Edward F. Lundwall, Jr.
A Seventh Triumph of Christ's Resurrection: Equipping for Discipleship
The institutions of mankind have been numerous throughout the ages, yet none has survived through the flow of time like the Christian Church. Before being made a participant in Christ's resurrection, men could do nothing to please God. "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God;" (Rom 3:23). "Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God" (Romans 8:7, 8). However, the iglesia, or Church as defined by Jesus Christ as a group of people who would believe He was “the Christ, the son of the living God” as declared by Simon Peter in Matthew 16:16, was and still is a new kind of community which supersedes man-made institutions…a “God-thing”…because it is sustained by the Resurrected Christ Himself, and would never be overcome even by “the gates of Hell.” How?
Christ promised (John 16:7-11) and sent the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:1-9) after He ascended to be the “Helper” (literally “the one that comes along side to help”) and to teach the church all the things that He had commanded (John 16:13-15). Also "….When he (Christ) ascended up on high, (i.e., because He was resurrected) he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men . . . And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: . . . From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love" (Ephesians 4:8, 11, 12, 16). God-given spiritual gifts sustain believers and allow for the church (called the Bride of Christ) to be self-edifying and multiplying through the generations until it is claimed by its Bridegroom, Christ, upon his promised return (Acts 1:7-11).
Related reading: The First Triumph; The Second Triumph; The Third Triumph; The Fourth Triumph; The Fifth Triumph; The Sixth Triumph