Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Non-Dimensional Church

And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is. (Ephesians 3:18).

The News outlets were all abuzz with the historic visit of Pope Benedict XVI. Wall to wall coverage let us in on virtually everything he was doing, every moment of the day. As things came to a climax in New York City with the Pope visiting St. Patrick's, and a few other parish churches, Ground Zero, and then Yankee Stadium -- one guy on Fox news asked, "Is he going to visit any non-dimensional churches?" There was a brief pause, followed by an eruption of laughter; he had meant to say non-denominational.

But his mis-speak may carry far more insight than we might wish to admit. For it is indisputable that there are indeed some churches in our land today that are non-dimensional. Existing only for themselves, regarding themselves alone as being the true chosen of the Lord; openly criticising and condemning anyone who does not follow Christ after their manner, and who do not hold to the Bible after their interpretation.

But the Lord of Love is much larger than than sort of thinking. Paul prayed that each one of us would be able to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep is the love of God.

So, how wide is it? Vast enough to include the whole world, which God so loved He gave His only begotten Son to redeem. And, how long? As long as eternity, without beginning or end. How deep? Is not the cross upon which our Savior died in agony, being made sin for us that we might be made righeous by Him, the deepest depth ever there was? And, how high? As high as unto heaven itself, where we are even now seated together with Him in His Father's royal presence!

The love of God is greater far than tongue or pen could ever tell; it goes beyond the highest star, and reaches to the lowest hell." (Frederick M. Lehman, 1948).

The Non-Dimensional Church, therefore, is any congregation that is void of the love of God. So wrapped up in themselves that they cannot accept the embrace of the Lord; so full of themselves that they expel the sweet Presence of the Holy Spirit, who would otherwise flood their hearts with the love of God. So focused upon themselves they cannot see how wide, how long, how deep, and how high is this thing called Love.

That's a church you shouldn't be going to.

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