“Sunday Morning Only Saints”
“Sunday Morning Only Saints.” Almost every congregation has them, brethren who attend only on Sunday morning but make excuses for not attending other worship services. It is the norm, in many congregations, to see the largest attendance numbers on Sunday morning but not on Sunday night. But, come Sunday night or mid-week Bible study, these “Sunday morning only saints” are not present, because it is night! “Sunday morning only saints” usually come dressed in their silk Sunday suits with spit-shined shoes, eager to get a quick sip and sample of spiritual snacks. When comes the evening, they have no appetite for a Sunday night or mid-week supper of spiritual food and go on a diet because they do not “snack” at night.
But, the command of the Hebrew writer in Hebrews 10:25 is a problem for them. For therein is written, “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” Is not the Sunday evening worship an “assembling” of the saints? And the mid-week Bible study, is this not an “assembling” of the saints? How about a Gospel meeting during a Sunday night and week nights? Is not each and every worship service and Bible study an “assembling” of the saints, even though they may be at night? Notice, the Hebrew writer did not say, “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together as the manner of some is; only on Sunday morning, but it’s alright on Sunday night!”
So then, by what authority do these “Sunday morning only saints” justify their Sunday morning only syndrome? Are you a “Sunday morning only saint”? Or, do you assemble with the saints whether rain, snow or sunshine, with all your power and might; every Sunday morn and eve, and even on any night? – tgmc
You Should’ve Seen What Happened Sunday!
By Allen Webster
The view from the pulpit is often interesting. People are so used to watching unresponsive TV and computer screens that they forget preachers can see them! After a while, the unexpected becomes commonplace, and the preacher is able to keep his composure regardless whether “the walls come tumbling down.”
When Christians gather for worship on the Lord’s Day, something special happens. They strengthen their common bond, as in concert they pour out their gratitude to their Savior. It is a time for worship (Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 16:1-2), rejoicing (Psa. 118:24), examination (2 Cor. 13:5), and fellowship (Acts 2:42-47). It is the week's beginning as well as its highlight; nothing else done during the next six days equals what happens on the Lord's Day. We understand why Paul delayed his journey for seven days so he could worship the Lord, on the Lord’s Day, with the Lord's people (Acts 20:6-7).
Usually present are people of all ages–babies, children, teenagers, young adults, families, empty-nest couples, senior saints, widows, and widowers. Each comes to express a common love for an uncommon God; each feels a universal thirst for eternal truth. While worship is formal and congregational, it should be neither cold nor impersonal–it is “in spirit” (Jn. 4:24). Worship involves personalities, and that can make it interesting. This past Lord’s Day, we had an uncommon service. You should have seen what happened...
A BABY CRIED. Occasionally someone frowns when a child cries during services, but most of us smile. Parents recognize the need to take out the child to avoid disturbing others, but we don't want them to feel self-conscious. We are glad it happens! What if no baby had cried Sunday? It would have meant there were no babies there, for all babies cry. No church wants to be that quiet; a tomb is quieter than a nursery, but who wants to worship in a cemetery! A church without children is a church with its best days behind instead of ahead. If no babies had cried Sunday, it might also have indicated that parents saw no need to train the next generation in the Lord’s ways (Eph. 6:4). Good parents want children to learn about God, beginning with their first Sunday on planet earth (cf. Matt. 18:1-3; 19:13-14). They do not want them to be able to remember the first time they came to worship. We know they’ll eventually learn to be quiet, but for now, we’re glad to hear them.
A SISTER LEFT EARLY TO GO TO WORK. In a perfect world, all businesses would close on the Lord’s Day so that every person could exalt God’s name in worship (Psa. 34:3). In heaven, it will be that way, but it is not that way on earth. Christians are sometimes forced to make decisions. This sister had to be at work before the service ended...what to do? She could have skipped the service and told others that she “had to work.” She could have slept in, had plenty of time to get ready, left in time to avoid traffic, and got a bite to eat before her shift. Rather, she chose to get up early, be in Bible class, sing God some songs, open her heart to Him in prayer, thank Him for Christ’s sacrifice during communion, give Him part of last week’s prosperity, and listen to His Word. She sat toward the back so as not to disturb others when she got up a few minutes before the sermon ended. Few saw her sermon on priorities (Matt. 6:33; Col. 3:1-2), but the preacher did.
PAGES RUSTLED. As the messenger preached the word (2 Tim. 4:2), hearers “searched the Scriptures to see whether those things were so” (Acts 17: 11). Far from offending him, it was music to his ears. Jesus found “the place where it was written” (Lk. 4:17), and so should we. We joke that our favorite sermon words are “in conclusion,” but we find most Christians thirsty for the Word (1 Pet. 2:2) and hungering after righteousness (Matt. 5:8). They bring their Bibles, read their Bibles, mark their Bibles, memorize their Bibles, and live by their Bibles.
A SISTER NODDED. Probably no one noticed, except the preacher, but a faithful sister nodded in agreement with a sermon point. She would not speak out to say “amen” as did her husband (1 Cor. 14:34; 1 Tim. 2:11), but she encouraged the preacher just as much without saying a word. Nods also help others in the audience to know that the sermon is expressing not only the preacher’s convictions, but also those of other Christians.
A CHILD DREW A PICTURE. Any parent knows that profound statements come “out of the mouths of babes” (Prov. 8:2; Matt. 21:16). Often, a little child has led God’s people (cf. Isa. 11:6). Most churches can point to some young people whose examples are worth imitating by those who are much older (1 Tim. 4:12). Last Sunday, a child was interested enough to draw a picture that related to what the preacher was saying (cf. 1 Tim. 3:15). There is nothing unusual about that; when there’s a PowerPoint presentation, little eyes are always paying attention, and little hands are often copying down the words. They may not yet fully comprehend the concepts, but the seed is planted; the foundation is laid; the base color is on the canvas. One day, fruit will ripen, the structure will stand, and the painting will be perfected. And these very notes may become fresh classes and sermons for another generation of children. Occasionally, some who now stand in pulpits still use notes written in childish letters on yellowing paper. These have been reborn into lessons for those who were not born when the notes were first taken. The truth never ages; it only needs recycling.
A CHRISTIAN WORSHIPED FOR THE FIRST TIME. Baptized on Tuesday, on Sunday, a young man offered God acceptable worship for the first time. God cleansed him from sin, set him in the church, and watched with interest as he bowed in adoration (Acts 22:16; 1 Cor. 12:28; Jn. 4:24). If the Lord delays His return, and the new Christian’s days are prolonged, that is probably only one of 10,000 times he will publicly worship his Creator (Jn. 4:24; Heb. 10:25), but it will likely never mean more to God, or him, than this first service. He took a beautiful step on a long journey, the first note in a grand symphony.
THOSE FROM "EIGHT TO EIGHTY" COMMITTED TO READ THE BIBLE. About this time each year, we encourage the members to read through the Bible. On Sunday, more than a hundred agreed to do so. The youngest, who is just under eight years old, will read the Bible for the first time. Perhaps this is the first of fifty or more times the cleansing Water of Life will purify his mind’s recesses. The oldest is past eighty and may be reading it for the last time (Heb. 9:27; Jas. 4:14).
TEARS FLOWED. Christian love often expresses itself in tears, as it did with Jesus and the early Christians (Lk. 19:41; Acts 20:37). God’s Word touched hones and good hearts, and last Sunday, souls responded to the Lord’s invitation. Joyful tears flowed over “one sinner that repenteth” (cf. Jas. 5:16, 19-20).
What’s going to happen this Sunday? Come and see! – Knowllwood church of Christ Bulletin, September 2006.