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Summary: The word "Church" is so often used out of context. This sermon series helps the church (the people) identify how God defines church buy using seven different analogies found in the Bible. This is the introduction sermon to the series. There are eight serm

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The Church (Sermon 1)

Sermon Series by Timothy Gardner

Church Analogies (Overview)

I found this poem found hanging on a wall in St. Louis at a local Salvation Army church. It was knitted together and it hung in the sanctuary. I wrote it down because i found it interesting to share with others. Let me read it to you.

“What makes a good church?

If all the lazy folks get up

If all the sleepy folks wake up

If all the discouraged folks cheer up

If all the gossiping folks shut up

If all the dishonest folks fess up

If all the estranged folks makeup

If all the depressed folks look up

If all the disgusted folks sweeten up

If all the lukewarm folks fire up

If all the Sanctified folks show up

If all the leading folks live up

If all the vowing folks pay up

And if all the soldiering folks stand up.”(Unknown)

The word "church" as rendered in the New Testament comes from the Greek term ekklesia which is formed from two Greek words meaning "an assembly" and "to call out" or "called out ones." In summary, the New Testament church is a body of believers who have been called out from the world by God to live as his people under the authority of Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:22-23).

Joke:

On a sunny morning, William's mother came into her son's room and said, "William, it's Sunday. Time to get up! Time to get up and go to church! Get up!"

From under the covers came mumbles, "I don't want to go!"

"What do you mean?" she said. "That's silly! Now get up and get dressed and go to church!"

"No!" he shot back. "I'll give you two reasons. I don't like them and they don't like me!"

"Nonsense," she told him. "I'll give YOU two reasons to go. First, you are 42 years old, and second, you are the PASTOR!" (Unknown)

The church: The place where a small part of the population goes on a Sunday morning. (Tim Gardner)

During the next several Sundays leading up to Advent we will be talking about church: what the Bible says church is and how it is compared to different things. Today will be a synopsis of what we will be studying. The compared to a building, a living body, a flock, a bride, a treasured possession, branches of a vine and a temple. Let's pray.

Church compared to:

1. A Building

Most people identify the word church to be a mere building, which is not necessarily true. There is such a thing as a church building, but without the church, it would only be called a building. In order for the name church building to be used it has to have a church meet there continually. So, what then is a church? 1 Corinthians chapter 3 verse 9 answers that question. “For we are God's fellow workers; you are God's field, God's building.” Church building. Therefore the church is the people, not the building. But there are two things that need to come to order before a people can call themselves God’s church. First thing is:

- Christ the Builder (Matt. 16:18)

If Christ is not the builder of the church, then the church will collapse in no time flat. Jesus has to be the foundation and the building contractor in order for the church to become sturdy to withstand storms and floods. Matt. 16:18 “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” Secondly…

- Christ the Cornerstone (Eph. 2:19-20)

“Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.”

The cornerstone is one of the most important parts to building. If it is not placed right, then the whole building can collapse with just one small jolt or jar to the building. Therefore, Jesus has to be placed in the right spot as our cornerstone. Secondly the church is compared to...

2. A Living Body (1 Cor. 12:27)

“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” We are a body. What does a living body consist of in most cases? Arms, legs, hands, feet, head...

- Christ the Head (Col. 2:19) “He has lost connection with the Head, from whom the whole body, supported and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows as God causes it to grow.”

If a body has no head, it has no life .The head is significant as it is where the brain is. The brain is what is needed to function the entire body. It tells our arms to move, our legs to walk, our eyes to blink, and even our mouths to talk and our lungs to breathe. It is the most vital part of the living body aside from the heart. As a church that is the living body of God, we must not think it is possible to function headless. It is impossible. Thirdly, the church is compared to...

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