In the book of Acts we read that the early church “devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer” (Acts 2:42). And if this is to be the example set forth, the example by which we are to follow as God’s church, then are we doing the same?
I recognize, that back then, they had no designated church buildings, but it does say that “every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts” (Acts 2:46). What I find strikingly powerful as we read this account of the early church, that wherever, and whenever they met together, they not only thrived, but the church had large influence and impact upon the community in which they lived.
There’s power in numbers my friends, especially when we gather in the name of Jesus. It is just so true, we are better together, than we could ever be by ourselves.
So, what if we did the same – took God at His Word, and lived out the example set forth? What implications could we have, especially throughout our community? For me, the questions to consider are, does the unsaved, spiritually unresolved world, see in us, a deep love and commitment to God, and to one another – as Jesus taught in taking the entire law and lumping it into these two commands (Matthew 22:37-40).
See, that is why the Bible so clearly teaches that church attendance is not some “good suggestion” but rather God’s high intention. The writer of Hebrews tells us that we should “not give up meeting together” (Hebrews 10:25). In a world that is always on the go, chasing all kinds of things with little eternal reward, we need the encouragement that church attendance affords. I am not talking about some number to be recorded, but rather a wonder of relationships to be rewarded. Think about it, with all that is happening in our world, the current realities surrounding us, I believe we need this devotional practice, this amazing habit, more than ever – being in church, gathering together, and “enjoying the favor of all the people” (Acts 2:47).
I love the church, the body of believers, the place where people can love one another (1 John 4:12), encourage one another (Hebrews 3:13), serve one another (Galatians 5:13), instruct one another (Romans 15:14), and honor one another in ways that the world doesn’t understand (Romans 12:10).