Local Assemblies churches by IsP7d1k


									The Local Church; The Assembly Of True Believers In Christ

The True Church consists of all true born-again believers in Christ. Local
churches, or Assemblies began in the homes of Christians where they met
for about three centuries. Let's go to the book of Romans, Paul was
inspired to write;

* Romans 16:3-5 "Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus.
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. Likewise greet the
church that is in their house. Salute my well-beloved Epaenetus, who is the
first fruits of Achaia unto Christ."

Apparently there were a number of small local churches that met and
assembled in various houses to worship God together, fellowship, and
study His Word, etc.
* 1 Corinthians 16:19 "The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and
Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their

Today most of us have nice church buildings where we can assemble to
worship the Lord together, and hear God's precious Word taught, and listen
to preachers preach the Word. For this we should be very grateful. If the
leaders of our nation, the ones who are in power, keep up the pace in
leaving the foundational principles our nation was founded upon, we just
may have to go back to meeting in homes as the early church did.
Sometimes our thoughts about the terrible condition of our nation, and the
world, is not very serious. We should take a long look at the situation in
light of what the Bible declares.
In various places, in different parts of the world, Christians have to go
underground and meet wherever they can, in homes or wherever, under the
watchful eye of the Communist in China and other countries.

Christ is the Head of the body, "The Church." He is also the Head of Local
Assemblies. Any of them who are not under the Headship of Christ, it not a
part of "The Church." There are many religions Christ has nothing to do
with. They deny His deity, His sacrificial death, His atoning blood, and His
bodily resurrection. Each of the false religions claim they are the way of
salvation. My understanding is that all of them believe in salvation by
works. None of them believe all the Bible says. Some misuse just enough
of God's word to mislead and deceive anyone they can, especially the ones
who are gullible. We need to know the Word of God in order to detect
false teachers when they approach us. I will mention just one, the so called
'Jehovah Witnesses', absolutely do not believe Jesus is God. The Bible
emphatically declares that He is God. The following is just one of many
Scriptures that state this very fact.
* John 1:1 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
Verse 14 "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we have
beheld His glory, the glory of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace
and truth."
"Made flesh" speaks of the incarnation of God the Son.
Christ is The Way, The Truth, and The Life. There is absolutely no other
way of salvation.
* Acts 4:12 "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other
name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."
* Romans 12:4-5 "For as we have many members in one body, and all have
members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in
Christ, and every one members one of another."
All true born-again believers in Christ are a part of the Body, the Church.
God has something for all Christians to do. There are pastors, evangelists,
missionaries (home & foreign), and many other ministries. We should
always follow the leading of the Holy Spirit, He will lead and show us the
work, the job, He has for us.

The Church, a temple of God for the habitation of God through the Spirit.
* Ephesians 2:19-22 "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and
foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God:
And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets. Jesus
Christ Himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly
framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also
are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."
Gentiles Christians are no more alienated from God, we now have the
same intimate relationship and blessings of God as the Jewish Christians.
The foundation of the Church is the Lord Jesus Christ. The Jewish
Christians and Gentile believers in Christ, carefully, and harmoniously
joined together make up the Body, the Church. Christ is the head
* Ephesians 1:22-23 "And hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him
to be the head over all things to the church. Which is His body, the fullness
of Him that filleth all in all."
God the Father appointed Christ head (Ruler) over all things for His glory,
and the benefit of the Church. He is the divinely appointed Ruler over the
entire universe. Every thing is under His control.
* Colossians 1:17-18 "And He is before all things, and by Him all things
consist. And He is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning,
the first-born from the dead; that in all things He might have the pre-
By Him all things are held together, He preserves all His creation. Jesus
(alone) holds the preeminent position in both the first creation ( the
universe), and in the new creation (the church). He is preeminent,
absolutely almighty, the Almighty God. All things are under Him.

The following personal story is not to glorify self, but to glorify God. It
will lead to the "Local Church" as it was before there were Church
Buildings. I love to talk about the Lord, and share His precious Word with
others. I also like to share some of my experiences.
+ My favorite quiet time with the Lord is before I arise each morning. I
love to pray and meditate in God's precious Word, and recite it. I absolute
love it when the Lord places new thoughts in my mind and blesses me with
an understanding of certain Scriptures. He always throws in something
extra, then I am blessed and even more excited. I am so moved by the
blessed Holy Spirit that I rejoice and praise the Lord. This morning was
one of those times, (Sunday 4-25-10). As I recited His Word and prayed, I
began to shed tears of joy, rejoicing in the Lord silently, but then I had to
break the silence, because He was so wonderfully, and graciously blessing
me, I just opened my heart to all of His blessings, and was filled to the
brim, then my cup began to run over, and ran out my eyes, as I shed my
God given tears. His presence was so very real to me as I talked with Him,
rejoicing, and enjoying His so great salvation. Still rejoicing while sitting
on the edge of the bed, trying not to disturb my wife, she awoke, and asked
me if I was getting up. I said to her, "I have been shouting in bed, and I
thought I would get up and shout," She then said, "I didn't hear you." I
replied, "I was silently rejoicing." Then, in my mind I said, 'Hey, praise the
Lord!' Then I thought, God will hear me even when I whisper to Him, then
another thought came, God can also read my lips.' Of course He knows our
thoughts before we express them.
I had just a touch of loneliness, I suppose due to the lack of the sweet
fellowship with my brothers and sisters in Christ at Church. But then while
still rejoicing I said to my self, What happen to the loneliness? It had
suddenly disappeared. The Lord seemed to speak to me, "I have taken care
of that." Oh, my heart just couldn't contain all the blessings He was
pouring out on me. What a wonderful Savior we have! I could never thank
and praise Him enough, but some day I will have all eternity to serve and
praise Him. I also thought of my wife and myself being at home. The
Scripture came to my mind that says, where two are three are gathered
together, I will be in the midst. At that time I didn't remember all the verse.
I later looked it up, in the mean time we had our devotion and prayed.
+ Matthew 18:20 "For where two or three are gathered together in My
name, there am I in the midst of them." These are the words of Jesus.
While rejoicing, I thought of the two of us in our home as being the church
in our house. Later, I read about how it was for approximately three
centuries A.D., when Christians met in different homes to worship and
fellowship, and learn God's Word via of teaching and preaching. Each
group was a local Church or Assembly. The different groups of Christians
in these local congregations, together, made up the body of Christ, the
Church. At that time they had no fancy buildings to use, that came later. I
am not advocating that this is the way it should be now, but it certainly
could happen in the future.
All able bodied Christians should be active for the Lord in a local Church.
I praise the Lord for all who are. Then I thought of how so many sick and
suffering people at home, nursing homes, hospitals and other places who
are neglected. Thank Lord for all the compassionate people, who are
lovingly doing their part. Since I am unable to do the things I once did, the
thought came to me, if I just had someone to take me, when I am able, to
wherever the hurting people are, and share the Word of God with them, and
pray for them. If all of us would give serious thought to the great need, and
do what we can, what a blessing that would be to each one.
There are so many precious, lonely people, who are discouraged, dejected,
rejected, and forsaken by their families. and others. It is indeed sad. Some
are hungry (have a strong desire), not only for natural food, but for
someone to visit, and share the Word of God with them. Many no doubt,
feel that no one loves and cares for them. We need to show, and prove to
them that they are loved, and that God's loves and cares for them, and that
He is the God of all comfort, and the Provider of the physical and spiritual
needs. Most of all, we need to give them the precious Word of God, and
pray for them. God will indeed bless you for your efforts in helping the
shut in. Many Christians are sick and shut-in, but not shut-out from the
love and compassion of the God of all comfort.

I want everyone to understand that I certainly do not feel that I am on a
higher level that my brothers and sisters in Christ. No, my friends, God
loves each of you as much as He loves me. He will not do for me anything
He will not do for others. He is not respecter of persons. The things I have
said, I pray will be of great help, and a blessing to everyone. I want to
encourage all, especially the sick and suffering people who are unable to
go to church, and do things they once did, not to give up, but keep looking
to the Lord for all they need, such as strength in the time of weakness,
courage in times of discouragement, comfort when they are uncomfortable,
and faith to keep on keeping on, no matter what. The Lord said, "Let not
your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." He never leaves us to suffer
alone, He is with us through it all. He is always a very present help to take
care of us. He is not far off. He dwells within us, in the person of the Holy
spirit, and is a constant Companion.
* Romans 8:28 "And we know that all things work together for good to
them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose."
We don't fully understand His purpose, but we know He will work it all out
for our good, and for His glory.

The Great Commandment--The precious words of Jesus is as follows;
* Matthew 22-37-39 Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart,
and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great
commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor
as thy self. On these two commandment hang all the law and the prophets.
* John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one
another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all
men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another.
* I John 3:11-14 "For this is the message that ye heard form the beginning,
that we should love one another. Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one,
and slew his brother. And whereof slew he him? Because his own works
were evil, and his brother's righteous. Marvel not, my brethren, if the world
hate you. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we
love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death."
Verses 16, 17, 18 "Hereby perceive we the love of God, because He laid
down His life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and
shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of
God in him. My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue;
but in deed and in truth."
God cannot be define, but the Scriptures throw light upon the nature of
God. Love is the very nature of God , it is shown in His divine
compassion. He is light and in Him is no darkness at all. He also is a Spirit
as Jesus said in the gospel of John.
* John 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him
in spirit and in truth.
He is not just the figment of the imagination, He is for real. God was
manifest in the flesh when Jesus was born of the virgin into this world. He
was man, yet He never ceased to be God. He was the God-man wrapped in
human flesh. It is a fact that God loves all. Jesus spoke the following
* John 3:16 For God so love the world, that He gave His only begotten
Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have
everlasting life.
"The Way Of Love" is found in the following chapter, (1 Corinthians
Chapter 13).

If we love the Lord with all our heart, soul, and mind, we will delight in
His word.
* The Psalmist said, Psalm 1:2 "But his delight is in the law of the Lord;
and in His law doth he meditate day and night."
The key word in the psalm is the word blessed (happy). It serves as a
pronouncement upon all who are faithful doers of His Word, who follow
the leading of the blessed Holy Spirit as He teaches and gives us an
understanding heart. A Christian can never really be happy apart from the
study of the blessed Word of God. We find in it comfort, and much
assurance of salvation, and learn of His precious promises. We can also
discover His will for our life, as He speaks to us through His word. The
Holy Spirit will bless us to understand the things we need to know. then to
be faithful doers of His Word by following His instructions.

Rutherford E. Layne, Th.D.

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