If you read the short story I posted yesterday titled “Clesia” and you’re interested in a little BEHIND THE STORY background and insight, read on … otherwise feel free to skip this post.
If the story serves any purpose or provides any insight then the glory is all God’s. If not, then you can blame me.
People (especially me) are constantly making God fit their expectations. For a long time I have been on a journey of seeking out the Truth and learning to discern the false prophets and false teachers that Jesus warned us of. There is no doubt that at times I get a bit radical but it is the result of strong convictions I believe God is laying on me. In some churches (at least some I’ve attended thru the years), much goes on that has no Biblical basis but I’m not sure that those involved there realize it or even truly intend it to be that way. It’s just how it’s always been or how they have been taught it should be … I think Jesus called that tradition.
The passages of Matt 7:13 – 23, Matt 22:1-14 and Matt 25:31-40 pop up frequently in my Bible study. And part of it is born out of the place I have frequently found myself: learning ‘about’ Christ and collecting Christ-things. And I’m afraid too many times in my busyness with church activities; I have paused to look up and could not see Jesus anywhere. And I then realized I was not in the place that God desired me to be. So maybe the story is a warning to me as much as to anybody. We often talk about wanting to hear ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’ But we rarely talk of the concern we might have of hearing ‘Depart from me.’
We would like to think that when the enemy takes a step among us, it will be obvious. But it will really be more like the 9/11 terrorists living among us. There may be some little warning signs along the way but we’ll not be sensitive to them, we’ll probably ignore them and then one day just like the World Trade Center – fire, death and destruction.
In Matthew 7:15 Jesus tells us to “Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing.” In other words, they will look and appear to be sheep just like we are – they will fit right in the flock. But then Jesus concludes “but inwardly are ravaging wolves. You’ll recognize them by their fruit.” We had a family discussion the other night about fruit and how you might truly discern the fruitfulness of a person. But how many of us even think about being fruit-watchers?
The names in the story may possibly add a layer of understanding for you. The Greek word for church is ecclesia. Clesia then is basically just short of being the real church. And the story bears that out. Initially I did not give her friend a name but I thought a name could provide a bit more insight. The name chosen: Addley. But basically I was just expanding upon the word addle. And it has two different meanings: confused and rotten. The view we shape of church and Christ is most influenced by those we walk closely with. If those you walk with are confused, you are liable to be equally confused.
As Pascal says, we have a God-sized vacuum within us that only God can fill. Frequently we try to fill that empty space with everything but God. But the pseudo-church has the appearance of being of God. If not careful, we can become a lot like that hungry fish who thought that minnow made of wood or that worm made of plastic looked real. Only later he finds himself immersed in bubbling hot grease over a burning flame. The example of the Bereans is a message to us to test the message, test the doctrine before embracing it. Paul reiterates that point in 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22. Many will go through that inviting and easy wide gate but they will be disappointed.
This story took about three days to come together. For the first two days, the idol was named Chris Tje but I thought it would be way too easy for folks to get Christ Jesus out of that too soon in the story so I changed the spelling to Krys Tje. That camouflaged it a bit and later allowed me to use just Krys like other one name idols. Obviously, the references to fan club are indirect references to the pseudo-church. The ORB was used just because it is a synonym for earth or world, I can’t remember which. Just reflects that the focus of the pseudo-church is typically worldly and that all life revolves around it rather than the one they proclaim. The message delivered is more about ‘do’ than ‘done.’
Hope that helps provide a bit of insight for you in interpreting the short story “Clesia”.