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REDISCOVERING CHURCH

Preaching By Sis Jasmine Magcalas

Summarised by JILC Publishing Ministry

Scripture:  But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people.

You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession.

As a result, you can show others the goodness of God,

for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.

“Once you had no identity as a people;

now you are God’s people.

Once you received no mercy;

now you have received God’s mercy.

1 Peter 2:9-10 The Message (MSG)

We do not play church. We do not do church. We do not attend church, because we are the church. God has designed, identified and called us.  It is vital that we know our purpose and rediscover God’s intention for the church, otherwise we would be missing the whole point and we all end up in tragedy.

The church of Corinth had come a long way from God’s original design.  The Apostle Paul has written an open letter by reminding the church about their calling in the hope that they will rediscover God’s beautiful plan for His chosen people.

CHURCH IS CALLED TO BE HOLY (1 CORINTHIANS 1:1-9)

We are reminded of our high calling and our position in Christ. The Greek work ‘Ekklessia’ means “a called-out people”. We have all been set apart by God and for God’s enjoyment and use. We are sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be His holy people. God has graced us and enriched us in every way- with all kinds of speech and knowledge. We do not lack any spiritual gifts for it has all been given to us through our Lord Jesus. The God who called us is faithful and is able to bring us and keep us firm to the end, so that we will be blameless on the day of God’s return.

In Corinth, the church was defiled as they lived in compromise and accepted sexual immorality and also arrogant about it. They were living a life full of wickedness, sin, greed, envy, and murder. The Lord rejects all kinds of defilements. Acceptance of any forms of defilement in the church is wrong, for a defiled church is not that is seeking God’s will.

CHURCH IS CALLED FOR FELLOWSHIP AND SERVICE (1 CORINTHIANS 10-25)

Division in the church is always a problem. There were quarrels among the Corinthians, that is why The Apostle Paul addressed the people of Corinth to live in unity and harmony, to be perfectly united in mind and thought. He reminded them that Christ alone has the power and wisdom above all. Even of Paul and Apollo’s, Christ is Supreme above them.

It is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.” 1 Corinthians 1: 19.

“For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human hands.” 1 Corinthians 1:25

We are called into fellowship because of our union with Jesus Christ. He was crucified and died for us. We were baptised in His name. We have been identified and reconciled with God through Jesus Christ’s ultimate sacrifice on the cross. We have been called into one family, knitted together and perfectly joined together in the name of Jesus Christ.

People in the church are diverse, but this should not create disunity. In fact, the Lord himself loves diversity. In 1 Corinthians 12, the church is compared to a body with many parts. Each having a distinct role to play and a specific function. There would be no sense if all of us were to do the same thing.  God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. Being in one body and with same Spirit, we should not take others for granted, as they also are a necessary part of the whole. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it.

In 1 Corinthians 13, it shows us that love is the excellent way and the greatest foundation of our service. Love is indispensable. Church membership is founded on love;  authentic, biblical, unconditional love.”

 “If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.  If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,] but do not have love, I gain nothing.” 1 Corinthians 13: 1-3

CHURCH IS CALLED TO GLORIFY GOD

We care called to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ, for our Father delights in the glory of His son. We do not glory ourselves, but we give glory to the One who deserves it all. The grace we have received from God, leaves no room for personal boasting.  What we were and what we are now is because of God’s works in us.

“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.  God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 1:27-31

“The hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:23 – 24

God is calling His church, his Bride

Commissioned for the great mission

Enabled to strengthen the weak

To uplift the oppressed

To bring comfort to those who are mourning and in need

Enabled and established to accomplish great things

So, the glory of the One true King might be displayed and bring honour and glory to Him.

Wake up all sleepers it’s time to set those eyes on The One.

Let the grace of God overflow and drown the pride of life and unify His Bride.

Let us learn all the more as we open our hearts and our ears to hear His loving voice saying,

“I am your beloved, You are mine.”

Let us all delight in His shade and taste His goodness.

Let us be light in the dark

Let us stoke the fire and keep it burning

Burning as we all serve.

Open our eyes

Fix them on the prize!

Let everything, Yes everything be poured to the One true King!

Hail Jesus!

Receive all the glory, honour and adoration!

All the reverence we give to You Our Lord and King!

~~A poem by Jasmine Magcalas~~