Now here me out. A short while ago my area had a big yearly event that happens on a Sunday morning. Each year, people from all over the world come into my town, spectators jam the roadways and byways to see these people that have come from afar compete. I’m always at church that morning. The question is, should I be?
Now, I’m 100% for attending church when the doors are open. I’m one of those guys that tries my level best to be at every one of the evangelistic services even if it’s every night and my kids get tired out. I feel it’s important to be in God’s house hearing His Word preached.
The question that nags me, though, is the one that says should I be concerned about the times on Sunday at which I worship. Is there a problem if the Sunday morning service was canceled on the special day? What if I wanted to compete (don’t worry, I’m not in the physical shape to even dare!)? Would it be wrong to do so? What if I wanted to be in the area passing out tracts or sharing the Gospel with the visitors?
How’s Your Testimony?
One reason not to do it would be because of testimony. I could see someone saying, “Aren’t you that Christian? Why aren’t you in church?” Or worse yet, not saying to me, but to others. They could think that I’m being hypocritical saying that they should be in church when I am not. This could be a hindrance if I was not able to say “my church canceled so that we could be here spreading the Good News” or something of that sort.
Wrong to Minister During Church?
But is it necessarily wrong to minister when a service at your church is going on? Suppose a few of us went door-to-door or did some other ministry during prayer meeting. Would it be wrong to want to do that so that we could have prayer support during the ministry? I mean, Sunday School teachers, Youth Group Workers, Nursery Workers miss a service here and there or every Sunday. If I’m out doing the Lord’s Work is it wrong because I’m not in the Lord’s House?
Do Not Forsake the Assembling Of Yourselves Together
I think the verse about forsaking the assembling of ourselves is important in that it dictates an easy trend. If we start not attending church, we can get into the habit, have no one to who we are accountable to, and fall away. It’s imperative that we model church attendance to our children– so they see the importance of it. If mom and dad are constantly skipping, then they are in danger of skipping too.
But we have to be careful not to use this as a blanket rule that the times and days that the church declares they are going to meet are somehow carved into the tablets that Moses brought down from the mountain. God will not be disappointed if the church does not meet on Wednesday at 7:00 PM and instead meets on Thursday at 6:00 PM. He’s not going to care if you have two services in the morning or one. Or whether Sunday school is before or after the service.
We Must Follow the Great Commission
We weren’t commanded to go and do church. We were commanded to go and make disciples. Church is certainly an end to those means, and worship is what we will and should be engaged in, but let’s keep our focus on the priorities at hand. Let’s get out and preach the Good News of Salvation to every creature in the best ways that we can– and let the heart that desires to serve God also desire to fill the pews of His house.