In my last part in my series on the church I want to discuss something that I think is at the core of Scripture and the heart of God. God’s will is to be the will of His church. Period. There is no doubt about that. Matthew 28:18-20, Acts 1:8, and numerous other texts explicitly call all brothers and sisters in Christ to proclaim the name of Christ to all people, and to live their lives totally to the glory of His name. This is not just for pastors, missionaries, evangelists, and other church leaders. This is for all who call upon His name for salvation. Every member.
Church is not about programs, comfort, music, style, or size. It is about Christ. It is not about feel good sermons made to pat our backs and encourage us to keep living for ourselves. It is about Christ. The center of the church, and for that matter every believer, is not to be entertainment driven music or good babysitting services so that mom and dad can hear a good lecture. It is to be Christ.
Two thousand years ago Christ came on a rescue mission that was planned before the creation of the world. WE ARE SINNERS! WITHOUT CHRIST WE ARE HOPELESS AND DOOMED TO HELL! But because of Christ, who died a sinner’s death in OUR PLACE on a rugged Roman cross 2000 years ago, we can be found, free, and forgiven. Hope is possible only in Christ. Peace is possible only in Christ. Salvation is possible only in Christ. It is available to everyone who will call upon Him to be saved. You can not do enough religious acts to get it. You can not do enough good. It is available only by His grace, to those who trust in Him by faith. And the good news is: for those who do trust in Him by faith, become a new creation. Punishment for sins gone. New life received. Adoption into God’s family granted. Right to call God “Father”, given. Freedom.
Our mission: Tell this good news. Period.
The only problem is, that most people who will read this, know this, yet will not live in this reality. Why? We want a church that serves us. I call it Burger King Baptist Church (We want it our way right away). We care more about programs that serve us than we do about Christ who saved us.
So, brothers and sisters in Christ, our mission is to tell the world about Jesus. If we are spending more money on Christmas and birthday gifts than we are on the proclamation of the gospel, then we should step back and ask ourselves who or what are we worshiping. This post might seem a bit “in your face”, but how do you calmly and gently talk about millions and billions of people who do not know the name of Jesus, who if things remain the same will spend eternity in hell, separated from God and His love? This truth ought to grip our hearts. I am not trying to say that God is not in control. He is, and always has been. The pressure to save the world is not to be on us. God is the one who saves. But, the call to obedience is on the church. If the state of the gospel in our world today was due to the full devotion and obedience of Christ’s church, then we would have much to celebrate. But, this is just not the case.
In writing this, I accuse myself. I seek to challenge my own soul. I need to repent of my lack of obedience. The temptation is to lower the standard of Scripture and enjoy my self-seeking program driven church that seeks to hide the number of lost people, so that it does not spoil my time at church as I sit down with my coffee. But I can’t do that. Lord help us. Lord help me.