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The church exists in a covenantal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. This new covenant is established by God and God alone with his covenant partners, or Christ-followers who have heard the gospel of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, have repented of their sins, have embraced Jesus Christ by faith, have been baptized in the name of the triune God, have received forgiveness of their sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit, and have been incorporated into the church of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:22-47). By means of this covenant, God binds himself to his covenant partners, who in turn observe binding obligations toward him. To the church Christ has given two signs of this covenant relationship: baptism, the sign of entrance into the new covenant relationship with God and into the covenant community, the church; and the Lord’s Supper, the sign of ongoing new covenant relationship with God and the covenant community, the church.[1]

[1] Allison, Strangers and Sojourners, 124.

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