Before we get started today I want to pray with you.
Now As I start to preach today, I WANT YOU TO ASK YOURSELF SEVERAL QUESTIONS.
1. Why is church important?
2. What does church mean to you?
3. Why do we come?
4. Why is church the first thing we miss over other things?
Think and meditate on these questions while I’m talking and my prayer is that the Lord speaks to you today.
We live in a spiritually dead age to where church has become more of a habit or just something to do, a type of a social gathering rather than a life necessity or the umbilical (or unbiblical) cord to a spirit filled life. I want to show you that God never meant for us, for you, for Christians to be apart from the church. In this country of plenty, we take too much for granted. We put our heart and soul and our passion into all the wrong things. We do not put our heart into what really matters; the only thing that matters is the honor and praise that He deserves. A quick story before I get started,
Chaplin John in Iraq, the lady with a Bible for the very first time.
Turn with me the book of
8“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates.11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
This is a day set aside that was a solemn day of worship to the one true God Keeping the Sabbath Day . . . holy means to separate it, the seventh day, from the other six as a special day to the Lord. We are to work six days, meaning we have six days to earn a living and on the seventh day we are to put aside everything and worship and thank God for all He has done and all he is doing in and around us. Boy has this country messed that command up. We do anything and everything but keep the Sabbath Holy. We as Christians literally dread coming to church, we haft to make ourselves go. And the first chance we get, we will skip church before anything else. Let’s see what I am talking about. Hmmm. We put sports either on TV or live before God and church, we put family functions before God and church, we put work before God and Church, we put ourselves before God and Church, I can go on, You Go to any beach or river or park etc. and you will see more people there than at 10 churches on any given Sunday. But let’s look back at why God made this command. The Israelites when they were slaves in Egypt would work seven days a week with no breaks. And the one all of us should know is that God created the world in 6 days and rested on the 7th. This was not to be a day of slothful inactivity but of spiritual service through religious observances. For the violation of this command God imposed on Israel, the death penalty. It was that important and is that important today in the present Church Age, the day of worship has been changed from Saturday to Sunday because of Jesus’ resurrection on the first day of the week.
But what happens when we take this for granted, what happens when we lose our passion for church and for God, now I’m not questioning anyone’s love for God, but I am questioning your passion, your fire. But back to my question, what happens?
Well you probably know someone like this or even sit next to someone like this. You can see it on their face. They say things like this.
I don’t need to hear what the pastor has to say, He is always talking about tithing and giving, all he wants is my money.
He was not talking to me this morning His sermons are never about me.
I’ll just go to the bath room, then well I’ll just hang out here, I’m bored
The reason these things are being said or done is that the heart is wrong. That person woke up this morning with something on their mind other that Jesus.
What about, I do not need to go to Church to be a Christian. Or I do not need to read the Bible to be a Christian. Does a fish need water to live? Do we need air to breath?
Church how can you call yourself a Christian and not have God, Church and the Bible on the Highest priority on your list? It ought to be the first thing you think about in the morning and last thing you think about when you go to bed. You want to know why this country has fallen out of God’s will, and temptation has taken over, Men walk away from their family, Men and women cheat on their spouse daily, murder, rape, drugs, false religions are taking over and the church is fading away, Because we do not read our Bible. We have no Idea how to resist the devil. We have no idea how to witness or win souls to the Kingdom. We have taken God and prayer out of the places that need it most, schools of all places, work place even churches and Homes. People we need to forget how to be more spiritual and get back to the basics were God rules all and put God first then prayer and church.
Turn with me to Hebrews 5:11 I’ll start to close with this:
we have much to say, and hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing.
We have much to say about this, he began, referring to the subject of Jesus’ As it turned out, his discussion was indeed lengthy (7:1-10:18) as well as deep. Accordingly, he knew that it would be hard to explain because his readers were slow to learn. They had been Christians a long time, he reminded them, so that by this time they ought to be teachers. Others, who had been in the faith less time than us, should be profiting from our instruction. Instead they needed someone to instruct them again in the basics.
The author here was speaking the elementary truths he used an expression which could refer to the letters of the alphabet as they might be learned by a school child. “You seem to need your ABCs reviewed,”
Basically he is saying that we were on fire when we were saved, we were zealous and over time we have become dull comfortable, we have found a nice little comfort zone and do not want to leave it.
Kelly’s come up
Church listen! We are the body of Christ; there is a song “If we are the body” It goes like this “
But if we are the body
why aren't His arms reaching?
Why aren't His hands healing?
Why aren't His words teaching?
And if we are the body
why aren't His feet going?
Why is His love not showing them there is a way?
There is a way
Then the song ends with:
Jesus payed much too high a price
For us to pick and choose who should come
And we are the body of Christ
4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.
We are not doing what God intended for us to do. We are to lax in our duty as a Christian
As I wrap this up I want to leave you with this. This past week was, see you at the pole I saw about 90 students standing outside praying and worshiping God with Hundreds of lost kids making fun of them and making nasty remarks but these kids did not care. They loved the Lord and didn’t care who knew it. Church, I saw and everybody saw what they stood for. I want to ask you, what do you stand for?
Psalm 133:1 1Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity!
7Yet from the days of your fathers
You have gone away from My ordinances
And have not kept them.
Return to Me, and I will return to you,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
“But you said,
In what way shall we return?’
105 Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.
We live in a dark world and the only way out is to put God 1st ,pray without ceasing and read the Bible and let it light the way, let it be the lamp unto your feet and the light to my path