The Difference Between a Church Attender and a Disciple of Jesus
Did you know you can be a church attender but not a disciple of Jesus Christ? I am not saying that disciples of Jesus do not attend church services...they do! But we can focus so much on coming to a service that we forget the point of them...to be and make disciples of Jesus Christ. In this short article, I want to point out some key differences between a church attender and a disciple of Jesus Christ.
First, church attenders trust their attendance while disciples of Jesus trust their God. I’ve heard folks say that they will go to heaven because they’ve gone to church services. They are trusting in their religious actions to earn the acceptance of God. A disciple of Jesus Christ trusts God to save them through the life, death and resurrection of the Son of God. A disciple’s attendance at church services is a “thank-you” to God for forgiving their unpayable debt while the church attender views his attendance as a payment buying God’s blessing.
Second, church attenders focus only on the “show” while disciples of Jesus focus also on the “go.” I recently heard of someone who drives over an hour to attend a church service because they like the music and the speaker. Throughout the week they have no relationships with the people in that congregation nor do they join in the ministry of the church. The focus is only on the Sunday morning “show.” A disciple of Jesus enjoys attending services to worship with fellow disciples, but also obeys the Great Commission in daily life. “GO, make disciples of all nations” is what Jesus said. He did not say, “COME, watch an entertaining performance.”
Third, church attenders believe their church is their church. A disciple of Jesus knows his church is Jesus’ church. In Matthew 16:18, Jesus promised, “I will build MY church.” He did not promise to build anyone else’s church. When church attenders falsely believe the church belongs to them, they want to get their way, serve their preferences, and meet their expectations. Their church ceases to be Jesus’ church. A disciple of Jesus wants follow Jesus’ way, serve His purposes, and meet His requirements.
Let’s attend services and follow Jesus together,