Jesus at the Center of Our Church

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Text: John 15

“I love you with the love of our Lord.”

What image of a church would any outsider or stranger aspire to be part of?

Jesus said that He is the Vine and that we are the branches.

We must keep in mind:
1. Jesus is the center and the main attraction.
As the vine, Jesus is everything.

When we say He is the main attraction, we mean that He is the one and only attraction of the church.

Jesus in the flesh?
The fastest growing cult in the country: Jesus Christ Kingdom by Quiboloy

In 2005, he proclaimed that he was the Jesus in flesh. Still, he had so many followers and churches around the nation.

Why do many Filipinos believe that his teachings were true? This is the reality that as creations and human beings we seek for a creator, a master, a God. Many want to see Jesus. Many want to experience His power, mercy and grace. Sadly, there are those who deceive men.

“I am the true vine and my Father is the gardener.”
-John 15:1

When Jesus said that He’s the TRUE VINE, behind those words were the expectation that false vines may rise to divert and catch our attention away from Him.

Francis Chan said, “I think there has been too much emphasis on me. I want to be used by God, but I think we have this desire to make heroes out of people rather than of God…”

We have to put the real Jesus in our lives. We must raise and exalt Him, not ourselves or anyone we see that is highly praised due to his teachings, exhortations and testimony. Everything should be always pointed to Jesus, none but only Him.

2. Bear much fruit

If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you want, and it will be done for you. My Father is honored by this, that you bear much fruit and show that you are my disciples.
-John 15:7-8

If we want to be part of His church, we must bear fruit. Fruit that will last and endure to the end.
Given that we have a big building and facilities, we must keep by heart and by soul the number of lives of people we have touched. We must have the burden on the empty seats during Worship Services. We must keep on reaching out for the lost.

Remember: The Father cuts off the branches that do not bear fruit.

A. Old branches
These are the USED-TO-BE Christians. Those who used to be active, on fire, shared Jesus, and involved in ministries, but ceased being one.

B. Branches that are covered by powdered mildew
Mildew destroys branches. In us, they represent sin. They are the compromising Christians.

3. Branches that are too far from the center
They are those who lack intimacy with God, the none practitioner of the ‘means of grace’. They are not open to God’s voice. They don’t read the Bible.

D. Branches that are huge and little
These are the Christians with a wrong state of heart. Remember, medium is the right size of a fruit bearing branch. Everything is a heart issue to God. He looks into our hearts. We may be helping at the church, doing ministries, yet our hearts are not fully transformed of His Word. Our lives are wastes when outside the church building.

What do we bear?
A. Obedience to the teachings of our Lord Jesus
B. Christlikeness is the holy and righteous living
C. Great Commission
D. Fruit of the Holy Spirit

3. Actively loving one another

My commandment is this – to love one another just as I have loved you.
-John 15:12

If we love one another, we are more than concern for each other, we are sensitive who needs help, prayers and the needs of our neighbors.

The group of those who believed were of one heart and mind, and no one said that any of his possessions was his own, but everything was held in common.
-Acts 4:32

In 1 Corinthians 6: 1-6, we are encouraged that our loyalty to God should reflect as well to the church. When somebody is weak or lacking, settle it. Love one another.

Evaluate:
Do we possess these images of a Christ-centered church?
Do people see the real Jesus as the head of our Church?
Do we see the fruit of th Spirit widely practiced at TFCN?
Do people see how we are actively loving one another?

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Jesus at the Center of Our Church
By Ptr Samuel Tamayo
English Service
October 22, 2012
Taytay First Church of Nazarene

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