Guarding Against Wolves
Topic: Sent Passage: Acts 20:28–20:32
A Recap of Sunday’s Sermon
Preaching Text: Acts 20:28-32
In Acts 20:29-30 Paul makes it clear to the Ephesian Church leadership that “wolves” will come among them. The wolves won’t be “out there” somewhere but rather within the church. In verse 31 he gives a clear application on what to do about it. He says, “So be on your guard!” This is similar to what Jesus himself said in Matthew 7:15-16, “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them.” These wolves won’t be easily recognized.
While in the series: Sent: Living the Mission of God, the question was, what are “wolves” that seem fine in the church but when look closely don’t actually produce any fruit for Kingdom growth?
We looked at two wolves to guard against.
- Acting like a Club instead of a Church. Clubs are good things but they are “For members Only” by design. A club is free to not welcome in those who are not members. The church is not now, never was, nor ever was intended to be a club. The church actually exists primarily for non-members! Too often the church slips into a club attitude that doesn’t welcome in those who look and act like “sinners.” It’s much like the Pharisees did in Jesus day, criticizing him for associating with tax collectors and sinners. This must be guarded against.
- Busyness with Church Work instead of the Work of the Church. It’s so easy for Christians to get so busy with all the good stuff of worship, service, fellowship, Bible studies, etc. that we never have time to get around to the actual work of the church, the mission! Guarding against this wolf takes being intentional about making time to spend with non-believers.
Taking It Home:
- Discuss with your household or think about ways you can reach out to someone struggling to connect to the church. Pray for opportunities.