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#40698 Mon Nov 10, 2008 9:35 AM
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How would you react to the statement "The primary purpose of the church is evangelism"? I heard it said at church yesterday, but I don't think I agree with it. What is the primary purpose of the church?

John

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John,

I too would have to disagree with this statement. The Church is the body of Christ to which sinners are called to become members and in which they are to worship God (primary purpose) and grow in knowledge, faith and holiness. See how Paul states it here:


Ephesians 4:8-15 (ASV) "Wherefore he saith, When he ascended on high, he led captivity captive, And gave gifts unto men. (Now this, He ascended, what is it but that he also descended into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.) And he gave some [to be] apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, unto the work of ministering, unto the building up of the body of Christ: till we all attain unto the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a fullgrown man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: that we may be no longer children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, in craftiness, after the wiles of error; but speaking truth in love, we may grow up in all things into him, who is the head, [even] Christ;"


Summarizing this passage one could rightly say that one of the primary purposes of the Church is the "perfecting of the saints" for the work of ministry. Evangelism is but one responsibility of the members of the Church. It cannot be shown to be THE PRIMARY purpose. Believers are called to be separate from the world, to set one day apart, the Sabbath (Sunday), to gather together to worship the one true God where the preaching of the Word is central. As a result of having worshipped God where God speaks to His people via the preaching/teaching of the Word, they are thus up-built and equipped to go back into the world to work, play, etc., and evangelize in their respective callings.

In His grace,


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How would you react to the statement "The primary purpose of the church is evangelism"? I heard it said at church yesterday...
If that is true the church will have to loose its primary purpose in heaven.

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John

Would your pastor be open to you going to him to seek clarification on why he stated that?
A previous pastor I had, actually liked it when people actually went to him and respectfully questioned what he said. He looked at it as a positive thing, being that at least he knew that some didn't just believe things that he said, without at least checking them out for themselves.

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Tom said:
John

Would your pastor be open to you going to him to seek clarification on why he stated that?
A previous pastor I had, actually liked it when people actually went to him and respectfully questioned what he said. He looked at it as a positive thing, being that at least he knew that some didn't just believe things that he said, without at least checking them out for themselves.

Tom

Tom: We are still deciding on a church, so I would not call him my pastor. I have already discussed a number of issues with him and has seemed open about questions. I may seek clarification on this issue too. However, there are a number of other issues I am concerned about that will probably take precedence.

Pilgrim: My views tend to mirror what you wrote. Thanks.

John


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