"But these things have I told you, that when the time shall come, ye may remember that I told you of them. And these things I said not unto you at the beginning, because I was with you. But now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you asketh me, Whither goest thou? But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment" Jn 16:4-8
"Let all things be done decently and in order." 1 Cor 14:40
The decent order of Grace was for Christ to leave so that the Spirit could come. What He would do in this age was establish a Church. The Church. Generation after generation of people that would make up the Body of Christ.
The Spirit being sent was 'expedient' for us. The structure created by Christ and His Spirit is expedient for us also.
"Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace" Heb 13:9a
The Church is one of God's designated places for that to happen.
The Church represents Christ's death, His burial, His Resurrection and then at some point His ascension at the rapture.
Many places that are called Churches are not Churches. Many who attend are not really apart of God's Church but God sends men and women and builds His Church in every generation. God says every believer can be a member in particular of this amazing provision for this age.
If we find a place in God's decent order of grace with a man leaning on God and a message that reveals the finished work of Christ we find a real treasure. God determines which place is our place. It will take time to reveal just what a treasure it is. We see babies born in the Church and they grow up and grow strong. In time we see people come and some go but some stay. Some come back years later. We see the soiled and broken become cleansed and healed. We see pain and personality clashes but we see mercy and forgiveness. The Church unfolds to us. The Church we see one Sunday morning is only the tip of the iceberg of what it really happening.
The world at large does not understand what the Church is. One day it will be gone. Who will open soup kitchens to feed the hungry then? Who will wrap the wounds of the Leper? Who will love the orphans? Will anyone say 'God loves you?'
It may happen in our lifetime. It may not. I want to see the treasure of the Church. If God has led me to one I want to stay for a while... for as long as God has me there. That place will reveal more to me about God's life than any other place on the planet. Even in the mistakes it may make because men are not perfect... if God has done it He will use it in spite of men if need be.
Let us be known in Heaven as Church builders and not Church bashers. Let us put brick upon brick building our little portion of the wall. It is God's Church and the Gates of Hell will not stand against it.