Communion of the Saints

    I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth
    And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord
    Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary
   Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried; He descended into hell
    The third day he rose again from the dead
    He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty
    From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead
    I believe in the Holy Ghost
    I believe a holy catholic church; the communion of saints

Apostles Creed

On Tuesday we looked at what it meant to be a part of the Catholic (universal) Church. But what about the communion of saints?
Well, do you remember what the Church is? The Church is all those who are in Christ. Who trust and believe in Him. The “communion of the saints” highlights an important point here. Not everyone who goes to a church is a saint.

I don’t mean saint as in ‘good person.’ I mean saint as in born-again believer. Notice how Paul starts his letters, 1 Corinthians for instance,

“To the church of God in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be his holy people, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ”

Who is Paul writing to? To the saints.
Paul recognises that as his letter is read aloud (as was the practice), there will be a mixed audience. Those who simply attend church and those who are of The Church. Now so what? Is this some theological tidbit or technicality.

Well, it does matter. It matters for something we are experiencing in Australia. Remember when the census came out and one of the key points was that Christianity was on the decline in Australia. What’s causing that? Well, for the most part, it isn’t a decline in The Church, but in those who used to attend church but were never actually Christian.

As John says,
They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us. (1 John 2:19)

On the positive side. We can see what God is doing. God wants a pure Church who follows Jesus faithfully. He isn’t pleased by people calling themselves Christian, attending church but never actually following Jesus. So whatever we do, let’s make our aim to grow The Church rather than just growing a church.

For Today:
  • Are you a part of the communion of the saints?
  • Do you know someone who attends Church but isn’t a follower of Jesus?
  • How could you help grow The Church today?
Pray: Praise the Father that He is pleased by the Church as it follows Jesus in faith. Give thanks for Jesus who is the head of the Church and died for it. Ask God for His Holy Spirit to be at work in all people to bring them into the communion of the saints.
Posted in

No Comments