Let's continue with our thoughts from the last DIY, shall we? If you have the memory of a goldfish and need to go over that again, here's a link to it. Go on. No, really, I can wait. *Whistles a merry little tune* Oh, good, you're back! Now... where were we... Oh yes, how the church fits into the Do-It-Yourself mindset.
There are many neglected aspects of Christianity in the West, such as spirituality (guilty), discipline (guiltier), and sexuality (guiltiest). But what some may not realize is that the church is one of the most neglected parts of Evangelical Christendom. It is becoming more commonplace to find someone who is spiritual, but not religious. We are interested in being involved with a god, but the line is drawn at the point where I have to share this with others (either giving it away or being a part of a mutual participation in it with others).
So what does the church have to do with DIY? Everything. If the DIY mentality claims people can do everything on their own, the church is the proclamation that no, they can't. The church is inherently community, communion if you will, within itself and with God. Assuming one holds to the doctrine of the Trinity (which I do), being made in the image of God is to be made with a communal spirit. The Trinity is in interacting, interpenetrating, and self-perpetuating entity, and the church finds her fullest being in this.
If I could boil all this down to a single sentence, it's this: The church matters!
There is more to be discussed, but it will have to wait for the time being. Next time, we'll deal with how the church matters instead of why. I'm thinking "why" should be a later post.
As always, leave your thoughts in the comments!
Grace and peace to you all,
Further reading for the interested:
Six Anti-Church Evangelical Trends at The Reformed Reader
Why Churchless Christianity Doesn't Work at Christianity Today
David Wells on "Churchless Christianity" at Reformation Theology
Books (links are to Amazon.com)
Allert, Craig D. A High View of Scripture? The Authority of the Bible and the Formation of the New Testament Canon. Edited by D. H. Williams. Evanglical Ressourcement: Ancient Sources for the Church's Future. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Academic, 2007.
Clapp, Rodney. A Peculiar People: The Church as Culture in a Post-Christian Society. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 1996.
Harper, Brad and Paul Louis Metzger. Exploring Ecclesiology: An Evangelical and Ecumenical Introduction. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Brazos Press, 2009.
Smith, James Bryan. The Good and Beautiful Community: Following the Spirit, Extending Grace, Demonstrating Love. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 2010.