Denominations and Organizations
"And how shall they preach, except they be sent?" Romans 10:15a
I want to explain why Dennis Beard Ministries does not belong to a denomination or organization. Many years back in 1985, I received a phone call from a denominational pastor asking me to play the organ for his church. I agreed stating that I would do so temporarily until he found another organist. I had preached revivals and tents for years without any backing from denominations or organizations. The pastor of that church suggested that I license with the UPCI which would open many doors. I thought Why not? I filled out the paperwork and was scheduled for licensing in Lufkin, TX at the states headquarters.
While praying one night alongside my wife before going to bed, I saw a vision of a large snake that came toward me. The snake bit me and I felt life going out of me as I was dying. I knew something was wrong. I told my wife, Diane, about the vision, telling her that we must pray in order to know the identity of this snake. Then I had a dream of a beautiful cemetery with glistening white headstones which were all in a perfect row. There were thousands of men lined up across the front of the cemetery dressed in black tuxedos with other men behind these, all wearing the same clothing. While admiring the perfect rows and their alignment, six men came walking into the cemetery with a coffin to bury a man. I yelled at the six men telling them not to bury the man. I yelled, Dont bury him! They disregarded me and walked with the coffin headed to a gravesite. I then looked up and saw a fiery flying serpent in the sky. I heard the Lord say Pray. As I began to pray, two golden arches came up; one on one side of the cemetery and another arch on the other side. The arches came together at the top making an arch shielding me from the flying serpent. I pondered the dream.
Then shortly after this I had another dream. In this dream, I was praying in a basement along with another preacher. He and I were supposed to be ready in order to pass over to the other side of a large lake or body of water. A different man came down the stairs to where we were praying and asked Are you ready? I spoke back to him; I am as ready as I will ever be. The other preacher and I walked up the steps in the basement following the man to a bank overlooking this large lake or body of water in which we had to cross. The preacher and I would have to swim to the other side of this great lake which would be a great feat. The other preacher dove into the water and began swimming toward the other side which was two to three miles away. I dove in also and began swimming toward the other side. While only just feet away from the bank on the other side, I saw alligators leaving the other side coming swiftly toward both of us. I thought, We had better hurry! At this time, a giant alligator or crocodile left the bank from the original side of this great body of water traveling what seemed to be the speed of light. We only had a couple of feet and we both would have passed over to the other side; when, suddenly this great crocodile with his jaws bit the preacher beside me in half in one bite. Another bite and the preacher was gone; totally devoured by this giant crocodile. I had reached the bank and stood upon my feet thanking God that I had made it to the other side, but at the same time, regretful that the preacher beside me had been devoured. While I was thinking about what had just happened, I found myself back in the basement at the original side of the great body of water praying with another preacher about the feat that was just ahead of us both. I realized then that I had only a vision of what lay ahead in passing or swimming to the other side of the great body of water. Just then, the man came to us both asking Are you ready? I answered him stating I was ready as I will ever be. I knew what was ahead for both of us preachers. That even though there were small alligators in the water, there was also a great crocodile that traveled so fast in the water that he looked like he traveled as fast as light. The other preacher came to the bank of the great lake and dove in and he began to swim to the other side. I looked and saw what looked to be a huge black rock just ahead of me which was about twenty feet long. I walked out onto the huge black rock thinking that it would help me get a head start on reaching the other side. As I walked out onto the rock reaching the end of it and getting ready to dive into the water, suddenly the rock rose up out of the water about ten feet. It was then that I realized that I was on the head of the great crocodile. I dove into the water swimming as fast as possible knowing that this crocodile could devour me in just a matter of seconds. I prayed for the Lord to help me reach the other side. I awoke from this dream.
God had given me one vision and two dreams to warn me of missing His will. The only thing that I had done differently in the past two weeks was fill out papers for licensing with an organization. I dropped going ahead any further realizing that God was warning me not to license with any organization or denomination. I write the following for any believer who is sincerely going on with the Lord unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
The Holy Ghost has spoken in meetings that in the last day work of God, men will be throwing away their denominational licenses in order to get into the move of God. This is written for the admonition of serious believers who desire to be counted worthy of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus who are not satisfied in only warming a pew.
Denominations consist, not in holding what God said, but in subscribing to articles drawn up by fallible man. Man can applaud his fellow; for in doing so, he praises himself. He can approve the sayings of another; for thereby he constitutes himself as a judge. And thus in the divinity of the day, we shall find that creeds, confessions of faith, and writings of the Fathers, really assume the place of the Word of God. (Author unknown).
Paul states in the letter to the Corinth church that there are divisions and heresies among them and gives us the motive behind these denominations and religious organizations. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you. (1 Corinthians 11:18,19). Divisions and heresies are not the will of God as some would have us to think. God desires that His body dwells together as one body as there is one hope of our calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all. Heresies are sects which are denominations and man-made organizations which function as factions in the body of Christ. We as the body of Christ are not to have these heresies, or dissensions, discord, disagreements, schisms, splits and frictions in the body of Christ which comprises but one man with Jesus as the head and the body made up of individual members are to be one. God hates discord among the brethren. Heresies are denominations. If Paul had written denominations rather than heresies, then man would have various heresies at present rather than denominations.
Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. (1 Corinthians 1:10). Paul stated that there should be no divisions or denominations. By definition, a denomination is comprised of conflicting beliefs from the whole; that is, a part of a whole as part truth rather than the whole truth of the Word of God. The light of God is progressive, shining more and more unto the perfect day when we shall know even as we are known of God. The Holy Ghost leads and guides the body of Christ into all truth, not partial truth focusing on but one set of scriptural truths.
When a preacher is called of God, the first thing he or she does is to confide in their pastor who rules the church. God never set one man over the church, but multiple pastors which are the same functioning office of elders which are the same as bishops. (See article on church government). The pastor then questions the individuals calling and then recommends a seminary of their particular denomination. Rather than reading the whole Word of God thoroughly from cover to cover, they enroll the new seminary student teaching their own particular doctrine of dogmas which aligns with the denominations particular creed. Thus, the new preacher is taught in their own seminary becoming a cookie cutter replica of the denominations beliefs who will preach only what has been shown to him or her in seminary. Thus a Pentecost will preach a Pentecostal doctrine; a Baptist will preach a Baptist doctrine; etc. None will grow any deeper in the Word of God since preaching something new rather than what is the beaten path of the denomination will bring the new preacher into question as to whether he or she has adhered to their particular doctrine of so-called truth. God is not pleased with this pattern at all since the denomination circumvents Him as the head of the church and the church as His body.
Also those of non-denominational beliefs only preach the ones approved among them holding to the same historical beliefs received in their circle of fellowship. Anything deep or new is considered a maverick which cannot be trusted as to what will be preached to their particular congregation thereby losing their control over the sheep.
You will know the denomination by its focus on one particular part of scripture. The denominational belief will be founded in the Word of God as Bible truth. The primary problem is that the denominations main focus will be on a part of scripture, not the whole Word. For example, the Baptist will focus on baptism as immersion in water based upon ones profession of faith due to a doctrinal formula of the Trinity. The Pentecostal will focus on one main scripture as the Whole truth to the whole world being Acts 2:38. However the truth is the whole Word of God being believed and obeyed, the denomination then becomes an occult which hinders their converts to come to perfection of glory. The believers objective should be to overcome unto the end which ultimately must be pressed into by a diligent effort on behalf on the believer in order to be led and guided into all truth; not just a partial truth as in all denominations and religious organizations!
Partial truth will not save anyone. We must be striving to enter in the strait gate which is the narrow way; overcoming unto the end being totally sanctified to the point where each and every believer is presented blameless in spirit, soul, and body at the appearing of our Lord Jesus. Denominations declare that their members are already saved rather than obtaining salvation in receiving the truth as it proceeds in greater light the closer we approach the coming of our Lord Jesus. We all must go on unto perfection. Jesus requires perfect works as stated to each of the churches in the Revelation of Jesus Christ which was given to John on the isle of Patmos. We are required of God as His body to be changed into His image as a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. Not one denomination presses onward toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ.
The very denomination is a governing body of men trying to do their best in ruling over the body of Christ as a corporation does over its own employees; stating in by-laws its goals in reaching more souls without regard for the current body entering into the full revelation of Jesus Christ. A simple message is taught for the simple minded; therefore, all leave from each service entertained in the flesh with the spirit man being deprived from spiritual nourishment in order to grow thereby.
Denominations have conflicting beliefs which guarantees false beliefs in relation to perfect truth. The body of Christ cannot hold to a denominational creed and enter into all truth since all truth requires a transformation on a daily basis. For the mind of the believer must be renewed in order to have the mind of Christ. The Holy Ghost must be the only teacher in order for each individual believer to be lead not by denominational creeds of men but of God who will certainly lead and guide His body into all truth; not partial truth as in Pentecost, but into all truth in this last season of Tabernacles. The abomination of desolation is because of transgression; the body of Christ being desolated or destroyed because the Word of God is transgressed by not going into all truth as led by the Spirit of God. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, only these are the sons of God. We cannot transgress the Word of truth by becoming complacent with man-made doctrines declaring everyone has salvation bypassing that all must be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ, unto full maturity. Therefore, any denomination that states that it has all truth has lied against the Word of God; for the Word is truth and the Holy Ghost is the Spirit of Truth, the Spirit of Jesus; for the Lord Jesus is that Spirit. But we all with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord are changed into the same image; from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord Jesus! Regardless of what any denomination states in their man-made creeds, any believer that believes he or she has the whole truth therefore is deceived, for the Lord is constantly changing us by His Word as we behold Him as we are changed into His image.
God did not come to build any denomination, but to save mankind. Man however wants to rule as God. Therefore man starts their own clicks and creeds saying this or that as my organization of believers is Gods house or God told me to start this denomination or organization. Truth is subverted and man is lifted up instead of God; the gifts of God being used for mans own kingdoms. The measure that the body of Christ is measured by is the Word of God, not a denomination. Each denomination is a division or part of the standard; the standard is and will always be the Word of God. The Lord Jesus does not recognize any denomination! Not mine, yours, or anyone elses! God looks only on His body as the church. Man desires his own words, his own work, and his own kingdom; for by doing so he justifies his own beliefs and doctrines glorying in his followers flesh. There is no headquarters of the church in the Word of God because Jesus Christ is the head and His individual members who comprise the body of Christ.
Each local congregation is autonomous being ruled and governed alone as sole governing body. The church in whole is the body of Christ with members in particular covering the earth. Headquarters is in heaven with Jesus, the only true God, as the head. Any regional, district, state, national or international headquarters is of man and is not of the government of God. There is nowhere in the Word of God that anyone can show a larger governing body than the local congregation of the church overseen by elders! All denominations teach parts of the Word of God focusing upon their various candy sticks for salvation which comes down in simple form as teaching as doctrine the commandments of men who worship Jesus in vain.
A denomination is defined in the dictionary as a church, communion, connection, creed, cult, faith, group, persuasion, religion, school, or sect. The mystery of Gods will from the foundation of the world has been to gather all things together in one all things in Christ Jesus as portrayed in the book of Ephesians in the New Testament. However, man desires to rule as heads of Gods body which is made up of various members following their individual doctrines who all claim to have a common goal of salvation. Are denominations in the will of God working for the cause of bringing the individual members of the body of Christ into one or do they by their very own government work against the government of God?
Most do not know what governments are in the Word of God neither how they function. Governments are individual church bodies ran by Elders as an individual governing organisms as functioning organs in the body of Christ for the edifying of itself in love by which every joint supplies. For the body of Christ to be edified, there must be the bones as individual members joining one bone to another in order to have a joint. It is at the joint that the body of Christ is edified by love one toward another. This is the blood flow in love from one member to another. The denomination even with good intentions is nothing but a dividing force in the body of Christ; a force against the will of God in making His body one. For the body of Christ is made perfect in one!
Jesus must be the head of the body of Christ as the church. Man however believes that God has given them the control to make intellectual decisions based upon their experience in God to rule and reign over the body of Christ. The men and women usually mean well and are basically good and honest believers. However, due to the government being set up by man as a corporation with a set of bylaws and incorporation papers deciding who will lead and what messages will be preached in their denominations, their very existence works against the will of God. The very makeup of a denomination finds itself in direct opposition to the work of God; that is working as a barrier to members gathering together as one, for all denominations will have restrictions as to where and what their members can or cannot do. By setting these various rules, they overstep their own fellowship ideals in ruling whereas the Word of God should be our main and primary focus. For our Creed is the Word of God; doing exactly what is written. There is no other sect but the true sect of believers who are called by the name of Jesus. There is no room or place in God for another sect of mans ideas and formulas for salvation. For there is no one that can argue that denominations work for the gathering of souls into one mind and accord in the Word based upon their individual creeds and doctrines of dogmas; for the denomination stands for the good of the denomination by controlling the conduct of their members and mindset that will or will not be tolerated by their enforcement of the rules which they deem to be set by the Bible.
A creed as has been already noted is a doctrine of dogma set up as the authority of belief in a denomination or organization to stress authoritative formulated statements of mans wisdom in intellectual knowledge as an attempt to know the truth to which everyone who is a member of that particular denomination agrees to uphold. I dont know about you, but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord and forget these man-made decrees.
And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. (Hebrew 12:27). Anything man-made will be removed by the Lord Jesus. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity. (Matthew 13:41). Anyone or anything that offends the body of Christ in receiving all truth will be removed by the Lord Jesus; and that includes man-made denominations and organizations. There is a great glory that is ahead for those who prepare now; those that take the Bible and Word of God as our only creed and doctrine of dogma. We must be willing to go to higher heights of revelation and go on into deeper waters of truth. God grant you and yours the leading of God into the present truth of the Word.
Dennis A. Beard