Let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage and warn each other, especially now that the day of his coming back again is drawing near (Hebrews 10:25).
Sometime ago, while on a flight to Chicago, I was witnessing to a fellow passenger. During the conversation, I pointedly asked, "Are you a Christian?"
He replied casually and flippantly, saying he wasn't very religious. Though he used to attend church, he said, he didn't anymore, and he wasn't particularly interested in spiritual things.
Then I asked him if he would like to live in a community where there were no churches. He looked at me a bit startled and exclaimed, "Of course not!"
"Did it ever occur to you that you are a parasite?" I asked.
"What do you mean by that?" he demanded.
"Well, you want all the benefits of the church and Christians in your community, but you are not willing to contribute anything," I explained.
He sat silently for a moment, then replied, "I'll be in church on Sunday."
The most important and influential institution for the good of mankind in any community is the church of our Lord Jesus Christ, which exalts Him and proclaims His holy, inspired word, the Bible. The church is God's salt and light in the world.
No, there is no perfect church anywhere, because it is made up of human beings like you and me who have not yet been glorified. But where He is preached, the Perfect One is present, and that is good enough for me. You have heard the old saying: "If you find and attend a perfect church, it will become imperfect as soon as you walk in the door."
God ordained the church to be His body upon the earth. Yes, those who for physical or other reasons who cannot be a part of a local church are still a part of His body, but God places importance on His corporate body, where we can serve and be served, where the whole is synergistically greater than its parts, and where in unity a greater impact can be made than through individual efforts.
God said, "Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another -- and all the more as you see the Day approaching" (Hebrews 10:25, NIV).
Like the man on the airplane: Be in church on Sunday!
Yours for helping to fulfill the Great Commission
each year until our Lord returns,
The late Dr. Bill Bright was Founder and President/Chairman Emeritus of Campus Crusade for Christ, an organization which began as a campus ministry in 1951 and now has more than 27,000 full-time staff and up to 500,000 trained volunteer staff in 196 countries in areas representing 99.6 percent of the world's population. In the past 50 years, Campus Crusade for Christ has seen approximately 6 billion exposures to the gospel worldwide. The film, "JESUS," which Bright conceived and funded through Campus Crusade for Christ, is the most widely translated and viewed film of any type ever produced. Since its use began in 1980, the film has been translated into 839 languages and viewed or listened to by over 5.7 billion people in 228 countries. Dr. Bright was also the author of more than fifty books. Visit campuscrusade.com for more details
Copyright (c) 2003, Bill Bright. All rights reserved. However, readers may copy and distribute this message as desired, without restrictions in number, as long as the content is not altered. Forwarding this e-mail to friends is encouraged. For many evangelistic and spiritual growth materials, visit the Campus Crusade for Christ Web site at ccci.org. See campuscrusade.com for Bill Bright's own materials.