Do I really HAVE to go to church? Like...in a building?
"I don't need to go to church, I already believe in God."
"I don't have time to go to church."
"I don't like church, but I love God."
"People have hurt me in church, I'd rather just watch a podcast at home."
"Taking the kids with me to church is too hard."
We have all felt it, maybe of us have said it, and quite honestly--it is very common to hear that people do NOT want to actually attend a church service in person. Yes...even I have said the last one before :P
So do we actually have to attend a church service on a Sunday morning in order to be Christians, follow scripture or grow our relationship with the Lord?
I would say the answer is no, but there are tons of verses that explain to us the importance of meeting together with other believers.
"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." Hebrews 10:24-25
You know how it is so much easier to eat healthy and work out if you have others doing it with you? If you hang out with people who eat pizza and drink Mt. Dew all day--chances are it is going to be a lot easier to do the same. If you have a great support system to work out, most likely you will follow through with it.
In the same way, you have heard the saying, "birds of a feather flock together" right? You want your kids to hang out with other kids who have good character, good grades, and good work ethic.
This verse is saying exactly the same thing!!! When you go to church on Sunday, and create, grow, and nurture relationships with other people who also want to love their neighbor as themselves, grow closer to the Lord, spend time in worship, and spread the Gospel--chances are that you will stay accountable in doing the same thing!
"How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!" Psalm 133:1
One person can do a lot of great things, but when a community of believers come together, mighty things can happen. Think of when houses are built for the poor on missions trips, or entire towns are fed through natural disasters...there are a lot of churches who can do these things!!
"Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved." Acts 2:46-47
Ultimately, all of us should have the goal of sharing our love of Jesus Christ with as many people as we can right?! When we are praising the Lord together, praying together, and ministering together--we will reach new people, love on more people, and more people will be saved and live in heaven with us someday.
And lets just keep it real...it is hard to stay accountable on your own. Eventually you slack off from reading your Bible, spending time in worship, and sharing the gospel with others. The accountability and encouragement that church offers is mighty and powerful.
I know I need the encouragement, love, and friendship that I find in our church body--and I would love to invite you to ours if you don't have a church home. (if you live far away, you can watch online, though I recommend finding one you can attend in person as soon as you can!)
534 S. Detroit Street
See you at 10:30 :D