How can I find the true Church of God?

Jesus promised His Church would never die out. In today's world of religious confusion, where is that church?


Answer:
Bible FAQ: How can I find the true Church of God?
Source: Photos.com

The true Church is the one that continues in the traditions, teachings and practices of the New Testament Church. Our Bible study aid booklet The Church Jesus Built details the transformation and corruption by reformers of many teachings given by Jesus Christ to His disciples. God's Church rejects the doctrines men have added or changed, and it holds to "the faith which was once for all delivered" (Jude 3).

An important tenet of Jesus' teachings was the gospel of the Kingdom of God. The role and work of the Son of God is central to the gospel. However, most churches preach only a message about the person of Christ, saying much about His role as Savior but little about His role as King. In other words, most churches do not preach the gospel that Jesus did. Jesus came as a special Messenger (Malachi:3:1) of the Kingdom of God—as well as the Savior. The true Church will also be preaching this gospel to the world as a witness (Matthew:24:14).

Another key in identifying the true Church is the correct day of worship. Jesus customarily observed the seventh day, the Sabbath (Luke:4:16), the day that God set aside at creation for worship (Exodus:20:8-11). Scripture reveals that the Sabbath is a perpetual sign or an identifying mark of the people of God (Exodus:31:12-17), meaning that the Church of God would be observing it today. Most churches say that the Sabbath law is no longer binding or that God caused Sunday worship to supersede it. They're wrong.

The Church Jesus Built discusses these topics more thoroughly. It shows the beginnings of a counterfeit Christianity in the first century. Several books of the New Testament mention false teachers infiltrating the Church with corrupting ideas. They combined bits and pieces of pagan religions with Christian concepts and convinced many to follow their ways. Satan has taken great advantage of these circumstances (2 Corinthians:11:13-14) and has created a counterfeit church to parallel the true one. Through the intervening centuries, people accepted the counterfeit over the true Church. The Bible study aid explains the doctrines and practices of the early New Testament Church of God, so those who would like to find it today can do so.


rwp_47

rwp_47's picture

So you want to know how you can find the true Church of God? The answers (because there may be more than one way to answer) to that question are actually fairly easy to state. But whether one understands an answer depends on a number of things.

For instance, why are you asking? Are you just looking for a good place to put your home made bomb? Because if that's the case then the answer probably won't help you all that much.
Another for instance. Why are you asking the United Church of God (United) how you can find the true Church of God? If we assume United isn't the true Church of God then why would you think United would know where it was? And even if (unlikely as it might be) United did know where it was ... why do you think it would tell you in that case? So we'd have to conclude that actually you think United is the true Church of God. Otherwise your question is [patiently ridiculous]. Wouldn't you agree?

OK , with that said, here's the answer to your question:
1 Timothy:3:15 - "... which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."
All you have to do is find the truth. And once you've found that - then there's the Church.

So you tell me. Is United the true Church of God? If your answer is no - then why did you ask (refer to the [patiently ridiculous] above)? If your answer is yes - then tell me how you found it. And so when do you plan on coming to Sabbath services?




rwp_47

rwp_47's picture

How can one find the true Church of God (the Church)? A better question is ... What is the true Church? Because if one doesn't actually know what it is ... then how would he know if he found it - even if he did? So, what is the Church?

Warning: controversial stuff to follow.

The Church is the temple of God (1 Corinthians:3:16).
The Church is the general assembly of the firstborn (Hebrews:12:23)
The Church is Christ's body (Colossians:1:18)
The Church is Christ ... in the same way one's body is himself (1 Corinthians:12:12 & Galatians:3:16,29)

Since the Church is the temple of God, and since the temple is only one of very many structures that make up the city of Jerusalem, then the Church (the temple) can't be the new Jerusalem. But the new Jerusalem is the bride of Christ. Therefore the Church is not the bride of Christ.

If this is what the Church isn't, then in this regard what is the Church?

The Church is the body of which Jesus is the head. So Jesus is a member of the Church. He is a member of the body of Christ. He is the member called the head. 1 Corinthians:12:21 states (concerning the members of this body) that, "the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you." Who is the head is here? Upon deeper reflection it becomes clear that the Church is the one seed of Galatians 3 and that the bible's notion of the word "Christ" is similar to the bible's notion of the word "God" (H430 elohiym). Both words can refer to an individual (the Father is God - Jesus is Christ). But both words can also be used as "plural nouns" and refer to a multiple of individuals that form a single object (a concept of which the United Church of God is very familiar).
It is also clear that while the Church is the body of Christ at this very moment. And also clear is that this bodyship hasn't been accomplished by marriage (because there has been no marriage and yet the body presently exists). This clearly suggests that the union of the head and the body isn't accomplished by marriage but rather by fiat. The union that is accomplished by marriage is the union between the New Jerusalem and the "plural noun" Christ of 1 Cor:12:12. Its salvation by marriage.
Running out of space -
How can one find the true Church? Depends. What is the true Church?




rwp_47

rwp_47's picture

How can one find the true Church? A more searching question might be ... What is the true Church? Because if one doesn't actually know what it is ... then how would he know if he found it even if he did?

For instance, some point to Rom:7:4 as proof that the Church is to marry Christ.

Of course the key word here is married (G1096). There are eleven verses in the New Testament where the word "married" can be found. But in every location except Rom:7:3-4 the word married is translated from G1060 , where G1060 means 1) to lead in marriage, take to wife a) to get married, to marry b) to give one's self in marriage 2) to give a daughter in marriage.

But in Romans:7:3,4 the word married isn't translated from G1060 (but instead is translated from G1096). And 1096 is used in many different places with various different meanings ... but the only place it is translated as married is in verses 3 and 4 of Romans 7. And the definition of G1096 is ... 1) to become, i.e. to come into existence, begin to be, receive being 2) to become, i.e. to come to pass, happen a) of events 3) to arise, appear in history, come upon the stage a) of men appearing in public 4) to be made, finished a) of miracles, to be performed, wrought 5) to become, be made.
As is plainly evident here, the word married (or even the idea of marriage) doesn't even show up in the slightest way in this definition. Consequently I'm left wondering why the translators used the word married in the case of G1096 in Romans:7:3-4, because it doesn't appear to make any sense? And this is even true when considered in context. Because the context is if a husband dies then the wife is loosed from the law of her husband and is free to remarry. But Romans speaks of us as having died (we've become dead to the law). But in context its not the woman who becomes dead but rather the husband who dies.
After thinking about this (and other scriptures as well) it rather strikes me that the translators likely were already predisposed to the belief that the Church is Christ's bride, and so simply used "creative translating" to support that presupposed personal belief. These are probably the same sort of fellows who'll next probably try and convince us of another one of their personal beliefs ... that being that God's a trinity.
Note: Definitions from Blue Letter Bible (web site).



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