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Summary: Part 3 of 3 series about Unity in the church. From Ephesians 4.

UNITY: You Do, I Do

Ephesians 4:7-16

February 17, 2013

I would like to tell you a short story. I didn’t write it. I heard it a long time ago, and found it on the Internet. There were 4 people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, and Nobody. There was an important job to be accomplished and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it. Somebody became angry about this, because it was Everybody's job. Everybody thought Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have done.

Is that the church?

On the other hand, consider this statement from Bill Hybels, the pastor of Willow Creek Church. I mentioned this quote about 5 years ago. Hybels said ~

Think what the church would be like if its people were ~

RADICALLY DEVOTED to Christ,

IRREVOCABLY COMMITTED to each other, and

RELENTLESSLY DEDICATED to reaching those who don’t know Jesus?

IT WOULD BE A CHURCH AGAINST WHICH THE GATES OF HELL COULD NOT PREVAIL!!

Sometimes who we are and what we become is so narrow that it could be one small decision which pushes us in one direction over another. We could be a church which blames one another for things which don’t happen because we don’t do what we are supposed to do. Or we may cross the line, take the risks we fear, and be the church Bill Hybels spoke about.

But how do we do that? How does a church become more dynamic and willing to risk? Those are difficult questions. Some may not want to change, they’re comfortable, others always want change, still others, the majority - are somewhere in the middle. If I asked what should we do, we would have lots of different answers.

While you may not necessarily like the way Hybels stated his view of the church, wouldn’t it be great to see the church, all the churches, be

RADICALLY DEVOTED to Christ,

IRREVOCABLY COMMITTED to each other, and

RELENTLESSLY DEDICATED to reaching those who don’t know Jesus?

We would be the church of what’s happening now. There would be constant ministry taking place, lives being changed, devotion to Christ, dedication to one another, commitment to loving those who don’t know Jesus. It would be so cool, that nothing and nobody could defeat the church, not even the gates of hell.

You know what it’s like when you go to a sporting event. You may sit there quiet and calm, but inside you’re bursting. Or maybe you’re constantly yelling and jumping and excited. In the end, you know you’ve been to an event in which you were caught up. Maybe it’s a concert. Maybe it’s a NASCAR race. I don’t care what it is, but you get whipped up in the moment.

Friends that’s what should be going on inside and outside this building when it comes to Jesus.

We’ve been looking at what Paul told the church in Ephesus about who they were to become, and today, were going to conclude our look, as we continue reading from Ephesians 4. Paul wrote ~

7 But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.

11 It was He who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers,

12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up

13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming.

15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into Him who is the Head, that is, Christ.

16 From Him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

So, how do we make this happen? We pay the pastors and they go out and do the work. That’s how some people believe. But I know that we know better than that. Because it takes everyone here and in fact, those who are not here to build the church to be what Christ calls us to be.

You see, for so long the church was stuck on baby food, they couldn’t get off of it, because they didn’t want to get off of it. It would mean they would have to grow up and change. You see, Jesus doesn’t want the church to be stuck. He wants the church to enjoy the taste of a good steak, or hamburger, to know what real Baptist chicken and noodles taste like. You get the drift. When we’re immature, we don’t do what we should. Sometimes we see it in adults and in children; we see the immaturity, but want and actually see so much more potential, but they don’t get there, because they’re being tossed by the waves of the world.

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