I just finished reading a blog linking Jesus, the church and coffee. I am already a big fan just because of the linking of those three items. The article, New on the Starbucks Menu, then gained even more favor in my eyes as it helped expose the false thought of living a “churchless Christianity” as a believer in Christ.
In addition to the self-serving and self-centered draw of declaring that you love Jesus but not the church (as described in the blog), I have found that people who want a churchless Christianity often want a Jesus who is different than the Bible describes.
One of the “problems” with the church is that it helps define the person of Christ according to Scripture. If you worship with a healthy church you are in grave danger of someone exposing you to a Jesus who differs from your preferred Jesus. Jesus as defined in the Bible rather than the Jesus that you have made in your own image and likeness. With this troublesome reality check comes the realization that you aren’t as perfect as you think. Then there comes a call to repentance and a change in your lifestyle to match the Bible. Living a life apart from the church allows you to twist the Word to match your lifestyle and preferences. To get away with it all you have to do is turn a deaf ear to your conscience and the witness of the Holy Spirit within you, rather than being tag-teamed by those inner witnesses as well as the chorus of human voices in the church. This tactic only lasts so long because as long as you read your Bible you will be confronted with the fact that you are living a lie. To solve that bothersome problem you simply have to stop reading the Bible.
Then again, can you truly call yourself a “real” Christian if you don’t read your Bible, don’t listen to the Holy Spirit & conscience within you, don’t heed other believers in Christ, don’t assemble with others as the church, and believe in a Jesus who is starkly different from the Jesus of the Bible?