|Vol. 16 No. 1 January 2014||
Arlis D. Richardson
What difference is there between a Christian who attends services only occasionally and a person who won’t become a Christian? Very little! Both are in rebellion to the Word of God.
Turning to Hebrews 10:23-27 we read:
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. For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.
How many Christians can read or listen to these verses and still take the attitude that some do is beyond my understanding. I must conclude that they really don’t realize how terrible hell really is – or else they have the attitude that the Scriptures are lying!
By the way, these Scriptures are not speaking only of the Lord’s Day assembly. Historical research reveals that persecution came to Hebrew Christians as even this was being written. Some had begun forsaking the regular, sometimes daily, assemblies. The writer is saying don’t be like those. Continuing to assemble they would gain strength and could indeed provoke each other to love and to good works. “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28).
Not only is a Christian not to forsake the Lord’s Day assembly, but neither is he to forsake any other assemblies designated by his overseeing elders for the assembly of the congregation. Hebrews 13:17 states, “Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.”
In August of 1976, a group of Christians conducted a campaign in Dover, New Hampshire. They knocked on 30,000 doors. They received many different kinds of responses to their efforts. Many said, “No thanks, we are Catholics.” Others said, “We are set in our religion.” Some said they were too old to change. One woman said she was a home Baptist. What she meant was that she was a Baptist but didn’t go to church. I am afraid we have some home Christians. They have obeyed the Gospel in the past. Oh, they come on Sunday morning but not on Sunday night. They do not come to mid-week Bible study or go to Gospel meetings and vacation Bible schools. They never go to see the sick or teach the lost. They just like to stay at home, and they will stay in their eternal home (hell) forever! Concerning the one talent man who stayed home and did nothing, Jesus said, “And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 25:30).