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Church, First Century

Go to Bible verses for: Church, First Century

Back to the First Century (Part One)

Commentary by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reminding us to take God's words seriously, cautions that all His words have great depth, having far more applications than appear on the surface. His word unfolds in layers, like the peeling back of an onion skin. After the upheaval and d. . .

Is There a True Church?

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Many 'church of God' organizations claim to be part of—or even the only—church of God. The Bible reveals specific characteristics of God's church.

Letters to Seven Churches (Part Ten): The Church

Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

Ups and downs, blessings and trials, have characterized every era of the church. God's people are always battling something negative between the brief highs.

The Source of Church Characteristics (Part One)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, clarifying our worldview with respect to the Israel of God (or the Church) in the context of eschatological (that is, end times) events, declares that our vision of our calling as well as our level of responsibility before the imploding of. . .

Is There a True Church?

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, exploring the topic on whether there is a true church, examines the differences between the True Shepherd and the hirelings, focusing on Jesus Christ's proclamation that there would be one flock, implying that there would be one church. Ma. . .

"I Will Build My Church"

Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

Richard Ritenbaugh, focusing on Peter's proclamation that Jesus Christ was the Messiah, the Christ, the Son of the living God, recognizes that after this awesome insight, Jesus realized that He could begin building His church. Sadly, the church that public. . .

What Is the Church's Work Today (Part 3)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that biblical history substantiates that God does not always have the church perform the same functions continually, but sometimes drastically alters the course according to needs and conditions. The perceived detours are necessa. . .

Purpose-Driven Churches (Part 3)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

Outcome based religion exalts numerical growth and feeling good over the truth of God, promoting the use of modern psychology over 'divisive' biblical doctrine.

Letters to Seven Churches (Part Two): Ephesus

Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

The Ephesus church effectively battled various heresies, for which Christ commends it. However, the members lost sight of the reason, having left their first love.

Jesus Christ: First Savior, Second High Priest, Third King

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

The book of Hebrews teaches that our relationship to Christ as our Savior, High Priest, and King is the key to salvation. He shows us the way to the Father.

Hebrews, Love, and the Ephesian Church

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh warns that the sheer variety of choices (distractions) available to us today (with their potential accompanying temptations and enervating time-wasting diversions) is extremely stressful because it automatically increases sin and lawlessnes. . .

Is Passover on the First Day of Unleavened Bread? (Part One)

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

Matthew, Mark, and Luke each seem to put Passover on the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, but a closer look reveals the consistency of Scripture.

The First Day of Unleavened Bread (Part 1)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

Passover takes place at twilight as the 14th of Abib begins. Unleavened Bread begins 24 hours later on the 15th of Abib. The Passover is a preparation day.

Recapture Your First Love!

Article by John O. Reid (1930-2016)

First love is the purest kind of spiritual love we as humans can demonstrate. It is a love that truly shows one's heart is completely given to God.

The Seventh Thunder

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

In Revelation 10:3-4, John tells of seven thunders—seven distinct, sequential reverberations of God's message to mankind. The seventh thunder is sounding now.

'Go Ye Therefore Into All the World...'

'Ready Answer' by Staff

When we sing this popular hymn, are we singing a lie? No, this is a commision to apostles, and right now we are doing what God desires of us.

Why Hebrews Was Written (Part Two)

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Among Catholics and Protestants exists the erroneous belief that the New Covenant abolishes the law rather than the truth that the epistle to the Hebrews provides: that Jesus Christ perfectly fulfilled His spiritual responsibilities and can now aid us in f. . .

A Distant Reflection

'Prophecy Watch' by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

George Santayana's famous quotation—"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it"—applies equally well to the church of God. Richard Ritenbaugh compares the history of the early church with the events and trends being exhibite. . .

Acts (Part 27)

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

Hebrews: Its Background (Part Five)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that the tumultuous time recorded in Acts is analogous to the current factional secularism, where God's Church is operating in the shadow of religious structures claiming to be "faith-based," but in fact denying God's L. . .

Who Was Herbert W. Armstrong?

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh shares the significance of Herbert W. Armstrong's role in the church. Increasingly, some fail to realize Herbert Armstrong's stabilizing role in God's church. The scattering we have experienced since his death has been a blessing from God, . . .

Why Hebrews Was Written (Part Four)

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Christians often spend so much time engaged in their present-day trials and tribulations that they fail to understand and learn from the experiences of Christians of the past. In the New Testament, God has supplied His church with multiple examples of the . . .

Hebrews: Its Background (Part Seven)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, examining the socio-cultural milieu before the writing of the Epistle to the Hebrews, explains the difficulties experienced by the new Jewish converts to the Gospel. The powerful testimony of the recently risen Christ, combined with the ap. . .

False Gospels

Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

A major clue for discerning false gospels is that any teaching attempting to change the nature of God or Christ or their doctrines is anti-Christ and false.

Unity (Part 1): God and HWA

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

In this lead-off sermon of the 1999 Feast of Tabernacles, John Ritenbaugh draws an instructive though disturbing parallel between the warning given to Belshazzar and the warning given to the greater church of God. A major contributory cause in the splittin. . .

Many Are Called, But Few Are Chosen (Part One)

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins, by way of introductory comments to his sermon-series on the history of the true Church, reminds us that those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it. God's people have an obligation to acquire, safeguard, and transmit the h. . .

The More Things Change

Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

We tend to think of the early Church as a 'golden age' of unity and momentum. But early church members experienced problems similar to what we face today.

Hebrews: Its Background (Part Four)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, suggesting that most of us resemble the Samaritan woman in our understanding of the value of our calling, maintains that our relationship with God is our sole protection from carnal human nature and the deadly pulls of the world. Whatever . . .

A Truth About Revelation 2 and 3

Sermonette by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the concept of church eras prevalent throughout the Worldwide Church of God, asserts that Herman Hoeh in his historical studies found a common link in doctrines and practices of groups from the apostolic times to the present,. . .

The Wisdom of Men and Faith

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh asserts that the pressures and conflicts that the church has undergone is part of a larger Zeitgeist (spirit of the time) that has embroiled institutions religious and political institutions worldwide. The mindset reflects (and is a functio. . .

Why Hebrews Was Written (Part Three)

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Hebrews was written to fulfill several needs of the first-century church. One of the most critical was to explain God's opening of eternal life to the Gentiles.

Preparing the Bride

Booklet by John W. Ritenbaugh

A Statement of Purpose and Beliefs of the Church of the Great God

Avoiding Superficiality

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

Success in spiritual things does not consist in growing large and powerful, but humbly living by faith, overcoming, and yielding to God's shaping power.

Acts (Part 2)

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh maintains that our historical and theological roots are advanced in a polished, literary, chronological narrative, perhaps designed as a trial document authored by Luke. It defends the apostle Paul and the early church, with a larger purpos. . .

Guard the Truth!

Booklet by John W. Ritenbaugh

The true church of God is an invisible, spiritual organism, of those people that have and are led by the Spirit of God, who hold fast to apostolic teaching.

A Search for Identity

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reflecting upon the breakup of our former fellowship into hundreds of pieces, examines the prospects for future unity. God gave His approval for the destruction of our prior fellowship into myriad splinter groups, allowing heresies to emer. . .

What Is the Work?

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reflecting that our concept of time is vastly different from God's, indicates that our spiritual pilgrimage (including our participation in the work of God) is largely a matter of faith, not sight. If we see God in the picture, we will not. . .

Acts (Part 1)

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh explores the possibility that the book of Acts, in addition to its role in continuing and advancing the Gospel or Good News, could well have been assembled as an exculpatory trial document designed to vindicate the Apostle Paul and the earl. . .

Where Did The Original Apostles Go?

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins notes that both Luke (in the Book of Acts) and the Apostle himself (in autobiographical comments appearing in his epistles) documented Paul's travels. However, the Scriptures remain largely silent regarding the exploits of the other Apostles. . .

The Handwriting Is On the Wall (Part Two) (2007)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that we are to follow Abraham and Sarah's example of relying on God's guidance, learning to trust in the wisdom of Almighty God rather than the world. In order to avoid strife, Abraham allowed his forward nephew Lot first choice.. . .

Man's Greatest Challenge (Part 4)

Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

Richard Ritenbaugh continues the theme of the difficulty we have in this age to distinguish truth from error. Satan's biggest targets for disinformation are God's called-out ones. As the apostles turned the world upside down by the Gospel, Satan's implante. . .

Why Hebrews Was Written (Part Three)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reminding us that Jesus handpicked the twelve apostles for a specific work, notes that there is a strong possibility that God has also handpicked each one of us to fulfill a particular role in the Body. Like an engineer on a building proje. . .

Suffering Disgrace For Christ's Name

Sermon by Martin G. Collins

Martin Collins, asking why Christians must endure such horrendous persecution and struggle, asserts that Paul warned in Acts 5 that the church would always be in danger of deception from within and opposition from without. "Opposition from without&quo. . .

Hebrews: A Message for Today

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

The book of Hebrews provides reasons to recapture flagging zeal, focusing on the reason for our hope and faith, establishing Christ's credentials.

The Beatitudes, Part One: The Sermon on the Mount

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

The Sermon on the Mount is as vitally important today as when Christ preached it. It contains the way we are to live as God's representatives on this earth.

The Handwriting Is on the Wall (1996)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

In this keynote message of the 1996 Feast of Tabernacles, John Ritenbaugh focuses upon the causes of the atomizing of the greater church of God into very small particles. Almighty God, as a means of mercifully disciplining and chastening His faithless chil. . .

Creator, Sustainer, Head (Part One)

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

The book of Hebrews resonates for the church of God at this time due to the strong parallels between our circumstances and those of the first century church.

Don't Give Up!

Commentary by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reflecting that the book of Hebrews was written for a group of people living at a time of the end of an age (the end of Jewish life in Judea), suggests that this nation is also languishing in an end-time decline. People are in a general ma. . .

The Importance of Doctrine

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

In this sobering sermon, John Ritenbaugh warns of the consequences of fellowshipping outside of God's called-out church. People who suppose they are supplementing their spiritual diet with a poisonous blend of heresy and lawlessness risk losing their ident. . .

Contend Earnestly

Article by John O. Reid (1930-2016)

All the signs point to Christ's imminent return, yet the Bible warns us not to let down! John Reid, using Hebrews 10, exhorts us to strive zealously to please God and finish our course!


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