Undenominational Christianity (Part Three)

“Reunification” is a buzz word in the Restoration Movement.

When the Restoration Movement started they were calling for everyone to drop their denominational titles and be “Christians only.”  This was all going on in the early 1800s and was being led by three guys in particular Barton Stone in Kentucky.  The other two were a father son pair who had done battle with the Presbyterian Church Thomas and Alexander Campbell.  Eventually their seperate movements would come together and form the Stone-Campbell movement in 1832. 

Eventually however these movements broke up into three seperate groups. One group broke away over arguments about funding things like orphanages and missionary societies.  The second group split off over the issue of instrumental music.  The argument is always that neither of these things were in the Bible, therefore we should not have them today. 

Reunification is the idea and hope that, in time, these groups will come back together.

Some people are for it.  Some people are against it.  Some people are for it if they admit they were wrong and come back begging. 

I am for it.  All the time there are small displays of solidarity and unity.  Recently many churches around the country hosted unity communion services.*  I have not been able to be a part of one of these, but I believe that they are a step in the right direction.  These services are obviously recognitions of what I talked about in previous posts and that is recognizing members of other congregations as brothers and sisters in Christ. 

This is also a step in the right direction for reaching ther real goals of the Restoration Movement–unifying not dividing. 

If you have been to any of these Reunification events, please tell me about it.  I am curious and inspired.

*Special Thanks to Kate Dear for the Link.

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About coleyoakum

My name is Coleman Yoakum. I am formerly a student at Harding University. Today you can find me in Detroit Michigan doing what I can to expand the Kingdom of God and preparing to start an intentional community in Pontiac. I enjoy reading, writing, photography, music and politics. I am sure that all of these things will find their way to this blog from time to time. Twitter: coleyoakum Facebook: Coleman Yoakum Email: coleyoakum@gmail.com Flickr: flickr.com/photos/coleyoakum/

3 responses to “Undenominational Christianity (Part Three)”

  1. Aaron J. Rushton says :

    West End Church of Christ in Nashville, where my folks and I are going now, had one of these back before Christmas. It was very powerful. Lots of stuff not in English. We had a guy from one of the Iglesias around town lead a prayer in English and Spanish, and then a singing group from Malawi? Zimbabwe? I wish I could remember, but they were from somewhere in Africa and had been flown in pretty much just for this event. It was pretty amazing.

    One of the things that was the most inspiring about it was that the spirit of the entire movement actually came through, even if it was just for an hour or so. We all focused on the communion – the commonality we all share in Christ. Instruments or not, women in the pulpit or not, orphanages or not, kitchens in the building or not… We managed to all focus on the uniting power of Jesus instead of the dividing power of man.

    It was nice.

  2. coleyoakum says :

    See, that just sounds awesome. One of my favorite chapels at Harding was an international chapel with sings in different languages, a lesson in a different language, and then a prayer in another language.

    When we were in Greece we walked into a church on a Sunday morning toward the end. They were baptizing people. But every time someone walked up to get baptized the preacher talked to them in a different language. We asked someone and he said, “Oh yeah, he is blessing them and asking for their confession.” The man told us each language. There was Turkish, Arabic, Greek, Albanian, German, Russian… that was a cool thing. They sang a worship song in every language as well. It was a cool experience.

    I know that is more of an international thing, rather than a reunification thing, but you comment reminded me how powerful those were.

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