Do you know about Christian churches and churches of Christ?
Though not part of a denomination, our church is part of a fellowship of independent churches within Christianity, known as the Restoration Movement, with the conviction that a divided Christianity is hampered in bringing the world to Christ, which is the Great Commission He gave us [Matthew 28:19-20]. Jesus prayed of His followers in John 17:20-21, “…that they may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” The reason this unity is necessary is so that people may believe in Christ.
Early in the 19th century, leaders from various denominations in different parts of America, unaware of one another, came to believe that followers of Christ should discard the divisive spirit of many centuries. They passionately desired to restore the church described in the Bible by laying down all the baggage of sectarian names and creeds. Once they began discovering one another’s existence, they gathered not to start another sect, but to call people back to the church of the New Testament, unbound by traditions and rules of men.
It’s estimated that there are close to 6,000 such churches in America with over one million members, and at least that many overseas as well. These churches today support some 38 colleges and seminaries, 1,000 missionaries around the world, and 1,000 U.S. benevolent and parachurch agencies.