Tuesday, June 8, 2010

"My Church"


No, I am not referring to Cozaddale Baptist Temple specifically; for the “My” I refer to is a pronoun referring to the Lord Jesus. You see, in Matthew 16:18 Jesus said, “…upon this rock I will build my church;and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” The Lord promised perpetuity to the church-His church. Now at that time there were no other ‘churches’ around, but Jesus was making it clear that this promise was for His church.
Today there are many ‘churches.’ One can open a phone book and find Catholic churches, Presbyterian, Wesleyan, Lutheran, Episcopalian, Jehovah’s Witness, Pentecostal, Orthodox, Synagogues, Latter Day Saints, Community Churches, nondenominational, interdenominational, mosques, Adventist, Anglican, charismatic, Calvinistic, Congregationalist, Mennonite, Quaker, Assembly of God, Methodist, Swedonborgian, Bible Church, Church of God, Church of Christ, Church of the living Hope, Friends church, and (my favorite) the Protestant Episcopal Church of the United States-just to name a few.
Then there are Baptist churches. Can we say that ‘Baptist’ churches are ‘His Church?’ Well, there are Alliance Baptist, American Baptist, Reformed Baptist, Affirming Baptist, Bible Baptist, General Association Baptist, Free Will Baptist, Primitive Baptist, Evangelical Free Baptist, Regular Baptist, Independent Baptist, Old Regular Baptist, Missionary Baptist, Separate Baptist, Seventh Day Baptist, Southern Baptist, United Baptist, World-Wide Baptist…I could go on.
Why are there so many ‘churches?’ Is it not any wonder that people are confused and frustrated with religion? Well, let’s just say ‘God is not the author of confusion.’(1 Cor. 14:33). This is one of the master plans of Satan to deceive masses of people. Millions are involved in false churches proclaiming a false doctrine (2 John 10) and are going to Hell. The question we must answer is-“What church is ‘My Church’ as Christ so designated it?
If a church preaches salvation but does not follow Biblical doctrine, is it still ‘My Church?’ If a church preaches salvation but does not keep the ordinances, is it still ‘My Church?’ If it does not matter what doctrine you hold and preach or how you observe the ordinances, then why did our Lord spend so much time teaching and presenting them? Why bother in the fight to uphold and protect doctrine? Why did Paul admonish Timothy to preach doctrine and the Corinthian church to keep the ordinances?
If there is a type of church that is ‘My Church’, then are all others not pretenders? This is a matter of great importance that many do not wish to discuss, decide, or designate; but we must! For the Lord’s promise of perpetuity, power, and purpose are only for the ‘My Church.’

1 comment:

Bill Hardecker said...

Lots of interesting and thought provoking questions here, Pastor Burke.

Some of the churches in Revelation certainly had both doctrinal and moral problems, and yet our Lord still dealt with them, calling them to repentance. When they did not repent, He removed them. Certainly I believe in the perpetuity of His churches.

I will certainly be tuned into your future posts. Thank you.