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Food for thought: Keeping the vessel and the treasure straight

From The Great Omission: Reclaiming Jesus’ Essential Teachings on Discipleship by Dallas Willard

You cannot avoid having a vessel. You have a Baptist vessel, and you have a Benedictine vessel, and a Quaker vessel, and so forth. The problem comes when we mistake the vessel for the treasure, for the treasure is the life and power of Jesus Christ. . . .

The problem is that conducting the religious life can become an entirely cultural kind of thing. And we can idolize our religious culture. There are many, many ways of doing this. It is so important for us to remember that a culture can capture us and shut off our access to the supernatural spirituality of the Kingdom of God, as explained in John 3 and Romans 8, for example.

I’m sorry to say this, but too much of what we call Christian is not a manifestation of the supernatural life of God in our souls. Too much of what we call Christian is really just human. And now I’m going to say something really terrible, so brace yourselves or stop your ears. The church of Jesus Christ is not necessarily present when there is a correct administration o the sacrament and faithful preaching of the Word of God. The church of God is present where people gather together in the power of the resurrected life of Jesus Christ.
(Image: Wikipedia Commons)


That's one of things that I notice about the bloggy group I'm part of. We come from so many different backgrounds, traditions, and religious cultures but yet we are all seeking the same thing...a close and more intimate relationship with Christ.

And, we have the additional benefit of keeping each other accountible when we take on a challenge that will (hopefully) bring us to a breakthrough of understanding in or of Christ.
David said…
Great quote. I must add this to the growing list of 'books to read'.