As a small non-profit ministry, we are fully dependent on the free-will donations of our community members. Without the financial support of our Bible study community, we cannot continue our work. During our Spring Fundraiser, we hope to engage 30 new recurring donors and an additional $450 per month in funding to support our growing ministry. Will you prayerfully consider becoming a financial partner in our mission to deliver free Bible studies to inboxes worldwide? {Give Now}

Why the Church is Important to God

A church steeple silhoutted against a stunning orange sky

By Margaret Kemp

Statistics show a decline in church attendance in the U.S.A.

Perhaps you’ve wondered if a believer even needs to be a part of a local church.

As some Christians point out, we can worship God anywhere. Others remind us we can watch our favorite preacher online. 

And sadly, some people no longer attend services because they’ve been hurt by people in the church.

You may even ask, “Is the Church important to God?” 

But the Church, as God designed it, is essential to the Christian faith.

What is the Church?

“Church” is not a building, a club, or a denomination. The New Testament word for “church” is ekklesia, a “calling out” or “a gathering of citizens called out from their homes into some public place.” 

The Church refers to a Christian community.

As believers, we are all a part of the universal Church, “called out” to belong to Christ. 

The New Testament also refers to the local church—specific groups of believers who gather together to “devote themselves to the apostles’ teaching, fellowship, breaking bread, and prayer” (Acts 2:42).

Church is important to God because He beautifully designed it for His children to care for one another and draw others into the family—the Church. 

A Christian woman with arms raised in worship, demonstrating one reason why the church is important to God

The Church is Important Because It’s God’s Plan

The Bible uses three metaphors to illustrate God’s plan for His church. 

#1 – The Church is a gathering of believers where the Holy Spirit resides.

“Built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the cornerstone.” – Ephesians 2:20 HCSB

The Church isn’t a literal brick-and-mortar building but a gathering of believers filled with the Holy Spirit.

Jesus introduced His building plan when Peter proclaimed, “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God” (Mt. 16:15-16).

This truth—that Jesus is the Messiah—forms the foundation on which Jesus would build His Church.

With a play on words, Jesus said, “Peter, you are Petros, a rock or pebble. Upon this petra, this bedrock (this foundational truth), I will build My church” (Mt 16:17–18). 

God is building something so strong that even Hell’s forces cannot destroy it.

The Apostle Paul told the Gentile believers in Ephesus that they were a part of God’s construction project—with Jesus as the cornerstone. 

The Apostle Peter called us living stones (2 Pt 2:5). We’re all a part of a magnificent temple where God’s Holy Spirit lives (Eph 2:19–22). 

#2 – The Church is the body of Christ.

“For as the body is one and has many parts, and all the parts of that body, though many, are one body—so also is Christ.” – 1 Corinthians 12:12 HCSB

The Bible describes the Church using an analogy of the human body. 

As the body of Christ, the Church is an organism, and each part has a specific function.

No one part can exist alone.

We each have gifts to use to strengthen and help other members of the body.

When we come to Christ, God gives us spiritual gifts, special abilities we use for the good of others (Rm 12:5–8).

Every member’s contribution is vital.

#3 The Church is the bride of Christ.

“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her to make her holy, cleansing her with the washing of water by the word. He did this to present the church to Himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or anything like that, but holy and blameless.” – Ephesians 5:25-27 HCSB

The Apostle Paul uses the marriage relationship as an illustration of the way Christ loves the church. Collectively, we are His reward. 

While on earth, this bride doesn’t always look pretty.

But Jesus is in the process of cleaning and making us holy. 

As Christ helps us to live purer lives and do good deeds, we become His beautiful bride. We’re preparing for Heaven, where He’ll celebrate with us (Rv 19:7–8). 

Two Christian men greeting each other at a local church

3 Reasons to Belong to a Local Church

Since the Church is God’s design, we should prioritize belonging to a local fellowship. Here are three reasons to belong to a local church.

1 – We’re stronger when we stick together.

Loose, scattered stones do not comprise a building. As part of His holy sanctuary, we should be connected and situated on the foundation of Jesus. We’re held together by the mortar of His truth and our love for one another.

2 – We’re more effective when we work together. 

Jesus is no longer physically on the earth, but we can be His hands and feet. To accomplish our mission, we contribute our unique talents given by Him.

3 – We’re more beautiful when we celebrate together. 

A single flower is lovely, but a bouquet is splendid. A single instrument plays a tune, but an orchestra plays a symphony. We become a radiant bride when we love each other as Jesus loves us!

A gathering of Christians supporting each other in prayer, demonstrating one reason why the church is important

Church is Important

Over the years, enemies have attacked God’s Church. The Church has sometimes suffered sickness and dysfunction. The bride has muddied and wrinkled her wedding gown.

But abandoning the Church is not the answer. The Church is important.

God works through imperfect people to build His Church. 

God’s plan for the Church will prevail. And all believers are called to participate.

As the Church, we can: 

  • Join a local congregation of Spirit-filled believers (Heb 10:24-25).
  • Use our gifts to further the mission of the Church (1Pt 4:10).
  • Lead pure, fruitful lives, and encourage our fellow members to do the same (1 Pt 1:13-22). 

When we recognize God’s abundant love for the Church, we can take our place as a living stone, knowing the Church is important. 

Margaret Kemp

Margaret Kemp is a teacher and writer who is passionate about studying God’s Word. She’s attracted to the printed word, the fragrance of vanilla, and all things blue and white. She loves spending time with her husband and family, singing, and traveling. Her heart’s desire is to help others to know God better and to find delight in Him. Read more of her writing on her blog and on Instagram.

Share this Article with Friends Online!

Read More on the Living by Design Blog:

Stay Nourished

with our Weekly Blog Posts & SOULfood Saturday E-mails​

By entering your email, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Scroll to Top