Summary: This is a sermon that shares what the church should offer to people who are searching for something real, stable, and powerful.
WHAT A CHURCH SHOULD BE
Text: Mathew 16: 13-19
Intro: What is the church? Why does it exist? Do I have to attend a church to be a part of the church? What are the benefit’s of belonging to a church? What does God have to say about the church?
Greek word for church is ekklesia- “called out ones”
Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionary says, ekklesia is a "gathering of citizens called out from their homes into some public place; an assembly.
Benefit- (Eph 4:11-12KJV) And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
Benefit- (1 Th 5:11 KJV) Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.
Benefit- (2 Cor 1:4 KJV) Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.
Attendance- (Heb 10:25 KJV) Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
God and the Church- (Eph 5:23 NIV) For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.
God and the Church- (Eph 5:25 KJV) Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Rev 21 John shares the vision God gave him of His redeemed bride.
Many today question the need for the church, the relevance of the church, and the power of the church.
The church is still God’s Church!!!
Church is not a building, or a denomination. Church is people, “called out” for a common purpose, who share a common need and hope in a living Savior.
So what is it that the church means to you? What does it offer to our life?
I want us to look at three things mentioned in this passage of scripture:
2. Strength and Stability
3. Power and Promise
A. In the world that we live in today, we see many who suffer from identity crisis.
1. Inferiority complex- 95% of the population suffers this. We are not what we are. We are not even what others think we are. We are what we think others think we are. James Dobson, Hide or Seek.
2. Pride- Pride is the only disease known to man that makes everyone sick except the person who has it. Buddy Robinson
(Prov 16:18 KJV) Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
3. People search for meaning to life after drastic changes: - Drastic physical changes
- Loss of a spouse or child
- Change in occupation
- Transition to adulthood
4. If we are not careful, we become defined by our circumstance or by the opinions of others.
B. Jesus did not suffer from an identity crisis.
1. Vs.13- “Son of Man”- servant of God to man.
2. Mark and Luke both focus on the humanity of Christ.
3. Jesus refers to himself as the “Son of Man” over eighty times in the Gospels.
4. (Mark 10:45 KJV) For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
5. John 13 we see Jesus washing the feet of the disciples. This was a symbol of both the cleansing power of Christ and the heart of a servant.
6. By seeing himself as the “Son of Man” , we know that He understood who He was and what the Father’s will was for His life.
7. (John 12:32 KJV) And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.
8. (Rev 1:8 KJV) I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
9. (John 10:30 KJV) I and my Father are one.
C. God wants to know, “Who do you say that I am?”
D. Peter’s identity was found in his knowledge of who Christ was.
1. Vs. 18 “Thou art Peter”-petra, “a little rock”
2. Jesus was building a church not of wood and mortar, but of people who had a revelation of who He was.
3. Not a physical or carnal knowledge, but a spiritual knowledge.( vs. 17 )
E. Who you are is found in Christ.
1. (1 Cor 15:10 KJV) But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.