Summary: Why is it so important to go to church and have christian friends? Beacuse of the strength we gain from them.
This week is perhaps one of the most important topics that I’ve discussed so far, although it may not seem like that to most. It is the importance of church, more specifically the fellowship we gain from it. As it says in verse 9 of the reading, “Two are better than one…”, but how much better would three be, or four or five or ten for that matter. But the problem in today’s society is finding these people to help support us. Christians don’t exactly walk around with a sign on them, nor do we have any kind of secret hand shake. Even when we attend a church there is no guarantee that we will find the fellowship we seek. Many people who are there are simply there for that one hour on Sunday. If we ever hope to find strong fellowship with other Christians it must be based on more than that small weekly interaction.
The best way for you to meet people who can strengthen you is to find those that you would want to be friends with outside of church. An easy way to do that is to get involved in something you enjoy within the church. Something like youth ministry, or being a greeter. Then you know the others there enjoy it too, and you already have that common bond. A common bond is one of the best ways to form a friendship. C.S. Lewis briefly touches on this in his book The Last Battle, which is the final book in the Chronicles of Narnia. “Well, those two got us all together, partly just for fun, so we could all have a good jaw about Narnia…” They all had that common experience and it brought them closer together.
But truly, what is the advantage of fellowship, why do we need it and how does it help us. In Matthew 26 (quickview) : 41 Jesus warns the disciples, “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.” Our bodies are what lead us into temptation, and as many know it is a hard force to resist, especially by alone. We need the help of those that we trust, those we feel comfortable sharing our short-comings with, to over some the temptation of evil. Hebrews 3 (quickview) : 13 says, “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” While we are locked in these mortal bodies we are weak, and our own strength cannot save us, it is only by joining together that we can ever hope to defeat sin.
Another strong point of fellowship is that it allows us to draw on the strengths of others. “Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” (Romans 12 (quickview) : 4-5) We all have special gifts that God has given us, and chances are we share some of them with others we know. Although we can share gifts, God gives different configurations of these to everyone. Someone may have an aptitude for public speaking and be a little insightful about the bible; another might know more about the bible and have an understanding of how science connects to religion. When you bring these two together they would be able to reach more people. So it is with all people, when we bring other Christians into our circle we increase our ability to reach others and help people. So I encourage everyone not only to find a church to attend regularly, but also to become involved there. You will not only be helping others you will also be helping yourself. God Bless.