New Testament Church
THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH
Jesus established an eternal truth to his disciples as he taught them that he would build his church ‘upon this rock…. And the gates of hell shall not prevail against it’. [Matt 16:18] The apostle Paul further taught in Ephesians 2:20 that his church was ‘built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone’. This scripture certainly eliminates any thought of the Church being built on Peter. True enough, Cephas does mean a stone, but he was just one of the stones the Church was built on and not the ‘chief cornerstone.’
Moses’ tabernacle and the temple at Jerusalem were a type of the Church. [Exodus 25:8; 1Kings 8:10; Zech 6:12-13]. We also have reference to the Old Testament building representing the Church in Hebrew 9:1-14; 1Timothy 3:5; 1 Peter 2:5; Ephesians 2:20-22.
Salvation is the only means of access into the Church [John 10:9; 1Cor 12:13; John 3:3, 1:12-13; Psalm 87:5-6.]
It is a spiritually organized institution. [1 Cor.12:13, 18] It was born or fully organized on the day of Pentecost in AD 33.
The only means of evil from the church is sin in our life. There is no unsaved people in the Church [ John 10:9-10; Exodus 32:33; Ephesians 5:27.]
God himself named his church [Eph 3:14-15]. The scripture teaches that every local church was simply the church of God. [Gal 1:13; 1 Cor1:2, 11-22; 2 Cor 1:1] As such, no man could join God’s church, but must be saved. [Acts 2:41-47, 5:13-14] God promises to ‘spue thee out of my mouth’ [Rev. 3:16] if we do not met conditions of holiness. God is responsible for ministers taking the oversight of a local congregation. [Acts 20:28] God alone gives out his gifts. [1 Cor. 12:18,28-31]
All members of the Church of God are equal in the sight of God. [1Cor 12:13; Gal. 3:28] the bible teaches no ecclesiastical hierarchy in the church, but rather equality of members. The term bishop in the New Testament does not mean what the sect world has made it to mean. It simply meant ‘overseer’, elder or pastor and not one having oversight over a district of ministers.
Women and men are of equal status in the church of God. [Gal 3:28]