There seems to be a growing number of people who proclaim to be a Christian but seldom, if ever, attend church. Church has always been a necessary component of the Christian faith, so why have we allowed satan to convince us that church is not important and can be pushed back another week, another month or even to the next holiday? Why have we lost sight of the focus of church and the importance of a community of believers? Let me clarify before we go any further… Church is not the building we gather in rather it is the Community of Believers that gather on a consistent basis.
The Bible commands believers to commune and gather together. Hebrews 10:24-27 says, “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left”. We are warned that if we do not follow this commandment, the charge to attend church with our fellow believers, that we are sinning. This is not a judgment of believers but a fact based on scripture.
Going to church is our outward visible appearance that we love and worship God. Jesus says in Matthews 10:32-33, “’Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.’” It is a public gathering of people who confess they are sinners and need the redemption of Jesus Christ. Church is not about receiving blessings but returning our blessings, giving thanks, and praising our God. Attending church is the least we can do for our God who gave His ONLY Son to die on the cross for our sins!
A time of fellowship with other believers is extremely important to Christ followers. The Bible tells us in Matthew 18:20 that “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” It is true that God is always with us, even outside of the church walls, but He tells us there is special time of the Lord’s presence when communities of believers come together in His name. And who doesn’t want to experience this extraordinary visitation from the Lord? We are also called to hold our brothers and sisters in Christ accountable for their transgressions (Matthew 15). The same must be true for us; we need to also be held accountable for our wrongdoings. We must live life with our church members and learn to love, forgive, and cleanse each other from sin. Your church will be the people there when times get tough and they will be the hands and feet of Christ when satan attacks you and your family. Likewise, you will be given opportunities to bless those inside the church and build them up as believers, serving each other as Christ has called us to do. John 16:33 reminds us that this life will not always be easy but we will find peace in our Savior who has overcome the world. “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” It is when we are gathered with and surrounded by other believers that we are challenged and strengthened to be the best that God has called us to be.
Attending church regularly also builds your spiritual strength and knowledge. Every day we will fight the enemy and stand firm in our faith. Sermons, lessons, music, praise and worship, offerings, and a community of believers is your weapon against the enemy. Ephesians 6 tells us about the armor of God – “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” We must always be ready for battle, to fight the good fight. If we slack in our time with God and other believers, we won’t be fully prepared to do His work.
We must also remember the commandment in Exodus 20:8, “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.” While the Sabbath is often recognized to be Sundays, we are free from the bondage of this old law. Your Sabbath may not be on a Sunday, but you do need to acknowledge God’s standard and set aside a specific day for your Sabbath. There is no wrong time to attend church and remember our God. But there is a consequence for NOT keeping this commandment. We are called and expected to remember the Lord’s Day in worship and prayer.
Yes, Christians should go to church. We have nothing to lose and yet everything to gain!