Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25
1. First, church is a place to belong, as the church can and should be. We are in community with one another as we belong to Christ and sincerely act it out. When a person puts his or her trust in Christ as Lord and Savior, His Spirit makes him or her a member of God’s family-His children in His Church. All Christians are born into this family and it is this community that will live forever; it is where we belong. So we need to be involved; if not, we should look for a group of other believers with whom we can meet regularly for worship, teaching, encouragement, and service. In other words, we need a good, local church (Rom. 12:5; 1 Cor. 12:12: 2 Cor. 5: 17).
2. Second, church is a place to serve, as God’s Spirit gives each of us special spiritual gifts and abilities that we are to use in service to Him and for one another. In addition, these gifts are designed to work with another’s gifts; thus as we serve, we do so as a community in Him. Christians need to be involved in the local church so we can discover our function and use our gifts. We live in a world of self-centered thinking, but we can be an example of something and point to Someone who is so much better. It is all about Christ’s example and command to serve others and how each of us seeks to apply this. Each of us needs the church and the church also needs for us to function correctly and effectively. In the church, we can grow spiritually; we learn more so we can serve more. This will also cause us to experience the excitement and adventure of helping others grow. As we discover how God has gifted us, we can use those gifts in the opportunities He gives us to learn and grow more (Rom. 2: 6; 1 Cor. 14:26)!
3. Third, church is a place to be served. Just as the various parts of our bodies depend on one another, so, as it is described in Scripture, Christians are to be reliant upon one another. Your eye gives you vision; your ear gives you sound. All the while, your brain processes the images and sounds so you can respond to your environment. You cannot see or hear with your individual organs, nor just with your brain. When you are involved in the church, you will find that you are in a community where one another’s needs are met as all work together in oneness and purpose for God’s glory. God normally meets our needs by using others, and He uses you to meet the needs of others; this is the church’s purpose with Christ as the head of it. Church members need to depend on one another just as the members of a human body do (1 Cor. 12; 14-27; James 5:13-16)!
4. Fourth, church is a place to grow. Just as our physical bodies need nourishment to function, so our spiritual lives need to be fed. This spiritual food is discipleship, which includes worship, prayer, good biblical instruction, and mentoring. As Christians praise God and pray, a special bond comes about. Gifted teachers and preachers who know and use God’s Word and care about you can help you grow. So, plant yourself in a good church and grow (Acts 20:7; Col. 3: 16; Heb. 10:25)!
5. Fifth, church is a place to work together. Our Christian faith is personal but not private. Healthy Christians are not loners; rather, we are in relationship with one another. God uses our intimacy with one another to help us. In so doing, we are spurring one another on. As He is intimate with us, we are to be so with one another. Jesus said that the world would watch relationships among Christians: “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:35) The church’s role is to help us learn how to love and obey God and keep us accountable and involved (John 13:34-35).
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