ep. 83 the global church

Gloria Furman

ep. 83 | The Global Church with Gloria Furman

Today I’m chatting with Gloria Furman on the global Church. So you’ll know her a little better, Gloria (MACE, Dallas Theological Seminary) is a wife, mother of four, cross-cultural worker, editor, and writer. In 2008 her family moved to the Middle East to plant Redeemer Church of Dubai where her husband, Dave, serves as the pastor. Gloria’s one of those women who oozes Scripture when she speaks. Throughout our friendship, many of the nuggets of wisdom she’s shared with me have really helped to reorient my thinking towards eternity.

  1. Can you tell us a little about who you are and what you do?

  2. What is the Church? What is the difference between the global and the local church?

  3. How was the Church established?

  4. Where do we see the thread of the Church weaving its way throughout scripture?

  5. What undergirds and empowers the Church?

  6. How does the gospel unite churches all over the world?

  7. How has the gospel united churches throughout all of history?

  8. What are pictures (biblical images) of the Church do we see in Scripture? What can we learn from them?

  9. From your perspective as a cross-cultural worker, how is the Church growing and expanding all over the world?

  10. Has living overseas impacted the way you think about, pray for, and interact with the global Church?

THREE QUESTIONS I ASK EVERY SECOND-TIME GUEST

  1. What 3 resources would you recommend for someone who wants to grow in their understanding and support for the global Church?

  2. What's one piece of advice you'd give 25-year-old Gloria on her journey to glorify God?

  3. What's something you're looking forward to on your journey right now?

NOTEWORTHY QUOTES

“The Church is the body of people called by God’s grace through faith in Christ to glorify Him together by serving him in his world.” - Mark Dever from The Church: The Gospel Made Visible

“The local expression of the church would be those particular members in a local context called together, as members of a local body, faithful and gathered together in the name of Jesus. The global Church would be all of those saints everywhere, all over the world.”

“The Church was established by God from before time began.”

“You know the world is round. It’s turning on its axis constantly. It’s always morning somewhere. I love to think about this particularly on Easter because we have that refrain on Easter morning, you say, ‘He is risen, he is risen indeed.’ The refrain is echoing around the world as the world is turning. It’s always Easter somewhere on that day. ‘He is risen, he is risen indeed’ is always echoing for 24 hours as the global Church is waking up to remember the Good News again to remember that Christ is risen. Even if it’s not on the calendar day, the Church is waking up to say, ‘He is risen!’ To consider the echoes of our praise here on earth in the throne room of heaven, constantly, around the clock, is just really neat to think of.”

“Adam and Eve are made in God’s image and as they multiply they are literally multiplying God’s image bearers all over the earth.”

“The gospel unites us and connects us to the one God. He has one gospel. This is the same gospel that will save a believer in Eritrea and Annapolis.”

“If you are in Christ you are a new creation, but ‘you are a new creation’ is us, the Church. The Church is the expression of God’s glory among the nations calling sinners (enemies) and making them as friends. This is his express method of evangelism to the lost and dying world.”

“The Church is the gathering place, the dwelling place of God.”

“If I’m soaking my mind in Scripture, the Spirit can stoke a Scripture-based imagination, so I don't come up with any other weird ideas about God’s people or what the Church is, but seeing what’s already there and let the word of God blow your mind.”

“The world will give you all kinds of ideas about who you are and what you’re here for, and what life is about, but having a Spirit-driven imagination, soaked in Scripture really encourages me.”

“God is doing immeasurably more than we could ever ask or imagine, and he’s always doing that, and he will keep doing that.”

“We get to pray and God will not waste a single prayer.”

“Earnestly pray that the Lord will send more workers into the harvest.”

“Remember that you are part of something far bigger than you, the individual, far bigger than your local church, as much as you love it or struggle with it. Remember that you are part of something so big! We’re getting ready for eternity! This life is so shockingly short and there is eternity. The global Church gathered together for eternity is such a great reality that we have to look forward to!”

GLORIA’S RESOURCES

The Temple and the Church’s Mission by G.K. Beale

Operation World

Window on the World (for kids)

The Church: The Gospel Made Visible by Mark Dever

Evangelism as Exiles by Elliot Clark

Joyfully Spreading the Word

WHAT IS ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU’D GIVE 25-YEAR-OLD GLORIA

God’s faithfulness in the past is a model and a promise for his faithfulness in the future, but he is too creative to do the same thing the same way twice. So no matter what comes it is God who does not change. There is no more steadying truth than looking at the unchanging character of God.


DAVE FURMAN’S BOOKS MENTIONED (GLORIA’S HUSBAND)

Being There: How to Love Those Who Are Hurting

Kiss the Wave: Embracing God in Your Trials

SCRIPTURE REFERENCES

Ephesians 5

Acts 2

Lamentations 3:22

Exodus 19

Ephesians 2:10

2 Corinthians 5:17

Hebrews

John 10

CONNECT WITH GLORIA


DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

  1. What is the definition of the local church and the global Church?

  2. What makes the Church unique from other institutions? (Matthew 16:17-19)

  3. How does the gospel unite us as the Church?

  4. What would be different about your life if you had a Scripture-based imagination?

  5. What could you do to orient your mind to see the world as God does?

  6. How has God uniquely designed you and currently situated you to engage in the global Church?

  7. What are you going to do or implement as a result of what you’ve learned this week?


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