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We, Orthodox Christians, mean by “church” the body through which Jesus is current and active in the human being today. That was founded by Christ v His Apostles, and has maintained a living link with the Apostles through the ordination that its clergy. The Nicene Creed indicates four straightforward characteristics the the Church, “We believe in One, Holy, global (Catholic) and Apostolic Church.” These attributes are dubbed essential, that is, those without which the Church would certainly not it is in the Church. These characteristics are:One Church The church is one body, from different members, visible and also invisible, since God is one. About being one church, St. Paul says, “There is one body, one Spirit, just as girlfriend were called in one hope of her calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism…” (Ephesians 4:4-6). In the lengthy soliloquy of the mr Jesus with the Father, the prayed that the church might be “one” also as He and also the Father space one. He said, “I do not pray because that these alone, but additionally for those that will think in Me through their word; the they all may be one simply as We space one” (John 17:20-22). The lord Christ additionally said, “And other sheep I have actually which space not the this fold; them additionally I have to bring, and they will certainly hear my voice; and also there will be one flock and also one shepherd” (John 10:16). This one shepherd in the parable is the mr Christ who said, “I to be the great Shepherd. The good Shepherd gives His life for the sheep” (John 10:11, 14).

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The church is one because she is one body and Christ is the head together St. Paul says, “Christ is head that the church” (Ephesians 5:23), “He is the head that the church” (Colossians 1:18). So, the church is one, since the mr Christ has one body; and we all are members of His body together the Apostle says, “For we room members the His body, that His flesh and bones” (Ephesians 5:30). The church is one since she is the bride the Christ. St. John the Baptist said, “I am no the Christ, yet I have actually been send before Him. He who has the bride is the bridegroom, however the girlfriend of the bridegroom, that stands and hears him, rejoice greatly…” (John 3:28, 29). The same meaning is proclaimed in (Ephesians 5:31, 32, 25; 2Corenthians 11:2). Being the only one, the bride the the lord Christ is represented in the tune of Songs; and around her the Bridegroom says, “My dove, mine perfect one, is the only one” (Song 6:9). Due to the fact that the church is one, what climate does words “churches” in the Holy holy bible signify? it signifies the places where the churches were created (Acts 9:31). The book of Revelation stated seven church in Asia (Rev 1:11); however, all of them space members that the One divine Universal Apostolic Church. Divine Church The church is holy because our lord Christ made her so. St. Peter defines the church, saying, “You also, as living stones, space being collected a spirituality house, a divine priesthood, to market up spirituality sacrifices agree to God with Jesus Christ… but you space a liked generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His very own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of the who referred to as you the end of darkness right into His marvelous light” (1Pet 2:5, 9). Together we know, words “church” come in the scriptures to signify the faithfulness (Acts 2:47; 8:1) and priesthood (Matt 18:17; 18:18) besides the structure (Rom 16:5; 1Cor 4:17). The Church is holy due to the fact that the blood of Christ cleanses us from all sins, “The blood that Jesus Christ His child cleanses united state from every sin” (1John 1:7). About Christ our Savior and His blood, the book of Revelation says, “To Him that loved us and washed us from our sins in His very own blood” (Rev 1:5). In our baptism, the old guy dies, that is corrupted; and also a brand-new man rises, who is divine in the photo of God. ~ above this regard, St. Paul says, “For as numerous of you together were baptized into Christ have actually put on Christ (Gal 3:27), that is you have actually put top top the righteousness, holiness and also cleanliness that the lord Christ. He likewise says, “Just as Christ additionally loved the church and gave himself for her, that He could sanctify and cleanse her through the washing the water by the word, the He can present she in self a glorious church, not having spot or pucker or any type of such thing, but that she have to be holy and without blemish” (Ephesians 5:25-27). Not only is the church holy, but additionally her target is to make united state holy, i.e. To live a holy life, to be various from the world, conformed to Christ’s will.Universal ChurchThe church is universal, gathering every believers with each other in the unit of faith. “For God so loved the world that He offered His only begotten Son…” (John 3:16). Simply as there are no difference within the love of God, for this reason the church stretches the end her arms to the world “where there is neither Greek no one Jew, circumcised no one uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, servant nor free, but Christ is all and also in all” (Colossians 3:11). This universal church lugged together the Jews and also Gentiles, and also all nationalities, peoples, and also tongues in one faith. Being universal, the church held Ecumenical Councils, choose the that of the apostle (Acts 15:1-35), created of the leader of the church to study and also define a matter of faith, and decide certain issues concerning the church organization so the all churches could follow one doctrine. The global church brought together every the local churches in one church embracing all, in one Creed, under uniform church laws. This global church brings all believers together in communion, in one faith, in the divine sacraments, and in partaking indigenous one altar. Nowadays, us see plenty of differences in faith amongst the different churches, which shouldn’t happen, the shattered the global church. During the process of crucifixion of our Savior (John 19:23, 24), we notice:Dividing His garments into 4 parts represent dispersing of Christianity in the four corners the the worldSeamless tunic, woven native the top in one piece is symbolic of the unified of the Church, which to be born in Pentecost by the dissension of the divine Spirit from sky The soldiers refused to divide it saying, “Let us not tear it,” symbolic the one church do not do it be divided Let us pray for the unit of the church to be a global church, one flock for one Shepherd… the an excellent Shepherd.
Apostolic Church The church is apostolic due to the fact that we have the right to trace her existence historically directly earlier to the Apostles. The hatchet “Apostolic” signifies the the church was established by one the Apostles, and also followed the to teach of the apostles without any kind of deviation it rotates this day. The Apostle Paul refers to this truth by saying, “having been built on the foundation of the apostles and also prophets, Jesus Christ self being the cook cornerstone” (Ephesians 2:20). The foundation of the church is the teaching of the Apostles, which they had actually received indigenous the mr Christ, as He ordered lock saying, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations... To teach them to observe all things that I have actually commanded you” (Matthew 28:19, 20). The is the teaching of the mr Christ yielded to the Apostles throughout the fourty days following His resurrection. The Apostles, in turn, delivered these teachings come the church they established (1Cor 11:23). St. Note the apostle, for example, established our Coptic Orthodox Church in the first century of Christianity, carrying to united state these teachings, not only orally, but also through His Gospel. Other Apostles taped these teachings in your Gospels and also epistles as well as their laws and also other written and unwritten teachings. This is known as the “Apostolic Tradition,” i m sorry the church obtained one generation after ~ the other, together St. Paul said to his disciples Timothy, “The points that you have actually heard from me among many witnesses, commit this to faithful guys who will be able to teach rather also” (2Timothy 2:2). In addition, the life of the church throughout the apostolic era is delivered to united state as one apostolic church. An example of this is the liturgies castle prayed, and also all the prayers that the sacraments they offered like the techniques of baptizing and ordaining priests. They exercised these prayers and also continued in the life of the church throughout the ages. Gift an apostolic church, the Orthodox Church has actually two distinctive features:Her changelessnessHer life continuity through the early on church of the ApostlesOne that the separating features the the Orthodox Church is she changelessness. She had, and still, preserved the full and true confidence of Christ without alters throughout every these centuries. The word “Orthodox” is applied to this church to designate that she has kept the belief “which was as soon as for all ceded to the saints” (Jude 1:3).

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The apostolic church is additionally characterized by the “Apostolic Succession.” The priest today has actually been ordained by laying the hand on and also received the divine breath (John 20:22) native his bishop. And also the bishop was ordained through the archbishop, the patriarch, or the pope, that was, in turn, ordained by his predecessor up to one of the apostle who got this strength from the lord Christ.