CHURCH WHICH IS HIS [Christ's] BODY"
Why Christians Should Not Belong To Denominations
by Bob Thompson
"[God] bath put all things under His [Christ's] feet,
and gave Him to be Head over all things
to THE Church, which is His body..."
Ephesians 1: 22-23.
1. WHO IS THE SUPREME HEAD OF THIS CHURCH?
Answer:—The Lord Jesus Christ. See Col. 1:18; 2:10, 19.
2. WHO ARE THEY THAT MAKE UP THIS CHURCH?
Answer:—All Christians. See Eph. 2:19-22; 1 Peter 2:5; 1 Cor. 12:18.
3. HOW DOES ONE GET INTO THIS CHURCH ?
Answer:—By a spiritual operation of God called "regeneration" and "baptism". See Acts 2:47; 1 Cor. 12:13; Col. 2:11-12; Rom. 6:3-6; Titus 3:5; John 3:3-6.
4. WHAT DOES THE WORD "CHURCH" MEAN?
Answer:—"A called-out assembly" — for example, ". . . the church in the wilderness" (Acts 7:38), referring to the people of Israel, called out of Egypt.
5. WHEN DID THIS CHURCH, WHICH CHRIST IS BUILDING, BEGIN?
Answer:—On the day of Pentecost. See Acts 1:5; 2:1-4; 11:15; 1 Cor. 12:13, 28; Eph. 1:13- 14; 4:4.
6. WHAT IS PROOF OF MEMBERSHIP IN THIS CHURCH?
Answer:—See John 13:35. Not membership papers, but "love".
7. HOW ENDURING IS THIS CHURCH?
Answer:—". . . the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."—Matt. 16:18.
8. HOW BIG IS IT?
Answer:—It is UNIVERSAL; it includes ALL believers throughout the world and excludes none of them! See 2 Tim. 2:19; Eph. 2:16-22; Acts 2:47; 5:14.
9. WHO IS "REVEREND" IN THIS CHURCH?
Answer—God alone. See Psa. 111t9. No mortal on earth has a right, to this description of awe and majesty, though thousands use it without shame.
10. HOW CAN CHRISTIANS KNOW WHAT TO DO AND HOW TO BEHAVE THEMSELVES IN THIS CHURCH ?
Answer:—The Word of God, "RIGHTLY DIVIDED," "thoroughly furnishes" the believer "unto ALL good works."—See 2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2:15.
11. WHAT IS THE NAME OF THIS CHURCH ?
Answer:—The head and body of an individual carry the same name. Christ is the Head of His "body" (the church) on earth. If that "body" has any name, it would have to be Christ. See 1 Cor. 12:12; Col. 3:17.
12. HOW SURELY DOES THE LORD COMMAND HIS CHURCH TO BE SEPARATED, AVOIDING ALL UNEQUAL YOKES?
Answer:—Read Eph. 5:11; 2 Cor. 6:14 thru 7:1; Rom. 12:2; 1 John 2:14-15. This truth is, illustrated in Deut. 22:9-11.
13. HOW CAN THIS CHURCH BE IDENTIFIED BY CHRISTIANS ?
Answer:—"A tree is known by its fruit . . . the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, etc." — See Matt. 12:33 and Gal. 5:22, 23.
14. OF ALL THE NAMES IN CHRISTENDOM TODAY, WHOSE NAME ALONE UNITES CHRISTIANS, AND IN WHOSE NAME ALONE ARE WE COMMANDED TO DO ALL THAT WE DO "IN WORD OR DEED"?
Answer:—The Name that alone is above every other Name, the Lord Jesus Christ. See Col. 3:17.
15. HOW CAN THERE BE MANY CITIES—Such as Ephesus, Jerusalem, Colossi, Philippi, Ft. Worth, Dallas, Tulsa, Richmond, Los Angeles, etc.—YET ONLY ONE CHURCH ?
Answer:—Because every Christian is in Christ, and there is only ONE Christ! See Gal. 3:27; 1 Cor. 12:13; 2 Thess. 1:1; 2 Cor. 5:17.
16. THEN WHY DOES THE BIBLE SPEAK OF "THE CHURCH AT E P H E S U S," "THE CHURCH IN COLOSSE," "THE CHURCH IN THESSALONICA," etc.?
Answer:—Because of their geographical locations. See Acts 8:1.
17. IS IT SINFUL FOR CHRISTIANS TO CALL THEMSELVES BY DIFFERENT NAMES, SUCH AS, "I'M A METHODIST," "I'M A BAPTIST," "I'M A LUTHERAN," etc.?
Answer:—Positively YES! See 1 Cor. 3:1-4 (note words, "envying and strife" in vs. 3 and compare with James 3:16). Observe how Paul strongly rebukes such name calling, charging the saints in Corinth with gross CARNALITY! See also 1 Cor. 1:10.
18. HOW ARE ELDERS AND DEACONS ORDAINED IN CHRIST'S CHURCH?
Answer:—One who meets the qualifications of 1 Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:1-9, will be recognized as an elder or deacon by every spiritual, discerning Christian.
19. IS THERE ANYTHING I CAN DO BY THE GRACE OF GOD THAT NECESSITATES MY CALLING MYSELF A METHODIST, BAPTIST, PENTECOSTALIST, OR ANY SUCH THING?
Answer:—No! Every Christian can say with the apostle Paul, "I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST . . ."—Phil. 4:13. See also 2 Cor. 9:8.
20. HOW MUCH PERSECUTION DOES ONE SUFFER AS A SECTARIAN?
Answer:—Little, if any. But, see 2 Tim. 3:12; Lu. 6:22-23; John 15:18-20.
21. IS IT LEGAL TO TAKE ANOTHER'S PROPERTY AND, WITHOUT CONSULTING THE OWNER, GIVE IT ANOTHER NAME?
Answer:—If you are talking about re-naming the church which Christ is building, calling it "Methodist," "Baptist," "Presbyterian," "Episcopal," etc. See. Jer. 23:27; Rom. 14:23 (with 10:17); 2 Tim. 3:16-17.
22. WHO GETS THE CREDIT FOR THE WORK CHRISTIANS ARE DOING IN SECTARIAN CIRCLES TODAY?
Answer:—Denominations, instead of Christ, are receiving the credit, as fair as the world is concerned. But the Father and the Holy Spirit (and every spiritual Christian) will honor the Son. See John 16:14 with John 17:5.
23. HOW MANY BAPTISTS ARE THERE IN THE BIBLE?
Answer:—Just one—John, THE Baptist!
24. WHAT "LOYAL" METHODIST OR BAPTIST WOULD THINK OF TAKING SOME OTHER DENOMINATIONAL NAME TO DESCRIBE WHAT HIS DENOMINATION IS DOING?
Answer :—Not one. Yet most professedly "loyal" Christians are using some other name than the Name of Christ to describe their Christian work. Thus, most Christians are more loyal to their sect than, they are to Christ!
25. CAN WE REACH MORE PEOPLE BY CALLING OURSELVES BY SOME SECTARIAN NAME AND BELONGING TO A RELIGIOUS CORPORATION?
Answer:—NO! Again see Phil. 4:13—and let's believe it!
26. HOW IS THE CHURCH THAT CHRIST IS BUILDING DESCRIBED IN 1 THESS. 1:1? Answer:—". . . the church of the Thessalonians which is IN GOD THE FATHER and IN THE LORD JESUS CHRIST"
27. WHEN THE TRUE CHURCH IS CAUGHT OUT OF THIS EARTH (1 Thess. 4:13-18), WHO AND WHAT WILL BE LEFT BEHIND ?
Answer:—The world, the flesh and the devil, including every sect house, every sect program, and every sectarian who has religion but not Christ.
28. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE TERMS USED IN THE BIBLE TO DESCRIBE THE TRUE CHURCH?
Answer:—Saints, the church, church of God, Christians, the household of God, the churches of Christ, a holy temple, the body of Christ, brethren, the house of God, children of God, the sons of God.
29. WOULD IT BE BIBLICAL TO APPROPRIATE ONE OF THESE TERMS TO DESCRIBE OURSELVES AND OUR CHRISTIAN WORK, WHILE WE EXCLUDE THE REST, IN ORDER TO ESTABLISH CIVIL RECOGNITION FOR TAX EXEMPTION?
Answer:—It would be "heresy" to do this for ANY purpose! Heresy is defined as "party spirit, to choose." This word is listed alongside of murder and adultery in Gal. 5:19-21 !
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