Why is it important that the church gets things right?

Paul answered the question that is the title of today’s article with three powerful verses.

Why should the church get things right?

(1) The church belongs to the living God and is the pillar and support of the truth.

“I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these instructions to you so that,

“If I am delayed, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth” (1 Timothy 3.14-15).

Believers present the truth of God to the world. Therefore, they must do their job right.

Paul listed character traits in chapter 3 that God’s people should embrace. Let’s review what he wrote and apply it to our lives.

— Above reproach.

— Love family with Jesus-kind-of-love.

— Self-controlled.

— Hospitable.

— An apt teacher.

— Gentle, not quarrelsome.

— Not a lover of money.

Paul called for correct teaching, but the majority of his direction concerned laudable behavior.

The way we live our lives will draw people to Jesus or repel them.

Why is it so important that the church gets things right?

(2) The reason why the church must get things right is that we have the most transformational message of all.

Without any doubt, the mystery of godliness is great:

He was revealed in flesh,
vindicated by the Spirit,
seen by angels,
proclaimed among Gentiles,
believed in throughout the world,
taken up in glory. (1 Timothy 3.16)

This verse summarizes Jesus’ career in six lines.

— He was revealed in the flesh.

In John’s introduction to his book we read, “And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth” (John 1.14).

If you want to know who God is and what he thinks, observe Jesus. He came to reveal God to humans.

“No one has ever seen God. It is the only Son, himself God, who is close to the Father’s heart, who has made him known” (John 1.18).

— Jesus was vindicated by the Spirit.

Paul wrote that Jesus “was declared to be Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness by resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 1.4).

A crucified God was foolish to the world. However, a bodily resurrection reveals the power and wisdom of God.

“For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God” (1 Corinthians 1.18).

— Jesus was seen by angels.

Ben Witherington III draws our attention to Scriptures that indicate Jesus’ appearance to angels included fallen angels.

Demonic forces that rebelled against God experience judgment from God.

And the angels who did not keep their own position but deserted their proper dwelling, he has kept in eternal chains in deepest darkness for the judgment of the great day (Jude 6).

For if God did not spare the angels when they sinned but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of deepest darkness to be kept until the judgment (2 Peter 2:4).

It is Witherington’s view that Peter’s statement in 1 Peter 3:10 that “he went and made a proclamation to the spirits in prison” refers to “was seen by the angels” in 1 Timothy.

Whether Witherington’s understanding is correct or not, we know this. Jesus made an impact on humans, angels, and demons.

— Jesus was and is proclaimed among the nations.

Jesus’ followers support the truth of God’s work through the way we live and speak. Jesus charged our mission with these words.

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1.8).

— Praise God that he has been believed in throughout the world.

The mustard seed faith that Jesus planted 2000 years ago has grown to the largest religious group in the world.

Paul wrote Timothy to make sure that the next generation of Christians continued the mission. That need is crucial today.

— That fact that Jesus was “taken up in glory” is a picture of his ultimate victory.

This is our mission and message. It is the best news the world can hear.

We are to proclaim it with our behavior and our words.

If we strive to live a Jesus-kind-of-life, we will fulfill the grand mission he has given us.

YouTube Video

Rudy Ross and I talk about this passage today on YouTube. You can see the video on the Bob Spradling channel.

Please email your prayer request to bsprad49@gmail.com. The Maywood prayer team will pray for you.

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