Christ is: Building the Church
“… I will build My church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” – Matthew 16:18
Thanks be to Christ, who is the Guarantor of our inheritance in the Church and of the promise that He will build His Church. Truly, it is God’s massive construction project. He broke down the old covenant which stood as a wall of partition between His people, Israel, and the world, and He abolished the enmity of the law in order to make a new building: us! As an engineer, thinking about Christ’s work in the Church from a design or production point of view, I am reminded of four M’s that make a complete construction project: Man, Material, Method, and Machine.
Every building project needs a leader, and who better than Jesus Christ? In Him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. The Stone which the builders rejected has been made the Head of the corner, and God gave Him to be over all things to the Church. We are complete in Him, rooted and built up in all things. No believer should ever doubt the capability of this Man to build His Church.
Christ’s Church is a building like no other. It is built upon a strong foundation: the apostles and prophets, with Jesus Christ Himself being the first Stone to be laid, the chief cornerstone. This foundation is being garnished with living and precious stones. These stones are all believers; people brought out of the miry clay and changed into gold, silver, and precious gems! They are fashioned to fit perfectly together to make a spiritual house, a habitation of God.
A potter, when he first sits down to work, does not simply see a shapeless lump of clay; he sees the final product in his mind and uses the best-known way to create the desired shape. The Master Craftsman of the Church is no different—He sees the final product in His mind and He has the best timing and the right tool for each job. Whether it is discipline, persecution, temptation, conviction, comfort, or anything else, His ways are perfectly crafting the Church. All believers can rest knowing that God has determined the best way to shape us from raw material into the perfect image of His Son.
Like a good foreman, Christ oversees the building up of His Church. There are differences of ministries in the church, and He places us exactly where we should be. Sometimes He expedites the process and exercises His sovereignty. He does this not as a bully that forces His will but simply and graciously overrules the imperfection and stupidity of man. Won’t it be great when the day arrives and Christ presents her to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing!