WHEN A CONGREGATION ELECTS TO USE INSTRUMENTS OF MUSIC IN ITS WORSHIP

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

February 9th, 2009, 6:02 am #1

WHEN A CONGREGATION ELECTS TO USE INSTRUMENTS OF MUSIC IN ITS WORSHIP

A remarkable thing has come to pass in the brotherhood of Churches of Christ. For 200 years, since our movement began here in America, our brethren praised God with their lips and steadfastly refused to joined with their religious neighbors in using instruments of music in their worship. This they did, not because they were old fashioned, obstinate or ignorant, but because they found no authority in God's Word for that practice.

For this they bore the ridicule of their neighbors and the scorn of denominational clergy. They endured a devastating apostasy and division involving the issue a century ago, yet they held fast to their biblical faith and quickly recovered the losses incurred. Now, shockingly, we hear voices among us, saying that we have been wrong in our stand. That we caused division by our stubborn refusal to allow those to use instruments who desired them. Some smile and tell us our a cappella worship is only our tradition, not something to insist upon. Others remind us it is only a relic of our frontier years. Now some twenty congregations have chosen to use instruments of music in some or all of their worship. What shall we make of this decision?

Adding instrumental accompaniment to the song worship of a congregation is only a symptom of numerous underlying problems in the hearts of those who do so.

  • It is a rejection of the authority of Christ as head over all things to the church (Eph. 1:22), which of necessity includes her worship. He nowhere authorizes it.

    </li>
  • It is a rejection of the authority of the Bible in the life of their congregations. They cannot find any teaching the New Testament to justify their actions.

    </li>
  • It is a matter of will-worship (Col. 2:23). Will-worship is finds its authority and justification in the mind and will of man rather than of God! They want instruments for their worship and that is sufficient reason for them to do so.

    </li>
  • It is an act of arrogance. They care not what Christ, His Word or their brethren think of their decision (Is. 13:11). They vainly assume that they know better than the thousands of faithful preachers and teachers who have gone before them who concluded that God's only authorizes singing for worship! They ignore the history of Christianity which demonstrates that the use of instruments was accepted a thousand years after the beginning of the church

    </li>
  • It is done to seek the favor and approval of men, to attract them to their assemblies (Gal. 1:10). They value the praises of shallow, worldly Christians and denominational visitors above the reign of Christ and their brethren.

    </li>
  • It reflects a lack of fear and reverence for God. We are to worship him with reverence and awe (Heb. 12:28). In all things we are to fear God and keep his commandments (Eccle. 12: 13).

    </li>
  • It is an act of presumption. For finite, sinful man to dare to change the prescribed worship of God and offer that which He has not called for is high-handed indeed (Num. 15:30).

    </li>
  • It is grows out of a rebellious heart that is not willing to yield itself to the wisdom, authority and glory of the Savior. In God's sight, such rebellion is as idolatry (I Sam. 15:23).

    </li>
  • To justify their use of instruments in worship, they denigrate those who went before them and the more than two and a half million members who today refuse to follow them into the dark forest of will-worship. In this they prove themselves to be unworthy members of the body of Christ.

    </li>
  • Like the ancient Adversary of God's people (Rev. 12:10), they resort to accusing those who stand before them with Scripture in hand challenging their departures. They accuse them of causing the division they themselves are fomenting.

    </li>
  • They blush not to sow discord and division among God's people. The terrible disruption of a century past, they ignore as they pursue their divisive agenda. They forget that God hates those who sow discord among brethren (Prov. 6:16,19).

    </li>
Some years ago, Dr. David Edwin Harrell, Jr. published a booklet entitled, "Emergence of the `Church of Christ Denomination.' Discussing the apostasy of the Christian Churches and Disciples of Christ a century ago, he writes, "The simple fact of the matter was that the people within the church no longer wanted the same kind of Christianity. This was the basic issuewhat doctrinal problems arose to divide over were inconsequential" (p. 14). "Instrumental music and organized societies were in essence the accidental basis of the doctrinal division in the movement. They certainly were not the cause of the schism. The cause was that the church had grown to include incompatible kinds of people" (p. 14). "The old values of the early leaders of the movement are no longer an acceptable expression of Christianity to this sophisticated element" (p. 20). "The cultured element in the movement has simply begun the search for a more sophisticated type of religion" (p. 23). "The church is dividing because there are two basic kinds of people within the movement who are demanding two very different kinds of religion" (p. 23). These thoughts will help us better understand what we are witnessing in our day.

___________________________________
John Waddey, Editor
Christianity: Then and Now

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

February 9th, 2009, 1:29 pm #2

He doesn't like the decisions made by other Christians, so he makes up what they are really doing, and slanders and gossips against fellow Christians. Has he forgotten the grace once shown him?
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zac
zac

April 2nd, 2009, 3:04 am #3

WHEN A CONGREGATION ELECTS TO USE INSTRUMENTS OF MUSIC IN ITS WORSHIP

A remarkable thing has come to pass in the brotherhood of Churches of Christ. For 200 years, since our movement began here in America, our brethren praised God with their lips and steadfastly refused to joined with their religious neighbors in using instruments of music in their worship. This they did, not because they were old fashioned, obstinate or ignorant, but because they found no authority in God's Word for that practice.

For this they bore the ridicule of their neighbors and the scorn of denominational clergy. They endured a devastating apostasy and division involving the issue a century ago, yet they held fast to their biblical faith and quickly recovered the losses incurred. Now, shockingly, we hear voices among us, saying that we have been wrong in our stand. That we caused division by our stubborn refusal to allow those to use instruments who desired them. Some smile and tell us our a cappella worship is only our tradition, not something to insist upon. Others remind us it is only a relic of our frontier years. Now some twenty congregations have chosen to use instruments of music in some or all of their worship. What shall we make of this decision?

Adding instrumental accompaniment to the song worship of a congregation is only a symptom of numerous underlying problems in the hearts of those who do so.

  • It is a rejection of the authority of Christ as head over all things to the church (Eph. 1:22), which of necessity includes her worship. He nowhere authorizes it.

    </li>
  • It is a rejection of the authority of the Bible in the life of their congregations. They cannot find any teaching the New Testament to justify their actions.

    </li>
  • It is a matter of will-worship (Col. 2:23). Will-worship is finds its authority and justification in the mind and will of man rather than of God! They want instruments for their worship and that is sufficient reason for them to do so.

    </li>
  • It is an act of arrogance. They care not what Christ, His Word or their brethren think of their decision (Is. 13:11). They vainly assume that they know better than the thousands of faithful preachers and teachers who have gone before them who concluded that God's only authorizes singing for worship! They ignore the history of Christianity which demonstrates that the use of instruments was accepted a thousand years after the beginning of the church

    </li>
  • It is done to seek the favor and approval of men, to attract them to their assemblies (Gal. 1:10). They value the praises of shallow, worldly Christians and denominational visitors above the reign of Christ and their brethren.

    </li>
  • It reflects a lack of fear and reverence for God. We are to worship him with reverence and awe (Heb. 12:28). In all things we are to fear God and keep his commandments (Eccle. 12: 13).

    </li>
  • It is an act of presumption. For finite, sinful man to dare to change the prescribed worship of God and offer that which He has not called for is high-handed indeed (Num. 15:30).

    </li>
  • It is grows out of a rebellious heart that is not willing to yield itself to the wisdom, authority and glory of the Savior. In God's sight, such rebellion is as idolatry (I Sam. 15:23).

    </li>
  • To justify their use of instruments in worship, they denigrate those who went before them and the more than two and a half million members who today refuse to follow them into the dark forest of will-worship. In this they prove themselves to be unworthy members of the body of Christ.

    </li>
  • Like the ancient Adversary of God's people (Rev. 12:10), they resort to accusing those who stand before them with Scripture in hand challenging their departures. They accuse them of causing the division they themselves are fomenting.

    </li>
  • They blush not to sow discord and division among God's people. The terrible disruption of a century past, they ignore as they pursue their divisive agenda. They forget that God hates those who sow discord among brethren (Prov. 6:16,19).

    </li>
Some years ago, Dr. David Edwin Harrell, Jr. published a booklet entitled, "Emergence of the `Church of Christ Denomination.' Discussing the apostasy of the Christian Churches and Disciples of Christ a century ago, he writes, "The simple fact of the matter was that the people within the church no longer wanted the same kind of Christianity. This was the basic issuewhat doctrinal problems arose to divide over were inconsequential" (p. 14). "Instrumental music and organized societies were in essence the accidental basis of the doctrinal division in the movement. They certainly were not the cause of the schism. The cause was that the church had grown to include incompatible kinds of people" (p. 14). "The old values of the early leaders of the movement are no longer an acceptable expression of Christianity to this sophisticated element" (p. 20). "The cultured element in the movement has simply begun the search for a more sophisticated type of religion" (p. 23). "The church is dividing because there are two basic kinds of people within the movement who are demanding two very different kinds of religion" (p. 23). These thoughts will help us better understand what we are witnessing in our day.

___________________________________
John Waddey, Editor
Christianity: Then and Now

E-Mail: [url=mailto:johnwaddey@aol.com]johnwaddey@aol.com[/url]
can someone give me scripture that pertains specifically to "worship" as in how it should be practiced. Where does it say we should do our communion every week? I just want to know where we get our services from a "scriptural" basis and not a traditional one. The 1st century church didn't use electricity either, should my church stop that as well. Is it okay to put crosses at the front of our church, and should I tell that lady in front of me that I'm glad she wore her best hat and jewelry so God could tell how truly dedicated she is for looking her best. Oh and I'll thank her husband (elder) for stopping that drunk at the door last week. We sure don't need any of those sinful people in our church. Oh and about those "psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs" doesn't the word "psalm" come from the word "psalmos" which means a song sung to the harp. All sarcasm aside. I prefer A cappella music. I just don't think it is right to condemn people for using instruments. I think you people are doing the opposite of what Jesus would do. Even if it is wrong, which it ISN'T. Jesus would have handled this way better. God Bless you. I will continue to pray for you, and the Churches of Christ.
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Stephen
Stephen

April 4th, 2009, 2:33 pm #4

Here is the good news in all of this God is our judge and not Waddle,Donnie, and Ken. I know what I will hear next, "No having God judge you is your worse nightmare!" WRONG! It is good news because the Bible is not a book of laws, it is a book of LOVE! Why is God a better judge? Because he shows Love, Grace, and Forgiveness! These men show no signs that they have any of these. SAD! Only when these men get out of there own ways will they really be able to see the Bible in a new light. I tend to think of these men as bouncers at a night club. They tell you what you need to do to get in the door, but have no real intentions of letting you by the red rope. This is just generation after generation of confused theology and bad understanding on what is understood as proof texting. What a horrible way to use the Bible. I bet these men have never read the Bible for any other purpose than that. SAD! In all that we do DO in the NAME OF THE LORD! Not just in your 1 hour a week with God, but all day and every day. I know for a fact that no where in the Bible does God condemn Musical Instruments. When they are used in worship, believe it our not, you won't, but they are used in the NAME OF THE LORD! When God told his disciples to go out it was to spread the Gospel! Wouldn't it be more "SCRIPTUAL" to use this website to do what God wanted us to do all along! Have you forgotten the purpose for our lives on this planet? Have you been blinded by what you think is the law and forgotten what love is? There are only two important issues to me as a Christian. 1. To be saved and give my life to God. 2. To tell others that God has sent his son and he died for our sins! That is IT! That is what God wants of us and all he asks of us. You do all of this on your own accord and not by the blessing of God. But in the end you reap what you sow. Have faith though because you are not the judge but God! Plenty of GRACE for you too!
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Sonny
Sonny

December 28th, 2010, 11:22 pm #5

He doesn't like the decisions made by other Christians, so he makes up what they are really doing, and slanders and gossips against fellow Christians. Has he forgotten the grace once shown him?
Brother Ray,

If you are still "out there" in cyber world, you should not question or challenge an upright and blameless gospel preacher and should not question or challenge the teachings on this site. Brother John Waddey is our hero and chief advocate for our message. You need to be concerned about "change agents" infiltrating your church. While most C of C congregations do not have any visitors and numerical growth occuring whatsoever, the biggest problem and fear is all those "change agents" out there seeking "hostile" takeovers. We here at Concerned Members are not worried about evangelizing the lost, but in pointing out the faults of all the saved. In fact, we do not believe they are saved.

-Sonny Elliot
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Dr. Bill Crump
Dr. Bill Crump

December 29th, 2010, 2:17 am #6

It's been said that the greatest stunt Satan ever pulled was to convince the world that he didn't exist. Change agents have pulled a similar stunt by convincing many congregations that change agents and church takeovers do not exist.
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Dr. Bill Crump
Dr. Bill Crump

December 29th, 2010, 2:53 am #7

Here is the good news in all of this God is our judge and not Waddle,Donnie, and Ken. I know what I will hear next, "No having God judge you is your worse nightmare!" WRONG! It is good news because the Bible is not a book of laws, it is a book of LOVE! Why is God a better judge? Because he shows Love, Grace, and Forgiveness! These men show no signs that they have any of these. SAD! Only when these men get out of there own ways will they really be able to see the Bible in a new light. I tend to think of these men as bouncers at a night club. They tell you what you need to do to get in the door, but have no real intentions of letting you by the red rope. This is just generation after generation of confused theology and bad understanding on what is understood as proof texting. What a horrible way to use the Bible. I bet these men have never read the Bible for any other purpose than that. SAD! In all that we do DO in the NAME OF THE LORD! Not just in your 1 hour a week with God, but all day and every day. I know for a fact that no where in the Bible does God condemn Musical Instruments. When they are used in worship, believe it our not, you won't, but they are used in the NAME OF THE LORD! When God told his disciples to go out it was to spread the Gospel! Wouldn't it be more "SCRIPTUAL" to use this website to do what God wanted us to do all along! Have you forgotten the purpose for our lives on this planet? Have you been blinded by what you think is the law and forgotten what love is? There are only two important issues to me as a Christian. 1. To be saved and give my life to God. 2. To tell others that God has sent his son and he died for our sins! That is IT! That is what God wants of us and all he asks of us. You do all of this on your own accord and not by the blessing of God. But in the end you reap what you sow. Have faith though because you are not the judge but God! Plenty of GRACE for you too!
His name is Waddey, not "Waddle." If you must begin your "argument" by deliberately butchering someone's name to ridicule them, then your "argument" is already weak.
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Joined: July 29th, 2010, 2:32 pm

December 29th, 2010, 3:26 am #8

WHEN A CONGREGATION ELECTS TO USE INSTRUMENTS OF MUSIC IN ITS WORSHIP

A remarkable thing has come to pass in the brotherhood of Churches of Christ. For 200 years, since our movement began here in America, our brethren praised God with their lips and steadfastly refused to joined with their religious neighbors in using instruments of music in their worship. This they did, not because they were old fashioned, obstinate or ignorant, but because they found no authority in God's Word for that practice.

For this they bore the ridicule of their neighbors and the scorn of denominational clergy. They endured a devastating apostasy and division involving the issue a century ago, yet they held fast to their biblical faith and quickly recovered the losses incurred. Now, shockingly, we hear voices among us, saying that we have been wrong in our stand. That we caused division by our stubborn refusal to allow those to use instruments who desired them. Some smile and tell us our a cappella worship is only our tradition, not something to insist upon. Others remind us it is only a relic of our frontier years. Now some twenty congregations have chosen to use instruments of music in some or all of their worship. What shall we make of this decision?

Adding instrumental accompaniment to the song worship of a congregation is only a symptom of numerous underlying problems in the hearts of those who do so.

  • It is a rejection of the authority of Christ as head over all things to the church (Eph. 1:22), which of necessity includes her worship. He nowhere authorizes it.

    </li>
  • It is a rejection of the authority of the Bible in the life of their congregations. They cannot find any teaching the New Testament to justify their actions.

    </li>
  • It is a matter of will-worship (Col. 2:23). Will-worship is finds its authority and justification in the mind and will of man rather than of God! They want instruments for their worship and that is sufficient reason for them to do so.

    </li>
  • It is an act of arrogance. They care not what Christ, His Word or their brethren think of their decision (Is. 13:11). They vainly assume that they know better than the thousands of faithful preachers and teachers who have gone before them who concluded that God's only authorizes singing for worship! They ignore the history of Christianity which demonstrates that the use of instruments was accepted a thousand years after the beginning of the church

    </li>
  • It is done to seek the favor and approval of men, to attract them to their assemblies (Gal. 1:10). They value the praises of shallow, worldly Christians and denominational visitors above the reign of Christ and their brethren.

    </li>
  • It reflects a lack of fear and reverence for God. We are to worship him with reverence and awe (Heb. 12:28). In all things we are to fear God and keep his commandments (Eccle. 12: 13).

    </li>
  • It is an act of presumption. For finite, sinful man to dare to change the prescribed worship of God and offer that which He has not called for is high-handed indeed (Num. 15:30).

    </li>
  • It is grows out of a rebellious heart that is not willing to yield itself to the wisdom, authority and glory of the Savior. In God's sight, such rebellion is as idolatry (I Sam. 15:23).

    </li>
  • To justify their use of instruments in worship, they denigrate those who went before them and the more than two and a half million members who today refuse to follow them into the dark forest of will-worship. In this they prove themselves to be unworthy members of the body of Christ.

    </li>
  • Like the ancient Adversary of God's people (Rev. 12:10), they resort to accusing those who stand before them with Scripture in hand challenging their departures. They accuse them of causing the division they themselves are fomenting.

    </li>
  • They blush not to sow discord and division among God's people. The terrible disruption of a century past, they ignore as they pursue their divisive agenda. They forget that God hates those who sow discord among brethren (Prov. 6:16,19).

    </li>
Some years ago, Dr. David Edwin Harrell, Jr. published a booklet entitled, "Emergence of the `Church of Christ Denomination.' Discussing the apostasy of the Christian Churches and Disciples of Christ a century ago, he writes, "The simple fact of the matter was that the people within the church no longer wanted the same kind of Christianity. This was the basic issuewhat doctrinal problems arose to divide over were inconsequential" (p. 14). "Instrumental music and organized societies were in essence the accidental basis of the doctrinal division in the movement. They certainly were not the cause of the schism. The cause was that the church had grown to include incompatible kinds of people" (p. 14). "The old values of the early leaders of the movement are no longer an acceptable expression of Christianity to this sophisticated element" (p. 20). "The cultured element in the movement has simply begun the search for a more sophisticated type of religion" (p. 23). "The church is dividing because there are two basic kinds of people within the movement who are demanding two very different kinds of religion" (p. 23). These thoughts will help us better understand what we are witnessing in our day.

___________________________________
John Waddey, Editor
Christianity: Then and Now

E-Mail: [url=mailto:johnwaddey@aol.com]johnwaddey@aol.com[/url]
Stephen, unless you can explain the TRUE GOSPEL of Jesus Christ you MAY not be a disciple!

Matt. 11:25 At that time Jesus answered and said,
......I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth,
......because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent,
......and hast revealed them unto babes.

Before you spend too much time being loving and judgmental, can you tell us WHO ARE the Wise from whom God HIDES His will?

Matt. 11:26 Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight.
Matt. 11:27 All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father;
......neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son,
......and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.

If God HIDES Himself from the WISE. It is a soul-saving question: who ARE the Wise.
If the Son REVEALS truth to the NOT-WISE, how can you make sure Christ even knows your name?
Maybe you can speculate the CONDITIONS for Jesus to REVEAL Himself?

Matt. 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

How and where do you "come to Jesus?"
What is the meaning of "labor" and "heavy laden?"
What is the meaning of the "rest" Jesus gives us?
From what and whom does He give us rest?

Matt. 11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart:
......and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
Matt. 11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

What do we do when we Rest and Learn of me?
What do you think a CONDITION for Jesus to be our only Teacher?

Because you are so certain, I would expect you to answer these questions in a few minutes or retract.

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

December 29th, 2010, 3:53 am #9

Brother Ray,

If you are still "out there" in cyber world, you should not question or challenge an upright and blameless gospel preacher and should not question or challenge the teachings on this site. Brother John Waddey is our hero and chief advocate for our message. You need to be concerned about "change agents" infiltrating your church. While most C of C congregations do not have any visitors and numerical growth occuring whatsoever, the biggest problem and fear is all those "change agents" out there seeking "hostile" takeovers. We here at Concerned Members are not worried about evangelizing the lost, but in pointing out the faults of all the saved. In fact, we do not believe they are saved.

-Sonny Elliot
Sonny,

Just can't get over "your Brother" John Waddey's despicable life, can you?

During the "hostile takeover" of the Madison congregation by the "change agents" -- and this wasn't even about instrumental music -- the implementation of the services of the "Praise Team" in "worship" (among other things) was "the last straw that broke the camel's back." It alienated many members. Many members were leaving to seek fellowship elsewhere. Finally, the representing elder made this announcement to the congregation: "Get over it, we must move on [with our plan to transform Madison]."

While that ("get over it"] wasn't exactly the wisest admonition the eldership could offer the dividing congregation, I believe this would be the appropriate advice for you to accept: "Get over it -- only God knows the real John Waddey or the real Sonny Elliot."

Convince us with the real stats concerning the number of visitors and numerical growth. This I know that Community Churches have experienced "numerical" growth in the last few decades. Why do you think that is? Oh, yes, the word "community" partly explains that. A Community Church is a collection (a "gathering") of unhappy Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians and members of other religious groups within the area or region. Voila!!! Even some members of the church of Christ.

Realistically, however, of the several thousands of "congregants" (12,000 or 15,000 or 20,000) that gather, the Association of Community Churches reveals that only a very small percentage is represented by "NEW converts." Right, one church's loss is another mega Community Church's gain.

Don't forget the important fact that the thousands of congregations of the church of Christ are virtually non-instrumental.
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Roncar
Roncar

December 29th, 2010, 4:10 am #10

Stephen, unless you can explain the TRUE GOSPEL of Jesus Christ you MAY not be a disciple!

Matt. 11:25 At that time Jesus answered and said,
......I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth,
......because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent,
......and hast revealed them unto babes.

Before you spend too much time being loving and judgmental, can you tell us WHO ARE the Wise from whom God HIDES His will?

Matt. 11:26 Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight.
Matt. 11:27 All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father;
......neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son,
......and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.

If God HIDES Himself from the WISE. It is a soul-saving question: who ARE the Wise.
If the Son REVEALS truth to the NOT-WISE, how can you make sure Christ even knows your name?
Maybe you can speculate the CONDITIONS for Jesus to REVEAL Himself?

Matt. 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

How and where do you "come to Jesus?"
What is the meaning of "labor" and "heavy laden?"
What is the meaning of the "rest" Jesus gives us?
From what and whom does He give us rest?

Matt. 11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart:
......and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
Matt. 11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

What do we do when we Rest and Learn of me?
What do you think a CONDITION for Jesus to be our only Teacher?

Because you are so certain, I would expect you to answer these questions in a few minutes or retract.
Ken, it has been about 20 months since Stephen has posted. He may not be available at this very moment.
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