Definition Of The Church

(a) The church of Christ, in its largest signification, is the whole company of regenerate persons in all times and ages, in heaven and on earth

( <401618>Matthew 16:18; <490122>Ephesians 1:22, 23; 3:10; 5:24, 25; Colossians l:18; <581223>Hebrews 12:23). In this sense, the church is identical with the spiritual kingdom of God; both signify that redeemed humanity in which God in Christ exercises actual spiritual dominion ( <430303>John 3:3, 5).

<401618> Matthew 16:18 ? ?thou art Peter and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it?; <490122>Ephesians 1:22, 23?and he put all things in subjection under his feet and gave him to be head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all?; 3:10 ? ?to the intent that now unto the principalities and the powers in the heavenly places might be made known through the church the manifold wisdom of God?; 5:24, 25 ? ?But as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives also be to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself up for it?; <510118>Colossians 1:18 ? ?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?; <581223>Hebrews 12:23 ? ?the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven?; <430303>John 3:3, 5 ? ?Except one be born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God...Except one be born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.?

Cicero?s words apply here: ?Una navis est jam bonorum omnium? ? all good men are in one boat. Cicero speaks of the state but it is still truer of the church invisible. Andrews, in Bibliotheca Sacra, Jan. 1883:14,

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