Why You Should Leave the Methodist Church
By Gary ColleyIt is not our intent in this study to impugn the motives or sincerity of any person who believes the doctrines of the Methodist Church. We readily admit that there are many highly moral people who are members of this denomination. But, as we honestly and candidly shine the light of Bible Truth on the man-made doctrines of Methodism, it is our prayer that these good moral people will also let the Truth, delivered by the Holy Spirit in God's word (John 16:13; 2 Pet. 1:20-21) be their guide.
It is our full intent to be honest in this study. It is also our hope that such honesty will be typical of those who read and make comparisons in this study. Let us be reminded that when Truth is presented to an honest man, one of two things happen. He either obeys the Truth, or demonstrates his dishonesty by rejecting it.
The History Of Methodism
No one can read one word anywhere—in the Bible or otherwise—about the Methodist Church, until 1729. This was some 1,700 years after the Lord established His church on the day of Pentecost. (Acts 2), and that makes the Methodist Church 1,700 years too late to be "from heaven."
It was not until John Wesley became unhappy with the errors of the Church of England, and attempted to reform them, that he and his brother Charles began to meet with some of their followers for religious exercises. (United States Religious Report, Vol. 2, P. 1082.)
It doesn't appear from history that they intended to begin a new church at that time. But the further they went in writing their reforms, or "General Rules" or "Discipline" for their followers, the more separation from other religions they developed. In 1735, John and Charles Wesley made their decision to come to America for the express purpose of spreading their newly formulated teachings and converting others to them. (Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 1485.)
Some False Doctrines Of Methodism
First, in the Preamble of the Constitution of the Methodist Episcopal Church, they claim that the Methodist Church is one of the branches in the vine of Christ.
When Jesus spoke of the "true vine" in John 15:1-6, he did not say that various man made denominations were the branches in the vine, but rather that individuals who bear fruit in Christ are the branches. (John 15:6).
Jesus adds individuals who are saved to His church (Acts 2:41, 47). His church is built upon His teaching (Matt. 28:18-20) and is purchased with His blood. (Matt. 16:18; 20:28; 1 Cor. 12:13; Acts 20:20). Each member or individual—not denomination—added to the church of Christ is a branch to bear fruit in the vine. (1 Tim. 3:14-15).
Second, Methodists wear a religious name that cannot be found in the Bible. This contributes to the religious division condemned by the Lord. (John 17:20-21; 1 Cor. 1:10-13). There is no church found in the New Testament under the name "Methodist Church. Had our precious Lord established such a church with all its various doctrines, this would certainly have been revealed on the pages of Holy Writ.
The Lord authorizes only one church (Matt. 16:18; Eph. 1:22-23; 4:4), one way to be saved (Matt. 7:13-14), and one fold into which all must enter to be able to enter heaven at last (John 10:1, 16). Salvation is never promised in the name "Methodist," or any other name than the name of Christ. (Acts 4:12; 1 Pet. 4:16).
Third, this religious group is governed by a General Conference, overseen by a single "Bishop," and these are responsible for making all the laws of the Methodist Church (Book of Discipline, Article 46). These usurpers presumptuously attempt to push Christ off His throne and deny he has "all authority in heaven and on earth." (Matt. 28:18; Col. 1:18, 24). They claim for themselves that which only belongs to Jesus Christ.
But in the church of Christ, every member must confess Jesus as Lord, or Ruler, in order to enter His body, the church. (Rom. 10:9-10; Acts 8:35-38). Christ is Lord and Lawgiver over His church, and He authorized under shepherds who are called elders or pastors. These are always in the plural and oversee a single congregation. (1 Pet. 5:1-4; Phil. 1:1). The New Testament knows nothing of a single bishop or elder over a congregation or a plurality of congregations. No authority is given to New Testament bishops to alter or change anything on which the Lord has legislated. Neither are they authorized to make new laws for the church.
Fourth, in order to become a member of the Methodist Church, one must do more and less than is found to be necessary in the New Testament to become a Christian. To become a Methodist, one must lay aside his Bible and take in hand the Methodist Discipline which dictates that, 1). One is saved as an infant, not by "faith only," but "by baptism," (Book of Discipline, Art. 17), 2). Others are saved by "faith only" (Book of Discipline, Art. 9), and 3). there must be at least a six months probation period before one can "join" the Methodist Church (Book of Discipline, Arts. 49 and 445).
But becoming a Christian, according to the New Testament, is not for infants who cannot believe, repent, or confess with their mouths. Nor does the New Testament teach that infants—or adults either for that matter—are saved by "faith only" or by "joining the church." One is added to the church of Christ when he is born of water in baptism after voluntarily developing faith in Christ as God's Son, deciding to repent of his sins, and making the good confession. (John 3:1-5; Mark 16:15-16; 1 Cor. 12:13; Gal. 3:26-27; Acts 2:41, 47). The Bible clearly teaches that salvation from sins is not by "faith only," (Jas. 2:14, 17, 19, 22, 24, 26). Neither is there a "probationary period" revealed in God's word. Salvation and being added to the church by the Lord in the New Testament always took place in the same hour of the day in which one became a believer through obedience to the gospel—not months later. (Acts 2:41; 8:26-39; 10:1-48; 16:14-15; 22:16).
Though Methodism teaches and practices other man made doctrines, these are sufficient to convince the honest person that the Methodist Church is not "from heaven, but of men." Without faith produced by God's Word (Rom. 10:17) — not the Methodist Discipline — one cannot please Him.