Non Denominational Churches?

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Scott_Bushey, May 10, 2002.

  1. Scott_Bushey

    Scott_Bushey
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    Whats everyones take on this concept? Do the non denominational churches know something that we do not?
     
  2. pinoybaptist

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    what in carnation are non-denominational churches?
     
  3. Dr. Bob

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    Denominational = supported/doctrinally aligned with a particular denomination or group. Like Liberty BAPTIST Church is "Baptist"; First Southern Baptist church is "Southern Baptist". Yeah, we all know that.

    Inter-denominational = supported by a number of people/churches that have a broad spectrum of theological beliefs. Cannot have the characteristics of just one denomination. Youth For Christ or Campus Crusade would be examples.

    Non-denominational = not aligned with one denomination and their belief structure. Still can have a very strong theology or position on separation, etc, but not just promoting one set of interpretations. Bob Jones University is an example.

    Almost every "non-denominational" church I have come across has a very strong doctrinal statement that they simply "hide". They want to attract folks, but will not actually hang their major belief on a signpost.

    Like saying we are "Grace Church" and in reality, we were 100% Baptist. But "baptist" was an overused name in Dallas, so we went with a non-denominational name.

    Lots of "Community" Churches are non-denominational. Our big one in Casper has 1000 members. It is 100% Church of God cult, but would never admit it. I got a copy of their doctrinal statement, printed in Anderson, Indiana. Hmmm.
     
  4. J.R. Graves

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    I for one believe labels are very important. If they weren't Wal-mart would go out of buisness. The labels on the food you buy let you know what's inside. The label on the church sign should let people know what the church believes on the inside. It my area most of the non-denomenational churches are either Pentecostal churches or liberal churches that are ashamed of the Baptist name and Baptist distinctives. I would recommend any church to keep the Baptist name. You don't gain anything by abandoning it.
     
  5. pinoybaptist

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    They went out from us because they were not of us.
    Not verbatim, but that is the thought.
    And the first part of your reply was exactly what I meant by my question. There is no such thing as a non-denominational church. They can claim to be.
    But when we come right down to it one or a couple of things will have to identify a church with a denomination, no matter how much they claim non-affiliation.
    As for Baptist churches who say they are ashamed of the name Baptist, I'm glad they're not with us anymore.
     
  6. Rev. Joshua

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    My experience exactly.

    Joshua
     
  7. just-want-peace

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    About 10 years ago, as my wife & I were travelling to Cape Hatteras, we noticed a small white frame churh in upper NC with the church name, followed by "UN-DEMONINATIONAL". :confused:
    We got quite a chuckle from this one!! :D
     
  8. longshot

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    Just curious Dr. Bob,
    Is the Community Church in Casper charismatic and is that why you referred to it as cult? My curiousity is based on being raised in a non-charismatic Church of God headquarted in Anderson, Indiana. ("Church of God" being the source of confusion for many).
    I didn't seem to think that their doctrines and those of the SBC Church of which I now belong were very far apart.
    Am I comparing apples to oranges or have I misinterpreted the doctrines? Thanks :cool:
     
  9. rlvaughn

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    Most "non-denominational" churches that I run across are charismatics, or they are "Baptists" that are ashamed of the name. But one of the largest groups that makes a claim to being non-denominational is the non-instrumental "churches of Christ (Campbellites)." If I understand scripture correctly, Christ did not give His church a denominational name. But what I find suspect is the reason a church has for distancing itself from a denominational name.
     
  10. Naomi

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    I thought this was funny, yet also inspirational:

    Two guys meet:
    First one asks: Are you a believer?
    Second one: Yes!
    First: Virgin birth?
    Second: I accept it
    First: Deity of Jesus?
    Second: No doubt!
    First: Death of Christ on the cross?
    Second: He died for all people!
    First guy was thinking *could it be? I was face to face with a real Christian?*
    First: Status of man?
    Second: sinner in need of grace-God doing for man what man can't do
    First: Return of Christ?
    Second: Imminent
    First: Bible?
    Second: Inspired
    First: The Church?
    Second: The body of Christ
    First: Conservative or Liberal?
    Second: Conservative
    First: (heart beating faster) Heritage?
    Second: Southern Congregationalist Holy Son of God Dispensationalist Triune Convention
    First: That was mine! Branch?
    Second: Pre-millenial, post trib, non-charasmatic, King James, one-cup communion
    First: (eyes misting) I have only one more question...
    Is your pulpit wooden or fiberglass?
    Second: Fiberglass
    First man withdraws his hand, stiffens his neck, and says "heretic!" and walks away

    God has one flock. Religious division is not His idea. The flock has one shepard, and though we may think we are many, we are wrong. There is only one.

    I believe: God became man in the person of Jesus, was crucified on the cross, resurrected on the third day, and is one day coming again. I believe He left us with the Holy Spirit to indwell all the believer's. I believe there will be no denominations in heaven, as we will be one. I believe that it is important not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together, I believe we should be witnessing to those who are lost. I believe pure "religion" is visiting the ones in jail, and caring for the orphans and the widows.
    I am a Christian belonging to the body of Christ.

    Naomi
     
  11. Johnv

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    I'm not a fan of non-denominational churches. When your church is a member of a denomination, it becomes accountable for its actions and beliefs. I think there's some security in that. Paul in his epistles talked about churches being held accountable. Many non-denominational churches say they're "accountable to the Holy Spirit", but simply use that as a tag line to interpret scriptures as they see fit. Besides, such a mentality implies that denominations are not accountable to the Hoyl Spirit, and that just ain't so.

    BTW, here in Southern California, the term "Community Church" is most often associated with the Reformed Church in America, but that's not a rule of thumb by any means. Several Baptist churches also say "community church" on them.
     
  12. Naomi

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    This is so true John! When leaders become isolated and not accountable, they say they are only accountable to The Holy Spirit, it is time to run!! Many churches have become spiritually abusive because of this very concept.
    Scriptures tell us to be accountable and submit one to another.
    There are times that denominational churches have not been accountable for their actions. They were able to mis-handle money and many other inappropriate things were done. While it is true that there is safety when you know the church is under some accountability, it is not always true that they are truly "accountable".
    Case in point: Just read the local newspaper
    Non denominational churches can be just as accountable as Denominational Churches are. It just depends upon the leadership of the church.
    Naomi
     
  13. Pete Richert

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    I can't believe this. Why arn't the Independent Fundlementist Baptist jumping in and crying foul!!! Non-Denominational Churhes are just churches who choose to govern themselves, derive their theology from the Bible, and see no need to label themsevles with names such as Baptist which means so many different things even on this board!!! Being Non-Denominational doesn't mean they don't have a theology, it just means they not getting it from outside the Bible. I don't see any difference between a true believing "non-denominational" church and a Independent Fundlementist Church. Most of my experience with the non-D's is that they are very similiar to Baptist (and some on this board with indentify them closer then other members of this board itself) who always have pride in the Bible alone. This all seems so ironic. I am usually defending the idea of denominations to these the non-D's, not the other way around.
     
  14. Naomi

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    I would never make a blanket statement like, "All non-denominational churches are not accountable to anyone". I would also not make a blanket statement like "All denominational churches are held accountable for their actions".
    Eventually we all are held accountable for our actions. My point is that it depends upon the leadership of a particular church. There are controlling people on both sides.
    I have been involved in a church where there was alot of control from the Pastor, and there was nobody else in leadership to go to. He surrounded himself with a bunch of "yes-men" who would agree with the Pastor no matter what. In a non-denominational church (which we were in) the buck stopped there. We had to leave that church because of this. Upon our departure, the ones remaining there were told to not have fellowship with us. Not because we were "divisive", not because we were in Sin, but we were "disloyal" by not doing what the Pastor wanted us to do. This was not a cult, who "dis-fellowships" ones who leave, this was a Church. There was no other steps we could take. Had it been a denominational church, we would have written a letter to the Superintendant of that denomination. Many people are still there, and still under this "Spiritually Abusive" Church.
    Yet....We were in a denominational "Mega-Church", that has a great reputation all around the world, that had other problems..
    I am not favoring one over the other, I am just saying that there are good and bad in both denominational and non-denominational churches. It really depends on the character of the ones in leadership. ;)
    Naomi
    One more thing....Sometimes when we "label" ourselves, I have seen walls go up between people. If one person asks, "What church do you attend"? and the other person answers another denominational church, you can just watch them cringe. As if to catergorize what "kind" of a christian they are. Thats what I have difficulty with.
    The world will know we are Christians by the love we have for one another. May we always keep that in mind. The world is watching us!
     
  15. Pete Richert

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    I'm not disagreeing with you on any of that.

    You wrote
    I'm just asking what the difference is in terms of accountability between this non-D and any Independent Fundlementist Baptist Church.
     
  16. Sam

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    I don't believe in non-denomanation. That is just a cover up. The preacher is preaching one denomanation to people of all religions and they become followers of his belief. ~Sheila~
     
  17. Pete Richert

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    Or I could say...

    I don't believe in Independent Fundlementist Baptist. That is just a cover up. The preacher is preaching one denomanation to people of all religions and they become followers of his belief.
     
  18. PackerBacker

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    What denomination was Peter, John, Stephen, Paul, etc? Were they covering up something?
     
  19. PackerBacker

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    I'm finding a label means little these days unless it has more adjectives than will fit on most church signs (even the big ones).

    You've got every different flavor and variety there is under the Baptist label. You really have to evaluate each one separately.

    Seems to me that the same standard should be used to the non-denominational folks. Sure there are some nut cases in the non-denomination ranks but we have plenty of nuts that pop up in Baptist circles also.

    In my current IFB circles SBC is almost a dirty word along with other groups of Baptists. Even some groups of IFB'er want nothing to do with each other. I'm sure others Baptists look on the IFB movement as a whole and want nothing to do with it either. Since some of us would be embarrassed to call ourselves one of "those other Baptist outside our little circle," it seems only logical that some of them might be as embarrassed about taking the Baptist label in general.

    Not speaking for all non-denomination churches, but perhaps some of them are not so much afraid to carry the name baptist as they are being more concerned for promoting Christ instead of a particular label of baptist. Maybe they got fed up with a lot more "rah, rah, rah," and pride in denominational names than there often is in a wonderful Lord and savior.

    [ May 19, 2002, 10:29 AM: Message edited by: PackerBacker ]
     
  20. Scott_Bushey

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    Packerbacker writes:
    Not speaking for all non-denomination churches, but perhaps some of them are not so much afraid to carry the name baptist as they are being more concerned for promoting Christ instead of a particular label of baptist.

    Scott writes:
    I have heard this. I do not disagree with their motive, mind you; the idea is excellent. But I have not met any assembly that is Christian that would state that their denomination is more important then Christ and the things of Christ. The conflict arises out of lack of education, lack of understanding. The idea is a perpetuated, propagated *misunderstanding* in regards to why we have denominations, why we use confessions.
    Those churches that seem to imply that they are exalting Christ and not denominationalism are usually doing exactly that which they say they avoid. Typically, these churches have identifiers or *something* of a statement of faith. These identifiers denominate these churches and literally dismantle and undermine that which they confess and defend.

    Example:
    If I introduced myself as having *no name*, eventually I would be known as "No Name", hence I am no longer, *no name*, but am "No Name".
    Get it???
    [​IMG]

    In HIM,
    Scott
     

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