The Latest From Heart of the Word

10/30/2022 - Left Hand Page #7 - "A Distinct Focus"

A Distinct Focus

We offer a special warm welcome to those of you who are worshipping [visiting the website!] with us for the first time.  You might notice that we are rather dogmatic about one thing, and that's our Lord.  He's the central focus for everything we do.  Everyting has its source in Jesus, so it's no wonder He said, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life" (John 14:6).  I don't think we're ever in danger of being overbalanced on our presentation of Him, our Lord.  But it's through losing sight of Jesus Christ that people are swept away by forms of religion that produce spiritual arthritis and stagnancy rather than stability.  In all areas of our congregational life, there is a distinct focus an it's seen in everything we do.

WORSHIP

If you take the person of Jesus out of worship, you end up with vain repetition or pagan liturgy.  Worship becomes a series of religious practices.  That's the main reason why so many people become frustrated with worship.  They've lost sight of Jesus (John 4:23-24).

WORD

If you take the person of Jesus out of the Word, you have legalism.  The Word is no longer life-giving, but becomes a set of laws and heavy demands that are impossible to measure up to.  It kills life rather than gives life (John 1:14).

CHURCH

If you take the person of Jesus out of the church, you end up with a social gathering and various kinds of clubs.  Without Jesus, you'll find people concentrating all their efforts on the social impact of the congregation.  Jesus allows for fellowship, but its more than pie, picnics, and parties (Matthew 16:18).

PRAYER

If you take Jesus out of your prayer life, it quickly becomes a series of mind games.  The most difficult thing is to continually be creating new ways to convince ourselves that the hell we're experiencing is really all in our head.  Without Jesus, prayer is nothing more than a soothing of our conscience by speaking positive things.  That kind of prayer never brings about results (Luke 11).

FAITH

If you take the person of Jesus out of faith, you find yourself gravitating from one method to another.  So the most recent system or method will become the basis for your faith.  Where faith isn't based on Jesus, we'll move from methods, to personalities, to defeat (Galatians 2:20).

"But I fear... your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ" (II Corinthians 11:3)

Ron Mehl