Roger Boone and Raymond Fox
The Original Gospel
The announcement thrilled the crowd, firing their souls with expectant hope. It was brief, forthright and authoritative. It was spoken in the obscure Roman province of Galilee, but it would ultimately reach every corner of the world. It was spoken about the year 30 A.D., but it would remain just as powerful through the coming centuries of time.
The announcement? It was the opening proclamation of Jesus the Christ when he began His earthly ministry: "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel." Mark 1:15.
During the next three and a half years, Jesus preached his saving message. Multitudes who sought peace with God and escape from fear and guilt dedicated themselves to following Him. But, those who blinded their eyes and closed their hearts stubbornly rejected the truth about Jesus and crucified Him. Three days later, though, Jesus arose from the death tomb, proving beyond any doubt His claim to be the Son of God.
Christ's death and resurrection ushered in a new beginning when, just seven weeks following His resurrection, on the day of Pentecost, His church was established. The followers of Jesus continued to proclaim the gospel and to establish the church with the power He gave them, exactly as He directed.
Restoring the Original
Nineteen centuries have passed since that triumphant beginning of Christianity. During times passage, the history of Christ's religion and the church that He built can be summed up in one word: change. From the early days of Christianity until the present, man has sought to add his own philosophies and traditions to Christianity while ignoring many of the most fundamental teachings of Jesus. For this reason, many modern day concepts of Christianity bear little resemblance to the original Christianity of the New Testament.
Change is usually motivated by the thought that the moral and doctrinal teachings of Jesus must be modernized to keep up with the "progress" of society. But has man really changed? (Romans 1:21-32) Despite his tremendous technological advances, does not modern man still have the same basic spiritual needs of his ancestors? (Romans 3:23) Has Christ changed? (Hebrews 13:8)
The members of the church of Christ believe that Christ is still able to meet the needs of man completely, without adding to or taking away from His message in any way. Christ's life, His word, and His plan for the church are dynamically relevant to contemporary man. That is why the church of Christ seeks to restore New Testament Christianity to its original simplicity and purity.
In the next few pages you will find what it means to return to New Testament Christianity. Please read them and thoughtfully consider Christianity in its original beauty.