27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
“Every human being was created by God primarily to know Him, love Him and serve Him. All other activity is superfluous. But that being the case raises some tough questions. One of them is simple: if the local church is God’s answer to our spiritual needs, then why are most churched Christians so spiritually immature and desperate.
One of the greatest frustrations of my life has been the disconnection between what our research consistently shows about churched Christians and what the bible calls us to be.
Granted, we are all sinful creatures...however, if the local church is comprised of people who have been transformed by the grace of God through our redemption in Christ and the presence of the Holy Spirit, then their lives should be noticeably different from the norm.”
* 8 out of every 10 believers do not feel they have entered into the presence of God, or experienced a connection with Him, during the worship service.
* The typical churched believer will die without leading a single person to a life-saving knowledge of and relationship with Jesus Christ.
* Only 9% of all born-again adults have a biblical worldview – meaning that less than 1 out of every 10 Christians, age 18 or older, believes that absolute moral truth exists, believes that such truth is contained in the Bible, and possesses a handful of core beliefs that reflect such truth. These truths consist of: there is a real heaven and hell, there is a real devil, a person is saved by grace through faith in Christ alone, and it is the responsibility of every Christian to share their faith in Christ with unbelievers.
* Churched Christians give away an average of 3% of their income in a typical year and feel pleased at their “sacrificial” generosity.
* Christians attend 1.6 times a month to a weekend service of any kind.
* Less than 1 out of every 6 churched believers has a relationship with another believer through which spiritual accountability is provided.
* The most significant influence on the choices of churched believers is neither teachings from the pulpit nor advice gleaned from fellow congregants; it is messages absorbed from the media, the law, and family members.
18 And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.
Unless the Lord builds the house,
those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
the watchman stays awake in vain.
2 It is in vain that you rise up early
and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
for he gives to his beloved sleep.
19 And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
14 What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? 15 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.
11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until 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.
14 Then 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 people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 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.
Therefore let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God, 2 instruction about cleansing rites, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment.
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
• Me — I must be willing to invest in, lead, teach, love, and develop others.
• Them — The person must be willing to respond.
• God — We cannot do God’s part.