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[COMPENDIUM:  PART 1 OF 7]

REBLOGGED FROM MEDITATIONS OF MY HEART by Rev. Philip Hoppe

I almost feel silly even having to write this first post in this series.  Encouraging Christians to gather for the divine service is like telling any normal people to fill up their lungs with oxygen or their car with gas.  But in our day a defense of gathering for Divine Service is certainly warranted.  Many have been deceived into thinking that gathering to God with his people is not essential to life with God.   The defense can be made in various ways.  It can be made the way of God’s command:

Exodus 20:8-10  “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.   Six days you shall labor, and do all your work,  but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God.   Hebrews 10:24-25  And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works,  not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

But while that may crush us into acknowledging God’s will for our life, that alone will not cause us to wear out a pew week after week.  No, only God’s kindness leads to repentance.  Only the promise of his gifts moves people into the pews.   Do you want eternal life?  Do you need forgiveness?  Do you want to belong to something bigger than yourself?  Then come to Divine Service each week.

READ MORE… http://ihoppe.com/blog/?p=3442

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