In today’s society we see a significant moral decay in the lives of people, such as has not been since Biblical times, namely: the flood during Noah’s time, because God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually; and, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah because of the evil and wicked ways of the people, including sexual immorality and homosexuality.
Are people of today less inclined to attend Church because they are pre-occupied with their own self-interests in this life, as their time is consumed in other activities: movies, television, surfing the web (internet), etc., which can tempt one to immorality.
Has the reality of life after death completely disappeared from the minds of the people? Society of today rejects what is recorded in the Holy Bible, or either interprets it to their own perception. We have seen this in the lives and actions of the people in recent elections: approval of homosexuality and same sex marriages. Also, the liberal lifestyles are manifest whereby people brush off the instructions of the Holy Bible, such as: marriage, a lifelong commitment between man and woman; divorce; drunkenness, etc. The Bible is very clear on these issues which are totally ignored by many. The Bible states that they who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (I Cor. 6:10, Gal. 5:21. Eph. 5:5, Col. 3:6, and Rev. 22:15). Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people. (Prov. 14:34).
What should be the most important reason to attend church? One of the fundamental points of Christian Doctrine of the Laestadian Lutheran Church is: “To know God and our Savior Jesus Christ and to become a child of God is the most precious matter in life.” Life in Christ is victory over death. (Phil. 1:21 and I John 5:1-5). As we live our earthly life in this world, our goal (after death) is to reach our heavenly home. “For here we have no continuing city, but we seek one to come” (Heb. 13:14).
God’s Word says that we are saved by grace through faith; and not of ourselves, nor works; salvation is a gift of God. (Eph. 2:8-9). It is grace, then, that teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and to live soberly, righteously and godly in this present world; looking for that blessed hope and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:12-13). A person may ask, what must I do to be saved, to be heaven acceptable? Jesus, in His sermon on the Mount, said: “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness“ (Matt. 6:33).
What then is the purpose of attending church? “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). Jesus said: “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matt. 4:17). In God’s kingdom, the gospel is proclaimed to penitent souls through the power of the Holy Spirit; the forgiveness of sins is preached in Jesus name and blood. “For without shedding of blood there is no remission [of sins]” (Heb. 9:22).