Monday, July 31, 2017

Earle: the task of the Church

Monday, July 31, 2017
    Commemoration of Ignatius of Loyola, Founder of the Society of Jesus, 1556
    For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Whoever thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men.
    —Romans 14:17-18 (ESV)
    It is sometimes said that even if no rules were laid down for the conduct of its affairs, the Church, being created by Jesus to “further the work of the Kingdom of God,” can be judged by the extent to which it is successful in continuing his work. This supposition rests upon a misunderstanding of what is meant by “the Kingdom of God” ... The Kingdom itself is not something to be “furthered” or “built” by men’s efforts. It is something which we are invited to recognize as already present, after a manner, in the life and work of Jesus. It is something to be inherited or entered into by those who believe. The Church’s task, in other words, is not to set the stage for a better world than this one but to draw the curtain from it, to reveal something that is already there.
    ... Nick Earle (1926-2014), What’s Wrong with the Church?, Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1961, p. 14 (see the book)
    See also Rom. 14:17-18; Matt. 6:33; 18:3; Luke 17:20-21; John 3:3-5; 18:36; 1 Cor. 4:20; 1 Thess. 2:11-12
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, reveal the Kingdom within my life.
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