Jesus Our Altar

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1 Tim 3:14-15
These things I write to you, though I hope to come to you shortly; but if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.

The Church is the pillar and ground of truth
* The church is the vehicle for God’s redemptive work
* The vehicle for sharing the message of grace through faith in Jesus
* The vehicle for sharing the love of God with the world
* The vehicle for teaching and equipping believers
* The vehicle for extending God’s love to our world.
Malachi 3 talks about bringing/giving to have meat on the house.
Bringing our covenanted giving to the house of God makes meat available to those in the house and even people outside.

God wants to meet our spiritual needs too, not just physical meat.

In the old testament, God had people come to the altar to get their lives “altered” so they could receive whatever they wanted. The altar became the focal point of gathering.
Noah built an altar
Elijah rebuilt the altar 1 Kings 18:30
In Ezra, the altar was rebuilt to call people to repentance.

The altar stands as the place you come to when you need God’s intervention.
If giving makes “meat” available…what provides spiritual blessings/transformation?
What do we do to turn the church into a place where people get their spiritual needs met?

We need to rebuild an altar.
What is an altar?
Hebrews 13:7‭-‬16
Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them. We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat. For the bodies of those animals, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.
Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

Jesus is our altar
We come to him continually with the sacrifice of praise and doing good.

If Jesus is our altar, what do we need to do to make people encounter Jesus and experience the transformation that is required?

Jude 1:20 says But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,

How do we build this altar?
Praise and worship is not a dress rehearsal that the worship team does to kill time. It is when we offer the fruit of our lips to God. It is an integral part, one of the major parts of the service. If we want to build a spiritual environment, everyone has to be present to offer a sacrifice of Thanksgiving to our God.

It’s our way of telling Him how great He is, what He’s done already before we ask for more.
1 The foundation of Praise and Worship has to be repaired.
2 We need to rebuild the foundation of repentance and forgiveness through the all that Jesus has done for us.
3 We need to rebuild the foundation of salvation through grace. It is not because of what we have done
4 We need to rebuild the foundation of prayer and the word
5 We need to lay the foundation of fellowship with other believers through corporate prayer. There can be no church without a gathering or an assembly.
6 We need to rebuild the foundation of honoring God with our gifts, talents and resources

When we do all of these, we create an atmosphere for people to be impacted spiritually.

– Pastor Oliha