As I have encountered churches over 20 plus years of ministry, the problems vary. Among the most immature of those problems is what I call “sanctified seats”. These seats have been graced by the posteriors of the same people for many years and will rise in revolt to other posteriors that would disgrace these sanctified seats.
I was asked to be a guest worship leader in a church a few years ago. The building seats 1,000 with only 200 in attendance. Although there was obviously plenty of room, one of these nearsighted “saints” chose to ask my son to get out of her “sanctified seat” rather than be thankful that guests were attending a service.
This morning, I was blessed to see the opposite. If you are on time or late to one of our church’s services, you will have a difficult time finding a seat. A couple had come to support the guest pastor and arrived at the beginning of his message. A couple got their attention, moved over, and gave this couple a place to sit.
You may not see the significance in this. You may be blessed to attend a house of worship where people aren’t territorial. A place where they don’t have “their” pew or some family claim to a room in the building.
Houses of worship in the Old Testament were not people’s territory. They were a place where God’s glory dwelt. In the New Testament, God’s presence indwells the believer in the person of the Holy Spirit. The church is not the house of worship but blood-bought believers assembled together wherever that may be.
If you are claiming territory at your place of worship, repent now. Scripture says that the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof. That means the piano you bought for “the church”, the pew you donated to “the church”, etc. It is an offering to the Lord to which you and I have no rights. So next time you sit down to worship, remember those seats are not sanctified. They are just material to keep you off the floor. Thank God and turn your attention toward Jesus!