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AVBunyan
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« on: February 14, 2005, 10:18:26 AM »

Yes, I believe most of Christianity today is made up of unregenerate folks.  You say, “You are judging.”  Yes, I am judging just like you are judging that most are regenerate.  

Don’t think for a minute that I haven’t had the below this preached to me first and applied it to my life first.  Now it is your turn if you will receive it.

Why do I say this?  2 reasons mainly:

1. I read a lot of the old saints from 1580 to 1850 or say (not much later).  

These folks were different than we are today.  

They were separated, focused for God, easily conceited of sin, understood sin, had a real devotion and love to a Biblical Jesus Christ, had a true willingness to give Christ their all including their lives, a daily time with God that was truly rich and real, had a genuine love for God’s word that in turn caused their lives to governed and ruled by the scriptures at all costs, and finally….they understood what happened to them at Calvary.  In other words they understood the doctrine of justification like we do not today which leads me to my second reason:

2. The average “saint” today doesn’t have a clue as to what took place at Calvary 2000 years ago.   The lack of understanding of this subject is appalling!

The “tion” words of Romans are unknown to them to the point where they are not discussed at all today (justification, redemption, propitiation, adoption, glorification, sanctification, etc.).

I believe the saint’s heavenly position as expounded by the apostle Paul in Ephesians and Colossians is almost unheard of today.  

I believe the average “saint” today cannot write out their salvation experience and have it match the doctrine laid down by Paul.  

I believe the average “saint” today could not write out a short thesis on the doctrine of justification or salvation from memory using Bible words.

I believe the average “saint” today doesn’t even know where he is going when he dies.  They are not sure whether or not they are going to heaven, an earthly kingdom, or the New Jerusalem.

I believe the average “saint” today cannot verbally give a clear, biblical plan of salvation to another person that lines up with Paul’s gospel.

Some of the reasons for the above are:

I believe the average “saint” today has no absolute final authority for his doctrine – all he has is multiple, reliable or unreliable modern versions which contradict one another which has led to doubting and almost total confusion.  His multiple authorities range from, the “Bible” (whatever or wherever that is), his church, his church leaders, Greek/Hebrew manuscripts, language scholars, professors, the ‘word of God’ (whatever or wherever that is), and finally his own Adamic nature.

I believe the average “saint” today will do almost anything to get along with everybody else so as not to upset his or her standing amongst the “brethren”.  This has lead to shallow bible study, compromise, and weak, anemic, saints with no convictions or true courage.

I believe the average “saint” today has cast off the old hymns that built up the lives of saints and have replaced them with worldly, man-centered, fleshly, and fluffy songs written primarily to make money that during the coming tough times will not be enough to get the true saint through.

We have replaced individual efforts with monster, worldly, business-like, man-centered, methods designed to bring in the masses while compromising Biblical convictions so as not to “offend” the sinner with such things as sin, hell, and judgment.  

Big is better – gain is godliness – small is unspiritual is the motto.

I believe the average “saint” today has replaced the great writers and writings of the past for the modern “fluff”, moneymaking, soft, weak, shallow, books of the today designed to be read quickly and easily.  The motto, “Make people happy, make them feel good about themselves, nothing negative, make them feel how wonderful they are” while ignoring what the Bible actually says about them.  

Sound, doctrinal, expositional Bible preaching and teaching has been replaced with entertainment, choirs, Super Bowl parties, family life buildings, sports, gyms, dating clubs, singles’ classes, divorcee classes, young married couples’ classes, old married couples’ classes, nursery schools, dramas, filed trips, and a lot of other unprofitable junk that the old saints never had or would ever touch with a ten foot poll and they accomplished a lot more for God without the above than we do with all the above!!!

Bottom line - I believe most of Christianity today is made up of unregenerate folks.  Because of the above we are living in the most carnal, weak, fleshly, worldly, unfruitful period of Christianity that there ever has been.  If you do not believe the above then one of two things is possible:
1. You are unregenerate.
2. You are regenerate but your standard of judgment is today’s “Christianity”.

Now, wasn’t that fun?

2 Tim 4:3  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

2 Cor 13:5  Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

2 Pet 1:10  Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:

May God bless!
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Kris777
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« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2005, 10:34:42 AM »

I know that I am not as strong in faith as the saints of the past. But I do know this, I am forgiven because of Jesus Christ, dieing on the cross and rising again. Smiley I WILL live my life the best I can, the way my Lord and Savior wants it. I do stumble and am weak, but if I keep my eyes on God I can move forward.  And aren't these today so called "Christians" the very people that still need us to each out to them?  Certainly!
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« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2005, 10:42:23 AM »

Although your judgement is harsh, I have to agree.

Many churches have become "fluffy" social clubs.  There are always a few in every church to be found who are Christians, firm in faith and rooted in the gospel.

But what can I do to get Christian churches back to the basics?    First, I will pray.   Second, I will encourage people at my church to study the Bible and pray.  

I think the mistake of many people who believe as you do is in leaving the churches there are in because they are not perfect.  There is only perfection in Christ.  Christ loves his Bride and will not leave her or abandon her.  

We can try to bloom where we are planted.  There is much that you could offer others.  You might have to ask the Lord for guidance and patience with dealing with immature Christians.  You sound like you have suffered much frustration and anger over this issue.  

 
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Reba
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« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2005, 11:00:38 AM »

Jesus said He was building His church... The church has grown over the last 2000+ years He does know what He is doing...
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AVBunyan
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« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2005, 01:04:30 PM »

1. Although your judgement is harsh, I have to agree.

2. Many churches have become "fluffy" social clubs.  There are always a few in every church to be found who are Christians, firm in faith and rooted in the gospel.

3. But what can I do to get Christian churches back to the basics?    First, I will pray.   Second, I will encourage people at my church to study the Bible and pray.  

4. I think the mistake of many people who believe as you do is in leaving the churches there are in because they are not perfect.  There is only perfection in Christ.  Christ loves his Bride and will not leave her or abandon her.  

5. We can try to bloom where we are planted.  There is much that you could offer others.  You might have to ask the Lord for guidance and patience with dealing with immature Christians.  

6. You sound like you have suffered much frustration and anger over this issue.  

1. Thanks M for your response - I enjoyed your posts and your approach.  Though the judgment is harsh I feel deserved.  I am certainly not where I should be in my spiritual like also.  

2. Amen - there are still some around - but are falling by the way side.

3. Great battle plan - scriptural and I praise the Lord for you desire to do this.

4. All I can say is Amen and Amen - I see many folks who use the excuse that because the church is failing they stay out of church - this is disobedience and a cop out!!!  It is also the height of spiritual pride.

5. Again, Amen and Amen

6. By the grace of God I have been under the same faithful pastor in the same church for over 22 years (ever since I was saved).  Through his guidance we have had to shake off some of what I've mentioned.   I guess my frustration has come from seeking to deal with the "saints" outside the local church and from "knocking doors" have seem the lack of knowledge of the gospel.  Plus I look in the mirror at my own spiritual life and see I am sadly lacking in the spiritual life that the old saints used to have.

God bless
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« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2005, 02:18:42 PM »


4. I think the mistake of many people who believe as you do is in leaving the churches there are in because they are not perfect.  There is only perfection in Christ.  Christ loves his Bride and will not leave her or abandon her.  



4. All I can say is Amen and Amen - I see many folks who use the excuse that because the church is failing they stay out of church - this is disobedience and a cop out!!!  It is also the height of spiritual pride.


God Afternoon,
I agree with your post...
I have a question, about #4...is stepped on my toes for sure.

My husband and I left the church I was born in because we felt their "doctrine" was wrong...so should we have stayed and not let "spiritual pride" drive us out? I thought it was more of needing to find a church that we thought was sound. It broke my heart to leave, and I am still not over it almost 7 years later. I still wish I was there, but I know I can't change their minds about what they believe. They are my family mostly, so they know how I feel about their church. Should going back to that church be something we should consider because we left feeling we were in the right and they were wrong?
lisajames96
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AVBunyan
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« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2005, 02:49:41 PM »

God Afternoon,
I agree with your post...
I have a question, about #4...is stepped on my toes for sure.

My husband and I left the church I was born in because we felt their "doctrine" was wrong...so should we have stayed and not let "spiritual pride" drive us out?  Should going back to that church be something we should consider because we left feeling we were in the right and they were wrong?
lisajames96

Thanks for your thoughts - allow me to clarify if I may.  I did not really mean one should not leave a local church if the church has gone off the deep end - some shoudl leave their churches based upon sound, scriptural reasons - but only "after a long train of abuses" - (see the USA's Declaration of Independence).  

What I was trying to say is that one should not stay out of church completely.  One can find a church somewhere that comes close to what they feel conscience would allow - we all know no local church is perfect - but I firmly believe God's method of ministering to believers is primarily through a local church.

What I was saying is we shouldn't let issues keep us out of a local church compeltely - especially if the issues are petty.

Of course the scriptures should be our authority on doctrinal matters.  Find one that is close - be patient - show forebearance and longsufferance and jump in and get to work!  Grin

I trust this has cleared up some of my ramblings!!!

May God bless  Wink
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MalkyEL
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« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2005, 09:19:05 PM »

AV,
  I was really impressed with your op.  Not that I was cheering you on, mostly just agreeing because contending for the faith has become a wishy washy "unity at all costs" theology.  Oh sure, there are exceptions, but the general rule is love, unconditionally [this is NOT a Scriptural teaching at all].
  So, I was rather surprised when you backed down so quickly, not really understanding your current stand on the church today in light of your op.
   I was one of those people who went from church to church to church to church, seeking for one that "was close".  Then I realized, I was not looking for perfection, I was looking for leadership that was truly looking to run the race, casting aside hindrences.
    The problem with "church", is that the pastor carries the full weight of its theology or doctrines.  What he speaks is rarely challenged or questioned.  If some brave soul dares approach him/her, their observations are soon put to rest by condensation and the "dare not touch the anointed" looks and inuendo concerning your intelligence.  Been there, done that so many times, I have many scars from the door hitting me on the backside on my way out  Lips Sealed
     What I have observed in my travels throughout churchdom [53 years worth - I retired from church 3 years ago  Cool] is that the pastor went to theological school.  He paid to get his education in the Bible.  Those of us who did not go to seminary are the "laymen".  Therefore; how dare we expect to know more than or are able to discuss any Biblical matter with any intellengce or authority with "the Pasor".  Pastors are untouchable.    One church I went to, the Sr Pastor had body guards so people wouldn't "bother" him.
   
All of that puts me, in my humble opinion, at odds with Scripture.

Not just the actions or presumed authority, but what comes out of the man's mouth.  If a man preaches against what is in God's Word or adds to it, my responsibility is to withdraw.  It is not up to me to "correct" him.  The Matt 18 scenario does not fit here, imho.  There is no way on God's green earth I would EVER approach a pastor alone.  Talk about setting yourself up.  I have also found that God does not ask us or instruct us to stick around cause no one is perfect in their theology.  If a pastor is not open to correction from a lay person, it is time to leave.
    This is one of the reasons the church is in lethargy.  Iron sharpens iron is like plastic picnic ware in the pew today.  The choice of modern translations quoted from the pulpit is enough to turn my stomach.  So, my position is to study on my own, and to let God put people in my life who are serious about His Word.
    I am not saying I am some spiritual giant that cannot learn.  I am simply saying, I am tired of discussions with those who are close minded, and use unauthoritive scriptures for their source and then wonder why their theology is skewed.
    So much for my soapbox  . . .  Roll Eyes

shalom, nana  Cool

     
     
     
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« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2005, 09:19:37 PM »

sorry, double post  Roll Eyes
« Last Edit: February 14, 2005, 09:21:46 PM by MalkyEL » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2005, 01:03:20 AM »

Yes, I believe most of Christianity today is made up of unregenerate folks.  You say, “You are judging.”  Yes, I am judging just like you are judging that most are regenerate.  

Don’t think for a minute that I haven’t had the below this preached to me first and applied it to my life first.  Now it is your turn if you will receive it.

Why do I say this?  2 reasons mainly:

1. I read a lot of the old saints from 1580 to 1850 or say (not much later).  

These folks were different than we are today.  

They were separated, focused for God, easily conceited of sin, understood sin, had a real devotion and love to a Biblical Jesus Christ, had a true willingness to give Christ their all including their lives, a daily time with God that was truly rich and real, had a genuine love for God’s word that in turn caused their lives to governed and ruled by the scriptures at all costs, and finally….they understood what happened to them at Calvary.  In other words they understood the doctrine of justification like we do not today which leads me to my second reason:

2. The average “saint” today doesn’t have a clue as to what took place at Calvary 2000 years ago.   The lack of understanding of this subject is appalling!

The “tion” words of Romans are unknown to them to the point where they are not discussed at all today (justification, redemption, propitiation, adoption, glorification, sanctification, etc.).

I believe the saint’s heavenly position as expounded by the apostle Paul in Ephesians and Colossians is almost unheard of today.  

I believe the average “saint” today cannot write out their salvation experience and have it match the doctrine laid down by Paul.  

I believe the average “saint” today could not write out a short thesis on the doctrine of justification or salvation from memory using Bible words.

I believe the average “saint” today doesn’t even know where he is going when he dies.  They are not sure whether or not they are going to heaven, an earthly kingdom, or the New Jerusalem.

I believe the average “saint” today cannot verbally give a clear, biblical plan of salvation to another person that lines up with Paul’s gospel.

Some of the reasons for the above are:

I believe the average “saint” today has no absolute final authority for his doctrine – all he has is multiple, reliable or unreliable modern versions which contradict one another which has led to doubting and almost total confusion.  His multiple authorities range from, the “Bible” (whatever or wherever that is), his church, his church leaders, Greek/Hebrew manuscripts, language scholars, professors, the ‘word of God’ (whatever or wherever that is), and finally his own Adamic nature.

I believe the average “saint” today will do almost anything to get along with everybody else so as not to upset his or her standing amongst the “brethren”.  This has lead to shallow bible study, compromise, and weak, anemic, saints with no convictions or true courage.

I believe the average “saint” today has cast off the old hymns that built up the lives of saints and have replaced them with worldly, man-centered, fleshly, and fluffy songs written primarily to make money that during the coming tough times will not be enough to get the true saint through.

We have replaced individual efforts with monster, worldly, business-like, man-centered, methods designed to bring in the masses while compromising Biblical convictions so as not to “offend” the sinner with such things as sin, hell, and judgment.  

Big is better – gain is godliness – small is unspiritual is the motto.

I believe the average “saint” today has replaced the great writers and writings of the past for the modern “fluff”, moneymaking, soft, weak, shallow, books of the today designed to be read quickly and easily.  The motto, “Make people happy, make them feel good about themselves, nothing negative, make them feel how wonderful they are” while ignoring what the Bible actually says about them.  

Sound, doctrinal, expositional Bible preaching and teaching has been replaced with entertainment, choirs, Super Bowl parties, family life buildings, sports, gyms, dating clubs, singles’ classes, divorcee classes, young married couples’ classes, old married couples’ classes, nursery schools, dramas, filed trips, and a lot of other unprofitable junk that the old saints never had or would ever touch with a ten foot poll and they accomplished a lot more for God without the above than we do with all the above!!!

Bottom line - I believe most of Christianity today is made up of unregenerate folks.  Because of the above we are living in the most carnal, weak, fleshly, worldly, unfruitful period of Christianity that there ever has been.  If you do not believe the above then one of two things is possible:
1. You are unregenerate.
2. You are regenerate but your standard of judgment is today’s “Christianity”.

Now, wasn’t that fun?

2 Tim 4:3  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

2 Cor 13:5  Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

2 Pet 1:10  Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:

May God bless!

That is true brother. I also believe that the Church has been in bad times. Unregenerate is what it is. Many Christians today are dead in their walk with Christ. Churches have lost their focuses on Christ and have put them elsewhere. Money, socializing, exterior activities but the most destructive of all is doctrine and unsound authority. The Church is the Body of Christ, and this is all it's members (all christians). What can be done?

They only way is to pray. Pray that we can worship God in spirit and in truth. Pray that we can all have the same desire of God. Pray that we can look only on God and nothing else of this world.

The Church is God's precious treasure. Jesus's bridegroom. We must love the Church as Paul did and as Christ does. Brothers and Sisters, if you see a church that is falling you need to correct it no matter what persecution you will probably face.

Brothers and Sisters, if you are not in a local church or you cant find one, that is ok. But be eager to "pursue righteousness, faith, and love with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart". When "two or three are gathered in My Name, there I will be in their midst." This is all that is needed. But desire to have more.


In local churches it is necessary that there be a shepard (pastor). But is the pastor the only working member in the body of Christ, the Church??? NO!!! Everyone is a working member in the Church!!! Thus, the Pastor should not be the only one giving revelations, psalms, or prayers. Sadly, this is how it is. Many people just go to church, sing, listen to the sermon, and leave. Maybe there are some in choir. Maybe there are people who hand out tracts to visitors. And many others who do choirs to keep the technicalities of the church running. But what do we have to strengthen each other in Christ?

1 cor 14:26
When you come together, everyone has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. All of these must be done for the strengthening of the church.

All of these are not just on the pastor.


Brothers and Sisters, I urge everyone to take a look at the Recovery Bible. This will help the Church out of it's decadance.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2005, 01:10:48 AM by felix102 » Logged
AVBunyan
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« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2005, 06:51:49 AM »

AV,
  I was really impressed with your op.  Not that I was cheering you on, mostly just agreeing because contending for the faith has become a wishy washy "unity at all costs" theology.  Oh sure, there are exceptions, but the general rule is love, unconditionally [this is NOT a Scriptural teaching at all].
  So, I was rather surprised when you backed down so quickly, not really understanding your current stand on the church today in light of your op.

Thanks MalkyEL for your response and kind words - you mentioneed that I backed down later on - Im open to chat here - would you be so kind as to explain so I might get a chance to clarify.  I do agree with your post and we may be saying the same thing.

Please expound more on my "backing down" - not upset or offended in any way - just would like some feed back so we cn chat some more on this important subject.

Again thanks fo r your feedback and May God bless!!
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« Reply #11 on: February 15, 2005, 08:54:16 AM »

I would agree that there are many pew sitters with no knowledge of Jesus in their lives, unregenerate, lost and dying sinners.  However, the majority?  I think the question isn't necessarily how little they don't understand, but how much the do understand.  What do I mean?  I mean that the gospel message is simple, and it is on those terms that we all come to Christ.  Simply.  It's not until we've come to know Him that the depth of the words you've given come to light.  

I'm not one to argue that we should remain ignorant.  I believe that each believer should come to an understanding of the depth of the plan of salvation God enacted from the foundations of the world.  But I also think that judging the relationship most believers have with Jesus based upon their knowledge of these words may be faulty as well.

Where do I stand on my understanding of what you've posted?  Hmmmm...

Quote
1. I read a lot of the old saints from 1580 to 1850 or say (not much later).  

These folks were different than we are today.  

They were separated, focused for God, easily conceited of sin, understood sin, had a real devotion and love to a Biblical Jesus Christ, had a true willingness to give Christ their all including their lives, a daily time with God that was truly rich and real, had a genuine love for God’s word that in turn caused their lives to governed and ruled by the scriptures at all costs, and finally….they understood what happened to them at Calvary.  In other words they understood the doctrine of justification like we do not today which leads me to my second reason:

Amen!  Yet I've seen many willing to separate when Paul admonishes:

Quote
I entreat Euodia and I entreat Syntyche to agree in the Lord.  Yes, I ask you also, true companion, help these women, who have labored side by side with me in the gospel together with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.

Philippians 4:2-3

Quote
2. The average “saint” today doesn’t have a clue as to what took place at Calvary 2000 years ago.  The lack of understanding of this subject is appalling!

The “tion” words of Romans are unknown to them to the point where they are not discussed at all today (justification, redemption, propitiation, adoption, glorification, sanctification, etc.).

Quite possible.  But do we refuse to teach them now for what they didn't have taught to them then?  Doubtful that you feel that way, and I'm not accusing you of such.  Just trying to point out that we're all taught by the same Spirit through God's means of the local assembly and our obedience to His word.  We learn when we come and obey.  So...what do these words mean?

JUSTIFICATION[/u]  I've heard it expressed many times as "just as if I'd never sinned."  That's good, but lacking.  Our justification is based upon the shed blood of Jesus on the cross.  Our blood is unrighteous and worthless in offering.  The blood of goats and lambs, while acceptable in that time, never removed sin.  It only covered sin.  Jesus perfect blood removes sin.  Being justified by the blood of Jesus Christ is having the penalty for our sin removed.  Jesus, on the cross, took the wrath of God and the penalty for our sin - death, separation from God - upon Himself.  When a person believes and accepts Christ, that blood is applied to his account, and the penalty for that sin is erased.  That person now may know God, may be with God as opposed to being separated from Him by sin.  When God looks at their life, He sees His Son's righteous blood and the price has been paid in His eyes.

REDEMPTION[/u]  This is having the penalty/price for our sins paid.  We were once indebted to God because of our sin.  Now, the price, our lives have been redeemed.  I see this as tying very closely to justification, but better understood in the OT sacrifices.  Justification is positional.  Redemption is transactional.  

PROPITIATION[/u]  The word means an appeasement.  Now.  What's that mean?  It helps to understand the way in which it was used.  It reflects the Day of Atonement sacrifice under the OT Law.  On that day, the high priest would take two goats, cast lots, kill one, and symbolically lay the sins of the people on the other.  The living one was taken far from the camp and left.  The blood of the sacrificial one was taken by the high priest into the Holy of Holies and cast upon the Mercy Seat, which sat on the Ark of the Covenant.  Above the Ark, the Shekinah glory, or the manifestation of the presence of God resided.  In the Ark were a few things, but formost was the tablets upon which God wrote His Law.  The blood was sprinkled between the Glory of God and the Law of God.  The blood was sprinkled to appease God.  This had to be done yearly, as that blood only covered sin.  Jesus, as High Priest, gave His blood (sacrificial goat), took our sins on Himself(symbolic goat) and removed them, and offered His blood as an appeasement, the propitiation for our sins.  Long, but true nonetheless...

To Be Continued....


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« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2005, 09:34:45 AM »

....henceforth and towith continued... Grin

ADOPTION[/u]  This is one I like, but for the sake of not confusing toooooo much, I'll be brief.  Er.  Ok.  I'll just teach.   Grin  Anywho...during the time that God used His people, the Children of Isreal, any who came to Him, came through them.  They became a prostelyte.  They took the sign of the covenant and became Jews.  These, where God's children.  His people.  So.  What of the Gentiles?  We know that the gospel message was first to the Jew, but also to the Gentile, so how do non-Jews become children of God?  He adopts them!  There are cultural aspects to consider in this as well in that the adopted child was given full sonship as it were, but the thought of being God's child and His provision for ensuring that are the point.  Now, there are "neither Jew nor Gentile."  We are His.   Smiley

SANCTIFICATION[/u]  While we are justified by the blood of Christ, and counted righteous as a result in God's eyes, He doesn't want to leave it at that.  Rather, He conforms us to the image of His Son, Jesus, that we can be bearers of that glory, and draw others to Himself.  We are made like Christ, to live righteous lives indicative of the state of righteousness God has placed us in.  Whereas justification removes us from sin's penalty, sanctification removes us from sin's power.

GLORIFICATION[/u]  I love this one most!  Whatever you're take on the passage, that's fine, but consider this.  God predestined us to be conformed to the image of His Son.  He justified us to make that possible.  He sanctifies us to bring us further along, and to bring others to Himself.  He glorifies us when He finally makes us like Christ in Heaven one day.  Whereas sanctification removes us from sin's power, glorification removes us from sin's presence.  The end goal of being made like Christ is completed.  We become image bearers that reflect the glory of God as Christ did on earth.

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I believe the average “saint” today cannot write out their salvation experience and have it match the doctrine laid down by Paul.  

I've heard many believers try.  I've read many who have the understanding, but have not the ability to communicate it.  They're growing.  They later learn how to communicate the great work God did in their lives.  My first testimony was got profound.  "I got saved."   Smiley  My testimony now, is far deeper.

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I believe the average “saint” today doesn’t even know where he is going when he dies.  They are not sure whether or not they are going to heaven, an earthly kingdom, or the New Jerusalem.

Sad, but true.  I find that the confusion, again, comes from a growing believer who encounters the book of Revelations for the first time.  They must be shown.  I've seen postings here where people have gotten it confused!  But I know that they know in the end, they're with Jesus.   Smiley  Do I know where I'll be?  Yup!  Unless I've got some Jewish blood in me and that factors in somehow... Grin

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I believe the average “saint” today cannot verbally give a clear, biblical plan of salvation to another person that lines up with Paul’s gospel.

I believe the average saint today does not verbally give any plan, biblical or otherwise of salvation.  But this I do know.  If God's working, it works.  He'll take a newborn believer, take the simple message of what He did for them, and enlighten an unbeliever.  I've seen it happen.  It just takes a heart willing to share the love of Jesus with another.

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I believe the average “saint” today has no absolute final authority for his doctrine – all he has is multiple, reliable or unreliable modern versions which contradict one another which has led to doubting and almost total confusion.  His multiple authorities range from, the “Bible” (whatever or wherever that is), his church, his church leaders, Greek/Hebrew manuscripts, language scholars, professors, the ‘word of God’ (whatever or wherever that is), and finally his own Adamic nature.

And what is your absolute authority?  The KJV?  I say, GREAT!!!  Mine is the word of God as well.  I'll not argue the versions here, as that should not be the argument.  We agree that the final word is God's word.  We just don't agree on which translation of that word is absolute.  Personally, if my pastor, assembly, books I've bought or anything else agrees with God's word, then I'm fine.  If not, then I'm not in agreement with it or them.  Smiley

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I believe the average “saint” today will do almost anything to get along with everybody else so as not to upset his or her standing amongst the “brethren”.  This has lead to shallow bible study, compromise, and weak, anemic, saints with no convictions or true courage.

AAAAAAAAMMMMEEEEEEENNNNN!!!!![/b][/u]  Fortunately, I don't worry about such things.   Grin  It would do us all alot of good if we all practiced being doers of the word and not hearers only.

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I believe the average “saint” today has cast off the old hymns that built up the lives of saints and have replaced them with worldly, man-centered, fleshly, and fluffy songs written primarily to make money that during the coming tough times will not be enough to get the true saint through.

I believe that the hymns of the past dealt more with teaching and admonishing than they did with worship.  I love some of the old hymns.  Be Thou My Vision, The Old Rugged Cross, Victory In Jesus, Amazing Grace, It Is Well With My Soul to name a few.  Many can be worshipful as well.  But I'll take worshipping God for Who He is and what He has done in song, and listening to a Godly Pastor exposite the Word anytime.   Smiley

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We have replaced individual efforts with monster, worldly, business-like, man-centered, methods designed to bring in the masses while compromising Biblical convictions so as not to “offend” the sinner with such things as sin, hell, and judgment.  

AMEN!!!!

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Big is better – gain is godliness – small is unspiritual is the motto.

AMEN!!!!

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I believe the average “saint” today has replaced the great writers and writings of the past for the modern “fluff”, moneymaking, soft, weak, shallow, books of the today designed to be read quickly and easily.  The motto, “Make people happy, make them feel good about themselves, nothing negative, make them feel how wonderful they are” while ignoring what the Bible actually says about them.  

I believe that adherence to one over the other is a problem.  However, I do know that many of the newer authors deal with modern psychology more than ancient theology.  I've always said that the Bible doesn't make you feel good without first making you feel truth.   Smiley

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Sound, doctrinal, expositional Bible preaching and teaching has been replaced with entertainment, choirs, Super Bowl parties, family life buildings, sports, gyms, dating clubs, singles’ classes, divorcee classes, young married couples’ classes, old married couples’ classes, nursery schools, dramas, filed trips, and a lot of other unprofitable junk that the old saints never had or would ever touch with a ten foot poll and they accomplished a lot more for God without the above than we do with all the above!!!

Bottom line - I believe most of Christianity today is made up of unregenerate folks.  Because of the above we are living in the most carnal, weak, fleshly, worldly, unfruitful period of Christianity that there ever has been.  If you do not believe the above then one of two things is possible:
1. You are unregenerate.
2. You are regenerate but your standard of judgment is today’s “Christianity”.

I've seen all of the above.  But I've also seen it through different eyes.  Mine are far less judgmental.  (You already said you were judging so I didn't mean that as an accusational insult Brother).  But, with all that said, I still have issues with entertaining believers in the pews.  I'll leave it at that.

...to be continued yet again...
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« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2005, 09:49:06 AM »

...continued...

I felt I should post, as I have been becoming more aware of those reading who may not understand what's being said.  They may have recently been saved, and don't know what these things mean.  I posted to share this with them.  Posting your feelings is great.  We all do that.  But posting the understanding behind the feeling is far more edifying.

I didn't post references (though I referred to much) for my understandings of those words, so if anyone wants them, feel free to ask.  I'll gladly supply!

I also felt I should post, as I see a danger in this thinking.  Not that the thinking is bad by any means, but that in so thinking, we become pharsaiacal.  The view I've seen from this initial post (and I could be wrong), wasn't for those who don't understand, but about those who do.  Had it been the former, the understanding would have been included.  That's the danger.  We see ourselves in a better light than others, to the exclusion of others.  We must build one another up.  This post was a great heads up AV!  Just be careful you don't step on any faces in the process.   Smiley

God bless.

His,

Kevin
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« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2005, 09:51:40 AM »

I often see people saying that they are feed up with the churches in their area and decide to "home church".  That is just stay at home and hold their own "worship services" with just their own family and maybe one or two other like-minded families.  

I could see this being a good thing if they are very isolated by distance from most churches and the only local church was some cult.  I can see some definite pitfalls with people "home churching".  Maybe this a topic for debate.

I can't find the scripture but there is one that urges the believers to not forsaken coming together for worship and breaking bread.  Sorry I can't find the scripture.  Maybe someone else can.

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