“I wrote something to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to have first place among them, does not receive us.” 3 John 1:9 (HCSB)
Just because it has ‘church’ in its name, doesn’t mean they are a part of Christ’s body! There are basic tenets of the faith that must be adhered to, namely the authority of the whole word of God! I know I’ve mentioned it before, but we’re told to do whatever it takes to maintain the unity of the Spirit (Ephesians 4:3). Without the Spirit and the Word, what is our unity based on but human understanding! Yet we are warned to trust God with all our heart and not lean on our knowledge and understanding (Proverbs 3:5-6).
There are many ‘churches’ today that have denied the Word. Simply look at what has happened in the United Methodist denomination, amongst several others. But there are also many other Word embracing churches that deny the Spirit!
Jesus even said that the Father is looking for people who will worship Him in Spirit and Truth (John 4:24). Today it is vital that we put ourselves around a Christian community that is both Word and Spirit focused. Followers of Jesus need to move from the milk of the word to the meat (Hebrews 5:12-14). It’s called discipleship, maturity, growing in the faith! And we must learn to live in, and keep in step with the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:25).
Pray for your pastor to be gripped with both the Spirit and the Word. Pray that he would lead boldly in both these areas! Pray that your church would create more freedom for the Holy Spirit to flow and for the full word of God to be preached (even the stuff that is sharp, controversial and perhaps offensive in our culture). Pray that your congregation would grow in a greater hunger for the meat of the word and deeper surrender to the Holy Spirit. Pray all this for yourself and the community of believers you associate with on a regular basis!