If you’re a church-goer or member, have you ever thought about why you attend? Do you go simply because you were raised going to church and it’s a tradition or habit? Do you go for what you hope or expect to get out of it? Do you believe church attendance is for the most part a good thing, but not necessarily required of a believer? What about joining as a member of a specific local church body?
The Scriptures teach that Jesus left heaven for one main purpose: to redeem a particular people, a group of specific individuals referred to in the New Testament as His bride or His church. The motivation for His doing so was love – a love that can be seen in the scriptures to be intentional, sacrificial, unconditional, and eternal, observes Pastor Earl Blackburn. And His love for the church continues as He “actively cherishes and adores, nourishes and feeds, protects and defends, purifies and makes holy, and faithfully prays and intercedes for His church.” There is, in fact, no love like that which Christ has for His bride.
In Pastor Blackburn’s valuable little book, Jesus Loves the Church and So Should You, he examines what the Bible (i.e. Christ and the apostles) teaches about the purpose of the church, the importance and value of church membership, and the believer’s role, benefits, and responsibilities as a church member. Blackburn’s ultimate goal for his book is to lead the reader towards a Biblical understanding, appreciation, and love for the church and to encourage them to faithful and effective churchmanship as individuals, and to cause us to love the church just as Jesus loves it.
24By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, 25choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward.
If Christ is not all to you He is nothing to you. He will never go into partnership as a part Saviour of men. If He be something He must be everything, and if He be not everything He is nothing to you.