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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Purpose of Church 2

Yesterday I suggested that it was not the purpose of church to feed us.  So what is its purpose?  Ephesians 4:11 – 16 is a key passage on this.  It says in part that God put gifted men in the Church for a purpose, a purpose that is at least fourfold and sequential.  The first step in the sequence is equipping.

A church is not a theater.  We are not commanded to assemble to be entertained; rather it is intended to be a training, equipping facility.  Why?  Because the end is not simply our edification but our engagement in expanding the Kingdom of God as we are commanded in Matthew 28:18 - 20.  Church is not a solo act, it is intended to be a rallying point for warriors.  It is not the responsibility of the pastor to do ministry, the work of service, it is his responsibility to equip those in the church, the saints, to do that work, to engage with the Word of God personally, to engage with the Lord in prayer personally, to engage with their community both believers and not believers personally.  It is a base of operations – not the front lines.  A supply depot – not the theater of operation.

We have to both embrace that as members of a community while at the same time releasing and expecting the leadership to function in that divinely assigned role.  It is important that our kids understand that as well.  Their ministry – service – will be living as believers in their schools.

There is more to say on this…  How do you respond?

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