Steve Ellson: The Blood Bought Church

Friday, January 12, 2018 - by Steve Ellison

We have too low a view of the Church.  The Church is far more important than many of us believe. Oh, we might give lip service to the significance of Church, but that lip service does not hide the meaning of our actions.  We might have great doctrine about the Church buried somewhere in our mind, but our actions betray us.  We have great trouble denying self and exalting Christ through His chosen vehicle, the Church.

  Almost every church member will be quick to tell you that Christ is the head of the Church and that they only desire His will to be done.  That’s what you hear until some little thing does not suit their fancy; then you will see their true beliefs manifested loudly and clearly in their attitudes, actions, criticism, gossip, etc.  This is a tragedy of huge proportions; it is a cancer that prevents many churches from reaching a lost and dying world.  This causes many of our pews to be empty.  Sooner or later, others grow weary of the actions of this group.  Christ is not pleased; in fact, He is grieved.  He is not pleased with us when we cause problems.  He is not pleased with us when we give up and fade away from the Church.  The sound you hear is Christ’s heart breaking.

 

Perhaps you are wondering to which Church I refer.   You are right; there is more than one church.  There is a universal, world-wide church and there are local expressions of that world-wide church.   When a person puts their faith and trust in Christ, the Holy Spirit seals them for all eternity, adding them to the world-wide Church.   The Bible also tells of groups of believers welcoming believers into their local fellowships.  This welcoming on the part of existing believers and accepting of the welcome by the new believers adds them to a local church (body, fellowship, congregation).   The Old Testament prepares us for this New Testament reality.   The Old Testament says that all the people of the world belong to God and it also speaks of the nation of Israel being a special, unique, community of believers belonging to the Lord.  Likewise, the New Testament Church, both world-wide and local, belongs to Christ. 

 

The importance and significance of the Church cannot be overstated. The Church is not a country club or civic club.  The Church is the Body of Christ and the Bride of Christ.  Christ has declared that He will build His Church, and nothing shall prevail against it (Matthew 16).  Christ loved the Church so much that He died for the Church, purchasing it with His own blood. (Acts 20).   The Church is being prepared as a bride for Christ to be presented to Him spotless and pure at the end of time (Ephesians 5, Revelation 18).  Persecuting the Church is the same as persecuting Christ (Acts 9). Christ is the head of the Church (Ephesians 1,5).  Mistreating others in the Church is despising the Church (1 Corinthians 11).   Members of the Church are not to judge other members; they belong to Christ alone (Romans 14).  

 

The defining characteristic of the Church is “love for one another”.  Jesus said in John 13:35“By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (NASU)1 John 3:14 says, “We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death.” (NASU) All our efforts at being the Church will fail if we do not love each other to such a degree that the lost world notices.  If we treat other members of the Church badly, it is abiding in death.  Think on that.


Trunk Or Treat Offered At Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church On Oct. 27

Cub Scout Pack 3037, Troop 137, and Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church at 6314 East Brainerd Road, will be hosting a Trunk or Treat on Saturday, Oct. 27, from 5-7 p.m. in the parking lot at the church. Scouts will decorate their automobile trunks with fun themes and enjoy handing out treats to the kids. The community is invited to this free and safe event. Wear your costumes! ... (click for more)

"Dial It Down" Is Sermon Topic At Metro Tab Church On Sunday

The public is invited to worship at Metropolitan Tabernacle Church at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday as Dr. Steve Ball, senior pastor will discuss "Dial It Down." The Music Ministry is led by Rob Alley and Metro Praise. Children's Pastor Olivia Aziz and staff would love to host your kids as well in the Metro Kidz Church. We are a multicultural non-denominational church. You can ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Airport Has Biggest Month Yet; Work May Start Next Year On Parking Deck With 1,300 Spaces

The Chattanooga Airport set a record in September with 44,000 enplanements, the highest ever for one month. This was an increase of nine percent over September 2017, and deplanements were in line, said Terry Hart president and CEO.   He said that more parking is needed near the terminal to keep up with the growth. The 20-year master plan includes a parking deck with ... (click for more)

Man, 72, Dies In Highway 58 Crash Due To Medical Issue

A 72-year-old man was killed in a wreck on Highway 58 on Monday afternoon. At approximately 4:40 p.m., the Chattanooga Police Department's Traffic Unit responded to the 5500 block of Highway 58. It was found that a Subaru was traveling south on Highway 58 when it left the roadway and came to rest against a tree stump. The driver was found to be unresponsive and was transported ... (click for more)

Why Are Joda Thongnopnua And Phil Bredesen Downplaying Their Democratic Values?

For the past several months, the Democratic Party has reached a tipping point. “Their Resistance” is to oppose anything and everything Republicans are doing to deliver a stronger economy and better economic opportunities for all Americans.  Yet, I find it very interesting that the public outcry we are seeing from the Democrats on a national level is nowhere to be found when ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Coach Who Said ‘No’

I couldn’t tell you the first time I met John Gagliardi … 30 years ago? 40? … and I never saw him nearly enough. He was a Division III football coach at some monastery of a place in Minnesota and that’s a long way from the Southeastern Conference. Our orbits rarely overlapped but somewhere down the line we were at the same table for dinner. Once that happened, it seemed like the ... (click for more)