communion of saints

Collins
World English Dictionary
communion of saints
 
n
Christianity the spiritual fellowship of all true Christians, living and dead

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

communion of saints

in Christian theology, the fellowship of those united to Jesus Christ in Baptism; the phrase is first found in the 5th-century version of the Apostles' Creed by Nicetas of Remesiana. The original Greek phrase has been translated both as a sharing of the benefits of membership in the church and as a communion with the saints (in the biblical sense of all who have been baptized). Both translations accord with the New Testament doctrine that the baptized are united with Jesus Christ, who shares in their human nature, and that their goal is to share in his present glorified state. The new relationship with other Christians, living and dead, and with Christ replaces the covenant relationship of the Old Testament.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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