Have you ever heard someone make the statement…

“I just didn’t get anything out of the lesson today.”


“That church just doesn’t meet my needs?”

Indeed, there are times when preachers and teachers have not been prepared and they failed to teach God’s truth.

Certainly, some congregations are not teaching sound doctrine and are not seeking to follow the example we find of the first-century church in the New Testament.

But, for many in the religious world, choosing “a church” has become more like choosing food items from a buffet table. If you don’t like what there is, you move on to the next option. If we don’t get what we want out of a congregation, or they don’t offer the “programs” we seek, we move on to another “church.” Is that really, how the Lord intended for us to see His church?

There is no doubt, that we should get something from the teaching of God’s Word and be edified at the assembly of fellow Christians to worship our God, but should our focus be on what the church has to offer us, or should our focus be on how we can offer ourselves for the building up of the Lord’s church? Consider with me these words from the apostle Paul wrote to the saints in Rome:

“For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us”….Romans 5:6-8

In this passage, Paul reminds the Roman Christians that when we couldn’t do anything about our sins and were still helpless, at just the right time Christ died for the ungodly.

Paul acknowledges that perhaps someone would dare to die for a good man, but the fact is, Christ died for us while we were yet sinners. He didn’t wait to die for us until we became good enough or we reached the point where we deserved Him to die for us.

If God were going to wait on that, Christ would have never died for us, because we could never get to the point where we deserve that kind of sacrifice. But thankfully, Christ dying for us wasn’t determined by us deserving it, it was determined by God’s love for us and His love for all the world (John 3:16).

Paul makes it clear in Romans 5:8, that the reason Christ died for us while we were still sinners, is because of God’s love! That love and grace of God demonstrated through Christ’s death on the cross should cause us to look at our sins differently. 

We should see our sin like those Jews on the Day of Pentecost saw their sin, in Acts 2:37. When they came to know the truth about Jesus’ death and the part their sin played in His death, they were pierced to the heart and they wanted to know, “what shall we do?” God’s love which caused Him to send Jesus to die for our sins, should convict us and cause us great regret for our sins! It should cause us to repent and turn away from our sins and be immersed in Christ so that our sins can be forgiven, just as Peter instructed in Acts 2:38.

But, not only does our Lord forgive our sins, but He also adds us to His church. Back in Acts 2, as those Jews who believed and received the truth of Jesus were being baptized (Acts 2:41), the Lord was adding them to His church.

“…And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved”…Acts 2:47b

In the same way today, disciples of Jesus Christ are added to His church when they respond in humble obedience to His gospel truth.

  • They don’t pick a church based on its programs or what it can offer them.
  • They choose to follow Jesus because they are thankful for the amazing love of God.
  • They truly believe the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ was not only for the world but for their sins. That belief causes them to obey the Lord and begin living a new life by faith in Him.

If this is how we see the church, then we won’t be “religious consumers” looking for what we can get or what the church can do for us. We will be disciples of Jesus who know the blessings and privileges we’ve been given.

We will be grateful to our Lord and will be looking for ways that He can use us to edify and help grow His kingdom. We will serve Him and those around us out of gratitude for His love that made it possible for us to be part of those who are saved, within His precious church.

What more should our God give than what He’s already given us in His church?

  • Shouldn’t it now be our time to give?
  • Our time to serve Him?
  • Our time to serve others?
  • Our time to help make more disciples.

May a greater appreciation for God’s love and all that He’s done through Christ and His church, cause us to always be growing in our love and our service to Him!

To God Be the Glory!

Excel Still More

Billy Clabaugh
Author | + posts

Billy, his wife Shayla, and their son Caleb live in Sayre, Oklahoma where he has been blessed to preach since 2012. He has a bachelor’s degree in Math Education from Oklahoma Christian University and a master’s degree in Sports Administration from Eastern New Mexico University. He enjoys reading, watching the Oklahoma Sooners, spending time with his family, and serving in the Kingdom of God.  Billy also serves on the board of directors for Excel Still More and is a regular speaker and writer for the workshop and other publications.