Church Mandate and Motto

THEME: God's comfort in the glorious ministry of Christ

Paul has spoken of the triumph of the ministry. Now he deals with the accreditation of the ministry. He will reach the heights in this chapter.

Do we begin again to commend ourselves? or need we, as some others, epistles of commendation to you, or letters of commendation from you? [2Cor. 3:1].

Paul is asking, "Do I need a letter of recommendation from my employer? Do I need a letter from God testifying that I am His minister?" Paul says, "No, I don't need to have that" -- for this reason:

Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men:

Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart [2Cor. 3:2-3].

The proof of the effectiveness of any ministry is whether or not it has a recommendation from God. He is not giving out letters of recommendation; the proof lies in the epistles that are written in the fleshly tables of the heart. J Vernon McGee once said I have read many letters from folk who have turned to Christ because of my radio ministry. Several years ago a wonderful family came up to me in Houston, Texas. If no one else turned to Christ through my radio program there, I still would consider it worthwhile. They listened to the radio program for three months before they made a decision for Christ, and then the entire family, a handsome family, all received Christ. They are some of the epistles I have down in Texas. I have such epistles in practically every state of these United States and on many foreign shores. They are my letters of commendation. Do you have any living breathing epistles?

Paul says to the Corinthian believers, "You are our epistles written in our hearts, known and read of all men."

And such trust have we through Christ to God-ward [2Cor. 3:4].

This gives me confidence. I know the Bible is the Word of God. While I was in seminary, I believed it was the Word of God. I think that intellectually it can be determined that it is the Word of God. But today I don't even need the intellectual demonstrations anymore. I've passed that. To me it is very simple -- the proof of the Word of God is what it does. They say that the proof of the pudding is in the eating. God put it like this: "O taste and see that the Lord is good..." [Ps. 34:8]. This is His challenge to us.

Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think anything as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God [2Cor. 3:5].

I am sure that you have already sensed the weakness of the apostle Paul in this epistle of 2 Corinthians. But Paul could say, "For when I am weak, then am I strong" [2Cor. 12:10].

God’s Mandate for New Life Community Church

Joshua 1:6-10 (ESV)

6 Be strong and courageous, for you shall cause this people to inherit the land that I swore to their fathers to give them.

7 Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success wherever you go.

8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

10 And Joshua commanded the officers of the people,

Our Church Motto (We are Ambassadors for Christ)

2 Cor 5:16-21

2 Corinthians 5:16-21 (ESV)

16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer.

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation;

19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.

20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.

21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.