The Work of the Lord's Church
"Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward
according to his labor. For we are God's fellow workers; you are God's field,
you are God's building."
I Corinthians 3:8-9
The New Testament church is a creation of the Lord, Jesus Christ, and as such, has a divine mission or work to do. The primary work of the church is to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ in order to help save souls. This work involves a three-fold mission: evangelism, edification, and benevolence (Ephesians 4:12).
In one of the most well-known New Testament passages, Jesus Christ instructs his disciples to "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature" (Mark 16:15). The mission of the Samford congregation is to spread the gospel, or "the good news" of Jesus Christ's death, burial, and resurrection, throughout our community and the world by preaching the truth in our worship services, in our classrooms, and through our support of mission works throughout this country and abroad. We believe it is our responsibility as a local congregation of believers to do our part to fulfill the commission of Christ to “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you" (Matthew 28: 19-20).
Not only does the church have a God-given responsibility to bring others to Christ, but it also must work to edify itself in love (Eph. 4:16). Local Christians are to encourage one another and build each other up in the most holy faith (Heb. 10: 24-25). The church at Samford accomplishes this in various ways: by studying the scriptures to show ourselves approved by God (2 Tim. 2: 15); by growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ (2 Pet. 3:18); by continuing steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine (Acts 2: 42); and by having fervent love for one another (1 Pet. 4:8-9), as well as for the Lord.
Benevolence is a work of the church. Paul told the Galatians " to do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith" (Gal. 6:10). The early church busied itself with works of benevolence, including the distribution of food, clothing, and other necessities. This pattern is found in the following scriptures Acts 2:44-45; Acts 4:34-35; Acts 6: 1-3; Acts 11:27-30; Romans 15:25-26; 1 Corinthians 16:1-2; 2 Corinthians 8 and 9; and 1Timothy 5:3-16. In our works of benevolence, we should remember Jesus Christ's words in Matthew 25: "Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me."
The Autonomy of the New Testament Church
This three-fold mission is the responsibility of each local church, which is composed of saints, with some assigned as deacons and elders. Jesus Christ is the only Head of the church (Ephesians 5:23 and Colossians 1:18). Each New Testament congregation is independent and autonomous of all other congregations.
Works supported by the Samford church of Christ:
Paragould Children's Home
Costa Rica Missions
Good News Today
Gospel Broadcasting Network
Crowley's Ridge College Bible Dept.
Heritage Christian University Bible Dept.
Freed-Hardeman University Bible Dept.