Looking over the entire Lord’s Day, other than the worship of God. The overall theme… At least for me was GO! The GO really started in Sunday School… We’re in Philippians 3:12-16 We talked about how we are being made perfect in Christ-likeness but haven’t attained it yet 1 Timothy 6:12 Hebrews 12:1. But we must continue to go forward and pursue it 1 John 3:2 We talked about laying hold of it and pressing forward to the prize of he upward call of God in Christ. As we were discussing the verses along with many cross references. One of the women in the group said ” we really don’t want to get in trouble for Christ… That if we GO! and do what the word of God tells us, we’re going to get into hot water and that will lead to suffering and persecution. So we kind of went into one of our rabbit trails about Going! Matthew 28:19-20 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
I think in the Contemporary Christian Church in general…We have a big problem… What happen to Go? We want to be comfortable… But as one writer puts it:
There is absolutely no question about what the mission and ministry of the church of God in this world is. Our work is clearly defined and established by our Master. This commission is not given just to the apostles. It is not given to preachers, pastors, evangelists, and missionaries. It is a commission given to the whole church of God. This is not a command to go to mission fields, though that is certainly included in it. Rather, this is a charge to us all to be Christ’s witnesses as we go through this world. The text might better be read, “Therefore (since I am Lord) as you are going into all the world, teach all nations!”
I love the mission statement of my church… It is short, powerful and to the point… WIN, BUILD and SEND We go out to our areas of influence, our families, friends and coworkers and share the word of God to them Romans 10:17 giving the an answer to the hope we have in Christ 1 Peter 3:15 Letting them see the change in us, our character and fruit Galatians 5:22-23 and the word of God says He causes the growth 1 Corinthians 3:7 and by His doing we are in Christ 1 Corinthians 1:30. Salvation is God’s sovereign work Acts 2:47 We have forgotten that. Then they come to church as a believers being built up in Christ… Growing in the grace and knowledge of their Savior 2 Peter 3:17, 18. Getting help with discerning all things 1 Thessalonians 5:21, being protected by the Elders Acts 20:25-30, devoting themselves to the Pastor/Elders teaching 2 Peter 1:19-20, 21, partaking in breaking of bread, prayer Acts 1:14 and fellowship (sharing/ partnering in Christ) Acts 2:42 Then the process starts over and over… as Jesus said Himself I will build my church Matthew 16:18 As one writer puts it.
Christ called it “My church,” emphasizing that He alone is its Architect, Builder, Owner, and Lord. The Greek word for church means “called out ones.” While God had since the beginning of redemptive history been gathering the redeemed by grace, the unique church He promised to build began at Pentecost with the coming of the Holy Spirit, by whom the Lord baptized believers into His body-which is the church.
What solidified this overall theme of GO! for me was the announcement from one of the Elders about The Persecuted Church… As he was naming the countries and what they were being persecuted for and the terrible things that were happening to them. I kept on saying We are too comfortable with our Christianity… These persecuted Christians are the epitome of the word GO! Not everyone can go as far as they do… But let me say this with conviction and clarity… We can go outside the four walls of our comfortable confines (our church) and say as Jesus said when He started His ministry Repent and Believe Mark 1:15 and let the Spirit of God do the rest, knowing the result will be what He wants and desires it to be. Isaiah 55:11 There is something in some of us who are afraid to leave the work of Salvation, of Regeneration up to God… It’s like we’re saying He really needs our help to save those who would believe. Let us shout out and join Jonah in saying Salvation is from the LORD! Jonah 2:9 Let Him build His church and let us be obedient to His word. Read Ezekiel 36:22-32 and count how many times the personal pronoun “I” is used referring to God doing it all. As a dear brother said in Sunday School yesterday
“He doesn’t call us to be successful but faithful to His word” Now we just have to be obedient to His word and leave the rest to Him.
I’ll close with the last stanza of the Hymn we sung yesterday.
TURN YOUR EYES UPON JESUS
His Word shall not fail you, He promised;
Believe Him and all will be well;
Then go to a world that is dying,
His perfect salvation to tell!