True Church Disqualifiers

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Tom Butler, Dec 31, 2008.

  1. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    This is a spinoff from the thread on What Makes a Church Baptist.

    Although I don't think any New Testament church has been perfect, I do think Baptists have come closest in its doctrines and practices. I also believe that there are other congregations that do not wear the name Baptist which are very close to New Testament teachings and practice.

    Now let's turn it around. What doctrines disqualify a congregation from being a true New Testament Church?

    Are there also practices or ecclesiology which would disqualify?

    Ready, set.....release the hounds!
     
  2. saturneptune

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    The biggest disqualifier are churches that add anything to the work of Christ on the cross for our salvation, of course with the gifts of grace and faith from God. The first thing that comes to mind is requiring Baptism for salvation. There are practices in other denominations that are obvioius.

    Another factor to me is churches that do not believe in evangelism or missions. That being Christ's last charge in Matthew, it seems to be essential.

    Of course, any church who does not believe in the Diety of Christ, the innerency of the Bible, the Trinity, the sovreignty of God, in my opinion would be disqualified.

    Things we talk about on this board all the time, end times, Calvinism, Landmarkism, the universal church etc, are not disqualifiers.

    I feel very strongly about eternal security, but not sure if a church disagrees it would disqualify it.

    Well, that is just my opinion, and a dollar with that will get you a large diet coke at McDonalds.
     
  3. Jim1999

    Jim1999
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    What! Calvinism and Landmarkism excluded! How dare you.:praying:

    I think those of us that come from another church structure tend to be a little more open. Even Spurgeon backed off a little. His membership was strictly of baptized believers, yet opened the table to all believers. He even had Anglicans preach from his pulpit.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  4. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    Would the mode of baptism (other than immersion) be a disqualifier? What about pedobaptism?
     
  5. Jim1999

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    Smyth, the so-called founder (hic) of the modern baptist church was never properly baptized by immersion. He poured water over his own head and then poured water of the heads of others.......

    Yes, I believe baptism by immersion is the ONLY biblical baptism and a requirement to call one's church, Baptist.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  6. saturneptune

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    I agree to be Baptist, one must be immersed, following regeneration. I am not sure about the term New Testement Church, as it implies a broader catagory. Some Baptist churches do not believe in missions, so it would be hard to qualify them as NT churches. Baptist and New Testement Church are not synonyms.
     
  7. Jim1999

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    In Canada it is so..we strongly believe in missions and label ourselves as New Testament churches.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  8. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    I'm assuming your not saying that Baptists aren't New Testament churches; but rather, churches which call themselves Baptist aren't necessariily NT churches.

    You can tell me if I've read you wrong at church tonight.

    I will say this. i believe the church you and I serve is a New Testament church. If it's not, then we both ought to be out looking for one that is.
     
  9. Jim1999

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    Oh, I am also a landmarkist, but that is not a requirement I place on everyone.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  10. Tom Butler

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    Y'all know where I'm heading with this thread, don't you. Eventually, I'm going to ask you to name names of the disqualified.
     
  11. preachinjesus

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    I'd suggest we ask a more affirmative question than the negative.

    What are the core practices and beliefs that make a New Testament church? Maybe getting these squared away, as according to the New Testament, is important before talking about what disqualifies a church.

    For instance I'd suggest that in practices and beliefs there are a few qualifiers:

    1. Believe in Jesus Christ, Who is God, as the means of salvation (John 1:1,14; John 20:28-29; Matthew 1:23; Romans 10:9-10; Philippians 2:5-6; 1 Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 1:8-10)
    2. Believe in the death, burial, resurrection, and future return of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:22-23; 10:38-41; 1 Corinthians 15:3-8; Matthew 24:30, 25:31-46; 2 Timothy 4:1; Acts 10:42)
    3. Believe in God the Father as Creator and Sustainer of humanity (Matthew 6:9; 7:11; 23:9; 28:19; Mark 1:9-11; John 4:24; 5:26; 14:6-13; 17:1-8; Acts 1:7; Rom 8:14-15; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Gal 4:6; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:15; 1 Timothy 1:17; Hebrews 11:6; 12:9; 1Peter 1:17; 1 John 5:7)
    4. Believe in the Person of the Holy Spirit (John 14:25-26; Ephesians 4:30; Acts 13:2)
    5. Belief in and study of the Bible as the revelation of God to mankind (John 17:17; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; Hebrews 4:12)
    6. Trinitarian in belief (1 John 5:6-7; Luke 3:21-22)
    7. Practices the ordinances of baptism and communion (Luke 22:29,30; Acts 2:41-42; I Corinthians 11:2)
    8. Meet regularly for worship, fellowship, and edification (Matthew 16:15-19; 18:15-20; Acts 2:41-42, 47; 5:11-14; 6:3-6; 13:1-3; 14:23, 27; Acts 15:1-30; 16:5; 20:28; Romans 1:7;1 Corinthians 1:2; 3:16; 5:4-5; 7:17; 9:13-14; 12 Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:19-22; 3:8-11, 21; 5:22-32; Philippians 1:1; Colossians 1:18; 1Timothy 3:1-15; 4:14; Hebrews 10:25)
    9. Are evangelistic and pursue missions to grow God's Kingdom (Matthew 9:37-38; 10:5-15; 13:18-30, 37-43; 16:19; 22:9-10; 24:14; 28:18-20; Luke 10:1-18; 24:46-53; John 14:11-12; 15:7-8, 16; 17:15; 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2; 8:26-40; 10:42-48; 13:2-3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 3:1-11; 1Thessalonians 1:8; 2Timothy 4:5; Hebrews 2:1-3; 11:39-12:2; 1 Peter 2:4-10; Revelation 22:17)

    I think this might be a good starting point.

    Also I'll toss this out there and see what happens...I believe the New Testament Church is a both wide and diverse. In saying that I mean I welcome brothers and sisters in Christ from a great diversity of denominations and walks of Christianity which might not completely agree with each in certain doctrines and preferences.

    It would seem the New Testament does talk about this, particularly such as the denial of the divinity of Christ, bodily resurrection of Christ, and then the moral purity of leaders in a local church.

     
  12. Jim1999

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    I don't disqualify anyone. They disqualify themselves by not agreeing with me. It is biblical:"Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations: ask thy father, and he will shew thee; thy elders, and they will tell thee...." Deut 32:7..Elders,,remember that..elderly...lol

    Cheers,

    Jim

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  13. saturneptune

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    I am where I belong. No, the vast majority of Baptist churches are NT, as is ours for example.
     
  14. Tom Butler

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    preachinjesus, I snipped your detailed list just to save space. People can look above at post #11 for the list.

    I'm operating under the premise that the distinctives of a Baptist church are the same as a New Testament church. That's why I stated the OP question the way I did, since we already have a thread going on Baptist distinctives.

    So, in light of the marks of a NT church in your post #11, does the lack of any of them disqualify that congregation from being a NT church?

    For instance, is a church which baptizes infants and attaches a sacramental value to baptism a New Testament church? Does a church which attaches a sacramental value to the Lord's Supper a New Testament Church?

    I want to make it clear that I'm not questioning the salvation of anyone who is affiliated with other denominations.
     
  15. saturneptune

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    One other factor Tom, that you should include that we have talked about before is charasmatic type practices.
     
  16. saturneptune

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    At the end of this thread, are you going to be able to list denominations that are NT churches besides Baptist. (or BO, that stands for Baptist only)

    Are you prepared to list Baptist sects that are not NT churches? One comes to mind right away, but will save till later.
     
  17. TCGreek

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    As long as a church maintains the essentials of the gospel, it is both biblical and an expression of the one body.

    We're not speaking of non-essentials here.
     
  18. Allan

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    I agree with you brother to a point.
    However just because a church maintains the essentials of 'the gospel' does not equate to the NT Church, just that they maintianed the proper message regarding salvation. I agree that this is a primary issue in which to establish a NT Church. I think there are still a few things that establish the basis of a NT Church - IOW - there is a short list and not some enlongated master sheet.

    However the term Baptist does not make one a NT Church but the beliefs espoused by any church regardless of the name. I do believe that though there are many types and variaties of NT Churches out there you have some closer to the 'whole' truth than others. The names of the churches (baptist, pentacostal, catholic, ect..) allow us to know what each group 'generally' believes. It is in this we must be careful of lumping all a particular group as all espousing the same belief.


    Regarding the OP:
    We can state which church groups might not fit under the NT Church umbrella but that does not necessitate some in their various groups all hold to the same belief.

    There are some groups I know what they believe in general (like the Lutherans) regarding salvation (which is scriptural) however in 3 different states I have been in and done witnessing in via various towns and programs, I have yet (seriouly - not yet) found one Lutheran who does not proclaim a works based understanding of salvation. So in relation to this particular group you would have to say as a denomination they fit the NT but in some local bodies they do not.
     
  19. blackbird

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    Spelling doesn't count here---------

    Emmulacate Conception---IOW the sinlessness of the virgin Mary

    And that other catholic doctrine-----what is it called??? Where the bread and wine actually become the very body and blood of Christ at a catholic mass?? Somebody help me out here----whats that called???
     
  20. Tom Butler

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    That is sometimes the case, I'm sure, even among us Baptists. But most denominations have pretty clear-cut beliefs, and a large majority of their adherents believe them. I think we all could cite the example of somebody who may not be, say, Presbyterian, but joined out of family considerations.

    My question is about denominations, not individuals within those denominations.

    You mentioned Lutherans. So, in your opinion, do their doctrines disqualify them from being NT churches?
     

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