For some, the Bible is just a book of stories. Those readers may enjoy the history and moral teachings, but for them, it is nothing more than information. For the Christian, however, the Scriptures are the inspired Word of God. The Bible is literally God speaking to us. That is why it is central to our faith and conduct. God’s will is found in God’s Word.
I find it interesting that the first question we ask those who become local church members is, “Do you believe the Bible to be the Word of God?” The Bible is the ultimate authority in what we do personally and as a church family. Here are a few Bible verses that should move our churches to action.
1. (Jesus said) “I will build my church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.” Matthew 16:18
We must never forget that the church is not ours, but Christ’s. He is the one who has died for it and sustains it as the head of the body. While many of us have gone through some discouraging times, we have the promise that Christ is constantly building his church.
2. “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35
Jesus said the proof that we can offer the world that we are following Him is that we are getting along with each other! Sadly, in the midst of COVID and cultural clashes, we have allowed ourselves to be known by what divides us instead of what unites us.
3. “For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function.” Romans 12:4
We all belong because we are part of Christ’s body! Everyone is needed. However, we are not all the same. Never make the mistake of thinking everyone has the same gifts and roles. Each of us should use our God-given abilities and resources to serve one another. Our mutual submission enhances the body of Christ.
4. “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.” 2 Timothy 3:12
As we follow Christ, we can expect push back. There is a growing gap between what the Scripture says and what culture condones. People will try to shame the church and speak against its moral stands. It’s okay. Our calling is not to give in to the loudest voice, it is to love and extend grace to everyone!
5. “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Colossians 3:13
People are on edge and frustrated. We need to extend grace to each other. The Bible says that we are to “bear with each other” which means we may have to tolerate certain things. We must not let our disagreements lead to bitterness, instead we should always be ready to forgive!
BEFORE YOU GO
How is your local church doing? What are some strengths in your fellowship? What are areas you need to grow it?
What other challenging passages from the church would you add to this list?