What Points NOT to Make with a Church of Christ Person

While we’re waiting for Thursday, I thought it might be interesting to start a discussion.  There are lots of people visiting this blog now, and I don’t know who you all are, but you might be interested what roads to NOT go down when you are discussing the Bible with a Church of Christ person, such as the fellows that host the TV programs broadcast in Martinsville/Henry County.

This comes from watching hours of the program, and seeing people bring up the same arguments time after time.  So, to save readers time, I’d like to assemble a list.

If you have something to add to this, please feel free.

Denominations

1.  When discussing denominations, don’t mention that John the Baptist is the proof of the Baptist denomination being found in the Bible.  The Church of Christ people will rightly tell you that “Baptist” was not the name of a church, but the activity of John.  He was a baptizer, not a “Baptist” as in the originator of the Baptist church.  This is a tree that just doesn’t need to be barked up.

2.  The Church of Christ is a denomination.  Now, if you’ve looked at some of Randy’s comments on this blog, you’ll see that the Church of Christ plainly is, according to the dictionary definition of a denomination.  If you look at http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/denomination , you’ll see that it is a denomination according to number 4.  Now, they’ll say that they don’t have an organization, but I disagree, especially when you go to one of their websites and see that they advertise and link up with each other.  It seems like at the least, the Churches of Christ in this part of Virginia and North Carolina are “united in their adherence to their beliefs and practices.”  Now, if that definition falls apart, look at the definition of “denominating” – to give a name to.

But, anyway, that’s a can of worms that they’ll be ready to answer should you decide to jump in.

2.  Baptism

The CofC on-air folks have their arguments all lined up like ducks in a row re: this topic, and they’ll be ready to shoot down anything you say that disagrees with their interpretation of Scripture.  So, if you’re going to get into this one, be prepared.  You can look at some of the discussions I’ve had with Norm and the strangely missing Jason over at www.bibleqna.com to get an idea how that conversation can go.

3. Musical Instruments in Worship

This was what first got me involved in conversations with our local on-air personalities.  I made the rookie mistake of calling up and talking about Psalm 150, which discusses the use of musical instruments in worship.  Well, the Church of Christ response to this is swift and merciless: that in the New Testament, the church wasn’t given permission to use instruments, so although the Old Testament has a number of examples of the use of musical instruments in worship, we aren’t allowed, and to do so is sin.

Now, also, if you mention the “psalms” of Ephesians 5:19 and Colossians 3:16, they’ll say that the word “psalms” (which in the Greek is from psalmos, “striking chords on a musical instrumet”) is indicating something that should go on in the heart – a striking of the chords on the strings of your heart.  A bit of a stretch, but that’s fine.

See, if your interpretation of this passage is different than theirs, you are in sin and not saved.  All because we’ve not been given permission in a way that satisfies their interpretation.

You can see where this is going.  Anyone have anything to contribute?

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2 thoughts on “What Points NOT to Make with a Church of Christ Person

  1. …without question-they are a denomination, regardless of what they claim. If confornted, Norm will ask “show me where we are doing sonmethiing that the early church didnt” in others words they take it back to the beginning of the church to proove they arent a part of any man-man church. But when you study churches of Christ nationwide, they all make this claim and are devvided on several issues. Matter of fact Cecil Hook ( a church of Christ preacher/ book writter has listed over 100 things that the church of Christ are devided on and many dont even consider each other brothers in Christ over these issues. So much for the pattern they profess to be following.

    …now baptism, good luck winning that one! These guys know every possible argument there is…but again there are churches of Christ that teach different on this too. The guys here teach that if you arent baptized with the understanding that you are being forgiven, that you are lost. So not only must you get baptized, but you better know what baptism does. I find it strange that Paul had to write the Roman Christians about baptism…seems they didnt understand it fully…but he still called them saints. But there are others like Max, Cecil Hook, and many many more who do not hold this view, but teach that God does the saving and even if its at baptism, it is all of God…not a work man merits, by his understanding or anything…Im not saying that none of these guys are right regarding baptism, but they do have teachings contrary to each other on this doctrine…

    Music…I think this one is easy…because they use the law of silence here to prove that singing should be done without music, but they seem to ignore the fact that they use song leaders, song books ( by the way written by man today, not from the Psalms )PA’s and many other things that the bible is silent about.

  2. Mr. Randy is very right with what he says about us. But please do make note that many of us don’t adhere to the CENI and silence rules, as we know they have quite a few holes. The men you speak of are dying out with their flawed preaching, and today we are bending towards a grace centered way. Please do not let these guys get under your skin. They live for this kind of stuff. I would almost bet you rarely hear the gospel preached by these men. You very rarely hear men like this even speak about Jesus. They are more into wanting to stir up trouble and draw attention to them, and not so much into preaching Christ. Just note that many of us church of Christ folk are not like these men and dont let them fool you into thinking that they are in unity on everything either. We have our problems just as other church groups do. TTYL

    David

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