IMPORTANCE OF BEING IN A CONGREGATION
First of all there are several different types of congregations the bible talks about
- The congregation of the HYPOCRITES: Job 15:34
- The congregation of the DEAD: Proverbs 21:16
- The congregation of the RIGHTEOUS: Psalms 1:5
In the first congregation, there are many people today who go through the motions of worship but their hearts are not right with God. They try to serve two masters. They work deceitfully and dishonestly. They yet commit sin but they are faithful to somebodies church.
In the second congregation, this is the man who wanders out of the way. There is only one way. And that’s God’s way. When a man wants to have his own way he is a backslider or not saved. Many are in sin, in darkness without hope and without a savior. The wages of sin is death. If you are in sin, you are in the congregation of the dead. If you wander out of the way of righteousness, you are in the congregation of the dead.
The third is the congregation of the righteous. The righteous are the saved and sanctified and unified with the body of Christ – The church of God. They dwell together in unity in the fathers name, they worship together without division, they live a consistent holy life everyday without willful sin. They worship under a true pastor who preaches and teaches the uncompromising truth of God’s eternal word. This is the church of God. The church according to the word of God that’s kept in the Fathers name. The church of God is comprised of a universal body of saved and sanctified believers, with visible local congregations throughout the world, as a witness to the lost. Each Church of God congregation according to the word is unified in the faith and in the Spirit of God. Each congregation gathers is under the divine guidance of an ordain Elder Pastor the Shepard of flock.
God used the Apostles Paul and Barnabas to establish church of God congregations and ordain elders as Pastors within the congregations to establish, govern, lead and feed the flock. The church is likened to the physical body and Christ as her head. This spiritual organism is composed of many members with different offices. God has a place and work for you in his church.
God sets you as members (of a congregation) of the body of Christ as (how) it pleases him. (I Cor. 12:18) This is necessary for the spirits of the saved to be perfected. It’s one thing to try and maintain a salvation experience outside a congregation; but it’s another thing to be able to grow in the deeper truths of Gods word, to get established in the doctrines, standards of God’s church, and be inspired and encouraged and loved by the saints of God in a congregation.
David Prayed: “Remember thy congregation, which thou hast purchased of old…this [is] mount Zion (church of the firstborn – the church of God), wherein thou hast dwelt.” Psa 74:2
David called the congregation Zion. Isaiah said (Isa. 2:3): “lets go up to zion because out of it comes the law and the word.” Many people don’t want to “go up” It takes energy to climb up higher for a higher standard of living. Well this is what you will get in the church of God. Let us go…they were to leave and go. Go where? A specific location – the house of God – a place where saint dwell together. “Behold how good and pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity (Psa.133:1).”
This is what you will see “come out of Zion”, through the law of the gospel that’s being preached and taught by a divinely called and ordained Pastor:
- The Salvation of souls is produced out of Zion (Psa. 14:7)
- The perfection (sanctification) of beauty shines out of Zion (Psa. 50:2)
- Saints flowing together (in unity), comes out of Zion (Jer. 31:12)
- Your help and Your Strength, comes out of Zion (Psa. 20:2)
- Your Strength and victory to rule over sin and temptation, comes out of Zion
- (Psa. 110:2)
- The blessings of the Lord to show you good, comes out of Zion (Psa. 128:5)
- The Establishing of souls in the faith come out of Zion (Psa. 87:5)
- The teaching of God’s word comes out of the congregation of Zion. (Isa. 2:3)
- The Way in which we should walk comes out of the congregation of Zion (Isa. 2:3)
- The Spirits of Just men are made Perfect out of Zion (Heb.12:22,23)
This is what’s produced constantly and automatically in a true church of God congregation.
To be continued…