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Doctrine of the Church

In any town or city of any size, where do you find the most imperfect people?  Do you find them in the bars, in the jails, or on the streets?  Nope, nope, and nope.  The most imperfect people can be found in a very unlikely place.  Look for the imperfect people and you will find them in the church.

In fact, the church is 100% comprised of imperfect people who have been called together by the perfect one, Jesus.   In Matthew 16, Jesus told Peter that He, Jesus, would build His church on one thing.  This one thing wasn’t the perfection of people but the faith they have in Him.  Jesus promised to build His church on the rock of faith, like Peter’s, and the gates of Hell won’t prevail against His church.  When we put our faith in Jesus, we are added to His family and are another imperfect member of His church.  I love how Paul describes it in 1 Corinthians 12:27  “27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.”

As imperfect members of His family, we commit to helping other imperfect people become more like the perfect one, Jesus.  Jesus gave us His church so that we could do life deeply with other believers and grow to become more like Him.   That’s why the writer of Hebrews commands us to practice the spiritual discipline of showing up.  Showing up to worship.  Showing up to serve.  Showing up to encourage others.  Showing up is a key discipline in the life of a disciple.  Read for yourself from Hebrews 10:24-25, “24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”  

Why is gathering together so important?  God things happen when the church gathers.  Some say they are Christians so they don’t need other believers.  They are missing the point.  Others say they are the church so why do they need to go to church?  They, too, are missing the point.  We go to church because we need people and people need us.  We need the church and the church needs us.  We need each other because we are a part of the same family.  Listen to how Paul puts it in ROMANS 12:5   “5 so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.”  This may be a shock to some, but when we put our faith in Jesus, our life is no longer our own.  We belong to Jesus as our Lord and Savior and we belong to each other - the church.

This is how imperfect people become more like the perfect one, Jesus.  They commit fully to Him and fully to each other.  If you have been hurt by the church, you aren’t alone.  Remember, it is filled with and even led by imperfect people.  But don’t let your church hurt keep you from being all that Jesus has commanded and called you to become.   Go to church for Jesus, not the people.  Don’t let them keep from following Him!   Love your church?  Take your commitment to the next level.  Commit yourself fully to spurring others on to love and good deeds.  Commit to serving, connecting, worshiping, and being a disciple that builds the church.   In Ephesians 4:15-16, Paul tells us what we are to do and how to do it.  Pick up your marching orders here:  “15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of 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.”  Build your life on love, truth, and serving others and you will see Jesus build your life and His church no matter how imperfect you are today.