March 2022 (9Marks, Conversion, & Galatians Unity)
I just returned from a conference at Midwestern Seminary put on by 9Marks ministries on the topic of meaningful membership and biblical conversion. It struck me how many parallels there were in the conference on that topic to what we have been seeing in our series through the book of Galatians. For instance, one of the talks and panels brought out the very important truth that what unites us most as Christians is not our socio economical status, or our ethnicity, or our geographical location, but the fact that we have been justified and adopted into God’s family! This is right out of the book of Galatians in chapters 3 and 4 as we have been seeing. God made us family through faith alone and our shared faith in Jesus unites a diverse group of people throughout the world into one large Christian family!
Furthermore, this shared faith unites local clusters of believers who decide together to covenant with one another and gather regularly to worship God through prayer, song, preaching, and to observe the ordinances of the baptism and the Lord’s Supper. That is what our church is all about. It is what we are called to be and do at FBC Gallatin. We are not simply a social club as the President of MBTS Dr. Jason Allen reminded us at the conference, but a body of blood bought believers who long to love God and others and proclaim the good news Gospel of Jesus Christ to a fallen world.
This means that meaningful membership starts with genuine conversion when a person actually believes the Gospel and is transformed. As that new believer then decides to go public and get baptized to identify with Christ and Christ’s people they are then grafted into a local church with fellowship and accountability and a shared mission together. This is all just Christianity 101, but it is profound and it is what we are called to be and do as a local church.
We may be tempted to think that we must implement all the latest and greatest strategies to attract people to FBC, but we are not simply interested in attracting people, but fulfilling the Great Commission and making real genuine converts who love Jesus and Jesus’ people! My prayer for us is that we would be an outpost in Gallatin where genuine Christians would flock to worship with God’s people and hear His Word and love one another as Christian family regardless of our differences. Would you pray with me that God would convert the unconverted, and also build up the converted through the ministry of believers in our church? That is my prayer for us as a church and I hope it would be our collective prayer together as well as we all unite and agree on this mission together. I love you church as we are all family united in the Gospel!
Sincerely, Pastor Daniel Pelichowski