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Ultimate community

I think you could make a pretty good case for the idea that community is a concept of growing significance in our world today.  It seems as if there’s been an awakening among many to its importance and place in our lives.  This is good news because it acknowledges the truth God Himself spoke when He said it was not good for man to be alone.  At the time, He was speaking specifically of Adam’s need for Eve but more generally I believe He was speaking of the need we all have for community. 


We form communities on many levels in response to this primal need.  We are part of biological communities we call families, geographical communities we call towns, educational communities we call schools, professional communities we call associations, and the list goes on.  All of these are good and have their place, but they’re all also limited in their ability to bring and keep people together.  At best they bring certain groups of people together for a certain period of time.  And because of this, they reflect man’s ultimate inability to create ideal community.  We are like Adam naming the animals but not finding among them anything that really corresponds to who he is.  Our attempts at community reflect our powerlessness to create it.  


But God stepped in and created Eve.  He did for Adam what he was unable to do for himself to teach him that marriage was the product of grace.  In the same way, God did for us what we were unable to do for ourselves to teach us that ultimate community is the product of His grace.  Paul develops all of this in Ephesians 2:11-18 where he talks of the cross bringing Jew and Gentile together in the body of Christ. 


The church is ultimate community.  Though it is filled with flawed human beings, they are brought together by the perfect love and sacrifice of Jesus.  They pursue the perfect model of Christ.  They have a perfect Father.  They all share the same status (forgiven) and possess the same Spirit.   There is a place for everyone in this community regardless of race, nationality, or background. 


Nobody brings people together like Jesus Christ and people in Christ have a unity unlike anything in the world.


“. . . to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”  (Ephesians 3:21) 


Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” (Ephesians 4:1)   


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