What is the “True Church?” – by Desmond Ford

Oct 2, 2015 1657

True churchWhen we speak of “the true church,” we do not refer to any denomination, for or the New Testament knows no such. There is but one family of God though its members are scattered among many groups. According to the New Testament, “no man can call Jesus Lord save by the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor 12:3). Thus anyone owning Christ as Savior and Lord is a member of his family, of his church.

This is true though not all believers see the particulars of duty alike. Many earnest Christians have not been baptized by immersion, although the New Testament does teach such a mode for the ordinance. They are none the less God’s children.

Our God does not recognize as his children only those whose exegesis of Scripture is always perfect. He looks at the heart, the inclination, the will, and where there is the intent to please God and obey his known will, there that person is regarded as a keeper of the commandments of God. Accurate knowledge is not required.

Neither is perfection called for, as this, just like accurate knowledge, would exclude all of us.

Observe that in Luke 1:6,20, we have humans described as perfect before God, keeping all his commandments, although their understanding of the will of God and their performance of it was defective. Zechariah the priest and his wife Elizabeth are described as “righteous in the sight of God, observing all of the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly” ((v.6). However, in verse 20 we are told that they “did not believe” the word of God that came to them through the angel Gabriel.

Thank God that the condition of heaven is the acceptance of the perfect righteousness of Christ, not our tattered, begrimed human robes of our own characters.

– Des Ford. Adapted from “The Remnant.”

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