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April 5, 2019, 10:00 AM

Why we Recite The Apostles' Creed Before the Ordinances


If you joined us last week for worhip, then you noticed that prior to a baptism we stand as a chruch and confess The Apostles Creed together. At FBC Buffalo we do this not only prior to baptism but also prior to the Lord's Supper. Both baptistm and the Lord's Supper are church ordinances as they were established by Christ (Luke 22:19-20 & Matthew 28:19-20).1 At FBC Buffalo we feel that observing the ordinances are great times to review and collectively confess what we believe to be most fundamental to our faith. While not every primary doctirne is addressed directly in the creed2, they are all implied and therefore exceptionally effective in captuing what we believe at FBC Buffalo. Below are three reasons we are convinced at FBC Buffalo that this is an appropriate practice. 

 

1. It's Biblical.

Confessions are biblical. This is illustrated when the Old Testament people of God confessed their faith every morning and evening with the words of Deuteronomy 6:4. The Israelites confessed their faith in the one God when they worshiped Him at the tabernacle and temple in response to His blessing of salvation (Deuteronomy 26:1-11).

We also encounter many confessions throughout the New Testament (i.e. Matthew 16:16; Ephesians 4:4-6 1 Corinthians 15:3-4).Since a great deal of content in the epistles are dedicated to correcting false doctrine, having a common confesion was vital to the teaching of the early church. It is still vital today.

2. It's Beneficial.

Not only are confessions biblical, following the pattern of expressing core beliefs, they are beneficial in many ways. They unify the church (Romans 15:5-6; Philippians 1:27). They provide the church with a clear standard of Truth. They remind us of essential truths (Jude 3). They prevent us from being “tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine” (Ephesians 4:14).4 We are reminded that we as individuals are not alone in this confession. Our kids at FBC Buffalo get to hear and think about the primary doctrines they are confessing with their parents making all of us ready to "give a defense for the hope within us" (1 Peter 3:15).

3. It unites us.

A confession is a chance to publical and collectively declare our core beliefs together as a church. That is a blessing in itself, but further this establishes a common belief that we as a church hold to and what Christians through out the ages have held to. It even unites us with those Christians who streach back to the start of the chruch (Jude 3).The Apostles Creed is a concise way for each part of the FBC Buffalo family to make known to others what we belive together. If one were to visit on a Sunday when an ordinance is observed they would not have to guess at what our church affirms. 

This is a short list and is far from comprehensive. A confession is apologetic.It is a way to share the gospel. It sets us as a chruch apart from many in our community. We don't take our confession of the gospe lightly. We are a confessional church at FBC Buffalo and we confess together: 

I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried;

he descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again;

he ascended into heaven,

he is seated at the right hand of the Father,

and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the Universal Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting.

Amen.

11689 London Baptist Confession. accessed April 4, 2019 http://www.arbca.com/1689-chapter28

2Dave Van Bebber Jr, "The Importance of Preaching the FirstLevel Doctrines of the Christian Faith," in Show Me Why: Thoughts from Missouri Baptists on Defending the Christian Faith, ed. Jeanie Crain (Jefferson Cith, MO: Missouri Baptist Convention Press, 2018).

3Daniel R. Hyde, Welcome to a Reformed Chruch: A Guide for Pilgrims (Orlando, FL: Reformation Trust Pbulishing 2010).

4Ibid.

5Vodie Bachman Jr., Expository Apologetics: Answering Objections with the Power of the Word (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2015).

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April 3, 2019, 11:00 AM

We have a church blog now! Four reasons to check it out (as if I really needed to convince you)


Since we have a new church website with the ability for me to post blogs, I will attempt to publish a blog once a week. It is a healthy habit for me to communicate with the church effectively, and it is a challenge for me to get into the habit of writing more often. This is one way for me to do that. I also hope to use this blog as a way to expand my ability to shepherd the church and to teach.

Four reasons why you should take a look at our church blog. (If you are reading this, did I really need to convince you?)

1. In order to be pastored beyond just Sunday and Wednesday.

One of the biblical requirements for a pastor is that he should be "able to teach" (1 Timothy 3:2). Further, scripture implores pastors to be "examples to the flock" (1 Peter 5:3). When a pastor makes a point to communicate through another available tool to his church he is demonstrating a desire and ability to teach on days other than Sunday, and he is demonstrating an effective means for how to interact with others in the digital realm. I hope to be able to write content that is useful for instructing people in our church because pastors are called to not only teach on Sunday morning, but to live their life as an example for others in the church.

 

2. To keep up-to-date with what is going on in the church.

One of the most common problems I have seen come up again and again in churches that I have been involved in is difficulty with communicating and coordinating calendars. One of the elements that I hope to facilitate in this blog is to address upcoming events and report on how an event went. I also hope that checking out the church website will cause some to jump over to our church calendar. Our church website has an up-to-date calendar that also includes birthdays, anniversaries, and special events. It is updated when new events are scheduled in the church, and it can keep you informed on any changes to our normal schedule.

 

3. So you can share information with friends on social media.

I have not plugged any numbers on how many individuals in our church have a Facebook account, but last checked I believe the majority of the people in our church have some type of a social media presence. Many of the topics I hope to include in my blog should serve as shareable post so you can engage your unchurched friends with on social media. The reality is that we use our social media accounts frequently to check out different topics and items of interest that are important to us and our friends. We frequently share memes, articles, and pictures on our social media accounts. Having a blog on our church website that deals with a variety of Christian topics should prove useful as a way to use your social media account to expand your great commission influence.

4. Because it's enjoyable.

I am not going to pretend that I am the most interesting or entertaining pastor in the world. I’m far from being all that interesting or entertaining, but think it will be fun for us as a church to develop a habit of using our media influence to have a great commission impact. Often today we hear about individuals in the media and politicians talking about our "carbon footprint." I would like to adopt some of that concept in causing us to consider how we can expand our "great commission footprint."

Engaging others with our Christian faith does not have to be a painful task. I think it can be fun to share faith related things on social media and engage friends with those items. It should be enjoyable for us to show others in our community and in our areas of influence things that are likable, fun, and unique to our church. This is not only a tool to witness to those with whom we have direct contact, but others might share or re-tweet our post reaching others beyond what we could imagine.

So there you have it, here is my (Dave’s) first blog post on our church website. I'm certain that it is imperfect. I am not only certain that it is imperfect I know without a doubt it is imperfect. I probably have many mistakes and errors in my post. There are a lot of things that I could say better, but you'll just have to pick on me by commenting or sharing the post. I’m sure that my posts will get better. I can promise that I will strive to glorify the Lord with the content that I put forward.

 



Comments

04-03-2019 at 4:19 PM
Pamela Kirk
God bless you, Brother! May you reach and disciple every soul that God brings your way.
04-03-2019 at 4:19 PM
Pamela Kirk
God bless you, Brother! May you reach and disciple every soul that God brings your way.
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