TWENTY QUESTIONS CONCERNING THE CHURCH
Questions are excellent ways of learning in any discipline. They are especially beneficial in studying the Scriptures and discerning the will of the Lord on various subjects. Jesus often employed questionsnot always to elicit answers, but to get His hearers to think.
Following is a series of twenty questions concerning the church. The world today has a plethora of notions regarding the church. Answering the questions below will help one to have a clear and biblical concept of the church. (For those not familiar with the content of the cited Bible texts, I would kindly urge them to turn to those passages, read them, and let God’s word speak for itself.)
1. If a person comes to genuine faith in Christ, repents of his sins, confesses faith in Christ as the Son of God, and is baptized (immersed) for the remission of sins, will that person then be in a saved state? (Mark 16:15-16; Luke 13:3; Romans 10:9-10; Acts 2:38; Romans 6:3-4).
2. Will this saved person be added to the church? (Acts 2:47).
3. Can one become a saved person without the Lord adding that person to the church? (See again question # 2).
4. To whose church does the Lord add all the saved? (Matthew 16:18).
5. Of what is Christ the savior? (Ephesians 5:23).
6. What is the body of which Christ is the savior? (Colossians 1:18).
7. Will the saved personat the point at which he became savedalso be added to a denomination? If so, please provide the scripture text.
8. Is it necessary for a person to join a denomination in order to be saved? If so, please provide the scripture text.
9. If one hundred people are saved in the manner mentioned in question # 1, may they remain aloof from all denominations and constitute themselves into a congregation of people who are Christians only?
10. By constituting themselves into a congregation of Christians only would this at the same time constitute them into a denomination? If so, why? Please provide the scripture text.
11. If ten thousand people, or a million people, or ten million people around the world were saved in the manner mentioned in question #1, and remained aloof from all denominations, and instead constituted themselves into local congregations of Christians in their geographical localities, would these thousands or millions of people become a denomination? If so, why? Again, provide the scripture text.
12. Does Christ want His followers (Christians) divided into different denominations and religious parties? (John 17:20-21; I Corinthians 1:10).
13. Is it still true that there is just “one body, and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all”? (Ephesians 4:4-6).
14. What is the “one body” mentioned in the preceding passage? (Ephesians 1:22-23).
15. Can one be a saved person (a Christian) without being a member of the Catholic Church?
16. Can one be a saved person (a Christian) without being a member of any Protestant denomination (Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, Nazarene, et al)?
18. If all Catholic and Protestant denominations should cease to exist would it still be possible for people to be saved in the manner mentioned in question # 1, to be added to the one church Christ established, and to constitute themselves into local autonomous congregations (churches) of Christ as people did in New Testament times? (Romans 16:16).
19. Would doing this please the Lord, be acceptable to Him, and be the basis upon which all could be one in Christ Jesus? (Galatians 3:26-28).
20. Did you know that there are thousands of such independent autonomous congregations around the world today made up of people who have been saved in the manner mentioned in question # 1, and who have never joined any denomination?
You are encouraged to seriously reflect on these questions, and you are cordially invited to visit a church of Christ. Likely, there is one not far from where you live.
December 9, 2014