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DOCTRINE QUESTION 21
There are so many different Churches, who knows which one is the right one?
This is an age-old question that is probably asked more than any other. It would be very confusing to the man on the street when he sees them all.
Let me answer this by making a very clear distinction between denomination, as a system, and the denomination, as a people. As a system they are all wrong. You will search the scriptures in vain to find one of them. In fact they are distinctly said to be wrong. 1 Corinthians 1:12-13, it is dividing the body of Christ. In Galatians 5:19, it is said to be part of the works of the flesh. The word "heresies" means a "sect" or part of a whole. In 1 Corinthians 3:1-4 is it said to be "carnal". It is strongly condemned in Romans 16:17. Since there is only one body (Ephesians 4:4) and so one church Matthew 16:18. To divide what God joins together is most certainly sinful and wrong in the sight of God. There will be no denominations in heaven and there ought to be none among Christians on earth.
As to the denominations as a people there are many Christians and gospel preachers among them. God has and is using people in them to do His will and accomplish His purposes. Let me illustrate; there are many born again Christians in China, but that doesn't make China and Communism right. That system is wrong but not all people in it. When it comes to salvation no denomination can save. Christ alone saves. He said in John 14:6 "I am the way, the truth and the life. No man cometh to the Father but by me." If one looks to a denomination for salvation they certainly will be confused and lost. Though there are in them those that can point you to the Saviour who can save, but there is no salvation in joining and living up to their standard. One must look to Christ alone to be saved. Isaiah 45:22 "Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God and there is none else".
All comments and questions to: Harold Smith
Updated July 2009, by Shelly Allen