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Featured What kind of 'body' was it, when the saints at Corinth were "baptized into one body"?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Alan Gross, Jun 27, 2023.

  1. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    If the Bible means anything to you, then you probably know that context is important.

    The context of I Corinthians 1:2 tells us that this letter was written,

    "Unto the church of God which is at Corinth..."

    1 Corinthians 3:9 Paul tells "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    "ye are God's building".

    So, Paul calls the church at Corinth, "God's building".

    Next, Paul mentions himself as "a wise master-builder",
    and The Lord Jesus as the only foundation,
    for "the church of God which is at Corinth" "God's building".

    1 Corinthians 3:10 "According to the grace of God which is given unto me,
    as a wise master-builder, I have laid the foundation,
    and another buildeth thereon.
    But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon."


    11 "For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

    These saints that made up "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    which was "
    God's building", having "Jesus Christ" as her "foundation",
    are then referred to as, "the temple of God"

    1 Corinthians 3:16 "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God"

    John Gill says,

    "The apostle having spoken of the saints as God's building,
    of himself as a wise master builder, of Christ as the only foundation,
    and of various doctrines as the materials laid thereon,
    proceeds to observe to this church, and the members of it,
    that they being incorporated together in a Gospel church state,
    were the temple of God;

    "and which was what they could not, or at least ought not, to be ignorant of:
    and they are so-called, in allusion to Solomon's temple;..."

    This "church of God which is at Corinth" and its members,
    being incorporated together in a Gospel church state
    were called
    "God's building" and "the temple of God".

    Paul then makes reference to
    "every church" he taught in;

    I Corinthians 4:
    17; "For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus,
    who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord,
    who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ,
    as I teach everywhere in every church."


    Those churches, plural, would also be particular local assemblies
    of baptized believers that would be called
    "God's buildings" and "the temples of God",
    provided its members were incorporated together in a Gospel church state,
    similar to this church at Corinth, per the New Testament pattern, as Paul is teaching.

    In chapter 6, Paul mentions
    "the church", when he is discussing
    that her various members need to resolve their own issues outside of a court of law


    I Corinthians 7:4
    "If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life,
    set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church."

    con't
     
  2. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    Then, like in the first mention of the word 'church' in verse 1:2,
    "Unto the church of God which is at Corinth..."

    in 10:16,17 we have the first mention of the local church assembly
    being called,
    "the body of Christ" and, "one body",
    using "the bread which we break" and "one bread".

    As a metaphor "one bread", compares the local body of believers, "we being many"
    to the one loaf of unleavened bread
    that is broken into pieces,
    "The bread which we break"
    representing each member, "we being many are one bread"
    during the observance of the church ordinance, in "one body",
    "the body of Christ", of Communion at the Lord's table.

    I Corinthians 10:16 "The cup of blessing which we bless,
    is it not the communion of the blood of Christ?
    The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?

    17 "For we being many are one bread, and one body:
    for we are all partakers of that one bread."

    Speaking of "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    Gill says;
    "they are one bread and body among themselves;

    "as bread consists of many grains of corn
    which have been ground and kneaded together, and make up one loaf;

    "and as the members of a human body are many, and makeup one body;

    "so believers, though they are many, yet are one body, of which Christ is the head;

    "one in union with him and one another, and one in their communion together at the Lord's table;

    "and so the Syriac, Arabic, and Ethiopic versions read,

    "as therefore the bread is one, so we all are one body";
    having communion with Christ and one another:"

    In I Corinthians 11:18; "the church", is spoken of as those local church members
    that
    "come together in the church,..." to observe Communion,
    when they
    "come together therefore into one place"

    18; "For first of all, when ye come together in the church,..."

    20 "When ye come together therefore into one place,
    this is not to eat the Lord's supper."

    and also in 11:33; "Wherefore, my brethren,
    when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another."


    In the 12th chapter of I Corinthians, in the 27th verse, "the body of Christ" is mentioned.

    "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular" 1 Corinthians 12:27.


    This
    "body of Christ", in 1 Corinthians 12:13, has particular "members".

    1 Corinthians 12:27, in the immediate context, explains exactly what is intended
    by the usage of the word,
    "body", in 1 Corinthians 12:13.
    "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body."

    "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular" 1 Corinthians 12:27.


    What is intended by the usage of the word, "body", in 1 Corinthians 12:13 & 27,
    is the same meaning,
    "the body" has
    in the context of the entire body of the chapter, below.


    In verses;
    12 "the body",
    13
    "the body",
    14
    "the body",
    18
    "the body",
    19
    "the body",
    20
    "the body",
    22
    "the body",
    23
    "the body",
    24
    "the body",
    25
    "the body",
    & 27
    "the body" all have the intended meaning
    of a local called-out assembly of baptized believers,
    such as "the church of God which is at Corinth".

    con't
     
  3. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    My additional comments below the verses, for clarity, are in bold black.

    12 "For as the body is one",
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",

    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    which are or would be called,
    "the body of Christ", and "having members in particular".


    "and hath many members, and all the members of that one body,"
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    "being many, are one body:"
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    "so also is Christ.

    13 "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body,"

    "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    "whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free;
    and have been all made to drink into one Spirit."

    14 "For the body is not one member, but many."

    "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    15 "If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand,
    I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?"

    The metaphor of the human body.


    16 "And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye,
    I am not of the body;
    is it therefore not of the body?"
    The metaphor of the human body.


    17 "If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing?
    If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?"

    The metaphor of the human body.

    18 "But now hath God set the members
    every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him."

    "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    19 "And if they were all one member, where were the body?"
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",

    or any other local body of baptized believers,


    20 "But now are they many members, yet but one body."
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",

    or any other local body of baptized believers,


    21 "And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee:
    nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.

    22 "Nay, much more those members of the body,
    which seem to be more feeble, are necessary:"
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",

    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    23 "And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable,
    upon these we bestow more abundant honour;
    and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness."
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",

    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    24 "For our comely parts have no need:
    but God hath tempered the body together,
    having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked:"
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",

    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    25 "That there should be no schism in the body;
    but that the members should have the same care one for another."
    "the church of God which is at Corinth",

    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    26 "And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it;
    or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.

    27 "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular."

    "the church of God which is at Corinth",
    or any other local body of baptized believers,

    The Divine Interpretation to answer the question,
    "What kind of 'body' was it,
    when the saints at Corinth were "baptized into one body"?

    is that those CORINTHIAN saints which God led to be baptized
    into that local church body assembly, for membership AT CORINTH,
    were
    "baptized into one body" 1 Corinthians 12:13, meaning
    "the church of God which is at Corinth" 1 Corinthians 1:2,
    "...the body of Christ, and members in particular." 1 Corinthians 12:27.

    13 "For by one Spirit (which God saved and led to be baptized)
    are we
    (those saved CORINTHIAN saints)
    all baptized (by immersion in water)
    into one body," (that local church body assembly, for membership)
    "the church of God which is at Corinth"
    , 1 Corinthians 1:2

    That is the
    Divine Interpretation spelt out for us in the Word of God.

    If the Bible means anything to you,
    then that is the only available position
    that is presented in God's Words.
     
  4. MrW

    MrW Well-Known Member

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    It’s like a bank or a post office.

    There is one Body of Christ—every Christian. Many branches. Church at Ephesus, at Corinth, etc. All part of the one universal Body of Christ.

    “I am the vine, ye are the branches”.
     
  5. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    This has no relationship, here, to a church, church body,
    or any type of assembly that Jesus Founded,
    as an Organized/ Organism ekklesia, or called-out assembly.

    “I am the vine, ye are the branches”, has no reference
    or Bible teaching regarding a church body of members in particular.

    There is no teaching of this in the Bible.

    There is no teaching of this in the Bible.

    I began the O.P. by saying, "If the Bible means anything to you..."

    There is "one body" Ephesians 4:4a.

    You have indicated that there are two different kinds of bodies,
    1.) the bodies of Christ and "Church at Ephesus, at Corinth, etc."
    and 2.) one universal Body of Christ.

    2 does not equal "one".

    There is one kind of body, which is a local called-out church assembly
    of the kind that Jesus built.

    You can't have two kinds of bodies,
    when the Bible says there is, "one body".

    Ephesians 4:11,12 teaches that God gave human instructors
    to His body of Christ, at Ephesus;
    "And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets;
    and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

    12 "For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry,
    for the edifying of the body of Christ:"


    These are local individuals called
    to serve Jesus' local body of Christ, at Ephesus.

    Jesus is the Head over each of His bodies of baptized believers,
    as Jesus stands in the midst of ruling each individual local church assembly.

    15 "But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things,
    which is the head, even Christ:

    This whole body of Christ, at Ephesus, is comprised of members in particular.

    16 "From whom the whole body" (of Christ, at Ephesus, made up of members in particular, i.e., vs 4:25; "members one of another.")

    (the members of which are) "fitly joined together
    and compacted by that which every joint"
    (regarding each of the particular members of the body of believers, at Ephesus, i.e., vs 4:25; "members one of another.") supplieth,

    "according to the effectual working in the measure of every part"
    (each of the particular members of the body of believers, at Ephesus, i.e., vs 4:25; "members one of another."),

    "maketh increase of the body"
    (of Christ, at Ephesus, made of members in particular, i.e., vs 4:25; "members one of another.")

    "
    unto the edifying of itself" (the body of Christ at Ephesus, i.e., vs 4:25; "members one of another.") "in love."

    The Bible teaching in Ephesians 4:25 is; "Wherefore putting away lying,
    speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another."

    The Bible teaching in I Corinthians, the entire chapter of Ephesians 4, and the rest of the Bible, is that each of the baptized believers, in the body of Christ at Corinth were "members in particular", and in the body of Christ at Ephesus, were,
    "members one of another."

    All instances of the word 'church', 'body', 'temple' refer to the kind of church body Jesus Divinely Founded, which was a local assembly of called-out and baptized believers, or may speak of all of them, or a number of them, but every time there is a practical application of the terms, it concerns a congregation or congregations, never a "universal" mystical mythical nothingness that took Satan over 1500 years to pass off as if it is something real or even in the Bible.

    Satan is a liar.

    4:
    15a; "But speaking the truth in love..."

    4:25a; "Wherefore putting away lying..."


     
    #5 Alan Gross, Jun 27, 2023
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2023
  6. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    Would that be Cleveland, Tn; or Anderson?
     
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  7. MrW

    MrW Well-Known Member

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    The Bible teaches One Body of Christ very clearly.
     
  8. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    The OP brings up the question of what 'body' is it that the Lord is talking about in I Corinthians 12:13, which the Bible plainly explains in 12:27 has members that are particular members.

    "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular". I Corinthians 12:27, so that is one instance of the Bible clearly describing what it means by "the body of Christ". That is a local assembly of believers that congregate together to worship the Lord.

    The rest of the occurrences of the word 'church', 'body', 'temple', 'the church that is in the house*, etc., are also proved out to always be local assemblies.

    *Romans 16:5a "Likewise greet the church that is in their house."

    Specifically, this brother has searched and examined all of the uses of the word, 'church', in the New Testament, in this short booklet and, with me, can find them all to refer only to a local assembly.

    From the end of chapter II of In Search Of The Universal, Invisible Church (Chapter 1) by Elder Milburn Cockrell - Sovereign Grace Landmark Baptist Pastor


    OBSERVATIONS

    "Thus we have concluded our examination of every one of the 115 verses in the New Testament dealing with the church.

    "Out of the entire 115 we have not found one single verse which teaches the universal, invisible church.

    "Therefore, I conclude the term "invisible" church is most appropriate as the big church is no place found in the New Testament.

    "In the New Testament there is no reference which does not fall under the local idea or one of its logical derivatives, which is simply the local idea in another form.

    "The Bible is utterly innocent of the inward conflict of the theory of a universal, invisible church. It is everywhere self consistent.

    "The Landmark position is overwhelmingly affirmed by the Word of God.

    "The common sense impression made by reading texts in which the word church occurs and a critical examination of doubtful passages demonstrate the actual church of the New Testament is a local society and never anything but a local society.

    "The real church of Christ is a local body, of a definite doctrinal constitution such as is indispensable to the "unity of the Spirit" of which it is the embodiment.

    "I believe this to be the teachings of the Holy Bible. I must stand upon these truths even if most of the world calls me a "misguided fanatic."

    I have seen where Protestants teach a Universal Invisible theory of a 'church' (which means a "called-out together assembly").

    They began this teaching during the Reformation, to give some reason for them being any different from where they originated, which was the so-called Universal Visible 'church' of Roman Catholicism.

    So, if you are Protestant, that is what they came up with, but not from The Bible.

    Yes, it does and in every case the Bible teaches that any time there is 'One Body of Christ's" it is a local body of assembling believers, according with the Greek term ekklesia (see chapter I; In Search Of The Universal, Invisible Church (Chapter 1) by Elder Milburn Cockrell - Sovereign Grace Landmark Baptist Pastor), the kind Jesus Originated, as an Organization - Organism, He called, "My church".


    Chapter I
    THE MEANING OF 'EKKLESIA

    "Throughout all Protestant Christendom there prevails the teaching that the word church has a twofold meaning in the New Testament. They say at times it is used in the local sense and at other times in the sense of a universal, invisible church consisting of all believers. They make the word to have a literal sense and a figurative sense.

    "Universal church people are not agreed on just what this invisible church really is. The strict dispensationalists would give this definition:

    "The true church, composed of the whole number of regenerate persons from Pentecost to the first resurrection (I Cor. 15:52),

    "united together and to Christ by the baptism of the Holy Spirit (I Cor. 12:12-13),

    "is the body of Christ of which He is the Head (Eph. 1:22-23).

    "As such it is a holy temple for the habitation of God through the Spirit (Eph. 2:21-22);

    "is 'one flesh' with Christ (Eph. 5:30-31);

    "and espoused to Him as a chaste virgin to one husband (II Cor. 11:2-4)."
    (See The Scofield Reference Bible, footnote on Hebrews 12:23, p. 1304).

    "Strict covenant theologians have a much larger church than dispensationalists. They say: "The catholic or universal Church, which is invisible, consists of the whole number of the elect, that have been, are, or shall be gathered into one, under Christ the head thereof; and is the spouse, the body, the fullness of Him that filleth all in all" (Confession of Faith of the United Presbyterian Church, Chap. 25, Article 1, p. 36, of the 1961-62 annual).

    "For 117 years of its existence the Southern Baptist Convention had no article of faith about the universal, invisible church. In the 1950s and 1960s the liberals ceased power, and in 1962 a revised confession was adopted which said: "The New Testament speaks also of the church as the body of Christ which includes all the redeemed of all ages" (Article VI)
    . This is essentially the strict covenant view of the church.

    "The dispensationalists make the church to be the whole number of regenerate persons from Pentecost to the first resurrection. They would exclude the Old Testament saints from being in the church and all New Testament saints before the day of Pentecost.

    "The covenant theologian has a much larger church consisting of the whole number of the elect, that have been, are, or shall be gathered into one.

    "Nevertheless, both schools have a universal, invisible church. This view is so generally believed that any person who dares to reject it is branded as a "misguided fanatic."

    "In this booklet I shall not inquire any more as to what theologians and creeds say about the church. There is no such thing as an inerrant creed or an infallible theologian. The final court of appeal is the Bible. What men may say about the Bible is unimportant.

    The great question is: What is the New Testament idea of a church?

    "Does the New Testament authorize only the local idea of the word church, or does it authorize the universal, invisible idea, or both?


    "It will be my purpose to prove that when we are shut up to the New Testament alone, only one definite idea of the church rules the field. I

    "In the New Testament the true and actual church is a local, visible body of baptized believers."
     
  9. MrW

    MrW Well-Known Member

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  10. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    Did see my posts on this thread? Just asking.

    The church at Corinth: What kind of 'body' was it, when the saints at Corinth were "baptized into one body"?

    Comparison to a body: What kind of 'body' was it, when the saints at Corinth were "baptized into one body"?

    The church at Ephesus, "members one of another": What kind of 'body' was it, when the saints at Corinth were "baptized into one body"?

    The great question is: What is the New Testament idea of a church?

    "Does the New Testament authorize only the local idea of the word church, or does it authorize the universal, invisible idea, or both?

    "It will be my purpose to prove that when we are shut up to the New Testament alone, only one definite idea of the church rules the field. I

    "In the New Testament, the true and actual church is a local,
    visible body of baptized believers, every time."
    What kind of 'body' was it, when the saints at Corinth were "baptized into one body"?
    ...

    You may not believe this, MrW,
    but there couldn't be a more plain description of a local church,
    then in the scripture you cited;

    "So we, being many, are one body in Christ,
    and every one members one of another."
    ...

    Except maybe for the plain description of a local church in I Corinthians 12,
    but we do have to move all the way down from 12:13, to 12:27;

    13 "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit."

    27 "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular."
    ...

    And where in Heaven's name did you come up with that thinking?

    Or where in Heaven's name did you get settled forever on that thinking?
     
    #10 Alan Gross, Jul 31, 2023
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2023
  11. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    #11 37818, Aug 1, 2023
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2023
  12. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    The OP brings up the question of what 'body' is it that the Lord is talking about in I Corinthians 12:13, which the Bible plainly explains in 12:27 has members that are particular members.

    Perhaps the generic article with the singular was used in other passages which were written when there was only one of the Lord's churches in existence. The only church in existence could be referred to as a particular church or as a kind of church which would have many examples in the future. Matthew 16:18; 18:17; 1 Corinthians 15:9; Philippians 3:6; Galatians 1:13 could be examples of this.

    "In the passages where the generic article is used, some believe there is a new meaning for ekklesia because of statements in the context. These statements are considered too great for the ordinary meaning of the word in their opinion.

    "We have seen that there is no grammatical justification for giving ekklesia a new meaning in these passages.

    "But, are the statements in the context a justification for giving ekklesia a new meaning in the New Testament? If these statements make good sense with the ordinary meaning of ekklesia then there will be no justification for a new meaning.

    "This is what we want to examine now.

    "The word ekklesia means assembly in the period prior to the New Testament; this is its common meaning, in fact, it is its only meaning according to all the information that Bible scholars have.

    "There are 22 places in the New Testament where some say the word receives a new meaning. If advocates for a new meaning in these places are correct then they should be able to show reasons from the context that this is true.

    "We have noticed that grammatically there is no justification for a new meaning. But are there statements made in these 22 places that would not make good sense using the common meaning?

    "Is there any indication of a new meaning? Briefly, the answer to both questions is, no!
     
  13. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    "...After His bodily ascension, Christ continues His work in the world through those He has redeemed—the Church now demonstrates the love of God clearly, tangibly, and boldly. In this way, the Church functions as “the Body of Christ.”

    Where is the evidence of this love for God clearly, tangibly, and boldly demonstrated, today in the world of the Universal Invisible 'church', so-called 'Body of Christ', 37?

    Are they stretching things or what?

    from: The Church of the Lord By Edward H. Overbey

    "Notice the statements made about the Lord's ekklesia and observe that the common meaning makes good sense with every statement.

    1 Timothy 3:15b "the house of God,
    which is the church of the living God,
    the pillar and ground of the truth."


    "A house is the gathering together of materials into one local, visible organization. An assembly is the gathering together of people into one local, visible organization. An assembly of the Lord holds up the truth to the community around it, like a pillar and ground holds up the roof of a building.

    "1 Corinthians 12:28 "And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues." God set apostles, prophets, teachers, etc., in the church at Jerusalem as the Gospels and early chapters of Acts reveal.

    "He set some of these gifts in other churches also. This passage does not say He set all of these in each church individually but all of these are set in that kind of thing. That kind of thing, "the church", is manifested in all the churches. All of these gifts are found in the church at Jerusalem and some of them in the other churches also. They are all found in that kind of thing and this is what it says in this passage since we have the generic article used.

    " In 1 Corinthians 10:32 we are told not to be a stumbling block or an offense "to the church of God."

    "Can a person or a church offend another church or several churches? Certainly, they can so this statement makes good sense with the ordinary meaning. Can a church be persecuted?

    "Can a person sing in a church?

    "Can a church bring glory to God throughout eternity by its work for the Lord now? Certainly, all of these things can be true of a church of Jesus Christ.

    "These statements fit the common meaning very well.

    " Can a church be said to be bought with the blood of Christ? Certainly, it can.

    "If an individual who professes to trust Christ as Saviour can say that, certainly an assembly of baptized believers can say that. The Lord in His Word speaks of individuals according to their profession. They are called believers, saints, and disciples, and are said to be bought with the blood of Christ even though time may reveal their profession is not genuine. The Lord knows who the false professers are; yet he speaks of them according to their profession. A church is an assembly of professed believers and they are referred to as such by the various expressions used even though some may not be genuine. These statements make good sense when one uses the word ekklesia according to its usual meaning.

    "Does God's plan for a church display His wisdom and do the activities of a church such as teaching reveal His wisdom to all who hear and see it? Ephesians 3:10. Certainly this is true. These statements make good sense with the common meaning.

    "Can Jesus be the head of each church? Certainly! We read he is the head of every man, 1 Corinthians 11:3. This means he is over each man and each church. He is Lord of all.

    "We will say more about this when we consider the figures used of a church.

    "Can a church be sanctified and cleansed by the Word of God? Most certainly! If an individual can, certainly a group of individuals can who are organized together to be a church of Jesus Christ. The Word of God is preached in the Lord's churches so that each church might be sanctified and cleansed of their sins by the spiritual washing power of the Word. The goal of all preaching to believers as individuals and as churches is that they might come close to their Lord and get rid of the sins in their daily life so that they might become perfect.

    This is the goal, to be without spot or wrinkle, even though it is never attained until Jesus comes again. When Jesus comes again every individual who is saved and every true church of Jesus Christ will be made perfect. There are no perfect individuals or perfect churches now but then they will be. The believers then will never sin anymore nor will true churches.

    "Two figures are commonly used to describe a church. It is like a house and like a body. Both figures fit well the ordinary meaning of ekklesia. A house is made of many stones, organized together into one thing. The body is made of many members, organized together into one thing.

    "A church is made of many believers, organized together into one assembly. These figures illustrate the common meaning very well.

    "The house figure is speaking of a special type of house, a house of God or temple.

    "In 1 Peter, Peter is writing to churches in Asia Minor, 1 Peter 1:1-2; 5:1-3.

    "Each church is like a spiritual house or temple.

    "Each member is a living stone in his church. Jesus is the foundation and chief cornerstone.

    "God dwells in this house or assembly of people.

    "This house is to serve the Lord, 1 Peter 2:5-6; Ephesians 2:19-22; 1 Corinthians 3:9-11, 16-17; Matthew 16:18. The foundation of the Apostles and prophets is Jesus Christ.

    "This was their personal foundation and the one they taught or advocated to others in their inspired writings, the New Testament.

    "Therefore, they are the foundation of every New Testament church, 1 Corinthians 3:11; Ephesians 2:20. A house is local, visible and organized just as a church is local, visible and organized.

    "The common meaning makes good sense but the new meaning doesn't make good sense because it is not local, visible and organized but universal, invisible and not organized.

    con't
     
  14. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    "In 1 Corinthians 12 the church at Corinth is likened to a human body. Each member of a church is like a member in a human body. One member with his gifts is like a hand, another like an eye, another like a foot.

    "Each is different but yet they are organized into one body. A human body has great diversity in its many members but it has great unity so that all can work together as one. A church has great diversity in its various members with their different gifts but they are organized into one church and can function as one for Jesus Christ.

    "When the Bible speaks of one body it is not giving us the total number of human bodies in the world in the first century but it is pointing out the characteristic of oneness or unity found in each human body,
    1 Corinthians 12:12; Romans 12:4-5.

    "Each church has this same characteristic of oneness.

    "One church body does not refer to the total of churches in that day but just like the illustration of the human body, it is pointing to the characteristic of oneness which should be in each church.


    "Notice that eyes are like a church member and yet eyes are part of the head. This observation should help us understand what is meant when it says Jesus is the head of the body.

    "He is the head in the sense of being the Lord over the body. The physical head with its parts are like members of a church. Jesus is the authority or head over all from head to foot.

    "Just as the husband is said to be head of the wife; Jesus is head of the church. Ephesians 5:23. The husband is not like the physical head of the wife but he is the leader, authority over the wife in their family.

    "Christ is head of every man, that is, He is the authority or Lord of each one, 1 Corinthians 11:3. He is not likened to the physical head of each man. This is the way Christ is the head or authority or Lord of each church body. Jesus is the head of each church body and a husband is the head of his wife. Each church body is a bride of Christ, a wife figuratively speaking. Christ is figuratively like a husband to each in that He loves each and is the authority over each. Each church is to obey Christ as an obedient wife, Ephesians 5:22-33.

    "This is the extent of the illustration. To argue that this makes Christ immoral because He is a polygamist is to go beyond the illustration. Christ and His kind of church are like a husband and wife only in the ways the context indicates not in every respect.

    "Christ is like a thief in the night in His coming without any prior warnings. He certainly is not like a thief in immoral respects.

    "In Ephesians 5:30 some have had a problem understanding the language. The physical body of Jesus Christ was made up of flesh and bones. Since His body illustrates each of His churches, the members of a particular church all together are His body figuratively speaking.

    "Another way of saying the same thing is to say that the members of a church altogether are His flesh and bones figuratively speaking.

    "Ephesians 5:31 brings out the truth that husband and wife become one in marriage. This is taught in Genesis 2:24. This truth applies to Christ and His church just as the other truths that have been brought out do, that is, the husband is the head of the wife, the husband is to love his wife, etc.

    "This is a great mystery," (secret), that is, the relationship between Christ and His church that was illustrated by the husband-wife relationship in Ephesians 5:22-31.

    "This was no secret concerning the literal husband and wife because it was taught in Genesis but it was a secret concerning Christ and His church because the Old Testament taught little about the church Jesus would build.

    "This secret was revealed in the New Testament."
     
  15. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    I didn't use that term "Universal Invisible." And there is only the one body of Christ, Ephesians 4:4. [Ephesians 2:20-22]
     
    • Winner Winner x 1
  16. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    One thing we know if that if you got something 'informative' from;

    1 Timothy 3:15b "the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth" What kind of 'body' was it, when the saints at Corinth were "baptized into one body"?

    as you marked, then it wasn't my flesh and blood that revealed it to you!

    I can't do it!
    ...



    ...

    Yep, one kind of local body of believers
    with the Authority to Do God's Business.

    Another figure used of a church is a
    "flock", Acts 20:17,28.

    A church is like a flock of sheep and their leader is called pastor, shepherd.

    This figure illustrates the basic truths concerning a church.

    A flock is an assembly; it is local and visible.

    At times the sheep are scattered but they assemble from time to time under the leadership of the shepherd.

    THE WORD “BODY”

    “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one BODY.”

    "Again, the
    “body” of this verse is the body of the context, that is the church at Corinth. This is what Paul is, throughout the chapter, illustrating by the human body.

    "The first question that should be asked here is this: Is the word
    “body” in this verse, that is the body of Christ, being used literally or figuratively?

    "Is Paul saying we are literally being placed by this baptism into the physical, fleshly, actual, biological body, of Christ? Of course not!

    "He is using the human body, in this chapter, to illustrate the truth of necessary union and interdependency within the church, and he is using this metaphor,
    “body of Christ,” to illustrate the relationship that the local church has with Christ as her “head,” which is simply to say He has complete authority over the church.

    "To make the use of the words body or head more literal than that is to violate the whole nature of the chapter and indeed the entire epistle.

    "Let it farther be understood that we are to think locally, that is of the church at Corinth, and locally as these truths apply to us in any church. Only in this setting can verses like 25 and 26 have any applicable reference to the context.

    "Members of a local, visible assembly are to have the same care one for the other, suffer with each other and rejoice when another is honored. If there were such a thing as an invisible, universal body (whatever that might possibly be) this conduct would surely not be possible for them.

    "So the term body here is a metaphorical term describing the relationship that the members of the church at Corinth had with each other under Christ their head. He is talking specifically of the body, that is the church, at Corinth.

    "Oh, but someone asks, does Christ have many bodies? This is a foolish question. Once we see the metaphorical use of the word BODY in this passage we understand that the usage is generic or institutional and thus is not numerical in any sense of being either singular or plural.

    Let me illustrate this truth thusly: Christ took a piece or loaf of bread, on the night before His crucifixion, He broke it and said, “Take eat, this is my body.

    "He was simply saying this piece of bread, which you are to eat, pictures my body.

    "But He said “This is my body. Now, are we to understand that this was the only piece of bread about which that statement could be made, or that all pieces of bread are a composite part of one great piece? Absurd!

    "When we see that the statement is a metaphorical one, and could be rightly made of any qualifying piece of bread, that is unleavened bread consecrated to the purpose of symbolizing Christ’s body, we see the truth that applies in 1 Cor. 12:13. Any proper qualifying piece of bread, at any proper time, and in any proper place and setting, could be referred to as
    “His body,” and in the singular, without violence to any other piece.

    "The very same thing applies easily and automatically to any true church, and it does no violence to any other true church, nor does it so much as hint that they are composite parts of the same thing.

    "Moreover, it does not hint at the foolish idea that the local church is only the manifestation or as some prefer to say, the only visible manifestation of the “real thing,” “the true church,” or the “universal church.”

    "Notice this truth as applied to the human body in 1 Cor.12:15.

    "Can the foot say
    “…I am not of the body…” What body?

    "It speaks of the human body as an object, not an individual.

    "so is the normal case in all metaphorical usages."
     
    #16 Alan Gross, Aug 1, 2023
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2023
  17. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    An extra Biblical modern discription of believers at a church. Not unlike using universal church used to discribe all the saved in all churches.
     
  18. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    You object to me connecting 'local' with 'body'
    and/or 'body' with baptized believers?

    What do you think a 'body' is? Something disconnected and spread out all over creation? I don't see that in Webster's, for a secular example.

    In the Bible, a 'body' of baptized believers is always, "members in particular", "together", or "members one of another", like a 'church', which comes from the word for "summoned out assembly", or like the local ideas of 'house', 'Temple', 'Tabernacle', 'flock', etc.

    "H. M. Dexter, a Congregationalist, was forced to say: “The weight of New Testament authority, then, seems clear to decide that
    the ordinary and natural meaning of ekºmaia
    (ekklesia, rendered church,) is that of a local body of believers.”


    "The Baptist movement in history has always been back to the New Testament.

    "These people have always refused to follow others away from the teaching and practice of that book. In the New Testament are plainly stated certain great principles which lie as foundation stones in the base of the Church of Christ.

    "These principles are;

    "the regeneration of the believer by the Holy Spirit and the word of God,

    "the baptism of the believer in water,


    "the equality of believers in the church,

    "the separation of church and State,

    "and in the church the sole authority of the Bible.

    "...right in looking for the Holy Spirit not without in forms, but within in the heart. This is the chief mark of the Baptist movement in history, the demand for evidence of regeneration, for a personal experience of the grace of God, for the witness of the Holy Spirit with the human spirit. In a Baptist church, this is an unalterable condition of membership."

    "...By insisting, on evidence of regeneration in every candidate for baptism, this will prevent the spirit of worldliness, which weakens other churches, from entering the assembly of the saints."

    "...The late and lamented scholar, J. R. Graves, LL. D., wrote: “Wherever there are three or more baptized members of a regular Baptist church or churches covenanted together to hold and teach and are governed by the New Testament,” etc., “there is a Church of Christ".

    "...The true and defensible doctrine is, that baptized believers have existed in every age since John baptized in Jordan, and have met as a baptized congregation in covenant and fellowship where an opportunity permitted.” To this explanation of Church Succession by Drs. Graves and Ford, all believers in Baptist “Church Succession '' fully agree."

    "...The only sense in which one Baptist church can succeed another is that the church leads men and women to Christ, then through its missionaries or ministers baptizes them, after which the baptized organize themselves into a Baptist church; or, in lettering off some of its members to organize a new church; or, in case the old church has fallen to pieces, for its members to reorganize themselves into a church."

    "...The M. E. Discipline defines the church: “The visible Church of Christ is a congregation of faithful men in which the pure Word of God is preached, and the sacraments duly administered according to Christ's ordinance in all things that are of necessity requisite to the same.’” Substituting ordinances for “sacraments’’ and adding Scriptural Church Government, this definition is good.

    "Dr. Hiscox: “A Christian Church is a congregation of baptized believers in Christ, worshipping together, associated in the faith and fellowship of the gospel; practicing its precepts; observing its ordinances; recognizing and receiving Christ as their Supreme lawgiver and ruler; and taking His Word as their sufficient and exclusive rule of faith and practice in all matters of religion."

    "The New Hampshire Confession says: “We believe that a visible church of Christ is a congregation of baptized believers, associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel; observing the ordinances of Christ; governed by His laws; and exercising the gifts, rights and privileges invested in them by His Word,” etc.

    "Eklesia —the word for church— (ekkøyaſa) occurs 114 times in the New Testament. In all but three it is rendered church.

    "It refers to the Christian Church once typically, (Acts 7:38) the remaining 110 occurrences antitypically.

    "In 99 instances, by counting, I find it denotes local organizations; in 12, by synecdoche, it means all the local organizations.

    "It is used by synecdoche in Matt. 16:18; Eph. 3:10, 21; 5:23, 24, 25, 27, 29, 32; Heb. 12:23, and, possibly, one or two other occurrences.

    "Says E. J. Fish, D.D.: “All investigation concurs with “unequivocal uses of the term in pronouncing the actual church to be a local society and never anything but a local society.’”

    The real Church of Christ is a local body, of a definite, doctrinal constitution such as is indispensable to the unity of the Spirit.”

    "Alluding to its application to all professors, of all creeds, scattered everywhere, as an “invisible,” “universal church,” Dr. Fish well says: “Not a single case can be adduced where the loose and extended use of the collective can be adopted without a forced and unnatural interpretation.

    The New Testament is utterly innocent of the inward conflict of those theories which adopt both the invisible, or universal, as it is now more commonly called, and the local ideas."


    Did you mean this like this? "Believers 'at' a church", like a church building?

    There is no certain agreement on what a universal church is supposed to be because there is no Bible teaching from which to draw a definite explanation of what one is supposed to be(?) It is purely extra-Biblical.
     
  19. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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  20. percho

    percho Well-Known Member
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    For, even as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of the one body, being many, are one body, so also is the Christ, for also in one Spirit we all to one body were baptized, whether Jews or Greeks, whether servants or freemen, and all into one Spirit were made to drink, for also the body is not one member, but many; 1 Cor 12:12-14

    at the right hand then of God having been exalted -- also the promise of the Holy Spirit having received from the Father -- he was shedding forth this, which now ye see and hear; Acts 2:33

    that they all may be one, as Thou Father art in me, and I in Thee; that they also in us may be one, that the world may believe that Thou didst send me. John 17:21

    but, there cometh an hour, and it now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father also doth seek such to worship him; Spirit the God, < the literal Greek] and those worshipping Him, in spirit and truth it doth behove to worship.' John 4:23.24



    ? All the same concept ?

    Whether at Corinth or where you are?
     
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