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"Rejoice in the Lord always
(e.g. Luke 1 or Lu 1:30)
What Is The Church
? The Church As A Body
In the New Testament, the term "church," also sometimes translated as "assembly," comes from
the Greek word "Ekklesia" which means the "called out." The word was used by the Greeks to describe
the assembling or gathering of citizens who were called out to meet together for public hearings. In the
scriptures "Ekklesia" refers to those whom Christ has "called out" from the world to be His own, and to
assemble together in His name.
The primary meaning of the church is used in a universal sense, referring to all Christian believers
everywhere. Irrespective of denominational or doctrinal differences, all persons who have genuinely
placed their faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord are members of His church, also called the body
of Christ, over which Christ is the head (Eph. 1:22-23).
Secondarily, the church also refers to a local congregation of believers. While the scriptures tell us
that there is only one true church, yet it is made up of many individual churches. Most of the Apostle
Paul's epistles were written to the local churches such as at Rome, Corinth, Thessalonica, Ephesus,
Philippi, Galatia, and Colosse, and he makes mention of many other churches which had been
established in various cities at that time.
It is important to understand that a church is not a building, although many people frequently use
that term to describe the facility built for the use of the church. History shows the New Testament
church met primarily in private homes . Christian cathedrals or tabernacles designed specifically for
believers to gather for worship did not exist until almost three centuries after the church got started.
Unlike the Old Testament temple, in which the presence of God habitated, the new covenant of Jesus
Christ made every believer a temple of the Holy Spirit. "Do you not know that you are the temple of God
and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?" (1 Cor. 3:16).
The church is often viewed as an organization, but is actually more of an "organism." It is the
united fellowship of all Christians with their God. The wondrous union of Christ's Spirit indwelling the
hearts of all true believers. What is the church? It's the bady of Christ.
This article is copyrighted Â© by Dale A. Robbins, 1995, and is a publication of Victorious Publications, Grass Valley, CA 95949.
The chuch as a body of believers.The Christian church, what is it?. The church is the body of Christ. Jesus is the head, we are His body.