Charred or glowing church

Church of the Holy Spirit in Dúbravka

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Is our church charred or glowing? What a question!!!  God does not like lukewarm, it is either hot or cold, we are either burnt or shining the light of God’s glory.

We often forgot our christian mission and most of brotherly love because we are biting more than we can chew. We forget to support the brethren because our time and money are fully engaged in programmes emanating from grandiose ideas of Church founders and leaders.

A church only shines when it is in the will of God, revealed and executed by the holy spirit. (He puts in us both to will and do his good purpose, we are his workmanship).  In today’s society,  success is marked by size of the church, number of regular members, community impact and the number of worship services and programmes. Who is in control? the Holy Spirit or the society? When we can truly say, it’s not what we think, what we want, but, the will of God driving all we do, then can we shine for all to see.

Comparing and trying to be like church “A”, the so-called successful church is not only ungodly, it leaves us spiritually, mentally and physically burnt out.  A burnt out church is no use to anyone, it is filled with insecurity, greed, faithlessness, lack of miracles and members will be lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.

We need to be in touch with our original vision, as spiritual men, we are to walk by the spirit not by fresh, it is not how far we get but how well we do God’s will.

If we grow where we are planted, we will shine, our light will glow for all to see and people will want us to direct them to the source of our light.

You and I can encourage other christians to walk in the spirit by prayerfully, quietly and patiently living out our spiritual conviction.

Galatians 5:16, 25

Philippians 2:13

Faith in Action 2

Faith in Action post of May 2011 exposed how we ought to completely believe God and wait for the manifestation of his will/our expectation.

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of  things not seen as I was thought by my primary school Religious knowledge teacher. I was also thought “heaven help those who help themselves” which is a very controversial saying, because, it is not directly from the bible. But we authoritative know that faith without works is dead.

All our gains is of God and free once we have faith in God and believe in the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ on the cross. We must nurture our faith, walk consciously in the spirit to align it with our present circumstances. This involves a lot of work, faith is dynamic and alive with a measurable momentum.

We demonstrate faith through works. This reflects in the chooses we make, our labour of love, bible studies and prayers. In the absence of active continuous nurturing we may loss sight of our calling and possible backslide.

We should not just be hearers but doers of what we believe. The difference between  a dreamer and a visionary is in the doing.

Suggested readings

James 2:26, 2:18

Timothy 4:1

Ephesians 2:8

Philippians 2:12 & 13

Is The Church Missing The Point?

The church

The Bible is clear on the composition and role of the church (body of believers – John 3:16 &17).  A simple look at the earlier church in Acts of the Apostle through the evangelical missions and letters of the disciples to the churches in the news testament we can learn a lot.  The prophets in the old testament also predicted all these, long before they unfolded.

The main  challenges given to the church ( pastors and members collectively) are:

1.  To preach the word of God, the power of the cross to deliver man from the sin and its consequences and make converts.

1 Corinthians 1:17 – For Christ did not send me to baptise, but to preach the gospel, not in cleverness of speech, that the cross of christ should not be made void.

Galatians 2:20; John 3:16; Galatians 3:26-29

2. Encourage one another in several ways such as  spiritually,financially, physically, psychologically and so on.

Ephesians 4:19-21

Galatians 6:1-2

Personal duties

We as believers  have absolute responsibility  to make sure we know who we are in Christ Jesus and  live as he lived. To do these, we need to:

1. Study the word of God.

BowerPower

Diligent Christian

Romans 8:14-19; 1 Timothy 4:12-13; Ephesians 4:14-15;

Jeremiah 31:34;

 John 14:26

Image from:  http://www.bowerpower.net/grading.htm

2. Be transformed to the image of God

We are a royal priesthood, a peculiar people empowered by the holy spirit to demonstrate the goodness of God in this wicked and perverse generation. Christians need to live a life that makes us credible representatives of God. when our ways is pleasing to God he makes even our enemies to be at peace with us.

Romans 12:1-2;      2 Corinthians 6:3-10

The 21st Century Church

What do we have today, christians and pastors who would rather use any means to attract people to their churches and care much less about their spiritual progress as long as physical appearance in church and finances can support their sometimes extravagant life style. Methods used  include performing miracles, sorcery, giving out  material goods and privileges to secure church memberships. Churches are now business ventures with pastors as CEOs.  Business activities range from selling spiritual materials like holy water or oil ,books, blessed handkerchiefs to running high tuition public schools. A lot of christians are now being paid for giving motivational speeches or counselling services.  Unfortunately our churches are now filled with people described in  the book of Jude;

Jude 4: For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who have long before-hand marked out for this condemnation,ungodly  persons who turn the grace of God into licentiousness and deny our Master and Lord Jesus Christ.

We need to review how we preach the word of God and worship him, we must do this  in spirit and in truth because God judges the motive rather than what is done. We are told in 2 Timothy 4:3-4 ” for the time will come  when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths.”

The  Repercussion of Adulterating/Misinterpreting the Word of God

God’s response is contained in Jeremiah 23:30-32 – “Therefore behold,I am against the prophets,”declares the Lord, “who steal my words from each other. 31 ” Behold I am against the prophets” declares the Lord,  ” who use their tongues and declare, ‘ The Lord declares.’ 32 “Behold I am against those who have prophesied false dreams,” declares the Lord,  ” and related them, and led my people astray by their falsehood and reckless boasting; yet I did not send them or command them, nor did they furnish this  people the slightest benefit,” declares the Lord. 34 ” Then as for the prophet or the priest or the people who say,” the oracle of the Lord,’ I shall bring punishment upon that man and his house-hold.

Jeremiah 7:1-7,23:16-17,30, 33

Bible quotations from New American Standard Version (NASV), 1971, the lockman Foundation