What Is Church?
Name: Antonio Gonzalez
Question: Can you show scripture on what church is? Some believe it’s a denomination or feel it’s their faith.
Answer: The true meaning of church is an assembly or a Christian community of members. The Bible never describes the church being a brick building or a denomination. The church has always represented God’s people when they are gathered together.
The Definition of Church
You can document that by looking up the word “church” in your Strong’s Concordance.
It is word G1577 which means,
From a compound of G1537 and a derivative of G2564; a calling out, that is, (concretely) a popular meeting, especially a religious congregation (Jewish synagogue, or Christian community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both): – assembly, church.
The Church Is The Gathering Of God’s People
Turn your Bible with me to,
27 “And when they were come and had gathered the church together, they rehearsed all that God had done with them, and how he had opened the door of faith unto the Gentiles.”
I guarantee you they were not gathering sticks and stones.
They were gathering the people together to “rehearse all that God had done with them, and how he had opened the door of faith unto the Gentiles.”
Notice, there was nothing mentioned about buildings, beliefs or denominations.
Instead, the church is made from an assembly. A Christian community of members, just like we have here on our website.
The Church Of God
28 “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”
It is interesting to note, if you serve “the church of God”, He decides who is an “overseer” (Strong’s: G1985) which means a “Christian officer in general charge”.
Numerous times in the Bible the church is referred to as “the church of God”.
It is His Church, He leads it and appoints others to maintain it here on earth.
One Church, One Body, One Faith
There should only be one church united under God. Anything else is added by men, and soon becomes church tradition.
4 “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;”
We should note the word “hope” can even mean “faith”.
We are certainly called in one faith, the Christian faith, and together we form the church, we form “one body” in Christ, (Romans 12:5, 1 Corinthians 12:12).
5 “One Lord, one faith, one baptism,”
“One faith,” is Strong’s word G4102 and means, “the truthfulness of God”.
Think about that.
We are told there is one truthfulness of God. Not thousands of different truths, not thousands of different denominations.
Since there is only one truth of God, then the thousands of Christian denominations are wrong by definition.
We are to uphold His Truths, not bring about our own, not bring about our own doctrines which men have been doing for thousands of years calling it God’s Word, (Jeremiah 23:30-32, Matthew 15:9).
6 “One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”
So always remember, it is our Father’s Church, His House, His Son leads it, and the Holy Spirit appoints overseers to guard the church here on earth.
Christ Establishes The Church With Peter
18 “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
Christ was not talking about a stick and brick building, that should be obvious enough from what we have covered.
“Peter” is Strong’s word G4074 and means, “rock”.
Christ was simply saying, He was establishing the church with Peter. Peter would continue the Ministry of Christ by teaching what Christ taught. Not only did this include the message in the New Testament, but the message in the Old Testament that Christ often quoted.
We are to continue that same message, His Message.
The Purpose Of Church
Listen to the words of Christ.
19 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:”
20 “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
The purpose of church is for God’s people to gather together in fellowship, to learn about the Bible, and share that message with the world. That is the great commission.
The Seven Churches
We are going to close by considering the Seven Churches of Revelation 2-3. When you read those chapters you will discover Jesus Christ was only content with two of the churches for what they taught.
Think about that.
Most of the churches were teaching falsely!
If we think today is any different, we are sadly mistaken.
So the question becomes, how can I tell if I am in God’s Church or man’s church?
By what they are teaching.
- Is it from some book of man?
- Is it church doctrine?
- Is Scripture read, and in context?
Each one of us must answer these questions for ourselves and our families. Each one of us must ensure we are being taught correctly by becoming a “Berean,” by verifying in the Scriptures what we are taught, (Acts 17:10-11).