So far, there have been six posts in our “City Church” chain blog experiment. I’ve enjoyed this format, because I’ve been able to read each post and think about each post before moving on to the next one in the chain. I’ve also appreciate the different perspectives and priorities that different people have brought to this discussion. So far, this is the chain:
Link 1: “City Church – A Chain Blog” by Alan Knox
Link 2: “City Church: Meeting” by Charlie Wallace
Link 3: “Roadblocks on the Path to City Church” by David Rogers
Link 4: “The Major Roadblock to a City Church” by Steve Sensenig
Link 5: “The Resurrection of the City Church: Who Will Move the Stone?” by Paul Grabill
Link 6: “A City Church Thought Experiment” by Jon Amos
Link 7: ?
If you would like to write the seventh post in this chain, leave a comment on Jon’s post which is link #7 in the list above.
Honestly, I’m still thinking through many of the aspects of one church in city. We certainly see this in Scripture. For now, I think it is most important to begin thinking of believers in my area – not just in my local congregation – as my brothers and sisters. Beyond thinking of others as brothers and sister, it is also important to begin building relationships with them. David (ded) left the following comment on Steve’s post (Link #5) concerning the humility necessary to seem a wide range of believers as your brothers and sisters:
Iâ€™d just like to add a thought regarding holding oneâ€™s doctrine with humility.
The first use of doctrine in NT Greek is â€“ Mt 15:9 ‘But in vain do they worship Me, Teaching as DOCTRINES THE PRECEPTS OF MEN.’ Spoken by Jesus to Pharisees.
The Greek word translated â€œdoctrineâ€ just means teaching or instruction. That’s it. We are the ones who determine what we teach from the Word and the interpretation it is given. Cults use the written words of the Bible and call it doctrine. We can call anything and everything we teach from Scripture “doctrine.”
So whose “doctrine” is going to apply to all of us? Here is where humility is called for desperately. Isn’t humility part of the NT teaching concerning godliness? Much scriptural evidence supports this conclusion.
If I accept humility as part of godliness, how can I reject being humble about anything including what I believe from the Scripture? Whatâ€™s more, to separate from others in direct violation of Jesus words about unity and brotherhood demands by Jesus own words in Matthew 5-7 from the Sermon on the Mount, that I expect to be judged myself in a like manner. Ouch! Thank you, Lord, for the “hard” word that does not give us self-righteous wiggle room!
When the Scripture is so completely clear about the nature of love (I Cor. 13) and the consequence of hating oneâ€™s brother (I John 4:20) how can anyone choose not to fellowship with believers outside their denomination?
Refusing to fellowship with brethren who proclaim clearly the Cross of Christ (His blood atonement thus fulfilling Godâ€™s righteous judgment against humanity)and His Resurrection (upon which the wonder of regeneration by the Spirit is fulfilled) is to completely fail accurate discernment of the Body of Christ, His Holy Bride.
Denying to accept unity of brethren for which Christ prayed in John 17, reduces all doctrines upon which such division is based to nothing more than the doctrines based on the precepts of men which are warned against by Jesus and associated with Pharisees.
I realized years ago that I belong to the church in my city. Period. I am brother to all who live here and proclaim Him the Crucified Lamb and the Resurrected First Born among many. They may reject me for various reasons. That is on them. I love them all and we would enjoy communion with each, should I be given the opportunity.
I submit this observation humbly and for review by others, but such is my “doctrine.”
Thank you again, David.