Exposing The Christian Church (Part 3)
By: Brian A. Yeager
In our two previous articles we have seen that the Christian Church began with what they call the “Restoration Movement”. We exposed the fallacy of that mindset. We have exposed their creation of human institutions to do spiritual work without God’s authority to do so. I concluded the last article stating that I intended to expose the Christian Church’s erring doctrines on unity in diversity and the role of women in the Lord’s work. After beginning this article, I have come to realize that we’ll only have space to deal with their error of unity in diversity. However, I will write a fourth article wherein we shall expose their view of women in so-called “church leadership roles”. Let’s get started in this article by accurately viewing the Christian Church’s doctrine on unity in diversity.
Unity In Diversity – In Their Words!
Interestingly, the Christian Church has been trying to open their doors of fellowship, just like many apostate “churches of Christ”. In fact, the last ten years has shown many so-called “churches of Christ” are willing to practice the same unity in diversity errors as the Christian Church. This error is so prevalent, that these two groups have come together in worship and other activities many times in the recent past. So, pay close attention to the Scriptures we’ll discuss in this article. For, we never know when someone will creep in among us and try to bring this error (II Peter 2:1-3 and Jude 3-4). The “Christian Chronicle” (a newspaper for fake churches of Christ) said this in their November 2009 issue:
“But this communion also harkened back to a more recent event — 200 years ago — when church reformer Thomas Campbell signed a document proclaiming that ‘division among Christians is a horrid evil filled with many devils.’ Campbell previously had been expelled from the Presbyterian church, partly because he allowed Presbyterians not part of his group to participate in the Lord’s Supper. Two centuries later some members of three faith groups with roots in the American Restoration Movement — the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Christian Church/Churches of Christ (instrumental) and a cappella Churches of Christ — met for Great Communion Sunday” (Link Here).
Notice the following statements made by the Christian Church:
“In 2004, our church celebrated the 200th anniversary of The Last Will and Testament of the Springfield Presbytery, a document that established our basic direction as the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and marked our fundamental identity as a people of unity, reconciliation and oneness. It is important, therefore, to understand some of the background of this document as we claim our identity as a Christian unity movement for the world of the 21st century. It was Barton W. Stone (1772-1844), a Presbyterian minister in the young frontier state of Kentucky, who had helped bring a major ‘sacramental revival’ to his Cane Ridge church in 1801. In that revival he experienced several denominations working together (Presbyterians, Methodists, Baptists) to bring the Gospel to the mission field of the rapidly expanding nation. Stone became convinced that he no longer wanted to be a defender of ‘partyism.’ He desired instead to be a servant of the one Church of Jesus Christ… We forget how bold and dramatic the words of that document sounded in 1804: to die,... and sink into union with the Body of Christ at large. It was - and is - a vision that places its ultimate trust in a resurrection faith: dying, and being raised to a new life in Christ. Disunity and division were a scandal to the Gospel. Unity, oneness, and reconciliation were not secondary themes to the message and witness of the New Testament Church; indeed, they stood at the very heart of the Church's preaching and proclamation. The message of our movement was, and is, simple and understandable: We are called to oneness in Christ. There, the emphasis was, and is, upon (1) unity-with-diversity, (2) the freedom of the individual, and (3) a valuing of a reasoned faith” (Link Here).
“Diversity should become a major focus of our future efforts in the dialogue unless we unintentionally want the Stone Campbell traditions to have the same demographic descriptions they had at the turn of the 20th century” (Link Here).
“Church Women United is a racially, culturally, theologically inclusive Christian women's movement, celebrating unity in diversity and working for a world of peace and justice. Founded in 1941, Church Women United (CWU) is: A movement representing 25 million Protestant, Roman Catholic, Orthodox and other Christian women” (http://www.discipleshomemissions.org/Women/CWU.htm).
The Truth And The Christian Church Are In Opposition Concerning Unity in Diversity
As we have done many times in this series of articles, I am going to have this section of the article primarily be quotes from the Scriptures. What you will see is that God requires us to be unified with the same mind, doctrine, judgment, etc. God is so clear on this matter, that it marvels me to see folks confuse the truth and extend fellowship beyond God’s boundaries. Notice how clear the Lord is on this matter:
“Can two walk together, except they be agreed… And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand… Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me… Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits… Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple… Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment… Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you… I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling” (Amos 3:3, Mark 3:24, John 17:20-23, Romans 12:16; 16:17-18, I Corinthians 1:10, II Corinthians 13:11, and Ephesians 4:1-4).
“And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them… Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel… Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be like minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind… Nevertheless, where to we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing. Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample… Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us… And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother… That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full. This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin… Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds… But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication. So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate” (Ephesians 5:11, Philippians 1:27; 2:2; 3:16-17, II Thessalonians 3:6; 14-15, I John 1:3-7, II John 9-11, and Revelation 2:14-15).
The Lord Hath Spoken And We Must Comply!
If anyone honestly reads the Scriptures above, they can see that unity in diversity is a false doctrine. That then begs the question as to how some in “churches of Christ” could partake of the Lord’s Supper with those of the Christian Church denomination. The Scriptures are clear in forbidding this too. Notice: “Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils” (I Corinthians 10:21). True Christians separate themselves from disciples of Satan (II Corinthians 6:14-18). One might try to argue that the Christian Church would not qualify as such, but Biblically you cannot deny that they are disciples of the devil (I John 3:1-10)! From such, we ought to individually and collectively withdraw ourselves (cf. I Timothy 6:3-5). To have fellowship with those of this or any other erring religious body is to violate the very Scriptures we’ve reviewed in this article. Folks, that is called sin (I John 3:4) and the punishment is eternity in Hell (Matthew 23:33, Romans 6:23, and II Peter 2:4-9).
Building bridges between erring religious bodies and calling that unity does not please God. God wants to see unity among His people (Psalms 133:1), but those of the denominational world are not His people (Matthew 7:21-23 and Luke 6:46). The one body spoken of in the Scriptures is the church of Christ (Matthew 16:18, Romans 16:16, Ephesians 1:22-23, and Colossians 1:18). We do not have the authority from Christ to expand the borders of His body. It is He who does the adding to His body, the church. Such only occurs after one has submitted to the conversion process He put in place (Acts 2:37-41; 47, Acts 8:4-38, Acts 18:8, Acts 19:1-7, etc.). It would be great to see people leave the Christian Church and other denominations, obey the Gospel, and be added by the Lord to His church. It is in this manner only that these folks could ever be unified with God’s people. Unity in diversity is not only a false doctrine, but it is also an oxymoron. Therefore, reason should come into play here as well!
Volume 10 – Issue 18 - January 24th, 2010