Lessons designed to promote the integrity of scripture and church!

I Corinthians 3:11“For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is    JESUS CHRIST  

All articles are written using the NKJV, unless otherwise noted! All articles are written by David Hicks, unless specified otherwise.


"The New Testament Church"





Part II.

Churches today are as diverse in action and practice as they are in doctrinal teaching. Many modern day churches have the look of sporting facilities, cafeterias, and corporate headquarters. All engaging in activity as varied as to be better recognized as earthly human organizations than the church that the Lord purchased with His own blood.

So, what did the New Testament church do?

In this study, we want to look at the activities the church under Apostolic direction and teaching engaged in and to learn that this is what God intended for His church, bought with the blood of Christ, to practice (then and always).


2) The Church Supported The Truth!

1 Timothy 3:15 “but if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”


One of the first acts we find the church involved in was continuing in the Apostles doctrine – Acts 2:42. Although the Apostles brought the doctrine into the world, this doctrine was not their own. Paul, in his letter to Christians in Rome , stated that it was the Gospel of Christ that he preached, note:

Romans 1:15-16 “So, as much as is in me, I am ready to preach the gospel to you who are in Rome also.

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.”


It was the Gospel of Christ that the Apostles were commanded to preach to the world (Mark 16:15); and it was this Gospel of Christ that not only contained the instructions of conversion to Christ Jesus, but the teachings of Christ that guide the converted to salvation in Christ.

Romans 6:17-18 “But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.”


The church is comprised of disciples, which are learners and practitioners of the teachings of Christ Jesus (teaching is doctrine!).

Luke 6:40 “A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone who is perfectly trained will be like his teacher.”


The Apostle Paul would dove-tail on this explanation of the Lord concerning true discipleship, note:

1 Corinthians 11:1 “Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.”

Philippians 2:5 “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus”


Thus, the church is comprised of those who stand fast in the truth of the teachings of Christ through the word. This is made evident by the commands of Paul to Timothy as a minister of the truth, note:

2 Timothy 2:2 “And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.”

2 Timothy 2:15 “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

2 Timothy 4:1-5 “I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: 2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. 5 But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”


The word is what is to be taught in the church, the word is what is to be preached in the church, and the word is what the church is to be founded upon!!!


Now before someone thinks that this is only the responsibility of the evangelist and not the responsibility of everyone in the body of Christ , note what the Apostle John has to say to the church:

2 John 4-6 “I rejoiced greatly that I have found some of your children walking in truth, as we received commandment from the Father. 5 And now I plead with you, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment to you, but that which we have had from the beginning: that we love one another. 6 This is love, that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, that as you have heard from the beginning, you should walk in it.”


The term “lady”, here used by John, is a reference to the entire church and represents her as the bride of Christ (Ephesians 5:25-27). Here, John states that he has found some among them that are actually fulfilling their role as the pillar and ground of the truth. He implores them that all of them should fulfill this role. The priority for this command is the same reason as Paul wrote to Timothy to preach the word; because a time would come when the truth of the word would not be enough, or would not satisfy; note:

2 John 7-11 “For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. 8 Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward.
9 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; 11 for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds.”


Even as the church was introduced to the world in its perfection, men began immediately to undermine the truth of the doctrine of Christ (the doctrine of the church) and to apostate and devalue the blood bought church of Christ . Just as this began with Judaizing teachers prior to the destruction of Jerusalem , and resurfaced after the destruction of Jerusalem in *Gnosticism; it has continued to this very day!

In order for the church of Christ to function as the Lord designed, it has to stand firm in the truth of the word, to mirror the heavenly design, and avoid human changes and deviations.

Just as Paul stated with emphatic certainty; we need not be “ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes” – Romans 1:16.


No apology needs to be made for those who find it boring or lacking enough value for them to find the proper enthusiasm and motivation to serve the Lord by just the knowledge of all that He has done for us!

The Apostle Paul said it best, note:

2 Corinthians 4:3-6 “But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, 4 whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. 5 For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus' sake. 6 For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”


As members of the body of Christ; seek the truth, the whole truth to be a rock in the church that is the pillar of truth!


*Gnosticism: This philosophical religion was predicated on “docetism” (Greek – “to seem”), a belief opposed as heresy in early Christianity that Christ only seemed to have a human body and to suffer and die on the cross . This philosophy expressed that all matter was inherently evil; so God would not take a fleshly body. In addition, those who adhered to this philosophy practiced “antinomian” (Greek – “anti-law, or lawlessness), which meant that right conduct is unnecessary as the soul remains pure regardless of what the body does; so no law was necessary for the body. Even though Gnosticism came into existence long before Christ established His church, just as many Hebrews could not relinquish their traditions as they became Christians; later in the first century church these converted philosophers would attempt to retain their philosophy and interject it into the church. The teachings of 1st & 2nd John are directed at this false doctrine!


Next: “The Church Spread the Gospel!