In the first century, Christ's followers were first known as Christians in Antioch (Acts 11:26). Peter also uses Christian to refer to Christ's followers in his first epistle: "If anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this name" (I Pet. 4:16).
Never once in the Bible was a human name used to refer to Christ's followers. Paul was one of the great apostles, but he didn’t want the disciples to be labeled after himself (I Cor. 1:10-17). Christ is the foundation of the Church established by God (I Cor. 3).
The Northwood church
We are a group of individuals who seek to be 'just Christians.' The congregation we attend is known as the church of Christ, at Northwood. But, don’t confuse this name with any man-given names you may hear – this one denotes our desire to belong to Christ. Since the Bible states in Romans 16:16 "the churches of Christ greet you", God had already determined a name by which we should call ourselves congregationally. However, we could have just as easily named our congregation the:
1 Cor. 1:2 – church of God at Northwood
1 Cor. 12:27 – body of Christ at Northwood
These Biblical names are each descriptive expressions showing how the church is related to Christ and His Father. However, individual followers of Christ were simply known as "Christians" in the Bible.
The Bible ONLY
We believe the Bible is inspired of God, and that it is our ONLY guide in religious faith and practice. God's Word frequently warns against changing the divine message (Gal. 1:6-9). We have no human creed or catechism: Christ is our creed and the Bible is our guide.
While we may live more than 1900 years after the first disciples, we too can be "Christians only". We do so when we follow the same teachings given to these first followers of Jesus. Christ said, "The seed is the Word of God" (Luke 8:11). Just as surely as an acorn seed will produce only an oak tree, so God's Word will produce only Christians and nothing more. We invite your further and sincere consideration of this simple truth.
What to Expect When You Visit
Our worship of God is not designed to be flashy entertainment. It is a reverent and dignified offering of the heart in accordance with biblical guidelines. We sing without the aid of musical instruments because the New Testament specifies this kind of music (Ephesians 5:19). The Lord's Supper is observed every Sunday according to the practice of early Christians (Acts 20:7). Prayers are offered by the congregation (I Timothy 2:1-4).
A contribution of funds into a common account is made by the members of the church every Sunday (1 Corinthians 16:1-2). We do not solicit funds from visitors. It is the privilege and responsibility of members of the local church to provide for the work which Jesus wants us to do (2 Corinthians 9: 6-8). We also have a sermon at both services on Sunday to give us biblical instruction for our daily lives (Acts 2:42).
Please visit us -- you will be warmly welcomed. You will not be singled out or embarrassed. It is our humble desire to have you as our honored guest.
Our congregation is led by elders (also called overseers, pastors or shepherds). These men are chosen based on qualifications outlined in Titus 1:5-16 and I Timothy 3:17, and provide spiritual oversight and direction for the group. These men act as shepherds of the spiritual flock and their exemplary Christian lives make them examples for all of us to follow. Brad Cicero, Neal Huggins, and Jeff Stricklin serve our congregation as shepherds.
Each congregation of the Lord's church recognizes special ministries that require service from within the membership. Since the role of elders is to shepherd the flock, they need to remain free of responsibilities that do not relate directly to spiritual matters (like assigning duties in worship services, building and grounds, and education programs, among others). The book of Acts tells us that the early church appointed seven men who were known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom (Acts 6: 1-4). For our congregation, we have chosen Chommie Clanton, Jeff Gray, Jeff Jolly, Grant Mann, Matthew Oliver, and Jim Roberts to serve in this important role.
Our congregation is also served by an evangelist - a minister of the gospel (2 Tim. 4:1-5).
David Maxson serves our congregation in this important role.