“The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and of the seven golden lampstands is this: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches. Revelation 1:20
The churches are lampstands!
We see the lampstand described in Exodus: 25: 31-40, 27:20-21, 37:17-24, and 40:4, 24.
God commanded exactly how it was to be built, the kind of oil it should use, that it must never burn out, and where it was to be placed.
Why was it so important?
“One of the most intriguing details about the lampstand was where it was placed—next to the table that held the “shewbread,” the loaves known as the “bread of presence.” The lampstand was positioned strategically to do one thing: cast its light on the table and on the bread that represented God’s provision and presence. For generations, the lampstand of the tabernacle stood to highlight the object that best represented God’s goodness and provision, the same object that Jesus would one day use to symbolize his own body… The church exists to shine a light into the darkness, a light that highlights God’s goodness and reveals God’s Son, in order that the world can understand and know him.”Reggie Joiner, Think Orange
What is the church?
Many people today understand the church as a building. This is not a biblical understanding of the church. The word “church” comes from the Greek word ekklesia which is defined as “an assembly” or “called-out ones.” The root meaning of “church” is not that of a building, but of people.
In Romans 16:5 Paul writes some personal greetings and is speaking of Priscilla and Aquila and says, “Greet also the church that meets at their house.”
People are the church. NOT a building. We are the church!
We are lampstands. What our light illuminates determines our influence.
As a parent this is especially convicting!
Many parents ask, what can the church (the Pastors and programs that happen inside the church) do to train my children spiritually? Instead, we should be looking more at what we are doing in the home to train our children spiritually.
Books that pointed me to the same scripture:
“These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down, and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:6-9
Parent responses to Deuteronomy 6
“Do this and you will only push your kids away and make them rebel. This is too much!”
“The Bible is important, but there is more to life than the Bible. Kids need to be well-rounded.”
“Making yourself an outcast won’t allow you to minister to the world.”
“If you do it this way, your kids will go crazy when they leave home doing everything you wouldn’t let them do when they lived at home.”
“The question is not whether or not our children sin later in life. The question is, do we have a biblical obligation to train them before they leave home? Is there any biblical validity to the idea that Christian parents should allow their children to experiment with ungodliness?” Voddie Baucham
What is the alternative? What if we don’t “push”? What if we do not impress them (God’s commandments) on our children?What will be more influential on a child?
The approximately 3 or 4 hours spent per week at the “Church” Or The 160 plus hours a week spent outside the church building?
Parents not pouring into their kids are often not pouring into themselves.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2
If you are not renewing your mind by studying the world, how can you possibly avoid conforming to the pattern of this world?
“…if you took all of the books available today on parenting and divided them by the number of days in a year, you’d discover that there has been an average of ten new parenting books produced every day of the year for each of the past twenty-one years…” George Barna – Revolutionary
Garbage in, Garbage out!Why does Moses set such a high standard of study and teaching in Deuteronomy 6:6-7?
“When the Lord your God brings you into the land he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give you – a land with large, flourishing cities you did not build, houses filled with all kinds of good things you did not provide, wells you did not dig, and vineyards and olive groves you did not plant –then when you eat and are satisfied, be careful that you do not forget the Lord, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.” Deuteronomy 6:10-12
Where is your light shining?[audio:http://www.marshalltownefc.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/33-Discipling-our-Children-Deut.-6_7-9.mp3|titles=33 Discipling our Children (Deut. 6_7-9)]