Last week, I was talking with someone, when he brought up the subject of the church. He had read some of my blog posts, and he asked me why I started studying the church.
I explained that I began questioning some of my own understanding of the church during a seminary class on the subject of worship. One of my assignments was to write an essay on worship. I decided to write an essay about the “worship service” from a scriptural perspective.
The more I studied the subject, the more difficult it became to write the essay. Eventually, I changed the topic of my essay, but I continued the study the “worship service.” I quickly learned that what I had been taught (either through books, classes, preaching, or example) could not be backed up by Scripture.
This led me to study the church meeting from Scripture. I soon discovered that many (most?… all?) ecclesiology (and then theological) topics are intertwined. Thus, changing what I understood about the church meeting meant that I also needed to examine what I understood about communion (the Lord’s Supper), church leadership, fellowship, spiritual gifts, etc.
But, as I begin to think back about the conversation with my friend last week, and other conversations that I had with other people during the last few years, I remembered that different people begin to examine their own understanding of the church for different reasons.
If you (currently or in the past) have questioned your understanding of the church, what caused (prompted) you to being that study in the first place? If you haven’t questioned your understanding of the church, what convinces you that what you’ve been taught is valid?
(I’m not saying that my understanding of the church is valid; I’m simply interested in other people’s thoughts on this.)