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The Work Of The Church

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The Work Of The Church
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Two of the ways the word church is used in the scriptures:

1) Church is used to refer to all of the saved (Matt. 16:18; Eph. 4:4; Eph. 5:23)-- the "universal church."

Christ is the head of the universal church and its members are subject to His word (Eph. 1:22,23). Beyond this there is no organization to the universal church-- no earthly head, no ecclesiastical synod, or convention.

The universal church does no work as a collective body.

2) Church is used to refer to the saved in a given locality (Acts 8:1; Acts 13:1; 1 Cor. 1:2)-- "the local church."

In the local church there is organization-- bishops, deacons, and saints (Phil. 1:1).

Each local church is independent in existence from other churches, equal, that is not subservient to another church or the eldership of another church, and autonomous, or self-governing, that is, one local church can not rule over or make decisions for another local church (Acts 14:23; 1 Peter 5:2).

"…The organization of the New Testament church is simple, not complex. It is the local church with elders, deacons and members. No other organization is known in the New Testament. The local church with elders and deacons is a complete and perfect organization through which to do everything God has commanded the church as such to do. It therefore follows that any organization larger, or smaller than the local church designed to do the work of the church, is an infringement upon the divine arrangement and is unscriptural." (Foy E. Wallace, Jr., Gospel Advocate, Sept.28, 1938).

"God gave no organization to the 'church universal.'…No super-organization or centralized agency has ever been provided by the Lord for inter-congregational action. There were no inter-congregational alliances ever authorized. No group of elders ever became, by New Testament authority, 'brotherhood elders.' …no church was ever set aside by divine authority to become a brotherhood agency through which all churches could do a work to which all were equally related. Each congregation maintained it independence. The only organization ever authorized by through which the church is to function is the local congregation" (W. Curtis Porter, The Gospel Guardian, May 3,10, 1956).

4 Diagrams of organizations and works that are wrong:



Last Updated ( Thursday, 13 October 2011 15:33 )  

What Must I Do To Be Saved?

No question is more important than this. We make many important decisions in life regarding matters such as education, marriage, and occupation. But none is as transcending as that which affects our soul's eternity (Matt. 16:26).

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"Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?"

Luke 9:23-25