What does the Shepherd's Chapel teach?

by Matt Slick
Return to Shepherd's Chapel

The Shepherd's Chapel is, at the very least, a controversial church with many unorthodox doctrines.  The following list of teachings from the Shepherd's Chapel is derived from scouring the Internet, chat rooms, bulletin boards, asking the followers of Arnold Murray, and looking at the Shepherd's Chapel web site.

Even though the Shepherd's Chapel is considered to be a non-Christian cult by many people, it is left to be fully determined whether or not it is.


  1. Denies the Trinity and teaches that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are really three offices held by the one God.
    1. On its website's statement of faith 1 it says "We believe in the God of the Bible (Exodus 3:6-14)."  Unfortunately, this is completely insufficient as an explanation since it does not affirm the Trinity nor does it deny modalism or polytheism.
  2. Denies the existence of eternal Hell.
    1. This contradicts the Bible's teaching. 
         Rev. 20:10, "And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever."
         Matt. 25:46, "And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."
  3. Denies the doctrine of the rapture.
    1. 1 Thessalonians 4:15, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.”
  4. Denies physical resurrection of believers.  We will be raised spiritually.
  5. Teaches annihilationism:  non-existence after death for sinners.
  6. Teaches that certain Old Testament kosher laws regarding meat should be followed.
  7. Teaches Serpent Seed doctrine:  Eve had literal sexual relations with the serpent.
  8. The offspring of Eve's impregnation resulted in Cain, Satan's offspring.
  9. The Kenites are the tares of the parable of the wheat and the tares in Matt. 13.
  10. Interracial marriage is wrong.
  11. Being born again is to enter into this body from a spiritual body of another age.
  12. America and Britain are the lost tribes of Israel.
  13. People were alive in a pre-existence.
  14. There was an earth age prior to Adam where a race of people lived.
  15. The Rapture is a false doctrine.


  1. Satan is a literal being.
  2. Jesus will return.
  3. Jesus will set up a future millennial kingdom.
  4. The Bible is the inerrant word of God.


  1. The earth is millions of years old.
  2. Arnold Murray is one of God's true teachers on earth today.




  • 1. shepherdschapel.com/statement1.htm

About The Author

Matt Slick is the President and Founder of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry.