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Fleeing Institutional Egypt: The Scattered Church Gathering in Homes

The End Time Church is comprised of a diverse group of people. We come from many ethnicities, nations, and doctrinal backgrounds. Our interest in biblical eschatology brings us together, as we share a similar passion for being biblical Bereans. Just as the synagogue in Berea was filled with Jews who "were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out..." (Acts 17:11, NKJV), so End Time Church finds herself filled with believers who daily search the Scripture to know the truth. We test all things, hold tightly to the things proven Scripturally (1 Thess. 5:21), and are quick to point out unsound biblical doctrine as those exposing the works of darkness (Eph. 5:11).

Yet another point brings End Time Church members together. We are often Christians in exile, fleeing the institutional entrapments of the American Church. Like the children of Israel fleeing from the bondage of Egyptian tyranny, many of you here have fled the tyranny and bondage of institutional Christianity. Edward H. Hammett terms the exodus of church leaders and members of the scattered church. He states, "I believe God is birthing a whole new church out there that I call the scattered church, and he's taking some of our best and brightest clergy and building that church."(Edward Hammett, Reaching People Under 30 While Keeping People Over 60: Creating Community Across Generations. Danvers, MA: TCP Books, 2015, 8). What Hammett did now know when he wrote that statement, or in his other book speaking specifically about the "scattered church" is that End Time Church would be birthed with a mission to gather the scattered church across the world together in a one-of-a-kind digital church. Indeed, many of the church's brightest minds are gathered here, where we diligently search Scripture to know the Truth. And we will continue to be a beacon shining out among the sea of people fleeing institutionalization at the core of our being.

Though End Time Church is comprised of so many who have scattered from the traditional churches they once attended regularly, others remain in such churches hoping to be a change agenda altering the location's culture through their work in the local church. End Time Church encourages our members to remain in a local church, being the change they pray would impact their local congregation. Cultural change is a slow process but will yield results if the change agent is diligent, faithful, and persistent. Any one person can the spark the Lord uses to ignite a bright fire for all to see. Any person can become a walking revival if they are faithful to Christ.

I am also reminded of Revelation 2:1-7 of the loveless church of Ephesus. This church was commended for their works, labor, patience, and inability to tolerate evil. End Time Church fits this well. But the warning of Ephesus must echo loud in our forums, apps, services, and groups. We must not leave our first love. In our pursuit of knowledge, it becomes easy to lose sight of Jesus Christ and him crucified (1 Cor. 2:2), thus lacking wisdom. We must not allow our pursuit of knowledge to cause us to mirror Gnostics, who valued knowledge as the supreme pursuit of religion. Rather, we must be defined by our love for God, each other, and those in the world. Even those who inspired our exodus from a traditional church, hurt us, or were otherwise unfriendly. Our efforts should be founded on Christ and exercised in triune love. As a community, we cannot afford our light to go out, lest the sea of scattered believers worldwide suffer faith-wrecking loss wandering through life without community and biblical discipleship.

In closing, the pursuit of souls must define ecclesia. Seeking the lost and sharing the Gospel through both word and deed is the Great Commission. End Time Church's leadership desires to see the lost saved as much as it is to provide sound biblical doctrine. But we believe that the work of evangelism is up to the people of End Time Church, not exclusively the leaders (Eph. 4:11-13). We want the members to hear the word, but more importantly, to be doers of the word (James 1:22). We desire that the members bear much fruit (John 15:5) in Christ. This requires intentionality. Each day, you choose to live for Christ or self, to share the Gospel or opinion, to be a light or hide it under a bushel. Many left the traditional, institutional church because of its fruitlessness. We must not likewise find ourselves fruitless, lest we be the biggest hypocrites of them all. What fruits are you bearing?

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Angela Williams
Angela Williams

Amen brother, Jesus is returning for a faithful and fruitful Bride.

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