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What’s A Church For?

by Ron Bartanen

What do people look for when searching for a church? What should a person look for when searching for a church? Those looking for a church should, first of all, ask, “What is a church for, according to the Scriptures?” Does the Bible speak of the church as a place of entertainment? Or is it a place for the performance of certain traditional rituals? Or is it a place for “Bingo Night” or bake sales? Or could it be for simply socializing with a bunch of friendly people? Or maybe the keeping of a family tradition? Motives for choosing a church are many and varied.

While many sincere, good-hearted people may be moved by the above, or similar, motives, in making a choice, they fall short of what the Bible teaches as to the purpose for the church. Isn’t it time for discarding the frivolous in religion, and seek the basics as set forth in God’s word, the Bible?

The “Great Commission,” given by the Lord to His disciples, establishes in a few words what He intended to be the church’s purpose for being. It was not complex, though often ignored. He instructed before His ascension into Heaven, saying, “Go teach all nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things, whatsoever I have commanded you” (Matthews 28:20).

So, what’s a church for? It is to fulfill the commissioning of the spiritual body of Christ to present to the world the gospel (good news) of Christ, baptize believers, and to nurture them in the word of God. The apostle Paul indicated as much to the elders of the church at Ephesus: “”I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you the inheritance among all them which are sanctified” (Acts 20:32). He also made clear to the church at Philippi their basic purpose, saying, “That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world: holding forth the word of life” (Phil. 2:15-16a). That’s exactly what a church is for.


       Ron Bartanen is the  preacher for the  Arthur (IL) Church of Christ

One Response to “What’s A Church For?”

  1. david wilcox says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with Bro.Ron and his family durning this difficult time. God’s speed Ron. 👏

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