Stop Going To Church // Week 4 Teaching Notes
Moving Beyond the Sunday
Can I be a Christian without going to church?
When we say “stop going to church,” we mean that there is way more to the big picture than simply showing up and filling a seat one hour each week. You were made for more than simply checking the “church attendance” box. So, what does this big picture actually look like?
Let’s take another look at the first example of the Church. What did this historical Church look like? We started looking at Acts 2:42-47 in the last post. Let’s read it again to look closer. This passage says:
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
We looked at the early Church’s devotion to “learning” last time, but we want to look a little more at their devotion to one another, or, to use the “churchy” word: fellowship. The were devoted to fellowship.
What did this look like? They did life together…all of it. They didn’t experience Jesus-centered transformation, and then go live under a rock, secluded all by themselves. They deeply ingrained themselves into the community of the Church around them. So, what can we learn from this example?
Examining their example a little closer, we see two primary things from this first expression of the Church.
- They serve others by leveraging their power and possessions.
- They don’t compartmentalize their expression to a singular weekly gathering.
This Church used every aspect of their lives to develop Christ-centered community devoted to seeing others thrive. It was a pervasive lifestyle, rather than just a weekly “thing to do.” So, what do we do with this?
The easiest first step is to follow the early Church’s example. We need become OTHERS-centered. Answer these questions to get an idea of what this could look like for you individually:
- What does “power” look like for you? How can you be intentional about using your influence, authority, social status, etc. to help others around you thrive?
- How can you use your “possessions,” whether wealth or uniquely important resources, to help others around you thrive?
Followers of Jesus are marked by the level to which they are “others-focused.” We see this from the very first expression of Jesus’ Church, and we should be living this today, too. Don’t do life alone. Stop “going” to church, and start “doing” life in the context of true, life-giving community.
Help build a place where others radically belong in Christ-centered community, where they and you can each thrive side-by-side.
Now, we want to hear from you. Tweet us, message us, email us…whatever it takes: How can YOU take practical steps toward being more “others-focused” beginning today?