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Showing posts from January, 2020

The life of the church

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The following post is excerpted from a lecture by Dr. Michael Morrison, dean of faculty and professor at Grace Communion Seminary.

In an earlier post, we saw how the apostle Paul used several metaphors (images) in defining the nature of the church. In this post, we'll see how Paul viewed the life of the church by looking at what he wrote concerning the church's assemblies, membership and discipline.
Church assemblies Paul understood that Christ does not just call scattered individuals – he calls individuals in order that they meet together. Paul describes those meetings in 1 Corinthians 14. Although the church in Corinth may not be typical, this is the best description we have: 
When you come together, each of you has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. Everything must be done so that the church may be built up. (1 Cor. 14:26)Note that the primary purpose here is the building up of the church – helping those who assemble grow in the faith…

The nature of the church

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The following post excerpts a lecture from Dr. Michael Morrison, dean of faculty and professor at Grace Communion Seminary. For a second post on this topic, click here.

Ekklesia What is the nature of the church? We learn a lot from the epistles of Paul where the apostle uses the Greek word ekklesia in referring to the church. Ekklesia comes from the Greek preposition ex (meaning out of) and the verb kaleĊ (meaning to call). In the first century, ekklesia was used to refer to town meetings in which citizens of a city were called together for a political purpose (e.g. Acts 19:39). By using the word ekklesia, Paul is viewing the church as a group of people who are called together. It may be that Paul's use of ekklesia was facilitated by the Septuagint's use of this Greek wordto correspond to the Hebrew word qahal, referring to the assembly of Israel. This does not mean, however, that Paul saw the gathering of Israel and the church as theological equivalents. We have to turn elsew…