Standing in the Way of God’s Work

January 11

Who was I that I could stand in God’s way?

Acts 11:17
God founded the Church. God was not the product of the Church, the Church was the product of God. The Church therefore is subject to God, its creator. Though this may sound silly for us to consider, the point must always be fresh in our minds. The warning of Gamaliel stands through the ages: So in the present case I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone, for if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” So they took his advice…. (Acts 5:38-39)
In my many readings for the completion of my ThM, I came across a startling indictment. While discussing the sufficiency and authority of Scripture in most churches, the author states:

Other churches and denominations hold to the insufficiency of Scripture erecting church traditions (e.g., how the Lord’s Supper is served, the placement of the pulpit in the sanctuary, the use of hymns rather than choruses) that rival and perhaps even trump Scripture for authority in determining their ecclesiological doctrines and practices. All of these different perspectives deny for different reasons the sufficiency of Scripture for the development of ecclesiology. (Greg Allison, Sojourners and Strangers, 34) The authors point is that when we are determining the correct way to conduct our worship, the first line of our defense should always be, “Will this practice please the founder of the Church, the Creator of the universe Himself?” Thankfully, when we ask such questions, we have a place to look to see the answer – Scripture. 

May it never be true of any church that Oxford Baptist Church neglects the fact that God is the founder of the Church.

How firm a foundation you saints of the Lord,

is laid for your faith in his excellent Word!

What more can he say than to you he has said,

to you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?

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