Baptized Into a Spiritual Body
One is not baptized into any sect or denomination. Rather, one becomes a member of the spiritual Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:27; Ephesians 2:19-22).
In 1 Corinthians 12:13 we find that "by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit."
This body is called the Church of God (Acts 20:28). Membership in this Church is granted by God upon genuine repentance and baptism and is not determined by men or human organizations. The Greek word for "church" is ekklesia, meaning "called-out ones." Simply put, God calls those He chooses out of this society to be part of His spiritual Church.
Jesus said His disciples, or followers, would need to be taught (Matthew 28:19, 20). In Ephesians 4:11-13 Paul also said, "And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ."
We see here that the Church, as the body of Christ, has an obligation and responsibility to help Christians grow spiritually, which requires working together under the guidance of called and faithful ministers of God. God admonishes us to strive for unity and recognize the need we have for each other (1 Corinthians 12:12-25; Ephesians 4:1-3).
Finding a church, or a called-out group of believers, in which we can learn sound doctrine and fellowship with people of like mind is important in staying on the road to eternal life.
Hebrews 10:24, 25 tells us, "And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching."
We in the United Church of God recognize the need to provide opportunities
for God's people to assemble and receive biblical instruction
and fellowship. Meeting regularly with God's people will
be a vital aid to your spiritual growth.
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