Whatever you call them (Small Groups, Bible Classes, Midweek Bible Studies, Sunday School, etc.), you probably need to rethink your attendance to them!
Statistically speaking, only about 60% of those who are reading this that attend worship faithfully actually attend a Small Group of some sort during the week. But I am willing to venture that many of the churches of Christ in our country are seeing more along the lines of 40-50% at best! I can actually remember numerous times in the past where me (the adult class teacher), my wife and our children were the only ones there for a Midweek Bible Study.
The fact is, our classes outside of worship services are lacking numerically and I believe there are some things we need to realize about these meetings that will encourage us to attend them more frequently and they are…
Bible Study Enriches Your Faith
I hope I don’t need to write a dissertation on this topic to get us to realize how important our Bible Study habits really are to our personal faith development. If you were raised in a religious environment, I can almost bet that you have memories of being a young whipper snapper sitting in a Bible class of some sort and that the information you learned there has stuck with you. I can vividly remember sitting as a child in a men’s enrichment class at church where I first learned the story of Gideon.
That being said, there is more to it than memorizing the Apostles’ names or the books of the Bible. Your attendance to Bible classes allows you to dive much deeper into God’s saving Word (James 1:21) and helps you to have the ability to pass that knowledge on to those who are lost.
Small Groups Help Church Relationships
Have you ever wondered why some TV commercials are repeated over and over again ad-nauseum? It is because advertisers understand that you are going to need multiple chances to engrain that phone number or product name before you will actually think about it when you are in need.
Lifeway Research reported
that only 1 out of every 6 self-proclaiming Christians would strongly agree that they actively seek out relationships with new people that they meet at church. The fact is, Small Groups provide the perfect place to see that face again, to hear that name again and start a real relationship with that person.
If the church is a family (Ephesians 2:19), shouldn’t we seek every opportunity to know who our family members are?
Wednesday Nights Are Refreshing
Many preachers try to link their Bible classes, sermons and other forms of teaching together in some way (and if you’re a preacher and you’re not doing that, you need to rethink that decision). That being the case, Wednesday nights provide a very helpful reminder of what was studied on Sunday and helps you to apply that in a better way for the rest of the week.
Seven days without true study in God’s Word (understanding that many of us aren’t getting the personal Bible study that we desperately need to remain pure in this world) opens the door for trials and temptations that are easily averted if we have refreshed ourselves on our mission and had the encouragement that is one of the major prerogatives in the assembly of the church (cf. Hebrews 10:24).
Whatever your reasons were for missing Midweek Bible Study or sliding in between Sunday School and Worship on Sundays, you need to rethink that decision. If not for the encouragement, family relationships or deeper knowledge of God’s Word simply for the fact that willful or even rebellious absence from the assembly of the saints is a very serious point of discussion in God’s word (Hebrews 10:25-26)!