Acts 3 sermon on the purpose of the Church
Oct 12, 2013
- Beautifully ornate temple building. Designed & visited by God Almighty
- In disarray because a few month’s prior it’s Holy Corridor was desecrated
- Worth millions but defunct because it lacked purpose, passion & God’s presence
- Lame man laid before its gates because he wasn’t allowed inside✫
- Godly well-dressed leaders stepped over this man daily to enter this facility
- Luke wrote about a similar scenario in Luke 10 (Good Samaritan)
- Two uneducated fishermen who had been deeply touched by the Holy Spirit walked to temple...reflecting upon the purpose of Christ and his desire for hurting society..
- This story is meant to strike the heart of every church leaders and sincere believer
- Our religious endeavors have become more important than our godly entreaties
- Our pace has co-opted our passion
- Our calling has taken a back seat to our “culling” (sorting thru and sifting/rejecting things due to their inferiority)
- Our agendas are comfort
- Our mantra is now!
- Our unholy trinity is me, myself & I (the cause of every demise)
- The man represents society...The temple represents the attitudes of God’s people...A miracle is needed in order to re-establish AWE in the House (Church) of God that it used to have.
- The miracle lies in the interaction of God’s standing people and God’s crippled people...because they need each other, badly!!
Key thoughts that I hear in this passage:
- A witnessing presence
- A witnessing power
- A witnessing compassion
- A witnessing worship,
We have reduced “witnessing” to an act and not a lifestyle.
We have to rethink what a witness can do:
- This man only saw these two men in a transactional lens.
- When they said look on us… They had seen each other before…
- Where had the man been looking?
- Sometimes you have to get in the dirt so that people can look on you!!
- But Peter and John had new power and this man had a new opportunity.
We are not called to witness for the Lord in the sense we merely discuss him…
- We are called to be a witness in that we bring people into the presence of God right where we are!
✫The man never had access to the temple. He didn’t need the temple...it needed him!!
The temple which is been so routine and religious now had a bona fide miracle and it's midst and it redefined worship.
✫We need a evangelism so that the new converts can remind us of the fresh fire and power of God that changed us. We need a evangelism to bring new people man to reinvigorate I worship.
The birth of the church was the father's restoration of what he had hoped to establish in Eden with those with whom he shared dominion
History of God’s Housing Situation...
- When Tabernacle was built to God’s specification, His Glory fell! (2 Chr 5)
- When Temple was completed to God’s specification, His Glory fell (Ex 40)
- When His Temple within human hearts were unified..His Glory fell (Acts 2, 8 & 10)
- When we unify...God shows up!! His Glory is revealed...
- ...But not until we love unconditionally
Christians like damning American culture and society. We blame it for the trouble in the world.
For it is time for judgment to begin with God’s household; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God? I Peter 4.17 NIV
*Remember being the oldest child left in charge???
- Who got in trouble if the younger child misbehaved?
According to Congregational Mission Professor, Craig Van Gelder
➢The Church is about human behavior that is being transformed by God’s redeeming* power...which will be used for his redemptive purposes
➢The Church is God’s personal presence in the world through the Spirit
➢The Church is a social organization (human community of people in interaction with each other...not a social agency) & spiritual community.
➢ The Church is called to live fully in the Reign of God’s Almighty
➢ The Church does not have a mission...it is God’s mission!!!
- How is God redeeming you for His great purpose in the world?
- In what ways do you help/hinder the Church in meeting its purpose?
- Do you want really to be a part of God’s solution in the world?
- Who is lame and sitting at your door?
- Pray for the Church to fulfill God’s intended purpose
- Pray for the Power of the Holy Spirit to control the Church
- Rethink life...you’re not the lame man in this story...you’re either Peter/John or you’re the people inside the temple going through the motions.