What Makes A GOOD N.T. Local Church?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Gregory Perry Sr., Feb 25, 2013.

  1. Gregory Perry Sr.

    Gregory Perry Sr.
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    Or more precisely...what is the CORRECT Biblical MODEL for a local New Testament Church? Please provide scripture.
    I know some will look to the book of Acts to define this but we must be cautious when doing that since Acts was primarily a transitional time from the "dispensation" of Law to the dispensation of Grace and the times of the gentiles which we are currently in (and I believe rapidly approaching the end of....but THAT is another thread:flower:). In any case...I think the discussion needs to dig deeper and move beyond the early beginnings of the NT church (as compelling as they may have been) in order to truly define the correct characteristics of a good,vibrant, N.T. church.

    Anyway...what do ya'll think?

    bro.Greg:saint:
     
  2. Luke2427

    Luke2427
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    It should be a place that longs to and aims to make as many people as possible into the image of Christ.

    In other words, it should be focused on the commission God gave to man in both the first book of the Old Testament and the first book of the New Testament- to make disciples all over the world- to fill the earth with the image of Christ.

    This is foundational. This is the most important thing the church does.

    A church not SUPREMELY focused on this is little more than a social club where people go to feel better about themselves and I think we have an OVERABUNDANCE of these churches in this culture.
     
  3. MB

    MB
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    The only church I'm aware of in scripture I most admire is found in Revelation. It seems that Philadelphia is the name of the city where the church was and the only one the Lord had nothing against in Revelations Jhon does not provide a name. Although Paul called many churches the Church of God and then he would name the city or town it was in. This name already has baggage of a group I do not agree with. The only thing I could think of is "The Churches Gathering place". Though a little long it is what it is. It's not the church it self but the gathering place.
    MB
     
  4. saturneptune

    saturneptune
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    I totally agree and would like to add a few comments. Our number one purpose for being here IMO is three fold, to tell a lost world about the Gospel, to worship and praise the Lord, and to help church members become more like Jesus Christ each day.

    To focus in on the model of a NT church, we have three models to choose from compared to Scripture. The RCC uses the visible, universal church model. The Protestants use the invisible, universal church model, and the Baptists use the local, visible church. By reading of the churches in Acts, it is obvious that number three is what is used to carry out God's work on this earth.

    Narrowing it down more, the two ordinances, Baptism and the Lord's Supper, are carried out under the authority of the local church as Scripture says. Baptism is a public profession of faith, after salvation. It has no regenerative power, and the mode is immersion, just as the Lord was baptised. It occurs after salvation as commanded by the Lord. We observe the Lord's Supper from time to time in rememberence of what the Lord did for us on the cross. The bread symbolizes His broken body, and the wine (grape juice, another thread) symbolizes His blood shed for our sins. As some other denominations believe, it is not a magic act that transforms the elements, or in the case of Baptism, there is nothing in the water that saves. Groups who believe either are not NT churches.

    Groups that believe in a loss of salvation, apart from the clear teachings of Scripture, are not NT churches. Any denomination that adds anything to the Gospel beyond Eph 2:8-9 are not NT churches. Denominations that have more emphasis on rules to memorize instead of obeying the Lord through the power of the Holy Spirit are not NT churches.

    Churches that, as Luke said, (the poster not the author of Luke) act like social clubs or circus acts are not NT churches. The total focus of the NT church is Jesus Christ. I would add that churches that allow and tolerate gossip are not NT churches, as this garbage does nothing but harm the cause of Christ.

    Groups that believe either that missions, evangelism, and visitation and the like are not necessary because of election are not NT churches. Churches that deny the sovereignty of God and make man the master of his or her destiny are not NT churches.

    I could go on but those are the major points. The so called universal church is a useless entity on earth. It only has relevance in eternity. The universal church never sent out a missionary, helped the poor, administered an ordinance, preached a sermon, collected an offering, encouraged anyone, etc.
     
  5. preachinjesus

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    I don't think there is a singular biblical church polity. You can find good evidences of all the major forms of church government in the NT plus a couple of others possibly (more organic types.) However, I do believe there are some key elements which go into the foundation of what makes a true NT church:

    - the Gospel is preached
    - the saints (Christians) are equipped
    - fellowship is had
    - those in need are cared for
    - new believers are baptized
    - the offices are maintained
    - the ordinances are administered

    That is what constitutes a NT church according to the NT. :)
     
  6. Thomas Helwys

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    So, you exclude the General Baptists and Freewill Baptists from being NT churches?
     
  7. Earth Wind and Fire

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  8. Tom Butler

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    Matthew 28:19-20 and Mark 16:15 provide a pretty good framework for defining an NT church, but the book of Acts fleshes it out.

    Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.
    Go ye, therefore and make disciples of all nations...
    The gospel is preached. A good translation of the Greek is "Going, therefore, preach the gospel." Or, "As you're going., make disciples." It's not just talking about mission trips, it's talking about part of going about our daily lives.

    Baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit...
    Whoever believes and is baptized...
    New believers are baptized.

    Teaching them.....
    The saints are equipped

    To observe all things I've commanded you
    Ordinances are administered, fellowship is had, needs are cared for

    Of course, Jesus is the "Shepherd and Bishop of our souls." He set the standard for the office of pastor. Deacons came later in response to a real need.

    Corporate worship is implicit in the gospels and explicit in everything else.
     
  9. saturneptune

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    Yes, because Free Will Baptists believe one can lose their salvation.

    John 1:11-13: He came to his own, and his own did not receive im. But as many as received him, to them he gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in his name; who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

    John 5:24: Verily, verily I say unto you, he that hears my word, and believes on him that sent me, has everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

    John 6:39-40, 44: And this is the Father's will which has sent me, that of all which he has given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which sees the Son, and believes on him, may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day... No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.

    John 10:27-30: My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. I and the Father are one.

    Romans 8:29-30: For whom he foreknew, he also foreordained to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers; and whom he foreordained, them he also called; and whom he called, them he also justified; and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

    Ephesians 1:4,5,11: For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight, having foreordained us unto adoption as sons through Jesus Christ unto himself, according to the good pleasure of his will...

    1 John 3:14: We know that we have passed from death unto life.

    1 John 5:13: These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may beleive on the name of the Son of God.

    Also, I would include Primitive Baptists, as they ignore the Great Commission. Whether or not you believe in Doctrines of Grace, we are commanded by the Lord to tell the Good News.

    I want to make one thing clear, the op is about the definition of NT churches. This in no way means that members of these churches are not saved. There are saved primitives, general, southern, and free will Baptists. There are saved members of all Protestant denominations. There are saved Catholics despite their church.
     
  10. convicted1

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    What makes A GOOD N.T. Church???



    ME!!!! :saint::tongue3::laugh::wavey:
     
  11. convicted1

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    Channelling your "inner Richard Nixon", I see.......:laugh: :love2: :tongue3: :flower:
     
  12. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
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    There is always Good, then Better, then Best!
     
  13. saturneptune

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    Now, how could be so cruel to Richard Nixon? After he was unjustly run out of office, he tried to redeem himself by going to cullinary school. To his chagrin, he failed the course. When asked by a reporter why, he said "I am not a cook."
     
  14. preachinjesus

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    It is erroneous to exclude certain groups purely on the grounds of a secondary doctrinal issue. If there is rooms for exclusion based on doctrine it must be over some of the essential doctrinal marks laid out in the NT.

    If we start splitting hairs over relatively minor doctrinal issues the church we'll have one or two other churches in the world and never accomplish the Kingdom work God has called us to do.
     
  15. Greektim

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    A foundation rooted in the OT and its continuity with Israel (kinda like the early church)
     
  16. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
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    Ha Ha Ha..... you know SN, this is amusing to me as an older guy but I seriously wonder if the younger generation would understand the joke! Was funny though:laugh:
     
  17. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
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    so you are taking it from that hermeneutic.....reading from left cover to right cover?!? Good for you :thumbs: :godisgood:
     
  18. Thomas Helwys

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    :laugh: :laugh:
     
  19. Thomas Helwys

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    Thanks for your explanation. I differ, but that's what makes for good Baptists. :)
     
  20. convicted1

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    While Nixon was in the oval office, he was having urinary trouble. The night before he was to have went to the doctor, he kneeled down at the foot of his bed and prayed, "Lord, let me make this one thing perfectly clear". I know, I know.....boo boo hiss hiss.........oh brother......:laugh: :tonofbricks:
     

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