30 Oct Some Assembly Required
When I think about Jeremiah preaching in the wilderness (Jeremiah 31:7-9), I think about Luther rediscovering the radical simplicity of the good news of Jesus Christ, and then I look at where we are today…and I wonder…might we not be back under the thumb of some authority that is placing itself between God and us? Have we squandered our gifts?
Brothers and sisters, a new reformation needs to happen, not only in our church, but also in our lives. We have been brought back under the yoke of uncertainty as to our relationship with God and with each other. We are being divided from each other in the name of power and authority. Christianity has been hijacked and turned into a partisan political tool. Religion, our faith, has been made into a means to an end, and not the end itself.
Assembly is Required
But guess what? When it is made into a means to an end what we are left with is just a box of separate parts. We are being divided from each other, and from God, and we can’t work like that. Assembly is required. And what assembly is more likely to serve God’s purposes than the one that happens here every single Sunday morning? You cannot know God’s word for you unless you find your way to the one place you can be guaranteed to encounter that word and that is right here. You can read your Bible in your daily devotions, or in your small group, but it is here, in the Christian assembly, that we are put together again to serve the world.
A Word We Need to Hear
Hear God’s word for you. It’s is really simple. You don’t need an advanced degree or any other book in the faith section of the bookstore. God loves us so much that he gave his Son to die for us. You didn’t deserve that gift, you still don’t, and yet it is yours today, tomorrow, each and every day. You will not consistently hear that word in any other place but in your church. Would that the church always be about that Word! Would that we would reject the forces of division and work together to serve our neighbors. The needs are so great, but God’s love is bigger, and his treasury is bottomless.