Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Learning what is takes to be a Godly church.

Title: The Perfect Church

Text: Multi-texted topical

Introduction: Continuing our lessons series Making the Most of Our Relationships

‒ The body of Christ, as the scripture calls us, is about people, and where there are people there are relationships.

‒ We’ve talked about two very important ones. “The Necessity of Godly Leadership” & “Godly Followship.”

‒ Today we will talk about the possibilities of “The Perfect Church.”

Remember the old child’s “hand church?”

‒ “Here is the church and here is the steeple, open it up and there’s all the people.”

‒ Really that is a flawed perception.

‒ “Open it up and there’s all the church.”

‒ I found the perfect church in Atlanta Georgia. (Tell Scott to show the slide)

‒ There it is. “The perfect church.”

‒ It has to be the perfect church because it says it is.

‒ I would like to know what they do and teach and the meaning behind the sign.

‒ I know if I joined that church, I would mess it all up.

1. Does the “perfect church” exist?

‒ Jesus said , (Matthew 16:18 NCV) “So I tell you, you are Peter. On this rock I will build my church, and the power of death will not be able to defeat it.”

1. Jesus built the church.

2. He does not make junk.

3. The concept of the church and it’s creator is perfect.

4. In a perfect world, the church would be and will be perfect.

‒ Some have said, “If we could only go back and be like the days of the church we read about in the first century, we would have the perfect church.

1. They say this because they assume that the 1st century church had no problems.

1. Yet we read, “And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews....”(Acts 6:1).

2. The more people the more the problems.

3. That’s just one example of many times where people are people.

2. Misconceptions of the perfect church.

‒ Finding the church that fits my needs.

‒ Finding the church that answers all of life’s problems.

‒ Truth is that the perfect church is imperfect because of imperfect people.

3. Maybe the question of having a “perfect church” is the wrong question. Maybe a better question is: What would be the ideal church? WHAT WOULD BE YOUR IDEAL CHURCH?

‒ A church where everyone stands on God’s word as the only source of truth.

1. Jesus put high stock in His word.

1. Jesus said, (Mark 13:31 NIV) “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.”

2. In his prayer for the disciples, Jesus prayed, (John 17:17 NCV) "Make them ready for your service through your truth; your teaching is truth."

3. He said that His words would be the judge in the last day. (John 12:48 NCV) "There is a judge for those who refuse to believe in me and do not accept my words. The word I have taught will be their judge on the last day."

2. The word of God was so important to the apostles that at the very outset of the church the apostles chose deacons to help serve the widows so that they could "...continue to pray and to teach the word of God.""(Acts 6:4 NCV)

1. Seven more times in the book of Acts “the word” of God is mentioned as being that which was taught to the people.

3. Paul also said of the word that there was no need to go up into heaven and bring down Christ because we have the "The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart." That is the teaching of faith that we are telling."(Romans 10:8 NCV)

‒ A church where love is at the center of its work.

1. Jesus said, “By this shall all men know that you are my followers, that you have love for each other.” He also said that the law and commandments all hung on two facts. (Mark 12:30-31 NCV) "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ {31} The second command is this: ’Love your neighbor as you love yourself.’ There are no commands more important than these.""

1. Love is the true mark of real Christianity.

1. Helen Keller said, "It is wonderful how much time good people spend fighting the devil. But, if they would only expend the same amount of energy loving their fellow man, the devil would die in his own tracks of boredom.”

2. We love each other in spite of our flaws.

3. We love each other in spite of our differences and strive to help one another through them.

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