• TeMah LoraLee

Which Christian Denomination Is Best? (Y1.T2.D44)

Updated: Apr 14


Unsplash; "Daniel Tseng"

 

No denomination is better than another.


And I speak from personal experience. For the past forty years, God has granted me access to at least a dozen different Christian assemblies across the spectrum because of job relocations.


I've sung classical hymns accompanied by a pipe organ and also donned a choir robe swaying to soulful gospel in rhythmic step. I've worshiped God in silence in mountain-top monasteries and danced and shouted on dirt floors in Africa.


Wherever I went looking for God, I found him. And if you were to insist that I tell you which experience was best, I'd tell you the question is like asking about my favorite cuisine.


I love meals that originated in China, as well as Mexico. I’m also a fan of Indian, Italian, African, and Thai food. With that said, I'm not a fan of steak, burgers, or bacon which happens to be very popular in the United States.


My personal preference for starches (pasta, rice, and potatoes) doesn’t make them better than someone else’s craving for meat (beef or pork). I felt the same about finding a place to worship, I understood how people have different tastes when it comes to music and sermon styles.


This didn't mean I was cavalier in choosing a church in my new community. As much as I wouldn’t eat at a filthy restaurant overrun with vermin, I never stayed at a church that supported false teaching—regardless of its denomination.


In every church I’ve attended, I met genuine, loving brothers and sisters. And in every single congregation, I found the false, bitter and judgmental. And this includes pastors and ministers.


When looking for a place to serve God I made sure it stayed true to the essentials of Christianity:

  1. Belief and confess: (Deuteronomy 6:4–5, Romans 10:9)

  2. Repent and be baptized: (Acts 2:38)

  3. Serve through love (Mark 12:29–31)

And I avoided places that:

  1. Twisted Bible verses to justify ungodly behavior (see Genesis 3:1–4, Matthew 4:1–11)

  2. Sought to control my thoughts and choices. (see post)

  3. Had leaders that didn't walk the talk (see post)

Once I settled those issues, I enjoyed praising God, whether that was from a pipe organ playing a classical hymn or a rock band with an electric guitar.


God wants us to enjoy our time with him and other believers. Remember—our faith isn't based on denominational doctrines but biblical truths.


Choose Wisely


33 When the multitudes heard it, they were astonished at his teaching. 34 But the Pharisees, when they heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, gathered themselves together. (Matthew 22:33–34)

Matthew 22:35–36, Mark 12:28, Luke 10:25


26 He said to him, “What is written in the law? How do you read it?” (Luke 10:26)


29 Jesus answered, “The greatest is, ‘Hear, Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one: (Mark 12:29)


Matthew 22:37–39, Mark 12:30–31a, Luke 10:27


31b There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:31b)


40 The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:40)


32 The scribe said to him, “Truly, teacher, you have said well that he is one, and there is none other but he, 33 and to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbor as himself, is more important than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.”


34a When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from God’s Kingdom.” (Mark 12:32–34a)


28 He said to him, “You have answered correctly. Do this, and you will live.”

29 But he, desiring to justify himself, asked Jesus, “Who is my neighbor?”

30 Jesus answered, “A certain man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who both stripped him and beat him, and departed, leaving him half dead. 31 By chance a certain priest was going down that way. When he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 In the same way a Levite also, when he came to the place, and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a certain Samaritan, as he traveled, came where he was. When he saw him, he was moved with compassion, 34 came to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. He set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 On the next day, when he departed, he took out two denarii, gave them to the host, and said to him, ‘Take care of him. Whatever you spend beyond that, I will repay you when I return.’ 36 Now which of these three do you think seemed to be a neighbor to him who fell among the robbers?”

37 He said, “He who showed mercy on him.”

Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.” (Luke 10:28–37)


39 Some of the scribes answered, “Teacher, you speak well.” (Luke 20:39)

Mark 12:34b, Luke 20:40


41 Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them a question, 42 saying, “What do you think of the Christ? Whose son is he?”


They said to him, “Of David.” (Matthew 22:41–42)

Mark 12:35, Luke 20:41

Matthew 22:43–45, Mark 12:36–37a, Luke 20:42–44


46 No one was able to answer him a word, neither did any man dare ask him any more questions from that day forward. (Matthew 22:46)


37b The common people heard him gladly. (Mark 12:37b)


Mark 12:38–40, Luke 20:45–47


Meditation Moment


Dear God,


Help me to provoke my fellow believers to love and good works and not forsake assembling together (Hebrews 10:24–25). You have put all things in subjection; the fullness of You exists within the assembly of believers (Ephesians 1:22–23). You are the head of the Christian body. You are the beginning and the firstborn from the dead. In all things, You have preeminence (Colossians 1:18). Your grace alone rules.


Amen.


Meditation Music Link

 

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