Name: Churches of Christ
Denomination type: Churches of Christ- Christian Churches
Year Reporting: 2010
Website: Visit Website
Description: Churches of Christ are autonomous congregations whose members follow the Bible alone in matters of faith and practice. There are no central offices or officers. Publications and institutions related to the churches are either under local congregational control or are independent of any congregation. Churches of Christ shared a common fellowship in the 19th century with the Christian Churches/Churches of Christ and the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). This fellowship ended in the decades following the American Civil War due to erosion of confidence in Scripture among many of those who formed denominational ties. This shift in belief embraced theistic evolution, doubted the complete truth of Scripture, and permitted practices foreign to the New Testament into the work and worship of the church. Chief among the changes in practice were using instrumental music in worship, permitting women to officiate in worship services, and conducting the work of the church through centralized agencies. Churches of Christ, following this division, remained strongly united in their belief in the inerrancy and sufficiency of Scripture. From this standpoint, they affirm faith in one God who subsists in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; they teach that salvation is through the sacrificial death of Christ and is available to all who come to God through repentance and faith, initially expressed through confession of faith and baptism by immersion. Churches of Christ follow the New Testament pattern to direct every facet of the teaching and work of the church.