Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The Glorious Chruch

 This is a summary of a message preached by Steve Oliver of Gateway church Dubai at the Family Camp held in Pune 2012.

God’s promises over our lives are never “maybe” but YES and Amen. If you are willing He will help you cross over into all that God wants for you.
1Cor22:5 5 David said, “My son Solomon is young and inexperienced, and the house to be built for the Lord should be of great magnificence and fame and splendor in the sight of all the nations. Therefore I will make preparations for it.” So David made extensive preparations before his death.

David is explaining to Solomon about the Temple and how exactly he should build it. God’s presence was going to dwell in it. “The house of the Lord should be of great magnificence”. When they finished building the temple it was magnificent. People worshipped God and God filled the temple with his presence.

Later the temple was destroyed. Haggai prophesied that the glory of the later house would be greater than the former. In Ezra’s time those who had seen the former temple wept because the temple rebuild was nothing compared to Solomon’s’ temple. So, how could he talk of the latter glory? He was talking of the future – a temple that would be raised up which would  be greater.

Around us is the magnificent building of God – the church.
When Jesus died he said, ”It is finished”. That opened a new covenant of grace. Though our response is individual there is a corporate result.

After he was raised from the dead he began to gather people.  One hundred and twenty people  who had witnesses the risen Christ spoke in tongues and 3000 were added to their numbers. How much joy there must have been that day and what a challenge for the leaders!
From that day the church began to take ground and went on to the ends of the earth. Within 30 years the whole Roman Empire had heard the gospel – thus the glorious church was born.

Jesus talks about his glorious bride in Revelation 19. John sees you and I as the bride of Christ being ushered in and being presented to the Lamb of God. V6 talks of the bride making herself ready.

It is grieving when Christians talk badly about the church/bride of Christ. We need to protect the bride of Christ. Eph5 Christ gave himself up for the church so that he may sanctify her without spot, blemish or wrinkle so that she might be holy and blameless without blemish. The church has a few wrinkles and stains. We need one another so that we can help each other. There are promises over the church and this is what we have given our lives for. We need to lay hold of what God wants us to be. IF we understand this we will change our cities and nations.

If we picture the church in her glorious state it stirs up mission in our hearts to go and tell others and tell them “you can’t miss the invitation to the marriage of the Lamb”.
Abraham had seen the new city that is why he could leave Haran and follow God.

If we are to take cities we need to build the church. Do an excellent job in the city and villages.
How we prepare the bride is important and each one plays a part. Everything we do counts and will be tested by the fire of God . Everything that we build will be tested by fire and we can’t fool around with the church. It’s about life and death for the nations. Everything that happens in the world is resting on the church. 

Where is God’s attention today? It is  on the church because you and I are the answer the vehicle of God reaching out to the nation and how comforting it is for those who lead. Heaven attention is on what we are doing.
These are important days when we know God is with us. Jesus’ plan is to see a glorious church, radiant. Over the next few years not only in the nation but across the world we will be planting churches.

As we go it isn’t going to be about churches we plant but what type of churches we plant because Jesus has given a specific plan and we must build according to that plan, according to his word.

God cares about the small details in our lives. When we follow him with all of our hearts God gives us the desires of our hearts.
We must pay attention to the detail of the foundations – because if you don’t cracks appear in the structure.

A glorious church will have a glorious foundation.  What we put into the foundation is what will be seen eventually.
You cannot talk about building without knowing something about its foundations “M. Lloyd Jones
We need to build foundations where churches relate with each other and not fall out.
If we have to see Churches change the city we need to build good foundations.

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