When Did the Church Start? Eleven Reasons Why Jesus' Church Was in Existence Prior to The Day of Pentecost
Some Scriptural reasons why the Church was not established on the day of Pentecost, but rather, began with the first family back in Genesis:
- It had a rule of discipline before Pentecost (Matthew 18:17).
- We read that Jesus sang in the Church (Hebrews 2:12). The only time that Jesus ever sang, so far as we have any record of it, was at the institution of the Lord's Supper (Mark 14:26). This was before Pentecost.
- They had a business meeting before the day of Pentecost and elected a successor to take the place of Judas (Acts 1:15-26).
- The Apostles were in the Church before the day of Pentecost (1st Corinthians 12:28). The first ones who were put in the Church were the Apostles, and this was at least three years before the day of Pentecost.
- The Church had its commission to preach before Pentecost (Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15).
- The Church had its authority to baptize before Pentecost (John 4:2).
- The Church had the Lord's Supper before Pentecost (Matthew 26:30).
- The keys of the Kingdom were given to it before Pentecost (Matthew 16:19).
- It had a church roll before Pentecost with names on the roll (Acts 1:15).
- To this church there were about 3,000 "added" on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:42). If I were to tell you I was going to "add" $200 to my bank account, this would imply that I already have a bank account to begin with. In view of the fact that 3,000 were "added" to the Church on the day of Pentecost, then we are led to believe that the Church was in existence before Pentecost.
- And perhaps the strongest evidence of all that the Church DIDN'T begin on Pentecost is found in Acts 7:37,38 where we read about the "church in the wilderness" in the Old Testament...
"This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear. This is he, that was in the CHURCH IN THE WILDERNESS with the angel which spake to him in the mount Sina, and with our fathers: who received the lively oracles to give unto us."
Let any other man who believes that the Church was founded on the day of Pentecost, answer these eleven reasons. Until such an answer is forthcoming, accept only the Word of God, and not the words of men.
Certainly, the debate over "when" the Church started is not a fundamental doctrine of the Christian faith. Many good many, such as Oliver B. Greene and M.R. DeHann believe that the Church began on the Day of Pentecost. I disagree. I personally agree with Pastor Jack Hyles that the Church began back in Genesis with the first Christian family. The local church today is a surrogate family. In the Old Testament, the eldest in the family was the spiritual leader, who provided guidance for the rest of the family. Due to urbanization and the migration of the family, churches became a necessity to provide a surrogate family. Howbeit, the Church has been around for thousands of years, going back at least 4,000 years to the "church in the wilderness." The Church could not have begun on the Day of Pentecost.
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