This is the second of a two-part series on why we should come to church physically. It uses the contention that, if you are able, you should attend an in-person, local church. That “doing church” online is never a substitute for physically coming to church. You can read the first four reasons you should physically come to church here: 8 Reasons to Come to Church Physically, Part 1.
#5 Come to Serve
While all of these things can be done with people online, only worshiping online misses the point. When we do this online we often pick people we know well or relate to well. Serving others in a specific community stretches us. It gets us to serve people that we normally wouldn’t think about serving or relate to. It also helps us combine our service to a local community that we live in. Serving locally shines the light through a local church, which helps people see the light of the Gospel from people they know. We should be like Jesus and live lives that are not looking to be served, but to serve (Matthew 20:28).
#6 Come to Give
Throughout Scripture we see giving through the local church. Sometimes those churches blessed other believers in other areas of their country, or even the world, but often the money was used for local believers, or local communities. We come to give in order to build churches, ministries, and bless our local communities.
Giving locally helps take care of a local ministry. Also, it is easier to have accountability of the church’s finances. It takes care of the local pastor(s), so that they can preach, teach, and administer God’s Word to the local church.
#7 Come to Pray
No Christian would say that praying isn’t important. Praying with a local body of believers is of vital importance. As we pray for our church family, we are reminded to care and look out for them. This is easier to do as I pray for others in my local church.
We can then rejoice and grieve with those who are in that state of mind (Romans 12:15). It gives me “neighbors” who I am responsible to pray for, as there is always an endless need of prayer. The local church gives me a circle of people that I specifically and regularly can pray for.
#8 Come to Encourage
Christians are called to encourage one another. Can we encourage a cousin across the country through a phone call or text? Absolutely. Can we call to encourage an old friend over the phone? Sure. Let’s be honest, hearing someone’s voice isn’t the same as someone sharing compassion with us face to face with a hug, or maybe shed tears with each other.
Let me also say, it is easy to misread people over text or the phone. But when we see people in person we can better read their body language to see how they are really doing, their true needs and feelings. Interestingly enough more than once the apostles wrote to the churches about looking forward to seeing each other “face to face.” Online church can never replace the in-person, personal meeting of God’s people to personally encourage each other.
Do you appreciate being a part of a local group of believers who can physically meet together? Which of these four areas do you appreciate the most in person? What is another reason you find the benefit of in-person church besides the eight that were listed?
Thanks for taking time to read this Maddening Theology post. If you enjoyed this content you can find Pastor Tim’s sermons at www.cornerstoneforestcity.org. You can also join us at 520 Marion St. Browndale, PA 18421 on Sundays at 10 AM. To make following the blog easier you can also register. You can also join us on Facebook at Cornerstone Forest City. Also, don’t forget to download our APP on iTunes or Googleplay.