At the time of the New Testament, Christians in each place met as the church in that locality. In obedience to the Lord and His Word, we would like to build the church according to the New Testament pattern. Many of us have had a deep desire for the church of God. We can testify that the Lord has guided us to his church and has given us a rich experience of the church life.
Christ loves the church
Ephesians 5:25 states that Christ loves the church and has given himself for them. To his disciples he said that he wants to build his church (Matt. 16:18). It is our deep conviction that as Christians we were saved for his church. That is why his Spirit has placed a desire for true church life in our hearts.
What is the church?
The church is neither a building nor a Christian organization, but the living body of Christ (Ephesians 1: 22-23). As soon as we have believed in Jesus, we have received eternal life (John 3:16). Through baptism we were baptized into the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12: 13). That's why every Christian belongs to the church. The church is composed of the head, Christ, and the many members.
In the beginning, Christians were one heart and one soul (Acts 4:32). Why are we struggling with unity today?
Divisions are condemned
The New Testament mentions separation tendencies in the church in Corinth. The apostle Paul wrote:
"I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought. My brothers and sisters, some from Chloe’s household have informed me that there are quarrels among you. What I mean is this: One of you says, “I follow Paul”; another, “I follow Apollos”; another, “I follow Cephas[b]”; still another, “I follow Christ.” Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized in the name of Paul?" (1 Corinthians 1: 10-13)
Divisions were condemned in the New Testament and the faithful were admonished to keep the unity in a practical way.
The situation today is incomparably more complicated. How can we live in oneness in the present time?
The unity of the local church
The local church should be an expression of a universal church. Especially in the local church, it is important to hold fast to the unity of the spirit:
"As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all." (Ephesians 4: 1-6)
The basis of our unity is the unity of the Spirit. Our heart's desire is to keep this unity.
But how can we hold the unity of the Spirit when we Christians meet in many different groups on different grounds? For this reason, we have given up the things that separate us, such as fellowship due to a spiritual leader (1 Cor. 1: 10-17), or a certain doctrine (Gal 5:20), or race or social status (Gal. Col. 3:11). The New Testament shows the pattern of how Christians gathered as the church in the locality, such as the church in Jerusalem (Acts 8: 1), the church in Antioch (Acts 13: 1), the church in Ephesus (Rev. : 1), etc.
We are convinced that God foresaw the historical development and that in His wisdom he revealed the way of oneness in his Word. It is our responsibility to seek and take the way of God.
How do I become a "member" of the local church?
The prerequisite for belonging to the church is to believe in Jesus Christ. Then you already belong spiritually to the church. Practically, however, we first experience church life as we gather on the biblical basis of unity. We cordially invite you to the meeting. Come and see!