Proper view of (and Passion for) the Local Church

by @jehiah on 2003-04-23 22:17
Filed under: All, Articles

First things first:This article draws heavily fromC.J. Mahaney,andMark Dever.

Prayer:Lord,please teach us how you mean us to live our lives as your followers.

  • Preface
    • We are called to follow christ together,and with some peticular people
    • what do you think about the church?
    • is the church some attempt at a frachise?like a religious mcdonalds all about bracelets and trickets and bumper stickers. I church.
    • All we want are things that benifit us in life,which is
    • We need a right view of the church.
  • What is a Church?
    • popular christian author collective noun. sheep:herd is a goose:gaggle,christian:church
    • when two of us see eachother are we automatically a church?grocery store?
    • ask what people think:a builing,all people everywhere
    • church:all believers everywhere(yes,it is in scripture)
    • church normally means a peticular gathering(local church)when used in scripture
    • 'big room' and 'big building' example(perspective that keeps in mind building is just an empty room where church meets)
    • it's not a place, it's a gathering of people,called out from the world by gods grace,called together to serve him by glorifying him in a local body of baptized believers who are associated by covenant in faith and fellowship of the gospel.
    • church shows the difference(very clearly)between those following the lord and those of the world.
  • What is the Purpose of the Church?
    • NCC Core Values
      • Worship:God,our pursuit of God,our eternal,never-ending thanks to God for creating,calling,justifying,sanctifying,glorifying us,our fervent worship and praise of God is the center and focus of all we do together as a church. Worship must never be an add-on or merely a preparation for teaching,but rather stands on its own as the high call we have together as His covenant people.
      • Preaching sound doctrine:I give you this charge:Preach the Word;be prepared in season and out of season;correct,rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction.2 Timothy 4:1-2Gods word says faith comes from hearing the word of God.
      • Authentic Relationships:Relationships are the backbone of our church.
      • Strong Families:
      • Outreach:
      • Service:(note:come to later)each one has received a gift minister it to one another,as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Peter 4:10
  • How does the church bring Glory to God?
    • [closest thing to Gods mission statement for history]
    • Ephesians 3:8-11 NIV(and Mark Dever's message on 'What is Gods Will?God's Glory')
    • sandwich illustration
      • each of the pieces mean something when on their own but not much
      • when you take the time to train someone(a chef)to work on those pieces and make something much more glorious(a sandwich)it shows your skill[you were the one who was able to teach the chef to work with the ingredients].
    • 'through the church Gods wisdom would be displayed'
    • The angels are learning about Gods wisdom throughwatching us,and our interaction in the church.
    • How much are they learning?depends on where they are looking. Alot of places there is little to distinguish the church from the culture. I would submit that there will be a time before our Lords return,there will be a difference between the two.=)
    • Bride of Jesus Christ
    • Commend those who have made this their passion.
  • Why do we need to be part of a local church .... now?[recap of previous point]
    • build on sandwich illustration and preaching of sound doctrine.
      • I give you this charge:Preach the Word;be prepared in season and out of season;correct,rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction.2 Timothy 4:1-2
      • The more we are refined,the more Glory God should get.
    • Ephesians 2:19-21citizens of kingdom[church universal]of God and members of his family[local church]
      • Family is our local church
      • notice all the illustrations relating to family and marriage. God chose those words and that example for a purpose!
    • christ married the church(church is the bride of chist)
      • marriage is the most intimate relationship
      • our involvement in church is how we can have/share in this intimate relationship
    • Ephesians 3:10"...NOW through the church"
    • you are to be a provider not only a cosumer
  • How can we serve the church?
    • Commitment to the local church is the mostbasicand important aspects of your christian life.
    • Books:Don Whitney:Spiritual Diciplines within the church.
    • 9 marks of a local church by Mark Dever
    • each one has received a gift minister it to one another,as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Peter 4:10
    • Ephesians 4:7by the gifts that Christ gives us. given as Christ apportioned it.
    • I Corinthians 12:28,31,Paul urges the Corinthians to excel in gifts that build up the church. The point is not to use our gifts for ourselves,but for the body.[MD]
    • Point out numerous requests for help in Church Anual Report.
  • How can we be motivated to serve the church?

Newsweek cover story 1990(paragraph 2 in linked article)hearlding dramatic religious resurgence in baby boomers
after death,but unlike earlier religious revivals,the aim this time is support not salvation,help rather than holiness,a circle of spiritual equals rather than an authoritative church or God. A group affirmation of self is at the top of the agenda,which is why some of the least demading churches are now in the greatest demand." I want you to know this is not one of the "least demanding churches

Small Group Questions:

  • Does your view of the church differ from what you have just learned?If so how?
  • How does God recieve glory from the Church?
  • Was there anything said tonight that has inspired and encouraged your vision for the church?
  • Do you see yourself as having a passion for your church?If so,how?
  • Do you have a long term vision(children Bible study leader,elder,pastor etc.)
  • How can you serve your church?
  • What are the angels learning about God from your commitment to the church?
  • What am i doing that
    • question to ask yourself:Is this decision/my life worthy of the calling i have recieved?
  • How can we be motivated to serve the church?
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