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The Importance of Christian Meetings

Certainly, the spirituality, the taking in knowledge and gaining an understanding of our Christian meetings, will lead to better self-control. The apostle Paul writes, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” (Heb. 10:23-25) When we spend time with like-minded ones, we tend to develop similar qualities and characteristics. This proves true, both in the good, and in the bad as well.

Proverbs 22:24-25 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

24 Do not associate with a man given to anger,
nor go with a wrathful man,
25 lest you learn his ways
and entangle you soul in a snare.

Powerful Weapon of PrayerThe book How to Live With—And Without—Anger thus encourages finding “good models in your own life . . . people who feel determined to overcome life’s unniceties and who actively keep working at doing so. Talk to these people. Try to learn from them how they manage to keep reasonably cool in the face of life’s annoyances.” Richard Lazarus writes, “An emotion does not have to be aroused by something in the outside world. It can be created by a person’s thoughts.”

1 Corinthians 15:33 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

33 Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.”

“Paul was also concerned that associating with such unchristian thinkers would corrupt not only the Corinthians’ doctrine but their behavior as well.” (Pratt Jr 2000, 267) “Paul closed this portion of his discussion with a stern warning. He worried that those who denied the resurrection of the dead would corrupt sincere Corinthian believers. He reminded them of a well-known proverb from the Greek poet Menander: Bad company corrupts good character.”[1]

Hebrews 10:24-25 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the custom of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.

10:24. The third exhortation calls us to responsibility to one another. The appeal to consider demands concentrated attention. The goal of this attention was to spur one another on toward love and good deeds. As Christians we have a corporate responsibility. We must help others who stumble and falter. We must concentrate on the needs of others and not on our individual salvation only.

We can spur people toward either good or bad works. Hebrews calls us to lead others to a practical expression of love and an attractive display of unselfish deeds.

The three important virtues of faith, hope, and love are mentioned in three consecutive verses (see 1 Cor. 13:13). Faith provides assurance. Hope promises an incentive to obedience. Love provides a foundation for prodding believers to godly living

10:25. To spur other believers forward in the Christian life, followers of Christ must meet together. Some of the readers of Hebrews were neglecting to meet together for worship, and this limited their ability to give and receive encouragement toward good works.

Christians who meet together with the aim of promoting godliness and love for one another can be remarkably successful in their ventures. Regular fellowship with believers is an essential ingredient in Christian growth. The readers of Hebrews knew that the Day of Christ’s return was drawing near. The closeness of this day compelled them to stimulate one another in an outburst of energy and concern.

Persecution may have led some believers to drop out of the fellowship. The remedy they needed was to begin meeting again. The verses following in 26–31 showed the final outcome of neglecting to meet with other believers. Such careless living could produce a contempt for Jesus and a renunciation of Christianity.[2]

As Christians, we are looking for a brotherhood, a community of like-minded worshippers, a Christian congregation that seeks biblical truths and imitates the first-century church.

 

[1] Richard L. Pratt Jr, I & II Corinthians, vol. 7, Holman New Testament Commentary (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2000), 267.

[2] Thomas D. Lea, Hebrews, James, vol. 10, Holman New Testament Commentary (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1999), 187.