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“Encourage one another daily … so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” (Hebrews 3:13, NIV)
A church family will help keep you from backsliding.
None of us are immune to temptation. Given the right situation, you and I are capable of any sin. God knows this, so he has assigned us as individuals the responsibility of keeping each other on track.
The Bible says, “Encourage one another daily … so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness” (Hebrews 3:13, NIV).
We are called and commanded to be involved in each other’s lives. If you know someone who is wavering spiritually right now, it is your responsibility to go after that person and bring him or her back into the fellowship.
James tells us, “If you know people who have wandered off from God’s truth, don’t write them off. Go after them. Get them back” (James 5:19, MSG).
A related benefit of a local church is that it also provides the spiritual protection of godly leaders. God gives the shepherd leader the responsibility to guard, protect, defend, and care for the spiritual welfare of his flock.
We are told, “Their work is to watch over your souls, and they know they are accountable to God” (Heb. 13:17, NLT).
Satan loves detached believers, unplugged from the life of the Body, isolated from God’s family, and unaccountable to spiritual leaders — because he knows they are defenseless and powerless against his tactics.
Talk About It
- Who in your fellowship needs to have you intervene in love and in response to God's command?
- What difference do you notice in your life when you are detached from church or from other believers?
Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller The Purpose Driven Life. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also the founder of Pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.
This devotional © Copyright 2013 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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