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I Believe In Belonging

Moody Church Hour / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
September 6, 2020 1:00 am

I Believe In Belonging

Moody Church Hour / Erwin Lutzer

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September 6, 2020 1:00 am

It was Jesus who proclaimed, “I will build My church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” The church is one of God’s primary means of working in the world, and it is vital that every Christian develop a growing relationship with a local body of believers.

 Click here to listen (Duration 54:30)

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It was Jesus who proclaimed I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it. The church is God's primary means of working in the world and each Christian should have a vital relationship with a local body of believers from Chicago. This is The Moody Church. Our weekly service of worship and teaching under the ministry of Dr. Erwin Luther today we bring you the first in a four-part series of messages on the topic. I believe in the church. Stay with us as Dr. Luther speaks on. I believe in belonging pastor looks or comes now to open our service this morning we gathered together as a company of believers of God's people to worship, to come together in corporate worship to be able to say to the Lord that we love him to give him our hearts and to listen to his voice. As you look through your bulletin. You'll notice that the emphasis today is on the church.

Jesus said upon this rock I will build my church. The church is his church belongs to him and today were going to be emphasizing our part in the vision that God has given to us in a few moments after I have prayed you'll notice that we will then stand for the Scripture reading Joe for writer will be reading a passage from first Corinthians.

The hymn 276 will be something Christ is made the sure foundation pastor Birch able read acts chapter 2 section that is listed in the bulletin. When we come to 280.

I love thy kingdom.

Lord, let's sing stands as one, two and five, one, two and five and then will sing 281 in the chorus make us one. We hope that as you have come together. It is with an attitude of desiring today to hear the voice of God.

We have so many privileges in this nation. And so as we come into God's presence. It is with a great deal of gratitude to his most holy name, but most of all for the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ our Lord matter what is troubled you today, no matter what is going to trouble you in the week ahead. These moments are set aside for God. Let's pray together and then we shall begin our father, we want to thank you today for the encouragement that we received from Jesus that he is the one who is building his church and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it.

We pray today that as we are a part of a much larger body of millions of people around the world make us conscious that we do have a part in your great vineyard, and most of all, Lord, let us direct our hearts and our minds and our thoughts toward you. We seek old father that you be glorified today among us in Jesus name, amen. Stand together for the reading of God's word. Please follow along your bulletin as we read first Corinthians 37 through 11. Neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who makes things grow.

The men who plants and the men who waters have one purpose and each will be rewarded according to his own labor.

For we are God's fellow workers.

You are God's field, God's building. By the grace God has given me. I laid a foundation as an expert builder and someone else is building on it, but each one should be careful how he builds, for no one can lay any foundation other than that one already laid, which is Jesus Christ and second surgery this morning is found in the book of acts chapter 2 verses 42 through 47 in Outlook offers us a fascinating look at the first century church. They devoted themselves to the apostles teaching into the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles.

All the believers were together and had everything in common.

Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts.

They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people and the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved versus one, two and five of hymn 280 Boone 275 to 75. We read in Scripture. In first Corinthians. How Christ is our foundation.

We like to sing about that to 75 as well as continuing on the two verses in your bulletin of May the mind of Christ, my Savior.

Father we come to you and we are so humbled when we hear about your servants trying to serve the Lord with nothing in father wherever your people are hurting. Today we want to pray for them and we ask that graciously, Lord God, you might make us a loving people. We pray for the city of Chicago and its great needs in this city their hearts that are broken in this congregation, their families, their coming apart, and we pray today father. In light of these great needs come and help us. Father boldly plead with you, we give you no rest we say in grace come and visit your people and revive us and help us father that is weak given as we serve and as we as we labor and as we pray father that it might be with our whole hearts.

We pray that many victories will be one that many souls will be saved that many hearts will be encouraged that families might be strengthened and we ask the Lord Jesus got that somehow in this city, we might still behold the wonderful works of God make this year a year of transformation receive the gifts that we have brought with gratitude. In Jesus name we pray. Amen thank I want you to know that I believe in the church and I believe in the church because Jesus said that the church belongs to him. It is his church. I believe in the church because Jesus said that he would build his church. I believe in the church because Jesus said that it was invincible.

The gates of Hades would not prevail against it. And because of that. I also believe in this church which is a part of the larger body of Jesus Christ.

I believe in the vision and the ministry of The Moody Church founded in 1864, when we speak of the church.

We are not speaking of the building.

I know we use that terminology don't we.

We say that I'm going to the church but actually the church is not a building. The church is the body of Jesus Christ. The church is people. The church is the people whom God has called the world saved and now send back into the world to represent him in the midst of this generation. You are the church. That's why, as I've mentioned before, when a plane is coming into O'Hare Field and were coming over Lake Michigan and I look down upon the city of Chicago.

I often try to find the building Moody Church. Sometimes I can see it. Sometimes I can't but I say to myself that's not the church. Anyway, the church are the people who are in factories and hospitals and home, the church that's you and me representing Christ wherever he has planted us. Now of course you know that Ted here at The Moody Church. We want to envision that honors God. We wanted vision that is not limited by our past. We thank God for our past. It's wonderful to belong to a church that is so well known within the city and really in evangelical circles at least throughout the United States and throughout the world. My wife and I have been to China where we met people in a church there. Who knew of the ministry of DL Moody and new ability, church, but I want you to know today that we do not want to look to our past and to have people think in terms of what is happening here in the past we want to have the vision that makes people think of what God is doing at The Moody Church in the present, not just the past we want to be able to look at the past as a writer but not as an anchor. We want to be able to look at the past as what shall we say it is a guidepost but it's not a hitching post where we we think that we are great because of our past. That's not the point. God forbid that it should be. So we want a church that is much larger end and not tied to our past. In that sense we also would like to ask God to give us a vision but is not limited by human opinions. Now, don't misunderstand. I know that God leads to human opinions through the opinions of the leadership of the church.

I understand that I'm saying that we certainly don't want to be hindered by the opinions of of the few people and I can say that today because as I speak here today. I'm not aware of any instance in which we are being hindered because of the opinions of a few, but sometimes does happen.

We should not be hindered because of our traditions in the sense that our tradition always has to be revised income under biblical scrutiny and there are things that we can learn from churches in America as well as churches around the world. So we want to be open to God, we do not want to have a vision that can simply be human vision. In that sense about what we can visualize but rather what God desires to do in and through us so I don't want to have the vision limited by such things as our history or human opinion, nor do we want here at the church. A vision that is limited by such things as being misdirected, misdirected, I believe that a misdirected vision is one that that is an internal vision that sees only what it is that we want to do rather than being able to look outside of our walls and seeing the great need. Maybe I can put it more clearly and misdirected vision is a vision where people are concerned about the survival of the church. Can we survive. I want you to know today that our mindset is not the question of whether or not we can survive. But the question of whether or not we can thrive under the good hand of God. We are interested in seeing people come to know Christ as Savior. It isn't simply a matter of having our bills paid but thank God we know that that's our responsibility and it is happening but that's not the beginning and the end it's not keeping the doors open simply because the doors happen to be open is rather us reaching out incarnate in Christ to our community and seeing his good hand of blessing and benediction upon us 10 years ago.

It is almost 10 years ago. I believe we adopted a vision statement and the vision statement deliberately was written in such a way that would not be ingrown. It would not turn in upon itself. It was a vision statement that wasn't merely us thinking of what God is going to do in us, but the way in which we are perceived in the impact that we have in our community. We wanted to make sure that it was a vision statement that was something much larger than simply these facilities and so many of you will remember and some of you have memorized or made you keep it on your fridge. If you've seen those cards that we produced with it better vision for The Moody Church is to be known in Chicago.

Let me stop there and say that we are quite well known in Chicago, but sometimes were not known for the right things. There are so many misconceptions that exist outside their I've had more than one person say I used to go past The Moody Church there. People have gone past this place holding their nose because they thought that we were some stereotype that they had in mind.

And then they'd come here, and Dave enjoyed the worship and the fellowship in the love and they discovered that they were entirely wrong in their conceptions and so we want to be known in the city but it's not just that we want to be known for what we are against. We also want to be known for what we are for, to share the love and the compassion of Jesus Christ with the city that so desperately needs it. You'll notice also that the vision statement goes on to be a caring and culturally diverse community is a lot of talk today about diversity a lot of it has to do with lifestyle diversity.

That's not what we mean were talking about ethnically diverse, culturally diverse, racially diverse. I think one of the strengths of Moody Church is that as you look around you.

You know that there is some people whose skin color is different from yours and it's wonderful to serve in the community and in a church in which we have sort of like a mini United Nations with people from from different backgrounds and different countries we have and I won't mention them all, but we have African Americans, we have Asian Americans, we have Hispanic American and then bless God we also have some Caucasian Americans as well.

And if you're going into an ice cream shop they would be the ones that would be plain-vanilla. We got some of those to and so God has given us this sense of diversity. This sense of saying that we need to reach out beyond ourselves.

The rest of the vision statement says to be known as a diverse community that seeks to transform lives because it's the gospel. The gospel that we are really interested in living out the gospel living out the social implications of the gospel, but living out a life of love and commitment and sacrifice wherever it is that God has us and so I want to tell you today that when you think of The Moody Church Sandberg village is our mission field. The Gold Coast is our mission field. The Cabrini Green housing project is our mission field. In fact, God is doing some wonderful things there, and our children's ministry. There are things that we haven't even shared with you yet that are in the developmental stage and that's why we keep talking about her family life Center and and why it's needed is so urgent because God is giving us leaders and and giving us vision to be able to reach the city through its children. So all that is our mission field, and North Africa is our mission field as we send one who has become a member of our staff to represent us there and to live there in North Africa and what a wonderful story that is but also Cuba is our mission field.

As we learned as we think of the more than 70 missionaries around the world that we support all these become our mission field. I'm not saying of course that we can do it all by no means we thank God for the hundreds of churches and dozens of organizations that are involved, but we pray that we will be able to have a part in what it is that God is doing, because we still want to see his hand for evangelism for the edification of his people. We want Moody Church to be a place where you cannot only be long, but where you can become the person that God wants you to be touching your community touching lives building bridges showing the world that Jesus Christ cares and that he loves them sign a question for you today that I need to ask.

Are you willing to embark with us on this journey is this. Also, your vision, do you have within yourself a a commitment that says yes we want to go where you are going. We want to see the impact that we can make and we are willing to sacrifice to give to go and to pray and to be so that our vision can be fulfill the vision that we believe is from God. As we've said before I'm vision that reaches toward tomorrow helping me change the city that could change the world and I'm asking you today between you and me, though you must answer in your heart. Unfortunately, you can't answer out loud because it could sound a little bit out of a confusing but in your heart. I want you to answer this question. Are you with us in the vision that God has entrusted to us. Now there are some people who are members of the church you perhaps are not involved in the church. We have members who become members and then they they drift off somewhere else and do and that's a little troubling, but there may be reasons for it were not being judgmental at that point, but there also some of you are here today who were not members and their some people who don't become members of the church for a couple of different reasons. First of all, some want to keep their options open. They say well you know we we attend there but sometimes the preaching is in good and we want the option of going somewhere else.

There are those who may say well you know we we want to be there and we can weaken support and we can be involved, but we don't want to really buying into it because because we just want to make sure that we don't get tied down and take anything that expression tied down to anything. You don't used to be years ago that loyalty was a very very prized virtue and and that many people had today that's not the case years ago, a person would keep his money in a bank because that's where his father kept the money in that bank and that you just were loyal you knew the people in the bank and that's where you did your business and that's where you had your commitment. Today's generation is not into that kind of loyalty if they can find 1/8 of an interest point more on their money, they will forget loyalty and those simply say I'm gonna go where I'm going to get the most and that's the way it is sometimes with churches, I will attend. I will be there if you bless me.

If you preach to me if I like the music but I want to make sure that my option is open so that I can go somewhere else at a moments notice. I hope you're not thinking that some people do. So I'm asking you today in case you are missing it, but I don't think you are. I'm asking you today. Are you willing to commit to what God is doing among us and to the vision that he has given to us as the leadership of the church at vision that ultimately turns out to be as big as the world there are other people who don't become members because they say you know I don't find it anywhere in the Bible it is in scriptural and the whole idea of membership is something that that's man-made know there is a singer for you. It's man-made. I want to give you some reasons today why I think that belonging to a church and becoming a part and committing to the church and is not just your your name on a roll, but that commitment and that sacrifice white is thoroughly biblical to give you some reasons.

First of all, because I think that church membership affirms your identity, your identity where you belong. Take your Bibles and turn to acts chapter 5 and we shall be looking at a few passages in the book of acts very briefly, but acts chapter 5 Ananias and Sapphire had just died member they lie hand in order to make the point that God hates lying and he wanted to get the church off to a good start.

He had them drop dead because of misrepresentation, and it wasn't even a flat out lie. It was kind of like a white lie. Let's suppose they sold the land for thousand dollars and then they told the church we sold it for $500 and then they gave the 500 and I was perfectly fine but they pretended they pretended that they gave all of the money. And God said, you've lied to the Holy Spirit and you are dead. I had one pastor say to me you know if God works that way today in the church. We have to have a more in the basement right now. That's the context. But I want you to pick it up in verse 13. After that happened no one else dared to join them even though they were highly regarded by the people.

Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and where added to their number one. That sounds pretty close to church membership to me to see what was happening is the people of the world knew exactly who belonged and who didn't belong in the line was much clearer than it is today, and today the lines are blurred but in those days if you belong to the Lord, you belong to this company and if you didn't belong to that company. Everybody knew that to I want you to know today that your commitment to Moody Church. Your decision to become a member and a part of what we're doing can tremendously help you in your witness because you can tell people that you are members of The Moody Church and you say over what they have so many misconceptions. The minute you mentioned the word Moody there thinking about all kinds of weird things. My dear friend. That's why God put you there to help them clarify those misconceptions and you can do that by telling them the story of DL Moody. Also, a few years ago I wrote a pamphlet about what Moody Church was and you know Pastor Worley.

I wasn't able to see any in the at the information desk this morning but if we don't have those were gonna reprint them for you, because all that you have to do is to get that out talks about who we are where we stand in the tradition of evangelicalism and it helps us pinpoint it because there's so many people with those misconceptions. I can't tell you the number of people who think that we somehow belong to the Moonies. My dear friend, God is called you to evangelize, but is also called you to help people correct their misconceptions that they might have been developed throughout the years.

There's a sense of belonging that says I belong there, and I hope that everyone of you who is a member and who will be a member can save belong to Moody Church and can say that without embarrassment, but in the proper sense with a sense of pride in saying I know where I stand and it's okay if you know that to the sense of identity identity for us to know who you are is identity for the world to know also who you are.

They joined the company. The Bible says let me give you a second reason it affirms our unity.

Unity we can look at chapter 2 for a moment. It says in chapter 2, verse 42 they devoted themselves to the apostles teaching in the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. This is acts chapter 2, verse 43. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles and the believers were together and had everything in common. They said we belong to one another all my dear friend, I can tell you this that belonging somewhere and belonging to one another is a great strength in the church. It's a strength for you.

It's a strength for us because we all profit by our strength.

You know that old line that says you know if we don't hang together we will hang separately and then the unity of the church. This strength that is derived we can do things together that we can never possibly do individually as we've already seen today by having this vision for missions and being able to touch the world in some sense with the gospel and with the love of Jesus Christ and we are unified in the doctrines of the apostles as it mentioned no people today say, oh, every church should just be unified. Just take all of Christendom and unified know know know know the purpose of doctrine is to unite, but it is also to divide people into safe here is the dividing line. We believe this and you believe that and because of the conviction of our belief we respect you and we love you, but were not into fellowship with you that's important. I'm going to preach God willing a whole series of messages on the business of understanding how to properly judge these kinds of things in today's world, but we affirm our unity. We speak well of one another and if somebody speaks ill of a believer. That person is then taken to the believer about whom he is speaking ill and he resolves that because we will not tolerate disunity. My wife and I had about a half-dozen pastors and their wives over to our place last night for dinner. It's a group of pastors that has been meeting for years and we we meet together a few times a year and we swap stories and we talk and we pray together and have some fun sometimes. Also one of the pastors shared there was somebody in his church was part of a committee and expansion committee and they were purchasing some land and he agreed that this was a good deal but after the deal was signed. He turned against the pastor said that this was a terrible decision even though he had been a part of it, and he began to accuse the pastor of dishonesty and and other things that were and accuse the whole staff and when they asked him for evidence. This is classic. Now listen to this. He said I do not need any evidence because the Holy Spirit showed all these things to me and I say to you. Beware of people who don't need any evidence because the Holy Spirit shows them these things more from the other side of the spirit world. So eventually he left and he's gone to another church is already ingrained that they are in another church and he's going to do the same thing I can tell you that right now because we know those kinds of personalities Allison. He did a lot of damage in the church because you always find somebody who's going to believe somebody no matter how disconnected they are from reality and God says I hate the disunity God says he wants unity in the church and when you become a member what you're saying is I believe where you're going. I believe in your vision. I believe in your doctrine. I believe in your passion and I want to sign up and go with you. I have to say today, very honestly and openly.

We need you to come with us. Where were going, we can't do this alone so it affirms our unity. It affirms our accountability of these people bless them.

For example, it talks about how they broke bread together and they were unified and they were under the authority of the apostles. When you become a member of Moody Church what you are doing is you are giving us permission to pick you up when you fall because what you're saying is, is that I believe that I need some accountability. I believe that I have to be under authority and as a result of that I want to be able to be accountable so that I'm not just an independent Christian on my own, but rather I am a part of that body. The whole business of church discipline all has to do with membership because we can't discipline those who have never bought into our agenda of those who have never said that they are a part of us in that sense, so it affirms our accountability. It affirms our opportunity here every day.

The text says this is verse 46 of chapter 2, they continued to meet together they broke bread in their homes and what's going on there is you see, they knew the people who were believers and you wouldn't just break bread in anyone's home, but those were part of the fellowship. The Moody Church. There are many things that you can do and not be a member but there's some things that you can't do unless you are a member Teaches Sunday school class to Become an elder. You can become a deacon can't become a deaconess why it's because we want people who say we believe like you do. We we think in this sense along with you. We share your vision. We share your passion and so it's a means of opportunity and opens the doors brother means of service. It also affirms your generosity. Of course you can give and not be a member and many of you are doing that. We thank God for that. But I want you to know that there's something about hiding into a vision in the church listen if this is where God has called you.

This is then your primary place where you generously support God's work. My wife and I receive many many different opportunities to give as you do, but to and we except some of them because they're good organizations, but primarily this is where we are committed. This is the work we know that when we give here were not just getting to something the local were strengthening the local ministry, but it is because of our desire for a global impact where having a part in what God is doing and in stewardship or enrichment you know God is just blessed us because 10% of all that we give to our expansion program goes to missions and that's why we can do some of the things that you been hearing about.

And so it's an opportunity to give and to be generous now.

The early church.

They sold everything the Scripture says selling their possessions. Verse 45 and goods they gave to anyone as he had need. We don't do that today. Jacuzzi does Jesus people USA just couple of miles north here.

Some of you perhaps have visited there I was there with them a few years ago and their people that sell everything and nobody owns anything and that's all distributed according to the the leadership very very interesting way. Now this was not reproduced and later we don't have any evidence in the epistles that the apostle Paul asked other churches to do this but this was their means of generosity spontaneously and joyfully they sold everything and they gave it to the apostles and said, distributed, however, you might have need help. When God saves people from God really saves people he always also saves their bank account. It also becomes converted and comes under his authority and if it doesn't we have to wonder about whether or not you got the real thing. Flip Wilson in one of his Lions has a section or shtick as it is sometimes said that we could simply call rev. Rev. Is preaching and rev. Says folks God not only wants this church to crawl. He wants it to stand everybody shouts, let it stand.

Rev let it stand and then he says God not only wants this church does stand he wants this church to walk and everybody says the letter walk around letter walk and then he says God not only wants this church to walk. He wants this church to run.

They said let it run ran letter Ron God not only wants this church to Ron. He wants this church to fly. They said let it fly.

Rev let it fly. I said okay. Now, if this church is going to fly. You have to sacrificially.

Give your tithes and offerings and somebody in the balcony shouted let it crawl rev let it crawl.

God does want this church to fly what I'm asking for today is your commitment because we can't do it alone.

We need your help. Listen, I'm not talking to those of you who are just checking us out your new in the area you're checking out various churches find check check all of them out just come back to us after talking about those of you who know that this is where God has planted you, and yet there is something within you that is withholding that final commitment that says this is the place.

This is the place of sacrifice of learning of becoming of being because I'm buying their vision. I'm talking to you today and I'm telling you that we need you.

Let me get to final observations. First of all, the church is to represent Christ in the world that's reported to couple of weeks ago I read a story that really stuck in my heart was written by a young man who was one of these activists who wants to change the world. A Christian young man and he was on a panel discussion all on a television station in another city, discussing with a number of people including John Perkins, whom some of us know a pioneer actually in racial reconciliation and a marvelous man of God who is preached from this pulpit. He was in this panel discussion also and the moderator was talking about the proliferation of pornography shops and strip joints and everything that was happening in the city and the moderator asked this question who actually is responsible for all these things that are happening that were talking about, and this young man was about to open his mouth.

He was ready for the answer. He was going to blame the mayor. He was gonna blame liberal judges. He was gonna blame the media, and John Perkins interrupted him before he could say anything, and Perkins said I am responsible. He said I take the blame. I take all of it is that I've been a minister in this city we hold Bible studies and he said I am at fault because my ministry has not been used to so transform this community, that something like this could never happen. It's my fault boy that stopped everyone in the panel. I don't know whether or not I can even get my mind around this because this is this is further than I really intend to go but I have to ask this question when you think of the breakdown of the family.

When you think of the city of Chicago with its crime. When you think of all the things that happen sometimes not too many miles from us. Could it be that it's our fault because we in our little cloistered way coming to church here have not touched the community. We have not been willing to build those bridges and as a result, we are the ones through negligence was created and is fair were those kinds of things can happen because Jesus said that you are salt and you are light.

Let me say also that it is God who causes the church to grow.

I'm still in chapter 2. You'll notice it says in verse 47 they were praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people and the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. Now, of course, let's distinguish now between the church universal which is the body of Jesus Christ.

God was adding to those people. People were being saved, which is the first state. Of course the first thing that we must do. But having been saved, God was adding these people to their number. I think in the early church. It was on couple that you are a Christian that simply drifted.

If you were saved you along my message today as I believe in belonging an emerging use sitting on the sidelines. I urge you to belong and to come and help us make a difference in this community. City of course I need to clarify something we are not saved through church membership if somewhere along the line in the last 20 minutes. You picked up the idea that if you get on the memorability church you you're going to go to heaven. You know, of course, that's wrong. You know I sometimes joke saying you don't have to be a member of Moody Church to get to heaven, but why take a chance, but I sister joke tell you there are members of Moody Church will not be in heaven because they slipped through his unsaved deal Moody since he is our founder, he gave this this story and I conclude with the story. Since he is our founder. He said that he was in a meeting one time where a man stood up and said it took me 42 years to learn three things.

Moody thought well you know if if it took him 42 years to learn it. Maybe I can learn this in three minutes. I would speed up the process. Listen for some of you now have taken years and years and years and years to learn the three things that this man shared and they were all true things. But how long it takes for us to learn them first thing said is that the man learned at first that he could do nothing toward his salvation. He can make no contribution. Nothing in my hand I bring, but simply to thy cross I cling that was number one that he learned number two is that God didn't expect him to add to his salvation or to save himself, didn't expect that is not a relief.

Those of you think you're trying to impress God with your good works and you know right well but there's no reason in the world why he should be impressed is not nice to know that he doesn't expect you to be able to save yourself the third thing this man learned is that Christ did it all and that his death on the cross was a sacrifice for sinners and the first thing that we do is not become a member of the church.

Some local church with our name on the role but the first thing that we do is we believe in Christ enters saved and that is a free gift given to those who finally give up on their own good works and transfer their trust to Christ alone after that. Now, you become a church member and you say yes I want to become part of something that is greater than I am. I want to buy into the vision. This comes today from my heart to your heart directly.

Are you willing to say yes yes by God's grace we been led here, cold here will buy into it with sacrifice and joy join me as we pray in our father we want to thank you today for the early church for its vigor for its joy for its generosity. We pray today father that in Moody Church.

You might reproduce in us the blessed power of the Holy Spirit, the freedom of the spirit. The strength of the spirit, the purity of the spirit and make us all God change agent in this city, but could indeed touch the world, old Lord to God. That is our plea to you today. In Jesus name Amen amen. Let's sing 286, 286. It's a short song that we don't sing too often, blessed be the tie that binds I'm thinking not only that binds us together but it binds us together with believers over in Africa that we've heard about and believers around the world.

286. Let's all stand to sing on today's Moody Church. Our Dr. Erwin lutes are the first of four messages on. I believe in the church we heard about the importance of commitment to the local church and Dr. Luther's message. I believe in belonging one of the best things about life in the church is finding help and encouragement from other believers next week. Join us as Dr. Luther speaks on. I believe in fellowship. The COBIT 19 pandemic has badly damaged the world economy. Solutions include troubling changes to how money works and what jobs will ever come back.

Dr. Luther would like you to have his lecture on covert, 19 the economy and our future to help all of us trust God during these tough times. It's available on CD or DVD is our gift to you and thanks for your gift to The Moody Church. Our call 1-800-215-5001. Share your gift with us and choose either DVD or CD is our thank you. Call 1-800-215-5001 or you can write to us at The Moody Church 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 online go to that's join us next week for another Moody Church. Our with Dr. Erwin lutes are in the congregation of historic Moody Church in Chicago

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