The purpose of my address tonight, is to ask and answer several important
questions. When an assembly of believers engage in celebrating an
anniversary, it provides us with a perfect opportunity to ask ourselves
the following necessary questions, namely, "Why does Waterford Gospel
Church exist? For what purpose does it function?" In seeking to answer
this question, it will enable us to re-focus on the true purpose of the
Church in general, and then apply that truth to our church in particular.
Someone has noted,
Many Churches are like a Canary in a cage,
there is much activity, but little progress
Illustrate - Bears in America's National Parks
I am told that as you drive through some of America's National parks, you
are constantly reminded by numerous sings, "Don't feed the bears!".
However, every year, more and more bears are seen wondering along the
roadside, or rummaging through the parking lots, looking for easy food.
Why do they do this? Because they have lost the purpose of their
existence. They were created to hunt for food in the depths of the forest,
not on the side of the road!
Three Reason For Our Existence
Allow me to suggest to you three reasons why I believe Waterford Gospel
Church plays a significant and vital role in this community, in which God
has placed us;
1. Our Mandate/Orders
We have been called to be ambassadors of Christ to a world that is lost.
We are His official representatives to the world that is Godless,
Christless and Hopeless!
It is encapsulated in the word's of the Lord Jesus; This is not an OPTION,
this is an OBLIGATION!
The Lord Jesus highlights our MANDATE in Mark 16:15;
Go into all the world and preach
the Gospel to every creature
A. The Expectation/Anticipation of the Mandate - ‘Go into all the
Some refer to this as the GREAT COMMISSION, others have referred to it as
the GREAT OMISSION!
Or as Wuest puts it,
Having proceeded into all the world
In Matthew 28:19;
Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations.....
This text, known to many as the great Commission, more accurately reads,
Going therefore, make disciples of all nations
As you are going, make disciples of all nations
Having gone on your way, make disciples of all nations
B. The Proclamation within the Mandate - ‘And preach the Gospel...'
Wuest again translates it like this;
Having proceeded into all the world make a public
proclamation of the good news to the whole creation
C. The Dimensions of the Mandate - ‘to every creature'
It was Wesley who said,
The whole world is my parish
2. Our Mission - Fourfold
A. To EXALT the Savior
The overarching purpose of our mission is not that our church would be
known; it is not that we might receive the applause of men. Our primary
motivation in all our ministry activity is that we might receive the
approval of God by exalting and glorifying the Saviour!
The Apostle Paul put it like this, in Colossians 1:18;
That in ALL things He may have the preeminence
The Greek word translated PREEMINENCE, is the word PROTEUO (PROTE-YOO-O),
meaning to be first, to hold the first place.
The Amplified Version puts it like this,
That He alone in everything and in every respect,
might occupy the chief place.....
It was this top priority that motivated Elijah to pray again in 1 Kings
18 - James 5:18 ‘And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain and
the earth brought forth her fruit'.
The ground was parched and dry, the crops were failing, the prospect of
famine and disease were immanent. However, this wasn't his primary
motivation. The need alone did not drive him. He was driven by a sense of
the Glory of God - God's glory was at stake, this is what motivated him.
Illustrate - Young man going to China. A skeptic said to him, ‘I
suppose your going to China to convert the hearten!' To which the young
missionary responded, No! I'm going to China for the glory of God!'
B. To EXPOUND the Scriptures
Paul's word to Timothy was clear, 2 Tim 4:2;
Preach the Word, be ready in season and out of
season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all
longsuffering and teaching
And again he reminds Timothy, back in 2 Tim 2:15;
Be diligent to present yourself approved to God,
a worker who does not need to be ashamed,
rightly dividing the word of truth
The phrase RIGHTLY DIVIDING, in the Greek literally means ‘To Cut a
Straight Line'; ‘To Hold a Straight Coarse';'To Handle the Word
Correctly and Directly'. It is the picture of a farmer ploughing a staring
furrow; A builder laying a straight row of bricks. Paul was a tent maker