Christ and His Church

Title: Christ and His Church

Bible Book: Selected Passages

Author: Donnie L. Martin

Subject: Church; Discipleship; Body of Christ; Revival



The organism we call the Church, is a topic about which many have spoken and written over the years. Some believe the Church is universal and invisible, while others believe it to be strictly local and visible. I happen to believe there are aspects of both trains of thought involved in the idea of the Church. However, such matters of discussion are not my goal today. There are matters concerning the Church that I find more important than those just mentioned. Like Henry T. Blackaby, I believe that:

“Perhaps one of the greatest challenges for Christianity in our day is for churches to so walk with God that the world comes to know Him through their witness. When a church allows God’s presence and activity to be expressed, a watching world will be drawn to Him”.1

Too many churches of our day are not walking with God. Perhaps that is because, overall, churches have forgotten what they are supposed to be. The Church is not simply an organization, but a living organism, the Body of Christ. As such, it is to be wholly under His authority, following His commands, and doing His bidding.

Many church members seem to view their church merely as a glorified business, in which the pastor and other officers are responsible for its success. Nevertheless, the Bible tells us that the Church is to function like a body, in which every member operates in concert with the other.

On the whole, the Church is not very important to the world. However, it should be important to the people of God. “But why?” you ask. I would like to provide some answers to that question today.

God’s people should consider the Church important because…

I. It Is Christ’s Body

A. The Church Belongs to Him

Matt. 16:18 “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

1 Cor. 3:9b “…ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.”

Rev. 19:7 “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. 8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.”

If the Church belongs to Christ, and it is as the Bible says, “the body of Christ,” why does not the Body resemble the Head?

Remember putting your face above a headless frame painted to represent a muscle man, a clown, or even a bathing beauty? Many of us have had our pictures taken this way, and the photos are humorous because the head doesn't fit the body. If we could picture Christ as the head of our local body of believers, would the world laugh at the misfit? Or would they stand in awe of a human body so closely related to a divine head?2

B. Christ is the Church’s Head

Eph. 1:22 “And hath put all things under his (Christ’s) feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, 23 Which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all.”

Eph. 5:23 “For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.”

Col. 1:18a “And he is the head of the body, the church…”

My point here should be obvious: Jesus is the head of His church; not the pastor; not the deacons; and not the trustees, but Jesus. Certainly, the pastor, deacons, and or trustees bear authority in the local body of the Church. However, their authority is subject to the headship of Christ. This does not mean that your pastor is just another member of the church. He is the spiritual leader placed in the local body, under the authority of Christ. This means that the pastor of the local church bears a great responsibility to maintain a right relationship with Christ, Who has delegated authority to him. The fact is, “No one individual can know all of God’s will for a local church. Each member of the body needs the other members of the body to fully know God’s will.”3

C. The Church is to be Holy

1 Cor. 3:16 “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.”

It is sad to say, but the modern-day Church is a far cry from what God intended for her to be. Ravenhill states the matter very clearly with the following:

Months ago The Wall Street Journal had an article on “The Electronic Church.” The New Testament Church was not electronic; it was electrifying. The Church fresh from the Upper Room invaded the world; now the Church in the supper room is invaded by the world.

The New Testament Church did not depend on a moral majority, but rather on the holy minority. The Church right now has more fashion than passion, is more pathetic than prophetic, is more superficial than supernatural. The church the Apostles ministered in was a suffering church; today we have a sufficient church. Events in the Spirit-controlled Church were amazing; in this day, the Church is often just amusing. The New Testament Church was identified with persecutions, prisons, and poverty; today many of us are identified with prosperity, popularity, and personalities.

We lack apostolic power because we lack apostolic piety, and we lack apostolic piety because we lack apostolic purity.

We need revival—God’s way. Revival—Spirit-born, heaven-directed, earth-shaking, and hell-robbing—is not important to the Church and to America. It is IMPERATIVE!4

D. The Church is to be Harmonious

Ps. 133:1 “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!”

1 Cor. 1:10 “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”

1 Cor. 12:25 “That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.”

If there is one group of people who should be the epitome of love and harmony, it should be the local New Testament church. However, apparently, not everyone in the local church believes that truth, as the following points out:

There are four main bones in every organization. The wish-bones: Wishing somebody would do something about the problem. The jaw- bones: Doing all the talking but very little else. The knuckle-bones: Those who knock everything. The back-bones: Those who carry the brunt of the load and do most of the work.5

II. It Cost Christ His Blood

Acts20:28b “…feed the church of God, which he  hath  purchased with his own blood.”

Eph. 5:25b “…Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;”

A possession is usually valued according to how much one was required to pay for its purchase. Christ gave Himself for the Church. The parable of the Pearl of Great Price beautifully illustrates the value that Christ placed on the Church. Should we value so meagerly what Christ has valued so much?

Matt. 13:45 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: 46 Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.”

III. It is to Carry on Christ’s Business

A. We are to Share Our Lord’s Love with the World

1 Thess. 3:12 “And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you.”

Gal. 6:10 “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.”

Is the world seeing the Church’s love for Christ in our day? Is the love of Christ for the lost world seen through the modern-day Church? Once again, Ravenhill gives us a hint as to why the world is not getting the message. He says:

“The Church may have to advertise its preachers, its conferences, it statistics—it does not have to advertise its spiritual bankruptcy; it is too self-evident”.6

B. We are to Share Our Lord’s Life with the World
1. We need to bear the Gospel to them

Matt. 28:19a “…Go ye therefore, and teach (‘make disciples of’) all nations…”

2. We need to baptize those willing to identify with Christ

Matt. 28:19b “…baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.”

3.We need to build up the converts in the Christian life

Matt. 28:20 “Teaching (‘instructing’) them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

1 Henry T. Blackaby and Claude V. King, Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God, (Nashville, TN: LifeWay Publishing, 2007), p. 16

2 Dan Bernard,

3 Henry T. Blackaby and Claude V. King, Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God, (Nashville, TN: LifeWay Publishing, 2007), p. 165.

4 Leonard Ravenhill, Revival God’s Way: A Message for the Church, (Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 1986), pp. 57 & 59.

5 Bits & Pieces, October 15, 1992, pp. 16-17.

6 Leonard Ravenhill, Revival God’s Way: A Message for the Church, (Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 1986), p. 85.


Copyright © November 1993 by Rev. Donnie L. Martin. All rights reserved.

Posted in


Scroll to Top