The Ground of the Church
In our objective study of the church as presented in the Bible, we focused on the ground of the church, which is oneness (Matthew 16:18; 1 Timothy 3:15-16; John 17). It was helpful to see the illustration of the ground not as the foundation upon which a building is built, since a foundation can be laid in any lot, but rather the actual lot, the piece of land, where a building can be constructed. I also appreciated seeing the practical application of the ground of oneness in 1 Corinthians 1:12-13 through the city of Corinth, where Paul, Peter, and Apollos did not set up their own churches with themselves as the ground, which would have caused divisions in the Body of Christ, but instead, built upon the same ground in the local church in Corinth. These ones all labored to bring others to the Lord and built them on the same ground of oneness. Thus, Corinth is one example in the Bible of how the believers met as one church in one city (1 Corinthians 1:2). Finally, it was sweet to see that what God wants is for the believers to be one with Him and one another and to build up His church on the proper ground. We closed with some prayer that the Lord would cause what was revealed to us through this Bible study to become our experience and practice. May the Lord gain what is on His heart!