Our scriptures utilize two re-occurring and beloved images.
Our Romans scripture emphasizes the imagery of the church as a body, specifically the body of Christ. Paul settles on the language to describe diverse members with differing functions incorporated into a single entity, inter-connected for a common purpose and mission.
While our Gospel scripture embraces word play with the imagery of a rock, a solid foundation upon which the church will be built. However, church is an assembly not a building, as Martin Luther wrote:
The scriptures speak plainly about the church and use the word in one sense only… the community or assembly of all believers in Christ on earth… This community or assembly includes everyone who lives in true faith, hope, and love. So it is the essence, the life, the nature of the church to be an assembly of hearts united in faith, not an assembly of bodies… It is a spiritual unity… but the blind Romanist makes it into an external community like any other.
(The Papacy in Rome).
Since the church is an assembly of hearts spiritually united, shall we explore the rock it is built upon?Read the rest of this entry »