Summary: The church is the body of Christ. It is not a building or an event. 24/7 x 365 days a year, we are the church!
7 Truths About the Church
Introduction: What is the church? Is it a building? Is it an event? Does church begin when the doors are unlocked on Sunday morning? Does it end when the last light is off and the doors are locked? Does church begin when the music director begins waving his arms and leading the music? Does it end when the last a-men is said? What is church?
I want to share with you 7 truths about the church. Most of you will say “I knew that” but my hope and prayer as God laid these 7 things on my heart and began to put this message into my head is that they’ll have an impact on the way you live your life and the way you look at church from now on.
Read: Ephesians 5:25-32
I. The First Truth is that Christ Loves the Church
A. The best thing a pastor could ever tell a young man who is considering marriage is to love his wife as Christ loves the church.
i. There are two types of love used in the Bible
1. Phileo – Phileo loves says I love you because
a. You’re so pretty
b. You do so much for me
c. You have a lot of money
d. You have something that I want
2. Agape – Agape love says I love you no matter what
a. For richer for poorer
b. In sickness and in health
c. Till death do us part
ii. When Paul instructs husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church the husband is to love his wife with an AGAPE love.
1. It is the same word used in 1 Corinthians 13 translated charity
B. A man leaves his parents, a woman leaves her parents and they become one flesh
i. The church is the bride of Christ
ii. The church becomes the body of Christ, one with Him
C. A man is to love his wife as he loves his own body
i. He would do anything for her that he would do for himself
ii. He’d lay down his life for hers
iii. Husbands love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for it.
1. Christ loves the church
2. He saw that the only way for it to have life was to give His own
D. I hope you understand tonight this first truth. Christ loves the church. It is very dear to Him.
II. The Second Truth is that the Church is Alive
A. The church is the bride of Christ, the body of Christ and it is alive
i. Church is not an event that happens
ii. Church does not begin and end with the flipping of a light switch
iii. It does not begin with the music director leading in song nor does it end with a prayer.
iv. There is not one living thing that can be turned on then off then on then off again
v. There is not one living thing that dies then lives then dies then lives again
1. Even a tree when it becomes dormant for the Winter is still alive
2. A sleeping bear in hibernation is still alive
vi. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year the church is alive
1. It never ceases to exist
2. It does not have doors that close and lock for the night
vii. There are some sayings that are very familiar to us
1. I can’t talk on the phone right now I’m getting ready for church
2. I can’t come over tonight to watch a movie, I’m going to church
3. Or as the cell phone rings in the middle of service and some will answer it and say I can’t talk to you right now I’m in church
4. These sayings suppose something of the church that is not true. The church is alive and it never ceases to exit
B. Paul uses the example of a marriage
i. I am always married to my wife
ii. I don’t cease to be married when I leave for work
iii. I don’t cease to be married when I am not around my wife
iv. There aren’t certain hours of the day or days of the week when I am married and others in which I am not.
C. So the second truth is that the church is alive
III. The Third Truth is that the Church has Form and Shape
i. This passage reminds us that in our own bodies we have many members
ii. It then tells us that the body of Christ takes the shape of you and me
B. 1 Corinthians 12:12 – 14
i. This passage reminds us again that we are the body of Christ