In Matthew 16:18, the “church” is first mentioned in God’s Word as Jesus tells Peter that his revelation ‘Jesus is the Christ’ is the rock upon which Jesus will build His church. And “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
Jesus established His church to spread the gospel and equip Christians to walk as His disciples, living as he lived in obedience to the Father. The Christian Church should starkly contrast secular culture and be light in an increasingly dark world. But is this happening in America? A strong argument can be made that the church is increasingly ineffective in transforming lives and the culture we live in.
Who is to blame for this problem? Is it church leadership failing to equip the believers? Or is it the people they lead? People who want enough Jesus to be saved, but not enough to be transformed into living a life holy and pleasing to God?
We explore these questions this morning with Dave Wager of Nicolet Bible Institute.
Quotes.[Tweet “What is the role and responsibility of the Church? How about pastors and church leaders?”][Tweet “Does our culture shape the entertainment world or does the entertainment industry shape culture?”][Tweet “Does the church influence culture or does culture influence the church in America?”][Tweet “Churches today have taken their cues form the business world where the customer is always right. @wagerdaw”]
You have wearied the Lord with your words. But you say, “How have we wearied him?” By saying, “Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and he delights in them.” Or by asking, “Where is the God of justice?” Malachi 2:17
“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.16 But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. Matthew 18:15-17
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, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine…” Ephesians 4:11-14