Sunday, June 12, 2016

Three Reasons to go to Church Today

(UPDATE: Another Reason to Go to Church)

Much could be said about this subject but I'll keep it brief. Also, we don't 'go to' church. We gather with the local church! But this is how we are used to talking so that's what I went with. 

Here we go:

1. You Were Made For Community

While we each of us must place our faith individually in Christ, Christianity is not privatized. In fact, some of God's very first words recorded in Scripture are 'it is not good for Man to be alone.' Yes, there is application to marriage there but there is also application to the fact that God has always been worshipped by a people not just 'persons'. 

You were made to worship God corporately. When you neglect this, you neglect a very part of what it means to be a human being! You were made to gather with other Believers to enjoy God and glorify Him forever. Throughout the Old Testament God had a people for Himself. In the New Testament God has a people. The point being God has always desired public worship to be part of the lives of those who trust Him by faith. You were made for community! 

2. The Bible Commands It 

"I don't have to go to church to be a Christian!"

That's simply not a true statement. Going to church doesn't 'make' someone a Christian. But one who repeatedly, willfully, and unrepentantly disobeys the Lord's commands doesn't love Jesus (John 14:15). And we are actually commanded to gather with other Believers in the local church: "Let us...not neglect to meet together" (Hebrews 10:25).  

So, I'm not commanding you to gather with the local church. But, God is! If you honor the Bible's authority over your life (which you should because it is the word of the living God!), you must agree that you are commanded to gather with the Saints. Not to do so is an act of rebellion. 

3. God Does Good to You by It

J.C. Ryle once said "You will find that from the days of the apostles down to this hour, public worship nas always been one of God's great instruments in doing good to souls."

To miss gathering with the Saints regularly is to miss something good for your soul! 

"I don't need to go to church. I'm just as good as those people down there!" That's precisely why you do need to go to church! Church isn't about our 'goodness' toward God. It's not building up a stockpile of merit in which He will accept us. No, we are all void of any goodness apart from Jesus! But in Christ is offered the righteousness required to have a right standing with God. By faith in the person and work of Jesus, God declares us righteous based on what Christ has done for us. 

When we gather with the local church God does good to His people. We are encouraged by one another. We are exhorted, admonished, lifted up, convicted, broken, replenished, challenged, sharpened, built up, and steadied by the Word of God. Our faith is strengthened. Our hope is deepened. Our love is increased. All of these graces are wrought by the Holy Spirit through the preaching, praying, singing, and living out of Scripture together in corporate worship! Go to church because God does good to you by it! 

I'm writing this on a Sunday. You've got time right now to get ready and gather with your local church. If you don't have one, find one. Why miss out on something you were made for? Why willfully neglect something you are commanded to do? And why would you not want something good for your soul!? Go gather beloved. To God alone be the glory. 

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