The Word Church and its Use

TEXTMatt. 16:13-18

INTRODUCTION:

A.      STRANGE CONCEPT OF THE CHURCH - LIKE SUPERMARKETS OR

          COFFEE SHOPS COMPETING FOR BUSINESS.

          1.       No matter whose price is lowest, you still get to eat.

          2.       No matter which church demands most, we are all going in the same direction.

B.      WHAT DOES THE WORD "CHURCH" REALLY MEAN?  IN THE BIBLE?

I.      THE WORD "CHURCH."

A.      GREEK, ekklesia, "From ek, OUT OF, AND klesis, A CALLING.  115 TIMES.

          1.       Applied by Greeks to any body called out from their businesses or homes.

                   a.       To discuss the affairs of state( Acts 19:39 ).

                   b.       A riotous mob( Acts 19:32-42 ).

          2.       Used of Israel( Acts 7:38 ) and in the LXX( Judges 21:8;  1 Chron. 29:1 ).

          3.       Used by the Lord of his body of redeemed people( Matt. 16:18 ).

B.      THE WORD AS IT IS APPLIED TO THE LORD'S PEOPLE.

          1.       General sense - all the saved( Matt. 16:18;  Eph. 1:22;  5:25;  Col. 1:18 ).

          2.       Local congregations( 1 Cor. 1:2;  Rom. 16:4-5;  Col. 4:15;  Rev. 2-3 ).

          3.       Formal gatherings of the redeemed for worship( 1 Cor. 11:18;  14:28-35 ).

II.     THE EXPRESSION "THE CALLED OUT" DESIGNATES THE

        RELATION OF THE CHURCH TO THE WORLD AND GOD.

A.      THOSE WHO ARE IN THE CHURCH ARE CALLED

          1.       Out of darkness( 1 Pet. 2:9 )---------------\

          2.       Into his marvelous light( 1 Pet. 2:9 )                    Col. 1:13.  Into his kingdom.

          3.       Into fellowship with God and Christ( 1 John 1:6-7;  1 Cor. 1:9 ).

B.      HOW ARE WE CALLED?

          1.       By God( 1 Pet. 5:10;  2 Tim. 1:8-9 ).

          2.       God calls through the gospel( 2 Thess. 2:14 ).

C.      ALL THOSE CALLED OUT, BELONGING TO CHRIST CONSTITUTE THE

          BODY, THE CHURCH.

          1.       We were called in "one body"( Col. 3:15 ).

          2.       There is but one body to be called into( Eph. 4:4 ).

          3.       What is this body?( Eph. 1:22-23;  Col. 1:18 ).

          4.       One body, one church belonging to Jesus( Matt. 16:18 ).

          5.       What about John 15:5 and 1 Cor. 12:12-14?

III.    IS IT NECESSARY TO BE IN THE CHURCH TO BE SAVED?

A.      OF WHAT IS JESUS THE SAVIOR?( Eph. 5:23 ).

B.      BY WHAT ARE WE SAVED FROM OUR SINS?( 1 Pet. 1:18-19 ).

C.      THE CHURCH IS ALSO BOUGHT WITH HIS BLOOD( Acts 20:28 ).

D.      THOSE WHO ARE SAVED CONSTITUTE THE CHURCH( Acts 2:47 ).

CONCLUSIONTHE ekklesia, GOD'S CHURCH.

A.      WE WANT TO BE A PART OF THE CHURCH.

B.      HOW DOES ONE BECOME A MEMBER OF THE CHURCH?

          1.       By obeying that by which we are called( 2 Thess. 2:14;  Mark 16:15-16 ).

          2.       By being baptized into the "one body"( 1 Cor. 12:13 ).