Morning service led by Beverley Sills, with preaching from Alan Cole.
As we look around our land today, we see former church buildings that have closed or been converted to other uses. Why? Has God lost His power? Does a church cease to exist when its last member dies or its buildings fall down, or does a church die when God has no further use for it? Revelation 2 & 3 give the warning signs to look out for:
- The church that has lost its first love (Revelation 2: 1-7). When a church has lost its passion for Christ, lost its love of the gospel and does not love and care for its members and its community, then it will die. Matthew 22:37
- False doctrine and tolerance of sin (Revelation 2: 12-17). The Holy Spirit will not send people to a church where the gospel is not preached, where false doctrine is proclaimed or sin is tolerated. It is important that all members, and especially leaders, are well versed in scripture and ready to act on any problems. 2 Timothy 2:16-19.
- Weak leadership. (Revelation 2: 18-28). Sometimes Satan will place individuals in a church who seek to lead it astray. Wise leaders will recognise this and take steps to deal with the situation. As church members we need to pray for our leaders that they will be given insight and strategic vision to lead the church . A church needs strategic vision, and that comes from our leaders.
- The church that is outwardly active, but spiritually dead (Revelation 3:1-6). It is easy for a church to be very busy, doing all sorts of activities except preaching the gospel. Churches need to be aware of over-busyness and of services being formal and lacking in meaning, unsatisfying for members and visitors alike.
- The church that is self-satisfied, independent and lacks nothing. (Revelation 3: 14-22). This is the church that relies on its own strength and not on God. Prayer is unnecessary as they can do everything themselves.
If the Baptist Union conducted an Ofsted style inspection on our church next week how would we rate? If Jesus came to our church next week, what would He think?
Theme: Why do Churches die?
Reading: Revelation 2 & 3
Preacher: Alan Cole
Led by: Bev Sills