The early church was made up of communities of people who gathered to pray and to help one another live the inclusive love of Jesus. What about us? Through the centuries, we have evolved into our present structure. Are we a community of believers reflecting the “way” of Jesus in our society, or are we merely reflecting the injustices, exclusion and self-preoccupation of our society under the name of religion? Today, as in the past, we have the same call to be the community of Jesus – a people who try to live a life based in the justice and love taught by Jesus.
Lord, help us to be known as your disciples by our love for one another.
Where does my church fail in modeling the reign of God? How can I help to change things?
The community of believers was of one heart and mind,
and no one claimed that any of his possessions was his own,
but they had everything in common.
With great power the apostles bore witness
to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus,
and great favor was accorded them all.
May every Church and Christian community be a place of mercy amid so much indifference.
Our lack of community is intensely painful. A TV talk show is not community. A couple of hours in a church pew each Sabbath is not community. A multinational corporation is neither a human nor a community, and in the sweatshops, defiled agribusiness fields, genetic mutation labs, ecological dead zones, the inhumanity is showing.
David James Duncan
What was true of an ancient community of Christian believers struggling with a powerful and appealing philosophy is also true for Christians in a postmodern context. Arguments that deconstruct the regimes of truth at work in the late modern culture of global capitalism are indispensable. So also is a deeper understanding of the counterideological force of the biblical tradition. But such arguments are no guarantee that the biblical metanarrative will not be co-opted for ideological purposes of violent exclusion, nor do arguments prove the truth of the gospel. Only the nonideological, embracing, forgiving and shalom-filled life of a dynamic Christian community formed by the story of Jesus will prove the gospel to be true and render the idolatrous alternatives fundamentally implausible.
Brian J. Walsh
Christian community is the place where we keep the flame of hope alive among us and take it seriously so that it can grow and become stronger in us.
Our relationship with each other is the criterion the world uses to judge whether our message is truthful – Christian community is the final apologetic.
Christian ethics is not primarily an individualistic, one-on-one-with-God brand of personal holiness; rather it has to do with living the life of the Spirit in Christian community and in the world.
I believe there are too many practitioners in the church who are not believers.
C. S. Lewis