Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Home Group (11/29/07)
TITLE: Home groups - a Biblical concept?
By Suzanne R
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A home group? Bah. I could be standing up in that mahogany carved pulpit each Sunday expounding Scripture and I’d be a lot more interesting than him. No, let the common people gather together in homes, share recipes and tut-tut-tut over children’s discipline problems. I’m above that.
Home groups. Life groups. Cell groups. Funny concept, really. Don’t know where they get the idea from. I mean, you don’t read of Jesus going to home group each week, do you? He didn’t even have a home most of the time. Foxes have holes, birds have nests, but he had nowhere to lay his head, the Good Book says. There’d have been no way Jesus would have turned up each week, rung the doorbell and been given a cup of tea from a fine china cup. No. He was much too busy with very important things like teaching, preaching, healing … and suffering. Mind you, he did seem to appreciate time spent with an intimate group of men and women – people like the disciples, Joanna, Susanna, Mary and others. But not in a home group. Oh no.
And then there’s the great apostle, Paul. You don’t read of him promoting home groups, do you? He was never at home anyhow – always on the road – travelling, preaching, teaching - suffering even. I suppose there were those couple of years when he was under house arrest and had people come to his home all the time, but it wasn’t like a home group. And there was that time the young man fell asleep while sitting in the window and Paul had to bring him back to life, but that wasn’t a home group either. No, it just happened to be a meeting in a home.
In the Old Testament days, they’d go to the Temple and do worship properly. When they could, anyhow. They’d gather by the river otherwise, I suppose. No home groups for them.
You don’t read of the great King David going to a home group, do you? No, he was much too busy running the country, going to war, writing poetry … and daydreaming on the rooftop. He had a few family issues too, which must have preoccupied him. Perhaps it would have done him good to have had a group of people with whom he could share his life. Still, he didn’t need a home group. No, he was much too important.
And what about the great patriarch, Abraham? There’s no way he’d have trotted off each week and yoo-hooed outside somebody’s tent flap before going in to share his life. No, he was much too busy moving his flocks and slaves and what not around ancient Mesopotamia, as well as resolving conflicts between his underlings. Oh – and trying for a baby. Disappointing, that whole baby business must have been. He could have done with others to lament with, I suppose. But a home group – no way.
And how about the first man, Adam. He didn’t even have any other people to mix with at first– not until His Creator decided that it wasn’t good for him to be alone and so created woman. Strange move, that one. It all went downhill from there, it seems.
That’s where it all began, I suppose. This obsession with meeting together to share lives. And recipes. And gossip. And all the rest. No, it certainly isn’t Scriptural. Far better to maintain our dignity with a decent distance between one another.
No, pastor. I’m not joining any motley mix of people obsessed with carnal pursuits. Mixing with the likes of them is beneath me.
But, reverend, may I have a word in your ear? You see, most people in this church of yours are stand-offish. Oh, they’re friendly enough on the surface, but it is hard to get beneath the exterior even over a cup of tea in the courtyard after the service. I’ve so much to offer, you see, but your constituents hold me at arm’s length. It’s strange, that.
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