In Luke 12:32, Jesus makes this amazing, wonderful, encouraging statement to His disciples:
Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
Wow! Ponder that for a while, and rejoice, dear church family!
I believe we can rightly apply those words to ourselves. In other words, we, the born-again members of Rockdale Community Church, are one of Christ’s “little flocks.” And the Chief Shepherd of our “little flock” is telling us in this text that the Father is pleased to give us the kingdom. It’s just too good! Amazing grace, how sweet the sound!
Not too long ago I was reading our November “Book of the Month,” (see the recommendation below in this newsletter) and at the end of chapter 5, I came to a section that is directly connected to Jesus’s words in Luke 12:32. And I was reminded why I was so encouraged by the FIRE regional fellowship that I attended last month. The authors were talking about the concept of the “theology of the cross,” which was put forth strongly by Martin Luther at the beginning of the Reformation. Here is that excerpt:
The temptation is to think that what we need most are national evangelistic campaigns or megachurches with slick multimedia presentations or access to the global media or charismatic personalities or influence in the halls of power. This is not a new temptation. The church has always faced the temptation to seek power and influence in the world.
But the theology of the cross calls us to place our confidence in what Jesus calls his “little flock” (Luke 12:32). At the heart of Jesus’s future are not globalized ecclesial structures—whether the Catholic magisterium or pan-evangelical networks. Instead the future belongs to small unassuming churches—Christ’s little flock. It is to Christ’s little flock that the kingdom of God has been given—the all-powerful, life-giving rule of God.
So we need not only a theology of the cross but also a church of the cross. The understanding of the church consistent with the gospel of Christ crucified is a church of the cross. That means power in weakness, wisdom in folly, and glory in shame. It means we must put our confidence in God rather than in ourselves. Christ is building his church, for the most part unseen, in the shape of thousands of small congregations. In this there is hope: the sovereignty of the risen Christ, and his “little flock.”
How encouraging is that?
I am so thankful and happy to be in a “small unassuming church” with you! May we continue to put our confidence in God and not in ourselves. May we continue to preach not ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord. May we continue to glory in the cross and be crucified to the world.
Be encouraged, little flock!
Pressing on with you, with our eyes fixed on Jesus,