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Originally published in "The Lord's Coming Herald & Wesleyan Bible Prophecy Advocate," Winter Edition 2007

Is The Body Of Christ Divided?

Not according to Scripture.

According to human experience, however, we do indeed find among us those "envying, strife, and divisions," which indicate that many who profess to be followers of the Christ are "yet carnal and walk as men."

So what is the cure for sectarian divisiveness in the body of Christ? Is it not within the materials of the Christian foundation itself?

"Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (I Cor. 3:11). The unity of the Christian church, friends, is to be found within the commonality of its faith, or doctrine, concerning the person, the work, the coming, and the kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. So what do we know, believe, internalize, and teach/confess about the historical Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ?

Friends, believe it or not, we are not all on the same page here. We may think we are, but we really aren't. No, not even in the conservative Wesleyan Holiness movement (of which we ourselves are a part) are we on the same page concerning Jesus and His kingdom.

For example, there are those among us, called dispensational premillennialists, who do not really believe that the Messiah has already established His kingdom. Rather, they are looking for Him to return to "set it up," as they say, and that in spite of the fact that nowhere in the New Testament itself is this "setting up of the kingdom" terminology ever applied to Christ's second coming.

Only one doctrine of the "kingdom" of the Messiah exists in Scripture, friends, and we are not all on the same page as the New Testament concerning it. Given this rift in the foundation of the Christian system, then, is it any wonder that the modern church is so divided?

Examples could be multiplied as to how modern dispensational teachings subvert the ideological foundations of the Christian system. Nor will it do to suggest that differences of doctrine in eschatology, or last things, should be tolerated because of so-called "pan-millennialism," or the idea that nobody knows what the Bible teaches anyway.

That sounds like a coup detent for modern liberal theology to me! Think about it! What would make the Devil any happier than for one to accept such an agnostic sentiment. The logical slippery slope here is that if nobody can know what the Bible teaches about eschatology, then ALL Christian doctrine is likewise up for grabs, and we are left to the vageries of mere existential subjectivistic humanism in our religion.

Be not deceived--those who suggest such things, in our circles at least, really don't mean them.What they really mean is that any deviation from the stranglehold that acceptance of Darbyite dispensational theology has upon them and theirs should not be disturbed. "Nobody knows what the Bible teaches about eschatology" in this case means: "nobody, that is, except the dispensational premillennialist--don't rock our boat!"

Enough said. The fact is that unity flows out of the foundation of the Christian faith itself--Darbyism is "another gospel" that destroys that foundation!

Related Article Links

The Faith Of The Church
Jesus Doctrine Of The Kingdom