The Bible warned Christians not to forsake gathering together. It doesn’t say not to forsake going to a certain building to attend church or not to forsake listening to a sermon.
We may learn from a gifted preacher or teacher, and that learning may or may not take place in a building with the name of some church out in front. There is certainly nothing in the word saying not to listen to teachers or preachers or not to enter church buildings, but that’s not actually how we gain spiritual strength.
Our spiritual strength, of course, comes from the Holy Spirit, but the power of that spiritual strength comes from unity with other Christians. You and I can’t alter the power level of the spiritual strength the Holy Spirit sends us, but we can concentrate whatever power He sends by gathering together with other Christians.
When I stand alone, I receive a certain level of spiritual strength from the Holy Spirit, but when I stand together with another Christian, the strength he receives and the strength I receive somehow interact and produce a combined strength much greater than that of either of us alone.
It’s as if we each radiate a magnetic field. When two of us stand side by side, our fields combine and become much stronger. As we add additional members to our little group, the power grows, as long as we are in union with one another and not dividing ourselves with bickering and quarreling.
The last few weeks I’ve experienced this in a real way. My basic gathering place for intermingling with and relating to other Christians is my Sunday School class. I’m a part of a very loving group that has been together for a long time, and every time I’m with these people, my spiritual batteries get charged, and the charging has a cumulative effect.
Not gathering has a cumulative weakening effect, too. I’ve missed my class two of the last three weeks because of commitments elsewhere, and I feel the effect of that weakening.
Writing my Tuesday blogs has become difficult during this period. Today, I sat here completely dry for over an hour with no ideas coming to write about. I began to wonder why that was, and that’s when the subject of gathering together came to mind.
Do you experience “dry spells” when you miss whatever group you gather with regularly? Do you begin to feel an estrangement from God Himself if you miss the fellowship for too long?
If you abide in Me and My word abides in you, then you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.
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