Friday, October 21, 2011
"HOW IMPORTANT IS CHURCH ATTENDANCE?"
Good Evening to All!
I know for the past few posts I have touched on some pretty touchy subjects, but if it wasn't necessary and I didn't care, I wouldn't bother. I wouldn't bother spending hours on researching scriptures, and going through different versions of the Bible checking to make sure that what I say cannot or will not be misinterpreted. I love the King James Version, because I love the "old English", but at the same time, I feel the need to use more contemporary versions so the scripture can be easily and readily understood. I also am very careful and cautious when it comes to the New International Version as there are some DEFINITE discrepancies within those pages.
So far, we have covered a General synopsis of Holiness and Christian Living, the subject of Prayer, the scriptures to back it up and the necessity of it, and Bible Study along with its supportive scriptures as well.
Our next subject to delve into is "Faithful church attendance and submission to godly leadership". I was glad when they said unto me, "Let us go into the house of the Lord." (Psalm 122:1) And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, (25) not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as in the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:24-25)
Just for a bit of information, according to my reference Bible, Paul does not use the usual Greek word for "church, perhaps because the term had come to mean the spiritual, invisible body of believers. Instead he uses a compound form of the word synagogue, which specifically means the local, physical gathering of believers. (see Ps. 40:9, 10; 42:4). This actually clarified something for me. I have heard people say "as long as there are a few of us discussing the Bible, then that is the same as assembling ourselves together. This disproves that statement. At one time they almost had me convinced to concede that point, but something kept nagging at me (we all know who that was) telling me they were wrong, but I just didn't know how to prove it. Tonight God has shown me.
Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you. (Leaders being our Pastors). They will have to give an account for their service at the judgment seat of God. (Hebrews 13:17)
I cannot count the times or the people who have stood right in front of me and said "I don't have to go to church, I can worship God just as well sitting in the middle of a lake catching fish. Well, first of all we know that is not true. When we're in the middle of the lake in our "tubes" with our fishing line in the water, all we are thinking about is are we going to get a bite. I know, because I'm just as guilty as the next person about that. Now when I'm home washing dishes, vacuuming the floor or any housework for that matter, I can sing and praise God with the best of them, but sitting in the middle of that lake fishing, I'm concentrating on that fish.
The thing is, people that "use that excuse" for not going to "God's House of Prayer" is focusing on ONE aspect of church. Worship is not all that is done there. There is learning going on, because God appointed preacher, apostles, disciples, teachers evangelists all to do His bidding and spread His Word. His preachers He calls His "shepherds because He has appointed them to "lead his flock. He calls us His sheep because we are to be lead.
Not only is there learning going on, but encouragement. Whatever a person is going through, they can find a good enough Christian friend in their church to help them through it. Whether it's someone to pray with, someone to confide in, to get advice from, or maybe even someone who will help them out of a "tight spot" if it's financial, or some other thing that can use "physical help. A true church family is there for the long haul to help each other.
This is where having Christian friends is great! You can be yourself without being hounded to change, or ridiculed because you don't happen to enjoy those things. Not only that, you don't have to worry about doing something that you will end up having to repent for. Of course we all do things that we have to repent for daily, but most are unintentional. That is why it is a good idea to pray and ask God to search our hearts and rid us of anything that is unpleasing to Him and ask Him to forgive us for anything we may have done to displease Him.
I'm not saying that if your friends aren't Christians they are bad people, they may unintentionally lead you down the wrong path, but we must also be on guard for those who know exactly what they are doing and trying to lead you astray on purpose . I am speaking of doing things we know are against the Will of God. Things that are contrary to His Word.
A true and devout Christian having done something in this manner would feel the desperate need to repent. To get down on their knees and beg forgiveness from God, and turn away from that sin and never do it again. Therefore, if you associate with other Christians that have similar interests, you wouldn't have to worry about temptation, because you and the people you are with know better.
As far as group worship, I love standing at my kitchen sink while washing dishes and belting out a song of Praise to God, or a somber and reverent hymn. I love the Lord and while I feel it in my soul no matter where I'm located, when I go to church and praise and worship Him, it is a much deeper and greater feeling. Group worship is contagious. It's like when I am standing up front and others come up there it's like the Holy Spirit just flows from one to the other enveloping us all, while each of us have our complete focus upon Him. It is definitely an indescribable feeling.
Christians all need the instruction, fellowship, group worship, and evangelistic outreach that a local church and pastor provide.
I was hoping I could cover more than one topic tonight, but it seems when God puts a commentary on my heart, it just floods from my heart and soul to this screen.
Good Night to All and May God Bless!