Summary: If you sat down and asked what does the church need today, what would be your answer? A lot of times we think of the material things, but God is more interested in the people that make up the church. What are the needs of the people? I hope to answer that question for us all.
The 2nd and 3rd chapters of Revelation, tell us of real churches in real places. These churches also are representative of different ages of church history.
The Laodicean church is a description of this church age. The church that is neither cold nor hot. A church that was rich and said it had need of nothing.
1. When we speak of the church, we are not talking about a denomination.
a. The bible doesn’t speak of a denomination.
b. When people are asked, “Are you saved?” they reply “Yes. I am a Baptist, I am a Methodist, I am a Catholic, I have been baptized.
c. When you stand before God, I do not believe He is going to ask, “What denomination? How long have you been a member? What He is going to ask is, “What have you done with my Son?” Romans 14:12
1) You can go to churches this morning and find no bible reading.
2) You can go to Baptist churches this morning and find no truth. The way of salvation is very clouded. Very few are saved.
3) God help me when I preach to make the way, the plan of salvation very clear.
2. When we speak of the church we are not talking about a building.
a. I thank God for this building, and we do need more buildings. But this is not the church.
b. The word church means a called-out assembly. A group of born-again baptized believers.
c. You are the real church, God’s temple. God living in you, people need to see that.
3. Now, the church in Revelation had a real need, same need we have today. What does this church need?
a. If it were financial, God could supply. Save a millionaire. He has proven this to me.
b. Preacher we need room. Yes, and God can supply that need also.
c. The thing our church stands in need of can only be supplied through us. God’s people. What can that be?
I. The Church Needs Conviction
1. Revelation 2:12-17; is an example of a church that was slowly losing its convictions.
2. The old message to the church is let us be like the world so we will be able to reach them. I don’t think so.
a. This world wants to see something real.
b. We need to come out from among them. 2 Corinthians 6:14-18
c. Convictions from things that are wrong. To things that are right, from the world to God. Romans 6:11-13
1) Dead to sin
2) Alive to God
3. It’s not popular to stand against the world. It is not popular to stand against the pleasures of sin, but understand this, when you stand for what is right, you will never stand alone.
a. You and God make a majority.
1) Daniel; Daniel 1:8; Nebuchadnezzar knew there was a God because of Daniel and the three Hebrew children.
2) Elijah; 1 Kings 18:21,25,27,30,36-39
3) Moses; Hebrews 11:24-29
4) Paul; Acts 27:7-25
b. Any time God ever had a job to do He has chosen and used men with convictions.
4. Not only do we need conviction about worldliness and separation, but also, we need convictions about waywardness.
a. Church membership, baptism, faithfulness to the church, to God. Ephesians 3:21
5. Some are saying, “What is right and what is wrong?” 1 Corinthians 6:12,10; 23-33
a. Expediency…. advantage, profitable
b. Enslavement…. does or will this thing control me.
c. Edification…. acts of building up, spiritual growth
d. Evangelism…. help or hinder other from coming to Christ
e. Exaltation…. bring glory to Jesus. Can you sign His name to it?
II. The Church Needs Courage
1. I think folks either ought to love this church or hate it.
a. Know where we stand on moral issues, principles
2. Everywhere Paul went, he either started a revival or a riot, no middle ground. Acts 14:1-4
a. There was either great joy. Acts 16
b. Or they were stoning him.
3. The first church had courage. Acts 4:15-21; 5:27-29; 40-42
4. There is a great pressure on the church today to compromise. To let down the standards. God help us to stand and have courage.
III. The Church Needs Consistency
1. One outstanding fact about the first church, it was consistent. Acts 8:4; 19:8-10
2. It is strange that many seem so consistent outside of the church but are so inconsistent about the things of God inside.
3. Consistent in the things of this life. Luke 12:15-20
4. Seek God first. Matthew 6:33
a. Attendance, home, job.
b. Prayer, talking to mate, wife, husband.
c. Bible study
d. Tithing, bills
IV. The Church Needs Compassion
1. We need to recognize people are lost. We need to look at their heart before we see anything else.