Who We Are
As the apostle Paul began his letter to the Philippians, he wrote: “To all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi…” (Philippians 1:1). What a simple, yet beautiful, description of a local church! This is who we are: We are saints in Christ Jesus who are located in Camden, South Carolina.
The word saint means “one who is holy and dedicated to God." By no means does this imply that we are perfect—we are not, nor can we even pretend to be. We are only made holy by the death, burial, and resurrection of our King, Jesus Christ. We believe that it is because of God’s love, mercy, and grace that He sent His unique Son to pay the dreadful price of the sins we have committed so that we could be reconciled to Him. And thus, we are “saved by grace through faith” (see Ephesians 2:8).
Do not be misled by the name “Church of Christ.” This is not intended to be a proper title, formally linking us to other churches with the same name or to a larger denominational structure. This is merely a description of who we are.
In the New Testament, the word church, though sometimes used in various ways today, means “an assembly” or “a group of people.” Churches in the New Testament were referred to in different ways to describe who they belonged to and what their purpose was: the Corinthians we called a “church of God” (1 Corinthians 1:2; 2 Corinthians 1:1); the Colossians were called “saints and faithful brethren in Christ” (Colossians 1:2); in Romans, Paul referred to the “churches of Christ” (Romans 16:16); and when writing to the Thessalonians, Paul called them “the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 1:1). Likewise, we call ourselves a “church of Christ” because we are simply a group of people whose sole allegiance is to Jesus, the Christ. Our identity is in Him.
When the New Testament was written there was no such thing as a denomination, or “type” of church; there were just churches. Denominations developed in later centuries. Each individual church was autonomous, meaning they did not answer to any human authority outside themselves, Jesus being their only Head. Each individual church was taught the same things by Jesus’ representatives, the apostles, like Peter and Paul. Each individual church worshipped in the same way, as instructed by those same apostles.
Here at McRae Road, our goal is follow the same pattern which those churches in the first century followed. We worship God as they did, organize ourselves as they did, and serve one another and the community as they did. By doing so, our hope is that we are following Jesus’ teaching.
Who are we? To put it plainly, we are Christians who love one another and Jesus. And we hope that that love is clearly seen.
"By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another" (John 13:35).