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Two toddlers who attended a play group in a church were already sitting alone outside waiting when their mother came to fetch them. The little boy tells that they had walked from one class to another. As they passed the heavy outer door, he said to his little sister: ‘This is our chance now; if both of us push we’ll get it open’, and they did.

           Alan Smith writes: There is great value in having a “club” of people who will fight with you, work with you, and be there for you when you need assistance.  Solomon put it this way: “Two people can resist an attack that would defeat one person alone. A rope made of three cords is hard to break” (Eccles. 4:12). God obviously knew that we need that support as we seek to follow Him. Think about it – why did God establish the church?  We don’t need the church to worship God – we can worship God anywhere and at any time.  We don’t even need the church to serve God – I can serve God in a multitude of ways on my own. But what I do need the church for, is to provide support, encouragement and strength as I walk the Christian path.  I need a “club” to help me do battle against Satan.  I need people around me who will help me to see the ways whereby I’m not reflecting the image of Jesus Christ, and encourage me to move in the right direction  I need brothers and sisters in the Lord who will show me what love is and teach me to learn to love as well.  I need people who can rejoice with me when things are going great and cry with me when my world is shattered.  I need the church!

Tony Campolo writes: You may find yourself put off by the church because of its failure to be faithful to his (God’s) teachings. But I would urge you to consider this fully … It is she who taught you about Jesus. …Christ loves the church and gave himself for it: Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, (Eph. 5:25). … Christ’s church is called his bride: you are like a pure virgin whom I have promised in marriage to one man only, Christ himself. (2 Cor. 11:2). His love for her makes him faithful to her even when she is not faithful to him. Through the ages, God has used the church to keep alive and pass down the story of what Christ has done for us. It is the church’s witness that has kept the world aware that Christ is alive today, offering help and strength to those who trust in him. In short, it is the church that has preserved the Gospel and delivered it into our hands. … Most Evangelicals have the church to thank for the Sunday-school classes that taught us what the Bible says and paved the way for our eventual decisions to commit our lives to Christ.

           Howard Storm had a near-death experience. He was an atheist and realised that he was lost. Then he remembered something of the song: “Jesus loves me, yes I know”. He learned that in Sunday school. He called out ‘Jesus, please save me!’ And Jesus was there. He accepted Jesus as his Saviour and testifies to it, till today . (See my web page).

Often we need other believers to push open the ‘heavy doors’ to freedom in Christ. Therefore we must share in the fellowship of the believers: “For where two or three come together in my name, I am there with them” (Matt. 18:20).

 

Thank you, Lord, for surrounding me with a big “club” of people who are such a blessing to me. Amen  

 

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