1 Timothy 2:1- First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.
This will be the final installment in this series. As predicted, this series has caused some to leave my blog. It has also provided the wide range of comments and complaints. Some of which were posted to the site and others were emailed directly to me.
One key learning that I have taken away from the Bible is that when Jesus spoke to those who did not know Him, he was gentle and, while He let them knew His stance on their sin, He stood with open arms to love them gently into His kingdom. With those who claim belief, He is very straightforward about right and wrong, sometimes to the point of overturning tables in anger inside the synagogue.
This post was an overturning of tables.
Most of the points made were taken directly from the denominational websites.
And I want to preface this one more time. Just because someone is involved, or even pastors, at a church of one of these denominations, DOES NOT mean they are against Christ. I have met numerous people in every denomination who are fervent believers. This was not a post about people. This was a post about rulers, leaders, and principalities. My late brother died a leader in the Episcopal Church, one which was very open to his lifestyle of being gay. Do I believe he was a strong believer? Yes.
We need to remember the Christian journey is just that. A journey. Just because the alcoholic gives their life to Christ does not mean their addiction is immediately gone. It could, and I’ve know people in which that is the case. But more than likely it does not happen that way.
So church leaders, please review this site and the 14 posts that I’ve written and then read your own denominational websites. And then take that information and go to the Bible. Check it out for yourself.
So in this final week, I want to look at the views on the Bible, ordinances, and the practices of Christians. While tirning away from these does not void salvation, these are principles that are clean in Scripture and denial of them suggests apostasy.
This will be one final long post as there are 3 points to get through. I’m sorry, but next week I promise that I will post a lighter piece (well, not necessarily lighter, but more digestible).
Acts 20:28 – Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood.
Male eldership and pastorate (1 Timothy 2:12-13, 1 Timothy 3:15, Titus 1:5-7)
Roman Catholic – Ordain men only.
Eastern Orthodox – Ordain men only,
Mormon – Ordain men only.
Jehovah’s Witness – Every baptized believer is seen as an ordained pastor, so men and women ordained.
7th Day Adventist – Ordain both men and women.
Christian Science – Ordains both men and women.
Anglican/Episcopalian – Men and women ordained.
Pentecostal/Charismatic – Both men and women ordained.
Holiness/Holy – Both men and women ordained.
Assemblies of God – Both men and women ordained.
Disciples of Christ – Ordains both men and women.
Quaker – Both men and women ordained.
Foursquare Gospel – Both men and women ordained.
Salvation Army – Both men and women ordained.
Christian Reform – Both men and women ordained.
Full Gospel – varies
Apostolic – Ordains both men and women.
Mennonite – Men and women ordained.
Brethren – Ordain both men and women.
Nazarene – Both men and women ordained.
Church of God – Both men and women ordained.
Church of Christ – Ordains both men and women.
United Church of Christ – Ordains both men and women.
Presbyterian – PCA ordains only men, PCUSA ordains both men and women.
Lutheran – ELCA ordains both men and women while LCMS ordains only men.
Methodist – Men and women ordained.
Baptist – SBC only ordains men, ABC ordains both men and women.
Evangelical/Non-Denominational – varies
Genesis 2:24 – Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Fidelity in Marriage and Condemnation of Homosexuality (1 Corinthians 6:9, Romans 1:26-27)
Roman Catholic – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Eastern Orthodox – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Mormon – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Jehovah’s Witness – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
7th Day Adventist – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Christian Science – Everything about marriage and homosexuality in Christian Science is summed up in the quote from their website, “marriage is the legal and moral provision for generation among humankind.” I honestly have no clue what that means and how that impacts the answers to the questions of man and woman or homosexual.
Anglican/Episcopalian – Marriage is either heterosexual or homosexual approved.
Pentecostal/Charismatic – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Holiness/Holy – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Assemblies of God – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Disciples of Christ – Senior Pastor Derek Penwell said on June 2011, “We are trying to figure out how to live in the whole identity of being open and affirming. We thought a statement that said we would no longer sign marriage licenses until all couples – both heterosexual and homosexual – were treated equally….”
Quaker – They believe in hetero and homosexual marriages.
Foursquare Gospel – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Salvation Army – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Christian Reform – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Full Gospel – varies
Apostolic – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Mennonite – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Brethren – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Nazarene – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Church of God – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Church of Christ –Marriage is between one man and one woman.
United Church of Christ – Marriage can either be heterosexual or homosexual.
Presbyterian – PCUSA believes that marriage can be either heterosexual or homosexual.
Lutheran – LCMS believes marriage is between one man and one woman. ELCA are conducting studies to determine if they should go down the route of same-sex marriages.
Methodist –Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Baptist – Marriage is between one man and one woman.
Evangelical/Non-Denominational – varies
Inerrancy of Scripture (2 Timothy 3:16)
Roman Catholic – “Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture make up a single sacred deposit of the Word of God . . .” (Catechism of Catholic Church, paragraph 97)
Eastern Orthodox – http://www.serfes.org/orthodox/scripturesinthechurch.htm
Mormon – The Book of Mormon in 2 Nephi 29:6 claims, “Fools think the Bible is enough!”
Jehovah’s Witness – They try and make the Bible fit with their theology tells them and they ignore those verses that disagree with them.
7th Day Adventist – Scripture is inspired, infallible, and trustworthy.
Christian Science – Similar to Jehovah’s Witness, she chooses the scriptures she likes and denies that which doesn’t fit her theology.
Anglican/Episcopalian – It is our foundation, understood through tradition and reason, containing all things necessary for salvation. Our worship is filled with Scripture from beginning to end.
Pentecostal/Charismatic – The Bible is the infallible Word of God and the authority for salvation and Christian living
Holiness/Holy – We believe in the verbal and plenary inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, known as the Bible, composed of sixty-six books and divided into two departments, Old and New Testaments. We believe the Bible is the Word of God, the full and complete revelation of the plan and history of redemption.
Assemblies of God – The Scriptures, both the Old and New Testaments, are verbally inspired of God and are the revelation of God to man, the infallible, authoritative rule of faith and conduct.
Disciples of Christ – We hold the centrality of scripture, recognizing that each person has the freedom – and the responsibility – to study God’s Word within the community of the church.
Quaker – Quakers’ beliefs stress individual revelation, but the Bible is truth. All personal light must be held up to the Bible for confirmation. The Holy Spirit, who inspired the Bible, does not contradict Himself.
Foursquare Gospel – We believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God; it is absolutely true, enduring, and unchangeable
Salvation Army – We believe that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, and that they only constitute the Divine rule of Christian faith and practice.
Christian Reform – We believe that the Bible is the authoritative Word of God. It contains all that people in any age need to know for their salvation. We call the Bible God’s Word, believing that, by the power of the Holy Spirit, God speaks to us through this book.
Full Gospel – varies, but typically that Scripture is inspired, inerrant, and infallible.
Apostolic – The Bible is the inspired and infallible Word of God to man. The New Testament serves as the foundation of the doctrine of the Apostolic Christian Church. The authorized King James version is embraced.
Mennonite – http://www.mennoniteusa.org/about/confession-of-faith-in-a-mennonite-perspective-1995/confession-of-faith-%E2%80%94-article-4/
Brethren – The Brethren use the New Testament as their guidebook for living. They believe the Bible is divinely inspired and hold that the Old Testament lays out God’s purpose and desires for humanity.
Nazarene – We believe that the Old and New Testament Scriptures, given by plenary inspiration, contain all truth necessary to faith and Christian living.
Church of God – In the verbal inspiration of the Bible.
Church of Christ -The original autographs of the sixty six books which make up the Bible are considered to have been divinely inspired, by which it is meant that they are infallible and authoritative. Reference to the scriptures is made in settling every religious question. A pronouncement from the scripture is considered the final word. The basic textbook of the church and the basis for all preaching is the Bible.
United Church of Christ – There is nothing in their statement of faith about Scripture.
Presbyterian – Our knowledge of God and God’s purpose for humanity comes from the Bible, particularly what is revealed in the New Testament through the life of Jesus Christ.
Lutheran – Luther believed the Scriptures contained the one necessary guide to truth.
Methodist -We say that God speaks to us through the Bible, that it’s God’s Word. This authority derives from three sources: We hold that the writers of the Bible were inspired, that they were filled with God’s Spirit as they wrote the truth to the best of their knowledge. We hold that God was at work in the process of canonization, during which only the most faithful and useful books were adopted as Scripture. We hold that the Holy Spirit works today in our thoughtful study of the Scriptures, especially as we study them together, seeking to relate the old words to life’s present realities.
Baptist – The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God’s revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter. Therefore, all Scripture is totally true and trustworthy. It reveals the principles by which God judges us, and therefore is, and will remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried. All Scripture is a testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation.
Evangelical/Non-Denominational – Varies
2 Timothy 3:16 – All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness
So this is all. I am waaaay beyond finished for this series, and I am sure you are happier for it. During this series I lost a LOT of readers. Even more so, I lost a lot of both Twitter and LinkedIn followers. It is definitely a very polarizing place to be when one criticizes the church. Many believe we shouldn’t do that. We should simply accept the status quo of the church and go on with our lives, believing that we are right and all others are wrong.
But that is a very wrong way to look at it.
The Bible calls us to unity as Christians. It is very difficult to be unified when, especially with this final analysis of Scripture, we are all across the board on our beliefs. We need to unify on beliefs before we can unify in the world.
I call upon the leaders of each major denomination to begin with Scripture. Then, reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to organize a coming together of the denominations. Pray about this.
We need to get unified, church.
We need to world to stop thinking that we can’t hold the truth because we don’t even know the truth. When the world speaks to someone in the UCC, the message is different than when they speak to someone in the Baptist camp. It is a shame.
Let’s unify, church. Let’s unify under the banner of Christ, the Trinity, the Bible, and the simple message of the Gospel.
Matthew 16:18 – And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.