Jesus Started It!

28 07 2008

          Have you ever wondered exactly when the church began? Many believe it started on the Day of Pentecost (as recorded in the second chapter of the book of Acts) when the Holy Spirit dramatically fell upon the assembled disciples (Acts 2:1-4). A few see it starting much later in Acts (some in chapter nine, some in chapter thirteen, and still others in chapter twenty-eight). All of these views would place the beginning of the church sometime after Christ’s departure to heaven.

          The word “church” is the translation of “ekklesia,” a compound Greek word (from ek, “out of,” and klesis, “a calling”) that literally means a called out assembly.

          We believe that Jesus – not Peter, Paul, nor any other person or group – established His church during His personal ministry when He called out individuals to assemble under His direction. Thus we believe the church began with the first called out ones (Matthew 4:18-23).

          This newborn church witnessed, preached, baptized converts, ministered to the needy, observed the Lord’s Supper, and even discussed how to handle problems in the church (Matthew 18:15-17).  

          Before He went away, Jesus comforted His church with a promise that He would pray to the Father who would send them the Holy Spirit, who would be with them and in them forever (John 14:15-17). He also charged them to tarry in Jerusalem until they were endued (empowered) from on high and then they were to begin their mandated mission to all nations (Matthew 28:18-20).

          After Christ’s ascension but before the outpouring of the Holy Spirit the church even had a business meeting and selected Matthias to replace Judas Iscariot (Acts 1:15-26).  

          The church is the most blessed institution on the earth, the only one built by the Lord Jesus Christ, the only one He promised to bless, and the only one He said the gates of hell would never be able to prevail against (Matthew 16:18).  

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