• Why was this site started?

    slide06.jpgLet us begin with a very important fact. The goal of the site is not to criticize traditional or institutional churches. Yes, some of the articles make comparisons and some of the writers do strongly question traditional practices. However, those of us who have created this site did so for several reasons:

  • Our Best Articles

    bestartikle.jWe have over one hundred articles available on our site, so if you are a new visitor, you may be overwhelmed. Where should you start? Here you will find some of our best articles that we have posted since the s...

  • Incarnational Practices

    slide05.jpgYou are church before you do church. This is one of the fueling insights of the missional church movement. This isn't a new idea...but it is pretty provocative, especially when one considers its implications. If we take Jesus at his word when he says (as recorded in John 20:21) "as the Father has sent me, I am sending you," then we realize that our being sent is the basis of our "doing" church. In oth...

  • What is an Organic Church?

    slide04.jpg Organic Church. I've been using this term for around fifteen years now. Today it's become somewhat of a clay word, being molded and shaped to mean a variety of different things by a variety of different people.

    T. Austin-Sparks is the man who deserves credit for this term. Here's his definition:

More Than a Meeting PDF Print Write e-mail
Friday, 25 January 2008 02:45

 Have you heard recently these common phrases after church: "Have a great week!" or "See you next Sunday..."?

Nothing imaginable makes me cringe more than hearing these statements over and over again, like "going to church" is something akin to next weekend's "golf outing". Until the church - be that simple, house, or regular - sees Christianity as more than a meeting, we will have little to offer the unsaved masses around us.

I often reflect on these words by Roland Allen, a little known missionary to China whose promising career was cut short by poor health in the early 1900s. His voice is as prophetic as it gets! A voice that I truly wish more people would hear:

"If Christ had not said, "Go into all the world", the word "Go into all the world" is so manifestly the expression of the Spirit of Incarnation that whoever had first uttered it would have been instantly recognized as the mouthpiece of the Spirit.... The Spirit is prior to the letter. The letter does not create the Spirit but the Spirit the letter." (Missionary Principles)

You must agree with me that the Spirit of Christ wants more from us than a "See you next Sunday" Christianity!

Surely Jesus' death on the cross bought for us more than a "Have a great week!" faith. Surely, even if no New Testament author had penned these words "Thou shall share your life abundantly, everyday, with your new family in Christ", the Spirit of those same letters would demand that we do exactly that!!

If ever the world needed a return to the first century church life style and power, it is today!

"The first century church was a Way of Life - a lifestyle. Today, the watching world is still wanting to know if there is a way to live together in community that correctly manages the abuses of the fallen sin nature, including the abuses of sex, power and money. Does the church model the solutions to these issues? Therefore, church should be a web of relationships, of right relating." (Wolfgang Simson)

Encourage One Another Day After Day

"Take care, brethren, lest there should be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart, in falling away from the living God. But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called ‘Today,' lest anyone of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin." Heb 3:12-13

Recently I have taken on a part-time at our local Wal-Mart. I obviously don't quite fit the Wal-Mart mold, having just returned from the mission fields of Central Asia and now live with our family amongst the Muslims of our small community. As I have I talked quite openly with my co-workers about the Lord, I noticed that the average person has no clue to what a real Christian is. They also have little to offer their friends who are, indeed, seeking help and answers to life's difficulties.

Case in point. As I talked about Jesus and Christianity, it was quickly pointed out to me that: "I stopped going to church when the priest physically abused me as a young child." Another jumped in with
"I believe in reincarnation and don't believe in any bible, etc." When I further queried her if she also believed in coming back as "plant matter" (ie. a tomato) like the billion Hindus of the world, she could only offer up: "Oh, I don't believe in that kind of reincarnation!"

Most people - to create some sense of peace in the midst of difficult times - have created a "religion in their own image" and see no inconsistencies with living up to their own "personally created" moral standards. They are not attracted by a "See you next week" faith!

They may not see the inconsistencies of the own "religion" but they do see the inconsistencies of lifestyle by many Christians.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Jesus, a "once a week meeting" with fellow believers is not enough to sustain your spiritual life. It is not even "life support"... You are already dying!

To start on the road to reclaim Christianity, I believe we must breakout of the Sunday church mindset! We need to follow the New Testament example of meeting daily! (see the life of Jesus, and Acts 2:46-47, 5:42, 6:1, 16:5, 17:11, 19:9).

Maria and I often use the saying: "To have life within the meeting, you must have life outside the meeting." This means that, like Wolfgang Simson wrote above, we need a "web of relationships". A brotherhood and sisterhood, living in committed relationships, where we can - daily - "consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds." (Heb 10:24)

Yours for the least in the Kingdom,

Jeff Gilbertson




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