May 22, 2014 | by: 0 Comments|
Many today think little of the Church (universal and local), but the New Testament and theologians throughout church history have spoken of the Church in some of the most elevated terms. In Acts 20:28, Luke exhorts pastors to care for the flock entrusted to them because the church has been purchased by God “with his own blood.” Paul teaches in Ephesians 3:10 that it is through the church that “the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.” In 1746, Jonathan Edwards had this to say about the church:
"The creation of the world seems to have been especially for this end, that the eternal Son of God might obtain a spouse (i.e. the Church) towards whom he might fully exercise the infinite benevolence of his nature, and to whom he might, as it were, open and pour forth all that immense fountain of condescension, love, and grace that was in his heart, and that in this way God might be glorified" [Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), "The Church's Marriage to Her Sons, and to Her God," sermon preached September 19, 1746, at the installment of the Rev. Samuel Buel as pastor of the church and congregation at East Hampton on Long Island. (Works 25.187)].
And in 1830, Anglican minister Charles Bridges wrote the following:
“The Church is the mirror, that reflects the whole effulgence of the Divine character. It is the grand scene, in which the perfections of Jehovah are displayed to the universe. The revelations made to the Church — the successive grand events in her history — and, above all — the manifestation of ‘the glory of God in the Person of Jesus Christ’ — furnish even the heavenly intelligences fresh subjects of adoring contemplation” [Charles Bridges, The Christian Ministry, (Carlisle, Pa.: Banner of Truth, 1830, 1997), p. 1].
How do you think about the Church? Is it important in your life? Essential? Do you love the Church? I pray that our love for Christ and for his Church will grow more and more. He loved the Church, and if we truly love him, we too will love the Church.
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