Rethinking Hebrews 10:25

  • 9 August 2021

I expect just about every churchgoer knows Hebrews 10:25 and has used it to guilt trip those who haven’t found a church that they feel comfortable attending, but I am going to argue that this verse was not written to stress the importance of warming a pew. Taken in context, the verse says the following:

And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.  ~Hebrews 10:24-25

Now prior to this, the author did talk about entering the Holiest so that may be why people associate this with attending church, but I think we do a disservice to view that as the primary focus.

I have seen plenty of people come into church at the last minute, find a seat, listen to the sermon, and leave right afterward. I guess they technically assembled, but they did not stir anyone up to love and good works, nor did they exhort anyone. On the other hand, I know people who are constantly ministering, showing hospitality, and otherwise getting together with God’s people. If they never stepped foot into a church building, they are fulfilling Hebrews 10:25.

I am in no way knocking church meetings or suggesting that they are not important. Those who have stopped going to church and have distanced from everyone they know are not thriving. We are not meant to be islands. Assembling is important. But be careful to not be harsh with those who spend their lives serving the Lord and are not at church every time the doors open.

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