Summary: The church was designed to be an irresistible community. Yet people are not always drawn to it. How can we change that?
2. An Irresistible Community: 1 Corinthians
March 14, 2010
Have you ever wondered what Spiritual maturity looks like? We all start out as infants. When we are born we are weak and helpless. We depend on our parents for survival. We cannot eat for ourselves, we cannot drink for ourselves, we go to the bathroom in our pants or in the bed. We cannot work or take care of others. While we are infants we are completely dependent on someone else. As time goes by we start to grow. We learn to control some of our bodily functions, we learn to crawl, to walk, we learn how to communicate with words and as we do we become more independent. As children we can take care of some things for ourselves but we still need our parents. Then we get a little older. We enter our teenage years and suddenly our parents who knew everything two years ago have become quite stupid. It is amazing. As children our parents knew everything and can do anything now as teenagers our parents can do nothing and know nothing. We start feeling like we know everything, we start believing that we are more intelligent than our parents and that we are ready to be independent adults. The problem with teenagers is they feel they are ready for independence before they are. It is interesting to see how sometimes we view ourselves as mature long before we ever reach a point of maturity. You see when it comes to assessing ourselves we are not always the best judges. While we live with our parents we view them as a drag, they hold us back and are so stupid. Then we move out. Suddenly our parents are smart again. In our physical lives we reach a point of maturity where we stop depending on others and start having people who are depending on us. Maturity in our physical lives means that we are fully developed people who are capable of dealing with responsibility and having people who are dependent on us. I wonder however what does maturity look like in our Spiritual lives?
If you want to look at 1 Corinthians 3:1. We are looking at how to make the church an irresistible community. The desire for community is one of the central desires in the heart of man. We have a natural longing to be with people who love us and accept us for who we are and yet also challenge us to be a better version of ourselves. The church is the true answer to the world’s need for community but they don’t always see it. When the church becomes the church that God intended it to be people will be drawn in light insects to a bug light and then we can zap them. No. A church that is alive is naturally irresistible to those who realize their need for community. So what we are looking to do is to find some of the characteristics the church should have that would make it an irresistible community. Last week Scott Springer talked with us about his mission to mexico and unity. Unity is one of the primary characteristics of a community. For without unity community would just be comm….not nearly as exciting. This week we are looking at maturity. We can see maturity in the lives of others and often times that maturity can draw us in. See most people don’t want to go back to Junior High because there is something compelling, or even irresistible about maturity. Which I think is why so many young people want to believe they are mature before they actually reach maturity. But what I want to know is what does maturity look like in our Spiritual lives? To answer that let’s look at 1 Corinthians 3:
1Co 3:1 Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly—mere infants in Christ. 1Co 3:2 I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. 1Co 3:3 You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere men? 1Co 3:4 For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not mere men? 1Co 3:5 What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. 1Co 3:6 I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow. 1Co 3:7 So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. 1Co 3:8 The man who plants and the man who waters have one purpose, and each will be rewarded according to his own labor.