SLEEPING IN CHURCH

  I read where a preacher told his congregation that he knew they agreed with his sermons because he could see them ‘nodding.’
It is told that a deacon yelled to the preacher that a certain person had fallen asleep.  The preacher said to the deacon, “wake him up.”  The deacon replied, “You wake him up,  you put him to sleep.”

  In the Bible in Acts 20: 7-12, there is the story of a young man falling asleep in church.  Remember, the Apostle Paul was the preacher “and he kept on talking until midnight.”  (Preachers do get carried away sometimes.)  “Seated in the window was a young man named Eutychus, who was sinking into a deep sleep as Paul talked on and on. When he was sound asleep, he fell to the ground from the third story and was picked up dead.”  Paul brought him back to life. “The people took the young man home alive and were greatly comforted.” 

  This then is the first record we have of a man who slept in church. But, it certainly is not the last for he has had many successors. My concern, as a preacher, is not that you physically sleep in church, your heart is with us even through your mind is not.  But, what about the many people who’s bodies are awake but their soul is asleep?  Those who are asleep to the potential and purpose of the church.  Those who are asleep to the impact and influence of their lives.

  We must be awake to the truth that the church of Jesus Christ is the pillar and ground of the truth of God.  The church is the body of Jesus through which the Good News (Gospel) is proclaimed.  Just know that it is through the preaching/teaching of God’s Word hope is given to the hopeless, strength to the weak, and salvation to the lost.  God has ordained that through the foolishness of preaching to save those who believe.  The real value of the church is through her message, proclaiming the mind and will of God to man.   Romans 10:17  “Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.” 

  What about the many people who are asleep to God and eternal life?  Someone has said, “No one has the right to hear the gospel more than once until all have heard it at least once.”  We hear the preaching/teaching of the Good News of God and yet for many “they have ears to hear but they do not hear” (understand, accept).  God’s word, through the church, offers to all the knowledge of eternity with God.  It is so easy to sleep away our opportunities for eternal life with God.

  Hear, the story that Jesus taught of the ten Virgins: 5 wise and 5 foolish. (Matthew 25:1-13)  The foolish were those who slept without making adequate preparation for the long wait for the bridegroom. But, the bridegroom came and entered the house.  The foolish had to go into the city and buy oil for their oil-less lamps. When they returned the door of the house was shut and their opportunity for entering in was gone.  All that is necessary to lose eternal life is just neglect, indifference, sleep.

     How shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation?”  Hebrews 2:3

 

4 Responses to “SLEEPING IN CHURCH”

  1. Max, I like this reminder. It reminds me of a song by Keith Green where he talks about the church being “asleep in the light”. Like you said, we can be in church and be active and appear to be doing all the right things, and yet in our souls, we can be asleep. I must guard against that.

    I am so sorry to hear of Joann’s continuing problems with her breathing. I will be anxious to hear an update after her Monday appointments. I will be praying for both of you. We missed you both this morning!

  2. Good Monday Morning to Max & Joann ….

    We have prayed for Joann and now we are Praising him for the answer that is already taking place.

    Your devotional for this week gives strength to the message deliver to our congregation …. ‘we become too comfortable in the pew … we need to march around the city until God tells us to stop … When we sit in the same pew, sing the same songs, go through all the same motions … “we get the same results’ … Our Mighty God says … Get Up, Get Out, Get Busy …

    Preach on my brother … Preach On !!!!

  3. Really timely message for us today ! Missed you both much yesterday Prayers for good results for Jo ! Love you both

  4. Max, Please know that I am praying for you and your wife. Cecil

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