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Stop Being A CEO

By Pastor Phillip Howle
web posted December 17, 2014

RELIGION – I work for a good boss, My CEO is God. I can’t complain about much. But, when I used to work in various factories, it was not uncommon at all to hear complaints about the CEO of the company. Things like “He has no clue what we do.” “He thinks he is better than us in his fancy car and front office.” Then there were other comments that I can’t repeat or print. Let me say that I have no idea how to run a company and the majority of you don’t either.  But, I am saddened by the many CEOs I encounter as a pastor.

Let me explain myself. A CEO to most pastors is a Christmas and Easter Only. This means that there are many people who typically come to church twice a year. Now this better than no times a year. Still, CEO’s sadden me. The fact they come to church on these major events in the Christian year shows they know something about Christ. It shows they know that church is a good place for them even if they limit it to twice a year. It makes me sad as well because I agree with Frances R. Havergal who said that “An avoidable absence from church is an infallible evidence of spiritual decay.” James, the Brother of Jesus, says it like this in James 4:17 “whoever knows the right thing to do and does not do it, it is sin.”

It is hard for CEO’s to grow in the image and likeness of Christ apart from church. Now believe me, I am not saying that going to church necessarily means that one is a true follower of Jesus.  Far from it, I have heard it said that going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than going to a MacDonald’s makes you a Big Mac. So then on the most elementary level, you do not have to go to church to be a Christian. You can be member of a church, you can have your name on the roles, and never darkened the doors except on Christmas or Easter or not at all.  But think of it like this, you can be legally married, and never go home. You can stay out late, sleep at a buddy’s house, and never come home to your wife and still be legally married. In fact I guess you could run around on your wife and still be legally married. But you don’t have a happy and a healthy marriage! You see in the case of the church, never coming to God’s house shows that there is something wrong in your relationship to Christ. Being a CEO necessarily shows that you don’t have a happy or healthy relationship with Christ. Sorry, but that is just the way it is. You may be going heaven, but it is odd to say you love someone and then never visit their house or seek to have a closer relationship with them.
In fact, in the New Testament there is no such person as a Christian who is not a church member. Conversion, being saved or born again, was described as “the Lord adding to the church” (Acts 2:47). Then Jesus said in Matthew 16:18 “I will build My church, and the gates of hell will not overpower it.” I am saying that if Jesus is this committed to the church, should we be any less committed to it? No.

I have to be honest, I find it hard to hear people say they are Christians and then willfully and repeatedly disobey their Lord’s commands by refusing to join themselves to Christ’s church. In fact, non-church attendance shows that they have bought the modern lie that says “God is irrelevant to the real business of life.” Read Hebrews 10:19-25  “Therefore, brothers, since we have boldness to enter the sanctuary through the blood of Jesus,  (20)  by the new and living way that He has inaugurated for us, through the curtain (that is, His flesh);  (21)  and since we have a great high priest over the house of God,  (22)  let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water.  (23)  Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.  (24)  And let us be concerned about one another in order to promote love and good works,  (25)  not staying away from our meetings, as some habitually do, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day drawing near.”

Let me close with a quote from Don Whitney “As wonderful and sophisticated as the heart is, it was never made to be just a heart, but a part of a body. It has no value to the body outside the body. And the heart itself can't thrive outside the body. As incredible and wonderful as you are, Christian, you were never made just to be an individual Christian, but a part of body. As every organ and every cell is God-created to be an active member of the human body, so every true Christian is God-created to be an active member of a local body of Christ.”

So, to all the CEO’s I hope to see you at church this Sunday! I also hope you give an honest appraisal to your spiritual condition and vitality. Give church a chance. It is not perfect; you will find sinners who fill the pews and the pulpits and you will also find a home for you as well.

Pastor Phillip

PS:  I am still in need of some support for my trip to Asia teaching local pastors on April 6th to the 16th. I  know there are many Edgefield Daily readers and if only a fraction of you gave a little the 2,500 dollars needed to fund my trip will easily be met. (Please forgive my tele-evangelist begging for dollars.)  If you would like more information on the details of the trip, you can call me at Antioch at (803-637-3003) or email me at phillip@antiochofedgefield.com. You can also give through a nice site called http://www.youcaring.com/mission-trip-fundraiser/help-pastor-phillip-teach-local-church-pastors-in-asia/274776  .It is a quick and free and easy. Or you can mail a check to Antioch Baptist Church, 1843 SC Hwy 23W, Edgefield SC 29824.

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