Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church (GATHERING) of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” (Acts 20:28)
Dear Family and Friends,
I must admit I was astounded, and pleased, when I read the headline of recent news article that touted the importance of gatherings (among other measures) for the publics overall health. According to the LA Times article, 1300 public health and infectious disease experts in California have signed onto a petition saying that fighting social ills, like racism (which bible churches are, hands down, the best at - TP), helps fight the coronavirus.
Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, an infectious disease specialist at UC San Francisco stated that, “…health issues in life expectancy, maternal and infant mortality, chronic mental conditions” and other illnesses cannot be explained by biological factors alone, such as a virus. Therefore, as a result of the toxic effects of stress, “…governments SHOULD AVOID DISBANDING GATHERINGS due to coronavirus risks” (Patch, LA Times, June 10, 2020). Simply put, people need to be able to congregate in groups and express themselves to relieve stress and combat a wide list of health issues.
This is exactly why we say CHURCH IS ESSENTIAL! The great Apostle Paul reminded believers that God declared gatherings (church) so vital, He purchased it with His own blood, “… feed the church (gatherings) of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” (Acts 20:28)
Why is church worth it despite the virus risks? Allow me to give you two reasons why. First, consider the church’s effect on a culture. Remove bible-believing churches from our communities, from any society – and you’ll have moral decay. Jesus taught us in His famous Sermon on the Mount that God’s people are the salt and light of any society. God uses His gathered church to illuminate the way to life everlasting through Christ Jesus.
The church is also essential because of its positive impact on the gatherers and ultimately others. In-person services invigorate the physical, mental and spiritual life of Christ followers, which in turn benefits all of society.
I say again, if Christ purchased the church with His blood you can be sure it is essential because it’s God’s institution, and that it is worth it despite virus risks.
Dr. Tim Pollock, Senior Pastor