The Vision: Loving God, Loving People
We need the love God on our streets like never before, we need to fall on our face and call on the name of the Lord. It’s like a desert out here with no rain in sight, everywhere we turn nobody wants to do right. All we ever see in our city is people wanting more and more, while abortion babies are dying more then in all the wars.
It’s sometimes hard to keep your head up and look around, when all you can see is the devil taking our people down. The only hope we have is what the Word of God tells me, He promised in the last days the Spirit of the Lord would fill me. So I throw my heart and hands up like an empty cup, to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, please come fill me up!
1 Timothy 3:14-15, “14 Although I hope to come to you soon, I am writing you these instructions so that, 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.”
- Discipleship was Jesus’ method of establishing His church, God’s foretaste of the Kingdom of Heaven coming to earth. Matthew 16:18-19, “18 And I tell you that you are Peter [i.e., “an obedient disciple”], and on this rock [i.e., “the profession of Jesus as Lord from a place of obedience”] I will build my church [i.e, “the gathering of Christ’s disciples”], and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. 19 I will give you [i.e., “the disciples in the church”] the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
- Disciples will restore and rebuild the judged earth, rule over the people and enjoy the wealth of the nations. Isaiah 61: 4 They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations. 5 Strangers will shepherd your flocks; foreigners will work your fields and vineyards. 6 And you will be called priests of the Lord, you will be named ministers of our God. You will feed on the wealth of nations, and in their riches you will boast.”
- It is from Jesus’ original twelve disciples (minus Judas and most likely Paul replacing him) that will have thrones, along side Jesus and judge the earth. Matthew 19:28, “Truly I tell you, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”
- Jesus’ disciples will even judge angels. 1 Corinthians 6:3, “Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!”
- Jesus’ disciples will be the ruling class of priests in God’s eternal Kingdom. Revelation 20:6, “Blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years.”
- Jesus’ disciples were tasked with receiving the Word of God, spreading the gospel and making disciples of all nations. Matthew 28:19-20, “19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Mark 12:28-31, “28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” 29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
- VISION: The central theme and focus of our church. In the business world they use “mission statements” to define their purpose. For example, Apple’s mission statement is, “Apple is committed to bringing the best personal computing experience to students, educators, creative professionals and consumers around the world through its innovative hardware, software and Internet offerings.” However, according to the Bible, God uses visions (divine revelations) to guide His people, Isaiah 1:1, Ezekiel 1:1, & Acts 2:17. The Bible is very clear to note that without vision or a revelation from God, the people on earth will perish. Proverbs 29:18, “Where there is no revelation (vision/divine guidance), people cast off restraint; but blessed is the one who heeds wisdom’s instruction.”
- THE GREAT COMMANDMENTS: The great commandments given by Jesus, as found in Mark 12:30, is the “vision/revelation” from the Father that should be every church’s number one focus and theme for all its functions. Which is to love the one true God with everything and love people as yourself.
- LOVING GOD AND LOVING PEOPLE: We at MPI have chosen to simplify the Great Commandments of God to make it easy to remember and share with everyone. “Loving God and Loving People!”
TWO MAIN WAYS TO LOVE GOD
- WORSHIPPING GOD IN SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH: We worship God in spirit by being born again, baptized in the Holy Spirit and by believing sound doctrine. John 4:23-24, “23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”
- OBEYING GOD’S COMMANDS: We obey God’s commands by following the teachings of Jesus and the apostles in the New Testament. There are roughly 100 commands in the NT and most of them could be summed up as, “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
TWO MAIN WAYS TO LOVE PEOPLE
- HELPING IN TIMES OF NEED: The parables of “The Good Samaritan” (Luke 10:25-37) and “The Sheep and Goats” (Matthew 25:31-46) illustrate how Jesus intended us to help people- clothing the naked, providing for the sick, feeding the hungry, helping the homeless, bringing justice to the oppressed, etc. Remember, sometimes “helping people” can be considered “tough love,” like Jesus with the “Rich Man” (Matthew 19:16-30) and Paul with the widows (1 Timothy 5:3-16).
- Sadly, needy people can sometimes try to wrongly obligate or shame Christians who don’t help them in the way they want it. Thus, the following saying is often true in such cases, “You don’t always get what you want, but you might just get what you need!”
- For example, an addict may try to make a person feel guilty because they will not give them money or a place to stay because instead they are offering them the chance to join a program. Or a husband may try to convince his battered wife not to call the police because going to jail will embarrass him and cause him hardship. However, the wife should love him enough to get him arrested because that is truly what he needs. This kind of “tough love” can also been seen in “Church Discipline” as noted by Paul in Corinth (1 Corinthians 5) and in Crete (Titus 3:10-11).
- PREACHING THE GOSPEL: As disciples of Christ we don’t just bring “social justice,” but we also must preach the gospel of Jesus Christ! For without the gospel- poor people with full bellies will still go to hell! Both the YMCA and Salvation Army started with this vision and we must carry on this tradition with the godly heart of their founders.
- For example, the YMCA, “combined preaching in the streets and the distribution of religious tracts with a social ministry.” Salvation Army’s objectives were, “The advancement of the Christian religion… of education, the relief of poverty, and other charitable objects beneficial to society or the community of mankind as a whole.”
- Paul boldly stated in Romans 1:16-17, “16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed— a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”
- Love God with all your heart soul, mind, and strength by worshipping Him in spirit and in truth and by obeying all His commands.
- Love People as yourself by helping them in times of need and preaching the gospel to them.
Wanna change the world? Love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and love your neighbor as yourself!