Whose Kingdom are YOU building?

7 Jul

I was talking to a friend today, who also happens to attend Ebenezer. He told me an interesting story about something that happened to him last night at his house.

He answered an evening knock on his door last night to find two people. He said he knew what was coming next: “Hi, we are from X church (a local, non-denominational church in Florence) and we would like to visit with you.” He told them he and his wife are happy to attend and be members of Ebenezer. That was not a good answer. The woman asked if this was the home of _____ (his wife’s name) and he said yes, and they attend Ebenezer. The visitor asked “Are you satisfied with Ebenezer?” He was shocked. He said he felt like he was getting a spam call from ATT or Verizon. He answered yes, for the next shocking question: “Are you sure you are going to heaven?”

As a student of evangelism, I have no problem with the second question. The context, and how it was asked, seemed to be a reflection of WHERE he attended church. The first question was very much an impersonal marketing ploy, but it all got me thinking:

Are those folks over there trying to build the Kingdom of God, or THEIR OWN KINGDOM?? Wouldn’t a better question have been “Are you satisfied with your walk with Jesus Christ?” WHY AIM IT AT THE CHURCH??? Not a direct statement, but that was certainly a passive-aggressive way to say “Ebenezer is really not connected to Jesus and how could you be satisfied??”

Oh, the games churches play!! I will go on record as saying I don’t play those games. I don’t think I have ever asked someone where they go to church, and followed their answer up with a slam against their church or their pastor … Regardless of what I really thought. I’ve even had people visit me, tell me all of their church’s dirty laundry and why they feel they should leave, and tell them the best thing they can do is stay and try to help the church work through the problems. We at Ebenezer have our share of problems, and running from it is never a good idea. I write all of this and freely admit that I am not perfect. I make mistakes. I get angry (I almost AM right now). But I could never orchestrate such against another Christ-believing church, a sister church of mine, and stand before God one day with a clear conscience.

Because, the New Testament clearly tells us we are ONE BODY OF CHRIST. ANYONE WHO BELIEVES CHRIST IS THE ONLY WAY TO HEAVEN IS MY BROTHER OR SISTER. End of story. Regardless of where they go to church. Or Sunday School. Regardless of whether or not they believe Adam had a belly-button, or where they stand on the all-important fried chicken vs roast beef Sunday lunch debate, or anything ELSE equally important in the grand scheme of things.

There is ONE GOD. We worship Him at Ebenezer. I happen to know they worship Him at Calvary Baptist, Central United Methodist, First Presbyterian, Effingham Presbyterian, and the list could go on and on.

The ONLY WAY we can make a difference here is to make sure WE ARE BUILDING GOD’S KINGDOM as a church. As churches. Will you join me??

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: