“God put all things under Christ’s feet and gave Him to the church as supreme Lord over all things. The church is Christ’s body, the completion of Him who Himself completes all things everywhere.” (Ephesians 1: 22-23)
Most people believe the church to be a building or a place of worship. The biblical understanding, however, is that the church is a body of believers in Christ.
The church is the body of Christ of which He is the head. The body of Christ is made up of believers in Jesus Christ from the day of Pentecost (Acts, Chapter 2) until Christ’s second return.
Entrance into the church of believers comes from being “born again.” We do this by being SURE of our salvation through faith, alone, in Jesus Christ:
Sin: Admitting that we are sinners
Understand that there are consequences to sin
Repent and accept Jesus as Lord and Savior
Enhance the Kingdom by bringing others to Salvation and bearing fruit
There is one church with a united thought and purpose: to use the talents and abilities of its members to encourage each other and to edify Jesus Christ. The one universal church also has a local presence for the believers to gather and worship.
The universal church consists of all those (in the world) who have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Members of the universal church should seek fellowship and edification in a local church. There is one denomination and that is Christian.
“For all of us, whether Jews or Gentiles, whether slaves or free, have been baptized into the one body by the same Spirit, and we have all been given the one Spirit to drink.” (1 Corinthians 12:13)
The local church is a body of believers in close proximity to each other who come together in union for teaching, worship, communion, and edification. They are gatherings of members of the universal church. The local church is where the members of the universal church can fully apply Christ’s principals of wisdom of the knowledge and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus told Peter in the book of Matthew that He would build the “church” on the rock-solid principal of unconditional faith in Jesus as the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.
“Peter, you are a rock, and on this rock foundation I will build my church, and not even death will ever be able to overcome it.” (Matthew 16: 18)
Additional References: Colossians 1:18, Romans 12:4, Matthew 16:18
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