We’re All In This Together

2018-10-07 – Year B – Pentecost 10-2 – The Rev. Christopher Klukas

Genesis 2:18–24; Psalm 8; Hebrews 2:9–18; Mark 10:2–9

 

Marriage, Covenant, and Membership

  • The lectionary readings today all speak to the covenant of Marriage
  • This seems appropriate on a day when we are welcoming new members into our congregation as well as joining La Iglesia del Espiritu Santo with Good Samaritan Anglican Church.
  • Church membership is different from the covenant of marriage, but it is a covenant, nonetheless.
  • Too often church membership is treated in much the same way as a consumer relates to their favorite brand of fast food, clothing, or coffee.
    • “It is good while it suits me, but I can just as easily move to another brand that suits me better.”
    • This is also characterized by the perception that “the church is here to serve me” and “I’ll stay as long as my needs are met.”
    • In this view, the church is a business, the staff is here to serve you, and all of you are the customers.
    • The truth is that there are no customers in a church. We are all here to serve. In a sense, we are all part of the staff!
  • Living stones – 1 Peter 2:4-5
    • Imagine removing stones from a wall? What would happen to the wall? It would crumble. We need each and every one of you!
  • So what is the church here for? To glorify God by making disciples, and sharing the love of God with those who don’t yet know him.

 

Making Disciples

  • In our values discussions, it has become clear that our church values mature discipleship and active or lively faith.
  • Because of this, it is worth asking what a mature disciple looks like.
  • Mature disciples: Love God and neighbor, serve, and never stop growing
    • Love God and Neighbor
      • The love of God should permeate every aspect of our lives
      • We need to put God first in all things
      • This certainly involves prioritizing worship in church on Sundays, but we also need to be engaged as Christians every other day as well
        • Prayer
        • Reading God’s word
      • The love of your neighbor flows out of your love for God and God’s love for you. 1 John 4:20-21.
      • How we treat others is directly related to our love for God. Each person matters to God, and he cares about how we treat others.
      • This includes loving the unloveable
    • Serve
      • “I am among you as one who serves” Luke 22:25-27
      • There are so many different ways to serve in our church.
      • We need to match our gifts to the needs in the church.
      • I would hope that each of you would have one or two ministries that you can thrive in.
    • Never stop growing
      • The word “mature” can be misleading. It can have the sense that you or I have arrived, and that there is no more growing to do.
      • As long as there is still sin in your life, there is more growing to do. Until you love God and your neighbor perfectly, there is more growing to do.
      • We need to keep growing as long as we have breath.
      • Neighbors in the church help us to love God more
        • Just as we pray and read the scriptures privately, we also need to do so corporately.
        • We do this on Sunday, but it is my hope that each of you would be involved in some form of small group Bible study as well.

 

Sharing the Love of God

  • One more thing, mature disciples share their faith with others just like mature plants and animals reproduce and multiply.
  • When you find something which changes your life, you can’t help but share it with those you love because you want them to experience the same good things.
  • We do this in small ways all the time. We recommend movies and restaurants to one another. We recommend doctors and dentists and mechanics to one another.
  • What could be more life-changing than a relationship with Jesus Christ?
    • How has your relationship with Jesus changed your life?
    • Which of your friends need to know about this?
  • Pray: for receptivity, for opportunities to share, for the words to speak
  • We can spend thousands of dollars advertising and throwing outreach events, but the single most effective way of getting someone to fall in love with Jesus is through a personal invitation.
  • You are all ambassadors for Christ.

 

The Covenant

  • We are committed to:
    • Our relationships with one another
    • Growing ourselves
    • Helping our brothers and sisters to grow
    • Helping our church to grow

 

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