Particularily with my generation the church has become only a building you drive by and admire the stained glass windows. But what is the church for, what is its purpose? Today's lesson provided the answers, all based on scripture.
The church is the body of Christ
1Corinthians 12:27 Now all of you together are Christ's body, and each one of you is a separate and necessary part of it.
Christ is the head of the church
Ephesians 4:15 Instead, we will hold to the truth in love, becoming more and more in every way like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church.
God places us in a church
1Corinthians 12:18 But God made our bodies with many parts, and he has put each part just where he wants it.
The Holy Spirit gives each member of the church a gift to be used to benefit the church
1Corinthians 12:4,7 Now there are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but it is the same Holy Spirit who is the source of them all. A spiritual gift is given to each of us as a means of helping the entire church.
Our responsibility is to do God's work AND to build up
Ephesians 4:12-13 Their responsibility is to equip God's people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ, until we come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God's Son that we will be mature and full grown in the Lord, measuring up to the full stature of Christ.
Being a member of a church should be so much more than attending Sunday services. We should be there to use the spiritual gifts we have been given and also to support each other. Why then is our church life not more important to us? Church groups should be a community within a community, but I suppose we are too often too busy with life (and yes, that includes me) to focus on the people within our church. I pray that we can all make our church a bigger priority in our lives.
Remember that, according to this study, the Holy Spirit speaks to us through the Bible, prayer, circumstances, and the church. If we are not visible within the church how is the Holy Spirit going to speak to us through the church? When we are seeking to hear from God, often we will see that what we hear from the Bible, in our prayers, through circumstances, and at church are all saying the same thing. When that happens you will know that you are on the right path.