Can i say something? I seem to be having this real difficulty with the church structure. I hate it so much that it frightens me a bit. I greatly dislike a pastor standing at a pulpit and telling me how to see a verse or passage. Some people are naturals at speaking and others need some more work, and I need to know that those needing some more work can be openly buffed and rebutted for their mistakes. It's definitely important to have some authority in a church, but I think more importantly that the church is the body of Christ, where Christ is the head, not the pastor. And the fact that the body is made up of many parts, each just as important as the other, makes me question whether or not having a pastor tell us what is or is not true each week is really the best structure for a church. My church does something called "home church" where the church can meet in small groups and discuss passages together and share insights and ideas together on a one-to-one level, and I love it. There's no authority except that which is there to direct us in where in the bible we are studying so that we can all share our ideas in small group and as a greater group. It's definitely a fun way of doing church.
Another important thing is the way the church reaches out. We are God's hands and feet, ready to love all and serve all... or at least, we should be. It's so important to me that I see this done in my church, where Jesus should be embodied in his lovers. Sometimes the church is so callous to the messes around us that we seclude ourselves and act like we are above them all. Truth is, everyone who walks into a church building is a mess that's wearing a mask. It's just that when everyone is wearing one, no one seems to notice. Ugh, what I wouldn't give for people to start going to church in their grubs and looking like they do before God on any other day. It's not like we only see God sunday mornings. I'm pretty sure the omniscient God sees you when your in your pjs drooling on your pillow too. And it's time that people (like me) started to sing with their heart, not their mouth. And then it's time that people (again like me) got off their high horse, scruffed down into the dirt, and started washing people's feet. We are soooooo loved by God. Everyone of us. Whether you choose to love Him back or not. we should be realizing how special each person is in His eyes and treating them like gold. which brings me into one more conversation I had the other day.
I am a passivist, and I am currently acknowledging my bias so that all are aware before I write this. My dad and I were arguing about whether or not it is morally right to kill someone who is threatening someone else's life. He said yes. I said no. I have many objections to this. Firstly, when Jesus said, "Love your enemies," I'm pretty sure putting a bullet through their head was not included in this "love." Secondly, who am I to judge whether someone lives or dies? I am human and make mistakes like any other person; I certainly hope that someone wouldn't sentence me to hell for the rest of eternity because they thought it'd be in my best interests. Thirdly, greater love has no man than this: to lay down his life for his friends. Jesus gave me the ultimate example. He could've stopped anyone from killing him at any time but he kept with it. He was abandoned by everyone he ever loved. His disciple and friend of three years denied ever knowing him. His followers didn't bother telling people that they knew him. He was alone in the world and sad, but he died for no reason at all because he loved them. He split the temple curtain in two, splitting the barrier and bringing God into the realm of man. That's powerful love. Can I justifiably kill one of the people that he loved to this extent? Do I have any more right to this love than them? I guess that's your choice, though the answer seems plain to me.
Well, it's way past my bedtime.
Over and out.