You know, about the only word that comes to my mind right now is wow. We are in a place in our country, a place in our culture, that I don’t think we’ve ever been before. So, I’m not going to spend a whole lot of time harping on what’s going on, where we’re at. We’ve done that enough the last couple weeks.
I want to just offer some encouragement. Listen, if you know me, you know I’m a like-to-have-fun, I’m a goofy kind of a guy. Life is meant to be fun. But I’m also — I take the Scriptures seriously. When God called me to be a pastor, that was something that I didn’t take lightly. That was something that I really spent a lot of time, my wife and I worked through, because I’m going to stand before God one day in heaven and answer to this calling that I took on, if God wasn’t calling me to it.
And at the same time, I take it very serious because I know there’s going to come a day that I’m going to and before God and I’m going to answer to how I led this church. And so, I take the church very, very seriously. I love the church, and I’m not talking about the building, the bricks and mortar. I’m talking about the organization that Jesus Christ came and died for. And so I take that very seriously.
And so I do want to, just in response to what’s going on right now, I just want to read one passage that I’ve been talking to a lot of people about. It’s out of Romans chapter 13. Paul is very clear. This is what he says. He says, “Let everyone submit to the governing authorities since there is no authority except from God. And the authorities that exist are instituted by God.” That’s Romans chapter 13 in verse 1. Paul got right into it.
And so, I say that to say this. There’s no reason we should be downing our government authorities whether — listen, I’m not going to share my political views, but whether you agree with those who are in office right now or not, if you are a Christian the Bible tells you to submit to that authority because the authorities in our lives have been planted there by God.
Nothing gets past God. Listen. God’s not on the throne going, “Wow, I didn’t see that person coming into office. Wow, I didn’t see this happening.” God’s not caught off guard by this. So, why don’t we take the Scriptures at face value, and instead of the whole legalism that I’m not a fan of, let’s live a life that’s holy and is taking seriously God’s Word, and let’s practice that.
And so, that’s why The Journey Community Church has made the decision that we’re going to change our service location. We’re not cancelling our church. We’re not cancelling our worship gathering. We’re just changing the location. A part of that is the YMCA has reached out to us — our church meets at the Atrium YMCA. We have a great partnership with the Atrium YMCA. And so they’ve asked us not to hold our services on their property this week because of all this. And so, listen, that rental agreement — let’s just be honest — they are the authority over us. So, if we’re going to be living a biblical life, then we’re going to submit to that authority as well, and we’re going to say okay. We’re not going to argue with that. We’re not going to stamp our foot on the ground and say you’re not going to keep us… No! That’s goofy. That’s just a building. We can have church wherever. We’re just changing the location this Sunday. We’re changing the location to online. I’m thankful that God’s given us that opportunity and that avenue to still be able to reach people.
And so, here’s what we’re doing. This Sunday morning at 10 AM, we’re going live like we do every Sunday. We’re just not going to be meeting in a permanent facility. I’m going to be with our worship arts pastor, Ben Lippincott. He’s going to lead some worship, and then I’m going to come, and I’m going to teach you some things out of God’s word. And what we’re going to do is we’re going to take a pause, a timeout, from our normal “Not a Fan” series that we’ve been going through. We were going to be in a passage that I really enjoy because it talks about not a bunch of rules, and dealing with the adulterous woman, and I can’t wait to get back to that because you know how I feel about rules. That’s not what God intended when He sent Jesus. He meant grace. Anyway, we’re not going to get into all that.
Please watch the video above for the rest of this message.