The New Testament’s Teaching on the Church

 

          A denominational understanding of the church is wrong. A simple reading of Ephesians 5:22-33 quickly and clearly demonstrates this fact.

          Unlike the denominational concept of the church, Jesus and His bride are not equal in authority. “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord…Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything” (vv. 22, 24). Jesus alone has full authority over his church; she submits to Him and Him alone.

          Unlike the denominational concept of the church, Jesus’ bride is comprised only of those He has saved. “He is the Savior of the body” (v. 23). In fact, membership in Christ’s church has one criterion—salvation. Every person Jesus saves, He has personally added to His church (Acts 2:47).

          Unlike the denominational concept of the church, Jesus is monogamistic in His love and affection, not polygamistic. “Christ is the head of the church” (v. 23). He has only one bride and she has only one body. Like every Spirit-filled woman, she desires and wears only the name of her husband. There are no hyphens in her identification; she is the only bride/church Christ has.

           Unlike the denominational concept of the church, the bride of Christ is a big deal to Him. He “loved the church…gave Himself for her…that He might present her to Himself a glorious church not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish” (vv. 25, 27). Jesus nourishes and cherishes the church (v. 29). To denigrate and demean her as denominationalism does is to denigrate and demean Him.

          Like every other husband and wife, Jesus and His bride/the church is a package deal. Beware of the obvious, fatal errors inherent in a denominational understanding of Christ’s church.

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Author: jchowning

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