The Church of Jesus Christ

Today’s message summary of December 29, 2019 from Pastor Gus Brown:

The church has a rich history and a very rewarding history. I praise God that the history of the church has been well documented—both its good points and not very good ones.

All in all, what really matters is that a person comes to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, and the role of the church has historically been involved with teaching the people the truth about Jesus. The opposition has been those that are referred to as the heretics.

The basic duty of the Church is to teach the people of God, the gospel of Jesus Christ (through bible teaching) from one generation to another.

When true teaching goes forth, the Holy Spirit does His work in the life of the believer.  We are reminded that we, as people, do not bring people to Jesus.  We are witnesses for the gospel. The Holy Spirit brings people to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and helps people to learn more and more about Jesus.

Good sound teaching is truth, and not always enjoyable to some who hear it.

Please understand that there is only one Church with many denominations. From that, the Church that serves the Lord Jesus Christ is most important.

Jesus said that He will build His Church. He never said He would build denominations. Denominations are built by men and women. While the Church can often be found within the denominations, they are two separate entities with two separate goals.

Matthew 16:13-18

Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Only God Himself can (and does) grow His Church.

Jesus wants His people to hear the truth through His teaching. He was teaching something totally different in His time on earth than what was primarily being taught. Note that the Pharisees and Sadducees were teaching differently at that time.  Jesus was now teaching more about God and His purpose for the world.

Jesus asks the question today, “Who do you say that I am?”

How do you see Jesus?

Is Jesus Christ the One who saves people from their sin, or is He just a good man?

Man is called to teach truth, but man cannot “convince” a person that Jesus Christ is Lord. He reveals Himself to each of us.

If it is of God, it is the teacher’s words being revealed by the Holy Spirit.

The church goal is to make Jesus known, while the denomination strives to make the denomination well known. That is a very fine line.

If a person is truly saved, they are a part of the Church of Jesus Christ.

As you are taught by Jesus Christ, the old things pass away, and you begin to see new things in your life.

2 Corinthians 5:17

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

As we live, we need His instruction, through the Church, over and over again. We need reminders.

2 Timothy 2:14-21

Remind them of these things, and change them before God not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, and their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, who have swerved from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already happened. They are upsetting the faith of some. But God’s firm foundation stands, bearing this seal: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity.” Now in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver but also of wood and clay, some for honorable use, some for dishonorable. Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.

God knows every person who is “His.” He knows who is saved and who is not.

He knows.

Salvation is a continuing process. That is why we have the Holy Spirit dwelling within us.

Avoid harmful talk in the midst of giving instruction. When speaking, you are to speak words of encouragement but words of importance and enrichment.

Life is serious. It requires candor in speaking the truth in love.

2 Timothy 2:22-26

So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captures by him to do his will.

The Church has a name for the purpose of the teachings of Jesus.  It is called disciple-making, disciples classes, Sunday school or Bible class (Bible study).

A disciple is a follower of Jesus Christ.

How was the Church going to be built?

Matthew 28:19-20

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.”

Jesus didn’t come and “make us saved.” He offered salvation.

Church does not “make a person saved.” The church offers salvation.

We are taught salvation by the teaching of the gospel.

There is nowhere that you can go and be taught about Jesus Christ and living a Christlike life except within the Church of Jesus Christ.

A disciple is a learner.

The word “disciple” is only found in the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) and the Acts (in Antioch, the disciples were referred to as Christians and followers of Jesus Christ).

A disciple is always a pupil of someone.

Matthew 10:24

“A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master.”

Luke 6:40

A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher.

Jesus expected His Church to grow and expand by going out and teaching about Him and His gospel (Matthew 28:19-20).

The Word of God transforms the life of those who hear and listen.

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