I Love My Church – Pastor Stacey Shiflett

I Love My Church

Ephesians 5

  • 25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
  • 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
  • 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

Intro: I want to boldly declare today – I Love My Church!

It is not arrogant or prideful to say, “I love my church.”

We can love the church because Jesus Christ loves the church!

I also want to go on record with this fact: Jesus loves the whole world.

I want to establish how much He loves everyone.

  • 1 John 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.

Jesus loved us before we were saved.

  • Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
  • 1 John 4:10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

Satan has launched an all-out war on the church.

But God promised that gates of hell should not prevail against the church.

  • Matthew 16:18 …upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

So why are many churches closing their doors?

Why are so many churches going out of business?

Why are churches shutting down in these last days?

It is because:

  • Members Become Contentious with Animosity
  • Messages Become Contaminated with Apostasy
  • Minds Become Controlled with Anxiety
  • Ministries Become Crippled with Apathy
  • Marriages Become Corrupted with Adultery

But the Bible is clear – Christ loved the church.

I Love My Church because of…

I. The Hand that is Apparent

  • Acts 4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.

Acts 4

  • 29 And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word,
  • 30 By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus.
  • 31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

II. The Hurting that are Attended

  • Luke 4:18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
  • Mark 2:17 When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

III. The Heresies that are Addressed

I Corinthians 11

  • 18 For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.
  • 19 For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.

2 Peter 2

  • 1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
  • 2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.

I’m tired of hearing false teachers say, “I studied it out.”

The Muslim Iman studied it out.

The Pope studied it out.

2 Timothy 3

  • 6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
  • 7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
  • 8 Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.
  • 9 But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was.

IV. The Help that is Acquired

  • 1 Thessalonians 5:11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.

I thank God for this church because of the many times I’ve left here helped.

Meeting with God and with God’s people helped me spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically.

  • Acts 28:15 And from thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to meet us as far as Appii forum, and The three taverns: whom when Paul saw, he thanked God, and took courage.

Paul saw the brethren and thanked God and took courage!

V. The Homes that are Admonished

I love my church because this is the only place I can go where I am challenged to be a better husband.

I love my church because this is the only place I can go where I am challenged to be a better daddy.

I love my church because this is the only place I can go where I am challenged to have a better home.

Every facet of society is committed to shredding the fabric of the family, marriage and the home.

My church makes the Christian home a priority.

My church makes the Christian home a possibility.

My church makes the Christian home a pleasure.

VI. The Holiness that is Admired

In a day where the importance of holiness is being downplayed, here at Calvary we still pursue holiness.

There is a group of people here that seek to follow God in a daily walk of holiness.

  • 2 Corinthians 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
  • 1 Peter 1:15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
  • 1 Peter 1:16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
  • 1 Thessalonians 4:7 For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.