Westminster Assembly

Westminster Assembly

Acts 6:4

"But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the Word."



1 Timothy 4:6-16

" If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained. But refuse profane and old wives' fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation. For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe. These things command and teach. Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity. Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery. Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee." 1 Tim 4:6-16 (KJV)

"The First National Church and Trust"

Tuesday, July 26, 2011
  I wonder if we in the modern day church is truly doing the right thing with our ministry.  Somewhere along the way our plans might have gotten a bit off track.  Remember when the local church was a place to come together as the Body of Christ to worship God and a place where saints came to learn and be edified, to grow in grace. The church is a place where God is glorified and souls are saved but also it is a place where saints are encouraged and made into disciples, at least that was the whole idea behind the local church and for many churches this is still the plan, but to those folks outside of the church, those not yet regenerated or those who will never be regenerated and will continue to live in sin, a slave if you will, well these folks are more and more mistaken as to what a local church is.

  To receive a phone call requiring about worship times is a very rare thing indeed, most of the time the phone rings it is, I would say at least 50% of the time, someone trying to sell you something, be it a new set of pew Bibles or the next great and awesome Sunday School course or the ever increasing bombardment of DVD sets to make your small group sessions more relevant!

  I could go on and on and mention all the VBS supplies but I do want to move onto the other 50% of phone calls, and this remaining half, the majority of phone calls are people outside of the church, those who do not attend any church anywhere at anytime, who call and ask for money and you would be surprised if you knew most do not ask very nicely, they more or less demand you deliver money to them where ever they may be, when you try to explain to them that they have the wrong idea of what a church does they often get very irate and begin to tell you what a church "is suppose to be like" and what a church "is suppose to do" and I must admit, even in all my training, study and prayer and time in the ministry, I must be missing something,  when did things change?  When did the church shift over to simply a charity that will give to anyone who asks? Or I should say, feel entitled to the little bit you have.

   The last few calls I received were people demanding money, one gentleman thought I should pay his electric bill for him and when I told him I could not do that he began to curse me, and the last call was from a young couple who were stranded at a friends house, they went there to party and now they do not have the gas to get back home on and that since I am a Christian I should drive them out some money, I think they wanted $57 to buy gas with.  No, I do not know who these people are, just ordinary people who believe the local church exist to bail out people when they get low in funds.  I want to say that I, at one time, did earnestly try to help everyone that showed up at my door or who called on the phone, my family often went without due to bailing people out, but I quickly began to realize that even though you give these people the last dollar you have, they still will not visit the church, in fact, you will never see them again, they have the money and they are off, on their way, onto the next adventure.   After helping so many people who needed way more than money, in fact, of course, money was the least of their problems, but you cannot tell them that, they get irate when you try to share the Gospel with them, more often you will hear "just give me the money already, I don't care about Jesus!"   So, needless to say, I stopped giving money to people who are outside of the church.   It is just not worth it, I was not helping them anyway, only enabling them to be even more self-centered and more immature.

   I can't help but wonder what we did wrong as a church, well, I know what I did wrong, I thought if I helped others they would listen to the Gospel or at the least visit the church, or "a church" out of thankfulness and then maybe, just maybe, be regenerated and live lives devoted to Christ.  But that is where I goofed up, but no more, yet they still call, still insist the church is a bank, ready to give and give and give, regardless of the size of the church.   This misconception of what the church is all about is getting worse every year and I do not know the way out of this mess, other than if we spend more time preaching Christ and Him crucified and less time being seeker sensitive, then maybe we will get this silly notion out of those peoples heads that the church is a place full of money who is there to bail folks out and give them their best life now.

   Most local churches are truly trying to make disciples, they are busy about the things of the Lord, wanting earnestly to be faithful in their New Testament Church calling, but there are so many, mostly large churches who are making things hard for the smaller churches, by putting up billboards and TV commercials, etc. telling the unchurched they are should visit their church for fun and games and food and music, whatever, everything but making disciples that is.  

  Until we get serious about worship then these problems will continue.  Until we get back to glorifying God and stop glorifying the Sinner, no one outside of the church will ever know or understand just what a local church is all about.

Be Holy!


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