THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS A PARTY

Christians are not known to be the most fun loving people in the world.  But they should be!  Who has more to be excited about than us?  But Somewhere along the line we got way too serious.  I’ve preached in churches where it looked like everybody had just spent the night upside down in a post hole.  Maybe the devil has been spiking our baptismal tanks with lemon juice. 

In Matthew 22 Jesus likened the Kingdom of Heaven to a wedding feast.  The invited guests failed to show up because catch this…they all went to work (Mt 22:5).  So the servants went into the highways and byways and invited a bunch of bums.  They of course showed up and ate all the food  because they have lots of time, bums don’t have jobs.  I realize there is a far deeper meaning here but you don’t want to miss the fact that the Kingdom of Heaven is a party. 

In the Old testament they were required to cease from their labors seven times a year and have a party.  The bible calls them Feasts and their purpose was to worship God but they were still parties.  Lots of food, friends, family and fun.  The very first thing we do when we get to Heaven is go to a party.  It is called the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.  I think it was Oz Guinness who said one of the greatest sins of the church has been to bore God’s people.  I agree!  The church should be in celebration mode every time we open the doors. 

In the 1920′s Aimee Semple McPherson built a church in Los Angeles called Angelus Temple.  It held 5300 people and was full several times on a Sunday.  Hollywood producers used to slip in on Sundays to get ideas for their movies.  The church should be leading the way in creativity not following decades behind.

The scripture says that we are created in the image of God.  It is impossible to even describe the level of creativity possessed by a God we actually call the Creator.  The heavens and earth and everything in it, the complexity of the biological DNA, the physical properties of the universe, the psychological construct of man and on and on was created by Him. 

Surely, some of that creativity has rubbed off on His children?  It clearly has, look arond at man’s accomplishments.  Why then is it so stifled in the church?  Why do Sunday services look like they came out of a celestial cookie cutter?  I have preached in India, and Africa, and South America, and Europe, and Central America and have been amazed at how church services look the same wherever I go.  Same music, same format, same blah, blah blah from the preacher… Oh yeah, I was preaching wasn’t I?  Oh well, never mind that part.

It might be a oxymoron but in our church we have worked hard at having fun.  Anyone who has ever attended our services knows we take God and his word very seriously but we are having big fun along the way.  We are putting together a video of some of the music we have done on Sunday mornings.  Next week I am going to post the video for you to have a look at, so check back next Wednesday.  In the meantime relax and try to have some fun.

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8 Responses to THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS A PARTY

  1. Evelyn Bennett says:

    I do agree with you Pastor Mark. Many people are so concerned how other people worship that they are forgetting that the spirit lives in them as well.

    I was a little intimidated to join the choir. I was concerned that I would be conscious of what others were doing instead of focusing on my own time with the Lord.

    When I go to church I am in my own little world. God has individual time with each of us. He is so Big he is able to be there for all of us.
    Why do people think they need to compete with each other for God time? Once we get past “it is all about me” phase I am sure our worship time will feel more like a celebration.

    Evelyn

  2. Karen says:

    This is why I love your church!Truelly celebrating Jesus.My husbands exacts words after the first Power and Praise night we attended were”I feel like I was just at a Jesus party”.Its moving freely in the Holy Spirit,I wish more churches would “allow” that.The sermons are so well absorbed(at least for me)when humour is thrown in.The fun and enthusiastic energy you have while preaching Gods word trickles into the congergation..I love that!And yes,wont it be a party once we reach heaven!Something I am so looking forward to one day,to party with my loved ones already there and Jesus himself…..

  3. Graham Nickerson says:

    I’ve attended Baptist services all my life. For some reason I’ve been told over and over that it was wrong to go to church and be entertained. I most certainly do not believe in attending church for entertain purposes only,,,but I get entertained by accident …I guess I’m down with that. If your spiritual gifts through music, drama, visual arts allow for you to worship God and entertain in the process. I say all power to you.
    I often wonder how many Christians would feel if they walked on King David dancing around the church like he did before the ark, maybe the reaction of Queen Michal?? Or “What blaspheme!!”
    Paul said if our worship was in vain then we foremost are the most miserable of people. Its too bad that are worship isn’t in vain and yet we still come across as the most miserable.

  4. Steve says:

    I love it when churches are filled with inexpressible joy. Joy that comes from being kind, merciful, not arrogant or self absorbed, but joy that comes straight from God when we live our life to please Him instead of ourselves.

  5. Anna says:

    I wish someone could tell that to the priests that tell us to shut up in the church while waiting for a wedding to begin

  6. Theo Lambrechts says:

    I have gone to church all my life. Some churches have changed their style of worship so that people can be more expressive. Others are still very very traditional where no one is allowed to even crack a joke or even a smile. God does not want us to be stiff in praising Him. Ir has taken me a while to accept change because of the way I was brought up.

  7. David John says:

    We are to have the Joy of the Lord are we not? It says to make a joyful noise unto the Lord, This is a celebration for those that have been set free !!Do we ever wonder if the Lord did the Hoka at the wedding feast?. David danced unto the Lord also, so we should be preparing ourselves for the eternal party with out Lord in heaven.Take Care and God bless.

  8. bridgnath says:

    Hello Pastor Hughes,
    The bible dont tell us to cease from working only seven times per year ,but also once per week according to the ten commandments. (which was not abolished).All the cooking was to have been done on Friday (preparation day ) so we can feast on Saturday which is the Sabbath of the Lord.
    God Bless
    Bridge

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