Who is the Church?

Contrary to the widely accepted opinion, “God … dwelleth not in temples made with hands, neither is worshipped with men’s hands as though he needed anything”! (Acts 17:24-25) In the Bible, we read of the “ears of the church” (Acts 11:22), of Saul “making havoc of the church” by persecuting God’s people (Acts 8:1-4), of the church in the house of Priscilla and Aquilla (Romans 16:3-5) and of Paul gathering the church together at Antioch (Acts 14:27).

Obviously, “the church” is not a steeple house built by the hands of men, so we ask: “Who (not what) is the church?”

Membership in the church is determined by neither people, preacher nor priest but by the Lord. “… The Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” (Acts 2:47) It cannot be joined. All who have been saved by Christ through the gospel (Rom. 1:16; I Cor. 15:1-4) are the church … making up its membership.

Those who are “the church” are perfectly organized, having Christ as their “head” and a position that is God-ordained. (Ephesians 1:22.23; 1 Cor. 12:18). What spiritual folly and ignorance is shown by any of these who believe they need a human “organizer” or that they can improve upon the work of the infinitely wise and powerful God.

These who are “Christ's body” alone have the divinely appointed ministry of the evangelists, “… pastor and teachers” (Eph. 4:11). They limit and frustrate the work of these Christ called men when they “call” or “appoint” pastors or teachers of their choice.

This is the only church with divine origin and blessing. It alone can fulfill this prayer of the Lord Jesus Christ for all who believe on him: “I pray … that they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us; That the world may believe that thou hast sent me.” (John 17:21). All divisions (denominations and sects) show sinful disregard for the will of God and of the “unity of the Spirit” (See 1 Cor. 1:10, 3:1-4, 16-17, Eph. 4:1-6).

See: Who is a Christian?

Reprint from: 6/69issue of: "Sound Words"