40,965 DENOMINATIONS FOLLOW JESUS
CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST
On the day of Pentecost, the apostles filled with the Holy Spirit spoke with diverse tongues and mystified the crowd. The church of Jesus Christ was established on Pentecost. The prophecy spoken by the prophet Joel in the Old Testament was fulfilled. Peter spoke to the crowd that gathered that "whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved" (Acts 2:21). The same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls (Acts 2:41).
Jesus founded His church about 2,000 years ago, but now the church has split up into 40,695 denominations around the world. How did this happen? What is the meaning of a church denomination?
The terminology "denomination is not found in the bible but is used today to denote any religious group that has its own particular form of worship, doctrines, practices, rituals or sacraments, system of organization and administration.
"Christian denomination is an identifiable religious body under a common name, structure, and doctrine within Christianity.
Worldwide, Christians are divided, often along ethnic and linguistic lines, into separate churches and traditions. Technically, divisions between one group and another are defined by doctrine and church authority. Issues such as the nature of Jesus, the authority of apostolic succession, and papal primacy separate one denomination from another."
DIVISIONS IN CORINTH CHURCH
During Paul's ministry, he discovered the church in Corinth that he planted already had divisions and he was displeased with his discovery. He wrote to them in 1 Corinthians 1:10-13. This shows that during the 1st century. There were already divisions among the church in Corinth.
10 Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
11 For it has been declared to me concerning you, my brethren, by those of Chloe’s household, that there are contentions among you.
12 Now I say this, that each of you says, ‘I am of Paul,’ or ‘I am of Apollos,’ or ‘I am of Cephas,’ or ‘I am of Christ.’
13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?
The division within the Corinthian Church was caused by members forming various groups that followed different ministers. Today's divisions within Christianity are also formed by Christians who follow different ministers that teach diverse theologies and doctrines, not abiding by the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ.
PROPHECIES CONCERNING CHURCHES
In the Old Testament, Isaiah 4:1 prophesies that seven women (churches) will take hold of one man (Jesus) saying. We will eat our own bread (words of God), and wear our own apparel (Rev. 3:5; Job 29:14 - righteousness) only be called by thy name (Christian).
These seven women denoting complete number of churches will be called "churches of Jesus" in name only. They only want the name of Jesus, but will preach their own doctrines. Jesus is the "bread of life" but they prefer their own "bread". Wear their "own apparel" means to put on their own interpretation of "righteousness".
- I put on righteous and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem.
- Let thy priests be clothed with righteousness.
Revelation chapters 2 and 3 describe the seven (complete number) churches differ from each other. Seven different churches differ in their emphasis on worship, rituals, works and organizations.
MAJOR CHRISTIAN DENOMINATIONS
1. ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH
History of the Roman Catholic Church - Key Dates.313:AD The Edict of Milan declares the Roman Empire neutral towards religious views, in effect ending the persecution of Christians. 321 AD.
Before the Edict of Milan 313 AD, the Romans were persecuting the Christians and they were in power during the time when Jesus was born and died. After this period, the Roman Catholics laid claims that Peter the apostle was given the power on earth to represent Jesus on earth to forgive sins.
The Catholic Church also claimed that the pope, being the head of the church founded by Peter was the rightful successor to Jesus on earth. Throughout the century, authorty was passed from pope to pope.
In 1054 AD a great schism occurred between the Western Church and the Eastern Church. Thereafter, the Church in the West became known as the Catholic Church and the East was known as the Orthodox Church.
The Catholic has 1.1 billion followers in the world which is about half of the world population..
2. Lutheran Church The beginning of the Reformation occurred on October 31 1517 when Martin Luther posted his 95 theses. The major foundation of the Protestant movement came from Martin Luther. Lutherans have about 70 million members worldwide.
The Reformation in 1517 brought about by Martin Luther restored essential truths for salvation of the church of Jesus Christ.
3. Presbyterian Church subscribed to the teachings of John Calvin (from the Reformed churches). It can be traced back to its roots to the Scottish Reformation led by John Knox. Its name is derived from the Greek word “Presbyterios” which means “elder”. Presbyterians have a worldwide membership of about 75 million.
4. Anglican Church was established in 1534 when England's King Henry VIII broke from the authority of the Pope, and became the Episcopal Church in America . The Anglican Church is one of the largest Christian denominations in the world, with approximately 73 million members.
5. Methodist Church is based on the teachings of John Wesley and it has its roots in Anglicanism. It originated in 18th century Britain, and due to missionary activity spread throughout the British Empire, the United States and beyond. Originally it appealed especially to workers, slaves and poor farmers. It emphasizes that all people can be saved. By 2006, it claimed some 75 million members worldwide.
6. Baptist Church is often regarded as an Evangelical Protestant denomination, originating from the English Puritan movement with Anabaptist influences. They emphasize a believer's baptism by full immersion performed on adults after a profession of faith in Jesus as Lord and Saviour. There are over 90 million Baptists worldwide in nearly 300,000 congregations, with an estimated 47 million members in the United States.
7. Adventist Church was established in 1863, and grew out of the Millerite movement in the United States. during the 19th century. Seventh-day Adventists are most well known for their teaching that Saturday the seventh day of the week, is the Sabbath. They are also known for their teachings regarding diet and health.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church, one of the world's fastest-growing organizations, primarily due to increases in membership in the Third World baptizes about 2,000 members a day. It is said that church membership reached 1 million between 1955 and 1961, hitting 5 million in 1986. At the turn of the 21st Century the church had 10,782,042 members which grew to 14,487,989 members at the end of 2004. It is believed that around 25 million worship in churches every Saturday and the church operates in 203 out of 228 countries recognised by the United Nations.
8. Pentecostal Church is called the Pentecostal Movement within Protestant Christianity. Special emphasis is laid on the Baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking with tongues. It also encourages gifts of the Holy Spirit, as recorded in the Biblical account of the Day of Pentecost. When the Pentecostal Movement began at the beginning of the Twentieth Century believers separated themselves from the mainstream church. In the Charismatic Movement the believers are encouraged to stay in their churches.
Estimated numbers of Pentecostals vary widely.
Jehovah's Witness · Latter Day Saint · Unitarian · Christadelphian · Oneness Pentecostal
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REASONS FOR DENOMINATION and UNITY
Each denomination considers it own teachings as essential corrections of the errors preceding it. It considers the change or division as a necessary justifiable measure.
All denominations have only a portion of the truth but not the complete truth. In order to fulfil the Lord Jesus Christ's prayer for unity for the completion of God's plan of salvation, each and every denomination must examine itself, change and work together for the good of mankind.
Jesus is the only "name under heaven given among man by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12). There should be unity of all Christians in the One Spirit (Jn 17:20-21). John 17:22-23 stress the importance of unity for the glory and love of God. Unity was desirable and achievable when the Holy Spirit was poured down on the disciples during Pentecost (Acts 2:1-4).
ESSENTIAL STEPS IN UNITY
- Worship the Father in spirit and in truth. (John 4:23-24).
- Jesus is the way, the truth, and the Life: No man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6).
- Attend a church that keeps the commandments of God (10).
- Attend a non-denominational, non-racial congregation with the Holy Spirit, speaking in tongues with power of working miracles like the first church of Pentecost.
GOD'S SABBATH OR MAN'S SABBATH http://hubpages.com/hub/godormansabbath?
GOD'S LAWS AND MAN'S LAWS http://hubpages.com/hub/godslawsandmanslaw
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