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Summary: In the message we will unpack the truths that the Church is - the Temple of God and the promised Messianic Kingdom!

The Church Is…

#BecomingTheChurchHeIntended

Welcome To Our Church Video (sermon spice)

NOW – if that does not get you fired up about His church, I don’t know what to do you….

As my pastor said when I was stationed in Newport News, “if that does not get you fired up, your woods wet.”

OKAY MGCC – welcome to week 3 of our series…

AND LISTEN B/S – that title pretty much sums up what we are hoping and praying to accomplish during this conversation.

IS – to become the church He intended for us to be…

OR – at the very least figure out what He intends and then go for it. AND – that make sense, right?

LIKE – why would we want or think…

THAT - we have the right to become anything other than what He, the One who has all authority intends?

NOW – most of you know that I am a huge NFL fan…

And the teams right now are in the middle of their first OTA’S (organized team activities) for the 2019 season.

AND – one of the things that the players especially those new to the team, through the draft or free agency need to do is learn the playbook.

QUESTION – wouldn’t it be kind of crazy, counter productive and ultimately career ending to join a team but never look at or refuse to go by the team’s playbook.

OR – imagine walking into a restaurant and ordering a steak.

AND – 15 minutes later, the waiter comes back and puts a plate of spaghetti in front of you, claiming it’s the best spaghetti you’ll ever eat.

QUESTION - would you be happy about that?

No way, you would send it back… because it wasn’t what you ordered. It wasn’t even close!

AND LISTEN B/S – in so so many ways this exactly what we have done with HIS Church.

UNDERSTAND - God gave us His “order” for the Church.

He told us precisely what He wanted through His commandments in the Bible (His playbook, His divine recipe).

AND THEN WE - in our arrogance, in many ways created something we think works better.

YOU SEE - rather than diligently studying His commands and delivering exactly what He asked for, we have been influenced by so many other things.

LIKE - we think about what ‘we’ want, what ‘others’ would want, what others ‘are doing.’

AND IN - in the spirit of Cain (Adam and Eve’s son who killed His brother because God accepted Able offering but not His), WE BRING - bring an offering we think God should accept rather than what He actually asked for.

WE – run the plays that we want, WE – cook spaghetti rather than steak.

In His book ‘Letters To The Church’ Chan writes…

There is a simple exercise I walk through with church leaders. First, I have them list all the things that people expect from their church.

They usually list obvious things like a really good service, strong age-specific ministries, a certain style/ volume/ length of singing, a well-communicated sermon, conveniences such as parking, a clean church building, coffee, childcare, etc.

Then I have them list the commands God gave the Church in Scripture. Usually they mention commands like “love one another as I have loved you” (John 15: 12), “visit orphans and widows in their affliction” (James 1: 27), “make disciples of all nations” (Matt. 28: 19), “bear one another’s burdens” (Gal. 6: 2), etc.

I then ask them what would upset their people more—if the church didn’t provide the things from the first list or if the church didn’t obey the commands in the second list.

MGCC – sadly I think we all know the answer.

YOU KNOW – in my 34 years in church leadership (the last 27 as a pastor)… I have seen people upset about many things... BUT – not even one time has anyone came to me upset about the fact that we are not reaching more lost people for Christ or discipling more believers to maturity.

AGAIN – this series is about becoming the church He intended.

IT’S ABOUT – following His playbook…

cooking what he ordered.

AND REMEMBER - as I have been saying, for us to become the Church He intended will require us (will require both you and me) during the next several weeks...

It will require us

• to be open to what God has to say about His church (and listen there is a very high likelihood that God is going to say some things we may not like, agree with and that make us feel uncomfortable)

• to be honest about where we really are (collectively and individually) in regards to His Church

• to be humble and admit where we have been wrong, and to spend more time looking at ourselves rather than at others and how they need to change or fall short.

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