BIRTHDAY OF THE CHURCH

June 4th, Sunday, marks the birthday of the Lord’s Church.  It is Pentecost Sunday.  Pentecost means 50.  After Jesus’ resurrection, He appeared to individuals and groups during a period of 40 days.  Then, He ascended, went up to Heaven, to be seated at God’s right hand.  10 days later, He sent the Holy Spirit to the Apostles.  The Holy Spirit guided the Apostles in divine truth.  For the first time in history, everything was complete for the presentation of the Good News.  The preaching of the Gospel (Good News) is what offers to mankind salvation.  You can be saved by becoming believers of that Word.  The saved are Christians and Christians are the church.

  Luke records this for us in chapter 24, verses 46-49 “He told them, “This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all the nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.  I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.” 

The climax of all that God was doing to save sinful mankind was here at Pentecost, as recorded for us in the second chapter of Acts.  The miracle of Pentecost was an appeal to the hearing (sound of a rushing wind), seeing (tongues of fire), and understanding (as the Apostles spoke, the people heard in their own language.) The Apostle Peter, spokesman for the Apostles preached the first Gospel sermon.
I was taught early in my ministry that a sermon should consist of three parts: It should be Bible Based, Christ Crowned and People Pointed At.  Peter took his message from the second chapter of Joel, he exalted Jesus saying, “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Acts 2:36   And he pointed it at people, ‘you crucified Him.’  What a shock to the Jews assembled there in Jerusalem, that they had killed their long awaited for Messiah.  They realized in their hearts what they had done. They felt their desperate need for reconciliation with God, forgiveness of their sins. They were pricked by their guilt of sin and cried out, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”  The divine answer came, “Repent and be baptised every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”  Acts 2:38
3000 people responded. Here the Church was born.
The Church is the body of Christ.  Christians are the Church.  God’s action is through His people.

A five year old girl had lost her way in the downtown streets of a city.  To a policeman, who was questioning her, she said, “If I can find the Church, I can find my way home.”

That is not as simple to answer as it sounds. There is great confusion in the religious world concerning the church.  May we return to the Bible and hear Jesus say, “I will build MY CHURCH.”  Mathew 16:18
The Church belongs to Jesus.  You can’t join the church, you can only join Jesus and when you do that, He adds you to His body, the Church.
Be the Church.   Be God’s family.

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