The Family Tree of Christian Denominations – John Boruff

Although we don’t belong to any denomination, we do want people to know that we identify theologically with the early Methodists –> Holiness Churches –> Church of the Nazarene / Assemblies of God / Church of God (Cleveland, TN) / Church of Christ / International Foursquare / Calvary Chapel / Vineyard Churches. These denominations are, for the most part, influenced by Arminian thinking (cooperation of the Holy Spirit with free will), holy living by God’s commandments, revivalism, Pentecostalism, and miraculous gifts such as prophecy and divine healing.

This is not to say that we don’t respect other branches of Christianity. We believe that all who truly profess faith in Christ and try to live by His Word with God’s help–are members of the Body of Christ: even those within the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches. There is a lot of spiritual wisdom in many of the other branches, such as the Moravians, Lutherans, Congregational, and early Quakers. Not to mention the Baptists and the Church of God in Christ (C.O.G.I.C.). And, although I naturally don’t like Reformed theology so far as it encourages antinomianism (sometimes), I respect the Anabaptists for their congregational church meetings, in keeping with 1 Corinthians 14:26, and their upholding of the priesthood of all believers. The Christian and Missionary Alliance is also to be praised, for their connection with the Catholic mystics of the past, and their practice of divine healing.


UPDATE: 12/27/12


UPDATE: 1/3/15

Current denominations that I would be more or less willing to be in fellowship with, so long as I discerned a sense of righteousness in the pastor of said church. I still have some theological reservations with some denominations (except for Assemblies of God, the Vineyard, and the Christian & Missionary Alliance)–both of which I agree with basically 100% in doctrine. But all of these denominations, even my favored AG and Vineyard and CMA, are plagued by the Seeker-Sensitive Movement (or Rick Warrenism): non-judgmentalism, friendship evangelism, man-pleasing, “unconditional love,” and a host of other practical heresies which produce antinomianism and carnality. As an independent minister, however, I would be willing to fellowship with a pastor in any of these mentioned denominations, provided I felt a sense of righteousness in him.

1. Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod – however, cessationism
2. The Anglican Church in North America – however, theistic evolution
3. The Southern Baptist Convention – however, OSAS
4. The Church of the Nazarene – however, theistic evolution and entire sanctification
5. Assemblies of God
6. Church of God (Cleveland, TN) – however, entire sanctification
7. Church of Christ – however, denies original sin
8. Vineyard Church – however, not so big on Hell and repentance preaching
9. Calvary Chapel – however, OSAS
10. Presbyterian Church in America – however, OSAS and cessationism
11. The Christian & Missionary Alliance
12. The National Association of Free Will Baptists – however, cessationism



The following is a simple breakdown of the Christian traditions we embrace:

1. Martin Luther (d. 1546) and the Lutheran Church
2. Thomas Cranmer (d. 1556) and the Church of England (Anglican)
3. Richard Baxter (d. 1691) and the Puritan Nonconformists (non-denominational)
4. John Wesley (d. 1791) and the Methodist Episcopal Church
5. William Booth (d. 1912) and the Salvation Army
6. William J. Seymour (d. 1922), Smith Wigglesworth (d. 1947), and the AG
7. John Wimber (d. 1997) and the Association of Vineyard Churches

About John Boruff

John Boruff is a husband, father, blogger, and insurance agent.
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3 Responses to The Family Tree of Christian Denominations – John Boruff

  1. Jack says:

    I have tried to do some research on Christianity, the basic beliefs, the various denominations with their beliefs. Most believe in the ten commands in one version or another. Is there a denomination that believes in the NEW COMMANDS that JESUS gave to us. In scripture it says ‘if you keep my commandments and remain in my love as I keep my fathers commandments and remain in his love” You can compare the similarities between the ‘Ten Commandment ‘ of the Father and the ‘New Commandments’ of Jesus BUT ( again) is there a domination that believes & practices the New Commandments. (Compare the Ten Commandments of the Father to the New Commandments [approx 50-51) of Jesus)

    • John Boruff says:

      Jack, you bring up an extremely important observation.

      1. I have yet to find anything in theology or the church that goes point by point through the commandments of Jesus. But probably a good starting point would be Bible commentaries. If you go to, Matthew Henry and Adam Clarke have good commentaries.

      2. Generally the Puritans viewed the Ten Commandments as the summary of “the moral law,” and they saw the influence of them all over the New Testament. The Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) is Jesus’ teaching on the Ten Commandments. John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist Church, did a sermon series on the Sermon on the Mount. Francis Turrettin’s Institutes of Elenctic Theology, Volume 2, has the longest treatment on the law of God I know of.

      3. So far as modern denominations are concerned, don’t get your hopes up. Revivals are usually the only times that God’s commandments are preached and urged on people. In fact, that seems to be the main purpose of revivals. While I could point you to holiness churches as a viable option, I would also caution that these churches tend to distract themselves about non-essentials, such as clothing and music styles.

  2. Ciprian says:

    God bless you! There is an error in the chart. the eastern orthodox church does not come from roman catholic, but from the original church. Also, the russian and greek churches are the same. The only difference lies in the style of painting of icons and the style of singing of the sermons, but they are the same religion they are serving together a lot of times. In Mount Athos, for example, there are a lot of russian or greek monasteries and they do the same preaching, the same rituals, the same beliefs.

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