“Never Speaking of Their God Again” – Alma 31:23

What is the role of church meetings in discipleship?

I’ve been thinking about that question today, as I’ve pondered the religious observance of the wealthy Zoramites. According to Mormon, the Zoramites would gather at their house of worship one day each week and offer thanks to God. But after participating in this collective worship, they would return to their homes “never speaking of their God again until they had assembled themselves together again” (Alma 31:23).

When we are baptized, we make a number of commitments which are not limited to the time we spend in church meetings: bearing one another’s burdens, standing as witnesses of God at all times, and keeping His commandments (Mosiah 18:8-10). Each week, as we partake of the sacrament, we attest to God that we will always remember the Savior (Moroni 4:3, Moroni 5:2). Clearly, our discipleship is not limited to the time we spend in church meetings.

Why then do we meet? Moroni said that church members meet often to nourish one another spiritually, to partake of the sacrament together, and to provide assistance to one another (Moroni 6:4-6). Meeting frequently helps us build relationships with one another and gives us opportunities to assess our spiritual progress and resolve to improve. In other words, weekly church attendance assists us in fulfilling our continuous obligations as disciples of Jesus Christ. Going to church doesn’t make you a good person, but it can help you become a better person if you let it influence the way you live during the rest of the week.

This Sunday, as I participate in worship services with my family and in virtual church meetings, I will think about how these gatherings will affect me during the week. I will resolve not to fall into the rut of the wealthy Zoramites, whose church attendance was perfunctory and disconnected from the rest of their lives.

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