I Love My Church
Intro: First of all, I want to say it is OK to love your church! Ephesians 5:25 says that Christ loved the church.
I Love My Church because of:
I. The Connection – vs. 1-6
- A Common Focus – vs. 1 …beseech you that ye walk worthy … SEE 5:1
- A Common Fellowship – vs. 2 …one another… vs. 3 … unity in the bond of peace… see 5:11 …no fellowship
- A Common Family – vs. 4 …one body… vs. 12, vs. 16 (2 times)
- A Common Future – vs. 4, 30
- A Common Faith – vs. 5 – SEE vs. 13 …the unity of the faith…
- A Common Father – vs. 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
II. The Construction – vs. 7-16
No less than 4 times in these verses, we find a direct reference to the construction of the believer:
- 12 – for the edifying of the body of Christ (EDIFY: building up)
- 15 – may grow up into him
- 16 – making increase of the body…
- 16 – edifying of itself in love
A. The Means – vs. 11
- He gave us Grace – vs. 7
- He gave us Gifts – vs. 7
- He gave us God’s Men – vs. 11
I love my church because of the preaching and teaching that God uses to complete His work in me.
We don’t have apostles today, except for the writings of the New Testament apostles.
We don’t have prophets today, except for the writings of the Old Testament prophets.
But we have evangelists, and pastors, and teachers today.
Their job is to communicate to us the Word of God so God can continue His constructive work in us.
B. The Mandate – vs. 12
- Ephesians 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
God will not leave you like He found you.
- Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
The ultimate goal; our standard; our measuring stick is …the stature of the fullness of Christ.
We’ve got a lot of growing to do!
I love my church because the standard for Christianity is Jesus Christ.
I love my church because the guidelines that we are taught to measure up to is HIM.
- Romans 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
C. The Maturing – vs. 14-16
- 12 – a perfect man
- 14 – that we be no more children
- 15 – may grow up…
III. The Correction – vs. 17-32
I love my church because here, we are held to a higher standard than the world!
It is here that God teaches me how to live the Christian life.
The Word of God is preached and taught with the expectation of a transformation.
- 20 But ye have not so learned Christ;
- 21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
I love my church because it is here that God changes me.
A. Corrects our Walk – vs. 17 – see 5:2 – Walk in love…
- Ephesians 4:17 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,
B. Corrects our Work – vs. 18, 19
- 18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:
- 19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
- SEE also – vs. 28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
C. Corrects our Words – vs. 29-32
- 25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
- 26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
- 27 Neither give place to the devil.
- 29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
- 30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
- 31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
- 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.