Members of the TRUE CHURCH [Ecclesia] do not GO to Church. In fact, they CANNOT go to Church, because they ARE the Church.
The Church belongs in the HOME [a HOME ECCLESIA], as you will soon see.
The word CHURCH comes from the Greek word ECCLESIA e?????s?´a (ek-klay-see'-ah).or, ekkle¯sia. Actually, the word "church," was derived from kuriakos, "of or belonging to the Lord," which is represented in the English Versions of the Bible by [the New Testament Greek word], ekklesia; or, Latin, ecclesia. According to Mat 16:18 the name ekklesia was first applied to the Christian society by Jesus, Himself. It closely correlates to the "kingdom of God" or the "kingdom of heaven," a designation which had its roots in Old Testament teaching and the Messianic expectations of Israel
Ecclesia means, "called out" (Greek ek, "out," and kalein, "to call"); it is "a meeting; a congregation of people." At first, the word was used for any type of meeting or gathering of people, religious or political. The word Ecclesia was NEVER used to describe a building. Rather, it is a CALLED OUT CONGREGATION OF PEOPLE.
The truth is, the early Christians did not meet in buildings. Throughout the New Testament, the writers relate that the first Christians met in private HOMES. Numerous New Testament texts to attest to this fact: Romans 16:5, 1 Corinthians 16:19, Col 4:15 and Philemon 2, are just a few. The Apostles set up the Church in this way for several good reasons. In fact, the practice of meeting in homes was the standard for the first three centuries following the Resurrection of Jesus Christ; it only began to change sometime beyond the year 300 AD. Jesus and the Apostles never set out to build 'church buildings', and, themselves, lodged and ate in private HOMES [Mat 10:11; Luk 10:7]. The Apostles never asked the believers to set up a 'building fund' or take up a collection for a "new wing'. Rather, knowing that the Church is the PEOPLE, like a family, they knew the family [the church] performed and thrived best in the home. See also: Mat 10:11-12; Luk 10:5 -7.
Scripture teaches that the temple or "house of God," is not a BUILDING, but that it is the PEOPLE (His people, the Church). THEY are the temple of God. In 1 Corinthians 3:16 it says,
"Know ye not that YE are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth IN YOU?"
The idea that THE CHURCH is the temple of God stands in stark contrast to the idea that a BUILDING is the temple of God! What a shame that the major groups spend millions or billions of dollars on stained glass, padded pews, pianos and organs, altars, baptismal fonts, and even landscaping. All this while millions of people still haven't personally HEARD the Word of God!
Collections and Offerings should NOT be spent on buildings, salaries for ministers, stained glass, baptsmals for babies, etc. Offerings SHOULD be spent only on the spreading of the Gospel (the good news) and incidental costs. It is NOT the duty of the Church to help the poor and down-trodden of the world [Mat 26:11]. True religion is not to be found in ornate temples, but in the LOVE shown to others (see 1Jo 2:3-15; 2Jo 1:5); Love of the brethren; That is, one's neighbor, as the Commandment says: Mat 22:39.
So you see why NOBODY can GO to Church.
Not all the true believers are 'ministers' of God, however; despite what Jehovah Witnesses believe. Only God CALLS a true minister. Full-time Ministry requires ALL of one's attention [Mat 8:22; Mat_19:27; Mar 10:28; Luk 9:60; Luk 5:28] Rather, the true believers are a Royal Priesthood. This is clearly taught in the New Testament: "…ye also, as living stones, are built
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