Preserving the Assembly

by admin ~ February 21st, 2010. Filed under: church.

What I have noticed now in twenty-two plus years as a pastor is that it is difficult to maintain a New Testament church to practice New Testament. Don’t get me wrong—Jesus’ yoke is easy and His burden is light. We can and should cast our burden upon Him. However, without vigilance, biblical practice will wain in a church. A church is an assembly. Assembly is the church. That’s the absolute essence of the word, ekklesia. It isn’t a church that doesn’t assemble. When the church assembles, it accomplishes a lot of what it is and what it does as a church. It worships God. That’s a big deal. We get together for Him. We do that through singing, giving money, praying, and then preaching and hearing preaching. These are all elements of worship for the New Testament church as found in the New Testament. The assembly also results in required edification from pastoral preaching and teaching, so that the church will not be tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine. Also the body life of a church occurs with assembly—admonishing, exhorting, provoking to love and good works, encouraging. All of this relates to faithfulness to assemble. As part of the assembly, you must, well, assemble. Not assembling is not acceptable for a church. We do it four times a week, really three times, just longer on Sunday morning. You’re not assembling if you do it one or two of the four. You are forsaking the assembling of the assembly. A body functions together. A body will not function properly when the parts are going their own way, not fitting together. The Head of the Body is not being obeyed.

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