What is the purpose of the Church?

Are we to attend it because we have wants? or are we to attend because we have needs? What does the Word of God tell us?

Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.

1 Peter 5:1-4 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

In Acts 20, Paul’s message to the elders was to “feed the Church of God.” Three years later, Peter was instructing the Church the exact same message, “feed the flock of God”

If a pastor is feeding our wants, we are not getting fed properly. Paul warned that we should not heap to ourselves teachers that will tickle our ears.

2 Timothy 4:1-4 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

Don’t let wants outweigh needs. Wants are no more than covetousness, desires to satisfy carnal lusts. Feeding them only leads to more carnality and is detrimental to our spiritual walk.

In his epistle to the Churches in Galatia, the Apostle Paul wrote:

Galatians 5:16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

Our desire should not be to satisy the lusts of the flesh; i.e., worldly music, worldly entertainment, worldly pastors that won’t preach against sin, etc.. Rather, we who are Christ’s should have the desire to be fed that which is beneficial and good for the soul.

The Church, over the years, has changed its values tremendously. The attitude seems to be “Be like the world so you can reach the world.” And the world seems to love it. And why wouldn’t they love it? After all, when the world can come into the Church doors and see no difference; i.e., worldly music, dancing, messages of acceptance as you are, sodomites on the preaching staff, etc., the world need not feel condemned for the same sins they participate in on the outside.

Many churches today are just as ungodly as the bar at the county line. The only difference seems to be a mention of Jesus Christ once in a while. Because of complacency, many churches have become whited sepulchers full of dead man’s bones.

We are to be a light to the world, but if we allow ourselves to conform to the world to reach the world, we have only succeeded in exchanging the Light that is needed for a much dimmer light that is wanted.

What is the purpose of the Church?  To feed the flock, strengthening each member in the Word of God, so that each member is fully equipped and capable of going out into the world as a light that shines in darkness.  Not to imitate the darkness, but to reveal to those who are in darkness their need for Light and Truth.