beliefs of the church of christ

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by joyfulkeeperathome, Nov 4, 2004.

  1. joyfulkeeperathome

    joyfulkeeperathome
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    I have a question concerning the church of christ and what they believe about a couple of topics. My mil was dating a man who belonged to the church of christ and they believed that b/c she was not in their denomination that she was going to hell. Also, they didn't use instruments in their worship service and claimed that it was b/c the Bible says to make melody in your heart to the Lord so they didn't need instruments, only sang Accapella (sp??) Anyway, this is NOT an attack on this denomination, I am seriously just trying to understand if this is a unviversal belief of the Church of Christ or if it was just this particular church.....

    Thanks for any help.....
     
  2. DHK

    DHK
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    Sometime ago we had a poster who visited a Church of Christ and found out what they believed. I copied and pasted her post. This is what she posted:

    The Rules & Pattern of the Church of Christ

    1 It must be noted immediately that this list is not to be construed as a written creed. No statement of beliefs or rules outside the Bible itself is permitted. However, it will be permitted that such lists of beliefs or rules shall be allowed if written in a church bulletin or other published material provided that such is clearly designated as not being a written creed. This list is here shared merely as a convenience and with the understanding that there is really no need for such since all these rules are to be found in a clear and unmistakable form scattered throughout the pages of the collected books of the New Testament. It is also to be believed that anyone who truly loves God and the truth will easily find these exact rules and consequently obey.

    2 By Scriptural definition (and for the purpose of applying these rules), a Christian is one who has done the following five acts of salvation (and in this order): hear, believe, repent, confess (a “Yes” response to the question “Do you believe that Jesus is the Son of God?” shall be construed as a valid confession), and be baptized. Of the several purposes and benefits of baptism, one must know that baptism is “for the remission of sins” in order for God to consider it a valid baptism.

    3 A person who has completed the above five acts of salvation, but who comes to doubt the validity of their baptism (perhaps later thinking that he/she did not fully understand the primary purpose), shall be baptized again. One of the following scenarios must be adopted: 1) that the entire previous life of the person in question shall be considered as one outside of Christ and separated from God, thus only now becoming a new child of God; or, 2) that the person in question is being rebaptized “just in case”. In this instance, it shall be assumed that the person is doing so with the knowledge that baptism is generally “for the remission of sins”, even though he/she has may not be sure if such cleansing is really needed. Regardless, any rebaptism shall be preceded with the standard ritual of confession (one’s previous life as an apparent believing Christian shall not suffice as meeting this requirement).

    4 The Bible shall be considered as the standard of authority for every spiritual matter. It shall be interpreted using the approved method of “command, example, and necessary inference”. Silence of the Scriptures on any matter is to be construed as a forbiddance of such. However, this rule shall not be applied to matters considered to be helpful in obeying any other commands (such as church buildings and their necessary furnishings, etc.).

    5 Congregations shall name themselves according to the following guidelines: 1) the name shall be one that is found in Scripture and has within it the name of God or Christ (it shall be permitted that Paul’s use of the term “churches of Christ” in referring to various congregations may be used as a formal name and amended to “Church of Christ”); and, 2) the name may be preceded with a location description, that being the location of the church building, not necessarily the location of the church itself.

    6 All those congregations who use the same generic name (excluding the location part of the name) and uniformly subscribe to these rules shall be considered as “the brotherhood”; no other Christian (one who has believed and been baptized but does not subscribe to one or more of these rules) shall be considered as being a part of “the brotherhood”.

    7 Individual members of the church may be called by several different names that are found in Scripture (“disciples”, “saints”, “children of God”), but “Christian” is the preferred designation.

    8 The church shall gather every first day of the week for worship. (Note: Most calendars have Sunday as the first day of the week. Cultures whose calendars are different will have to decide whether to observe Sunday or their first day of the week; no further help here is given in making that decision.)

    9 The worship service shall consist of the following five acts of worship: praying, singing, giving, partaking of the Lord’s Supper, and preaching. The reading of Scripture shall also be considered as acceptable since it relates to preaching. No other acts (such as lighting candles, dramatic presentations or readings, etc.) shall be allowed in the service other than the following exceptions: making of announcements, recognizing of families who wish to place membership with the congregation, giving of Bibles to graduates or other special people, or other such special activities that shall be deemed as appropriate for the worship service.

    10 It is permissible for congregations to have salaried preachers and other paid employees (such as youth ministers, education ministers, secretaries, janitors, etc.).

    11 Acceptable designations for preachers shall be the following: “ministers”, “evangelists”, or “gospel preachers”. Generally speaking, all preaching can be called “gospel preaching” regardless of the subject. Sermons shall typically be ended with an invitation to be baptized or to rededicate one’s life to the Lord.

    12 The Lord’s Supper shall be observed every first day of the week, and it cannot be observed on any day other than the first day of the week (nor at any function other than one specified as a formal worship service). If the congregation chooses to have another worship service later in the day, the Lord’s Supper shall then be observed again. However, only those who were not at the earlier service (or who otherwise did not already partake) are expected to partake. These same persons are to be given the opportunity to put an offering in the collection plate. These two acts of worship can be done in the presence of others who merely watch, or it can be done in a separate assembly apart from other Christians.

    13 The Lord’s Supper shall consist of the following (and in this order): 1) a prayer of thanksgiving for the bread (which must be unleavened); 2) the distributing of the bread; 3) a prayer of thanksgiving for the fruit of the vine; and, 4) the distributing of the fruit of the vine.

    14 Those who have not been baptized shall not be allowed to conduct any public part of the service. There is one exception to this rule: young boys who have not yet been immersed may be permitted to read Scripture in the general assembly or to lead singing or prayers in a special assembly for the purpose of training such boys.

    15 Those who have not been baptized shall be allowed to participate in the worship by listening to the prayers and the preaching. They are further allowed to actively participate by joining in the singing and by putting money in the collection plate. They are not, however, allowed to partake of the Lord’s Supper.

    16 The music of the worship assembly shall be limited to the vocal expression of words. No humming or other non-worded sounds are permitted. The use of harmonious or other singing shall be deemed as fulfilling the pattern of chanting as found in the early church.

    17 No instrument of music shall be used at any time in the worship other than to play the first note or key of a song before the singing of that song. The use of a song leader is permitted, as is the use of a microphone for him. Song books or other such aids are also permitted. However, it is forbidden for more than one person to help in leading the singing, and no voice other than that of the one song leader’s may be amplified by artificial means.

    18 Singing shall at all times be congregational; at no time is it permitted for one person or group of persons to sing while another merely listens, other than at those brief times when a song is written accordingly. In other words, it is permissible for different people to sing different parts at different times during a song, provided that all members sing at some point during the song and it can reasonably be said that they all sang together.

    19 If a congregation wishes to permit a separate group (such as a chorus) to sing to the congregation, it must be done in a separate assembly, or at least after what is considered the closing prayer of the worship assembly. It is permitted for the chorus to sing, read Scripture, and end with a closing prayer, but this shall not be considered as a time of worship, nor shall any individual in the audience allow their thoughts or feelings to be intended as a worship unto God. It is merely a performance for entertainment value; the fact that songs, hymns, and spiritual songs are being sung is inconsequential. If a woman should be used to lead the group, she is not permitted to speak until after the close of this non-worship service.

    20 There shall be no clapping, raising of hands, or any other gesture or indecent or disorderly action during the worship service. However, a congregation is allowed to suspend this rule during special child-oriented services such as Vacation Bible Schools or Youth Rallies.

    21 During the worship assembly, men are allowed (but not required) to say aloud “amen” or some other similar word or phrase as long as such is done decently and in order. Expressions such as “Praise the Lord” would technically be permitted, but are not recommended.

    22 A collection of money is to be taken every first day of the week. Each Christian is to give as he purposes in his heart, keeping in mind the amount generally required under the Old Law. The money collected shall be put into a church treasury and referred to as “the Lord’s money”, but it can be used for a variety of purposes such as church buildings, utility bills, employee salaries, landscaping, etc. (all at the discretion of the elders). Funds cannot be obtained and deposited into the church treasury by any other means than by free will offerings. Fundraisers of any kind are forbidden.

    23 The elders of a congregation may choose to have more than one regular assembly during each week. If so, attendance by all members at all of these assemblies is required unless they are prevented from doing so due to illness, work, or some other good reason. Those who no longer attend any assembly on a regular basis shall be deemed as being unfaithful and shall eventually be disfellowshipped (this shall typically be comprised of declaring such in a worship assembly and in a letter sent to the person being disfellowshipped).

    24 Women are allowed to teach other women or children. They may not teach male children who have been baptized. Women may speak aloud in any Bible class (while still recognizing the authority of the man), but not during the formal worship service (other than during the announcement period).

    25 The business of each congregation shall be conducted by one of two methods: 1) a plurality of elders and deacons; or, 2) a men’s business meeting. The first is the preferred option, but it is not required if the congregation cannot find at least two men willing or able to fulfill the responsibility. Elders and deacons must fit the qualifications listed by Paul, the main difference being that elders have to have children who have been baptized, while deacons just have to have children. Those men who are needed to serve as deacons but do not technically fit the qualifications can still be used as long as their title is changed (“ministry leader”, etc.). Women may serve in an appropriate way but are not to be called deaconesses.

    26 There shall be no organization of the church beyond that of the local congregation. However, conformity of beliefs can be maintained through brotherhood lectureships, publications, universities, etc.

    27 Elders have authority only over the local congregation. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. An eldership can take upon itself (with approval by the other party or parties) the oversight of such things as congregations with few members considered to be in a mission area, church workers in mission areas, or other similar works deemed to be in need of the oversight of an eldership.

    28 A plurality of congregations may combine money from their respective treasuries for the purpose of evangelistic efforts in another location. At no time, however, can this effort be conducted or organized in such a way as to be construed as a “missionary society”.

    29 Divorced persons are to be a welcome part of the congregation. However, those divorced persons who wish to marry again, or those who have already been divorced and married again, must be investigated by the church (or its designee) in order to determine if their marriage (or pending marriage) has been preceded by a “Scriptural divorce” (that being one where the other person committed adultery either before or after the divorce). Those deemed to be in “unscriptural marriages” are expected to get a divorce in order to remain in good standing with God and the church.

    30 All major doctrinal issues must be understood and taught without error. This includes (but not necessarily limited to): that we are not predestined to salvation, that it is possible for a Christian to lose his/her salvation, that speaking in tongues and other such miraculous gifts came to an end at the completion of the writing of the NT, that there will be no Rapture nor 1000 year reign of Christ, and that Heaven and Hell are literal. However, this requirement of perfect understanding shall not apply to the issue of the indwelling and operation of the Holy Spirit.

    31 The preaching of these rules and correct doctrinal positions shall be deemed and denoted as “preaching the truth”. As noted above, people who do not understand these rules (and thus fail to follow them perfectly) shall be deemed as not truly loving God nor the truth.

    32 These rules shall be observed without variation of any kind. Anyone who fails to know and follow these rules perfectly is deemed to be lost eternally unless he/she repents. The grace of God shall not be thought to be extended for any misunderstanding or noncompliance. However, moral imperfection (sin) shall be excused (covered by grace) provided the person regularly prays and asks for forgiveness.

    33 Any group who fails to abide by these rules in their entirety is to be called a denomination. Anyone who attends a denomination is committing the sin of denominationalism.

    In addition, the following are yet more rules that are not as frequently debated:

    1. observing Christmas or other holidays
    2. fruit of the vine must be fermented/not fermented
    3. one cup vs. multiple cups
    4. no kitchen or eating in the building
    5. cannot give to non-Christians, orphan homes, etc.
    6. non-baptized not allowed to read Scripture
    7. no separated classes
    8. Bible versions
    9. taking of oaths
    10. serving in the military
    11. inflicting capital punishment
    12. using force to defend oneself or others
    13. serving as a government official
    14. lifting hands while singing
    15. joining a ministerial alliance
    16. how God answers prayer
    17. fasting
    18. who selects and appoints elders
    19. singing as the emblems are passed
    20. use of church buildings for secular activities
    21. building of fellowship halls, gymnasiums, etc.
    22. use of an instrument in "church" weddings
    23. youth directors, youth rallies, youth camps
    24. the six days of creation being literal days
    25. the operation of Christian hospitals
    26. ministers of education, ministers of music, etc.
    27. the baptismal "formula"
    28. formal confession before baptism
    29. dedicating babies
    30. signing contribution pledge cards
    31. women wearing shorts and slacks
    32. women working outside the home
    33. Children's Bible Hour
    34. bussing children to services
    35. degrees of reward and punishment
    36. dress code for men serving the Lord's Supper

    DHK
     
  3. joyfulkeeperathome

    joyfulkeeperathome
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    Thank you very much for this list of rules - it has very well answered both of my questions...
     
  4. DHK

    DHK
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    Your welcome Joy.
    The Church of Christ is a cult, as you can see from the above rules. It is very legalistic. It's main heresy is baptismal regeneration, that is, that it requires baptism to be saved. Thus salvation comes by works (Baptism) and not by grace.
    DHK
     
  5. Bro. James Reed

    Bro. James Reed
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    I can atest that at least the large majority of the above is true. My dad's family was Church of Christ and his surviving Aunts still are. His grandmother told him when he was younger that he would go to hell if he didn't join the Church of Christ. He never did, but he did join the Primitive Baptist church last year, and was ordained as a Deacon this year.

    Our former pastor was also raised Church of Christ. When he was a child, a man about to be baptized into their church slipped in the baptistry, hit his head, and was killed. They preached that he did not meet all of the qualifications to be in heaven since he wasn't baptized into their church.

    From many outside appearances, it seems that the Church of Christ has kept many of the same characteristics it had before Campbell split from us Primitives. Once on the inside though, one can see how they have completely perverted the doctrine.

    It's really a shame that they would get so far off from the truths once held by their forefathers.
     
  6. Dragoon68

    Dragoon68
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    I don't know the precise answers to your questions but I do have some thoughts on the matter.

    My impression - and it certainly could be an incorrect impression at least from the point of intent - of the extensive list that was posted is that it reads a bit like:

    "Just look at what those people believe, what they're saying, and what they're doing! Shame, shame, shame on them! They're so wrong and we're so right!"

    I know people in my own family that are members of a Church of Christ and I find that they demonstrate their faith in God by their actions and give honor to His name in doing so. You don't have to spend more than just a little time with them to know they are Christians. These people are most welcome in my home and, I'm willing to bet, in our Lord's as well. I don't plan to attend their church but I'm certainly okay with them doing so. In fact I'm proud of them doing so! I'm glad they take their children there and are trying to bring them up in the ways of the Lord.

    I remember preachers from years ago screaming from the pulpit that we were all going to hell if we didn't do this or that! They meant well. Lot's of people are busy figuring out who among us is going to hell and who is going to heaven. I already know I deserve hell but, fortunately, my Lord has decided the matter before I was born and provided a pardon for me. It doesn't really matter what anyone thinks about it! I wouldn't worry whether or not the church you mentioned thinks your friend is going to hell or not. I'd be more concerned with the character of the person she's dating and what is the Lord's will for them.

    I grew up with piano being used in church worship along with a choir. When my wife and I joined the Primitive Baptist church not having either seemed very awkward. However, after a while we found that we liked it better. We could actually hear and understand the words we sang and felt they were more directly addressed to God than to us. That seems better to us. Never the less, we don't have any problem at all with those who find instruments acceptable in their church worship. We're just glad they have a church they like and are attending it. God will hopefully find favor, whether we do or not, with the praises given to him based upon the intent of the person. He sure won't find any favor in the quality of my own singing!

    I just wish I could do a better job of living and acting like a Christian myself. It's a daily struggle!

    Patrick
     
  7. DHK

    DHK
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    Patrick,
    I would agree that most that I have met have a very good "Christian demeanour" about them, but then I question if that "religion" is Christian at all. I am not so much concerned about all the rules, but their doctrine of salvation. If Jesus did not pay the entire price or penalty for our sins, then how can we be saved. Those who believe that baptism is necessary for salvation take away from the sufficiency of the atoning work of Christ. Baptismal regeneration is a heresy. If salvation is contingent on one's salvation, then I question if a person is really saved or not.
    DHK
     
  8. Dragoon68

    Dragoon68
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    Good points! We certainly agree that the price paid by Jesus is entirely sufficient for our salvation. I further believe that our salvation is already determined even before we are born and, therefore, to attain it we need do nothing which is not to suggest we should do nothing with it. Baptism is a sacrament that proclaims what has already taken place. I've been baptized three times and the last time was just to make the Primitive Baptist church happy. I sure didn't need it to get to heaven!

    That's how I understand it but, hey, I really know very little about the mystery of salvation. Some people see it differently and they put much more importance upon the sacrament of baptism itself. I don't agree with that but I'm not at all comfortable with implying or saying they're not Christians because of it.

    The Lord has already decided who are His chosen ones and will reveal that as He see fit. If I must make an evaluation of the matter, for rightful purposes in my relationships with others, it will hopefully be based in greater part upon the actions of the person and the character they reflect rather than the particular nuances of their denominational beliefs.

    Never the less, for the purposes of learning, it's great to compare differences in denominational beliefs. If nothing else, it strenghtens a person's convictions of the truth.

    Patrick


     
  9. DHK

    DHK
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    I certainly can't agree with your views on predestination. It flies in the face of the Great Commission. Let's examine a few facts about it:

    1 Peter 1:2 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

    There is no such thing as God predeterming our lives. He gives us free choice. We choose to accept Christ or reject him. We choose to do good or to do evil. It was Eve who chose to eat of the fruit of tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God did not force her, did not predetermine, did not do anything to influence her choice. But he did know about it. It was all according to His foreknowledge.
    Knowledge is different than predestination or determination. God is all knowing. If God were not all knowing, omniscient, then God would not be God. He chooses according to his foreknowledge, according to the decisions that He knows beforehand that we will make. He does not force any decision upon us, he just knows the beginning from the end. Upoon that basis and that basis only can we say that we have been chosen before the foundation of the earth. It is all precedicatied upon the foreknowledge of God, upon his omniscience.

    Consider:
    "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved."
    "Call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shat be saved"
    "As many as received Him to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name."

    Believe--requires your decision.
    Call--requires your decision.
    Receive--requires your decision.

    This is not all of God in the sense that God believes for you. He will not! He gives you the choice to beleive or to reject, and that may be foreknown, but it is not predestinated. There is a difference. The difference is that if it were all predestinated it would negate our responsibility in carrying out the Great Commission and our duty in witnessing to others.
    This in saying all that I believe that your statement:
    "I further believe that our salvation is already determined even before we are born and, therefore, to attain it we need do nothing,"
    is an unbiblical statement.
    DHK
     
  10. Dragoon68

    Dragoon68
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    I thought you might not agree with those views! The predestination issue is a separate albiet very interesting topic. It's very understandable why so many of us view it differently. Thanks for your comments about predestination. This has been debated among Christians for a long time! That's not really the underlying point I wanted to get into to.

    My point is that various Christian individuals and groups understand things differently and are each firmly convinced they have the full and complete truth. They each can lay out scripture to "prove" their points. Obviously, there is only one truth and that is God but then there are often various "truths" among men. The differences among fellow Christians can be respected without compromising beliefs. We need not claim that our brothers and sisters with whom we don't agree are not Christians.

    The concept that all views are equal and therefore anything and everything is acceptable is, of course, false. There is a point at which all of us must draw a line against what is not Christian and what is completely false doctrine. The fact that men view things different does not change the fact that there really is only one truth. It just means we're not ever going to fully agree who among us is correct. We will ultimately know the truth when we see Him.

    We can not, and should not, all openly embrace the views of other Christians whom we don't think have the full and complete truth. We don't want a universal church where anything can be preached. We each have to hold fast to, and even advance, what we "know" is right. In doing so we should be very careful not to imply in a judgmental way the others are not Christians. God has a way of reminding us how little we really "know" and we can be very surprised by it.

    Patrick
     
  11. DHK

    DHK
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    Now we can look at a major difference perhaps. Though I believe this to be an unbiblical view, you have pointed out that it has been a position widely debated. I can accept that it is a position that many other orthodox Christians take, and therefore agree to disagree and still be brothers in Christ. That is the essence of soul liberty. This doctrine does not affect our salvation in Christ.

    Contrast that to what the Church of Christ believes concerning salvation--baptismal salvation. It is not simply an unbiblical position in one's opinion, it is heretical. They have crossed the line into heresy which makes them a cult. They consider baptism to be part of salvation. That takes away from the grace of God that saves us. "It is by grace through faith and not of works that we are saved." Baptism is a work, a work that man himself does. Thus the doctrine is heretical. We are commanded to withdraw from all those who walk disorderly and "cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them." (Rom.16:17). This is contrarty to the doctrine which we have learned. Again, it is heretical.
    DHK
     
  12. joyfulkeeperathome

    joyfulkeeperathome
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    The point of my post was to get an idea if that were what all (or most) Church of Christ people belived. My mil is no longer dating this guy. She broke up with him b/c his church did not belive that she was saved (she is assembly of God). She did not feel that that was a good basis of a relationship and I agree with her. I just wanted to get a feel to see if maybe his church was just an exception to the rule, but from that list, it looks like his church pretty much adheres to the rules....

    thanks for all the help...
     
  13. Susie

    Susie
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    I would just like to say I am Baptist I was raised in the Baptist faith. My brother died 19 years ago at the age of 32 he didnt attend church for a long time but his wife went to the Church of Christ and one day he started they had 2 children ,my brother lived and breathed for the Lord and taught in his church several times . I know what you meen about some saying they will be the only ones in Heaven but he wasnt like that he never put any ones beliefs down .I can still remember his words ( show me ) he wanted you to show him in the bible what ever you could be talking about so if you where going to talk about God you had to show him in the bible the words.I had so much respect for my brother and I miss him so much but I do know one thing with out a doubt my church of christ brother will be in Heaven waiting on me when my time comes.I know he believed differently in alot of ways but I know he had a relationship with God and confessed his sins and is in Heaven now . He was putting a security light up at his church all he liked was putting in the bulb my dad was there and my brothers children . my dad turned around to get the bulb to send up to him and his belt broke and he fell to the grown. My brother loved the LOrd and he loved his church so much he brought me there and showed me the church as it was being built he was so proud. He was trying to save the church money by doing this himself and he didnt have a saftey rope because he said it wouldnt take that long. To me denominatios are not whats important there will be no denominations in Heaven just Christians. God Bless You All.
     
  14. Dragoon68

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    Here's an interesting bit of scripture to consider relative to this discussion that someone pointed out to me:

    Luke 9:51-56: "And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem, And sent messengers before his face: and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for him. And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem. And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them. And they went to another village."

    James and John concluded that the Samaritan village was evil and they wanted to condemn it to be burned up on behalf of the Lord of course. Jesus, however, saw the matter differently and rebuked their intentions for the evil spirit behind them.

    This reminds me that sometimes we are quick to condemn that which we don't think is right among us and yet our Lord may view it very differently.

    The scripture is not a literal perfect fit but it's worth pondering.

    Patrick
     
  15. LorrieGrace

    LorrieGrace
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    (((SUSIE)))

    You must miss your brother very much and my heart hurts for you.

    I think a lot of people are gonna be in for a huge surprise when they get to heaven and see who IS there and who is NOT there.
     
  16. eschatologist

    eschatologist
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    It is my opinion that baptism is NOT a work, but every bit a part of FAITH as believing, repentance and confession. Too many get hung up on the physical ACT of baptism, but fail to recognize its spiritual connotations. Believing is an act that someone does by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ, yet who will deny its spiritual benefits? Repentance is an action done by the believer that is a DECISION done WILLFULLY, yet once again who can reject that it has spiritual importance and is necessary for salvation? Also confession is something YOU must do with physical actions by either confessing out loud to the Lord in prayer, or in secret with your heart and mind. This is ALSO considered in the Bible as necessary for salvation. So, who believes that believing, confession and repentance are not necessary for salvation? If you are you are not considering what the scriptures have to say about these very important spiritual ACTIONS. Yet who can deny that there is not also some physicality to these actions as well? God will not MAKE you believe, confess, and repent! You MUST do it willingly and with ACTION on your part. So this takes us to baptism. The Bible connects baptism to believing, repentance, and confession as a PART of what someone MUST do to be saved. Those who believe otherwise are trapped in their belief of not being able to overcome their fear of baptism as being a work, which, by the way, impedes their ability to see its spiritual quality and benefits! Many try to dissect and separate these actions in order to omit baptism as a part of the whole (i.e. there are various scriptures that say you are saved by believing or you are saved by confession or repentance). If you are saved by belief alone, why then do the scriptures also say you are saved by confession? Can you also be saved by confession alone? No, this is NOT in harmony with what the scriptures have to say! We are command to do ALL and OBEY what we are commanded to do! The Hebrew writer says that Jesus is the author of salvation to ALL who obey (Heb.5:9). Transversely, you could rightfully say that Jesus is NOT the author of salvation to those that disobey! And we are COMMANDED to believe, repent, confess, and be BAPTIZED! So you can see that baptism is NOT a WORK, but a part of the very FAITH that Jesus commanded us to do!
     
  17. DHK

    DHK
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    So with all of these ACTS (works), you believe you are saved by works. Right?
    DHK
     
  18. eschatologist

    eschatologist
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    DHK

    You still do not get it! I said that ALL of these encompass faith: belief, confession, repentance, and baptism. I only stressed that because there is some physical act involved they are still a part of faith and have spiritual connotations. They are NOT works! Let me repeat, they are NOT works!!! They are all part of the same whole -- faith. Picture this: You have a nice round pie which is cut into four pieces. Belief represents once slice, confession represents one slice, repentance represents another slice, and baptism represents the final slice. Together as a unit they represent forgiveness of sins. If you remove belief can you have forgiveness of sins? No, not according to scripture. Without confession can you obtain forgiveness of sins? No, not according to scripture. Take away repentance can you receive forgiveness of sins? No, not according to scripture. All of these are REQUIRED for forgiveness of sins and salvation. Removing anyone of these from the whole of faith lacks forgiveness of sins and obedience to God! Yet many believe you can remove baptism from faith because they are lost as to what the spiritual significance is; they are to caught up in believing it is merely works because it involves physical elements: water, a person being baptized, and the one doing the baptism. They can not see the SPIRITUAL necessity of baptism because of the physical elements! They are wrong. Baptism is every bit a part of faith as belief, repentance, and confession -- which also relies on some degree of a physical element. The scriptures likewise represent baptism as such -- connecting belief, confession, and repentance WITH baptism. So now picture that pie again and remove the baptism slice -- do you now believe you have a whole and are in obedience to faith and the commandment of our Lord Jesus Christ?
     
  19. DHK

    DHK
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    No, what you have done is cut up FAITH or belief (two different ways of expressing the same thing), into five slices, call them acts, and end up with a works salvation.
    Faith or belief (which is the act of having faith) is not a work, and never was.
    Saving faith includes repentance.
    Both are expressed verbally (not necessarily audibly) when one "calls" upon the name of the Lord in prayer. We express our thoughts, our faith to God in prayer. That is calling on the name of the Lord, or confessing...

    Baptism has nothing to do with faith. It is purely an act of obedience to a command of Christ done by man. Man does the baptizing. Man receives the baptizing. It is an act of man.
    I know some churches that practice foot-washing. That also is an act of man. It falls in the same category. It takes man or men to wash feet, and there are men and women who are the receipients of "clean feet." It is an act, a work. And so is baptism. God does not come down and baptize you. God does not come down and wash your feet. These are acts or works that men do. Faith has nothing to do with them. They have nothing to do with one's salvation. Baptism has as much to do with your salvation as foot-washing does--nothing!
    Except a man be born again he cannot enter the kingdom of God. The term is born again, not baptize.
    DHK
     
  20. untangled

    untangled
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    Hey Joyful,

    Whoever told you that they did not do that because of what the Bible says I believe is mistaken. In fact, they do it because what the Bible doesn't say. From what I understand since the New Testament does not say to play instruments they do not. They believe it would be "adding to" scripture.

    There are a couple of Church of Christ congregations that use instruments at times but they are not normally tied to the denomination any longer. It is basically forbidden. Of course, this is just my understanding. Hope this helps.

    In Christ,

    Brooks
     

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