Did you notice that the libraries and bookstores are full of books about these churches?
Why do they teach so many different kinds of things?
Pray to Mary.
Don't pray to Mary.
Don't Baptize Babies.
Eat meat on Friday.
Don"t eat meat on Friday.
Priests can marry
Priests can't marry.
The work of the church is social.
The work of the church is spiritual.
There is no life after this one.
There is a life after this one.
Where did all of these churches come from?
Lets go back, ....clear back almost 2000 years to 30 AD
Jesus said, * I will build my church...* Matthew 16:18
That must mean that the church belongs to Jesus because He is the one who built it!
At least that is what the Bible says.
I wonder what else it has to say about Jesus' church?
Ephesians 1:22-23 says* ...and gave Him (Christ) to be the head over all things to the church, which is His body..*
Therefore HIS BODY = HIS CHURCH
Colossians 1:18, * ...and He (Christ) is the head of the body, the church...*
The HEAD decides, controls, and guides!
Ephesians 4: 4* There is one body, and one Spirit, even as also ye were called in one hope of your calling;tells us that
1 Corinthians 1:10 *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*
ONE = UNITY
In John 10:27, Jesus Said, * my sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.*
John 10:16, *.. and there shall be ONE FOLD and ONE SHEPHERD.*
We see that in the New Testament that there was only ONE CHURCH!
Jesus condemned man teaching his own ideas and doctrine in Mark 7:7-9 ..* in VAIN do they worship me, teaching for doctrine the commandments of MEN..*
However men did change the simple teachings of Jesus, and now we have DENOMINATIONS.
Lets compare some of the teachings of MEN with what JESUS and the APOSTLES taught in the New Testament.
Men say, * we painted the church.*
Is this Jesus' body, His church?
Acts 8:3 tells us that *Saul made havoc of the church and committed men and women to prison.*
This indicates the church was made up of Christian men and women.
SOME believe that all of the different denominations are branches of Jesus' church.
Get the Bible and look at Jesus' words
in John 15:5- I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same beareth much fruit: for apart from me ye can do nothing. 6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.*
Disciples are the branches, not churches!
In Mark 16:16 Jesus said the following:
*He that believeth AND is baptized shall be saved.*
But some say:
*He that believeth NOT and is baptized shall be saved*
And yet others say:
*He that believes and is NOT baptized shall be saved*
WHO SHALL WE BELIEVE?
Matthew 23: 8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your teacher, and all ye are brethren.
11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
MANS WAY ...
We elevate clergymen, Popes, Ministers and Preachers to some position between us and God where in fact He has forbidden this.
1 Corinthians 4:6 "that we might learn not to think of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against the other"
The Apostle Peter writes to Christians in 1 Peter 2: 9 *But ye are a elect race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light*
GODS WAY...ONE FAITH
Jude 1:3 Beloved, while I was giving all diligence to write unto you of our common salvation, I was constrained to write unto you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered unto the saints.
(Christians are also called believers, disciple, saints and brethren in the Bible)
MANS WAY...MANY FAITHS
Baptist Manual, Methodist, Episcopal, Watchtower,Catholic, and Creeds
In 2 John 9 we read * Whosoever goeth onward and abideth not in the teaching of Christ, hath not God: he that abideth in the teaching, the same hath both the Father and the Son*
If we are to learn from the Bible and especially the doctrine of Christ we cannot change the words to suit us.
Deuteronomy 4:2 Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish from it, that ye may keep the commandments of Jehovah your God which I command you.
When the doctrine of Christ is polluted with the doctrine of men, it makes man's worship of God EMPTY of value. It is vain.
Are you following the doctrines of men that make worship vain, or are YOU abiding in the doctrine of Christ?
Adapted from One Church, a tract by Ney Rieber
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