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September 22, 2020 7:00 pm
Dr. Alan Benson continues “Divine Design,” a series about Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood.
Welcome to The Daily Platform from Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina. The school was founded in 1927 by the evangelist Dr. Bob Jones Senior's intent was to make a school where Christ would be the center of everything, so he established daily chapel services today. That tradition continues with fervent biblical preaching from the University travel platform today on The Daily Platform or continuing a study series entitled divine design which is a study of Biblical manhood and biblical womanhood. Today's message will be preached by VP for student development and discipleship. Dr. Alan Benson take your Bibles and turn with me if you would first Timothy chapter 3, first Timothy chapter 3, I have had the privilege of eating in McDonald's now in 40 countries. I use McDonald's as a marker so that I can remember how many I'd been to.
However, the reason for my trips has not actually been Mickey D's. I have not traveled around the world to see if I could find McDonald.
It actually has been to visit experience and encourage really a much more colossal institution so feel my experiences I have had the privilege of sitting on the floor and worshiping with brothers and sisters in Christ.
In Cambodia I have labored with fellow believers in Hong Kong meeting at a YMCA filed in the darkness in a concrete compound without power running water for eight days to study the Scriptures with fellow pastors in China. I preach the gospel while delivering babies in a grass hut in the rain forests of Honduras. I've huddled to study the word was Saints of God and pregnant strove your what is known as trans Nice Tria. I visited a church in the middle of Chapala compound, a group of 30,000 migrant workers gathered to labor in the copper mines in northern Zambia Chapala is 90% HIV-positive. In the middle of that group of people. There is a faithful pastor pastoring a church, having lost his own wife to AIDS. I preach to gather believers in a small village in the mountains of Transylvania in Romania when I tell you all this because the Lord in his grace hasn't allowed me to see the world. He has graciously allowed me to see another creation of his crafted by his own hand and shape for his own glory. He has allowed me to see the church listen as John describes her for us. After this I beheld in low a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palms in their hands, and crowd with a cried with a loud voice, saying, salvation to our God which sin is upon the throne, and unto the Lamb and all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts fell before the throne on their faces and worshiped God, saying, blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen. And they're praising him because of the we are studying divine design we've been looking at Biblical manhood and womanhood. We studied male and female in the God design relationship between them and complement eeriness. We discussed singleness and marriage and today I want to look at the creative design of God in formulating a people for his own namesake and calling them together to equip them for ministry in a rebel world and glorify himself through their spreading of his fame to the ends of the see no matter who you are male, female, married or single. It is the plan of Almighty God that you serve him by embracing and spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ through his church had the privilege of being in local church pastoral ministry for 25 year God is allowed me to see the Western church in almost every facet church planting. That's where I grew up very small church in the ministry. I traveled some in evangelism for the University got to preach and hundred and 40 churches in the semester in the youth ministry serving in multiple churches of the youth pastor as an associate pastor as a Christian school administrator, I survived one year of that an associate pastor in a church transitioning the pastor served for 50 years and now serving in three pastors pastorates the full-time senior pastor after all of that.
I feared today that the Western believers have a very skewed, very anemic view of the church. We often see it as a powerless self-promoting social club and I speak this to our shame. I fear that many of you sitting in front of me today. Look at church and find yourself in one of two categories, you believe in the church along to make a difference for the Lord but somehow feel disenfranchised because you don't know where you fit or even if you are truly welcome or you're not really all that interested in church because you feel like there are other more effective ways to make a difference in society we have lost sight of the greatness and glory of the church. We somehow failed to effectively share the true greatness of the church and in doing so, we haven't passionately passed the tort. Someone said you don't need to defend the line you just need to turn it loose. I fear that my generation is become so accustomed to trumpeting a glorious pastor bemoaning a dwindling presence that we have fallen prey to protecting the lion by hiding him away. I stand before you today to declare that the church of Jesus Christ is as much a lion today as she has always been entered this generation.
I declare let the lion are Jesus declared in Matthew 16, I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it and that was an empty rhetoric.
Songwriters said it this way.
Oh church arise and put your armor on. Hear the call of Christ are captains for now that we can say that they are strong in the strength that he is given the shield of faith and belt of truth will stand against the devil's lies an army bull whose battle cry is love reaching out to those in darkness are called war to love the captive soul but to rage against the captors with the sword that makes the wounded hole will fight with faith and valor when faced with trials on every side. We know the outcome is secure in Christ will have the prize for which he died an inheritance of nation come see the cross where love and mercy meet in the son of God stricken then see his foes lie crushed beneath his feet. The conqueror has risen for as the stone is rolled away and Christ emerges from the grave. This victory march continues till the day every eye in heart shall see him so spirit, put strength in every stride give grace forth every hurdle that meet we may run with faith to win the prize of a servant, good and faithful as saints of old still line the way retelling triumphs of his grace we hear their calls and hunger for the day when with Christ we stand and glory I take you today. Of all the passages we could to first Timothy chapter 3 because I believe that pictures are worth a thousand.
Paul writes to a church. The church at Ephesus. What is known as the epistle on the church. Really, the epistle we know is Ephesians, he writes to that same church by writing two letters to the man that is leading, guiding, shepherding that church we may call in the pastor. He is not an apostolic appointee to Timothy, writes first and second Timothy and he writes to him with a very specific purpose. A look at first Timothy chapter 3, first Timothy chapter 3 I want to see verses 14 through 16.
Paul writes these words these things right.
I under the hoping to come under the shortly. But if I tarry long, that now made us know how thou ought us to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth and without controversy great is the mystery of godliness. God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up in the glory I believe is a pivotal passage in really first and second Timothy and I believe it captures the essence of all the pastoral epistles at its heart. Paul writes to Timothy and says I'm delayed in coming. So I'm writing you something that is of incredible important.
I'm writing because you need to understand how you're supposed to conduct yourself in the church. So as we contemplate that I really want us to see just three simple things I want us to see the purpose in writing.
Why does Paul write these words and I think they will be a challenge to us.
First of all I want to see the makes an assumption. Paul is writing with the assumption that men are in the church and need instruction on how to behave see the New Testament knows nothing of an unchurched believer. All the New Testament writers assume that believers would be an active part of the community of faith. So Paul wrote in Romans 12, five so we, being many, are one body in Christ and everyone members of another Peter wrote in first Peter to you.
Also, as lively stones are built up a spiritual house and holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God by Jesus Christ but you are a chosen generation, a royal peace priesthood and a holy nation, a peculiar people that you should show forth the praises of him who called you out of darkness in a marvelous light. The author of Hebrews wrote in Hebrews 10 and let us consider one another to provoke at 11 good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as a manner of some is, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching my friends. The New Testament never sees church as an option in the very beginning and asked to is Peter Preece and the souls of men respond to the gospel of Jesus Christ and repentance and faith, we find that these 3000 new believers were added to the church. This was the first episode of over 2000 years of the fulfillment of the promise of Christ to build his church believers. Those who place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ and rightly identify with him are identified with that which he committed himself to build in this age and that is the church so he writes with this assumption. This assumption that you're going to be in the church that I want you to see that he adds to that and admonition. Notice what he says the word behave it means to can conduct it to speak of our conduct.
The way we walk our behavior as a person actually refers. I think especially to how a person relates to other people in their conduct one with another, and so to find out the pastoral epistles. All of these instructions about relationships within the body about how the church is to conduct its business about the back door supposed to gather and pray about the preaching of the word will find all of these dynamic instructions about how life happens within the body of Christ. One of the interesting things is that he would use this word to behave that there is a responsibility that there's something I should be doing that church is not then just a spectator sport that there's a way that I'm supposed to let there are things that I'm supposed to do and throughout the New Testament, you will find that the church is never merely just described as an organization. It is an organism. It is alive and as our bodies are equipped with appendages, each with a special function to accomplish any task. So Christ as the head is equipping his body so that it will have the capacities to all that he is designed to do within the church, and you my friends are one of those appendages. God designed you. God redeems you. God equips you because he has a capacity for you to accomplish in the church so were supposed to know how are supposed to carry ourselves to conduct ourselves to carry out that role is an interesting story about a boat race and the race began in off the boats went in this particular boat makes its way to the front. It's leading the race the crew begins to notice that the captain is somewhat uneasy is walking around looking back behind him is looking in front of him and he's trying to figure out where they're going. What way the wind is blowing, but he seems very puzzled. Eventually one of the process of captain. Are you okay and he said well I think going to have to let the boat behind us, pass us and he said what. This is a race were supposed to when he said yeah I know but I never planned on is leading the race so I'm not quite sure where to go. Young people I think so often that we live our lives that way. Not quite sure who I am not quite sure who I'm supposed to be. I'm not quite sure what giftedness I've been given not quite sure what the church is like, or what it's supposed to do and so we sit back and we try sometimes to lead from behind and it never works. This book is written because were supposed to understand how to behave ourselves in the church.
I ask you this question at this point in your life are you figuring out who you are in Christ are you figuring out what abilities he has given you.
Are you settling on a purpose for your life and your you striving to see God work through you to accomplish that purpose.
Because the church is waiting and it's waiting for you say I know who I am in Christ and I know what his mission is and I know how he's gifted me to do that and I'm jumping in, because the church is God's plan so we hear the word behave. I think we naturally shrink a little. They would get a picture in our mind we think of a mother speaking to a young child in scolding tones because of their disobeyed ingredients that you behave let's not really the intent of the word here.
It actually is more a call to function properly.
To live in accordance with who I am with the abilities I've been given to accomplish a purpose. It's to live the way that I'm supposed to live and to do what I'm supposed to do listen then to what Paul says about the church in Ephesians 4. Here's what it's for. For the perfecting of the saints for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ till we all come in the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the son of God and unto a perfect man under the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men and cutting craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive, but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ, for whom nobody fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supply of according to the effectual working in the measure on every part, maketh increase of the body under the edifying of itself in love.
You realize that in this passage of Scripture, the apostle Paul has described the church as the place for every spiritual capacity to be carried out is the place where the gospel is supposed to be proclaimed to the world. God isn't just calling individual believers to declare the gospel to the ends of the earth, God is actually calling churches declare the gospel to the end of the urge earth and churches are filled with individual believers not isn't calling individuals to send out missionaries to take the gospel or fees calling churches to do that not isn't calling individuals to reach their community for Christ is calling individuals through community of faith called the church to reach their community for Christ. They say all of that to say Paul has no scope that in any way shape or form. Individuals would bypass the church to accomplish the mission of God is one of the unique dynamics is this, that while you are serving God you are being served by the people of God.
And while you are equipping people. You are being equipped by the people of God while you are discipling others who are being discipled by the that the people of God. God is called his body to be filled with symbiotic relationships were as you give your given to and as you serve your syrup as you love your love as you lead your lab. That is his mission for taking the gospel to the ends of the and that's why we see that mission accomplished.
What is gathered in heaven. Suture so I challenge you. First of all with Paul's purpose and admonition figure out how you're supposed to conduct yourself in the church and commit yourself to it. But then I want to see exactly the pictures of the church. Notice the pictures that he uses here really. They're just slides and so I want you to see them first of all the pictures the church is the house hold of God. One amazing picture we could relate to the fact that we realize in the Old Testament the temple was a dwelling place of God and that now there's a carryover in that picture that this is now the dwelling place of God.
But notice that it's intentionally and the rest of the New Testament is filled with familial language, but if the church is the household of God.
Here we see picture that he is the father within that house. The place I'm supposed to rightly commune with my father for the Plaisance boat was supposed to rightly be disciplined by my father.
It's the place where I'm supposed to rightly honor my father is within his household. It's within the church and yet he is created here. The imagery that he has father has children's and we now have the capacity to have relationships like none other that as I become a member of the body. I am joined there now. Those who are my brothers and sisters and they may be those of other ethnicities in other walks of life and other mental capacities and they look differently and they live differently and yet somehow now organically by the work of Jesus Christ. We are brought together in one body, and we are brothers and sisters. There are some of you sitting here today and the thing that is ravaging your soul is a sense of wanting to belong somewhere wanting someone to accept you wanting a place to fit in your driving yourself with thoughts of career and purpose and goals and endeavors can I tell you that by the design of your father you belong in the church. It's a place to find out who you are and what you're supposed to do is a place to move beyond surface relationships to people who commit their lives, not just to God's but do you for his sake, and will love you when you're unlovely and will chide you when you are unloving. They will guide you when you're going astray and they can reach into your life and help you when you have questions. The church is a place to find the relationships at your long it will just commit to being the church with the household of God, but then I want you also to see that it is the church of the living God. An interesting expression word. You have heard many times. I'm sure he uses the word Iglesia and it really is a common term, it was common in that first century Greek, not just a New Testament word, but received special application in the New Testament because applied to this group. This body, this select group of people and it really has the idea of setting something aside, if you ever maybe having yet I haven't made the mistake got instructions and you open the box and you open the packages and inside them is one special package and its label that says do not throw this away most of us, as men say, and we bill whatever it is and it won't all work because then you're like where where's that thing where what I what I put that thing and it's that one piece that you know needs to be set aside because as a special-purpose friends that really is the idea of the word ecclesia is a group especially set the set aside because it has a special purpose that is vital to everything else is mature and God is the one who set it aside is the church of the living God, not one among the dead idols, but all living God. A dynamic God, a God who is changing things a God who created things of God was in control of all things, the God who has a plan for all things and that God set aside a group of people for his own namesake to accomplish his mission of making himself known and he's asking you to be a part it's the church of the living God. But then, lastly, it is a pillar and ground of the truth. What truth.
Look at verse 16, we will take the time to look at but the truth is the gospel young people.
We are living in a day were most of us in the Western world don't know more, or anything about it like we should, but there's actually more persecution of New Testament believers taking place in our world today than there ever has any other time in history.
They estimate that there were more martyrs for the faith in the last 10 years that there weren't any other 10 year window in history. Somehow we don't understand we are living in Western culture where truth is being assaulted from every side by redefinition. By everything that we've always assumed matter being redefined so that it doesn't matter any more young people. I'm here to tell you that Paul declares her this morning that we are to know how to act to conduct ourselves in the church because the church is a repository of the truth that matters in it. We let the church fail somehow were failing to hold up truth as were supposed understand when I say that the church will not fail. Jesus promised will not fail, but hear me, it may fail in America like it has in other places. So today in divine design. God has created you. God is created you to be the you. You're supposed to be and he's called you to be the best you, you can be to rightly understand who you are male-female, single, married, and whoever you are. He is gifted you to accomplish an eternity impacting mission and he has designed it divinely designed it that you carry out that mission through his body, the church and I again I'm calling you as this generation.
Don't wait for the church. Don't wait for an invitation don't stand around awkwardly. It's no wonder when they'll ask you don't have to but I think you're grown-up. I am challenging you as this generation to look at the church as a caged lion jump and let the lion roar, for the glory of God. Let's play father, thank you for the church. I pray, oh God, that you would stir in our souls a commitment for your glory that we would be a people for your namesake that we would engage with relentless passion to desire to see your truth, upheld and spread for lost men and women around the globe to come to faith in Christ that we would long for real relationships that we could be built up in our faith that others could be transformed in being like Christ and oh God, I pray that you would help us to see with greater clarity that the place for all of that mission will work is the church building your church. We pray in Jesus name you would listing to a sermon preached by Dr. Alan Benson, which is part of the study series about Biblical manhood and biblical womanhood entitled divine design.
Join us again tomorrow as we conclude this series here on The Daily Platform