What is the definition of the term Church?

In linguistic origins, the term ‘church’ can be traced back to two Greek words. Firstly, “Ekklesia,” which when translated into English, means “called out assembly.” This implies a group separated from the world.

Secondly, the word “Kuriakon” is literally translated as “belonging to the Lord.” These roots provide insight into the spiritual and possessive associations of the word as it is understood today.

This is why church in the Christian religion refers to a body of believers and not a church building, as commonly thought.

References of the Christian Church in the Bible

  1. Assembly called out by God, separation of church

    Acts 7:37-38:This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear. This is he, that was in the church in the wilderness with the angel which spake to him in the mount Sina, and with our fathers: who received the lively oracles to give unto us:”

  2. A building

    1 Corinthians 11:18: “For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.”

    Here it refers to a pagan temple:

    Acts 19:37: “For ye have brought hither these men, which are neither robbers of churches, nor yet blasphemers of your goddess.”

  3. All saved Christians are in the Christian faith

    1 Corinthians 10:32: “Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God:”

  4. A collective Body of Christ

    Ephesians 1:22: “And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,”

  5. Local Church of Christian believers

    Acts 20:17: “And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church.”
    1 Corinthians 1:1-2: “Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:”

    1 Thessalonians 1:1: “Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

  6. Spiritual Building

    Matthew 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.”
    Ephesians 2:19-22: “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

  7. Bride of Christ

    Ephesians 5:31-32:For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.”

Distinctions of Church

In ecclesiastical terminology, different classifications of ‘church’ exist to provide clarity on their attributes:

– The “Invisible Church” denotes all redeemed Christians, irrespective of their physical presence (alive/passed on to heaven). In contrast, the “Visible Church” refers to Christians who are alive and you can see them now in church.

– The “Local Church” describes a local congregation/Christian community in a particular area, while the “Universal Church” encompasses all Christian bodies globally.

– The “Actual Church” signifies those who have achieved perfection and reside in heaven with Jesus Christ, while the “Ideal Church” is comprised of individuals striving towards perfection, despite their imperfections.

– The “Church Militant” represents the true church on earth, and the “Church Triumphant” points to the true church in heaven (heavenly church).

Founding of the Church

  1. The foundation is Jesus Christ.

    Matthew 16:16-18:And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. 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.”

    Jesus Christ is the Rock, not Peter as they have pointed out in the Catholic church.

    John 2:19-21: “Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? But he spake of the temple of his body.”
    1 Peter 2:5-8: “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.”

  2. It is made possible by the cross.

    Ephesians 2:16: “And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:”

  3. The church started at Pentecost.

    Acts 2:1: “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.”
    Acts 2:4: “And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
    Acts 2:47: “Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”
    1 Corinthians 12:13: “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.”

Purpose of the Church

The purpose of the church body is threefold:

  1. Evangelize the sinners
    Acts 2:47: “Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”
  2. Edify the saints
    Ephesians 4:11: “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;”
  3. Exalt the Savior
    Ephesians 3:21: “Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.”


As a Christian, here are the basic Christian duties upon salvation. To grow fast into an advanced Christian, it necessitates Bible study and going more into doctrines.

History of the Church

The church fathers in the Bible (Noah, Abraham, Moses, and Jesus) show us what took place in the church. Because we can always learn from history.

To find out more about the history of Bible believing churches, please take a look at this article.

  1. Noah
    A preacher of righteousness.

    2 Peter 2:5: “And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;”

    Noah preached for 100 years, and he only had 7 members in his church attendance.

    Genesis 5:32: “And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth.”
    Genesis 7:6: “And Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth.”

  2. Abraham
    God called him out from paganism into another land. God called out Abraham and his wife only, but he disobeyed God and brought Lot with him.

    Genesis 12:1: “Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee:”

    Lot became worldly and committed incest (Genesis 19:25-36).

  3. Moses
    Pastored 2 million members.

    Acts 7:37-38:This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear. This is he, that was in the church in the wilderness with the angel which spake to him in the mount Sina, and with our fathers: who received the lively oracles to give unto us:”

    The church criticized the pastor’s wife.

    Numbers 12:1: “And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman.”

    The church also complained about the pastor being absent.

    Exodus 32:1: “And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him.”

    The congregation lacked trust in the pastor.

    Numbers 14:2: “And all the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron: and the whole congregation said unto them, Would God that we had died in the land of Egypt! or would God we had died in this wilderness!”

    Some people in the church taking the pastor’s position. What ensured was church discipline.

    Numbers 16:1-3:Now Korah, the son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, and Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, and On, the son of Peleth, sons of Reuben, took men: And they rose up before Moses, with certain of the children of Israel, two hundred and fifty princes of the assembly, famous in the congregation, men of renown: And they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron, and said unto them, Ye take too much upon you, seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the LORD is among them: wherefore then lift ye up yourselves above the congregation of the LORD?”

    The pastor backsliding because of anger towards his own people.

    Numbers 20:10: “And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock?”
    Numbers 20:12: “And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.”

  4. Jesus
    Chose and called out His own disciples.

    Matthew 10:1: “And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.”

    He originally had 70 members and was left with 12.

    Luke 10:1: “After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come.”

    One of the 12 disciples is an infidel.

    John 20:24-25:But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

    Jesus’ right-hand man cussed and swore in front of lost people.

    Matthew 26:69-75:Now Peter sat without in the palace: and a damsel came unto him, saying, Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee. But he denied before them all, saying, I know not what thou sayest. And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth. And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man. And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee. Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.”

    Jesus’ treasurer was a devil.

    John 13:29: “For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast; or, that he should give something to the poor.”

If you are looking for a Bible-based church and Christian worship based on the word of God, please take a look at the list of churches here.