November 10, 2014

Ephesians 5:27- to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.

I’ve usually read the end of Ephesians chapter 5 as words about marriage containing some profound insights about the church. Having just returned from a conference of our national church it is tempting to read this passage as words about the church containing some profound insights about marriage. As happens in marriage sometimes we in the church can focus on our disagreements and disappointments. We can be quick to accuse and attribute bad motives to decisions we wish were made differently. We notice first the stains and the wrinkles and the blemishes. Most of the folks I met had a certain degree of angst for the future of their denomination and their congregations. All this is very real. But there is another reality, perceived through faith, that as imperfect and human and even sinful as the church is, Christ does “present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.” I’ve stood with nervous grooms at the front of the church on their wedding day and shared their view of their brides approaching. If that is also God’s vision of the church then there is good reason to be hopeful. This week, where will you see “a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless?”

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