Luke 1:37-38 is from our Community Bible Reading this week and for our Bible reading throughout the rest of the year!
Our theme for this year is working together. We began the year in Ephesians 4:11-16, first to see that it is God’s will that we work together but then answering, how does working together work? The answer, beginning with Ephesians 4:11, is that working together works when our pastor works…correctly.
Yes, there is a way that our pastor is to work correctly. Ephesians 4:11-16 teaches us that the pastor who teaches, teaches to equip the saints. This equipping (supply, re-supplying, repairing) is to equip you and me for the “work of the ministry,” that is, the work of serving others (ministry is the word deaconing, a word used for waiting on tables, like in a restaurant. And notice it is described as work). This “work” builds up the body of Christ, the church.
It is important to remember that it is Jesus who builds the church (Matthew 16:18). He actually said, “I will build my church.” And he builds the church in giving the church two gifts – you and the pastor. You as a Christian are uniquely gifted by Jesus with a spiritual gift (Ephesians 4:7). This gift is for the working of the church. The second gift is described in four varied ways – apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers (quite likely the pastor who teaches). In that second gift, we (hopefully) experience regularly the pastor who teaches. So, think upon it: working together includes you with your spiritual gift and the pastor who teaches to equip you. And it is not just any teaching that equips. It is teaching doctrine that equips, teaching doctrine in love that equips (Ephesians 4:15).
And in order for this to happen two things must happen. First, you must see that our church vitally needs you. And second, you must see that you vitally need our church.
This Sunday will be related to last Sunday. We will be in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. We work together knowing God’s will together.
These two Sundays are important Sundays for our year of working together.
We will soon be back in our study of the Gospel of Luke.
Also, as the year begins, consider the joy of our gathering together each Sunday. It begins at 9:30 am with prayer together. And then at 10 am it continues with our worship together.
I love you.