The Church in Today’s Society – Part 1 of 3? (at least 3 at this point)

Christianity and Black Holes Christianity and Two Black Holes in Space

And so we begin… While my wife was reviewing for me the things that made headlines of late, she mentioned one that stated "Pair of Black Holes Locked in Death Dance" (from cnn.com) Stick with me on this one. It takes a little while, but like a good mystery novel, there are clues to the plot along the way, and if you haven't gotten it yet, I give it all away at the end…

Here's the money quote…

Black holes can't be seen. Their presence is inferred by their gravitational effects on their surroundings and by radiation from near the black hole, where a feeding frenzy superheats gas so much that it emits X-rays.

Determining that these two black holes will collide involved other indirect evidence, drawing data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory.

OK!!!! Did you get it? What on earth (bad pun) does a black hole have to do with Christianity, the Church, and Today's Society? Lets look at the first sentence in the quote. Remember that this is a major international news source talking about something that "Can't be seen" and whose existence "must be inferred by their "effects on their surroundings". You there yet??? Try this on for size…

The Church is not a building. It is not merely a person, nor even a collection of people, for if it were, every collection of people could be called a Church, and rightly so. It must, therefore have a distinguishing characteristic that separates it from a mere "gathering". What is it?

How about its EFFECT on the society in which it exists? Paul said to the church at Corinth in 1 Cor 2 4-5:

4My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, 5so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power.

He was asking them to have faith in something (Heb 1:11 – Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen) they could not see (God, God's Power) based on evidence (demonstration) that was given them in support of that something's existence. He was basing its existance on a purponderance of the evidence. For there to be evidence, there must have been some resulting effect. Lets see Exodus 4:29-30 for another example of the EFFECT of the unseen force of God, through His people, on their surroundings…

29Moses and Aaron brought together all the elders of the Israelites, 30 and Aaron told them everything the LORD had said to Moses. He also performed the signs before the people, 31 and they believed.

I find it no small thing that the statement "and they believed" comes after the performance. The evidence begat the belief. Ok…. Summing up before I start preaching…

I believe the key point of the black hole is that the world, whether we believe it or not, is willing to accept the existance of something that they cannot and will not ever see with their naked eye if we are willing to give them enough evidence of its existance. To do that, we need to be living lives that have an effect on our surroundings, and as a Church, our grouping and gathering needs have the same, if not a magnified effect.

May it be said that there was enough "other indirect evidence" in our lives and our churches that it causes others to ask, ponder, and maybe even, to join us and believe. Who knows. Maybe we will see the Church in a headline on CNN that says that "a collection of great bodies with a super-supernatural power that you cannot see appear to be coming into allignment to potentially effect millions of the bodies within the scope of their unexplainable gravitational pull" — And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. -John 12:32

Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. – Mat 7:20

Up Next: Christians in Business

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6 Responses to “The Church in Today’s Society – Part 1 of 3? (at least 3 at this point)”

  1. Mark Wilson Says:

    Amen brother. I tried to read this yesterday but couldn’t get into it, too abstract… but today I got it. Fabulous. Well done.

    Church is… where you (and I) are.

  2. Chad Houck Says:

    Precisely Mark. Too often we rely on the church (ie building, staff, ministers) to be the tool that we expect God to use to effect the world. But He said that he keeps this treasure in earthly vessels… us… Each of us is the temple of the Living God and each has the innate ability to effect the world through the power of the Spirit resident within us. His word, the very truth of Christ himself is written on all our hearts.

    We simply need to open our walls that we build in fear around our Christianity to keep the prosecuting world away, and avail ourselves to a hurting world with the one and only answer that heals, reveals, and deals with every problem we could ever face. Thank you Lord.

  3. Jessica Says:

    Chad… such an inspired smartie!!!
    Man deep thoughts by Chad… i think I had one of those brief moments last night, but I’ll have to get back to you on that one.

    But man… it’s true. As of late, (to use your seemingly intelligent lingo) I have been really working on my family… and it’s true if we (the church) could have a great enough effect on the people around us ,that they would have to stand up and notice… and even better, check it out! If we could actually stand up in ever situation and the whole community of “Christians” actually be who they claim (a follower of Christ) what an impact it would make. If the world were to look at these “Christians” and truly see Christ. If they could walk into a place (especially a church) and feel the love of God radiating from each Christian. There would be no debate… We don’t debate if there is wind or not, we simply feel it and know it’s there. We don’t see it, but we see the trees sway, the way the wind picks up leaves and dirt. We see the way it transports things and changes the feel of everything. But when we feel it we don’t ponder whether wind exists or not. We take it at it’s words, or lack there of, and know it’s going by, know it’s sweeping things away. So that I guess is the way it should be with God. As for those who need a little more than a feeling and someone calling it “wind” or “God” I think that is truly what the church is for. To be that light in the darkness… to be the arrow that points toward God. But Christians so often hide their light in fear like you said and shrink back from any opportunity to point someone in the right direction. I understand the fear! But to any Christians held back by that fear, including myself, I want to ask, “Doesn’t perfect love cast out all fear??” At least that’s what my bible says…

  4. owoidoho Patrick Says:

    it is true! In my country a church is characterize by how big? Whats the population?etc. ‘just as business’ But if we all rise to this revelation, it will take us far…

  5. menyene Anieunam Says:

    waow, am really blessed with all ya coments,this article should be published in a hard copy so it can educate the “church”, its workers, and the Christians. The knowledge of this revelation is a seasoned one and the time to act is now! God bless you

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