The Church -- Mine, Yours, or His
One often hears folks refer to “my church” or “your church.” Do they mean it like Jesus did when he promised to build His church? He promised Peter that on the great confession Peter made, “I will build My church” (Matt. 16:18). Men guided by the Holy Spirit wrote of His church as the only one over which He is the head. “he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence” (Col. 1:18).
We ought never mean by “my church” anything other than His church. That’s not always the way it is, however. When we speak of “my church” we generally mean it is the one in which we hold membership. That one usually has “my pastor,” and all “my likes and preferences” in religion. Don’t think this is being “picky,” The way we think of the church determines in which one we will be members.
Being in the church Jesus built and over which he is head and savior means my likes and preferences are his — not mine. We should often review our own likes and preferences in religion. Are they the Lord’s or ours, possibly by tradition? The sure way to avoid being in the wrong church is to measure a church by the one and only blueprint -- the New Testament.
Since the church belongs to the one who built it He alone has the right of admission into it. Admission into the church Jesus built is based on the grand example of what happened on the first great Jewish festival, Pentecost, after he ascended back to heaven. On that wonderful day, Peter spoke for Jesus saying to those who wanted to know what to do, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Acts 2:38). What church did they join? None is the right answer. Read the following: “And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved” (Acts 2:47).
If any one of us today does what those sinners were told to do, we will be forgiven of our sins and the Lord will add us to His church just like he did those on the wonderful day of Pentecost. It’s right there in the New Testament. Please consider carefully and prayerfully if you have been added to the Lord’s church – not some church people think of as theirs.
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