Organized Religion

TEXT:† John 4:19-24

INTRODUCTION:

A.† FADS AND TRENDS AFFECT THE RELIGIOUS AND THE CHURCH.

B.† TENDANCY TO EMPHASIZE INDIVIDUAL INVOLVEMENT ONLY.† LIBERTARIAN.

††††††††† 1.† Don William lyric in ďI Believe In You:Ē

†††††††††††††††††† ďI donít believe that heaven waits

††††††††† †††††††††††††††††† For only those who congregate.

††††††††† 2.† Surveys say that people are forsaking organized religion

†††††††††††††††††† (churches with their worship and programs of work) for personal spirituality.

††††††††† 3.† The purpose of the churches is to serve the temporal needs of the individual and not

†††††††††††††††††† connected with evangelistic work.† Worship becomes a program or show to gratify

†††††††††††††††††† those who come.† The work of the church becomes social or political.

††††††††† 4.† Other activities , like rodeo or motorcycles, take the place of Sunday am worship.

B.† LETíS SEE WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT ALL THIS.

I.††††† REASONS FOR REJECTING ORGANIZED RELIGION.

A.† PEOPLE DONíT WANT TO GO TO CHURCH.

††††††††† 1.† Sunday is a day off Ė Lazy!

††††††††† 2.† Not interested in the obligations of membership Ė donít want to be involved. $$$

††††††††† 3.† They wonít be held accountable for their lifestyle or behavior.

†††††††††††††††††† a.† Others in the church are responsible (Heb. 13:17;† 10:24-25;† 3:12-13;†

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 2 Pet. 2:9-10).† ďNobodyís gonna tell me what to do!Ē

†††††††††††††††††† b.† They serve a different Lord (Matt. 6:24;† 1 John 2:15).

††††††††† 4.† But they will be held accountable (John 12:48;† 2 Cor. 5:10).

B.† WHAT DO PEOPLE SEE IN ORGANIZED RELIGION.

††††††††† 1.† Form with no substance (Matt. 15:7-9).† No heart in the liturgy.

††††††††† 2.† Lives inconsistent with teachings (Rom. 2:1-2, 21-24).

††††††††† 3.† Teaching inconsistent with the Bible (2 Tim. 1:13;† 1 Thess. 5:21).

††††††††† 4.† Itís all about money! (1 Tim. 6:3-5;† 2 Pet. 2:1-3).

††††††††† 5.† They donít stand for anything (2 Tim. 4:3-4).

II.†††† WHAT ABOUT THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH?

A.† A PART OF GOD'S ETERNAL PURPOSE( Eph. 3:10-11 ). †NOT MANíS INVENTION!

B.† Heb. 8:1-5.† THE TRUE TABERNACLE( vs. 5;† 1 Cor. 3:9-11 ).

C.† PROMISED BY JESUS( Matt. 16:18 ).

D.† BROUGHT ABOUT BY HIS DEATH( Acts. 20:28 ).

E.† AS CHRIST LOVED THE CHURCH (2 Cor. 11:2;† Eph. 5:25-28).

III.††† CAN WE BE SAVED OUT OF THE CHURCH?

A.† EKKLESIA, "TO CALL OUT."

††††††††† 1.† By the gospel( 2 Thes. 2:14 ). To what?( vs.13; Rom.1:16 ).

††††††††† 2.† Called from what into what?( 1 Pet. 2:9;† Col. 1:13-14 ).

††††††††† 3.† Called to be saints( 1 Cor. 1:2, 9 ).

B.† THE CHURCH IS THE KINGDOM( Acts 1:6-8;† 2:1-4 ).

C.† THE CHURCH IS GOD'S FAMILY( 1 Tim. 3:15 ).†

††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† HIS CHILDREN ARE IN HIS FAMILY.

D.† JESUS, A PRIEST OVER GOD'S HOUSE( Heb. 10:21 ).† No priest?

E.† BODY( Col. 1:18;† Eph. 5:23 ).

F.† SAVED WITHOUT THAT WHICH IS IN THE CHURCH?

††††††††† 1.† All spiritual blessings in Christ (Eph. 1:3).

††††††††† 2.† All divine choosing in Christ (vs. 4).

††††††††† 3.† All sonship is in Christ (vs. 5).

††††††††† 4.† Godís grace is in Christ (vs. 6).

††††††††† 5.† Redemption & forgiveness are in Christ (vs. 7).

††††††††† 6.† His will purposed in Christ (vs. 8-9).

††††††††† 7.† All things summed up in Christ (vs. 10).

††††††††† 8.† Christ is the fullness of all things divine (Col. 2:9).

††††††††† 9.† The church is the fullness of Christ (Eph. 1:22-23).

IV.†† WHAT ABOUT MY OBLIGATIONS?

A.† GOD DISIGNED THE LOCAL CHURCH.

††††††††† 1.† Inspired letters written to them.

††††††††† 2.† Organized by God (Acts 14:23;† 20:28;† Phil. 1:1)

††††††††† 3.† Godís expectation of you (Acts 9:26).

B.† WE MUST DO OUR PART.

††††††††† 1.† Like members of a body (Rom. 12:4-5).

††††††††† 2.† We must do our part, according to our abilities (Eph. 4:16;† 2 Cor. 8:11-12).

C.† DO WE HAVE TO GO TO CHURCH? (Heb. 10:9-25).

CONCLUSION:

A.† ORGANIZED RELIGION, WHAT ARE WE TALKING ABOUT?

††††††††† 1.† What we find distasteful and inconsistent in the religious world.

††††††††† 2.† What God has given in his pattern (Heb. 8:5).

B.† WHO DOES JESUS SAVE? (Acts 2:47;† Eph. 5:23).

C.† HOW DO I GET INTO THE CHURCH? (1 Cor. 12:13).

D.† DOESNíT THAT ALSO PUT ME INTO CHRIST? (Gal. 3:26-27).