You Don’t Need the Church, But You Do Need the Kingdom

It is not enough to profess faith in Jesus Christ.  We must obey Him.

Our obedience does not consist in going to church and engaging in the rituals of religion.  Rather, it consists in obeying the commandments of God which are that we should love one another. 

You do not need the church, but you do need the kingdom.  Church is visible, tangible, and outward.  The kingdom is invisible, intangible, and inward.  The kingdom is a way of life whereby you think every thought and perform every action to please Jesus Christ. 

As you seek to please Jesus you will begin to sense His approval in your soul.  This approval is more important than the approval of any human being. 

As you grow in your obedience, so you will grow in your joy and peace.

This is the gospel of the kingdom.  There is no gospel of church.

Bible notes on this post.

The purpose of this blog is to praise Jesus Christ for those who want to hear about Him without having to join a church.

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12 Replies to “You Don’t Need the Church, But You Do Need the Kingdom”

  1. Would you say that if you find a good, biblical church that this can be helpful and more beneficial than no church at all for in at least some aspects? I think that Christian community and accountability is very helpful in ones walk with God. It may not be necessary, but I think it is certainly helpful, in say, something like a sin issue where support and encouragement of a church would be nice.

    1. The two worthwhile things a church today can do are 1) to preach Jesus Christ, and 2) to help the poor. However, you can achieve both of these goals without going to church.

      As for accountability for sin, no human group – large or small – can provide this. Only when we are accountable to God can sin be overcome for only He can see our hearts where all sin begins.

  2. I strongly disagree here. There are sin issues in our lives that I don’t think we can overcome through sheer willpower. God created the Kingdom of Heaven in order for us to have encouragement in these matters from our brothers and sisters in Christ. The “church” is actually just the other people in the Body of Christ, and the building just happens to be a convenient place to meet and socialize with them. I agree that that part may be unnecessary.

    One of the keys to overcoming a sin, say like pornography or addiction of any sort, is accountability to someone apart from God. God is the means by which we free ourselves from the bondage of sin, but He seems to have given us resources to help us in this battle, namely, other Christians. There are things like X3 Watch and stuff to help in this regard, and the purpose is so that we can’t rationalize ourselves, or even lie to ourselves about our problem, but so that someone can encourage us as we try to overcome the issue, whether drug or alcohol addiction, pornography, etc.

    I am partially confused by your first sentence here. Are you saying that Christian friends are not worthwhile and non-Christian friends are better? What about helping prevent heresy and false teaching? Is that useless? What about simply being able to discuss God and what He has done in your life with others who feel the same way? What about prayer and encouragement in hard times? Are these are things that are not worthwhile? I think they are very worthwhile, and, along with the two that you name, are the purpose of the church. Its hard, in my mind, to say that these things are useless and we are better off without them, because surely that is not the case. It may be that we can get along without them, but just as I can “get along” without an education of some sort, it certainly doesn’t hurt to have one.

    1. There are sin issues in our lives that I don’t think we can overcome through sheer willpower.

      I am not talking about willpower. I am talking about living in the sight of the Lord, doing those things that are pleasing in His eyes. I am talking about seeing Him who is unseen. When we do this, it is His power that empowers us.

      One of the keys to overcoming a sin, say like pornography or addiction of any sort, is accountability to someone apart from God.

      If this were true, pornography would not be a problem among churchgoers.

      I have never known anyone to be so addicted to pornography that they looked at it in front of other people (parents, spouses, etc.). On the contrary, people hide this sort of behavior so they won’t be caught. If you can hide this sort of behavior from people, why not hide it from God? The reason people don’t hide it from God (which means, of course, not to do it at all) is that they fear people but don’t fear God. Fear God and you will be empowered to resist sin. Fear man and you will remain ensnared in sin.

      Human fellowship is good, but fellowship with God is what we need most of all.

      1. Of course people don’t do it in front of others in most cases. But surely others can help us see Him more clearly. Its hard to say that its as simple as fearing God, and that this will give us the power to overcome sin. That is true, yes, but much harder than it seems. Sin will always be an issue in our lives no matter what. It is simply our goal to eliminate it as much as we can. And I know from personal experience that I have had issues that I would not have solved, or even maybe recognized to be issues, without others help. And their encouragement and prayer means a lot, to know I’m not on my own, but have God and the Christian community that I am in.

  3. //It is not enough to profess faith in Jesus Christ. We must obey Him.//

    AMEN!!!

    //You do not need the church, but you do need the kingdom. Church is visible, tangible, and outward. The kingdom is invisible, intangible, and inward. The kingdom is a way of life whereby you think every thought and perform every action to please Jesus Christ. //

    You define the kingdom nicely, but the word “church” seems poorly defined to me. I think there’s a profound difference between what the New Testament means by the word translated as church compared with how we generally use the word church in contemporary language. The NT church is the body of believers who do believe and obey, the spirit filled body of the bride of Christ. The modern notion of church includes a building, sacraments, pews, schedules, hymnals, and all the other trappings of religion. Jesus didn’t have much use for religion, particularly when obedience was sacrificed on the altar of religion. Church isn’t a place to go or a thing to do. Church is the community of faith where parts of the body work together in common spiritually coordinated obedience to our Lord.

    The way you talk about the kingdom sounds a lot like how to talk about the NT church. The kingdom has a manifestation in the church, though the kingdom goes far beyond this manifestation.

    Sorry if that all sounds critical. I really did enjoy the post and I appreciate the thoughts you’re expressing.

  4. So what about the emphasis that Paul puts on churches, as groups of people, and the way he describes Jesus love for the Church? He calls Christ the “head of the church” , as well as Christ body being the Church in Collosians. If they were so unimportant, why is it that most of the NT is made up of letters written to churches?

    I think it is a slippery slope to minimize the impact of the church on the world and individuals. What if everyone took the attitude that you shouldn’t need/go to church, what would happen to Christianity? It would disappear. There would be no community, people would fall form the faith, the global impact would be gone, and its influence, and therefore spreading of the Gospel, would cease entirely. So if idea was actually universalized and instantiated by everybody, it would seem to be the end of Christianity as we know it.

    1. Paul wrote to, and cared for, churches – encouraging them to prepare for the kingdom of God, which was coming. Nowhere do we hear them say back to Paul: “Oh, Paul, it doesn’t matter to us about the kingdom of God, we think church is just fine.” With the same attitude, many of Jesus contemporaries rejected Him saying something along the lines of, “No thanks, Jesus; we don’t need You because we have the temple.”

      See Jesus Christ Has Already Come Again along with the linked biblical case Whatever Became of Jesus Christ?

  5. Just some numbers, a recent survey found that of Christian high school students that went to college, 60% said would no longer consider themselves as such. Of these, about 90% had not found a church after starting college.

    1. This is why it is so critical for us to teach young people to put their faith in Christ and not in church. Faith in Christ is standing on a rock, while faith in church is standing on sand.

      If you grow up practicing your faith in front of people, then your faith will go away when the people go away. However, if you grow up practicing your faith in front of God, then you faith will never go away because God will never go away.

      See Spiritual Christianity Versus Social Christianity.

  6. Totally agree here. So I will say no more in that regards haha Christ and God are the most important aspects of life, and should be what the church is centered around, and any church that isn’t is in the wrong. And it is unfortunate that this is how many churches are though. Too caught up with the social things that they forget about Christ.

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