God Wants Us to be United as One
Some ask, why do we as Christians have to gather together often? Why isn’t Christianity like Buddhism; isn’t it more convenient to just set up a shrine at home and then worship at leisure? The answer is simple – because God’s will is for us to be united as one.
Know that God’s plan is not to save a lot of people and have them spread out all over the world like loose sand, but for us to assemble and worship Him collectively. When we congregate, according to God’s will we form a “household”, a “temple”, a “nation”, a “body of Christ”, a “new bride”, a “new Jerusalem”…
Besides, God is “love”. His wish is that we come together, because only then can we learn to “love”. In fact, all groups inherently contain “love”. Otherwise, any group will soon disband. So there must be love before there will be families, communities, schools… Similarly, there must be God’s unselfish love before there will be a church.
God’s will is also that we should learn forgiveness. While it is true that without communal living, there will be no friction, but without friction, we will not learn forgiveness and acceptance. God wants us to learn to love one another, just as He loves us. But if we don’t get together, how can we learn to love one another? God’s will is also for us to learn to share, just as Christ loves us and shared His life with us. Even His glory, power, throne etc. have been shared with us. So we should assemble often so that we will have the opportunity to learn sharing. If we become loners, and care only for ourselves, we will never know the joy and preciousness of sharing. God’s will is also for us to learn to complement and to support each other. There is not a single great project in the world that was constructed by just one person. When we live together under one church, we will have to learn to support the guidance of those with leadership qualities. We cannot all be leaders, and cannot all just follow. God wants us to complement each other – to work together, to cover each other’s weaknesses.
So, brothers and sisters, you need to gather together often; you need to join a fellowship; you need to interact with other members; you need to learn more about others, to establish mutual affection; you need to discharge your duty as a Christian within communal life. Therefore, the writer urges all believers to fully participate in all manner of activities, so that you will abide by the will of God.
If you come to our meetings every Sunday but you don’t know anyone, don’t join in any of the church’s social activities, and don’t have a communal life, I’m sure that you are not happy as a Christian. You will also easily fall away when you face trials, and perhaps even lose your faith, because you have no one to give you a hand, intercede for you in prayer, and support you. You will also not taste of the warmth of the Household of God. You will not substantively understand many of the teachings of the Bible, because you have limited opportunities to interact with people and make alive the Truth that you have heard. Therefore I exhort you to be a Christian as willed by God – unite together as one with other Christians, complement one another, support each other, encourage each other, so that you feel like the church is your “home” where you receive the warmest of care, and you can also learn to care for others.
By: David Ng