WHY CHURCH

For believers, there is no substitute for attending church. Besides something that pleases God, it is necessary for a believer’s spiritual well-being. For shut-ins or invalids who aren’t able to go to church, the ministries on radio or TV might be the only kind of fellowship or spiritual nourishment that they get. God certainly understands the circumstances of these people, and recognizes the sincerity of their hearts. However, it is a different matter for those who could attend church but are too lazy, or put other things such as entertainment and amusements before God, or who harbor bitterness or indifference toward other believers.

It is important to attend church for the following reasons:
 

(1) It is an Expression of our Love for God

Going to church is a visible, tangible expression of our love and worship toward God. It is where we can gather with other believers to publicly bear witness of our faith and trust in God, something that is required of all Christians (Matt. 10:32-33)  and it is where we can bring Him offerings of praise, thanks, and honor, which are pleasing to Him. The psalmist wrote, “I will declare Your name to My brethren; In the midst of the assembly I will praise You” (Psa. 22:22). People are often motivated toward church attendance for how it will bless themselves, however we should remember that the primary purpose of the corporate gathering is to bring “service” to the Lord as a blessing to Him (Psa. 134:2). Indeed, the Lord is deserving of our time and energy to honor Him with our service of devotion. “You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created” (Rev. 4:11).

(2) It builds up our Spiritual Strength

Receiving the preaching and teaching of the Word of God increases our faith and builds us up spiritually. Every believer knows what it is to face spiritual conflicts to their faith, and must realize the importance of being fed spiritually so that they can overcome the challenges. Paul states that Christians face a wrestling match with the Devil and his evil spiritual forces, and warns that the church must put on spiritual armor for protection, as it will take everything at our disposal to stand (Eph. 6:10-18). How important that we take every opportunity available to receive ministry and strength from God’s Word. “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17).
 

(3) It brings a special visitation of the Lord’s Presence

There is the promise of a special visitation of the Lord’s presence whenever two or more gather specifically in the name of Jesus. By implication, this means whenever “Jesus” is the object of gathered prayer, worship, praise, preaching, etc. Even though Jesus resides within the heart of every believer, he honors a gathering in his name by coming in the “midst,” with his power, awareness, and anointing. In such a gathering, Christ is able to do things in hearts that he may not at any other time. The scripture says that God inhabits the praise of His people (Psa. 22:3), and in such an atmosphere the Holy Spirit will often manifest spiritual gifts that minister to the body of Christ. “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them” (Matt. 18:20).

(4) It provides fellowship with other Christians

Gathering together also has compounded importance to the relationship of the Christian brethren. The Bible makes it clear that a right relationship with God requires a “vertical” and “horizontal” alignment  that is, we must have a vertical fellowship with God and a horizontal fellowship with other believers. It is not possible to love God and refuse to love the brethren. If you have a problem loving other Christians, you have a problem in your relationship with God. Scripture warns us that unforgiveness toward others will void God’s forgiveness of our own sins (Matt. 6:15). John wrote, “He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him” (1 John 2:9-10). 


Leave a Reply