The Ark and the Temple Don’t Make Church

GodReflection: It’s Jesus Friday

garyguarujaI am just the right age to have roots that tangle their way back to conclusions drawn from the Enlightenment and the discovery of the Scientific Method. Both attempt to codify and to prove.

Scripture makes a wonderful playground to find exact instructions and patterns then deduce an application for today’s reality. Since there was a pattern for A and B, there must be a pattern for C.

Countless times I’ve read Scripture’s precise instructions for Noah’s ark and for Solomon’s temple. Today’s architectural and engineering expertise could produce closely accurate models of either.

I find limits when I attempt to reason backward from the known to the unknown in my effort to understand God’s written Word.

blueprint1For example, I overstep the bounds of Scripture when I attempt to construct a pattern for church that makes church reproduction a Biblical rubber stamp.

To piece into a pattern bits and pieces of information found in the New Testament Letters by the Scientific Method doesn’t  make an adequate fit for church.

It occurs to me that Old Testament Scripture may offer a better pattern for church than the Ark and the Temple.

How about the Cities of Refuge? In some ways they make a rather good analogy to church. The cities were designed around purpose not blueprints.

A city of refuge meant safety. Its purpose was to save life. It signified security. The city of refuge offered hope. For the fugitive who made it to the city, peace and tranquility was the reward.

blueprint9God set no dimensions for His safe cities. Nothing is said about construction size, streets, or buildings. I suspect each had its own character while no two were identical. No pattern here. The cities existed for their purpose not their design.

My city of refuge is the church, the body of Jesus. No blueprint here. The church is designed for its purpose. It doesn’t specify precision and form. Broken and chipped bricks find a nice fit. Even shattered glass fits into body architecture.

The church is the body of Christ. The church is Jesus.

It is built from the boneyard of humanity. No precise blueprint can anticipate the mangled and tangled material that will find a perfect fit.

In Jesus we fugitives found hope, safety, and security. We found life, peace, and tranquility. In Jesus I find a city of refuge.

Jesus makes church and what makes church my refuge is Jesus.

Once again I must conclude—if I get Jesus right, I will get church right.

It’s Jesus.

Stay tuned.

Dr. Gary J. Sorrells – A GodReflection on Blueprint Church.





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