Just because a church has been in existence for hundreds, if not thousands of years, does not make it right by the mere fact of its longevity. If longevity were the only precursor to truth, then the Catholic church would have the right to say that they are the true church Christ died for. This also holds true for all churches. In fact, the number of members or how rich or affluent a church may be should never be considered when choosing the right church for which to worship.
Anyone who desires to become a member of the body of Christ must first hear the gospel preached: How that Jesus died, was buried and arose from the dead on the third day according to the scriptures. 1 Cor 15:1-4 Upon hearing this gospel one must believe with their heart, and confess with their mouth before men that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God. Rom 10:9,10 Then one must put their faith into action. They must repent of their sins and be baptized into Christ for the remission of sins. Acts 2:38 Upon obeying the gospel of Christ, one is added to the church by Jesus Christ. Acts 2:47
All churches of Christ must abide by the exact same doctrine by which the new testament church abode. All new testament churches of Christ met on Sunday to remember the Lord’s death, and to give of their means. Acts 20:7 f; 1 Cor 16:1-3 All new testament churches of Christ sang psalms and hymns and spiritual song without the aid of instrumental music. Eph 5:19 All new testament churches of Christ studied God’s Word, and heard the gospel and doctrine of Christ preached unto them, in and out of season. 2 Tim 4:2-5
All Christians must live a good and moral life before God and man. They must avoid fornication, adulteries, homosexuality and all other works of the flesh. Gal 5:19-21 Christians must study God’s Word in order to grow in the faith, to teach others, and to be approved of God. 2 Pet 3:18 ff; Heb 5:12-14; 2 Tim 2:15 All faithful Christians must endure trials and persecutions and sufferings for the cause of Christ. 2 Tim 3:12 f; 1 Pet 4:12-18 If a Christian endures unto the end, then are they saved and given a crown of life. Don’t be confused with those who suffer for the causes of the world whose end is to be burned, whose damnation is just. Heb 6:8 ff; Rom 3:8; 1 Pet 4:15
Conclusion: Don’t let anyone trick you out of eternal life. This life is too short to trade it for eternal life. There are many false prophets, teachers and preachers who are out to deceive you. 1 Jn 4:1 Some of them are your family members, some are friends and others are the highly educated and well articulated of the world. Denominations can not save you! Only the church which Christ died for can save you, for therein is contained the manifold wisdom of God, the pillar and foundation of the truth. Eph 3:10 f; 1 Tim 3:15 This church carries the name of our Lord and Savior. Rom 16:16 To gain its entrance one must obey the gospel of Christ. Acts 2:37-47 To be faithful abide by the doctrine of Christ, and worship God in Spirit and in truth, while enduring persecutions. 2 Jn 9 f; Jn 4:23,24 This is the strait and narrow way which leads to eternal life, and few there be that will ever find it. Mt 7:14 Choose to be among the few by obeying the gospel of Christ, and remaining faithful unto death. Mk 16:15,16 f; Rev 2:10