We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Ecclesiology?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGEEK is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGEEK, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Ecclesiology is the study of the church, specifically the Christian church. While many people may think of physical structures when they hear the word “church,” ecclesiology actually focuses on the study of the church as an entity, and on the study of people who belong to the church. This field of study is a topic of interest for some theologians and historians, especially those interested in Christianity, and it can play a role in the development of church doctrine. Researchers in this field can approach ecclesiology from a number of perspectives and directions.

One of the key roles of ecclesiology is to answer fundamental questions about the Christian church, such as what the function of the church is, how the church is defined in the Bible, who belongs to the church, what the Bible has to say about the administration of the church, and who the members of the church leadership are. Researchers in this field are also interested in a number of specific topics addressed in the Bible.

There are a number of interpretations of the Bible, as well as a diversity of branches of faith within Christianity. Part of the study of ecclesiology involves research into the many interpretations of Christianity, and study of various church doctrines and the approaches to Christianity seen in different branches of the church. Quakers, for example, place a heavy emphasis on direct communication with God and the lack of a formal, organized leadership, while Catholics have a complex hierarchy of Church officials and a very differing doctrinal approach to Christianity and the practice of Christian faith.

Ecclesiologists are also interested in the role of the church in society and history. Religious faith does not occur in a vacuum, and the church has had and continues to have a profound impact on history. This field of study may include analysis of periodic adjustments of church doctrine, approaches to people of different faiths, schisms within the Christian faith, and the study of the emergence of new sects within the church. The fundamental goal is to understand the church, whether one is studying evangelical Christian sects or the highly traditional Eastern Orthodox church.

Degrees in ecclesiology are offered at several colleges, universities, and seminaries around the world. Because researchers in this field grapple with a number of fundamental doctrinal questions and issues, it is not uncommon to see scholarly disagreement in this field, along with differing approaches to the source texts used in ecclesiology. As a whole, researchers add a great deal to the general body of knowledge and thought which informs the practice of Christianity all over the world.

WiseGEEK is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a WiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments

Mary McMahon

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Read more
WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.