CHURCH OF CHRIST DISCIPLES OF CHRIST INTERNATIONAL
This declaration of our faith is
a synopsis of our faith in God and belief in the life, death, and
resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. The doctrine of the
Church of Christ agrees with the holy scripture. It is not
good enough for us to accept a statement of faith independent of
scripture. The totality of the scripture supports our belief.
Note: God is no respecter of persons, and neither is God's Church.
In this statement; the use of male pronouns also includes women in
references to members of the Church as well as to members of the
ministry. There is no male or female in the work of the Lord, "for
[we] are all one in Christ Jesus" (Galatians 3:28).
THE FOUNDER-JESUS CHRIST
We believe that Christ Himself instituted His Church
and that He received full authority from God to do so (Mark 9:7). In
Matthew 16:18, Jesus tells His disciples that the Church would be
built on Him, and because of this Satan would have no lasting power
The Church is founded on the love of God (John 3:16).
This is an unchanging love, a love that cares tenderly for a person
even when she or he is wrong. God's love loves the sinner, but hates
the sins in the person's life. "But God commendeth his love toward
us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans
THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH
The Church of Christ Disciples of Christ is a New Testament Church.
This does not in any way preclude our belief in the Old Testament,
for it served as a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ. But after
faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster (Galatians
3:23-26). We believe the entire Bible from Genesis to Malachi and
Matthew to Revelation; to be the revealed Word of God. We are a New
Testament Church because our salvation, hope, and eternal life came
through Christ Jesus.
THE MEMBERS "DISCIPLES"
We believe that Christ designated a name by which His followers are
to be called. That name is
"Disciples" (Matthew 10:42; Luke 14:26; John 8:31). We believe that
because Christ chose this
name for His followers, it should be held in reverence.
THE EMBLEM-THE FISH
Among the first Disciples of Christ nearly 2000 years ago, it is
said that in the struggle of the Church with the civil authorities,
the early Disciples used the sign of the fish as a secret code
to protect their identity in the midst of their enemies. The Church
of Christ Disciples of Christ carries that same emblem today.
THE PERSONS OF THE GODHEAD
The Doctrine of God
We believe that God created all existence and without God
was not anything made. We believe that there is but one God, who is
infinitely perfect, existing externally in three Persons: Father,
Son, and Holy Spirit.
THE WORD OF GOD
We believe that the doctrine of the Church of Christ is
scripturally and spiritually based on the Word of God (Matthew 16:18,
Acts 1:8). We believe that the revealed word of God (scripture) is
the only authority by which Disciples of Christ are to be governed. We
believe that all claims of
spiritual knowledge must be supported by the Bible). We believe that
the word of God is the final revelation in their faith from God (Isaiah
8:16; Revelation 22:18-19). We believe the word of God is complete, and
was made complete when Christ redeemed us from the sentence of hell by
offering Himself as a ransom for our sins (Romans 5:8). The
word of God is the sword of the Spirit (Heb. 4:12). The Spirit is quick
fast-acting), powerful (alive and active), sharp (piercing, to the
point, dagger sharp), and discerning (revealing). We believe all
scripture is given by inspiration of God (revealed), and is profitable
for doctrine (teaching), for reproof (criticism), for correction
(righting wrong or discipline), for
instruction in righteousness (direction for holy living) and (2 Timothy
THE DOCTRINE OF JESUS CHRIST
In the Gospel of John, we hear it most directly: "The
Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1). Christ is not just
a man, sent from God (like John the Baptist). He was not just a prophet
or an angel. He is Emmanuel, God with us (Matthew 1:23, John 14:8-11).
We believe that Jesus Christ is the only true Son of God. We believe
that Christ was in the creation act with God in the beginning (John
1:1). We believe that Jesus was incarnated through the giving of birth
young virgin named Mary. Jesus came to forgive men and women of sin,
heal of sickness, give abundant life, save of its shortcomings, and to
introduce the Holy Spirit. We believe Christ died on a cross in
Calvary, and then He rose from both death and the grave. We believe that
Christ is active in the lives of all who worship Him. We believe that He
is preparing a resting place for His Church (John
THE DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
The Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost) is a Person. The Holy Spirit
is the Spirit of God Himself, therefore the Holy Spirit is someone and
not something. Receiving the Holy Spirit brings about
conviction, sanctification, regeneration, adoption, salvation, guidance,
comfort, teaching, gifts, fruit, and eternal life. The Holy Spirit,
empowers the believer to manifest the gifts of the Holy Spirit / working
of/ listed in Corinthians 12 and (word of wisdom, word of knowledge,
faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, discerning of spirits, tongue,
interpretation of tongue, and the tenth gift, the gift of love (to which
Paul devotes the entire 13th chapter of 1 Corinthians). Believers also
gain the fruit of the spirit and fruit (love, joy, peace,
long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance
listed in Galatians 5:22-23.
THE ORDINANCES OF THE CHURCH OF CHRIST
THE GREAT COMMISSION
The Church of Christ,
Disciples of Christ International recognizes preaching and teaching
the Gospel as its first priority in obedience to the command given to
the first disciples by Jesus Himself. "Go ye therefore, and teach all
nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and
of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have
commanded you" (Matthew 28:19-20).
We believe that if one is to
follow the path of righteousness of Jesus Christ, she or he must
be totally submerged under water, which is known as "water baptism."
Baptism symbolizes death and new life in Christ Jesus. "We are buried
with Him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from
the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in
newness of life" (Romans 6:4).
THE LORD'S SUPPER - The Bread and the Fruit of the Vine
We believe that the observance of the Lord's Supper
(Communion) by all believers is essential. The Lord's Supper symbolizes
God's love for us through Christ's suffering and death for our
salvation. We believe that as often as we keep this observance, we show
forth (symbolize) His death and suffering (John 13:15; John 13:1-7; Luke
We believe that, according to scripture, Christ
demonstrated one of the greatest acts of humility, love, and
self-sacrifice by lowering Himself to wash His Disciples' feet. While
we agree that feet washing is not in and of itself a prerequisite to
salvation, we do believe that all who confess
salvation (baptism of the Holy Spirit) should partake in the ordinance
of the washing of one another's feet.
ON SALVATION AND GRACE
We believe that men and women are carnal and, thereby,
sinful. Because we are born in sin, there needs to be an atoning and
redeeming process undertaken between Christ and the individual. We can
only be restored to divine favor through salvation. This redemptive
operation, which comes only through the initiation of the Holy Spirit,
is brought about by repentance (a change of heart) toward God and faith
in our Lord Jesus Christ, which brings about conversion and
sanctification (purifying) (Romans 10:8-13).