Summary: I believe that every local church has a Divine commission and purpose. Seeking God will unlock the doors to that purpose
Focus Every Christian has the responsibility and privilege to share the gospel
This morning we are going to begin a time of refocusing in which we will focus on one main question this morning, “Why does the North Hinsdale Community Church Exist, why are we here?”
As we begin to look at the question, I am sure that each person has an answer to this question. There are reasons in which you attend the North Hinsdale Community Church.
The reasons will vary: I have always attended this church; I like the preaching, the worship, and the fellowship. It is convenient.
What we need to understand is that though we may have different reasons for attending this church, God has His purpose for this congregation of saints that gathers here on Meetinghouse road.
Let’s begin answering the question, “Why is the North Hinsdale Community Church here or why do we exist?”
I dare to say that our purpose for being is not that there were 8 Baptists who decided to found a church in 1800.
Nor is our purpose defined by the congregation who returned services here in the early 1930’s.
Every church’s purpose is defined by the Head of the church, Jesus Christ.
The easy answer to this question comes from the West Minster Catechism: The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
This is true for every church and every Christian. But I believe that each local congregation is uniquely gifted for a specific purpose. Our job is to find out how God has gifted us, and to begin walking toward that purpose.
As we begin this morning, I would like to read to you two statements which have great importance to this morning’s message. The first comes from The Church’s Constitution and Bylaws Preamble;
“For the purpose of establishing and maintaining a place of worship of Almighty God, our Heavenly Father; to provide Christian Fellowship and to assume our share of the responsibility and the privilege of propagating the Gospel of Jesus Christ, we whose names appear upon the church roster under the above date, adopt the following articles of church order and submit ourselves to be governed by them. In so doing we hereby revise and amend the constitution adopted in 1952.”
The second statement, one that is a bit more familiar, as you have heard me make mention of it over the past several months:
“The North Hinsdale Community Church exists to win, to disciple, and to equip believers into a mature and meaningful relationship with Jesus Christ in Life and service.” Matt 22:37-40 & 28:18-20
“Jesus replied: "’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ’Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
“Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 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, 2and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."
A Great Commitment
To the Great Commandment
And the Great Commission
Will grow a Great Church!
The Five Purposes of the Church
1. Purpose One: Love the Lord with all your heart
2. Purpose Two: Love your neighbor as yourself.
3. Purpose Three: Go and make disciples.
4. Purpose Four: Baptizing them
In the Greek text of the Great Commission there are three participle verbs: going, baptizing, teaching. Each of these is a part of the command to “make disciples.” Going, baptizing and teaching are the essential elements of the disciplemaking process. At first glance you might wonder why the Great Commission gives the same prominence to the simple act of baptism as it does to the great tasks of evangelism and edification… Why is baptism so important to warrant inclusion in Christ’s Great Commission? I believe it is because it symbolizes one of the purposes of the church – identification with the body of Christ… Christians we’re called to belong, not just believe.” (Purpose Driven Church, pg. 105)
5. Purpose Five: Teaching them to obey
Why do we go to church; why do we bother being Christian?
I want to take a few minutes to look at a series entitled “Cat and Dog Theology”
Go Over Points of Cat Dog Theology.
The first statement legally outlines the purposes of the church while the second outlines the Vision of the church. However, the heart of each statement is quite similar.
In both statements there is mention of our relationship with God, the need for fellowship, the need for instruction, and the need to share the gospel.