Page 3 - September 2021 - Truth & Tidings
P. 3

“       he truth is in Jesus” (Eph 4:21).   terms used throughout this issue. And
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              When we “heard the word of truth,  this additional truth that Scripture reveals
        Tthe gospel of your salvation, and  concerning local assemblies is also precious
        believed in him” (1:13), we were sealed  – and “love rejoices with the truth.”
        with the Holy Spirit and made members   Every part of God’s revelation is valuable
        of Christ’s body – hallmarks of this distinct  and not to be overlooked. Truth matters,
        dispensation, sometimes referred to as the  and since “love rejoices with the truth,”
        Church Age. The truth of the Church as one  one measure of our love for the Lord is our
        body in Christ is glorious; it is called “the  desire to hold to His truth, even when it
        mystery of Christ” (3:4). At the climax of  becomes less and less popular in a society
        His creation week, God gave the first Adam  steeped in secularism and relativism. As
        a bride, and presented us with a picture  Jesus Christ is the foundation of every true
        of Christ and His Church (cf. Gen 2:18-25   church (1Co 3:10-11), our loyalty in a local
        and Eph 5:31-32). The Church remained a   church is borne out of loyalty to Christ and
        mystery, kept hidden for ages (Eph 3:1-11),   His Word. We should hold truth in a Christ-
        but this eternal purpose of God was finally   like manner: in humility, not in arrogance;
        realized in the last Adam, the Lord Jesus   with joy, not with animosity. Admittedly,
        Christ. The oneness of the Church, and her   local churches will differ from one another
        oneness with Christ (1Co 12:12), is a pre-  in some practices – partly due to differing
        cious truth, and “love … rejoices with the   cultures and traditions, and partly due to
        truth” (13:6) – if we love Christ, we must   differing judgments on some aspects of
                                             truth. This is why we must respect local
        love His Church.                     church autonomy, but it remains incum-
          In our earthly pilgrimage, however, we   bent upon every local church to appeal
        will never come into contact with most of   to the authority of Scripture. Sometimes
        Christ’s Church. So God has wisely and   frustration with traditions or errors of judg-
        graciously designed something further for   ment have led beloved saints to throw out
        our spiritual blessing and development: a   the baby with the bath water, jettisoning
        fellowship of His people that meet together  truth in the process. Don’t throw out ba-
        in a given locality (e.g., 1Th 1:1). There is  bies, and don’t jettison truth. “Love rejoices
        one Church (Eph 4:4), but many churches  with the truth,” including all of God’s truth
        (Rom 16:16). Or, there is one Assembly,  for the Church and the churches. Let us be
        but many assemblies; you will notice both  committed to the authority of His Word
        ¹ All Scripture quotations in this article are from   and keep enjoying the blessing of the Lord
        the ESV.                             in the midst of His gathered people.

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