The Church is not a Building but People

The Church not Made by Hands

Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet,” Act 7:48

Paul speaks at Athens.

photo credit:www.christiansunite.com

The temples of the Old Testament are among the framework of today’s devouring errors of misrepresenting the body of Christ with forms ,figures and rituals than with the reality of the word of truth rightly divided. But ,understanding God’s purpose during those time, we can know that God did not intend it to deceive us nowadays.God’s revelation today is not similar to the past.Those structures were long been the dwellings of man’s idols ( 2 Co.6:16) and God dwells not in them (Acts 17:24). Many referred to it as “temples, tabernacle, sanctuary, house of God, chapels, house of worship and as churches “. But today in this age of the grace of God, do we have to refer to those structures as the church or temple or house of worship when God refers the word “church” to His body?

We often heard the words “ Come and visit at our church located a Block 1, Corner, Ave.…” Or “ We build a new church on top of Hill 120 at a cost of $……” Or “I will go to church every Sunday”.But many seldom heard that the church according to the scripture is not made by the hands of man.

Ask yourself these questions if the church refers to a structure:
1.Can you gather those buildings together? “ And when they were come, and had gathered the church together….”Acts 14:27
2.Can it bring something?“ And being brought on their way by the church.”Acts 15:3
3.Can it receive you? And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church.”Acts 15:4
4.Can it rest? “Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea…”Acts9:31
5. Can it be confirmed? “And he went through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the churches.”Acts 15:41
6-7. Can it be established in the faith and increase in number daily?And so were the churches established in the faith, and increased in number daily.”Acts 16:5
8. Can it chose? And not that only, but who was also chosen of the churches to travel …”2 Co.8:19
9. Can it send somebody to an errand? “Whether any do enquire of Titus, he is my partner and fellow helper concerning you: or our brethren be enquired of, they are the messengers of the churches.”2 Co.8:23
10.Can it see? “ Wherefore shew ye to them, and before the churches…”2 Co.8:24
11-12. Can it be followed? Is it also in Christ? “For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus…”1 Ths.2:14
13. Can it assemble? And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church…”Acts 11:26
14. Can it receive and give salutation? “ And when he had landed at Caesarea, and gone up, and saluted the church…”Acts18:22
15-16. Can it be fed? Did God purchased it by His blood?Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”Acts 20:28
17. Can it be charged? “If any man or woman that believeth have widows, let them relieve them, and let not the church be charged…”1 Tim.5:16
18. Can it receive service? “ I commend unto you Phebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea:”Rm.16:1
19-20. Can it receive greetings? Can it come inside the house?Likewise greet the church that is in their house…”Rm.16:5(1 Co.16:19 (See also: Col.4:15;& Phm.2)
21. Can it receive edification? He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church.”1Co.14:4(See also:5,12)
22. Can it receive persecution?For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.”1 Co.15:9(Gal.1:13;Php.3:6)
23. Can it be offended?Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God:”1Co.10:32
24. Can it read Paul’s epistles? “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth…”2 Co.1:1 (See also:1 Ths.1:1;2Ths.1:1)
25-26. Can it come in one place? Can they speak with tongues? “If therefore the whole church be come together into one place, and all speak with tongues, and there come in those that are unlearned, or unbelievers, will they not say that ye are mad?”1 Co.14:23
27-28. Can it communicate through giving? Can it be addressed as ‘ye’?Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only.”Php.4:15(1Co.3:16-17; 14:23; 2 Co.6:16)
29. Can it receive care? “(For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)”1 Tim.3:5
30. Can it subject? “Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ…”Eph.5:24
31. Will Christ accept it as his body?And he is the head of the body, the church…”Col.1:18 (See also:Eph.1:22; 5:23)
32. Do they practice customs? “ But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.”1 Co.11:16
33-34. Did Christ love it? Did Christ gave Himself for it?Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;”Eph.5:25
35-37. Is it glorious? Is it holy? Is it without blemish? “That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.”Eph.5:27
38. Was it pleased? Then pleased it the apostles and elders with the whole church…”Acts15:22
39. Does it refer to mystery? “This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.”Eph.5:32
40. Is it the body of Christ? “ Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:”Col.1:24
41-43.Can it walk in the fear of the Lord? Can it be comforted? Can it multiply by itself?Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.”Acts9:31
44.Can it give thanks? “Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.”Rm.16:4
45.Is it the pillar and ground of truth? “But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”1 Tim.3:15
46-47 .Can it be nourished?Can it be cherished? “For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:”Eph.5:29
48.Can it know? “And was unknown by face unto the churches of Judea which were in Christ:”Gal.1:22
49.Is the grace of God bestowed on it? “Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia;”2 Co.8:1
50.Were Corinthians inferior compared to it? For what is it wherein ye were inferior to other churches.”2 Co.12:13
51. Can it be commanded? “Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye.” 1 C0.16:1
52.Can it make known the manifold wisdom of God?To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God,”Eph.3:10
53. Was Paul sacrificing for the sake of it? “Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:”Col.1:24
54. Did Herod come against it? “Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church.”Acts 12:1
55. Does it have elders? “And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church.”Acts 20:17
56.Can it pray? Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.”Acts 12:5
57. Does it have ears? “Then tidings of these things came unto the ears of the church which was in Jerusalem: and they sent forth Barnabas, that he should go as far as Antioch.”Acts 11:22
58. Does it have messengers? “Whether any do inquire of Titus, he is my partner and fellow helper concerning you: or our brethren be inquired of, they are the messengers of the churches, and the glory of Christ.”2Co.8:23
59-60.Is it addressed as “them”, “they” and “ye”? “I robbed other churches, taking wages of them,2Co.11:8 “For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews:”1Th.2:14“Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:”1Co.1:2 
61-63. Is it sanctified and called saint? Is Christ the Lord of  it? “Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called tobe saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:”1Co.1:2
64. Is it shameful for women to speak inside the buildings? “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; butthey are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”1Co.14:34-35
65-66. Is it where the Holy Spirit dwells? Is it the temple of God today?Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?”1Co.3:16
67-69 Does it have work of faith? Labor of love? Patience of hope? “Paul, and Silvanus, and Timothy, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers; Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;”1Th.1:1-3
70-71.Is it called brethren? Is it the elect of God? “Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God.”1Th.1:14
72. Is it the church of God? What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not.”1Co.11:22 “For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.”1Co.15:9
73.Can it be comforted by the Holy Spirit? “Then had the churches rest throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.”Acts 9:31

Beloved, dear readers, if the church refers both to people and places, to building and builders(those who build structures), then the Scripture will be in question. But “God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar…”Rm.3:4 If you are a believer, you have the mind of Christ (1 Co.2:16) and these things will be revealed to you.

Do you admit this is a truth seldom heard?

(Reminder: My reference on the word church is only intended to show that it does not refer to building. It is not my intention to distinguish dispensation in Paul’s epistles.)

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