Sunday, January 08, 2006

"...One holy catholic and apostolic church"

Notes from this morning's sermon by Piers Bickerseth. This is something of an overview of what is the church? ahead of looking at worship, gathering and then 10 weeks in Ephesians.

Play articulate: Building? Pews? Organ? Sundays?
Can you articulate a biblical definition of church?
The gathering of God's people who confess Jesus as Lord!

1. One Church
Ephesians 4v4-6. One people with one trinitarian God.
But isn't it divided? No - denominations aren't the church but only structures to serve it. The church is one.

2. One Holy Church
Ephesians 5v25-27. The church made holy by Jesus' death.
Made holy and to be holy, imitating Christ (5v1) with family likeness.

3. One Holy Catholic Church
Ephesians 2v6. Raised up and seated with Christ in the heavenly realms.
Catholic, not Romans Catholic. Catholic is an old word meaning something like universal, big and united. The true church is universal. What we see is a physical local expression of that. The reality is on a cosmic scale.

4. One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church
Ephesians 2v19-20. The church is built on Christ, the Prophets and Apostles.
Their teaching is the foundation of the church. If when playing jenga you remove the foundation the tower falls. The church without its foundation falls. 19th Article of the Church of England says: The visible Church of Christ is a congregation of faithful men, in which the pure Word of God is preached....

*structure from the Nicean Creed.

1 comment:

  1. This is the theme for this years Spring Harvest...