No Spectators: Body Life in the Local Church (New Sermon Series)

When Jesus Christ shed his blood on the cross, he purchased for Himself a church, not just an assortment of individuals (Acts 20:28).
That church bought by Jesus is manifested in local assemblies all over the world. Dr. Kevin Vanhoozer describes such a local assembly as follows:

“The local church is a place in which the gospel of Jesus Christ – the good news of new life in Christ – gets acted out by disciples who translate it into forms of life, worship, and works of love… We are an enacted parable of the kingdom of God.”

An enacted parable of the kingdom of God! In other words, God placed North Sub at the corner of Lake Cook and Waukegan in part so that we might show our community a lived, flesh-and-blood picture of what life looks like when King Jesus is on the throne. We’re an embassy of another kingdom, an outpost of another land – a nation our neighbors have never visited but where our true citizenship lies.

That makes the local church much more than a voluntary association of individuals. In reality, each local church has been assembled by God not for the comfort and enjoyment of its members, but rather for the carrying out of God’s purposes in a particular place at a particular time.
As a church on the North Shore at this moment in time, we believe God has gathered us to carry out a mission to bring people “from the Well to the Word to the World.”
That mission is so weighty and of such cosmic importance that we can’t afford to allow any family members to remain on the “sidelines.” All of us must play our roles. And as with any high-functioning team, family, or organization, it’s not enough for us to know our own individual roles; we need to have some level of understanding of the roles of others within the body so that we can optimally support and complement one another’s contributions.
This takes work. So in Winter-Spring 2020, we’re going to explore the basics of how the local church is meant to function when we are all playing our roles and pulling in the same direction. We will be unfolding a relentlessly biblical vision for church, one that may offend some of our sensibilities in its insistence on living out the gospel in the way God’s Word prescribes.
By the end of this series, we will have explored together:
  • What church is
  • What a worship service is meant to be
  • How church leadership is meant to function
  • The significance of church membership
  • How men and women can partner together in ministry
  • How church members can use their gifts for the good of all

…and several other “basics” of church life. Pray with us that this exploration – through our sermon series, our Life Group discussions, and our Life Courses – will bear fruit. Specifically, pray that we attain the following goals:

  • That each member of the North Sub family would gain clarity on the roles we are each meant to play in the body.
  • That people on the “sidelines” would be awakened and empowered to use their gifts to contribute to the mission.
  • That our Sunday morning services and all our other church activities would be invigorated by enhanced clarity of purpose.
  • That, as people find their proper “seats on the bus,” our future initiatives would be more fruitful.
We’ve been purchased by the shed blood of Jesus Christ. We’re His now. Let’s endeavor together that He will call the shots in our corporate life, and that together we’ll grow into an increasingly clear “enacted parable” of the kingdom over which He reigns.
Want to Go Deeper this Series?
Here are some ideas to help you immerse yourself in our Winter/Spring 2020 series:
1. Join us for Life Courses at 9:15 AM each Sunday beginning January 5th.
2. Sign up for a Life Group where you can discuss these issues in community.
3. Reflect on the theme song we will be using in worship during our No Spectators sermon series.
4. Read or study one of the following supplemental resources:
– Center Church by Tim Keller
Nine Marks of a Healthy Church by Mark Dever
Hearers and Doers by Kevin Vanhoozer
Feels Like Home by Lee Eclov
The Gospel Driven Church by Jared C Wilson
Letters to the Church by Francis Chan
Deliberate Church by Mark Dever
Sojourners and Strangers by Greg Allison
Church Elders by Jeramie Rinne
Biblical Eldership by Alexander Strauch
Church Membership by Jonathan Leeman
Church Discipline by Jonathan Leeman
5. Join us for our  sermon series beginning January 26th, and listen online to any sermons you miss!
6. Email Karen with stories about how you’re seeing this series connect with your life.

Parents Night Out – Kids Night In

An early Valentines Day gift for PARENTS and a night of fun for KIDS full of games, activities, crafts, a movie and pizza for dinner!  Don’t miss out, Click here to register by Feb 2.

Kids will be cared for by screened and caring leaders.  This event is open to kids Infant – grade 5


Theme/Activities:  Our activities and fun will center around some football fun and the heart of who God created us to be. 

Grades K – 5 will be watching either the Peanuts Movie (rated G) or Airbud Golden Retriever (rated G)
Age 2 – K TBA


Dinner & Snacks: (If your child cannot eat this, please bring a bag dinner for them, marked with their name)

Dinner:  Pizza, Veggies/Dip & Lettuce Salad (applesauce for kids Kindergarten and under).

Snack for Age 2-K:  Bananas & Pretzels

Snack for Grades 1-5:  Popcorn


December Compassion Project 2019

Caris Diaper Drive
Caris Pregnancy Counseling and Resources helps women and children thrive during and after an unplanned pregnancy. Please bring in diapers, especially sizes 4-6 and all sizes of pull ups, during the month of December.

Advent 2019: Make Ready

For centuries, the church has taken the opportunity during Advent to anticipate not only the celebration of the first coming of Christ at Christmas, but also the second coming of Christ at an hour we do not know.
The scriptures repeatedly encourage us to make ready for Christ’s return, to live now in light of the truth that He will one day come again. It will be just “a little while,” as we heard in 1 Peter 5:10, before He returns to make all things right. Until then, the words of Jesus ring in our ears: “When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” (Lk. 18:8).
During this year’s Advent series, we will explore several texts to help us “make ready.” As we preach through three passages from the gospels and two from the epistles, we will call each other to readiness using multiple genres, including parables, exhortations, and apocalyptic literature.
We also will sing Christmas songs new and old, many of which contain layers of anticipation for the coming return of Christ. “Joy to the World” is a perfect example:


Joy to the world, the Lord has come
Let earth receive her King
Let every heart prepare Him room
And heaven and nature sing, and heaven and nature sing
And heaven, and heaven and nature sing

That’s who we aspire to be: a church whose hearts are prepared to receive our King. May the Lord bless our Sunday morning worship gatherings, our December Life Group meetings, and our Christmas Café conversations to that end.
Six Opportunities for Advent Participation
Read and meditate on the scripture passage in advance of each Sunday’s sermon.
  • 12/1: Matthew 25:1-13
  • 12/8: Luke 12:35-48
  • 12/15: 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
  • 12/22: 2 Peter 3:1-13
  • 12/24: Matthew 1:18-25
Support Student Ministries by joining us at the Pancake Breakfast before service on 12/8.
Join us for fellowship at the Christmas Café after service on 12/8, 12/15, and 12/22.
Join us in a one-day fast on Wednesday 12/18 to earnestly pursue readiness for Christ’s return.
Join us for a candlelight Christmas Eve service at 5pm on 12/24.
Invite someone who doesn’t have a church home to come to service with you!

Project Share 11.23.19

Join us on Saturday, November 23 from 8:30-11:30am as we pack 1200 baskets of food for the under-resourced for the Chicago-land area.  We will end our time together in celebration by worshiping and eating pie!  Questions?  Contact Karen.