Wednesday, November 14, 2012

There are many hypocrites in the church!

The church is filled with hypocrites. Why should I join them? Just the other day, Elder So and So did... Sister So and So and Brother So and So... Such questions linger in the minds of many who would like to join the Church or even some who are already members but feel like walking out because they are not impressed by the character of some members. I truly feel for such children of God, for once I thought likewise. Nevertheless, I saw the light, like the one that illumined Saul on his deadly mission to Damascus. "It is hard to for you kick against the pricks," the Lord said. Saul asked, "what will you have me to do?" (Acts 9:5, 6). We must never forget that the church is God's idea. Whoever is worried about the status of God's church, must repeat Saul's question before quitting or joining.

We must never assume that the Church is made up only of people who have already been fully furnished to live as Christians. Just like Jesus explains in the parable of the wheat and tares (Matthew 13:24-30), God's true Church is not composed of perfect people. One wise man said that "a church is not a museum, but a workshop. In a museum, items finished long ago are lined up on display... In a workshop, on the other hand, some items are in the beginning stages, some half done, and some nearing completion. Changes are taking place. A church is like that. Its people should be expected to be in every stage of Christian love-learning and busy with the process."

One of my lecturers likes saying that fellowship simply means "fellows in a ship". The church is like the ark in Noah's day. It was definitely an imperfect boat for it was built by humans, leave alone the wear and tear standing in the sun for 120 years. But when the flood came it did the perfect job of helping God to save his people for it was a divine plan, not a human plan. The church is an imperfect organization for it is made up of humans, and at times the stench of dung is unbearable. But it will do the job of helping God save His people, for it is built after God's plan. The parable of the ten virgins (Matthew 25:1-13) demonstrates to us that the church is composed of truly connected and not truly connected Christians.

A glance at a few texts in the Scriptures would advice us (1) to look to Jesus for salvation~ Isaiah 45:22 (2) to look unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith~ Hebrews 12:2 and (3) rhetoric "why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?"~ Matthew 7:1-5. Jesus, as the head of the church is already too deeply committed to the success of his body despite its imperfections.

Harmon White implored us in her testimonies, "I testify to my brethren and sisters that the church of Christ, enfeebled and defective as it may be, is the only object on earth on which He bestows His supreme regard..."

Beloved of God, I can confidently propose to you never to quit, for those contemplating it, and never hesitate to join God's true church, for those considering it. Nevertheless, it must be remembered that God calls his church from the world. It must be in the world (John 17:14-16) but must not be of the world. A church that is like the world will have little success in attracting people from the world.

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