When is a church not a church?

No… it’s not the start of a poor joke; its a genuine question about the nature of the church. The word ecclesia is used numerous times in the New Testament and literally means ‘gathering’. It is used in reference to the universal gathering of God’s people around the King and is used of specific ‘gatherings’ on location in places like Thessalonica and Corinth.

The question is: does the New Testament usage of ‘ecclesia‘ extend beyond a simple time and space gathering, either on earth or heaven, or is it limited to such an understanding?

How does the people of God relate to the church of God? How does the kingdom of God relate to both these two?

Is the only expression of ‘church’ on earth when we meet together on a Sunday, or is there something more to being and doing church?

There will be more posts to follow… but in the mean time please add any comments you may like to on the subject…