Last Friday evening and all day Saturday, I was at 9Marks Conference 2010 organised by Charlotte Chapel in Edinburgh. Speaking was Mark Dever, Pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist in Washington, Paul Rees, Pastor of Charlotte Chapel, and Liam Garvie, Pastor of St Andrews Baptist. I'm not going to go into everything that was covered but something was highlighted that I hadn't thought of before. I believe that the church exists to edify its members, not the unbelievers that may come along on a Sunday. Until the weekend, I was of the belief that a Gospel message should not be preached each Sunday. How are believers supposed to grow in their faith if all they know is the Gospel? 2 Timothy 3:16 says:
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness.
All scripture, not just the Gospel, but the entire Bible. This is the part I hadn't thought of before. The cross is at the centre of our faith. As another blogger put it, at the cross...
…We see God’s sovereignty—reigning with absolute control over humanity’s greatest sin.
…We see God’s purpose—making known the mystery of His will prepared before time.
…We see God’s plan—to unite all things, on heaven and on earth, in Him.
…We see God’s judgment—requiring recompense for guilt.
…We see God’s holiness—demanding the perfect sacrifice.
…We see God’s power—crushing the Son of God according to the purpose of His will.
…We see God’s wrath—punishing the wretchedness of sin.
…We see God’s sorrow—wailing as only a forsaken son can.
…We see God’s mystery—the Son, as God, separated from the Father, committing His Spirit to God.
…We see God’s compassion—pleading to the Father to forgive the ignorant.
…We see God’s gift—His one and only Son, bruised and broken on our behalf.
…We see God’s mercy—making unrighteous sinners righteous.
…We see God’s love—Christ dying for sinners.
…We see God’s rescue operation—delivering us from the domain of darkness to the kingdom of His Son.
…We see God’s proposal—pledging Himself to His bride forever.
…We see God’s revelation—the Word of God speaking His last so He might speak on behalf of many.
…We see God’s victory—disarming His enemies, putting them to shame, and triumphing over them.
…We see God’s glory—the name of the Father being magnified for the sake of all peoples.
We are sinners, we leave church on a Sunday to face a week of sin and so, this point was made by one of the speakers, we need to be reminded of the Gospel. Obviously the breaking of bread centres around the Gospel, need that be enough for the week ahead allowing for other teaching in services? Hopefully I'll get some comments for discussion to help clarify my own thinking.