Giants of the Reformation (8)
All Scripture isgiven by inspiration of God, and isprofitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3.16, 17
Institutes of the Christian Religion
John Calvin (1509-1564)
“Here, then, is the sovereign power with which the pastors of the church, by whatever name they are called, ought to be endowed. That is that they may dare boldly to do all things by God’s Word; may compel all worldly power, glory, wisdom, and exaltation to yield to and obey his majesty; supported by his power, may command all from the highest even to the last; may build up Christ’s household and cast down Satan’s; may feed the sheep and drive away the wolves; may instruct and exhort the teachable; may accuse, rebuke, and subdue the rebellious and stubborn; may bind and loose; finally, if need be, may launch thunderbolts and lightnings; but do all things in God’s Word.”
Churches today sponsor a wide range of programs, activities, and events, and feature many boards, committees, teams, and so forth. Are we careful to make sure that each of these has the sanction of God’s Word, and that all the work of each of these is done in a manner consistent with and according to the plain teaching of Scripture? The Spirit has determined how best to build Christ’s Church, and He will do so, working with us, only as we follow His lead from the Scriptures. We must not substitute the world’s ways of getting things done for what the Scriptures teach; rather, to the extent that we borrow on worldly wisdom – and there is a place for this – it must be only in such a way as to aid in fulfilling what the Scriptures require, and subordinate to any clear teaching of God’s Word concerning how we must build His Church.
How confident are you that all the work of your church is being done according to the teaching of God’s Word?
T. M. Moore
Organizing with the Spirit
The Lord Jesus is building His Church. His Word is the blueprint, His Spirit is the General Contractor, and we are all builders together of the Body of Christ. But are we doing our work God’s way, or ours? The Spirit has His ways of organizing our work, and we do well to understand as much as we can about His methods. This is the argument of Dr. Kent Miller of Michigan State University, and you can watch our Conversation with Dr. Miller, and download a free copy of his paper on the subject, “Organizing with the Spirit,” by clicking here.
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Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.All quotations from John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, John T. McNeill, ed., Ford Lewis Battles, tr. (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1960), Vol. 2, Book IV, pp. 1012ff.