WHAT IF "CHANGE AGENTS" HAD BEEN OUR LEADERS

WHAT IF "CHANGE AGENTS" HAD BEEN OUR LEADERS

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

August 30th, 2007, 4:11 am #1

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WHAT IF "CHANGE AGENTS" HAD BEEN OUR LEADERS
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<font color=indigo size=3 face=times new roman>As I wade through the plethora of books being issued by those who are seeking to impose changes on Churches of Christ, I am led to ponder, "What if the ‘change oriented' preachers, university professors and editors had lived in earlier generations and been the ones providing leadership for the church when crises appeared?"

If they had been among us in the years following the Civil War they most surely would have sided with those promoting instrumental music in worship, human organizations to do the mission work of the church (i.e., missionary societies), women in leadership roles and fellowship with denominational churches. All of these items and more are in the on the agenda our "change agents." Had they been our leaders back then there would be few if any Churches of Christ today. We would all be in the Disciples of Christ or some other denominational communion. Thank God for Tolbert Fanning, David Lipscomb, Austin McGary, J. D. Tant and that noble band of faithful men who stood against those "change agents" of yesteryear and saved the church from apostasy.

If they had been our representative leaders in the generation between the two World Wars (1920-1940), it is very possible that we would all be caught up in the speculations of premillennialism just like most of our Protestant neighbors. Our change agents think our fathers made a mistake to oppose those who sought to introduce that popular error among us. We can be thankful that we had H. Leo Boles, R. L. Whiteside, Foy Wallace, Jr., John T. Hinds and other good men who would not abide those who promoted that change in the thinking of our people.

Had they represented us in the 1960s, when Charismatics began to surface among us, we very well could be a Pentecostal body today. In fact, if our contemporary promoters of change succeed they will most certainly lead us in that direction. They cannot find it in their code to oppose error that appears in the garb of "spirituality," excitement and miraculous workings of the Holy Spirit. Thank God for Guy N. Woods, James Bales and others who quickly extinguished the Pentecostal flame.

If they had been our leaders in the 1970s and 80s, we might all be a part of the Discipling Movement of the International Churches of Christ (i.e., Crossroads/Boston) denomination. A few good men stepped forward, wielded the sword of the Spirit effectively and exposed the promoters of that movement for the heretics they were. Our change advocates have no stomach for such negative, confrontational teaching and action. A favorite saying of the promoters of change is, they prefer "function over form." Since the Boston folks won lots of converts, how could anyone object to their methodology?

If today, we as a body of people allow the advocates of change to be our teachers and leaders we are like the man with a "death wish." They will change us from the Church of Christ purchased and founded by the Lord Jesus into a denomination founded by Barton Stone and Alexander Campbell. They will change our worship from that ordained by Christ in his Word to that designed and demanded by men who do not revere God's Word. They will change our faith from that derived from the New Covenant of Christ to that borrowed from Luther and Calvin and modern Pentecostal leaders. Rather than salvation by grace through obedient faith (Eph. 2:8-9), they will have us teaching salvation by grace and faith alone. If our children and preacher students are sent to their universities, they will likely emerge as denominational disciples rather than as strong faithful Christians. Rather than come home to strengthen and build up our congregations, they will come as missionaries of a new faith and practice inspired to impose changes on a church they no longer believe in.

Reader, as you listen to the sweet, inviting sirens of change, ponder these "What If" questions. They will help you to say "No!" to them.</font>

___________________________________
John Waddey, Editor
Christianity: Then and Now

E-Mail: [url=mailto:johnwaddey@aol.com]johnwaddey@aol.com[/url]
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Jimmy Joe
Jimmy Joe

August 30th, 2007, 8:50 pm #2

If one's faith is so weak that it can be changed by the words of a "change agent",it wasn't based in a firm foundation to begin with. If one truly believes something, words without proof to back it up will not change their belief.
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Dr. Bill Crump
Dr. Bill Crump

September 3rd, 2007, 1:52 pm #3

That's just it: Too many people don't have a firm foundation in Christ and the New Testament Scriptures, so they easily believe those who come along from the Change Movement who exhibit "good words and fair speeches." Gullible people are led astry, because they don't know the TRUTH.

"Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple" (Rom. 16:17-18 KJV).
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Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

April 10th, 2008, 5:17 am #4

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WHAT IF "CHANGE AGENTS" HAD BEEN OUR LEADERS
</font>


<font color=indigo size=3 face=times new roman>As I wade through the plethora of books being issued by those who are seeking to impose changes on Churches of Christ, I am led to ponder, "What if the ‘change oriented' preachers, university professors and editors had lived in earlier generations and been the ones providing leadership for the church when crises appeared?"

If they had been among us in the years following the Civil War they most surely would have sided with those promoting instrumental music in worship, human organizations to do the mission work of the church (i.e., missionary societies), women in leadership roles and fellowship with denominational churches. All of these items and more are in the on the agenda our "change agents." Had they been our leaders back then there would be few if any Churches of Christ today. We would all be in the Disciples of Christ or some other denominational communion. Thank God for Tolbert Fanning, David Lipscomb, Austin McGary, J. D. Tant and that noble band of faithful men who stood against those "change agents" of yesteryear and saved the church from apostasy.

If they had been our representative leaders in the generation between the two World Wars (1920-1940), it is very possible that we would all be caught up in the speculations of premillennialism just like most of our Protestant neighbors. Our change agents think our fathers made a mistake to oppose those who sought to introduce that popular error among us. We can be thankful that we had H. Leo Boles, R. L. Whiteside, Foy Wallace, Jr., John T. Hinds and other good men who would not abide those who promoted that change in the thinking of our people.

Had they represented us in the 1960s, when Charismatics began to surface among us, we very well could be a Pentecostal body today. In fact, if our contemporary promoters of change succeed they will most certainly lead us in that direction. They cannot find it in their code to oppose error that appears in the garb of "spirituality," excitement and miraculous workings of the Holy Spirit. Thank God for Guy N. Woods, James Bales and others who quickly extinguished the Pentecostal flame.

If they had been our leaders in the 1970s and 80s, we might all be a part of the Discipling Movement of the International Churches of Christ (i.e., Crossroads/Boston) denomination. A few good men stepped forward, wielded the sword of the Spirit effectively and exposed the promoters of that movement for the heretics they were. Our change advocates have no stomach for such negative, confrontational teaching and action. A favorite saying of the promoters of change is, they prefer "function over form." Since the Boston folks won lots of converts, how could anyone object to their methodology?

If today, we as a body of people allow the advocates of change to be our teachers and leaders we are like the man with a "death wish." They will change us from the Church of Christ purchased and founded by the Lord Jesus into a denomination founded by Barton Stone and Alexander Campbell. They will change our worship from that ordained by Christ in his Word to that designed and demanded by men who do not revere God's Word. They will change our faith from that derived from the New Covenant of Christ to that borrowed from Luther and Calvin and modern Pentecostal leaders. Rather than salvation by grace through obedient faith (Eph. 2:8-9), they will have us teaching salvation by grace and faith alone. If our children and preacher students are sent to their universities, they will likely emerge as denominational disciples rather than as strong faithful Christians. Rather than come home to strengthen and build up our congregations, they will come as missionaries of a new faith and practice inspired to impose changes on a church they no longer believe in.

Reader, as you listen to the sweet, inviting sirens of change, ponder these "What If" questions. They will help you to say "No!" to them.</font>

___________________________________
John Waddey, Editor
Christianity: Then and Now

E-Mail: [url=mailto:johnwaddey@aol.com]johnwaddey@aol.com[/url]
<font color=blue>Dear Readers:

Today we respond to attempts by change agents to discredit the great men of God who preceded us in our efforts to restore the true faith and worship of God. Likely you have heard some of this kind of criticism. Please share this lesson with other brothers and sisters in Christ.

— John Waddey</font>

_____________________________

  • <font size=5>
    THE PROGRESS OF KNOWLEDGE
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    <font color=black size=3 face=times new roman> The search for and acquisition of knowledge is a never ending quest. It was several thousand years before we determined such fundamental things as the rotundity of the earth, that the sun was the center of our universe, that our earth orbits the sun and is spins on its axis and hundreds of other basic laws of nature and the universe. Every year new discoveries are made as the search for knowledge goes onward. We are often reminded that more was learned about life and the universe in the last century than in all those preceding. Our children learn more than we learned thirty or forty years ago, because the total sum of available knowledge has increased and many faulty assumptions of the past have been discovered and rejected. We do not fault our grand parents because they did not understand such things as space travel or atomic particles. They were intelligent and well informed for their day, given the knowledge available to them and the opportunities they had to learn.

    The same lesson applies to our forefathers in the faith. As our change agents try to establish themselves as scholars and leaders of our people, they devote much time and energy trying to discredit our past leaders. Few of them, they note, had advanced academic degrees while many of our agents of change have their doctorates from the finest secular universities. They delight in pointing to views held by early generations of leaders that we no longer accept. They love to talk of Alexander Campbell's post millennialism and the pre-millennial views of David Lipscomb and James A. Harding. All of them love to cite Alexander Campbell's letter to the lady from Lunenburg, Virginia wherein he seemed to concede that the pious unimmersed were in good standing with God. He later revised his answer, which they rarely discuss.

    The unstated goals of the change agents are as follows:
      • To discredit those great leaders of the past so they can supplant them as the thought leaders of our brethren.
      • By show-casing their misconceptions about their millennial theories, they hope to defeat our objections to their extending fellowship to those who today embrace and promote millennian speculations. This would include the "Premillennial Churches of Christ," Christian Churches and most Evangelicals bodies.
      • By bringing up Campbell's Lunenburg Letters, they seek to disarm those who are no not willing to extend fellowship to Evangelical Protestants who preach salvation by grace alone and faith alone. Change agents are eager to do this.
      • To discredit the very concept of "restoration" as a misguided dream of primitive frontiersmen.
    That those past brethren did not see everything as we do is really to be expected. The Bible remains the same, but our knowledge of it is continually expanding. Questions that were not burning issues in the 19th century exploded on the scene in the 20th century. Premillennialism was one of those issues. Others included theistic evolution, and the boundaries of fellowship.

    We should not think less of brethren who never had occasion to study these matters as we have been forced to do. We should not fault them because they knew less than we know on some matters. We can see farther than them because we stand on their shoulders. Our path is easier because they labored long and hard to clear the way through the wilderness of theological ignorance and error.

    Godly men, yet to be born, will know more about some issues than we do today. They will have the benefit of our research and attainments. They will have more and better tools than we have. Hopefully they will have more thorough training.

    Godly men will not scorn devout men of the past. To do so reeks of arrogance and ingratitude. They will honor them and bestow credit on them for a job well done. Our fathers did not exhaust the well or knowledge nor shall we.</font>

    ___________________________________
    John Waddey, Editor
    Christianity: Then and Now

    E-Mail: [url=mailto:johnwaddey@aol.com]johnwaddey@aol.com[/url]
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Ken Sublett
Ken Sublett

April 10th, 2008, 4:46 pm #5

<font color=red>By show-casing their misconceptions about their millennial theories, they hope to defeat our objections to their extending fellowship to those who today embrace and promote millennian speculations. This would include the "Premillennial Churches of Christ," Christian Churches and most Evangelicals bodies.</font>

The meaning of premillenial is that "Jesus tried to set up His kingdom during the first advent. Satan beat Him to a pulp and set Him hightailing it back to heaven--haven failed." Therefore, he set up the "church" until He got strong enough to give it another lunge. The "now but not yet kingdom" or the "new wineskin church" signs on to the various movements which are certain that if they can get ALL of the churches joined together in a happy musical orgy, AND they silence ANYONE who objects, there will be such a force that it will then be POSSIBLE for Jesus to come again without failure. Pretty sick people. Of course, it was MUSIC which they saw as the TOOL to whip everyone into the same "group mentality" (re Shelly)

False teachers on another board pick up the mantra that G.C.Brewer denied that baptism was necessary for fellowship. What they don't tell you is that he was REFUTING the statement of those pushing for a broader fellowship. Brewer also shows the MOTIVE of those pushing for "a broader fellowship" as flowing from their feeling of SPIRITUAL SUPERIORITY. Of course, the Pharisees justified their actions based on "spiritual superiority.

G.C.BREWER

<font color=darkblue>Modernism has been shown to be nothing short of materialism and little short of atheism. It did not have enough religion in it to attract religious people or to appeal to the religious element in man's soul at all and, therefore, it was a complete failure. Communism, in all of its brutal behavior and pagan morals, is only the result, and the logical result, of modernism. Therefore, the religious thinkers have begun to swing back to orthodoxy.

This neo-orthodoxy accepts the Bible as the word of God. It takes the word as the basis of our faith. It, therefore, appeals to the scriptures and claims great reverence for revealed truth.
Yet this neo-orthodoxy, if I understand it, claims that while faith
is based upon the word of God, it can reach far beyond
the literal word or what is revealed in human language.

[Using irony] Men become acquainted with the Lord through his word and then they grow intimate with him through personal consecration and through spiritual exaltation.

Their spiritual superiority gives them exemption from all technicalities and enables them to see that discussions of doctrinal issues are but crudities.
They, of course, do not feel that they are limited by the written word.
The written word is essential; it is inspired; it must be believed;

but the really consecrated Christian can penetrate into an inner meaning of the word
and have a much broader vision, a much more sublime faith, and a much
deeper spirituality than the man who adheres to what the word says.

A man who limits the meaning of the words to their dictionary definition is not in harmony with the neo-orthodox practice. He must be able to see a meaning of which lexicographers know nothing.

Modernism has been shown to be nothing short of materialism and little short of atheism. It did not have enough religion in it to attract religious people or to appeal to the religious element in man's soul at all and, therefore, it was a complete failure. Communism, in all of its brutal behavior and pagan morals, is only the result, and the logical result, of modernism. Therefore, the religious thinkers have begun to swing back to orthodoxy.

This neo-orthodoxy accepts the Bible as the word of God. It takes the word as the basis of our faith. It, therefore, appeals to the scriptures and claims great reverence for revealed truth.
Yet this neo-orthodoxy, if I understand it, claims that while faith
is based upon the word of God, it can reach far beyond
the literal word or what is revealed in human language.

[Using irony] Men become acquainted with the Lord through his word and then they grow intimate with him through personal consecration and through spiritual exaltation.

Their spiritual superiority gives them exemption from all technicalities and enables them to see that discussions of doctrinal issues are but crudities.
They, of course, do not feel that they are limited by the written word.
The written word is essential; it is inspired; it must be believed;

but the really consecrated Christian can penetrate into an inner meaning of the word
and have a much broader vision, a much more sublime faith, and a much
deeper spirituality
than the man who adheres to what the word says.

A man who limits the meaning of the words to their dictionary definition is not in harmony with the neo-orthodox practice. He must be able to see a meaning of which lexicographers know nothing.

It has been pointed out that such arguments as we are dealing with are not made by men who are endeavoring to find satisfaction in reference to their own connection with Christ and to have their hearts perfectly assured before him. These men, probably without an exception, have complied with the terms of the gospel and would not dare to risk their own salvation without submitting to gospel terms.
But they are controlled in their thinking now entirely by a desire to fellowship somebody
who has neglected or refused to obey the gospel of Christ.


Thus, it can be seen that they are out of place in their whole thinking.
They are trying to assume the responsibility that belongs only to God
and trying to reach a conclusion that
will offer the promises of God to persons who do not accept the terms
upon which the promises are made.


"But now some fledglings of uncertain feather are disturbing the qauiet of the garden of God with a concert of voices that are rapidly rising to fortissimo volume. But before they reach the top note of the crescendo they seem to be in danger of rupturing their rennets.. If someone suggests that birds do not have rennets, he may be reminded that calves do, and the music in this case seems to justify the mixed methophor...

They are attempting to defend their practice of using instrumental music in Christian worship, but they do not go far in the effort before they try to shift the responsibility and throw us into the affirmative. They charge us with being they aggressors, when they are the ones who brough in the innovations--the ones whos practicd is in question."</font>

<font color=red>Thanks to the recent fledglings proving themselves unlearned and unethical, many people are seeing that they do not have to be relegated to being "audience" but indeedcan become part of the "one another teaching" activity.</font>
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