Christian Church: What it Means?
Christian Church - At its root, the word "church" means a "called-out group." In the New Testament of the Bible, the term is used in two specific ways: (1) a local church or single organized group of Christians and (2) the universal church or body of Christ. The universal church is made up of all believers in Christ, from the day of Pentecost in Acts to the end-times of Revelation. The local church is a visible and temporal representation of the universal church.
Christian Church: Its Origin
The Christian Church was a "mystery" hidden throughout the Old Testament of the Bible. Later, Jesus first prophesied the coming of the church when He spoke to Peter and declared, "On this rock I will build My church" (Matthew 16:18). Here, Jesus is making a play on words, since he earlier changed Peter's name from Simon to Peter, which means "rock." The traditional view of when the Christian Church actually started was the Day of Pentecost (50 days after the Passover during which Jesus was crucified). It was at this time that Peter gave his great sermon, and in response, "about 3,000 souls were added to them [the apostles]" (Acts 2:41). This group of believers was first called "the church" in Acts 2:47, as "God added to the church daily those who were being saved."
Christian Church: It's Purpose
As a body, the ultimate purpose for the Christian Church is to bring glory to its Head, Jesus Christ. As the church brings honor to Christ, it also fulfills two specific purposes related to God's plan for the earth: (1) evangelism to non-believers and (2) edification for fellow members of the church. Among other things, the church is also known as the bride of Christ and the living temple of the true God. Obviously, the church is not a building, a meeting place, an organization, or a denomination. The church is the totality of all believers in Christ, regardless of denomination or meeting place. The entire body of believers is the church, and as such, the church is the dwelling place of God.
Christian Church: Become a Member
The Christian Church is comprised of those who have been redeemed by Christ who died on the cross and rose again. They are justified by faith in Christ alone. They are not saved by false teachers, compromised gospels, by their works, by a building, or by a religious ritual. They are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone.