Poole Christian Fellowship Mission Statement Part two – “Loving the church”
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Notes on Sermon preached on 15 January 2017 to Poole Christian Fellowship at Poole High School.
There are many great projects that individuals give themselves to. I submit that the greatest cause anyone can give their lives to, is in partnering with Jesus to build his church.
We are on the second week of our three weeks looking at the specifics of our mission statement “Loving Jesus…loving His church loving the loss”. We will be looking together at what it means to love the church, by asking three questions:
1. What is the church?
As we have repeatedly said – the church is not a building. Literally the Greek word ecclesia means something like “called out community”. The church is a called out community of believers of every tribe race and tongue, from every age .
It is the community pictured in Revelation 7:
After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. 10 And they cried out in a loud voice:
“Salvation belongs to our God,
who sits on the throne,
and to the Lamb.”
In this age the church is organised by God into local communities of believers the local church.
The church is likened to:
- A Body – in which each part has to do its work
- A Building – in which each person is a living stone
- A Family – in which every person matters
2. How Does Jesus love His church?
- Jesus loves his church by purchasing it – Jesus gave His life to buy the church and to pay the ransom
- Jesus loves his church by building it. We are still on a building site – that’s why it all looka a bit messy at times!
- Jesus is the churches bridegroom – Jesus is spending this age preparing the bride for eternity
3. How Should we love the church?
As Jesus loves the church – so should we. How do we do this?
- Recognise how important it is to Jesus. The church is at the centre of God’s plan – so it should be at the centre of ours.
- Recognise that you are a part of it – incredibly we as individuals are privileged to play a part in the great project of the ages
- Recognise that you have to play your part – the privilege gives us also a great responsibility. As Spurgeon said: “There is nothing as unchristian as the solitary Christian”. We have a part to play and the church can not function correctly until we do
- Recognise that it’s not about you! Consumerism has found its ugly way into the churchm and it is possible to use the church as a way to fulfill our own agenda. It si not about meeting our own needs – it is about seeing God’s kingdom come in our generation
- Keep the end in sight. Sometimes the building site gets messy, and sometimes the family doesn’t work well. When that happens we need to keep our eyes on what Jesu sees: the end point of history when Jesus returns for his bride:
Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,”[a] for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’[b] or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
5 He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!”Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
6 He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7 Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children.
I submit that the greatest cause anyone can give themselves to is to partner with Jesus in building his church.