The non-denominational churches of Christ are about 13,000 independent congregations in the USA that have mutual agreement and fellowship, not to be confused with church of Christ (Mormons), united church of Christ or international churches of Christ (ICOC).
The non-denominational chruches of Christ are a relaxed, casual, friendly people who meet first day of the week (Sunday), a hour bible study and a hour worship service, and Sunday evening and Wednesday evening bible study.
Our buildings where we congregate, are modest, free of religious articles, such as statues, symbols, and the attire of our speakers, are usually a simple suit and tie.
We refer to ourselves as non-denominational, not to mean a sole, lone congregation, but to put light on the pattern, teaching of governance, given to us by Jesus Christ and his apostles.
This form of independent congregational organizing has been in America for hundreds of years and in Europe going all the way back to being instituted by the Apostles to continue on after their deaths.
The apostle Paul wrote standards to the churches, to have elders, over only the congregation they attend (non-denominational).
Bishop is a transliteration from latin, it's correct translation is overseer, and use interchangeable with the term elder in the new testament.
1 Timothy 3:1-7 1 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop (overseer, elder), he desireth a good work. 2 A bishop (overseer, elder) then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) 6 Not a novice, F3 lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
It is written Jesus Christ is our perfect eternal high priest forever, the head of the church, sits on the right side of God, replacing the imperfect high priest of the old covenant.
It is written all believers are a royal holy priest hood (figuratively), under the new covenant.
There are no orders by Jesus or his Apostles to set up a literal priesthood.
Their are no orders by Jesus or his apostles to have a centralize, small group of men, as elders, or in a single man, to rule over multiple congregations (denominationalism).
Members of the non-denominational churches of Christ history goes back to the 1700's in America, and in Europe going back to the day of Pentecost, taught the original, essential teaching of salvation, one is saved by mercy, grace (unmeritorious right acts), through faith (God's persuasion) = hear, believe, repent (turn from sin), confess Jesus is the son of God the Christ and be baptized (immersion, water) in Christ for forgiveness of sins.
I hope the few articles and links listed on christjustified.com, will be helpful in your search for truth in the word of God. The main page of christjustified.com, in the right column, are my writings on various topics, from an independent mindset, studying the bible the last 32 years. The other links on the web site, consist of various members and ministers, their discerning of the scriptures, among the non-denominational churches of Christ.
As the creator of Christjustified.com, I have presented to my best ability the main teachings of the churches of Christ, and my personal bible study observations, to help congregations, and individuals to further their learning. This does no way speak for the churches of Christ as a whole. There is no official web site of the non-denominational churches of Christ, being there is no centralized hierarchy among the congregations. Individuals and congregations take upon themselves to host web sites, presenting their case to the world.
Listed below are some teachings of King Solomon and Jesus, that speak volumes of the beginning meekness, righteous spirit (mental disposition) one should have if he or she wants to please God in spirit and truth. Thank you for your time, may God bless you in search through God's word for truth, understanding, wisdom, justice, mercy, compassion, love.
Proverbs1:1 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel: 2 To know wisdom and instruction; To discern the words of understanding; 3 To receive instruction in wise dealing, In righteousness and justice and equity; 4 To give prudence to the simple, To the young man knowledge and discretion: 5 That the wise man may hear, and increase in learning; And that the man of understanding may attain unto sound counsels: 6 To understand a proverb, and a figure, The words of the wise, and their dark sayings. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Proverbs 1:20 Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets:
21 She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying,
22 How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?
23 Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.
Proverb 2:10 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;
11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee:
12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh forward things;
Proverbs 3:13 Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.
14 For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.
15 She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.
16 Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour.
17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.
18 She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.
Matthew 4:1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. 2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he afterward hungered. 3 And the tempter came and said unto him, If thou art the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.
4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.5: Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, 6: And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
7: Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. 8: Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 9: And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.
10: Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. 11: Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
Matthew 6:25 Therefore I say unto you, be not anxious for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than the food, and the body than the raiment? 26 Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not ye of much more value then they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add one cubit unto the measure of his life? 28 And why are ye anxious concerning raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: 29 yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God doth so clothe the grass of the field, which to-day is, and to-morrow is cast into the oven, [shall he] not much more [clothe] you, O ye of little faith? 31 Be not therefore anxious, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 For after all these things do the Gentiles seek; for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first his kingdom, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 34 Be not therefore anxious for the morrow: for the morrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
Matthew 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy by thy name, and by thy name cast out demons, and by thy name do many mighty works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. 24 Every one therefore that heareth these words of mine, and doeth them, shall be likened unto a wise man, who built his house upon the rock: 25 and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and if fell not: for it was founded upon the rock. 26 And every one that heareth these words of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand: 27 and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and smote upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall thereof. 28 And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished these words, the multitudes were astonished at his teaching: 29 for he taught them as [one] having authority, and not as their scribes.
Matthew 10:34 Think not that I came to send peace on the earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I came to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law: 36 and a man's foes [shall be] they of his own household. 37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
Matthew 11:25 At that season Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou didst hide these things from the wise and understanding, and didst reveal them unto babes: 26 yea, Father, for so it was well-pleasing in thy sight. 27 All things have been delivered unto me of my Father: and no one knoweth the Son, save the Father; neither doth any know the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son willeth to reveal [him.] 28 Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Matthew 18:3 and said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye turn, and become as little children, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven. 4 Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me:
Matthew 22:34 But the Pharisees, when they heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, gathered themselves together. 35 And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question, trying him: 36 Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 And he said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second like [unto it] is this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. 40 On these two commandments the whole law hangeth, and the prophets.
Mark: 4:3 Hearken: Behold, the sower went forth to sow: 4 and it came to pass, as he sowed, some [seed] fell by the way side, and the birds came and devoured it. 5 And other fell on the rocky [ground], where it had not much earth; and straightway it sprang up, because it had no deepness of earth: 6 and when the sun was risen, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away. 7 And other fell among the thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. 8 And others fell into the good ground, and yielded fruit, growing up and increasing; and brought forth, thirtyfold, and sixtyfold, and a hundredfold. 9 And he said, Who hath ears to hear, let him hear. 10 And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parables. 11 And he said unto them, Unto you is given the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all things are done in parables: 12 that seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest haply they should turn again, and it should be forgiven them. 13 And he saith unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how shall ye know all the parables? 14 The sower soweth the word. 15 And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; and when they have heard, straightway cometh Satan, and taketh away the word which hath been sown in them. 16 And these in like manner are they that are sown upon the rocky [places], who, when they have heard the word, straightway receive it with joy; 17 and they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, straightway they stumble. 18 And others are they that are sown among the thorns; these are they that have heard the word, 19 and the cares of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful. 20 And those are they that were sown upon the good ground; such as hear the word, and accept it, and bear fruit, thirtyfold, and sixtyfold, and a hundredfold.
Mark 10:23 And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 24 And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26 And they were astonished exceedingly, saying unto him, Then who can be saved? 27 Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for all things are possible with God.
1Corinthians 13:4 Love suffereth long, [and] is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, 5 doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not its own, is not provoked, taketh not account of evil; 6 rejoiceth not in unrighteousness, but rejoiceth with the truth; 7 beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. 8 Love never faileth
I John 2:15: Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16: For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 17: And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
About me, had a lot of questions at eighteen. Deciding in 1984; I should give the bible my effort, to see if there was truly a God, and if I can understand Him. If there ever was going to be a time in my life to totally devote myself, without distractions of family, friends, to an honest, in-depth search it was then. Deciding to put aside everything I was ever taught, which wasn't much, except for a lot of traditions, being raised Catholic. Schooled in three grammar Catholic schools up to 8th grade, and then two public high schools. I read the gospels, proverbs, and psalms. I found most interesting proverbs and parables of Jesus, gave me the will and spirit to realize the search for wisdom and understanding of God in the bible, was noble and attainable. Read Jesus' parables one by one, each reading ten or so times very slowly, trying to discern the smallest principles they offered. Giving me a spirit (mental disposition) that the bible could be understood, if by the blessing of God, he will supply me with the endurance, perseverance, to search the dark sayings of the bible for answers, truth.
I began to pray and fast some, losing about forty pounds. I prayed for the wisdom of King Solomon's proverbs, and the wisdom of Jesus, I saw King Solomon’s wisdom as a stepping stone to Jesus" wisdom, very beneficial. I prayed for mercy, God might reveal his ways to me, which from reading I perceived he didn’t have too. Prayed that God might have mercy on me, reveal to me, where if any in my area are there true worshipers, of him gathered.
After three months of study, trying to build a foundation. Building from the smallest principles, so I may have the knowledge to discern much larger deeper principles, dark sayings of wisdom, someday. An elderly women and middle age woman, came to my front door, and invited me to the non-denominational church of Christ, in a town some distance away, which I never heard of the church of Christ in my life till that day. For I lived in a mostly Catholic northern city.
I was cautious, I asked some questions of the women, with the knowledge I learned from my bedroom study. They answered them in a reasonable way. I ask then for the phone number of the church. I called and ask some more questions which again they answered reasonable. Soon I went and visited the church, and studied more with them, and was persuaded the bible taught believers immersion (water) saves, soon after I was immersed into Christ for the forgiveness of sins.
I attended all the churches of Christ in my area, seeking a greater depth of study from various preachers. I researched the history of the churches of Christ through the years.
John Jerome Nowak
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