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Amy is co-host and blogger for both Stand Up for the Truth and Naomi's Table, two ministries that give her the opportunity to write and talk about Jesus all day long. She has written, produced and broadcast in the realm of television and radio news, magazine business journals and marketing materials.

That "perfect" church?

English: Church service

Today we are asking you our listeners about what should we expect of the church in our time.  Many of you have been looking for the perfect church, and while we don’t make recommendations we do want to at least start that discussion, as we are planning a program for the end of the year that will lay all of this out.

Of course we know that there is no such thing as a perfect church, as we are all fallen human beings.  And we also know that the church isn’t a building, it is a body of believers, and so we need to make sure our expectations are realistic.

Churches today have asked these questions about what their church should be:

  • Christ-centered or seeker friendly? Can we be both?
  • Only for committed believers or for unbelievers?
  • Should pastors get into the habit of sharing the complete gospel message at every service?

Joining us for our discussion in this first segment is a pastor from Florida, Carl Gallups. Carl is senior pastor of Hickory Hammock Baptist Church in Florida, and he also hosts of YouTube Christian Apologetics – God and Country channel PPSIMMONS. His other books include one specifically for helping Christians share Christ with Atheists titled, The Magic Man in the Sky: Effectively Defending the Christian Faith. His latest is titled, THE RABBI WHO FOUND JESUS.

 

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8 Responses to “That "perfect" church?”

  1. Gary Lee Fennimore #

    The Church should be what GOD desires it to be not what any individual wants it to be. Therefore, since GOD wrote us the only exclusive "how to manual" on Churches I believe that the Church must adhere to everything prescribed by GOD in those specific texts in the bible. All the "one anotherings", all of the qualifications for leadership roles, all of the restorative measures such as Church discipline i.e. Matt. 18, Gal. 6, etc., and all of the literal renderings of each text including Revelation.

    December 17, 2013 at 5:59 AM Reply
  2. Nellie #

    Hard to find churches that have any reverence for the LORD. We want good words, good sermons, nothing to convict, nothing to repent, just a free ride.

    December 17, 2013 at 10:09 AM Reply
  3. Carol Von Canon #

    Here's something from a bible study I recently found online that addresses "church". Very interesting, and worthy of thought, study, and prayer!

    THE CHURCH EXISTED BEFORE CHRIST

    Act 19:34 But when they knew that he was a Jew, all with one voice about the space of two hours cried out, Great is Diana of the Ephesians.
    Act 19:35 And when the townclerk had appeased the people, he said, Ye men of Ephesus, what man is there that knoweth not how that the city of the Ephesians is a worshipper of the great goddess Diana, and of the image which fell down from Jupiter?
    Act 19:36 Seeing then that these things cannot be spoken against, ye ought to be quiet, and to do nothing rashly.
    Act 19:37 For ye have brought hither these men, which are neither robbers of churches, nor yet blasphemers of your goddess. – KJV

    G2417, ἱερόσυλος, hierosulos, hee-er-os'-oo-los, From G2411 and G4813; a temple despoiler: – robber of churches.
    G2411, ἱερόν, hieron, hee-er-on', Neuter of G2413; a sacred place, that is, the entire precincts (whereas G3485 denotes the central sanctuary itself) of the Temple (at Jerusalem or elsewhere): – temple.
    G4813, συλάω, sulaō, soo-lah'-o, From a derivative of σύλλω sullō̄ (to strip; probably akin to G138; compare G4661); to despoil: – rob.

    What is important to note, is not simply the Greek word, translated CHURCH in this text. It is how THE TRANSLATORS DEFINED THE WORD "CHURCH". For here, it is UNDERSTOOD, what is actually MEANT, when you hear these same kinds of theologies speak of the word CHURCH. (As in CHURCH and STATE)

    Here it is noted that (1) that there IS NO SEPARATION of CHURCH AND STATE, (2) and that the term CHURCH refers to something that CHRIST DID NOT START.(Nor had anything to do with) In fact, THE CHURCH in this text is actually something that is HOSTILE not only to CHRIST, but even HIS RELIGION, and even those who followed him, and taught about him.

    HERE'S ANOTHER FAMOUS TEXT WITH THE SAME WORD
    (BUT THIS TIME "TRANSLATED" ENTIRELY DIFFERENT)

    2Th 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
    2Th 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the ἱερόν of God, shewing himself that he is God.

    2Th 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the CHURCH of God, shewing himself that he is God.

    HERE IS HOW IT IS "TRANSLATED" HERE
    (THE SAME WORD)
    2Th 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

    2Th 2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
    2Th 2:6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
    2Th 2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
    2Th 2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
    2Th 2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
    2Th 2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
    2Th 2:11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
    2Th 2:12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

    Most people are not aware that the term ἱερόν IS TRANSLATED "CHURCH"
    (And "Ecclesia" has nothing to do with the word "Church" in the Greek language at this point in history)

    CHRIST STARTED AN "ECCLESIA" NOT AN "HIERON"

    December 17, 2013 at 2:57 PM Reply
  4. Carol Von Canon #

    MARTIN LUTHER ON ROME'S CHURCH BUILDINGS

    (Describing the "True Evangelical Church") "They should sign their names and meet alone in a house somewhere to pray, to read, to baptize, to receive the sacrament, and to do other Christian works.". (This quote goes on at length describing such a meeting: Can be found in:) Liturgy & Hymns, Vol.53, Luther's Works, p.53

    QUOTE: The body of Christ was God's temple. His castle and palace, His royal hall. We should note this well. A man need not go to Jerusalem, to Rome, to St. James (cathedral). He has God at home in the Lord Christ. Therefore let everyone who would be saved and have a gracious God obtain from him what he desires turn his heart and eyes toward heaven and look upon Christ, who is sitting at the right hand of God. Let everyone who would serve God and be sure to find him, come to this spiritual and true temple-Christ. Before him let him fall down. Let him pray and believe on him. END QUOTE. Page 161,

    QUOTE: God will say: (on Judgement day) "Who commanded you to build churches? I have placed living temples before you. These you should have built up for me, supported for me, helped for me. Instead you dealt with other things, tomfooleries I have not commanded. Therefore depart from me, I never knew you" END QUOTE

    December 17, 2013 at 5:00 PM Reply
  5. Your comments are a major concern of mine. I am working on a course of instruction for Christian Sunday schools as well as Messianic Jewish groups (My background includes education and curriculum design).

    Unfortunately, many people involved in the Hebraic Roots movements are replacing salvation by grace with salvation by works.

    A balanced approach to the Hebraic Roots movement is to embrace the feast days (They all point to the Messiah). They were celebrated by Jesus throughout the Gospels. But, basing your life on keeping the Oral and Written Laws of Moses without understanding that Yeshua/Jesus paid the price for our salvation is foolish.

    The Talmud points out that the Temple doors would not stay closed after the crucifixion of Yeshua and the eternal candle in the Temple would not remain lit. Jews are confused by the incidents, but Christians should understand that G-d did not only inhabit the Temple and Temple sacrifices were no longer acceptable. Yeshua was "the" sacrifice and according to the Talmud, sacrifices after the death of Yeshua were no longer acceptable.

    If you would like to find out more on the topic, follow our course as we put it together at: jewishroots101.com

    Right now must of the material on the page is fluf (Holding space for the real content).

    Be patient with your children. How you react will speak more than your words. My daughter sometimes get seduced by Judaism and I gently nudge her back into the fold. Love is more powerful than theology.

    Shalom!!

    December 17, 2013 at 7:14 PM Reply
  6. Not sure I posted my comments on the correct thread. I just went back to the top and saw the question.

    But, our churches/synagogues seem to be doing little for our society, much like schools seem to be having limited success (I am a teacher). I'm not negative, because we have the potential to go against the norm and build powerful places of worship.

    I don't think a one size fits all approach works. The starting point should be the Messiah. The Holy Spirit will direct our actions. An important followup should be a focus on building a community with legitimate concern for each other.

    Can you sit down and talk with anyone from your congregation? Do you know their names? Problems?

    Thanks for your site.

    December 17, 2013 at 7:28 PM Reply
  7. D #

    I believe the idea that "there's no such thing as a perfect Church" is a misnomer, as well as a self-fulfilling statement: it's a misnomer because it applies a description of the unregenerate man to the regenerate and ignores the description of the regenerate man in the scripture, and it's self-fulfilling because it gives an excuse for the flesh to the Church, and anytime we make an excuse for the flesh by saying, "well, no one is perfect", we guarantee that we will fail.

    So I would start with the very nature of the new-man (which is the Church):

    "Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, 3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, 4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. 5 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. 10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things YOU WILL NEVER STUMBLE" 2 Peter 1:2-11

    "And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God" ~ 1 Cor 6:11

    "For this is the will of God, your sanctification: to abstain from sexual immorality, and know how you should possess your own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the gentiles who do not know God; that no man should defraud his brother in this manner, because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and now testify. For God did not all us to uncleanness, but in holiness. Therefore, whoever rejects this, does not reject man, but God." ~1st Thess. 4:1-8

    "Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, 'be holy, for I am holy'" ~1 Peter 1:13-16

    I believe we must begin with a right understanding of our new-nature as new creations in Christ; many in the Church are still living according to the very nature that is supposed to be crucified with Christ and done away with. Until this is worked out, everything else is just dead works.

    Once we understand this, and have it worked out in us through faith in Jesus Christ by the power of the resurrection of the Holy Spirit, THEN we can begin to talk about other issues in the Church, such as meeting in proper Biblical order, making disciples, spiritual gifts, charity, love towards one another, evangelism, and boldness of faith to shine like lamps atop the hills.

    This is an excellent question, and one I hope we will pay due attention to.

    December 18, 2013 at 4:38 AM Reply
  8. Of course we know that there is no such thing as a perfect church, as we are all fallen human beings.

    December 30, 2013 at 5:43 AM Reply

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