We hear Hebrews 10:25 preached to us all the time, admonishing us to go to church. “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching” (NKJ). Okay, that’s fine, but why? Other than the fact that this verse says I should go (which should be enough of a reason to do anything – because the Bible tells me to), what’s the big deal about going to church? Why can’t I just stay home and glorify God? I can read my Bible. I can do Bible studies. I can even watch preachers on TV. Why do I need to physically go to church?
As with all the Bible, verses don’t stand in isolation from the other verses around them. Let’s look back a few verses and pick up the context of Hebrews 10:25. Chapter ten begins by giving an explanation of how the old covenant, with its many sacrifices, was just a shadow of the new covenant, now ratified by the one marvelous, atoning sacrifice of Jesus. Since we can now enter into this new and living way thanks to Jesus Christ, our high priest, let’s live in accordance to it. Here’s how we do it:
- Verse 22: “Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith…” We live this new life in Christ by drawing near to God with a true and sincere heart.
- Verse 23: “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering…” We live this new life in Christ by holding fast to what we believe without being tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine.
- Verse 24: “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works.” We live this new life in Christ by admonishing others to love and participate in good works.
The command in verse 25 concerning going to church comes on the heels of verses 22 – 24. We draw near to God by hearing the Word taught on a regular basis by someone we know and trust, and to whom we have committed the care and nurturing of our soul – our local pastor. We hold fast to the confession of our hope by being in constant fellowship with other believers who can encourage us through our ups and downs. And we can only consider one another to stir them up toward love and good works if we are around other believers. We are able to draw near, hold fast, and stir up as we assemble ourselves together.
No more excuses. The next time the church doors are open for service or Bible study, be there.
©2015 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.
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