Listen to the prayer of Jesus, “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one…” John 17:20-22. Jesus did not pray for His followers to be divided! The followers (disciples) became known as Christians. Acts 11:26. The honest Bible student does not find, Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist, or Methodist Christians, etc. in the Bible.
Listen to Jesus, “When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build [future tense] my [singular] church [singular]; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it [singular].” Matthew 16:13-18. The Holy Spirit said, “For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 3:11. The church is built upon Peter’s confession, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus only built one church. Ephesians 1:22-23; 4:4; 5:23-30.
THE CHURCH IN PROPHECY
The Holy Spirit wrote, “And it shall come to pass in the last days, That the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, And shall be exalted above the hills; And all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, To the house of the God of Jacob; And he will teach us of his ways, And we will walk in his paths: For out of Zion shall go forth the law, And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.” Isaiah 2:2-3. Also, “And it shall come to pass afterward, That I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; And your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids In those days will I pour out my spirit. And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, Blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, Before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: For in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, As the LORD hath said, And in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.” Joel 2:28-32.
From these passages, we learn where and how the church would be established. What city? Jerusalem. What nations? All nations. What days? In the last days. Who’s teaching? The Word of the LORD. Whose house? The house of the God. The Holy Spirit said, “…to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.” 1 Timothy 3:15.