Church of God, New World Ministries

Bible Q & A

Q. What is the biblical name for God’s Church?
A. The Bible gives the true name of God’s Church in 12 different places. In five passages where the true name of the Church appears, the entire Body of Christ the Church as a whole-- is indicated. Thus when speaking of the entire Church, including all its individual members on earth, the name is “the Church of God.” Here are these five passages:

  1. Acts 20:28 the elders were admonished to “shepherd the church of God.”

  2. I Cor. 10:32 “Give no offense, either to the Jews or to the Greeks or to the church of God.”

  3. I Cor. 11:22 “Or do you despise the church of God?”

  4. I Cor. 15:9 Paul wrote, “persecuted the church of God.”

  5. Gal. 1:13 - Here Paul repeats the statement “I persecuted the church of God.”

    Nowhere is the true Church called after the name of some man or doctrine. Where one specific local congregation is mentioned, the true Church is called “the Church of God,” often in connection with the place where the congregation was located. Here are four more passages:

  6. I Cor. 1:2 “The church of God which is at Corinth.”

  7. II Cor. 1:1 “The church of God which is at Corinth.”

  8. I Tim. 3:5 in speaking of a local elder in a local congregation, Paul wrote Timothy, “For if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?”

  9. I Tim. 3:15 “I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God.”

    In speaking of the local congregations collectively not as one general Body, but as the total of all local congregations the Bible name is “the churches of God.” Here are the final three verses:

  10. I Cor. 11:16 “We have no such custom, nor do the churches of God.”

  11. I Thess. 2:14 “For you, brethren, became imitator of the churches of God which are in Judea in Christ Jesus.”

  12. II Thess. 1:4 “So that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God.”

These verses prove the name of the true Church. Denominations not bearing this name could not be God’s true Church. And of all the churches that do bear the name, only one could be the true Church of God that one that obeys all the commandments of God and maintains the faith delivered once for all time. All others are counterfeit, even though some know about the true name.

Since Christ is the Head of the Church, Paul also called the various congregations “the churches of Christ” (Rom. 16:16) But the actual name is “the Church of God.” It is kept in the name of the Father (John 17:11).
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