Flatland/Pics: Paradox and Paradigm

If we want to be a transformation bringing church we must understand the paradox and the paradigm of ministry. The paradox confuses us so we end up with the wrong paradigm of ministry. This is the message that Pastor Bart brought us Sunday. It is a message that we often don’t listen to either because we don’t want to or because we really don’t understand. I encourage you to listen to the podcast at flatlandchurch.com.

Acts 19:19-20 shows the church at Ephasus was a life transforming church.

The paradox

Salvation is a matter of faith, transformation a matter of actions. We can not get the two mixed up. James 2 :17

The paradox is that people think that they can be saved by doing good works but that we are transformed simply by faith.

We can not condem the world and try to force them to follow our “rules” on them thinking that will transform them when it is salvation then transformation.

We also must live transformed lives that the lost are attracted to Christianity. We must not stink it up.

The paradigm

1 Cor 5:12-13. Don’t judge the world but judge Christians who claim to be righteous but by their actions live like the world. They say “save me but don’t transform me.”

Those that are farthest from God must be shown the most grace. Those closest to God must be the most challenged to live the God focused life. Christians must challange each othe to live right.

Christians and non-Christians are not opponents. We are on the same team opposed to Satan.

Who are God’s customers? The unsaved. He doesn’t get mad at his customers when they act ungodly, he gets mad at his team, his workers, i.e. us when we fail to do what he has called us to do.

We should not judge a person’s salvation by their transformation. There are non-Christians who live good and Christians that don’t live as they should.

This message is one that we all need to hear and live. As Christians we all too often try to force non-Christians to live as if they are following Christ yet we live ourselves according to the world’s standards and lifestyles and not God’s.

We need to love those in the world that they may see Christ. We cannot condem them for what they do nor can we live like them. We need to take on the attitude of Christ (phillipians 2).

We need to be strict with those who call themselves Christians, holding them to the standard that is Christ.

We must hold each other to that higher standard that the world will see that we are different, that we represent something more than what the world offers.

Let us live the Christ like lives that we may be the rain on the parched land.

Quick note: I have been having a lot of small problems with my iPhone app for WordPress, where I keep loosing text, think it is posted when it is not, etc. This post and the next were both really messed up. I am looking for a good replacement.

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