Four years ago, when this blog was just getting started – back when I only posted a few times each month – I wrote a short post called “The Church or Two Churches?” about the use of the term “church.” I think this is a good question for us to consider.
According to Romans 16, within the city of Rome there was a church that met in the home of Priscilla and Aquila (Rom 16:5). There was also a church that met with Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, and Hermas (Rom 16:14). Finally, there was a church that met with Philologus, Julia, Nereus and Olympas (Rom 16:15).
Paul recognized each of these groups as the church.
Based on Paul’s use of ekklesia (“church”), when two of these groups met together, would Paul have recognized the combination as the church, or two churches?
I believe he would have recognized them as the church, not two churches.
If this is true, what are the implications for the church today?