While I don't personally love The Message paraphrase, I picked it up at random and was intrigued by Eugene Peterson's Description of a church. Thought I'd share:
"When Christian Believers gather in churches, everything that can go wrong sooner or later does. Outsiders, on observing this, conclude that there is nothing to the religion business except, perhaps, business-- and dishonest business at that. Insiders see it differently. Just as a hospital collects the sick under one roof and labels them as such, the church collects sinners. Many of the people outside the hospital are every bit as sick as the ones inside, but their illnesses are either undiagnosed or disguised. It's similar with sinners outside the church.
    "so Christian churches are not, as a rule, model communities of good behavior. They are, rather, places where human misbehavior is brought out in the open, faced, and dealt with."

Thoughts? Comments?


  1. Is he trying to look more like Schaeffer?

  2. In order to find fault with Christianity, critics must find fault with something that Christianity posits to be perfect. Sinful conduct on the part of us within the church is shameful, and we have an obligation as God's ambassadors to represent with regards to personal righteousness, accountability, and unity within the body, but ultimately it is too facile to say "look Christians are hypocrites!" In fact, this observation, that we too are sinners, supports the truth claims of Christianity. We are sinners, we need a savior who is perfect, that savior is Christ. Find fault with Christ and you've got something, but find fault with me and all you've done is prove what the Bible says to be correct- I'm desperately wicked and without hope apart from the Christ. If one is finding fault with Christianity based on the conduct of Christians then they are operating on a faulty premise, because by Biblical definition we are fallen and imperfect. As I said earlier, in order to find fault with Christianity you must bring a charge against what Christianity considers perfect. That, however, does not excuse us or our conduct we are all painfully aware. We are called to serve as ambassadors, and respresent him faithfuly, with a common spirit, loving one another, and striving to be conformed to the image of Christ.

    Colossians 3:12-17

  3. I wouldn't want to go to a hospital that had a poor track record of healing the sick, and a church that doesn't hold the body accountable and continuously urge its members towards health and Christlikeness should be equally avoided. I agree with Peterson on the analogy and I think it's helpful, but the world needs to see transformation and change- not a community of permanent invalids. That's profoundly unattractive.

  4. Thank yo all for comments. I so agree with you Tater Tot! what is the point of a hospital if it isn't gonna help make you better?? <3


oh yeah? Tell me something I don't know.