Finding a good local church matters more than you can imagine. That’s because the local church isn’t simply a place you to go once a week. The local church is an embassy of the kingdom of God. It’s the place where heaven meets earth. It’s where Christ followers assemble to proclaim His lordship and grace before the eyes of the watching world. Nothing could be more important than that!
But there are so many churches out there. Some of them vibrant. Some of them dying. So how do you find a good local church?
Here’s 5 things to consider before joining any church.
#1 Does This Church Teach The Bible?
The number one thing you need to figure out before joining any church is whether or not this church teaches the Bible.
The Bible is the lifeblood of the local church. It is God’s revelation. In it God unveils who He is, what He’s like, and how we can know Him personally through Jesus Christ His Son.
Churches do lots of things, but the most important thing they do is present God’s word in a clear and compelling way on a weekly basis.
Does the church you want to join teach the Bible?
#2 Does This Church Encourage Spiritual Worship?
Jesus said God is seeking true worshipers. And true worshipers worship God in spirit and truth (John 4:23).
Is the church you are considering joining full of Spirit-filled worshipers? Or is it marked by apathy and indifference?
I once attended a church where the people were like statutes during the musical portion of the worship service. Nobody moved. Nobody clapped their hands. And they certainly didn’t raise their hands toward heaven.
We may have sung about how God raised Jesus on the third day. But if you were an outsider looking in, you might have walked away convinced that He was still in the grave.
God created us as physical, emotional, spiritual beings. And, according to Jesus, the greatest command of them all is that we love God with all our heart, soul, strength and mind (Luke 10:27).
Does the church you want to join encourage spiritual worship?
#3 Does This Church Care About Those Outside The Church?
So many churches in America today are either dead or in steep decline. And the fundamental reason for this is that they care more about meeting their own needs than they do about meeting the needs of others.
Churches that only look out for “number one” die slow, agonizing deaths.
That’s because the church doesn’t exist for the church. The church exists for the glory of God and the good of others. The second churches start caring more about themselves than they do others, they begin to wither away.
“Love God. Love people.” That’s the message Jesus preached.
Does the church you want to join care about those outside the church?
#4 Does This Church Encourage Me To Use My Unique Gifts?
The church is like a body. It has many parts. And each part brings something substantial to the table.
The truth is God has created you in a unique way. There is no one like you. You are an original through and through. And you have gifts, talents and abilities that only you possess. And the local church needs you to use those gifts to reach it’s fullest potential.
So, you want to join a local church that will challenge you to put those talents to use to make a difference in the life of the church and in the lives of others.
Does this church encourage you to use the gifts God has given you?
#5 Does This Church Value Community?
Showing up on Sunday’s is important. You need to meet with believers every week. No doubt about it.
But you need more than that. You need to surround yourself with a small group of committed Christ followers so that you can continue to foster your faith.
Life groups are vehicles of life change. God does things in small groups He doesn’t normally do in larger gatherings. There is something about doing life with other people who love Jesus that is special. That is transformational. And you simply can’t become the person God desires you to be without it.
Does the church you are considering joining value community?
Question: Here are five things you should consider before joining a local church. What would you add to the list? Join the conversation clicking here.