May 08, 2005

David Giesbrecht - “Celebrating the Community of the Church”

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Sermon Recording: Download


David Giesbrecht (formerly librarian at Columbia Bible College and Regent College, and father of Karen, who led the worship service) spoke on "The Church as Community". When Jesus needed a retreat, he went to Caesarea Philippi, a non-Jewish civic center in which Herod constructed a great temple to Caesar and 14 temples to Baal. In this confused religious environment, Jesus asked friends what people had been thinking about him. When Peter confessed that Jesus was the Messiah, Jesus decided that his movement would not focus on building temples like those in Caesarea Philippi, but his church would be built on people like Peter (or better, on those who accepted his confession). Later the metaphor was developed further to say that the church is built of living stones. The ecclesia was an elected assembly in Athens which met about 30 times a year to consider how to help people. Early Christians used the word "ecclesia" for church, but we seem to have moved away from the primacy of helping people. One might also look at the church as the Bride of Christ, but whatever our point of view, we must remember that Christ (not we) is responsible for his church. Even though we do not own the church, we should not give up on it when things go badly wrong. We should work so that the church is the place where wholesome action is initiated. For example, the word "Shalom" appears about 250 times in Hebrew scripture. Practicing the type of peace explained in Luke 6.27-31 should be the goal of today's church ("Love your enemies"). Christ's ideas were so radical that he was thrown out of church. Today's Christians are actually more comfortable with the thinking of those who expelled Jesus than they are with the more difficult teachings of Jesus. [JEK]


Passage: Mt 16:13-20
Communion: No
Ecumenical or Event:
Potluck Lunch: No
Congregational Meeting: No


Speaker: David Giesbrecht
Worship Leader: Karen Giesbrecht
Song Leader: Andre Pekovich
Pianist: Kathryn Schmidt
Usher: Rovin Karuna
Zoom Coordinator:
Children's Feature Leader:


Bring Flowers:
Coffee Helper:
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Child Care Volunteer: Janice Kreider

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