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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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Bobby Cole

Another Sin...........Perhaps?

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I belong to a couple of Bible oriented discussion groups, this being one, and have some interest in a couple of secular groups as well. There are a few that I just go and look at them to see what they are up to.....yeah, nosy I guess.

What I have noticed in the more secular groups is that there is more interest lately in the hot topics, particularly in the "religion" boards.

 

One question keeps cropping up which at first made me laugh a little but now I think it might be a good thread to start here just to see what the feedback might be.

Mind ya'll, I absolutely do have an answer for the question written below, but again, it's just one of those questions that sort of bothers me in that it bothers so many others.

 

The question: Is it a sin if a Christian does not go to church? Easy huh? I'll give my own answer at a later time.

 

Have fun and may the Lord our God Bless You Mightily!!!! Bobby

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The question: Is it a sin if a Christian does not go to church? Easy huh? I'll give my own answer at a later time.

 

How are we to know that anybody is a Christian if they do not love one another John 13:35? Bobby Cole, I love you, but I do not want to fellowship with you, commune with you, or talk to you.

 

Betcha, ya are wondering what kind of love is this?

 

God bless,

William

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Only on Christmas and Easter ... ask any of the 'submarine Christians' who only surface for those two 'Holy Days of Obligation'. ;)

 

Seriously, missing a day at Church is not a sin.

Never attending any Church as a regular habit indicates one is not part of the body of Christ (which is technically, not a sin in and of itself, but rather a symptom of something far worse).

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The question: Is it a sin if a Christian does not go to church?

It would depend on why he doesn't go to church. Some Christians live in places where there simply aren't any Bible believing churches for them to attend. Here in the United States we take it for granted that any believer who wants to attend church can find a church to attend. There are parts of the world where this isn't true.

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How are we to know that anybody is a Christian if they do not love one another John 13:35? Bobby Cole, I love you, but I do not want to fellowship with you, commune with you, or talk to you.

 

Betcha, ya are wondering what kind of love is this?

 

God bless,

William

Point well taken. At a stretch, it's similar to saying, "Lord, do please close your eyes and guard your ears because I am going into the bar to find some "company" for the night. Love you and I'll talk to you tomorrow."

 

 

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It would depend on why he doesn't go to church. Some Christians live in places where there simply aren't any Bible believing churches for them to attend. Here in the United States we take it for granted that any believer who wants to attend church can find a church to attend. There are parts of the world where this isn't true.

Good point! There are numerous times when we forget that God is the ultimate judge and certainly knows the heart of His children.

 

 

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Trey Gowdy gave a pin drop speech at Liberty University. Made me think.... too many feel justified when rejecting others. Take a peek at this short video and consider what Gowdy suggests for a moment: https://www.christforums.org/forum/lounge/20191-trey-gowdy-pin-drop-speech

 

God bless,

William

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Firstly, as to the "pin drop" speech; when I hear or read something I like I generally walk away with a totally different take on things and this time I have been hit with at least a half dozen messages I plan on giving in the future. I'll get back to you guys at a later date on some of my findings.

 

Now, to the topic. It's been about 3 days since the thread was posted so it's time I gave my own rendition of the subject at hand.

 

Earlier in the year I posted a relationship between Rom. 8:28 and a recipe for "biscuits" and so it is this time with the topic.

There are two major ways of baking a pan of biscuits:

1. Place the cut out's in the pan and leave about a half inch between the raw biscuits.

2. Place the cut out's in the pan and bunch them together.

Note first, there is no real wrong with either technique and both are used commercially and in homes world wide but let's focus on the end product.

 

If we examine the finished biscuits that were given a little space on the pan, we find them an almost similar leavening both vertically and horizontally. The finished products are now touching each other and when you pick one up, no matter which way you look there is a crust. When one opens a biscuit we find a nice product and fairly compact.

Now, the dough that was bunched together has no horizontal movement but an extreme vertical rise as compared to the spaced ones. When we pull one out, with the exception of those directly touching the sides of the pan, there is no crust on the sides and when we open it up the finished biscuit is fluffier than it's counterpart and will absorb much more butter than the other.

 

The same it is for Christians. Those going to church and those who do not are still Christians just like both kinds of biscuits are still biscuits.

But here's the difference: One Christian does not rise as much and tends to have a little crust or hardness around the edges of his faith and the center is more compact which will not allow much room for the "butter" or Holy Spirit to do His work.

The other rises more, is softer around the edges, and absorbs everything the Holy Spirit has to give making this Christian a much more desirable and learned individual. Hmmmm......I wonder which is which? No brainer.

 

Isn't cooking fun? God Bless.........Bobby

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Darn, now I am hungry for biscuits. :)

 

Ah yes, another opportunity for a good conversation with the Lord. Thanks for my hunger, thanks for feeding my hunger, and thanks for giving me peace and warmth after my hunger is fed. Yeah, and then there's the biscuit thing too. Thanks for the material food I am about to receive..........

 

God Bless............Bobby

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@Bobby Cole

I just wanted to let you know that I shared your post on the two ways to bake biscuits with a group of people on Thursday. They loved it. One had me send them a link to this site so they could read it again for themselves (I was very clear that it was your thoughts I was reading out loud).

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@Bobby Cole

I just wanted to let you know that I shared your post on the two ways to bake biscuits with a group of people on Thursday. They loved it. One had me send them a link to this site so they could read it again for themselves (I was very clear that it was your thoughts I was reading out loud).

My dear brother in Christ, there was really no need to make the analogy my thoughts. When it came to me I was actually making about 200 biscuits for a banquet and at the time I was fighting with myself for a message regarding congregational attendance. Always looking to God for guidance, it came to me and I have been relaying that message for about 30 years now. So, I guess you could say that they might just be God's thoughts and I was the one He told so I could pass it on to everyone else. They are now......your thoughts as well.

 

God Bless.........Bobby

 

 

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Oh well thank you to @atpollard for introducing me to a new term. Our pastor always calls them the CEO's of church....Christmas, Easter and other special occasions. I was pretty satisfied with that one, but I have to say that I like the submarine Christians. Both work to describe those people though, and we all know them...the ones that you see twice a year. As for the question that you asked, I would have to say that it would not be a sin as long as you are worshiping in some other fashion maybe. I happen to love church though, so I never miss it.

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Only on Christmas and Easter ... ask any of the 'submarine Christians' who only surface for those two 'Holy Days of Obligation'. ;)

 

Seriously, missing a day at Church is not a sin.

Never attending any Church as a regular habit indicates one is not part of the body of Christ (which is technically, not a sin in and of itself, but rather a symptom of something far worse).

As the couple told the pastor as they were leaving the church, "everytime we come here the Poinsettias and the Lillies are so pretty"!

I have been known to call them the "flower children".

 

Going to church to celebrate the birth and the resurrection of Jesus Christ is certainly a great thing. But, I do believe that Jesus had a few things to say in between those dates that we really need to hear.

 

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How are we to know that anybody is a Christian if they do not love one another John 13:35? Bobby Cole, I love you, but I do not want to fellowship with you, commune with you, or talk to you.

 

Betcha, ya are wondering what kind of love is this?

 

God bless,

William

 

I don't remember reading anywhere that you have to go to church. Sometimes, I feel closer to God when I'm alone praying in front of my bible. One of my family friends, listen to a pastor on the radio for hours instead of going to church. I think if you spend your time studying the bible or God, then it's okay to miss church. But if you're skipping church to watch a game ore go golfing then that's a problem. Though that has more to do the mindset and where you are spiritually than being physically in a church.

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I don't remember reading anywhere that you have to go to church. Sometimes, I feel closer to God when I'm alone praying in front of my bible. One of my family friends, listen to a pastor on the radio for hours instead of going to church. I think if you spend your time studying the bible or God, then it's okay to miss church. But if you're skipping church to watch a game ore go golfing then that's a problem. Though that has more to do the mindset and where you are spiritually than being physically in a church.

"Iron sharpeneth Iron, so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend". Proverbs 27:17.

In the congregational setting (church) there is so much more than just going to get an "I love you Jesus aspirin" and then go about your business.

 

I too like my "time off" but there is a time when we must realize that God wishes us to fellowship, work together, study together, grow together leaving none behind and help each other in any way possible and a good church setting is such that it does act as a community service of sorts.

 

Jesus Himself had a little down time but it would seem that most of His time was sacrificed helping and ministering to others to the tune of His eventual and greatest sacrifice: His own crucifixion.

If we give to God our time at home it is a great, great thing but to give to the children of God is a far greater task with greater rewards and blessings.

 

Iron cannot be sharpened by waving it in the air, it must be struck with the likeness of itself in order to be keen.

 

God Bless...........Bobby

 

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Apparently it's the same question the Samaritan woman wanted answered.

“a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. But a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for the Father is seeking such as these to worship Him. God is Spirit, and His worshipers must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”
Failing to church isn't a sin but you'll be missing out on much because the purpose of going to church encouraging one another and building each other up.. All Christians need that.
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I don't remember reading anywhere that you have to go to church. Sometimes, I feel closer to God when I'm alone praying in front of my bible. One of my family friends, listen to a pastor on the radio for hours instead of going to church. I think if you spend your time studying the bible or God, then it's okay to miss church. But if you're skipping church to watch a game ore go golfing then that's a problem. Though that has more to do the mindset and where you are spiritually than being physically in a church.

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

(Hebrews 10:24-25 ESV)

 

Believers are part of one body and each of us is given spiritual gifts he is to use for building up the other members of the body. You can learn without going to church but you can't put into practice what you learn or help other members of the body without physical contact with them. You should spend time studying the Bible but it shouldn't come at the expense of your fellowship with other believers.

 

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"Iron sharpeneth Iron, so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend". Proverbs 27:17.

In the congregational setting (church) there is so much more than just going to get an "I love you Jesus aspirin" and then go about your business.

 

I too like my "time off" but there is a time when we must realize that God wishes us to fellowship, work together, study together, grow together leaving none behind and help each other in any way possible and a good church setting is such that it does act as a community service of sorts.

 

Jesus Himself had a little down time but it would seem that most of His time was sacrificed helping and ministering to others to the tune of His eventual and greatest sacrifice: His own crucifixion.

If we give to God our time at home it is a great, great thing but to give to the children of God is a far greater task with greater rewards and blessings.

 

Iron cannot be sharpened by waving it in the air, it must be struck with the likeness of itself in order to be keen.

 

God Bless...........Bobby

 

Still doesn't technically say that you have to go to church but meet up with other Christians. Technically, taking on a forum like this would satisfy that or having coffee with other believers. Church can be an important aspect of being a Christian if you can find a good church that provides great sermons but sometimes, it's better to go out and find exact answers and people who wish to discuss what you wish to know.

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Hmmmm........kinda brings a whole new meaning to Matthew 18:20. Where two or three are gathered together in My name, there I will be in the midst of them.". The Internet has seemed to replace sooooo many things.

 

Many many people do not believe God exists because they cannot see Him. They see the effects of His presence, but still do not believe.

I like to make sure people absolutely know that I am a real person without having to solve a capcha and touch someone with flesh and bone with a good handshake or a hug. Means a lot more to me but for you........okay...not so much I guess. Nope, not a sin but being alone is soooooo.........uh..........lonely........

 

God Bless.........Bobby

 

 

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Church can be an important aspect of being a Christian if you can find a good church that provides great sermons but sometimes, it's better to go out and find exact answers and people who wish to discuss what you wish to know.

Going to a bad church is usually better than not going to church at all. Going to church isn't just about having your needs met but is also gives you the opportunity to meet the needs of others. If you go to a bad church and get involved in it you might have the opportunity to influence it so that it is more like a church should be.

 

We should also follow the example of Jesus.

And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And
as was his custom
, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read.

(Luke 4:16 ESV)

He attended the synagogue regularly even though many of the synagogues were probably as bad as many churches are today.

 

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Going to a bad church is usually better than not going to church at all. Going to church isn't just about having your needs met but is also gives you the opportunity to meet the needs of others. If you go to a bad church and get involved in it you might have the opportunity to influence it so that it is more like a church should be.

 

We should also follow the example of Jesus.

And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And
as was his custom
, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read.

(Luke 4:16 ESV)

He attended the synagogue regularly even though many of the synagogues were probably as bad as many churches are today.

 

I have to whole heartedly disagree with going to a bad church. Going to a church ran by a heretic is as bad and maybe worse than being an atheist. In Matthew 7:13-23,

Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. 14 “For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it.
15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 “You will know them by their fruits.
Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes, nor figs from thistles, are they? 17 “Even so, every good tree bears good fruit; but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 “A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 “So then, you will know them by their fruits. 21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. 22 “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’”

 

Or in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15,For such men are false apostles, deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. Therefore it is not surprising if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their deeds.

 

2 Timothy 4:3-4, which states that For there will be a time when people will not tolerate sound teaching. Instead, following their own desires, they will accumulate teachers for themselves, because they have an insatiable curiosity to hear new things. 4 And they will turn away from hearing the truth, but on the other hand they will turn aside to myths.

 

As Christians we must be discerning of False Prophet according to 1 John 4, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world. 2 This is how we know if they have the Spirit of God: If a person claiming to be a prophet[
] acknowledges that Jesus Christ came in a real body, that person has the Spirit of God. 3 But if someone claims to be a prophet and does not acknowledge the truth about Jesus, that person is not from God. Such a person has the spirit of the Antichrist, which you heard is coming into the world and indeed is already here.

 

4 But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world. 5 Those people belong to this world, so they speak from the world’s viewpoint, and the world listens to them. 6 But we belong to God, and those who know God listen to us. If they do not belong to God, they do not listen to us. That is how we know if someone has the Spirit of truth or the spirit of deception.

 

So, it's wrong to go to a bad church if you know that the doctrine is not godly and the focus is wrong. Even if the people at the church consider themselves Christian, if they are more concerned with hearing what is convenient and alines with their personal lifestyle instead of conforming to God, they are false followers as well. As a Christian, part of our test is to discern the truth and to be wary of heretics and blasphemers. Jesus, is God, and he went to a synagogue that was being taught according to the word of God. Not a church that talks more about needing money to buy fancy lights or plays on your emotions instead of on the word of God.

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Going to a church ran by a heretic is as bad and maybe worse than being an atheist. In Matthew 7:13-23,

I agree that you shouldn't attend a church that teaches false doctrines but many people refuse to attend even a church that is Biblical in its teaching because they disagree with the church on some issue that isn't essential doctrine. You will never find a perfect church; many of the letters Paul wrote to churches was to correct some error in what they were doing, but he never suggested that members of the church should stop going to it or supporting it.

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Going to a bad church is usually better than not going to church at all.

I'm not sure that I'd agree to that extent. There are many "Christian" churches that seem to exist for the purpose of serving something other than the God that I believe in, and I fear that a Christian's spiritual welfare could be threatened in some of these churches, at least unless they had a very strong foundation before going in. The harm in some of these churches, and I'm thinking particularly of the "accepting and affirming" churches here, is that they accept sin and affirm sinfulness as being okay with God, resulting in people who may have the desire to serve God, but a faulty idea of what that means. Many of us are probably wrong about some things in our life but when we're being taught the wrong from behind the pulpit, we might consider it to be right.

 

That said, I don't believe that it's necessary or even desirable for a Christian to refuse to attend church unless everything about that church matches up to their own understandings. As an example, I am a Mennonite who hasn't lived near enough to a Mennonite church to be able to attend regularly in many years, yet I see only a benefit of fellowshipping with Christians who are not Mennonites, as compared to not being able to fellowship with Christians in my neighborhood at all. I attended a Church of Christ, non-instrumental church for many years. On many issues, including all of the salvational issues, I have no quarrel with the Church of Christ, non-instrumental, except that I see no harm in using instrumental music during the worship service. Although the prohibition of instrumental music in the worship service is a defining point for that non-denomination, and I disagree with that, I also see no harm in a cappella singing, so I can easily set that issue aside. I have attended a Southern Baptist church and was even a deacon in an American Baptist church, both of which match up pretty well with my understanding of the Scriptures, so long as I don't make an issue of the assurance of salvation. The Book of James can be a touchy subject, as I learned when I chose James as the subject of a Wednesday night Bible study. Yet, I can see no harm in fellowshipping with my brother and sister Christians in the Baptist churches.

 

I am currently attending a small non-denominational church whose theology seems to be Adventist in nature, although the pastor comes from a Baptist background and denies being Adventist. While I don't believe everything that I hear from behind the pulpit, I don't feel as if I am being encouraged to sin, and I have been enjoying the discussions during fellowship times.

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I'm glad you came in @Ken Anderson! I wouldn't mind putting a couple of "likes" on your post but William only gives up one to a customer. It seems rather stingy at times. To me, you pretty much hit the nail on the head, but I think what @theophilus was referring to was a church similar to one my wife and I left about 6 years ago.

It wasn't that the pastor wasn't preaching Christ crucified or any great doctrinal differences it's just the manner in which his services seemed to go that bothered me. I think on the best Sunday that I saw, there were about 50 in the pews and half of them were bussed in from one of the local mentally handicapped facilities. The pastor always recorded his messages and played them on the net so he spoke fairly slow but in a language that would be hard for a 3rd year seminary student to decipher much less teach those from the mental home. In other words, he spoke to computer land and not to his congregation. His associate pastor was also head of the praise and worship time and often spoke "in tongues" when in actuality it was the same rehearsed sentence over and over. Why we started going there is a very long story that doesn't really pertain to the topic so I'll leave it there for now.

 

Again, doctrinally it was a safe church and the fellowship was great, but was one of the worse churches I have ever attended.

I do declare a nondenominational stance even though my ordination was under the S. Baptist convention and two of my three post grad degrees were accomplished via a Baptist Seminary.

Because of the type of ministry I fell in love with, (home missions) it isn't a really smart thing to declare a denomination for fear of alienating anyone who might just need to hear "Jesus Saves". I have found that Jesus Christ crucified and resurrected is the biggest and best package anyone could teach or preach but the bottom line is that when someone does venture out and go to a "foreign" church he or she must know true Christian doctrine in order to be safe from wayward teaching.

 

If the lace on the table is messed up a little I do not really care but if the food on the table is tampered with, I leave the table entirely.

 

God Bless..........Bobby

 

 

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