The Church of Christ
The church of Christ is not a denomination; therefore, it is not a part of denominationalism. It is neither Catholic, Protestant, nor Jewish, but it is simply the body of Christ, being composed of those who have from the heart obeyed the will of Christ just as did those who became its members in the days of the apostles. All who obey the Lord's will He adds to the church (Acts 2:37-47.)
The church of Christ originated in the mind of God (Eph. 3:10-11), was established by Jesus Christ himself (Mat. 16:18), He being the foundation thereof (I Cor. 3:11), and consists of those who are called "the saved" (Acts 2:47; Eph. 5:23). These saved are content to wear the name "Christian" (Acts 11:26) and submit to no creed but the gospel of Christ in its fulness.
The church of Christ had its beginning in the city of Jerusalem of Palestine in 33 A.D. when Hades had failed to hold its builder (Mat. 16:18; Mk. 16:2-6). It came into existence while the apostles were alive (Mk. 9:1) when the Holy Spirit was given unto them in fulfillment of the promise of God (Mk. 9:1 Lk. 24:49; Acts 2:1-4) to guide them into all the truth (Jno. 16:13) as they "preached the gospel to every creature" (Mk. 16:15-16). It was at the beginning of the church that the "word of the Lord" went "forth from Jerusalem" (Isa. 2:2-3; Lk. 24:27).
To enter the church of Christ which is His body, one by his faith in Christ (Acts 18:8) repents of his sins (Acts 2:38), and confessing his faith in Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God (Rom. 10:9-10; Acts 8:37 ; I Jno. 5:1) goes with Him into the watery grave of baptism (Col. 2:12; Acts 8:28), being buried with his Lord (Rom. 6:4) where the old man of sin is destroyed (Rom. 6:6). Arising therefrom, he walks in newness of life.
The worship of the church of Christ lacks show and ritualistic pomp as it worships just as it did in the days of the apostles-in spirit and in truth (Jno. 4:24). It worships in song (Col. 3:16), in prayer (Acts 2:42), in teaching God's word (Acts 2:42; 20:7), in communing by partaking of the Lord's Supper (I Cor. 10:16, 11 :20-30; Acts 20:7) every first day of the week, and by returning to the Lord a portion of that which the Lord in His love has given man (I Cor. 16:1-2; 2 Cor. 9:6-7). It is only by this means-that is, by individual contributions, that the work of the church is financed as it was in the days of the apostles.
The mission of the church in the world is to save souls by publishing abroad the gospel of Christ, God's power to save (Rom. 1:16; 1 Cor. 15:1-4). The church is the pillar and ground of the truth (I Tim. 3:15).
The members of Christ's church, also called "saints" (Rom. 1:7) and "priests" (I Pet. 2:5 ; Rev. 1:6), mortify the deeds of the flesh (Col. 3:5), "being not conformed to the world but transformed by the renewing of the mind" . . . (Rom. 12:2), presenting their bodies as "living sacrifices unto God" (Rom. 12:1),always endeavoring to be fashioned like unto their Lord, the Christ (Rorn. 8:29). Their reward will be a "crown of life" (Rev. 2:10) and an eternal habitation with God, Christ, and the redeemed of all ages (I Jno. 2:25 ; I Thes. 4:17). In this eternal abode, "God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." (Rev. 21:4) Yea, truly, "He that overcometh shall inherit all things" and God "will be his God, and he shall be God's son" (Rev. 21:7).
Dear friend, will you not become a member of this glorious church? "Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth." (Col. 3:2) "Look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal." (2 Cor. 4:18).
Truth Magazine III:8, p. 3