Which Denomination?

For the discussion of the distinctives of the various mainstream Christian denominations
Bart
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Which Denomination?

Post by Bart » Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:29 pm

My family and I are moving to a new small city - approximately 200,000. My background is Baptist but my view of the future of the church is vastly different than the Dispensational mind set that pervades Baptists. Oddly enough there are almost no 'non-denominational' churches in this very old city. The City is dominated by main line denominations. I am a believer in affiliating with a local church. Are there any suggestions out there as to what denominations to consider... I know all have pros and cons. My mom said if I ever find the perfect church I should not attend because I would ruine it! :) I may just stay Baptist and hope to find a family that is tolerant of my partial preterist/intramillennial views. Any suggestions welcome. Thanks Bart

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RICHinCHRIST
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by RICHinCHRIST » Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:39 pm

Calvary Chapel is a great denomination. It depends on the pastor, but some can be very adamant in their pre-trib dispensationalism. I find myself not bringing up eschatology with my Calvary brethren, since it never really does much good. It's something I've come to live with. But overall, they focus on teaching the Bible verse-by-verse, which is good.

That's the only real denomination I am very familiar with (since I've only walked with the Lord five or six years). I also have been part of an Acts 29 denomination, but have recently left it. They don't focus on discipleship as much as Calvary, and their sermons tend to be more heady and intellectual. The Calvary style is very simple and usually focuses on topics that really matter.

I'm earnestly searching for a home church with less of an authority structure (but there are barely any here in NJ). I'd also like to be plugged in with a church that was more charismatic, and open to the leading of the Spirit. I'm not sure where you are in that camp, but Calvary tends to not be very charismatic, even though they do believe in the gifts. I have literally no experience in charismatic churches, but I hear there are way too many which are charis-maniac. I hope to find a church that is more aware of the Spirit's role in the Church, even though I have not yet found it.

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TK
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by TK » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:36 pm

Rich wrote:
I have literally no experience in charismatic churches, but I hear there are way too many which are charis-maniac. I hope to find a church that is more aware of the Spirit's role in the Church, even though I have not yet found it.
My wife and I have come full circle.. we went from a fairly traditional Friends church to two different charismatic churches but due to what we felt were excesses and fakery we are now sort of looking for a new church to attend. I would sure like to find an "empowered evangelical" body that doesnt go crazy with the weird charistmatic stuff, because I do believe in the gifts. I guess "charismatic light" is what we are looking for.

TK

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darinhouston
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by darinhouston » Mon Feb 13, 2012 5:44 pm

In seeking my present church, I visited a Church of God, Anderson Indiana church for a while and absolutely loved it and thought it would have been the best place but for the lack of any children's ministries to speak of. With young kids, I needed at least some outlet for them, but was leaving a megachurch of many years which had a bit of an overload of "activities" and "stimulus" (if you know what I mean). The CoG folks were especially diverse in race and background and looked a lot like the Ecclesia should look like from God's perspective I think. They were pretty charismatic, but in a very rational and honest way.

Doctrines aside, I think the denomination is less important than the particular congregation -- you may just have to visit around, I'm afraid, until you find the right mix. What we found isn't perfect, but it's quite good (for us).

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steve
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by steve » Mon Feb 13, 2012 7:43 pm

The Church of God, Anderson, Indiana, is a good church doctrinally (from my perspective) because they are both amillennial and Arminian—a hard combination to find. They are not Pentecostal, but if you find one that is "moderately charismatic" you may have found the best of all worlds. Of course, as Darin says, it depends on the congregation. Love is the main ingredient to be looking for in a church.

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look2jesus
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by look2jesus » Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:51 am

TK wrote: I guess "charismatic light" is what we are looking for.
TK, that made me laugh out loud!
And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowlege and discernment...Philippians 1:9 ESV

Bart
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by Bart » Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:21 am

Thank you to all for your comments and support! Bart

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psimmond
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by psimmond » Mon Jul 21, 2014 9:15 pm

I also think COG Anderson and Calvary Chapel are good picks. I think Wesleyan/Free Methodist can also be pretty good. (You may still have to abstain from alcohol to be a member, but that may have changed.) The Missionary Church (http://www.mcusa.org/) might also be worth considering. And although I've never attended one, The Alliance denomination looks pretty good (http://www.cmalliance.org/).

Another one I like that I can't find in the south, but is easy to find up north, is the Evangelical Free.
Let me boldly state the obvious. If you are not sure whether you heard directly from God, you didn’t.
~Garry Friesen

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mattrose
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by mattrose » Mon Jul 21, 2014 9:27 pm

About 10 years ago I read Ron Rhodes book "Handbook of Christian Denominations" (or something like that). While I was reading I made notes and then made a top 10 list based on the doctrine of each.

1. Church of God Anderson
Doctrinal match made in heaven
2. Wesleyan
My happy home
3. Nazarene
Full of great people
4. Mennonite
Gotta love the liberal Ammish
5. Calvary Chapel
Verse by verse Bible churches
6. Salvation Army
Unique, awesome reputation
7. Free Methodist
Their use of 'free' was full of meaning
8. Free Will Baptist
Share my views on 'elect in the Son'
9. Christian Missionary Alliance
Only disagreemnt is with ideas on healing
10. Vineyard Church
Emphasize God's present kingdom

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mattrose
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Re: Which Denomination?

Post by mattrose » Mon Jul 21, 2014 9:30 pm

psimmond wrote: I think Wesleyan/Free Methodist can also be pretty good. (You may still have to abstain from alcohol to be a member, but that may have changed.)
In the Wesleyan Church, you have to commit to completely abstain from alcohol in order to be a COVENANT member. But they've also created a 2nd tier of membership labeled COMMUNITY member. My concise opinion of this setup is that it is pretty stupid.

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