Feral Christianity...

Once again, I want to write about "Growth in Community" and you have to understand what’s at stake if we don’t get this “God thing” right. People, mobs of people, masses of people…are all alone in our culture right now…and they need us to talk about how to check the plague of isolation that is spreading across our land.

This is where the distinction between the religion of our day and the revolution of the kingdom must be made…there are two distinct alternatives available within the culture of Christian spirituality right now…

Fiefdoma domain controlled by a feudal Lord (the Churches’ Jesus). (religion)

Kingdoma domain under the leadership of the Bible’s Jesus. (revolution)

Christ's Invitation into the Kingdom Culture…

John 6:53-69

53 Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.


Many Disciples Desert Jesus

60 On hearing it, many of his disciples said, "This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?"

61 Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, "Does this offend you? 62 What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! ________________________________________________________________________

66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

67 "You do not want to leave too, do you?" Jesus asked the Twelve.

68 Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.

The invitation into the culture Jesus gave and the rejection of so many to the invitation should cause us to ponder this with a sobriety that disturbs us a little bit…

You have to think the people were thinking something like…

1. “I don’t know if I’m ready for this kind of seriousness in the relationship.”

2. “He, obviously, wants more out of this relationship than I do.”

3. “He’s wanting to get serious, and I’m not sure I’m ready for that yet.”

4. “We weren’t on the same page in our relationship.”

5. “I just wanted to be friends.”

*I just like hooking up.

*You know…friends with benefits…no strings attached.

6. “I don’t want to be in a relationship right now…I’m enjoying the single life.”

But Jesus knew what he was doing. He was essentially preaching a message called…

“The invitation out of spiritual singleness.”

God didn’t design our faith to be a platonic love relationship, a mere nominal Christianity with no strings attached…He is desiring marriage, partnership, intimacy.

**But there are so many Exiled Souls within the Church right now. (banished beings, deported disciples)

Check out this verse that talks about the importance of Banding Together with others in God's body connected to Him as the head.

Hebrews 10:24-25

24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

* Don’t give up on banding together.

* Don’t make a habit of isolation.

* Do it all the more.

Genesis 2:18

"It is not good for the man to be alone.” - God

The psychological effects of isolation

J Kellerman, D Rigler and SE Siegel

The Psychological side affects associated with isolation include anxiety, depression, sleep disturbance, withdrawal, regression, and hallucinations.

Our Life starts to be overgrown with side-affects leaving the soul suffocated within…

What are “Side-effects” – pesky things that just stay right here by my side and follow me around like a stray dog. You meet me, but you can’t meet me without meeting my good friends named “Side-effects”. The only way to get rid of “Side-effects” is to move away from isolation and toward intersection with community.

Many of you would say with the Psalmist….

Psalm 102:7
I lie awake; I have become like a bird
alone on a roof.

But you don’t have to live life alone (unaided)…

God has given us Little Communities, better known as Life Groups within the church:

The church is a mosaic of broken pieces through which the world gets a glimpse of Jesus. It is only when those broken people come together that Jesus face emerges…

Jesus does something really special when we move toward each other, banding together our broken pieces in search of solidarity…a brokenness that finds wholeness. And as our scattered pieces find their prodigal pieces, these broken shards finally find their meaning…a meaning that can only be found in collective redemption. Group therapy wasn’t discovered by AA…it was formed by God and it’s called “the church”.

Yet so many Christians are not banded together with others in a common mission…they are alone…they are what psychologists call “Feral”.

Feral – (little to no contact with other humans)…WILD

Feral children, also known as wild children, are children who've grown up with minimal human contact, or even none at all. In many cases, these children are confined and denied normal social interaction with other people. It is the absolute absence of human presence, touch and language”.

The result is Psychosocial dwarfism - In this syndrome, the failure to grow is caused because production of growth hormone in these children is suppressed owing to excessively high levels of psychosocial stress. Once they are removed to a normal (nurturing) environment, there is usually rapid catch-up growth.

Feral Christians, using this analogy, are people who have adopted the “personal relationship with Jesus” doctrine which could easily be translated “isolated relationship with Jesus”. This kind of life leads to having an underdeveloped, deformed, socially inept, emotionally malnourished and stunted growth, other wise known as…(psychospiritual dwarfism)

Our world is increasingly addicted to Virtual Community – e-community. (online chatting, online video games, online porn, online day trading, online shopping, online billing, online etc.)

“The Internet: absolute communication, absolute isolation.” - Paul Carvel

A glut of Communication with a dearth of Community.

Or as Melvin Webber called it Community without proximity (nearness).

This virtual reality causes people to desert the Kingdom by the droves…

Paul dealt a lot with what he called deserters and the pain of their chosen absence….

2 Timothy 1:15
You know that everyone in the province of Asia has
deserted me, including Phygelus and Hermogenes.

2 Timothy 4:10
for Demas, because he loved this world, has
deserted me and has gone to Thessalonica.

2 Timothy 4:16
At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone
deserted me. May it not be held against them.

Maya Angelou

Send ecard"There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you."

Hebrews 10:24-25

24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.


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