WHAT HAPPENED AT MADISON THIS WEEK -- VII

WHAT HAPPENED AT MADISON THIS WEEK -- VII

Joined: March 9th, 2002, 4:18 pm

January 16th, 2004, 4:19 pm #1

Last edited by Donnie.Cruz on June 13th, 2012, 5:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Kenneth Sublett
Kenneth Sublett

January 16th, 2004, 6:25 pm #2

Donnie, did I post the fact that HAND CLAPPING is also VOMITING. For instance, when David "rose up to play" with the servant women he did the WHIRLING DERVISH dance. You sang, played or clapped (body drumming) and danced until you vomited and fell down "drunk in the spirit." In the JUDAS or Dionysic types who tried to pervert Jesus are pictured in the LAST ACT of the New Wineskin worship as VOMITING. Sure, they believed that getting drunk on wine (supplied by the leaders) or getting intoxicated by music meant that the GODS lived within. That is why EVERYONE grasped the connection between MUSIC and SEXUALITY.

-------------------------------------
* They can have approval for hand clapping and dancing in worship (Ps. 47:1; 149:3).

Psalm 47:1 Making an instrumental noise and "making a joyful noise before the Lord" was the Battle Cry of all nations and all "gods."

O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph (creaking, shrill, stridulous sound.) Psalm 47:1

For the Lord most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth. Psalm 47:2

He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet. Psalm 47:3

He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob whom he loved. Selah. Psalm 47:4

God is gone up with a shout, the Lord with the sound of a trumpet. Psalm 47:5

Hand clapping in worship services is the authentia authority of the female and effeminate over the masculine (male and female). It is a show of contempt. David "sang to the Gentiles" and shed the blood of the Gentiles with his foot on their neck. However, Jesus shed His blood FOR the Gentiles and taught them the Word.

The visions of your prophets were false and worthless; they did not expose your sin to ward off your captivity. The oracles they gave you were false and misleading. Lam 2:14

All who pass your way clap their hands at you; they scoff and shake their heads at the Daughter of Jerusalem (Sodom Rev 11:8): "Is this the city that was called the perfection of beauty, the joy of the whole earth?" Lam. 2:15

...."therefore I am going to give you to the people of the East as a possession. They will set up their camps and pitch their tents among you; they will eat your fruit and drink your milk. Ezek 25:4

See the nature of the Babylonians which informed the Goyiim or Nations to whom God TURNED Israel over because of their MUSICAL IDOALTRY at Mount Sinai.

"I will turn Rabbah into a pasture for camels and Ammon into a resting place for sheep. Then you will know that I am the LORD. Ezek 25:5

.."For this is what the Sovereign LORD says: Because you have clapped your hands and stamped your feet, rejoicing with all the malice of your heart against the land of Israel, Ezek 25:6

...Therefore I will stretch out mine hand upon thee, and will deliver thee for a spoil to the heathen; and I will cut thee off from the people, and I will cause thee to perish out of the countries: I will destroy thee; and thou shalt know that I am the Lord. Eze. 25:7

.....This is what the Sovereign LORD says: 'Because Moab and Seir said, "Look, the house of Judah has become like all the other nations," Ezekiel 25:8

None of this hand clapping has to do with "worship in praise to God."

Caphaq (h5606) saw-fak'; or saphaq (1 Kings 20:10; Job 27:23; Isa. 2:6), saw-fak'; a prim. root; to clap the hands (in token of compact, derision, grief, indignation or punishment); by impl. of satisfaction, to be enough; by impl. of excess, to vomit: - clap, smite, strike, suffice, wallow

And Balaks anger was kindled against Balaam, and he smote his hands together: and Balak said unto Balaam, I called thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast altogether blessed them these three times. Nu.24:10

Men shall clap their hands at him, and shall hiss him out of his place. Jb.27:23

For he addeth rebellion unto his sin, he clappeth his hands among us, and multiplieth his words against God. Jb.34:37

Therefore thou hast forsaken thy people the house of Jacob, because they be replenished from the east, and are soothsayers like the Philistines, and they please themselves in the children of strangers. Is.2:6

Make ye him drunken; for he magnified himself against the Lord: Moab also shall wallow in his vomit, and he also shall be in derision. Je.48:26

All that pass by clap their hands at thee; they hiss and wag their head at the daughter of Jerusalem, saying, Is this the city that men call The perfection of beauty, The joy of the whole earth? Lam.2:15

And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified. Re.11:8

Someone jump in about the WINTERFEST where Madison youth group boasts of up to 10,000 "purchasers". It was prophesied that Jesus would not CALL OUT which means to proclaim a large assembly. Rather, where TWO OR THREE gather (synagogue as students) Jesus promised to be in their midst. He REPUDIATED the notion of MASS MOVEMENTS because people USE and ABUSE the young people. Hitler grasped that if you wanted to do what Promise Keepers or the Postmodern freaks promote as dissociation or schizophrena. Hitler called it the "community of the great demonstration" where the PALTRY WORMS were won with music and masses where they could never be reached with the written word.

Parents need to be warned that the MASS DEMONSTRATION with BOOMING AND CLANGING music is a MIND CONTROL effort and they are being ADDICTED to something more damaging than drugs.

http://www.piney.com/mkv2ch06.html

Ken Sublett
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on January 16th, 2004, 7:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Donnie Cruz
Donnie Cruz

January 17th, 2004, 11:23 am #3

George stated: This site is a joke!!! Not only to me when I look at it but from what I have been told by many of my Christian friends from the Madison CHurch of Christ. I am good friends with Nick/his family as well as Jimmy/his family and wouldn't waste my time telling you what they are up and if they still attend Madison or not cause I feel that is none of your business Donnie. The reason for my saying this is all you are gonna do is disect their status and what they are doing in their lives to serve the Lord. So, if you think you are getting it from me....think again....
George


Response:
  • <font color=“blue”>Rather than searching for statements that might cause your circulatory system to malfunction, have you considered reading a few of several threads on the board that I’m certain you can benefit from? For example, we have:

    • KEEPING ABREAST: REVIEWS OF BOOKS AND MATERIALS RELATING TO THE CHANGE MOVEMENT
    • APOSTASY: “If I Were Satan”
    • A NEW BIG PICTURE: “THE CHANGE AGENTS ARE COMING! THE CHANGE AGENTS ARE COMING!”
    • WORSHIP IS NOT ENTERTAINMENT
    • TO CHANGE OR NOT TO CHANGE? (with interactive responses to this message)
    • COMMUNITY CHURCHES AND CHURCHES OF CHRIST
    • WORSHIP FOR SALE (90% OF ALL CHURCH CONFLICTS ON MUSICAL ISSUES)
    • CHANGE YES: APOSTASY NO!

    Besides, what are you afraid of? I’ve known of Jimmy Sites with a good speaking ability—studious and always prepared to present his lessons clearly. I also stated earlier that I really missed Nick Boone—and I meant that! I wish he could return to leading singing for us—and I mean that. For all you know, Nick could (and I strongly believe that he would) be a source of inspiration to REAL congregational singing. We need to stop this non-sense of BEING SUNG TO by an elite bunch of musicians—the singers and the clanging cymbals BOTH! By the way, if and when this happens, the concerned members will be the first ones to let everyone else know that reverent worship in spirit and in truth is back.</font>
Donnie Cruz
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on January 17th, 2004, 4:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Kenneth Sublett
Kenneth Sublett

January 18th, 2004, 5:13 pm #4

Rubel Shelly: Today's Sermon Today:
  • Rubel Shelly Claims: They [women] served Yahweh at the door of the tabernacle (Ex. 38:8)
    But GOD Said: And it came to pass, when Moses went out (far away) unto the tabernacle, that all the people rose up, and stood every man at HIS TENT DOOR and looked AFTER Moses, until he was GONE INTO the tabernacle. Exod 33:8

    And it came to pass, as Moses entered into the tabernacle, the cloudy pillar descended, and stood at the door of the tabernacle [not the women], and the Lord talked with Moses. Exod 33:9 [Miriam got scourged while standing in Christ's position!]

    And all the people [tribe, man] saw the cloudy pillar stand at the tabernacle door: and all the people rose up and worshipped, every man in HIS tent door. Exod 33:10
You see, it is Christ in the pillar who STANDS at the door of the tent: not the WOMEN. Now, having repudiated the WORD, WOMEN stand in the holy place as the MEDIATORS. Rubel says that the "teams" can LEAD YOU INTO THE PRESENCE OF GOD. ARE YOU LISTENING? This is the training at WINTERFEST, a Pagan "Mad Woman's" Festival:
  • "Musicians and theater apologists...defused their opponents' anxieties about music, theater, and sexuality,

    creating a space for players in the cultural mainstream." Sane parents WILL NOT be defused!
See Jeff Walling 1995 training our youth to rebel: it works! Check your local church whatever the denomination: the Mad Women may have done a BODY SNATCH! See how Jeff Walling ridicules the church. Those TAKING children intend or have taken over churches and cast out the 'grey hairs.'

http://www.piney.com/Walling1995.html

Keith Lancaster will give AID AND COMFORT this year to TRAFFICK in a purely COMMERCIAL promotion. Jimmy Sites has been a featured performer at the MAD WOMEN'S WINTER FESTIVAL. The Madison Youth Group is PROUD of this MASS OUTPOURING expecting about 10,000 youth.

We have noted that all TYRANTS know that you cannot change people into an irrational dose of schizophrenia with the advice of Hitler:

http://www.piney.com/mkv2ch06.html

Hitler says: "The mass meeting is also necessary for the reason that in it the individual, who at first while becoming a supporter of a young movement, feels lonely and easily succumbs to the fear of being alone..he experiences community of the great demonstration

He concludes by calling those FOOLS who have gambled away their standing.

Ken Sublett
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on January 18th, 2004, 6:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Just a Demon
Just a Demon

January 20th, 2004, 1:45 am #5

Thank you Kenneth and Donnie for spreading discord and division amongst God's people.

You are making my master's (Lucifer) work easy.

Thanks.

A Demon.
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Donnie Cruz
Donnie Cruz

January 20th, 2004, 11:37 am #6

You’re welcome, Lucifer’s servant!

No, wait! I should thank these prominent change agents operating in the brotherhood:

• MAX LUCADO, Senior Minister (or “Pastor”) of the Oak Hills [Community] Church, Texas
• RUBEL SHELLY, Senior Minister (or “Pastor”) of the Woodmont Hills Family of God [Church], Tennessee
• RICK ATCHLEY, Senior Minister (or “Pastor”) of Richland Hills Church of Christ[?], Texas


Each of the respective congregations has its own elders [excuse me, they’re now called “SHEPHERDS,” … Stupid!] … intimidated by its own VERY FAMOUS “pastor.” (“Pastor” in the church of Christ!—Wow!—sounds “Baptist” to me—tell me you’re kidding!) This simply means that the eldership [or should we say, the “SHEPHERDSHIP”] is in subjection to … THE MAN!!! ALL THREE famous change agents, along with others almost as famous (Jeff Walling, Joe Beam, etc.) are “spreading discord and division amongst God’s people.”

These change agents have been hard at work in at least the last two decades. This website, on the other hand, is still a neophyte. And you’re accusing us of dividing the church? What have you been smoking? <font color= “blue”>Here’s your analogy: The ones who want to maintain the authentic, original rules of the baseball game are the ones breaking the rules of the game (translated: sowing discord and being divisive); but the ones who want to modify or incorporate certain rules of basketball into baseball are not subverting the game.</font>

I’m sure your master Lucifer will not correct your flawed accusation.

Praying for unity in the body of Christ!

Donnie Cruz
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on January 20th, 2004, 1:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Kenneth Sublett
Kenneth Sublett

January 20th, 2004, 5:45 pm #7

Thank you Kenneth and Donnie for spreading discord and division amongst God's people.

You are making my master's (Lucifer) work easy.

Thanks.

A Demon.
Confession is good for the soul but when you mock the WORD of God which was good enough for most people P.S. (Pre Shelly, pre Lucado), then God has "raptured" those marked with the WORD out of your presence.

If you have been thrown into the PK or Postmodern cult's schizophrenia, the Bible and ancient literature knows that you CANNOT get back up into the presence of the Living Word.

Now, here is some stuff to show that ANY focus on MUSIC which compromises the DIRECT COMMAND to TEACH and ADMONISH one another with "that which is written" has always been attributed to the DEMONS or demi-gods. A modern liberal scholar says: "There is no other tradition." That is why ALL of the musical terms and names of instruments in the Bible which can be USED for pre-Christian "ritualistic lostness"show that they come from SATANIC influences or perverted sexual "worship" where the PERFORMERS bring the demons to estrus.

Now, here is my first PROOF that MUSIC as worship is HERESY:

http://www.piney.com/MuHeresy.html

http://www.piney.com/MuHeresy2.html

http://www.piney.com/FathRecClemBIV.html

Clement explained the UNIVERSAL connection between religion and MUSIC. The people under Jubal (rimes with....) caused the destruction of the world. When he HANDLED musical instruments the meaning is WITHOUT A COMMAND. Handle also connects to sexuality and homosexuality: the sin which began in the garden.

Right off the Ark people turned back to being led by SATAN or DEMONS:

But when all these things were done, men turned again to impiety; [There is a similar chapter in Homily IX.

7, but in a discourse: on the following day.-R.] and on this account a law was given by God to instruct them in the manner of living.

But in process of time, the worship of God and righteousness were corrupted by the unbelieving and the wicked, as we shall show more fully by and by.
Moreover, perverse and erratic religions were introduced, to which the greater part of men gave themselves up,

by occasion of holidays and solemnities, instituting drinkings and banquets,

following PIPES, and FLUTES, and HARPS, and diverse kinds of MUSICAL instruments, and indulging themselves in all kinds of drunkenness and luxury.

Hence every kind of error took rise; hence they invented groves and altars, fillets and victims, and after drunkenness they were agitated as if with ,AD emotions.

By this means power was given to the DEMONS to enter into minds of this sort, so that they seemed to lead insane dances and to rave like Bacchanalians; hence were invented the gnashing of teeth, and bellowing from the depth of their bowels; hence a terrible countenance and a fierce aspect in men, so that he whom drunkenness had subverted and a demon had instigated, was believed by the deceived and the erring to be filled with the Deity.

In the same way the HOLY WHORE using musicians and rhetorical speakers or sOPHISts (serpents) will replace the WORD and preach little "dung cakes" after converting you back to be BEAST PEOPLE: children of Satan.

Rev 18:22 The MUSES of harpists and musicians, flute players and trumpeters, will never be heard in you again. No workman of any trade will ever be found in you again. The sound of a millstone will never be heard in you again.


Ken
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on January 20th, 2004, 6:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Donnie Cruz
Donnie Cruz

January 27th, 2004, 12:03 pm #8

<font face=Courier color= “blue”>==============================================================
REGULAR CONTRIBUTION___2001________2002________2003_______2004
==============================================================
Church Budget_______$47,143_____$38,000_____$39,000____$39,500
Children’s Home_______5,400_______4,021_______2,500___________
Youth/Children___________________________________________2,600
Amazing Grace/CPI_____3,000_______1,539_______________________
Special Missions______________________________1,500___________
==============================================================
Total Weekly Budget_$55,543_____$43,560_____$43,000____$42,100
==============================================================


==============================================================
MADISON MINISTRIES BUDGET_____________________2003________2004
==============================================================
Madison Church__________________________$2,475,000__$2,438,100
Christian Care_____________________________371,592_____387,384
Vision 2000________________________________362,000*____362,000
Children’s Home/Domestic Violence Programs_176,396____________
Youth & Children’s Ministry____________________________124,800
Valley View Christian Camp_________________108,000_____113,000
Special Missions____________________________67,600____________
Worship & Media Center__________________________________35,316
==============================================================
Budget Total____________________________$3,561,188__$3,460,600
==============================================================
*Balance on Building Note (end. 2002)___$3,557,119____________


==============================================================
MADISON MEMBERSHIP RECORDS____________________2002*_______2003
==============================================================
Family Units_____________________________________*_______1,903
Attenders________________________________________*_______4,279
Baptized/Madison_________________________________*__________56
Placed Membership________________________________*_________120
Baptized/Prison__________________________________*_________334
Restored/Prison__________________________________*_________675
Deceased_________________________________________*__________36
Births___________________________________________*__________13
==============================================================
*Stats for 2002 not available at this time____________________
==============================================================
</font>
———————————————————————————————————————————
When available, link to http://www.madisoncofc.org/ (Madison Marcher: January 21, 2004) for
the complete 2003 Financial Recap and Regular Weekly Contribution Budget for 2004.
———————————————————————————————————————————

———————————————————————————————————————————
ON THE RECORD: Combined 8:00 and Contemporary Attendance (Statistics taken from the Marcher)
*Sunday School Drive on October 19, 2003
———————————————————————————————————————————
<font face=Courier color= “blue”>
2003 AUGUST ______________ 1,702___1,759___1,726___1,742___1,732
2003 SEPTEMPBER __________ 1,782___1,722___1,629___1,498
2003 OCTOBER _____________ 1,681__________*2,028___1,643
2003 NOVEMBER ____________ 1,708___1,664___1,526___1,637___1,596
2003 DECEMBER ____________ 1,554___1,534___________1,557
2004 JANUARY _____________ 1,725___1,712___1,640
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Note: “Churches of Christ in the United States” [2003] compiled by Mac Lynn
reported the following data on Madison for 2002:

Members___________________ 3,142
Adherents_________________ 4,730
Attendance (Worship)______ 1,786 (average weekly) </font>
———————————————————————————————————————————
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on January 27th, 2004, 2:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Donnie Cruz
Donnie Cruz

February 2nd, 2004, 12:35 pm #9

================================================
The Madison Marcher (Vol. 53, No. 04, January 28, 2004) Announcements:
================================================

<font face=Courier size=3>
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| A Word from the Shepherds: |
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</font>
<font color=“blue”>
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
An outline of the “New Vision Presentation” will be in the next Marcher, which will be mailed. Audio tapes of the presentation are available now in the Worship & Media Center or at the Welcome Center during service times. You may call Keith Hall at 860-3236 to purchase a tape ($3) or CD ($5) during the week.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~</font>
<font face=Courier size=3>
======================
| PREACHER POTPOURRI |
| Dr. C. Bruce White |
======================
</font>
<font color=“blue”>
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
What a great group of elders. It is impossible to imagine how a group of men could have improved on the manner and method of presenting the direction of an organization than our shepherds did on Sunday. It is evident that the church “on this corner” has a bright future. I am excited to be a part of this family and anticipate this year.

It is time to step up. We need workers in ministries, servants in worship, teachers in classes, and encouragers in every pew. We need sacrificial giving that reflects God’s love for this church. This entire effort is determined by the individual who responds to accountability and is not hiding in the crowd.

The announcement about my retirement brought a few questions. I will preach through the end of 2004. We will be looking for a pulpit minister during the year. It is my plan to work for the Madison church as long as my health allows. Thank you all for your love, concern, and encouragement.
. . .
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~</font>
<font face=Courier size=3>
================================================
The “New Vision Presentation” begins as Dr. Bruce White speaks…
================================================
</font>

. . . the shepherds have been working diligently on what they’re going to present today. I think it is vital for us to have a good understanding where this congregation stands, where it’s going, what its direction is going to be, what its vision is. I don’t know of men with whom I have shared in the last 25 or 30 years that I have appreciated more for their spirit, for their love of the Lord, for the commitment to kingdom, and for taking the role of shepherds as seriously as these gentlemen do. So, standing before you today will not be just a bunch of men in the church, but you’re going to be hearing from your dedicated and committed leaders in the kingdom of God. And we’re grateful for each and every one of them. I know that you are as well. We’re going to begin with prayer…if you will please bow with me while we pray.

[to be continued . . .]
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Donnie Cruz
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on February 2nd, 2004, 1:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Donnie Cruz
Donnie Cruz

February 3rd, 2004, 1:03 pm #10

———————————————————————————————————————————
<font color=“blue”>
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: The following is an “unofficial” transcript of “New Vision Presentation” that was delivered by the leadership during the regular Bible study period at 9:20 a.m. on January 25, 2004. The Madison Marcher indicated on 1.28.04 (Vol. 53, No. 04) that the outline “will be in the next Marcher [February 4, 2004], which will be mailed. Audio tapes of the presentation are available now in the Worship & Media Center during service times….”

Please feel free to click on the “Respond to this message” provided below in order to make necessary corrections to the following transcribed material.</font>
———————————————————————————————————————————
<font size=4> “NEW VISION PRESENTATION” </font>
<font size=2>January 25, 2004</font>
[Dr. Bruce White]: . . . the shepherds have been working diligently on what they’re going to present today. I think it is vital for us to have a good understanding where this congregation stands, where it’s going, what its direction is going to be, what its vision is. I don’t know of men with whom I have shared in the last 25 or 30 years that I have appreciated more for their spirit, for their love of the Lord, for the commitment to kingdom, and for taking the role of shepherds as seriously as these gentlemen do. So, standing before you today will not be just a bunch of men in the church, but you’re going to be hearing from your dedicated and committed leaders in the kingdom of God. And we’re grateful for each and every one of them and I know that you are as well. We’re going to begin with prayer…if you will please bow with me while we pray.

[Prayer]: Dear Father, we’re grateful that you allow us to be a part of your kingdom and that you have confidence in men to carry out your work—that is beyond comprehension. Who are we that we should even dabble with your things and yet because you place this responsibility and opportunity before us, we want to use the very best that we have for you. We’re thankful for our shepherds, for the commitment they have for your kingdom, for their appreciation of Jesus, for their love for every member of this congregation, for their desire to be practical leaders. We pray that you bless each one of them as they make their presentations today, that clarity and understanding and wisdom will come forth. Bless us as hearers that we might listen carefully, that we might listen with open and challenged minds, and that we will have a cooperative spirit to make this congregation exactly what you want it to be and to constantly leave it in the hands of your Spirit. Bless us in all that we say, all that we do, all that we are that we might ever glorify the name of Jesus. It’s in His name we pray. Amen.

… Chris Gingles.

[Speaker, Chris Gingles]: Well, I could tell you we’ve been praying and working and looking forward to this day for a long time. And I know that many of you have shared that. And if we share with you our vision this morning, it is our prayer that you will become as excited about the direction for our church family as we are. Through the last few months the elders of this church have focused a great deal of time, a great deal of prayer, a great deal of attention in charting a course for our church family.

We recognize that we are not the church family of 5,000 that we were once upon a time. We recognize that the financial resources that we once had available are not available at the present. We recognize that the culture in which we live has changed, and we recognize that the expectations and the needs of the church family have changed as well. If the Madison church of Christ is going to remain relevant to the members and to our community, if we’re going to work and live, operate within our available resources, if we’re going to continue to follow Jesus this challenge, his instruction to us, to make disciples of all nations, then, we believe it is imperative that we make some mid-course adjustments.

First, we ----- time in prayer, seeking guidance from our Creator. We know that a lot of you have been praying for us as well. We ------ specifically for God to reveal His plan for our church family—not, not developing our plan and then asking Him to bless it. But we have asked for Him to reveal His plan for our family. We’ve spoken with many of you individually and we’ve prayed. We’ve assembled a group of men to put together a plan to retire the church debt. And we’ve prayed. And through the leading of the Spirit, we have the core of what we believe that God would have in the direction that God would have us to follow here at Madison. And today we’re going to share with you the vision, the direction of the Madison church of Christ. We’re going to cover a lot of territory this morning, a lot of subjects. And at 3:30 this afternoon, we’re going to meet back in Bixler to answer any questions that you might have. We’ve provided question cards—there’s a good reason for the cards. The elders of this church have agreed to always agree on everything. And we’re afraid that if we resort to answering questions extemporaneously that perhaps we would provide a response to your question that we do not intend. We believe that the better option is for us to discuss the question among ourselves and then to provide a response that we all agree with.

Okay. Let’s begin with some things that will not change. First, it goes without saying, but we’re going to say it anyway: The “Madison Church of Christ” has been and will continue to be a “Church of Christ.” We will continue to be a church devoted to the study of God’s word and to prayer. Second, we’re committed to acappella singing in our worship assembly—we’re going to continue in that commitment. In our Sunday morning assembly, we will continue with the traditional worship format at 8:00 o’clock and a contemporary format at 10:30. When Jesus spoke to the woman at the well, he told her that the most important of worship was what’s in the heart of the worshipper. And that it’s the heart of the worshipper that the Father sees. And it is our desire to provide worship styles that connect the worshipper with the Creator.

Today, we will share with you the role of elders and how the elders of this church will interface with the church family. We’ll talk about connecting our church family through relationships with each other. We’ll talk about some expectation for you who call this a church home. We’re going to talk about involvement in ministry. We’re going to speak about finances of our church family—let me just give you a preview. We have a wonderful facility here, but it’s very much like my own home and that it’s not completely paid for. And the elders have decided that rather than spending money on the interest on the mortgage, we decided that it is a better idea to come up with a plan to pay off the debt until we asked a group of godly men if they would put together a plan for us to retire the debt of this church family, and they did. And this morning we will share with you that plan. But I can tell you, brothers and sisters, that we will live—we will live—within our budget. Even before we begin to describe the direction for our family, we realize that because we are a family of individuals, we are not always going to see everything the same way. We never have and we never will. Some aspects of the vision will appeal to some but not to others. Some of you will be happy with the changes that we made with our finances, and others will not. But we ask that you remember that we are family. You know for many years, brother North always said that here at Madison that everybody has his say, but nobody has his way all the time. Exactly right! And that remains true today. Mark ---. We’re committed to be a church of prayer. Mark….

[Prayer]: (Let’s bow and pray.) Lord, God of heaven, creator of all good things, only you know many prayers have gone up soliciting your guidance in the development of this vision for your family here at Madison. And because so many teachers and deacons, ministry leaders, shepherds and other members have requested your direction, I believe that what is being presented here today is your vision, not ours. We realize that it’s not possible that everyone will agree with every aspect of this vision, but we do pray, dear God, for complete unity in your Spirit in the bond of peace here on this corner, and that we will all work together in harmony to reach just one more soul, to serve our community and to serve you most of all, dear God. We pray that each individual will be devoted to serving, instead of being served. We ask your blessing on this vision known as family of believers at this Madison church of Christ for it’s in the name of Jesus our Lord and Savior. Amen.

[Speaker, Chris Gingles]: In his letters, Paul frequently refers to the church family, church of the family. And in many ways, our church family is like your own family. We’re brothers and sisters in the Lord. A lot of Paul had to say in his letters to the first century churches was simply about the basic fundamentals of just getting along. And the purpose for that was so that we demonstrate our love for each other, that world would see a difference in the way that we live. That’s true in your own home; that’s true in our church family. In our physical homes, there are issues about what the family will do and how and where it would spend money. And same thing is true for our church family. In the home, there’s a spiritual leadership role for the man. In our church family, that leadership role is entrusted to elders. Some decisions that the elders make you will agree with, and some you will not. It doesn’t mean that all the decisions that the elders make are right or best any more than the decisions that you make in your own homes are always right or better.

Elders have certainly made their share of wrong decisions. For the last few years, the elders of this church have tried to accommodate everyone and to make everyone happy, but we’ve come to realize that’s simply not possible. You see when we try to go in all different directions, the conclusion is that we have no direction, or at least no consistent direction. And that’s disappointing for you and that’s frustrating for us. And so our prayer is that you will learn to support even the things that you did not initially agree with. And the purpose is that we would have some consistency and direction, that we would all be headed in the same direction. In his letter to the church in Ephesus, Paul tells us to submit to one another out of reverence to Christ, that we submit to one another because of our reverence to Christ. We’ve also discovered that it is easy for our church family to become so focused on the administrative decisions that we forget our true purpose. Brothers and sisters, our purpose in this world is to share Jesus with those who do not know Him, and that must be at the core of everything that we do. From that point, then we’re going to move on.

It is important for us for you to know that the elders of this church family are a very, very diverse group. And when we approach an issue, we do not always see everything the same way. And that’s true because if we chose any twelve people from this church family, it would be the same—they would not always see things the same way. But we do believe that through the leading of the Spirit, that the elders as a whole are greater than the sum of the individual parts. And because of that, we have agreed that all of us would support the group decision even when it is not our own personal preference. We do that. We do that to maintain unity. And we ask you to do the same thing: to support the decision even when they are not your own personal preference, and for the same purpose—to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

[Speaker]: A few years ago, Lynn Anderson wrote a book entitled, “They Smell Like Sheep.” In his book, he described the successful shepherd as constantly being with the sheep and, hence, the name of the book. Buck is going to … share with you how the shepherds at the church family are going to smell like sheep. Before he comes, Buck just this week has been dealing with the illness of his father, had a major surgery, very invasive pancreatic cancer, so let’s spend a few moments in prayer.

[Prayer]: Father, we’re just very grateful for all the way that you can see the work in us and through us. I pray in a very, very special way now that you will bless Buck, bless his father. I pray, Father, that in the middle of this adversity, that you would reveal yourself to that family. I pray, Father, that --- drawn close together, closer to you. We give you all the praise and all the glory. In the name of Jesus.

[Speaker, Buck Dozier]: Thank you, Chris, and thank you for this week. What I’m fixing to say probably has more to do with the cultural change than --- take place in this church than anything I could possibly know. It used to be stated here that the elders could run General Motors here. And probably that was true at one time … that the highly talented elders that we had could have done that. But this eldership now has been ----- in running General Motors or anything else like that. We want a cultural change. And this is what that change is.

We, as elders, must effectively shepherd, mentor, and equip the flock for works of service that will bring honor and glory to the Father. We believe the hands-on personal relationship model is best. As a mentor, we believe we must always model Christ-like behavior, values and faith through the shared life. As an equipper, we believe we must equip the flock as Jesus equipped His follower. We believe it is necessary to maintain frequent and long-term contact with the people. We believe it is vital to build warm and loving relationships. We believe that sharing our emotions with people when they hurt or rejoice creates unbreakable bonds. We believe that being with people on their variety of life’s settings allows us to see that we are all just children of God striving for the same goals.

We believe that it is necessary to equip our deacons to oversee administrative duties as well as to equip every member of the flock to do works of service based upon their gifts and patience given to them by God. It is our prayer that we will always glorify God by tending the flock, touching the flock, knowing the flock, feeding the flock, soothing the flock, crying with the flock, laughing with the flock, praying over the flock, guiding the flock, and smelling like the flock. We believe this is the biblical model and purpose of the true shepherds—we would like to return to this church to what we believe is the biblical model of what shepherds were supposed to be in the first century. Therefore, the structural eldership would change just --- [?] ---.

There will be an executive committee of elders to deal with a lot of the business part of it. There will be a presiding chairman, appointed for one year, appointed by the full eldership, they will preside over the committee of the three, the full eldership meetings and any other meetings being necessary to the full body of elders. The chairman of ministry—he will be appointed for one year, serve one term; the primary shepherding role for this elder is to assure that all present ministries are relating to our mission statement and that spiritual growth is taking place in our congregation; and he’ll be the liaison to the deacons’ committee. [. . . To be continued … including the beginning of this paragraph. Is it the new concept stuttering? Is the tape of poor quality? Is it a temporary auditory malfunction on my part?]

[. . . To be continued . . .]
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Donnie Cruz
Last edited by ConcernedMembers on February 3rd, 2004, 1:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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