FROM PASTOR TIM JOHNSON:
Due to our business meeting I was not able to chat with as many people after Sunday’s service as I had wanted. However, a saint drew my attention to a study that tempered the pessimism concerning the study that was conducted on Christian identity through Pew, which I addressed in the sermon.
The study suggested that while the Pew research does accurately indicate that the percentage of those describing themselves as Christian is down and those of the “Nones” is up, much of the decline could be attributed to nominal Christians leaving the church rather than committed Christians leaving the church.
What this might mean is that the Church is becoming a bit more refined if you will, and, while smaller, healthier. At the same time, we must remain vigilant to identify those who are not in an authentic relationship with Jesus and steer them to Him through the truth of the Gospel both proclaimed and lived.
Based on the feedback I received from Pastor Dave Mobley who visited our church two weekends ago, we are a healthy church that respects its Elders and is unified around the Gospel. That’s good news and seems to position us one of those churches that may reflect the refining aspect of trends we see.
It is interesting to note that the kind of shepherds God judged through Jeremiah were judged because of their infidelity to God. We need leaders who are first and foremost genuine followers of God.
Marketing geniuses need not apply. Slick business models don’t sustain the church in hard times when money is scarce. Faithfulness to God’s word and His Great Commission will more likely preserve a church and produce faithful remnants when the days are lean.
In Luke 1:32-33: “He (Jesus) will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
Luke records these words from the angel who told Mary of these deep truths. Jesus, from the line of David would complete the work long ago promised to David being the Righteous Branch in the Line of David.
One day, the Jews will be in their land fulfilling part of the Abrahamic Covenant and Jesus will reign over them and all the peoples of the earth fulfilling the Davidic Covenant. In that day, “Every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the father.”
Rescued by Christ,
SERMON: THE LORD IS OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS