The Church (Discipleship Training)
What this means is that the church must play a central role in our discipleship and our walk as Christians. For individualistic westerners, this is a difficult truth to swallow, and increasingly larger numbers of people are refraining from joining a local church.
The Bible, however, does not envision a Christian who is not part of a local church. For more information, read this article: Why Become a Member of a Church?
To understand the nature and purpose of the church, as well as to grow in our engagement with, involvement in, and love for the church.
Read and discuss:
- Matthew 16:13–20: The kingdom of Christ is opened by the proclamation that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God. (First Key of the Kingdom: Doctrine)
- Matthew 18:15–20: The kingdom of Christ is closed to those who do not repent from their sin. (Second Key of the Kingdom: Discipline)
- Acts 2:39; 1 Corinthians 7:14: The visible church consists of professing believers in Christ and their children.
- 1 Corinthians 12:12–31: The church is the body of Christ.
- Ephesians 2:19: The church is the household of God.
- Ephesians 3:15: The church is the family of God.
- Ephesians 5:25–33: The church is the bride of Christ.
- Colossians 1:13: The church is the kingdom of Christ
Read and discuss:
- What is the church?
- How many different ways does the Bible describe the church?
- What place does the church have in the redemptive plans of God?
- What place should the church ahve in the lives of individual believers?
- Consider your relationship to the church. Are you pursuing the peace, purity, and unity of the church?
- Consider your service to the church. Are you supporting the church in its worship and work, to the best of your ability?
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