Once again I briefly was involved in a discussion of what it means to be a Christian. This occurred on a Facebook page initiated by a brother in the Lord which involved reading a book by Bonhoeffer entitled Life Together and participating in a group discussion. Greg invited me to join the group/page discussion, and as is typical for me, I read a comment and jumped in with a response. I didn't notice at first that a book was being discussed, nor did I make the connection that I had therefore not read the chapter under consideration when I went blathering off with my thoughts.
Anyway, the point here besides my thick-skulled willingness to talk without knowing what I am talking about, is the wonder and curiosity and immediate thinking provoked for me when anyone who knows Jesus begins to speak of that relationship and how such plays out in the simple reality of daily living. The idea that we as humans have far more in common with one another on the basic level of our humanity than all the attention given to our differences, this commonality of human experience, fascinates me.
The conversation in question was largely over the position Bonhoeffer takes in his book on how Christians are to relate to one another: we relate to Christ first then to one another. This developed into a lively discussion on how Christians relate inside the family, that is as a gathered group labeled "church".
In commenting about that topic...again...I failed fairly miserably in the Facebook discussions to encourage others in this. The lack of my ability sent me into reflection before the Holy Spirit, which became some notes, which is becoming this next series of posts in the Wild Wood.
Anyway, it all boils down to this: sin is far too much the focus of what church is all about in modern day practice. Therefore, when the church seeks those outside the family of God for the purposes of evangelism, it is a constructed outreach that is handicapped by sinful attitudes on sin. This impacts the fellowship of those so gathered.