Safer-with-the-Church (Ephesians 4:11-16)
Key idea: The church is essential to us, and we are essential to the church.
I. The Church is Essential to Us
The picture we are given is that the church consists of believers transformed by the Gospel of Christ (chapters 1-3), united around the person of Christ (4:13), ministering the truths of Christ (4:15), so that everyone would be rooted in Christ (4:14), resulting in a family who loves like Christ (4:15-16).
Ephesians 4 accomplishes at least two things:
A. It recognizes the importance of the church
B. It reconstructs our understanding of the church
II. We are Essential to the Church
Three ideas that help define and describe how each of us ministers:
A. The Word we hold in common
B. The uniqueness of our gifting
C. The overarching call to love
How has God uniquely made me to love others and encourage them in their walk with Christ?
Practical questions to ask as we seek to love others:
A. How can I ensure open communication?
B. What are their practical needs, and how can I meet those needs?
C. What are their spiritual challenges, and how can I offer loving truth about Christ?
D. How can I be praying for them?