Jesus himself used the terms “CHURCH” and “KINGDOM” interchangeably in his announcement at Caesarea Philippi (Matthew 16:18) It is mandatory to view the Lord’s words there as a reference NOT to two institutions but to ONE.
This astounding prophecy was not a mere clever prediction of Jesus, based upon political considerations, and the probabilities indicated by the rebellious nature of Israel and the character of the Roman authority.
The Elect are people who will love God and choose to serve him are “the elect” foreordained before all time to inherit eternal salvation.
Of all the primary steps of obeying the gospel, faith, repentance, confession and baptism, all are said to be “unto” or “toward” salvation, God, Christ and the remission of sins; whereas of baptism alone is it declared that it is “INTO Christ.”
God’s giving people up was not capricious, but founded upon the righteous premise that such conduct deserved the adverse judgment it received.