Forsaking the Assembling
"…and let us consider one another to provoke unto love and good works; not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as ye see the day drawing nigh." (Hebrews 10:24-25)
What do we see when we see Scriptures such as the passage above? Do we believe that it applies to everyone else, but not to ourselves? What is ironic, and also quite sad, is that the individuals needing to read this article the most are not here to benefit from it.
Take a look around you. Do you notice anyone missing? How does it make you feel when you see empty pews where in times past a brother or a sister could be found sitting? Do YOU feel these missing individuals are encouraging or exhorting you with their absence, or does it make you feel discouraged? Does their absence make you feel they have genuine Christian love for you, and want you to do good works, or does their absence make you feel as if they really don't care? Obviously, we know that there are some who are not here with us this morning due to illness or infirmity. We are not talking about them. Those individuals would love to be able to meet with the saints. Unfortunately, most of the people missing from the assembly are not here because they CHOSE not to meet with the saints. They have delegated God and His Son, as well as the church, which is you and I, to a back room in their lives. Is this the type of attitude that Jesus Christ wants from those who claim Him as their Savior?
Jesus said, "If any man cometh unto Me, and hateth not his own father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. Whosoever doth not bear his own cross, and come after Me, cannot be My disciple. No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon." (Luke 14:26-27; Matthew 6:24) In other words, Jesus is saying that NOTHING comes before Him, not even our very own families or our very own life, IF we are going to be His disciple! We cannot claim to be a child of God, IF we put anything else before our God. Jesus said, "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light." (Matthew 11:28-30) Is it really TOO burdensome for us to meet with the saints? Isn't Jesus' death at least worth that much to us?
May God bless you!