Why Does the Church Meet?
Many NT passages refer to churches assembling together for regular worship. The word translated church (Ekklesia) means called-out or assembled. Just by definition I cannot be a part of a called-out, an assembly if I am not there. But why is assembling important? Why do I need to attend assemblies?
- We Assemble to Worship God (Joh 4:23-24). When we understand that we are “saved by Grace” we desire to praise the God Who Saves (Rom 15:9-11). Our mentality changes from “Do I have to come every time?” to “I GET to come worship.”
- We Assemble to Receive and Give Instruction. A chiald of God will hunger and thirst for righteousness (Mat 5:6). She will want to edify, encourage, and build up others (1Th 5:11). When church leaders set times for us to assemble for these purposes, we should participate.
- We Assemble to Set a Good Example. Whether we are older Christians or younger ones (1Ti 4:12; Mat 5:16) we set an example to others. Consider this thought, “If others followed the example I set by my assembly habits, would they learn enough and receive enough encouragement toward eternal life?”
- We Assemble to Follow the Faithful. Paul says to imitate his life in Christ (1Co 11:1). Can you imagine Paul failing to assemble with the church? What would we think of elders or the preacher if they neglected attending? Would Jesus neglect an opportunity to study with others or to worship the Father?
- We Assemble Because of God’s Place in Our Lives. We Belong to God not self (1Co 6:19-20). Christ does not want first place, He is our life when we are His (Col 3:4). Am I willing to rearrange my schedule for the One who saves me, the One who gave six hours on the cross deserves more than just a few hours of my time?
- We Assemble to Prepare for Heaven (Rev 5:11-14). The one thing on earth that will be in heaven is our public worship. It willl be perfected in heaven. But if I do not want to worship now, why would I expect to enjoy heaven?