03 May 2019

Why Are You In Church This Morning?

This is rather long and probably needs to be divided into 2 parts. Cheers.

Why Are You Here?
Why Did You Come to Church Today?
A1 What is church?
A2 What is church supposed to be?
A3 What do we do in church?

A1 What is church?

B1 The Greek for church is ἐκκλησία ekklēsia. It means originally any public assembly of citizens summoned by a herald (Vocabulary of the Greek Testament by Moulton and Milligan 1914-1929). In the New Testament it is translated assembly, congregation, church.
B2 It is usually used in the sense of properly, people called out from the world and to God, the outcome being the Church (the mystical body of Christ) – i.e. the universal (total) body of believers whom God calls out from the world and into His eternal kingdom. (Source).
B3 Simply put it is believers. It is not simply Christians, because some people call themselves Christians but are not in the Bible use of the word.
B4 A Christian is someone who has been convicted they have broken God’s law and deserves God’s punishment. They must be convince that they are not a good person. It is someone who then repents, believes in, and trusts into Messiah Jesus for salvation and in no one and nothing else. Doing good works does not save.

A2 What is church supposed to be?

B1 Church is an assembly of believers. It is not for unbelievers. Unbelievers are always welcomed and encouraged, but they are not the reason and purpose for the church.
B2 We are not to stop meeting together. Hebrews 10:19-25 NKJV Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and having a High Priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
C1 What Day is this? Some understand day to be the destruction of Israel. Some believe it is the rapture. I believe it refers to 1 Corinthians 3:13 MKJV each one's work shall be revealed. For the Day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try each one's work as to what kind it is.
C2 This day is the judgment day for Christians.
D1 Romans 14:10 WPNT But you, why do you judge your brother? And you too, why do you look down on your brother? Because we will all stand before the Judgment Seat of Christ.
D2 2 Corinthians 5:10 WPNT Because we must all be exposed before Christ’s Judgment Seat, that each one may receive his due for the things he did while in the body, whether good or bad.
C3 This day is immediately after the rapture.
C4 This is where Christians are judged for what we have done in this life. 1 Corinthians 3:12-15 MKJV And if anyone builds on this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble, 13 each one's work shall be revealed. For the Day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try each one's work as to what kind it is. 14 If anyone's work which he built remains, he shall receive a reward. 15 If anyone's work shall be burned up, he shall suffer loss. But he shall be saved, yet so as by fire.
C5 Wilbur Pickering commenting on 2 Corinthians 5:10 states, “If we are wise, like Paul, we will never forget the Accounting. He was ‘confident’ that upon leaving his physical body he would be at home with the Lord. To have the same confidence we also must consciously live so as to be well pleasing to Him.”
B3 We are to be like our brethren in Acts 2. Acts 2:42 WPNT And they continued steadfastly in the Apostles’ teaching and in the fellowship, both in the breaking of the bread and in the prayers.
C1 Continued steadfastly
C2 Apostle’s teaching (doctrine and lifestyle). We must know what we believe.
C3 Fellowship (with other believers)
C4 Communion (Lord’s Supper)
C5 Prayer (part of worship both as individual and corporate)
B4 We need to be taught. Ephesians 4:14 NKJV that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting.
C1 We need to know what we believe. What we believe is important. We must be taught, and we must study the Bible and doctrine.
C2 We need to learn discernment. The pastor must lead in this, but every Christian needs to know what Christians believe. The pastor can go into error.
C3 We all need to be able to defend the faith. We all need to be taught and to be trained. 1 Peter 3:15-17 WPNT Rather, sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready with an answer for everyone who asks you a reason concerning the hope that is in you, with meekness and respect; keeping a good conscience, so that wherein they speak against you as evildoers, those who revile your good way of life in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, should the will of God so determine, than for doing evil.
C4 We need to learn to recognize deception. False teachers will try to deceive us. They change the meaning of words, they claim this teaching was only for the New Testament times, they will tell you the Scriptures have been corrupted, they will slowly—I mean slooowly—introduce lies (it might take years, but they will do it. It is how they take over a church), they will promote important people with many doctorates who believe some life (thus implying that we should believe them), they will assert authority (“We are elders, so you must submit).
D1 Example 1: 1 Timothy 2:4 CSB Who wants everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
E1 Calvinist:
F1 All has different meanings.
F2 Here are some examples of different meanings.
F3 All here means all types.
F4 There are many sources. This one is from here.
E2 Plain, normal sense
F1 It states all.
F2 There are no qualifiers to modify the plain, normal sense of all.
F3 Even if it is kinds, types, etc., the Calvinist version fails.
G1 If all refers to gender, then we know there are only 2 genders—male and female. This would indicate that all means each and every male and female.
G2 If all refers to economic status, we know there are the rich, the poor, and everyone else. This would indicate each and every economic class.
G3 If all refers to occupation, we know that some are in the fields of education, legal, medical, government, agriculture, services, engineerings, repair, retired, ill, etc. This would indicate each and every person, since all have some occupation.
D2 Example 2: Acts 10:9-16 WEB Now on the next day as they were on their journey, and got close to the city, Peter went up on the housetop to pray at about noon. 10 He became hungry and desired to eat, but while they were preparing, he fell into a trance. 11 He saw heaven opened and a certain container descending to him, like a great sheet let down by four corners on the earth, 12 in which were all kinds of four-footed animals of the earth, wild animals, reptiles, and birds of the sky. 13 A voice came to him, “Rise, Peter, kill and eat!” 14 But Peter said, “Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean.” 15 A voice came to him again the second time, “What God has cleansed, you must not call unclean.” 16 This was done three times, and immediately the vessel was received up into heaven.
E1 Hebrew Roots groups: If you read on, Peter is trying to make since (SIC) out of this vision, because he knew the Lord wouldn't have him eat unclean meat. What came about? In verse 28 Peter says, "Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath shewed me that I should not call any man common or unclean." Peter says here that God showed, in that vision, that he should not call any MAN common or unclean.
E2 The passage in the plain, normal sense was understood by Peter that he, Peter, was to get up, kill, and EAT. Peter was COMMANDED to EAT.
B5 We need to remember Jesus’s death and its purpose. 1 Corinthians 11:20 WEB When therefore you assemble yourselves together, it is not the Lord’s supper that you eat.
C1 We gather for the Lord’s Supper.
C2 This is only for believers.
D1 1 Corinthians 11:28-30 GNB So then, you should each examine yourself first, and then eat the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For if you do not recognize the meaning of the Lord's body when you eat the bread and drink from the cup, you bring judgment on yourself as you eat and drink. 30 That is why many of you are sick and weak, and several have died.
D2 Matthew 7:6 NKJV “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.
B6 We need to live a Christian life.
C1 Good works which glorify our Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16 NKJV Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
C2 Care and concern are in this order.
D1 Spouse
D2 My children
D3 The members of my local assembly
D4 The believers everywhere else.
D5 Non-Christians for a witness and testimony.
C3 Some things we are to avoid: Galatians 5:19-21 WPNT Now the works of the flesh are obvious, namely: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, strife, jealousies, fits of anger, selfish ambition, dissentions, factions, envyings, murders, drinking bouts, orgies, and the like; about which I am warning you beforehand, as, in fact, I did before, that those who practice such things will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
C4 Some things needed to be seen in our lives: Galatians 5:22-23 WPNT But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control—against such things there is no law.

A3 What do we do in church?

B1 Sing: Ephesians 5:19-21 NKJV speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of God.
B2 Pray: 1 Thessalonians 5:17 NKJV pray without ceasing.
B3 Collect:
C1 For congregation expenses: 1 Timothy 5:17-18 NKJV Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine. For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer [is] worthy of his wages.
C2 For the poor Christians: Galatians 2:10 NKJV [They desired] only that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do.
B4 Offer sacrifices
C1 The sacrifice of praise: Hebrews 13:15 NKJV Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of [our] lips, giving thanks to His name.
C2 The sacrifice of helping the brothers and sisters in financial need: Hebrews 13:16 NKJV But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
C3 Ourselves: Romans 12:1 HCSB Therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your spiritual worship. (Compare: Luke 9:23-24 WPNT Then He said to everyone: “If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross, and follow me. Because whoever desires to ‘save’ his life will lose it, but whoever ‘loses’ his life for my sake, he will save it).
C4 The sacrifice of prayer: 1 Timothy 2:1 HCSB First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone.
C5 The sacrifice of thanksgiving: 1 Thessalonians 5:18 HCSB Give thanks in everything, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
B5 Be taught
C1 The Gospel
C2 Jesus’s doctrine (teachings)
C3 The Christian life
C4 Apologetics
C5 Summary: Matthew 28:19-20 WPNT As you go make disciples in all ethnic nations: baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit; teaching them to obey everything that I commanded you; and take note, I am with you every day, until the end of the age!” Amen.
B6 Encourage each other
C1 By faith
C2 By prayer
C3 By good works
C4 By listening
C5 By helping serve in the congregation
C6 By the grace and help of the Holy Spirit
D1 Acts 9:31 WPNT So then the congregations throughout all Judea and Galilee, and Samaria, had peace and were built up; and proceeding in the fear of the Lord and in the encouragement of the Holy Spirit they were being multiplied.
D2 The Greek word for encouragement is παράκλησις paraklesis. It means (via Strong’s)
E1 An imploration, entreaty (urgent request (for mercy or help)).
E2 An exhortation (urgent counsel, encouragement, or caution).
E3 A comfort, solace.
D3 He helps in our prayers: Romans 8:26 NKJV Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
D4 He strengthens us to get through trials: Ephesians 3:16 NKJV that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man.
D5 He never abandons/forsakes us: John 14:16-17 GNB92 I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, who will stay with you forever. He is the Spirit, who reveals the truth about God. The world cannot receive him, because it cannot see him or know him. But you know him, because he remains with you and is in you.
D6 Gives us peace in difficult situations: Romans 15:13 GNB92 May God, the source of hope, fill you with all joy and peace by means of your faith in him, so that your hope will continue to grow by the power of the Holy Spirit.
B7 Application
C1 The church is us believers.
C2 We are a family.
C3 We are to worship God together, be taught, and be encouraged.
C4 We are to bear one another’s burdens.
C5 We are to be taught, then do, then teach others.

A4 Sources and quotes

B1 1 Timothy 2:4:

Understanding 1 Timothy 2:4 by Pastor John Samson

God "desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth." 1 Timothy 2:4
I have often times heard people quote 1 Timothy 2:4 to dismiss, out of hand, the biblical teaching on Sovereign grace or Divine election. In quoting the verse they have told me that God has no interest in electing certain people to salvation but that His desire is for every person to be saved. Yet, we must remember that the word "all" always has a context. It can sometimes mean all people everywhere - many times it does - but it sometimes means "all" in the sense of "all kinds" or "all classes, types" of people or at other times it refers to all within a certain type or class.. For instance, we do the same thing in our English language when a school teacher in a classroom may ask the question, "are we ALL here?" or "is EVERYONE here?" She is not asking if everyone on planet earth is in the classroom, but because of the context in which the question is framed (the school teacher's classroom) we understand she is referring to all within a certain class or type - in this case, all the students signed up for the class.
I believe 1 Tim 2:4 is speaking of all in this sense of "all types."
What is my biblical basis for saying this?
The context. Lets read the passage:
1 Timothy 2:1-4 First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, 2 for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. 3 This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Who are the "all people" of verse 1? I believe the "all people" of verse 1 are the same "all people" of verse 4, as the subject matter does not change in any way at all in the intervening verses.
When Paul wrote "First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people.." was he asking Timothy to get the equivalent of the local phone book and starting with the alphas and going all the way through to the omegas (the Greek alphabet) make supplication, pray, intercede and make thanksgiving for each individual in the city... or more than that, the whole world?
I don't think so. Why do I say this? Because Paul qualifies verse 1 with verse 2 when he speaks of "kings" (kings are types of people) and "those in high positions" (again "those in high positions" are types of people).
Why should we pray for them?
One of the reasons we should pray for them is because these people (kings and those in high positions of authority) make decisions which affect society at large. If these people have their eyes opened, they will not be persecutors of Christians but will enact laws that will actually restrain sin so "that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way." So one of the reasons to pray for them is because good government can mean a measure of peace in a society, and it is a lot easier to spread the Gospel when there is no civil unrest.
The passage also points us to another reason to pray, namely that God desires all (all who?) .. all types of people.. including these influential people with authority in society.. to be saved.
His message to Timothy was this: Do not just pray for the peasants, the farmers and the uneducated (the people who seem to be coming to Christ in great numbers right now), but remember to pray for kings and the very rulers in society who are at this moment persecuting Christians. Make prayer of this kind a priority - do it "first of all" - pray for these people Timothy - make sure the Church is praying for these people - because God desires all kinds of people - even kings (or Emperors like Caesar) and the elete in society - people of every kind, to be saved.
We must remember that the earliest Christians were almost all from the lower class of society, so this would be BIG news to them. As Paul wrote elsewhere..
1 Corinthians 1:26-29 26 For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. 27 But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; 28 God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, 29 so that no human being might boast in the presence of God.
Turning to another Scripture in Revelation chapter 5, we are given prophetic insight into the future, revealing to us what Jesus the Lamb actually achieved in His atoning work on the cross. He did not save everybody or make a mere potential atonement available for everyone, but he made an effectual atonement - a powerful one that achieved its desired end or goal of saving certain specific people. What exactly did He achieve?
In Revelation 5:9, the heavenly anthems ring out in praise of the Lamb saying, "...for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed (specific, actual) people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation..."
Note the words, for they are very specific. It does not say that Jesus ransomed the people OF but people FROM every tribe and language and nation. The Greek word for "from" is ekmeaning "out of" - He redeemed people out of every tribe, language, people group and nation.. NOT all without exception, but all without distinction.
I mention this verse in Revelation 5 because this is in perfect harmony with 1 Timothy 2:4 which teaches very clearly that God desires all (all kinds of people) to be saved. God will have every tribe, tongue, people group and nation represented around the throne as the heavenly hosts sing of the Lamb who was slain to redeem them.

The World’s Worst Bible Interpretation in History
This is obviously a touchy subject and you are free to believe or not to believe whatever you feel. However, Jesus never said He made all food clean.

If you read the scripture of Peter's vision, it says (Acts 10:15) "What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common." As far as I can see throughout scripture, the unclean animals were never cleansed.

If you read on, Peter is trying to make since out of this vision, because he knew the Lord wouldn't have him eat unclean meat.

What came about?

In verse 28 Peter says, "Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath shewed me that I should not call any man common or unclean."

Peter says here that God showed, in that vision, that he should not call any MAN common or unclean.

I believe the issue of the clean and unclean meats is not a Salvation issue, but God loves us and cares about us enough to show us what is good food to put into our bodies (His Temple) and what is not good. Why would we want to eat things that live off of waste?

As for the bad grammar that that man has... I agree with you!

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