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“Why Are There So Many Churches?” – Don Blackwell

I was worried about this this is the first gospel meeting I have done since the accident and I worried about my stamina I worried about how I would feel I worried about how am I going to get up there to preach I’m you know I can’t get behind a pulpit but the Brethren have built this awesome ramp for me you’ve got this great table you’ve got such a good setup you have encouraged me so greatly all of the kind words I have felt so very very good in fact I feel more like myself preaching leading this week and so I thank you for your kindness I have just really seen the kindness and generosity of Brethren since this in a whole way sherry and I were talking one day and she said you know sometimes people will ask where is God at a time like this and we observed that oftentimes God is present working through his children he is present working through the Brethren and I have certainly observed that and I think many of you who have extended that kindness to us several of the ladies here have made baskets for us and brought us bread and food and chocolate and fudge and all sorts of good things that we can’t thank you enough for but we do appreciate it I also appreciate this eldership here for standing on the old Jerusalem gospel and standing on biblical principles and having the courage and the backbone to do what is right in a time and an age in which people are wanting to turn to philosophy they’re wanting to hear something fantasy from the pulpit and the church here stands on the old simple truth and it’s preaching the same gospel that has been since the day of Pentecost you’ve got such a good preacher here and we’re glad to be here have you ever wondered why there’s so many different churches today have you wondered why there’s so many different practices and beliefs and could every different denomination be right does God approve of the division and the confusion that exists in the religious world and does it even matter that’s what we’re going to talk about tonight why are there so many churches in the religious world and is God pleased with this condition in fact if I were to ask you the question exactly how many churches exist in the world today what would you say to that fact oftentimes when I start a Bible study with people I asked in that question how many churches exist in the world today usually the answer I get is something like this they say I don’t know a lot and I’ll say that that’s right a lot several years ago when I made a DVD on this topic I looked it up and at the time I found that there were thirty eight thousand churches professing Christianity in the world today recently I received an email where a fella challenged on that and he said I don’t believe that’s right he said I’ve looked this up and I can’t find 38,000 so I went back and started doing some digging I couldn’t find 38,000 when the reason I found out the reason after I did more digging is in the last five years the number has climbed to 43,000 churches in the world today the number is climbing exponentially I can give you the documentation if you would like to see it I want you to think about how confusing that is for a person who’s seeking the truth because you’ve got one shirt over here that’s teaching this practice a church over here that’s teaching just the opposite practice one church is saying that item a is sinful another church is saying item a is mandatory can they both be right now of course you’ve got some people that say this is good it’s good to have this kind of variety they’ll say you know it’s it’s nice to be able to pick the church the Church of your choice one church is just as good as another see if you’ve ever heard this this phrase we’re all going to the same place anyway it’s just different paths to get there have you ever heard somebody say that before your friend may I tell you at the beginning of this lesson that the Bible says that God is not the author of confusion and when I read in the New Testament I read about only one church and yet when I look around the religious world today and I see those who profess Christianity I see thousands of churches and so I like to ask people the question how did we get from 1 to 43,000 and the answer is something went wrong something was dreadfully wrong and it didn’t go wrong with God it went wrong with men now we’re going to answer the question tonight why are there so many churches but before we can answer this I need to lay down two foundational principles they’re very simple but I got to lay them down before we answer this question here’s number one foundational principle number one is this in the Bible we read about only one church we’ve got to establish that principle I want you to imagine with me for just a moment that there exists such a thing as a time machine and I want you to imagine that you could get in a time machine and you could go back to Acts chapter two to the day of Pentecost and I want you to imagine that you could walk up to one of those 3,000 converts who had just obeyed the gospel and you could ask one of them this question sir I would like to know what denomination did you just become a part of what would they say to you they would probably say something like I don’t know what you’re talking about and you say well you know I mean did you become a Methodist did you become a Catholic did you become a Baptist which one did you become a part of he would probably say something like sir I don’t know what you’re talking about I have never heard of a denomination I don’t know these groups that you’re discussing all I know is I became a part of the church that belongs to Jesus Christ the Church of Christ and that would be exactly right because there was only one acts 2 and verse 47 says the Lord added to the church that such as were being saved now that also fits perfectly with what jesus promised Matthew 16:18 upon this rock I will build my church singular the Apostle Paul later echoes the same sentiment of the one church when he speaks to the elders from the Church of Ephesus in Acts chapter 20 he tells them to Shepherd the Church of God which he purchased with his own blood in the book of Ephesians we’re told that God has put all things under Christ’s feet and gave him to be the head over all things – now listen to this – the church which is his body now I want you to get this because this is deep the church which is his body the Church of Christ is the body of Christ they are the same thing now that’s important because when you get to Ephesians 4 in verse 4 he gives a list of ones and he says there’s one body if the Church of Christ and the body of Christ were the same thing if there’s one body then friends there is one church dear friends when a person reads the New Testament he is impressed with the fact that there exists only one church now what if somebody were to come along and say Dona get that I understand about the one church but don’t you think it would be okay to start different divisions in that church because you know people have different views about things and what wouldn’t it be okay to have different denominations if you would in that church would that be okay Prince the answer to that question is no I want you to listen to what the Apostle Paul says about this in 1st Corinthians chapter 1 he writes to the church at Corinth and he says I plead with you brethren that’s New King James the old King James says I’m beseech you brethren is I’m beg you brethren by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ now note this that you all speak the same thing that there be no divisions among you but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind in the same judgment now notice this speak the same thing let this sink in as you think about the religious world that there be no divisions that you’re perfectly joined together I have brought this up to denominational preachers over the years when they say it’s okay to have all of these different churches and I’ve said to them how about first Corinthians chapter 1 in verse 10 how do you explain speaking the same thing and there be no divisions and that we’d be perfectly joined together ladies and gentlemen does that match what you see in the religious world today I’m telling you it doesn’t match I’m telling you we don’t have the right to do that now more specifically what was the problem at the Cory Church of Christ why did Paul write this listen to verse 12 of 1st Corinthians 1 Paul says now this I say that each of you says I’m a Paul or I’m of a populace or I’m of Cephas or I am of Christ is Christ divided was Paul crucified for you or were you baptized in the name of Paul now what’s the problem in the first century you’ve got the seeds of denominationalism because some people in that one church we’re starting to say well you know I’m a Christian but I’m gonna polish Christian I’m a Christian but I’m I’m a see fiskerton I’m a Peter Christian or I am I’m a Christian but I’m a Paul Christian and what Paul writes to them he says brethren by either by the Holy Spirit he says this kind of division in the church is not right it is sinful to have this so if we’re gonna answer the question why are there so many churches we’ve got to get impressed upon our minds in the Bible there was only one church here’s foundational principle number two you need to understand that God predicted that there was going to be a departure from that one church system from the New Testament pattern of the one church the lord said men are not going to speak they’re not going to stick to this despite the warnings despite the passages over and over and over and over that talk about the one church he said man’s not going to follow it now submission is where where is that predicted one of these I mentioned just a moment ago in Ephesians chapter 20 when Paul spoke to the Ephesian elders he told them to Shepherd the Church of God which he purchased with his own blood I want you to notice what he says next Acts chapter 20 and verse 28 he tells them to Shepherd the Church of God listen to verse 28 he says for I know this that after my departure shall shall savage wolves enter in among you not sparing the flock now listen to this part also from among your own selves men will rise up speaking perverse things to draw away disciples after them this is what Paul says he says brethren Shepherd the church he says because men are going to come in and they’re gonna teach false doctrine they’re going to to draw away disciples after them and I want you to tuck this in the back of your mind Paul said one of the departures that’s going to take place relates to the leadership in the church why do I say that because he said to the elders also from among your own selves there’s going to be a departure note that where else does the Holy Spirit warn us about this Parcher when you get the first Timothy chapter 4 listen witty sales first empty chapter 4 and verse 1 the Bible says now the spirit speaketh expressly what that means is the Holy Spirit is speaking very straightforwardly very plainly here the Holy Spirit speaks plainly and he says this in the latter times some shall depart from the faith I want you to notice that they’re going to depart from the faith that one system the one church system they’re going to depart from that giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons speaking in lies and hypocrisy having their conscience seared with a hot iron forbidding to marry and commanding to abstain from meats which God created to be received with Thanksgiving from those who don’t believe the truth now what does he say he says there is one system of faith men are going to depart from that I want you to notice two of the things that are going to be involved in this departure he said they’re going to teach that you can’t get married they’re going to teach that you can’t eat certain foods I remember when I was growing up in Charleston South Carolina I attended the public school system and I remember that we always ate fish on Friday any of you remember that you’d always eat fish you know why that was because the Roman Catholic Church came along and forbad forbid the eating of certain types of meat it’s interesting the thing that Paul said was going to take place there’s going to be a departure they’re going to say you can’t get married did you know that the Roman Catholic Church teaches their priests that they can’t get married they say you can’t eat certain types of meat two of the things the Holy Spirit specifically said we’re going to take place we see in regard to the Roman Catholic Church our two foundational principles we see number one in the Bible there’s only one church number two the Lord said there’s going to be a departure from that one Church system right let’s ask our question tonight why are there so why are there 43,000 churches in the world today how did a basic belief system where everyone taught the same thing believed the same thing worship the same way how did that turn into 43,000 if you look at history very early on you see the Gnostics pop up in 125 ad you got the Montana stand 156 the manish ins in 244 the Novation’s in 251 there are small groups they don’t last very long but one of the largest and most significant departures that relates to the early church related to its leadership and it related to a Roman Emperor who was named Constantine now do you remember I mentioned just a moment ago that Paul told the elders also from among your own selves that is from the leadership of the church there’s going to be a departure history tells us one of the first major departures related to its leadership hold that thought I’m going to come back to it a minute rather than God’s plan for the church was to have elders and to have deacons elders must meet the qualifications in first Timothy and in Titus elders in the Lord’s Church had authority over only the congregation where they were members God established it that way each congregation was to be autonomous what that means is this church these elders can’t go down the road and tell another eldership what to do you can’t have one elder over several congregations each congregation is autonomous but what began to happen is over time elders began to meet together to discuss problems that we’re going on in the congregation’s and when you get to in fact I want you look at this timeline I know it’s hard to read I’m going to zoom in on certain parts of it but we’re going to use this to trace the question why are there so many churches if you look at the top there’s a green line that green line represents the Church of Christ it goes back to the day of Pentecost and it continues even to our present time now I’m going to zoom in on this a little bit and can see we’ve got to the 300s and particularly 313 marked out because in the 300s ad there was a Roman Emperor in power his name was Constantine Constantine began to take interest in this group known as the Church of Christ and in 313 ad he passed something history calls the Edict of Milan and it ended persecution against Christians prior to this Christians were being put to death they were being fed to the Lions they were putting being put in prison but Constantine said I like Christianity and so in 313 he ended the persecution now you can imagine that this gained favor with the Christians in and around Rome and so the Roman government began to have a lot of influence with the elders in the Lord’s Church and the end result of this was an adverse effect on a large part of Christ’s Church now this newfound relationship led to meetings that took place between the elders in the Church of Christ and Roman officials and when we get to the Year three in fact I jumped here when you get to the year I’ve got this pointed out 325 when you get to the year 325 history records a meeting that is called historically the Council of Nicaea at this particular council Emperor Constantine said we’re going to make Christianity the religion of the Roman Empire and he said we’ve got a name for it we are going to call it by the Latin word Catholic which we get our word Catholic it is translated it means universal it’s going to be the universal religion of the Roman Empire what happened then is the first official departure from the New Testament pattern and what they did was they really patterned the Roman government they patterned the church after the Roman government and so you can see where the Roman government had an emperor eventually the Catholic Church is going to have the Pope the Roman government had advisors and governors the system of religion then had terminals and bishops now brethren that was never God’s plan from the beginning you begin to see this departure Christians who were faithful to the Bible these individuals who stood against the Catholic Church they were persecuted they were ostracized many of them had to go into hiding to meet now historically tells a history tells us that after the formation of the Catholic Church it began to grow in strength it began to grow in number and political power they begin to create new doctrines and man-made traditions and they had the growing endorsement of the Roman government and so they had power in time their doctrines were made mandates and they were placed upon all of the members of the Catholic Church I want you to notice some of the dates associated here with this new Catholic doctrine they had the doctrine called Latin Mass that is their worship that they gather together that came along in the Year 394 they came up with the doctrine of purgatory and the Year 593 purgatory we talked about last night that’s the idea that if you’re not good enough to go to reward when you die you go to punishment for a little while until you’ve paid your debt and then you get out the first official pope that is Papa God on the earth came along in the year 606 Boniface the third the idea of transubstantiation came along in the year 1000 transubstantiation believes that when you partake of what we call the Lord’s Supper that they literally the bread literally becomes the body of Jesus Christ and the fruit of the vine literally becomes the blood of Jesus Christ they came up with the mandate of the celibacy of the priests in the year 10 15 that his priests can’t get married now remember first Timothy chapter 4 he said they’re going to depart from the faith they’re going to teach that you cannot get married they came along with this doctrine now if we go back and we zoom back out at this I want you to notice the Greenline brethren for the first approximately thousand years there are only two churches you’ve got the Church of Christ which began on the day of Pentecost and then you’ve got the Catholic Church which came along a few hundred years later but then when you get to the year 1054 I want you to notice this I’m going to zoom out so you can see it when you get to the year 1054 the Roman Catholic Church splits into two denominations then you have the Roman Catholic Church Roman Catholicism and you have the Greek Orthodox Church during this period of time the Bible became more and more unavailable to the common man history says they entered a period that is called the Dark Ages and the Catholic Church continued making up man-made doctrines in fact here’s 1054 let me zoom in on some of these doctrines in the year 1190 – they came up with a doctrine called indulgences indulgences basically meant you can pay for a sin in advance and so if I were going to commit a sin I could go and pay the church and basically I got a forgiveness of that sin in advance st. Peter’s Basilica and Rome was largely built from the sale of indulgences in fact there is an old story that I heard I think Charles Spurgeon is the one that supposedly told this but he said during the years that the Roman Catholic Church was selling indulgences there was an occasion where a priest had gone into a certain town he traveled there to sell indulgences and he made a lot of money as he was selling these indulgences he had all of this money he was leaving the town and a certain individual came and robbed him and stole his money the priest then went to the local magistrate they caught the man and they took him before the magistrate it came to the magistrate’s attention that this man before robbing the priest had bought an indulgence and so the magistrate said I’m going to throw this out because you’ve already forgiven him for this before he even did it now how about that the sale of indulgences is the idea of the confessional booth came along in the year 1215 if you’ve ever been in the Catholic Church building or you’ve seen it on television there is a booth where you’ve got a Catholic priest on one side and a person comes in on the other side you’ve got a small wall between you you confess your sins to another human being and he in the place of God will speak your sins forgiven and give you some sort of penance sprinkling replaced baptism in the year thirteen eleven that is prior to that it was always immersion but in that year they said we believe sprinkling will suffice the Pope was declared infallible in the year 1870 that is anything he speaks ex cathedra that is while he’s on the pope’s chair while he’s on the Pope’s throne if he speaks it is just as if God Himself is speaking now I want you to notice this as we zoom out when you get into the 1500s you see a lot of activity taking place on the chart here and that’s because once you get to this this point you have men such as Martin Luther and these men begin to speak up and they would say this is not right Martin Luther particularly hated the sale of indulgences he said the idea that you can pay for sin in advance is ridiculous he challenged the Pope as being one who was unscriptural he said the Bible is the only source of authority Martin Luther’s widespread opposition to the Catholic Church started a protest movement historically it’s called the Protestant Reformation when you get to the Year 1521 what you have is another denomination shortly before the Lutheran Church came on the scene there was another group that popped up called the Anabaptist the Anabaptist started as a protest to the Catholic Church and particularly it was a group of people that thought it was wrong to baptize Bay these they hated infant baptism they said babies don’t have sin and so they became the Anabaptist Anna means again they were those who baptized again so if you were baptized as a baby they would say that doesn’t count they started the Anabaptist what is very interesting is the Anabaptist movement spawned several other churches such as the Baptist Church the Amish church the Mennonites and the Brethren in Christ as religious freedom expanded denominationalism continued to grow it multiplied into the many factions that you can see on the timeline here and it laid the foundation for the multiple denominations that exist in the world today now would you listen to this some of these churches began with a noble desire to get back to the Bible that is they said this is not right we’ve got to go back to the Bible some of these churches did not even begin with a narrow desire if we can let me see if I can zoom in on this on the timeline here I don’t know if you can see this but probably can’t but in the year 15:34 the Church of England began the Church of England began because King Henry the Eighth desired to have his marriage to a Catherine of Aragon annulled and so the Roman Catholic Church said we’re not going to do it and he said you will they said we won’t and he said I’ll start my own church and we’ll do it and he did it didn’t even begin with the noble desire it began because he said this is the way I want my marriage to be and if you won’t do it I’ll start my own church now brother what is the point to this the point that we get out of this chart out of this timeline is it shows us just a small fraction of the churches that exist today some began out of good motives others bad motives but they were all started by men I want to tell you that the reason that the number of churches is multiplying today is because particularly in this country a person can go to the government he can start a church and it’s a money-making scheme men will start their own church people will follow that individual and it’s nothing more than a grab for power and a grab for money and they are multiplying by the tens of thousands now if you go back to the top line here which you will see is this green line that represents the church starting by Jesus Christ it started in the year 80 33 it’s the Church of Christ that means the church belonging to Christ is the one you read about in the pages of the New Testament and from history you can see that all of the other churches are man-made churches denominations and hopefully you can see why today there are so many churches but here’s the question since the Lord condemns division and we have to be a part of that one church and if it’s not the one bought by the blood of Jesus and all these others were man-made where does that leave everybody else here’s the next point I want to ask this question what does all of this mean for us today somebody might say well done does that mean are you saying that all of the denominations are wrong dear friend I want to be kind but I want to be very clear about this does this mean all the denominations are wrong it would have to mean that all of the churches not built by Jesus Christ or without New Testament example and without New Testament Authority somebody says a little further does that mean that the good intention morally upright people in the denominations then they’re going to be lost my friend my next-door neighbor he attends this denomination are you saying he’s going to be lost that way let’s let the board answer this question I want you to listen to this Matthew chapter 7 verse 21 this is a scene from the Judgment Day this is Jesus talking Jesus says not everyone who says to me Lord Lord shall enter the kingdom of heaven but he who does the will of my father which is in heaven many many not a few many will say to me in that day Lord Lord have we not prophesied in thy name have we not cast out demons in thy name have we not done many wonderful works in thy name then I will profess unto them depart from me ye that work iniquity I never knew you now I want you to notice a few things out of this he says many will say unto me what does this mean a lot of people are going to be in this category I want you to notice next they are calling him Lord you can almost hear the shark in these people’s voice Lord Lord and then they begin to list the things that they did they called Jesus Lord they said they taught in his name they were doing good deeds in his name these are people who genuinely believed they were followers of Jesus Christ and on that day the Lord is going to say I never knew you friends when you look at all of the different denominations that exist today and you see that they are without New Testament authority what you learn is on the day of judgment they’re going to be good people they’re going to be people who are teachers people who claim to be holding to the name of Jesus Christ who are going to be lost because they did not do the will of the Father now what I learned from that is having good intentions is not enough having your heart right is not enough I have to follow the New Testament pattern again Acts chapter 2 and verse 47 praising God and having favor with all the people the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved now here’s the question I want to wrap up with tonight how do I become a part of that church what if I said you know what I just want to go back to the Bible I just want to be a part of that one church because I know I can be saved in that church how do I do that and the answer is exactly the same way they did friends this is a simple simple lesson and that’s what we want people to do is to go back to the simplicity of the Bible in the Bible there was only one church I want to go back and be a part of that church and do exactly what those people did what you have to do oftentimes we summarized this to become a Christian to be a part of that church we’d say you’ve got to hear believe repent confess and be baptized and I think that’s good I’ve said it at the end of almost every sermon for the last 25 years but I think sometimes we do a disservice because we don’t really explain what that means so let me take just a minute here what do we mean when we say you’ve got to hear the gospel what are we talking about there what we mean is this number one you need to hear that you have transgressed the will of God and because that you are destined for hell Romans 6:23 the wages of sin is death you need to hear that Jesus Christ God came in the flesh and died for you to pay the penalty for your sin so that you don’t have to go to heaven you need to hear that in Christ salvation is found and you need to hear that Romans chapter 10 verse 14 indicates that those who don’t hear the gospel or have no hope we say that a man must hear the gospel and then he must believe it believe what what what does that entail well what he has to believe is what he’s heard that is he believes he’s lost because of sin he believes that God came in the flesh and died for him and Jesus Christ he believes he must be in Christ he believes that Jesus Christ is the son of God John 8:24 jesus said if he believed not that I am he you shall die in your sins he believes John 1 in verse 14 and the word was made flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld his glory the glory as of the only begotten of the Father full of grace and truth you believe in the death the burial and the resurrection of Christ that while we were sinners Christ died for us Romans five and verse 8 that he rose from the dead defeating death first Corinthians 15:54 and 55 and Romans 10 and verse 9 says if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead you will be saved and one more thing I want you to listen to this it is crucial that a person believe and understand the body of Christ now do you remember what I said at the beginning I said the body equals the church right body and church are the same thing a person must believe and understand the body of Christ that is the Church of Christ now what do I mean by that I mean a person can’t obey the gospel and then go back into a denomination I had a discussion with a preacher friend one day and he said Don the Bible never says you have to understand the concept of the one Church in order to become a Christian and I said brother you’re mistaken about that I said number one in the first century there was only one church they didn’t understand anything other than that but I want you to appreciate this in Acts chapter 8 when Philip went down to the city of Samaria and he preached unto them Acts chapter 8 and verse 12 says but when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ they were baptized both men and women now break that down a little bit when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God what is the kingdom of God it’s the church that’s exactly right it’s the church they weren’t baptized until they understood the concept of the one church after they knew the name of Jesus Christ and the one church they were baptized French a person has to hear and then he has to believe it then number three he has to repent now what does that mean often times I hear people say well repentance means that you do 180-degree turn you quit sinning that’s not what repentance means repentance is a change of mind Acts chapter 17 verse 30 says truly this times of ignorance God overlooked but now commands all men everywhere to repent listen to this this is a good definition of repentance repentance is a change of mind brought about by godly sorrow that results in a reformation of life you see repentance takes place up here the change of life is what the Bible calls fruits of repentance you change your mind that’s repentance your change of light is the fruits of repentance you hear the gospel you believe it you change your mind why because I realized I’m gonna go to hell because I don’t want that to be the case because I want to be in Christ I want to go to heaven I hear I believe it I repent of my sins and then we say that you’ve got to confess what is it you’re confessing you’re confessing what you’ve heard you’re confessing that you believe it what you’re saying oftentimes we say this we say that you have to make the confession I believe Jesus Christ is a son of God we say that’s the good confession better than that’s not the good confession that’s the summary of the good confession when a person says I believe Jesus Christ is the son of God what are you saying is I believe all that entails I believe because of my sin God came in the flesh and died for me I believe that he is the son of God I believe I was going to go to hell I believe in the one Church I believe in the body price and I’m just gonna summarize all that by saying I believe Jesus Christ is the son of God Romans 10 verse 10 says with the mouth confession is made unto salvation you hear believe repent confess and then a man must be in water for the remission of his sins baptism is the point at which a person comes in contact with the blood of Christ listen to this Romans chapter 6 and verse 3 says do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ were baptized into his death where did Jesus shed his blood in his death how do you contact the blood that was shed in his death as many of you as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death therefore we are buried with him through baptism into death that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father even so we should walk in newness of life now I want you to get this out of this often times I hear denominational people say you don’t have to be baptized Romans chapter six three and four that’s just a symbol but I want you to notice what the Bible says about that supposed symbol that you were raised to walk in newness of life you don’t get the new life until you come out of the water regretful baptism why is that because you go into the water as a sinner you contact the saving blood of Jesus because you’re buried into his death and you come out to walk in newness of life that’s why Jesus said in mark 16:16 he who believes and is baptized shall be saved hear believe repent confess and be baptized and then live faithfully but sometimes when a person hears a sermon like this they think that we are saying we want you to leave our denominator the nomination and become a part of our denomination I want you to tell I want to tell you tonight that’s not what we’re saying it on and if you’re hearing that please let me correct you what we are saying tonight is this we want you to leave all denominations and just go back to the one Church of the Bible just be a Christian not a hyphenated Christian let’s just be plain and simple Christians let’s be saved the same way that they were saved this worship the same way that they worshiped and if we do that we can know that we’re going to go to heaven if you will look back at the beginning there’s only one historically that goes all the way back to the day of Pentecost we want you to be a part of that the Church of Christ that’s not a name it’s not a denomination it is a designation of ownership that is the church belonging to Jesus Christ tonight would you leave all denominations and just be a part of the church that belongs to Jesus Christ you do that by obeying the gospel nothing would please us more tonight than the baptize of Christ maybe you say I’ve never heard anything like this in my life I want you to sit down I want to see book chapter and verse we would be so happy to do that I’ll even do that tonight if you want to it is that important maybe you’re here tonight and you are a New Testament Christian but maybe you haven’t been living your life right you haven’t been walking in the light tonight you’ve got an opportunity to repent and to become a faithful child of God maybe tonight publicly you need to rip confessed public sin and we would count it an honor if we could go to God and pray on your behalf this evening if you want to obey the gospel if you want to be restored you have that opportunity we invite you to come this together we stand and as we’ve seen the invitations

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