I knew that it had to happen sooner or later. The latest "revelation" to my knowledge occurred on top of Sand Mountain in Northeast Alabama; in Albertville to be specific. It was made public in THE INSTRUCTOR, a publication of the "Church of Christ" located at 1107 Highway 431 South. (Did you know that Christ had a Church located on that exact spot of ground?) It seems clear that this new "revelation" was received (or conceived) by the minister of that Church, Carrol Sutton.
What is this new "revelation" that is now to be proclaimed as sound doctrine by all the faithful preachers of the so-called "Non-Institutitional" Church of Christ churches? At least, if it is indeed "sound doctrine" it should be preached by all of them. Here is the new "revelation:" "THE CHURCH BUILDING IS SACRED!!'' Yes, you read that right. Unbelievable as it may seem to thinking, knowledgeable saints of God, that is what this dear brother proclaimed in his October 1987 Church paper. Hence, dear brother and sister, when you enter the precincts of the Church building, including the sacred ground upon which it sits, you are on "holy ground." It is not clear yet if you will be required to "take your shoes off of your feet" when you step on this holy ground or enter into the "sacred" building.
Our brother claims that since "the church building, without question, RELATES to religion...it is religious...building," therefore, it is "sacred." He points out that "the word 'sacred' is defined as 'set apart for the service or worship of deity! This is certainly descriptive of the church building...If by 'sacred' a person means 'devoted exclusively to one service or use,' the church building is sacred."
Our brother also states: "However, 'holy' is defined by Webster to mean '1. set apart to the service of God or a god: SACRED...' The church building is set apart to the service of God. It is holy in that sense!"
Preachers, our clergy, have been preaching for several years that when you contribute into the Church coffer, that collection of wealth then and there becomes "the Lord's money" or "the Lord's treasury," or somehow turns into "holy" or "sacred money' to be used only for very specific and limited purposes as determined and controlled by the Eldership. It must follow, therefore that if this "sacred, holy money of the Lord's" is used to build a Church building, then that Church building must be holy and sacred also. Isn't that simple? See how easy it is to justify a "sacred" or "holy" building that is often called "the Lord's house" and/or "the Church of Christ!" Surely it must be HIS if it is built with HIS money!! Hence, God owns the Church building! It has been real easy to put the Lord Jesus and God the Father into the real estate business. Just think of how much property THEY own all over the world that has been built with this sacred money, the Lord's treasury.
The Roman Catholic Church has always held this position and now the Church of Christ churches are acknowledging that such is right and are still copying that largest and first of all man-made religious institutions! Do YOU believe that the Scriptures teach that a Church building erected by men according to their wisdom, belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ? Is our Lord in the real estate business? The Lord Jesus has never given any man or group of men the authority to collect money from His people and pool it in what they erroneously call "the Lord's treasury," to use it to purchase real estate, build Church buildings (as we call them), Fellowship Halls, ball fields, kindergartens, or to pay the salaries of the church organization employees. The Lord did NOT establish or start a church INSTITUTION of any kind. The Roman Catholic Church has had this deception going for centuries and it has served that totalitarian institution well in its efforts to enslave and control millions through the ages. This is the base upon which all denominations are built. What today are called "local churches of Christ," is anchored upon the same wisdom and doctrines of men.
Since the church building is now declared to be "sacred" or "holy" it must follow that it is sinful to desecrate the "holy place" with such worldly things as a bridal shower, a baby shower, a funeral, a wedding, a class party, a fellowship meal, a kindergarten, or a ball field or playground on the property "of the Lord." Such things must not be built upon or conducted on the holy ground. One big question is what about the parking lot? Since it is purchased with "the Lord's money," does this make it "sacred" also? Does this put the Lord in the parking lot business?
There still remains the bigger decision about that water fountain and the rest rooms unless they are considered "holy places" also. Oh! What problems are encountered when the clergy have "revelations" or begin to make and bind religious laws upon the church institutions.
The new "revelation" that the church building is sacred or holy moves the local Church of Christ organizations closer to Rome, if the enslaved people let the Church and its clergy continue to control their lives. As an obedient member of the local church institution, you must go to the "sacred building" (place) at the required times to engage in the prescribed (by men) rituals called "worship services," all under the control of the church officials and the hired, professional Ministers. Having been "institutionalized" in the local church to which you belong, it is your duty to obey and pay; but without any voice or vote. Religious slavery.--W. W. Wow