Q & A
A simple search on the internet or even a quick look through a phone-book will reveal that thousands of different organizations/denominations claim to be a "church" of some sort. Some commonly seen organizations include the "Baptist Church", the "Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints", the "Lutheran Church", and the list goes on. With so many different competing voices, it can be a challenge to determine which voice is correct. However, instead of adding to the number of competing views, we would simply like to direct each person to the One True Voice: the Bible. Although there is not enough room to answer every question that you might have, we hope that you will find this information useful. We have no intention of inventing new answers to please large crowds, but we would invite you to join us in searching for the Truth.
Is your question answered?
What is the Church of Christ?
The church of Christ is not a title given to an organization or social group. The church of Christ rather, is God’s fulfillment of the redemptive plan outlined in the Old Testament. In fact, 750 years before Christ came to Earth, Isaiah announced the eventual establishment... read more
How are you different?
We believe in the importance of going back to the original teachings in the New Testament and restoring the church and Christian living as it first was when Jesus' apostles established it. God did not have the apostles start a primitive version of the church and then leave it up to... read more
What should we restore?
Some of the elements that existed in the church in New Testament times were specific to the first- century and are not important to restore. For example, we do not need to dress in first-century clothing and use oil lamps. However, there are teachings and practices... read more
Which denomination are you?
The church of Christ is neither Catholic nor Protestant, but simply "Christ's church" without any other descriptors - a nondenominational church. When the apostle Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome, he wrote: "all the churches of Christ send greetings. (Rom 16:16)" Today... read more
Who started the restoration?
At different times in history and in different places in the world people have decided to leave behind traditions and creeds that have been created by man and return to the simple pattern for the church and Christian living that can be found in the Bible. History records... read more
Why call it the "Church of Christ"?
The word “church” was, in the first century, not recognized as a strictly religious title. In fact, the word used in the Greek (the language in which Jesus’ followers wrote) had a much broader meaning. To the first century reader, this word “church” would simply mean “assembly”... read more
Are you a new church?
The church of Christ is not a new church with new teachings. The church of Christ has over 2,500,000 members world wide, with congregations existing all over the world and dating back thousands of years. The church holds many commonly held beliefs. For example... read more
Is such a pattern still valid today?
It was always in Jesus' plans to build His church. In the gospel of Matthew 16:18 it is recorded that Jesus said "I will build my church," However, Jesus did not personally establish congregations while He was here on earth. Rather, Jesus intended for this work to be done by the apostles... read more
Since the Bible writers were inspired by God, and since the Bible contains God's complete message for mankind, it is the only basis we need for our faith. If we will follow the pattern for the church and for our personal daily Christian life as described in the New Testament we can be pleasing to God today just as in the first Century... read more
Is the Bible All We Need Today?
The bible was not designed or intended to be a text book answering any and every question on; mathematics, law, commerce, science, history, geography and politics. Yes, we can find answers to life‘s challenging problems in the bible. God gave us the bible to know him, to know of his plan to bless all men through Christ and how to live to please God. The bible is sufficient as our spiritual guide and map. The bible is all sufficient in things pertaining to spiritual teaching, admonishing one another, how to conduct ourselves before God, things pertain to godly living and to equip us for every good work. Paul reminded us of the sufficiency of the scriptures, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17
God has revealed in the bible all we need to know about him. There are things God does not want us to know. He has also revealed things we need to know about man and our relationship with each other. “The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.” Deuteronomy 29:29
God has also revealed in the bible all we need to know about salvation and godly living. “Seeing that his divine power hath granted unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that called us by his own glory and virtue.” 2 Peter 1:3
Do we need additional information, a spiritual manual or another spiritual guide book? No. The bible is all we need in things pertaining to God, man and spiritual matters. There is nothing wrong in reading commentaries, encyclopedias and studying books that discuss and explain things in the bible. These books cannot take the place of the bible. The teachings, traditions and beliefs of men should not replace what is written in the bible. We should not put aside what God has revealed in the bible in favor of other books or teachings. Jesus warned us of that danger, "Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men." Mark 7:8
Must We do Anything for Salvation?
Throughout the Old and New Testament, the Scriptures consistently affirm that individuals have a role to play in the salvation process. Some religious groups contend that a person has no role to play in their salvation and that, apart from God preforming... read more
Is Salvation by Faith Alone?
It is often expressed by those who claim to hold the Bible as authoritative that, in order to be saved, all one must do is have faith (i.e. trust) in Jesus Christ. It is often said that salvation is “by faith alone in Christ alone”. Is it common to hear people declare “just accept Jesus as your personal savior... read more
Is Baptism Necessary?
Baptism was commanded by Jesus. He gave instructions for His followers to go everywhere, teach people about the good news of salvation, the gospel, make disciples, and baptize people by His authority: Matthew 28:19-20, Mark 16:15-16.
Jesus has made baptism important to man’s salvation. Baptism is a command of Jesus. In baptism: man’s sins are washed by the blood of Jesus, he is added to the church, he is saved and united with Jesus: Acts 22:16, 1 Corinthians 12:12-13, 1 Peter 3:21, Galatians 3:26-27.
Where Did the Idea Come From in the Bible?
The communion has its history dating back to Israel’s deliverance from Egypt. The night before they were freed each family ate the Passover meal. They were commanded to observe this feast through their generation to remember their deliverance. The Passover feast was to start with a week called, the Week of Unleavened Bread. See Exodus 12:1-17, Matthew 26:17-19, Luke 22:7-13.
As Jesus and the disciples were having the Passover meal, he took the opportunity to institute the communion, Lord’s Supper. He blessed the bread and wine and gave them to the disciples to share among themselves. He made a promise to eat with them in His kingdom, the church. The Passover meal and the communion were eaten the night before Jesus was crucified Matthew 26:26-30, Mark 14:22-26, Luke 22:14-20.
How Do We Participate Today?
The communion is also called the Lord’s Supper and breaking of bread. Immediately after the church was established, the early church had the breaking of bread as part of their weekly worship. This was in keeping with the words of Jesus to eat with the disciples in His kingdom, the church Acts 2:42.
The disciples met every Lord’s Day, Sunday, to remember and proclaim the death of Jesus. And so do we. This observance of the communion will continue until Jesus returns. See Acts 20:7, 1 Corinthians 11:26.
The body of believers partake of the Lord's Supper every Sunday the guidelines of which are found in the next question.
What are the Guidelines to Partaking of the Communion or Lord's Supper?
The disciples met every Lord’s Day, Sunday, to remember and proclaim the death of Jesus. This observance of the communion will continue until Jesus returns. See Acts 20:7, 1 Corinthians 11:26.
Paul wrote to the church in Corinth and gave some guidelines concerning the communion and its observance in 1 Corinthians 10:16-17, 11:23-33.
What does the Bible Say about Worship?
Worship is to offer praise, thanks, adoration, glory an honor. This praise comes from the created to the Creator. It is also given to the Creator God for His goodness and things He has done: Revelation 4:9-11, Psalm 100.
Man has been worshiping God from creation. The first record of worship is found in Genesis. Cain and Abel offered different things in their worship to God. One was rejected the other accepted Genesis 4:1-7. Noah expressed his thanks by offering animal sacrifices on an altar Genesis 8:20-22. As the Jews moved through the wilderness on their way to the Promised Land, a tent (tabernacle) was built for worship. After they had settled in the Promised Land, God gave instruction for a temple to replace the tabernacle for worship. Men served as priests to offer animal sacrifices in the tabernacle and temple: 2 Samuel 7:5-7, 1 Kings 6:1.
When Jesus came to earth he met at the temple, there were also synagogues where people met for worship. Jesus visited both places of worship Luke 4:11-18, John 2:13-16. Jesus promised a new worship was coming. It would not be the worship of animal sacrifice in the temple nor the worship in the mountain of Samaritans. This new worship would be done in spirit and truth John 4:20-24.
How do We Worship Today?
Jesus promised a new worship was coming. It would not be the worship of animal sacrifice in the temple nor the worship in the mountain of Samaritans. This new worship would be done in spirit and truth John 4:20-24.
The early Christians met for worship after Jesus established His church. This worship was new and different to what was done in the tabernacle, temple or synagogue. Christians came together to give praise and to remember the death of Jesus. They sang praises to God, prayed, ate bread and drank fruit of the vine to remember Jesus, gave of their prosperity, fellowshipped with each other, and the word of God was preached Acts 2:42, 20:7, 1 Corinthians 16:1-2, Ephesians 5:19. This is how we are to worship today following the same New Testament pattern.
What is the Purpose of Worship?
The early Christians met for worship after Jesus established His church. This worship was new and different to what was done in the tabernacle, temple or synagogue. Christians came together to give praise and to remember the death of Jesus. They sang praises to God, prayed, ate bread and drank fruit of the vine to remember Jesus, gave of their prosperity, fellowshipped with each other and the word of God was preached Acts 2:42, 20:7, 1 Corinthians 16:1-2, Ephesians 5:19. That is our purpose as well today.
Who is the Holy Spirit?
He is a member of the Godhead, Trinity. This grouping is comprised of; God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. They are three in one. The Holy Spirit was active in the creation of the world Genesis 1:1-2. These three persons that make up the Godhead work together as one in heaven 1 John 5:7. When Jesus was baptized, all three members were present at the baptism Matthew 3:13-17. Jesus promised the apostles, the father would send another comforter by his authority. The Holy Spirit would help and bring things to their remembrance John 14:26
When is the Holy Spirit given?
The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit is given to all those who obey the gospel. The Spirit is given when a person believes, repents of sins, confesses the name of Jesus and is baptized Act 2:38, 5:32. The Holy Spirit is not given to make us Christians. God gives us the Spirit because we are sons Galatians 4:5-6. He lives and dwells in our lives daily from the moment we become children of God 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, Romans 8:9.
What are the names for the Holy Spirit?
God the Father and Son are called by many in the bible. The Holy Spirit is no different. All the qualities that are in Father and Son are in the Holy Spirit. The bible has about 30 names and descriptions for the Holy Spirit. These names and descriptions tell us who the Holy Spirit is, and the work He does. He is called; Spirit, Spirit of Glory, Spirit of life, Holy Spirit, Spirit of God, My Spirit, Everlasting Spirit, Spirit of Truth and Comforter John 14:17, Hebrews 9:14, Ephesians 4:30 Romans 8:15.
Why is the Holy Spirit given to Christians?
The Holy Spirit is active in our lives and functions in many areas. He is given as a down payment and serves as guarantor of our future home and reward in heaven Ephesians 1:1-14, 4:30. He comes in our lives to shape and influence our character Galatians 5:22-23. The Spirit assist with our prayers by communicating our thoughts and desires to God Romans 8:26.
How did the Holy Spirit help the Apostles?
The Holy Spirit empowered the apostles to preach and perform miracles. He also brought things Christ taught to their remembrance. As the apostles traveled to countries, towns, villages and communities to preach, the Holy Spirit was present. He confirmed what the apostles preached was from God. The confirmation was done with signs and miracles. The Holy Spirit also directed the apostles and teachers to people to teach them the gospel. He prevented the apostles from preaching in some places Acts 1:8, 8:29, 16:6, Hebrews 2:1-4
When do we go to Heaven or Hell?
Heaven and hell are after the judgment
This question has been asked many times by people. Some are seeking for answers, some have particular beliefs about death, the afterlife, heaven and hell. The Bible provides the information we need on this question.
Before man can be in heaven or hell, he has to face the judgement. The judgement must take place first, and then people will be separated to those two place.
"And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation"
"And do you think this, O man, you who judge those practicing such things, and doing the same, that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and long suffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance? But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who "will render to each one according to his deeds": eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness--indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek; but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek"
"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad"
II Corinthians 5:10.
When will this take place?
Heaven and hell will take place on one and the same day:
It is apparent from the verses quoted from the previous question that every person, good or bad, believer or non-believer will appear before God to be judged according to the things he has done while living on this earth. The judgment takes place after death, but it also refers to it as the Day of Judgment. It is a single event, and not an ongoing process.
"We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed"
2 Thessalonians 1:3-10.
“For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead."
People will go to heaven and hell when Jesus returns:
Jesus made a promise when he was leaving the earth, to go and prepare a place, then return to receive those who will be in heaven. This place in now under preparation. We earnestly wait for his return to take us to heaven.
“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.”
What happens after death and where are the dead?
Jesus presented information of what takes place when we die and where man goes after his death. The waiting place is not on the earth, as both Lazarus and Abraham were there, and a request was made to send Lazarus on the earth to warn. The thief on the cross and Jesus went to the same place the day of their death, three days later, Jesus said to Mary, I have not been to heaven. The Bible tells us Jesus went to Hades after his death.
"There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. Then he cried and said, 'Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.' But Abraham said, 'Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented. And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.' Then he said, 'I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father's house, for I have five brothers that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.' Abraham said to him, 'They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.' And he said, 'No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.' But he said to him, 'If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.'" Luke 16:19-31
Jesus said, "Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, 'I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’"
“He foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption.”
Jesus answered him, "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise."
This tells us that there is a place of waiting. In the Old Testament it is called Sheol or the grave. In the New Testament it is called Hades. The waiting place is divided into two sections one called torments, here in this passage, and the other is called paradise. Luke 23:43.
These places are not the final stop for man, but serve as the place of waiting. Jesus now holds the keys to death and Hades.
When he returns, he will open up the grave.
"Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth -- those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation"
How Do We Use Our Tongue?
Much can be said of a person's character by the way they use their tongue. Jesus said that "out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks." (Mat. 12:34) Solomon said, "Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof." (Proverbs 18:21) James says, “The tongue is "a fire, a world of iniquity", and he calls the tongue a "deadly poison." (James 3:6, 8)
As a fool would carelessly play and prank with a loaded gun, so many Christians today do likewise with their deadly tongue. If only we could fully realize the untold damage that we are doing to the body of Christ! If only we could see the full effect of the words we use!
Perhaps a closer look into the Bible can help. God made man, and God made man's tongue, so surely God should be qualified to comment on the subject. Surely, God should have some good counsel concerning the use and misuse of the human tongue. Let us consider some sins of the tongue as we find them revealed in God's word.
James warned us that we can use the tongue to do good and bad things. Christians should be careful in using the tongue to do negative and destructive things. Let us guard our tongues. Too often our tongues are used to promote the work and agenda of the devil. As we use our tongues every day, let us be mindful of the damages we can cause to people and ourselves James 3:2-10
The Swift Tongue
Some people are guilty of speaking too swiftly when they really need to wait before saying anything. God's word says the following in Proverbs 18:13: "He that answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame unto him." How many times have you had to "eat" your words because you spoke too swiftly? James 1:19 warns us to be swift to hear and slow to speak. Why do you suppose God gave us two ears but only one mouth? If we talk less and listen more, we are more likely to avoid problems with our tongues.
The Backbiting Tongue
Proverbs 25:23 and Romans 1:30 make mention of a backbiting tongue. A backbiter is someone who uses their tongue against you when you aren't present, yet they will not face you with their charges when you are present. This is a cowardly backbiter who would rather stir up problems than solve problems. A backbiter would much rather talk about a person than talk to the person. A backbiter would much rather talk about some weak Christian in the church than offer some words of encouragement to them. A backbiter is of no use to anyone, and no one has ever been strengthened or edified through backbiting. Beware of the backbiters, especially the ones who sow discord among brethren Proverbs 6:19
The Tale bearing Tongue
Proverbs 18:8 says, "The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly." Leviticus 19:16 says, "Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people. . ." Every Christian has the duty to deny his own desires and seek to edify other Christians Romans 14:19; Philippians. 2:3. Tale bearing runs wholly contrary to Christian edification. Tale bearing (carrying and telling tales) spreads all sorts of hurtful information around, and Satan uses such information to hinder and tear down God's work. A victim of tale bearing, according to Proverbs, is a "wounded" person. God forbid that a Christian should wound another Christian, but it does happen all the time! Some Christians live as though they think God has "called" them to bear tales on other Christians. Many "Christian" newsletters are dedicated to informing the body of Christ on the latest news about someone's ministry or personal life. Let us use our tongues to build and edify one another in the body.
The Cursing Tongue
Some people, Christians included, have a nasty habit of using their tongue for cursing. Romans 3:13-14 says, "Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness." This passage deals strictly with unsaved people and their ungodly ways, yet there are a great many professing Christians who curse regularly. There are people in the world who use cussing and profanity on a regular and daily biases. It has become part of their speech. Many people curse because their life is miserable. They are unhappy so they make it known with their degenerate speech. Christian, don't expect God's blessings if our mouths are filled with cursing. "As he loved cursing, so let it come unto him: as he delighted not in blessing, so let it be far from him. As he clothed himself with cursing like as with his garment, so let it come into his bowels like water, and like oil into his bones."(Psalm 109:17-18)
The Piercing Tongue
Another sin of the tongue is piercing words. Proverbs 12:18 speaks of this tongue by saying, "There is that speaks like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health." Some people have a sharp piercing tongue which Satan uses to offend and insult others. The Bible commands Christians to have their speech dominated by grace (Colossians 4:6), yet most churches have a few people who use their tongue like a sword to pierce their brethren in Christ. We often hear, stick and stones may break my bones but words can do me no harm. Yes, words can do us harm. The pain of sticks and stones may last for a time, but the pain of words can last very long in our lives. Let us think on the words of Paul to Titus, “Use sound speech that cannot be condemned” Titus 3:8. Every Christian should pray, “Lord, make my words gracious and
What Does the Bible Say About Misusing the Tongue?
The Lying Tongue
Proverbs 25:18 says, "A man that bears false witness against his neighbour is a maul, and a sword, and a sharp arrow." So a lying tongue is a misuse of a deadly weapon. It can be used to harm others near at hand (a maul), a few feet away (a sword), or a great distance away (an arrow). Satan is the father of lies (John 8:44), and God said that he hates a lying tongue (Pro. 6:17). All liars will have their part in the lake of fire, according to Revelation 21:8.
The Flattering Tongue
Flattery is also a sin of the tongue. The Bible speaks of flattery as a characteristic of the wicked, not the righteous: "For there is no faithfulness in their mouth; their inward part is very wickedness; their throat is an open sepulchre; they flatter with their tongue." (Psalm 5:9) Imagine the improvements that could be made in our nation if voters elected leaders based on the record rather than based on the flattering speeches! Flattery is just a form of lying, and it has no place in the life of a Christian.
The Proud Tongue
The Bible also speaks of the proud tongue. Psalm 12:3-4 says, "The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaks proud things: Who have said, with our tongue will we prevail; our lips are our own: who is lord over us?" The most annoying Christians in the world are those with proud tongues because a proud tongue usually comes with two closed ears! Proud- tongued Christians are generally so full of themselves that they learn very little from anyone else. A proud-tongued Christian will talk much of his knowledge and service, but very little about the Lord.
In a church, a proud-tongued Christian will make all sorts of suggestions about how the church should function, yet his suggestions, if received, will place burdens on everyone but himself. A proud- tongued Christian is hard to teach or reason with because he thinks he knows everything. A proud tongue Christian seek to tell what to do but do not get involve in putting his word into action.
Friend, God hates a proud tongue. Allow the Holy Spirit to use our tongue in the way of humility and kindness because pride will only quench God's Spirit and damage our testimony.
The Overused Tongue
Some people sin by simply overusing their tongue. Ecclesiastes 5:3 says, "a fool's voice is known by multitude of words." People think they appear smart by much talking, but the Bible states just the opposite. Ecclesiastes 5:2 says, "Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few." God doesn't like an overused tongue. Let us think before we use too many words. Words can put us in trouble.
God gave us the tongue for our own good and to help others. Sometimes we misuse our tongue to do and say things that are destructive to others and ourselves. The tongue is little in size compared to other parts of the body, but it can do great harm to the body.