1. Welcome to Baptist Board, a friendly forum to discuss the Baptist Faith in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to all the features that our community has to offer.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

Universal or Local?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by garpier, Jun 29, 2005.

  1. StefanM

    StefanM Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,279
    Likes Received:
    194
    Faith:
    Baptist
    By the same logic, there is no such thing as the Trinity, either.
     
  2. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    8,910
    Likes Received:
    968
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Interesting ideas Pastor!
    I’ve always been taught that there is a “universal church” and have never read the passage from a different point of view.
    It reminds me of the BLACK AND WHITE PICTURE of a young woman that when changing one’s perspective turns into a picture of an old hag.

    I can see your point after further review.
    I’d like to study this out further.

    Can you suggest literature from your point of view that I may study further?

    Rob
     
  3. garpier

    garpier New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2000
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    0
    There are a couple of small booklets written by A.J. Kirkland; Upon This Rock, and The New Testament church: A local body. Also a small booklet by I. K. Cross titled The Church: Local or Universal? All of the above were published by Bogard Press, Texarkana a number of years ago. I don't know if they are still available.

    Thomas Strouse has written I Will Build My Church. It is available from Emmanuel Baptist Theological Press 296 New Britain Ave. Newington CT 06111.

    Also the newly published Emmanuel Baptist Theological Journal has an article entitled, The Local Church, Another Church and the Parachurch. It is available at the same address.
     
  4. Bro. James

    Bro. James Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,130
    Likes Received:
    59
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Some of the above referenced books may be found at: abaptist.org. Check out the bookstore.

    My copies were printed in the 1970's.

    Bro. James
     
  5. exscentric

    exscentric Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    May 24, 2004
    Messages:
    4,365
    Likes Received:
    47
    Just a question, most "local church only" folks also hold to successionism in baptism. So, if there is only the local church what difference does it make who is baptized by whom since each local church is an entity unto itself?
     
  6. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    22,678
    Likes Received:
    64
    Which local church is the Bride of Jesus Christ or is He a polygamist as the Mormons would claim?

    John 3:28, 29
    28. Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him.
    29. He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.


    Ephesians 5:25-32
    25. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
    26. That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
    27. That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
    28. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
    29. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:
    30. For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
    31. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
    32. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.[/i]

    Revelation 3:12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

    Revelation 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
     
  7. TCassidy

    TCassidy Late-Administator Emeritus
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Messages:
    20,082
    Likes Received:
    3,489
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Wrong! The Trinue nature of the Godhead is all through the scriptures.
     
  8. TCassidy

    TCassidy Late-Administator Emeritus
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Messages:
    20,082
    Likes Received:
    3,489
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Any faithful church is His Bride. Remember the first rule of understanding, "never try to make a metaphor walk on all fours." "Bride" is a metaphor meaning "faithful." Every local church should be faithful to her Lord.
     
  9. exscentric

    exscentric Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    May 24, 2004
    Messages:
    4,365
    Likes Received:
    47
    "Any faithful church is His Bride. Remember the first rule of understanding, "never try to make a metaphor walk on all fours." "Bride" is a metaphor meaning "faithful." Every local church should be faithful to her Lord."

    Wellllll now, seems that making "bride" mean "faithful" rather than "bride" is kind of like maken a metaphor walk on all eights!
     
  10. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    8,910
    Likes Received:
    968
    Faith:
    Baptist
    OldRegular brings up a very good point.
    The idea that Christ is married to many seems antithetical and abhorrent to the concept of faithful purity in marriage.

    Let me add a definition of the “universal church”:
    All those who have been born of the Spirit of God and have been baptized into the Body of Christ.
    (Perhaps by this definition alone you could identify me as a dispensationalist).

    Studying this through it seems that Paul uses the word ‘church’ (ekklesia) in at least two or more distinct ways.

    In 1 Corinthians 16:9 Paul clearly uses the word as you suggest, a local assembly.
    This is also clearly the meaning in 2 Corinthians 8:1.
    But Paul also uses the word in another sense. This can be seen particularly in instances where it appears that the term should have been made plural. (e.g. Acts 9:31)
    [It’s interesting to note that there are textual variants where the word ‘church’ has been pluralized].
    Also see 1 Corinthians 12:28; 1 Corinthians 15:9.

    In Philippians 3:6, and Galatians 1:13, Paul describes himself as “a persecutor of the church”. This could be read as ‘a persecutor of the church [in Jerusalem]’but it is better understood in a more general, collective, (or universal) way. (“…I used to persecute the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it;” [Gal. 1:13 NAS]) In these instances the word church encompasses more than one local body.

    In yet another instance, Paul uses the word in a more collective sense. Ephesians1:18-23
    It could be argued that the church refers to the local body but the word church is surrounded by superlatives; “all things,” “all rule and authority and power and dominion,” “every name,” ‘…even in ages to come…, “the fullness of Him who fills all in all,” AND the word once again is in the singular tense. IMHO this once again is an instance of the collective or ‘universal’ church.

    The idea of a universal group covering all believers is not a concept foreign to Scripture. (Matt. 16:18 ; 1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 5:25; Col. 1:18; Gal. 3:28; Eph. 4:4)

    Rob

    [ July 04, 2005, 12:00 PM: Message edited by: Deacon ]
     
  11. StefanM

    StefanM Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,279
    Likes Received:
    194
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Wrong! The Trinue nature of the Godhead is all through the scriptures. </font>[/QUOTE]There is "no such language" of the Trinity. It's implied, but it's not explicit.
     
  12. dh1948

    dh1948 Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Messages:
    550
    Likes Received:
    1
    When we get to heaven, do you suppose the Lord will make any distinction between those who believed in local church only and those who believed the church was also universal?
     
  13. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    22,678
    Likes Received:
    64
    I will ask you the same question I used to ask my children when they made outlandish statements. Where is it written that, in this instance,
     
  14. garpier

    garpier New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2000
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    0
    Would someone be so kind as to show where the local church is called a "bride." There is in Ephesians the illustration of the husband and wife as the way in which Christ loves the church. In Revelation where the Bride of Christ is mentioned, it is not in connection with a local church. The word for church as you know is ekklesia which was understood in the first century as a local visible assembly called out for a specific purpose. There is no usage of ekklesia in the New Testament which cannot be understood in this way.
     
  15. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    22,678
    Likes Received:
    64
    I hope you are not holding your breath garpier.
     
  16. garpier

    garpier New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2000
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    0
    Holding my breath? No, I don't look good with a blue face. :eek:
     
  17. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    22,678
    Likes Received:
    64
    :D :D [​IMG] :D :D
     
  18. Bro. James

    Bro. James Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,130
    Likes Received:
    59
    Faith:
    Baptist
    "Universal Church", visible, is an early departure from the scriptural pattern. This idea is still prevalent among those from Rome and Constantinople.

    "Universal Church", invisible, is a "reformed" version promulgated by Luther and others.

    "Local, visible, Assembly is the more ancient teaching of scripture. It predates the Reformation and Constantine's Council of Nicea.

    "Local" also is surviving the "gates of hell". She is the "Bride of Christ", without spot, blemish, or any such thing. She remains undefiled. She is kept by the Bridegroom through the Holy Spirit. It is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit which makes a true assembly--the rest are worshipping in vain. See I Cor. 3--"wood, hay and stubble..."

    Selah,

    Bro. James
     
  19. Bro. James:

    If, as you wrote, "She [the local church] is the "Bride of Christ", without spot, blemish, or any such thing." then WHICH local church is it? Is it the Missionary Baptist Church in Prineville, Oregon; or is it the Bible Baptist Church in Mountain Home, Idaho; or is it the Lighthouse Baptist Church in San Diego, California; or is it Grace Baptist Church in Jacksonville, NC; or...well...I think you get the idea. If the Bride of Christ is not ALL CHRISTIANS corporately, then you have a very difficult problem in all practicality.
     
  20. TCassidty wrote: "Any faithful church is His Bride. Remember the first rule of understanding, "never try to make a metaphor walk on all fours." "Bride" is a metaphor meaning "faithful." Every local church should be faithful to her Lord."

    Well, once we think we have license to make a metaphor out of words anywhere we choose, the Bible becomes clay in our hands rather we clay in God's hands. If we were to be CONSISTENT in our hermeneutics using TCassidy's metaphor license, then Jesus is a bride too, because His name is "Faithful" Revelation 19:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

    And Antipas was a bride too: Revelation 2:13 "... even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth."

    Such interpretations is very Origin-est.
     
Loading...