Read the Westminster Standards in a year.
Confession of Faith
Chapter 25: Of the Church

3. Unto this catholic visible church Christ hath given the ministry, oracles, and ordinances of God, for the gathering and perfecting of the saints, in this life, to the end of the world: and doth, by his own presence and Spirit, according to his promise, make them effectual thereunto.1

  1. 1 Corinthians 12:28

    And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, administrating, and various kinds of tongues.

    Ephesians 4:11-13

    And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,

    Matthew 28:19-20

    Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

    Isaiah 59:21

    “And as for me, this is my covenant with them,” says the Lord: “My Spirit that is upon you, and my words that I have put in your mouth, shall not depart out of your mouth, or out of the mouth of your offspring, or out of the mouth of your children's offspring,” says the Lord, “from this time forth and forevermore.” (ESV)

Larger Catechism

𝒬 63. What are the special privileges of the visible church?

𝒜. The visible church hath the privilege of being under God's special care and government;1 of being protected and preserved in all ages, notwithstanding the opposition of all enemies;2 and of enjoying the communion of saints, the ordinary means of salvation,3 and offers of grace by Christ to all the members of it in the ministry of the gospel, testifying, that whosoever believes in him shall be saved,4 and excluding none that will come unto him.5

  1. Isaiah 4:5-6

    Then the Lord will create over the whole site of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, and smoke and the shining of a flaming fire by night; for over all the glory there will be a canopy. There will be a booth for shade by day from the heat, and for a refuge and a shelter from the storm and rain.

    1 Timothy 4:10

    For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe.

    Ephesians 4:11-13

    And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, (ESV)

  2. Psalm 115:1-2

    115:1 Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory,
    for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!

    Why should the nations say,
    “Where is their God?”

    Psalm 115:9

    O Israel, trust in the Lord!
    He is their help and their shield.

    Isaiah 31:4-5

    For thus the Lord said to me,
    “As a lion or a young lion growls over his prey,
    and when a band of shepherds is called out against him
    he is not terrified by their shouting
    or daunted at their noise,
    so the Lord of hosts will come down
    to fight on Mount Zion and on its hill.
    Like birds hovering, so the Lord of hosts
    will protect Jerusalem;
    he will protect and deliver it;
    he will spare and rescue it.”

    Zechariah 12:2-4

    “Behold, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of staggering to all the surrounding peoples. The siege of Jerusalem will also be against Judah. On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples. All who lift it will surely hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth will gather against it. On that day, declares the Lord, I will strike every horse with panic, and its rider with madness. But for the sake of the house of Judah I will keep my eyes open, when I strike every horse of the peoples with blindness.

    Zechariah 12:8-9

    On that day the Lord will protect the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them on that day shall be like David, and the house of David shall be like God, like the angel of the Lord, going before them. And on that day I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

    Matthew 16:18

    And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. (ESV)

  3. Acts 2:39

    For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.”

    Acts 2:42

    And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.

    Matthew 28:19-20

    Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

    1 Corinthians 12:12-13

    For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit. (ESV)

  4. Psalm 147:19-20

    He declares his word to Jacob,
    his statutes and rules to Israel.
    He has not dealt thus with any other nation;
    they do not know his rules.
    Praise the Lord!

    Romans 9:4

    They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises.

    Ephesians 4:11-12

    And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ,

    Acts 22:16

    And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’

    Acts 2:21

    And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

    Joel 2:32

    And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the Lord has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the Lord calls.

    Romans 10:10-13

    For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

    Romans 10:17

    So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. (ESV)

  5. Matthew 11:28-29

    Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

    John 6:37

    All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. (ESV)


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Based on Calendar of Readings in the Westminster Standards by Dr. Joey Pipa. Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.