Why Go To Church?

Why Go To Church?

A Baker's Dozen of Reasons

1. Christ made a promise. "Where two or three are gathered together in my name, I'm there among     them" (Matt. 18:20). So who in their right mind would pass on the chance to hang out for an hour with the Lord of heaven and earth?
2. You've been baptized. Christ has huge things in mind for you, like you forgiving sins, for example (John 20:23). You won't get to them without his steady, regular encouragement, the kind that's found only at church where he's there too (see above).

3. Or maybe you haven't been baptized. Still, Christ has huge things in mind for you too, and the scars in his hands and feet to prove it. But how will you get to those things until you know about them? Until you start believing them?
4. Speaking of believing, how can anyone, baptized or not, believe something as wild, outrageous, and good as the Gospel of Jesus Christ unless he or she is surrounded regularly by other people who do?
5. But you don’t think the Gospel is as good as all that? Then you've been missing something. The penny hasn't dropped yet. There's nothing unusual about this, by the way. It takes most Christians a very long time before all of a sudden they're tasting the joy the wise men knew (Matt. 2:10). But this can only happen when you're with Christ week after week in the company of people who worship and trust him.

6. After all, we spend most of every week in a world filled with relentless messages about how you're only as good as you make yourself to be. And again, "you get what you've got coming to you," whether for better or for worse. A long time ago God commanded his people to take a regular break from the world and its grinding messages. "Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy." You might not deserve that break, but God wants you to have it anyway. And as far as the message is concerned, church is where you'll find it.
7. In any case, Christ needs you at church for the sake of other people there who he's trying to encourage as well. Your presence helps them. It matters more than you'd guess.

8. And in meeting those people you start building the kind of relationships that are needed if Christian people are going to bless the world as magnificently as God means for them to do.
9. Just by the way, in going to church you really annoy the devil. You also irritate people who have bought the devil's line and think that church is silly.
10. At the same time you fortify yourself and your dear ones, assuming you bring them with you, against the devil's assaults. He wants you believing that life is brief and pointless, and that you finally count for nothing. Christ tells us he's wrong. You need to hear that again and again.

11. Church is the only place where somebody will look you in the eye and say "The body of Christ, given for you. The blood of Christ, shed for you. See how you matter. Remember how profoundly God loves you."
12. So church is where God equips you to spend your days with confidence, hope, and joy no matter what those days might otherwise contain. He gets you ready to serve him well in the world he sends you into. He teaches you to trust and count on him in life and in death.
13. Bottom line: why go to church? Because God wants you there. Need more be said?
                                                                                                                        --Pr. Burce
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