Summary: The world is changing. The church is changing. Christians need to be careful not to confuse changing methods with God’s eternal, never-changing message. This message contains a significant reference to Bob Russell’s Book, When God Build’s a Church
Intro: Since the beginning of the year, we’ve been examining the challenges of CHANGE:
o In our life
o Our physical conditions
o Our Spiritual levels & issues
o Our personal preferences
o The political climate
o Social interactions
o The financial picture
o The Weather is changing
Everything is Changing — In fact, Eccl. 3 tells us there is a time for all this change.
In the midst of all this rapid change, and while the world seems at times to spin out of control,
We need to experience some “Islands of Stability”
• something that never changes
• These islands of stability are things we can depend on
• Things on which we can hang our heart and mind
God’s Love for us will never change
God’s Word will never change- It can be trusted as a firm foundation for life
God’s Purpose for our Lives will never change
Today, I want to close this series of messages by addressing one more of these “islands of stability”
This island of stability is something God initiated to protect and provide for His promised
people who are called according to His purpose
The Church…His Church…The Bride of Christ…The Community of the Faithful
The Church for which Jesus Christ, God’s one and only Son, came and died.
The Church: The Body of Christ, of which He is the head Eph. 5
The Body of Believers into which Jesus pours His Spirit;
And to which he
o Indwells us with spiritual gifts—so that His body can be
Healthy, strong and vibrant --- full of light & salt in a
dark, hurting, confused world.
THAT CHURCH!! Are You A Member of THAT Church?
The New Testament word for Church is “ekklesia” – the “called out”
• People who are “called out” of darkness – I Peter 2:9 -- into His marvelous light - to be the light of the world
• People who are “called out” of the world in order to GO to a world with Good News -- Mt. 28:19-20 “…Go to the world and make disciples…”
The Great Commission
• People who are “called out” of disobedience to a walk of love and holiness. John 13:34 says this will be the way people will know who we follow. It’s the Great Commandment.
• People who are “called out” generic legalism to experience His all encompassing Grace – so that they will be gracious people
• People who are “called out” of secular individualism into a Community of the Humble & Faithful…dependent and inseparably connected to each other.
Praying for One another
Forgiving One another
Preferring each other
Honoring One another YOU KNOW…THAT CHURCH!!
Bearing One another’s burdens The Called Out
Devoted to One another
Forgiving One another
• People who are “called out” of a life of despair and meaninglessness - - to Hope, Victory and a Divine Purpose
• People who are “called out” of Death and destruction to experience the Abundant Life of Resurrection and Power
• People who are “called out” from their worldly resident to a heavenly citizenship
THE EKKLESIA - The Called Out - The Redeemed -- The Church
• People who are “called out” of suspicion, fear & hate – to a place of grace where…
They passionately love each other
They desire the very best for each other
They keep no record of wrongs
They mutually encourage one another -- Are you Part of that church???
Is That You? Is that your church? That’s How the Bible describes His Church
That certainly can’t be a description of a building… could it? NO WAY!
So, when we say, “We’re going to Church” or “Let’s go to Church”
We don’t mean the building…do we?
Because, the Bible tells us that God doesn’t dwell in buildings,
But He dwells in the hearts of His people – the CHURCH, the “Called Out”
I’m sure this is not a shocking revelation to anyone here this morning, but
YOU ARE THE CHURCH
• When you go to the Wal-Mart / K-Mart or Kroger, the people at the store experience the church
• When you go to work on Monday morning, the Church goes to work
• When you get in a wreck, everyone involved in that tragedy experiences the church
• When you are in a discussion at school or at work or with a neighbor, those people who hear your words, hear the church – the ekklesia – the called out
Therefore, because the church is made up of people, not Brick, Wood or Stone,
People from all over the world, different races & cultures and climates,
Then the church is subject to change. WHY???
Because people are different!
Cultures around the world are different