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dustcry
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« on: May 16, 2004, 10:53:20 PM »

Well...since I'm new, I suppose I should kick this off with first letting everyone know what my experiance is with christianity.
I was raised Protestant and went to protestant church until I was 17.  
I attended grade school at a catholic school and attended mass with the school, and went to protestant church on sundays and wednesdays.
At 17 I bounced all around to different churches, at first only protestant and then on in to the orthodox.

I have attended Russian Orthodox, Chatholic, and Greek Orthodox churches.
I lived with a Greek Orthodox monk for 6 months and attended their church off and on.  During this time with this monk, I had the oppertunity to read their version of the bible (which is literally in volumes).
I the middle of everything, I also read up on, and studdied Druidry but found it to be lacking subject even though it was something akin to a very stripped down version of christianity with out actually saying the same words.

In the end, I simply walked away from church alltogether.
I still read(past tense) my bible, and prayed.
Nowdays, I only pray.
I've gotten rather sick of reading the bible because my brain will not shut off the philisophical valve when reading it.
Too many lectures and debates, I think perhaps, for my brain to simply just read and soke in meditation.
There is only one book in the entire Bible that I can read in peace nowdays.
Titus.
I like to hang verses of Titus around my rooms, as well as, simply re-read it all the time.
It's simply the purest book in the entire Bible.

(I'm not mentioning anything in here about my views on other religions [which I have] as the "agreement" states that I should not discuss any other religion than christianity[and oh how I would love to discuss the fear of man found in this enforcement...but I won't...I will only say that Daniel would be a good example to follow.])

Ok...so now that you know where I come from on things.
My first Post debate/curiosity.

Church.
(oh boy, here we go)

Church was created to teach others about christ in a mass multitude.
And since not everyone had a reading level of appropriate messures, congrigational speaking and instruction was a very good and sound way to accomplish the task.
Especially since that's somewhat how Jesus tended to give instruction.

The structure of an "instructor" as the center of attention to a multitude of people gathered to learn about Jesus, God, the Holy Spirit and all else christian seems very appropriate, and it is purely invaluable to new and/or young christians.

Where I see an issue, at least for me, is that this formation of gathering fails to satify the spiritual need of actual worship.
While it's great to learn things, it's absolutely aweful for fellowshiping together with/to the Lord.
Now...it is still considerable to call it fellowshiping and worshiping, I know.
On the other hand, step outside of the defenses for a moment and do try and understand my point without aiming for vengence.

If I'm not mistaken, Paul could easily be said to be the primary founder of churches by following Jesus' method of teaching to masses.
This is an excellent tool and form for teaching, and we all should continue to learn throughout our entire life as christians.
Yet, is it not possible to have both?
To have devoted hours for nothing but worshiping in the form of psalm and prayer, to include long spans of silent prayer and meditation with god.
Is this somehow in contrast to the Dogma of christianity, or have we just simply over looked it because of tradition?
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« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2004, 07:13:03 AM »

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Where I see an issue, at least for me, is that this formation of gathering fails to satify the spiritual need of actual worship.
While it's great to learn things, it's absolutely aweful for fellowshiping together with/to the Lord.

This, I think, is dependent on the church; where/what is their focus? It can be had in "church" if one takes the time to find the place (that's not to say it's the only place we should worship Him). But you are right in saying that honest, heartfelt, spirit led worship is missing in a lot of places.

Quote
This is an excellent tool and form for teaching, and we all should continue to learn throughout our entire life as christians.

Definitely agreed.

Quote
To have devoted hours for nothing but worshiping in the form of psalm and prayer, to include long spans of silent prayer and meditation with god.
Is this somehow in contrast to the Dogma of christianity, or have we just simply over looked it because of tradition?

In some cases, it's probably the "time issue". A lot of folks would rather not spend the time to do that most important of things....worship. Worship is a desire of God, but if we worship correctly it fills us spiritually, as well.

Quote
I still read(past tense) my bible, and prayed.
Nowdays, I only pray.
I've gotten rather sick of reading the bible because my brain will not shut off the philisophical valve when reading it.

This truly is a shame.



Gracey
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Heidi
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« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2004, 08:42:09 PM »

Good post, Dustcry. In my opinion, the church has done more to lead people away from Christ, than toward Him. Most people in the church today do not know what a personal relationship with jesus Christ, and few care. All they care about is what thw CHURCH tells them. Unfortunately, they will only suffer the consequences when they die and then it will be too late. Jesus said the work of God is this; "to believe in the one he sent." Period. That is all you have to do is believe HIM. Not someone else's interpretation of Him, but Him alone. I don't even go to church because of all the false teachings! I listen to Jesus through the Holy Spirit which agrees with all of His words. That is all you need. Then if you have that, you can decide whether you want to join a church or not. But if you are not born again of the spirit, then going to church will not get you to heaven.
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« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2004, 12:44:44 AM »

Good post, Dustcry. In my opinion, the church has done more to lead people away from Christ, than toward Him. Most people in the church today do not know what a personal relationship with jesus Christ, and few care. All they care about is what thw CHURCH tells them. Unfortunately, they will only suffer the consequences when they die and then it will be too late. Jesus said the work of God is this; "to believe in the one he sent." Period. That is all you have to do is believe HIM. Not someone else's interpretation of Him, but Him alone. I don't even go to church because of all the false teachings! I listen to Jesus through the Holy Spirit which agrees with all of His words. That is all you need. Then if you have that, you can decide whether you want to join a church or not. But if you are not born again of the spirit, then going to church will not get you to heaven.

It is truly a shame that yiou believe this.  You really don't like Jesus' Church.  That is sad.
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dustcry
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« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2004, 01:02:44 AM »

Quote
In some cases, it's probably the "time issue". A lot of folks would rather not spend the time to do that most important of things....worship. Worship is a desire of God, but if we worship correctly it fills us spiritually, as well.
Time is not the issue, as what I'm saying is that it's rather a MISS-allocation, for me, of time in church.  Too much time spent on preaching, and not enough on worship.  And that goes for the countless churches I have attended in protestant sects.  Now, Orthodox tends to do less preaching, but it still lack horribly by instead taking up the time with practiced routines, not to imply that they are bad, for I certainly think not of them.  Only to say that it is not "worship" and adornship and meditation which I very so much crave.

Quote
This, I think, is dependent on the church
Well, so far I can only speak for all the very many churches of various styles and denominations that I have gone to...a quick brief outline (and there are more):
Non-denominational
Evangelical
Baptist
Church of Christ (both sub-sects)
Korean Evangelical
Lutheran
??(don't remember the name but it was about as close to catholic as a protestant church could ever get)
Catholic
Greek Orthodox
Russian Orthodox
Church of Scientology (highly debatable sect)
"Holy Roller" (excuse the slang, I can't remember the actual denominational name for these)
Southern Baptist

There are more, and even some I can't remember the names of at all...17 + years and being in a military family gives you an opertunity to see many churches, as well as my home town has somewhere near 20+ churches, or something of that caliber when, there is 15,000 people on the entire island.
Then there's my relatives who we always have gone to church with when visiting....

All together, I am not satisfied with church, I've always felt the need for more of something, and became immediatly sick mentally anytime a preacher or the like began to speak.
I can't talk to him back...why listen?  I've heard the rants from the pulpit all before, over and over and over again. All of them the same, but with a twist of difference depending on the preachers interpitation which is taken to be of higher exactness with accuracy to the words truth because of their training and schooling.
Personally, I have zero faith in any man.
I am highly considering going to pastoral school for the soul reason to be my own pastor, and to retain the right on paper so that when people say that I shouldn't try to understand the Bible without guidance, I can show them the paper and tell them that I could join me for study if they would like.

I appologize...I wouldn't actually do any of that, save for the schooling.  I do get frustrated at alogations or implications that one is incapable of studying and understanding the word of God without guidance from someone educated on the Bible.
I thought that the Bible talked about how the stupid and simple would be more blessed in the end of everything for their minds would not be torchered with questions that drive them mad like those who are educated...
Something to that degree anyways...
So...why all the fuss about educated people and the Bible?  

wow...this is getting horribly off topic...I have many things that I want to discuss...but here I will attempt to re-adress my on-topic issue.

I would simply apreaciate a church that just meditates and prays as an alternative service to the normal "educational" version of service.
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« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2004, 02:55:31 AM »

Good post, Dustcry. In my opinion, the church has done more to lead people away from Christ, than toward Him. Most people in the church today do not know what a personal relationship with jesus Christ, and few care. All they care about is what thw CHURCH tells them. Unfortunately, they will only suffer the consequences when they die and then it will be too late. Jesus said the work of God is this; "to believe in the one he sent." Period. That is all you have to do is believe HIM. Not someone else's interpretation of Him, but Him alone. I don't even go to church because of all the false teachings! I listen to Jesus through the Holy Spirit which agrees with all of His words.
You're setting yourself up as infallible.  You haven't actually used the word itself, but you have, in effect, claimed to be infallible in your personal interpretation of the Bible.
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« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2004, 04:10:34 AM »

While I can agree with Heidi in certain isolated instances...
Heidi, it would help your points if you didn't blanket your targets with "they".
The entire Church community is probably not that way.
Atleast not yet.

As to the use of the word for Heidi's point...it's not needed.
Heidi is presenting an opinion that is her(?) own about the general conduct of the Church and the belief strongly therein of the acceptance of the Church's (which ever it be in concern) cerminised(sp) dogmatic principle without any real desire to check it agains the Bible and your own interpitation of it.

It's what I call "Limmings in Sheeps Cloathing".
Or "Pat-Answer People".

For instance...this is one of my favorite things right here.
If I think someone is a P.A.P., I'll ask them the all too common quesiton, "Why do you love Jesus?"
There are a few Pat-Answers to that question.
The two most common are:
"Because he died on the cross for my sins."
and
"Because he first loved me."

To the first I return the question, "What if he didn't die on the cross for your sins, but was still the son of God.  Would you still love him?"

And for the second I ask,"What if he didn't first love you, would you still love him?"

Most people get angry or offended with these questions because they mistake them for attacks on Christianity or the validity of Christ as savior.

Not at all the point.
The point is to check yourself and understand why you love Christ.  To point out that even in our religion, we are still selfish and require much improvement.
It's meant to point out that Christ loved you without you loving him, yet we love him because he loves us.
Christian translates "follower of Christ" loosely.
To follow is to head and aim to be like that which you follow.
In this case, Christ.
Thus, in trying to be like Christ, we should be paying attention to the fact that we require his action to love him and that we should be working toward a goal of loveing Christ regardless of his actions.
From here, loving the people of the world regardless of their actions will be easy.

Pat-Answer People may never grasp this...because they will never question deaply enough past what is preached on sunday morning/night, tuesday bible study, and wednesday fellowships.

I believe that something akin to this example is what Heidi was voicing with her(?) opinion.
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« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2004, 06:21:14 AM »

While I can agree with Heidi in certain isolated instances...
Heidi, it would help your points if you didn't blanket your targets with "they".
The entire Church community is probably not that way.
Atleast not yet.

As to the use of the word for Heidi's point...it's not needed.
Heidi is presenting an opinion that is her(?) own about the general conduct of the Church and the belief strongly therein of the acceptance of the Church's (which ever it be in concern) cerminised(sp) dogmatic principle without any real desire to check it agains the Bible and your own interpitation of it.
Checking it is fine.  It's Heidi's assumption that, whenever the church's interpretation disagrees with hers, it's her interpretation that is automatically right and the church's that's wrong, that is (at best) deeply dangerous and amounts to setting herself up as infallible.

Quote
It's what I call "Limmings in Sheeps Cloathing".
Or "Pat-Answer People".
What's a limming?  Or did you mean lemming?  Either way, relying on your own interpretation  is no more evidence of critical thinking than relying on other peoples.  Heidi is just as much of a "pat answer" person as the worst person who just repeats what they have been taught without thinging about it.  It's just that Heidi's doctrine is unique to her.

Quote
I believe that something akin to this example is what Heidi was voicing with her(?) opinion.
The trouble is, Heidi things so much less deeply than the people she attacks.
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« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2004, 09:05:59 AM »

No, my point is that if we believe church DOCTRINE as the gospel instead of the gospel itself, then we are worshiping the church. Again, the true church is Christ inside of us. The true church IN THE WORLD are Christ's true believers whom no one can snatch out of His hand. The rest "honor with their lips but their hearts are far from me", and Jesus said there will be many of them. Do you like false teachings, Nikolai? They do exist and Jesus and Paul warn us about them. The best way to discern between true and false teaching is to first, KNOW CHIRST'S WORDS. Which is why I initiated that thread that Ebia thought was ridiculous. Ebia apparently thinks the catholic doctrine is the gospel and Christ's words should take a backseat to it.

As far as infallibility, ebia. I am a sinner who has opinions like the rest of the sinners do. I do not claim infallibility like the catholics claim the pope is and their doctrine is. If you think I think I'm infallible, that's your problem. Why would think I think I'm infallible? I certainly don't.  I believe my opinions are right just like you believe your opinions are right. If you don't think your opinions are right, then why do you have them?
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« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2004, 12:56:52 PM »

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Too much time spent on preaching, and not enough on worship.  And that goes for the countless churches I have attended in protestant sects.

It is true of some churches - we've been very blessed with our church. The worship time takes up as much or more time than the rest; and if worship time spills over to fill up most of our time, nobody complains. It's been a gift from God; finding this "church".

I guess when I said "it's dependent on the church" I wasn't referring to "denominations" - although I am sure there are good and bad in all of them. I was referring to the pastor and members that make up the church, I guess, and what it's beliefs are, and how they fulfil those beliefs.

Quote
I've heard the rants from the pulpit all before, over and over and over again. All of them the same, but with a twist of difference depending on the preachers interpitation which is taken to be of higher exactness with accuracy to the words truth because of their training and schooling.

I've heard my share of those, too. Strangely enough, I have a similar occurrence to you....when a "preacher" teaches from a non spiritual perspective, I get nauseated. Some folks may "pooh-pooh" it, but it's defintely a discernment of sorts.

Our pastor is very sensitive to the spirit and learns from the congregation as we learn from him. All-in-all, it's been worthwhile....but nothing human is perfect. If you are looking for the "perfect" church, or what you perceive as the "perfect" church you probably will never find it here on earth (learned that the hard way, too :) )

Quote
The point is to check yourself and understand why you love Christ.  To point out that even in our religion, we are still selfish and require much improvement.
It's meant to point out that Christ loved you without you loving him, yet we love him because he loves us.

For the most part I agree.....we can be a selfish people and will always require improvement. However, I think I am missing the point here.....

Are the questions you ask just to make people think about their answer? Even if I thought about it first the answer would likely contain the same elements; because He first loved us, because He rescued me from myself; because without Him life would have little meaning; because, because, because.... I could go on, but I'm sure you understand.

I must say, in thinking about it first, though I am reminded just how much I need Him; how much I depend on Him. So in some ways, I suppose it's useful but I can see how it might annoy people.  

Quote
For instance...this is one of my favorite things right here.
If I think someone is a P.A.P., I'll ask them the all too common quesiton, "Why do you love Jesus?"
There are a few Pat-Answers to that question.
The two most common are:
"Because he died on the cross for my sins."
and
"Because he first loved me."

To the first I return the question, "What if he didn't die on the cross for your sins, but was still the son of God.  Would you still love him?"

And for the second I ask,"What if he didn't first love you, would you still love him?"

If he didn't first love us we probably still wouldn't be here, and I wouldn't have to think about the answer.

Quote
Thus, in trying to be like Christ, we should be paying attention to the fact that we require his action to love him and that we should be working toward a goal of loveing Christ regardless of his actions.
From here, loving the people of the world regardless of their actions will be easy.

I'd have to agree mostly, with this. We do require to take action. Learning to walk in love and striving to become "Christ-like" doesn't just happen. We have to make the effort.


Heidi:
Quote
Most people in the church today do not know what a personal relationship with jesus Christ, and few care.

That is waaaayyyy to broad a statement. "Most people"? What is "most people"? For instance, I could say "most people" at our church are spirit-led and quite mature. That would be true, because I know from experience. Why not say "most of the people I know" instead of "most people". You are including all of civilization in a statement like that.


Gracey



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dustcry
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« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2004, 08:23:45 PM »

Gracey:

I would be very interested in your church if I were living or happened to be around where it is.
Where is it, in case I happen to be going by that way.
I would love to check out a church that spends more time worshiping.

Quote
However, I think I am missing the point here.....
Well, the quote in which you were responding too does no real good out of context as perhaps you might have taken it.
It is meant to be mixed with the section you quoted next.

It's simple.  You can usually tell between a christian who thinks, ponders, and meditates on their beliefs and "why" they hold them, and a christian who simply accepts.
Generally, I don't bother anyone with these questions period.
But there are a select few who, for some reason, decide that what they have learned in church is what they are going to get everyone in the world to believe.
Basically, pushing their beliefs.

I go in and ask them these questions because they are usually the ones who will miss-understand them which will give me the oppertunity to explain, which will in turn hopefully spark a little desire for them to think, ponder, and meditate on what it is they are actually pushing relentlessly.

These same people tend to be P.A.P's, and hence the point to make sure they understand what they are pushing ... seriously.

Blind faith is fine, but blind agressive faith is not.

It's a bit more complicated than this even, but I hope this generally gives you an idea.
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« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2004, 09:06:22 AM »

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I would be very interested in your church if I were living or happened to be around where it is.

Central Ontario - biggish town. If you think you are coming this way let me know and I'll email you   Smiley

Quote
Blind faith is fine, but blind agressive faith is not.

Well, I have to agree on this. I was once the "aggressive" sort. I've since discovered the way to approach people not aggressively.... it just turns them off. How can you converse with somebody if you just want to bombard them?


Gracey
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« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2004, 09:20:16 AM »

Boy, that's for sure, Gracey.


What's better than to be seated on a long flight next to...a born again insurance salesman?


     Undecided


       Lips Sealed


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« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2004, 06:08:57 PM »

Dustcry asked:
To the first I return the question, "What if he didn't die on the cross for your sins, but was still the son of God.  Would you still love him?"

And for the second I ask,"What if he didn't first love you, would you still love him?"

*************************
I love God because He is the King of the Universe. He is Creator.  He is Jesus.  He is Spirt.

I love God because He is Omnipotent, Supreme, Majestic, Infinte.  I love Him because He is Wisdom, Beauty, Knowledge, Perfection.

I love God because He is Holy.  
Rev 4:8 And the four living creatures each one had six wings around, and within being full of eyes. And they had no rest day and night, saying, "Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty," the One who was, and is, and is coming! Isa. 6:3

I love God because He is faithful, when I am not.  I love Him because He is the Potter.  Because He is my Father.  Because He tempts, trys, tests, chastises, corrects, disciplines, and instructs me.  I love Him because He leads and guides me into all truth.

I love God because He allows me to reflect His love by reaching out to those He has ordained for me to love, care for, encourage, help, serve.  I love Him because He said - do it to the least of these and when you do, you have done it unto Me.

I love God, most of all, because God is God, and I am not.  He is my Magnificent Obsession and my King.


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