Summary: This is third in series of messages concerning the Church Covenant, and What Is Required Of Church Members ?
Sunday Morning Sermon Part 3 of series
Church Covenant: What Is Required of Church Members Part 3
Ephesians 4:15-22, 5:15-19
This is the third in our series of messages on our church covenant. Our purpose is to define what a covenant is, and to determine what is required of church members according to the word of God, and our church covenant. As we have said prev. this covenant is not divinely inspired. It is not the word of God, but is based on the truths found in scripture.
In review.....1st message we determined that those that this covenant pertained to are members of this church who have been led by the Spirit to profess faith in Jesus Christ, and have been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. The second message from the second paragraph of the covenant was a look at some of the things to which we promise to do as church members here at The Rock Baptist Church. This morning we will examine the third paragraph of the covenant.
We also engage to maintain family and secret devotion; to religiously educate our children; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances; to walk circumspectly in the world; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements and exemplary in our deportment; to avoid all tattling, backbiting, and excessive anger; to abstain from the sale and use of intoxicating drink as a beverage, and to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Saviour.
I. We have a responsibility to worship.
We also engage to maintain family and secret devotion; to religiously educate our children;
Worship like charity begins at home ! The extent of our worship on Sunday may be connected to our worship personally, and in our home !
a. Personal devotion
b. Family devotion
c. Religiously educate our children
Deu 6:7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
Many times we come to the house of God and leave our hearts at home. Other times we go home, and try to leave God at his house !
II. We have a responsibility to witness.
to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances;
a. To our families.
b. To our friends.
III. We have a responsibility to walk.
to walk circumspectly in the world; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements and exemplary in our deportment;
a. we should be just in our dealings.
Illust. Preacher who visited a businessman trying to get him to attend services.
b. we should be faithful in our engagements.
We should do what we say. Carry through on our promises. Christians should be people who keep their word !
c. we should be exemplary in our deportment.
I remember being in school.....bet you thought it had been so long that I forgot ! When I was in school we received a grade for deportment. Deportment means "conduct". What kind of grade would we get as believers, and as members of this church in our conduct ?
Joke: Little boys trying to determine who would keep the stray dog by seeing who could tell the biggest lie.
d. abstain from the sale and use of intoxicating beverages.
One of the biggest disappointments in my early Christian life was when I discovered that a man whom I held in high esteem, and that I looked up to as a Christian mentor consuming alcohol.
It broke my heart.
IV. We have a responsibility for our words.
a. avoid all tattling.
The word "tattling" literally means the telling of tales. I think a better definition would be gossip.
Backbiting is literally talking in secret ! It is to speak evil of someone behind their back.
Many years ago the Moody Church News carried a humorous story about a woman in a small town who was know for being a gossip. One day on vacation she visited the offices of The Chicago Daily News. She was wearing a white dress and inadvertently leaned against a wall where a freshly printed copy of the front page was hanging. It was a hot, humid day, and some of the print came off on the back of her white dress.
Later, as she walked down the street to meet her husband, she noticed that people walking behind her were snickering. When she reached the place where her husband was waiting, she asked him if there was anything on her back that shouldn’t be there. As she turned around, he read the large black reversed letters: sweN ylaiD. Realizing the appropriateness of the words, he said, "No, dear, nothing’s on your back that doesn’t belong there."