“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 nearer.”
(Hebrews 10: 24-25)
Oh, just picking a verse or two from this chapter, Hebrews 10, is really, really challenging, the reason I’m drawn particularly to this verse and to pray according to it is because of the implications of what comes before it so Hebrews 10, the first part of this, really for 23 verses leading up to this verse is talking about how Jesus has paid the price for our sins, that he has entered into the most holy place with his blood, paid the price for our sins so that now you and I can enter into the most holy place, the curtain has been torn in two.
We have access to God. We can draw nearer to God but then flowing right from that. So that’s glorious truth, but then flowing right from that, the author of Hebrews says, “So let’s encourage each other. Let’s motivate one another. Let’s stir one another up to love and good works. Let’s meet together. Let’s encourage one another,” and I just think about the implications of our relationships with Christ individually, for our relationships with one another in the church. We, every one of us in Christ, has full access to God. So based on that, we encourage one another to grow closer to God. We live to help others grow in their relationship with God, to stir them up toward love and good works. We meet with each other and we encourage one another in faith.
Don’t approach church with a consumeristic attitude, but approach church seeking how you can help stir up others in love and good works.
I want to encourage you to see your church with this perspective. One if you’re not plugged into a church, committed as a part, a member of a church, let me encourage you to do that ASAP and then in that church that you are a part of, go there, gather together with people. Every Sunday, maybe at other times during the week, and let your motivation be how can I glorify God by encouraging the people in this church. Don’t let it be, “Okay how can I be served by this church? How can I go and attend the programs and have my needs met.” Don’t go with that approach. Go with the approach of saying, “How can I encourage people? I’m going on Sunday to gather with the church and I’m gonna meet together with other followers of Christ in this local church I’m a part of. How can I encourage them? Who can I pray for? Who can I build up? How can I stir others up to love and good works, to help them grow in their relationship with Christ?” What happens when an entire community of people gathers together regularly with that on their minds. We all have access to God through Christ and we’re gonna spur one another on toward Christ. That is God’s design for the church.
So God, may it be so. I pray for this in the church I have the privilege of pastoring in the Washington D.C. area. God, I pray that at McLean Bible Church we would stir up one another to love and good works. That we would encourage one another in Christ, every time we gather together. God, I pray for this for other churches. I pray for this for followers of Christ who are listening to this right now in every one of their churches. God, we pray for fellowship in our churches, for community in our churches that is motivating and encouraging one another to grow in relationship with you, to make your love known in the world. God, we pray for love and good works to flow from our churches because of what has been made possible for us in Christ. Together as brothers and sisters. God, help us to meet together regularly. Help us not to treat casually. Like regular meeting with the church, help it not just to be a matter of convenience but a matter of priority in our lives and not just meeting together but encouraging one another. May that be our approach to biblical community. Every week and all during the week for that matter. God, make our churches what you desire for us to be. Hebrews 10, 24 and 25 kind of churches, based on the privileges you’ve given every single one of us in Christ. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
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