"Draw me away! We will run after you. The king has brought me into his chambers. We will be glad and rejoice in you. We will remember your love more than wine. Rightly do they love you." Song of Songs 1:4
The Bride saying "we will run after you" in this verse beckons a question, who are these people she's purposing to run with?
We have a great example in the Psalms of what it means to love and pursue Jesus. In many of these Psalms is a common theme: a longing for God and His presence. More specifically, longing to appear in His tabernacle.
In Psalm 139, David penned in my opinion the most beautiful description of God's omniscience and omnipresence. Yet, we have portions like Psalm 84:2 which say:
"My soul longs, yes, even faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God."
They longed for God's presence in His house but the Psalmists did not stop there, they also expressed a longing to worship God in His tabernacle with other worshippers. Psalm 42:4 says:
"When I remember these things, I pour out my soul within me. For I used to go with the multitude; I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept a pilgrim feast."
To them, God, His presence, and His presence among His people were non-negotiable factors. It was essential for their faith and their very existence.
Paul in Hebrews 10:25 the Amplified version instructs:
"not forsaking our meeting together [as believers for worship and instruction], as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more [faithfully] as you see the day [of Christ’s return] approaching."
According to this scripture, a church is for worship and instruction. It's where we together with other believers adore our Beloved Jesus and learn about the principles of His Kingdom. It's where we find support and encouragement to walk the Christian faith.
Paul again says in 2Timothy 2:22:
"Run away from youthful lusts—pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace with those [believers] who call on the Lord out of a pure heart." (AMP)
In essence, one of the crucial ways to overcome the lusts that war in our bodies is to run after Jesus with other believers. Man was not designed to do life alone, no Christian can thrive outside the local church. The lack of a Christian community: both within and outside the church is the reason many believers are unstable in their walk with the Lord. The revelation of Jesus is personal, but true pursuit of Him is in the company of other believers.
PRAY WITH ME:
Lord, open my heart to truly understand and appreciate the benefits of the local church. Let me know the ways I can thrive in intimacy with you in the company of other believers. Amen.
REFLECT AND ACT: