Can CoC be considered Christian?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Thinkingstuff, Aug 14, 2009.

  1. Thinkingstuff

    Thinkingstuff
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    I was just thinking about this the other day. And wondering if the CoC should be considered really a christian organization. For instance I don't hold JW's to be Christian because they hold to Jesus being a demurge and not one with the Father. Also note that the Mormons not only have another book of revelation but they are really pantheistic and elevate man to the level of God. For sure there are different CoC organizations but the founders of that particular denomination ( they claim not to believe in denominations) disregarded the Holy Spirit as a person in the Trinity but held to an operation. Now there are divergent groups from this who hold that the HS is a person (but not all) but have a mode view of him as in this quote from one of their websites:
    Isn't this form of belief really divergent from historical Christianity and its view of the Trinity? I mean we call the JW's a cult and the Mormons a Cult we call the Oneness Pentecostals a cult. Why do the CoC not get this view? JW and Mormon's also claim the bible. What makes the CoC more palitable?
     
  2. BobRyan

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    I agree that the Mormons have a huge probem with mankind rising to the level of God - and universalism etc.

    But the JWs, Catholics, Church of Christ etc - I have always considered to be "Christian" even though I have very strong differences with them on doctrine.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  3. Darron Steele

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    It depends on what portion/s of the Churches of Christ you are talking about.

    A Christian is a follower of Christ. If a person is `active' in a Christian group, but is not a follower of Jesus Christ, then s/he is not a Christian. Likewise, even if a Christian is spending Sunday mornings with a group that is not Christian, s/he is still a Christian.

    There are portions of the Churches of Christ where it is taught to believe that Jesus Christ is Who the Bible says He is. Further, it is taught that His standards for our lives should be followed in all things. The leaders are generally people who have submitted their lives to live as Jesus Christ taught: they are Christians. These portions of the Churches of Christ are Christian.

    There are portions of the Churches of Christ where people are not taught to follow Jesus Christ's standards in all things. Their primary religious loyalty is to their portion of the Churches of Christ, and they insist that `just about anything goes' in order to advance the group's precepts, organization, or adherents. This means that the teachings of Jesus Christ for our conduct can be tossed aside if it would be expedient to advance the group's precepts, organization, or adherents. If someone shows them "Book-Chapter-Verse" where a course of action they chose is wrong, they either ignore it, `mark' the person as `of questionable faithfulness, and/or directly revile the person showing it to them from the Book. When sinful activity is used to advance the group's precepts, organization, or people, and it is pointed out by an outsider, an attempt is usually made to make it appear `okay.' They are led mostly be people who have not submitted themselves to live as Christ taught, and who stand ready to disregard His teachings at will. They essentially teach that to be `Christian' is to support their religious group by nearly any means -- again, even if it discords with Jesus Christ's teachings for our conduct. These portions of the Churches of Christ are not Christian.

    The unfortunate state of affairs is that Christian Churches of Christ often take in influence from the radical non-Christian "Churches of Christ." They will accept as `faithful men' people who are adamant supporters of the Churches of Christ and its party lines, but are no more willing to submit themselves to live as Christ taught than other hardened unbelievers. This of course taints the ethics of the Christian portion of the Churches of Christ. On the other hand, the non-Christian "Churches of Christ" generally refuse to acknowledge Christian Churches of Christ as legitimate Churches of Christ, or at least look at them as `too liberal for our comfort.'

    These comments are about United States Churches of Christ.
     
    #3 Darron Steele, Aug 14, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2009
  4. Alcott

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    I think there are 2 things wrong with this type of approach. The first is wanting to deem someone Christian or not based on whether they put things in the same terms, with those terms usually being nonbiblical. Do they have to believe "the Holy Spirit is a person"? Since such a statement is not contained in scripture, I wouldn't determine it that way. The Holy Spirit convicts, teaches, directs, and can be grieved-- those terms are biblical, so they are the terms in which I would frame any questions about that doctrinal aspect. The second point is that we can rely too heavily on affiliations. A person who believes and trusts in Christ is a Christian-- salvation is individual. I certainly think I've known C o C members, Catholics, different types of pentecostals, et al, who are Christian though I don't think their theology is very sound. Considering that, I do think it's possible for members of 'cults' to be saved-- probably very few of them; but in the same say that being a Baptist or a Bible Church member is not what saves you, being a JW, for example, is not what condmens you-- it's faith, or the lack thereof. If we have to have perfect theology ["knowledge of God"], then no one is saved. And in all the individual cases of salvaation in the NT-- the first 3000, Paul, Cornelius, the Philippian jailer, et al-- nothing was said about their having to profess belief in the trinity or the 27 more books that will be added to the canon of scripture. And as for "You can't be a Christian if you......" consider Paul in Galatians saying "he that shall be circumcised is obligated to obey the whole law--" but when he met Timothy he circumcised him "because of the Jews." That either proves conformance with bibilcal standards is no requirement or else Timothy from then on never broke the slightest of Mosaic law, having accepted that over the 'better way,' Christ.
     
  5. matt wade

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    No, it can't.
     
  6. Thinkingstuff

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    Ok.
    Ok
    This doesn't really say anything. You're certain Churches of Christ believe who the bible says Jesus is and others don't. Who does the bible say Jesus is according to these groups?
    I know muslims who say they've submitted to Jesus Christ as well. I know Hindus who say so as well (and strangely enough live more christlike than many christians).
    So how are they any more Christian than my hindu friend who lives as he believes Christ of the bible told him? He loves God with all his heart (to him that is Vishnu) and he definately loves his neighbor as himself.
    So it all depends on conduct? JW and Mormons conduct themselves pretty well too.
    I'm sorry to hear that however, it says nothing of doctrine apart from living like you believe Christ ask you to.
     
  7. Darron Steele

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    Thinkingstuff: I do not have time for this nonsense.

    Who does the Bible say that Jesus Christ is? Hypothetically, if I need to give you a lesson on this, maybe you are not a Christian. As I assume you are, you do not need me to give you a lesson on Who Jesus Christ is according to Scripture.

    They know the Bible's teachings on Who Jesus Christ is, I assume. I do. The same was true of the Baptists that showed me, and the same view of Jesus Christ is held by these portions of the Churches of Christ.
    Did I say that? No.

    However, it is the main test.

    How else do you read Jesus Christ at Matthew 7:20? He said “by their fruits ye shall know them” (ASV) = “you will know people by the deeds they do” (NBV).

    If a person believes that Jesus Christ is Who Scripture says He is, and lives according to His teachings in overall life, then yes s/he is a Christian.

    If a group of these people get together to teach that Jesus Christ is Who Scripture says He is, and to encourage each other to live as He taught, then yes, it is a Christian group.

    If you do not like it because you wish they agreed with you more, too bad.
     
  8. Thinkingstuff

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    I'm making a point about who do you believe the bible is telling us Jesus is. I took an extreme to make the point. I believe the bible tells me that Jesus is The son of the Living God. I believe the bible tells us that Jesus and the Father are one (homoosious). I believe the bible tells us that Jesus was completely man as he was completely God. I believe the bible teaches us that Jesus was born of a virgin. I believe the bible teaches us that Jesus died for our sins. I believe the bible teaches us that Jesus rose from the dead. The JW using the bible do not agree with certain of these items. How about the Churches of Christ? I honestly don't know. What do the Churches of Christ teach about the Holy Spirit or the Trinity?
    This is wonderfully vague. I've mentioned the JW the Mormons also reliant on scripture don't hold to the views I've espoused above. Why vague? Unless there is some divergence. I believe what I've posted is fundamental to Christian beliefs about Jesus. Do the CoC hold to this view of Jesus at least? How about the HS?
    Well, you can see how I got that
    Again vague. Who does Scripture say he is according to your or the CoC? I think thats relevant. The JWs say scritpure says Jesus is a Dimurge. Momons say scritpure says that Jesus is Satan's brother. Hindu's say scriptures say that Jesus is God as everything is God. Its not a game but a serious question using the same scritpures. Jesus asked it of Peter. All of these groups I've listed live according to Jesus moral standards but are they how Jesus wants them to live soley. Can they all claim to be followers of Christ? Do you see my meaning?
     
  9. Darron Steele

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    Thinkingstuff:

    I am not being "wonderfully vague"; I just do not have time to spell out for you what the Bible teaches about Jesus Christ.

    If I genuinely and truly need to spell that out for you, let me know. I think it is unfortunate that if you have spent any substantial amount of time in a Baptist church, you would need me to explain it to you.

    In this matter, I hope you are just being difficult. I really do.

    You posted this thread as a question. I answered it. It is pretty clear that it was not really a question: you have decided `no' and are determined to think whatever you have already decided. I am not willing to take time for the games.
     
  10. Thinkingstuff

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    How? I've specifically stated what I believe the bible teaches about Jesus. You have yet to do that. Here I show you again. Do you want scripture referrences with them as well?
     
  11. Darron Steele

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    Looks like I do not need to spell it out for you.

    You were just being difficult. Good.
     
    #11 Darron Steele, Aug 14, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2009
  12. Thinkingstuff

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    You missed your calling as a politician. You are able to say volumes without being nailed down on anything specific.
     
  13. Darron Steele

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    A politician is typically someone who
    a) is interested in the role s/he has taken,
    b) lies pathologically to keep the role s/he has taken,
    c) otherwise, avoids taking stands whenever possible to keep the role s/he has taken.

    I have no interest in arguing with you over this; you posted this thread as a question. I was interested in answering your question, not arguing with you over something you have your mind made up over. Therefore, I do not meet criteria (a).

    If you do not mind my bluntness, politicians are infamous for being deceptive to get what they want. You posted this thread as a question -- when it was not, and you really wanted another type of discussion.

    Your personal attack is baseless. I told you the truth when I said this:
     
  14. Thinkingstuff

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    Weird. What does the Churches of Christ Teach about the Holy Spirit? Because its based on this that I wonder if they are truely Christian.
     
  15. Thinkingstuff

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    In other words does CoC believe this?

     
  16. Darron Steele

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    Are these genuine questions?

    Genuine questions, meaning the kind where you do not already have the answers resolved in your mind.

    If they are genuine questions, I will try to answer them. If they are just `springboards' into an argument you want to have, I am not interested.

    So, are these genuine questions?
     
    #16 Darron Steele, Aug 14, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2009
  17. Jedi Knight

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    JWs cannot be saved......period. If they do not honor the Son in the same manner as the Father....no dice. See John 5:23
     
  18. DHK

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    A paraphrase that reads into the Scripture does an injustice to the Scriptures.
    "Fruit" is "fruit" and that is all. In no way can fruit be translated as "deeds" as the NBV does. In fact that would be a mistranslation, leading people away from the true meaning of the verse.

    karpoV karpos kar-pos'
    probably from the base of 726; fruit (as plucked), literally or figuratively:--fruit.

    The word is fruit--that is all--fruit.

    You shall know them (the false teachers) by their fruit. What fruit is Jesus speaking of? He is speaking of their doctrine, not their works. Works don't even enter into the equation here. He is speaking of doctrine.

    Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees (also false teachers).

    Matthew 7:15-17 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

    --A corrupt tree brings forth evil fruit. The evil fruit is evil doctrine that condemns people to hell. For example:
    The denial of the trinity, the denial of the deity of Christ, the denial of the atonement of Christ, the denial of the virgin birth of Christ, etc.

    The Saduccees denied the Resurrection.
    The Phairsees denied that Christ was the Messiah or deity.
    This is corrupt fruit. It has nothing to do with works. We know a false teacher by their doctrine. There are many false teachers doing good works. We know them by their doctrine, not their deeds. False teachers sometimes make it on BB. We know them by their fruit (false doctrine). How could we ever know them by their works? An impossibility!
     
  19. JSM17

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    I am suprised that the COC is aligned with the JW and MOR. The vast differences can easily be seen.

    I would like to know where your quote came from and the source of the website would help. As for the Holy Spirit, He is God, He is just as much the creator as the Father and the Son.

    There is one God, the Father the Son, and The Holy Spirit. I have never met anyone in the coc that does not believe in the "Trinity". I am sure there are some out there, but I have yet to meet them.

    As for Jesus, I believe that He is the Christ, my Savior and Lord, that He died for me, was buried and was raised from the dead.



    Matt Wade wrote:

    I would like to hear why you think that the COC cannot be considered Christian.
     
  20. Darron Steele

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    Hi DHK: you are certainly inventive, but the NBV is not a paraphrase -- it is a translation.

    Further, you are the first person I have ever seen allege that
    a) the "fruits" here are not works or deeds, and
    b) the "fruits" here refers to so-called "doctrines."
    This is very inventive.

    Considering that this was said before Internet discussion boards, it seems strange that you seem to think the age-old understanding of Matthew 7:18-23 is invalid because it is more difficult to apply to an Internet discussion board. Personally, I do not think the Internet has changed things quite that much: what Jesus said means the same thing now as it has for about 2000 years.

    First of all, you are `paraphrasing' more than the NBV translation was. You are not saying that "fruit" here meant that people have fruit growing out of their bodies. However, the translators, being experts in biblical Greek, did know that "deeds" was a valid rendering.

    I noticed you skipped some verses, one of which was where Jesus expanded His subject to `trees' in general.
    Mat 7:15 Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.
    Mat 7:16 By their fruits ye shall know them. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
    Mat 7:17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but the corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
    Mat 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
    Mat 7:19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
    Mat 7:20 Therefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
    Mat 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven.
    Mat 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy by thy name, and by thy name cast out demons, and by thy name do many |miracles|?
    Mat 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (ASV|NASB|ASV)​
    You see, in Matthew 7:20, Jesus was no longer talking about just "false prophets" but people in general.

    Are you going to allege that "Bring forth therefore fruit worthy of repentance" (ASV) at Matthew 3:8 is not `actions' or `deeds' or `works' but rather `doctrines'?

    Are you going to claim the same of Gal 5:22-3 "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, self-control; against such there is no law" (ASV)? That "fruit" is not `actions' or `deeds' or `works' but rather `doctrines'?

    Are you going to claim the same of Colossians 1:10 "to walk worthily of the Lord unto all pleasing, bearing fruit in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God" (ASV)? That "fruit" is not `actions' or `deeds' or `works' but rather `doctrines'?

    You find me multiple biblical scholars who know Greek well enough to translate who will corroborate your idea as possible, and I will take your innovation more seriously.

    However, you are not entirely `out to sea.' A person who pretends to be a Christian but denies that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the living God come in the flesh, that He rose from the dead, that He died for our sins, etc. is a liar. The `fruits' of the person are the person's lies.
     
    #20 Darron Steele, Aug 15, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 15, 2009

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