on the unity of the church

In his book Paul the Missionary: Realities, Strategies and Methods (IVP, 2008), Eckhard Schnabel writes:

For Paul, the unity of the church is not based on organization but on the power of the Holy Spirit and the life that the Spirit inspires (preface).

I find this comment striking.   With the exception of the Pastorals one does not fin a terrible amount of emphasis on how the various communities of faith are to be organized.  In fact, you see almost nothing about it, well, some but even what is noted leaves a lot of room for interpretation, no?  I suppose even the Pastorals are not as detailed as we moderns would like.  Even so, it can seem like the more you try to corner Paul on organizational issues the more he slips right through your fingers.  Instead, he emphasizes a life lived in and led by the Holy Spirit.  Could this explain perhaps why we turn to books meant for secular world as to how to function organizationally?  I suppose this does not have to be all bad but I do think it should encourage us to even greater dependence on the power of the Holy Spirit.

it gives me the shudders to think how little even I myself depnds on the power of the Holy Spirit.

Anyhow seems like this work by Schnabel is a must read.


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