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What is a Church? (10)

In the previous section the apostle had condemned factions within the church at Corinth and closed with a long admonition to follow his example in avoiding such things. He had stated, "Let no one glory in men," ( 3: 21 ) "And you are Christs and Christ is Gods" ( 3: 23 ), and also, "For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you…

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What is a church? (9): The Corinthian church (1)

The first letter Paul wrote to the Corinthian church is divisible into two distinct parts. In the first, the apostle addresses some divisive issues which were having an effect on unity there. He also addressed particular questions that were put forth in some way to him for his judgment. In the second part of the letter (beginning in chapter 11 and verse 2) he addresses the purpose of worship, the demeanor Christians should maintain during the assemblies on the Lords…

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What is a church? (8)

I had taken a hiatus from this series for some period of time as other issues were pressing. Also, as this had become an exhaustive survey it was then clear that soon it would require additional work. The most interesting and comprehensive studies on what constitutes a church are just now before us as we begin to look into the first letter to the church at Corinth. So now being some better prepared, well look briefly at the concluding remarks…

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What is a church? (7)

The next usage of the words translated for church and assembly appears in Acts 21 and verse 22. In this instance, Paul has reached Jerusalem and has just completed his explanation of the situations that he had come upon as he had been teaching to the non-Jews during his last tour through the churches in Asia and Macedonia. The instructions are for him to offer that he is following the traditions of the Jews so that any arising trouble might…

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What is a church? (6)

The next few mentions of the word for church or assembly are found in Acts 16:6 and 18:22 and they are incidental to noting the growing strength and spread of the gospel through the churches. But following these is a record worthy of more particular note. In Acts chapter 20 beginning with verse 17 is the text of Pauls remarks to the Ephesian elders as he prepared to leave for Jerusalem. Gathered at Miletus, they came to hear Pauls parting…

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What is a Church? (5)

I had not intended an exhaustive study when I started this, but to this point that is what has resulted. The plan from this point - as the series is moving into passages where the general topic is the church and its particulars, the readings will become more extended; and as such I will likely forego printing the longer readings in the body, relying instead upon your interest to pursue them on your own. But I will stay with the…

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What is a Church? (4)

Were about to enter the hazy area in examinations of this type where we cannot see far enough ahead into all the information needed to identify particulars because some of what we require is not yet in sight and revealed in this type of chronological study. So in this look at where and how the words church or assembly are used in the NT, we are about to find that not everything we need may be within easy reach using…

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What is a Church? (3)

Continuing with the look into how the word church is used in the New Testament and at what constitutes a church, the next usage in order is found in Acts 5: 11 - "So great fear came upon all the church and upon all who heard these things." The great fear imposed was in result to the stir following the deaths of Ananias and his wife Sapphira, when they had sought to deceive God. Following this, the next occurrence is…

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What is a Church? (2)

In the last installment I had said that in this second part we would examine the form and function of the church. "So what should a church be, and what should it not be? What is the beginning and form of the church that Christ built? What exactly constitutes a church, and its form and function as it is noted in the New Testament." Well deal with these in order taking up the textual use of the words. But we…

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