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From: Charles Bowman
Received: Dec. 20
As was the purpose of some of the letters that the Apostle Paul wrote, this is merely a means to encourage the churches to redirect their focus. The foundation of the church is to be established upon God and his commands in the Holy Bible. Sadly, the bulk of believers are aligned by their differences of doctrine. Instead of being followers of Jesus Christ, believers stand behind a denominational name. Acts 4:12 says, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”
That name is Jesus Christ! Being a follower of Jesus Christ, those that believe should display the characteristics found in the fruits of the spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
Disappointingly, that’s not the case. Even though we’re commanded not to judge and not to play favorites, we do. Church is not about the building or the number of sins committed by us; church is the fellowship, praise and the worship of our father in heaven. All of the spiritual uplifting and encouragement that happen within the fellowship is to be taken out into the world (Matthew 28:19 – The Great Commission). James 1:22 says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” From 1 John 3:18, “Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”
We may offer words of encouragement with our lips but we fail to put them into physical action. Often times we are focusing on the speck in someone else’s eye instead of the plank that is in our own eye. We’re all sinners in the eyes of the Lord and in his eyes they are all the same. Jude 1:22 says, “Be merciful to those who doubt; save others by snatching them from the fire.”
As Christians, if we are to be completely obedient to the commands that God has given us, we have to remember that we are no better than anyone else and that our focus should be directed at bringing lost souls to redemption. Church should be an environment where sinners can give God thanks, can praise his holy name and can ask for forgiveness.
Much too often we fall into cliques within the church based upon our level of wealth, our level of education, our appearance and many other categories. The truth of how we should live our daily lives is in the Holy Bible. Unless we are striving to serve God wholeheartedly, we are shackled to the views and beliefs of the world around us
(1 Corinthians 3:18-19). Look around the community, and you’ll see a lot of darkness. The body of Christ should be united in order to reach lost souls, but the barrier of denominational beliefs (1 Corinthians 3:3) thwarts any godly progress. The point is this: The churches should be fighting Satan and not each other.
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