Is"Church of Christ" Scriptural?
Introduction: It is good that we are concerned about what is scriptural. Indeed, we are taught to have authority for all we believe and practice (I Pet. 4: 11, I Thes. 5: 21). Many will be lost in the Day of Judgment because they worked iniquity or lawlessness (Matt. 7: 21-27, no authority for their beliefs and consequent practices).
I. Religious names of churches.
A. We are told that there are now thousands of different denominations in America. Each religion has a name.
B. However, no more thought is usually given to the scripturalness of a designation than to the religion itself (cp. Col. 3: 17).
C. Church names often glorify their founder, philosophy, or when they claimed to have begun. Lutheran, Baptist, and Pentecostal are examples.
II. Scriptural designations.
A. We read of "the church," "church of the Lord," and "church of God" (Col. 1: 18; Acts 20: 28, ASV; I Cor. 1: 2).
B. You will notice that these descriptive phrases glorify God, not man, particular teaching, or time of origin.
C. You never read of Lutheran, Baptist, or Pentecostal because these religions were started many centuries after Jesus built his church (Matt. 16: 18, 19, Acts 2: 47, KJV).
III. Regarding "church of Christ."
A. We read the following: "Salute one another with an holy kiss. The churches of Christ salute you" (Rom. 16: 16).
B. Christ is the founder of his church, he provides the teaching, he has assigned the work, he is her husband and head, and he died for the church (Matt. 16: 19; 2 Jn. 9-11; I Tim. 3: 15; Eph. 5: 22, 23; Acts 20: 28).
C. Moreover, Christ is the savior of the church (Eph. 5: 23). Therefore, it should be no surprise that we read of "churches of Christ."
D. It is true that it takes more than the right "name" to be the Lord's church. However, the right designation is required.
Conclusion: Men can be united around Jesus' name and glorification, however, seeking human matters divide (I Cor. 1: 10 ff.).