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This course explains what a church is; whether a Bible Study in your home is a church; and what the purpose of a local church really is.

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This course explains what a church is; whether a Bible Study in your home is a church; and what the purpose of a local church really is.

 

Bible Study Course

Church

Welcome to the third booklet in the Bible Doctrine I Series. This study is written to be used with the KING JAMES BIBLE, otherwise your answers are not going to be correct. Please get your Bible, and begin another exciting study in God’s Word, that just might change your life!

“… and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” (Matthew 16:18)

Chapter 1

I. What Is A Church?

A. In a positional sense, every person in this age or time who has trusted Jesus Christ as his/her personal Savior, is a part or member of Christ’s Body, the Church.

 

Note: The church is not a building — it is people. People who have trusted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior.

1. I Corinthians 3:9 says, “ye are God’s husbandry, YE are God’s ________________.”

2. Verse 16 of that same chapter says, “Know ye not that YE are the ____________ of God?”

3. Acts 7:48 tells us that, “the most High dwelleth not in temples made with __________.”

 

So in the truest sense, the church is made up

of people — not bricks and mortar.

4. We become a part or member of the church the moment we are saved, according to I Corinthians 12:13. This verse tells us that, “by one Spirit are we all baptized into ______ body.”

5. In Colossians 1:24, this body, CHRIST’S BODY, is said to be the ___________.

6. According to verse 18 of that same chapter, Jesus is said to be the ________ of that body, the church.

7. Ephesians 2:19 says, “ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but ____________________________ with the saints, and of the household of God.”

Illustration: If you were born in the United States of America, you did not need to apply for citizenship or membership in this country — you were granted that the moment you were born.

Even so, the moment you were born again, you became a citizen of heaven, and a member of Christ’s body, the church.

8. There is no racial discrimination with God as is seen in I Corinthians 12:13. He will save all who will accept Him, and will bring them into the church, whether they be “Jew or ______________.”

 

Note: Gentiles are all people other than Jews — God’s chosen people, the descendants of Jacob.

 

Illustration: While it is true that a baby becomes a citizen of this country the moment that he is born here, he really does not appreciate that fact until he gets old enough to communicate with other citizens.

Even so it is with the Christian. It is true that the moment he gets saved he is a member of the body of Christ, the church, but he will never fully appreciate that fact until he communicates with other Christians locally.

B. In a practical sense, the church is made up of local congregations of baptized believers.

 

Note: For practical purposes, the body of Christ, the church, must meet together to benefit each other.

1. Hebrews 10:25 says that we are not to forsake the ____________________ of ourselves together.

 

Note: The word church means, “a called out assembly.” It comes from the Greek word, ekklesia.

 

Please notice in that verse that there was a problem

— some Christians were not assembling together.

Note: Some people today feel that it is acceptable to just stay home and watch church on television on Sunday morning. Is that acceptable to God?

    1. That is not acceptable, because it is disobeying God’s command to “assemble together.”

    2. That is not acceptable, because, as we shall see later on, it is impossible to observe the church ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper through the television set.

    3. That is not acceptable, because it makes spiritual gifts unable to be of any use or benefit to the church.

 

It may be that you feel you have nothing special to

contribute to a local church in your area, but that is not true.

 

Note: Please read I Corinthians 12:12-27, and fill in the following blanks.

    a. Verse 12 says that the body is one, but it has ________ members.

    b. Verse 21 states that no member can say to another, “I have no ________ of you.”

    c. In fact, verse 22 says that those members which seem to be more feeble are __________________.

    d. Verse 26 says that if one member suffers, then ______ the members suffer with it.

    e. On the other hand, that same verse goes on to say that if one member is honored, then all the members ______________ with it.

Illustration: The church is likened unto our bodies, which happen to have many different parts. But all of those parts are important.

Yes, people see your face more than they see your toes, but the body would have no balance without the toes.

Is there any part of the body more important that the other? Maybe the brain? But what good would a brain be if there were no parts of the body to direct and get into motion?

The heart plays an important role, but it is never normally seen by a person.

You may feel that you are of no value to a local church because you cannot teach a Sunday School class or sing in the choir, but what if everyone was a Sunday School teacher? Who would there be in the class to listen? If everyone sang in the choir, who would there be in the pews to listen?

There is a church somewhere that needs you!

 

2. Romans 16:5 shows that the early church did not always have a building in which to meet, so they met in ____________.

 

Seeming the early church sometimes met in homes,

is it okay to just hold a Bible study in your home

every Sunday morning and call that church?

a. No, because Acts 14:23 instructs that ____________ (pastors) should be ordained (and present) in every church.

b. Philippians 1:1 also shows that there is another position of leadership in the church besides that of bishops (pastors), and that is ______________.

The qualifications for these two positions are given in I Timothy 3:1-13. An informal Bible study in your home cannot be called a “local church.” A church may meet in your home, but there would need to be ordained leaders in charge.

REVIEW:

1. The church is not a building — it is ____________.

2. We become a part or member of the church the moment we are __________.

3. __________ is said to be the head of the body, the church.

4. There is no ____________ discrimination with God — He will save all who accept Him, and He will bring them into the church.

5. For practical purposes, the church must ________ together to benefit each other.

6. Hebrews 10:25 says that we are not to forsake the ____________________ of ourselves together for church.

7. The word church means, “a ____________ out assembly.”

8. What verse tells you that it is not acceptable for you to just stay home on Sunday morning and watch church on television? _________________

9. No member of the church can say to another, “I have no ________ of you.”

10. Those members of the church which seem to be more feeble are __________________.

11. The early church did not always have a building in which to meet, so they sometimes met in ____________.

12. A Bible study in your home cannot be considered as church unless there are ________________ leaders present and in charge.

Chapter 2

II. Why Is A Local Church Necessary?

 

A. It provides needed fellowship.

 

Note: The word fellowship means, “communion,” or “sharing in common.”

1. Acts 2:42 says that those people saved in verse 41 were steadfast in the apostle’s doctrine, and ____________________, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

2. Acts 2:46 relates that they continued in this practice __________ with one accord.

 

Note: It is normal that Christians need each other’s friendship, as the next verses clearly show.

3. According to II Corinthians 6:14, we are not to have close ties with unbelievers, because righteousness has no fellowship (nothing in common) with ______________________________.

4. That verse also says that light has no communion with ________________.

 

Note: When we get saved, we soon find out that we are headed in a different direction than our old friends. We tell them that Christ can do for them what He did for us, but if they reject the gospel, we find that we have fewer and fewer things in common with them. In fact, as the next verses show, our old friends will sometimes break our hearts as they take sides against us.

5. I Peter 4:1-4 says that your old friends will think it ______________ that you will not run with them in their sin any longer.

6. In fact, those verses even say that they will speak ________ of you, because you will not go with them to practice their old sins.

 

This is one good reason for being faithful in attending a local church.

You need the friendship, the fellowship, and the sharing in common

that you can only have with other believers.

7. Christians may have once seemed like strange people to you, but if you are saved, Ephesians 2:19 says that you are now ____________________________ with the saints.

8. Like Moses in Hebrews 11:24-26, we choose to be associated with other believers, than to enjoy the ___________________ of sin for a season (a short time). (vs.25)

9. We find it increasingly difficult to have close ties with unbelievers, because Amos 3:3 says that two cannot walk together, except they be ____________.

 

Note: At the local church, you will find people with whom you have something in common — faith in Jesus Christ, and the desire to serve Him.

— Why is a local church necessary?

B. It protects against false doctrine.

 

Note: The word doctrine means, “teaching” or “instruction.”

1. Acts 15:1-4 shows that false doctrine was already trying to creep into the church. Some said that unless a person was circumcised after the manner of Moses, he could not be __________. (vs.1)

2. The false teaching was not allowed to continue, because some of the leaders, Paul and ________________, openly disagreed with what was being taught. (vs.2)

3. The local church at that city (Antioch, 14:26), then sent them to the ____________ at Jerusalem for their counsel about the matter. (15:2,4)

 

Note: The church at Jerusalem was greatly respected, because it was not only the first Christian church, but the majority of the apostles also made their homes there. Their advice would naturally be sought out when a problem arose.

4. In I Timothy 1:2-4, Paul asked Timothy (a young preacher) to stay at the city of Ephesus and charge some that they teach no other ________________. (vs.3)

5. According to verses 6 and 7 of that same chapter, some teachers had ____________ aside, and were teaching wrong things.

6. According to I Timothy 4:6-16, the local pastor and church are commanded to be faithful in reading (reading the Bible publicly in the church), in exhortation (urging the congregation to pursue a future course of conduct), and in ________________. (vs.13)

The local church is a place where faithful leaders are to

make sure that false doctrine is openly rebuked and corrected.

7. Hebrews 3:13 says that Christians are to exhort one another daily, lest we become hardened through the __________________________ of sin.

Note: Sin is very deceitful, because it often gives the false impression that it is good; when, in fact, it is bad.

Illustration: A clear example of this is the matter of abortion. Abortion is murdering a baby before it can be born. Is that too harsh of a statement? If you think so, then consider this fact. A person is considered to be legally dead today when there ceases to be any brain waves or activity in the brain. But the medical profession is being very inconsistent, then, because brain waves have been recorded in a fetus (a baby in the womb) as early as 43 days from conception. Then why do they not consider the baby as a living person? Simply because they do not want to have to answer for their sin.

We who are against abortion are called, pro-life (we are for preserving and protecting the life of the unborn baby).

That puts people in favor of abortion in a difficult position. They should be called, pro-death, or pro-murder. So what have they called themselves? They have chosen the name of pro-choice. That is a nice-sounding name, is it not? It has the sound of liberty in it. But it is a deceitful name, because it really means, “having the choice or liberty to murder your unborn baby if you choose to do so.”

That is a good example of the deceitfulness of sin.

Note: A local church is important, because it brings out these matters into the open, and shows the truth.

 

People who forsake the local church are many times

led away into false doctrine. The reason is that they are

disobeying God for not assembling with the church, and they are

hearing a multitude of opinions about religious matters (from friends, relatives,

TV and radio preachers), and they often do not know who or what to believe.

But cannot the Lord show a person what is right? Yes, but God only speaks through His Word, the Bible; and the person in question has already shown his unwillingness to listen to the Bible by his not being in church. When we knowingly disobey the Bible, the Lord will not answer our prayers. Psalm 66:18 says, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not ________ me” (iniquity is sin).

– Why is a local church necessary?

C. It is a place to fulfill your spiritual gifts.

1. Ephesians 4:7,8 tells us that when Christ ascended to heaven He gave __________ unto men.

2. Verse 11 of that same chapter tells us that some of the gifts were: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and ________________.

3. The purpose of these gifts, according to verse 12, is to edify (build up) the ________ of Christ (the church).

4. The desired result of spiritual gifts is found in verse 14 — “that we henceforth be no more children, ____________ to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine.”

5. Ephesians 4:16 says the body is fitly joined together by that which every ________ supplies.

6. According to I Corinthians 14:26, “all things” (spiritual gifts), are to be used in the church for the purpose of ________________ (building up) others.

 

Note: The local church is a place to fulfill your spiritual gifts in harmony with others. They are not to be exercised selfishly; instead, they are to be used to strengthen and help other believers.

 

If you are saved, God has given you spiritual gifts, and

there is a local church somewhere that needs you. If you

stay home they will be lacking in some way.

 

REVIEW:

1. The first reason that the local church is necessary is that it provides needed ___________________.

2. Fellowship means, “communion,” or “______________ in common.”

3. We are not to have close ties with unbelievers because __________________________ has no fellowship with unrighteousness.

4. Like Moses, we choose to be associated with other ___________________, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season.

5. The second reason a local church is necessary is because it protects against false _______________.

6. The word doctrine means, “_______________” or “instruction.”

7. Timothy, a young preacher, was asked to stay at Ephesus to charge some that they teach no other ________________.

8. Sin is very deceitful; that is, it gives a false impression of being ________.

9. The third reason a local church is necessary is because it is a place to fulfill your __________________ gifts.

10. The purpose of spiritual gifts is to edify or build up the ________ of Christ (the church).

11. If you are saved, there is a local church somewhere that needs ______.

Chapter 3

III. What Is The Duty of the Local Church?

 

A. It is to tell others how to be saved.

1. Jesus’ final words upon earth were some commands that we are to obey. Some of those words are in Matthew 28:18-20, and verse 19 says we are to go and __________ all nations.

 

Teach them what? Teach them how to be saved, because

He then goes on to tell us to baptize those people. As we

have seen from our previous study on baptism, a person

is forbidden to be baptized until he is saved.

2. Mark 16:15 says we are to go into all the world and preach the ____________ to every creature.

3. According to Matthew 22:36-39, the greatest commandment is to love God. Next to that, we are to love our ________________ as ourselves.

4. Luke 13:3 says, “except ye ____________, ye shall all likewise perish.”

5. In John 3:18 we read, “he that believeth not is __________________ already.”

Note: If we are to obey the second greatest commandment of God, then we are going to have to tell our neighbors how to escape the judgment of hell. They stand condemned at this moment without Christ.

– What is the duty of the local church?

B. It is to baptize new converts.

1. Matthew 28:19 says that after we teach them (how to be saved, and then they respond), then we are to ______________ them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

2. Acts 2:41 says that they that gladly received the word (trusted Christ as Savior), were then ________________.

 

Note: The previous course on baptism shows that the first command after we are saved is to be baptized. It also shows that only ordained pastors and deacons are to do the baptizing. So a clear duty of the local church is to see that these new converts are baptized.

 

– What is the duty of the local church?

C. It is to train Christians.

1. In Matthew 28:20, the third and final command of Jesus is that we, “teach them to observe ______ things whatsoever I have commanded you.”

“All things” means that we are not to stop working with

a person after he has trusted Jesus as Savior, and has

been baptized. There is much more to learn about

how to then live a life that is pleasing to God.

 

Note: Romans 12:1,2 points out the importance of finding, “what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, ________ of God.” (The “will of God” is what God wants to accomplish through your life, and also what will make you the most fulfilled in life.)

2. II Timothy 2:2 says, “And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to __________ others also.”

3. Ephesians 4:11-16 shows the purpose of the spiritual gifts of church leaders: “Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the __________________ of the Son of God.” (vs.13)

 

Note: After we teach a person how to have eternal life, we need to then teach him how to live a life here that will please God.

 

– What is the purpose of the local church?

D. It is to send out and support missionaries.

1. Acts 1:8 says we are to be witnesses, “both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the __________.”

2. According to Matthew 28:19, we are to go and teach all ______________.

3. In Mark 16:15, the Bible says, “Go ye into all the __________, and preach the gospel to every creature.”

 

The Lord’s command is clear — get the gospel to all

the world! But how can one person do it all alone?

That is just the point — one person cannot do it all alone.

4. According to Luke 10:1, Jesus appointed ______________ men to go before Him, by two’s, into every place where He would come.

5. Luke 10:2 says that we are to pray to the Lord that He would send forth __________________ into His harvest.

6. In Mark 5:1-19, we find a demon-possessed man meeting up with Jesus. The man gets saved, and then asks Jesus if he could go with Him (that would be missionary work). But Jesus said in verse 19, “Go ________ to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee.”

Note: The important thing about praying that the Lord would send out more missionaries, is that you are faced with the personal question, “Does He want me to go?” You will never have peace about the matter until you ask Him.

Illustration: What would you do if you saw an elderly woman standing beside her car, which was stuck in a snow-filled ditch? Would you not stop and offer to help? She might say, “Why, thank you, but if you could just drop me off at the drug store, I will call my son who has a wrecker.”

God wants you to do the same in the matter of missions. You offered to get out of your warm car for that lady, and get down in the ditch and push. Will you not offer the same to God — to leave the comforts of home and get out on the mission field and work for Him?

It may be that He will kindly refuse your offer, like the elderly woman did, but ask you to help in a different way. He may want you to help right from your car (right on the job where you are — living right where you are). You helped the woman without even leaving your car, and it may be that God wants you to help missionaries right where you are. You can do that by giving money; by sending supplies; and by praying.

 

Beware! Giving will never bring you peace — if God

has called YOU to go.

7. Acts 11:22 says that the ____________ which was in Jerusalem sent forth Barnabas (as a missionary) to go as far as Antioch.

8. According to Acts 13:1-3, the church at Antioch was told to “Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the ________ whereunto I have called them.”

9. The work God called them to is described in verse 5: “And when they were at Salamis, they ________________ the word of God.”

 

God calls MEN to serve Him as missionaries. Missionaries

go preach the gospel, and God has called men to do that.

The church then recognizes God’s call upon their lives,

and officially sends them forth to the work.

10. According to Philippians 4:15, no ____________ communicated with Paul on his missionary journey concerning giving and receiving except the Philippian church.

11. Verse 16 of that same chapter shows that they sent money “once and __________” to meet Paul’s need.

Note: This shows how the church could be counted on to support missionaries in a regular way.

12. Verse 17 shows that this is one way that “fruit may abound to your ______________” (in heaven).

13. Verse 19 says that when we support missionaries, God then promises that He will “supply all your ________ according to His riches.”

 

Note: The Bible example is to support missionaries through your local church. It will bring about God’s blessing in this life to meet your needs, and it will also lay up rewards for you in heaven. (See also Matthew 6:19-21).

– What is the duty of the local church?

E. It is to observe the Lord’s Supper.

1. According to I Corinthians 11:23,24, the bread symbolizes Jesus’ body, “which is ____________ for you.”

 

The bread is broken, because it is to picture Jesus’

broken body for us. Today, companies are preparing little

square or round crackers that are a convenient size to use

for the Lord’s Supper without having the mess of breaking them.

This is one time when convenience encourages

churches to be unscriptural in their practice.

 

Note: An unbroken cracker does not picture the Lord’s broken body for us any more than sprinkling pictures the “death, burial, and resurrection” that baptism is to picture.

This is but another example of how deceitful sin is (remember Hebrews 3:13?). The devil wants us to forget how the Lord was beaten and broken for us.

2. Matthew 26:27 then shows that Jesus “took the ______, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it.”

3. Verse 29 of that same chapter says that the juice in the cup was from the “fruit of the ________” (it was grape juice).

 

Grape juice is what the Bible tells us to use in the cup.

Kool Aid, soda pop, or alcoholic wine are no substitutes.

Note: Jesus never made or drank alcoholic wine, although many accuse Him of doing so.

One reason we know He never did so is because the Bible forbid it. Proverbs 31:4 says, “It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for ______________ strong drink.” Jesus is the “King of kings,” according to Revelation 19:16. And He is the “Prince of peace,” according to Isaiah 9:6.

But some people persist and say that He made wine at His first miracle. First of all, the Bible uses the word wine in a general or generic sense at times (Isaiah 65:8 calls grapes still hanging on the vine wine, and you certainly cannot say they are alcoholic).

 

It is easy to prove that Jesus did not make alcoholic wine at His first miracle,

but simply made grape juice. In John 2:10, if the words “well drunk” meant that the

crowd was “intoxicated with alcohol,” and if Jesus made more alcoholic wine for them,

then what you would have is Jesus helping a bunch of drunken people get more drunk!

That would sure seem like a strange thing for Jesus to do when I Corinthians 6:10 says

that a drunkard shall not inherit the kingdom of God. If Jesus would have made

alcoholic wine for them, He would have been helping to keep people out of heaven!

Such a thing would have made Jesus a sinner, and unable to be the Savior. But that was not the case, because Luke 19:10 says that Jesus came to seek and ________ that which was lost.

Jesus never made or drank alcoholic wine — and neither should you (please see Bible Course #109 for further discussion on this).

4. I Corinthians 11:33 says, “when ye come ________________ to eat (the Lord’s Supper), tarry (wait) one for another.”

Note: This shows us two things:

First, the Lord’s Supper is only observed when the church gathers together. It is not something that you do by yourself at home, nor do you take it to some individual.

 

There is no example in the Bible of taking

the Lord’s Supper to a dying person.

The dying person does not need a symbol of Jesus’ blood (which the cup represents) he needs the real thing! And he can have Jesus’ blood applied to his soul by simply calling upon the Lord to save him (Romans 10:13).

 

There is no example in the Bible of taking the Lord’s

Supper to a backslidden individual to restore him to fellowship.

The worst thing that a backslidden person could do would be to take the Lord’s Supper. For this very reason, I Corinthians 11:30 says that many are “weak and ____________ among you.”

Second, this shows us that all of the congregation is to be served before anyone eats of the elements, or drinks of them: “tarry (wait) one for another,” I Corinthians 11:33 says.

    a. This means that the congregation is NOT to walk up in front of the church one by one to partake of communion.

    b. This means that everyone is to wait to eat the bread or drink the cup until everyone has received theirs also. Then, everyone is to eat or drink at the same time (usually when the pastor or deacon in charge makes a motion to do so).

 

– What is the duty of the local church?

F. It is to worship the Lord.

1. Matthew 22:36-38 says that the greatest commandment is to “________ the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.”

2. Part of the early church gatherings included “praising ______,”

according to Acts 2:47.

 

Although this point is noted last, it is the

most important for the church to observe.

Note: If a local church meets with success in the salvation of souls, in the growth of its membership, and in its finances and number of missionaries it supports, the tendency is to exalt the pastor or the local church itself — instead of the Lord. Eventually, God will have to deal with that local congregation because of its pride. Let us always give glory to the One to whom it is due – God. The Bible says in I Corinthians 1:31, “He that glorieth, let him glory in the ________.”

 

REVIEW:

1. One duty of the local church is to tell others how to be __________.

2. After they are saved, it is our duty to teach them that they should be ________________.

3. After we teach a person how to have eternal life, we then need to teach him how to live a life that will ____________ God.

4. Another duty of the local church is to send out and ______________ missionaries.

5. Giving to missions will never bring you peace if God has called you to ____.

6. Broken bread is to be used in observing the Lord’s Supper, because it is to picture Jesus’ broken ________.

7. __________ juice is to be used in the cup when observing the Lord’s Supper.

8. The greatest commandment (and thus the greatest duty of the local church) is to “________ the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.”

Chapter 4

IV. How Is the Local Church Supported?

A. By tithes.

1. Malachi 3:10 says, “Bring ye all the ____________ into the storehouse.”

2. According to Numbers 18:21, the Lord had given to the children of Levi (the priests) all the __________ in Israel for an inheritance, and for their service they performed in the tabernacle.

 

Note: A tithe is one-tenth of a person’s income.

3. I Timothy 5:17,18 talks about supporting elders or pastors. It refers back to an Old Testament passage, and applies it to the New Testament church leaders, saying, “The labourer is worthy of his ____________.”

4. The same matter is brought up again in I Corinthians 9:6-14. Verse 14 says, “Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should ________ of the gospel” (be supported in life by the gospel).

Some argue that the tithe was only a command under

the Old Testament law of Moses, and that we do not have

to observe it today. But the tithe was practiced long before

the law was given to Moses (by Abraham in Genesis 14:20;

and by Jacob in Genesis 28:22).

 

Note: It is clear from points #3 and #4 above that the Old Testament means of supporting priests (by tithes) is directly applied to the supporting of church leaders today.

5. Malachi 3:8 says that the people were ______________ God by not giving tithes and offerings.

 

Note: This verse brings about the seriousness of not tithing, and also brings up another matter about money — offerings.

 

— The local church is supported:

B. By voluntary offerings.

1. I Corinthians 16:2 says, “Upon the __________ day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him.”

 

The first day of the week is Sunday. The believers

were told to set aside a portion of their money on

that day to give to the Lord.

 

Note: There are probably at least two reasons why they were told to do it on Sunday.

    First, they were to set aside a portion for the Lord before their money had been all spent over the course of the week.

    Second, the church met on Sunday, so it would be the natural time to gather the offerings.

2. According to verse 1 of this same chapter, this particular collection was “for the ____________” (the believers in Jerusalem, according to verse 3).

Note: These voluntary offerings are used to meet a variety of needs; in this case, for the poor Christians in Jerusalem.

 

The church is by no means to be a system

of welfare in the community.

II Thessalonians 3:10 says, “that if any would not ________, neither should he eat.”

There is only one group of people that is eligible for REGULAR support from the church other than the pastors and missionaries, and that is certain widows.

    a. According to Acts 6:1, the ____________ were being neglected in the daily ministration (the daily feeding).

    b. I Timothy 5:3-16 gives more details about what widows are eligible. Verse 4 says that if a widow has ________________ or nephews, they are to requite her (repay her by supporting her).

    c. Verse 9 of that same passage says that a widow should not be taken into the number (the group that is supported by the church) if she is under ____________________ years old (a “score” equals 20, so threescore would equal 60 years old).

    d. That same verse also gives another requirement for her, that she can only have been the wife of ______ man.

    e. Verse 10 gives another requirement, that she be “Well reported of for ________ works” (she must have a good reputation).

The church may use its offerings to help out believers in need, but only pastors, missionaries, and widows that meet these qualifications may receive REGULAR support of the church.

3. II Corinthians 8:1-15 talks about giving offerings. Verse 12 says, “if there first be a ______________ mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.”

4. According to II Corinthians 9:7, God loveth a ________________ giver.

 

When it comes to offerings, there is no set amount

which a person must give, like there is with the tithe. What God

desires is a willing offering from a cheerful heart.

Note: Some people think that they cannot afford to tithe and give offerings to the Lord because of their present bills. If that is your case, consider these promises of God.

a. Luke 6:38 says, “Give, and it shall be __________ unto you.”

b. Concerning tithes, Malachi 3:10 tells us to bring them to God’s house and prove Him whether or not He will open the windows of heaven and pour us out a ________________.

c. Philippians 4:15-19 talks about giving to the church so missionaries can be supported, and the promise given in verse 19 is that God will then supply all your ________ according to His riches.

The burden of proof lies with us. We have to give in faith, and He promises to meet our needs.

REVIEW:

1. A tithe is a__________ of a person’s income.

2. The tithe was practiced long before the law was given to Moses, by such men as ______________ and __________.

3. According to Malachi 3:8, a person is ______________ God if he does not give tithes and offerings.

4. On what day of the week are we to set aside offerings for the Lord?

5. What three groups of people may receive regular support of the church?

    a.

    b.

    c.

Chapter 5

V. What About Local Church Membership?

 

A. It is the example of the Bible.

1. In Acts 2:38-41, Peter preaches a gospel message, and many respond and are then baptized. The same day there are __________ unto them about three thousand souls. (vs.41)

 

The example is that when people get saved and

baptized, they are then added to that church.

2. In I Corinthians 5:1-13, the Corinthian Church is rebuked for letting one of its members continue on in open sin.

    a. Verse 2 says that the church should have been mourning over this man’s sin, “that he that hath done this deed might be taken ________ from among you” (removed from the church).

    b. Verse 7 says, “__________ out (remove) therefore the old leaven.”

   c. Verse 13 says again, “put ________ from among yourselves that wicked person.”

 

You cannot be put out of a group unless you are a member

of it. You cannot be “put away” from something of which

you are not a part. So this clearly shows that the early

church practiced church membership.

3. Matthew 18:15-17 describes how a person comes to the place of being removed from the membership of a local church.

    a. Verse 15 says that if a Christian “brother shall trespass against thee (sin against you or do you wrong), go and tell him his fault between thee and him __________: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.”

 

Note: It may be that the one who wronged you did not even realize it, or did not know it would offend you. That is why you are to go to him alone and give him a chance to make things right without embarrassing him in front of others.

    b. If the person will not make things right, then you are to go to him again with one or ______ more, that there may be witnesses from the church as to what the problem is. (verse 16)

    c. If the offender will not listen to the witnesses involved, then verse 17 says they are to tell it unto the ____________ (the church assembled together).

   d. If the offender neglects to listen to the church, then verse 17 says “let him be unto thee as an ______________ man (unsaved person) and a publican.”

 

An unsaved person cannot be a member of the church.

Even so, a Christian who falls into sin, and will not repent,

is put out of the local church membership. The purpose

of church discipline is NOT to drive a person away — it

is a step that will hopefully bring the person to

repentance and back to church again.

Note: II Corinthians 2:1-11 is a follow-up letter concerning the immoral man of I Corinthians 5:1-13. The immoral man has repented in II Corinthians 2, but the church members did not know what to do with him then.

    a. II Corinthians 2:6 says, “____________________ to such a man is this punishment” (the punishment was enough to bring him to repentance).

    b. Verse 7 says, “So that contrariwise ye ought rather to ______________ him” (do not hold a grudge against him after he repents – forgive him).

    c. Verse 8 says to “______________ your love toward him” (encourage him now that he is your friend, and can be a part of the church again).

— What about local church membership?

B. It is evidence of your commitment and intention to live for Christ.

1. Acts 5:1-11 tells the tragic story about a husband and wife who lied to the church.

    a. According to verses 1-3, they had sold some ________.

    b. The church was not forcing them to give any of their money from the sale, because verse 4 says, “Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own __________?”

    c. Verse 4 shows the seriousness of lying unto the church — it is not just lying unto men, but unto ______.

    d. Verses 5-10 show the consequences of their sin, both Ananias and his wife Sapphira ________. (vss.5,10)

2. After the death of Ananias and Sapphira, Acts 5:13 says that, “of the rest durst no man ________ himself to them” (joined the church).

Note: The problem of people suddenly not joining the church was not because two liars or hypocrites had been revealed in it casting doubt on the rest of the membership. Verse 13 says, “the people __________________ them” (the crowd of people thought very highly of the members of that church).

Neither was the cause a lack of people getting saved, because verse 14 says “____________________ both of men and women” were getting saved.

Then what was the problem why people would not join this church?

 

For a time, people were afraid to join this church

because of what happened to Ananias and Sapphira.

They were afraid that if they joined, and then lied or

committed some other sin, that they also would suddenly

die. So the people who were members of this church

were greatly respected among all the people.

Whoever was the first one to step out and join this church would have been showing evidence that he was serious about his commitment to Jesus Christ, and his intention to live for Him.

 

Question: How about you? Are you a member of a good Bible-preaching local church? If you are serious about living for Jesus Christ, then you need to step forward and join a good Bible-preaching local church! If you need help finding one, write to us.

REVIEW:

1. After Peter preached a gospel message, 3,000 people were saved, baptized, and __________ to the church.

2. The immoral man of I Corinthians 5:2 was told to “be taken ________ from among you” (removed from the church).

3. You cannot be put out of a group unless you are a ____________ of it.

4. If a Christian wrongs you in some way, “go and tell him his fault between thee and him __________.”

5. If the offender will not listen to you, nor to the witnesses that you bring, then you are “to tell it unto the ____________.”

6. If the offender will not listen to the church, then “let him be unto thee as an ______________” (as an unsaved person; that is, no longer a member of the church).

7. If the offender repents of his sin after being put out of the church, then you are to “______________ your love toward him” (encourage him that he is your friend, and that you want him to be member of that local church again).

Final Test

Church

Please study your notes very carefully before taking this test. When you are finished, please return the entire booklet to us for grading. When it is graded, the booklet will be returned to you, and the next available booklet will be sent to you. May God richly guide and bless you!

1. The church is not a building — it is ____________.

2. __________ is the Head of the church.

3. For practical purposes, the church must ________ together to benefit each other.

4. Hebrews 10:25 says that we are not to forsake the ____________________ of ourselves together for church.

5. A Bible study in your home cannot be considered as church unless there are ________________ leaders present and in charge.

6. The local church is necessary because it provides needed ____________________ (communion, or sharing in common).

7. The local church is necessary because it protects against false ________________.

8. The local church is a place to fulfill your __________________ gifts.

9. One duty of the local church is to tell others how to be __________.

10. After a person is saved, it is our duty to teach him that he needs to be ________________.

11. Another duty of the local church is to send out and support ________________________.

12. Giving to missions will never bring you peace if God has called you to ____.

13. Broken bread is to be used in observing the Lord’s Supper, because it is to picture Jesus’ broken ________ for us.

14. When observing the Lord’s Supper, the juice in the cup is to be __________ juice.

15. Jesus’ miracle at the wedding was making more grape juice – not alcoholic wine — because if the people were intoxicated, and He made them more alcohol, then He would have been helping a bunch of drunken people get more __________!

16. The most important duty of the local church is to worship the Lord, because the greatest commandment is to “________ the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.”

17. A tithe is __________________ of a person’s income.

18.. The tithe was practiced long before the law was given to Moses. Two examples are ______________ and __________.

19. According to Malachi 3:8, a person is ______________ God if he does not give tithes and offerings.

20. After Peter preached a gospel message, 3,000 people were saved, baptized, and __________ to the church.

21. You cannot be put out of a group unless you are a ____________ of it.

22 If you are serious about living for Jesus Christ, then you need to ________ a good Bible-preaching church.

 

How The Bible Says You Can Be Saved

1. Do you realize that you have sinned? (Rom. 3:23) (I John 1:8)

2. Do you realize the penalty for your sin? (Rom. 6:23)

3. Do you realize that if you die in your sin, you will go to hell?  (Psa. 9:17) (Prov. 15:24) (Luke 12:4,5)

4. Do you realize that the Lord Jesus Christ paid that death penalty for you? (Rom. 5:8) (I Pet. 3:18) (I Pet. 2:24)

5. Do you realize that it is only through the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ that you can be saved, and not through any good works of your own? (I John 1:7) (I Pet. 1:18,19) (Eph. 2:8,9) (Titus 3:5-7)

6. Do you realize that after Jesus died for your sins, He arose victorious from the grave the third day, proving that His sacrifice was sufficient to pay for all of the sins of the whole world? (I Cor. 15:1-4)

7. Do you realize that to be saved you must repent (you must have the desire to turn from your sin and false beliefs, and for the Lord Jesus Christ to cleanse you from all your sin)? (Luke 13:3) (Acts 3:19) (Acts 26:20)

8. Do you realize that after you get saved, God’s first command for you is for you to get baptized and then to live for Him?  (Acts 2:41) (II Cor. 5:17)

9. Are you ready to now pray and ask the Lord Jesus Christ to forgive you of all your sins, and to save you? (John 1:12) (Rom. 10:13) (I John 5:13)

* If you are, then bow your head right now and confess to God that you are a sinner deserving judgment. Ask the Lord Jesus Christ to forgive you of all your sins, and to save you. Ask Him to cleanse your life, and to give you the power to live for Him. Ask Him to lead you to a good, Bible-preaching church, where you can follow the first command after salvation — that of getting baptized and publicly confessing your faith in Him. Ask Him to help you find some good Christian friends to encourage you in the faith and to help you grow.

q — I have just asked the Lord Jesus Christ to save me.

________________________________________________

(sign name here)

 

________________________________________________

(date)

 * If you have just received the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, please write to us at the address below,

or copy this page and send it to us via email, so that we may rejoice with you.

 

#BC-E-103  @  1990    LIBERTY GOSPEL TRACTS

This Bible Study Course may be printed off for personal study, but cannot be printed in quantity

and distributed without prior written permission from Liberty Gospel Tracts.

www.libertygospeltracts.com

LIBERTY GOSPEL TRACTS

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