"What's the Point of Church"

My Baptist brother’s church posted an ad about their new sermon series which is titled “What’s the Point of Church”. In the ad it describes:

“If Christianity is all about your personal relationship with God, do you really have to come to church? Why can’t you just stay home, read your bible, and worship with Christian music on the radio? Well if you come to church this Sunday you can find out.”

What are your thoughts on this?
How can we explain what’s wrong with this dilemma of theirs?
And how can we explain what the point of Church is?

1 Timothy 3:15

It would be interesting to hear what their rationale for why you need Church is from their Sunday sermon. Is this a church where they’d post the sermon online? I know many Baptist and Baptist-like Non-Denoms seem to have an online presence these days where they post sermons to be viewed after the fact.

I have no idea why they feel they do or don’t need Church, nor do I particularly care. That’s their deal, not mine.

As a Catholic however, I believe that the Church is God’s instrument of salvation and Christ’s voice on earth. If it were not for the Church I would not know the Gospel nor have the grace of the sacraments.

-Tim-

It seems like a good idea to get people talking about their new sermon series about why go to church. I don’t think there is anything wrong with it; I’ve heard some very good protestant sermons. The point of the Catholic Church is different from that of a Baptist church. I think they just want to get people in the pews; that’s not much different from what Catholic churches are also trying to do.

I think their message is to get people to come to Church period.

Ask them in a group of their congregants incuding their pastor - “is it a sin not to go to church on Sunday?” When they have sorted this out your answer will emerge.:slight_smile:

Peace!!!

The point of going to church, for me, is to worship God. Sure, I can pray at home, etc. However, in church that is where the faithful go to Mass and praise the Lord. The sacrifice is made and it is beautiful. Further, in the Catholic Church, it is a mortal sin not to go to Mass on Sunday.

Also, one can and should surround themselves with others who believe like them. Helps them to grow in their journey.

Without church, there is no structure. So, one can just go willy-nilly and do whatever they want. When going to church, you need to look into your heart and see if you have any mortal sins. If so, one goes to Confession or does not receive Communion until going to Confession and being in a state of grace. That is the Catholic way, and I do not know what the Baptists believe.

I think going to church helps keep people accountable and there is a great sense of community in church.

On two different levels for me as a life-long Lutheran:

Church is (typically) the only place where I receive Absolution. It is the place where I receive the Eucharist. IOW, forgiveness of sins through the sacraments, starting with Baptism, is available at church, where we also hear the word. Word and Sacrament.

It is at church where I find comfort and strength from the communion of saints, both earthly and Heavenly. Support, intercession, fellowship.

I can’t get any of these sitting home by myself. Christ’s intention was not a solitary faith, but a communion of faith.

Jon

I have heard this dilemma in an interview of a former baptist as well as on other forums.

This is where the tangled web starts to fall apart. It can lead in many directions.

Some Protestants think church is only about fellowship.

This is where they should start to understand when/where their theology came from and how it evolved.

It’s a broad-based dilemma with different definitions.

If it were me, I’d point to John 20, Matthew 16 & 28, 1 Tim 3, or any passage that discusses the church.

Then, point to the history of John Smyth and Martin Luther versus Ignatius of Antioch, Linus, Clement, and others who succeeded the apostles.

My thinking was also along the same lines. I got to mass every week because it’s the only place where I can not only confess my sins, but receive absolution for them. It’s the only place I can actually enter into Christ’s real presence and have Christ enter into me in a literal way. It’s the only place I can not only personally receive the sacraments but as part of the community of Christ welcome and witness others doing the same. It’s the place where I come together with other Christians to worship our lord as a community as Christ taught us in Matthew 18.

And on a very base level, I always have felt church is a more reverential and holy place, being that it’s the house of God, when compared to my own home. The least I can do for the Lord who gave his life for our salvation, is go to him in his house.

Maybe there’s no dilemma and they (the leadership at that church) know the importance of communal worship.

Could you be misinterpreting their message? I read it as yes, there is a very good reason to go to church! COME TO CHURCH and find out why!

Advertising can be a really tricky thing, especially when you need to reach such a wide audience.

Was the OP misintrepreting the Baptist church’s message? I thought it was pretty evident that what you say was their intention. To come to church on Sunday and find out why you should be doing so.

Clearly there’s a difference between a Protestant and Catholic understanding of church.

A majority of the former have a church often without the magisterium or sacraments. There’s no need for a priest and no set liturgy. The goal might be fellowship or worship.

My understanding is that the bible verse referenced in this thread is often used to justify a church without these components. It often includes the concept of the “invisible church” among the denominations. However, as people further ponder the concept, it sometimes backfires as described above.

This is the irony of it

Scripture describes the Church as a body with the various members having different functions or charisms to serve the whole. A person going it alone is like a finger trying to go it alone–all the parts work best when working together with all the other parts.

Since God does not give the same functions and charisms to each person, to properly worship and serve God in the harmony of one body, Christianity by necessity has a social dimension–and that society, that body, is the Church.

The Catholic Church best embodies this principle which is why, despite the weakness of its members, it has over the centuries been the most successful at spreading the true worship and service of God.

True

The former while they want to be called “church” aren’t “church”. God Himself in the flesh established His Church on Pentecost. That is the One true Church. No other. It is still here today, 2000 years later, with pope Francis 266th successor to St Peter at the helm.

Protestants, no matter the stripe, can do the following when they meet, because they have no valid priesthood.

This is speaking of the true Church Jesus established Himself

Heb 10:
23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful; 24 and let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. 26 For if we sin deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27* but a fearful prospect of judgment, and a fury of fire which will consume the adversaries. 28* A man who has violated the law of Moses dies without mercy at the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29* How much worse punishment do you think will be deserved by the man who has spurned the Son of God, and profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and outraged the Spirit of grace?

one will notice

By deliberately failing to meet on Sunday (the Day) as is the habit of some

[LIST]
*]it is already considered a mortal sin for that person because
*]there is no sacrifice for sins for THEM as a result of deliberately failing to meet on Sunday.
*]They profane the blood of the covenant for failing to meet
*]They spurn the son of God and outrages the spirit of grace for not meeting
*]as a result, punishment for that person and a fearful prospect of judgement and a fury of fire awaits because that person is considered an adversary of God for deliberately not meeting for the Eucharist (not my words but from scripture)
[/LIST]
And WHY is all THAT describing the Eucharist (mass)?

[LIST]
*]what is the sacrifice for sin and blood of the covenant talking about when they meet? It’s the Eucharist. The summit of our faith. Matthew 26:26-28. Jesus said it’s the Eucharist, the consecrated bread is His body, and the consecrated wine is my blood of the covenant, 1 Corinthians 11:25 ] which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. Jesus the son of God said those words instituting the Eucharist. Jesus further describes the importance of the Eucharist for the soul. Jn 6:53 unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. Life of the soul is **grace. **THAT’s the Eucharist.
[/LIST]
Therefore, the one who deliberately blows off (mass) the Eucharist on Sunday, after being given this knowledge of truth,
·
THEN

[LIST]
*]
[LIST]
*]no sacrifice for sin is left for THEM
*]they profane the blood of the covenant
*]they spurn the son of God & outrage the spirit of grace
[/LIST]

*]and judgment awaits them
[/LIST]
That’s how important the Eucharist is, ergo the mass, and it is to be celebrated when we meet . It describes also in [FONT=&quot]descriptive detail, why it’s a mortal sin to deliberately miss on “the Day”. It also shows why it is a day of obligation to go to mass[/FONT]

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