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Cowboy Fellowship Church Pete Pawelek Series: 1 Thessalonians June 13, 2010 www.pastorpete.org or listen to the sermon here simply search for the title in the search bar on the player. The Model 1 Thessalonians 1:7-10 Go ahead and get your Bibles out, and open up to the book of 1 Thessalonians, even if it takes you a second to find it, I want you to get there. If this is your first Sunday to be with us, or if you've been gone over the last few weeks, we've been studying the book of 1 Thessalonians, and going through it systematically, kind of verse by verse. In our first week, we talked about the background of the book. We talked about the geography and the strategic location of the town of Thessalonica. We talked about how Paul ended up in Thessalonica, how he was run out of Thessalonica, where the letter came from, where it was written, and all of that good stuff. Then we moved on, and we looked at The Method that God uses. We said the method God uses, that He used in Thessalonica over 2,000 years ago (or roughly 2,000 years ago) is still the method He is using today. We examined the method, and then we looked at The Message. We said essentially the same thing about the message that the message of the gospel has not changed. We looked at some specifics about the way these people in Thessalonica received that message, and the power that came with that message. Today, we're going to look at The Model, The Model Church. Paul calls this church in Thessalonica the model church for all the other churches. We're going to examine the last three verses in the first chapter. We're going to finish the first chapter up today, verses 7-10, but just for good measure, I want us to go back and read verse 6 because it's important in context with the three verses we're going to study today. It says, "You became imitators," this is starting in verse 6. "You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit. And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia. The Lord's message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia—your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it, for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead— Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath." Can I just brag on Cowboy Fellowship for a second? Is that all right? You know one of the things about this that is important to realize is that Paul is not talking to an institution. He is not writing a letter to a pastor. He is not sending a letter to a building. He is sending the letter to the church, and according to the book of 1 Corinthians, chapter 12, verse 27, it's not in your bulletin, Cowboy Fellowship Church Jourdanton, TX

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but you can go look it up later, Paul said this to the Corinthian church. He said, "Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it." In other words, you are the church. The church is not a building. It's not a pastor. It's not a structure. It's not an institution. The church is people. I have been amazed the last two weeks about what people are saying about the church at Cowboy Fellowship in our community. I mean I don't have time this morning‌ We could spend the whole time bragging on you guys, but I mean my neighbor comes over and knocks on my door and was just so impressed by some stuff some people from our church did. I'm not going to go into that because I don't want to embarrass them or him. I was super impressed this week when Ty Keeling and his team that has been working so hard out in the garden. If you don't know, there is a garden out behind the portables, and they made their first harvest this past weekend and this week. On Wednesday they went to distribute the food, and we had another family in the church that raises produce that had some extra produce who brought it as well and added it to what we had. They gave out almost 1,000 pounds of vegetables to 45 families who don't come to our church, who don't attend here. They just gave it out for free. I mean it's just amazing. People all around the community are talking about that and talking about what an amazing ministry that is. God blessed us with some rain these past few weeks, hasn't He? He blessed some a little too much. As you may have heard, there are several families in our church whose homes were flooded out in Verdi. One family in particular the very next day they called in and asked for prayer, and within a matter of hours, thanks to Facebook and social networking, there were people at their house helping them rip out carpet, people from their Bible studies, people from the teams they work on, helping them clean out their house and get everything up off the floor. They had over 12 inches of water come into their house. Then on Saturday, we had a whole group of people all throughout the day come in and rip the sheet rock out and the insulation out and the cabinets out, and all of that stuff. People are just amazed because the body of Christ is doing what they're supposed to do. Our church has been a model. We continue to get phone calls. We've done schools on how to plant Cowboy churches. We get emails monthly from other pastors, churches that are Cowboy churches, core teams that are fixing to start a Cowboy church often times come and visit us for a weekend to learn all they can about what we do and how we've done it and where we've come from, and the struggles we've had so that they can follow the model that we have here. That is an amazing testament to all the work that you guys put in because you are the church. That's kind of what's going on here in Thessalonica, and Paul looks at this church, and he calls them a model. If you have your Bible open, you should underline or circle that word because that word is significant. It's significant in our language. I typed in the word model on my computer dictionary, and I found that the word model has several definitions. I want to give you a few of them this morning.

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The word model can be a three-dimensional representation of a person or a thing, of a proposed structure typically on a smaller scale than the original. It can also be something that is used as an example to follow or imitate, or it can be a person or a thing regarded as an excellent example of a specified quality. I've given you a lot of extra room on your notes as we've been studying the book of Thessalonians. Many of you have been saying, "I need more room to write my own stuff." So I've given you lots of room to write this down. I want you to write down the word model somewhere on your notes, and then I want you to write these words down because this is how significant what Paul is saying is. I want you to write down the word representation, that this church was worthy to be a representation for all the other churches in the region. It was worthy to be a representation of what God's people should look like and what God's people should do. I want you to write down the word follow and the word imitate. This church was worthy to be up in the front of the other churches and to lead the other churches and that the other churches would follow in their footsteps. It was worthy to be a church that other churches could look at, other Christians could look at and imitate the things that were going on in Thessalonica. I want you to write down the words excellent example. This church was an excellent example of what a church should be. Paul thought this church was the model church for all the churches in that region. We have to remember this isn't the only church in the region. This isn't even, if you were here on the very first Sunday we started this, you'll remember this isn't even the first church that Paul planted in Macedonia. It's not the first church. It's not the only church, but Paul says, "You guys are the model church." The actual Greek word for model is tupos, and it's what we get our word type from, but it literally means to be an example, to be something worth following, or something worth emulating, something worth imitating, something you can copy exactly, something that you can look at and build something else from it and copy it exactly as it is without changing it a bit. So it's significant Paul would write to this church in Thessalonica, and say, "You guys are the model for everybody else in the region." It got me to thinking, if Paul was writing to the church at Cowboy Fellowship in Atascosa County, would he find us worthy to use this same word‌a model‌for all the other churches in the county or a model for all the other churches in South Texas, or a model for all the churches in Texas? Or would he say, "You're a model for all the churches in America or a model for all the churches in the world?" Our goal is not to be a model so people will write books about us. It's not to be a model so people will talk about us, it's to be a model so we can be effective for the kingdom of God. These people in Thessalonica, as we've talked about in weeks past, were extremely effective for God's kingdom, and because of that, Paul says, "They are a model." There are three specific things Paul points to that leads him to this conclusion that they are the model church for everybody else. If you're following along in your outlines, write this one down.

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1. It was because this place, this church was a place of inspired evangelism. It was a place where they were sharing their faith. It was a place where they actively, willingly, and regularly went out and told people about Jesus Christ. Remember, this is in spite of severe persecution. Their inspired evangelism, their inspired evangelism to go out and tell people about Jesus is in spite of the persecution and the suffering and all of the things that are going on. They were not ashamed. They were not scared, and they were not shy when it came to the gospel message of Jesus Christ. They were inviting people to do more than just come to church with them on Sunday. These people were inviting people to have a relationship with Jesus Christ. Read it again, verses 7 and 8, 1 Thessalonians, chapter 1, "And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia. The Lord's message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia—your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it." I want you to turn in your Bibles to the book of Acts. We're going to start in Acts 15, and look at two passages, one in Acts 15, and one in Acts 16 about this particular message they were preaching. It's hard to get the full effect of what Paul is saying because some things just don't translate. He says, "The Lord's message rang out from you." What we have to understand is this particular phrase, these particular words as we see them used in other places in the Bible, specifically here in Acts 15 and several other places in Acts (by the way) we see the full meaning of what they mean. This isn't a casual mention of God's grace. This isn't a casual, "Hey, God loves you. Hey, don't forget that." This is an actual powerful proclamation that you are a sinner, and you can have a relationship with Jesus Christ because He loves you, and you can come to know the Savior of the world, and He will save you from your sins. This is an unashamedly, pure proclamation of the gospel. If you look in the book of Acts 15, verses 35-36, it says, "But Paul and Barnabas remained in Antioch, where they and many others taught and preached the word of the Lord," same phrase that is used in Thessalonians. "Some time later Paul said to Barnabas, 'Let us go back and visit the brothers in all the towns where we preached the word of the Lord," again the same phrase. It translates a little differently in English, but it's the same phrase in Greek. "Preached the Word of the Lord to see how they are doing.'" Acts 16, flip over a page or so. Go to Acts 16, and look at verses 31 and 32. Here is how Dr. Luke records Paul's journey here in Acts 16, and here's the same phrase. We'll see it again. It says, "'They replied, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.' Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house." Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and all your household, and then the phrase, "They spoke the word of the Lord." That's not a casual mention that God loves you. That's not a, "Hey, oh by the way, just in case you're wondering, Jesus loves you." No, this is somebody who stood up and unashamedly told Cowboy Fellowship Church Jourdanton, TX

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them the gospel, and that is what's going on in Thessalonica. Not only were they bold, not only did they do this in spite of persecution, he says something else. He says, "This message, the Lord's message rang out from you." Again, significance in the Greek word…we kind of get it in English, but it means to reverberate. Have you ever heard R. C. really bang on the cymbal back here and it reverberates through the whole room? It just kind of carries. That's what he's talking about. Or maybe like this, have you ever taken a rock, a big rock, maybe you're like my two-year-old. You like rocks. And have you ever taken a big rock and been out at the tank and chucked it in? What happens? Plop, and then you see a ring, right? The ring gets bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger until…what? It hits the banks. That's what has happened here. That's what he is saying with the word. It's reverberated. Not only did they receive the gospel, not only did it come to them, but they didn't hold it and keep it. They became amplifiers. They took the gospel, and then they sent it on its way, and they spread it out everywhere. It rang out. He says, "The Lord's message rang out from you." The gospel of Jesus Christ increased in scope and size because these people were willing to go and tell others about it. I want you to, if you have your Bible, again take it and look back here at the back. Go back to the maps. You should have some maps in the back of your Bible. It looks something like this. Find the map that talks about Paul's missionary journeys, and these maps are important. They're part of the Bible, too, and they really help give you a picture of what's going on. If you look at the map, find Macedonia. It's off to the east, or off to the right of the heel of the boot of Italy, all right? If you can find Italy, it looks like a boot. Look at the heel. Look off to the right, and you should see Macedonia. That's where Thessalonica is, and then if you look directly south of Macedonia, we'll see Achaia. What Paul says is, "God's message has reverberated or spread in that entire region of the world. Then he goes further and he says, "Your faith has become known everywhere because God's message rang out from you." Not only did it infect this region, which is large to be sure, especially in a day and a time when people were born and died in the same town, or a businessman might travel 7, 10, 12, 30 miles, but outside of that, that was it. There weren't bullet trains. There wasn't air travel. There weren't cruise ships that you could just sail across the Mediterranean in. Travel was difficult, and Paul says, "Still, because you have preached the gospel, you have proclaimed it boldly. It has infected this entire region and indeed the gospel message of Jesus Christ has become known everywhere, in all of the known world because they were not ashamed to tell people about Jesus." The message of the gospel didn't ring out just on Sunday mornings when the preacher in Thessalonica stood to preach. It didn't ring out just at Bible study. It didn't ring out just at prayer meeting. It rang out every day everywhere the church went because you are the church, and they were the church. As they went to work, and as they went to school, and as they went to watch their kids play soccer, and baseball, and football (which they didn't have, but you get the point), as they went to town hall meetings, as they went to eat dinner, as they went everywhere they Cowboy Fellowship Church Jourdanton, TX

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went the gospel message rang out and reverberated and got bigger and bigger. It was a place of inspired evangelism. Because of that, Paul says, "You guys are the model for every other church in the region because the message of the gospel has rung out from you." Any church that desires, any church that will dare to set out to be an example to follow or a church to emulate or a model for other churches must be a place of inspired evangelism. One of the reasons our church has grown so rapidly over the past six or seven years is because this has been a place of inspired evangelism, but rest assured, when inspired evangelism stops, when it ceases to exist, when the church, the members, the people are unwilling to go out and tell others about Jesus and make this message ring out everywhere they go, growth will stop and the opportunity to be a model for others will as well because any model church is a place of inspired evangelism. I've given you a place on your bulletin, three blanks at the end of point number one. People's names go in those blanks, names of people you're going to witness to in the next week. Think about them. Picture their face, people you can go and tell about Jesus. It's not hard. Tell them about your life before you knew Christ. Tell them how you met Christ, and tell them about your life after you met Christ, your life now, how much better it is. Go and tell them. Let the gospel message ring out from this church. 2. It was also a place of radical transformation…a place of radical transformation. This church wasn't just a place of inspired evangelism; it was also a place where radical transformation had taken place. If you look at the book of 1 Thessalonians, and go to verse 9, it says, "For they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us (speaking to verse 8). They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God." This word he uses for turn, it doesn't mean this. There are different words for turn. There are different ways you can turn, right? Watch me. The word for turn doesn't mean they turned their head. It doesn't mean they looked like you're crossing the street. Anybody coming? Nope. Okay, I turned. No. This is like an about face in the military. It's a complete turn. It's a sharp, crisp 180-degree turn. It's not a slow turn. I'm taking my time and get there whenever I want to; I'm there. It's not an, "I'll look over my shoulder and turn, oh that hurts, I'm coming back here." No, it's a complete turn. He says, "You turned. You turned in the opposite direction…sharply, crisply, suddenly, definitively. You turned to follow Jesus." A couple of other places this is mentioned in the Bible. James 5:20, "Remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins." Back to the book of Acts if you want to follow along, chapter 9, verse 35, "All those who lived in Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord." Acts 11:21, "The Lord's hand was with them, and a great number of people believed and turned to the Lord." Acts 26:18, "To open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in Me." To turn around. You can't see me, can you, unless you turn. A turn like that is not going to work because you're going to get tired if I stay here for the rest of the sermon. Your neck is going to start to hurt. You back is going to start to hurt. Your shoulders are going to start to hurt. It is Cowboy Fellowship Church Jourdanton, TX

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going to be uncomfortable, unless you stand up. Stand up, and turn 180. Now that is better. That is easier on your neck. It's easier on your shoulders. It's easier on your back. One commentator wrote this of this word in this passage. He says, "This word is used in the New Testament to indicate the fact that in a sinner's conversion, there is a turning in the absolute opposite direction. Such conversion entails repentance, and a turning from idols and in faith submitting to the Savior alone. Such a turning is far more than merely changing one's belief about who Christ is. It's a complete reversal of allegiance from idols to serve the living and true God." It's a complete turn. You can have a seat. I'll go back to the front so you don't have to stand the rest of the time. So now you can turn back in the other direction. These people had made a complete turn. They had once followed idols. They had once worshipped false gods. They were a people that, just like us, were enemies of Christ. They were once lost, but when the gospel came to them, Paul says, "You turned. You were radically transformed. You turned around from the way you were going." They didn't just turn their heads. They didn't just turn their back a little bit and try to look like this. They did a complete 180, an about face, and they went to the Cross. They turned from the way they were going and went in the complete opposite direction. Have you? Have we? Have we turned radically? Have we been radically transformed by the gospel message of Jesus Christ, or have we only done this? Yeah, I want to go to heaven. Oh, I can't do it anymore. You can't live the Christian life doing this, or you just keep coming back here to your old ways and your old things and your old habits and all that stuff that took you astray in the first place. So many of us are trying to live our lives the way you were trying to look at me back there at the start, like this. It won't work. The only way this works is if you turn. Have you turned? Have we turned? Or have we just gotten better? Have we just gotten better at hiding our sins? Have we just pushed them a little bit farther underneath the bed, stuffed them a little bit deeper into the closet so other people can't see them? Have we really forsaken sin as the Bible calls us to? Have we really turned and gone the opposite direction from it and done a complete 180, or have we just done this when we need to and then back here when we want to? These people had been radically transformed. They hadn't just done enough to get into heaven. They had embraced the message of the gospel completely, and they had turned from idols. They weren't taking their time on this journey, and oh, I'm going to turn one day whenever I get good and ready. As long as I can see it, that's good enough. Maybe when I get a little older I'll turn. No, they turned and they went suddenly, sharply, crisply, radically. They were transformed and changed by the message of the gospel and because of it, he says, "This church is a church that all the other churches in all the region and in all the world could look to as their model." Because it was a place of radical transformation as they turned from their idols and their false gods to follow Christ wholeheartedly and embrace the Christian faith. Then the third reason he gives is because‌

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3. This church was a place, a place of great expectations. It was a church of incredible expectation, and they weren't expecting a good sermon on Sunday. They weren't expecting the band to come up with another great special. They weren't expecting donuts to be there. They weren't expecting hot coffee. They weren't expecting somebody to park them. They weren't expecting somebody to shake their hand, but this was a church of great expectations. They were expecting the return of Jesus Christ. Paul says it this way, "They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God and to wait for His Son from heaven who He raised from the dead, Jesus who rescues us from the coming wrath and to wait for His Son from heaven." It's an interesting thing about that word wait. Six different words, maybe five, I can't remember. I lose count. Four, five, or six different Greek words that essentially mean wait in English, but this one is very specific. In fact, it's the only time it's used in the entire New Testament. It's the only time it's used in the Bible. Paul never uses this word in any other context anywhere else, only here to the church at Thessalonica. This word means to wait, but not just to wait, it means to wait with eager expectations. It's like they're antsy. They were waiting in anticipation. They weren't sitting there like, "Oh man, I bet Jesus is going to come one day. Sure wish He'd get here." No man, when these people‌they were up on the edge of their chairs and they were going, "He's coming back! Oh the sky, the sky! Oh, nope, that ain't it. Oh, that was close. I thought it was Him! I really did." Boy, they were excited. They were eagerly expecting the return of Jesus. They knew He was coming back. They believed He was coming back, and they were ready for His return. Paul says, "You're a model because you're patiently waiting." The only time he uses this specific word for wait‌an eager anticipation, an eager expectation that the sky would open up in their lifetime and they would see Him coming back. I have no greater expectation in my life than that I might be here on that day. Oh what a day it would be to be able to witness it from here on planet earth, to be able to see the blue sky open up to the blackness of space and to see the King of kings and Lord of lords ride down with the armies of heaven following Him, and to know the day had finally come that I had waited for for so long. Oh, I want that to happen so badly, and I have no greater expectation in life. If it doesn't happen here, if it doesn't happen while I'm alive, I just hope I can saddle up one of those white horses and ride down with Him. That's going to be a ride. Oh, I eagerly want it to happen, and I expect that it might happen this very hour. No one knows the time, the day, or the hour and because of that the church often forgets that Jesus is coming back. We get so busy. We get so wrapped up in our lives. We get so wrapped up in the good things we're doing. We get so wrapped up in work and family and school and everything else that we lose sight of the fact that it could be at any second He is going to return. Not this church in Thessalonica. They knew it could be at any moment, and they lived their lives with eager expectation that at any second He could come back. Cowboy Fellowship Church Jourdanton, TX

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This isn't a matter of if, it's a matter of when. The book of Revelation, chapter 19, verse 11-16 says, "I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice He judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name [oh, He has a name] written on Him that no one knows but He Himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and His name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following Him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of His mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. 'He will rule them with an iron scepter.' He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On His robe and on His thigh He has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS." Jesus Himself said, "And if I go and prepare a place for you," this is John 14:3, "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with Me that you also may be where I am." He is coming back. One of the final verses in the Bible comes in Revelation 22:20, "He who testifies to these things says [and this is Jesus], 'Yes, I am coming soon.'" He is coming back, and this church eagerly awaited His return with great anticipation. Do we? We should expect and know it could be at any moment. Here's the larger point: if you're in here today and you don't know Jesus, if you're in here today and you have never given your life to Christ, you have never turned and called on Him to be your Lord and Savior, yeah maybe you've turned and seen it, but have you turned and given your life to Him in full submission? Have you turned from the idols and the sin that have infected your life to follow Him? Have you forsaken it completely? Here's the larger point: He's coming back, but whether He comes back in your lifetime or not, it doesn't really matter because the Bible is clear. Every single one of us will one day stand before the King of kings and Lord of lords, eyeball-to-eyeball, toe-to-toe, face-to-face, mano-a-mano. Your granddaddy ain't going to be there. Your preacher ain't going to be there. Your mamma ain't going to be there no matter how much you cry and beg and whine and bellyache‌just you and Jesus. You're going to be called to give an account of your life and the fact of the matter is no matter how good of a speaker you are, no matter how good of a talker you are, no matter how many good things you think you have done, if He does not know you, it's the end of the road. You're not going to like the outcome. He will only know those who have turned and been radically transformed by the message that comes through inspired evangelism. Those who have done that eagerly await and expect His return. I don't fear that sky opening up. Oh, it's going to be a bad day for lots of people. I don't fear it a bit. I look forward to it because I know He knows me, and I know Him. Do you? If you don't, today is the day of salvation. Why wait another day? You don't have to memorize verses. You don't have to come to the front. I'm not going to ask you to raise a hand, stand up, meet me at the back, none of that. Just pray in the stillness of your heart and give your life to Him today. Be transformed by the message of Jesus just like these were in Thessalonica. Cowboy Fellowship Church Jourdanton, TX

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Would you pray with me? If that's you, if you have that hole, oh I remember that hole so bad, I remember how horrible it felt. If you have that deep, dark hole on the inside that you've never been able to fill, if you know without a shadow of a doubt if today was your last day, the outcome wouldn't be good, just pray this prayer where you sit. Say, "Lord, it's me. I come in here today and I confess that I'm a sinner. Lord, I admit that I've been running from You, hiding from You. I haven't been doing the things You call me to do, but today by faith, I ask that You would come into my life and change me from the inside out. By faith Lord, I pray that You would wash me clean. By faith, I pray You would transform me and make me into a new creation. Lord, I thank You for Your love and Your goodness, Your grace and Your mercy. I thank You for sending Jesus to die for me." Father God, we thank You for meeting with us in this place today as a church. We thank You for the opportunity to open Your Word and study about this model church in Thessalonica. God, that we might exhibit some of the characteristics of this church, that we as a people, not an institution, but we as a people, as individuals would go out as the church and be the kind of people who practice inspired evangelism, that don't just tell people about church and all the good things going on at church, but we tell people about You. We tell people about Your Son. We present the gospel to them, and give them an opportunity to respond from our own testimonies. Lord that the message might ring out from Cowboy Fellowship every day, not just on Sunday. Lord, that this might be a place full of people who have been radically transformed and changed by the gospel. That we wouldn't be people who creep over our shoulder every now and then to make sure we can still see the Cross, Father, that we would be people who actively and willingly and passionately run to the Cross and no other direction in life. God, I pray we would be a church that expects Your return at any moment. Lord, may it come soon, but in the meantime may we accomplish the mission You've given us. Oh that we might be a model church, not so people would write about us or talk about us, but so that the kingdom of God might grow so others would be inspired. Father, we love You and we thank You for all that You've done in our midst. We thank You for all that You want to do. We ask these things in the name of Jesus, Amen. I want to say a few words here before I step down. If you just gave your life to Christ, if you said the first part of that prayer with me, I want to ask you to do one thing. If you would, on the backside of your bulletin there is a tab that says visitor's information, if you're a visitor today, if this is your first time, even if you're from out of town and you're just visiting with family or something, would you let us know you were here? We'd like to get as much of that information as you're comfortable with. But on the backside, there is a box at the very top. It says, "I'm committing my life to Christ today." If you said that prayer, if you gave your life to Christ, would you check that box? Make sure your name, phone number, and address are on the front side. We're going to send you a CD and a letter telling you a little bit more about what you've done.

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We're not going to sign you up for Bible study. We're not going to make you stand up here next week and give a testimony. All we want to know is that you made that decision. If you said that prayer, check that box, and then what you do is you just tear it off right down the seam. You can take all the announcements, your sermon notes, everything home with you, and then you just drop this in one of the buckets, the milk cans all around the church. We collect the tithes and offerings, and we'll get with you this week. There is also a place for prayer requests. There is a place if you need somebody to contact you from the church. There is a place for baptisms. Those will be coming up again in a few weeks, so if any of those apply to you, just check that box and we'll get with you. If you just said that prayer, we want to welcome you to the family of God and give you a round of applause really fast.

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The Model  

This message looks at the model that this New Testament church used...

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