The Lord’s Church Is Different, By Garland Elkins (part 1)

Do you ever ask: “In what direction must I go to find eternal bliss?  Since eternity is forever, it is the most important thing in the world for us to do the will of God. This tract is intended to point you to the Bible where we are told what we must do to inherit eternal life.

Twentieth century technology is noted for its change. Each day, it seems, we have new and better ways of production, transportation, therapy, communications, etc.

But in this changing world, we still find that life, even at its very best, is full of trouble. And, a basic fact still faces us: it is appointed to man once to die; then the judgment. (Heb. 9:27.)

It is our purpose and plea to urge all men to go back to the Bible. We seek to “speak where the Bible speaks and to remain silent where the Bible is silent.” (I Peter 4:11.)

The time that you use in reading this tract may be the best way you could possibly use the same amount of time. The few minutes spent in reading this tract could conceivably enhance your hope of an eternity in heaven.

You can be just a Christian without being a part of any denomination. In these days of many sects and conflicting teachings isn’t it marvelous that one can be a Christian, a member of the Lord’s church, therefore saved from his past sins; yet not a member of any party or sect? There can be no doubt that all Christians of the first century were members of the Lord’s church. (Acts 2:47.) Yet they were members of no denomination for none existed.

Peter, Paul and all Christians belonged to the church; yet they belonged to no denomination. Question: “Why should any person claiming to be a Christian belong to a denomination today?”

THE LORD’S CHURCH IS UNDENOMINATIONAL

People generally have become so accustomed to thinking of the church in terms of denominationalism that, in the minds of some, it is almost impossible to disassociate the church of the Lord from denominationalism. Yet when we read of the Lord’s church in the New Testament, very few, if any, think it is a denomination. I use the word denomination in the sense in which it is used in religion to refer to a sect or party. The world has a right and certainly a need to know wherein the Lord’s church is different.

NEITHER CATHOLIC NOR PROTESTANT

Churches of Christ have a distinctive plea. The plea is: be neither Catholic nor Protestant but a simple Christian. First century disciples were neither Catholics nor Protestants for none of these denominations existed and did not until hundreds of years later. A person can be an American without joining any political party, Democrat, Republican, etc. Even so, one can be a Christian without joining any sect. In our day many think of the word “church” as synonymous with the word “denomination.” It is extremely difficult to get people to see that they can be Christians without being a part of any sect. In our country alone there are between two and three hundred sects; but the church of Christ is not a sect. Paul, though a member of the Lord’s church, denied that it was a sect. (Acts 24:5, 13, 14.) (to be continued)

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