Preaching With Authority – Part 2
In part one of our two-part series of Preaching With Authority, we touched on verse 21 of Mark chapter 1. It was in that verse that we saw Jesus had a common practice of meeting in the synagogue on the Sabbath in reading. He made it a point to be there every week. It was a regular course of action for him that he had inculcated into his ministry and life. (Luke 4:16, John 18:20)
Paul also was an example of this in Acts 19:8. From these examples and from the Scriptures themselves, we see that gathering for worship is essential and commanded. The gathering of the saints is crucial for a healthy spiritual life in covenant community. This is why it is a command given to us not to fail to assemble together (Heb_10:25).
This is particularly relevant with the COVID-19 pandemic in full effect. Saying something like, “gathering is a command”, can be misconstrued as belonging to the fringe element. It automatically triggers a response in some people that it is being irresponsible to say something like that. But this is not about COVID-19 but about what the Scriptures say.
You have all kinds of craziness people — including Christians unfortunately — are putting out all over the internet, various kinds of nonsense conspiracy theories. Don’t drink the Kool-Aid. We must stay focused on God’s word and not crazy YouTube videos that don’t instill faith but fear. We must take the whole of Scripture and what it says about those things which we addressed last week.
Whether you connect with other believers online in a live session or whether you connect with them in person, there is still the mandate of connecting and gathering with believers regularly for worship. The preference, of course, is to be in person because there is something within that that you cannot get virtually. But the times in which we are living in right now are not normal and we must prayerfully and with patients make decisions for our congregation as elders in the church for the welfare of our people.
In whatever context that we gather, the church gathering should be ongoing and consistent. It should not be sporadic or when we feel like it. Again, it should preferably be in person with other believers. Many Christians today are lackadaisical in their attendance to the synagogue of the church. We have lost the sense of importance and community that is supposed to be interwoven into our lives in terms of the people of God.
Biblical teaching is a necessity for Christian worship. During the synagogue of the saints, there should be a designated and set apart time for preaching and teaching of the word of God. This should be the main part of our worship as the people of God. The meat-and-potatoes of worship is in His word being heard and understood. This should not only be within the teaching itself, but it should also be within the worship music as well. It is a time where we want to encounter God not just with emotions and feelings, though that may be a part of it and should be, but especially with a worship of the mind (Mat_22:37, Rom_12:2).
This morning, we’re going to look at the people’s response to the Lord’s preaching and what it requires to mirror that kind of preaching in the church today.
Join our livestream at pastor David’s Facebook page here…
at 11:50 a.m. where we teach independence in dependence on Christ.