Sunday, October 21, 2007

What Would Jesus Build?

Rick wrote an interesting post on his site discussing what Jesus would do with the church. I've wondered many of these same things over the last few years. Would He be as proud of the things the Church has done as we are? What does He really want?

This line of discussion highlights another similar discussion my brother-in-law and I had recently. We're both currently stationed overseas, he in Italy and me in Germany. We went to Rome back in January of 2007 with our families to see the usual sites. This trip involved a visit to St. Peter's Basillica. At first I was struck by the grandure and the history of the place. I mean, I stood right on the spot where Charlemagne was crowned the first Holy Roman Emperor. All the marble, the statues, the's very easy to be swept up in the place. But then an uneasy feeling swept over me. What is it all for? What would Jesus think of this place? How much money was spent building this place? How many lives could have been bettered, how many more missionaries sent off to the lost, how many more widows and orphans taken care of? I can't help but feel this in every cathedral we visit now. Some say these churches are so grand in order to help the visitor look to and imagine the grandure of God. I say we can see that in the face of every new sinner who gives his life to the Lord at the altar. The tears streaming down their eyes are much more beautiful than the biggest pipe organ in the world could ever be.

Unfortunately, I see some of the same in America. How "nice" does a church have to be in order to make God happy? Is there a minimum standard? I'm positive there are plenty of open-air churches and churches with no walls in Africa more alive, more vital, and more relavant, than many of our grand churches here in the states. It's the people that make the church...not the building.


Todd said...

That post gets an "Amen" with a couple of "whoop-whoops," two big snaps, and a "Hallelujah!" Well said, young man. You nailed it!

James said...

I have to disagree with the lot of you. What would Jesus build? What would the author of the best-selling book of all time build? The subject of thousands of other books, speeches, and the subject of dozens of movies build? What would one of the earth's most well-known personages build? I think he would build the Grand Canyon, the Andes and the Himalayas, he'd cause the sun to rise above Kilimanjaro and hang the moon and stars in the sky. I think he'd color the sky blue and paint the leaves and grass with a thousand shades of green. He'd build the kind of stuff that would amaze even those that did not believe in him.