Picture this. A group of believers, whose weekends are busy with church activities, Young People, Young Adults, Sunday School, , etc.
Come Sunday morning, 80 people shuffle into the hall, settle down and for the next 1 hour, stand up to sing hymns, pray, read something from the bible. Done.
Next up is ministry of the Word. The preacher goes up to the pulpit and belts out an hour of bible knowledge full of Greek translations, illustrations and practical applications.
Wednesday comes, and prayer meeting and bible study commences. Like clockwork, the assembly goes about its business.
One day, a visitor walks in. He says, “Hi, my name is Jesus. What are you all doing in this place?”. They reply, “Why Lord, funny you should ask, but we are busy serving you!”.
And He responds with another question, “To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me?”
How would the assembly feel?
If that assembly sounded like ours, how would WE feel?
That question is what the Lord asked Israel (Isa 1:11) in day when they kept an ‘outward form’ of sacrifice and worship, but their heart was far from God. Did their sacrifices matter to God? No it didn’t.
It was a question that brought them back to reality, and it would do us good if we examined ourselves as to whether we have an appropriate answer if the Lord asks us the same question.
It is wonderful to be in service. To be involved in ministry. To preach the Word. To visit others. To have fellowship.
We need to remember that these are to be the outflow of our close walk and love for God, not a means to get closer to the Lord.
Do you think our/your assembly has become ‘mechanical’? Do you think we are just ‘keeping the meetings going’?
It isn’t the elder’s fault. It isn’t the system. It’s us. The heart of the believers that are far from God.
What we need then, is to rediscover our first love, the Lord Jesus. Enjoy Him, read His Words, obey His commandments in our daily lives, and we can be the change we want to see in the church.