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Summary: Many Christians are AWOL today in their faithfulness to Christ’s church because they have bought into the lie that church is not really that important.

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Series: Lies Satan Tells

Lie: CHURCH IS NOT REALLY THAT IMPORTANT

Hebrews 10:25

Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

Many churches boast hundreds and even thousands on their membership rolls, yet only a small percentage of their “member” are active. As one old honest gentlemen once said, “The FBI couldn’t find most of our members.” Why are so many Christian’s AWOL in their church attendance? Because they have bought into the lie that “Church is not really that important.”

I. EXCUSES FOR FORSAKING CHRIST’S CHURCH

“Forsaking” engkataleipoo:

1. to abandon, desert 2. to leave behind among, to leave surviving:

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon, Electronic Database. © 2000, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc.)

Why do so many people forsake/abandon Christ’s church?

A. Many Excuses

*There are too many hypocrites in the church.

*Someone hurt my feeling.

*I watch church on TV

*I can worship God anywhere

*I don’t need the church, I already know it all

*The church doesn’t give me what I need.

B. One Lie

“Church isn’t really that important”

WE DO WHAT WE BELIEVE!!

II. THE IMPORTANCE OF FAITHFULNESS TO CHRIST’S CHURCH

The church is Christ’s. It was He who established the church and ordained the importance of faithfulness in attendance. Faithfulness to Christ’s church is important for our...

A. Walk with Christ

(Eph 4:1) I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of

the vocation wherewith ye are called,

(Col 1:9-10) For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray

for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; 10 That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;

(1 Thess 2:11-12) As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one

of you, as a father doth his children, 12 That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory.

a. Walk in Obedience

b. Walk in Agreement

(Amos 3:3) Can two walk together, except they be agreed.

Church was important to Christ, therefore it should be important to us.

(Luke 4:16) And He came to Nazareth where He had been brought up; and,

as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the sabbath day,...

B. Growth In Christ

The word of God teaches us that when we are saved/born again we are babes in

Christ. Can you imagine for a moment, bringing a child into the world and then not giving that child the nourishment he/she needs to grow properly. This would be child neglect. We must bring that child into the house, God’s house. Ex. Jesus at the temple, age 12.

*through Sitting Under God’s Word

*Viewing the Modeling of Christ’s Walk

C. Service to Christ

(Eph 2:10) For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

The church is One Body, but Many Members. For the body to effectively carry out Christ’s commission then every member must be faithful in fulfilling his/her purpose.

D. Strengthening Through Christ

“Exhorting” parakaleoo:

I. as in Greek writings to call to one’s side, call for, summon: Acts 28:20 II. to address, speak to 1) as in Greek authors, to admonish, exhort: absolutely, Luke 3:18 2) to beg, entreat, beseech 3) to console, to encourage and strengthen by consolation, to comfort, 2 Cor 2:7 4) to encourage, strengthen Eph 6:22 5) it combines the ideas of exhorting and comforting and encouraging in Rom 12:8 6) to instruct, teach: Titus 1:9 (Thayer’s Greek Lexicon, Electronic Database. © 2000, 2003 by Biblesoft, Inc.)

(Prov 27:17) Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.

E. Protection In Christ

Faithfulness to Christ’s church places one under the authority and protection of..

a. Pastor’s and Church Leaders

b. Christ Himself

III. THE DANGERS OF FORSAKING CHRIST’S CHURCH

A. Stagnation

- no growth

B. Separation

- one of the adversary’s primary desires is to separate believer’s from one another. This allows the lone believer to be easy prey for our adversay.

C. Condemnation

(Charles W. Colson, The Body, 1992, Word Publishing, p. 70.)

Yet membership in a confessing body is fundamental to the faithful Christian life. Failure to do so defies the explicit warning not to forsake "our assembling together." His understanding of this prompted Martin Luther to say, "Apart from the church, salvation is impossible." Not that the church provides salvation; God does. But because the "saved" one can’’t fulfill what it means to be a Christian apart from the church, membership becomes the indispensable mark of salvation.

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