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June 2, 2021 11:33 am
+ The underrated but important scripture was done together's long time since we soothe and read the word of God. So let's do that and join me as we read and let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the day drawing near him and please be seated for many people. Their faith is very individualized at their Lone Ranger's. They have no spiritual home. Other kind of ecclesiastical moments in a spiritual wilderness, perhaps occasionally going from church to church but never really finding their spiritual home, but when God in his grace saves us. He calls us not to live. So lowlifes but to gather as the people of God, even as we are doing, my maternal grandparents as I was a little boy visiting them never referred to going to church. They referred to the gathering or to the assembly. That is the gathering. The assembly of the people of God, a recognition that the church is not a building is not a denomination but rather the church comprises of followers of Jesus Christ, who had been saved by his grace yes to come, individually, one by one to the Lord Jesus and acknowledged him as their Savior and Lord. But no understand that while their faith is very very personal.
It is not always private but draw that it is to be shared. We are to gather together as the people of God gathered to the parson and in the name of the Lord Jesus and today then as we regather after this terrible battle with COBIT.
I want to demonstrate from Scripture the importance of the church. I want to encourage you to love the local church to be part of a local church to be committed to it to be a member of it to worship God and to some of others in the local church as we, as we worship is where equipped is will encourage and we then go into our dark world with the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Your spiritual health.
Your spiritual balance your spiritual growth are developed in the context of the church of Jesus Christ in a way that listening at home by lifestream or going on YouTube cannot duplicate no as we gather and were so privileged this morning as we gathered in this beautiful sanctuary we come. I believe face-to-face with God to realize that when God created you he created you to worship him.
He created you to love him, to know God and worshiping God is our highest, most noble activity that is the greatest thing that we could ever do that some of you, like myself, watched a very important soccer matches and the two of the great clubs English clubs playing in the European cup final and I wanted because I love soccer was a great game on the right team one as I thought. I want some of the preview, not listen to it and I love soccer but I thought for the vast vast numbers of the world, the greatest chart. The most important thing they do is to watch a soccer match is idle.
We live and breathe in poor followers of Manchester city who thought they were going to win there and great morning. Many of them got drunk last night and returning to England with a terrible hangover that is number one in the life, and I thought whatever sport you like and I like sport. Just think of the sadness, to think that God created us in his image and that for vast numbers of people there greatest joy is watching a soccer match or a football game on a basketball game or work or whatever it is, and they've erected an idol when God in his grace saves us to do something remarkable. He opens our eyes to see the beauty of our Lord Jesus Christ. I do understand that we were created for this high and noble purpose that we, his creatures, we who are redeemed by the precious blood of our Lord Jesus Christ can come and to praise our great God and say great is your faithfulness. Jesus said a remarkable statement to a woman about a mortal woman in John chapter 4 Jesus said to this woman that the father seeks worshipers. The God the father seeks us to worship and to worship in spirit and in truth, I did at Calvary church, we come to worship God with reverence and with all focusing on the greatness of God but also on his grace revealed to us in our Lord Jesus Christ. Now you have your Bibles that I trust done to first Timothy chapter 3, first Timothy chapter 3, number going to looking at a lot of verses in the Bible so I hope you have your Bible and you say I don't know my way around that. That's okay, week by week.
As you come here is your regional and Bible you'll find your way around it in first Timothy is towards the end of the New Testament.
First Timothy three, Paul is writing to young to them as they is one of the leaders in the church at Ephesus and he says to him, here in first Timothy three verse 14. I hope to come to you soon.
But I'm writing these things to you so that if I delay you may know how you ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth. Notice how Paul describes the church. Number one, it is the household of God is the very house of God. Secondly is the church of the living God. Third, if the pillar is the support is the foundation of the truth.
Yes, the church is important to God. I want to think with your formatted first. There many metaphors in the New Testament of the church here for. First of all, the church is the house of God to realize that as we come this morning with come to the very house of God in the Old Testament. Where did God dwell. He dwelt in the tabernacle. He tells Moses annexes 25. Let them make me a sanctuary tabernacle that I may dwell in their midst. Think of the condescension of our Lord is about to deliver his people from Egypt. They're going to go through the wilderness and he wants to dwell in their midst. You want the house to be built for him.
We have the tabernacle and then there's going to be the temple here Paul is writing in first Timothy three is writing to Timothy, who is leading the church at Ephesus and the pagan Ephesians believed that the goddess Artemis dwelt in their temple.
Some of you have been to Ephesus in the modern-day Turkey to see the temple and the Ephesians and the pagan superstitions. Superstitions believed that Artemis was actually living in that temple. The temple is one of the seven wonders of the world know Paul is telling us the New Testament that Jew and Gentile comprise the church in which God dwells. First Timothy 315. It is the household of God, the church think of it as the house of God.
We live in homes. We live in houses. You have your house I have my house.
This is God's house is the house of God turn to first Corinthians 1st Corinthians chapter 3 many problems in the first century church at Corinth, Paul writes here in first Corinthians 3 verse 16 not a member. He's writing to the church so often, when we read the New Testament we think is just directed to individual people and often it is but this is a text given to the church. First Corinthians 316 do you not know all that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you is a well individual Christian is indwelt by the spirit that's true, Paul is saying here so that later, but here he saying you collectively use the Corinthians do not know that you are God's temple and that God's spirit dwells in you. That is, as they come together in the church. If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy and you Corinthian believers you are that temple moved a few pages to Ephesians, Ephesians, chapter 2 will see the same thing. Ephesians chapter 2 is a marvelous chapter where Paul is describing the reconciling work of our Lord Jesus Christ.
He has demolished that wall a facility between Jew and Gentile is not to dine these demolished and in the wonder of the gospel. Paul is explaining that not only are you reconciled individually to God. That's true you're no reconciled to your fellow Gentiles, that Jew and Gentiles out of one of my one and God's new society in the church and is going to explain in Ephesians 3 that not only are they in the same church become equal. Jew and Gentile slave and free men and women all equal in this new society. This new community, the church Ephesians 2, verse 22. With that background, but is what Paul is saying in him that is in the Lord, you also visit this is mind blowing. Think of this thing seriously today brother sister and him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the spirit. It would Old Testament believers with the builder tabernacle and you can read the care in which the tabernacle was built.
You can read about the magnificent Solomon's Temple where Solomon is amazed that you want us to build a temple.
Amanda Evans and the heavens can continue God, much less this house that we're building for your perspective, you contain God's reason for that is omnipresent, but now in the wonder of the gospel. Jew and Gentile are coming together in this one new man this church, says Paul, you're being built together. Jew and Gentile slave and free men and 100 built together into wall a dwelling place for gold by the church is the dwelling place of God is the family of God is the household of God.
That is why when you come toward you.
We ask that you leave your Starbucks cup excites using Margie do that. I like my coffee stop drinking for 50 minutes. No, we don't allow it because we don't want you spilling it on the seats but more importantly, we want you to understand that when you come here not because of the beauty of the sanctuary that points us to the majesty of God, not because we have this wonderful natural light coming in.
Something more important that when you come here you're coming into the dwelling place of God by his desk. How the church is the house of God. It is a dwelling place for God to discredit you see John women God is everywhere. That's true God is everywhere is my present when I can worship God in my house. I told Megan I can worship God on the golf course. Yes you can but should you do that, but you continue doing it. Yes, of course, you can worship God everywhere. I was sure the Old Testament but should not, of course you can and you should worship God, whatever you can, but the psalmist says in Psalm 87 verse two that the that the Lord loves the gates of Zion, more than all the dwelling places of Jacob. Yes, God loves the individual dwelling places of Jacob drugged Israel that's true what the gates of Zion is a picture of the temple.
A picture of the time when the people of God go to the temple in these wonderful feasts because there is the very presence of God. So David says I wondered you said this morning, and when that's what I was glad when they said to me let us go towards that great game yesterday, but we got excited about. I was glad when they said to me let us go to the house of the Lord, my wonderful because David understood but God's grace was dwelling with his people and the greatest of all privileges that we have is not just the worship alone of torture should worship the Lord. Of course, you should watch it with your family the greatest privilege we have is to come together in the house of God and praise our great and gracious God, so far as the church is the house of God.
Secondly, the church is the bride of Christ generalize that the church is loved by God that we are his precious blood. Listen to Paul as he speaks, the fusion elders in acts 20 acts 20 verse 28 he says to them. Pay careful attention to yourselves, talking to elders in the church and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care talking to elders of a particular church care for the Church of God when she obtained with his own blood bowl tells us in Ephesians 525 when he tells husbands to love their wives. He says husbands love your wives, as Christ love the church and gave himself up for her that when the Lord Jesus Christ. I think of this, he was not just dying for individuals is precious blog was being shed for what purpose so that he may purchase asked the church of Jesus Christ and sold towards the father the son and the Spirit love the church why it is being purchased with the very blood of Jesus and so would describe in this beautiful way of intimacy and love Christ church is is Bryant's Christ loves the church he loves us. He loves Calvary church he purchased us with his own blood, and we are to love what Christ loves the church as ours of God. Secondly is the bride of Christ.
Third, it is the body of Christ, that we are the very body of Christ. The who is the head of the church Ephesians 1. Many scriptures Ephesians 1 verse 22 Paul says you put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all, Christ is the head of the church. First Corinthians 1227 Paul is describing the church at Corinth with all of the different gifts, all of the way church functions.
He said one Corinthians 1227 now you are the body of Christ, and individually members of the church of Jesus Christ who is the head, Christ is the commander he is totally to be in charge is why Paul is saying to Timothy, I need to tell you how you're going to behave yourself in the house of God.
So you want to meditate.
It is what God wants is what Christ once he's ahead. He's the one is to be glorified. Leave your own agenda and yourself will and your ego at the door. Church belongs to Christ. It is his very body. He is the head, and we are the body individually members of it. Think of that. Think of the wonder of that.
Think of the humility of our guards that he describes us save sinners that we his body. The body of Christ we go into a world and show by love and compassion that we are the very body of Christ church is loves of God is the bride of Christ.
The body of Christ and the church is the building of God building of God first Peter to turn there with me. First Peter chapter 2 Peter is describing this in the beautiful way. First Timothy two verse four says the end of verse three.
If you have tasted that the Lord is good. We tasted of the goodness of God. As you come to him a living stone, rejected by God, but in the sight of God, chosen and precious gas. The builders rejected them. That's true, but he is the cornerstone you yourselves – five are like living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house to be a holy priest who would to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable acceptable to God through Jesus Christ's rebuilding of God. We saw in their study of Matthew and if you knew were just taking a break today for Matthew. Lord willing, we'll go back to that Sunday. Matthew chapter 16 Jesus is told us.
I will build my church. Make no mistake about it, he is the head. This is the church of Jesus Christ ending we sometimes forget that the only way for leaders congregation member of the church belongs to Christ. I will build my church, Christ is the very cornerstone is the foundation stone were singing about that I think of the marvelous truth. Peter is saying that we are living stones or we are still top with Christ as our head of Christ is the foundation were built up as a spiritual house all to the glory of God.
The church important yes is the house of God is the bride of Christ is the body of Christ is the building of God. Therefore, all true believers all the frantic followers of Jesus Christ are to belong to a local church and explain that through the grace of God. Every single authentic follower of Christ belongs to the great universal church at conversion. We are placed by the spirit into the body of Christ. As Paul says in first Corinthians 1213 that were baptized by the spirit into the body of Christ utilize that the day that you were to say, not only would your sins forgiven but through the work of the Spirit of God you were baptized into the body of Christ. This is the great universal church matter what denomination you is the wonder of the grace of God, will become part of the family of God and therefore, Paul's argument in first Corinthians 12.
Is this that we are the one body we can be divided.
That's why division is so grievous to God, the devil up to the body doesn't does all of the only kind to mess up your family to mess up your marriage you're in business.
He does all you can do mess it up your employer and employee that the devil is there is the planting his seeds of doubt and confusion. But God's Spirit is a God of unity. That is one body we receive the Syrians spirit, the Holy Spirit who indwells your brothers the same Holy Spirit that dwells in me.
The precious blog that washed away all of your sin is the same precious blood that wash away all of my sin. One Lord, one faith, one baptism, and we are incorporated into the same body were all part of that great family of God. Part of all of the redeemed of all eternity shall praise our Savior, but all those saved should belong to a local church with me to the book of acts, Matthew Mark Luke John acts acts chapter 2. Acts chapter 2. Here is the day of Pentecost, Peter is preaching he says in verse 41 looker cards so those who receive his words was that were save those who responded to the gospel.
What happened to them nor baptized into them and why is it some of you believers in Jesus Christ have never been baptized. Those who received his word were baptized and there were added that day about 3000 souls verse 42 they devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.
Verse 47 praising God and having favor with all the people and the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved added to the church are not life solos, other than to say baptized and then go do your own thing, though, that added to the church when Paul writes for example, to the church at Corinth, which I referred to in first Corinthians 1. What does he say in verse two is writing to the church of God that is in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints.
Together with all those who never replace call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Both their Lord and ours. When Paul is writing to the Corinth rights to the church.
It is a communication to the church and the church will be gathered, they would been read and reread before the church at: you need reading.
I need to be part of the local church in the local church is best seen not as part of the universal church but rather is representing and demonstrating the universal church in a particular locality, so this body of believers to the Calgary. We are to make visible the church to them believing world. The last well what does the church look like these that want to point out the problems that went. Paul tells us in Ephesians 3 verse 10 that the manifold wisdom of God is made known through the church to the rulers and authorities, but God's wisdom is being displayed through the church would be there as we will see in the moment talks about gifts and firstly the photographs then he talks about were sure of that manifold. The multifaceted grace of God that unbelievers going to know the grace of God will be content.
We can communicated verbally but were also displayed on so that people come here for the first time there's an atheist is a skeptic comes from the first time and he or she can understand something of the wisdom of God and something of the grace of God through the church of Jesus. So if you're part of the universal church. Your saved you need to be part of and committed to a local church that what is this made want to give you three ways we glorify God in what I'm calling the body life of the church, the body life of the local church at Calvary glorifies God will want to glorify God. Ways we can do the garden.
The Scripture the body life talking about being part of the church involves ready for serving one another, often sale of being served the great to be served by people but none that I'm saved by that God calls me into this local fellowship. I am to serve others. First Peter four verse 10 that referred to listen to Peter.
He says as each has received the gift brother sister new members you receive the gift as each has received the gift use it on. Use it to satire one another. Don't use it to show off.
Don't use it to bolster your sagging ego.
Use it to serve one another as good stewards of God's very grace become part of a local church. Like Calvin, church, I received a gift whatever it is, maybe gift of helps make a gift of mercy maybe a gift of giving me the gift of teaching. Whatever it is I'm to use that in surveying others by being a member of Calvary or testifying that you committed to the body of Christ believed Christ followers to make here. Calvary is your spiritual home garden Scriptures were members of the same body worship of the same flock were stones of the same building were children of the same family and think of the uniqueness of the church.
Think of all of the tensions. Our society all of the divisions politically and socially and economically seems that in here in the states. These divisions are great, getting greater and greater then we people getting so frustrated with each other thing of the uniqueness of the church and the church of Jesus Christ.
June and Genta are sitting at the same more stable using of the differences from someone else using your hostility between someone who is rich or poor hers of a different color comes from a different background a different color you go. Hostility is nothing like that hostility between Jew and Gentile.
Think of it in the church were slaves and were free people that all of the same, more stable men and women. When women would look down on second class citizens are not know were sitting at the same horse stables happens. The been reconciled to God and reconciled to one another and why is it brothers and sisters.
These these divisions of these differences continue to haunt us here at Calvary we have the joy of having different nationalities, different cultures, but we are one church. Someone said to me a few months ago. Well you pastor the American church from another country as the church is nomadic right knee. Why would they select me as a pastor I can mostly miss isn't one of the questions someone asked me when I was up here of the Congregational when I was kinda getting some gas may well you you here legally want to check my passport and I said no. I got a card saying I am an alien is true welcomed United States. You will note a resident alien.
Okay, an alien, yes. I'm really on admitted rights to this June Genta living.
I want to say to you, wherever you are. Who ever you are ever here bankrupts I want to see to you are welcome Calvary church. Please hit me. Someone told me this story is a joke about Scott's regards we get ridiculed by people to love discrimination against people of different in her this man, this florist was a barber for a haircut and after the haircut he goes the barber in the barber says you know you do such a great community service. You'll need to pay for said on its wonderful next morning as a barber… Shop. Here's a dozen roses from the Florissant thinker, that's a police officer goes for haircuts was the pain in the barber says your police officer. You do such a great service for our community you will need to pay officer said thank you very much. Next morning the barber goes to open the shop as a thank you card and a dozen doughnuts waiting for the rhythm of the police officer paid for them or not. I'm not sure Scotsmen go through haircut. He also goes to pay for Barbara and Barbara said you know you Scott's make such a contribution to our society were not quite sure what what you want to pay this customs very happy and leaps next door went next day when the barber goes to open his barbershop.
There's a dozen Scotsmen waiting for for haircuts and people tell me these jokes and I'm in the life of the but I can tell you not hundred percent of the time, but even Scott's people are welcome here. Why we are partners in place, we are clearly bidders with our Lord. One of the greatest joys and you know this. I trust you know you've experienced it, however imperfectly, one of her greatest joy is to serve with her brothers and sisters in Christ of my true think of those who sing in the choir to go to all these rehearsals would drive me crazy right golf think over the thing over and over and over again. Emily just sing in the choir in Michigan. Jason was great right, different people, different caps, the joy not only of serving but serving with others.
Some of you feed the homeless. You pray together and you go and we serve the Lord. In England the missions trip and yes you are encouraging the missionaries reaching out with the gospel, but one of the greatest joys is the fellowship you have on that trip with your brothers and sisters in Christ. This is what it means to movement the many one another's in Scripture. One of your life group leader sent her a note to his class and and all of the one another's work were listed in one another's burdens.
Pray for one another. Encourage, help with. Don't grumble against each other respect one another and above all love one another world is desperate for people of love we are in crisis.
You don't need a critic.
Do you you need someone who comes along beside you and who loves you and is prepared to bear your burden so we read in Hebrews that Scripture don't neglect meeting together some of the first century someone skipping church. Don't neglect that.
But encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
So here's a way in which we glorify God and wildlife reserve one another. Secondly, it involves submission to the word of God and to the leadership. Notice that Paul in first Timothy three's 15 refers to the church as the pillar and the foundation of the truth.
Where do you go for truth of it was in the CNN something on more for Fox News. You can get the truth you the truth from the politician get the truths from the pop culture you get truth from the celebrities. The church of Jesus Christ is the pillar and support of the truth.
Why, because God is there, and God is truth and one other foundations of our ministry at Calvary, and is referred to by some of her new members. One of the very foundations that we must never ever depart from is the proclamation of the truth of God's work. Yes, we believe this is true, we believe that when the Bible speaks God speaks the church is where you go for truth.
What should we believe, how should we act, the answer is in the word of God. John Calvin said the dog barks when his mass that is attacked I would be a colored if I saw that Don truth was attacked and yet would remain silent in the church of Jesus Christ. Whatever's going I'm going on in the pop culture.
Whatever the politician of the courts or say or whatever the activists are saying we must be committed to the truth and particularly when truth is attacked, as it is, it is important for the church to defend the truth to proclaim the truth that we will understand the truth and that we will in an accurate and in a persuasive and in a gracious way. Tell others.
This is what God said the church and this is why is important in the church that we learn to submit to one another. Paul tells us this in Hebrews 13 to obey you left your leaders. They watch over your soul to make it difficult for them. Sometimes people want to lead you before you lead. You must voluntarily learn to submit to God's work.
Make sure you looking for a church that you are part of a church which is going to point you to the word of God and to the Lord Jesus Christ. This is the authority misses me.
The people you going to church is allowing the music. This is where my friends go. It's a cold church and you say, but what are they telling your about the Bible while you're learning about God's what are you learning about the Lord Jesus Christ must learn the body of Christ, that we are to learn to follow to submit to the word of God to submit to the leaders of the church that God has appointed SI McMillan in his book. None of these diseases tells a story of a young woman who wanted to go to college but her heart sank when she read the question on the application form. Are you a leader being both honest and conscientious general no and to return the application expecting the worst.
To her surprise, she received a letter from the college dear applicant.
A study of the application forms reveals that this year of college will have 1462 new leaders. We are accepting you because we feel it is imperative that they have at least one follower is good is good we honor their military to military teaches you before you lead. You must learn to follow always agree with instruction, not necessarily your learn to follow one of our themes at Calvary church this year is obey the word of God, can we practice instant a bridge and stop arguing with the word of God submit to show humility by the Live Meeting server when another admin submitting to the word of God submitting to one another and it involves financial responsibility for screwing things 16 minute what Paul says concerning the collection for the saints as I directed the church of Galatia, so you also to do on the first day of every week we meet on Sundays or Saturdays on the first day of every week. Each of you each of you each of you is to put something aside and started up as he may prosper so that there will be no collecting when I come part of our worship.
Then to give the Lord has prospered us.
We been bought with a price were not on God showered his grace on us over and over again is learned in the sermon on the my were not to lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, but rather than having to use everything we have all the resources or homes are our own cars.
Everything is to be used for the glory of God is a dog and what should I give give generously your Scott's person we are innately generous.
Some of you may not be so generous if James can you give generously give systematically, the Scripture says the Lord has prospered your just casually note of what you give, you give generously. You give systematically to give cheerfully, Scripture says Paul's how much can you give cheerfully join a gift from someone and give it to you cheerfully. I give you something soon, then you are is what was on the Monroe know the very nature of giving is giving his gracious is from the heart. You give with a smile giving God really need your money on the everything "is wealth on your ticket from you as many of you know the Lord gives the Lord takes away.
Give generously give systematically give as the Lord has prospered you the lacrosse. The rich or poor.
You can give as much as a lotus prospered you think of the Lord is prospered. You, so we give part of the body life of the church so that they church can reach out with the gospel of Jesus Christ. So from Scriptures, we conclude the importance of the church is clear.
Think of immense privilege of being part of a local church that something which is dynamic, something which is changing the church is not so much an organization but as a living organism is were growing up to the fullness of Christ as we seek to do everything to the glory of God make that a priority member become a member Calvary church. If you're not serving get involved in serving worship every Sunday, make that a priority would you know maybe a part of the family brought the toll it may be that you have never yet come to Christ as your Savior was in the John John 112 but to all who did receive him.
You receive Christ as your Savior something you must do personally, but all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God who are born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God as a supernatural birth to all of us have sinned, so I'm not much of a sinner, not sin nor sin of yours is small until you know sin of yours is small. Just as no grain of sand is small and the mechanism of a watch just a little grain of sand just a little virus to grow the damage it does. Yes, you may not be may not have committed as much sin as others but one tiny sin can disable damn you for all of eternity was only one way is only one who can forgive your sins there's only one blood, which is so precious it will forgive all of your sin and that is the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ God, who became man who dwelt among us who lived a sinless life, died on the cross for our sins and rose again and so I call on you to not part of the family of God to humble yourself, turn from your sin receive Christ as your Savior. And may we have been saved. May we hold hi in her life hi and her family life hi in our priorities. The local church which is the very house of God help us. Her father God. We pray, thank you for Calvary church.
Thank you for your grace and mercy to us when they mess up. Thank you for the way you've guided us protected. This through this crisis encourages father strengthen us in May. We at Calvary. Always be united always glorifying you always basing all we do and say on the Scriptures and of the joy of telling people that Jesus saves. We ask in his name