JULY 19, 2023

Hi everyone!

In many of our Christian circles, we have all probably heard the phrase “established church”. “Oh! That church on that side of town is great. It’s an ESTABLISHED church.” Have you ever wondered what people meant by using this phrase to describe a church? What does the church in question have to be or have to have in order to be considered “established”? Does it need to have engaging preaching? Dynamic worship? Thriving small groups? Does it need to be welcoming or friendly towards outsiders? Good stewards with finances?

What does it mean to be an established church?

Luckily for us, Paul answers this exact question in Romans 1:11-12.

He writes, “For I long to see you so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you, that you may be ESTABLISHED; that is, that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other’s faith, both yours and mine.”

Paul’s desire is to see the church that is in Rome so that he can deposit a gift of the Spirit to them. It is a simple theological truth that the Holy Spirit equips and empowers the church with various gifts. The Spirit does this for functioning of the church and the advancement of God’s kingdom, not for any one member’s self-promotion. The gifts that the Spirit gives are, in many ways, the lifeblood of the church. Without them, the church cannot function. Without members using their Spirit-endowed gifts, the church would run aground. Without the church functioning as it should, the appointed way for God’s kingdom to be advanced would be no more. Do we see the importance of spiritual gifts?

Back to the original question: What does it mean to be an established church?

Allow me to answer this question with a different question. If the Apostle Paul were to step foot into our church would he be both a a source and a conduit of encouragement for us? That is, would there be mutual encouragement taking place as a result of Paul’s visit to our church? According to the text cited above, this is how we can determine if a church is established or not.

So, I will ask again: Would Paul be encouraged by his visit to Redeemer Community Church? Would we be encouraged by Paul in his visit to RCC? Or do you think we would be getting a letter like one he wrote to the Galatians (Read Galatians 3:1-3)?

Friends, may we be an established church. May we be a church that holds onto the gospel. May we be a church that cares for one another. May we be a church that practices it’s spiritual gifts for the advancement of God’s kingdom.

Contact Pat Howell with any questions.

Two water related events coming up this month. First, it’s the Crowder concert at Magic Springs.

Our students are making plans to go. And you’re welcome to tag along. If you or a student are planning to come, please register by 11:59 PM tonight. TODAY IS THE LAST DAY TO REGISTER. Click here for details and to register now.

Two days later, we’ll be splashing around and enjoying pizza together at our end of July pool party!

Our students are also going to be starting the Fall off right with a great time of fun, food, and a Bible study series. Make plans to join and invite a friend!

Parents! It’s almost Awana time! Registration is open for the fall. We will be having a Kick-off night on August 30th for parents and kids. Hope you will join us!

And you can register for Awana here: https://redeemerlr.churchcenter.com/registrations/events/1833857

For the the next two Sunday’s we will be exploring the faith of Abraham and what got him into the Hall of Faith. Matt and I hope you have been encouraged by our series in Hebrews 11. We hope that your faith has grown as a result of it so far!

See you in church.

Blessings in Christ,
Cole Perkins

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