NT Church - The teaching is based on the truth of God's Word.

For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ; till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ; that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the head, even Christ (Eph. 4:12-15).


The emphasis of teaching in the church ought not to be for entertainment nor should it even be the preaching of the Gospel to the unsaved. The emphasis needs to be on the edifying or building up of the body of believers. Twenty or thirty minute sermons once or twice a week, full of entertaining illustrations or stories, are not enough to build up the saints. The teaching ought to be Scriptural, systematic, clear, and all inclusive (not avoiding certain truths because they may cause offense). This is an issue that cannot be passed over lightly because it is an integral mark of a New Testament Church.


A distinguishing mark of a New Testament church is that the public teaching is based on the truth of God’s Word and time is provided to teach it adequately so that the assembly grows strong in Christ. Entertaining messages and/or brief messages may have a certain appeal to the carnal Christian or to the unbeliever, but adequate spiritual food is needed for the growing Christian. It is important to examine the contents of the messages that are being proclaimed week by week, not in a critical fashion, but to determine if the saints are really being fed adequately. The Word of God needs to be the diet for all Christians, whether they are mature or young in the faith. We are instructed, "As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby" (1 Pet. 2:2).


The questions then to be asked in looking for a New Testament Church are: Is the word of God preached clearly and systematically? Does the preacher use an opened Bible as he speaks? Does the preacher receive adequate time to teach the Word? Are the messages entertaining, but lacking in solid Bible teaching? Are some taking a turn at preaching who are not adequately preparing their messages or do not really have the gift of teaching?


These are serious questions which need serious answers. The body will not grow if the Word of God is inadequately taught. There is a vast difference between an audience that is being entertained and a body of Christians who are being fed so that they might grow and produce fruit for God. In these days when many are being tossed about by false doctrines of every kind, solid Bible teaching is a desperate need in any New Testament church.