I. The basic meaning of the word "church" in the New Testament is found in two Greek words:
A. KURIAKON meaning "that which belongs to the Lord." Illustrations: I Corinthians. 11:20, "The Lord's Supper." Romans. 14:8, "We are the Lord's."
B. Most common: EKKLESIA (used 111 times in the New Testament). It is made up of "ek" meaning "out of," and "kaleo" meaning "to call." So the word actually means "that which has been called out from."
II. FUNCTIONS OF THE CHURCH (The duties and activities of the early church)
A. Special positions of service: Prophet, Evangelist and Teacher Ephesians, Bishops, Elders and/or Pastors, Deacons
Romans 12:4-6 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith;
B. While we all have special gifts, observe where it leads
NKJ Ephesians 4:11-15 -- And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness by which they lie in wait to deceive, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head Christ.
C. The saints -- the entire church family.
1. They were to lead a holy and blameless life to the glory of God's grace, Ephesians 1:4,6.
2. They were to "grow in grace", II Peter 3:8 and seek to attain the full measure of the stature of Christ, Ephesians 4:13.
3. They were to evangelize the world with the gospel, Matthew 29:19,20; Acts 1:8; 8:4.
4. They were to have fellowship with God and with one another, I John 1:3 7, "they continued in the Apostles fellowship" Acts 2:42.
5. They were to strive for unity, Ephesians 4:3, 4,13.
6. They were to love one another, I Peter 1:22;
7. Pray much, Acts 4:32, 12:5,
8. Claim for themselves the power of the blessed Holy Spirit to function as God ordained and to preach the Gospel to the world, Acts 1:8; II Tim 1:7; Romans 15:19
III. Responsibility in the Church is to know and to do God's will
A. NKJ Mark 3:35 "For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.''
1. From the heart (Eph 6:6).
B. NKJ Romans 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
C. NKJ 1 John 2:17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
IV. Comes to three important questions.
A. What is the will of God?