So what is the sixth model of community in the Bible (number 1 in chronological order as it appears)? It is, amazingly, God Himself!
In Genesis 1:26, during the great creation time, God said...'Let us make man in our own image, in our likeness...' Thus, here is the perfect model of community; God Himself. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. From the beginning (and even before the beginning because there is no beginning with God), God is in community and God is community. Thus, from creation to eternity, God desires community for it is His very nature!
He knows that the best for us is found in community. But not just any community. We are only fulfilled and made complete when we participate or "community" with Him through His Son Jesus Christ and with the body of Christ, the Church. In this, we are being prepared and made perfect for an eternity in community as God has designed and will bring about.
John Eldgredge says in his book Epic, "How wonderful to discover that God has never been alone. He has always been Trinity - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God has always been a fellowship." In other words, one could say that God has always been "koinonea" and at the very heart of God, is the 'common-ness' and 'participation' in the lives of those He loves namely you and me!
So far, we've seen the six models of community in the Bible:
6. The new heaven and earth
5. The new testament church
4. The people of Israel
3. The family
2. The garden of eden
1. God Himself
Next blog, I would like to begin discussing why I have them in reverse order and the common things that I see in each expression of community. Then, later on, I would like to talk more about this should affect our lives and the way we do ministry...