What is a denomination?

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by SpiritualMadMan, Oct 19, 2004.

  1. SpiritualMadMan

    SpiritualMadMan
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    On another thread the question is asked whether we should follow Jesus or a denomination..

    The thought occurred to me that perhaps a definition of the purpose of a denomination might be in order?

    IMHO a denomination is a framework for growing in Grace, becoming like Jesus and banding together for mutual edification and comfort...

    When a denomination forces people to go against Scripture that is bad and we tend to call such groups cults.

    But, when the real differences are style, fine points, or 'grey areas' we end up forming a new denomination...

    What a denomination gives us is the stability and framework so that we ourselves can be stable...

    Different denominations have differing rules of conduct and practice...

    And, if I join a particular group I have to be willing to acquiesce to the groups normal practices and forms of worship...

    To not do so would mean that I would be disruptive...

    But, if I am not a subscribing member then I am free to do as my heart dictates within the bounds of Christian Liberty and my understanding of God's Word...

    So, I guess, to answer the other threads question...

    One must Follow Jesus First. But, because we are called to be a part of a church we have to Follow Jesus within the framework of a denomination/church...

    I know there are many churches that call themselves non-denominational... Ha Ha! Not so! For as soon as you create a framework for order you have created a form of denomination...

    But, that's just my view... [​IMG]
     
  2. Gup20

    Gup20
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    DEFINITION: A denomination is a group of like-minded believers who have decided to believe a particular (and specified) set of doctrines.

    PURPOSE: That is the hard question, isn't it. Personally I see denominations as the largest and primary source of division in the body of christ. Personally, I think that denominational lines are wrong and evil. I think they hinder the body of christ more than help. Yes, indeed there is comfort and strength in being in a group of like-minded believers - and I believe we should all be in one accord for maximum effectiveness... but who gets to decide which interpretation of scripture is the correct interpretation?

    So what's the problem? Why aren't we all in agreement? Sin and death... this world is cursed right now. We live in un-redeemed bodies that are effected continually by The Fall and death. Our spirit man has been re-born, but we live in lost and dead bodies. Therefore, we are not in perfect union with the Father. There are spiritual forces at work in the earth actively seeking to obscure the right path and lead us to the right or left.

    Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high [places].

    1Pe 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

    Why are we not perfectly unified? Because the enemy of our souls actively subverts - steals, kills, destroys. We live in a lost and dying world, and it's influences can be felt in our very bodies (though we are not subjugated to it for eternity).

    The purpose of denominations is to separate. It is so that outside influences do not interrupt our cozy ideas of our own interpretations of the Word. Think about it - when somone is deemed a 'heretic' what happens? They are excommunicated or cast out of the denomination. Denominations are walls. Walls can be used to provide safety and assurance, but walls protect evil men just as surely as they protect good men.

    When it comes down to it, denominations are and were born in the mind and heart of men - not of God. It is typically a difference of OPINION as to interpretation of scripture. I am sure that God himself inteneded for a unified body or church - all following one gospel and all using true doctrine as He directs.
     

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