The Bible uses the strongest and most intimate language when describing the church. In one place the Bible calls the church, “The Bride of Christ” (Revelation 19:7), in another place, “The Body of Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:27) and Jesus Himself called it His, “Mother, Brothers and Sisters” (Matthew 12:50).
The only thing that Jesus personally said He would build and the gates of hell would not prevail against is the church (Matthew 16:18, 1 Peter 2:4-10 & 5:1-4). The Bible declares that Jesus is the Cornerstone and the foundation of the church (Ephesians 2:20). That is why the author of Hebrews said that we should never forsake the church and always gather together as often as we can (Hebrews 10:25).
1 Corinthians 9:24-27, “24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.”
SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINES DEFINITION: The commands and practices a disciple “show” in their life to “grow” spiritually because they “know” God.
TWELVE SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINES:
- Bible Reading
- Family Order
- Scripture Memorization
- Soul Journaling
- Praying & Worshipping
- Discipleship & Christlikeness
- Christian Service
- Public Evangelism
- Spiritual Meditation
- Financial Stewardship
- Christian Fellowship
- Church Involvement
SEVEN POWERFUL STATS ABOUT CHURCH ATTENDANCE
Those who attend church one or more times a week;
- Live longer lives (33% longer).
- Have lower divorce rates (almost 20% less).
- Have less mental problems (22% lower).
- Commit less crimes and do less drugs (source).
- Do better in school (source).
- Smoke and drink less (source)
- Have better sex lives (source).
ALL ABOUT THE CHURCH
1 Timothy 3:15, “If I am delayed, you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth.”
- DEFINITION: The Greek word for church is “ekklesia.” Ekklesia means “called out ones who gather together.” The church refers to people who have been called out of the world and gather together to know God and to make Him known. The main purpose for Jesus making disciples was so they could be the foundation of His church and spread the Word of God to all the nations.
- TWO EXPRESSIONS OF THE CHURCH: First, the church is universal. The “universal church” is considered to be all the believers around the world who love God and are called to help build the one true church of Jesus Christ. The second kind of church is called the “local church.” For a church to be considered a church it must have sound doctrine, biblical offices, baptism & communion, church discipline and biblical fruit in it’s disciples.
- TWO OFFICES OF THE CHURCH: Elders and deacons (1 Timothy 3:1-12).
- FIVE GIFTS OF LEADERSHIP IN THE CHURCH: Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors and Teachers (Ephesians 4:11-12).
- DISCIPLESHIP vs. MEMBERSHIP: Membership is a modern way of getting people to join the church, discipleship is what Jesus based His church upon (Matthew 28:19-20).
HOW TO BE INVOLVED WITH MPI CHURCH