THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT

PROGRAM AIR DATE: 6-30-19



LESSON TITLE: "THE ONE TRUE CHURCH AND ITS PURPOSE"



WELCOME

KING DAVID ONCE SAID, "THIS IS THE DAY THE LORD HAS MADE; WE WILL REJOICE AND BE GLAD IN IT." TRULY THIS LORD'S DAY IS A WONDROUS DAY AND WE WELCOME EACH OF YOU TO OUR PROGRAM THIS MORNING. AS ALWAYS ON THIS DAY, WE WILL HAVE THE PRIVILEGE OF STUDYING GOD'S WORD. SO, WE ARE EXCITED THAT YOU HAVE CHOSEN TO GIVE THIS TIME OF SACRIFICE TO OUR CREATOR. I ENCOURAGE EACH OF US TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF EVERY OPPORTUNITY THIS MORNING TO GIVE OUR OWN REVERENCE TO GOD, AS WE TOGETHER OFFER THIS TIME OF WORSHIP TO HIM. MAY ALL THINGS BE DONE, TO GOD, FOR GOD AND UNTO HIS GLORY. LET'S START OUR PROGRAM THIS MORNING WITH A PRAYER!

PRAYER: OUR GOD AND FATHER IN HEAVEN, WE ARE SO THANKFUL FOR THIS DAY AND THE MANY GREAT BLESSINGS OF LIFE. WE ARE THANKFUL FOR THE PRIVILEGE THAT WE HAVE TO BE CALLED YOUR CHILDREN AND TO BE SERVANTS IN YOUR KINGDOM. AND HELP US THIS DAY FATHER AND EVERY DAY TO BE LIGHTS IN THIS WORLD THAT OTHERS MIGHT KNOW YOU THROUGH US AND THAT THEY MIGHT BE ABLE TO FIND THEIR WAY TO SALVATION AND ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH OBEDIENCE TO YOUR WILL. FATHER, WE KNOW THESE THINGS ARE ONLY POSSIBLE TO YOUR SON JESUS AND IN HIS NAME WE PRAY, AMEN.

OUR FIRST SONG OF THE MORNING REMINDS US WHO MUST BE IN THE DRIVER'S SEAT IN OUR CHRISTIANS LIVES. OFTEN WE TRY TO STAY IN CONTROL AND HAVE THINGS OUR WAY. HOWEVER, THIS SONG TELLS US THAT OUR PURPOSE AS CHRISTIANS IS NOT ABOUT WHAT WE WANT BUT WHAT GOD WANTS. A GOD WHO LOVES US AND IS ALWAYS THERE FOR US! SO AT THIS TIME I HOPE YOU ALL WILL JOIN IN WITH THE CONGREGATION AS WE SING TOGETHER, "BLESSED REDEEMER!"



DEVOTIONAL THOUGHTS



AS PARENTS, WE SURE HAVE AN AWESOME RESPONSIBILITY TO RAISE OUR CHILDREN IN THE THINGS OF GOD. I LOVE THE WAY PAUL CLARIFIES THIS IN THE LATER PART OF EPHESIANS 6:4, WHERE HE SAID (IN RELATIONSHIP TO CHILDREN), "BUT BRING THEM UP IN THE NURTURE AND ADMONITION OF THE LORD. THIS VERSE SAYS WE ARE TO BRING OUR CHILDREN UP, TRAINING THEM, AND ENCOURAGE THEM IN THE THINGS OF GOD.

NOW I MIGHT ASK, BUT WHY SHOULD WE DO THIS? WELL, BESIDES THE OBVIOUS, WHICH IS, BECAUSE GOD SAID SO. WE ALSO READ WHAT THE GREAT WRITER SOLOMON SAID ABOUT THIS MATTER. IN PROVERBS 22:6, WE READ, "TRAIN UP A CHILD IN THE WAY HE SHOULD GO, AND WHEN HE IS OLD HE WILL NOT DEPART FROM IT." SO WE ARE TO BRING OUR CHILDREN UP IN THE THINGS OF GOD SO THEY WILL FOLLOW HIM AND SERVE HIM ALL THE DAYS OF THEIR LIVES.

FINALLY, LET'S NOTICE THE POWER OF OUR EXAMPLES AND ACTIONS BEFORE OUR CHILDREN. IN THE FIRST PART OF A VERSE WE READ EARLIER IT SAYS, "AND YOU, FATHERS, DO NOT PROVOKE YOUR CHILDREN TO WRATH, BUT BRING THEM UP IN THE TRAINING AND ADMONITION OF THE LORD." AS PARENTS WE ARE NOT TO DO THINGS TOWARD OUR CHILDREN WHICH CAUSE THEM TO DO WRONG THINGS. IF WE CAUSE THEIR ANGER AND THUS THEY ARE PROVOKED UNTO WRATH, ARE WE NOT ALSO GUILTY? AS WE ALL KNOW, A BAD EXAMPLE OR HARSH ACTIONS TOWARDS OTHERS WILL AFFECT THOSE AROUND US AND OFTEN CAUSE THEM TO DO THINGS THEY WOULDN'T NORMALLY DO. IF WE CAUSE SUCH THINGS WE ARE JUST AS GUILTY IN THE EYES OF GOD.

ON THE OTHER HAND IF WE LIVE AS WE SHOULD, AND OUR ACTIONS AND WORDS ARE ACCORDING TO THE THINGS OF GOD, OUR CHILDREN WILL BE BLESSED BECAUSE OF IT AND GROW IN THE LORD AS THEY SHOULD. THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT SOLOMON WAS FURTHER TALKING ABOUT IN PROVERBS 20:7, THERE WE READ, "THE RIGHTEOUS MAN WALKS IN HIS INTEGRITY; HIS CHILDREN ARE BLESSED AFTER HIM."

DO YOU SEE THE DIFFERENCE OUR ACTIONS CAN MAKE BEFORE OUR CHILDREN? DO WE REALLY UNDERSTAND THE POWER OUR WORDS AND DEEDS HOLD IN THEIR EYES? HOWEVER, LET ME ALSO REMIND US THAT THIS IS NOT ONLY TRUE WITH OUR CHILDREN, BUT WITH ALL PEOPLE WHICH WE COME IN CONTACT WITH IN THIS LIFE. WE ARE TO BE GOOD AND GODLY EXAMPLES IN ALL THINGS AND BEFORE ALL MEN, IN EVERY FACET OF OUR LIVES. ARE YOU THE TYPE OF PARENT AND CHRISTIANS YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE?

TODAY, WE WILL BE CONTINUING OUR STUDY TOGETHER ON, "THE ONE TRUE CHURCH." OUR SPECIFIC TOPIC TODAY WILL FOCUS ON "THE ONE TRUE CHURCH AND ITS PURPOSE." WHAT A BLESSING IT WILL BE TO STUDY THIS TOPIC FROM GOD'S WORD IN JUST A FEW MINUTES.

AS FAR AS OUR SPEAKER THIS MORNING WE ARE HAPPY TO AGAIN HAVE BROTHER BRENT GREEN WITH US. BROTHER BRENT WORKS FULL TIME WITH THE BIBLE INSTITUTE OF MISSOURI AS A TEACHER AND SCHOOL REPRESENTATIVE. WE APPRECIATE HIM FOR ALL HIS GOOD WORK AND LOOK FORWARD TO HIM LEADING OUR STUDY FROM GOD'S WORD AT THE APPROPRIATE TIME. NOW LET'S JOIN TOGETHER IN OUR SECOND SONG OF THE DAY. THE NAME OF THIS HYMN, "THE STEADFAST LOVE OF THE LORD."



LESSON

BY BRENT GREEN



WHAT A GREAT JOY AND PRIVILEGE IT IS AS ALWAYS TO BE ABLE TO STUDY THE WORD OF GOD. WITH THE OPPURTUNITY THAT WE HAVE BEFORE US WE WANT TO CONSIDER WHAT THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH IS. NOW TO UNDERSTAND I BELIEVE THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH WE ACTUALLY HAVE TO ANSWER THE QUESTION: WHO IS THE CHURCH? THERE MIGHT BE SOME WHO THINK THAT THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH IS JUST TO BE ANOTHER GROUP AND THAT MIGHT BE A GROUP THAT INVOLVES ITSELF IN SIN. IT MIGHT BE A GROUP THAT'S JUST A SOCIAL CLUB. A GROUP THAT'S NO DIFFERENT THAN ANY OTHER GROUP OF PEOPLE THAT FIGHT AND BICKER AND CAN'T GET ALONG. MAYBE SOME THINK THE CHURCH IS JUST A PLACE WHERE THEY CAN BE ENTERTAINED OR MAYBE THEY SEE THE CHURCH AS BEING NOT DISTINCT AT ALL BUT JUST ANOTHER GROUP OF PEOPLE INVOLVED IN WORLDLINESS OR DENOMINATIONALISM. WHO IS THE CHURCH? IF WE CAN ANSWER THAT QUESTION I BELIEVE ALSO UNDERSTAND WHAT THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH IS.

I WANT YOU TO CONSIDER FIRST THAT THE CHURCH IS THE CALLED OUT. THAT'S WHO THE CHURCH IS. JESUS SAID IN MATTHEW CHAPTER 16 VERSE 18, "'I ALSO SAY TO YOU THAT YOU PETER, AND ON THIS ROCK I WILL BUILD MY CHURCH.'" JESUS WAS REFERENCING THE STATEMENT PETER MADE JUST PREVIOUSLY THAT JESUS CHRIST IS THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. UPON THAT FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE, UPON JESUS CHRIST HIMSELF, JESUS BUILDS HIS CHURCH. THAT TERM HE USES THERE LITERALLY MEANS THE CALLED OUT. IT'S A COMPOUND WORD AND WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? HOW IS THE CHURCH THE CALLED OUT? WHAT WE'VE GOT TO UNDERSTAND IS WE MIGHT LOOK AT OTHER PASSAGES LIKE IN ROMANS CHAPTER 6 AND VERSE 17 THAT THE CHURCH IS MADE UP OF THOSE WHO ARE CALLED OUT OF SIN, NO LONGER TO BE SLAVES OF SIN, NO LONGER SHACKLED BY IT. BUT NOW WE'VE BEEN CALLED OUT OF SIN INTO HIS MARVELOUS LIGHT. I LIKE HOW PETER PUT IT IN FIRST PETER AND WE WILL READ THAT VERSE TOGETHER IN FIRST PETER CHAPTER TWO. PAUL AND OTHERS WOULD WRITE ABOUT THE CHURCH BUT PETER HERE USES THIS SAME WORD FOR CHURCH OR THE SAME IDEA REMINDING IS THAT INDEED WE ARE NO LONGER THOSE AS THE CHURCH AS THE PEOPLE OF GOD WHO ARE LIVING IN SIN. FIRST PETER CHAPTER TWO AND VERSE NINE, PETER SAYS, "YOU ARE A CHOSEN GENERATION, A ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, HIS OWN SPECIAL PEOPLE, THAT YOU MAY PROCLAIM THE PRAISES OF HIM WHO CALLED YOU OUT OF DARKNESS INTO HIS MARVELOUS LIGHT." THOSE TWO ASPECTS ARE BROUGHT FORTH HERE IN THIS ONE VERSE THAT YES INDEED AS THE CHURCH WE ARE DIFFERENT. WE ARE DISTINCT. WE ARE THIS HOLY NATION, THIS SPECIAL PEOPLE. AND WHAT HAS TAKEN PLACE? WE WERE CALLED OUT OF DARKNESS AND INTO HIS MARVELOUS LIGHT. WE ARE NO LONGER A PEOPLE THAT ARE INVOLVED IN SIN AND THAT'S THE DIFFERENCE. WHO IS THE CHURCH? IT IS NOT MADE UP OF PEOPLE WHO ARE STILL STRIVING TO LIVE IN SIN AND DO WHATEVER THEY WANT TO IN THIS LIFE AND ENGAGE IN ALL THE SINS THEY COULD EVER DESIRE. NO, THE CHURCH IS A GROUP OF PEOPLE WHO HAS BEEN CALLED OUT OF DARKNESS INTO THE LIGHT OF JESUS CHRIST. WHO IS THE CHURCH? IT IS THE CALLED OUT. WHAT DO WE LEARN ABOUT THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH? THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH IS NOT TO BE A GROUP OF PEOPLE INVOLVED IN SIN. THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH IS TO BE A PEOPLE WHO ARE WALKING IN THE LIGHT AS GOD IS IN THE LIGHT, FIRST JOHN CHAPTER 1. WE ARE TO BE PEOPLE THAT ARE DISTINCT BECAUSE WE'RE NO LONGER LIVING LIKE THE REST THE WORLD. WE ARE NO LONGER LIVING IN SIN. IF WE AS CHRISTIANS, AS HIS CHURCH, THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST, THE ONE THAT BELONGS TO HIM, DO NOT UNDERSTAND THAT WE WILL NEVER FULFILL OUR PURPOSE. OUR PURPOSE IS TO WALK IN LIGHT OF JESUS CHRIST BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT WE'RE A PART OF.

SOMETHING ELSE WE NEED TO UNDERSTAND ABOUT THE CHURCH IS THAT THE CHURCH IS THE FAMILY. MOST LIKELY ALL OF THOSE ARE PART OF A PHYSICAL FAMILY NO MATTER HOW BIG OR SMALL THAT IS. THAT'S ACTUALLY WHAT THE CHURCH IS BUT IN A SPIRITUAL SENSE. SEVERAL PLACES WOULD INDICATE WHO WE ARE AGAIN AS THE CHURCH. EPHESIANS CHAPTER TWO VERSE 19 CHRISTIANS ARE THERE CALLED THE MEMBERS OF THE HOUSEHOLD OF GOD. ANOTHER PLACE, FIRST TIMOTHY CHAPTER THREE AND VERSE 15 WE ARE REFERED TO AS THE HOUSE OF GOD WHICH IS THE CHURCH OF THE LIVING GOD. WHAT DO THE TERMINOLOGIES THERE THE HOUSEHOLD OF GOD AND HOUSE OF GOD INDICATE? THEY INDICATE ONCE AGAIN AS WE'VE ALREADY SAID. THAT WE ARE THE FAMILY OF GOD AS HIS CHURCH. WHAT THAT MEANS FOR US AS INDIVIDUALS IS WE'RE THE CHILDREN OF GOD. ISN'T THAT GREAT TO THINK ABOUT BEING CHILDREN WITHIN A FAMILY! THE JOYS OF HAVING PARENTS AND THE JOYS THAT COME WITH BEING A PART OF FAMILY. SOMETIMES THERE ARE TRIALS AND DIFFICULTIES MOST CERTAINLY. BUT IT'S A BLESSING TO BE A PART OF A PHYSICAL FAMILY MOST OF THE TIME. IT IS TRULY A BLESSING TO BE A PART OF GOD'S SPIRITUAL FAMILY TO BE HIS CHILDREN. WE ARE CHILDREN BECAUSE WE ARE SONS OF GOD THROUGH FAITH IN CHRIST JESUS. GALATIANS THREE AND VERSE 26. WE AS CHRISTIANS ARE CHILDREN OF GOD. FIRST JOHN CHAPTER THREE VERSES ONE AND TWO. THERE JOHN SAYS, "BEHOLD WHAT MANNER OF LOVE THE FATHER HAS GIVEN UNTO US, THAT WE SHOULD BE CALLED CHILDREN OF GOD." IT IS GOD'S GREAT LOVE THAT HE PUT US TOGETHER AS A SPIRITUAL FAMILY. HOW DO WE BECOME A PART OF THAT? WE INDEED WERE THOSE WHO ARE BAPTIZED INTO JESUS CHRIST. WE WERE BORN AGAIN. JOHN CHAPTER THREE VERSES THREE AND FIVE. WE ARE INDEED THOSE IN ROMANS CHAPTER EIGHT IN VERSE 15 WHO HAVE BEEN ADOPTED INTO THIS SPIRITUAL FAMILY BY GOD HIMSELF. WHEN WE WERE BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST WE WERE ADDED BY GOD TO HIS CHURCH, ACTS 2:47. WE WERE ADOPTED INTO THIS FAMILY. ISN'T THAT A GREAT THING TO THINK ABOUT? WE DON'T HAVE TO LIVE IN A WORLD OF SIN. WE DON'T HAVE TO BE A PART OF THE FAMILY OF THE WORLD SO TO SPEAK THAT IS ON A PATHWAY TO DESTRUCTION. NO, WE CAN BE A PART OF THE SAVED. WE CAN BE A PART OF GOD'S FAMILY AND WE ARE A PART OF GOD'S FAMILY AS CHRISTIANS. WE ARE THE FAMILY OF GOD AS THE CHURCH.

WHAT AGAIN DOES THAT MEAN ABOUT OUR PURPOSE OR PURPOSES TO BE A LOVING FAMILY? OUR PURPOSE AS THE CHURCH IS TO BE THE FAMILY OF GOD BUT IF WE ACT LIKE THE FAMILY OF THE WORLD'S THEN WE'RE NOT ACTING AS WE'RE SUPPOSED TO. WE'RE NOT FULFILLING OUR PURPOSE IF ALL WE DO IS FIGHT AND BICKER AND DIVIDE OURSELVES AND COMPLAIN AND THEN WE JUST ACT LIKE THE WORLD WOULD ACT AS A PHYSICAL FAMILY. WE'RE NOT BEING THE FAMILY OF GOD. WE'RE A SPIRITUAL FAMILY. WE'RE TO SET THAT PREMIER EXAMPLE BEING A LOVING FAMILY OF BEING SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF GOD WHO LOVE HIM; THAT IS GOD AND LOVE EACH OTHER ACCORDINGLY. THAT IS OUR PURPOSE TO BE A LOVING FAMILY AS HIS CHURCH, TO BE THE FAMILY THAT GOD DESIRES US TO BE.

SOMETHING ELSE TO UNDERSTAND ABOUT THE CHURCH IS THAT THE CHURCH IS THE BODY. THERE IS BUT ONE BODY ACCORDING THE SCRIPTURES, EPHESIANS CHAPTER FOUR VERSE FOUR SAYS, THAT AMONG THE SEVEN ONES THAT PAUL GIVES, THERE HE SAYS, "THERE IS ONE BODY." I THINK IT'S ALSO IMPORTANT TO READ OTHER VERSES TO UNDERSTAND WHAT ELSE THE SCRIPTURE SAYS ABOUT THE BODY. THERE IN FIRST CORINTHIANS CHAPTER 12 VERSE 13 IT SAYS, "FOR BY ONE SPIRIT WE WERE ALL BAPTIZED INTO ONE BODY." THERE AGAIN WE SEE HOW WE WERE THOSE WHO BECAME A PART OF HIS BODY THROUGH BAPTISM BUT THROUGH BAPTISM WE WERE ALL ADDED TO WHAT? HIS BODY, THE BODY OF CHRIST, THIS SPIRITUAL KINGDOM, HIS CHURCH ABOUT WHICH WE'VE BEEN SPEAKING. AND SO AS WE WERE BAPTIZED INTO THAT BODY IT IS ALSO IMPORTANT TO UNDERSTAND THAT THERE IS A HEAD OF THIS BODY. IT IS NOT SOMEBODY ON THIS EARTH. IT IS NOT A COUNSEL. IT IS NOT A MAN BUT IT IS JESUS CHRIST HIMSELF. THERE IS ONE BODY AND THERE IS ONE HEAD. EPHESIANS CHAPTER ONE VERSES 22 AND 23 SAYS CHRIST IS HEAD OVER ALL THINGS TO THE CHURCH WHICH IS HIS BODY. AGAIN WE LEARN THAT THE CHURCH IS THE BODY BUT WE ALSO LEARN THERE THAT JESUS CHRIST IS THE HEAD OF THIS BODY, THAT AS EPHESIANS 5 GOES ON TO SAY THAT NOT ONLY IS HE THE HEAD BUT HE'S THE SAVIOR OF THE BODY. WHAT DOES THAT MAKE US? IT MAKES US AS INDIVIDUAL CHRISTIANS MEMBERS OF THIS ONE BODY. PAUL TALKED ABOUT THAT IN FIRST CORINTHIANS 12 IN VERSE 20 SAYS, "THERE ARE MANY MEMBERS, YET ONE BODY." WE ALL INDIVIDUALLY MAKE UP AS WE ARE INDIVIDUALS COLLECTIVELY THE BODY OF CHRIST. ONE BODY, HIS BODY. THE BODY OF JESUS CHRIST. THE SPIRITUAL CHURCH. HIS SPIRITUAL BODY THAT HE ESTABLISHED THAT WE MIGHT BE A PART OF IT HERE IN THIS WORLD AND LOOK FORWARD TO THE REWARDS IN THE LIFE TO COME THAT WE MIGHT ONE DAY ALL BE TOGETHER IN HEAVEN ITSELF.

IS THE CHURCH TO BE A SOCIAL CLUB? YOU SEE, I'M AFRAID SOMETIMES BECAUSE WE FORGOT WHO WE ARE, THAT WE ARE THE SPIRITUAL BODY OF CHRIST, WE NO LONGER FULFILL OUR PURPOSE THAT WE LIVE AS CHRISTIANS, THAT WE COME TOGETHER AS HIS CHURCH TO SIMPLY BE A SOCIAL CLUB, A PLACE OF GATHERING TO HAVE FUN. A PLACE TO GATHER THAT WE MIGHT BE THOSE WHO CAN JUST ENTERTAIN OURSELVES AND TO HAVE THOSE FELLOWSHIP ACTIVITIES. DON'T MISUNDERSTAND THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH HAVING FUN AND FELLOWSHIP AS CHRISTIANS. BUT WE'RE NOT A SOCIAL CLUB. THAT'S NOT OUR PURPOSE. WE AS CHRISTIANS ARE A SPIRITUAL BODY AND WE NEED TO THINK ABOUT THINGS IN SPIRITUAL TERMS AND UNDERSTAND THAT THIS LIFE IS NOT ALL THERE IS. THERE IS A LIFE TO COME. TO UNDERSTAND OUR PURPOSE AND TO BE THAT SPIRITUAL BODY THERE INDEED WE MUST UNDERSTAND THAT THIS LIFE IS NOT SIMPLY ABOUT FUN AND GAMES. IT IS ABOUT BEING THAT SPIRITUAL BODY OF JESUS CHRIST. SOMETHING ELSE WE NEED TO UNDERSTAND ABOUT THE CHURCH IS THAT THE CHURCH IS THE TEMPLE. HOPEFULLY WE UNDERSTAND THAT AS WE HAVE READ OUR BIBLES THROUGHOUT THE YEARS THAT THE OLD TESTAMENT DID HAVE INDEED A PHYSICAL TEMPLE THAT UNDER THE OLD LAW GOD PROVIDED A PLACE WHERE HIS PEOPLE THERE, THE JEWS, COULD TURN THEIR ATTENTION. THAT THEY COULD LOOK TO THAT PHYSICAL TEMPLE AND SEE THE GLORY OF GOD DWELLING THERE AS GOD MADE HIMSELF KNOWN AND UNDERSTAND THAT GOD WAS IN THEIR MIDST. THAT TEMPLE WAS A PHYSICAL PLACE WHERE THEY COULD WORSHIP GOD, A PLACE WHERE THEY COULD BRING THEIR SACRIFICES AND OFFER EVERYTHING GOD HAD PRESCRIBED THERE IN THE OLD LAW. SUCH AS INDEED GONE BY THE WAYSIDE BECAUSE IT'S BEEN NAILED TO THE CROSS, COLOSSIANS TWO AND VERSE 14. BUT IS THERE STILL A TEMPLE TODAY? MOST CERTAINLY THERE IS AND WE AS THE CHURCH ARE THAT TEMPLE OF GOD. HOW CAN WE UNDERSTAND THAT? WELL, VERSES LIKE FIRST CORINTHIANS CHAPTER THREE IN VERSE NINE WILL TELLS US THAT WE AS CHRISTIANS ARE SPIRITUAL STONES BEING BUILT UP INTO A HOLY TEMPLE. THERE AGAIN IN THE WRITINGS OF PETER I THINK IT MIGHT BE IMPORTANT FOR US TO SEE AGAIN WHAT PETER SAYS. FIRST PETER, AGAIN CHAPTER TWO AND VERSE FIVE SAYS, "YOU ALSO," HE'S WRITING TO CHRISTIANS, "AS LIVING STONES, ARE BEING BUILT UP A SPIRITUAL HOUSE, A HOLY PRIESTHOOD, TO OFFER UP SPIRITUAL SACRIFICES ACCEPTABLE TO GOD THROUGH JESUS CHRIST." NO, THERE IS NO LONGER A PHYSICAL TEMPLE BUT THERE IS A SPIRITUAL TEMPLE AND WE ARE THAT TEMPLE AS HIS CHURCH. WE ARE BEING BUILT UP TOGETHER AGAIN COLLECTIVELY TO BE THAT SPIRITUAL TEMPLE, STILL A PLACE WHERE GOD DWELLS, FIRST CORINTHIANS CHAPTER THREE, AS WE ARE THAT SPIRITUAL TEMPLE OF GOD WHAT IS OUR PURPOSE? WELL IS IT ENTERTAINMENT? DO WE COME TOGETHER AS CHRISTIANS TO ENTERTAIN OURSELVES? TO HAVE A SHOW PUT ON BEFORE US THAT WE MIGHT EVEN BRING NOT JUST CHRISTIANS IN BUT OTHERS IN AND ENTERTAIN OURSELVES? CERTAINLY NOT. THE CHURCH IS THE SPIRITUAL TEMPLE OF GOD. IT IS A PLACE RATHER IT IS A PEOPLE THAT COME TOGETHER TO OFFER UP THEIR WORSHIP TO GOD AS THAT TEMPLE OF GOD. AND WHEN WE DO SUCH ACCORDING TO THE TRUTH AND SPIRIT OF HIS WORD AS GOD DEMANDS US TO WORSHIP HIM IN THAT WAY, JOHN 4:24, THEN WE CAN TRULY OFFER UP WHAT HE DESIRES AND HE WILL BE IN OUR MIDST AS WE ARE THAT TEMPLE. LET US REMEMBER WHAT WE ARE THAT WE MIGHT FULFILL OUR PURPOSE IN OFFERING UNTO GOD THE WORSHIP HE REQUIRES OF US AS HIS SPIRITUAL TEMPLE. THAT'S WHAT OUR PURPOSE IS. IT IS TO WORSHIP GOD AND NOT OURSELVES.

FINALLY LET US CONSIDER THAT THE CHURCH IS THE KINGDOM OF GOD. WE CAN UNDERSTAND THAT IN MANY PLACES AND ONE OF THEM IS IN SECOND PETER. WE HAVE BEEN READING FROM FIRST PETER BUT IF WE LOOK OVER AT SECOND PETER CHAPTER ONE IN VERSE 11 WE FIND THESE WORDS. SECOND PETER CHAPTER ONE VERSE 11 SAYS, "FOR SO AN ENTRANCE WILL BE SUPPLIED YOU ABUNDANTLY INTO THE EVERLASTING KINGDOM OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST." IT SPEAKS OF A KINGDOM. ONE DAY THIS PRESENT SPIRITUAL KINGDOM WILL GO HOME TOGETHER TO BE A PART OF THAT EVERLASTING PLACE CALLED HEAVEN ITSELF. BUT IN THE PRESENT WE ARE A PART OF GOD'S KINGDOM. WE AS THE CHURCH ARE HIS KINGDOM. REMEMBER WHERE WE BEGAN THERE IN MATTHEW 16? JESUS SAID UPON THIS ROCK I WILL BUILD MY CHURCH. HE ALSO IN THE VERSES TO COME HE SAYS TO PETER I WILL ALSO GIVE YOU THE KEYS TO THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. JESUS USED THE TERMS CHURCH AND KINGDOM INTERCHANGEABLY. THAT RIGHT NOW ON THIS EARTH, HIS CHURCH, THAT IS JESUS' CHURCH, IS HIS KINGDOM. WE AS CHRISTIANS MAKE UP THAT SPIRITUAL KINGDOM OF JESUS CHRIST. WE HAVE A LAW TO FOLLOW. THE LAW THAT JESUS GAVE US TO FOLLOW. THE LAW OF JESUS CHRIST, GALATIANS CHAPTER SIX AND VERSE TWO, THIS KINGDOM HAS A TERRITORY. PRESENTLY IT EXISTS ON THIS EARTH. WHEN JESUS SAID TO HIS APOSTLES AND DISCIPLES HE SAID, GO INTO ALL THE EARTH. THAT'S WHERE WE EXIST RIGHT NOW. NO, NOT EVERYONE ON THIS EARTH IS A PART OF THE KINGDOM BUT THOSE WHO ARE SPIRITUALLY BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST ARE PART OF THAT KINGDOM. AND AS WE ARE PART OF THAT KINGDOM WE STILL HAVE OUR CITIZENSHIP IN HEAVEN, PHILIPPIANS CHAPTER THREE AND VERSE 20. WHO ARE WE AS THE CHURCH? WE ARE THE KINGDOM OF CHRIST AND THAT TELLS US OUR PURPOSE. WE ARE NOT TO BE THOSE INVOLVED IN WORLDLINESS. WE'RE NOT ACTING LIKE THE WORLD AND THINK LIKE THE WORLD AND SIMPLY BE LIKE THE WORLD. NO, OUR PURPOSE IS NOT TO SIMPLY BE ONE AMONG THE MANY PEOPLE OF THIS GLOBE OR ON THIS GLOBE. NO, WE ARE TO BE DIFFERENT. WE ARE TO LIVE AND ACT AND SPEAK AND ACT OUR LIVES AND LIVE OUR LIVES ACCORDING TO SCRIPTURE OF GOD'S WORD. OUR PURPOSE AS HIS CHURCH IS TO BE THAT SPIRITUAL KINGDOM OF JESUS CHRIST. MAKE SURE YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT THE CHURCH IS OR RATHER WHO THE CHURCH IS THAT YOU MIGHT UNDERSTAND WHAT HIS PURPOSE IS IN THIS WORLD.



CLOSING COMMENTS

LET ME THANK YOU AGAIN FOR CHOOSING TO BE WITH US TODAY FOR THE LIVING WORD PROGRAM. I HOPE AND TRUST, THAT TOGETHER WE HAVE ALL BENEFITED FROM THIS SERVICE TO OUR LORD. LET ME ALSO INVITE YOU TO JOIN US EVERY LORD'S DAY MORNING AT 7:30 AS WE GIVE THIS TIME TO OUR CREATOR.

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HOW BLESSED WE ARE TO KNOW THE SPECIFIC PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH WHICH OUR LOVE DIED FOR AND ESTABLISHED FOR OUR SAKES. MAY WE THEREFORE DILIGENTLY SEEK HIS WORD TO KNOW ALL THAT HE WANTS AND THUS MAY WE ALWAYS STRIVE TO PUT GOD FIRST IN ALL THINGS!