The Authority of the Church

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While Jeff Lethco can preach anything well, I love the stride he gets in when talking about the church.

It was a powerful start to our “Church Matters” series today as we focused on the authority of the church. For us, it’s Scripture.  We won’t be conditioned by expectations.  We don’t have to cave in to comparison traps.  We don’t have to try to woo or keep anyone based on preferences.  We want to be obedient to God’s Word.  And oftentimes, churches can begin to base all of their activity and identity on something that is totally absent in the Bible.

Today, we worshiped to:

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Worship Preferences

Yesterday, we showed a video at North Side that really summarizes our approach to worship here with our church.  We have shown it to remind us during a time of worship why we are actually gathered together.  We made the video about 1 year ago.  I had been asked by some fellow ministers to get a copy and I thought why not make this available to any church that might find it useful?

Here’s the video description:

The process of picking a place to worship has kind of become like picking a place to eat. We all have individual preferences, but when did worship ever become about what we got out of it?

You can watch the video here:

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Why God Might Be Out to Get Your Church

Your church bears the name of Christ.  Most likely, your church was founded for his glory, was organized the way it is for his glory, but churches can get off track.

Our assumption is that God is for every church.  The very fact that it is called a church automatically receives God’s blessing, right?

What if I told you that God was actually against certain churches?  What if I told you that the most powerful being in the world actively opposed certain bodies?

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Do Buffet-Styled Churches Honor God?

For years, I have bought into the church growth principle that the more choices you give people in a church, the more successful the church will be.

To agree with that principle, you must gauge a church’s success by the number of people who stay at that church.  But is that true success?

Here are the courses that the American church is serving up:

  • Worship – traditional, contemporary, blended, cutting edge, emergent, ancient future, classic, golden, choir, band, hard rock, country western, southern gospel, chandeliers, go-bos, expensive organ, expensive guitar, etc.
  • Discipleship – Sunday school, community groups, small groups, Bible fellowship classes, on-campus, in-homes, co-ed, single, married, guys only, girls only, by hobby-interest, by age, by life situations, etc.
  • Preaching – coat and tie, jeans and t-shirt, podium, table, old, young, hip, wise, screen, video, sermon, message, talk
  • Family Ministries – discipleship times, creative programs, glorified babysitting, “community” sports programs with a side of Christ, men’s ministry, women’s ministry, single, divorced, newlywed, with kids, with small kids, with fussy kids, for fussy kids, puppets, Awanas, GAs, RAs, children’s choir

And the list could go on.

  1. Is God honored when we explain what church we belong to by describing the type of music we like?
  2. Is God honored when we defend our group’s methods within the church rather than celebrating the diversity of the whole church?
  3. Is God honored when we try to woo members from other churches because this program is better than that program?

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