DO I HAVE TO ATTEND CHURCH?
“ . . . 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.” (Hebrews 10:25)
A lot of people ask if they have to go to church to worship God. They suggest that it is just as well to go out into nature and worship Him from the privacy of your own heart. That you don’t have to be around church people because they are hypocrites so they’d rather go it alone. One guy said this to me the other day and I prayed for wisdom on how to answer him. I knew he was a fisherman and enjoyed fishing with his buddies. So I said just as he enjoys fishing with his friends and gets a lot of personal satisfaction from that, so it is natural for God’s people to want to be together. I told him the Lord calls us sheep, not wolves. You’ve heard of the lone wolf? He howls at the moon in isolation. Now what good is that? But sheep have a herding instinct and naturally want to be together. Sure they bump into each other and the wool can rub you the wrong way, but they like to be together. I told this fellow these things but really wondered if he was God’s sheep at all. So then I changed my line and asked him if his name was written in the Lamb’s book of life, and he just kind of stared at me. I explained the plan of salvation to him and urged him to turn to Jesus. Then he could be one of His sheep and be led right into heaven!
I don’t think twice about going to church. I love it! I love to worship God and I love the fellowship of God’s people. I love God’s Word and I love to pray. I even love the announcements because it tells me what’s going on at the place I love the most. I’m part of God’s family and if I’m not there then someone’s going to miss me and I’m going to miss out on so much that could benefit my spiritual growth. Besides that, the church will suffer a bit because God could of used me to reach out to someone in need.
No, I don’t sing the church blues, rather I line up with the psalmist who said: I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go to the house of the LORD!" (Psalm 122:1).