December 10th 2018 – Ephesians 2:19-22

"19So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, 21in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit."

Ephesians 2:19-22

As to the idea of the building in process of construction, a great deal can be fruitfully said. It is a common sight in many parts of the country to come upon an ancient ruined building in a rundown and dilapidated condition and to learn at a later date that the historic building society have proceeded to restore it. And even to see the ongoing transformation wrought by careful rehabilitation makes it easy to visualise what the completed building would look like. This is a faint illustration of how it will one day be with the Church of God. And in the meanwhile, the King and Head of the Church is supervising the operation of rebuilding, and by His Spirit is present in all the work. And the word is getting around that a Day is coming when He will return to take up His abode and the church will be a glorious church, transformed beyond all imagining, as a true habitation of God. But in the meanwhile, while the work of rehabilitation is in progress, the Church must often - and inevitably - be in a very untidy, even haphazard, state, as any building site must be. It is by no means a 'showhouse' as yet, but far more like a workshop, with bits and pieces lying here and there, uncoordinated, and far from being in their proper place. But this does not ordinarily dismay the Clerk of Works, since He has the over-all plan in his mind's eye, and knows that, by and by, these odd, uncoordinated pieces will be fitted into their place to some purpose. In the same way, if we are wise master-builders, we will not be too upset or discouraged if at any particular point in the process things may look untidy, disorganised, and even symbolic, for we will have the ultimate end-product in our mind's eye, and will be working toward it. Besides - to pick up Peter's metaphor in 1 Peter 2:1ff - in the earlier stages of a reconstruction or rehabilitation work, there is often a good deal of clearing away to be done, even demolition, in order to make way for new building. And that creates a very messy situation. And in the spiritual rehabilitation, demolition has to take place also, wrong attitudes, wrong assumptions, wrong presuppositions, so much that has become 'second nature' to us in our sinnerhood has to be challenged and brought under the scrutiny of the Word of God and stripped away from us. You get the idea?