As we have just finished our Missions Conference, I believe God is making at least two specific calls (i.e., commands!) to us as a church. The first specific call is precisely the message of the KPC 2012 Missions Conference from Al Baker. As you read this, the KPC 2012 Missions Conference will have concluded, meaning that God has left us with quite the challenge: Turn from our seductive worldliness and experientially be gripped by the Glory of the Gospel of Christ and the Calling of the Gospel of Christ as agents of a “revival culture.” This demands we daily die to Self and living unto Christ. But there is a promise with this challenge: “Behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt 28:20). In the Lord Jesus Christ, God has given us 1) new hearts with a new vision as ambassadors of Him; 2) new status of forgiveness and righteousness with a new passion to be co-laborers in His Kingdom; and 3) newness of life in the Holy Spirit with a new mission. In short, God has given to those who are united to Christ by faith everything they need for “life and godliness” (2 Pet 1:3), for “making disciples” (Matt 28:19), for “turning the world upside down” (Acts 17:6) for Christ! But here’s something important if we want to see God’s Glory come upon us. It must be done together as one body in Christ. The Apostle Paul, writing to the Philippians, speaks of their “partnership” (Phil 1:5) with Paul as “partakers” (1:7) with him of grace, actively standing with Paul and with one another, to “live as citizens of the Gospel of Christ … standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel” (1:27, italics mine). The word for “partnership” in Greek is koinonia, the word we often translate as “fellowship.” In other words, fellowship is active striving with each other to see the Gospel brought to bear. We could say it this way as well: Church membership is partnership. In our society, when you join as a “member” of a club, we often associate that with passivity and consumerism; we join a club to get certain benefits. The “partnership” of Christ’s Army means God has enlisted you for active involvement – in the gospel mission of Christ. Like a fish in water, you will find out that this “one-anothering” is what you are created in Christ Jesus to be. So, whom will you pick as your partner in Christ?
This leads us to the second specific call of God to our congregation: Those whom God is calling into servant leadership, whether in behind the scenes ways (in relationships) or as Deacons and Elders. During the month of March, we will open a season of nominations for Officers. Two of our Elders – Jim Morgan and Jim Saturday – will be rotating off at the end of this month. Jim Morgan will not be open for being nominated for a new term. Elders are men recognized and chosen by the congregation to serve as lead-shepherds who will oversee and lead by example in making disciples and equipping us in Gospel growth and Gospel advancement. Deacons are men recognized and chosen by the congregation to serve as lead-servants, in helping us to show the Gospel in practical, tangible ways – meeting physical needs among us, encouraging generous giving of our money and time. What kind of people are we to recognize? First and foremost, we need men of Gospel-character, who model repentance and faith in their lives, the godliness that accords with the sound doctrine of the Word. Secondly, we need men of Gospel-conviction, who wholeheartedly and warmly embrace the truths of the Scriptures, as pictured for us in the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms. Thirdly, we need men of Gospel-competency, who demonstrate the ability to minister Jesus in word and deed.
During the month of March, there will be “nomination booklets,” which will explain in more detail of the Biblical offices of Deacon and Elder and the procedure for electing them. Please carefully examine our spiritual well-being and consider whom God may provide. More than that, pray that God will raise up such workers and leaders! Also, during the month of March I will preach on Gospel-Leadership from 1 Timothy before turning back to Matthew, where providentially we will look at one of the best chapters in the Bible on spiritual leadership – Matthew 18.
Grace and peace, Harris
Knollwood Presbyterian Church | Presbyterian Church in America | Sylacauga, Alabama
155 Knollwood Lane, Sylacauga, Alabama 35151 (256) 249-2648 Service times: Sunday School 9:45 am | Morning Worship 10:55 am | Evening Worship 6:00 pm Various Community Groups meet throughout the week.