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Adapted from Frank L. Cox

It has been said, "Unto the Church of the Lord in every locality, I am under solemn obligation to the extent of my ability, but unto my home congregation, I am under special obligation." Notice the following special obligations:

1. I owe a wholesome influence in the community. Therefore, I owe the example of a good life. I must "live soberly, righteously and godly in this present world" (Titus 2:12; Matt. 5:13,16).

2. I owe friendliness to the strangers who enter the door of the meeting house. I want them to feel at home, learn to love us and return from time to time. I owe it to them and to the church to show myself friendly. I must not stand back and wait for others to greet them (Heb. 13:2).

3. I owe regular and consistent giving. Whether I give or do not give, the financial obligations of the congregation must be paid. If it is right for my congregation to pay its obligations each week, it is right for me to give each week. Though circumstances may force me to be absent at times, my contributions should find their way to the treasury of the Church (1 Cor. 16:1-2). Even when I go on vacation, I should leave my weekly contribution or make-it-up when I return home.

4. I owe faithful and consistent attendance. The attendance is the life of the church (Heb. 10:25). For this reason, I must attend the services...all the services. While attendance will not "get me to heaven," attendance is an excellent measure of my faithfulness.

5. I owe encouragement and support to the leaders of the church. The members of the church make or break their leaders. Therefore, I must give them support to help them be strong and more efficient. I must pray for them and their families. As long as they are true men, I must not embarrass them in the work of the Lord (1 Tim. 5:19).

6. I owe persistent effort in winning the lost. I must set to the noble work of winning souls for Christ (Lk. 19:10). This I can do by sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ in word and deed (Rom. 10:1). I must be like Paul, who said, "Therefore, knowing the terror of the Lord, we persuade men."

7. I owe warmth, forgiveness and edification. I must not allow the church to become a place where hearts are chilled. I must make it a place where hearts are warmed. Therefore, I must forgive and forget (Matt. 6:14,15).

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