Article - To Forsake Christ’s Church is to Forsake Christ (part 1)
Some studies indicate over 70% of high school graduates no longer attend or participate with a church (www.liifeway.com/Article/LifeWay-Research-finds-reasons-18-to-22-year-olds-drop-out-of-church). Reasons range from “not liking church” to “getting out of the habit” to “having friends who do not share the same social or moral doctrines of the church” to “members being too judgmental/hypocritical”, etc. When asked about their salvation, many youth (and adults) think they can remain saved without attending any worship assemblies so long as they maintain a “personal” relationship with God. It is not uncommon to hear the youth say “It is not about a religion, but a relationship with Jesus”. However, such thinking is contrary to God’s thinking contained in His word (Isaiah 55:8-9)! God’s word teaches that salvation is “located” in Jesus and His cleansing blood (John 14:6; Acts 4:10-12; Revelation 1:5). Spiritually speaking, in order to obtain and maintain salvation one must get into and stay in the cleansing blood of Jesus (John 6:53-56; 1 Thessalonians 5:9; 2 Thessalonians 2:14; 2 Timothy 2:10; 1 John 1:5-10). Upon hearing the gospel (Ephesians 1:13), believing that Jesus is the Son of God (John 3:16), repenting of sins (Acts 3:19), confessing Jesus as Lord (Romans 10:9-10), and being immersed for the purpose of having one’s sins remitted, a precious soul gets “into” Christ, hence into His cleansing blood (Acts 22:16; Romans 6:3-4; Galatians 3:26-27). In order to maintain salvation in Christ, one must continue to remain faithful to Him (Luke 6:46; Philippians 2:10; Revelation 2:10). God’s word further teaches that only the saved are “located” in the church of Christ - NOT outside (Acts 2:38, 41, 47; 1 Corinthians 12:13; 15:24; Ephesians 5:25-27; Colossians 1:13-14). Acts 20:28 states that Jesus purchased the church “with His own blood”. The church consists of individual members, whether male or female, who have obeyed the gospel and are doing his or her share to cause growth of the body/church (Acts 8:3-4; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; Ephesians 4:11-16).
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