Topic

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]

Service Details

Passage: Mt 16:13-20

Communion: Yes

Ecumenical or Event:

Potluck Lunch: No

Congregational Meeting: No

Worship Team

Speaker: David Giesbrecht

Worship Leader: Karen Giesbrecht

Song Leader: Andre Pekovich

Pianist: Kathryn Schmidt

Usher: Rovin Karuna

Childrens Feature Leader:

Hospitality

Bring Flowers:

Coffee Helper:

Sound Helper:

Sunday School Team

Child Care Volunteer: Janice Kreider