Outline and Audio Sermons:
Dr. Walter D. Huyck Jr. D.Min.

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Beyond Comprehension

God’s Gift to the Church

Eph 4.8,11-15

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[The early Methodist evangelist, George Whitefield, was one of America's most effective preachers, who won thousands to Christ. He was vigorously opposed by Charles Chauncy, pastor of Boston's famous First Church.]

[Rev. Chauncy objected to the idea of instantaneous conversions and to the emotional excitement caused by Whitefield's ministry.]

[In 1744, on Whitefield's second visit to Boston, the two met. Rev. Chauncy said, "So you have returned, have you?" "Yes," replied the evangelist, "in the service of the Lord." "I am sorry to hear it," Rev. Chauncy said bluntly. "So is the devil," retorted Whitefield.]

[The devil hates any preacher who fearlessly and effectively sounds the gospel trumpet. —Bible Illustrations] 

A.     God’s Gift To The Church (vs 8,11) 

1.      God’s Calling (2 Tim 1.6-11) [– In our day Churches have lost sight of the supernatural calling of God’s man.  Pastors have a unique place within the Church because they have a unique calling by God.  Clearly, Paul addresses and indicates the calling and giftedness of young Timothy as pastor, and himself as an Apostle in:] 

[2 Timothy 1:6-11 6 Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands. 7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. 8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; 9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, 10 But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: 11 Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.]

[Too many Churches in our day have lost sight of the supernatural endowment of God upon those He calls from within His Church.  Too many have bought into the idea that just anyone can Pastor a Church, and this is just not scriptural.  There is a clear and distinct calling upon God’s man, and Church members should ensure that they are following a man clearly called by God into pastoral ministry.]

2.      God’s Control (vs 11, 1 Cor 12.12-13,18) [– There is a God given structure to the Church, just as there is structure for our homes, and structure in our living bodies.  Yes, the Church is a living organism, rather than an organization.  But a living organism has structure and organization in it.  For instance our bodies have various parts and every part must perform its function in order for the body to work and live.  So it is in the organism of the Church.]   

[Our text reveals that God has given order to the Church.  There are to be leaders or pastors in the Church and they are meant to give direction, guidance and protection to the Church.  The Bible is clear about where the authority of this order is based.] 

[1 Corinthians 12:12-13 12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.
13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.]

[1 Corinthians 12:18 18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.]

[God is the one who chooses where each member is to be placed within His body. While we understand that there is no difference in the fact of our salvation and sonship in Christ, we are all equally the children of God.  There are differences in the position, purpose, authority and responsibilities of individual members within the body.  An arm is responsible to function as an arm, a leg is responsible to function as a leg, and so on.  Hence, there is a diversity of giftedness and responsibility within the body of Christ.  A pastor has a distinct burden, guidance and responsibility within the Church body and that distinction must be recognized and honored by the Church as a whole.]

3.      God’s Captivity (Eph 5.23; 1 Thess 5.12-13) [– Another philosophy that has taken the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ is the idea that the Church is meant to be a democracy.  The Church was never meant to be a democracy; instead Scripture clearly reveals that it is without any doubt a Theocracy. The Bible declares:] 

[Ephesians 5:23 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.]

[Make no mistake.  Christ shares His position and authority with no one or no majority.  When it comes right down to it, God does not care whether you like what He declares or whether you think He is fair or not.  He is Almighty God and He will not negotiate with you or your sensibilities.]

[Hence it is in the Church.  God has placed His pastor in the Church and the Church is expected to recognize the authority that substantiates the pastor as the head of the Church.  The Bible reminds us:]

[1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 12 And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; 13 And to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. And be at peace among yourselves.]

B.     God’s Guidance For The Church (vs 12) 

1.      Pastors Must Preach (2 Tim 4.1-5) [– Pastor’s must rightly divide the whole Word of the God.  Paul told Timothy:] 

[2 Timothy 4:1-5 1 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. 5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.]

[A congregation that fails to recognize the calling and command given by God to their pastor will refuse to allow their pastor to preach and say the things he needs to say to confront sin in the Church and challenge true spiritual growth within the Churches people.  Christians don’t mind the exhortation and doctrine, but when the reproofs and rebukes come they will often rebel and begin seeking to vote their pastors out of their positions.  The truth is that some times the preaching of the Word of God hurts, for the purpose of growth.]

[Churches do not need preachers with itching ears, they need God called preachers that will minister the Word of God.]

2.      Pastors Must Provide (1 Pet 5.1-4) [– Pastors must act as shepherds for their Church.  There are regular times when they must lead their flock to the green pastures and still waters.  There are also times when they must protect the flock from its predators and sometimes its own sheep.  The Bible reminds us:] 

[1 Peter 5:1-4 1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: 2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; 3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. 4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.]

[Two things come to mind here:]

a.       [The pastor must willingly to sacrificially lead the flock.]

b.      [The flock must be willing to follow the pastor.  Church members must watch out for those who would cause them to doubt the sincerity, integrity, and ability for their pastor to lead them.  The Bible warns:]

[1 Timothy 5:1 1 Rebuke not an elder, but intreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren;]

[1 Timothy 5:19 19 Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.]

[It should not surprise us when persecution and accusations arise when we are doing God’s work.  It is the worlds, and our adversaries attempt to destroy God’s man, God’s people, and God’s work.  Accusations should be reasonably address, but God’s man must also be diligently protected, Give him the benefit of a doubt.]

3.      Pastors Must Persuade (Heb 13.17) [– A God called Pastor must be properly understood.  If God is really leading Him to minister to you, your family, and your Church; then he will assimilate the responsibility over your soul personally.   This is a supernatural result of God’s calling upon His life and the level of work the Holy Spirit is doing within this man.  The Bible says:] 

[Hebrews 13:17 17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.]

[The problem in our day is that many Christian fail to recognize this divinely impressed facet of God called ministry.  Our culture is largely a free spirited, get your hands off my life, kind of individual culture.  While this individualism is a mark of Americanism it is not a mark of God’s kingdom.  God purposefully impresses upon His pastors that they are personally responsible for their member’s souls.  In placing this heavy burden upon them God forces them to approach his people with a bold honesty about the Word of God and the things of God.]

[Church members need to understand the sense of personal responsibility God engrains within His ministers, and need to strive to understand that when they seem too close to their life’s issues it is the expression of God’s calling and love working through them that has brought them to where they are.]

C.     God’s Grounding Of The Church  (vs 13-15) [– There are at least two things that God seeks to provide for you through the structure of the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ.  While these are provide through the Church as whole the pastor and his leadership is a dynamic part of the provision given and realized by each member.  Through God’s grounding you will realize:] 

1.      Your Maturity (vs 13; Romans 8.29) [– Through the work of the Church in your life, including the pastors work, you will grow in Christ and will become more and more like Christ day by day.  Clearly God’s goal for every born again Christian is that they be just like Jesus.  The Bible states:] 

[Romans 8:29 29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.]

[Churches that refuse to acknowledge the calling and authority of the pastor in their fold and personal lives rob themselves of one of the most influential molding agents that God has provided for their lives. ]

2.      Your Purity (vs 14-15) [– Pastors are also one of the primary defenses that God has provided the Church against false doctrine and false teachers who try to infiltrate the Church.  The problem with deceivers in the Church is that they are very good at disguising their lies from the Church.  Even Pastors are challenged with the task of identifying false teachers within the Church.  A part of the function of a pastor within a Church body is to help keep the Church pure in doctrine and theology.] 




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