Name Tags: An Experimental Study
Many people enjoy doing problem solving puzzles such as crossword, fill-it-ins,
Sudoku and the like. Many of our younger generation like to play video
games with problem solving puzzles in them such as MYST.
I do not have time for these types of things, but being a bible teacher
I enjoy working at solving division problems among believers. Our Lord
Jesus Christ does not want us to have division problems among ourselves
but yet we do. Many brethren believe that these problems cannot be fixed
but I believe they can if the brethren involved wish to do so. If the
brethren are not interested in doing the Lord’s will and not to
have division among ourselves then it is not going to happen with those
particular brethren, but for those that wish to do so it can be very
In the past I have written articles on various division problems among
brethren and now I would like to address the division problems between
Acts 2 believers and mid-Acts believers.
In doing so, being a mid-Acts believer myself, I sat down and looked
at the scriptures from an Acts 2 perspective to see why the division
problems are there.
This study is experimental. What I have done is taken my mid-Acts views
and combined them with the views from an Acts 2 perspective and with
a lot of prayer for wisdom I searched the scriptures to see what I came
up with. The results are pretty interesting, but I very well could have
overlooked some things.
So if you don’t mind and if you have the time, if you see something
that I have overlooked and you see a flaw in this teaching, please contact
me at email@example.com
and explain the flaw to me. As I said, this study is experimental, taking
both views of the Acts 2 believer and the mid-Acts believer and blending
them or combining them to see if there can be a solution to our division
There is only one truth, and the truth will always reveal itself: eventually.
Many of our Acts 2 brethren call the church, which began at the cross
or in Acts 2, they call it “The Body of Christ”. On the
other hand, our mid-Acts brethren call the one new man that was given
with Paul “The Body of Christ”.
So what happens is that we have division among ourselves of when the
body of Christ started and yes, brethren actually argue about it and
separate each other from their company because of it.
Because I deal with brethren from Acts 2 all the way to Acts 28 on a
regular basis, for this reason I usually call the church that began
in Acts 2 “the new covenant church” and I call the one new
man, “The One New Man” just to make sure I keep the separation
clear. I try to avoid using the term “the body of Christ”
when I am talking to a mixed company of believers.
I use the term “new covenant church” because they are waiting
for the new covenant to get their sins blotted out at the second coming
of Christ as told by Jeremiah in Jeremiah 31, the Lord in Luke 21, Peter
in Acts 3 and Paul in Romans 11.
If I say, “The body of Christ” then an Acts 2 brethren will
feel that I am talking about the church which began in Acts 2, but a
mid-Acts believer will feel that I am talking about the one new man
that began with Paul. So the problem here is with name tags.
What this article will try to do is clear up the problem with name tags
that we use which seems to be causing a problem.
So let’s get started.
In John 20 Jesus met with the apostles after his resurrection but Thomas
was not there. Thomas told the apostles that he did not and would not
believe that Christ rose from the dead. Later Jesus met with them again
when Thomas was there and Jesus told Thomas,
“29 Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen
me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet
So Jesus is telling us here that there are 2 different classes of believers,
those that have seen and those that have not seen. I have never seen
the Lord so I belong to the class of believers that have not seen.
He also states that the ones that have not seen and yet have believed
are blessed above those that have seen and believed.
Why is this?
In Hebrews 11 it says,
“1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the
evidence of things not seen.”
The evidence of things not seen.
If you see it, is it real faith? What if you don’t see it and
believe anyway? This is where real faith comes in.
Don’t get me wrong, Thomas had faith in that Christ was raised
from the dead but it was not till after the fact when he saw him in
So Jesus said that those that have not seen and believe would be blessed.
Let’s look at this on a chart:
This information will be needed for later on in this study, so just
keep this info in the back of your mind.
Some people believe that there are not 2 classes of believers and whether
you have seen the Lord or not does not matter, but Jesus said something
quite different in John 20.
Now let’s go to 1st Corinthians 12. Paul told the Corinthians,
“27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.”
Paul told the Corinthians that they were particular members of the body
What made them particular?
And if the Corinthians were particular members of the body of Christ,
then who were the regular members?
Just as when Jesus said to the Pharisees in Matthew 23,
“14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for
ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore
ye shall receive the greater damnation.”
He tells them that they will receive the greater damnation. This tells
us that if there is a greater damnation that there is also a lesser
The same goes for 1st Corinthians 12:27. If there are particular members
of the body of Christ then there must also be non-particular members
of the body of Christ or regular members if you please.
So through this scripture we can see that in the body of Christ there
are particular members and members that are not particular or just regular
members. Let’s put this into a visual chart:
So is it possible that the body of Christ has two classes of believers?
Some that are particular and some that are not particular? Some that
have seen the Lord and some that have not seen the Lord?
Did Thomas see the Lord? Yes.
Did the Corinthians see the Lord. NO
Who did Jesus say would be blessed, the ones that had seen the Lord
and believed or the ones that had not seen the Lord and believed?
Let’s get deeper into the scriptures and find out.
In Matthew 16 Jesus said,
“18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and
upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not
prevail against it.”
Jesus said, “…I will build my church…”
He did not say, “…I am building my church…”
So this tells us that the building of the church is not started yet
but will be sometime in the future. In Acts 2 it says,
“47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people.
And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”
This scripture tells us that the church has begun and the Lord is adding
souls to it. Some people say it started at the cross, some say when
the Holy Spirit was given. It doesn’t matter to me. As long as
you see it started no later than Acts 2:47 then I am OK with it.
This church will also go through the tribulation period or Daniel’s
70th week. In Matthew 24 it says,
“15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation,
spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth,
let him understand:)”
Who is Christ referring to? He is referring to the church, the believers
during Daniel’s 70th week.
Now let’s put this in a visual chart showing the church starting
at Acts 2 and going into Daniel’s 70th week. We will leave the
dispensation of grace given to the Gentiles out for the moment:
So on this chart we see the church starting in the 483rd year of Daniel’s
prophecy and continuing into the 490th year of Daniel’s prophecy.
Once again, if you are unfamiliar why we start the church at the beginning
of the 483rd year of Daniel’s prophecy then you might want to
look at this article:
Now before the split of the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel’s prophecy,
Saul of Tarsus persecuted the church. In Acts 8 it says,
“3 As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering
into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.”
In 1st Corinthians 15 it says,
“9 For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet
to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.”
In Galatians 1 it says,
“13 For ye have heard of my conversation in time past
in the Jews' religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church
of God, and wasted it:”
So here is the question:
Did Saul (Paul) persecute the church of God?
So before Paul got saved he persecuted the church of God. During Paul’s
ministry he went to the city of Ephesus and led many people to the Lord.
In Acts 20 he called for the elders of the believers at Ephesus and
they met him at Miletus. When they got there he told them many things,
one of these things was in verse 28 which says,
“28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the
flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed
the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”
Were the elders of Ephesus in the church of God?
Were the believers in Ephesus in the church of God?
In 1st Timothy 3, Paul told Timothy,
“15 But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou
oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church
of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”
Is the house of God the church of the living God?
Was Timothy in the house of God?
Was Timothy in the church of the living God?
Was Paul in the house of God?
Was Paul in the church of the living God?
In 1st Peter 4 it says,
“17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the
house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of
them that obey not the gospel of God?”
Was Peter in the house of God?
Is the house of God the church of the living God?
Was Peter in the church of the living God?
Is there just one house of God or two separate houses of God?
There is just one house of God.
Now it is about to get very interesting. In my early years after I got
saved I was brought up in a grace belief that there were two separate
distinct churches, a kingdom church and a body church. Such as this
The only problem with this is, I can only find one church in the new
testament scriptures. Many mid-Acts believers teach that the body of
Christ is separate from the kingdom church but this is not what the
We know for a fact, that God made something called the One New Man so
that he could join both Jews and Gentiles. In Ephesians 2 it says,
“15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the
law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself
of twain one new man, so making peace;”
Now let’s concentrate on this part of the verse for a moment:
“…for to make in himself of twain one new man,…”
Let’s break it down and follow and believe it means exactly what
it says. It says “himself” so let’s make a visual
chart showing himself and it also says “…to make
Does it say, “to make outside of himself”?
NO. It says to make IN himself of twain one new man. Let’s show
both of these views on a visual chart.
This chart shows both views, the one new man in himself and the one
new man outside of himself. Which one is correct? The correct one is
the one new man made IN himself.
So according to this scripture, the Lord made IN himself
one new man. So the one new man is not outside of himself but rather
is in himself. The one new man is not outside of Christ but rather is
Now what we need to do is define exactly what “Himself”
Is “Himself” the church of God?
Is “Himself” the body of Christ?
Is “Himself” both?
Whatever himself is, we know for sure that the one new man is in himself
not outside of himself.
Lets back up to Acts 20 again. Were the elders and the believers in
Ephesus in the church of God? According to what Paul said they sure
Did Paul persecute the church of God? Yes he did.
Now when Paul writes to the Ephesians he says in Ephesians 1,
“22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him
to be the head over all things to the church,
23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.”
So in Acts 20 we saw that the Ephesians were in the church of God and
when Paul writes to them he says that Christ is the head over all things
to the church, which is his body.
Here Paul calls the church of God, the church which is his body. So
what we are going to do now is make a visual chart and show “Himself”
as the church of God and also show it as the body of Christ and inside
of himself we will put the one new man.
This chart shows “himself” as the church which is his body
and the one new man within himself. The church is Jew only but the one
new man is Jew and Gentile. The church is also the house of God which
is the church of the living God.
Now using this chart, lets cover Ephesians 2 and 3 and see if these
verses make more sense now. In Ephesians 2 it says,
“11 Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles
in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called
the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;
12 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth
of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope,
and without God in the world:
13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh
by the blood of Christ.
14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down
the middle wall of partition between us;
15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments
contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man,
so making peace;
16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross,
having slain the enmity thereby:
17 And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them
that were nigh.
18 For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.
19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens
with the saints, and of the household of God;
20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus
Christ himself being the chief corner stone;”
As Paul says here, on the chart we have taken “himself”
and made in it the one new man.
The Gentiles are now no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens
with the saints and of the household of God. Peter, Paul, Timothy and
all of the other Jews and Gentiles that are saved are all in the same
house of God which is the church of the living God.
This one new man that joins Jews and Gentiles is built upon the same
foundation of the apostles and prophets just as Paul said in verse 20.
The one new man is not based upon a separate foundation as some teach.
All of the members of the one new man are members of the church but
not all members of the church are members of the one new man.
Now let’s do Ephesians 3 and see how it fits.
“1 For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ
for you Gentiles,
2 If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is
given me to you-ward:
3 How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote
afore in few words,
4 Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery
5 Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it
is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
6 That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and
partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:”
Now verse 6 is of particular interest, let’s do a few questions:
The Gentiles should be fellowheirs with whom?
The Jews. This would include the apostles and prophets of verse 5.
And of the same body with whom?
Once again the Jews. This would once again include the apostles and
prophets of verse 5.
So on this chart, we have himself, called the church of God, called
the body of Christ, called the house of God and the one new man is inserted
into this church.
Now remember, this study is about name tags. Some people call the church,
the body of Christ and some people call the one new man the body of
Christ. Even so, there will be several preachers that will want to argue
over the proper name tag to use.
But what really matters is that you see that there is one entity inside
of another entity regardless of what you desire to call them. This is
the main thing.
Many of our Acts 2 brethren see just one entity and many of our mid-Acts
brethren see two separate entities, but in all reality there is one
entity inside of another entity, which seems to make it difficult to
see both at one time.
Not being able to see this causes us to have division problems among
Now there is going to be brought up the age-old question, “Were
the 12 in the body of Christ or not.”
Well, if I were to answer this question I would first have to ask, “What
are you calling the body of Christ?”
If you were to say the body of Christ is the one new man then I would
say “NO” the 12 apostles were not in the body of Christ.
If you were to say the body of Christ is the church that began in Acts
2 then I would say “YES” the 12 apostles were in the body
My answer would depend upon which name tag you used for what and this
would probably be based on whether you were an Acts 2 brethren or a
Now let’s get back to where we started.
“29 Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen
me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet
“27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.”
We discussed earlier about there would be some believers that would
be blessed more than others and also that the Corinthians were particular
members of the body of Christ. Lets add this to our chart:
What we have done is called the church, “the body of Christ”
and inside of the church was made the one new man. The 12 apostles of
course had seen the Lord and we will make them “Regular Members”
of the body of Christ. The 12 apostles ARE NOT part
of the one new man.
The Corinthians had not seen the Lord and we will make them “Particular
Members” of the body of Christ and they ARE part
of the one new man.
Now if you are a mid-Acts believer you already know the difference between
these two groups. Once again for a moment, let’s return to the
old name tags and call Peter’s group the kingdom church and Paul’s
group the body church.
You already know the kingdom church has their works involved as James
said in James chapter 2, they have to endure unto the end, they are
waiting for the second coming to get their sins blotted out among other
The body church is sealed unto the day of redemption, no works involved,
already redeemed and so on.
Now taking this new chart showing the one new man inserted into the
body of Christ, apply these two different doctrines accordingly.
Apply Peter’s doctrine to the church which is now called his body
and apply Paul’s doctrine to the one new man.
Everything still works. When the middle wall of partition was broken
down and the one new man was made in himself (Christ) Paul’s doctrine
of the gospel of the grace of God went into effect and will continue
until the one new man is taken out of the way which is the adoption
(rapture) at the end of the dispensation of grace.
Everyone outside of the one new man but in the church is in the body
of Christ. These are regular members of the body of Christ.
Everyone inside of the one new man is also in the church which is his
body but they are considered particular members of the body of Christ
as Paul told the Corinthians.
The members inside of the one new man are more blessed than the members
outside of the one new man.
The members of the body of Christ that had seen the Lord are not in
the one new man.
Paul would be an exception to this, Paul had also seen the Lord (the
Lord had to appear to someone to show them the mystery) but yet Paul
was in the one new man.
So looking at things this way, the Lord said that there was going to
be some believers that were more blessed than others and Paul showed
us that some members of the body of Christ are particular and some are
Now let’s look at a chart with everything on it:
This chart shows the one new man made in himself, which is Christ.
The one new man was inserted when Israel fell and became Loammi and
God gave the dispensation of Grace to the Gentiles. This is when Israel
was broken off of the good olive tree and the Gentiles were grafted
in and this stopped the prophecy of Daniel’s 70 weeks.
When the dispensation of grace is over, the one new man will be adopted
as Paul says in Romans 8:23 and our bodies will be redeemed at this
time. This also will be when the Gentiles are broken off of the good
olive tree and Israel is grafted back into the good olive tree and the
prophecy of the 70 weeks can now resume.
The church, without the one new man, will resume through the 70th week
of Daniel and the members of the church, which are Jew only, will be
resurrected at the second coming. This is when they receive the blotting
out of their sins.
The members of the one new man will receive glorified bodies that can
go into heaven and will not need to partake of the tree of life.
The members of the church will be resurrected with fleshly bodies and
they will need to partake of the tree of life. In Revelation 2 John
is writing to the Jewish churches and Jesus said,
“7 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith
unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the
tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.”
So the members of the church will have a need to partake of the tree
of life whereas the members of the one new man will not. Some believers
will be more blessed than others just as Jesus said in John 20.
The one new man will receive glorified bodies as the Lord Jesus Christ.
In Philippians 3 Paul said,
“20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also
we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:
21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto
his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even
to subdue all things unto himself.”
And in 1st Corinthians 15 he said,
“52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last
trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible,
and we shall be changed.
53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must
put on immortality.
54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this
mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass
the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.”
So the particular members of the church the body of Christ, being the
one new man which is Jew and Gentile, will receive glorified, incorruptible
bodies that do not need to partake of the tree of life, but the regular
members of the church the body of Christ, which are Jew only, will received
fleshly bodies at their resurrection as stated by Ezekiel in chapter
37 which says,
“7 So I prophesied as I was commanded: and as I prophesied,
there was a noise, and behold a shaking, and the bones came together,
bone to his bone.
8 And when I beheld, lo, the sinews and the flesh came up upon them,
and the skin covered them above: but there was no breath in them.
9 Then said he unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man,
and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Come from the four winds,
O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.
10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them,
and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army.
11 Then he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house
of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost:
we are cut off for our parts.
12 Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold,
O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of
your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel.
13 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves,
O my people, and brought you up out of your graves,
14 And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place
you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken
it, and performed it, saith the LORD.”
Once again, as Jesus said, some believers will be more blessed than
others. Some will receive fleshly bodies, which will need to partake
of the tree of life to live forever as the Lord told the church in Revelation
2 and some will receive glorified bodies, which do not need to partake
of the tree of life as foretold by the apostle Paul.
Now before we close, let’s do a quick comparison of just a few
of the differences between regular members of the body of Christ with
the particular members of the body of Christ which are all in the same
household of God which is the church of the living God.
THE HOUSE OF GOD, WHICH IS THE CHURCH OF THE LIVING GOD, WHICH IS
THE CHURCH, WHICH IS HIS BODY, THE BODY OF CHRIST WHICH IS HIMSELF.
1. a) The regular members are members of the church but not members
of the one new man.
b) The particular members are blessed being made members of the church
through the one new man.
2. a) The regular members are Jew only.
b) The particular members are Jew and Gentile.
3. a) The regular members have to endure unto the end as Jesus said
in Matthew 24, Revelation 2 & 3 and other places.
b) The particular members are blessed by being sealed unto the day of
redemption as Paul said in Ephesians 1 & 4 and other places.
4. a) The regular members have their works involved as James said in
b) The particular members are blessed by not having their works involved
as Paul said in Ephesians 2.
5. a) The regular members will receive fleshly bodies at their resurrection
and will need to partake of the tree of life to live forever.
b) The particular members will be blessed and receive glorified bodies
at the adoption and will not need to partake of the tree of life.
Once again, this is just a few of the differences of the members of
Now many of our Acts 2 brethren only acknowledge the similarities between
Peter and Paul’s doctrines and they do not acknowledge the differences.
Likewise many of our mid-Acts brethren acknowledge the differences between
Peter and Paul’s doctrines and they do not acknowledge the similarities.
In order to fully understand the holy scriptures you need to acknowledge
both, the similarities and the differences of Peter and Paul’s
doctrines and rightly divide between them believing the bible means
EXACTLY what it says.
So here is the situation, it seems to be that name tags of the body
of Christ is causing division among us. Once again, dealing with believers
from Acts 2 to Acts 28, in mixed company I will continue to call the
church that began in Acts 2 “The New Covenant Church” and
the one new man that began with Paul and was inserted into the church
as “The One New Man.”
Having division over a name tag seems like a silly thing to me.
Overall it seems to me the biggest problem here is that the Acts 2 brethren
see the body of Christ as one entity and most of the mid-Acts brethren
see two separate entities or two separate individual churches.
In all reality, it looks like the body of Christ consists of two entities,
one inside of another, which I admit can be difficult to see. But even
Peter said about Paul’s writings,
“16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these
things; in which are some things hard to be understood…"
But if Acts 2 brethren and mid-Acts brethren could both possibly see
this, then it could be a start to working out our division problems.
The mid-Acts brethren will have to see that there are not two separate
churches but rather that the one new man consists inside the church
and the Acts 2 brethren will have to see that the church is not just
one entity, but rather that the church consists of one entity inside
Once again, if you believe you see a flaw in this experimental study
please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
and let me know what it is.
Hopefully through this short study, we, the Acts 2 brethren and mid-Acts
brethren, can start to see a solution to our division problems.