During the month of February I briefly want to look at the four aspects of our life together as a church that are highlighted in our vision statement. What we are seeking to do as a church and why the Bible says this is an important thing for us to be doing.
This week I want to look at the second aspect of our life together as a church.
Growing under his Word – Romans 12:1-2
Our vision statement reminds us that as the body of Christ we desire to grow together around his word. A church that does not meet around the word of God is NOT a Christian church… it is simply a social club. Fellowship groups that do not meet around the word of God are simply a social and caring group. The thing that makes us distinctly different as God’s people is that when we meet, we meet around the word of God. The word of God builds us up, the word of God encourages us, the word of God rebukes us, corrects us and trains us for Godly living. (2 Tim 3:16-17)
Now personally I am quite happy for this to be so. If I was not committed to opening God’s word to you this morning I would be constantly stressed out wondering what to speak on each Sunday and hoping it all fitted together with what I said the previous Sunday or two years ago. God’s word is wonderful, it is trust worthy, it is consistent, it is wise, it fits together, it works and when we do not like what it says I can (after checking I got it right) simply pass the criticism on to the original author. If we do not like what the Word says, and there are some pretty tough words that critique our modern society and our comfortable living, then we must remember God loves us, God has redeemed us, God has given us his word and his word is best for us. Best for us yesterday, today and forever.
If we want to know God’s will we must grow under his Word.
But the danger with God’s word is that we think that by simply reading and talking about it then we are ‘covered by it’. There is nothing mystical regarding the word of God. If the words are read out they can be like water off a duck’s back or they can be life transforming and the difference is what we do with them in our hearts and lives.
James 1:22 says – do not merely listen to the word and so deceive yourselves do what it says. Romans 12:2 calls on us not to conform to the pattern of this world but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds so that we can know what God’s will is, his good pleasing and perfect will.
I want to ask you a question – are you growing under God’s word (and for those in our 10 am service by growing I mean putting it into practice not memorising it for lollies).