Which Church? New Testament Churches Had No Headquarters On Earth

Which Church? New Testament Churches Had No Sectarian Title

Modern ecclesiastical bodies consist of a central authority with numerous congregations responsible to that central office. The format differs from group to group, but there are general assemblies, synods of bishops, central oversights and so on. This concept of a headquarters on earth is alien to the Word of God. New Testament churches were churches of God, 1 Corinthians 1:2, and each one was responsible to God alone. This is demonstrated in the seven letters that the Lord dictated to the churches in Asia, Revelation 2 and 3. There is no hint that these churches were responsible to each other, or to any central authority, but to the Lord Jesus Christ, the one who walked among the golden lampstands, Revelation 1:12-13.

The autonomous character of local assemblies is a safeguard against false teaching. Error affecting one assembly need not corrupt another. If a central authority exists, and the devil infiltrates it, false teaching will then be pushed out to every congregation in the group to become the compulsory creed for all. So then, every local church should stand independent of each other, and responsible to the Lord alone. This does not mean that there should be no fellowship between assemblies. Scripture allows for this as can be seen, for example, in Acts chapter 11. Barnabas came from Jerusalem to Antioch to teach and encourage the new assembly there. At the end of the chapter, the believers at Antioch sent a monetary gift to the needy Christians in Judaea. Thus there was both spiritual and material fellowship between these two communities of God’s people.


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  1. Excellent point Jack. How amazing the Church is and each local group has a unique ministry and service for the Lord. Every assembly is accountable to the Lord only. We also have to be careful that we don’t create an environment that is like a denomination and form a loose set of requirements for being called an assembly. This is a very tricky topic but one that often goes ignored. I liked your reference to the churches in Revelation!!

  2. Fr. Brent S.

    Protestant churches have no right to exist and their very existence is mortally sinful. Christ founded One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church and there is no salvation outside this Church. I live in an area in East Tennessee were Protestant are the majority. They spend their time at feel-good prayer services. They do not believe in good works. Rather, they go out and tell every Catholic they meet that they are damned for worshiping Mary and statues. They’ve even heckled me while I was going into the local liquor store for my weekly a bottle of whiskey. To say the least, I’m sick of these disgusting people and the way they bully Catholics.

    Fr. Brent S.

    • I am so sorry to hear about your unfortunate experiences with the ‘protestants’ in your community.

      In your remarks you raised the issue of good works… I would like to comment on this as I believe there is a great deal of misunderstanding on this important issue. Ephesians 2:8-10 makes it very clear that good works ARE VERY IMPORTANT for Christians (v10). However, good works has nothing to do with salvation (v9). Salvation is by grace alone, not good works. After salvation, however, Christians should be characterized by good works.

    • I am also sorry you have experienced Christians in this way. There have been many people in the name of Christ do terrible things to others. That however does not reflect on Christ Himself and what He taught. His message was clear and simple. He said “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but by me.” What powerful words these are. No matter what happens to us we can be assured of His word. He is the only way to salvation. I am so thankful I have Him as my Savior!