Summary: How do we become the type of church where people see the evidence of God's Grace on Us
Becoming an M & M Church
INTRODUCTION: God has called his church to reach a lost world for Him Matthew 28:19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,. In the first century as at other times in history, the church has taken very seriously this mandate. Yet it seems as we look to the dawning of a new century that the church has seemed to lose the urgency of its task. In many cases the church has become little more than a social club for the saved. Jesus himself said in Mark 2:17 "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners." And in Luke 19:10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost." The mandate for the church seems clear, the question is how do we accomplish it. I want to suggest that we do so by becoming an M & M church. No, not a church that passes out chocolate candy, Although that would probably bring people into the church. We need to become a church that is magnetic and mobilizing. “What’s that” you ask? Well lets look at an example of such a church.
Now those who had been scattered by the persecution in connection with Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus and Antioch, telling the message only to Jews. 20Some of them, however, men from Cyprus and Cyrene, went to Antioch and began to speak to Greeks also, telling them the good news about the Lord Jesus. 21The Lord's hand was with them, and a great number of people believed and turned to the Lord.
22News of this reached the ears of the church at Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. 23When he arrived and saw the evidence of the grace of God, he was glad and encouraged them all to remain true to the Lord with all their hearts. 24He was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and faith, and a great number of people were brought to the Lord.
25Then Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26and when he found him, he brought him to Antioch. So for a whole year Barnabas and Saul met with the church and taught great numbers of people. The disciples were called Christians first at Antioch.
I think what the church in Jerusalem heard about was a church that had the two characteristics I already mentioned. They were magnetic and moblizing.
How do you know if a church is magntic and just exactly what are you talking about?
I believe magnetism is evidenced in the phrase 23When he arrived and saw the evidence of the grace of God. It is our ability to be a reflection of God that makes us magnetic. Here are just a few of the characteritics a church needs to be magnetic.
A) The church must have integrity or in the words of the beatitudes be pure in heart.
The world has seen too much evidence of a church that says one thing and does another. They are looking for a church that has a pure heart. A church that strives to the very best of its ability to be free of contamination.
They are also looking for a church with pure motives.
On making an evangelistic visit to an individual once I said you know what you need to do what is keeping you from doing it. Their answer has stayed with me since that day. They looked me in the eye and said, “because when I do people in the church will quit coming to visit me.”
We must check our motivation. People want a church where they feel like they belong. A place where people really care about them as a person and not just a statistic.
B) The church must be a place that shows mercy.
Not getting what we deserve.
In order for us to show mercy, we must have sympathy for the other person. This word comes from two Greek word syn meaning together with and paschein meaning to experience or suffer. Therefore sympathy is experiencing or suffering together with.
If we can achieve this attitude, it will help us in 3 ways.
1) Keeps us from being kind in the wrong way.
2) It makes forgiveness and tolerance much easier
3) It helps us to better understand what God did for us through
How can we practice mercy?
1) Through physical acts.
Matthew 25:31-39 "When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. 32All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.