Paul taught that our battle is not in the natural realm, but in the supernatural. His message is an important message for us today. Many believers go to a church service with the wrong motivations. Let’s consider three of these motivations so that we might search our own hearts concerning our motivation and, if necessary, repent and come into alignment with God’s eternal purpose.
First, many go to a church service to receive a “pep talk.” To get something that will help get them through the week. There are those who need to be encouraged. That is not wrong. It is part of the reason Christians gather together. God’s purpose and desire, however, go much deeper than pep-talks. He wants us equipped to deal with the challenges that we face in the world with the flesh and the devil.
Second, some go to a church service as a sense of duty. Their heart is not fully engaged. They attend from a need to have religious activity. Many feel a need to “appease God” by their attendance. God is not looking for appeasement, but obedience to His calling.
Third, there are those who attend a church service when their soul moves them on special occasions or when other activities do not interfere. You could say it is obeying God on their own terms.
The purpose of our gathering is primarily for corporate worship, equipping and instruction. Of course, this also includes receiving the Lord’s Supper. Within these areas, the Spirit of God wants to manifest His presence among the members of His body by ministering His gifts to meet needs in the lives of God’s people and equipping them for the work of ministry.
Put on the whole armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.
Ephesians 6:11 NASB
When Paul wrote, “put on the whole armor of God.” It is a clue there will be warfare. The armor of the Lord provides for both offense and defense in the battle. This armor is intended to be worn by those who have received God’s salvation. His salvation is greater than most realize. In the last two chapters, we will expand on this thought.