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Doing God's Work God's Way

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We are living in a time in which some people are saying that we need to re-invent the church. But I say wait a minute. I agree with a growing number of pastors who seem to have gotten to the point where “enough is enough”. I believe we need to get back to God and back to basics in the church. We need to do God’s work and will God’s way which is to follow the biblical foundations for the church Jesus himself modeled. I believe this church looks like the church in Acts 2:41-47. A church comprised of authentic believers in Jesus Christ living a disciplined disciples life which God honored by adding to the church daily and where God’s people grew in ever deepening relationship with Him. That is the church that changed and turned its world upside down. Today I fear that the one being changed is the church as the world brings increasing influence into God’s house and among God’s people. We are commanded to avoid the ways of the world (1John 2:15-16) and have our minds transformed and not conformed to its ways (Rom 12:1-2). Some churches seem to walk on the margins in attempting to be relevant to our culture often compromising, albeit it well intentioned, in view of winning some. Jesus never compromised on the gospel and neither should we. The solution to our dilemma is to be obedient to the Word of God and endeavor to model ourselves after the original foundation for the church that Jesus himself established and exemplified. The Acts 2 church is God’s original design for the church. A church where the whole Word of God is taught and believers are proactively discipled, where God’s people pray together, fellowship together, serve together, worship together and go on mission together. This does not mean we avoid acknowledging and responding to an evolving culture, but we should not compromise in this process and never subordinate God’s ways for our own. The goal of the church is to join God in His work to redeem a lost world. Our goal is not bigness, entertainment, seeker friendliness, grand facilities, or providing an unending array of programs and activities. The goal is to establish a “healthy” church where God’s people grow in their relationship with God and go on mission and serve out of their love and obedience to God’s commands (John 14:15). My heart as a pastor is focused in two primary areas; the first is the spiritual development of God’s people and secondly winning the lost. These two key areas live at the intersection of the “Great Commission –Matt 28:19-20” and the “Great Commandment –Matt 22:37-40”. This is the heart of the mission of a biblically focused church. Doing God’s work and will God’s way should be our chief pursuit. The only means for doing this is being deeply grounded in God’s Word and being obedient to all it commands. I pray the church turns from the influence of the world and humbly returns to its foundation and becomes the influence Jesus intended His church to be on the world. As for this pastor, I pray that God will provide by His Spirit the wisdom, courage, strength, and grace to stand strong and mirror the biblical foundation of His church. An Acts 2 church where the power of the church is clearly seen by a lost and watching world through the lives of God’s people and a church exemplified by its love for God and where God’s people live and serve in unity. Originally posted here: https://biblicalpatterns.wordpress.com/2012/03/27/doing-gods-work-and-will-gods-way-in-the-church/

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1 Sarah R = "When we call the Bible's values "out-dated" or "not for us" we are basically saying that we think we know better than God. This is the same old sin that started in the Garden of Eden. Those who lead others away from God's Word will be judged, just as Adam and Eve were."
2 Sarah R = "I have never seen a church discipline a member, but that is the Biblical model. From Old to New Testament there are commands to and examples of people being disciplined or even thrown out of the church if they are living in deliberate sin and refusing to repent or are preaching a different gospel. What we do see today is the church judging others. To be clear: the Bible says we are NOT to judge those who are outside of the church - God is the judge of nonbelievers. This is talking about disciplining those who proclaim to be believers in Christ and yet live contrary to His commandments."
3 Sarah R = "Too often we get caught up in being popular, growing in numbers, commercialism, and political correctness - when Jesus was concerned with none of these things. If we as a church look more like the non-believing world than we do like Jesus.... then we are doing something very, very wrong."