The Lord's Church
The Lord’s Church
There is a doctrine that the church was not part of the eternal plan of God. This is a false doctrine. Jesus made it clear that He intended to build His church. Jesus told Peter “I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it“ (Matthew 16:18). Jesus continues in that chapter to show he will suffer and be killed. The audience cannot believe that these things will happen to Jesus, but Jesus insists they will. He explains that some of them will not die before these things happen. In other words, it would happen in their generation.
Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom. Mat 16:28
Jesus was crucified and many (maybe all) believed his plans had come to an abrupt halt, but He rose from the grave.
Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments: And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? Luke 24:1-5
Jesus had told Peter “the gates of hell” would not prevail against the church. That phrase came from the word hades. This word means the place of departed souls or the grave. So what Jesus said was proven to be true. Even death could not stop him from building His church. He rose from the grave, overcoming death and continued on his quest to establish the church.
Before Jesus ascended he told his apostles to tarry in the city of Jerusalem and they would be endued with power from on high (Luke 24:49). You might recall the account in Acts 2 when the day of Pentecost came. Cloven tongues as of fire came upon the apostles and they began to speak in tongues. Peter preached to the people that Jesus was the Savior, the Messiah. Many of these same people who were responsible for Jesus death were convinced that He was the Savior. They asked what they should do and Peter told them “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Acts 2:38.
About 3,000 were baptized and were “added unto them”. Added unto who or what? As we read on a few verses we see what they were added unto. The scriptures say the “Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved” Acts 2:47. Jesus was going to add the saved to the church he spoke of in Matthew 16:18. This church WAS the kingdom He spoke of a few verses later in Matthew 16:28.
Nothing has changed since that first gospel sermon on the day of Pentecost. If you want to be saved heed Peter’s words “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Acts 2:38. The Lord will add you to the church and you can work out your salvation.