Friday, October 14, 2016

Daily Encouragement (Part 3)

…and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near. (Hebrews 10:23-25)
Stimulating and encouraging is to include the getting of people together in worship.  The command here is to not abandon (“forsake, leave behind, or desert”) their gathering together; their worship.  You cannot be stirred up to love and ministry if you stay away from worship in the Father’s House.
Church going has fallen on difficult times lately.  For some Christians it is a weak substitute for a picnic on a rainy Sunday.  Excuses are as plentiful as quarters in the collection plate.  The fact is many professing Christians don't think church is all that important.  They think they can be perfectly good Christians without being part of a local congregation.
God disagrees!  For one thing, our own spiritual welfare is not to be our only concern.  We go to church not just to get but to give…to spur on other Christian to "love and good works" (Hebrews 10:24). If we stay away, we may give them an excuse to be careless.
On the other hand, if we attend with enthusiasm, we encourage other believers in their ambition to draw near to Christ.  If we are faithful in meeting together with them, we will honor the Lord, grow in our faith, and give a strong witness to the world.  We will also become a vital part of the lives of our brothers and sisters in Christ. 
The Christian faith allows no room for rugged individualists.  To have a fire, you need more than one coal.  You also need a spark and a draft of air.  One humble, open, involved individual set on fire by Christ, can be the spark.  The Holy Spirit, the breath of God, may blow on that spark and set a congregation ablaze. -Haddon Robinson
Our hearts are sometimes cold. Fellowship can kindle warmth and make our witness bold.  If we are honest, we must say that fellowship builds us up and binds us together.  Nowhere in the Bible does it say that names on a church membership roll means we’re saved.  That doesn't mean, however, that joining with other believers in a local church is not vital to our spiritual growth.  Gathering regularly for worship and instruction encourages love for others, good works, and mutual accountability.
An article some time ago likened the Christian without a church to:
     a student who won't go to school
     a soldier without an army
     a citizen who won't vote
     a seaman without a ship
     a child without a family
     a drummer without a band
     a ballplayer without a team
     a honeybee without a hive
     a scientist who does not share his findings with his colleagues
Don’t neglect one of God's greatest provisions for your spiritual growth. Get into God's Word and start attending church faithfully.  Don't be a churchless Christian - get involved!  Remember, “Seven days without church makes one weak.”
Scripture to Claim:

I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go to the house of the LORD."  (Psalms 122:1)

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