Saturday, May 8, 2010

Definition of the Local Church

"A local church is a manifestation in time and space of the ultimate, heavenly-eschatological assembly of God’s redeemed humanity. Each local church represents what it means to be God’s people by assembling together in one place for worship, encouragement, and accountability; by being a community shaped by the Scriptures; by observing the symbol-laden acts of baptism and the Lord’s supper; by maintaining its purity through church discipline; and by seeking to make disciples of all nations. All of this is to be done under the leadership of elders, the service of deacons, and the rule of the congregation."- by Grant Gaines.

"The local church is a group of people who are united with Christ through faith in the gospel of Jesus Christ and repentance of sins and who have been united with one another by Christ’s baptism of them into his body by the Holy Spirit. These individuals have then obeyed Christ in receiving the outward physical sign of the basis for the forgiveness of their sins (the death and resurrection of Jesus) and their baptism by the Spirit, namely water baptism by immersion. A local church is led by pastors, served by deacons, administers the ordinances (baptism and the Lord’s Supper) and is governed congregationally under the headship of Jesus Christ by His Word. Local churches should seek to exposit the Scriptures in preaching, exalt the Savior in worship, equip the saints in discipleship, and evangelize sinners as their mission." - by Steve Weaver.

What would be your definition?

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