By Dr. Jim Wolfe, Senior Pastor.
This week, I read a great article by Gary Ledbetter, Editor of the Texan, addressing the question, “Why go to church?” In that article, Gary made this observation: “But I’ve never seen someone grow spiritually by himself. Believers who neglect assembling with other believers slide morally, doctrinally and spiritually until they are not easily distinguished from ‘decent’ pagans.” We know even lost people know to do “good” things!
We have all heard the excuses why this current generation of believers feel the Church is not relevant. One survey I remember stated that many believe that one or two Sunday morning attendance a month makes a person a faithful attendee! Many churches no longer have Sunday night or Wednesday night services! There may be some gatherings in homes or get-togethers at restaurants or the movies, etc. Some even meet to do some good things for family and community; but who needs doctrine and Christian nurture from the Church family? They are just old folks! Now, if this is true you might as well tear out Titus Chapter 2 from your Bible!
Christian maturity is not about the goodness we do for God. It is about the closeness we have with God. The old adage still rings true today: The more time we spend with the world, the things of the world, and the people of the world, the more like the world we become. The more time we spend with Christ, the things of Christ, and the people of Christ, the more like Christ we become.
We at Ridge Avenue, have challenged our younger folks to develop Sunday and Wednesday night gatherings at the Church that speaks to the issue of the spiritual decline among God’s people. They have taken that challenge and beginning January 6 are gathering from 5 to 7 PM on Sunday nights, inviting others to join them for doctrine, fellowship, and ministries. As you make New Year resolutions, why not include true Christian growth, and come join us!
The writer of Hebrews says it this way: “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 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” (Hebrews 10:23-25).