Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars:
In previous Proverbs studies, we considered the differences between the strange woman and the wise woman and compared these two women to the faithful and unfaithful Christian church.
As faithful Christians, what can we consider about the wisdom of Jesus when we read the above scripture?
What sort of house are we building—or rather—what sort of house is Jesus building? I think of this in two ways, both of which are metaphorical representations of the present-day temple of God.
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are (1 Corinthians 3:16-17).
The Church Within Individuals
As Christians, we are being built up into Jesus Christ. He forgives us of our sins so that we can boldly approach God, not as sinners, but as children of the Almighty who wear the righteousness of Jesus.
With the righteousness of Jesus upon us, we can seek God and the power of the Spirit so that we are renewed in heart. This is the work of Jesus within us. We can trust in this.
He will cause us to transform to the degree that is necessary for us to perform our service to Him faithfully. We all grow at the pace He deems, in the manner He deems, and we yield the results He deems.
This is all His work, so that means we have faith in Him, and we also refrain from judging other Christians.
It is not possible to believe in Jesus and go unchanged. It is true that many carry His name unfaithfully, but it is also true that if any of His “sheep” go astray in this manner, Jesus will bring them back.
He will not lose a single person that belongs to Him. We can trust in that. We can trust in His work for each person. We can trust in the resurrection and transfiguration at His coming when we put away the chains of mortal immorality once and for all.
The Church as a Whole
First, I think of the systemic structure of churches in general. This includes the various church hierarchies, the typical approach to church services, and the role of the church in the community.
I tend to have disagreements with the way Christian churches of all stripes are conducted, so it is hard for me to think of this without criticism.
However, there is a structure of sorts within the body of Christ—the church that exists within all Christian sects in spirit—and this structure is unseen and hard to pin down because it is not contained or limited to the structures we have in place.
We know that the head of the church is Jesus Christ, and we are one body in union with Him. We know that there are different offices within the body, and all are required so that the body can function properly.
We know that if one part of the body is sick, then that part of the body should receive more attention and care.
There are areas of our body that are sick, but I trust in Jesus to make us well. He works in many individuals, and they work together preparing His church for His return. That is a comforting thought when we are tempted to despair over the troubles within the household of the faith.
It is amazing to think that the true body of Christ in spirit exists within all sects of Christianity, and I know many would disagree with me there.
I do not think any Christian sect can say that they have it all right, and I do not think it is fitting for any Christian sect to accuse another of being false. Rather, I think all have something to offer and all have something lacking.
As much as I want to see a unified Christian structure, I don’t think that would be good. Not in this present world. I do expect that the “strange woman” or Great Whore of Mystery Babylon will unite all, and the head is not going to be Jesus Christ.
However, in this present time, we as individuals can strive to find better union in spirit by the Holy Spirit, and I believe that the faithful will unite in Spirit during persecution. I think it is a good idea to do so now, because I believe that the spirit of murder, slander, and accusation within the churches are in-part responsible for the formation of the Great Whore.
I think if we could hear each other out, we would find that we have a lot in common and we might change our perspective on some teachings. At the least, we can grow in humility, thereby accepting that our favored views could be wrong when it comes to teachings that are secondary to the death and resurrection of Jesus.
We can stop accusing one another and allow each Christian to pursue Christ according to the liberty and grace they are given by God. He will sort things out, and this sorting out will catch many in the traps they lay for one another.
What about the seven pillars?
I don’t know what to make of that. I think of the seven spirits of God. The number seven is also a symbol of perfection in the scriptures. There are also seven churches in Revelation. All but two are rebuked and “removed out of their place,” but since faithful Christians belong to all, the unity and redemption of His church could mean that all seven come together in perfection.
In any case, whether we are talking about the church as a whole or the Christian individual, Jesus will bring all things to perfection. We can trust in that.