We are constantly looking for ways and means for bettering ourselves in this life. We do so by increasing our spiritual integrity. God knew what was best for us and from which we could obtain the nourishment our soul craves. He knew how valuable gathering with brothers and sisters of like precious faith could be to us.
Each member of the Lord’s church bears the burden of building up the church. We are to walk as rooted and grounded individuals (Col. 2:6-7). To neglect worship services is a willful sin (Heb. 10:25-26) about which none can take pride or justify. As a result, one must repent (Acts 8:22).
Regular attendance demonstrates a number of things to others. It shows our faith in Christ as the head of the church (Eph. 1:11-13; Heb. 11:6). It evidences an obedient spirit similar to Jesus’ (Heb. 5:8-9; 10:25-26). It shows faith in Jesus’ promise to be with us (Matt. 18:20-24). It edifies and builds up the church by prevention of backsliding (Eph. 4:16). It proves us to be for Christ and His church (Matt. 12:30; Jn. 15:14). Our physical presence in worship proves we love Christ and His people (Jn. 14:21, 24; I Jn. 3:14). Being in the presence of God and His people make the faithful happy (Ps. 122:1; 133:1). Those who are absent are called “sinners” and no faithful child desires that distinction (Jn. 4:23; 9:31; Matt. 4:10). Negligence destroys the church and Christianity (Heb. 2:2-3; 10:25). When we are assembled, the contribution increases as a power for good (1 Cor. 16:2). All who are present are built up through teaching and finding strength from fellow worshippers (Acts 2:42; 11:26; 20:28). Partaking of the Lord’s Supper strengthens the inner man (Jn. 6:53). Preaching and singing are made better (Eph. 5:19; Acts 20:7). It enables the church to shine like a city (Matt. 5:14-16; Phil. 2:12-15). It has a saving influence on the whole family (Heb. 11:7). Our friends and neighbors are helped to be converted (1 Tim. 4:12). It is the accomplishment of a good thing (Jas. 4:17; Jud. 5:23).
If it is no sin to be absent one time, then it would not be for 100! God has taught us to gather “every first day” of the week (1 Cor. 16:1-2). If we are truly devoted, we will put forth every attempt to go the second mile and be there always (Matt. 5:41)!
–Mike King, church of Christ at Lakeside