The Institution of Religion....the ITgreenspun.com : LUSENET : church of Christ : One Thread
The title of the book I am writing is, "Let My People Go.....From the Institution that Engulfs Them."
It is important that we seek God's plan for His family as we compare what is going on today in the Churches. Do the practices match the scriptures? Does it matter if they match or not? These are important questions.
What is the institution that engulfs us? The best way to define the institution is by showing ITS results. I say "IT" because the institution is separate and apart from the saints of God. The institution can be planted, built, and started by men. It is not the family of God man can build.. The family of God was built by our Lord as people accepted His unfolding plan through obedience to His will. What Jesus started cannot be restarted by man. What Jesus planted cannot be replanted by man. When one goes to an area and "starts" a Church he is in fact, starting an IT. Something besides God's family. We are the created beings. God created us for His companions. We are the clay, He is designer. Therefore, when we become a part of something God did not design we are participating in an IT. We do not have that right. Back to the original question: Does it really matter?
It is not an easy task to begin talking about the results of the institution of religion. Possibly the best starting point would be in what holds up the institution. We would have to admit that would be the Church treasury. Without the Church treasury the IT would collapse. Without the Church treasury there would be no Church buildings, no salaries to pay for the different systems in the institution. There would be no business for the Board of Directors to run, leaving the elders to do the work God directed them to do: living among the people as an example the saints will want to follow. Being biblically literate to the extent they can teach those who are young in the faith.
With the collapse of the institution and its systems, Christians would have to do their own studying...their own search for the will of God. The saints would be allowed to be the stewards God intended they be where they wouldn't turn their stewardship over to others. There would be no man-made rules and regulations set in place to hinder their relationship with God. There would be no intimidation, no fear of censorship and no fear of being cast out when the rules were broken. Without all of this there would be true freedom in Christ. Freedom to serve the living God as He continues His unfolding plan.
Later: Commandments given to individuals and not to groups whether the individuals worship God in their daily lives or whether they get together with other Christians as they encourage and edify one another through interaction.
-- "Come let us reason together"
-- Nelta Brock (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 05, 2004