We live in a fallen world
We live in a fallen world
Ever since the original sin of Adam and Eve, our world has had to suffer as a result of the sin that's in our world. This sin is a result of the bad decisions that man has made. The year 2020 will be remembered as a year that has brought a great amount of suffering and chaos.Covid-19 will be one of the infectious viruses that we will have to endure. Such as the common cold tuberculosis and influenza all are what we endure. We may come to the conclusion that this is the worst time ever in the history of mankind. Throughout history there has been times of social chaos during wars and global pandemics that others generations have had to experience.
What has occurred in these pandemic days has motivated us to think more about our faith, especially our identity as the children of God. Our various departments in our governments around the world has taken aim at what has become the identity of many religious groups that assemble. Christians have been forced to reconsider what defines our relationship with God, and our relationships with each other. Because of restrictions that have been placed on the Christians in reference to our assemblies, faithful Christians must reconsider our relationship with God. Is it possible to feel close to God in our homes as we do in the midst of our fellow congregates?
Many Christians identify their faith by the time that they spend in assemblies. Is it true that the heart of our theology is identified by these assemblies, particularly the assemblies of our Sunday morning worship services? The world – the unbelieving world – in many cases has understood Christians according to our actions that we perform towards others, and the ceremonies that take place in our church buildings around the world. This understanding that the world has of Christians has distorted the view of what Christian should be and the purpose of the church. It may be that this pandemic may help in correcting this great misunderstanding about the church. As many churches have been greatly restricted, or even shut down completely, many Christians begin to reevaluate their own personal identity and their purpose. Those in the world have started viewing Christians with a different perspective. It is also given many Christians more time to study God's Word and to have a deeper understanding of the faith that they have.
As we sit at home alone wondering if the church can ever exist when all the members are socially distanced from one another and alone in their homes. We have the great opportunity at this time to make sure that we have a biblical, scriptural understanding of the purpose of the church. The worship that we extract from the confines of our loneliness must be rediscovered and demonstrated in the privacy of our homes. These are certainly times that we need to reconsider if what we may have fabricated – developed traditions – over time that in itself has drifted us away from a close relationship with God Almighty. What we defined as worship may have been an invention for ourselves with less focus on God Almighty and more on our own emotional needs.
We may be sitting at home wondering if the Holy Spirit functions outside the church assembly? We may even wonder, and have convinced ourselves that if we don't perform certain acts of worship with fellow disciples in assemblies, we are not worshiping God. Worse; yet we may have even convinced ourselves that the identity of the church is established by the performance of these act of worship on Sunday morning during that "hour of worship."
Maybe the good – if there is any good – that will come out of the Covid-19 pandemic, as in the past the case of wars, is that we are forced into a social environment wherein we can better understand our inconsistencies in reference to church. We have a chance at this time, it is greatly needed, to refresh our studies of the purpose of the church, in particular our relationship with each other and God. Many times, in the past – Old Testament times – God has brought about the change that He desired, in His children through times of great chaos (the exile and Babylonian captivity). The children of Israel came back from captivity a changed people, and never again wandered off into self-righteousness and idol worship.
In the last several months in isolation we come to understand that church is not defined by assemblies. Church is defined by individuals that are driven by love, who have been baptized into Jesus Christ, and received salvation through His grace. When we come to realize this fact then we will find confidence in being at home alone in a relationship with Him.