Reformed Baptist Fellowship

What Should I Think of the church?

In Reformed Baptist Fellowship on June 29, 2012 at 11:44 am

Many people in our day have an indifferent, negative, or even hostile attitude towards the church, while claiming to be Christians – that is, followers of Christ.

Are such attitudes compatible with being a Christian?  As disciples of Jesus Christ, we must have the same attitude towards the church, and commitment to it, that He has. Therefore, we must ask the question: What does Christ think of His church? Three passages make the answer to that question clear:

1. Christ Loves His Church. Eph 5:25 says “… Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.”

2. Christ Is Building His Church. In Matt 16:18, Jesus says “… I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

3. Christ Indwells His Church. In Matt 18:20, Jesus says of His church “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

Therefore, if we believe that Christ loves His church, is building His church, and indwells His church, then that will define our attitude toward the church as well: we will love Christ’s church, we will seek to build up Christ’s church, and we will be in the midst of Christ’s church whenever it gathers for its stated meetings.

Christ’s work and mission is centered on His church. Therefore, as disciples of Christ, we must center our lives on that which Christ centered His life on. A Christ centered Christian is a church centered Christian, because that is where Christ centers His love, His work, and His presence.

It says of the Lord Jesus in John 2:17, “…The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.” May we too be consumed with zeal for “…the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”

Pastor Max Doner
Sovereign Grace Bible Church
Lebanon, Oregon
  1. Amen!

    “A Christ centered Christian is a church centered Christian, because that is where Christ centers His love, His work, and His presence.”

    Bless God for His single and universal church, as expressed in LOCAL and PARTICULAR assemblies! Thank you pastor Doner for this necessary and important reminder. I have often maintained that our view of the church betrays our view of Christ. After I was converted in 1994, I straightaway fell in love with His church and day. My love for her (the church) has only increased and intensified.

    Psalm 122:6 – “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May they prosper who love you.”

  2. And don’t forget addendum. For most “dedicated” members church is somewhat added to the rest of their life like a social club, even for elders. In stead of being church centered their lives revolve around family, friends, events and activities of affluency. People are more likely to sacrifice service to the church than they are their recreation to have their best life now.

    I just had this conversation with my Pastor. The question, since this is the cultural milieu in which we find ourselves in, how is it inculcated into the people to be church centered without driving them away? The idea of obligation is a funny animal. By covenanting with a church obligation is voluntarily aquired much as in marriage. However, when people are “obligated” to keep those obligations there is more likely to be a domestic altercation than repentance and submission. Much of what we find to day is autonomous individualism. Some how the freedom to which we were called has become more or less like the Corinthian church where each pushes forward before their brethren rather than as John said, laying down our lives for the brethren. We have forgotten what is meant by the communion of the saints, I think.

  3. I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD. Psalm 122:1

  4. I love Thy kingdom, Lord,
    The house of Thine abode,
    The church our blessed Redeemer saved
    With His own precious blood.

    Should I with scoffers join
    Her altars to abuse?
    No! Better far my tongue were dumb,
    My hand its skill should lose.

    For her my tears shall fall
    For her my prayers ascend,
    To her my cares and toils be given
    Till toils and cares shall end.

    Timothy Dwight, 1800

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