November 3, 2019
I hear the question often, “Why do I need to go to church? I can worship God anywhere.” So many people claim that if you are a Christian, you don’t have to go to church.
The writer of Hebrews says in 10:25 that we should not forsake the assembling of ourselves together. That we should gather and encourage one another.
Furthermore, I’ve heard people say that going to Church doesn’t make one a Christian anymore than going into a barn makes one a cow! That’s true, but a genuine Christian WANTS to go to Church. Not just because Jesus and the teachings of the Bible tell us to go, but that’s where we can worship together and encourage one another as the book of Hebrews says.
I’ll never forget once when I was a young teenager, my Grandmother Pansy Plumley picked me up to go to a little country church that was having a revival meeting. After the service was over she asked me how I enjoyed it. I told her that it was very inspirational and encouraging. She said that she would be praying for me that I would get in the habit of going to church regularly. I told her I would like to do that.
I did start going to church regularly, and when I was 19 years old, I felt called into the ministry and started preaching. I pastored for 50 years before retiring in January of 2019.
For many years, I pastored a church in the same town that my grandmother lived in. She came to hear me preach many times and would always brag on me and tell me how proud she was of me.
That was one of the great Christian virtues of Grandmother, that she constantly encouraged her children and grandchildren to go to church. She would say, “It doesn’t matter what kind of church it is. Just go to one and worship God.”
When Sandra and I moved to Longview, Texas, it was going to be my goal to visit many different churches and enjoy hearing other ministers preach. I did that, and hardly ever missed a Sunday. But I have a bad back, and sometimes I just hurt too much to go to church. So we would have church at home. Usually just Sandra and myself and our daughter, Rachel.
The Bible relates in Matthew 18:20, Jesus taught, “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them.” So, you don’t have to go to a building with a steeple and a cross to worship God. It can be in your home.
John Wesley, the principal founder of the Methodist Church, taught parishioners that they should gather together and worship every Sunday. He told them that if it was a week when the circuit rider was not coming to the church, for them to meet together in one another’s homes. Wesley called these meeting class meetings. His idea worked, and today there are several million members in Methodist Churches around the world.
When God created us, He wanted us to be healthy physically, mentally and spiritually. All humans have bodies that are going to wear out, get sick and eventually die. And as we get older, our minds are not as sharp and focused as when we were young. But one’s spirit can grow stronger and stronger throughout life. And our spirit NEVER dies.
So, let’s all focus on going to church where we can worship together and encourage one another.
God Bless You,