What does the church need?

“By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35)

I learn new things constantly. Articles have been written about “what the world needs” and “what millennial’ s need. The word need is classified as both a noun and a verb, the verb form means “expressing necessity or obligation”, “Something that is required because it is essential or very important”. My English classes from high school remind me that verbs take action and do something.

Jesus is the “head over all things, the church” (Eph 1:22), the church is described as “His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all” (Eph 1:23). Christ does all things in the interest of the church, and just like a bridegroom is incomplete without his bride, the church completes Christ, who fills all in all. The church will always exist (Daniel 2:44) and the church is the only entity that God has promised to save (1 Cor. 15:24). Although the existence of the church is promised by God until the return of Christ there is still one basic need the church has, and that need is love that will take action.

Throughout the bible it is clear to see the love that God has for us. It started in the beginning when God made man and breathed life into him (Gen 2:7), God did something for man by giving him life and a soul. God guided the children of Israel from Egypt and although it took two generation because of the disobedience of the first they eventually made it under the leadership of Joshua into the land that God promised them. God gave the children of Israel the land because He loved them. All along the way God did something for His people, He provided! The entire Old Testament speaks somehow to the promise of the coming of the Christ, the promise began in Genesis 3:15. God promised the Christ so that all people could be reconciled (2 Cor. 5:18-19) to Him through Jesus Christ, and God has given to us the charge us to go out and to teach others about Christ, so they too can be reconciled. And that takes love, in the verb form, in the following two ways.

  1. We must love God enough to do what He says:  The commandments of God are not always easy, but they are always right (Ps. 19:8). God has chosen the church to make known to the rulers and authorities His manifold wisdom (Eph. 3:10), and God expects His church to go and teach others (Mark 16:15). The church at Logan Martin will continue to grow as long as we continue to work together (Eph 4:16) to accomplish all the church is intended for.  
  2. We must love other people enough to teach them the gospel of Christ: The word of God has the power to save the souls of men (Jas 1:21) provided it is received and obeyed (Heb 5:9), but the word of God must be taught. If we really love people we will love their souls. Jesus near the end of the Sermon on the Mount was very specific that the gate that leads to eternal life is small and the road is narrow (Matt 7:14), but the way of destruction has a wide gate and a broad road (Matt 7:13). Life is short and eternity is long and we all must be about the business of teaching others so their souls can be saved.

The love many in this congregation have for God and others amazes me. Thank you for your example, thank you for the love you have for God and His word and the love you have for others.