About Jesus     Steve Sweetman

Home Page

Part 5


Church Is A Body People


The New Testament describes true believers in a variety of ways.  It calls us the church, the Body of Christ, the family of God, a royal priesthood, and so on.  One example that you might think describes me is a “peculiar people”. (1 Peter 2:9)


The word church is translated from the Greek word “ekklesia”, which simply  means “a gathering of people”.  “Ekklesia" was an ordinary word used in everyday conversation.  It was not a religious word.   For example, in Acts “ekklesia”  is translated as the “mob” that hassled the apostles.


Jesus used this word when He said that He would “build His ekklesia” – His church.  Note that Jesus said “His church”, not  “His churches”.


We hear of people building churches all of time.    Someone asked me, “why don’t you start a church”?  Why would I do that?   Jesus already started one.  I’m not interested in competing with Jesus.  We don’t need to build another church.  We just need to find the people Jesus has joined us with  and work with them by serving Jesus.   


When Jesus said that He was going to build His church, was He speaking of the building down the street?  We all know He wasn’t.  If that was the case, He would have  appointed contractors to help Him build, instead of  apostles, prophets, evangelists, teachers/pastors.


Did Jesus mean that He would build many distinct, individual, and self sufficient churches in certain localities?   I don’t think so.  The people who visit a particular building from time to time do not constitute the church, only part of the church.  There’s only one true world wide church.


Concerning this one church, I heard a Bible teacher give a prophecy.  It was short and to the point.  Jesus spoke through this man and said, “I want my church back”.  If this prophecy was from Jesus, and I believe it was, Jesus feels that we have hijacked His church.  I certainly don't want to be a hijacker.


As “peculiar” as I am, I believe these things are more than just words.  What we think and believe   determines how we live.  We need some fundamental changes in our thinking, especially in relation to church life. Only then will fundamental changes come to church.


We need to see church as an “ekklesia”,  a gathering people, holy and faithful men and women placed together in His Body, that are networked around the world.  Actually the word “network” is a good word to use in this respect.  Our problem is that we don’t see church as people networked together in a body.  We see it as many different  organizations, with little contact with each other.


Our English word church has evolved into something far different than what Jesus meant when He used the Greek word “ekklesia”, assuming He spoke these words in Greek and not Aramaic.


Church is the Body of Christ world wide.  We are joined to certain people, other body parts, for mutual friendship and ministry.


Next Section

 Home Page