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Study: 4                                                           

The Genuine Church


   The word Church appears for the first time in the New Testament, and it was said by our Lord Jesus Christ concerning the sons' Assembly of the True God (Matthew 16:18). Nevertheless, we now make fast that never, by no means, the word Church refers to an assembling. Place neither to a material building, like as it is wrongfully used by some religions, because The Temple is composed of Jesus Christ Himself, and all of them which have been Saved in his Name (John 2:19-22 ; 1 Corinthians 6:19 ; Acts 17:24 ; Isaiah 66:1-2 ; 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 ; 2 Corinthians 6:16 ; Ephesians 2:19-22).


Definition of Church :

   Essentialy it is the community of all Jesus Christ's believers, which have been gathered together by Faith in his Name through the Regeneration of the Holy Spirit.

   This Spiritual Church is Jesus Christís. Mystic Body, and it is possible to be a member thereof only through the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, that is perceived only by Faith, which is a Gift of God (1 Corinthians 12:13 ; John 4:24 ; 1 Peter 3:21 ; Ephesians 4:5 ; Romans 6:3-11 ; Ephesians 2:8).

   The Church is Universal for, all of us, the sons of God by the Spirit of Adoption, taken out of every nation under heaven, become its members (Acts 2:5-12 ; Acts 2:47 ; Acts 9:31 ; John 17:20 ; Galatians 3:25-28 ; Romans 8:16), as well as them that were already Rescued and are now with the Lord (Hebrews 12:22-23), for that reason the bigger part of the Church is Invisible, but at the same time, it has a Visible part on the earth whose members do show forth their Brotherly Kindness and good works unto the world (Romans 12:9-10 ; Hebrews 13:1 ; 1 Thessalonians 4: 9-10 ; Ephesians 2:10 ; 1 Peter 2:12 ; Philippians 2:15), also loving the enemies (Matthew 5:43-48), and giving a faithful witness of the Lord (Matthew 10:18-20 ; Matthew 24:14 ; 2 Timothy 1:8 ; Hebrews 7:8 ; Revelation 6:9 ; Revelation 12:17 ; Revelation 20:4 ; Revelation 19:10 ; Acts 18:5).

   The Church is also Local, due in the New Testament each townís Christian Community was considered as a Church, so we may also use the word Churches (Acts 8:1 ; Acts 11:26 ; Acts 13:1 ; Acts 14:23; Acts 14:27; Acts 15:41).


Relationship between Jesus Christ and the Church.

It is understood mainly in four ways :

Jesus Christ is the Head of the Body :

Ephesians 5:23 ; 1 Corinthians 12:12-31 ; Ephesians 1:22-23 ; Colossians 1:18 ; 1 Corinthians 11:3.


Jesus Christ is the Heavenly Husband of the Church : 

2 Corinthians 11:12 ; Revelation 21:2 ; Ephesians 5:31-32.


Jesus Christ is the Foundation Rock of the Church :

Ephesians 2:19-22 ; 1 Peter 2:4-8 ; 1 Corinthians 10:4.


Jesus Christ is the High Priest of the Church : 

Hebrews 3:1 ; Hebrews 2:17 ; Hebrews 6:20.


Unity of the Church:

   Both it is a Gift of God and a Miracle, due the Lordís Sacrifice on the Tree and Pentecost, gathering together in One the children of God that were scattered abroad (John 11:52 ; Ephesians 2:13-18 ; 1 Corinthians 12:13).

   This Unity is of force only among them that worship and serve God, all of us that became Jesus Christ Bodyís members through the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, having the Faith alone, which saves, and the Living Hopefulness of Jesus Christís Return (John 4:24 ; John 3:1-7 ; Colossians 2:12 ; Galatians 3:26-28 ; Romans 6:1-11 ; James 2:14-26 ; Hebrews 11:1-10 ; Hebrews 12:1-3 ; Acts 1:10-11 ; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 and 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11). Outside this background it is an illusion to seek Unity. Wherefore, in spite of to make every effort to organize Unity on our own, we cannot do it because it is Spiritual, but we can keep the Unity of the Spirit in the bond of Peace (Ephesians 4:1-6). This requieres a believersí constant activity (1 Thessalonians 5:16-24).


Gifts and Functions within the Body of the Church:

   Each Jesus Christ Bodyís member receives one or more than one Gift of the Spirit for the whole Body profit (1 Corinthians 12:7-11 ; 1 Corinthians 12:28-31 ; Romans 12:1-21 ; Ephesians 4:11-12). On this wise, all Jesus Christ Bodyís members being endowed with Gifts are called to be priests, but within the Genuine Church there are no hierarchies, like as it is understood in other churches, neither clergy and laic division (1 Peter 2:9) ; therefore as every member has received the Gift, even so he ought to minister the same unto the others, submitting one to another in the Love and Fear of God (1 Peter 4:10-11 ; 1 Peter 4:8 ; Ephesians 5:21).

   Thus, we may say that in the Church of the New Testament, the apostles did a labour which may not be repeated (Acts 1:21-22 ; Ephesians 2:20).

   Elders and supervisors did watch over the Flock, and at the same time they preached and taught (1 Timothy 3:1-7 ; 1 Timothy 5:17 ; Titus 1:5-9), whereas deacons did essentially serve the Church (1 Timothy 3:8-13). There were also women doing that service to the Church (Romans 16:1-2).

   All of them, whether they be Elders, supervisors or deacons are established by direct Authority of Jesus Christ Himself, who is the Head of the Church, and they do perform their duties being in communion (fellowship) with the Whole Body (1 Corinthians 12:1-31 ; Romans 12:6-8). Let us consider now that Paul left Titus in Crete to ordain Elders in every city (Titus 1:5), but under the rule of Jesus Christís Spirit, which means that the Lord Himself send us to build up the Church (Psalms 127:1). In addition, this is not a one man Ministry, as it is in false churches (for example : catholic church), but of many. In that way authority, activities and decisions are taken through the Guide of the Holy Spirit so all of them remain within the Body of the Church (Acts 17:23-28).


Eternal Destiny of The Church:

   In this world The Church is still imperfect, incomplete and despised ; it is not of the world and is walking in the way of the Tree, like as her Lord did it (Luke 12:32 ; John 15:18-25 ; John 17:14-21). So its labour is to bring a faithful witness of Jesus Christ (to preach the Everlasting Gospel) to earn spirits for his Name (John 15:26-27 ; 1 Peter 2:9-10 ; Philippians 2:15-16). The  Church must grow up in holiness (Ephesians 4:12-16). It is at hand both the time in which the number of the Bodyís members will be complete (Romans 11:25-26) and that Jesus Christ presents to Himself his Glorious and Irreprehensible Perfect Wife (Ephesians 5:17 ; Colossians 1:22) ; on this wise, the Perfect and Blameless Church will be caught up unto heaven to meet her Lord (1 Thessalonians 4:14-18 ; Matthew 25:1-3) to celebrate the marriage supper of the Lamb (Revelation 19:7-9) being joined to Him and sit down with Christ in his Throne shall reign together with Him for evermore (Revelation 3:21 ; Revelation 22:3-5 ; 2 Peter 1:11). All of us, which have been Saved through our Faith in the Gospel shall have Happiness without tribulation, before God Himself dwelling in that Great City, which has Foundations, whose Builder and Maker is God, the Holy Jerusalem ; and we shall have an Eternal very close communion with Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit (Hebrews 11:10 ; John 14:1-3 ; Revelation 21:1-27 and Revelation 22:1-5).

   The ending Bibleís words do  encourage the hopefulness of the Church through the Holy Spirit : And the Spirit and the Bride say, Come ... He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come Quickly. A - men. Even so, Come, Lord Jesus Christ (Revelation 22:17-20).


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