Unless you have read from older authors or certain ‘high church’ denominations, you have probably never heard the term, laity. The most simple definition of the word is, “people”. The greek word, λαός, has three main glosses (or meanings)- people, crowd, or multitude. A great verse for this is found in Matthew 1:21, “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
Looking at this example, there is an obvious honor in such a term. Should this be reason enough to lay claim of it as a group, though? Is it that easy? The history of the church shows us that this term has been adopted as a means of distinguishing the “ordained clergy” from that of the common people. The issues arise from those who pervert our understanding of authority. Such a thing is done when we think that someone with a title is “better than.” Sadly, this happens the majority of the time. You, right now, don’t have to make that error.
Why have I brought this term to your attention? Well, because laity is what most of us are, myself included; the one who is writing a short blog post for those who find their way here. As a middle aged male, blue collar worker, I have no qualifications to put me in any esteemed group. However, having been redeemed by the precious and infinite worth of the blood of Christ, I have been promoted to “the laity.” A Christian is a Christian -Rom 12:5 “so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.” Let us rejoice at the label of laity.
I’m thankful for the opportunity to write a post for Risen Son Church. We, as a congregation, are going through some changes, which is exciting for most, but challenging to some. May we be “eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”(Eph 4.3) As we wade through these God ordained waters, may we be more biblical in our polity and bring about a solid, distinguishable laity.