The gospel of Jesus. We are a sinners who deserve death and hell. He is God incarnate. He is righteous and holy. He deserves all of the majesty of Heaven and our praise. In His longsuffering He endures our hatred of Him and His law. He condescends to save us from the condemnation of hell. He is raised upon a cross, thereupon crucified. He takes our punishment upon Himself, thus satisfying the justice of God. The wrath of God is assuaged by His atoning work. We hear about what He has done for us and either believe it or not. If not, then the flames of hell are waiting for us, and rightly so, for we are fully culpable for our transgressions. If we believe, then repentance is our faith revealed and testimony to the dying world. We hate our sins and turn to Christ our redeemer, who purchased us with His sacrifice upon the cross. He becomes our Lord and Master. Sin no longer rules us. Our minds are being renewed by the reading of His word. Our hearts are transformed into new living hearts with God honoring desires. He sanctifies us as we grow in faith and knowledge of Him. We are born again. Not to live as slaves to sin and death, but to live as bondservants of Christ and holiness. Love Jesus with all of your heart, for He is the Savior!
Day: November 18, 2014
Neat Little Book, A Review of, “I Am A Church Member” by Thom S. Rainer
The Pastor at the SBC Church I attend gave these booklets out to everyone last Sunday after Service as an early Christmas present. It didn’t take long to read. I am a slow reader, so for me that is saying something. It was pretty concise and brief. Packed in a small booklet between two hard covers is a primer, if you will, on being in The Church and being in A Church simultaneously, instead of one or the other. The ideas inside this book truly express the gospel, and what it means to be part of the body. I encourage all new Christians and those of us who have matured to read this booklet. For the younger folks it will help them understand what this is all about and for us a bit further along it will help us remember what we are to be about. We aren’t in a social club, even though we socialize with one another. We aren’t there for the benefits, even though we do benefit from corporate worship and ministry to the body. We are there for the love of God and the worship of Him who made us. In the abounding overflow of His love expressed to us by Christ crucified we should lavish that same love on the body as we minister to each other and share the glorious gospel of Jesus with those who have never heard. As a healthy body, made of healthy members, we can magnify Christ and glorify God, through the proclamation of His gospel, His word, and our love for one another. This book is a great reminder and primer.
Some complain that this is legalistic or that the scripture verses are out of context. Some also complain about the contracts at the end of every chapter. I answer that by saying you need to look at the intent of the book. You don’t have to sign the contracts and turn them in. They aren’t binding. I think they are kind of silly myself. As an entire mission, I agree that the local Church needs to shape up, but it can’t be done by people obligatorily signing up for things. The idea within this booklet is for you to have a changed heart and then you’ll want to do the things within the booklet. The problem with the Church is that it is full of unchanged people. You can’t expect them to, “get on board” when they aren’t even on the team. So to the critics, I ask, “Are you sure you are saved?” If you are then you won’t hate the Church.
Available for purchase here
and from Holman the publisher
Trim Size: 0.24 x 5.00 x 7.00
Page Count: 96
Binding: Paper Over Board
Publication Date: May 2013
I Am a Church Member: Discovering the Attitude that Makes the Difference by Thom S. Rainer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars