Today’s message summary of January 5, 2020 from Pastor Gus Brown:
Is the church doing what God has called us to do? Is it teaching its people?
Can the church do what is necessary to come along side of people before they get themselves in trouble?
“If you think education is expensive, wait until you see how much ignorance costs.” –Barack Obama
Is the church responsible for ignorance? Is it doing enough to overcome it? The challenge of the church is not just teach, but find ways to do it better and better.
This is at a time in our lives where churches are closing and Christianity is losing its footing of acceptance. It is losing ground with our youth. While there is freedom of religion in the United States, it does not mean that all religions are on equal footing or even tolerance.
Our world is deeply divided, and it is difficult to get people to make a commitment to something that may promote division. There are social demands that have pressured the church into a place of weakness and compromise.
If we lose the covenant with the Lord Jesus Christ and the gospel, a redemptive life in Jesus Christ, then we have nothing to offer the world.
Our church should continue to teach the importance of love conquering all things. It is important for the church to continue to teach the importance of Scripture. We always have to go back to the Word of God–not the teaching of man’s philosophies, but the teaching of God’s Word.
The church has to recapture its great responsibility of teaching.
The basic duty of the Church is to teach and educate God’s people for living in this world.
There are many learning centers where we learn things. The question is where are you learning from. Where are you learning? What you learn is how you think. How you think determines how you will live.
Is learning important to you? You can’t make a person want to learn something.
The Church is the real classroom for life. God wants to interact with you.
The Scriptures testify about Jesus Christ.
What you learn about is important.
People can study the Scriptures but not apply them. Complete learning begins with application of what you have learned. Taking God’s Word and applying it to your life will bring about a true experience with Him.
God’s Word keeps us upright in the world.
God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit vs. Satan, demons and ungodliness. Both are learned experiences.
As an example, consider life in a godly home vs. an ungodly home. A godly home is one that features the teaching of Jesus Christ. An ungodly home does not refer to Jesus Christ.
In both experiences, you are learning something.
There is teaching of the church and there is teaching of the world and its views.
You have to have an attentive ear and the desire to learn truth. The Holy Spirit will take this desire in learning the truth and will provide insight and guidance.
In contrast, the God of this world (Satan) provides teaching, as well.
There are ultimately only two different teachings. Those of Jesus Christ, and those of Satan. You will need to discern what is truth and decide who you want to listen to.
The teaching of godly friends is necessary to encourage believers in the fellowship. Godly friends will challenge each other to walk in righteousness. They bring God into the conversation to sharpen each other and help each other.
The teaching of ungodly people will usually exclude conversations of religion and politics…perhaps the two most important things that impact our lives. The counsel of ungodly friends will hurt the person in the long run.
There is Christian education vs. Public education. The key here is to know that Christian education provides guidance that is helpful for living as a Christian in the world. Public education is a place of learning, as well, but it is rooted in the doctrine of mankind.
The church has been given a great responsibility in the area of teaching, stirring the mind or causing one to think.
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.
We are to go to church to learn in order to know and understand God’s Word in order to be able to disciple others.
The Holy Spirit is provided to confirm and deepen the teaching of truth.
Being then God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, and image formed by the art and imagination of man. The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent.
In the past, God overlooked ignorance (v. 30), which is simply a lack of knowledge, but now is the time to learn personally and challenge others to turn from their sins and follow Jesus Christ.
The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.
In Acts 17:22, Paul said that the people were “very religious.” Being “religious” is merely a starting point. You need to learn more about who God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are because you are His offspring.
Jesus is a living God and lives not within brick and mortar, but dwells within the life of a believer in Him. In your service for Jesus Christ, He will show you the abundant life within your service.
And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
God has given teachers to the church.
Are you willing to listen?
2 Chronicles 24:19
Yet he sent prophets among them to bring them back to the Lord. These testified against them, but they would not pay attention.
Hear, you deaf,
and look, you blind, that you may see!
Who is blind but my servant,
or deaf as my messenger whom I send?
Who is blind as my dedicated one,
or blind as the servant of the Lord?
He sees many things, but does not observe them;
his ears are open, but he does not hear.
Are we seeing or hearing? Many are not. They are not paying attention to what God is saying.
This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. Indeed, in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled that says:
“‘“You will indeed hear but never understand,
and you will indeed see but never perceive.”
For this people’s heart has grown dull,
and with their ears they can barely hear,
and their eyes they have closed,
lest they should see with their eyes
and hear with their ears
and understand with their heart
and turn, and I would heal them.’
Thankfully, there are those who are sent to open the eyes of the people.
And I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you, delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’
People will sometimes choose to turn away.
Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth;
for the Lord has spoken:
“Children have I reared and brought up,
but they have rebelled against me.
The ox knows its owner,
and the donkey its master’s crib,
but Israel does not know,
my people do not understand.”
Ah, sinful nation,
a people laden with iniquity,
offspring of evildoers,
children who deal corruptly!
They have forsaken the Lord,
they have despised the Holy One of Israel,
they are utterly estranged.
I spread out my hands all the day to a rebellious people, who walk in a way that is not good, following their own devices.
What God sees is outside of our own thinking and reasoning.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
Listen to His teaching.
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food. Incline your ear, and come to me; hear, that your soul may live; and I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure live for David.
Failure to listen to God, in disobedience, can bring harm to yourself.
Yet you have not listened to me, declares the Lord, that you might provoke me to anger with the work of your hands to your own harm.
With the Word of God, you learn to walk by faith. The Church has to continue to teach the importance of God’s Word and how to live for Christ.