Is the Church of Christ a cult?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by evangelist6589, Apr 14, 2016.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    They believe in Baptismal Regeneration yet affirm the essentials of the faith. Does this one variance make them a cult?
     
  2. JonC

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    I do not think that it automatically makes them a cult. I know many who are certainly cult-like, but I also know several that are not (some teach one must be a member of the CoC to be saved...not their denomination because unlike the Baptist they don't follow a man and Alexander Campbell doesn't count).
     
  3. Jerome

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    Nancy Grace interviewing her producer's father-in-law on her show several years ago:

    http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0603/27/ng.01.html

     
  4. Jeremy Seth

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    My corps buddy gave me a book from his Church of Christ called "Churches in the Shape of Scripture" by Dan Chambers, and I enjoyed reading it. Here, Mr. Chambers is very deliberate in encouraging the idea that coc isn't a denomination but a movement that is anti-denominational. In the introduction he makes it clear that he doesn't speak on behalf of everyone who calls themselves coc because they don't have unifying doctrine.

    The rest was a theogical overview, which I mostly could get behind but for the bit on hermeneutics and works for salvation. He was going to SBTS at the time of writing, which I admit makes me more keen on liking him.

    My experience going to one of my buddy's Bible studies and reading the book leads me to believe the coc doesn't think they are exclusively going to Heaven, he even addresses that in the form of a joke where St. Peter points out a room in heaven with no windows and says "that's the coc, they think they're the only ones here so we just let them pretend and don't bother them".

    If exclusivity is the deciding factor towards culthood, I do not have reason to believe a majorty of CoC members fit the criteria.
     
  5. JonC

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    Some of those things are what makes the CoC cultic. I have friends who are CoC (it is a very popular denomination where I live). Their parents believe that I am going to Hell because I am Baptist and therefore a member of a false church following a man rather than Christ. But my friends do not think that CoC members are the only ones going to Heaven. So there are a couple of differences between generations and churches.

    But their insistence that they are not a denomination is not something to be appreciated but reviled. It makes them cultic. They believe that they are not a denomination because there are no other Christian churches. Alexander Campbell did not set out to make another denomination, and before his death he expressed regret that this is precisely what he did. His desire to unite all Christianity resulted in the exact opposite in practice. But the issue was that he was not trying to unite Christianity "in Christ" through the gospel of Christ but rather in an umbrella of univocal doctrine (and more specifically, his doctrine). In other words, they believe that they are not a denomination because there are no other true churches. They confuse the title "Church of Christ" with the actual Church of Christ mentioned in Scripture.

    In my area, I am comfortable calling most CoC churches cults. But there are exceptions, not only churches but also members within these churches.
     
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  6. kyredneck

    kyredneck
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    YOU believe "SAVED" means 'regenerated', right?:

    16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that disbelieveth shall be condemned. Mk 16

    If "SAVED" means 'bound for heaven' then please splain to me where they're wrong.
     
  7. evangelist6589

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    Eph 2:8-10
     
  8. kyredneck

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    8 for by grace have ye been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;
    9 not of works, that no man should glory.
    10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God afore pprepared that we should walk in them. Eph 2

    This means nothing. It's open to interpretation. You didn't address what 'SAVED' means.

    Does 'saved' mean 'regenerated'? Is the passage stating that faith regenerates us?

    FYI, scripture indicates that only the 'regenerate' can be 'saved'.
     
    #8 kyredneck, Apr 16, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2016
  9. JonC

    JonC
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    I don't think that the question is regeneration here, but whether or not water baptism is the mode by which our sins are washed away. And for most of the CoC, you are only "saved" if you were dunked under the water by a CoC elder. In other words, if you were not physically submerged in water by an authorized minister then you have not been regenerated.
     
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  10. evangelist6589

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    No its not open to interpretation as the text is crystal clear on its meaning. Oh and by the way do you believe one cannot be saved unless one is water baptized?
     
  11. Salty

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    just wanted throw in my 2 cents here - where does Scripture REQUIRE an authorized minister.
    I realize that our Baptist tradition is that the pastor does the baptizing - but there have times when a person other than pastor preformed the ordinance.
     
  12. Jordan Kurecki

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    It depends on how you define cult, I would definately classify them as a false religion.
    They ascribe to Baptism what only Faith in the shed blood of Christ can do; wash sins away.

    It's a false religion straight from the pits of hell.
     
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  13. Jordan Kurecki

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    Unbelief is what damns, not being unbaptized.. Notice the second part of that verse..He that believeth and is baptized is saved... as is he that believeth and is not baptized.
     
  14. JonC

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    I don't think an authorized minister is required.
     
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  15. Jordan Kurecki

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    Those who try to use Mark 16:16 to teach that baptism is necessary for salvation commit a common but serious mistake that is sometimes called the Negative Inference Fallacy. This is the rule to follow: “If a statement is true, we cannot assume that all negations (or opposites) of that statement are also true." For example, the statement “a dog with brown spots is an animal” is true; however, the negative, “if a dog does not have brown spots, it is not an animal” is false. In the same way, “he who believes and is baptized will be saved” is true; however, the statement “he who believes but is not baptized will not be saved” is an unwarranted assumption. Yet this is exactly the assumption made by those who support baptismal regeneration. http://www.gotquestions.org/baptism-Mark-16-16.html
     
  16. JonC

    JonC
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    There are many things about some of the smaller (and older) CoC churches in my area that I would consider false doctrine. What prevents them from being "Baptist" is their view that God uses water baptism in saving men by His grace. What you have to decide is what false doctrine actually causes them not to believe the true gospel.

    Is it their view that God uses water baptism in salvation? Is it their exclusion of other believers in the Kingdom of God? Is it their false understanding of biblical authorization (or the hypocrisy of their practice)? Is it their misunderstanding of the nature of translation and adherence to the King James Version Bible as the "perfect Word of God"? All of those are false doctrines, but I do not know that any of those preclude them from being saved.

    They are cult like. I don't now that they are not, however, truly saved while believing those false doctrines.
     
  17. evangelist6589

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    Yes and I am trying to figure that out for myself. I know that the United Church of Christ is from Hell but not sure on this one. They hold to false doctrine yes but does it damn not sure yet. KJVOnlyism is false doctrine but I never write up those churches because they affirm the essentials.

    I am trying to dialogue more with them to see really what they believe. If it does turn out they are false what type of tract should I mail them?

    I have tracts designed for apostates, tracts on Hell, tracts on the moral law, and tracts on the blood of Christ.
     
  18. JonC

    JonC
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    I think it best not to look for doctrines that "damn" (they do not infact condemn but instead they reflect an already condemned state) but look for the doctrines that save. Do they hold fast to the gospel of Jesus Christ?

    If so, then no amount of error can rip them from His grasp. If not, then no amount of correct theology can save them.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G530A using Tapatalk
     
  19. evangelist6589

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    They are 5-pt arminian and believe salvation can be lost. This is false doctrine but is not another gospel.

    From their website it would confirm they affirm the essentials of the faith, other than their idea on Baptism.
     
  20. evangelist6589

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    Bye the way whenever I look at websites I always look for the essentials. If a church does not list them then the church is a false one.
     

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