One of area of passion of the Christian faith that God has placed on my heart is that of the church; not a denomination or a new movement, but the church of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savor;, the church that is to be The Bride of Christ. This too is another reason why I feel that God is calling me to seminary; because I have such a deep passion for the church, and I need to learn so much more to help it become all that God wants it to be. Once again this morning God gave me a word through a message from Jim Cymbala, the pastor of The Brooklyn Tabernacle. He states that too many Christians go to church once a week and have the mind set of just “hanging out” until Jesus comes back. This is NOT why Jesus died on the cross, This is NOT why He commissions us to Go and Make Disciples. Jim preaches out of Ephesians 4, reminding us that we are all gifted in Christ, and we are to act on those gift. As sons and daughter’s of Christ, we are set apart to do His Work here on earth! Listen to his messege here: http://www.moodyradio.org/brd_ProgramToday.aspx?id=35654
Ephesians 4 reminds us that we are chosen and set apart for the Lord’s work; we are his body:
Unity in the Body of Christ
1As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called— 5one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. 7But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. 8This is why it[a] says:
“When he ascended on high,
he led captives in his train
and gave gifts to men.”[b] 9(What does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended to the lower, earthly regions[c]? 10He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.) 11It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
14Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. 15Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. 16From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
Living as Children of Light
17So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more. 20You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. 21Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
25Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26“In your anger do not sin”[d]: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27and do not give the devil a foothold. 28He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.
29Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Do you hear the words?? I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.
12to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.
23to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
So Lord, today my prayer is that The Body would get a huge wake up call. That you would burn in their hearts and their minds the truth and purposes of our role as your disciples. Let us never be satisfied with complacency in this life, but always desire to build up your kingdom, obeying your commandments to Go and Make Disciples of every nation. Let us sense the urgency of the work that you have placed before us. Strengthen us by your spirit to complete the work that you have gifted us with. Let us not desire the things of this world but let us always desire you and desire to do your will here on earth. Lord, I thank you for giving me this word today; may I also be a strong and disciplined, joyful worker, because I am obeying and using the gifts that you have given me. Le us always keep the eyes and ears of our heart fixed on you! In Jesus name. Amen.