Church of Christ

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by stubbornboy, Oct 13, 2003.

  1. stubbornboy

    stubbornboy
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    i just want to ask about this group Iglesia ni Cristo (INC or Church of Christ in english,a local chuch here in the Philippines)if they are really sweeping across the USA.because they are boasting that they have many followers in your country.is that true?have any of you met these people :confused:
     
  2. Taufgesinnter

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    Over the last decade, the Churches of Christ have grown in the U.S. by nearly 50%, so that their members now make up slightly more than 1% of the American population. They are still outnumbered by Mormons and Jews, but they do have a larger membership than the Jehovah's Witnesses.

    Evangelicals do not consider the Churches of Christ to be evangelical, because nearly all congregations that have the name Church of Christ believe in baptismal regeneration--that only believers should be baptized of course, not babies, but nobody can be born again except through water baptism. In other words, baptism is necessary for salvation (which is a form of salvation by works, isn't it?). So a Church of Christ is not considered evangelical, and some evangelicals here even consider them to be a cult.
     
  3. Artimaeus

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    Technically, the Chruch of Christ doesn't believe in Baptismal regeneration but it is close enough. They believe that it is at the point of Baptism that salvation is bestowed. They don't believe salvation is initially earned through works but that it is kept by obedience, which amounts to the same thing. I have never heard anyone call them a cult. A cult is more than just someone who is in error. They aren't secretive or follow a charismatic leader, or reclusive. I always thought that we ought to change names with them because we believe in Christ alone and they believe and preach so strongly on baptism.
     
  4. Rosebud

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    Maybe I can help ya here a bit, lol. I was baptized into Church of Christ. They are not a cult, I will say that much.

    I've just recently discovered there to be a stricter version which is what I was used to. The ones that preach if there is music in the church you attend or say you died before baptism you would go to hell. If you were not a member of a CHURCH OF CHRIST you would go to hell. That's what turned me off of COC because the bible clearly says not to pass judgement yet they were passing the ultimate judgement by dictating who was and wasn't going to hell.

    Also, inside Church of Christ, there was no lifting of hands during worship. Women are not allowed to preach (which I still agree to) unless it was Bible study with other women or children.

    But yes they certainly do stress baptism. For instance, if you were on your death bed and received the Lord BUT had not been baptized the COC would say you were still going to hell.
     
  5. Major B

    Major B
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    There is certainly a lot of diversity within the COC. For instance, Max Lucado is COC, and his doctrinal stance is not far from Baptist in many ways.

    There is a cult, the International Church of Christ, which is radical and which broke off from the COC, and there are some old-fashioned COC congregations which are exclusivist, etc.
     
  6. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    Artimaeus is right, the Campbellites do not, technically speaking, believe in baptismal regeneration; in fact, they don't believe in regeneration at all. They do not believe that the Holy Spirit indewells the believer; they take all promises of the Comforter to refer to the inspiration of the Apostles and all work of the Holy Spirit to be purely intellectual.

    However, they do believe that baptism is essential to salvation and that in baptism a man receives forgiveness of past sins. From that point on it's just a matter of doing good enough and being faithful enough to be worthy of entering heaven when you die.

    I find it very odd that while Campbellites are often chided by Baptists for their belief in baptismal salvation, the Protestants get off scott free - and yet most, if not all, of the confessions of the historic Protestant denominations teach baptismal regeneration.

    I have also noticed that some of the Campbellites are starting to use the term "eternal security of the believer" while still retaining their belief in "falling from grace." This is just the latest trick in their long tradition of willful deceit intended to deceive unwary Baptists into their heresy.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  7. stubbornboy

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    ok people let me get it straight this church of Christ ive post about came from the philippines.they started 1914.their leader is Felix Manalo.They are called INC or Iglesia ni Cristo.they believe that they are the messenger of God revealed as the ravenous bird (in Isaiah) and the 3rd angel from the eastw/c holds the four corners of the earth 9in revelations).yes they are cult .they believe in order to be save you have to be a member of their church,they dont beleive in the deity of Christ nor the Trinity.i just want to ask if they are so visible their in the states bcoz they are boasting their big chapels their. [​IMG]
     
  8. Dr. Bob

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    Sorry, stubbornboy, haven't heard of any that extreme here in the USA. They certainly ARE a cult (as you described them) and nothing like the Church of Christ denominations here.

    Never seen one as bad as you describe. But I don't live in California. :rolleyes:
     
  9. Tanker

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    The mainline Churches of Christ in the USA are very slow growing, if there is any growth at all. They are much like Baptists except that they don't use instrumental music. Contrary to what was said in a previous post, I have never seen them use deceit. Seems that Mark has a lot of bias here and in other areas.
     
  10. Matthew 16:24

    Matthew 16:24
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    A guy I worked with was from COC which believed his church was the only one and if he moved and could not find another COC like HIS (not just another COC) or decided to join another church, he would lose his salvation. He believed that Baptism saves people after believing, of course. Also, believed if he committed one sin and died without confessing it, he would go to hell. Pretty far out there to say the least.

    Another guy from Austin said his parents were COC and believed that COC is the only true church and is the only church going to heaven.
    So one in AZ and one in TX that are definite cults.
     
  11. Michael Wrenn

    Michael Wrenn
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    I think any church who believes theirs is the only true church is a cult--JWs, Mormon, Roman Catholic, Landmark Baptist, etc.
     
  12. KenH

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    I was borned and raised in the Church of Christ until I was 43 years old when I became a Southern Baptist. It is not a cult. To call them a cult is to rob the word of any meaning, such as has been done to words like racist, anti-Semite, etc.

    There is also no deceit as they are quite upfront about their teachings. For the most part there has been a great relaxation in the "we're the only ones" going to heaven belief. There are still some older members who think that way and some younger hard-headed ones, but they probably only make up about 5% of the membership now.

    And there is a growing belief in eternal security.

    A lot of the changes in the Church of Christ has come about due to the influence of men like Max Lucado.

    As far as this group in the Philippines is concerned, I have not heard of them until now, but they do not sound like they are a part of the mainstream Church of Christ in the USA. They are probably simply using the term as it does come from the Bible. People throughout the past 2000 years have referred to those saved as the Church of Christ in a generic sense. The Bible uses the term in Romans 16:16.
     
  13. Bro. James Reed

    Bro. James Reed
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    It's amazing how a people who broke off from Primitive Baptists can now be so far removed from our beliefs.

    Tanker, you said their difference was no musical instruments. Actually, this is oner thing that the retained from, their Baptist heritage. When they broke away, musical instruments, for the vast majority, were not in use in Baptist churches.

    As for their beliefs, I can agree with what has been said by my brethren here. They teach, in order to get to heaven that you have to be baptized in the Church of Christ. I know this because my dad family, not his parents though, were very strict Church of Christ from Northeast Texas/Arkansas. His grandmother used to tell him that he would go to hell if he wasn't baptized into their church.

    Also, the PB preacher who baptized me was raised Church of Christ. He always told the story of when he knew the CoC was in error. He went to a baptism when he was a boy. They man was walking down the steps into the baptistry when he slipped and bumped his head, killing himself. They preached that this man went to hell because he hadn't been baptized. (Here's my question, if they were so worried about his eternal destination, why didn't they baptize him really quick before his death?)

    I have a cousin in Georgia who's a member of the ICoC and they are one of the most liberal churches out there.
     
  14. Mark Osgatharp

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    Here is an example of the sort of deceit to which the Campbellite movement has been given from the very start:

    "About the time of the McCalla Debate Campbell began a paper which he called the Christian Baptist. In issues of the Christian Baptist is to be found some of the finest material that ever came from the pen of Alexander Campbell. The name of the paper, Christian Baptist, was not at all Campbell's preference for a name. He wanted some other name, perferably just the name Christian, but Walter Scott, who had become a very close friend of Campbell, persuaded him to use the term 'Baptist' because of its possible influence on the Baptist people."

    This quote is from a lecture by Earl West delivered at the Harding College Lectures in 1950 and published by the Harding College Press in Searcy, Arkansas. This is one of the most prominent Campbellite schools in the country.

    By feigning to be Baptists in the early years, the Campbellites gained an audience among Baptist people and led many individuals and whole churches into the Campbellite movement. While they may appear to be similar to the Baptists in the external form of baptism, in reality they are as far from the Baptists as daylight from darkness.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  15. KenH

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    Yeah, I know, Mark, as I got my accounting degree there in 1978.

    But you are talking about a publication way back in 1823. I used to have a complete set of this publication(I donated it to a Church of Christ) as it was only published for a few years. I would hope that almost 200 years later that anyone with any intelligence at all knows the difference between the Church of Christ and a Baptist Church. Very, very few people have ever even heard and fewer still have ever even read a copy of The Christian Baptist.

    I tell you what, Mark, when you hate a person or an object you really have a deep hatred that you use to spew forth your vitriolic words, don't you?

    And as an ex-Church of Christ member I have more problems with that denomination's teachings than you would ever dream of having. But I am not a hateful person by my new nature so I would not use your tone or your language.
     
  16. HankD

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    Hi Ken,

    I believe you have misunderstood Mark.

    It seems that he has the ability to discern spirits, sometimes what he says comes across as harsh. I really don't think he is hateful.

    HankD
     
  17. KenH

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    Well, we are all entitled to our opinion. And Mark is not someone with whom I would wish to break bread. Christians simply are not supposed to exhibit his attitude and tone. I think he hates very deeply those with whom he disagrees. At least that is the way he comes across.
     
  18. Matthew 16:24

    Matthew 16:24
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    As for cults, what is the definition of a cult?
    I consider COC a cult because of my two experiences with two different members in two different states.
    I forgot about the only acceptable baptism is in their church. COC teaching is, if you are not baptized in COC you are going to hell. I consider that a cult on just that fact alone. I also have visited COC websites and they pretty much believe the same thing and some even compared their beliefs to Baptist beliefs and stated that we are in error and are practicing unbiblical baptism (basically not saved).
    Another experience with the COC is they only teach from the New Testament. Their reasoning is the Old Testament was for back then and the New Testament is for now, so why teach anything from it?
    Remember these are only my experiences and who knows maybe there are some COC that do not believe their the only church.
    The guy I worked with really made no sense because when I asked him why is your church the only one? He said because its “Christ’s church…………… Church of Christ”. I asked, so if you went to another COC in a different state that was not affiliated with your COC, are you still saved? He replied “no, it has to be affiliated with my COC to be the true church” I was bewildered “huh?!?” I got nowhere with him.
     
  19. KenH

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    1) So do you consider the Catholic Church to be a cult? Frankly, to call the regular Church of Christ a cult is to speak ignorantly. Now, there are still a significant number of quite conservative Church of Christ members, whom I imagine have quite a presence on the Internet, that will outright state that they are the only ones going to heaven. There is a Church of Christ in town that claimed those in the Church of Christ I was a member of were not saved because we were not as hardline conservative as they were.

    Also, there is the International Church of Christ, that is a cult as it has a charismatic leader. It is a splinter group from the mainstream conservative Church of Christ.

    2) That is simply not true. I my last 10 years as a Bible class teacher in the Church of Christ and I taught a whole bunch from the Old Testament. There's a good chance I taught more classes from the Old Testament than the New Testament.

    I really don't like feeling like I have to defend the mainstream conservative Church of Christ, but as one who used to be on the inside I feel somewhat obligated to explain that the situation is not as black and white as it might appear to someone who has never been a member of the Church of Christ. Plus some of the charges by some based on a very limited exposure to a few Church of Christ members, especially since we are not being told what brand of Church of Christ congregation, needed to be explained.
     
  20. rsr

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    The bad blood between the Churches of Christ and the Baptists reaches back to the early 19th century when Campbell's church joined the local Baptist association and rent it assunder. Similar controversies caused vitriol spewing between the Church of Christ and Baptists for years; whole Baptist associations defected.

    Was Campbell deceitful? Not necessarily. He came from a Presbyterian tradition and adopted Baptist baptism. (Although the Landmarkers don't acknowledge it as authentic.) But he never was denominationalistic, but resotrationist. My take is that it was this emphasis — restoring the primitive Christian faith — that set him seriously at odds with the Baptists, who also claimed to be practicing primitive Christianity.

    Alas, this is in the past, except to those who are stuck there and want to relive it. It is of historical interest, but I feel no need to continue the vendetta.

    Churches of Christ are today very diverse, with folks like Max Lucado (as mentioned before), whose church is evangelical in orientation, contemporary in service and rejecting of any form of baptismal regeneration, to traditionalists who insist on using one cup for communion, reject instrumental music and hold to some form of baptismal regeneration (although even the more traditional churches have adopted Sunday schools and paid pastors.)

    And remember that the preamble to the London Baptist Confession of 1646 described the document as:

    And the 1689 London Confession described it as:

     

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