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301  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: February 04, 2004, 01:09:37 PM
2nd Timothy wrote:
I believe the verse you are refering to is...

2Pe 2:21  For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.
******************
Thanx  Cool!  This was one of them,  but my mind says there is yet another one referring to ignorance - not Rom 1,  either - h m m m - have to keep searching   Huh.

Been  thinking about the story of the African tribe that you and Judge Not were talking about.  I totally agree that God will move heaven and earth to reach those who are seeking for Him.  It has certainly been true personally, and Jeremiah 31 says that those who diligently seek Him will find Him.

Jesus also prayed:  John 17:1 ¶ Jesus spoke these words and lifted up His eyes to Heaven and said, Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son so that Your Son also may glorify You,
2 even as You have given Him authority over all flesh so that He should give eternal life to all You have given Him.9 I pray for them. I do not pray for the world, but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.
10 And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine; and I am glorified in them.
20 ¶ And I do not pray for these alone, but for those also who shall believe on Me through their word,
21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You, that they also may be one in Us, so that the world may believe that You have sent Me.

Jesus taught:
John 6:33 For the bread of God is He who comes down from Heaven and gives life to the world.
34 Then they said to him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.
35 And Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes on Me shall never thirst.
36 But I said to you that you also have seen Me and do not believe.
37 All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will in no way cast out.
38 For I came down from Heaven, not to do My own will but the will of Him who sent Me.
39 And this is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all which He has given Me I should lose nothing but should raise it up again at the last day.40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes on Him should have everlasting life. And I will raise him up at the last day.
53 Then Jesus says to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, you do not have life in yourselves.
54 Whoever partakes of My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.
65 And He said, Because of this I said to you that no one can come to Me unless it was given to him from My Father.



302  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: February 03, 2004, 11:04:43 PM
BlackEyedPeas [Tom] asks:
"Is there an accountability factor of any type or form?"

Interesting question, Tom!

I am assuming you are asking within the framework of acceptance of the gospel message.  Yes, there is an accountability factor - it is dependent on the ability of the mind and heart to accept the concept of need for a Savior.  I have heard of children as young as 4 and 5 giving their hearts to Jesus and remembering that decision all through their lives.

The Bible does have some things to say about raising a child to know their Creator.   When it comes to those who have not heard the gospel - such as you refer to on the mission fields, I would consider that to be as a young child in the faith and therefore, would need training and teaching to understand the salvation process.

Personally, I believe that as a parent, there is a covenant in effect.  As believers, your children would be considered "saved" until they reach an age of decision - that would differ of course on the "spiritual awareness" of each child.

Here are some scripts:

Deut 6:4 ¶ Hear, O, Israel. The LORD our God is one LORD.
5 And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
6 And these words which I command you this day shall be in your heart.
7 And you shall carefully teach them to your sons, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise up.

Prov 22:6 ¶ Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Acts 2:38 Then Peter said to them, Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ to remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all those afar off, as many as the Lord our God shall call.

Been looking for a verse that says you are responsible only for what you know, but - can't find it - anyone know where it is - I thought it was in the gospels?
303  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: February 02, 2004, 12:05:27 AM
Judge Not wrote:   I don't argue with your scriptural references, brother, but with your interpretation of those same references.  I could use the same references to make my point.

MalkyEL:  sorry - I am a sister in Messiah  Smiley, but consider myself a son of God, sorry for the confusion.

Judge Not wrote:  I cannot find it in my heart to condemn those who have not heard, or who have been prohibited from hearing, God’s final Word.  Maybe Jesus sees it differently, but not from what I have been taught and not from what I feel in my heart.

Rom1:16 ¶ For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation to everyone believing, both to Jew first, and to Greek;
17 for in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; even as it has been written, "But the just shall live by faith." Hab. 2:4

Rom 10:9 Because if you confess the Lord Jesus with your mouth, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.
10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth one confesses unto salvation.
13 For everyone, "whoever may call on the name of the Lord will be saved."
Joel 2:32
14 How then may they call on One into whom they have not believed? And how may they believe One of whom they have not heard? And how may they hear without preaching?
15 And how may they preach if they are not sent? Even as it has been written, "How beautiful" "the feet of those preaching the gospel of peace, of those preaching the gospel of good things." Isa. 52:7
16 But not all obeyed the gospel, for Isaiah says, "Lord, who has believed our report?" Isa. 53:1
17 Then faith is of hearing, and hearing through the Word of God.

John 15:5 I am the Vine; you are the branches. The one abiding in Me, and I in him, this one bears much fruit, because apart from Me you are not able to execute, nothing.
6 Unless one remains in Me, he is cast out as the branch and is dried up; and they gather and throw them into a fire, and they are burned.7 If you remain in Me, and My Words remain in you, whatever you desire you will ask, and it shall happen to you.
8 In this My Father is glorified, that you should bear much fruit; and you will be disciples to Me.

Heb 7:25 And from this He is able to save to the end completely the ones drawing near to God through Him, forever living to intercede on their behalf.

Judge Not wrote:  Jesus died for ALL sin.  ALL sin.  

Try to imagine the burden on Him on the cross – ALL sin being delivered to Him in His last dying moment.  I can’t imagine that weight.  He had already been tortured beyond imagination with everything man had to dish out.  Adding to that ALL the sin of man, past, present and future, is so far beyond my comprehension that I weep when I consider it.


Heb9:28   so Christ having been once offered "to bear the sins of many," Christ shall appear a second time without sin to those expecting Him for salvation. Isa. 53:12

Rom 3:22 even the righteousness of God through the faith of Jesus Christ, toward all and upon all those who believe. For there is no difference,
23 for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God,
24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus;
25 whom God has set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness through the passing by of the sins that had taken place before, in the forbearance of God;
26 for the display of His righteousness at this time, for Him to be just and, forgiving the one being of the faith of Jesus.

Rom 5:14 But death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is the type of Him who was to come;
15 but the free gift shall not be also like the offense. For if by the offense of the one many died, much more the grace of God, and the gift in grace; which is of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many.
16 And the free gift shall not be as by one having sinned; (for indeed the judgment was of one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offenses to justification.
17 For if by one man's offense death reigned by one, much more they who receive abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by One, Jesus Christ.)
18 Therefore as by one offense sentence came on all men to condemnation, even so by the righteousness of One the free gift came to all men to justification of life.
19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of One shall many be made righteous.


Judge Not wrote:     To think He did that for a select few who believe a certain way according to a particular denomination's belief is totally alien to me, and will remain so.

MalkyEL:   According to the Word of God, Jesus died for the sins of those would receive salvation.  Salvation is available to all, but not all accept it.  Therefore, sin is not forgiven unless it is repented of.  Once one belongs to Jesus and He lives fully in that person, sin becomes anathema to that person - putting the sinful desires to death.  That means the intent of the heart is pure before God and sin from that point on does not condemn that person because he has been washed in the blood of Jesus.  For those who are not saved, there is no forgiveness of sin.  That is not a denominational teaching, that is the Word of God on the matter.

 
304  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: February 01, 2004, 09:09:12 PM
Judge Not quoted:
Billy Graham [from part 1 - interview with Schuller]:
Well, Christianity and being a true believer--you know, I think there's the Body of Christ. This comes from all the Christian groups around the world, outside the Christian groups.  I think everybody that loves Christ, or knows Christ, whether they're conscious of it or not, they're members of the Body of Christ.And I don't think that we're going to see a great sweeping revival that will turn the whole world to Christ at any time. I think James answered that, the Apostle James in the first council in Jerusalem, when he said God's purpose for this age is to call out a people for His name. And that's what God is doing today, He's calling people out of the world for His name, whether they come from the Muslim world, or the Buddhist world, or the Christian world or the non-believing world, they are members of the Body of Christ because they've been called by GOD. They may not even know the name of Jesus but they know in their hearts they need something that they don't have, and they turn to the only light that they have, and I think they are saved, and that they're going to be with us in heaven.

John 3:16 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that everyone believing into Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God did not send His Son into the world that He might judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.
18 The one believing into Him is not condemned; but the one not believing has already been condemned, for he has not believed into the name of the only begotten Son of God.
John 14:6 Jesus said to him, I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

1 John 4:12 No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love having been perfected is in us.
13 By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because of His Spirit He has given to us.
14 ¶ And we have beheld and bear witness that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world.
15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.


1 John 5:10   ¶ The one believing in the Son of God has the witness in himself. The one not believing God has made Him a liar.

Judge Not wrote:
. . .  This person knows in his heart that God (although that may not be what this person knows to call Him) exists, and this person has reached a point of love and understanding with this Supreme Being with whom he has never been “officially” introduced.  This person dies.  Is this person condemned to everlasting hell, or is he forgiven?

 . . .   He longs for the real God with all his heart – just as he has his entire life – but others have completely shielded him from the true Word.  This man dies.  Is he condemned to everlasting hell, or is he forgiven by the blood of Calvary?

MalkyEL:   Unless a person believes in and receives Jesus as Savior and God, they are condemned to hell.


 Judge Not  wrote:   God has said he will not return until every heart has a chance to hear His word and accept or reject Him.

MalkyEL:  Would you please find me some Scriptural references for this?  Thanx.

Judge Not  wrote:  However, what about those who died before they had a chance to hear the Word?  Are they condemned to everlasting hell?  What about those who are locked away from the Word?  Are they condemned to everlasting hell?  What about those who are deaf, dumb and blind – are they condemned to everlasting hell?  

Rom 9:14 ¶ What shall we say then? Is there not unrighteousness with God? Let it not be!
15 For He said to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion."
16 So then it is not of the one willing, nor of the one running, but of God, the One showing mercy.
17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "Even for this same purpose I have raised you up, that I might show My power in you, and that My name might be declared throughout all the earth."
18 Therefore He has mercy on whom He will have mercy , and whom He will, He hardens.
19 You will then say to me, Why does He yet find fault? For who has resisted His will?
20 No, but, O man, who are you who replies against God? Shall the thing formed say to Him who formed it , Why have you made me this way?
21 Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel to honor and another to dishonor?
22 What if God, willing to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much long-suffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction;
23 and that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy which He had before prepared to glory;
24 whom He also called, not only us, of Jews, but also of the nations?

Judge Not wrote:   What about you, my friend?  Are you condemned to everlasting hell?  What about me?  Am I condemned to everlasting hell?  

MalkyEL:   I am not condemned to hell.  God's Spirit lives within me.  I once thought I was saved.  At 16 I got "saved" but did not give my life over to God as Master and King.  For 30 years I served the church believing that my "righteous" behavior secured my place in heaven.  I was very wrong.  It was not until I met Him face to face that I realized I was headed for hell.  Giving my life over to the redeeming work of Jesus, has made all the difference in my life.   My heart confirms I belong to Him because He is my Everything.  I am His son.

Rom 8:10 ¶ But if Christ is in you, the body indeed is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
11 But if the Spirit of the One having raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, the One having raised the Christ from the dead will also make your mortal bodies live through the indwelling of His Spirit in you.
12 So, then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to flesh,
13 for if you live according to flesh, you are going to die. But if by the Spirit you put to death the practices of the body, you will live.
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
15 For you did not receive a spirit of slavery again to fear, but you received a Spirit of adoption by which we cry, Abba! Father!
16 The Spirit Himself witnesses with our spirit that we are children of God.


305  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: February 01, 2004, 05:00:09 PM

Sincere Heart quoted:

27 He answered: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind' ; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
36 "Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?"
37 The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him."
Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."
=============================

EXACTAMUNDO!!!!!!!!!!  Grin  Grin  Grin
306  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: February 01, 2004, 04:49:59 PM
Part 2 - Billy Graham

John 5:23 "That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent Him."
 
John 5:11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
 
John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
 
2 John 9-10 "Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed."
The Television interview of Dr. Billy Graham by Dr. Schuller continued: Part II, which was broadcast on Sunday, June 8, 1997. The following is an accurate transcript of a segment.

SCHULLER: You knew ...Fulton Sheen. You knew these men. Your comments on both of these men [Fulton Sheen and Norman V. Peale].

GRAHAM: The primary way of communication is to live life, let people see that you're living what you proclaim....[comments on his friendship and conversations with Fulton Sheen] I lost a very dear friend, and since that time, the whole relationship between me and my work, and you and your work, and the Roman Catholic Church has changed. They open their arms to welcome us and we have the support of the Catholic Church almost everywhere we go. And I think that we must come to the place where we keep our eyes on Jesus Christ, not on what denomination or what church or what group we belong to."

To obtain the entire interview contact: Garden Grove Community Church, PO Box 100, Garden Grove, CA 92642 telephone 714--971-4000

In the above quote by Dr. Graham, he stated, "...He's calling people out of the world for His name, whether they come from the Muslim world, or the Buddhist world, or the Christian world or the non-believing world. They are members of the Body of Christ because they have been called by God. They may not even know the name of Jesus but they know in their hearts that they need something that they don't have, and they turn to the only light that they have, and I think that they are SAVED, AND THAT THEY ARE GOING TO BE WITH US IN HEAVEN."

This statement directly agrees with the Roman Catholic Universal Catechism, page 224; par. 847: " Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience, those too may achieve eternal salvation. "

We know that God's Word never fails to provide the insight and guidance in all issues in our life. It is inerrant. It is truth. In saying that, we must then ask if what Dr. Graham stated above is in line with the Word of God?

Acts 4:12 " Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved. "
 
John 14:6 " Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
 
2 Thessalonians 2:11-15 "And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto He called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle."
Someone also sent the following message and information to me.

"I too have seen Billy Graham's version of "universalism" - that people may have Jesus in their heart without being conscious of it... (From a transcript of an interview with David Frost, May 1997). "It took place the day before the interview with Robert Schuller - Here's one part I found to be particularly disturbing:"

FROST: "A quote: "If ever there was a woman called of God to proclaim the strip - Scriptures, my daughter Ann is one. She's one of the great Bible teachers among women today. I have a great appreciation for her and other women who have a gift of God." Does that mean that you are in favor of the ordination of women? "

REV. GRAHAM: "It's -- it would be according to the circle I was in because I'm -- I feel that I belong to all the churches. I'm equally at home in an Anglican or a Baptist church or a Brethren assembly or a Roman Catholic Church. And I would have to say that I would identify with the customs and the culture and the theology of that particular church."

2 Thessalonians 3:6 "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us."

It has been documented that Billy Graham is also a 33° Mason. Although a statement has been issued to the contrary by the Billy Graham Evangelical Association, there were at least two Lodges that had posted him as one of their famous freemasons. The Endtime Deception web site has lengthy documentation on Billy Graham. Jim Shaw's expose of Freemasonry, The Deadly Deception, stated that "an internationally prominent evangelist" was present at his 33° initiation and others have stated that person was Billy Graham.

Please note that a 33rd degree is a high posiiton in the Masonic Lodge.  The Masonic Lodge is not a Christian organization - it is occultic to say the least.  If you are in doubt as to the veracity of this, I can post more information on it.

307  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: February 01, 2004, 04:45:04 PM
PART 1 - Billy Graham

excerpt from http://www.seekgod.ca/deceptions.htm --- Please go to this link and read the entire article.

Billy Graham

Researching and weighing to Scripture also means that we must seek the truth, no matter what the opposition, or whether people will hear and understand the facts. The following is part of a correspondence regarding well-known evangelist Billy Graham in which some statements I made were being questioned.

"This really surprises me to hear such things of Billy Graham. I have a hard time believing that he doesn't think that Jesus is the only way. I am almost positive I have heard him quote the verse "I am the way, truth, life, no one comes to the father but through me".

Billy Graham has said those verses, probably hundreds or thousands of times. Due to reading a review of Graham's autobiography by a former pastor who became a reporter, I started to look into Billy Graham and what he really believes. One fact that I noticed quickly and which disturbed me was that one complete chapter of the autobiography is devoted to his viewpoint of Bill and Hillary Clinton being godly people and god-fearing. Recent current events show where the Clinton's truly stand in their views on morality and godly living.

Other information came to my attention in the form of an interview that Billy Graham had done. I had seen other documentation regarding the same interview and have done a lot of background research about things he has said and upheld over the years. One thing that I felt initially, before the background research, was that if he is saying things contrary to scripture because he isn't well, or because of his age, then his family should protect him. They should stop the interviews so that his ministry and credibility are not destroyed. In saying that, though, I have done enough research to know that all is not, and has not been, what it seems.

Titus 2:7-8 "In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you."
When researching the following interview that took place on television with Robert Schuller, I phoned directly to the Billy Graham Evangelical Association. The purpose was to verify the information and also obtain a copy of the interview directly from them.

The individual I spoke with was new to the department. However, upon my inquiry he went and got a copy of the requested interview and verified that Dr. Graham had indeed said what is quoted below. I then asked for a copy of the interview and at first he sounded quite willing to accommodate that request. However, he then left the telephone for a fairly lengthy time. When he came back, his tone had changed and he said his supervisor said they no longer gave out copies of the interview. He said it was because Billy Graham didn't really mean it like it sounds. However, further research has revealed that Billy Graham has said the same thing, in various ways, in many interviews over many years.

I then contacted the Robert Schuller organization and asked for verification and tried to obtain the transcript. I had already received a copy from another source, but wanted verification that it was correct. It was.

Television Interview of Billy Graham by Robert Schuller, Hour Of Power, Part 1, an approximately 7 minute long Broadcast in Southern California on Saturday, May 31, 1997. The following is an exact transcript of an excerpt close to the end of the Broadcast.

SCHULLER: Tell me, what do you think is the future of Christianity?

GRAHAM: Well, Christianity and being a true believer--you know, I think there's the Body of Christ. This comes from all the Christian groups around the world, outside the Christian groups. I think everybody that loves Christ, or knows Christ, whether they're conscious of it or not, they're members of the Body of Christ. And I don't think that we're going to see a great sweeping revival that will turn the whole world to Christ at any time. I think James answered that, the Apostle James in the first council in Jerusalem, when he said God's purpose for this age is to call out a people for His name. And that's what God is doing today, He's calling people out of the world for His name, whether they come from the Muslim world, or the Buddhist world, or the Christian world or the non-believing world, they are members of the Body of Christ because they've been called by GOD. They may not even know the name of Jesus but they know in their hearts they need something that they don't have, and they turn to the only light that they have, and I think they are saved, and that they're going to be with us in heaven.

SCHULLER: What, what I hear you saying that it's possible for Jesus Christ to come into human hearts and souls and life, even if they've been born in darkness and have never had exposure to the Bible. Is that a correct interpretation of what you're saying?

GRAHAM: Yes, it is, because I believe that I've met people in various parts of the world in tribal situations, that they have never seen a Bible or heard about a Bible, and never heard of Jesus, but they've believed in their hearts that there was a God, and they've tried to live a life that was quite apart from the surrounding community in which they lived.

SCHULLER: I, I'm so thrilled to hear you say this. There's a wideness in God's mercy.

GRAHAM: There is. There definitely is.

***************

308  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: January 31, 2004, 10:56:42 PM
Tom wrote:

I think you are right about many of our brick and mortar churches being in big trouble and maybe falling apart. I may be somewhat naive, but I still think there are quite a few brick and mortar churches where God's love is felt when you walk in the door.

I know that I'm naive about many denominations and what may be going on or not going on in their brick and mortar buildings. However, I'm positive that the CHURCH WHICH IS THE BODY OF CHRIST is alive and well.

I think that the individual members of the brick and mortar churches can and should join together and collectively say what will and what will not be done in that brick and mortar building. I honestly believe this is the difference between God's will being done in that building or not.
========================================

I think we are all misinformed and naive.  I did not say that God's love is expressed in some churches - I know that it is, and have seen it.  However; the effectiveness of the church on today's world is losing ground, not gaining.  I know many do not agree with me.

It's interesting that a number of denominations are praying for and believing that there will be a great revival in the end days.  It would be so wonderful if that were true.  But Jesus preached just the opposite.  So did the apostles in the letters to the churches.  The situation in the world is going to get worse not better.  The church, by default has accepted the world's system of doing things.  This precludes her failure in the end, not success.  The world, including this country is headed for a one world religion.  It is too late to stop it.  satan has been laying out the groundwork for centuries.  It is fact, not fallacy.  Look around at what many of our christian leaders are saying and doing.

Billy Graham, probably the greatest evangelist of all time, has also fallen to the one world religion fallacy.  He has said that he believes there are other ways for salvation.  That buddists can go to heaven among others.  Jesus said this would happen - that many would fall away and even the elect would be deceived if not for the grace of God.

Jesus said the road to destruction was wide and the gate to His Kingdom narrow and few would find it.  The church as a whole unit, is defective and malignant.  Yes, the body of Messiah is intact - God chooses and selects from within all denominational boundries - He does not show favoritism.  And yes, many churches are mission minded - but they are the minority.  The time is coming when the church system will no longer function as the body of Messiah.  As the Head of His body, Jesus will have His few that are obedient.
309  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: January 31, 2004, 07:44:36 PM
Tom,

Nice set of Scripts.  The doctrine of Jesus was love. Love one another as I have loved you.  Anything done out of our selves is not His love in us.  It must be God's love, for He is Love.  Without that love, what we do is worth nothing.

When our works are burned up, what remains is motive and intent - unless it was God's love in us that moved us to compassion, the works are useless and burned to a crisp.

It really is not about what the church can do any more.  The church is falling apart.  It is full of deception and false leaders.  When the church is gone - as an institution - I am not talking about the body of believeres - what is left are individuals providing for the needy [emotional, spiritual, mental] which will have to be done as led by God's Spirit, which is love.  If that is not our driving force, we will fail.  If we are counting on the church to provide, our faith is in a system, not in the power of God's love in each one of us.

310  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: January 30, 2004, 08:21:51 PM
ok - let me be blunt Roll Eyes

The church will NEVER, as a collective body, take care of all the needs people have.  First of all, it takes 100's of 1000's of dollars to create and implement these kinds of programs.  Secondly, the church [at large, collectively] does not care.  

In general terms - the church is selfish and trained to gather tithes to pad their own programs and buildings.  It does not have a mission mind set.  I am speaking of the church as a whole - there will always be individual churches who are mission minded.

The church is not going to change.  Yes, there are exceptions.
Our individual responsibility is not to find a cure for every facet of a broken society.  It is God's.  He is the One Who directs and motivates and graces with ability.  If you truly want to help and do as His Word dictates, you need to just obey Him.  Period.  Everyone of us has a purpose in life - His will.  He will let you know how, when, and where He needs to place you to help those in need.  He gives you a heart for certain segments of the hurting and needy.  If we are a child of God, we are lead by His Spirit.
311  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: January 29, 2004, 11:19:53 PM
Tom wrote:
Am I correct that nobody expected such a fierce winter storm there?

In Michigan that is a way of winter life here - we may not like it, but oh well!!!  It was expected and plenty of warning.  We get dumped on quite a bit - I live in the Grand Rapids area which means we get "Lake effect"  extra snow due to the warming of systems coming over Lake Michigan.  Our typical snowfall is around 5 feet total for the season.  Some years we get lots more than that - I would venture to guess this year is going to make up for a loss in the last few  Cool.  Around here, you grin and bear it.  Most people are equipped to withstand the frigid temps and heavy snowfalls.  And of course the kids scream in delight with "snowdays" and no school Grin.  The temps, at least here, are pretty normal - we range anywhere from 20 to -10 --  it's the windchill that makes it bad - any wind will make it feel lots colder - like 10-40 degrees lower depending on mph of the wind  Undecided.

We do have casualties due to shoveling snow more than anything, due to heartattacks.  As with all traumatic weather conditions, people do lose their lives.  It is a grievous thing, I agree.  Thank you for your prayers.

Shalom  Wink
312  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: January 29, 2004, 10:30:59 PM
Hi! Tom, thanx for the welcome  Cool!  I am from Michigan where there is a ton of snow and frigid temps - hope it is warmer where you all are!!! Cheesy
313  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: January 29, 2004, 10:24:31 PM
That is a real loaded question  Roll Eyes

My personal opinion, for what it's worth - here goes  Wink

Paul taught us that the body of Messiah has many parts that are all supposed to work together in unity with Jesus as the head.  This would certainly rely on every person within the body functioning with perfect unity.  It ain't gonna happen, sorry to say.

I guess you could say the church has created a monster.  We have pretty much failed since those early days when the disciples all met together with oneness.  As the church became larger and spread out, heresy and deception flooded in.  No longer was it a body in unity, but one of separation - which has continued to this day.  

As a person who believes that God is in control, I see that He has institued other ways for the poor, orphans, needy, downtrodden, homeless, and broken people of this world to be served and ministered to.  Not that it has been accomplished by any stretch - hence worldwide pockets of severe famine and hopelessness.  The church cannot possibly manage the problems that are world wide at this point.  

Instead of looking at the failures of the body in this regard, I prefer to look at what God can and will do through in spite of where we went wrong.  The government and other humanitarian organizations contribute, as do larger Christian organizations.  So lets bring this down to personal and local church management.  

Every church has the responsibility to do what God instructs them in regards to reaching out.  Not all churches are interested, to be blunt.  Hopefully yours does care.  There are probably different types of care organizations in your area that are sponsered by churches.  In my area, churches often join together for one mission or another.  Some churches who are really motivated can manage their own programs.  If being a part of reaching out is really on your heart, you need to hook into that.

On a personal level, I believe that God can direct you to give monetarily and/or material goods or by your involvement.  Reaching out to others does not always mean the desitute.  There are many who need love, compassion, a phone call, a ride - you name it.  Look for volunteer agencies in your area and offer your services.  Hook up with Christian Pen Pals and write to a prisoner on death row - there are literally thousands who have no one who cares - make that a church project.  These women and guys need financial support as well.  Or get a group of friends together and serve in a soup kitchen on a weekly basis.  Give groceries to food pantries.

Involvement within the body of Messiah does not mean specifically an organized church, but others, who are one in Spirit with you, as God directs to reach out.  Jesus wants us to continually reach out in love whereever He points the way.  It is more about you taking part whereever you can.  If your church is receptive to involvement, cool.  But if it is not, then get involved in other ways.  The body is inclusive of all believers.

You mentioned if the welfare system breaks down, who will be responsible.  To be honest, there is no organization that could take it over.  It would have to be managed on a local level.  That may mean churches would have to get together, but that is usually difficult as everyone has specific ideas on how that should be accomplished.  There are millions of people on the welfare roles in this country.  We can complain about government interference, but the church has willingly given over its commission to outside of itself.  It is kind of late at this point to think we can restore it.  God can and will get the job done in other ways.  Right now, I think we need to concentrate on how we can do His will right now with those around us.  Focus on the need where you are at, not at what you cannot change or you will drive yourself nuts  Grin

Forgive me if that seems like a clinical approach.  My heart breaks for those in need.  We are Jesus' hands and feet.  How will they know Him unless His love and compassion are reflected in and through us, one by one.

314  Theology / Bible Study / Re:The Church's job? on: January 29, 2004, 08:32:51 PM
Thought this might help too  Smiley

Matt 25:31 ¶ But when the Son of man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He shall sit on the throne of His glory.
32 And all nations shall be gathered before Him. And He shall separate them from one another, as a shepherd divides the sheep from the goats.
33 And indeed He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats off the left.
34 Then the King shall say to those on His right hand , Come, blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
35 For I was hungry, and you gave me food; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you took Me in;
36 I was naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.
37 Then the righteous shall answer Him, saying, Lord, when did we see You hungry, and fed You ? Or thirsty, and gave You drink?
38 When did we see You a stranger, and took You in? Or naked, and clothed You ?
39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and came to You?
40 And the King shall answer and say to them, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brothers, you have done it to Me.
41 Then He also shall say to those on the left hand , Depart from Me, you cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels.
42 For I was hungry, and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty, and you gave Me no drink;
43 I was a stranger and you did not take Me in; I was naked, and you did not clothe Me; I was sick, and in prison, and you did not visit me.
44 Then they will also answer Him, saying, Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister to You?
45 Then He shall answer them, saying, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.
46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into everlasting life.
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