Hebrews 10:24-25 begins with, “Let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works.” The first place to begin a discussion of church attendance is, as we saw last week, the consideration of one another. The primary purpose of paying attention to one another is to “stir up love and good works.” The phrase, “stir up” can be used negatively for something that is bothered, but here it is used positively for motivation and stimulation. There is some irony in the wording. The idea is to “provoke” someone. Just as a person may be forcefully provoked to anger, believers are told to strongly provoke one another to a life of love. A stagnant pond breeds bacteria, but a flowing stream keeps the water fresh. Believers should constantly work toward the stimulation of others so that the “water” of the Christian community will remain “fresh” and “healthy.”
The “stirring” is to be a motivation to love and good works, or “good works inspired by love” which was, apparently, the church’s reputation (Heb 6:10). Christians have a high calling to stimulate one another spiritually and morally, to lead a life of mutual encouragement. The best way this is accomplished is to share in one another’s lives; to assemble together for worship and fellowship.
Love is expressed relationally. We must spend time, get to know, and form a bond with each other in order to love one another and motivate love in our church. We can never truly consider or motivate one another to loving deeds if we keep each another at a distance.
And, be sure, this love is not emotional or soft, it is a condition of the heart to do what is right in our relationships with others. We should welcome every opportunity to gather with the people of God in order to grow in our own love and motivate others to do the same.