Our Sunday morning services at St John’s are Eucharistic services, because our focus is on Jesus. We are Christians, those who believe that God has spoken and revealed himself in Christ. In other words, we are not called to grope after God and make him in our image. He has made himself known, and Jesus is his image to us. Christians believe that God has communicated with his world and creation and the ultimate expression of himself is Jesus – God as a human being.
14The Word became flesh and made his dwelling amongst us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
18No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only who is at the Father’s side, has made him known. John 1:14 & 18
1In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2but in these last days he has spoken to us by his son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. 3The son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being… Hebrews 1:1-3
The Christmas story begins to make it clear in the name and title given to Jesus at his birth. The title Immanuel means “God with us” and the name Jesus means Saviour or God-to-the-rescue. That rescue and salvation was finally achieved by his death on the cross. As Christians we believe God is not distant or silent, but has spoken and has drawn close in Jesus. He has revealed himself and done all that is necessary for us to be forgiven and to know him personally within the family of his people.
Christ in the Scriptures
If God has ultimately revealed himself in Christ, then we understand Christ to be found and explained in the scriptures. The Bible is “God’s Word written” as it came personally to prophets (old testament) and apostles (new testament) and, as it is taught, so God’s voice is heard. The message is gospel or good news.
39You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me, 40yet you refuse to come to me to have life. John 5:39–40
26Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory? 27And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself. Luke 24:26–27
It is the Scriptures that point us to Jesus and teach us who he is and how his death and resurrection are the key to life with God now and forever – forgiveness, new life and purpose and destiny. God was in Christ reconciling us to himself. We are all called to hear and respond in what the Bible calls “repentance for sin” and “faith in the Lord Jesus”. Christians are those who are “in Christ” – they belong to God and to the family or household of his people, the church.
The Spirit of the living God
God is father – the unseen God in Himself; God is Son – visible in history and in human form, but God is Spirit, making himself real as Father, Son and Holy Spirit in our experience. Yes, three but one, three – in -one – like the author of a play, the main actor in the play and the agent or director of the play, all being the same.
Therefore in our worship and fellowship at St John’s we seek to be reverent – looking to God and focused on Christ, relevant – centred on the Bible, and real – dependent on the Spirit.
This is the foundation of Christian faith and life, ministry and mission.