Why Church?

Stuart Briscoe

Mention the word church to many people today and if they don't immediately think building, they'll assume you're talking about somewhere you go. And their response will possibly be, "I go there occasionally," or, "I used to go there." Or they might even say, "Why do I need it?" But 2,000 years ago, in the early, exciting days of the church, the believers saw the church as a community of the called to which they belonged wholeheartedly.

Stuart Briscoe fervently believes that the church of today needs to (re)discover a basic understanding of the biblical meaning of church. And in this series of twelve teachings, he enthusiastically outlines his own discoveries and seeks to show practically what it means to be called as participants in what Jesus is building in the world today! For church is not somewhere we go, church is something we are!

Messages From This Series:

  1. 1. Church Isn't Somewhere We Go, It's Something We Are

    Stuart Briscoe

    For hundreds of years, people have been talking about the church as if it were simply a building. But that was never what it was meant to be.

    Stuart Briscoe begins his 12-message series Why Church?, by helping us get out of the mindset of the church as a building, and into the mindset of thinking of "church" as first and foremost a word for relationships and community.

    Scripture:  1 Kings 8:27 , Acts 7:48 , Matthew 16:18

  2. 3. Foundational Principles - Final Instructions

    Stuart Briscoe

    In Jesus' last days with His disciples, He laid out the blueprints for the founding of His church. He made sure His disciples knew what the church should be, whose it was going to be, and what their jobs were in building it.

    In this message, Stuart examines these foundational principles and how well our churches today are following them.

    Scripture:  Acts 1

  3. 5. Jerusalem: The Prototypical Church

    Stuart Briscoe

    We're fortunate to have 2,000 years of church history and church experience to draw from in our churches today. But what about the first church—the prototype?

    In this message Stuart dives into the origins of church practices as we know them today, where we got our rituals from, and how these were redefined in the sacrifice of Jesus.

    Scripture:  Deuteronomy 6

  4. 6. The Church Gathered, the Church Scattered

    Stuart Briscoe

    If we're stuck in the mindset of the church as a building in which we gather, instead of a community of believers, we lose sight of one of the key purposes of the church: to scatter among the lost.

    The first church understood what it meant to be a rich, powerful community that prepared and supported people for mission work. Have we lost this in our churches today?

    In this message, Stuart explains the missions of the early church, while encouraging us to use our churches today not just to gather, but also to scatter.

    Scripture:  Acts 2

  5. 7. Gathered for Discipleship

    Stuart Briscoe

    In His blueprints for the early church, Jesus outlined the three purposes for which the church should gather: discipleship, fellowship, and worship. Jesus commanded discipleship so that his disciples would create disciples. They were to teach others everything that they had learned from Jesus. If we're going to have a robust church, we are going to have to learn from the example of the apostles and become disciples who disciple others, teaching people what Jesus has taught us.

    Scripture:  Acts 2 , John 13:1 - 13:17 , Matthew 28:19 - 28:20

  6. 8. Gathered for Fellowship

    Stuart Briscoe

    In the modern day church, our constant emphasis on our personal relationships with Christ has caused us to lose sight of the community of faith that we're a part of. Jesus commanded that His people gather as a church so that they would be reminded of their citizenship in this community—both the visible and the invisible. Fellowship is also the reason that Jesus first commanded His disciples to disciple others, so that more people could come to share the fellowship that Christians enjoy with the Father, Son, and Spirit.

    In this message, Stuart walks through what this fellowship and community looked like in the early church.

    Scripture:  Acts 2 , John 1:3 , Romans 1:16 , Romans 12:9 - 12:10

  7. 9. Gathered for Worship

    Stuart Briscoe

    The early church worshiped in many ways: through Psalms, songs and through the sharing of the Lord's Supper. Their worship was designed to put believers in a posture of submission and availability to God—to remind them that worship and life are not about them; they're about God.

    In this message, Stuart explains what it means to be gathered for worship the way the early church was, using a form that we can model from Psalm 95.

    Scripture:  Acts 2:42 , Hebrews 12:28 , Psalm 95

  8. 10. Scattered for Mission

    Stuart Briscoe

    The church today seems to have lost the sense of mission that Jesus gave His disciples in the Great Commission. We focus more on trying to bring people into the sanctuary than training those who are already in and sending them out. Right from the very beginning, God called the Jewish people to Himself in order that through them the nations of the world, both Jew and Gentile, would be brought into the community of faith. We need to recapture this vision for missions in our churches today.

    Scripture:  Acts 13 , Acts 1:8 , Acts 11:21 , Genesis 12 , Matthew 28:18 - 28:20

  9. 11. Being Part of Something Grand

    Stuart Briscoe

    Do we ever really recognize the enormity of what it means to be part of the body of Christ?

    If you are a Christian, you have been invited and commanded to join in on God's plan to make all things new. God wants to renew everything that was lost in the fall. This is what mission means—to be part of the community infiltrating culture and society in order to bring people into the kingdom and to bring about the purposes of God.

    Scripture:  John 20:21 , Matthew 4 , Revelation 21:5

  10. 12. We've All Been Called

    Stuart Briscoe

    If you're a Christian, you have been called by God. Simply by beckoning you into a relationship with Him, God has called you to be a part of His ministry.  

    In this message, Stuart challenges you, as a member of the community of believers, to use your unique gifts for reaching your unique mission field. God gave you certain gifts to reach certain people. This is what it means to be the church.

Enable Downloads

Please provide the information below.

Support Telling the Truth

God uses the faithful and generous support of people like you to continue to change lives through the ministry of Telling the Truth. Thank you for joining us in seeing to it that no one misses the grace of God.


About Telling the Truth

Telling the Truth is the international on-air and online media ministry that distributes the teaching content of uniquely-gifted Bible teachers—Stuart and Jill Briscoe—to help people know Christ and experience Life in all its fullness.

Telling the Truth Headquarters
12660 W North Ave
Brookfield, WI 53005
Outside North America
Telling the Truth
126 Fairlie Road
United Kingdom

Telling the Truth logo