Christ the Kingdom Builder
Christ the Kingdom Builder
Christ is building his Church. He is accomplishing his holy purposes. All authority in heaven and on earth is his (Mt. 28:18). His kingdom, therefore, is advancing on his terms, through his appointed means, and on his divine schedule. This is good news for Christ Church Presbyterian, and for every church who is putting their faith and trust in him. Yes, it is true that cultural Christianity is fading fast. Public opinion is quickly turning against us. Perversion is openly celebrated. God’s truth is openly scorned. Secularism is on the rise. Nevertheless this does not change the good news that our crucified, risen, and exalted Lord is building his kingdom the world over, and all the legions of hell are utterly powerless to stop him (Mt. 16:18). History has seen the church tested before, and the true church flourishes under hardship and persecution. Light shines brighter as things get darker.
In Psalm 2 we learn that the rulers of the earth conspire against the LORD, and against his Anointed. Don’t we see this today? But he who sits in the heavens laughs (2:2-3). The LORD set his Son, his Messiah-King, on Zion’s holy hill. All authority is his. Christ will accomplish his redemptive purposes through his efficacious Word and Spirit. We can be confident that Jesus will redeem his elect and save all those who take refuge in him (Ps. 2:6-7;12; Eph. 1:4-14; 2:8-9). It is with this deep and abiding confidence that we “go forth and make disciples” in the Charleston low country and beyond.
The book of Acts is a historical account of the apostles’ faithful response to our Lord’s missionary mandate to “go forth and make disciples of all nations”–– to be his “witnesses to the ends of the earth” (Mt. 28:18; Acts 1:8). The apostles were faithful because they boldly proclaimed the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27) and established biblical churches. In these churches the Word and sacraments were principal tools of discipleship (Acts 2:42). They were primary means of spiritual nourishment (I Peter 2:2)–– leading God’s people to abide in Christ and his sanctifying truth. Moreover, qualified teaching and ruling elders were carefully and prayerfully chosen to give spiritual oversight, care, protection, and instruction to the flock (Acts 14:23; Titus 1:5).
Therefore, the apostles carried out the Great Commission using the methods and means of Christ through the ministry of the church (c.f. Eph. 4:1-16). The local church is God’s workshop for making disciples. There are no alternatives. Lone Ranger Christianity is no Christianity at all. The local church is the God-ordained context where believers mature under the sound preaching and teaching of the Scriptures, receive spiritual oversight and accountability from qualified leadership, and build one another up through the exercise of spiritual gifts. This is precisely why the planting and strengthening of biblical churches must be the church’s primary task as we seek to fulfill the Great Commission.
Members and regular attenders of Christ Church Presbyterian, as we move into year three of our church planting endeavor, let us more earnestly devote ourselves to the ministry of the church and the mutual encouragement of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. Moreover, let us pray. Prayer is the evidence of our utter reliance upon God and our belief that he hears and answers when we call. Take time this afternoon and this week to pray for the following:
CHRIST CHURCH | PRAYER REQUESTS
Pray that the members of Christ Church would spiritually mature under the proclamation of the gospel through word and sacrament every Lord’s Day.
Pray that we would be faithful witnesses in Charleston and the world.
Pray for true conversions.
Pray for a growing piety in our homes, marriages, and congregation.
Pray for future officers / shepherds who are called and qualified.
Pray for the pastors of Christ Church–– Rev. Jon Payne and Rev. Ross Hodges: Personal godliness, wisdom, humility, purity, time management, and protection from the world, flesh, and the devil.
Pray for longterm facilities for Christ Church.
Pray for our four expectant mothers and their babies: Alicia Williams, Jamie Pepin, Kristin Gee, Bekah Sutton.
Pray for the ongoing organization and development of our rapidly expanding nursery ministry. Pray also for our growing men’s and women’s ministries.
Pray that God would do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us (Eph. 3:20).
Pray earnestly for our foreign church planters / missionaries (back of bulletin).
Pray for reformation and revival in Charleston!