Summary: We constantly hear what is wrong with our churches all of the time, but what is right in our churches?
Sunday Evening August 12, 2001 Bel Aire Baptist Church
WHAT IS RIGHT IN OUR CHURCH?
I have had several comments lately that I have been whipping on the church pretty hard. I have been told that everything being said in the sermons are negative and are putting our church down.
I would say to you that I do appreciate the work that you are doing for the Lord and your service for Him. I will also tell you that I will not apologize for the sermons that have been preached because those sermons are given to me by the Lord and if you have a problem with the sermons maybe it is because it has hit home. If you are already doing those things for the Lord then that part of the sermon did not apply to you and you don’t need to worry about it. If it does apply to an area of your life, then give it to the Lord and allow Him to correct that area of your life.
If I were to ask the question, “What’s wrong with the church?” I would get a variety of answers. The easiest job in the world is that of criticizing the church and its leaders. We also must remember that criticism is the poorest substitute in the world for service. Many church members are not living up to their responsibilities. They are guilty of neglect and they know it. To try to excuse themselves, they find fault with the church. They say, “I don’t go to church for this reason- I don’t give to the church for that reason.” Now I realize that no church is perfect because it is made up of human beings. But we must admit this- that there is more right with the church than wrong.
We must remember that the enemy is on the outside. We are fighting the world, the flesh, and the devil. We are not to be fighting on the inside. We are not to be kicking our church. We must show the world that there is something vital and valuable about our Christianity. Would a real estate agent run down a house they were trying to sell? We need to live and serve each day so that others might come to know Christ.
So instead of running down the church let’s see what is right with our church.
I. Our Church Is Built On The Right Foundation
A. What is that foundation? It is Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
Matthew 16:18 (NIV)
“And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.”
1. Peter had just made his great confession in verse 16.
Matthew 16:16 (NIV)
“Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
2. Jesus called Peter a “rock”, but He did not say that He was building His church on Peter.
3. Jesus used two Greek words here in speaking of rocks.
a) The word for Simon Peter meant a small stone or movable rock.
b) The other word that Jesus used referred to a ledge of rock, not a stone to be kicked about, but an eternal, immovable, unshakeable thing.
B. So you see that the church was founded upon a personality and that personality is Jesus Christ.
1. He is the foundation stone of the church, not poor old sinful Simon Peter.
2. Jesus is the “rock and salvation.”
1 Corinthians 3:11 (NIV)
“For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.”
“’Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,” and do not do what I say? I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built. But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.’”
II. Our Church Is Right In Its Membership
A. The church is more than an institution, more than an organization, more than a building.
1. It is a company of believers in Christ who have followed Him in baptism.
2. No one is excluded from this company once they have been born again.
B. The members of His church are not perfect, but they are trusting in Christ and seeking to do His will.
1. We are members of the family of God.