Let’s talk about your relationship with God. Some of you may not believe, but that doesn’t mean He is not there. Nor does it mean that He has nothing to do with you. In fact, you are His creation and constantly provides all you need in this world. More than that He has sent His Son to provide the sacrifice for your sins so that you might be reconciled to Him. Whether you believe it or not, He loves you and wants you as a loving father wants his child.
Are Christians Required To Make A Financial Contribution To The Church As An Act Of Worship Every Sunday?
We see that this was the practice of the church from her beginning. “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers” (Acts 2:42). This verse shows that the church was regularly engaged in various forms of worship, including “fellowship”. This term is often used in the New Testament in reference to the sharing of our finances to support the work of the church (cf. Rom. 15:26; 2 Cor. 8:4; 9:13; Gal. 6:6; Heb. 13:16). The first congregation in Jerusalem presented their gifts to the apostles (Acts 4:34-5:2).
Jesus told the apostles to make disciples and to teach them to observe all that He commanded (Matthew 28:18-20). The disciples observed the Lord’s Supper on the first day of the week and only on that day. This is the day the Lord arose from the dead (Mark 16:9); the day that the church began, on Pentecost (Acts 2), which always fell on the first day of the week (Leviticus 23:15-16); the day that the church met to take the Lord’s Supper (Acts 20:7) and to give into the treasury of the church (1 Corinthians 16:1-2). The first day of the week is the Lord’s Day (Revelation 1:10).
Hear these words from an experienced veteran soldier of the cross of Jesus and an inspired preacher of the gospel: “Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time. Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one” (Colossians 4:5-6). The apostle Paul commands us to be wise so that we can make the most of every opportunity; so that we might know how to speak to people.
“For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6).
Just as God brought physical light into our physical world, so He has brought spiritual light into our spiritual hearts. We received this light when we believed and obeyed the gospel of Jesus Christ. It looks like Jesus.
The world still lies in the darkness of ignorance and sin. They need the light of the knowledge of the glory of God. We must show them Christ. Let them see Him in your words and actions. Shine the light of Jesus to the world every day and to everyone.
“With what shall I come before the LORD, And bow myself before the High God? Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, With calves a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, Ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:6-8)
Israel was commanded by God to offer sacrifices at the Temple altar on a regular basis. But He was not pleased with their many offerings. Even if they were to make the ultimate sacrifice by offering their own child to Him, He would not accept it. Why?
Some professing Christians never darken the door of a church building to assemble with God’s people. Others like to come in from time to time, especially at holidays. Many will be there on Sunday if nothing else gets in the way and many will come every time the doors are open. In whatever category you find yourself please ask, “Why am I here? And, what am I doing here? Am I here to fulfill the will of God in this matter?”
Are you feeling fatigued and overburdened? Everyone experiences sin, stress, grief, heartache, pain and misery. It can be overwhelming and seemingly impossible to overcome. There is often no relief and no escape.
Here is Jesus' invitation to you: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30).
King Saul did not obey God but sought to appease Him by offering sacrifices to Him (1 Samuel 15:22-23). God did not and does not accept such offerings from those who are disobedient (Micah 6:6-8). In fact, He abhors such hypocritical worship and service. God wants us to obey Him from our hearts.
When David sinned with Bathsheba, God did not want more offerings from David (Psalms 51:16-17). He wanted David to realize, acknowledge, confess, mourn over and repent of his sin. God accepts us when we bring to Him a broken and contrite heart; a humble heart ready to listen and obey Him in everything.
God made us in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27). This does not refer to our body but to our spirit. God is spirit (John 4:24). He has no physical body.
We each have a physical body that came from the earth and will return to the earth (Genesis 2:7; 3:19), but also a spirit that came from God (Hebrews 12:9) and will return to God (Ecclesiastes 12:7). Our physical body is not made in the image of God but in the image of the earthly. When Jesus comes, we will receive a spiritual body made in the image of the heavenly (1 Corinthians 15:42-50).
Robert Dodson is the Preaching Minister for the Northwest Church of Christ.
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