We invite you to study the
Bible and worship with us.
The church of Christ in Utica is simply a local congregation of God's people, just like those you read about in the New Testament. We are are just a non-denominational church of Christ: simply Christians, neither Catholic, Protestant, nor Jewish.
We believe the Bible is the inspired word of God and we try to follow it as our only authority in religion. Since we find no denominational names in the Bible, we wear no such names. We have no man-made creeds to set forth doctrine because the Bible provides us to all good works (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Following just the Bible will make us just Christians and members of Jesus' true church, just like Peter, Paul, and other New Testament Christians (Acts 11:26) .
We accept Jesus Christ as Lord and respect His authority. Jesus said, "And why do you call Me, 'Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say?" (Luke 6:46). To add to or take from the simple instructions of Jesus is to fail to honor Him as Lord (Acts 17:11; Galatians 1:8,9; 2 John 9-11). We have no conferences, synods, councils, or earthly headquarters because Christ has not authorized these. Such man-made systems compete with Christ's authority and often bind human traditions, which Jesus condemned (Matthew 15:3-9).
We proclaim the message of eternal life through the sacrifice of the crucified and risen Son of God (Romans 6:23). God offers His salvation to all, but the sinner must respond by:
Hearing and believing the gospel message (Mark 16:15,16; John 8:24)
Repentance of sin (Acts 17:30; 2:38; 2 Peter 3:9)
Confession of Jesus as Lord (Romans 10:9,10)
Baptism into Christ for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38; 22:16; Romans 6:3,4)
Faithfulness throughout life (Revelation 2:10)
The faith that the Lord requires for salvation must express itself in obedience (Hebrews 5:9; 1 Peter 1:22-25; Matthew 7:21-27; Romans 6:17,18). It is through obedient faith that we become God's children.
"For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ." (Galatians 3:26-27)
Baptism, as an expression of obedient faith, is the culminating act by which God places one in a proper relationship with Jesus Christ (Mark 16:16; 1 Peter 3:21; Acts 2:38). We would be happy to study the Bible with you concerning God's gift of salvation through Jesus Christ and how one may receive it.
All who are in fellowship with Christ are members of His spiritual body, the church universal (Ephesians 5:23-25; Colossians 1:18). The universal church is a spiritual body, with Jesus as its head and saved people throughout the world as members of His body (Ephesians 1:22-23; Acts 2:47). As such, the universal church has no earthly, centralized organization.
Christians in a local area should fellowship together in the worship and work of a congregation or local church (Acts 9:26). In the Bible we read about such churches in Jerusalem, Rome, and other places. These were not different kinds of denominations (as is so prevalent today), but simply congregations of Christians in various places. The work that our Lord authorized for such local congregations is spiritual in its goal and emphasis: saving souls, helping Christians grow in Christ, and worshiping God (Acts 11:26; 20:7; 1 Timothy 3:15).
These congregations were independent and self-governing, each one seeking to appoint a plurality of qualified elders (also known as bishops or pastors) to oversee the work of local church (Acts 14:23; 20:17,28; 1 Peter 5:1-4; 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Hebrews 13:17). The members were dedicated to following the example of the Lord in their daily lives (1 Peter 2:21; Ephesians 5:1-2). The church in Utica seeks to be such a congregation of Christians -- a church of Christ -- in our community.
You may expect to be treated as an honored and respected guest. In keeping with our effort to carefully follow the Bible, our worship consists only of activities authorized in the New Testament.
* We offer prayers of supplication and thanksgiving through Jesus Christ (1 Timothy 2:1-2,8; Acts 2:42).
* We edify one another through singing, using the voices God gave us to praise Him accompanied by sincere conviction from the heart (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16; Hebrews 13:15).
* Through study of God's word we exhort one another to "continue steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine" (Acts 2:42; 11:26).
* On Sunday, the first day of the week, we observe the Lord's Supper as a memorial of our Savior's death (Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 11:24-26).
* Also on Sunday we take up a collection so members can give as they have purposed in their hearts (1 Corinthians 16:1-2; 2 Corinthians 9:7). As a visitor, you would be our guest, so please do not feel under any obligation to give.
Since our Lord commands us not add to or take from His teachings, we sincerely seek to worship in these ways without any human changes (Matthew 15:9; Galatians 1:8,9; 2 John 9-11; Revelation 22:18,19).
You can find a schedule of our meetings on our home page. We invite you to meet with us at any of these times.
Besides their regularly scheduled meetings, faithful churches in the New Testament studied God's word "from house to house" with people or families in their communities (Acts 5:42; 8:4; 20:20; 1 Thessalonians 1:8). The advantage of a one-on-one or family study is that participants can effectively meet their personal need for understanding of God's word. We would welcome an opportunity to participate in such a study with you in a time and place convenient to you. Click here to learn more about our personal Bible studies.
If you would like to learn more about the church or any of the topics mentioned above, please visit the links at the side and bottom of this page. If you have other questions, please feel free to call us, write us, or click here to e-mail us.
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