gty.org/resources/sermons/80-341

Well as I was mentioning a few moments ago, we have been in a prolonged recognition of God's faithfulness of over 40 years of ministry together, and it has prompted me on each of our Sundays over the last month or so to look at some of the foundations of our church that has put us in the place where God has blessed us so greatly. We take no credit for it, this is not a work of man, certainly not a work of mine. This is, we believe, a work of God. There are some spiritual commitments that we have made here in this church that really were there at the very, very beginning of this church, even when I came, an eagerness to follow the Word of God. And it is that commitment to the Word of God that has given us unwavering, unaltered, unchanging commitment to a pattern of ministry that is laid out in the New Testament.

I grew up in churches. My father and grandfather being pastors, I was exposed to my own church as a kid growing up in my Dad's church, I was exposed to many other churches, many churches in which we had mutual ministry and shared youth activities and things like that. My college days, even while I was a student, I was speaking in various places in various places. In seminary I was in more churches and exposed to more approaches to churches and how they did their work. And by the time I finished my seminary days, I had pretty much seen every way you could do church at least at that period of time. And I came to the conclusion that I just wanted to follow what the New Testament said as closely as possible.

Setting aside all those things that were traditional or normal or expected, let's go back and see what the Word of God has to say. I couldn't imagine that the Lord would have expectations for His church and not instructions for His church. And so it was that in the months before I ever came here, I was grappling with the Word of God, endeavoring to understand if the Lord ever allows me to become a pastor, what is it that is non-negotiable, critical, essential...what are the mandates for the life of the church so we can be the church of Jesus Christ and bring honor to our Head and have an impact in the world. And so from those earliest days when we first came together in February of 1969, our focus was always upon...what does the Word of God have to say about every aspect of our life as a church?...

j vimeo.com/61653037

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