When You Go to the House of God

Ancient counsel to consider on this first day of the week:

Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. To draw near to listen is better than to offer the sacrifice of fools, for they do not know that they are doing evil. Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few. For a dream comes with much business, and a fool’s voice with many words. (Eccl 5:1-3)


  1. David Halbrook

    I have mixed thoughts about the expression “house of God” when referring to the building where we meet. It is purchased with the money specifically given and used for the gospel’s work, it is “God’s House” in that sense (thus, the phone and stapler are His too). I typically tend to shy away from that phrase (though that isn’t reason enough to say that anyone else should avoid it) because typically non-Christians associate it with a “sanctuary” (and all the associated baggage). They first need to think of “the saved, the family of Christ, the church of Christ” as God’s house (1 TIm. 3:15). But, I guess like with other words that are used in multiple ways today (baptism, gift of the Holy Spirit, etc) we just have to use the opportunity to define what we mean. No objection to the post, Eccl. 5 definitely is valueable to us, as we consider going to publically worship Him.

    • Good thoughts, David. Like you, I don’t refer to “church buildings” as “houses of God.” I think your “mixed thoughts” are solid, and I agree. Acts 17:24-25 is one passage that comes to my mind.

      I took the title, “When You Go to the House of God” directly from Eccl 5:1. I was reading there earlier this week and those thoughts struck me as something helpful to meditate upon on Sunday mornings.

      Thousands of years later, we live under different physical circumstances and a different covenant. WE are being built up as a spiritual house (1 Pet 2:5). And yet, the wisdom contained in books like Ecclesiastes is timeless. It was the wisdom itself to which I was trying to draw attention.

      Again, I appreciate your thoughts. Thanks for reading!

  2. The “House of God” refers to the people that make up the church, not the actual building itself. However some people do have mixed feelings about the “building” being the house, or the “people”. As Christians, we know how we are to worship in the building-and not act in childish and immature people, but at the same time, the building is going to one day cease while the members, parishioners, brothers and sisters, etc will still be there in worship. Whether the people have to move away to congregate or stay right where they’re at.