Living as Christ’s New Community (Colossians 3:5-17)
CrossWay Community Church
September 18th, 2022
Bring up race and people tense up and dig their heals in. Why is this? Why is talking about race is so difficult, and no less in the church? In this episode, Isaac Adams sits down with Kirk to talk about talking: how can we have better conversations about race? Or even more fundamentally, why do we need to have better conversations about race? Based on Adam’s recent book, Talking about Race: Gospel Hope for Hard Conversations (Zondervan, January 2022).
Sunday morning sermon
Lake Drive Baptist Church
Delivered August 31st, 2014
Text: 1 Corinthians 11:17-34
17 But in giving this instruction, I do not praise you, because you come together not for the better but for the worse. 18 For, in the first place, when you come together as a church, I hear that divisions exist among you; and in part I believe it. 19 For there must also be factions among you, so that those who are approved may become evident among you. 20 Therefore when you meet together, it is not to eat the Lord’s Supper, 21 for in your eating each one takes his own supper first; and one is hungry and another is drunk. 22 What! Do you not have houses in which to eat and drink? Or do you despise the church of God and shame those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you? In this I will not praise you.
23 For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; 24 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 25 In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.
27 Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. 28 But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. 30 For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep. 31 But if we judged ourselves rightly, we would not be judged. 32 But when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord so that we will not be condemned along with the world.
33 So then, my brethren, when you come together to eat, wait for one another. 34 If anyone is hungry, let him eat at home, so that you will not come together for judgment. The remaining matters I will arrange when I come. (NASB)
Without necessarily consciously thinking about it, we are aware of the idea that the clothing we wear needs to fit the occasion, event, or activity to which we wear them. For example, when I was in high school, I worked at a restaurant. And I had to wear a uniform—this ugly purple polo shirt that felt like burlap. Or, when I refereed soccer, I didn’t just wear anything; I wore a referee outfit. Similarly, many of you probably have either a work uniform, school uniform, or a certain dress code. We even have special gowns for those who are graduating (although I’m slightly convinced that whoever invented these wanted to make graduates feel humiliated—“Hey, you’re graduating. So… wear this black garbage bag and silly hat while we make you walk on a stage”). We have unwritten rules: You don’t wear a tuxedo to go swimming at the beach. When you go to a funeral, you’re not going to dress like Richard Simons. And when you go shopping, you don’t wear your pajamas… unless, apparently, you’re shopping at Wal-Mart.
Let me start out by saying that this is a response to Dave Marriott’s blog post entitled Guarding What Is Primary: Second Degree Separation which was posted today on The Gospel Toolbox. But with that said, let me add that I say “response” for lack of betters words. “Response” makes it sound like I am arguing with him, which is not what I’m doing. (For all I know, he may agree with me!) I am more so continuing the conversation.
Some recent events in the “world of Christianity” have provoked some thoughts in my mind. I will get to those thoughts in a moment, but first allow me to give some background.
Growing up I always felt that there was way too much division in the church. Now by “division” I mean both in local churches and the universal Church. I grew up with a very interesting “religious” background. Growing up I was shifted through vatrious denominations as I had parents who were really trying to figure things out for themselves. Experiencing so many “flavors” of Christianity (besides making me very discerning) made me very anti-denominationalistic. Further, my senior year of high school the church I was attended, a church my family was heavily involved in, had a split, a breakup, or whatever else you’d like to call it. This was a devastating time for me but also a time that God used for extreme spiritual growth in my life. I was very upset at the adults of that church for acting so unbiblical and immature (especially since the split wasn’t even over some doctrinal issue). But this frustration sparked in me a desire to search the scriptures to discover for myself what the church was really all about and what the church should look like biblically. I’ll stop there, because this is not intended to be a biography in anyway; but those two factors, my encounters with various denominations and beliefs growing up as well as the church split, had an extreme effect on my view of unity.