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The true meaning of “church”

By   /   January 28, 2012  /   Comments Off





Everybody needs a church. Yes, even believers. The word “church” comes from the Greek word “eclessia.” That means “gathering.” We are social beings.

There are gatherings of believers which we of course refer to as “churches.” The problem with the term “church” is that it has become synonymous with a building where believers meet. A “church” as was referred to in the New Testament was anywhere there was a gathering of believers. That was usually in peoples’ homes. “Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus. . . Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Greet my beloved Epaenetus, who is the first fruits of Achaia to Christ.”(Romans 16:3,5)

Anywhere two or more are gathered in the name of Jesus, you have a church, not necessarily organized religion. Jesus said, “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”(Matthew 18:20) Many believers gather every Sunday as a church in a temple they call a “church.” I am one of them. Even the New Testament believers met in a temple when they could.

“So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart. Praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.”(Acts 2:46-47) Remembering the thing we used to do as children with our hands, it should sound like this: “Here’s the temple, here’s the steeple, look inside and find the church.”

Those who have not been “saved” according to the above verse may attend a different church. We all need a church. Most of us will seek one out. “Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name. You wanna be where you can see, our troubles are all the same, you wanna be where everybody knows your name. You wanna go where people know, people are all the same, you wanna be where everybody knows your name.” Cheers!

The difference in the world’s church and the Eclessia of believers is the Spirit of the living God. “And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.” Without the fellowship of our Redeemer, the One Who wants to save us and lead us to eternal life, any eclessia is ultimately an exercise in futility. The black whole remains. Billy Joel writes of the bar atmosphere in The Piano Man: “And the waitress is practicing politics as the businessman slowly gets stoned. Yes, they’re sharing a drink they call loneliness but it’s better than drinking alone.”

If you go to an eclessia of believers, rejoice in the fellowship! If you don’t, you need to. You need the Savior. Believers need to get together and worship Him no matter what form that fellowship may take. Ask Jesus to lead you to an eclessia which would meet your deepest need. Firstly, ask Him to be your Savior. Believe!


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