Category Archives: Uncategorized

Church is God’s people

Most would associate the word ‘church’ with a building, steeple, or priest. Yet, in the Bible that’s never the case. Church is the people of God.

In Ephesians 2:19–22, church is the household of God – the family of God. It’s a spiritual reality. God has put us in our town to show people what the family of God looks like. As we love one another, pray for one another, encourage one another, rebuke one another, and teach one another, we show our town what it looks like to live in relationships under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

To state the obvious, we can’t do this on our own. It’s impossible to ‘one another’ on your own.

And so it’s God’s plan for all Christians to meet together and live together as his people in the local church.

This is hard, but possible! And so let’s ask God to enable us to live as his people with love and grace.

In Christ, Tory Cayzer.

Advertisements

Church is God’s plan for you

A Christian who is not part of church is no where to be found in the Bible. In fact, the church is at the centre of God’s plan for the world and so is definitely God’s plan for you. There is no Plan B.

Jesus says he will build his church and won’t be stopped. All who confess he is the Messiah, the Son of the living God, are his church (Matthew 16:13–19).

So the most important thing happening in the world today is Jesus building his church.

We ought to be comforted and hopeful to know that Jesus is the one building the church. It’s easy to worry or wonder about the future of the church and Christianity. We are in good hands!

But knowing Jesus is the one who builds his church also gives us a challenge. If we are not involved in building the church, are we following Jesus?

My prayer is we’ll have a greater appreciation of the church in God’s plans, and seek to realise this in our local community as we help build his church.

In Christ, Tory Cayzer.

Spiritual Presence Alone

Thomas Cranmer wanted the Lord’s Supper service to give comfort and assurance to the Christian. It was not about us offering a sacrifice to God, but thanking him for his mercy to us in Jesus Christ. He reformed the Roman Catholic Mass so that it was inconceivable that the Lord’s Supper was repeating the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and that we were remembering his sacrifice – as Jesus himself commanded us to do.

Everything we do must be shaped by the gospel of grace in Jesus. We must keep on reforming!

And so the first gospel truth Cranmer guarded in his Lord’s Service was the sufficiency of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. In the words of consecration, he wrote:

ALMIGHTY God, our heavenly Father, who of thy tender mercy didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to suffer death upon the Cross for our redemption; who made there (by his one oblation of himself once offered) a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, oblation, and satisfaction, for the sins of the whole world; and did institute, and in his holy Gospel command us to continue, a perpetual memory of that his precious death, until his coming again;’

Christ’s sacrifice was sufficient. Once for all. We’re not repeating the sacrifice of Jesus in any way, we are remembering.

The second gospel truth was the incarnation. Jesus Christ had a real physical body and had to in order to truly represent us and die in our place. If he wasn’t he couldn’t save us. Yet, the Roman Catholic Church taught (and still does) that the substance of the bread and wine changes (transubstantiates) into the body and blood of Christ when the priest says the words of consecration.

Cranmer wanted it to be clear that Christ is seated in heaven at the right hand of the Father. He can’t be in two places at once, otherwise, he doesn’t have a body like ours. Christ is only present in the Lord’s Supper in a spiritual sense.

As we ‘take and eat’ the bread we participate in a spiritual sense as Christ dwells in us and we in him. We feed on him in our hearts by faith.

It was Cranmer’s rejection of the Roman false teaching of transubstantiation (the real presence of Jesus in the bread and wine) that he was burnt at the stake by Queen Mary.

Let’s pray that God would raise up men and women who hold to the perfect and sufficient sacrifice of Christ for us, men and women ready to go to the stake for the one true gospel of grace.

In Christ,

Tory Cayzer

Glory To God Alone

Have you ever wondered why God made everything?

Why he allows some things to happen, and other things to not happen?

The answer in the Bible is for God’s glory: for from him and through him and for him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen. (Romans 11:36)

The Reformers were driven by the glory of God. Their protests of faith alone, grace alone, Bible alone, and Christ alone were so that God alone receives the glory.

By nature, we are glory thieves. We try to take the spotlight from God and give ourselves glory. This is a tragedy when we remember that everything was made for God’s glory.

It’s a tragedy as we are most human and most satisfied when we bring glory to God – afterall, it’s what we were made for!

Can I encourage you this week to pause before speaking and making decisions to consider: how can I bring glory to God in this moment?

In Christ, Tory Cayzer.

Bible Alone.

The psalmist describes the Bible as perfect, trustworthy, simple, right, and firm. It brings refreshment, wisdom, joy to the heart, light to the eyes, and great reward (Psalm 19).

Yet, history shows people have added and subtracted from the Word of God. The Reformation stated the Bible alone is all we need for salvation and godly living.

Martin Luther coined the phrase ‘Scripture alone’ that our sole and ultimate authority is the Bible. This is because the Bible is where God speaks. All Scripture is God-breathed (2 Timothy 3:16).

In our age of suspicion toward authority and tolerance to everything, this won’t be popular.

As we debate sexuality, gender, and marriage, ’liberal Christians’ will cast doubt on the authority of the Bible, saying it is not enough in our age.

Let’s rejoice that the Bible alone is sufficient because it is God’s Word to us and for us.

In Christ, Tory Cayzer.

Grace alone.

Nothing is as precious or wonderful as the grace of God in Jesus Christ. A glance through the words of some hymns gives insight into the wonder…

…abounding grace, abundant grace, amazing grace, boundless grace, fountain of grace, God of grace, indelible grace, marvellous grace, matchless grace, overflowing grace, pardoning grace, plenteous grace, unfailing grace, immeasurable grace, wonderful grace, the word of grace, grace all sufficient, grace alone, bright glories of thy grace, and grace so rich and free…

Grace is so amazing yet we easily ‘dis-grace’ ourselves when…

We are not amazed by it. But in Ephesians 2:1–3 we’re reminded that without it we are dead. D.E.A.D.

We try to add to it by thinking we can contribute to our salvation. In Ephesians 2:4–9, it’s grace alone!

We use it as an excuse to sin. In Ephesians 2:10, grace saves us from sin for good works.

In Christ, Tory Cayzer.