A noteworthy paper to pray about....Conservative, Fundamental, or Scriptural?
SIMPLE STATEMENT OF SCRIPTURAL ASSEMBLY
[There is much one might say about finding the Christian path, understanding it, and following it with other believers in Christ, but here is a concise statement to introduce the subject. One can learn more about it by writing to Bible Truth Publishers in Addison, Illinois for books and literature down through history by esteemed Bible Teachers to guide one. – R. DeWitt 4/12: from biblecounsel. homestead.com
In thinking about joining a church group, one ought to first know what he is thinking of joining, and be very sure and much in prayer before linking up with any fellowship, which might lead one astray. If it is a new innovation it should be suspect. The Bible is very old, but the truth is still there today for the Church (note Acts 2:41-42 and the Epistles). God did not leave us to wander and wonder, and He surely does not intend that we add to His Word or change what He gave for His Church ---that “one body of Christ” in "unity of the faith" ---the "priesthood" (1 Pet. 2).
Actually, one cannot join a church, for God’s Church is the universal and spiritual “body of Christ”, which is not a social club nor an organization, but a fellowship of true Christian believers. Then one must know what it means to be a true believer, and see how one can become that to participate in the fellowship God intended ---universal and locally of “one accord”.
Any earnest seeker can surely visit a sound scriptural assembly (which are yet found in many places) that holds to the Word of God for all authority for the Christian faith, but to be in full fellowship there it will be required first that the visitor be “born again”, and that means to have the indwelling Holy Spirit of God by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ --God’s beloved Son who died on the Cross for our sins, and rose again and returned to His Father in Heaven. That personal relationship with the Savior is fundamental to the faith, for just being a disciple (follower) of the teachings of Christ is not salvation. Various sects today teach works and pleasing activities and opinions as doctrine, which is contrary to the Epistles and offensive to God. God still has His faithful gatherings in the world (though not popular places) if one is earnest in inquiry.
It should be understood that church history was bound in ignorance and tyranny after the Apostolic period. God then began to move by His Spirit to restore His testimony. My study of church history shows the most scriptural rendering and practice of church truth in the world is that revival of circa 1800 AD, when the biblical form and practice of church truth was recovered out of the tyranny and rigid controls of religious men, in the Roman Catholic Religion from about 500 AD to 1500 AD. From that time of protest, called the Reformation in the Middle (dark) Ages to circa 1800 AD, most denominations and sects then were following rituals and practices much like what they learned over the 1,000 years of religious bondage under RCR control. Many new sects being formed to this present day are simply splinters from those sects that came out of the Reformation.
With the revival of church truth (specifically in 1827 AD in Ireland and England) the rituals, ceremonies, hierarchy, activities, programs and innovations were rejected by serious Bible teachers, and there was a return to the pure Word of God. That recovery has continued in what is commonly known as “the brethren movement" or "brethren from 1827". One can learn of this and see the history and form of the universal Church if they wish, through Bible Truth Publishers, Addison, IL.
God’s pathway in this world for church truth is not just promoting a conservative religion, or fundamental ways, but Scripture only. So many professing Christians say that is what they follow, but in truth they do not. All so-called conservative or fundamental denominations are man-made religions with innovations, for God never gave us such religious sects. He gave us His immutable Word. If one intends to bow to the Word of God, he/she must know what the universal church (bride of Christ) is in the world, and be in conformity to it (see Acts 2:41-42 and the Epistles for instructions). As stated above, one needs to also understand God’s dealings with His Church in the world and see how He preserved it from the Apostolic time to the present, in spite of the failure of men to uphold the Scripture.