The post, The Church can not be separated from the State sparked a few interesting reader comments. Seems I “mis-wrote” (See footnote 1 below) my thoughts. So here’s a stab at clarification.
Several comments seemed to suggest I didn’t adequately explain what I believe THE Church is. If you look up “church” in your Merriam Webster you’ll find a plethora (that’s a fancy word for “bunch”) of definitions. The word came from the Middle English word, catholik, meaning universally accepted. That does not mean the Catholic Church of today is universally accepted as the church Jesus founded.
In Matthew 16 when Jesus asked Peter who he thought Jesus was, Peter replied,
“You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
“Blessed are you, Simon Bar Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it.”
“This rock” God revealed to me, was not Peter, but the revelation from God to Simon declaring that Jesus was the Christ, the Son of the living God. In other words, Christ would build His church upon those to whom God revealed Christ’s true identity, the Son of the living God. From this passage we see Christ is the builder and founder of His New Testament church. He calls this church His church. Christ founded His church and He is the head of His church. Any church founded by someone other than Christ is not Christ’s church.
All those who have believed and accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior are brothers and sisters in Christ and make up the body of Christ, the pure, spotless Bride of Christ. His church.
As God works His plan in us and through us daily we must reckon with Colossians 1:16
For in Him all things were created, things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities. All things were created through Him and for Him. Colossians 1:16.
How do you like my new word--"mis-wrote"? If politicians can make up a stupid word such as "misspoke" when they're trying to walk back something stupid they said or flat out lied, I can "mis-write" something I wrote that caused readers confusion, can't I?
3 thoughts on “How do we know the one true Church?”
“Church” — yet another example of a mis-translation to benefit the translators. As you know, the Greek in Matt. 16:18 we read as “church” is derived from two words combining “ek” and “klesis,” literally “the out-called [ones]” — ergo our word ecclesiastical, referring to all things churchy. So, in its most original sense, as identified by Jesus and later Paul, the church is not the building, or the pastor and the staff or programs, liturgies or land. It is: people.
Spot on, Michael. People. Exactly!
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Now that makes more sense to me. I still don’t agree, as I believe that man’s laws while based biblically (in some instances) should not impinge upon those who do not believe the same things.
Let me give you a ridiculous example. There is a town in Texas where I previously lived where it was illegal to dance. yes, dance. The town mayor was of a denomination that had decided dancing was the “devil’s work”, and his city council all went to the same church.
Now I know you said in people who have accepted Christ. All these people had “accepted Christ”. There were other people impacted by the law they created though that impinged upon their worship practices and lives. They danced in church, they danced at home and they wanted to dance in other venues as well. If the council had been of any other denomination that law would not have been passed.
Then there are the various laws or regulations that are designed by good “Christians” that are designed specifically to deny civil rights to various groups. Such as the Muslim “ban” or “defense of marriage act” that said marriage is man and woman only. There are the voting laws that are currently being proposed, again by people who are “Christian” designed to make it far more difficult for the poor and people of color to vote.
There are many Christians who live for and through Christ. They just don’t seem to be in a position to create or pass laws in this country. And until the people who profess Christianity and walk in His steps become the ones in power we will never see the utopian world that is implied in your writing.
But that is what makes life so wonderful I think..that there are people out there (like you and me) that can discuss things that others are terrified to discuss and walk away friends.