There are several different denominations in our Christianity, caused by divisions based on various man-made doctrines and dogmas, rules and regulations, struggles to get positions and power, methods of worship and liturgy, traditions and rituals etc. I do not think that these divisions are our Lordís plan for His Church. He wanted unity and He prayed for it before His death. Even during the days of Apostles in the first century, seeds of divisions were sown in the early young church. For example, one group said that gentiles need circumcision before they become Christians. In Corinth one sect was taking water baptism for the dead who never received it while they were alive!
In spite of all the differences and divisions we may have in our churches, there are some sure Christian truth and bible-based doctrines we can depend and hold on. It is through Jesus Christ repentance and forgiveness of sins is preached and those who believe in Him is set free from all the sins and the gift of Holy Spirit is given (Acts 16:30-31, Acts 2:38, Acts 13:38-39, Luke 24:47) In other words, anybody who repents sins and accept the forgiveness given freely and unconditionally through the sacrificial death of Son of God is saved and becomes a citizen of Godís Kingdom. Of course, they will have the Godís promised gift of Holy Spirit to dwell and guide the believers to grow and mature in Christian growth. The criminal on the cross next to our Lordís cross and the woman who wept at the Masterís feet were forgiven instantly without any religious rituals and ceremonies!
I really wonder why various denominations of Christianity preach and practice different rules and regulations in order to lead a gentile to Christian fold. Every believer is readily adopted in the family of God through simple faith and by Godís infinite mercy and grace. How do we know that we are saved? As the Lord said, ďThe tree is known by the fruitsĒ, the life style of every Christian shows the fruits of salvation. A believerís thoughts, words, actions and lifestyles show the power and witness of salvation. A saved Christian is a new creation. He is a newly grafted branch (cut off from the old and sinful earthly Vine of Adam) in the wounds of the divine Vine of Christ to dwell forever and produce fruits to glorify our Heavenly Father. When we surrender and live in Christ Jesus, we will produce fruits of Spirit for Godís glory! Amen.