Summary: We are to be obedient to the Lord and to tell others the Good News. But we can do neither unless we understand the Lord’s Word, and we cannot understand that unless we read it and unless are taught it in our churches. So, what do you think? Are we
Today, I want to talk about what we are eating. Let me rephrase that; what are we being fed? I want to talk this morning about the plight of the American church. The church is not to make ourselves feel good, but to help others find life. We need to understand Who it is that makes that offer, but before we can do that, we must really understand who makes that offer. That person is not your local pastor, but Jesus. I hesitate to say ‘Jesus Christ’ because some think that is His name. His name is Jesus. His title is Christ. But before we can properly talk about Him today, we need to understand just Who He is, and who he is not.
Jesus is not just a good man as many people would have you believe. He was not just a prophet as others would tell you He is. He was nothing short of being fully God and fully man at the same time He walked this earth. He is one-third of the blessed and holy Trinity. He is the Creator of this world; of everything in this world; and He is the Creator of you and me.
Have you ever wondered what His mother Mary thought about as she held Him after giving birth to Him? She probably counted His toes as all mothers do. I wonder if she realized that those were the same feet and toes that had walked on streets of gold for eternity; or the same feet that the multitudes of angels bowed at as they worshiped Him.
Did she realize that those lips she gently rubbed her finger across were the same lips that had spoken this world into existence with?
Did she realize that, as she kissed her newborn baby, she wasn’t just kissing her newborn baby, but she was kissing the actual face of God?
And as she stood there helplessly watching Him hang on that cross 33 short years later, did she realize that He was not being put to death, but He was willingly sacrificing His life so that we would have every opportunity to live with Him for eternity?
And that brings me to the subject today; the subject of the church. Why do we have church? We have church solely for the reason of praising Him as we are lifting each other up in His name while reaching out to others for Him.
We ask ourselves why the local churches are not having that much effect on people nowadays, and then we come up with a list of biblical answers about how Satan is trying to destroy the church. He is trying to destroy the church, and he has always been trying to do so. But the question is – HOW is he doing it?
I believe he is accomplishing his mission by getting us unfocused on what our real mission is! Let me give you a few examples of how he does it.
Look at what the churches are offering. You can browse through any newspaper that lists church activities and you will see the same thing, over and over again. Let’s begin today by asking ourselves;
1. WHAT IS TODAY’S CHURCH DOING?
We are called to share Christ. We can only do this by imitating Him in our own lives. But to do this, we must know Christ and not just know about Him. The only way to do that is by reading the Word of God, and not ignore the Word of God. Is that what our churches are teaching today – or not?
One church recently advertised in a newspaper that they offered an internet safety program on Sunday morning. They wanted to teach you how you and your family could be “safe from Satan” while using the internet.
Another church offered a “Photography and Prayer” service on Sunday morning. I can only assume that their intent was to teach you how to pray while snapping photos. It doesn’t make much sense to me how this would bring you closer to Jesus, or have a deeper understanding of God’s precepts.
One church was having the traditional fellowship luncheon service, where they “preach while they eat.” I know that Christians like to eat as much as anyone else, but there is a time and place for everything.
In school, students never eat lunch while sitting in class. It is next to impossible for a person to learn anything while they are busy focusing on eating food. So I do not understand why they would want to preach a sermon while their congregation is busy eating lunch.
Then, there is the ever-present “Gospel Sing Night.” Have you ever noticed how more people will show up for a time of singing than show up for a Bible study?