Sin causes us to be separated from God and from each other. But when we come to Christ, He reconciles us to God and to one another and causes us to be devoted to God and one another. This is what we see in the book of Acts. Luke described the “authentic community” of the first century church. He said they were marked by four “devotions.” They were a shared faith, a shared family, a shared food, and a shared focus. We can experience this community when we pursue these four devotions. Today, we’re going to focus on the second devotion, “A Shared Family.”
Thanks for listening to the podcast from gary combs and the preaching team at wilson community church in wilson, north carolina. Check us out on the web at wcc nc dot award for moreand now here’s the sermon
all right, good morning church all of you are sitting down front where i can see you this is like the best thing ever maybe we should talk about community maybe we should talk about how we love each other and that you gotta actually get close to each other to know each other and this is awesome i appreciate you sitting down closer to the front and actually what’s happening is you’re letting us have more seats in the house because we just had the grand opening yesterday on the new children’s wing and it looks beautiful amen that’s right that’s appropriate and our children are so excited i mean, after the first service i had little kids coming up to me telling me about their classroom and so forth, so excited what we believe in, what we hope for is that more children will come to christ in this space, right? And the cool thing about children is they can’t drive themselves to church and so their parents will come and they’ll need a seat in here and as you sit closer together we’re making more room so thank you for that i know it’s unamerican but it is very christian to sit together and love each other and we appreciate you doing that
now we’re talking about the first century church and how it just exploded on the world scene and how it just turned world history upside down in just a short time and part of the reason for that really was their devotion to four marks four devotions and that’s what we’re unpacking in this serious called community
last week we talked about the apostles teaching the mark of a shared faith and today we’re going to talk about fellowship or in other words a shared family being part of a family and when we think of family we get all kind of thoughts don’t we i mean some of them are good and some not so good regardless of how you think of a family let’s just kind of think for a second how hollywood has depicted families through the years let’s take a little quiz i’ll pop up a photo and you call out the name of the show let’s just kind of see what your hollywood family intellectual is like here
pop up the first one who’s calling out who’s this leave it to beaver good job next one the adams family said that the truth is a lot of your families are actually more like this one then leave it to beaver, right? So let’s pop up the next one who’s this partridge family. All right, ladies, how many of you had a picture on the wall of come on, admit it, okay, just one or two or being honest in the room were trying to work on your honesty. Okay, who’s, this all in the family, right next, the brady bunch, right. Okay, next one, the cosby show. That was a great one. Now i had noticed how the older people were going to do. But the younger people said family matters. That’s , right? Family matters.
Family ties good and one more full house all right awesome you guys get in hollywood families but all of those have one thing in common they’re all fictitious they’re all not real family that’s not what a real family looks like here’s the reality god designed you for family for him he made you for himself and long before you were born he wanted to adopt you into his family and he’s made every effort to do so and he wants a family god wants a family and that is wonderful but the kind of family he wants the kind of family he formed you for made you for is more authentic more real l more lasting but the problem we have is that americans are struggling and disconnected because of the mobility of modern life we’re moving away from our grandparents and our parents where we’re disconnected from family
here’s what george gallup reports when he takes a survey on this issue he says we’re physically detached from each other we change places of residence frequently seven and ten do not know their neighbors americans are among the loneliest people in the world how about that when we have all of of the internet and social media we could be the most connected we are the loneliest in the world the thing is god created us for community
notice what he said right after he made adam he says this it is not good that man should be alone. He did not make us to be lone rangers. He made us for community. He made us for family but here’s the problem it’s called sin a little three letter word here the sin nature causes us to want to isolate sin wants its own way it causes us to isolate
In the early church, father basil says this. He says, when we live our lives in isolation, what we have is unavailable and what we lack is unpopular.Unprocurable in other words, what we could share, we don’t and what we need we can’t get because we’re living these lives of isolation. That’s what sin does
what did adam and eve do right after they sinned? They hid from god and then they blamed stuff on each other, like that woman you made me do it That is what sin does sin causes us to hide from god and it causes us to isolate from each other. And so that’s the pattern that we see today in our lives
but god made us for family in the book of acts we see these four marks these four devotions of this early church this church that turned the world upside down we see a shared faith we talked about that last week they were devoted to the apostles teaching we see a shared family the fellowship a shared food which we’ll talk about next week so come back next week but today let’s focus on this a shared family
as we look today as we dive back into the same passage we’re going to preach the same scripture today but we’re going to look at it through a different lens through the lens of family and look for three steps on how the text teaches us that we can have a shared family so let’s look at the text
chapter two of the book of acts a description of the first century church and we’ll read verses forty two through forty seven and they devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and the fellowship to the breaking of bread and the prayers and awe came upon every soul and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles and all who believed were together and had all things in common and they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all as any had need and day by day attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes they received their food with glad and generous hearts praising god and having favor with all the people and the lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved this is god’s word amen
we’re looking for three steps on how to share in the family of god here is the first choose to belong fully choose to belong fully stop just dipping your toe in and dive in the deep end decide to belong fully notice in verse forty two they were devoted to four marks the apostles teaching fellowship the breaking of bread and prayer we’re going to drill down on that second devotion now fellowship
remember last week we talked about the word devoted in the greek it has the idea to be continually facing towards it has the idea of focus don’t take your eye off of this the first century church was focused on not three things not five things but four devotions and so we’re not interested in reinventing the wheel here we just want to do what the bible says amen that’s what we want to do we want to obey god and so today we’re going to look at that second word fellowship we’re going to face towards it and we’re not about take your eyes off of it fellowship
this word for those of you that are taking notes koinonia there’s your greek word for the day koinonia it could mean communion participation fellowship as it’s translated here when we come to the lord’s table we often call the lord’s supper communion it comes from that same word koinonia this idea of participating together actively connected fellowship at the root of it is a greek word koinonia which means common in fact if you read the new testament in the original greek it’s called koinonia not classical greek but koinonia it was the common language of everyday people
now the thing about koinonia someone has said fellowship is like this it’s too fellas in a ship there is really more than that there really has to be a third person before you can have biblical koinonia you know that person is the spirit of christ it’s the holy spirit you can’t have koinonia without jesus you can’t have fellowship without the holy spirit in our midst now
one of the things that we teach in our churches this rhythm that we see depicted in the first century church is that they met in the temple courts and they met house to house and so we try to do that so on sundays we offer two opportunities at nine fifteen and eleven for you to come and meet corporately li like this so that you can hear the word of god and learn it and then meet weekly in your homes in smaller groups and move it from head to heart.
In other words, not just head knowledge but apply it to your life, there’s something about sitting knee to knee and face to face that helps sharpen like that. And so this first century church was focused on doing that, being in fellowship, being in in family like that. Now, in order to be in this family, you must be born again spiritually, you can’t just come in and take a seat here. Boy, we’re glad you’re here, but you really can’t be part of god’s family without receiving god’s son. So here’s what god wants, he wants a family hey he’s desired a family
even before you were born,
look what it says in ephesians. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through jesus christ, god wanted a family, he wants you and look god’s, not lonely . He has lived eternally in the person of the father son and the holy spirit in eternal koinonia and eternal communion
his love is so great now the author of that song that stephen unpacked for us today which i find very moving but the word reckless troubles me a little bit so he worked that out with us a little bit like let’s sing that song but i don’t like the word reckless so maybe talk about that before we sing it that god’s not reckless god everything god does is under his control but from our perspective his sacrificial love is kind of crazy it’s other worldly
when i’m thinking about that god he’s in this koinonia this father son and holy spirit he’s never been lonely but that his love is so wonderful great and sacrificial that he wants to add to it and he created us and then invites us into communion in the participation community family with him and it is awesome and wonderful that he wants you
when i was young there was this campaign they had billboards and invite cards and all this it was a national campaign it was called the i found it campaign and you could be driving on the road you would see billboards that would say i found it and it would have a phone number that you could call back in the day when people used to make phone calls There was no www anything www back then it was, like world wide wrestling or something. when you would make a phone call you would ask them you’d say, what did you find? And they would say, i found jesus, and let me tell you how you can find him, too. The i found it campaign was cool, is was a good way to get people talking about jesus there’s, just one problem with it, it was theologically incorrect, you didn’t find jesus. Jesus found you. It feels like you found him because you didn’t know him before from your perspective, but the truth is long before, while you were still sinners christ died for you. He found you. He loves you he wants you in his family
the book of john says but to all who did receive him who believed in his name he gave the right to become children of god how do you become a member of this family by receiving believing in jesus it is free well actually it’s the most expensive entrance fee of any thing in the universe fortunately for you it’s already been paid for it cost jesus everything so that now it’s paid for it’s free for you the only thing that you must do is receive it you must claim it and so the bible says receiving believing what jesus did for you and you can become a child of god there’s no other way if there were another way then why would god have chosen to send jesus that’s it that’s the way
the bible says i am the way it says jesus speaking i am the way the truth and the life and no one comes to the father except through me that’s either the most egotistical statement ever made by anyone or it’s true and it’s true jesus is saying i’ve done it all i’ve paid it all for you i gave it up listen to this when you hear him on the cross say my god my god why have you forsaken me? Why do he say that? Because he gave up that eternal fellowship that eternal koinonia in the end. He had never felt separated from god. But when he took on my sin when he took on your sin, he took my sin. And he took my separation. And he took my death. And he took yours too, so that he could offer what his eternal life in place of my death he could offer his righteousness in place of my sin. And he could offer his son ship in place of my separation. So that he became one that god turned his back on so that god might receive us as children of god. This is the great exchange. This is the great payment that he makes. Have you decided to belong fully to god’s family? How do you do it ? You receive jesus? You believe in what he’s done for you?
Our relationship changes when we believe in jesus our relationship to god and to one another. Look what Ephesians says in chapter two. From now on, you are not strangers and people who are not citizens. You are citizens together with those who belong to god. You belong in god’s family. Are you in god’s family? You’re either in or you’re not. And there’s only one way in it’s already been paid for. He wants you, he desires you. He loves you. You know, there are many reasons i mentioned this before. There are many reasons why we isolate why we hide from god and why we isolate from one another. Most of them revolve around phobias and fears like the fear of intimacy. We’re just afraid of getting too close to someone else. We’re afraid because probably we got close to someone in the past and it didn’t work out. It could be connected. And all these fears are kind of linked together could be connected to a fear of vulnerability. Because you were in a previous relationship and you showed weakness, you were vulnerable, you were transparent. And then they used it against you. Or they used it to hurt you. And so then you go. I will never show my true self to people again because of what they did to me. You start making self proclamations like i won’t get close to people. I won’t let people that close to me again. So you have fear, fear of intimacy, fear, vulnerability, fear of abandonment. Maybe your parents abandoned you when you were children, maybe maybe your spouse left you. You’ve been abandoned. And so you’re afraid. Maybe you’re here because you got hurt at the last church.
May i just say something kind of bold to you? You probably will get hurt here, too. But here’s, why there’s, no perfect church there’s, no perfect family, because we’re sinners saved by grace we still are this lost world, we still struggle with sin, and so we need grace and forgiveness. And if you find a perfect church, don’t join it. You’ll mess it up. We’re not a perfect church. And if you’re looking for one, you won’t find it here. But we’re trying to be a real church, a real family, an authentic community and that’s, messy stuff. It’s, messy. But stay at the table don’t push away
we live in a culture where we run away from everything you hurt my feelings i’m out of here well you’re going to be running the rest of your life everywhere you get somebody’s going to hurt your feelings get over yourself we need one another we need the lord and we need one another it’s not good for man to be alone our relationship has changed and so we have these fears and these phobias that come from the sin nature and then we have personality differences and the personalities are i guess neutral right there not either good or bad way
Let’s say some are extroverts extroverts like crowds they like meeting new people they like talking they gain energy from being with others and introverts lose energy with others they spend energy to be with others and so introverts are often afraid or it may be afraid it is not the right word but they’re made anxious by crowds or about being around people so it hurts sometimes they will use their personality type as a reason not to be involved in community in and family
let me read this to you from randy titus in an article he entitled why introverts need community okay randy says i have to mentally prepare myself to spend time with other people being in crowds or around new people because it causes great anxiety and stress for me. I am an introvert okay now that we have that out of the way. Let me tell you why i ignore my introverted desires and force myself to spend time with other people. I spend time with other people for god’s, glory and for my good looking back now on all that god has done in my life through christian community
i would say that if you are a christian, then you need to not only talk to people . You also need to invest in people. You need to know others and be known by others. The reality is that people need you and you need people. Now, by the way, randy titus is a pastor if god calls you to be a pastor, you have to be with people all the time. Well, god I am an introvert. Go preach.
I remember i used to run drug stores. You know, before i became a pastor, i was a district manager with the eckerd drug corporation. We ran drugstores, and we’d have a grand opening. You know, you’d open a brand new store. Every product would be exactly fronted and faced, just as it should be. The floor was sparkling. every employee was in dress code perfection, the whole store, beautiful and the store manager invariably would come up to me and say, now the customers were going to come in and mess the whole place up. If only you could have a drugstore without customers, they make it so much harder the store never looked better than it did on grand opening day. Never did it look as good.
We just opened our children’s ministry wing. After a week ago, we did final walk through with the contractor i walked through with a microscope going, i think you missed a spot right there. I mean, we’re paying for it, right? And i’m guaranteeing you if i walk in there after your kids have been in there just one day, i’m going to have to be, oh! You can’t aim for perfection here. Cause kids will mess it up. If you’re gonna have a house, people need to live in it. And if you’re going to have a children’s ministry, children need to have room and we can buy another bucket of paint and touch it up after they leave it’s messy being family now,
are you here today and have you come in here and you’re not a member? You’re checking it out. You’re not a member of the family. Oh there’s room at the table for you. How do you get in? Jesus? Believe it that he came and he died for your sins, and that he was raised again on the third day, and ascended to the father believe the gospel believe the good news, and then it’s not just enough to have head knowledge to just believe that’s part of it, but as an act of the will surrender your life, believing in your heart that you that you asked him into your life receive and believe. And he’ll make you a child of god. He will invite you into the family. He’ll cause you to be born again spiritually, so that you become part of the koinonia, the family of god, the community.
Come on, others are here today and you’ve done that. You remember? But you’re not fully in. You just stuck your toe in the water? Yeah, you’ve received jesus, but you have these hurts and hang ups and it’s holding you back. You got hurt at a previous church and you’re afraid to join because you’re afraid if you went to a community group, somebody would hurt your feelings, you shared a prayer request and what was said in the group didn’t stay in the group and you are like i’m not gonna be in a group anymore because somebody told Look, we’re not perfect. Forgive them and get back in there. Stop running! Stop pushing away from the table decide to fully belong
here’s number two decide to live sacrificially decide to live sacrificially now we’re getting down into those verses unpacking that word fellowship, and we see in verse forty for all who believed were together and had all things in common where there’s that greek word koinonia again translated common all things not some things, but all possessions, all their stuff they considered it part of the family’s possessions not just theirs, but that it belonged to god first and since it belonged to the father belonged to the family and they just started living like that i had you until i got here, right? I just triggered your american individuality. Your desire for consumerism and independence was completely triggered just now. You were like, i was all in on this until you started talking about sharing my stuff.
Can i just get you to change the word stuff for another word? It’ll help sharing your junk now, it’s, easy. Hey, you want some of my junk, okay, your stuff feels different, right? But besides, if you would just go ahead and give your house to god, your car to god, your stuff, your stuff to god, your junk to god You say god, your car broke down. I don’t know what you’re going to do about it. Your roof is leaking, too. Makes it easier stop holding it so tightly decide to live sacrificially if christ lives in you then his sacrificial love lives in you and if it does, it causes you to love one another as christ has loved you which implies and it’s gonna hurt that you share your stuff your car, your house, your groceries, your stuff with others especially in god’s family, all things not some things all things distribute as people have need
oh, this is dangerous stuff first, john chapter three the apostle john says by this we know love that he speaking of christ, lay down his life for us and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers but if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need yet closes his heart against him how does god’s love abide in him and that’s it that’s a tough test that’s the love test john says very boldly he says, if you want to share your stuff, forget saying that the love of god is in you because that’s the test right there. if you’re a hoarder if you gotta hang on to everything yeah, i mean, if everything’s about you for your protection and self, gut check your stuff, your time, your talent , right.
The three T’s , right, time, talent, treasure. have you given those to god and said they’re available available to god’s family Galatians says therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone, especially to those in the family of faith. Is there something missing in the church? Is there some ministry or need or capacity? There never is. To god’s people he e always gives us what we need at that time if we don’t have it, it’s, because someone in the rooms holding it back. But if we all opened her hands, everything that’s needed to say yes to his calling on us in this season would be fully present. But someone’s holding it back. Oh this is disturbing stuff i don’t like it either in my flesh i don’t like it but it’s about being family it’s about sharing
i got an email this week this is a great email i get emails like this i get other kinds of emails i don’t like so much but this was a good one Pastor gary and wcc i hope to take a moment to say thank you as you know we moved back to wilson last year to pursue a new season and calling on our lives we planned we saved we readied ourselves to make a seamless transition it couldn’t have been easier with the quick sale of our home and renters moving out of our house in wilson that we’d still kept and the financial ability for us to start back to school which was our plan i will keep this short things didn’t work out as planned our house here in wilson that turned out was damaged badly by the renter’s so that we couldn’t move into it as we planned the insurance company and the management company started distancing themselves from us and so the huge repair estimates were forced upon us we were unable to even move into the house that we owned and so we had to buy another house and start doing the work ourselves. Over the past six months there have been times that these circumstances have overwhelmed us with sadness and frustration, but god has continually reminded us of his presence one way he’s done this is through the church family with no earthly reason they gave up their evenings and their saturdays to do yard work in the blazing sun or to crawl underneath the house and do subflooring members of wcc have overwhelmed us with love and it has outweighed the weight of our circumstances i can say this in all honestywe’re better to have gone through this season of suffering and to have experienced the love of god through the church family and their sacrificial giving i fear that those who came by our side willl just never know the impact they’ve made on our lives or how they’ve helped us reconnect to the church people we’ve known for years and some we met for the first time showed up at our house and gave us a sense of true community so that we felt like family thank you thank you thank you what a great email right
i’m telling you it’s great when god’s family acts like god’s family oh we could build a barbed wire fence around this property with the curly barbed wire at the top and we still wouldn’t be able to keep people out that wanted to come and get to be part of god’s family if we actually started acting like god’s family if we started holding her lives more open you’ve seen me do this so many times right, one hand open to god, right, receiving that’s, where some of you need to fix that today you’re shaking your fist at god. I could do it myself. No, open your hands, say, come on in. I need your help but you, can dam it up downstream to just as easily. So you need to open this hand up to others, and let his love and his blessing flow to you and through you to others.
We need to live the life of the open hand. You know they say you can’t take it with you you never see a hearse pulling a u haul you know that’s true but you can send it on ahead what you keep you lose what you give away you send on ahead and you can take people with you too learn to share learn to sacrificially give in god’s family
here’s the third step commit to gather regularly commit to gather regularly notice in verse forty six says day by day attending the temple together verse forty seven praising god i mean they were so fired up they had to meet every day they were meeting on all days of the week seven days a week they were getting together they just can’t get enough of each other now i know it’s busy today modern life it’s much different than that season but we’re trying to develop a rhythm here that we’re seeing really helps people and the rhythm is this that if you would meet in the temple courts which is this space right corporately on weekends and then house to house during the week so that you move the sermon from head to heart by sitting knee to knee and face to face around the table with a cup of coffee in your hand sitting in the living rooms unpacking talking about how the bible applies to you praying together i’m telling you life change happens but you have to commit to it because there’s a lot competing for your attention, soccer games, music lessons, gymnastics, school programs, vacations, things at the beach, you got a second home, a lake house there’s so many hobbies and things i get it but don’t you think you need to dial in a rhythm in your life that includes god’s family that’s what the scriptures teaching that’s what turned the world upside down as they were committed to gathering regularly
hebrews chapter ten it talks about the importance of corporate worship this says we should not stop gathering together with other believers as some of you are doing instead we must continue to encourage each other even more as we see the day of the lord coming now the day of the lord’s the day of his return the day of christ return i believe christ is coming again and i believe he’s coming soon i believe that many of us will be alive when he returns there are many signs that have been fulfilled we should meet all them or the scripture says for mutual encouragement but yet our selfishness and the world constantly wants to break us out and not be present we need to meet we need to be together for worship in mutual encouragement
pastor tim keller says this sanctification happens at times like this that’s like a big theological word right it means to be made holy or to be made like jesus it’s this process of becoming like jesus what god’s up to what’s god up to in my life where he’s making you like jesus that’s his purpose it’s to make you like his son
first john three two says we know what we shall be but when we see him we should be like him for we shall see him as he is he’s making us like jesus tim keller says sanctification can happen on the spot as we sit under gospel preaching and engage in corporate worship
here’s what i believe is happening right now all over the room people in the room right now are being sanctified as they hear god’s word and becoming obedient to it repenting of areas that they need to repent of and bringing their life into alignment with what they’re hearing that’s why corporate worship that’s one of the reasons it’s so important is because it’s in the one another of corporate worship that sanctification takes place
Acts five forty two talks about this rhythm every day in the temple and from house to house they did not cease teaching and preaching that christ is jesus they had this rhythm and corporate worship also points to a future reality in other words it’s heaven rehearsal it’s preparing you for the future
the apostle john saw this he says after this i looked and behold a great multitude that no one could number from every nation from all tribes and peoples and languages standing before the throne and before the lamb clothed in white robes with palm branches in their hands and crying out with a loud voice salvation belongs to god who sits on the throne and to the lamb that’s a worship service right there we’re in rehearsal right now i won’t be up front at that meeting i’ll be in the back somewhere trying to find a seat in your midst deservedly so will be in white robes and the lamb which is christ jesus the lamb who took away the sins of the world we will worship it will be wonderful
we’re rehearsing right now and we gather to do that modern life competes with it but we carve out space because we need each other now in my family we do certain things and we have to work hard at it family reunions, family vacations and we have this new thing that i just got back from you’ve heard me talk about it it’s the annual grand parent trip we have seven grand kids we’ve got number eight on the way in october we love our grandchildren it’s awesome four of them qualified for this year’s grand parent trip the qualification is simple you must be potty trained it now the night before we took off this week to take four of them four of the seven have qualified a nine year old an eight year old a six year old in a four year old they’ve all fully qualified for the grand parent trip. We went to myrtle beach for three days, and they got to go The night before a fifth one tried to qualify. An appeal was made, he had perfected, it seemed potty training, but there was a problem. Mommy had to be in the bathroom with him when it happened, and so since we weren’t taking mommy, the appeal was denied. We only took four. Four was enough. On the way there, on the way there, they all loved jesus and each other on the way. They were, like, papaw thank you for taking us on the trip, and they’re all in there, and they’re all singing songs. I said to nate who’s, the nine year old nate. We need a good travel prayer before we leave. Would you pray? He prayed a beautiful prayer, and they got along wonderfully all the way there. The only exception would be every five minutes. When will we get there? But that questions expected right on the way home. It was as if the demonic had fallen on these cousins that loved each other, who had waited all year long for the grandparent trip, who had qualified, you know, for the grandparents who talked about it, anticipated it on the way home, he touched me things were being thrown, quit it. I’m going to pull over. I mean, all the way home, all the way home. Now, this is biological family who wanted to be together on a vacation. We were so happy when their parents came to the house, i told robin, i said, robin, call ahead and make sure they’re all waiting for us. I don’t want any. I don’t wanna keep the screaming kids any longer than i have to. I want them lined up. Ready. They don’t need to come in the house. Just let them get out of the car.
Yesterday we had some people working with us talking about next phases, the growth of our church and so forth. So we had important people in town who flew in, and so we all piled into my vehicle that had just got back from vacation and people were handing me french fries mike where’d you get that it was in the seat, you know, here’s something else, you know, like here’s a superhero, i just sat on, you know, i’ll never get that it’ll never be the same after having them in there. That’s what it’s like, just to have biological family we get so excited about the idea of it. And maybe you were excited about the idea of it, of being with the cousins, the brothers and the sisters, but the reality of it is we’re sinners and we still mess up, so we need a whole lot of grace and a whole lot of love and a whole lot of forgiveness, right? But we don’t push away from the table, we stay together, and when it gets hard, you get you leaning closer and you work it out and you learn to live like the family of god. That’s what we need that’s what we need oh if we could be that church it would turn wilson upside down it would turn eastern north carolina upside down it would turn the world upside down if we would be the family that god has in mind
don’t you want to be part of that family yeah it’ll get crazy once in a while it’ll be kind of messy because real church is messy and we completely claim our statement which is what kind of church are we where it comes you are the church come as you are right but be forever changed come as you are and be forever changed by the love of jesus so come as you are but leave changed and don’t leave long because you need to come back regularly yeah so will you do it
The next step for some is this get in the family join the family ask jesus to be your lord and savior i will pray for you in just a second you can pray with me and you can become part of the family you can become a child of god that’s your step that’s what you need to focus on for the rest of you if you’ve done that repent of what he identified as your sin here you’re holding back in an area you’re not fully devoted to the amily maybe you’re visiting from out of town and you’re not fully devoted to the local church that is there in your city. When you go back, find a good bible believing church, get plugged in. I want all of us to take some time right now, as we pray to apply this word to our lives. Let’s pray.
lord, i pray first for the person that’s here today, friend. I know the holy spirit has drawn you to him, drawn you to the lord right now, right where you are. Would you pray with me? Dear lord jesus, i’m a sinner. But i want to confess my sins now and come to you. I believe you died on the cross for me, that you were raised from the grave that you live today. I believe that when you come into my life, forgive me of my sin and make me the person you want me to be . I want to be a child of god. I want you to be my lord and savior, the bible says. If you pray that prayer, believing that the lord will save you that you’ll be a child of god. Welcome to the family. Others are here, and you’re a family member. But you’ve been making excuses. You’ve been given into fears and phobias. You’ve been blaming it on a hurt from a previous church, or maybe even this church lean back in, become fully devoted. Let the lord do work in you. Would you confess that right now? In jesus name. Amen.