We see a lot of Christians base their lives on different things. Some base them on wayward things, such as government, the economy, their own job, or their health—the things that are here one day and gone tomorrow. However, Jesus says that he is the one foundation. In this sermon, Greg talks about how we are to base our lives upon Jesus, and also shows how Woodland Hills has done this.
Woodland Hills Church is part of the worldwide church. We believe in the dogma that all other Christians believe in, namely the Apostles’ Creed. Yet, we’re kind of an odd duck in this flock. We tend to focus on issues that many churches in America don’t want to focus on. During this series called Tapestry, we are looking at the different Christian traditions that we draw from and focus on. Whether it’s the reformation, the Anabaptists, the pietistic movement, or the charismatic tradition, we didn’t just make up our understanding of the mission of our church.
In this sermon, we wanted to focus on the foundation of Woodland Hills Church, and our foundation is the person of Jesus Christ. In everything we do or say, we want to point back to his teachings, life, and our communal relationship with him. In Jesus, we find the foundation of our faith and what we draw life from. We don’t draw it from attendance, our preaching, our ministries or missions. We draw it from Jesus.
Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He’s never fickle, petty, self-centered, hypocritical, or stupid. He’s eternally solid, sure, steadfast, and trustworthy. Don’t base your faith on any one church. Instead, base it on Jesus Christ. God uses Woodland Hills Church, but we’re a church full of small rocks, while Jesus is the giant boulder upon which the church is built.
There is a great deal of diversity in the church. This is a beautiful thing, but it can be an ugly thing. It is beautiful when people come together, humbly, and share their opinions and views while still having their foundation on Jesus Christ. The problem becomes when people make their opinions and views more important than Jesus. We have distinct beliefs at Woodland Hills Church, and there’s nothing wrong with this. However, our beliefs are not what we base our church on; we base it on Jesus Christ.
We put the importance of our beliefs in their proper place while we endeavor as a church. At our center is the person of Jesus Christ. Next, we have the dogma of the church. We believe this is best represented by the Apostles’ Creed. We believe this dogma to be the true teaching of the church. Next we have our doctrines. These are the way that we live out our lives as a church. Finally, we have our opinions. When we have these concentric rings of understanding, we can hold in check our desire to be right all the time. We know our opinions aren’t as important as the dogma of the church. We know that Jesus is greater than our doctrines, and when they don’t line up with him, we need to change them.
It is important to have a sure foundation in our faith. That foundation is Jesus Christ. Our life does not come from our opinions, beliefs, or our dogma. It comes from Jesus. The church was built by Jesus, for Jesus, and is owned by Jesus. As we continue in our Tapestry series, keep in mind that other Christian denominations are part of this universal church. They have good parts and bad—just like Woodland Hills Church. And while we may disagree with them on some doctrines and opinions, we also share some doctrines, opinions, and dogma with them. But most importantly, we share the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ with them.
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11 thoughts on “Our One Foundation”
Highly anointed message!
LOVE This, so relevent to me in this season. Very grounding, humbling, and enlightening. Thank you!
There is one true church …and He is the builder………..Amen!
Should a pastor really be wearing jeans on a Sunday???
Just kidding. This was frickin’ great.
Google Maps puts us about 4K miles apart, but the message was spot on.
Just a thought. How come the “dogmatic” tools used is the Apostle’s Creed alone? Why not the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed as well (if not instead of the Apostles Creed)? I guess what I’m wondering is what was the rationale for ONLY using the Apostle’s Creed in particular?
Don’t attend Woodland Hills but listen online,.One of the best sermons I have ever heard and at age 56 I’ve heard more than I care to mention!
Hey Edward, I think the rationale behind using the Apostles’ Creed was to just give an example of an early Christian creed that expresses some of dogmas of the faith. And the Apostles’ Creed is one of the more well-known creeds within many church backgrounds. We weren’t trying to suggest the Apostle’s Creed is somehow more important or “better dogma” than some of the others.
Good question though – thanks!
This was very good message. Greg hit the nail on the head. Many times as Christ followers we commit the sin of Biblio-idolatry (the worshiping of the Bible and interpretations therein). I do hold to Sola Scriptura, but I’m aware that the written word points to the Living Word.
The Written Word is a servant to the Living Word and guides us (in tandem with the Spirit) to an encounter with this Son of the Word. The aim of Scripture is Jesus. Christ himself puts it so aptly to the ‘fundamentalists’ of his days in John 5:39-40
“You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life.”
Indeed, He is our only foundation for no one can be with Christ and against him at the same time. (Mark9:39-41)
Adds of a lot of eisegesis as he presents his message…That’s the trouble wit sticking with Historic orthodoxy ,its loaded with traditional teaching and not always so biblical…But I actually think the Apostles Creed is the best of them..
I am going to show this to my family which consists of my two former husbands, and two children (each one is father of one of them). We have quite diverse beliefs in some areas and I think this can bring us all together. We are thinking about meeting regularly to encourage each other and start a kind of home church. So thank you for explaining the mere Christianity that C.S. Lewis so beautifully defines in the book by that title.
Every value that you shared that Woodland Hills shares is close to my heart and really for the most part, everyone in my family. (we differ on some spiritual things). So I really think this is going to help us with our unity.
I have been a vegetarian since I was 18 (40 years ago) because I believed it was unjust to kill animals. I have not yet found a pastor who shared this value unless he or she was a 7th Day Adventist. So to find that you are a vegetarian is very refreshing
I usually try to have peaceful conversations with people, but I can appear to be lawyer-like as I ask questions and they tend to squirm. I’m glad you reminded me that I need to always disagree in love.
Thanks for this message–very very inspiring and helping me to trust in Jesus and make him center of all even more. I wonder why I need to hear this over and over again–until I finally get it. I think your way of explaining the concentric circles of belief helps me a lot.
BTW, rid you and Bruxey decide to get matching shirts? He said almost the same thing when he preached in the shirt–that he didn’t want to distract anyone.