The Christian Church is the sphere as well as the organ of the Spirit’s administration of redemption. As a corporate body it was founded by our Lord Jesus Christ; is invested with certain attributes and notes as the representative of His agency among men; discharges its functions as an institute of worship and depository of the Faith; has definite obligations to the world as an instrument for its conversion; and, lastly, bears special relations in its temporal form to the eternal Kingdom of Christ.
The Christian Church is the sphere as well as the organ of the Spirit’s administration of redemption.
These several branches of the one subject must be considered in relation to Biblical, Dogmatic, and Historical Theology: from the Word of God we gather the materials for the true doctrinal statement; and make this the standard by which to test the various ecclesiastical phenomena of the Christian world. That this whole question belongs generally to the Administration of Redemption has been already shown at the outset, where the special relations of the Holy Spirit to the work of the Redeemer was the subject. It may be added that many topics connected with this department of theology must needs be distributed over several sections, especially those of the Three Offices of Christ and the consummation of the Kingdom in Eschatology.
Continue reading: “The Preparations for the Church in the Gospels.”
This excerpt is from William Burt Pope’s Compendium of Christian Theology (London: Beveridge and Co., 1879). Read more in Logos Bible Software, Google Books (links via Society of Evangelical Arminians), or PDF (scans from Fred Sanders).