The Purpose of Sunday is Monday
At IgniteLife we believe that the purpose of Sunday is Monday… we are here to equip people for the works of service that God has assigned them (Eph 4:11-12). In other words, the purpose of the 'church gathered' on Sunday (Greek kuriakos) is to build up people for their mission in the 'church scattered' on Monday (Greek ecclesia).
Kuriakos appears only twice in the New Testament (1 Cor 11:20 - 'when you come together in one place' - and Rev 1:10 - 'on the Lord's day'). In contrast, ecclesia appears around 115 times. The former literally refers to that which is a lord's, and the latter literally refers to a convocation - a group of people called out of a population for a particular purpose. We Christians are called out of the world (sanctified) to be like Paul and Silas who 'turned the world upside down' with the 'word of God' (Acts 17:1-14).
Does this mean that Sunday church does not matter? I do not think so. I believe that the church gathered matters to God. In Heb 10:24-25 we see evidence of this. The writer says, 'And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together...' (emphasis added). When we worship together, share communion together, listen to a good discussion point or sermon, and fellowship as community, we do stir up love and good works in each other and exhort one another. We are 'being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit' (Eph 2:19-22). And, by the way, to exhort literally means to call each other to action.
When we have a sense of being built together we are more confident that we can regard our Monday environment as a mission field in which we are ambassadors of Christ. We are on the front line! Although we might not have many opportunities to evangelise directly, we can be light and salt (Matt 5:13-16) and we can express neighbour-love in our regard for those with whom we 'rub shoulders' and in our diligence in every task we undertake. It makes no difference if our Monday environment is paid employment, a sport team, volunteer work or looking after family. All counts in the Kingdom of God.
It is significant that the Hebrew word transliterated avodah is variously translated ‘work’ (Gen 2:15, Ex 34:21, Ps 104:23), ‘worship’ (Ex 8:1) and ‘serve’ (Josh 24:15). It is a picture of integrated faith. With respect to work, paid or unpaid, God ordained it (Gen 2:15), He inspires it (Is 28:23-29) and He sustains it (Deut 28:11-12). Clearly we can worship God on Sunday and on Monday.
I believe that the more we worship on Sunday, the better-equipped we are to 'worship' on Monday!
Questions for discussion
1. As Christians, should we separate our Sunday persona from our Monday persona?
2. Does this blog change your commitment to Sunday church as preparation for Monday ministry?
3. In what way(s) can we be light and salt or express neighbour-love in our Monday environment?
4. How might we integrate our worship, work and service?