“Spiritual life was far more than what went on within the walls of a building for an hour on Sunday morning. It was manifest in lives so overpowered by the Holy Spirit that they became living letters of Jesus Christ (II Cor. 3:3). It was the kingdom life of the Spirit, the rule of God translated by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit into tangibles like righteousness, peace, and joy (Rom. 14:17). It was a “program of God,” centered in the redemptive work of Jesus Christ, with cosmic dimensions to touch every part of life for Christ.

     None of this means some N0-church movement…But it does mean preaching “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:28). It means preaching the kingship of Christ, the rule of God, that all life belongs to the Lord – not just “church” life, or even merely home life, personal life, school life. It means all societal life patterns and relationships. This means Christian action as the body of Christ, an expression of the communion of the saints in the home, in education, in politics, in journalism, in art, in science.” Harvie M. Conn, Contemporary World Theology: A layman’s guidebook. (out of print)

Sobering words from the late great Harvie M. Conn on the nature of Spiritual life among the early church, and a challenge for us today as well. Are we treating our spiritual lives with God as something performed in certain places, rather than something embodied everywhere?

There is so much posturing around being “Gospel-Centered” today that at times it appears all one has to do is say it and a multitude of social offences are ignored by the holy huttle. Whereas Christ would say be in the world but not of it; and would stick to it on us, saying something like, “you got out of the boat…what happened half  way?” 🙂

I’m left wondering, do we realize as Harvie did that the program of God’s salvation is centered in the redemptive work of Jesus Christ, with cosmic dimensions to touch every part of life for Christ.“?

(Photographic art by Factoids)