1 Timothy 1:4-5
“What’s wrong with the Church”
In 1 Timothy chapter 1 verses 4-5 Paul defines biblical maturity for us by revealing to us two important things: What biblical teaching is and What biblical teaching produces:
- Vs. 4 Biblical teaching: Is that which builds up the individual believer into more and more the image of God. It involves two specific teachings seen in two works of Christ: His death and His resurrection! Biblical teaching must have these two exhortations: Jesus died that we might live, therefore we die to self-centeredness that He may live through us!
- Vs. 5 What biblical teaching produces: We will know that this is taking place when LOVE is manifested in our lives by way of a threefold manifestation of this LOVE as we are told that it is from: A pure heart, good conscience and sincere faith.
I believe that this is the standard of biblical maturity and how Jesus planed to build His church. Looking at Jesus’ original blueprint when compared to what we now see has been built as the church leads me to SIX conclusions:
- Because Jesus’ plan requires for the individual believer to “die daily” to self-centeredness, many in the evangelical world have sought to redefine church maturity based upon things that they can manipulate like “nickels and noses”.
- This has led to Church leaders having to change the aim of the great commission in Matthew 28:19 from “making disciples of all nations” to “making decisions of all nations”. The evangelist has found that it is far easier to get a person to profess Jesus than to get them to “observe ALL things that Jesus commanded”.
- This redefining left the evangelical church in ruins as our outreach is primarily towards those who are in church just not the same one that we are a part of.
- Since discipleship is no longer the aim, the reason for attending church has changed from transformation, to information at best or entertainment at worst!
- This produced a church that has become a band of spectators instead of participants who are coming to church to “have it their way” instead of folks who desire that their lives would be all about Jesus’ having His way in us!
- And finally, the greatest concern is the obvious idolatry of this kind of redefinition of church. Since the mission of Christ has been changed, so too has the focus of the Church; as the “Church” is on the throne instead of “Jesus”.
Saint’s we must work at making certain that the Church doesn’t ends up looking like the description that Paul gave Timothy in his 2nd letter in chapter 3, verse 5 where he said that they “have a form of godliness, but deny its power”. This has been pastor Dale, Blessings!