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If God is Everywhere, Why Church?

I never really understood the idea of a Church… at least not from a theological point of view. If God is supposed to be everywhere, then what is the point of having a house of God? Now of course there are other reasons for have Christians to build Churches.

From a historical stand point, it seems like churches were built because our culture at the time was used to building temples to the various Gods. So it made sense to just change the name of those temples to a different God and then build more. It was much easier than tearing down the temple and building something useful like a school, hospital, or a strip mall.

Then there is the fact that when you get down to it, religion is a business and businesses need to make money. Having people come to a fancy building every week really helps to sell the God thing. You have the beautiful stained glass, the shiny gold trim, and masterful works of art all of which are designed to make people feel in awe. Church goers are so dazzled by all the shiny objects that they ride an emotional high which the Church takes advantage of to elicit more devotion and to get people to donate more to the Church.

Having everyone chant in unison also helps to create a stronger bond with the “in group” and with the Church leadership. When the collection plate gets passed around, people a are more willing to give.

But none of this has anything to do with their imaginary God. God is supposed to be everywhere (except Hell of course). So again what would the theological reason be for building a house to God? When Christian fundamentalists say that “the holy spirit is present in this room,” isn’t that a given? So much for omnipresent.

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  • http://www.politicalopinionarticles.blogspot.com david

    Rally the troops, and raise funds. Why go to the countryside, when you can bring the countryside to you?

  • http://stripey7.blogspot.com Eric Hamell

    Churches are social organizations. Membership is defined by what the congregation join in rejecting or limiting their contact with — whether things (the “profane”) or people (“unbelievers”). The church is a place where it is stipulated these people or things won’t be. This is theologically explained in terms of “consecrating” a place to a god. While he is imagined to be present in all places, that doesn’t mean all places are consecrated to him. Again, the actual social function is to define the group’s identity in terms of their agreement to regulate their behaviors in relation especially to the “profane.”

  • Atheist Kiwi

    Actually, to be fair, they don’t need churches anymore, they can use TV and Internet to raise funds.

    My son thought it was funny to switch to the religious channel this morn. I just said bullshit continuesly for about 5 mins. In the end he switched back to cartoons. I am amazed people fall for this crap…..

  • http://www.whereisjefferson.blogspot.com Chris Martin

    Hey Staks,
    It was great hearing you talk and “breaking bread” with you.
    Keep up the blog, I like what you’ve been writing. I’ve only got 3 postings so far and am trying to get my time scheduled to be more consistent in my postings. The ideas are there, just not on line yet.
    Cheers!
    Chris