by Jerry Vines

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CHURCH 2000 (2 of 12)
Phil. 1:3-5

For these Sunday nights in January, February, and
March we are taking a look at the church. I'm calling
these messages Church 2000. I'm trying to just
underscore again what the church is all about, what
the church is, and what the church is intended to do.

This evening we're talking about the fellowship.

For a number of years I have been wearing contact
lenses. When I study in the morning I don't put on my
contact lenses, I use my glasses. Now, if for any
reason I don't have on my contacts or my glasses, then
things are blurred. I can't see things well. They
are out of focus. But when I put on my glasses or
when I put in my contact lenses, things come back into
focus and I can see things clearly and see things as
they are intended to be.

What I'm trying to do in these messages is help
you put on our New Testament glasses and look at our
church in the light of what the Bible says in the New
Testament. Probably you have already read that Billy
Graham is going to be coming to Jacksonville in the
fall for an area--wide crusade. I remember early in
the years of the ministry of Dr. Graham someone who
was very critical of his ministry said about him,
"This man is setting the church back 200 years." To
which Dr. Graham replied, "Well, what I'm trying to do
is set the church back 2000 years."

What we want to do is to study the New Testament
and see what the pattern and the principles are in the
New Testament and build a church that way.
Tragically, when you look at the church today and
compare it to the New Testament church you really
wonder if it's the same thing.

I heard about a preacher who was eulogizing a man
who had died. He was using all kinds of flowery
language and he was making all kinds of elaborate
statements about what a wonderful man he was and all
of these things. Somewhere in the midst of it the

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