So, why “regional Ecclesia?” While a great deal of discussion has been given to city church, and some pretty definitive statements made about what the Bible recognizes as a “Ecclesia,” we return to the same premise: What does that word mean in the mouth of the person speaking it or writing it? Because the Bible records addresses to Ecclesiae by place name, the assumption that modern city names tell us how to think about the definition of an Ecclesia.
However, the word “polis” as it is applied to the discussion of ekklesia does not refer to the same thing as “city.” It refers to people affiliated together culturally as a basis for defined commonality of association. Some type of social contract defines their league or relational condition.
God’s People, in a Place, to Produce a Purpose
The reason this is important lies in the fact that kingdom has culture, and the Great Commission focus kingdom leadership on discipling cultures. The context most consistent with what the Bible is thinking about Ecclesia is: God’s purpose for that people of a place.
Remember that Ecclesia for Israel in the Old Testament referred to a place who were often in a place. Consider that God may replace that people in a place in order to secure what He purposes for that place. So, we begin with “God’s purposes for a place and people,” then consider how God will influence the place with the people to produce His purposes, then we add kingdom of heaven to that place through kingdom culture as the influence of heaven on earth, and the citizens of the kingdom are called together into assembly to agree with the decisions of the King about how to produce His purpose of place through the people.
In this way, the spiritual influence of that kingdom begins to increase until the culture of that kingdom has impact upon the existing culture.
In the book, Apostle, I explain how that technical term, apostolos, answers to the King’s strategies for cultural influence and impact, and how the kingdom meaning of these ideas fits the mission of the kingdom of God in the nations. For our purposes here, let me say that Jesus as King wants His kingdom culture to influence and impact the cultures of the earth, and that He sees those cultures redeemed through spiritual kingdom come, culture, and conquest. So, we conclude by way of introduction to this discussion, that Ecclesia is best understood as regional, and this manifesto assumes that kingdom operates with these principles, processes, and protocols in mind.
[After reading several discussion, including one from Australia by David Orton sent to me by my friend, David Balestri, I have followed a manifesto form for this treatment. However, neither of these men nor any other, should be blamed for my discussion and conclusions which are entirely my own.]