“not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near." Hebrews 10:25
Church attendance by many professing believers has hit hard times in recent decades. It seems, what was once a priority for some Christians, has now become a mere optional extra. Of course, it can be, that some regularly go to church, wrongly thinking that this earns some spiritual kudos before God. Then others attend church simply because of tradition and to save face with their church going peers.
But the genuine believer knows better than this - right? After all we come to meet the King - the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. In other words when we pray “Our Father who art in Heaven hallowed be thy name thy kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven…” we are anticipating a time when we will be with the King in the here and now and in the future. The ‘here and now’ presence of the King, which points to a greater eternal presence, is the corporate gathering of the saints, Lord’s Day by Lords Day! Michael Horton is so right when he wrote; “The visible church is where you will find Christ’s kingdom on earth, and to disregard the kingdom is to disregard its King.” [Grace Quotes]
Therefore, to treat our Lord’s Day meeting with the King as an option and not a priority over all else is nothing short of sacrilege. Too often church attendance is substituted by temporal trivialities that we consider as legitimate excuse.
Let me finish with these words of Thabiti Anyabwile from his book ‘The Local Church’ “We desperately need the church for love, for maturity and preparedness, for spiritual care. It is arrogant, rebellious, self-reliant, God-indicting pride to conclude that the church is an optional extra to the Christian life. We need everything God designs for us. Everything. To reject what God designs for His glory and our good is spiritual suicide. To reject the church is to take your own spiritual life.” [Grace Quotes]