The Importance of Getting Plugged into a Local Church
Posted On November 11, 2020
Written by David Wooten, director of student services at Reformation Bible College
One essential ingredient for a successful college experience at Reformation Bible College is for each student to get connected to a local church. RBC is not a surrogate church. One of the school’s convictions is to serve alongside the church to disciple students to have an increasing love for Christ. Academic study in a college classroom is no replacement for a faith community in a local church. While the college provides a rich theological and biblical education and wonderful community through student life, it does not desire nor does it attempt to be a substitute of a local congregation for the student. For many young adults, college is a time when they drift away from their church. This is not the case for RBC students. They are active members in many of the wonderful churches in the Central Florida area.
God has ordained the church, not the academy, to be the place where His children grow in spiritual maturity through the means of grace. Students benefit from sitting under the preaching of their local pastor where they hear the exposition and application of the Scriptures. They get to experience relationships with others of all ages in a community of faith. Participation in the sacraments and ordinances of the church is a means of worship that can only be experienced and enjoyed in congregational life. In fact, the thirty-two “one another” commands of the New Testament are intended to be obeyed in the context of the local church. It is through the local church that students can use their gifts and pursue their passions in ministry, missions, and evangelism during their college years. The local church offers students accountability that they need in their walks with Christ.
Young people who are thinking about applying for admission to Reformation Bible College will need a reference from a local pastor. Having a pastor who knows them because of their faithful attendance and engaging participation in a local church will result in a stronger recommendation in the admissions process.
At the end of the day, RBC seeks to produce graduates who love and serve the church of the Lord Jesus Christ. Some of our students will go on to pursue the pastorate and other vocational ministry, but most of our graduates will pursue other callings. Regardless of whether our alumni enter ministry, the marketplace, or pursue the high calling of being a wife and mother, every RBC graduate should have a love for the local church and a desire to serve the Lord Jesus through a local congregation. That is not something for which they have to wait until they earn their degree. Being active in a local church through attendance, fellowship, and ministry is something that can benefit every RBC student right now.
David Wooten is director of student services at Reformation Bible College.