I Believe: The Church

The body, family, and bride of Christ.

The Church

The Church is the family of God and the building, body, and espoused bride of Christ. It is a spiritual organism comprised of all who have been born again, having personally appropriated the gospel and become genuine followers of the Lord Jesus Christ. The universal Church is manifest in local churches of which Christ is the only Head.

The Church exists for the worship of the Triune God to be experienced, furthered, and proclaimed in and through the community of the redeemed, to the ends of the earth. That purpose primarily expresses itself in three ways: the nurture and discipleship of Christians, the proclamation of the gospel in word and deed, and merciful service for those in need. That work includes going, baptizing, and teaching to observe all that Christ and God’s Word have commanded, in the power of the Holy Spirit. Merciful service to the poor, oppressed, and marginalized demonstrates the gospel through deeds and is integral to the mission and purpose of the Church.

Upon conversion, those newly redeemed are to participate in a local church. After an appropriate time of initial discipleship, they should be baptized by immersion.

Distinguishing features of the church include her gospel origin and message, sacred ordinances, discipline, mission, love for God, and the love of her membership for one another and the world. I affirm the autonomy of the local church operating under the Lordship of Jesus Christ who is the Head of the church, served and led by a plurality of biblically qualified elders and deacons. I affirm the sacred ordinances of believer’s baptism and the Lord’s Supper as biblical means of testimony for the Church.

Key Texts: Ephesians 1:22-23, 5:25-27, 1 Corinthians 12:12-14, 2 Corinthians 11:2, Acts 13:1-4, Acts 20:28, 1 Corinthians 5:4-7, 13, 1 Peter 5:1-4, Matthew 28:19-20, Acts 2:41-42 and 18:8, 1 Corinthians 11:24-26, Colossians 1:28, Ephesians 4:12-13, Acts 1:8, 2 Corinthians 8:3-4, 1 John 3:17, Luke 6:35-37, James 1:27

This series lays out my understanding of Scripture’s teaching on primary theological topics. My complete doctrinal statement is available here.

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