Grace Life Church Proclaiming Jesus Christ and the Gospel of God's Grace
IMPORTANT PLEA TO MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN CHRIST WORLDWIDE!
My friends, GET RID OF RELIGION! It shows itself in many forms but has one common thread (or rope) that will bind you! It leads you to believe that you must do things for God, others, and even yourself to keep God happy with you and bless you. It's the way many churches operate today - and it's FALSE TEACHING!
This short article is intended to clearly spotlight a significant problem that has infected many, if not most churches, all over the world. Religion puts the focus on you and what you're doing or should be doing. It leads countless believers to "play church" - doing all the "right" things which often include following man-made traditions and/or systems their churches or denominations say they need to do in order to be accepted by God, grow spiritually, and fit into their religious programs. This NEVER produces a growing and close relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ! Religion doesn't produce true spiritual growth because the focus is on self, not Christ!
God hates religion and you should too! The devil loves it when believers and unbelievers fall into the trap of religion. He loves it when we focus on ourselves and not on Christ. That's what he wants!
The primary reason God planted Grace Life Church in Sycamore in 2010 is so I would obediently obey God and His precious Word. God called me to boldly reject religion and proclaim Jesus Christ, and the gospel of His wonderful grace. The gospel of grace is the gospel for the church, the Body of Christ, today! Tragically, my wife and I could not find this gospel being clearly and consistently proclaimed in our community. Even more troubling is that the gospel of grace is not proclaimed and taught in most churches today! This is the primary problem the church faces today!
I'm not saying that all churches have fallen prey to this problem, but MOST have. Believers who hunger to grow spiritually are increasingly tired of being told that they need to do more for God, give more money to their church for ministries and building projects, get involved with more church ministries, etc. in order to please God and receive His blessings. Many of them know from reading and studying the Bible, particularly the epistles written by the Apostle Paul, that this is NOT what the Bible teaches on living a victorious Christian life! Many believers know from experience that this way just doesn't work!
Countless believers today are sick and tired of religion! This is a good thing! They hunger to know Jesus Christ more deeply! Like the Apostle Paul often prayed for the churches he wrote to, many Christians today desire to know more deeply the love of Christ. They know that the Christian life must be focused exclusively on Christ - not on church traditions, systems, and one-man dominated churches and ministries! Tragically, too many Christians are unaware that religion is blocking them from experiencing a rich and growing love relationship with Jesus Christ!
That's why God is starting churches and ministries like ours! You can be assured that Christ is building and protecting HIS church today. I believe one way He does this is through the Holy Spirit leading saints to create small fellowships that meet in small offices, homes, apartments, tents, barns, and all kinds of places the Lord provides for believers all over the world! As you probably know, in countries where Christians face severe persecution, believers often have to meet in very small and secret places in order to avoid being caught. We also need to remember that the Bible teaches us that when the church started soon after the resurrection of Jesus Christ, many believers met in small houses (Rom. 16:3-5; 1 Cor. 16:19-20; Col. 4:15; Phm. 1-3).
God has always used house churches to build His church throughout its history. I believe another way He uses house churches is to help preserve the teaching of sound doctrine from His Word. It's harder for false teaching to spread among a multitude of many small fellowships than in very large churches (mega-churches, for example), where one person can lead many people astray. The Apostle Paul warns us "that the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear" (2 Tim. 4:3). That time has definitely come!
The professing church is filled with false teaching. It has departed from sound doctrine on a large scale. More specifically, I believe the biggest problem is the regular teaching that mixes law and grace - which is legalism. The Bible clearly teaches that after the cross-work of Jesus Christ, that we are not to live our Christian lives using Israel's Law program or any other rules/regulations that men may devise - "For sin shall not be your master, because YOU ARE NOT UNDER LAW BUT, BUT UNDER GRACE" (Rom. 6:14). Can the Bible be any clearer?
All of this lines up with the Word of God. In 2 Thes. 2:1-4, the Apostle Paul writes that the "coming of our Lord Jesus Christ," or the Rapture, will not occur "until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed." I believe that the increasing false teaching in the church will eventually lead to "the rebellion" both in the church and throughout the world. We should all be able to see the continuing moral decay in our society and around the world. The Rapture is approaching!
The bottom line is this for believers: Keep your focus clearly on Jesus Christ (Heb. 12:2), through His Word and prayer, and you'll experience the abundant life Christ said He came to give us (John 10:10), even in the middle of the trials and difficulties we all go through! I promise you! I learned this very important lesson in my own life, as countless other believers have as well.
Get rid of religion and it's empty promises and experience the incredible joy and peace of having a warm and intimate relationship with our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ! This is what God wants most for you! This is life at it's very best and all the money and religion in the world will not provide it for you!
If you desire for me to speak at your church or ministry about this vitally important subject, please call me at 815-757-3570 or email me at email@example.com so arrangements can be made. I would consider it and honor and privilege to bring the message of God's incredible grace to you!
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you!!!