By Leroy Coote.
1 Corinthians 14:26
Everything must be done so that the church may be built up.
This is a continuation of my article from last week on our gathering together online which we have done for over six months now. I finished the previous article by saying that I will talk about the purpose of all activities that happen in a church service, which is encompassed in the verse quoted at the opening of this article.
What does the term “built up” mean? My hope is that through all that happens in our online church services as well as our Bible study groups, each person is built up in their faith. But what does “built up” mean in relation to the church? Essentially it means that the church is strengthened. How is the church strengthened when we gather together given that church is the gathering of the people of God whether it be in person or online? It is strengthened when each individual member of the church has their faith strengthened to the point that each member lives a life that glorifies Jesus Christ outside the walls of the church. Each activity that happens as part of a church service is aimed at this purpose.
The preaching of the Word of God, reading of the Word of God, the praying of prayers, the words of administration over communion, the partaking in communion and the singing including the words are to be aimed at building up the faith of every church member that attends a church service whether it be online or in person. In 1 Corinthians 14, every time a spiritual gift is mentioned, it is followed by the phrase or words to this effect, “so that the church may be built up”. Based on this, my hope and prayer for anyone who attends a church service, whether it be online or in person, will be continually strengthened in their faith and that with the help of God’s Holy Spirit we all grow in our faith from the church services we partake in, since growth in one’s faith grows the faith of the church.
May God help you to grow in your faith as you partake in worshipping God with other Christians – as worshipping with other Christians is church regardless of location.