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  • David

    February 14, 2022 at 6:17 am

    The Seedbed Daily Text, February 14, 2022

    If self-deception is measured by understanding that the Church is not about my church, then my self-deception quotient is zero. After nearly forty years of trying to build, revitalize, revision or reform my local church and my denomination, I came to the stark realization that the Church is not the denomination, the organization or mine to build. The Church is Jesus’s Church and He is building it with or without me. His formula for doing that is the Great Commission that He gave first to Peter and the Apostles and then to us. We don’t need better churches. We need better Disciples and fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ. As one of my favorite church development authors put it, “When you build churches you will sometimes get Disciples, but when you make Disciples you always get the Church” (Mike Breen, 2011).

    Another form of self-deception is the idea that we make Disciples. That is our commission and number one job, but we don’t actually make a Disciple any more than we save people or build the Church. Only Jesus Christ through the work of the Holy Spirit can save or make Disciples. Our job is to create environments and processes whereby people can encounter and be transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit. Our role is a matter of being and doing. We become like Christ for the sake of others and we do what He commanded us to do. To live any other way is self-deception and an “empty way of life.”

    A closing thought, I am not bashing the local church or even denominations. They are important components in a comprehensive approach to making disciples. Where they become problematic and even harmful is when they become self-deceived, self serving organizations more focused on preserving the organization and their form of religion than making Disciples for the transformation of humanity and the World we live in. The organization is merely a means to an end, not an end in and of itself. JD put his finger on the challenge we have today, many of our churches and denominations are just “collectively self-deceived human built organizations” that have no idea that they are self deceived. Wake up sleeper, and rise from the dead. . .