What Are Your Thoughts About Being Part of an Online Church?

The following is an edited transcript of the audio.

What are your thoughts on worshipping and being a part of Christ's body through an online church?

If the question means, "as your only experience of worship," it seems sick. We are created in bodies, not just in minds. And there is something docetic about this. That may not mean anything to a lot of people. Docetism was an early heresy that said that the body is not very important, and that life in the flesh and the created world is not very important, and that Jesus Christ only seemed to have a body. And usually material is evil.

God made us with bodies. He made us to give holy kisses to one another—embraces, handshakes, eyeball-to-eyeball conversation. He made husband and wife not to have imaginary video sex through Skype. He made them to go to bed together in the same bed. He made them to raise children in the same house, with hands-on hugs and spanks on the bottom and love. And he made churches to get together to hear each other sing, and to look at each other and talk to teach other, and minister to each other and help each other die well.

So to dispense with the entire bodily dimension of togetherness in order to substitute a video dimension of togetherness—like this right now—would, I think, be spiritually defective, would be contrary to Christ's understanding of the church, and would be hurtful to the soul.

There are mysteries here in human relationships that we can't quantify. And I don't think that they can be replaced by electronic symbols.

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