Duh--What church should I attend?

Part # 3 of three Part Blog:

  1. Why go to church?
  2. What is the ‘church?’
  3. How to find the right congregation?

How to find the right congregation?

A congregation is what we normally refer to as a church.  Here is the distinction I am making.  
The Church;
This is the one described in my previous blog… “what is the church.”  It is the timeless eternal body of believers.
A Congregation:
This is a local gathering of believers who are part of “The Church”.
Think of it this way—-three levels:

Level # 1-  THE CHURCH—the mystical eternal union of all believers.

Level # 2-   The Church in a town/ city/ area.  Because of level # 1, there is realistically only ONE church in a town, city, etc.

Level # 3-  Congregations:  These are various groups of people that meet together for primarily four interactive, communal, things:

  1. Word:  Preaching, teaching, sharing
  2. Sacrament:  Celebration of the Lord’s Supper (communion/ eucharist)
  3. Worship: Music, readings, silence, gifts
  4. Prayer:  Communal prayer, interaction, liturgies 

But, all of this is done communally —which creates the family, body, building, vine illustrations from blog #1. 

The key point is understanding the purpose of church.  Because the church is a body, the body(congregation) that I become a part of —frankly needs me.  If it doesn’t need me, it is not a body!  It is not a building!  It is not a vine!  It might even be an aberration of the church?  It may indeed be a group of people, an organization, but it can’t be a church. 

A congregation —by virtue of definition and essence—needs me. 

For a congregation to be ‘set in order’ a congregation needs the following things:

  1. Members
  2. Leadership
  3. Governmental standards and procedures 

Now to the real question:  How to find the right congregation.
There are a series of things that you need to do:

  1. You need to seek the LORD and ask where does He need you to be.  The Lord has a place for you to be. 
  2. The congregation which you will join will be your family—so choose wisely.   
  3. Please recall, the congregation that you will join is the congregation that needs you.  You are to be part of the body—so you need a place to minister and function.  
  4. Combine all the above with your spiritual temperament and appetite. 
  5. Avoid a consumeristic mentality—-the what’s in it for me. This is not helpful and is really not Biblical.


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