26.4 The Lord Jesus Christ is the head of the church. By the appointment of the Father, all authority requisite for the calling, establishment, ordering and governing of the church is supremely and sovereignly invested in Him. It is impossible for the Pope of Rome in any true sense to be the head of the church, for he is the antichrist, described in Scripture as 'the man of sin', 'the son of perdition,' who 'exalts himself' in the church against Christ and 'above all that is called God', whom 'the Lord shall destroy with the brightness of His coming'. Matt. 28:18-20; Eph. 4:11,12; Col. 1:18; 2 Thess. 2:2-9.
26.5 In the exercise of the authority which has been entrusted to Him, the Lord Jesus, through the ministry of the Word and by His Spirit, calls to Himself out of the world those who are given to Him by His Father, that they may live in His sight, rendering Him the obedience prescribed by Him for them in the Scripture. He commands those thus called to form particular societies or churches to promote their common welfare, and to engage in the public worship which He requires them to carry on while they continue in the world. Matt. 18:15-20; 28:20; John 10:16; 12:32.
26.6 The members of these churches are saints by reason of the divine call, and in a visible manner they demonstrate and declare, both by their confession of Christ and their manner of life, that they obey Christ's call. They willingly consent to hold fellowship together according to Christ's instructions, giving themselves to the Lord and to one another as God wills, and yielding full assent to the requirements of the gospel. Acts 2:41,42; 5:13,14; Rom. 1:7; 1 Cor. 1:2; 2 Cor. 9:13.