Comparison of Christian Denominations / Religions

(Christian Study Topics)

christian41_300x300Below are comparisons of different Christian religions/denominations. It’s very important to note that Christianity is not about a religion. It’s about having a relationship with the living Christ… This includes loving God, fearing Him, and obeying his Word.

I encourage all to pray and ask God to open your mind, heart and spirit to His Word (the Bible). Set aside what you think you already know about God and the Bible; Humble yourself to the Lord. We should seek truth from God and His Word – not a religion.

God | Holy Ghost | Holy Trinity | Atonement | Organization of Christianity
Miracles | Probable Future Status of Non-Believers | Pre-Existence of Man

 

NOTE: Because specific teachings and beliefs can vary from congregation to congregation, some beliefs above may only be accurate in certain congregations or regions. Only the Catholic Church and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have teachings (doctrine) that come from one central place and remain the same world-wide.

 

 

GOD

Adventist
A personal Being that is invisible and spiritual in nature. He is Omnipotent, Omniscient, and Omnipresent.

Assemblies of God
The one and only God composed of three beings: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Created the heavens and the earth and redeemed all mankind.

Baptist
An infinite and eternal Spirit. He is the source and support of all things. He has no form of body and is the same perfect spirit from the beginning.

Catholic
A spirit and has no definite form or limitations. He permeates the universe and is the same unchangeable substance from the beginning. Spiritual-incorporeal.

Christian Scientist
A divine mind. Mind, Spirit, Truth, Life, Principle, Love and Soul (when Capitalized) are synonyms for God. Has no physical form. Is the source and substance of man’s true being.

Church of God in Christ
The Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost form one God together, creating the Trinity.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints
The Eternal Father with a body of flesh and bones, tangible as man’s. He is an exalted personage, with an immortal body. His power is Omnipresent therefore He is Omniscient and Omnipresent.

Disciples of Christ
Speculation as to the nature and kind of being that God is, is left to the individual. The most important belief for a person to have is the belief in Jesus Christ, as our Savior.

Eastern Orthodox
A spiritual personal substance and as an infinite spirit, He is everywhere at the same time. He is the same unchangeable substance from the beginning.

Episcopalian
A personal, infinite, transcending and eminent spirit. He has no form, body, parts or passions, so that His divinity will not be lost.

Jehovah’s Witness
God is Jehovah, who sent Christ, Jesus to earth to perform the ransom sacrifice. God is the leader of the Jehovah’s Witnesses and of no other people on earth. God’s primary purpose is to vindicate his name.

Lutheran
A spirit, absolute Personality, eternal and has no body or parts (of in-comprehensible shape) has power,Omniscient and Omnipresent.

Methodist
A personal spirit without parts or body. In the Godhead there are three persons, of one substance, power, and eternity. Consists of the Father, Son, Holy Ghost.

Presbyterian
A spirit and has not form or shape. Man is created in the image of God only in the moral or spiritual sense, and not in the physical sense.

Quaker
What is known about God is experimentally known. God is experienced through the “Inward Light” which is the spirit of “Christ within”. Belief in Imminence of God rather than his Transcendence.

Unitarian
A spirit, no tranquility or materiality. Not transcendent but eminent and is traditionally anti-Trinitarian. Opinion ranges from Fatherhood of God to agnostic humanism, humanizing human values.

United Church of Christ
Member of the Holy Trinity with Christ and will judge all men. Is an Eternal Spirit. There is no dogma concerning any physical nature.

 

HOLY GHOST

Adventist
Third person of Godhead. The executive of the Godhead and when present is the presence of the Father and The Son.

Assemblies of God
The third member of the Trinity. Adherents are encouraged to seek out baptism through the Holy Spirit, which is characterized by speaking in tongues.

Baptist
Third person, or attribute of the one, and only one, God. God meaning “spirit.”

Catholic
Third person of the Trinity, proceeding eternally from the Father and The Son as from one principle. Is equal to the Father and Son in perfection.

Christian Scientist
Is “multiform in office” God the Father-Mother; Christ the spiritual idea of Son-hip; and Divine Science or the Holy Comforter.

Church of God in Christ
As the third member of the Trinity, the Holy Ghost is to be believed in, obeyed, and worshipped along with the Father and the Son. He teaches and guides one into truth.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints
Third member of Godhead. Has attributes of Deity. bears witness of Father and the Son. He is the minister of the Godhead and executes the will of the Supreme Council.

Disciples of Christ
Is the Comforter that was promised in the New Testament. The function and constitution of the Holy Spirit are not of any concern. It expands the Christian mind.

Eastern Orthodox
A distinct person of the God-spirit substance. The third person of God which proceeds from God, the Father.

Episcopalian
One of the tri-characters Of the one God-substance. Proceeds from the Father and The Son. Known as the Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit.

Jehovah’s Witness
The Holy Spirit is not a person as Jehovah God and Jesus Christ are. The Holy Spirit is God’s active force.

Lutheran
Third person of the divine essence. Proceeds from the Father and the Son. Is co-essential and co-eternal.

Methodist
A spiritual personality which proceeds from the Father and the Son. Is one with the Father and The Son in substance and Glory. “They are One.”

Presbyterian
A spirit, is God Operating as one of God’s persons. Functions for the one and only God (Spirit). Is the third person of the Godhead, one substance.

Quaker
Source of all religious truth and authority is the Holy Spirit, which makes God accessible to all men. Do not believe in the Trinity.

Unitarian
Do not believe in the Holy Ghost. Bible references cannot be taken literally.

United Church of Christ
The Holy Spirit is “creating and renewing the Church of Jesus Christ, binding in covenant the faithful people of all ages, tongues, and races.”

 

HOLY TRINITY

Adventist
Three persons: God the Father, a spiritual being; Jesus Christ – very God, a being of same nature and essence as the Father; Holy Spirit – the great regenerating power.

Assemblies of God
There is one God, composed of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. God created this world and everything in it.

Baptist
One of God only, as is Capable of manifesting three distinct and separate persons. Father, Son and Holy Ghost. All are equal in perfection, distinct in office, one in substance.

Catholic
Only one God (numerically), and three distinct divine persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost capable of three personages. They all have the same divine nature.

Christian Scientist
Consisting of the unity of Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit, not three persons in one. They are one divine Principle consisting of three offices: Life, Truth, and Love.

Church of God in Christ
God the Father, Christ the Son, and the Holy Ghost create the Trinity. Each member of the Trinity is equal in power, glory, and substance.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints
Three separate and distinct personages. God the Eternal Father, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. The Father and the Son have bodies of flesh and bone and created man in Their image. The Holy Ghost is a spirit. These constitute the Godhead and are one in purpose.

Disciples of Christ
Have discarded most of the doctrines concerning the Trinity, and are not concerned about it’s nature or functions. Baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as set forth in the New Testament.

Eastern Orthodox
Three persons in one: Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Of the same spirit-substance. They are undivided, non-confused and equal in all things.

Episcopalian
Three person in one God. God, the Father-Creator, God the Son- Redeemer, God the Holy Ghost-Sanctifier. They are one substance.

Jehovah’s Witness
Jehovah God and Jesus Christ are two separate and distinct persons. They are not combined with the so-called “Holy Ghost” in one Godhead commonly called “The Trinity”.

Lutheran
God is Trinity, meaning three distinct persons in one divine essence. Jesus Christ is God manifested in the flesh, Holy Ghost (third person) manifest God, through which God is made manifest.

Methodist
Consists of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit). They are three distinct entities which are one spirit-substance.

Presbyterian
Consists of the Father, Son, And Holy Spirit. Of one substance yet three separate personages. Constitutes the Godhead and are one in power and glory. They are manifestations of the one Godhead.

Quaker
Quakers are a faith of “experience”, rather than accepted dogmas. What is known about God, Christ, or the Holy Spirit, is know “experimentally”, and is the true guide. Belief in Trinity is example of speculation.

Unitarian
Do not believe in the Trinity. This would be contrary to the unity of things as we understand them. Christ was a great moral teacher only.

United Church of Christ
Believe in the Holy Trinity. The Statement of Faith say: “We believe in God, the Eternal Spirit, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” The Holy Spirit is considered separately.

 

ATONEMENT

Adventist
It was for all sins, original and personal. The benefit of the Atonement applies only to those who believe in Christ.

Assemblies of God
The atonement of Christ makes divine healing and redemption from sins possible. The atonement is applied only to those who have faith in Christ.

Baptist
Christ atoned for our personal and original sins. He opened the door to everlasting life, through which we, by our faith, may enter.

Catholic
It makes possible for all the grace of salvation, by which sins are forgiven through confession. But His merits must be applied through the Sacraments to each individual soul.

Christian Scientist
Christ is the true idea of the Son of God, or God, present to redeem mankind from sin, disease, and death. His crucifixion, resurrection and final ascension has brought to light man’s true spiritual nature.

Church of God in Christ
Information on this topic was not readily available.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints
Through the Atonement, Christ the Redeemer and Savior assured redemption, or resurrection, for all. Provides for salvation and exaltation according to our personal worthiness.

Disciples of Christ
Jesus Christ atoned for the sins of men. As a rule, the doctrine of original sin is rejected. Most believe that all men are sinful until redeemed by the saving sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

Eastern Orthodox
For personal and original sin. All who believe correctly and do good works are benefited. The individual must have confession.

Episcopalian
Christ atoned for the sins of the world. Original sin is washed away when individual is baptized. Christ’s death redeems us from sin by our faith.

Jehovah’s Witness
The purpose of Christ’s life was to vindicate God’s name by witnessing of God’s kingdom. The vindication of God’s name is more important than the salvation of man. Vindicate – to clear of guilt or to justify.

Lutheran
Christ, by His innocent suffering and death upon the cross, made complete satisfaction for all our sins and carried all our guilt. Reconciled us to God, purged sin.

Methodist
Christ atoned for the personal sins of men and also for the original guilt. Christ was crucified to reconcile God to man.

Presbyterian
It was for universal and personal sins. Sin results in death (separation from God), which came through Adam and for which Christ atoned.

Quaker
It was not legalistic sacrifice but spiritual growth. It was Chris’s way of showing compassion for others. We must find our own way of identifying with the suffering of others.

Unitarian
Man (race) has never fallen, therefore there is no Atonement or restoration necessary. The majority believe in evolution, meaning our development from lower life forms.

United Church of Christ
Believe that Christ died on the cross for us and was resurrected. Spiritual or physical resurrection is a matter of personal choice, not a matter of doctrine.

 

ORGANIZATION OF CHRISTIANITY

Adventist
Christ did not organize a visible church during His ministry. His disciples created the organization. The church has been raised up to give God’s special message for today.

Baptist
Christ did not organize a definite church. He organized his followers to spread the Gospel. And they, in and of themselves, created a church.

Catholic
Christ organized His church while on earth, and it has existed on the earth to this day and is known at the Roman Catholic Church. It will not cease to exist.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints
Christ organized His church during his ministry on earth. He ordained 12 apostles and also other officers. In His church there were apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, bishops, priests and deacons.

Eastern Orthodox
Christ established a church through the apostles. All are members of the church of Christ who have a true conception of Christ in their hearts, and have been properly baptized.

Episcopalian
The Christian church was organized by Christ while he lived on earth, and He inspired His apostles to further organize and expand it. Has existed since the time of Christ, and the Episcopal Church is part of it.

Lutheran
Christ did not organize the Christian church during his mortal life. Organization came later in the development of the church. The Lutheran Church comes closest to the ideal of Christ.

Methodist
Christ did not organize a temporal church, only in a spiritual sense.

Presbyterian
The majority of members do not believe that Christ organized His church while on earth. He appointed apostles and others and taught Christian living. This does not require an organization.

Unitarian
Christ did not organize a church. He did have followers and was a great moral, ethical, spiritual and religious teacher.

Christian Scientist
Most believe that Christ did not organize a physical church. The word of God, as revealed in the Bible, is the textbook. The most important thing to know is that Christ taught the truth.

Disciples of Christ
Christ did not organize any church while living on earth. The church began at the Day of Pentecost as recorded in the New Testament. Disciples were followers and believers in Christ, not part of a church organization.

Jehovah’s Witness
Witnesses have been around for 6000 years even to this day and are the only true faith. One must be a member to be saved. Christ was one in a long line of Witnesses.

Quaker
Christ had disciples that followed His examples of compassion and concern for others. People should believe in following Jesus rather than believe in a religion about Jesus.

United Church of Christ
Some may believe that Christ organized His church while on earth, and some may not. Every true church is a church of Christ. Christ is the sole head of the United Church of Christ, which is His Church.

 

MIRACLES

Adventist
Have happened in the past and still do happen. A miracle is the divine interposition of divine power apart from God’s usual way of working.

Assemblies of God
God did and still does allow miracles to occur for believers today.

Baptist
There were miracles anciently but there miracles of the same nature since the time of Christ.

Catholic
Miracles are the divine intervention of the laws of nature. Believe the miracles as recorded in the Bible and also others duly proven as such.

Christian Scientist
The “Great Works” of Christ were not miracles or exceptions to Law, but the natural effect of understanding Divine Law. Healing comes from spiritual understanding. Heath is not physical but spiritual reality.

Church of God in Christ
Miracles were performed and still are today to convince men that the Bible is the word of God. Miracles occur where there is preaching about God and faith in Christ.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints
Characteristic of the Priesthood in operation. They are confirming signs to believers: “We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecy, revelation, visions, healings, interpretation of tongues, and so forth.”

Disciples of Christ
Jesus performed miracles during His ministry on earth. Concerning miracles in modern times, most members do not believe in miracles today.

Eastern Orthodox
Believe in miracles as recorded in the Bible anciently and also in present day miracles.

Episcopalian
Miracles exist today and have never ceased. They are demonstrations of the dominance of spiritual forces over material conditions.

Jehovah’s Witness
The miracles of the past as recorded in the Holy Bible were very real. But today there is no need for miracles. The biggest miracle today is the increase in the church membership worldwide.

Lutheran
Acts of Jesus or done through His name. The laws of nature are temporarily suspended. Miracles at the time of Christ confirmed His claims, now not necessary.

Methodist
Believe in miracles anciently as well as today, mostly manifested in healings. They are a higher power operating over a lower power, not understood by man.

Presbyterian
Believe in miracles as recorded in the Bible. Praying helps the sick, and healings occur through faith (by anyone).

Quaker
Most would believe in the miracles recorded in the Bible. There are a wide variety of personal beliefs about whether or not there are miracles today. No statement of faith.

Unitarian
Do not believe in miracles. The biblical miracles cannot be taken literally, they are legendary. Natural laws cannot be broken.

United Church of Christ
Majority of members believe the miraculous stories in the Bible should not be taken literally. No scripture has to be taken literally because much of the Bible is figurative.

 

PROBABLE FUTURE STATUS OF NON-BELIEVERS IN CHRIST

Adventist
Those who do not believe in nor have faith in Christ, do no accept His gift of life, will be eternally destroyed. There is no probation after death.

Baptist
Those who reject Christ will be eternally condemned. As for any possible future opportunity to accept Christ, we do not know of the possibility.

Catholic
Man will be saved if he does all that he can with what he knows God commands of him. If he does not he will be condemned.

Christian Scientist
All will have everlasting life and will continue to experience good or bad according to their choices. This is all that is known, all else is only conjecture.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints (Mormons)
Jesus Christ, while disembodied, preached to obedient spirits and missionary labor continues there in the spirit world. Every tongue will confess that Jesus is the Christ.

Disciples of Christ
Divine mercy will determine the future status of those who died as non-believers in Christ. Therefore our members are not concerned as to any possible future status of these individuals. God will decide.

Eastern Orthodox
All non-believers in Christ will be condemned.

Episcopalian
The intermediate state of continual progression and discipline is to help us to become reconciled to God. This is because God is not willing to lose any.

Jehovah’s Witness
Unrepentant sinners, along with the devil and his angels, will just “cease to exist.” There is no hell, or place of punishment, because all of these wicked will be destroyed at Armageddon.

Lutheran
There is no pre-existence of man. Man begins to exist when he is born into this world.

Methodist
Those who have faith in Christ will be saved, and those that do not believe will suffer condemnation.

Presbyterian
Do not know. God will determine such.

Quaker
It is only speculation that there is any future place for either believers or non-believers in Christ. Belief in life after death or heaven and hell are only speculation.

Unitarian
There is nothing to be saved from as there is no hell, therefore there is no condemnation. Will be saved by our character.

United Church of Christ
The most important thing is how we live our lives, not what church we belong to. We are children of God and our status in the future is left up to God.

 

PRE-EXISTENCE OF MAN

Adventist
There is no pre-existence of man. Man begins to exist when he is born into this world.

Baptist
Do not believe in the pre-existence of man. Jesus Christ (God) only had such. He lived before this life.

Catholic
Christ, as God, was from all eternity. Do not believe in the pre-existence of man.

Christian Scientist
Most believe in the pre-existence of man, meaning that life does not begin at birth. There are a variety of beliefs within the church concerning this subject.

Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints (Mormons)
Before life, we lived as spirits with God our Heavenly Father. When we are born, the spirit unites with a body of earthly substance. The spirit is immortal.

Disciples of Christ
No doctrine concerning the pre-existence of man. There is a wide variety of opinion and it is left to the individual to believe what they wish.

Eastern Orthodox
God, meaning the Holy Trinity, only had pre-existence. All of us were created on this earth by God (spirit).

Episcopalian
God lived before His birth at Bethlehem and is the only one to live before birth. Do not have any knowledge of the pre-existence of man.

Jehovah’s Witness
Christ had what is called a “pre-human” existence as a spirit person, was born a mortal man, and does not have an immortal soul. Our personal existence begins with our birth.

Lutheran
Do not believe in the pre-existence of man.

Methodist
Do not believe in the pre-existence of man.

Presbyterian
No doctrine as such. Only speculation.

Quaker
Do not have a majority that feels one way or other about it. This is left to the individual to interpret for his or her self. Not generally a matter of discussion in meetings.

Unitarian
There was no pre-existence of man. Man began here on this earth.

United Church of Christ
Most do not believe in an existence before birth, but there may be some that do. This is a matter that is left up to the individual, and is not a matter of concern for the church.