You don’t have to go to church to believe in God

I recently heard someone exclaim that you don’t need to go to church to believe in God. This was in response to a relative who wanted her children to be “confirmed” in a certain church.

Of course, you don’t need to go to church to believe in God. The statement I heard was met by approval from many people who were listening. But is that the end of the story? Belief? All you need to do is ‘believe’ in God and you’re done?

I like to think about it this way. I believe in Uganda. That’s it. No more.

Let’s examine that, because the statement itself says nothing, does it?

I believe in Uganda. I believe it exists. I saw it on a map one time. I heard about it on the news. Some people say they’ve been there and back again. And when I die, I believe I may go to Uganda.

Therefore, you can rightly call me a Ugandan.

Correct? No. Not by a long shot, and if you described your belief in this way to someone, they would think you are crazy. But unfortunately, when you describe your feelings about God in the same way you are met with approval from others. Let’s try that same situation with ‘God’ instead of Uganda.

I believe in God. I believe He exists. I’ve seen the Bible. I heard on the news about someone who says they’ve been to heaven and back and have seen Him. And when I die, I believe I may go to be with God. Therefore, you can rightly call me a Christian.

No, a belief in God doesn’t make you a Christian, and just because you believe you are on your way to heaven doesn’t make that right either. To believe in God makes you no different than the demons, which the Bible says also believe in God. A belief in Jesus doesn’t make someone a Christian either. Just like a belief in Uganda doesn’t make you Ugandan.

If you want to be a Ugandan you move to Uganda, learn about Uganda, pay your taxes to Uganda, become a citizen of Uganda and conform to the laws of Uganda. Then you can be rightly called a Ugandan.

A belief in Christ, coupled with a desire to know Him, a desire to follow His teachings, a desire to be a citizen of heaven, to live with Him in Heaven, and the desire to bend your will to conform to His – combined with repentance – makes you a Christian.

And personally, I find a real Bible believing, Bible teaching church to be a good source of knowledge of God. If you want to believe in God and believe you are going to heaven, then you should have something to back up your belief other that your own feelings. Don’t cobble together your idea of God from someone else’s concept that you heard somewhere but are so far removed from that you can’t even remember where. Go to the source, the Word of God, and find your answers. And a proper Bible teaching church is a great help.

I hope this helps some better understand the extent of their belief in God.

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9 Responses to You don’t have to go to church to believe in God

  1. Darrell says:

    you are saying in order to “believe” in god you have to go to a building where people that have read a book can recite passages from said book and interpret it to the masses, well, I believe in God, I have a relationship with him, and I live a life that is full of questions for god that, we answer from day to day, minute to minute. I live my life for my family and I believe that is living for god. I speak to god everyday not just Sunday. I am tired of people thinking if they go to church on Sunday it justifies their lives Monday through saturday, a belief is 24-7, it is YOUR life style. no i do not go to church every sunday nor have I been any recent sundays, but I know in my heart that each day is a day i TRY to live the best and fullest life for myself, for my family,for my society, and for my god. This is in no order of importance.

    • adminII says:

      I think Ray Comfort may like to talk to you :) But seriously, you should check him out on YouTube because his main message would be that no matter how good we are we can’t be good enough to measure up to a holy God’s standards.

  2. Justin Grice says:

    Agreed. Real faith results in action.
    Justin Grice recently posted..Offering free website design services for churches through August 31, 2011My ComLuv Profile

  3. Crystal says:

    I enjoyed this post. No you do not have to go to church to be a Christian, but being a Christian does require something of you. You can’t just say I don’t have to go to church and cut it off right there, it requires more info. Salvation is free not cheap.

  4. I agree with your post ” You Don’t Have To Church To Believe In God”

    This is my delimna and I have been asked this question many times. There are no Bible preaching teaching churches in my area. What do I do now?

    • Rob says:

      Unfortunately I don’t have a real good answer for this one. We chose to stay at home when we were in this situation. We still continued to have fellowship with some of our friends that were at our former “purpose driven” and “seeker sensitive” church, but we didn’t attend. As far as I’m concerned, if we continue to attend after we’ve made our concerns known and we fail to see any change (or even any interest) then we are fully endorsing their activities by participating with them.

      If there truly is no Bible teaching church in your area, stay home, watch sermons online, fellowship with any friends you have and make them more than aware of the situation, consider a home church, and pray that you’ll find what you need. We were actually moved out of our city twice for work and family, and when we arrived at our current location we found TWO Bible teaching churches amidst the program driven churches here in this small little town. But even they are at risk of stumbling if they don’t pay attention to what is happening in Christianity.

      Don’t give up hope. You have the Word, you have access to a large group of believers globally, and it is still possible for you to find that church. If all else fails, and you feel led, consider starting your own :)

  5. Dillon Hardy says:

    I personally would reject any church or God that says that person is destined to hell.

  6. Jeff says:

    We went to a local church. (small dessert town) We quit going but we always have been, are, and always will be believers. We got a church news letter the other day and it, stated “believers with no church are embezzlers”.
    Any comments?

  7. Eileen Katch says:

    You do not have to go to church to go to heaven. The only way to heaven is to trust our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. We are saved by our faith in Jesus,that He died on the cross to pay for our sins. Otherwise,He died in vain. We can’t work our way into heaven by good deeds. He did everything for us on the cross. Accept your free gift even though we don’t deserve it. Read what Paul wrote for us in the bible. Eileen

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