Tag Archives: denominationalism

The Whole Building – One Temple, One Church #1429

19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, 22 in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit. (Ephesians 2:19–22, NKJV)

Zealously justifying division into hundreds and hundreds of different churches with opposing doctrines, worship practices and polity, Protestant denominationalism says the church is comprised of many churches (denominations). Today’s passage shows the Scriptural futility and error of this rationale. The household of God (the church) is the “whole building” that is “fitted together” to form “a holy temple of the Lord” (v. 19-21). God has one temple, one church. God’s temple is not a collection of many temples (different denominations), it is built of “living stones” (Christians, 1 Peter 2:5). Christians, not denominations, constitute the temple in which God dwells. Instead of defending unity in moral and doctrinal diversity (which is the essence of denominationalism), we urge our religious friends to choose the divine wisdom of unity in truth (John 17:20-21). Just as God has one temple, even so there is one church that belongs to Christ to which the saved are added (Matthew 16:18; Acts 2:47). Additional churches are of men, not of God.

Any Other Gospel #456

8  But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9  As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed. 10  For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ. (Galatians 1:8-10)

There were many false gospels being preached in Paul’s day. There still are. What is preached as the gospel of Christ makes a different; it matters what you are taught and what you receive. For example, many tell you to “choose the church of your choice and glorify God”, but the Bible does not say that. We could just as well say, “choose the gospel of our choice and glorify God” (since the existence of different churches necessarily implies different gospels). But, the gospel of Christ speaks of only “one body”, one church (Matt. 16:18; Eph. 1:22-23; 4:4). Denominationalism is not the gospel preached by the apostles; it is the division of men (1 Cor. 1:12-13). It pleases men, but our goal is to please God by preaching what the apostles preached and by receiving what faithful Christians of the first-century received (vss. 8-9). Be sure you are a “bondservant of Christ” and not one who, by pleasing men, stands “accursed” of God.