“Get all you can,” John Wesley proclaimed as he preached a sermon. His comments were met with a hearty “Amen” from an older gentleman in the congregation.

Wesley continued, “Keep all you can.” Another “Amen” sounded loud and clear.

“Give all you can.” Silence fell over the congregation.

Then in hushed tones, the older man’s voice could be heard as he mumbled, “What a shame to spoil a good sermon.”

Many Christians stay away from church because they think pastors always ask for money. Others keep their distance because they have had bad experiences with church people. Whatever a believer’s excuse may be, the Bible nevertheless commands him to attend church. This does not contribute to his salvation, but it does play an important role in his spiritual growth.

The church serves three main functions, each of which enables its members to fulfill the Great Commission. These include (1) teaching, (2) worship, and (3) edification. As believers are taught the Word of God, they are equipped to testify of their faith. As they engage in worship, they are motivated to witness. Finally, as they are spiritually edified, they are emboldened to evangelize.

The Church exists for you, Christian, and you exist for the Church. If you do not do your part to reach the lost, then the Church will not experience growth. Likewise, if you do not attend church, you will not receive the encouragement and accountability you need to continue sharing your faith. You will miss out on the iron-sharpening-iron effects of fellowship with like-minded believers. Don’t make excuses — make plans to be in your church this Sunday.

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.