As Clear As a...Hot Fudge Sundae?
Q: What do churches and ice cream have in
A: They both come in at least 31 flavors.
"How do I know which church to join? Lutherans, Catholics, Presbyterians, Methodists.... they all look the same to me. Which is the right one?"
It's a common question asked by many people on a daily basis.
Below are seven simple questions and their biblical foundation to serve as a guideline when answering this for yourself and your family:
Does this church...
- Believe the whole Bible is God's revelation to humans?
"All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction,and for training in righteousness" 2 Timothy 3:16
- Believe in the Triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit?
|"Make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." Matthew 28:19
- Believe Jesus Christ is the only son of God and the only Savior of the world?
|"The Father has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world." 1 John 4:14
- Believe Christ died for the sins of the whole world?
"Christ died for our sins..." 1 Corinthians 15:3
"...for the sins of the whole world..." 1 John 2:2
- Believe everyone is saved by the grace of God through faith in Christ's
|"By grace you have been saved through faith." Ephesians 2:8
- Believe Baptism washes away all sins?
|"Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins. Acts 22:16
- Believe the words Jesus spoke when He instituted the Lord's Supper?
|"Take, eat; this is My body...Drink of it, all of you, for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins" Mathew 26:26-28
When looking for a church, ask these questions and settle only for answers that come directly from the Bible.
Church Selection...A Few "Don'ts"
1. Don't fall prey to the "flavor of the month" church.
|Mega-churches become popular because they generally tell us what we want to hear, regardless of what God's word says. While the latest fad may be to attend the same church as everyone else in the neighborhood, don't allow yourself to stray from God's word. Always ensure any church is Bible-based and Christ-focused first!
2. Don't select a church because it's the closest or has an impressive building.
|Faith begins from the inside. Convenience and attractiveness, while niceties, can lead to a downfall in faith if the selected church is otherwise untrue to the Gospel.
3. Don't fall for the old "All churches lead to the same place anyway".
|Believing that all Christian denominations are really the same is a very comforting thought because it means all people believe correctly and will ultimately be in heaven. Unfortunately, this is not true. Any church belief not directly based on the Bible (Old and New Testaments) is wrong. Any church that tries to convince you of their "opinion" without a biblical foundation is wrong.
An Open Invitation
Churches of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS), such as St. John in Libertyville, are dedicated to passing on the entire truth of God as found in the Bible. WELS churches are centered in the Gospel. Christ crucified is the central point in all sermons, hymns, and worship services.
We invite you to stop by for worship or to contact our pastor to discuss the questions and/or concerns on your mind. You'll find us to be open and honestly interested in conveying how God's word fits into our lives.
St. John Lutheran Church
501 W. Park Ave. (Rt. 176)
Libertyville, IL 60048