The question on the table is: Would Jesus attend church services?
Of course lots of people say – Heck no! Church is all messed up right now, he wouldn’t step into a church except to tear the place up.
I understand that “church” is not a synonym for “synagogue” – sadly it seems we have very limited options for fellowship. I long for the day when my savior and teacher is back on the hilltop to teach in person. But until then, what can I do?
Let’s see what example we have in scripture…
Yeshu *taught* in the synagogue – as was his custom (Luke 4:16).
When he got kicked out of his home town synagogue, he went out and started teaching other folks on the Sabbath.
So where was he every Sabbath? With people who wanted to learn! Since he was teaching a crowd all the time – I see that as some encouragement to be with other people.
I am so torn up about this.
I don’t want to be in the church because going there makes me cranky.
I argue. I get angry. I feel nauseous. I feel like I am faking it. I feel conflicted
It really kills me to see leadership leading a bunch of people away from God.
Replacing what God has put in place with garbage.
And if I want to follow what scripture actually says – for example – Keep the Sabbaths and teach your kids about the Exodus every year – The church gets all wacked out and tells me I am under some Jewish Burden of the Law and I don’t know what grace is for…
Seriously that makes me want to barf.
I am not saying I want to go back to church.
But on the other hand. If I am following my Savior’s example, I am not spending Sabbath alone, or just with my family. I am not hiding my light under a basket. I am not burying my talent in the dirt.
I should be out there, with people who love God. Celebrating. Studying. Growing.
Where are they?
My Savior didn’t go into the synagogue and blast everyone that was there. He didn’t tell people to stop gathering together to celebrate the Sabbath.
He did get pretty angry with the leadership of the study halls. He was angry that they were putting such heavy burdens on people who just wanted to praise God and learn more. He didn’t like to see the people’s faith dashed to pieces. He was also violently angry with the money changers who were basically out there telling the common folk that what they had was not good enough for God. Turning them away from worshipping Him with all they had. Telling them they needed something better, telling them to come back with a few more bucks and they could buy something that was *really* fit for presenting to the LORD.
Oh that…that…. really makes me so sad and angry.
That..breaks my heart.
Those thieves were taking advantage of common people who really just wanted to worship – money changers were not teachers, they were con artists that stole people’s faith and joy. Can you imagine? Going all the way to Jerusalem, bringing your very best? And then there is some guy at the door that tells you your best isn’t good enough?
That what you have to offer isn’t what God wants?
The very animal that God himself gave to you in the first place is not as good as what they can sell you for a price. So what do you do?
Do you go ahead and try to offer what you brought with that doubt some bozo planted nagging at your heart? What you have isn’t good enough…God really doesn’t want it or do you give up what you brought and settle for what they are offering? But your heart isn’t in it – this stupid lamb isn’t the best from *your* flock. It is just some random animal anyone with enough denarii could offer.
Why do we always get the idea that Yeshu’s feelings about the money changers were his feelings about fellowship in general? That he was some how really torqued with regular temple attendin’ folks? He came in an taught them as one with understanding. Not as if they were losers. But as an encourager. If he was chewing all the regular folks out…I imagine the crowd that followed him would have been smaller.
I just want to be clear – Yeshu was not upset with people for coming together. He did not chew folks out for the sin of being under bad leadership. It seems that he was even okay with what the people were being taught, as long as they didn’t believe they were better than other people (Matt 23:3) He was mad at people who stood between regular folks and their heavenly Abba.
Also mixing the Holy with the Profane is Wrong. On every level. And that is one of the core reasons I personally can not be in church.
Because every church I know of is guilty.
Our little local church does not have a cross in the sanctuary – just so you know. And people there do not bow down to any object that I know of. But they do have Christmas and Easter sevices and that is Not Okay with me.
But locking my self up in a cave seems equally wrong. I am starving from lack of service.
I am missing the opportunity to love others. Sitting on my hands seems a very foolish way to spend the short amount of time I have in this life – especially when I *know* I was put here to use them for good.
I thank God that I have the silly goats, because it is one small way that I can serve others. I help people with their animals. I educate them. And when they are here I love them. But it seems so small.
So…no I don’t think Yeshu would be heading for Son-Rise Service (except maybe to flip the pulpit and then gently bring the misled people back to understanding truth). But I don’t think he would be stubbornly sitting at home with His arms folded and his lip pouting that no gathering was good enough either. And that is what I am doing. And that is not right.