One of the issues that continually faces believers is the idea that we are okay by ourselves. Oftentimes we may think that we do not need other Christians in order to progress in our spiritual growth.
However, we do need each other. We need fellow Christians to encourage us to be faithful to the Lord. Without the support of others, we can be in great danger of falling into apostasy.
Our need of each other for growth and perseverance is the focus of today’s passage. In light of the great and effectual sacrifice Christ has offered (Heb. 9:1–10:18), we are exhorted to meet together so that we may spur one another on to love and good deeds, especially since the return of Christ draws ever closer (10:24–25).
As we have seen before, Christians are called to a living and active faith, to a faith that produces love and good works. This is not to say that good works are meritorious or that they somehow add something to salvation. Rather, they evidence true faith in the God who is love and who Himself performs good works. Where love and good works are wholly absent, then faith is absent as well (James 2:17).
When we encourage one another to love and good works, two things happen. First of all, church members who have falsely professed faith see that they must stop doing so and put their faith in Christ alone as they are encouraged to love God with all of their heart, soul, strength, and mind.
Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, when we encourage one another, the true believers in the church are motivated to persevere in their faith. Faith is to be a continual possession, profession, and action, not only a one-time event. Calvin says that, in today’s passage, the author of Hebrews “intimates that all the godly ought by all means possible to exert themselves in the work of gathering together the Church on every side; for we are called by the Lord on this condition, that every one should afterwards strive to lead others to the truth, to restore the wandering to the right way, to extend a helping hand to the fallen, to win over those who are without. But if we ought to bestow so much labour on those who are yet aliens to the flock of Christ, how much more diligence is required in exhorting the brethren whom God has already joined to us?”
Ask yourself this question: “Do I really believe that I need encouragement to maintain my faith?” The answer should be yes. True believers share their struggles with other believers and pray for each other so that they will persevere. Allow fellow believers to encourage you and if you are not a part of a church, find one soon and join it.