May 28, 2014

Wednesday in the Word-Do I need to go to CHURCH?

Can you be a Christian and not go to church?
Why sure you can....the gospel is clear...
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16 NKJV



Let's narrow this down a tad though...Do you remember the story of the thief on the cross that was next to Jesus? He never had the opportunity to go to church yet Jesus promised him that he would be in paradise with him. (Luke 23:39-43) According to the Word of God this man trusted & believed Jesus. So in a sense it is true that you don't have to go to church to be a Christian. BUT....As soon as we start saying what we have to do and what we don't have to do in order to be saved we are in danger of getting the Gospel totally confused....and as soon as we start coming up with excuses as to why we do not need to go to church if we are a Christian has caused many a Christian to go astray.



Here is the thing....If we are a Christian then we are a member of God's Church and the church is our family. Matter of fact the church being our family is one of God's precious gifts to us. The Christian life was never meant to be lived alone! Matter of fact I would be willing to say that it is IMPOSSIBLE to live the Christian life alone and be what Christ expects you to be.
Now I am not talking about Homebound and shut-in's that cannot physically go to church. There is a major difference. Though I've seen those that seem to be able to go everywhere else they wanted to go but could not attend one hour in the house of the Lord. (That is all I am going to say about this one)


The way I see this is in comparison to marriage. Marriage involves a relationship that comes from spending time together and communication.In order to build up my marriage and have a healthy marriage I must do these two things. Well in order to mature and grow in Christ it is vital to me to spend time with my church family to feed off of God's Word AND to use my gifts, talents and abilities to help others within the body of Christ.  


The Bible says in 1st Corinthians 12:4-11 (NKJV)
 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.  There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.  But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all:  for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit,  to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit,  to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.


Spiritual gifts are not natural skills or talents (James 1:17), they are given with the Holy Spirit at our spiritual birth. They are for all believers; every believer has been given at least one gift, some more, depending on their calling. The fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22) is not the same as a spiritual gift; they are the character of Christ being developed in each believer. 



I personally do not think you can mature as a believer without your church family.

We are going through the Doctrines on Sunday night and my Pastor said this, "Those who say they have a relationship with Christ but they do not need to go to church is speaking contrary to the teaching of Christ". I believe this to be so true!

Hebrews 10:24-25 (NKJV) says,
 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,  not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.



 I cannot imagine what my life would be like without my church family. Nor can I imagine how stale I would become without the church body to help me grow, flourish and mature in Christ. I need them and they need me! When we have people that join our church our Pastor will always ask, "Do you know why God brought them to us?. The answer is ALWAYS the same. "BECAUSE WE NEED THEM".



Remember when I said in a previous post that a picture paints a thousand words? That is how I feel about the pictures being shown today. Not just because they are pretty roses, lilies, herbs and veggies...but because had we not tilled the dirt, fertilized, watered, and picked the weeds from away from them then they would not be what they are now! It is the same way with being a part of a vital, believing, teaching church...WE WILL NOT GROW in the Lord as Christ would like for us too without the church! 


I don't know about you my friend...but I need my church! I need the accountability, the love, the hugs, the friendships, and the prayers. I need to be there to give to others as well of myself. The church needs us and we need the church!

 Hugs and blessings,
 Cindy 


  
  
 









8 comments:

  1. Very well said!!! I am sharing this because I have heard so many times that "I don't need to go to church to be a Christian". I'm like you, I need my church family and I feel so much closer to God there than any other place even though He is with me everywhere.
    Kim Crews

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  2. I appreciate your post today Cindy. I was one of those that said, "I am saved but I don't need to go to church because I can have church at home". I will not tell my story on your blog but let me say this; God done an amazing work in my life and clearly has shown me that I NEED my church but more so that if I love Him as I say I do then why would I not want to be a part of His church. Great post.
    Connie Royals

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  3. You hit the nail on the head here: "I personally do not think you can mature as a believer without your church family." Yes, we can be a believer and saved without attending church, but that's like learning your ABCs at home without ever going to school to learn to put sentences together. Loved this today, my Friend.

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  4. Hi Cindy! I so enjoy your Wednesday in the Word. This was a great post. I too need to go to church and would fill so guilty and left out if I didn't go. I know we can't depend on the church for our 'walk with God' but going to church, hearing the Word, fellowshipping with other believers certainly helps me with my walk. Encouragement, challanges, I need that.
    Sending hugs,
    Shelia ;)

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  5. great post, cindy! enjoy your day:)

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  6. Oh my.....you've hit on a topic near to my heart. Thank you for your wisdom and insightful. God has given you the gift of wisdom and discernment! HOPE you have an awesome day!

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  7. I have had this conversation with folks and I would have to agree with all you have written here. You can certainly be saved and not go to church but we were not meant to walk this life alone. We were made for fellowship. I think the analogy with the plants is a perfect way to think about it. We need each other to grow and mature

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  8. I really enjoyed reading this post, believe you are right on target. <3

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Thank you for taking the time to comment on my blog. Have a blessed day!
Hugs and blessings, Cindy