HANDOUT FOR SERMON: WHAT AN AMAZING SPIRITUAL FAMILY, HOWEVER, HAS THE CHURCH LOST ITS MISSION? Is the local Church as God truly wants us to be? Is there room for improvement? October 22, 2023, Manchester, TN
INTRODUCTION Jesus Christ came to earth to accomplish several things of which all were a part of the Fathers will. He came as light to the world, He came to seek and save the lost, He came to give His life as a propitiation for sin, and He came to establish His Church. In fact, Jesus clearly stated that He would build His Church and that the gates of hell could not hinder His work in doing so, Matthew 16:18.
Other scriptures that teach the main mission of the Church which Jesus built: Matthew 28:18-19, Ephesians 3:10, 1 Peter 2:9, John 15:16, 1 John 1:2-3
LESSON 1. THE CHURCH WHICH JESUS BUILT IS MADE UP OF THE PEOPLE OR FAMILY OF GOD. There are many bible verses that teach that the disciples, followers, true believers are the people or family of God. Scripture: 1 Peter 2:9-10, John 1:12, John 3:3-5, Romans 8:14-15, Galatians 4:6, Ephesians 2:19, 1 Timothy 3:15, Colossians 3:15
The Church is to be a family. Do we understand fully what this means? Have we grasped the true meaning of God in this reality?
What is a family: A family is a group of two or more people related either by birth, marriage or adoption who live together. A common kinship.
The Purpose & Value of a Family. To provide food, shelter, clothing, and physical security. Where one learns about love. warmth and companionship. A place that promotes growth, development, and stability.
2.DIFFERENT KINDS OF FAMILIES: FUNCTIONAL OR DYSFUNCTIONAL FAMILIES. It is important that local congregations of the Lord’s Church look seriously inward and evaluate their current status.
Dysfunctional family: Is a family in which conflict, misbehavior and often neglect or abuse happens. A broken family will refer to a family who has lost a parent and a dysfunctional family refers to families who experience excessive conflict or instability. Most families experience some level of dysfunction. Indicators: addiction, perfectionism, abuse or neglect, unpredictability and fear, conditional love, lack of boundaries, poor communication, lack of intimacy.
Functional family: Is one where the adults are at the center of the family in charge and pulling together in the same direction. Their goal is to create a very secure environment for their children and each other. A desire for a safe environment for all in the family unit. Home becomes a place of nurturing, genuineness and care. It becomes a place of encouragement. Communication and respect are vital for a functioning family. Children are allowed to become independent yet are taught rules and boundaries.
God clearly teaches us how He wants His family and His Church family to think, react and treat one another and the world. God gives plenty of admonition and guidance for how His family is supposed to be. There are many principles provided in the New Testament where God demands proper emotion and behavior in the family of God.
Scripture: 1 John 13:34, Ephesians 4:32, Galatians 5:22, Galatians 6:1, Romans 15:1-2, Romans 12:10, Philippians 2:4, Colossians 3:12, Hebrews 13:16
Read: Ephesians 4:1-10 & 11-16, 1 Corinthians 12:12-27 He addresses the members of the local church individually as to giving each person a “gift” for the purpose of benefiting the body! There is one body but we are a collective of individuals who are supposed to be working for the benefit of ALL, not just ourselves!
3. IT SHOULD BE “WE” OVER “ME!”
Read the Lord’s prayer. Matthew 6:9-13/ Luke 11:1-4 Take note of the collective pronoun that Our Lord Jesus Christ uses. This should NOT be overlooked!
Challenge yourself in reference to “how you read scripture!” Rethink the way in which you read scripture, rethink how you think about scripture, rethink the way you understand scripture and lastly rethink the way you apply scripture.
It is unfortunate that we can become very selfish if our approach to the Bible and its teachings. We think of self. Even our interaction with others is based on my own viewpoint, upbringing, religious background and my “own understanding or interpretation of scripture.”
In the beginning the Lord’s Church was all about the benefit for ALL. Read Acts 2,4,6,8,
We must work together. We must always be there for one another. For some the Church is: there when I need it but when I don’t I am out of it and don’t care about it!
Read: Acts 27 Paul is shipwrecked. God wanted them all to stay together. God wanted to save them all! He did not want them to just “think” of themselves!
• They were all right where they needed to be. (Fairhaven)
• God is saying “I can still work with you!”
• We must take courage.
• You cannot jump ship and run.
• We must relax, not stress nor fight about it. We must eat and be nourished.
We all need to make it together! Think collectively. We are a part of one another in the great family of God. Acts 27:44 “So, everyone escaped safely to shore.”