Choir: A Reflection of the Body of Christ

Recently I came across a wonderful article that described the beauty and power of a choir's role in the church's praise of God. Within this article, the author described three ways wherein the choir is a reflection or microcosm of God's desire and plan within the Church. Being a part of church choirs since the age of 13 and now privileged to lead the Faith Baptist Choir, these reflections resonated with me.

1. Choirs Emphasizes the Whole Group Over the Parts

A choir can't have one person--that's a solo. A choir can't even have just a few people, relatively speaking--that's a quartet or ensemble. A choir requires a larger group of people, united under the purpose of singing a particular message together. Choir requires individuals to sacrifice self-interest to pursue the value of the whole.

Sounds like Christ's Church...

2. Choirs Demonstrate the Value of Each Person

While choir emphasizes the whole, each individual within the choir has value and worth. Each voice adds a unique part to the sound of the whole--a sound incomplete when all the voices are not present. A choir takes the unique gifting and voice of each individual and incorporates it into a greater purpose or mission.

Sounds like the Body of Christ...

3. Choirs Illustrate the Diversity of Gifts in the Church

The varying levels of ability within the Faith Baptist Choir would probably surprise those not involved in it. Every choir has a wide range of talent, skills, and training. Each individual can add more than a musical contribution to the choir--they can add spirit, commitment, dedication, joy, service, encouragement, and much more. Any choir is better when these spiritual gifts are employed alongside one's musical ability.

Sounds like the local Church...

I pray that each week you are encouraged towards greater praise by the choir at Faith Baptist Church, but I also earnestly pray that you will be exhorted to greater involvement, participation, and service to the Body of Christ by recognizing how the choir you see weekly is simply a reflection of how each member of the Body of Christ should be invested in God's desire and mission for His church.

-Pastor David

Preparing for Service

In Ephesians 4, Paul calls the Ephesian believers to walk worthy of their call is saints in the body of Christ. As a part of Faith Baptist Church, we have an equal opportunity, privilege, and even responsibility to Christ and His church. In verse two, Paul begins describing this vocation we are called with four characteristics:

1. Lowliness--Proper Evaluation of Self
In reality, we have nothing to boast of except God and His grace (I Cor. 15:10; James 1:17). As we prepare our hearts for service in Christ's church, may we recognize our lack of ability and merit outside the goodness of God displayed in our lives.

2. Meekness--Power Under Control
Understand that meekness is not weakness. It is likened to a tamed horse under the control of a bit, bridle, and reins--very powerful, but under control. This is practically done in our lives by aligning ourselves with the truth of God's Word and allowing the Spirit of God to direct our attitudes and actions (Gal. 5).

3. Longsuffering--Patient, Long Tempered
This speaks of our response to others when they hurt or attack us. When, not if we are hurt in Christ's church, God calls us to love and forgive (Eph. 4:32).

4. Forbearance--Recognize the Worth of Those Around Us
While similar to patience, this refers more to the acceptance of people in spite of their failings and weaknesses. This it to endure the difficult and trying times ministering to and with others because of Christ's love for them, rather then neglecting them at the first sign of difficulty.

It is through these Spirit filled attitudes that we endeavor to keep the Spirit's unity in the bond of peace (Eph. 4:3). This is the responsibility of every believer in Christ's church: from pastoral staff member, officer, teacher, usher, greeter, and everyone in between.

- Pastor David

Recognizing our Role

Last week, as I was studying a lesson for Growth Groups, I was challenged by reported statistics regarding the Jehovah’s Witness’.

“A Pew survey in 2008 found that this group consists of only 0.7% of the population in America. The proselyting conducted by this cult is heavily dependent on their publishing arm, which is based in Brooklyn, New York where more than 1,000 miles of paper are printed daily.”

This cult, contains less than 1% of our population yet their influence is prominent. As we shared these statistics in class, I was convicted over my effectiveness for Jesus Christ. However, the more I study, the more I recognize the spiritual condition of many churches. It lead me to question our impact. The church has been called to a purpose.

Faith Baptist, without a purpose, any function is doomed to fail. So what is the purpose of the church. We understand that the church is not a social club or another thing-to-do… We understand that when we joined this body, we determined to submit to the accountability of other believers. But why are we really here? Here are a few thoughts…(certainly, not exhaustive)

Worship the Saviour

Every ministry of the local church must center around the Lord Jesus Christ and be offered as worship to him. Worship is “the praise, adoration and reverence of God.” It is a celebration of the worthiness of God, by which honour is given to his name. This act must be a regular occurrence and it must be done with the proper perspective of who we are, and who He is. (Ps. 51:17; Isa. 57:15). “As the psalmist proclaimed, we must “come, worship,”and, “bow down” (Ps. 95:6). The three are inseparable. (Ps. 51:17; Isa. 57:15). It was encouraging to see many humbly worship God during the morning service last week. While new to some, this must be a common practice within the life of the believer.

Edification of the Believer

Edification is defined as “building up and strengthening in the faith of believers and churches.” Ephesians 4:12 explains that ministry workers were given “for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:” As believers meet together they gather to sharpen each other and hear from the preached word of God. They have opportunity to utilize their spiritual gifts as they function together for the glory of God. Edification is focused on the equipping of the saints whereas worship is the offering that equipped saints give back to the Lord Jesus Christ. The writer of Hebrews exhorts his readers not to neglect the assembling of themselves together as was the habit of some (Heb. 10: 25). Although worship emphasizes God, it is also intended to benefit the worshipers.

Evangelization of the Lost

It is no doubt that Christ placed an emphasis on the evangelization of the lost sinner. Luke 19:10 states “for the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Before Christ’s ascension, He commissioned the church to reach the lost with the saving power of the gospel. (1 Cor. 15:58, Matt. 28:18-20, John 20:21 One author stated: “If the church is to be faithful to its Lord and bring joy to his heart, it must be engaged in bringing the gospel to all people. This includes people whom we may by nature tend to dislike. It extends to those who are unlike us. And it goes beyond our immediate sphere of contact and influence. In a very real sense, local evangelism, church extension or church planting, and world missions are all the same thing. The only difference lies in the length of the radius. The church must work in all of these areas. If it does not, it will become spiritually ill, for it will be attempting to function in a way its Lord never intended.” It must be the goal of every local church and believer to prioritize Christ’s last command as our first doing. “Thriving churches have the Great Commission as the centerpiece of their vision, while dying churches have forgotten the clear command of Christ.”

So how do you have a part in the church? You may be saying… “I don’t.” Can I challenge you to get involved with what is happening here at Faith Baptist Church? Now is the time to take part in God’s institution: The Church.

- Brother Jordan