I’m reading through Brad House’s book Community: Taking Your Small Groups Off Life Support and wanted to share a an excerpt that speaks to how sin distorts and perverts community.
God’s purpose in creating Adam and Eve were that they would be fruitful and multiply, resulting in communities that would glorify him. Instead, they sinned which sent each subsequent generation further and further into sin. This culminated in the cross. House writes, “that moment on the cross was a reflection of our sins of independence, selfishness, rivalry, jealousy, oppression, blame shifting, gossip, backbiting, neglect, isolation, pride, apathy, and every other perversion of grace that destroys community” (32). A life that perverts and corrupts grace (yours, mine and every other human being) produces several problems:
- It is a distorted picture of what God himself is like. A community of God’s people should reflect the nature of God. A community that is marked more by sin than by grace and claims to be a community formed by God misrepresents the Creator (32).
- It denies grace by choosing an impoverished and deprived life. The community God creates is good because it reflects him; it is good for his people. Choosing a life outside of community with God denies this truth and is what god us in this mess in the first place (32).