The local church matters. When you look at our culture you’ll find almost everything else matters…and then the church.
The things of God have become secondary. The local church is no longer a priority for most people. Here’s the thing: the local church still matters, is needed, and can still influence the next generation.
For many Christians today, the following is true:
- Sports > church
- Entertainment > church
- Lunch > church
- Vacations > church
- Family > church
- Jobs > church
Some of those might seem a little harsh. But it’s true. Many prioritize everything as more important than gathering together with other like-minded followers of Jesus for corporate worship and the teaching and preaching of God’s Word.
The local church matters. More Christians need to get plugged in. There is no such thing as a lone ranger Christian. We are designed for community. It’s in our DNA as human beings. God instilled in us a longing for fellowship with Him and each other.
Why the local church matters
Here are 3 reasons why the local church not only matters but is relevant today, tomorrow, and until Jesus comes back.
1. The church helps us combat our fears
We live in a world full of fear. Every day the evening news gives us something new to be fearful of. But God tells us in His Word to “not fear.”
Isaiah 41:10 says, “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with my righteous right hand.” (CSB)
When we are plugged into the local church other Christians (our brothers and sisters in Christ) can challenge and encourage us to not be fearful because God says He will “hold on to you with my righteous right hand.” The local church is a place to be reminded to fear not and trust God!
2. The church is the house of prayer
Isaiah 56:7 says, “I will bring them to my holy mountain and let them rejoice in my house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be acceptable on my altar, for my house will be called a house of prayer for all nations.” (author emphasis, CSB)
Many churches have become houses of entertainment, and idolatry, and care more about who is on stage than who is sitting in the chairs. The local church matters because it’s a place where we can pray and find prayer.
Jesus quoted Isaiah 56:7 in Mark 11:17, when He said, “Is it not written, My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations? But you have made it a den of thieves!” (author emphasis)
The local church is supposed to be a house of prayer. When that happens, people can find other brothers and sisters in Christ to surround them in prayer because we all know the world we live in is hard, unloving, and full of darkness.
The local church can be light in a dark world and prayer is a way for us to connect with God, and hear His heart so He can realign our hearts with His.
3. The church is God’s only plan to tell others to follow Jesus
People are God’s Plan A to reach a lost world with the Gospel. There is no Plan B. The local church is God’s megaphone to a fallen world that’s desperately in need of a Savior.
Before Jesus ascended back to heaven He gave this command to His followers in Matthew 28:19-20: “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (CSB).
Notice Jesus never gave this command to the angels. His mission has always been to use people…broken people to be exact. But how amazing is it that the local church can be a place that exhibits God’s grace in practice to a world that desperately needs a touch from God?
The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is perfected in weakness” (CSB). His grace empowers the local church to bring the Gospel to a fallen world.
Go and tell.
Go find a local church and be on a mission to tell the world about Jesus. It’s the church’s mission to build up, edify, and bring the Gospel to all nations.
Go and tell.
Originally published here.