The English Word ‘Church’

The English word church is derived from kuriakos, a Greek word meaning belonging to The Lord. “Church” is commonly used to translate another original New Testament Greek word, ekklesia, which meant an assembly of called out ones. It corresponds to the congregation of the Old Testament: This is he who was in the congregation in the wilderness with the angel who spoke to him at Mount Sinai… Acts 7:38

“Congregation,” “meeting” or “assembly” are most often used to translate the original Hebrew words of the Old Testament, pronounced: ay-daw and kaw-hawl which were used primarily to describe the Israelites in a sense of a gathering of the Lord’s holy people.

They set out from Elim, and all the congregation [ay-daw] of the people of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin…..Exodus 16:1

But when the assembly [kaw-hawl] is to be gathered together, you shall blow, but you shall not sound an alarm. Numbers 10:7-8

In the Greek version of the Hebrew Old Testament, ay-daw was translated as sunagoge  (synagogue), and kaw-hawl was translated as ekklesia. Earlier, synagogue was a term used collectively for the Jewish people, while ekklesia was used for the church, the “called out ones.”

The “Rock Of Ages” provides a direct continuity between the Old Testament congregation, the “physical Israel” who were set free by the blood of a Passover lamb, and the New Testament church, the “spiritual Israel” who are set free by the blood of the Lamb of God.

1 Corinthians 10:1-4 I want you to know, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same supernatural food and all drank the same supernatural drink. For they drank from the supernatural Rock which followed them, and the Rock was Christ.

Matthew 16:18 On this Rock I will build My church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it.

Romans 9:6-8 For not all who are ethnic Israel belong to Israel, and not all are children of Abraham because they are his descendants; but “Through Isaac shall your descendants be named.”

This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the Children of God but the children of the promise are reckoned as descendants.

True, righteous Christian individuals are the holy people of God, the Israel of God. A continuity of faithful believers of Abrahams type and now with Jesus as our Mediator, we look forward to the great promises of God to His Israelite people. Of their redemption, their gathering into all of the holy Land and eventually how it will be them who call out to the Returning Jesus: Blessed is He that comes in the Name of the Lord.  o