Life Together – Part 9
We are One – Ephesians 4:15-16
Crosspoint – Dave Spooner – Nov. 7th, 2021
- Today we celebrate the one-year anniversary of Crosspoint Church. Tell the story of how it came to be: a phone call from Pastor Bill during a week of prayer and fasting, year of discerning to answer the questions – “Is God in this?” and “Are we better together?” We were up, down, and in-between, many meetings, thinking it would be done after this. Encouragement from mission-minded people, it is bigger than this.
- First service together – worst day to launch a church. We are doing this during a worldwide pandemic with heightened restrictions in our region, days before a contentious national election with social and political unrest. On the very morning, we change our clocks back an hour – I think God did it that way, so that He would get the credit and glory, and it would be confirmed that He was in this.
- In our first service, there was anticipation, anxiousness, and the presence of God and people. The first passage of Scripture that was quoted in our service is printed in our prayer room:
Eph 3:20-21 NIV
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
- We talked about our new day, built upon the foundation of what God has done in the past to bring us to this point. We had the three cords woven together, “A cord of three strands is not easily broken” (Eccl. 4:12).
- We talked about our new name, with the countdown and pregnant pause. The cross is the point where we are reconciled to God; the cross is the point where our sins are forgiven; the cross is the point where we receive new life; the cross is the hope of the world. The cross is what brings us together from every tribe, and language, and people, and nation. God draws us to Him, transforming us to be like His Son, and then together, He sends us out to represent Him to all creation throughout all eternity. We will introduce real people to a real God, by knowing Jesus and making Him known.
- We talked about the eternal message of John 3:16:
For God – the initiation
So loved – the motivation
The world – the application
That He gave – the demonstration
His only Son- the salvation
That whoever (believes in Him) – the invitation
Should not perish – the implication
but have eternal life – the exaltation.
- We talked about our sacred mission:
Rom 1:5-6 ESV
to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations
- Over this past year, we have seen the Lord work, and through His power and grace, we have accomplished quite a bit (see the one-year accomplishment list).
- Recently, we have been focusing on “life together,” what God has given us in the church. The church is built on Jesus, by Jesus, and for Jesus to display His grace, wisdom, and glory. God has bound us together in Himself. He has given gifts to each one of us, and has given us a cast of coaches to equip us as His body in the world. He has designed us to grow and be mature, ready to respond to Him in what He is doing, instead of being immature infants tossed about various teaching and easily tricked by deceitful schemes.
We grow mature as a church by speaking the truth in love
Eph 4:15 NIV
Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.
- We primarily grow mature as a church by speaking what is eternally true to each other, motived by love for each other. Truth without love is too hard. Love without truth is too soft. Just like in a body, we need both bones and tissue to live. Bones give us strength, structure, and a framework. Tissue gives us senses, and connection, and movement. We are to do this from the platform. We do it in our meetings. We do this in our conversations. We do this in our actions and activities. We do this so that we can be responsive and responsible to the head, which is Christ, from whom we take our direction, and whom we serve.
We grow mature as a church as each part does its work
Eph 4:16 NIV
From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
- We build ourselves up in love as each part does its work. What does this tell us? Each part and each person matter. If we are functioning as we are designed, we all benefit; if we are not functioning as designed, we all lose. And because we love God and each other, we will do our work. This means we have something to do, and it is essential that we do it. It requires connection and involvement, effort and sacrifice, focus and fuel, prayer and power.
Conclusion and Communion
- We have so much to be thankful for and so much to celebrate. We should enjoy these things, feel satisfaction from them, and praise God for them. By the goodness of God, we also, by His grace, power, and love, have the opportunity to continue to do what He would have us to do and be in the coming years. Let us continue to speak the truth in love as each part does its work. Let’s ask God for His grace and power to fill us again. Let’s look to Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith. Let’s join together in what binds us together.