The bottom floor is standing only, it’s packed. The balcony has seats, but everyone stands. The ‘Compassion’ stalls are up at the back. A feeling of anticipation is in the air. This is going to be big. This is what the Church gathering should be.
This is what went through my mind as I went to go see my first live Christian concert.
But though it was certainly edifying and just generally enjoyable, it actually wasn’t what the Church should be.
What I am not saying is that I don’t think there are a place for these kinds of things. I’m just not saying it is ‘church’, i.e. the gathering of God’s people.
It’s good to look at what the first Christians did to understand what the gathering is. Acts 2:41-44, They devoted themselves to the Apostles’ teaching, to the breaking of bread and prayer.
In today’s terms that would be, devoted to the Word and fellowship, sacraments and corporate prayer. These seem to be the essentials.
But looking at the pastoral letters (1 & 2 Timothy and Titus) we can see the highest priority for pastors and elders is the preached and proclaimed Word, Titus 2, in the LOCAL Church.
So let’s come back to this ‘Christian Concert’. The content certainly included prayers, potentially fellowship, though I went with a friend and there wasn’t much communion, and there was singing, sure a ministry of the word but no preaching.
Can we say then that ‘Christian Concerts’ is the meeting of the gathered church?
No, I don’t think we can. It is a music concert, where varied churches have gathered with a Gospel focus.
Which is still a very good thing. But it’s not Church.
There is a simlar post over at WorshipMatters.com which I think you might find helpful.