<<subgroup within Christianity>>

These distinct church groupings within Christianity were often formed when a leader saw a particular ‘new’ truth in the Bible and started a fresh, breakaway gathering with the emphasis on that aspect of teaching. However, no one

     Respect and appreciate the emphases of other                         denominations in the “Body of Christ”

denomination has a monopoly on divine truth or can claim to represent the whole church of God, of which they are only a part. (In contrast, groups which consider they alone have all the truth and maintain exclusive practices are termed sects).

Typically there are only very small variations in the beliefs and doctrine of different denominations, the result of the degree of emphasis. As Christians we should love one another deeply, focusing on the many similarities that unite for “We are all one in Christ Jesus” rather than emphasising the few ‘non-essential’ points where we differ (Gal 3:28; 1 Jn 4:7,11,12).

Focus on the truths of ‘the                 gospel that unites’

Unity and diversity (not division) are both important in the church. Regular intermixing or networking of the different Christian groups in an area is to be recommended provided no one tries to ‘convert’ the other congregations to their beliefs or steal another group’s followers. Satan’s intention is to get splits between believers as he knows there is enormous power in unity while this is seriously reduced when there is division (Ps 133:1,3; Lk 11:18).

If we see another individual or group straying from the non-negotiable truths of the faith (preaching another gospel) it is the responsibility of Godly leaders to confront them with humility and love and present the truth more fully (Act 18:24-26).

See also: church, cults, doctrine, error, non-negotiable, sect, theology, tolerate, unity.

Copyright © 2022 Bible Dictionary. All rights reserved. Website design by fuel.