This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Can I be a Christian and not belong to a local church? How is the Church structured like it is? Can I serve in my local Church?
The People Of God - Not The Person
Jesus calls us to “personal” faith in him, but he calls us into his community. The great commission is a call to community: And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20 When we are saved from sin, we have peace with God and one another. see Ephesians 2:11-22 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, Ephesians 2:19-20 We are called to love one another as disciples. Here are a few examples of that call: John 13:35 & 15:12, Romans 12:10, Ephesians 4:2 Jesus and the Church are likened to a building and foundation (Eph 2:19-20, 1 Corinthians 3:10-16), a Husband and Wife (Eph 5:22-23 & Rev 19:6-9) and Head and Body (Eph 1:22-23). You can’t separate these examples, just as you cannot separate loving Jesus and loving the Church.
Observing The Church in Acts
The book of Acts follows on from the Gospel of Luke. In it we see the continued work/acts of Jesus through his body, the Church. (a) They belonged to God and to one another. And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. Acts 2:42-45 Also Acts 4:32-37 (b) Everyone served the preaching of the gospel and in their gifts. Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty. But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.” Acts 6:3-4 We see various other examples of service in Acts & “Body Ministry” is outlined in Romans 12:3-8, 1Cor 12:12-30 (c) We see real community in Acts. In the passages outlined above, but here in chapter 11: 26 See also 1 Cor 12:13, Galatians 3:26-28, Colossians 3:11 & Revelation 7:9-10.
Week 2. Loving Godʼs People.
Application: The ʻone-anotherʼ Texts
Look at the phrase one another as it’s used in the New Testament and consider your place in the local church: John 13:34 - "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” Romans 12:10 & 16 “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” “Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.” Romans 13:8 [ Love, for the Day is Near ] “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulﬁlled the law.” 1 Corinthians 1:10 [ Divisions in the Church ] “I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought.” Galatians 5:13 “You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature ; rather, serve one another in love.” Ephesians 4:2 & 32 & 5:11 :”Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord,” “Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” Colossians 3:13 & 3:16 “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.” 1 Thess 5:11 “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up...” Hebrews 3:13 & 10:24-25 “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up.” “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” James 4:11 “Brothers, do not slander one another.” 1 Peter 1:22, 3:8, 4:9, & 5:5 “Now that you have puriﬁed yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart.” “Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.” “Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.” “Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble." 1 John 1:7, 3:11, 4:7, 4:11, & 4:12 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, puriﬁes us from all sin.” “This is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another.” “And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us.” “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.” “Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” “No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”