T Nation

Protestants Q&A


#1

I hope this will be civil and not in a debate format, but in an actual Q&A in which we learn what our various protesting brothers believe in when it comes to their faith. As over the past couple of weeks/months/years I have become less and less sure of what things mean with the Protestants.

I'll pose the first question.

Where in the world is Carmen San Diego? I mean invisible church, and what is it?


#2

Hey B.C:

Glad you started this thread :slightly_smiling:

I first wanted to point out that the Catholic Q & A thread was in debate format only because me (as the OP) learn best from debates. Its true!

Anyways...

Carmen San Diego....I mean.....the invisible church, is actually visible and invisible. The church is simply all the believers who worship in Christ's name. Of course, when I go to church, I can actually see the people Im conversing with and worshiping with.

The invisible part comes from the indwelling of the Spirit of God in every true believer. Not everybody has Christ in them, only the true believers do. We can't see Christ's spirit in us (actually Im referring to the Holy Spirit, not Christ per se), so the invisible church is the Spirit of God that dwells in his physical church.


#3

I prefer Hugenots....


#4

There are anywhere between 20,000 and 30,000 Protestant denominations. As we discovered the more fundamental of these thinks everyone but themselves will go to hell. How do you reconcile this?
If these denominations believe more or less the same things, why can then not get to a unification point, make one church out of any?


#5

I'll take a stab, is it in San Diego?


#6

Most Protestant denominations are split over very insignifcant doctrines. For instance, there are Pentecostal branches that believe you cannot have received the Holy Spirit unless you have spoken in tongues and there are those that don't. Baptists, most Pentecostals, and I believe Methodists practice adult baptism while Lutherans, Presbetyrians, and Anglicans don't. Some Pentecostal branches practice Jesus name only baptism. Some do full immersion while others just sprinkle water. Some see speaking in tongues to mean speaking in a foreign earthly language while some think it's speaking in a spiritual language directly with God. Then of course you have dispensationalism vs. preterism.

You have a few rare groups that I would consider totally out of line such as the United Pentecostal Church which believes in Oneness: God is not three separate persons but manifested himself in three separate ways so while he was Jesus he was not the Holy Spirit or the Father. There is the Church of Christ which teaches you can't be saved unless you have been baptized into the Church of Christ. Other than that, I don't think any Protestant groups are heretical to the point of spending eternity in hell.

Also the Invisible Church is a phrase used to describe the body of all believers as opposed to the Visible Church (i.e. an actual church building) so it would technically be located in San Diego as well.


#7

French swine


#8

I attend a batptist church, but do not affiliate myself as anything other than a christian. That is all that really matters.


#9

I hope not, I drive my 4x4 out there and I don't need to be driving into an invisible building in the middle of the desert. Or...invisible people, I'm not sure.


#10

How am I supposed to find the invisible Church?


#11

Doesn't the Bible say something about not fighting over "small" stuff?

Why do you consider some of these things small, especially when they correlated to things Jesus said?

So a Church is not a church building? I thought it was a body of believers?


#12

Being a Christian, is all that really matters?

What is a Christian?


#13

Try lemon juice.


#14

Sometimes I hate Nicolas Cage.


#15

A christian is someone who follows Christ, by definition of terms. But a practical meaning to me is someone who trusts in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, but the only way for us to know is to see evidence through actions and spiritual fruit. So you and I do not know if someone else is a christian, we can presume given the evidence, but we do not know. Only GOD knows the motivation of the heart.

Also here is a good start,

Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."

Romans 6:23 "The wages of sin is death, But the gift of God is eternal

life through Jesus Christ our Lord."

Romans 5:8, "God demonstrates His own love for us, in

that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us!"

Romans 10:13 "Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved!"

Romans 10:9,10 "...If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, you shall be saved; for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation."


#16

How does one know if they are Christian, or how are you supposed to find another Christian?


#17

A christian is someone who follows Christ, by definition of terms. But a practical meaning to me is someone who trusts in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, but the only way for us to know is to see evidence through actions and spiritual fruit. So you and I do not know if someone else is a christian, we can presume given the evidence, but we do not know. Only GOD knows the motivation of the heart.

Also here is a good start,

Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."

Romans 6:23 "The wages of sin is death, But the gift of God is eternal

life through Jesus Christ our Lord."

Romans 5:8, "God demonstrates His own love for us, in

that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us!"

Romans 10:13 "Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved!"

Romans 10:9,10 "...If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, you shall be saved; for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation."


#18

Yes which is why I think most Christians should ignore minor differences over things like the age of baptism which is never clearly defined anyway. Jesus never mentioned anything about the gifts of the Holy Spirit dying out in the Apostolic Age like some say. He never said speaking in tongues was necessary or unnecessary. He also never gave dates as to when the events of the Revelation were to occur so you can debate whether many happened or will still happen. Ultimately, those things seem small.

I think practicing something like Jesus name only baptism or Oneness modalism is more significant. I wouldn't advocate a church that did these.

I'm no theologian when it comes to the Invisible Church, but you have the visible Church which could be the actual church building, the physical body of believers (you can see them). Then you have the Invisible church which is the body of believers intangibles as in their faith in God. Comes from Matthew 7:21-24.


#19

Yes which is why I think most Christians should ignore minor differences over things like the age of baptism which is never clearly defined anyway. Jesus never mentioned anything about the gifts of the Holy Spirit dying out in the Apostolic Age like some say. He never said speaking in tongues was necessary or unnecessary. He also never gave dates as to when the events of the Revelation were to occur so you can debate whether many happened or will still happen. Ultimately, those things seem small.

I think practicing something like Jesus name only baptism or Oneness modalism is more significant. I wouldn't advocate a church that did these.

I'm no theologian when it comes to the Invisible Church, but you have the visible Church which could be the actual church building, the physical body of believers (you can see them). Then you have the Invisible church which is the body of believers intangibles as in their faith in God. Comes from Matthew 7:21-24.


#20

Describing a protestant group as heretical seems like a misnomer based on the fact that there is no set beliefs among protestants. These people are heretics to whom?

And considering baptism essential has been a debate among many protestant groups. The view is certainly not unique to the Churches of Christ. There are many autonomous Churches of Christ (congregations) that compose the Church of Christ (or simply the Church) which you join through baptism. It isn't, however, a stipulation that you must be baptized or even worship at A Church of Christ to be a member. You just have to be a member of the Church in general to be saved.