Vol. 4, No. 11
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Many churches have special names, but the New Testament church has no name. Denominations have proper names. The word "denominate" means to "name" something. The New Testament church is called the house of the Lord, the family of God, the body of Christ and the kingdom of Christ (Galatians 6:10; Ephesians 1:22-23; Colossians 1:13; Hebrews 3:5-6; 1 Timothy 3:15), with no proper name.
The individual members of the New Testament church have a proper name. Their name is not "disciple," though they are disciples (Acts 9:1). Their name is not "brethren," though they are brothers and sisters (Acts 9:30). Their name is not "saints," though they are saints (Acts 9:32). Their proper and divinely given name is "Christian" (Acts 11:26; 1 Peter 4:16), but to call the church the "Christian Church" is to denominationalize that great institution.
To speak of the New Testament church as "the church of Christ" is as right as it is to speak of it as "the church of God" (Romans 16:16; 1 Corinthians 1:2), but neither is a proper name. To speak of "Church of Christ" congregations, "Church of Christ" preachers, is to denominationalize that church. The New Testament church has no proper name.