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A Christ Centered Church!

SERMON: A Christ Centered Church!

TEXT: Acts 11:26

Introduction: The Church is the most glorious institution in existence! God's Holy Word reveals the Church in:

Promise

Gen. 3:15 -I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel."

Eph. 1:4-5 - even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,

Prophecy

Dan. 2:44 - And in the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed, nor shall the kingdom be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand forever,

Preparation

Matt. 16:18 - And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Mark 9:1 - And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Perfection (Acts 2:1-47)

Christ is the head of the Church (Eph. 1:22-23), savior of the body (Eph. 5:23) Furthermore, Christ is the center of both the Bible and the Church. The goal in Church- Growth must be our desire to be a Christ Centered Church. We must be...

1. A Converted Church. Many people are convinced, but fewer are actually converted. We must be converted to Jesus, not preachers, Elders or Deacons. Cf. 1 Cor. 1:18 - For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

2. A Convicted Church. The pulse of a local congregation must beat in unison. We must have "one heart and one soul" (Acts 4:32). We must be "likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind" (Phil. 2:2). We must stand together on the solid rock of Jesus (Eph. 6:10-11 - .10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.

3. A Confident Church. Those who obey Jesus and live by His word are RIGHT! And, when you're right, you're right. There is no shame in obeying, loving, defending, studying and proclaiming the Gospel (Rom. 1:16). Jesus strengthens those in him (Phil. 4:13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.) and His strength is our confidence.

4. A Cooperating Church. The letter "I" does not appear in the word TEAM or CHURCH. We are all a part of the body of Christ. We must work together

(1 Cor. 12:12-27 12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.

13 For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body-Jews or Greeks, slaves or free-and all were made to drink of one Spirit.

14 For the body does not consist of one member but of many.

15 If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," that would not make it any less a part of the body.

16 And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," that would not make it any less a part of the body.

17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell?

18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose.

19 If all were a single member, where would the body be?

20 As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.

21 The eye cannot say to the hand, "I have no need of you," nor again the head to the feet, "I have no need of you."

22 On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable,

23 and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty,

24 which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it,

25 that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another.

26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.

27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.).

The Christians on Pentecost "were together, and had all things common" (Acts 2:44). If we do not work together, we will segment and separate. There must be "no divisions among you"(1 Cor. 1:10).

5. A Commissioned Church. God loves souls so much that He "gave His only begotten Son" so that we might be saved (John 3:16); He revealed His Word and gave His grace (2 Tim. 3:16; Tit. 2:11). His Son is the pattern for our life (1 Pet. 2:21). He does not want anyone to "perish" (2 Pet. 3:9), but wants all to be saved (1 Tim. 2:4). Therefore, because our soul is so important, shouldn't other souls be important to us (2 Tim. 2:2)?




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