Church Assembly: Our Blessing and Duty of Worship Part 1

The Church Assembly: Our Blessing and Duty of Worship I. God demands that He alone be worshipped and He visits judgment upon those who fail to do so. EXO 20:3-6; MAT 4:10. A. The worship of God is also the fear of God. MAT 4:10 c/w DEU 6:13 c/w PSA 5:7. B. Since the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, none are truly wise who do not worship God. PRO 9:10. C. Since the judgment for not worshipping God is visited upon succeeding generations, it is important that parents train their children to worship Him according to His word. PSA 78:4-7. 1. This training is by oral and written Biblical instruction. DEU 6:7; EPH 6:4. 2. This training is by leadership and example: parents need to show their children that they prioritize regular assembly for public worship of God, show them that they respect church order and rule. a. Parents can talk and teach about “the wonderful church” all they like but if their decisions and actions are telling their children something else, guess which “message” is doing the real training? b. “Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself?...” (ROM 2:21). c. (ISA 38:19) The living, the living, he shall praise thee, as I do this day: the father to the children shall make known thy truth. II. The gospel church is now God's house, the reformation and perfection of O.T. patriarchal and Mosaic worship (“our fathers”). HEB 9:10 c/w ROM 4:1; 1CO 10:1; ACT 7:38 c/w 1TI 3:15. A. God’s house is God’s habitation through the Spirit. EPH 2:19-22. B. God’s house is where God's honor dwells. PSA 26:8. C. God’s house is a conduit for spiritual correspondence between heaven and earth. GEN 28:17; HEB 12:22. D. God’s house primarily exists by and for God’s pleasure and glory. EPH 3:21; REV 4:11. 1. Dispense with the notion that the church is primarily for your pleasure or convenience. 2. Christ died to “...present it TO HIMSELF a glorious church...” (EPH 5:25-27). E. God’s house is where the spiritual sacrifices of His worship are to be offered. 1PE 2:5. 1. Sacrifice has ever been a part of true worship from the beginning of the world. HEB 11:4. 2. This pattern continues throughout Scripture. 2KI 17:36; PSA 96:8-9. 3. The sacrifices we offer in the N.T. do not require bloodshed and death as in the O.T. a. We offer sacrifices of praise and thanks. HEB 13:15 c/w PSA 69:30-31. b. We offer sacrifices of our material wealth. HEB 13:16 c/w PHIL 4:15, 18. 4. We are to present our bodies a living sacrifice. ROM 12:1. a. present: To make present to, bring into the presence of. To bring or place (a person) before, into the presence of, or under the notice of, another... b. To bring before or into the presence of God; to dedicate by so bringing. b. ROM 12:1 is written to baptized believers. This requires bringing oneself into the presence of God, to come to where He is, the assembly that convenes to render Him corporate praise. He is in the midst of His saints who are GATHERED TOGETHER. MAT 18:20. c. The corporate aspect of ROM 12:1 is seen in that it does not say “present your bodies living sacrificeS” but “present your bodies a living sacrifice,” Church Assembly, Our Blessing and Duty 6-16-19 Page 1 i.e., the presentation of many bodies together is a sacrifice that pleases God. 5. N.T. church worship also requires sacrifices of our time, energy, pleasures, etc. a. Sacrifice that is no expense to the offerer is not a sacrifice. 1CH 21:24. b. Christ frowns on the low-effort servant who will not put himself out to please his lord. MAT 25:24-26. c. Years ago I reproved a saint for her laxity in basic Christian responsibility. She responded, “But I’ve never been in a church before where I had to do anything: I don’t think I should be in this church anymore.” She being unrepentant, I agreed, and her wish was granted by the church. d. Coming to Christ is to take His yoke upon oneself, i.e., to work. And His yoke is easy. MAT 11:28-30. e. (JER 12:5) If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and if in the land of peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan? F. God’s house has been given distinguishing and glorious ordinances to keep (pay attention or regard to; to observe, stand to, or dutifully abide by). 1CO 11:1-2. III. The church consists of members (1CO 12:27) but church membership is not a club like Sam’s Club (or any other such club) where you can fully be a member but not fully engaged. The church is not “Jesus’s Club” where you go only when you feel like it or need something. A. The first N.T. church membership role was that of believers gathered together in one place for instruction and church order. ACT 1:15-26. 1. It was upon this assembly that the Holy Ghost came. ACT 2:1-4. 2. This was God taking up residence in His house, as in EXO 40:33-34; 2CH 7:1. 3. Suffice it to say that God highly prioritizes His house over your house. PSA 87:2. B. Church = congregation. PSA 22:22 c/w HEB 2:12. 1. congregation: The action of congregating or collecting in one body or mass. 2. congregate: To collect or gather (things) together into a mass or crowd. 2. To assemble (people), esp. to a meeting. 3. The very concept of church is not of scattered but gathered members. C. In 1. Coming together into one place demands both the elements of a time and a place. assembling, the church comes together into one place. ACT 2:1; 1CO 11:20; 14:23. Otherwise, how could the whole church come together in one place? 2. Techno-church where no assembly is required is not Biblical church. D. God presses the issue of assembly by commandment. HEB 10:25. Church Assembly, Our Blessing and Duty 6-16-19 Page 2
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