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November 16, 2008

Pastor Mike Householder spoke this morning at Lutheran Church of Hope here in Des Moines about the true Church, and what that actually means. It was awesome, and here my thoughts on what he said. 

“When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Peter, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hell will not overcome it.”               [Matthew 16:13-19] 

The Church, the family of Jesus Christ, is built on the rock of Peter’s faith. Peter himself is not the rock necessarily, but it’s his faith. The other disciples are afraid to admit that Jesus is the Messiah, but Peter steps out and tells Jesus he is indeed the One. It is on that display of faith that Jesus constructs his family. This passage also tells us that Hell and Satan cannot overcome the church. The Bible tells us that Satan has dominion over the Earth, and it’s my belief that any one person on their own will cannot defeat him and his temptation, but as the church, with God on our side, he cannot enter our gates.

Now, it needs to be clarified that the Church is not just a building. It’s so much more than that. The church is all the people in the world who share Christ in their hearts. This means that wherever you go, the church goes. We are always representing our Savior, no matter where we are or what we’re doing. Who we serve, the church is serving. On the flip side of that, and more powerfully in my opinion, who we ignore, the church is ignoring.

“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.” [2 Corinthians 5:20] 

The church is God’s vessel for reaching the world. For reaching the hurting. We can’t do it on our own as individuals. As a group of servants though, as a family, we can reach the whole world. Do you really believe that? 

Do you see church as someplace you go on Sunday mornings, or do you see it as a lifestyle? A lifestyle of servanthood. A lifestyle of learning and growing. Be the church. 

Think about it. 

P.S. See Acts 2 for more detail about what church is, and I may do on a post on that in the future.

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