The apostles left no instruction for how the church was to be organized after they all died. The reason for this was that they expected the Lord to return before they all died. Therefore, they only had to give instructions to the church of their generation. After that, the Lord would have arrived in His kingdom and He would give whatever direction was required. Indeed, that’s just the way it has happened. The kingdom of God has come. Jesus is reigning on His throne and shepherding His flock. He has separated the sheep from the goats and He is not confused about which is which.
Meanwhile, weak humans, lacking the faith to accept these things, have sought to build Him churches. Peter before them had tried to build a tabernacle for the Lord on the Mount of Transfiguration. The usual blueprints are the New Testament documents. The problem is that no church has ever successfully imitated the New Testament church – much less surpassed it. The reason for all the failure is that the New Testament church was a tent of waiting for the indestructible temple of the kingdom of God that would be descending from heaven. Since that temple came very soon after the apostle John in the book of Revelation said it would come very soon, it has been in our midst sheltering all who love Jesus Christ with an undivided heart. God doesn’t need the structure of the church because He has the structure of the kingdom.
This same apostle John warned us to guard ourselves from idols. Man-made churches are idols for they distract from devotion to the living God. Like the idols of old, they are objects of our making to which we become devoted. They are like the high places in Israel, or the houses of Baal (meaning “lord”). How can we establish such places of worship in the light of what Jesus said to the Samaritan woman about places of worship?
Jesus Christ is everywhere and He wants to be worshiped everywhere. He wants no representation of Himself to stand between us. He wants no house made with human hands whether that be a cathedral building, a megachurch congregation, or a house church small group. He doesn’t want families to come to one of these places and offer rituals in His name. Rather, He wants the husband to love the wife, the wife to love the husband, the parents to love the children, and the children to honor the parents. In other words, He wants righteousness.
We the leaders have tried to draw the people to ourselves when we should have been directing them to Him.
Our idols inspire rituals. The living God inspires righteousness.