The newly appointed pastor of a 10,000-member church transformed himself into a homeless man on the day he was to be introduced to his new congregation. Walking around the church, the disguised pastor was shunned by his future flock and asked to sit in the back of the building.
When the moment came to introduce the new pastor, Steepek stunned parishioners by stepping forward in his decidedly un-churchly garb. He then recited a passage from the Bible that urges Christians to help the unfortunate as they would Jesus Christ himself. After he recited this, he looked towards the congregation and told them all what he had experienced that morning…many began to cry and many heads were bowed in shame…. he then said… Today I see a gathering of people… not a church of Jesus Christ. The world has enough people, but not enough disciples… when will YOU decide to become disciples?
The body of Christ is in an identity crisis. The vast majority of Christians do not understand why the church exists. Church isn’t about us it is about Christ and what He did for the church. Jesus died for the church. He purchased the church with His blood. Church is not a democracy. Church is a theocracy. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost inspire the direction of the church. Christ gave the commission of the church, to go out into the world and make disciples baptizing
them in the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Paul reaffirms the mission of the church in II Corinthians 5:17-20.
Again the mission of the church is to save the lost. Paul says that every person who is in Christ is a new creature. He says that old things pass away and all things are now made new. Here is what Paul is saying, our past is removed from us as far as the east is from the west. Our sins will be remembered no more. I can’t think of a better thing to happen to lost people than this. Today if you are lost your past can be forgotten and your sins remembered no more. I think that is something that everyone could live with. I think that is something that I want to be a part of. I want to be a part of people becoming a new creature in Christ Jesus, don’t you?
The church must function in the ministry of reconciliation. We have been given the word of reconciliation. The word of reconciliation is that Jesus came into the world that the world might be saved through Him. Jesus came as the bridge between heaven and earth. Jesus while on the cross had one hand in humanity and the other hand in divinity. He is the bridge to heaven. He is the doorway to heaven. Jesus said I am the door if any man come in he must be saved. John said in Revelation chapter 4 that once the church age was over he heard a trumpet and saw a door in heaven. The door that John saw in heaven was Jesus coming to get His church. The Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout with the voice of the arch angel and with the trump of God. The dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet them in the air. So shall we ever be with the Lord.
The word of reconciliation is that Jesus came to save the world. Jesus came to reconcile us back to the Father. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but by Jesus. Jesus is the way to the Father. He is the bridge that takes us to our heavenly father.
Paul says in verse 20 of II Corinthians chapter 5 that we are the ambassadors of Christ. We are on the official business of Christ. Christ’s official business is to save the world.
Rev. Gary Wilson is pastor of Abundant Life Worship Center, 741 Stratton Street, Logan, and a member of the Logan Ministerial Association.