Looking Out for the Church
Acts 20:28 through Acts 20:31 (NIV)
28Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood. 29I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. 30Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them. 31So be on your guard! Remember that for three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears.
As those entrusted with the overight of Gods church, we must look out for the church by:
- Looking Up – to the God which has given you the mission. It is Him who you should look to for what you need.
· I looked on Jesus and the dove of peace entered my heart. I looked at the dove of peace; and lo ... off he went.
-- Corrie Ten Boom in Each New Day. Christianity Today, Vol. 35, no. 2.
See: Ro 5:1; Eph 2:14; Ps 34:5
- Looking Down – what we have been rescued from (don’t touch, its too hot)
- Looking Back – to the work of others who have gone before you and shed tears and blood.
· The example of noble deaths such as the Spartans and others hardly move us, for we do not see what good it is to us. But the example of the deaths of Christian martyrs move us, for they are our members, having a common bond with them, so that their devotion inspires us not only by their example, but because we should have the same. ...
The history of the church should more accurately be called the history of truth.
-- Blaise Pascal, Christian History, no. 25.
- Looking Ahead – to the work and mission before us. (You have nothing to do but save souls (others, and your own).
- Looking Inside – Watching out for ourselves and our spiritual condition. We can get so busy with ministry that we lose our relationship with God (Lonnie Potts).
- Look Out – Be on your guard
· It often seems that the church is a place for contention, which seems to turn some people away. But some see fighting in the church as a healthy sign that people care enough to invest the energy in fighting. A few years ago two ministers got into a fight about what they considered to be an important doctrinal matter. They settled the fight when the first minister told the second: "Look, what are we fighting over? We're both striving to do the Lord's work. You do it your way and I'll do it His way!"
--James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited (Wheaton: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc, 1988) p. 90.