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Edification requires Consideration

Posted by on Jul 5, 2012 in blog links, edification, gathering | 8 comments

Edification requires Consideration

Eric at “A Pilgrim’s Progress” asks a very important question in his post “Are Different Things Edifying for Different People?” He answers his own question with, “Yes!”

In his post, Eric focuses on the differences between people. And, people are different, both in their backgrounds and understandings and maturity, but they are also different in what they are currently going through in their life.

Because of these differences, Eric makes the following statements:

Since we are different people, we Christians likely are edified by different activities in different amounts, different ways, and in differing occasions. This can even vary from time to time for the individual. It certainly varies between people.

In light of these differences, church gatherings should have a great deal of variety to them. In the busyness of life it is easy to fall into the trap of the routine. Regardless of how churches tend to gather, they can end up doing the same things gathering after gathering. This may be edifying for some, but others may feel starved.

I agree. In fact, not only do I agree that different things are edifying to different people and that these different ways to edify are best brought out through different people serving and speaking when we gather together, I also think that different things are edifying to different people at different times. In other words, as people change, that which builds up (edifies) changes as well.

Now, don’t misunderstand me. Only those things which point back to Jesus Christ and encourage others to follow and trust him are edifying. However, there are many, many ways to point people to Jesus and to help them follow and trust him. And, for different people at different times, some things are more or less edifying.

One of my favorite passages related to gathering with other believers points to this:

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. (Hebrews 10:24-25 ESV)

If you read these verses in context (Hebrews 10:19-25), you’ll see that “considering one another” is one of the responses to the fact that we now have direct access to God through Jesus Christ. But, also notice that “considering one another” is the prerequisite (if you will) for gathering to encourage one another. Why must we “consider one another”? Because we are all different and because that which encourages/edifies may be different as well.

Are you considering one another and ready to encourage one another in whatever one another needs when you gather together?


8 Comments

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  1. 7-5-2012

    Living life together (sharing yourselves honestly with one another) has to happen before one can consider another and encourage them. That is why this scripture and it’s way of life isn’t truely applicable in many gatherings that simply focus on attending as passive hearers of a sermon, or to hear and sing songs as in many of the more institutional forms.

  2. 7-5-2012

    Whether we gather together or not, whom ever shows at the place we meet shows, and if not then not. We all that gather here are free to do so. No one calls the other in chasing or badgering. If they show they show. For we all know that god is their teacher and protector. No one here has rule over anyone. We all trust in prayer that all are safe. Whenever any do gather it is used to whatever the situation calls for. Whatever the need of the other brothers and sisters need at the moment. And our office is available to all during the week. And all know they are loved period. Ths is the greatest get together i have ever witnessed. Pure freedeom to be who you are a child of the living God

  3. 7-5-2012

    Dori,

    Yes, I’ve written about the two different ways to “forsake meeting together,” either by 1) failing to gather with other believers or 2) failing to encourage one another when we do gather.

    Howard,

    I hope, like the author of Hebrews says, you are also taking the time to consider those who gather with you and that you also seek to stir them up to love and good works by encouraging them.

    -Alan

  4. 7-5-2012

    Thanks Alan!

  5. 7-5-2012

    Yes, living in the present and seeing it unwrapped each and every day

  6. 7-6-2012

    Here’s your whole passage:
    Hebrews 10:19-25(NET) Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus, by the fresh and living way that he inaugurated for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a sincere heart in the assurance that faith brings, because we have had our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water. And let us hold unwaveringly to the hope that we confess, for the one who made the promise is trustworthy. And let us take thought of how to spur one another on to love and good works, not abandoning our own meetings, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and even more so because you see the day drawing near.

    Your comments (and Eric’s) point out several things I’ve never focused on before:
    1) Different strokes for different folks…several people attending a gathering are ministered to by different things…the time of prayer…the testimony of one brother or sister relative to a struggle of the previous week…a new insight in a passage of Scripture…a specific song or the general tone of a singing time. So many times two people can listen to the same teaching and one hears the negatives and walks away depressed and burdened down while the other hears the positive points and leaves uplifted.

    2)Taking thought…”let us take thought of how to spur one another on to love and good works.” Here in Hebrews we are being directly charged to consider those around us and carefully and consistently adopt strategies that encourage each one to ‘love and good works’. It almost sounds manipulative, but it could be conducted as a scientific experiment to determine which approaches are most effective for each person. For me it would be an insightful discussion of a passage on love…for someone else it might be choosing several songs that express God’s love in the musical idiom they prefer (hopefully not, “I gave my life for you; what hast thou given for me?”)…maybe the research would show that testimonies or descriptions of what individuals have done the last week to show love…the list could go on, but the point is that the strategies of leaders as well as individuals interacting with other individuals can be sharpened by taking thought…considering.

  7. 7-6-2012

    2)Taking thought…”let us take thought of how to spur one another on to love and good works.” Here in Hebrews we are being directly charged to consider those around us and carefully and consistently adopt strategies that encourage each one to ‘love and good works’. It almost sounds manipulative

    And this is not manipulative, the thought that I take is I need your words Father not mine for you Father are the one that knows all needs. This is me getting out of the way and Father living through me,as Father lived through Jesus through the Holy Ghost. For Christ did nothing, nor said anything without the Fathers direction. Jesus sent the disciples the same Holy Ghost that lived in Jesus. Thus all the ones that believe get the same. Ephesians 1:13

  8. 7-8-2012

    One verse that constantly challenges me is where Bible says, consider others more significant than yourselves. Not just to consider them significant! I think thats the catch! Thats the dying place. Thanks for the gentle reminder!

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