Myth #10 – Organic Churches Think They Are Superior
“Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus …”
This is the last post in this series of 10 Myths About Organic Church. I hope that you have enjoyed them. I just wanted to say in closing that this Myth #10 brings out a sore spot not only in so called “organic” churches but in all groups of believers. It’s called “exclusivism” and I would define it as cutting yourself off from others because you believe that you are above or superior to others. Every group is in danger of falling into this trap, not just “organic” churches! In fact, this is the very definition of the word “sect” as well. A sect is a group of believers who have separated themselves from all other believers. Usually, they have separated themselves because they have believed the lie that they are in some way superior to the rest of the Body of Christ.
The Safeguard for Church Life
In my opinion, if a church has truly been planted with the proper ingredients, it should not fall into this trap. Though there are never any guarantees. What we need is the church to be founded upon the Person of Christ and Him crucified. Paul said that when he came to the Corinthians he determined to only know Christ and Him crucified (1Cor2:2). This Christ is the “Crucified One” and the word of the cross should be preached within the content of this glorious Christ.
“For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.”
The cross of Christ is the great safeguard from exclusivism, pride, and all the other works of the flesh. Letting this mind be in you means that we allow the revelation and experience of the cross to permeate our very souls. We can see in Philippians 2 that the mind of Christ is that He emptied and lowered Himself to become a servant. Please understand here that I am not just referring to the redemptive aspects of the cross. I am speaking of the work of the cross in the daily life of the believer.
“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”
Living a crucified life means that you are daily denying yourself, the flesh, and the fallen old man. Jesus told us to lose our lives (Jn12:24,25) and that He would give us a new life – eternal life – the life of His Father (Jn 6:57). Living a crucified life means that my mind is being renewed day by day into the mind of Christ. I am thinking of others (and their needs) before myself. I am treating others as I would want to be treated. I am laying down my life for my brothers and sisters. Not only those in my group, but those in the larger Body and my fellow man (like the good samaritan parable).
The message of the cross does major damage to our self-lives and selfish ways of thinking. If this message (which is part of the proclamation of Christ) is being preached to a group of believers it will greatly reduce the risk of falling into the trap of exclusivism and superiority. We are not better than anyone! All of those who have Christ living in them are our brothers and sisters! We receive them because Christ has received them!