Summary: This message deals with the fact that the church belongs to God not us. The church must work together and work in unity and not allow divisiveness to enter in. My powerpoint slides used a background from a model that was built from legos.
“Lego My Church”
1st Corinthians 3:9-16
You may have heard of the Crystal Palace Exhibition. It opened in London in 1851 and the purpose of it was to display some of the inventions of the day. Brand new ideas that would shape the future. One of the greatest discoveries of that time was the use of steam for power. They had farming plows that ran on steam. They had a steam cannon. All kinds of exhibits using steam.. Of all the great exhibits that year, the first place winner was a steam invention that actually had 7000 parts. When it was turned on it’s pulleys, whistles, bells and gears made a lot of noise, all kinds f commotion, all kind of movement but it served no purpose whatsoever.
In this high tech age you and i live in I think it is very easy to confuse activity with accomplishment, to confuse busyness with productivity. We can fool ourselves into thinking that the sound of gears and pulleys is the sound of something important being done. Let me ask you this morning...is that true in your life or mine? And beyond that is it possible that it’s true of our church? Is it possible that we could be building something that may be good, it may be very busy, it may be full of activity, we may even make a lot of noise but when you look at the bottom line, the results that God wants to see just are not there.
In the slide that you see this morning you are looking at what is called the Lego church. You know what Legos are. They are those small pieces made of hard plastic that fit together somewhat like a puzzle. Not every piece will link with every other piece but when you put all of the pieces together you can build something really great. Let me give you a few facts about the lego church you are seeing here.
* How long did it take to build it? The planning, photography and building took 18 months.
* How many lego pieces did it take to build it? More than 75,000.
* How big is it? 7 feet long, 5 1/2 feet wide, 30 inches tall.
* How many windowpanes does it have? 3976
* How many lego people does it seat? How many does the church hold? 1372
It also has a balcony, a lobby, stairs to the balcony, restrooms, a baptistry, an altart, a cross, a pulpit and a very elaborate pipe organ. Each slide you will see this morning is a different view of the same Lego church.
When Paul was writing his first letter to the church in the city of Corinth he was writing to a church that had many problems. Paul deeply cared about this church-partly because he is the one who first preached the gospel in Corinth in about AD 50 and he is the one who started this church.
There were divisions in the church , let’s face it, they happen-we are not all alike so we don’t always agree. It was a divided church. Paul tells us there were 4 different groups in the church who were all competing for the leadership of the church. The people were living immoral lifestyles-to name a few things...Paul gives us quite a list here. He says they were ..(1) backbiters (2) whisperers, (3) deceitful (4) full of envy, (5) they made promises, then broke them (6) kids disobeyed their parents
(7) committing murder (8) hated God.
Sounds like America in the 21st century. And that was not all that was on the list. But here’s the deal: as sinful as they were, Paul was talking to a group of people who had experienced new life in Christ...they weren’t prefect obviously and apparently they were immature and so they split up into different cliques...into different groups/factions and that always causes problems in churches...really in any organization.
So Paul is trying to appeal to them on the basis of the fact that they share something in common...they are all believers in Christ and he is saying to them stop these childish practices of following this group and this group like he told the church in Ephesus..they were acting like children and they wee allowing the wrong people to influence them. So as usual Paul gives us some advice and if we take his advice and we apply it to the church the church will be stronger, we will be one in spirit, not divided, we will be a unit, not a faction, we will be a team not lone rangers . Then he reminds us of 4 things we must remember to keep a church stable, to keep a church strong and to keep a church working together. Remember these 4 things.