There are those who believe that the church of Christ is just one of many other denominations and that it was founded by Alexander Campbell in the United States in the 19th century but this is not what the Bible teaches nor is it consistent with the historical record of the church of Christ.
Jesus promised to build His church (Matthew 16:18). The first congregation was founded in Jerusalem by the inspired preaching of the gospel of Christ through the apostles of Christ (Acts 2). As the gospel went forth many other churches of Christ were established throughout the world (Acts 1:8; Romans 16:16; Colossians 1:23).
Churches of Christ survived persecution and trial for many years and have always existed in various places around the world up to this very day (“Restoration Movements Around The World” by W. Ralph Wharton). Long before Alexander Campbell ever left Scotland for the United States, there were already churches of Christ in both places (“Tradition and History of the Early Churches of Christ in Central Europe” by Dr. Hans Grimm, “The Restoration Handbook” by Leslie G. Thomas).
According to the Bible, the church of Christ will never be destroyed (2 Samuel 7:12-16; Daniel 2:44; 4:34; 6:26; 7:14, 27; Micah 4:7; Matthew 16:18-19; Luke 1:32-33; 1 Corinthians 15:24; Colossians 1:13-14). It is not a manmade denomination but consists of those who have been saved by the blood of Christ in their obedience to the gospel (Acts 2:36-41, 47; 20:28; 1 Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 5:23).
Jesus Christ reigns by the gospel from heaven as the head of His church (Matthew 28:18-20; Ephesians 1:22-23; Colossians 1:18; 3:17). There is no earthly headquarters or manmade hierarchy that rules over the churches of Christ. Each congregation is autonomous, being led by elders (presbyters) who act as overseers (bishops) and shepherds (pastors) (Acts 14:23; 20:14, 28; Philippians 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-11; Hebrews 13:8, 17; 1 Pet. 5:1-3). These congregations are united by their common faith in and love of Jesus Christ (Ephesians 4:1-16; 2 Timothy 1:13; Titus 1:4; 2 Peter 1:1; Jude 3). They are not a part of any denomination but are opposed to such division (John 17:20-23; 1 Corinthians 1:10-13), calling all out of denominationalism and into the church of Christ by the preaching of the gospel of Christ (2 Thessalonians 2:13-14; 1 Peter 1:2; 2:9-10).
You can be a Christian, a member of the church of Christ you read about in your Bible. Believing on Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God, repent of your sins, confess your faith and be immersed in water for the remission of sins just as the Bible teaches. You will be a Christian and God will add you to His church. Then, join yourself to other Christians in churches of Christ around the world (Acts 9:26-18; Hebrews 10:24-25).
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Robert Dodson is the Preaching Minister for the Northwest Church of Christ.
6059 Azle Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76135