The “Creed in the Deed”

[This article was written by Larry R. DeVore.]

Over many decades, (perhaps since the division between Christian Churches and Churches of Christ) there have been brethren who have put clauses in the deeds to their meeting houses to try to stop any innovations in worship being introduced in the future in their place of worship. In most cases, these have not worked. Here is an example:

“No mechanical instrument of any kind whatsoever shall ever be used in connection with the song service or worship or work to be carried on or conducted by said congregation or religious body.”

“In the event any Elder of the corporation at any time shall fail to subscribe to the teachings of the New Testament, as set forth in ARTICLE FOUR herein…he shall automatically become disqualified and dropped as an Elder of the corporation.”

Article Four, Articles of Incorporation.
Richland Hills Church of Christ, Fort Worth, Texas
Secretary of State. November 2, 1967.

You may remember my article in Plain Bible Teaching for February 2007, informing you that the Richland Hills church would begin a Saturday evening service with Communion and instrumental music in February of 2007. They decided this on December 3, 2006. Two of the 17 elders resigned before this was decided. According to the above clause, the other 15 were disqualified. It is impossible to write a “Creed in the Deed,” if brethren are determined to introduce unscriptural innovations.

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