Holy Spirit Interactive
Saturday, August 18, 2018
Inside Holy Spirit Interactive

Holy Spirit Interactive: Discover the Church: The Churches of the Bible

The Churches of the Bible

The meaning of “Church”

The English word “Church” translates the Greek word (ekklesia). In everyday Greek at the time of Jesus, this meant a coming-together of free citizens for elections and other matters to further the interests of the city-state. This was the term used when the Old Testament was translated from Hebrew into Greek. In Hebrew the expression was qhal YHWH – “the assembly of the Lord”, or “assembly round the Lord”.

So when Christians used this word, they were saying some important things:
  1. about their coming together, which was not just any kind of get-together, but a coming-together in the way in which the first disciples did in the Upper Room at Pentecost (Acts 2:1);
  2. about their assembly around the table of the Lord (cf. 1 Cor 10:21);
  3. about their work for the Kingdom of God (cf. Col 4:11);
  4. about their sense of freedom – they felt they had been set free by Jesus (cf. e.g. Gal 5:1)

By “Church” was meant the followers of Jesus, united in prayer and action for the Kingdom, the successors of the People of God of the Old Testament (cf. Jer 31:31-34).

Next: The Church the Apostles left behind