Spiritual Disciplines Within the Church (Pastor Joey Rountree)
As one reads through Israel’s history in the Old Testament, something becomes clear. Religion became their culture. So much so, that the New Testament reveals a constant contention between the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the insistent Judaizers (new wine in old wine skins).
Is there a similar problem in the church today? Are we a product of our parents’ and grandparents’ culture? Do we attend church because mama and grandma did? Are we just going through the motions?
Or do we agree with David when he wrote, “I was glad when they said to me, Let us go into the house of the Lord.” Psalm 122:1
Some points to consider:
1. If God has spoken on a subject, then we need to faithfully and reverently receive His Word.
2. It is healthy to periodically evaluate our motives.
3. We need to consider the children. (From the graduation service, Bro. Mike quoted some statistics. He had six of those graduating stand up. He then asked five to sit down. He stated the one standing represented the one of six who would remain in church.) A generation of children are being raised that do not know or see the importance of the church.
4. Many professing Christians attend church only occasionally.
5. Faithful attendance helps ensure that I may one day overcome the temptation to quit. (Proven: absenteeism leads to quitting altogether)
The reasons people give for not attending:
12. Not enough time.
11. No interest.
10. The church has nothing to offer.
9. Doesn’t fit my lifestyle.
8. Not invited. (go and tell; come and see)
7. A bad experience.
5. My only day off.
3. Irrelevant sermons.
1. They’re always asking for money.
“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.” Hebrews 10:24-25
Some more reasons:
1. To obey a biblical requirement. 2. A preventative against backsliding and apostasy. 3. To experience the fellowship and encouragement of believers. (stir up love; Intentional love and encouragement will determine whether you pay for your fuel inside or at the pump ~ Johnny Hunt) 4. To express obedience to the greatest commandment ~ Love God/ Love people. (problem – most show up to get rather than to give) Do I show up with the intention to bless God and others?
Something to ponder: We live in a day when there is always a reason to miss church. There is always something going on. We are always busy.
Closing Point: If I can miss church without missing church, something is wrong.