Question About 2 Churches Of Christ (Nashville and Africa)

Dr. Bill Crump
Dr. Bill Crump

October 27th, 2010, 3:38 am #21

Sonny wrote: "I do think that a few on this site have a narrow, legalistic, self-righteous, sectarian, Pharisaical view of God and others/church."

"Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide [is] the gate, and broad [is] the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait [is] the gate, and narrow [is] the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it" (Matt. 7:13-14 KJV).

Well, Jesus did say that the way to life is narrow, which is irksome to most of the world. He undoubtedly knew that many people would loathe to have a "narrow" belief and would much prefer the wide gate of "acceptance and tolerance." So it's not surprising that, in the eyes of the world, those who follow the "narrow" way of Christ are "legalistic, self-righteous, sectarian, Pharisaical," etc., etc.
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Richard
Richard

October 27th, 2010, 4:08 am #22

Richard wrote: "Don't get on me about the five mythical acts of worship. I'm a 5th generation c of C boy and I know the doctrine just as well as any of you, probably better, and that knowledge is what has lead me to believe that it's wrong. We are saved by grace through faith, not by some mythic acts of worship and certainly not by anything we do."

When Richard says the "five mythical acts of worship," I gather that he is referring to the singing, preaching/studying the Word, giving of our means, praying, and taking the Lord's Supper, all of which are mentioned in the New Testament. Strange, I didn't think any part of the New Testament was "mythical," but I suppose that, in this postmodern age, some Christians have changed their mind about that. Next, I wonder if Richard will tell us that, since we are "saved by grace through faith," then Jesus' requirements for salvation are also "mythical."

BTW, Jesus' requirements for salvation are: hearing the Gospel, believing the Gospel, repenting of sins, confessing Jesus as Lord before mankind, being baptized for remission of sins, and leading a life of obedience to Him by serving Him and doing good for mankind. These requirements should be very familiar to a "5th generation c of C boy." They are all mentioned in the New Testament, and there is an entire thread on this board devoted to that subject, titled "Christ's Requirements for Salvation." I suggest that Richard read and study the lead post in that thread.
Dr, Crump, I understand that baptism is essential. In this you'll get no argument from me. I also understand that salvation doesn't include once saved always saved. What I have a problem with is mere men imposing so called "acts of worship" that are barely mentioned in the bible. Preaching is surely not an act of worship, studying isn't an act of worship either. While both of these things are very necessary for our spiritual growth, they are not in themselves "acts of worship" in their practice.

I used to smoke cigarettes until I finally understood the meaning of Rom 12:1 which says "to offer your bodies as a living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God---this is your spiritual act of worship." That act of worship is scriptural and is the whole reason I stopped puffing cigarettes almost 3 years ago. Now some people may say that I took that out of context, but for me it wasn't. Dr. Crump, how healthy of a life style do you lead? Are you a big fat guy, or are you someone who really presents his body as a living sacrifice? I wonder if I could pick at you a little for not conforming to this spiritual act of worship? Now you may say that I have taken this way out of context, but I can say the same thing about a lot of things you hold true and dear to your heart. I believe you and many people like you have taken lots of things out of context and made things fit into a neat little checklist you can check off in order to feel good about your salvation. It's just like Americans to make everything Corporate and have to have checklist and little scorecards to check off.

As for singing, I can say that is in act of worship, it's mentioned in several places and is pretty specific. The Lords Supper isn't really that specific except for in 1 Corinthians where it talked about them eating a meal together. The writer was condemning the church because not everyone was getting something to eat or drink while others were getting drunk and eating all the food without waiting on the others. I guess the thoughts in 1 Cor 11:17-22 means nothing to you at all; it doesn't fit in your neat little box on how worship should go. I suppose you also ignore women with short hair and men with long hair, that doesn't fit in your little box either I'm assuming.

James 1:27 says that"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." We can turn to the very next chapter where it talks about favoritism being forbidden, but most churches I've ever been too sure do favor folks such as yourself who is a doctor of whatever, or some muckety muck who has tons of money. Yes, I've seen the ugly side of "so-called" Christianity and it stinks. It seems to me you don't mind flaunting the Dr. Crump title, yes I know you went and earned that title, but I also earned the title of Mr. yet I don't demand you call me that, to anyone I'm simply Richard....I don't get caught up in titles, although I could and have every right to do so by the laws of man. Your title of Dr. doesn't impress me and surely has nothing to do with the content of your character or by what authority you spit out your venom.

I know what the requirements for salvation are every bit as well as you, probably more so than you because it seems you take so many things out of context. You spout out the doctrine that suits you and totally ignore whats important. It is because of the venom from people like you that so many people have the left the Church of Christ and indeed all forms of organized worship. People are now more interested in Christianity, not churchianity. There are a whole lot more people now that can read and discern things for themselves that do not need the likes of you shouting down or poo-pooing their ideas and or beliefs they hold dear to their hearts.

One final shot to you, and it's going to really hurt you because it's scriptural and is in black and white just as plain as baptism. Ephesians 2:8. This is the most ignored passage of scripture in the bible to those who claim to be of the "one true church". For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the GIFT of God-not by WORKS, so that no one can boast." Yes, I know we have to do good works to show our faith, but our salvation is a GIFT from GOD, the bible says it's so, and you and I are not going to do enough work to justify our soul salvation. Those 5 mythical acts of worship are in the bible, very vaugely, and they are not what is going to justify you or save you on judgement day.

Christianity is a very personal thing, we are told to work out our own soul salvation with fear and trembling. You also need to read Rom 12, 13,& 14...These are some more very ignored passages of scriptures in the old 'hardline" churches of Christ. Hey, I'm still a church of Christ man, so is my family, but I'm not the type that's going to condemn others over matters that are of opinion and not scriptural.

Dr. Crump. for you own good(and I've read many of your posts) you need to back off the sarcasm and the absolute hateful tone of your remarks. I'm saying this in love and in concern for your soul. I don't know who you are, or what you think you are other than what I read on this website. You come across as very arrogant and like a know it all, nothing you ever said ever makes me think differently. You are the epitome of why the church of Christ is dying....people are far to educated these days, and too knowledgable about things to be brow beaten into submission. Your brand of Christianity isn't Christianity to me at all, it's about the occult and the control of all those you come into contact with. People like you are the reason people like me have stayed away from churches. We've always wanted to be there, but could never live up to the self-righeteous standards the "chose few" leaders wanted us to live by. Come to find out all these years later, that the powers that be aren't any different than anyone else.
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Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

October 27th, 2010, 4:34 am #23

Brother Cruz,

Thank you for sharing your experience and perspective. I gather that your primary issues are praise teams and then clapping. Perhaps I misunderstand, but I deduce from this that the church at Madison indeed worships acappella and not with instruments.

No, pertaining to a weekly experience with a praise team. Have only experienced on a few occasions when visiting elsewhere. I can see pros and cons depending on a given situation, but nothing directly in Scripture forbidding.

I hope you have found a congregation where you can worship in peace.

Again, when I began posting my beef was with you know who (won't rehash though it is still a valid point in my opinion).

I do think that a few on this site have a narrow, legalistic, self-righteous, sectarian, Pharisaical view of God and others/church.

I used to be this way. Brothers in Christ loved me while challenging my perspective, interpretive methods, and inconsistencies. Thanks be to God.

-Sonny
[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]Sonny,

I was afraid that you would draw the conclusion that these are Donnie's primary issues. No, Sonny, I'm just telling you the events that occurred in the Madison congregation -- events leading up to the upheaval that had members leaving in droves. How can it be more real than that?

Did you ignore the principle that can be learned from the "Boiling the Frog" story?

The "but nothing directly in Scripture forbidding" is getting old. It doesn't work as a solution AFTER the congregation has already divided. Why can "Change Agents" not leave the church alone or start their own from scratch?

OK, whatever makes you happy: calling those who OPPOSE the devious works of the change agents as "narrow, legalistic, self-righteous, sectarian, Pharisaical." Christ and the apostles, by deduction, would fall in that category as they admonished to mark them that cause division and as they prayed for unity ... that they be of the same mind and the same judgment."[/color]
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Sonny
Sonny

October 27th, 2010, 5:10 am #24

This is also what I meant by your primary issues (specifically with Madison, not overall). And I hope you did not take my latter comments as being specifically toward you and disrespecting you based on your history with Madison. And yes, that is "real" and even though I believe in the unity in diversity concept being taught in Scripture (I realize you may not) THIS DOES NOT MEAN I AM SHRUGGING OFF "ANY AND ALL" DECISIONS, CONDUCT, COMMENTS, ETC. FROM THE LEADERSHIP/CHURCH AT MADISON because I was not there, do not know many facts, and more than likely in this whole deal there are several violations of Scripture from people on different sides of the fence and God's heart bleeds and Jesus literally bled for the entire congregation. May God's grace "heal" the church and all involved.

And may God bless you, Brother Cruz, with peace and joy and a resolve to not allow past negative experiences to discourage you or keep you in bondage to the past or hold you back from living for Christ evermore.

I did not ignore the boiling frog story. It is how I became so legalistic. I didn't even realize it.

I think we have much bigger fish to fry than how many singers get microphones, and I mean that toward those promoting praise teams as much as those condemning. Nevertheless, there are pros and cons depending on the situation (I can elaborate if needed). By saying it is not forbidden in Scripture, it is just that, a matter of opinion for which we must use spiritual judgment. Thus, we are not remaining silent where the Bible is silent if we say the Bible clearly and unequivocally teaches that it is sin and unacceptable.

I do not think "change agents" as you and others define them is what Jesus and the Apostles, including Paul in Romans 16:17, had (have) in mind. Paul is speaking of doctrinal divison (not opinion matters for worship and traditions, per Romans 14 and these "differences" being O.K.) and moral division ("evil" Romans 16:19).

I realize full well you will disagree with that, but at least you know my perspective and that I do not believe I am disregarding Romans 16:17, etc.

Grace and Peace Brother.

-Sonny
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Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

October 27th, 2010, 6:01 am #25

[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]... some of our congregations wouldn't be so ashamed of or confused about associating with the name of Christ:

-- Oak Hills Church [dropped the name "of Christ"]
-- Woodmont Hills Family of God [embarrassed by "church of Christ"]
-- Bridgeway Church [formerly "of Christ"]
-- The Hills Church of Christ [why no longer "Richland Hills"?]
-- ____________________ Community Church

Interestingly, these are congregations whose leaders [at no fault of their members] decided on their own to implement mechanical music in the assembly.

So, the question for you, Sonny -- knowing that instrumental music and "Praise Teams" are unnecessary, distractive and divisive -- what are you going to do now?[/color]

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Sonny
Sonny

October 27th, 2010, 6:41 am #26

Sonny wrote: "I do think that a few on this site have a narrow, legalistic, self-righteous, sectarian, Pharisaical view of God and others/church."

"Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide [is] the gate, and broad [is] the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait [is] the gate, and narrow [is] the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it" (Matt. 7:13-14 KJV).

Well, Jesus did say that the way to life is narrow, which is irksome to most of the world. He undoubtedly knew that many people would loathe to have a "narrow" belief and would much prefer the wide gate of "acceptance and tolerance." So it's not surprising that, in the eyes of the world, those who follow the "narrow" way of Christ are "legalistic, self-righteous, sectarian, Pharisaical," etc., etc.
You make the mold tighter and the way narrower than Jesus intended. I am choosing not to take the time to quote the 4 gospels, but would encourage you to read stories about prodigals and prostitutes, tax collectors and sinners, women caught in adulterery and women with 5 husbands, a thief on the cross, etc. entering the kingdom of heaven.

Some in Churches of Christ have ignored the gospels and jumped straight to "proof-texting" from Acts to Revelation.

The good news for the Pharisees and the teachers of the law (Lk. 15:1-2) according the Prodigal Son story in Luke 15:11-32 is that the older, self-righteous brother (vs. 25-32) is also included by the Father, though he wanted to exclude his younger, foolish, wasteful brother.

Luke 6:35b-37

"...he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven."

Matthew 21:31b

Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you."

Brother Crump, I can't wait to be in heaven with you! And, with moderates, ultra-conservatives, ultra-liberals, baptists and methodists, "change agents" and "worship leaders", acappella and instrumental churches, hand clappers and stoics, adulterers, prostitutes, tax collectors and sinners. ALL who are converted to Christ (not traditions or dogma), whether when younger or older.

Romans 8:1 "Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."

We need to be getting as many people into the water and raised to walk a new life as we can, because only in Christ, by grace through faith, do any of us "make it". Not by works, theology, nor morality, are ANY of us worthy.

The reason many will not enter ISN'T instruments or clapping or VBS or crayons in a classroom or the NIV, but because they never were "clothed with Christ" (Galatians 3:26-27), which has nothing to do with such trivial doctrinal minutia drivel of a few who have "zeal" but without "knowledge" (Romans 10:2).

You may not see me as making it and I do not even practice IM, clapping, praise teams, go to Winterfest (it's been several years), etc. BUT YOU WOULD FIND SOME OTHER REASON and that's o.k. because you're not the judge. Praise God.

By the way, I do believe that rigid, exclusive, ultra-conservatives will even make it in spite of their ways because God's grace and mercy is even available for us! (I say "us" because I am a recovered / recovering self-righteous, legalistic, Pharisee.)

"Brother", as I have seen and addressed you respectfully throughout, I am loving you, including challenging you. (Ephesians 4:15 - speak the truth in love)

It's o.k. for you to love me too and for iron to sharpen iron (Proverbs 27:17).

-Sonny
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Sonny
Sonny

October 27th, 2010, 7:00 am #27

[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]... some of our congregations wouldn't be so ashamed of or confused about associating with the name of Christ:

-- Oak Hills Church [dropped the name "of Christ"]
-- Woodmont Hills Family of God [embarrassed by "church of Christ"]
-- Bridgeway Church [formerly "of Christ"]
-- The Hills Church of Christ [why no longer "Richland Hills"?]
-- ____________________ Community Church

Interestingly, these are congregations whose leaders [at no fault of their members] decided on their own to implement mechanical music in the assembly.

So, the question for you, Sonny -- knowing that instrumental music and "Praise Teams" are unnecessary, distractive and divisive -- what are you going to do now?[/color]
they are not always distractive and divisive, per look at much of Christianity where they are used and everyone is unified about it.

I still love my C of C heritage and will personally continue in the acappella tradition, but will not bind this preference on every believer in Christ for fellowship / unity.

What am I going to do now?

1. Continue trying to lift up Christ to both acappella and instrumental churches and Christians, and lift up Christ pertaining to any other differences that should not divide us.

2. Go to bed, because it is getting late. (We can chat more another day bro.) I have actually posted more tonight than ever before. Will probably take it easy the next few days as I am busy Wed. - Fri. evenings of this week anyway, and will check back in this weekend for updates and possible responses.

While you and I obviously have some theological and interpretation differences, we are closer than we are distant in terms of lifestyle (ethically speaking) and worship (acappella, no praise teams, or hand clapping, etc.). Perhaps this is a good and positive fact and note to end on. What do you think?

-Sonny
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Dr. Bill Crump
Dr. Bill Crump

October 27th, 2010, 2:31 pm #28

Dr, Crump, I understand that baptism is essential. In this you'll get no argument from me. I also understand that salvation doesn't include once saved always saved. What I have a problem with is mere men imposing so called "acts of worship" that are barely mentioned in the bible. Preaching is surely not an act of worship, studying isn't an act of worship either. While both of these things are very necessary for our spiritual growth, they are not in themselves "acts of worship" in their practice.

I used to smoke cigarettes until I finally understood the meaning of Rom 12:1 which says "to offer your bodies as a living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God---this is your spiritual act of worship." That act of worship is scriptural and is the whole reason I stopped puffing cigarettes almost 3 years ago. Now some people may say that I took that out of context, but for me it wasn't. Dr. Crump, how healthy of a life style do you lead? Are you a big fat guy, or are you someone who really presents his body as a living sacrifice? I wonder if I could pick at you a little for not conforming to this spiritual act of worship? Now you may say that I have taken this way out of context, but I can say the same thing about a lot of things you hold true and dear to your heart. I believe you and many people like you have taken lots of things out of context and made things fit into a neat little checklist you can check off in order to feel good about your salvation. It's just like Americans to make everything Corporate and have to have checklist and little scorecards to check off.

As for singing, I can say that is in act of worship, it's mentioned in several places and is pretty specific. The Lords Supper isn't really that specific except for in 1 Corinthians where it talked about them eating a meal together. The writer was condemning the church because not everyone was getting something to eat or drink while others were getting drunk and eating all the food without waiting on the others. I guess the thoughts in 1 Cor 11:17-22 means nothing to you at all; it doesn't fit in your neat little box on how worship should go. I suppose you also ignore women with short hair and men with long hair, that doesn't fit in your little box either I'm assuming.

James 1:27 says that"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." We can turn to the very next chapter where it talks about favoritism being forbidden, but most churches I've ever been too sure do favor folks such as yourself who is a doctor of whatever, or some muckety muck who has tons of money. Yes, I've seen the ugly side of "so-called" Christianity and it stinks. It seems to me you don't mind flaunting the Dr. Crump title, yes I know you went and earned that title, but I also earned the title of Mr. yet I don't demand you call me that, to anyone I'm simply Richard....I don't get caught up in titles, although I could and have every right to do so by the laws of man. Your title of Dr. doesn't impress me and surely has nothing to do with the content of your character or by what authority you spit out your venom.

I know what the requirements for salvation are every bit as well as you, probably more so than you because it seems you take so many things out of context. You spout out the doctrine that suits you and totally ignore whats important. It is because of the venom from people like you that so many people have the left the Church of Christ and indeed all forms of organized worship. People are now more interested in Christianity, not churchianity. There are a whole lot more people now that can read and discern things for themselves that do not need the likes of you shouting down or poo-pooing their ideas and or beliefs they hold dear to their hearts.

One final shot to you, and it's going to really hurt you because it's scriptural and is in black and white just as plain as baptism. Ephesians 2:8. This is the most ignored passage of scripture in the bible to those who claim to be of the "one true church". For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the GIFT of God-not by WORKS, so that no one can boast." Yes, I know we have to do good works to show our faith, but our salvation is a GIFT from GOD, the bible says it's so, and you and I are not going to do enough work to justify our soul salvation. Those 5 mythical acts of worship are in the bible, very vaugely, and they are not what is going to justify you or save you on judgement day.

Christianity is a very personal thing, we are told to work out our own soul salvation with fear and trembling. You also need to read Rom 12, 13,& 14...These are some more very ignored passages of scriptures in the old 'hardline" churches of Christ. Hey, I'm still a church of Christ man, so is my family, but I'm not the type that's going to condemn others over matters that are of opinion and not scriptural.

Dr. Crump. for you own good(and I've read many of your posts) you need to back off the sarcasm and the absolute hateful tone of your remarks. I'm saying this in love and in concern for your soul. I don't know who you are, or what you think you are other than what I read on this website. You come across as very arrogant and like a know it all, nothing you ever said ever makes me think differently. You are the epitome of why the church of Christ is dying....people are far to educated these days, and too knowledgable about things to be brow beaten into submission. Your brand of Christianity isn't Christianity to me at all, it's about the occult and the control of all those you come into contact with. People like you are the reason people like me have stayed away from churches. We've always wanted to be there, but could never live up to the self-righeteous standards the "chose few" leaders wanted us to live by. Come to find out all these years later, that the powers that be aren't any different than anyone else.
The simple truth irks many people, and to retaliate, they erroneously regard those who post the truth as being "hateful" and full of "sarcasm." The truth does indeed do strange things to people.

How did the first-century Christians worship when they assembled together? They heard and studied the Word of God, sang hymns, prayed together, took the Lord's Supper together, and contributed of their means for the needy. There was also the opportunity for baptism. The congregants were encouraged to live their lives doing good to mankind as well. Thus, worship was simple and unadorned. What the first-century Christians did isn't called "acts of worship" as such in the New Testament, but what they did is indeed essential to worship. What else are we to do when we worship, unless people think that "worship" must now include pulpit comedy with amusing anecdotes and constant hilarity, drama/musical productions, the showcasing of singing groups and instrumental soloists to the accolades of men, skits, puppet shows, and all the other worldly goings-on present in postmodern churches? These latter parallel the pizzazz of theaters, yet not one word of them is mentioned in the New Testament.

We must follow New Testament example and put away the idea that we can do anything in worship just because "God didn't say not to." BTW, if something is "barely mentioned" in the New Testament, or mentioned only ONE time, are we to ignore it? Must something appear a million times in the New Testament in order for it to be drummed into our heads, before we even remotely consider following it?
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Dr. Bill Crump
Dr. Bill Crump

October 27th, 2010, 4:02 pm #29

You make the mold tighter and the way narrower than Jesus intended. I am choosing not to take the time to quote the 4 gospels, but would encourage you to read stories about prodigals and prostitutes, tax collectors and sinners, women caught in adulterery and women with 5 husbands, a thief on the cross, etc. entering the kingdom of heaven.

Some in Churches of Christ have ignored the gospels and jumped straight to "proof-texting" from Acts to Revelation.

The good news for the Pharisees and the teachers of the law (Lk. 15:1-2) according the Prodigal Son story in Luke 15:11-32 is that the older, self-righteous brother (vs. 25-32) is also included by the Father, though he wanted to exclude his younger, foolish, wasteful brother.

Luke 6:35b-37

"...he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven."

Matthew 21:31b

Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you."

Brother Crump, I can't wait to be in heaven with you! And, with moderates, ultra-conservatives, ultra-liberals, baptists and methodists, "change agents" and "worship leaders", acappella and instrumental churches, hand clappers and stoics, adulterers, prostitutes, tax collectors and sinners. ALL who are converted to Christ (not traditions or dogma), whether when younger or older.

Romans 8:1 "Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."

We need to be getting as many people into the water and raised to walk a new life as we can, because only in Christ, by grace through faith, do any of us "make it". Not by works, theology, nor morality, are ANY of us worthy.

The reason many will not enter ISN'T instruments or clapping or VBS or crayons in a classroom or the NIV, but because they never were "clothed with Christ" (Galatians 3:26-27), which has nothing to do with such trivial doctrinal minutia drivel of a few who have "zeal" but without "knowledge" (Romans 10:2).

You may not see me as making it and I do not even practice IM, clapping, praise teams, go to Winterfest (it's been several years), etc. BUT YOU WOULD FIND SOME OTHER REASON and that's o.k. because you're not the judge. Praise God.

By the way, I do believe that rigid, exclusive, ultra-conservatives will even make it in spite of their ways because God's grace and mercy is even available for us! (I say "us" because I am a recovered / recovering self-righteous, legalistic, Pharisee.)

"Brother", as I have seen and addressed you respectfully throughout, I am loving you, including challenging you. (Ephesians 4:15 - speak the truth in love)

It's o.k. for you to love me too and for iron to sharpen iron (Proverbs 27:17).

-Sonny
If the denominations, ultra-liberals, and others Sonny mentioned are to make it to heaven, they must put away their man-made doctrines and do-as-we-please attitudes and follow the teachings of Christ in the New Testament. That is what the "narrow way" is--the Gospel of Christ, not of man. Clearly, many denominations do NOT follow what is commanded in the New Testament. If they persist, how can they be saved? How can God forgive those who continue to ignore and scoff at what He has commanded in the New Testament? Christ has clearly warned us that such people will not be saved.

Sonny wrote to me: "You may not see me as making it...BUT YOU WOULD FIND SOME OTHER REASON..." By that, Sonny seems to have concluded that I have as much as condemned him to hell, when I have neither said nor thought anything of the sort. What a profoundly strange and judgmental attitude on his part! Sonny is right in one aspect, however: only God is the judge.

By "tolerance and acceptance," does that mean we embrace and encourage those who practice doctrines alien to the Gospel of Christ? Here's the answer:

"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: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds" (2 John 1:9-11 KJV).
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Jimmy Joe
Jimmy Joe

October 28th, 2010, 1:55 am #30

The simple truth irks many people, and to retaliate, they erroneously regard those who post the truth as being "hateful" and full of "sarcasm." The truth does indeed do strange things to people.

How did the first-century Christians worship when they assembled together? They heard and studied the Word of God, sang hymns, prayed together, took the Lord's Supper together, and contributed of their means for the needy. There was also the opportunity for baptism. The congregants were encouraged to live their lives doing good to mankind as well. Thus, worship was simple and unadorned. What the first-century Christians did isn't called "acts of worship" as such in the New Testament, but what they did is indeed essential to worship. What else are we to do when we worship, unless people think that "worship" must now include pulpit comedy with amusing anecdotes and constant hilarity, drama/musical productions, the showcasing of singing groups and instrumental soloists to the accolades of men, skits, puppet shows, and all the other worldly goings-on present in postmodern churches? These latter parallel the pizzazz of theaters, yet not one word of them is mentioned in the New Testament.

We must follow New Testament example and put away the idea that we can do anything in worship just because "God didn't say not to." BTW, if something is "barely mentioned" in the New Testament, or mentioned only ONE time, are we to ignore it? Must something appear a million times in the New Testament in order for it to be drummed into our heads, before we even remotely consider following it?
Dr. Crump, You made two points that I made a few years ago on this site except you stopped a little too soon. I agree that if one is to live and worship as the first century Christians, then do so. How is one to determine where it is appropriate to stop following the examples of the first century Christians? Could you please give me your opinion on Acts 2:44-47. Is it time to give up the material, unnecessary inanimate objects (SUV's, Large flat screen HD TVs,etc.)that most of us own and follow the example in Acts 2:45?

That was point one. Point two. How many times does one have to be given an example in scripture for it to be followed? If one time is sufficient then give me your opinion on John 13:12-17. Please don't use the back in those days and for the Apostles only excuse. I realize it was a symbolic gesture to show submission. So is one time enough.

Straight answered opinions would be appreciated without the sarcasm.
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