Thursday, December 3, 2009

Thoughts on The Role of the Church...

A few weeks ago in my Church Ministry class, I was asked to give my position on the role of the is part of my response

I believe that the church should be Christ-centered in every aspect, namely because it is composed of those of whom Christ has “called-out” for Himself, and I believe that the church should be God-glorifying- seeking to please the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in all things, submitting to God’s Sovereignty and Supremacy. Colossians 1:18 says that Christ”is the head of the body, the church” and therefore everything that is done in His body must fall in line according to the Standard and Headship of Christ. Discernment and proper discrimination must be high priority in order for this to be accomplished and a love and high estimation for the truth must also be in place. Matthew 16:16-18 tells of Peter speaking to Jesus declaring to Him that He is the “Christ, Son of the Living God”. Immediately Jesus responds to Peter telling Him that this revelation of Him was not given by flesh or blood, but was rvealed to Him by the Father in Heaven. Jesus continues speaking and tells His disciples that upon this rock He will build His church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it. Many interpret this passage to mean that Jesus was building his church upon Peter, meaning Peter was somehow the first leader or foundation of it. I believe that the “rock” Christ was speaking upon building on was Peter’s statement and how that statement was revealed to him. “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God”, is, I believe, the rock upon which Jesus has built His church; That all who this is revealed to – not by flesh and blood, nor by marketing plans, large buildings, culturally relevant music, or modern organization strategies, but by the Father who is in heaven – will come together and seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness. Christ, in Matthew 7 spoke of the house that is built upon a rock, a house that is founded on submitting to and glorifying the teachings and Person of Jesus Christ. My point is that no other method or strategy or vision besides the revealed “Jesus is Lord” will truly build His church. It is from this vine that all of our visions strategies and goals for ministry must branch from, and without it our churches will be nothing. With this said, I believe as Warren said, that the church’s purpose is about bringing in God’s lost sheep, and at the same time, teaching those sheep discernment, truth, and sound doctrine. The church must always look to Acts 2:46-47 where it says “And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” This verse is the church’s confidence and her foundation; that no matter how many trends, or strategies, or ideas that we come up with,as good or as bad as they are, only the Lord can add to His church. Like Ezekiel, God commands us to speak to the dry bones, but only He can give them life. Ideas, strategies and cultural relevance without compromise are all good and, at times, necessary factors in order for the church to continue to shine as a light to the world, but we must remember that we are a light, not the match, and it is God who adds men to his bride, not man. This is my current position on the church and as I grow in grace, this position may change. My prayer is that if it changes, may it glorify God, and may it fall in place to beautify His spotless and pure bride. "

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