All Aboard

No offence to Russel Crowe but I heard the Hollywood film “Noah” wasn’t very good.

I haven’t seen the movie but I heard that it strays considerably from the biblical narrative. I’m not denying that the movie was probably well put together with good acting and dazzling special effects. I’m just saying it would have been nice if they had stayed closer to the text of scripture. But that’s Hollywood for you.

In any case, Noah is one of the best-known Bible characters because his name is associated with the greatest catastrophe in the history of the human race. One thing we know about the Ark (which Noah built in obedience to God) is that it was a massive structure. Big enough to fit two of every animal.
And I tend to think the ark was big enough to fit extra people if necessary. Unfortunately, the ark set sail with quite a few empty seats.

It reminds of the Titanic. While the great ship was slowly sinking into the frigid waters of the North Atlantic lifeboats were lowered to the sea half-full. From the ark to the titanic, to some of our churches today, it’s the tragic story of empty seats. I know what some of you are thinking. You don’t have to occupy a seat in a particular building in order to be saved. That much is true.

The ark of safety for us is not a big floating box with three decks, or any other kind of physical structure made of wood and stone. The ark of safety is a Person, none other than the Lord Jesus Christ. Yet we also see in scripture that the church is called the Body of Christ. Has Christ become severed from His own body? Can we have a relationship with Christ and at the same time refuse to associate with a local body of believers?

Some claim they don’t need to sit in church on Sunday morning in order to worship God. They feel closer to Jesus while sitting on their couch sipping freshly brewed coffee. Surely, it’s easier and more comfortable to sit home and watch church on TV than it is to get dressed, get in the car and drive to a building filled with messy, imperfect people.

But is it right? And is it best for the one desiring to sit at home? Of course, it’s much easier to raise questions than it is to provide solid answers.

One thing I can say for sure. There’s no salvation apart from Christ. He is the ark of safety for humanity today and there’s no shortage of room for those who want to get onboard. If you have questions and doubts about the church (or about anything else) you’re certainly not alone. My only advice would be, don’t let the questions and doubts keep you from Christ.

I’d even go so far as to say, don’t let the church keep you from Christ. It almost sounds blasphemous but it’s true. When operating at its worst, the church can actually hinder genuine seekers from finding the Lord. When operating at its best the church is a lighthouse, warning people of danger, helping them to safely reach their destination.

There’s safety in following Jesus. He loves us. He knows what is best for us. We just need to trust Him.

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