Seeing God's Breath

"Every scripture is God's breath…" (2 Timothy 3:16–17).

History of Churches of Christ

Below is my collection of records for the history of the church of Christ from before the Restoration Movement in the 19th century. Some churches of Christ in England track their existence in England from “nonconformists” in the 17 c. and then of the Lollards in the 14th c. whose teaching came from central Europe. Likewise, the churches of Christ in central Europe often associated with Waldensians trace their earliest years to the 8th c. from the Christians in southern France known as “the Vaudois” (People of the Valley) who took their beginnings from the Novatian “Cathari” in the 4th century. The Vaudois strictly followed the New Testament Scriptures and claimed their history back through early Christians like Irenaeus, Polycarp, and Clement in the 2nd c. unto the Apostles in the 1st c. and the establishment of the church on the day of Pentecost following Jesus’s resurrection. However, the gospel will start a congregation of believers whenever even without a historical line of descent. See “Ten Characteristics Shared among Churches of Christ.

Here are some “nonconformists” of whom the churches of Christ would unite today as fellow brethren: Thomas Helwys and the Church of Christ (1612) and his words about Baptism and Salvation. The churches of Christ are also found in the history among those who were later known as “Baptists” in Thomas Crosby’s “History of the English Baptists” having the same beliefs as the churches of Christ today.

Read more:

John Tombes about Baptism in the Church of Christ (1659)

Henry Danvers’s A Treatise on Baptism (1674)

Here are some fascinating histories of the churches of Christ before the Restoration Movement:

History of the Churches of Christ in England by Keith Sisman

History of the Early Churches of Christ in Central Europe by Hans Grimm

12 thoughts on “History of Churches of Christ

    1. I think highly of Sisman’s work. Mr. Freely does little to nothing to correct Sisman’s history and is grinding an axe. Freely does not accurately present the beliefs of the church of Christ today. God is witness that he is bearing false witness. I’ve tracked down Sisman’s sources as much as can. He got leads from Thomas Crosby’s “History of English Baptists” who as Crosby notes were only called Christians among “churches of Christ” before the mid-1600s. They hold beliefs that are almost the same as churches of Christ today. I was shocked to see these things. I’ve noted that in the confessions above and from reading Thomas Helwys. I have no inclination to claim another’s history as those of the churches of Christ.


  1. Traces of the Kingdom, by Keith Sisman.

    While loaded with misspellings, run-on sentences, comma splices (cough!), and Britishisms (a few not found in the Oxford Dictionary!), this book provides information gleaned from rare and obscure volumes and records in the Cambridge and British Libraries. Sisman lives only about 30 miles from Cambridge and has friends at Cambridge who opened doors not generally opened to most visitors to the Library.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey David,

    I know the author personally and he would be happy to hear from you if you go to his website….his contact info is on there. Google or bing traces of the kingdom. Good luck!


    1. I sent him an email once before never heard back from him would you happen to have another email address I’ll send it to maybe you have a different one thank you David


    2. I’m almost done his book and I’m looking for more information for the churches of Christ in the United States from the pilgrims forward if anyone can help I would appreciate it thank you David


  3. Sir: do you know where I could find the book the devils door? I have traces of the kingdom Amazon had 1 copy I got that! But can’t find the other book.thank you david


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