How important is attendance to services of the church? This has long been a debated subject among church going people. Some seem to regard yearly attendance as satisfactory while others find comfort in a twice per year appearance at so called important religious holidays. Still there are others who will strive never miss a service. What does the Bible have to say concerning attendance?

The Hebrew writer encouraged Christians “not to forsake the assembling of themselves together” (Hebrews 10:25). The disciples came together on the first day of the week to break bread and to hear Paul preach the gospel (Acts 20:7). Paul gave orders to the churches of Galatia as well as Corinth to lay by in store on the first day of the week (1 Corinthians 16:1-2). Based on these passages it is clear that the first century Christians assembled regularly for worship and to encourage one another (Hebrews 20:24).

Regular attendance is indicative of our commitment to many things in life and the same should be the case for the Lord’s church. Regular attendance on our jobs is almost always required if we are to remain employed. I know of no workplace that allows its employees to miss work without reason. Most organizations have a policy leading to termination for a “no call no show” which is seen as a willful decision to abandon the job.

On a sports team regular attendance to practice sessions and participation in games makes one a vital part of the team. It would be difficult to get to know team mates, learn more about the game and improve if you were never in attendance. If you were to join a gym a complete the necessary steps for membership you would never find yourself becoming more fit without regular and consistent attendance to workout sessions.

Jesus in John 6:48 declares “I am the bread of life” and when saints assemble themselves together they are partaking of, feasting on, the bread of life, the word of God (Matthew 4:4), teaching one another with hymns and spiritual songs (Colossians 3:16), remembering the Lords death (1 Corinthians 11:26). With this spiritual nourishment Christians grow and mature. Missing out on physical nourishment will cause one to be weak just as missing out on the spiritual blessings gleaned when saints assemble together will result in Christians that wither and fall from the vine.

By Joe Engelbird

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