Looking at the Church through the Eyes of Jesus
Before the world began, God knew that someday He would establish the church. Paul described this mystery of God’s plan as having been hidden in Him from the beginning of the ages (Eph. 3:9). He planned for all men to be brought together into one body, the church (Eph. 3:6; 1:22-23).
Modern America seems to have no regard for God and even less for the church. It is true that denominationalism, religious divisions and actions done by those who claim to be Christians but fail to honor the Lord and His original plan have contributed to this disrespect. However, think of the contrast in the view America has for the church and the way Jesus looks at the true church He established.
The world despises the church because the church believes in an absolute standard for right and wrong. It is not culture or society which determines what is moral or immoral. His people are often seen as “pests” whose influence must be eradicated from our land. Freedom in America means that every person should do what is “right in his own eyes” (Judges 17:6) and no one has the right to criticize anyone’s choices.
Christians in the first century were seen as ignorant, unlearned, uneducated and untrained (Acts 4:13), and twenty centuries later they are often seen in the same way. The world refuses to look at the evidence for the deity of Jesus and the work He did, and they mockingly describe Christians as having blind faith in a myth which has no more basis for reality than the blind faith children have in Santa Claus.
Now contrast this with how Jesus sees the church. His regard for the church can be seen in the agony of Gethsemane and the cruelty of Calvary. Why would Jesus, God in the flesh, endure such things? The answer is found in the reality that the blood the Lord shed was that which purchased the church (Acts 20:28). He sees the church as those people who have been washed in His blood (Acts 22:16) and have been sanctified, cleansed and therefore are without blemish (Eph. 5:26-27).
Because the church as been cleansed “with the washing of water by the word,” His people are “a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing.” The church is His beautiful bride and He loved His bride so much that He gave Himself to purchase her (Eph. 5:23-27).
So the question to be determined is which view is the right view of the church? Once we understand the answer, we must never share the world’s view of the body of Jesus. Someday those who have mocked the church and denigrated His bride will stand before God. You will also stand there. Which view do you have of the church? Which view will you have when you stand before the Lord? Think about it!