Things I Think

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393 Responses

  1. Jackie Alnor says:

    Would like more details on number 3.

  2. Michael says:

    Jackie,

    It’s pretty simple , really.
    CC thinks it’s lost it’s cache of “cool” among young people and young pastors in particular and they are seeking to find ways to regain it.
    Evidently, they haven’t noticed the mass exodus of people and pastors from the Resurgence.
    Evidently.

  3. Jackie says:

    Well Michael – We do agree on something. 🙂

  4. Michael says:

    Jackie,

    It must have something to do with the blood moons… 🙂

  5. nancy says:

    Good thoughts … most sad … but need to be thought about non the less … thanks for sharing!

  6. Michael says:

    Thank you, Nancy!
    I’m a cranky blogger these days…I probably need to change perspective soon for my own sake.

  7. EricL says:

    Thought provoking post.
    #1- I think its an issue of “us” versus “them”. Those poor orphans are “others”, so their plight doesn’t hit us as much, while Coy and his style of church is very much “us” is the USA.
    #2, 4,5- Agree
    #3- If CC has lost its “cool” with younger generations, it is more due to the old guys taking the spotlight and refusing to let it shine elsewhere. All that you see is some dude that’s bald or gray-haired and so younger folks can’t relate. Too bad they didn’t keep the spotlight on God instead- He is ageless, after all.
    #7- How telling: our society became so upset about something he SAID privately but had no problem with what he DID publicly. He said this to his mistress, but no one is protesting his despicable abuse of his marriage vows. He has boasted in court of his sexual debauchery but there was no uproar. His words were so wrong- but it is sad that racism is one of the only sins our society still recognizes. So sad. His adultery is also wrong, people.

  8. Andy says:

    3. The pointless, compromised, doctrinally lost, and incredibly boring blob of “Christendom” grows. While the rest of us have to run screaming from the blob as it consumes one “church” after another.

    5. What will never get “tired” is just simply teaching through the Bible. That will always be relevant and a draw to all who are of the truth, both young and old, both male and female. No need to create some (eventually burned-out) “image”, if the Word of God is the basis of fellowship.

  9. Michael says:

    EricL,

    Excellent comment.
    Your observation on #3 is spot on.

  10. Michael says:

    Andy,

    I disagree.
    The basis of fellowship is the person and work of Christ.

  11. Ps40 says:

    #5 Hauerwas is on to something here:I think its reformation-big. The exodus now is just the beginning. That said…..God will continue to be God, His church will continue to exist and although She will drag Her heels through the dirt in protest She will pass through this age. (With about as much grace as She passed through the last one). 🙁
    I love Stanley Hauerwas–brilliant and challenging mind. I hope the church heeds his prophetic voice.

    Michael–I’m always pleasantly surprised by the authors you are reading.

    Cannot hang around the blog today but may our gracious God and Savior be staggeringly present in all our lives today.
    P.S. I think the church may be willing to address the issue of healing for our wounded children when they finally cop to the fact that childhood wounds can be catastrophic! But as long as they deny the impact or existence of childhood wounds [many CC’s still do this] they need to keep their heads in the sand. This is mostly because they have “denounced” many things that can offer the kiddos some help and they have NO IDEA how to help bring healing to the broken souls in this predicament.
    Sadly, as your “things I think” already reflects, I suspect we , the church, are failing at this. We’d better get a grip.

  12. Anon says:

    I guess people lost respect for you. Being a gossip blogger is not biblically supported.

  13. Anon says:

    PS Now you can focus on getting a job, helping around the house and spending more time with the Lord:)

  14. Aponemo Time says:

    I was station surfing on the radio in the car this morning, and came across a popular local station. Apparently the morning show was doing a segment on exposing cheaters, In the course of the conversation between the husband and his wife’s affair partner, it was absolutely stunning to me how completely arrogant the affair partner was – he saw no wrong in what he was doing and had no remorse. He didn’t deny anything and seemed to believe he was doing nothing wrong. What was even more stunning (disappointing, sickening…) was the reaction of the listeners – a lot of them were saying the affair partner was the good guy. Why? Because he was being honest…

    Of course, the affair partner is not married or otherwise involved, so he has no skin in the game (so to speak). The wife is probably just a convenience for him. Since he’s such an honest chap, he’s blameless. After all, the wife pursued him – what’s a normal, healthy guy to do in that situation?

    What a load of s—. The utter lack of personal responsibility in this country amazes me. How can we expect society to hold people accountable when individuals won’t even hold *themselves* accountable?

  15. Michael says:

    Ps40,

    Well said.
    As to my reading…I don’t have time to do much of it these days…but I was taught by a gently subversive friend the values of reading broadly and it was a great gift that was given.

  16. Michael says:

    AT,

    We’ve reached about where if you’re honest about your sin, then it’s not sin anymore…

  17. OK I can explain the crickets when you talk about child abuse on here.

    No offense but it just might be that no one wants to do the RB.

    And we have a policy. We have had a policy since 2000 the day we began.

  18. Michael says:

    BD,

    There may be some truth to that…but I think it’s more a case of apathy and lack of concern .

  19. Andy says:

    Michael wrote: “The basis of fellowship is the person and work of Christ.”

    How would you know the person and work of Christ, without the Bible? Would you just make stuff up?

    Therefore the Bible is the basis of fellowship.

  20. Michael says:

    Andy,

    You and I interpret the Bible in radically different ways…but I acknowledge your place in the kingdom based on the work of Christ on your behalf.
    There is much, much, more to fellowship and discipleship than Bible study…

  21. The Midnight Rider says:

    #10, the problem is the American Church treats the poor and Orphans like an event instead of people. That’s why these Churches shcedule out reaches and take pictures and pos tthemo n their web site. When you just treat them like people and don’t make a big spectacle of it then you know you are doing the work of God.

  22. Andy says:

    Michael wrote: “There is much, much, more to fellowship and discipleship than Bible study”

    I never said that there wasn’t more to fellowship. I am asserting that without the Bible as THE foundation, it’s not fellowship, no matter what else is going on.

    I’ve been to too many “churches” that were funny stories, clever anecdotes, the “social gospel”, and countless other things for 40 minutes, with one or two Bible verses thrown in for legitimacy.

    So my point was, the Bible is the basis of fellowship.

  23. The Midnight Rider says:

    #6, I would rather quote an Anabaptist than a Calvinist anyday of the week even on Sunday.

  24. The Midnight Rider says:

    I agree Andy, many people want to be all things to all people. You have those who are Universalists and Michael will affirm them here as they are a brother in Christ. Sorry but the Word of God is a lamp unto our feet and good for reproOf, correction etc. We might have things in common with unbelievers but in reality those who are our brethren will also value the Word of God.

  25. Andrew says:

    Andy,

    There was a period of time in church history where most Christians were illiterate and could not read the Bible but I assume they had fellowship. Most churches believe in both Word and sacrament and not just the Word itself.

  26. Michael says:

    TMR,

    #24…don’t let me catch you quoting me then. 🙂

  27. Andy says:

    Midnight Rider, that is why the Word of God has to be THE foundation of fellowship. Because without it, anyone can say anything.

    Andrew, I don’t believe in any of the assertions of “church history”, and I don’t believe the claims of supposed “widespread illiteracy”, so I won’t bother with that discussion.

  28. Xenia says:

    What does the Bible say is the “pillar and foundation of the truth?”

    (Hint: Not the Bible.)

  29. The Bible is really an essential gift of God and is without question the record that facilitates our fellowship but the work of Christ ministered to us and through us by the power of Holy Spirit is what matters. That Christ actually did something that changes us matter most of all. Christianity is not a matter of simple rational discourse it is shared communion in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit that carries the thing.

  30. erunner says:

    #1 Same story but make it involve a CC and the crickets would be gone with comments abounding.

  31. To # 2 – I personally do not think that an organization is “christian’ or “secular”.

    It may be an organization made up of Christian people … but it is not a christian organization.

    I have never heard anyone define “christianity” by a mission statement.

  32. Andy says:

    Xenia, the church is the believers, not your personal denomination. But the church (the group of believers worldwide) can only be joined by believing the true Gospel, which is found in the Bible.

    If some “church” can come along and change the “truth” which won’t match up with the Bible, now they are basically their own religion.

  33. Michael says:

    TMR,

    Is salvation contingent on belief in certain secondary doctrines?
    I am not a universalist…but I don’t think it’s a damnable sin if you are one.

  34. Xenia says:

    Would the Gospel be true even if it weren’t written down in a book?

    (Which was the case for the first few decades of Christianity.)

  35. Andy says:

    Xenia, your 35 is an assertion of “church history”, which I reject. You don’t know what Paul or others may have passed around in letters that weren’t Scripture necessarily, but simply had the Gospel.

  36. Andrew says:

    Andrew, I don’t believe in any of the assertions of “church history”, and I don’t believe the claims of supposed “widespread illiteracy”, so I won’t bother with that discussion.

    __________________________________________________________________

    Andy, I became a Christian long before I started reading the Bible because I was still learning to read at a young age. To think I have to understand the entire Bible before I can have fellowship is crazy. I whole heartily believe the Bible but there still are sections of it that I have no clue to its understanding. Regarding church history, I certainly hope you can find something worthwhile in it. It may be a mess but we can still learn from it.

  37. Andy says:

    Andrew, there are people that read the very most simple parts of the Bible, and don’t even agree on how a person gets to heaven. So obviously I’m not talking about perfectly understanding every chapter of Ezekiel or something, to have fellowship. I’m saying, an agreement that the Bible is the final and only authority, is a requirement, and having the Gospel right, is a requirement. Am I more clear now? 🙂

  38. Why would anyone make a blanket statement that “I don’t believe in any of the assertions of ‘church history’ … ? And how would you exclude scripture from part of the narrative of church history since it was the record left to us by those who were living history? I would agree with Andy that he should not try to discuss this matter because nothing remains but his assertions.

  39. Andrew says:

    Andy, you are clear to a well educated and literate blogger but to a mentally retarded individual or infant I doubt they would understand you. I think there is provision though in the gospel for these folks.

  40. Andy says:

    Andrew, now you are pulling out another variable. As many times as you pull a variable, you miss the point. Mentally handicapped people are not in the same discussion as what we are discussing. People that are not mentally handicapped, can understand the Gospel (many mentally handicapped can too, if you’ve ever worked with them, you’d see it, but that’s another story). People that can understand the Gospel, so often end up in a false gospel anyway. So where’s the fellowship with that?

  41. Michael says:

    BD,

    There are very few statements I have found more….strange….than the complete rejection of church history.

  42. Andy says:

    Michael, I guess the “church history” issue is that you trust books written by men. Books written by men that I don’t trust.

  43. Michael says:

    Andy,

    From what I understand of your views, I believe in a “false Gospel” and so have the vast majority of the church for millennia.
    Congratulations to your sect for being the only ones to get it right.

  44. Muff Potter says:

    Andy @ # 33,
    I think you missed Xenia’s point by a parsec.

  45. Andy says:

    Michael, I still don’t really know exactly what you believe, only that you consider me to be “heterodox”. But at any rate, if you can read Romans 4:5 and say amen (in other words, not adding works like water baptism or any others), then you’re my brother.

  46. Andrew says:

    Andy, I am speaking of all types of people. Putting children and mentally handicapped aside, I can think of another situation as well and that is in an international fellowship where not everybody speaks the same language. If we can’t not understand each other, how can we have fellowship?

  47. Andy says:

    And yes, I do believe many in professing Christendom, in all generations, has had a false gospel. Jesus agrees: “the way is narrow, and few find it”.

  48. Andy says:

    Andrew, a language barrier also prevents me from exchanging recipes with them. That doesn’t address the issue of the Bible being the basis of fellowship.

  49. Michael says:

    Andy,

    History, church or otherwise is gathering all the data available from a particular time to understand that time.
    What threatens you is the reality that doctrine developed over centuries…that the dogmas you embrace didn’t come forth in full flower in the first century.
    That is simply fact…and doesn’t change the truth of those doctrines one iota.

  50. Muff Potter …”parsec” … word of the day but the day is young. Nicely played.

  51. Andy says:

    Michael, you believe that, and I don’t. I’m not threatened by any words of man. I have the Bible, which is eternal. I can read it, and compare teachers to see who is lining up with it, or not. This task has the Lord given to the sons of men, to seek the truth, and find it. I have His Word, so there is the truth in that one book. I’m all set, not because I’m “brilliant” (I’m not), but because God gave me His Word.

  52. Andrew says:

    Andy, exchanging recipes is like making the bread. I am talking about “breaking” the bread in fellowship together.

  53. Andy says:

    Andrew, I’ve had the blessing of God’s grace, even with my sick and twisted heart, to be in many countries as a missionary. A translator was needed to determine that they believe the Gospel, and once it was clear they did, fellowship away…

  54. Andrew says:

    Andy, so you put some trust in the translator that he/she was translating correctly?

  55. Andy says:

    Andrew, yes, I have to trust that the LORD worked through the translator(s), to give me His Word. If He promised to preserve His Word, then He has to translate it perfectly accurately for me.

    Why do you think satan floods the world with a thousand translations in just English alone? To try and make God a liar.

    God is not a liar.

    I trust God to preserve His Word for me, and He did. If someone doesn’t think they have the Word of God in their hands in purity and perfection, then why have this discussion at all? The Bible is lost, and so you decide what is truth: “Every man did what was right in his own eyes”.

  56. Michael says:

    Andy,

    I have numerous English translations.
    Which ones are from Satan and how do you know?

  57. Andy says:

    Michael, do all of your Bibles line up perfectly? Do they all say the same things? Do some have the blood of Jesus in certain verses where others delete it? Do some have 1 John 5:7, while others tear at it? Do some have hundreds of verses missing, passages torn away? You know the drill. The documents found in a wastepaper basket (the basis for modern translations), don’t get any support from me personally.

    Last night a guy was reading a verse from “the Message”, and I must say, it didn’t sound like any of the other versions, not even close. It sounded like some mystic giving psychological advice, and it matched none of them. That sort of thing, God is keeping track of it…

  58. Andrew says:

    Andy, I don’t want to derail this post any longer. I thoroughly admire your commitment to the Word and agree with much of what you said. However, understanding and comprehending the Bible is different than saying God preserved it.

  59. Andy says:

    Andrew, I will join you in not derailing the thread entirely, unless Michael wants it derailed, then I will oblige 🙂 He really should have the call. But understanding and comprehending, now that is the issue. If we can agree that the Bible is the final and only authority, we can play on the same field. But some aren’t even willing to go that far.

  60. Michael says:

    Andy,

    I can teach all of the doctrines of the Scriptures from most of the modern versions as well as I can from the KJV.

    All of them.

  61. Andy says:

    Michael, you know, I actually agree with your 61. I can do that too. But the thing is, there’s enough error that brings confusion, and God is never the author of confusion. Where there’s confusion, I know the Holy Spirit is either not at work at all, or He has tons of things that He will clean up.

    I have seen so many that come and say, “My Bible doesn’t say that”. And it’s not just about word choice. It’s entire passages, missing descriptors, all sorts of things.

  62. Ps40 says:

    Andy,
    Are you not aware that there have been editors, redactors and contributors throughout the entire writing, compilation and canonization process–OT and beyond? ? Were those who chose which collections to set aside [as in to canonize, or not to canonize] also part of the diabolical plan to mess up those doctrines you referred to in #58? To dismiss the presence of editors is to dismiss the existence and reality of the entire process??? The Scriptures that God preserved, and the process in which He preserved them are not at all like the Quran’s “process” or delivery. There was human involvement. There are human fingerprints. They deal in human language, which, last time I checked has NEVER has remained static, and is constantly in a state of flux–even change.
    I guess I do not understand why these “changes” you refer to are so unsettling to you. When has it been any different in our faith’s history?

  63. Andy says:

    Ps40, none of that lines up with my studies about it. None of it. It’s all contradictory.

    Another strike against “history” as the basis of truth.

  64. Andy says:

    Whoa, I got moderated for typing in the username, probably because it ended up encompassing too many verses to put into the pop up balloon?

    So to the person in 63, I can’t type your username without being moderated, so here is what I wrote:

    None of that lines up with my studies about it. None of it. It’s all contradictory.

    Another strike against “history” as the basis of truth.

  65. Ps40 says:

    Also, this term “canonized”: If you asked what is Canon, and what is not Canon, the answer you would receive would be entirely dependent upon the exact church age you were referring to. Canon was defined differently throughout the church ages. To deny these progressions, it seems to me, is to question the way God preserved His truths?
    But then again–folks have been perplexed about the merging of the human and the Divine from the beginning…so why are we surprised?

  66. Ps40 says:

    The Scriptures I engage with are no less authoritative because humans were involved in the process. I am perplexed as to why this is so threatening to this church age? You are reflecting this same fear IMO. I’m intrigued.
    And as to your statement, “None of it lines up with my studies about it[church history]” Just. Wow. Wow. I have just spend four years completing a degree in Biblical studies and cannot imagine how you escaped the realities of the process of God’s truths being preserved until now. Just wow.

  67. filbertz says:

    coffee is the basis of Christian fellowship.

    …and in some cases, beer. 😉

  68. Ps40 says:

    amen filbertz.

  69. Andy says:

    To P-s-4-0 (doing it that way will keep me from being accidentally moderated)…

    I’m not afraid. Again, why is everyone pulling the fear card? Rejecting lies doesn’t mean being afraid. It just means, I don’t buy anything you’re saying, because my studies have proven the opposite to me.

    I have studied the Bible and Bible issues for a very long time, and not going to some organized “four year program” doesn’t mean you have any level of superiority or understanding. It just means, you studied what they told you, without being able to challenge it.

  70. Andy is a garden variety fundamentalist and there is no real reason to fret over his viewpoint. It is well-worn. I celebrate that he wants an authoritative Bible and wants to fellowship with believers that share the same convictions.

    I am still curious about the rejection of church history but it really just means that he wants to avoid all avenues for an open door to tradition being authoritative.

    I do think he accepts the historical canon so there is one piece of church tradition that he receives.

  71. Andrew says:

    Andy, did you study the Bible under the tutelage of George Bryson or someone else?

  72. Ps40 says:

    Or.
    It may mean I was determined to find out for myself. So that another man would not subject me to his interpretation. Or. that I was so very aware that I alone would be held accountable for the way I represent God to a lost world, that I thought it was important to set aside this time in my life to give myself to the study of God’s Scriptures, as opposed to parroting the guys I hear on the radio.
    It amazes me that so many, perhaps not you, but so many devalue the learning/studying bit as though it can only become a poison to one’s soul? If I let a doctor cut on my daughter, you can bet I will want him to have studied and earned a credential of some sort before I deem him authoritative.
    Im confused. What exactly is the benefit of ignorance for the church? And how is it better than the threat of becoming educated?

  73. “It just means, you studied what they told you, without being able to challenge it.”

    Um no, that is not a good analysis of post graduate education, this is the sort of assertion that makes your other assertions much less compelling.

  74. Ps40 says:

    No. I studied under scholars. Legitimate scholars. World renown voices. Brilliant men, and women, who have earned their voices through their willingness to devote their lives to the subject of Theology and Biblical Studies.

  75. Andy says:

    BD, thank you for your understanding, sans derision. 🙂

    Andrew, I know George Bryson, I’ve read a lot of articles, but all my reading from him, came from things people linked from this website, ironically.

    P-s-4-0, I am in learning and studying in the Word of God, every day. For many, many years. I just didn’t pay for it.

    And yes, some came from the radio. Some came from the internet. Some obviously came from physical church buildings. Some came from magazines, pamphlets, booklets, telegrams, candy grams, dancing grams…. 😉

    The whole point is, I am just as much of a student as you. And I have found something very different than you.

    That “history” is a bunch of lies.

    But the Bible is truth.

  76. filbertz says:

    Psforty,
    I’d add bbq to the list too. 😉

    I’m always perplexed of late. I think I’ll be perplexed forever at this rate.

    “Perplexituity” is what I’ll call it.

  77. Andy says:

    P-s-4-0, you would have rejected the uneducated, unlearned apostles.

  78. filbertz says:

    andy,
    comments like 78 are unfounded, ungracious, and undermine your credibility.

  79. Andy says:

    filbertz, I’ve had worse things said about me. Worse is, the inference that I’m not a Bible student because I didn’t attend a paid four-year program.

  80. Ps40 says:

    No. I would not. And I have learned the dangers of broad sweeping statements that turn everything into a black and white issue. To validate one privilege [being entrusted with an education] is not to say I negate the other reality [most persons in world history are not that fortunate]. Clearly God has no trouble working through any circumstance. I just do not need to make the “other” side my enemy. I value education: I recognize that God has worked where that privilege is not available. These two ideas need not be mutually exclusive to be true. I have learned to avoid saying “This is true.” and am trying to replace that with “How is this true?” The former has left me fearful at times, the later leaves room for my own ignorance to become enlightened.

  81. Andy says:

    P-s-4-0, education in the Bible is found in more places than just a four-year program.

  82. Ps40 says:

    I have also learned that some things I pay for actually do have value.

  83. filbertz says:

    andy,
    an inference is implied; written between the lines. your insult was stated.

    the issue of education is broad and complex, but the lack of formal education is not superior simply because the founding fathers of the faith didn’t attend university.

  84. Michael says:

    Andy,

    History and belief in the Scriptures are not mutually exclusive.
    The reality is that you do trust historians…but only the ones who agree with you.
    Your system is fear based…and the fear is that somehow the reality that doctrine and practice developed over centuries somehow invalidates the faith you hold to today.
    That…is just silly.

  85. Andy says:

    P-s-4-0, true. But pay isn’t required to validate it.

  86. Andy says:

    Michael, then your system is fear-based as well. Fearful that perhaps “my system” is right, and that is why you feel the need to defend against it so much.

  87. Ps40 says:

    #82
    I agree! I learned more about God’s faithfulness in an abusive patriarchal church setting than I did in University. But that does not negate the gift of education I received from God, or does it? Is one from God and the other not? Hm?

  88. Michael says:

    Ps40,

    I like the way you think and write.
    A lot. 🙂

  89. Michael says:

    Andy,

    One of the most wonderful things about knowing Christ is that I’m free to be wrong.
    I don’t have to fear anything, or anyone, or any ideas.
    I can explore, learn, question, and think without fear…because He has already assured me that I’ll get home before dark.

  90. Andy says:

    But Michael, I do the same. Per your 90, I have heard, with no lack of hours-long chatter per time, those that espouse the “history is my guide” position. I’m not afraid of it. I find it to be a rejection of the correct understanding of Scripture. I too can question without fear, I question all men, in all generations, for, “all men are liars…”

  91. Ps40 says:

    Hey shanks;) I’d love to troll around here all day–but the I-5 corridor is calling and I must get home!
    May our mysterious, gracious and tenaciously loving God be present in ALL our lives this day.
    i’m out!

  92. Ps40 says:

    and the “freedom” and “free from fear”thing in #90 is just GLORIOUS! It’s good to revel in that beautiful truth.

  93. Andrew says:

    I too can question without fear, I question all men, in all generations, for, “all men are liars…”
    ______________________________________________________________________

    Andy, do you put yourself in this category of “all men” are liars? Are you ever afraid that you are lying to yourself? Do you trust yourself and your interpretation of the Bible over all others that have gone on before you?

  94. Andy says:

    Andrew, I am a liar, just like you and Michael and P-s-4-0 and everybody who ever lived but Christ.

    So that is why I can’t trust anything but the Word of God, the Bible.

    As for my interpretation, it has changed over time. It went from a “lose your salvation” Chuck Smith position, to an eternal security position. It went from a “commit heavily to the Lord in every single thing or you’re going to hell” position, to a simply believe in Jesus to be in heaven position. There are others, but you get the point.

    The Bible is perfect, and I’m growing in my understanding of it. But I already understand a lot, and I’m not going to compromise that to widen the narrow way.

  95. Andrew says:

    Andy, from what your wrote it kinda sounds like your interpretation went from a non orthodox Chuck Smith position to a much more reformed and or orthodox position. It certainly sounds like history would be your friend with this new understanding although I am sure there are some caveats.

  96. “So that is why I can’t trust anything but the Word of God, the Bible.”

    So you don’t trust the Holy Spirit in his daily work?

    How about mom? … do you trust mom?

  97. Andy says:

    Andrew, I am not reformed. Probably not wise for me to elaborate on that, though…

  98. Andy says:

    MLD wrote: “How about mom? … do you trust mom?”

    Don’t get me started.

  99. “I am not a universalist…but I don’t think it’s a damnable sin if you are one.”

    Why, thank you! 😉

  100. “…He has already assured me that I’ll get home before dark.”

    Quotable, in fact downright stealable! =)

  101. Andrew says:

    Andy, I use the term reformed rather loosely. I have to stop doing that. I included the Lutherans in that term since Luther was part of the reformation but I think MLD will set me straight with that.

  102. View From The Board Room says:

    #3 – Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa is just another Calvary at this point. Yes, it was the flagship when Chuck was alive. Now it’s just another one.

  103. Michael says:

    Gman,

    You’re welcome.
    Feel free to steal the quote…I stole it from Steve Brown. 🙂

  104. filbertz says:

    all men are liars.

    while I wouldn’t debate the veracity of that statement, I would qualify it. First, no one lies all the time. Second, because I’ve lied doesn’t mean I lie regularly. Third, even liars can speak the truth. Fourth, many people rarely lie and strive to speak the truth. One cannot presume another is lying or there is no basis for conversation or social interaction.

    Finally, we all know where liars go…

  105. filbertz says:

    …Washington DC. 😉

  106. Michael says:

    Fil,

    Well played… 🙂

  107. Michael says:

    View From The Board Room,

    It is “just another” CC….but it’s the one that is in control of the public face and destiny of the movement today.

  108. The Midnight Rider says:

    “No. I studied under scholars. Legitimate scholars. World renown voices. Brilliant men, and women, who have earned their voices through their willingness to devote their lives to the subject of Theology and Biblical Studies.’

    Are we supposed to be impressed today or tomorrow? The most brilliant people misinterpret scripture, see Gene Scott, John McArthur. The Word of God surpasses knowledge. Many of these False Theologians make thier students twice the Sons of Hell with their false doctrines. As Jesus said we have no need that anyone teach us as the Holy Spirit guides us into all truth.

  109. As Jesus said we have no need that anyone teach us as the Holy Spirit guides us into all truth.

    thier

    …apparently not spelling

  110. “As Jesus said we have no need that anyone teach us as the Holy Spirit guides us into all truth.” – We might want to check the context and who that was direced to.

    Now does anyone really follow that statement? A guy applies to be the pastor of your church and his resume says EDUCATION and EXPERIENCE – “I just follow the Holy Spirit.”

    Does he get the job?

  111. There IS a need for teachers who understand our faith in the context of history and are willing to risk their distillation of their studies and honest presentation of those ideas.

    There is ALSO the need on the part of those who are taught for critical thinking, debate and challenging what we’re being taught, in the context of history’s achievements, and failures, and the desperate need to innovate and evolve.

  112. TMR,
    Just a little fun at your lack of using the spellchecker, which saves my bacon with every post.

    Seriously, there is a great deal of value for a teacher to know what has been classically declared to be “unorthodox” in light of the long history of the church. We don’t exist in a vacuum, nor do we exist unconnected with others within our faith.

  113. A guy applies to be the pastor of your church and his resume says EDUCATION and EXPERIENCE – “I just follow the Holy Spirit.”

    Ad-libbing is really good in jazz, but then, only when surrounded with skilled players who, from experience, know all the possible changes.

  114. j2theperson says:

    Re: your number 1, Michael, I think, in part, people just know about Calvary Chapel more than they know about any of the people involved in the story from the Philippines. It’s a shocking and horrible case, but when you don’t know anything about the people involved or the ins and outs of the organization what can you say other than “they sound like horrible, evil people and I hope they are punished accordingly”? But, the people on this blog know more about Calvary Chapel, how it works, and the people involved and that knowledge can fuel more conversation.

  115. Andy says:

    MLD wrote: “Does he get the job?”

    He wouldn’t get the job. He would be passed up for claiming that the Holy Spirit is his only Guide, rather than “education”.

    Of course, he will then go outside the “system”, start a church alone, and it will swell up to twenty times the size of the “educated” pastor, with twenty times the good and eternal fruit.

    So…. 😉

  116. Andy,
    Perhaps it’s just me – but I don’t go with the “holy spirit told me crowd.”

    And you are right, most people do not want to follow an educated person.

    I remember as a young christian, the battle cry that people flocked too was” I didn’t go to cemetery.”

    Some of us grew up and moved from that kind of leadership..

  117. Andy says:

    MLD, if the Holy Spirit isn’t saying something, then it doesn’t matter how much “education” a person has.

    This “education” didn’t exist in the days of Jesus and the apostles thereafter. For those that have the “history” fetish. The deepest (and true) history is that they only had the Holy Spirit.

    And since the Holy Spirit is God, the “education” thereafter didn’t improve on the Holy Spirit. Of that I assure you.

  118. I think 3 yrs 24/7 with Jesus is an education in itself.

    I just don’t understand those who praise lack of education.

    Does this “holy spirit told me” work with anything else? Can I become a good motorcycle mechanic by just listening to the Holy Spirit?

    I can guarantee that if someone came to you with “the holy spirit told me”… that you would vet him using materials you learned more formally.

  119. Andy says:

    “I just don’t understand those who praise lack of education”

    I love education. Biblical education that isn’t based on the doctrines of man. I just don’t like your education.

    “Can I become a good motorcycle mechanic by just listening to the Holy Spirit?”

    Listening to the Holy Spirit will teach you that mocking never leads to truth. Try it sometime.

    “that you would vet him using materials you learned more formally”

    Define “formally”. According to the BIBLE, I can spiritually test prophecies, and teachings, and spirits. So according to the BIBLE, that is how I would do it. I wouldn’t go thinking to some words of man about it.

  120. Just saw this offered for free by the Gospel Project.
    Free eBook: J.I. Packer’s “Keeping The Ten Commandments”
    http://www.gospelproject.com/2014/05/free-ebook-j-packers-keeping-ten-commandments/

  121. Andrew says:

    I love education. Biblical education that isn’t based on the doctrines of man. I just don’t like your education.
    _____________________________________________________________________

    You sound all pious and all but you have yet to tell us specifically about any seminary, school, teacher etc..where you can learn this biblical education from other than George Bryson. I have tested some of GBs material and I have found it wanting.

  122. Andy says:

    Andrew, you seem to have an obsession with George Bryson. I have read things from him that were referenced from phoenixpreacher. Nowhere else do I see him being talked about. What is it with you and him?

  123. ” Biblical education that isn’t based on the doctrines of man.
    What are some of these “doctrines of man”?

    or is that just a default to anything you disagree with?

  124. The Midnight Rider says:

    “…apparently not spelling”

    Arrogant much? So what I can’t spell very good, do you think yourself to be better than me because of that?

  125. am I being moderated for asking Andy to describe “the doctrines of man?” of was that just a glitch?

  126. Well, that wasn’t moderated, so I will try again.
    Andy,
    ” Biblical education that isn’t based on the doctrines of man.
    What are some of these “doctrines of man”?

    or is that just a default to anything you disagree with?

  127. Andy says:

    MLD, anything YOU disagree with, you will call unbiblical. Anything unbiblical is by nature, a doctrine of man.

    So apply to yourself, your own question to me. You disagree with plenty, so you call things doctrines of man, ALL THE TIME.

    There is a Greek word to refer to what you do, what is that Greek word? 😉

  128. ( |o )====::: says:

    TMR,

    “…apparently not spelling”

    Arrogant much? So what I can’t spell very good, do you think yourself to be better than me because of that?

    …only when it comes to having a sense of humor

  129. I don’t call anything unbiblical -where did you ever get that idea?

    All heresies and false teachings come directly from the Bible.

    I have never seen a false teaching that someone wasn’t claiming came from the Bible and quotes verses to substantiate it.

  130. Andy says:

    “…only when it comes to having a sense of humor”

    I have a sense of humor. And as the possessor of a sense of humor, you weren’t funny.

  131. Judy says:

    Do you think, Michael, that the lack of interest in the poor orphans is that the church hasn’t taught anything about caring for the widows and orphans or anything about their value in God’s eyes for, say, the last 50 years. I don’t think the church (i.e. the people) have a clue how God values the widows and orphans and what he requires of us in terms of caring for them, or even how the New Testament church was set up to provide for them. If someone could name me 10 churches in America who actually care (locally) for widows and orphans, I’d be shocked and I might just faint.

  132. ( |o )====::: says:

    Andy, lighten up

  133. View From The Board Room says:

    @108 – Michael, I don’t know that that is the case. Although historically “yes”, I do not believe it steers the movement (or public perception of the movement) at all. It is not the largest (or even in the top 7 largest) church. The new pastor there isn’t all that influential. Nor are people looking to Costa Mesa for guidance like when Chuck was alive. Not even a long shot

    So if a team from Costa Mesa met with Benny Hinn I do not think it would make even a ripple in the Calvary world.

  134. Andy says:

    “the lack of interest in the poor orphans is that the church hasn’t taught anything about caring for the widows and orphans or anything about their value in God’s eyes for, say, the last 50 years”

    This isn’t true. Every major book out there by these “radical” authors, all talk about feeding the world, helping the poor, housing the orphans. It’s the topic of tons of current books. The guilt and condemnation is laid on thick.

    If the original question from Michael was, why did the site crash with visits about Bob Coy, but not with visits about oppression of children…… the answer to that question is because the oppression of children is widely covered, and making a special trip to Phoenix Preacher to read about it, is unnecessary. It is covered everywhere (even secular news).

    But when Bob Coy, by far the biggest name in CC (now that Chuck Smith is dead) goes down by his own hand, that has been the calling card of Phoenix Preacher from the start. “All things Calvary Chapel”. That is what Michael didn’t understand, apparently. He’s not the only game in town in exposing the horrors that children face in the world. But he is a more marque name in exposing Calvary Chapel.

  135. Michael says:

    Judy,

    That’s part of it…and orphans don’t have celebrity status or influence.

  136. Andy says:

    “Andy, lighten up”

    I would have suggested you do the same, but I had given up on that long ago.

  137. Michael says:

    Andy,

    Show me where this story is being covered.
    I’ll wait.

  138. Dusty says:

    MLD,(#131) funny man

  139. Andy says:

    Michael, I can’t state that for this SPECIFIC story. But I can say for the issues that children face. Issues that children face are widely covered, in a lot of places, websites, books, organizations and foundations. But specific issues within Calvary Chapel, the “interior dirt”, that is your thing, in the minds of some.

  140. Michael says:

    VFTBR,

    I would disagree.
    This team is trying to set the persona and future of the group as a whole.
    I also think they may blow the whole thing up or hasten a major split.

  141. The Midnight Rider says:

    Question for those here:

    A church goes on an outreach for the homeless and also gives them the gospel along with food. The homeless person accepts the Lord and becomes Born Again. Here is the question, do we, as the homeless persons brethren, take him/her in and give him/her shelter or do we just leave them on the streets?

  142. Andy says:

    TMR, to answer your 143…

    How about someone that is already a believer, already born again? And they are homeless, and you take them in, and they live with you for months and months and months, don’t seek to get a job, don’t even help around the house, and come back very late at night after being who knows where…. This happened to my wife and me, with someone we took in last year.

    So to answer your question. Be led of the Holy Spirit as to what to do. The auto answer of “take him in!”, may or may not be the Holy Spirit’s answer.

  143. Michael says:

    I have to go…time to take Trey to the place where he learns to kick people hard. 🙂

  144. Dusty says:

    Midnight Rider, sadly as someone who has fed the homeless for years, I have only brought two to my home and was taken advantage of both times. despite the being taken advantage of I feel guilt over the lack of bringing in more homeless…..but I have to abide my husbands wishes.

  145. Dusty says:

    Michael said, “4. The millstone around the neck of the American church will be engraved with the names of the children we allowed to be abused by our idols.”

    Amen!! and Amen!!

  146. Andrew says:

    Andy, this isn’t about GB, this is about you. I only mentioned George because he is the only teacher I have ever heard you speak positively about. You have yet to give me one seminary, teacher, pastor church or school that you would tutor under. Not one.

  147. Andy says:

    Andrew, no need to be so dramatic. Here are some “big name” teachers (just so you can have some you have heard of) that I have enjoyed and gotten much from over the years: Charles Stanley, Tony Evans, Charlie Bing, J. Vernon McGee, Thomas Constable.

    I don’t really care about the “seminary” thing. Walking with Jesus in life, is a seminary.

  148. Andrew says:

    Andy, thanks! Just curious, do you consider yourself a pastor or do you have another secular vocation?

  149. Brian says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6KEHR2oOH0I#t=186

    There is some mild coarse language and awful racist stereotyping, but you got to admit he can put on a show, which is all that matters. He could stand there and lie to all those Marines that are being deployed into harms way. This is a 7 minute clip of the most outrageous parts of his speech to the Marines. I have to admit there is a part of me that admires his ability to just do it so well and with such ease. I always get all tongue tied when I lie or exaggerate and often apologize or back peddle. Goes to show what a complete coward I am.

  150. Dusty says:

    Michael, #1-10 make it very evident where your heart lies….with the children and widows and orphans….in line with your God and Savior Jesus. Good thoughts big brother

  151. Michael says:

    Dusty,

    Thanks…just remember that #7 is true too. 🙂
    It’s amazing when you read through Mark…the compassion that Jesus has for people others place no value on.
    It’s been a great study for me…

  152. Dusty says:

    Michael, I would be in that boat with you…#7 is true of me as well. 🙁

  153. Dusty says:

    i’ve missed you!

  154. Dusty says:

    you are honest and true

  155. randallslack says:

    Is Andy the new RB?

  156. randallslack says:

    “American Christanity dose not work anywhere outside of America. And certainly is not working very well in America either.

  157. Concerning #3.

    Calvary Chapel is on it’s way to shutting down as far as being significant. They never let younger men rise up through the ranks.

    Older carnal men have tried to install other carnal men in it’s pulpit.
    https://phoenixpreacher.com/?p=13829

    They dug this pit by everything that has gone on before.

    If they had allowed younger men to participate in ministry more over the years there would have been more life and vitality. The zealousness of youth adds much.

    Places that are open to the ministry of others thrive and grow spiritually.

    Young people have short attention spans and they have always responded to others within their own age group.

    CCCM needs to look within their own ranks for those that God is raising up and give them opportunities to serve.

    The old guard is tired and old.

    Young people respond to young people.

    Step aside and let the younger men come up to bat.

    A lot of us left when we were young because there was no place for us. Don’t let this continue CCCM…

  158. Michael says:

    davidsurfer51,

    You just wrote the phone calls I had all day long with CC people.
    Well done.

  159. “I don’t really care about the “seminary” thing. Walking with Jesus in life, is a seminary.”

    http://37.media.tumblr.com/3ab9d43ff52df198cd70eaa397bb7c08/tumblr_n3c2af5l6u1sh491mo1_400.jpg

  160. You know learning is good, but if Andy says that is all he needs then why the mockery?

  161. Sometimes it seems like praise for all the guys that went out and got a degree in structural engineering, but scorn for those who are content to be the construction worker.

  162. Education elevates those who choose it.

    It is why every civilized culture throughout history invest in their children, to learn, become better and more than they are. it is why we record history, build libraries and make record of our sciences and skills, to pass these all along to those with the vision, initiative and drive to learn and put it to use.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with remaining in one’s chosen field at one’s station in life. But to disdain those who seek higher education is pure folly.

    The structural engineer creates the jobs which employ the construction workers.

  163. Pastor X says:

    @159
    That is only a part of the equation on the chalkboard.

    The over 60 crowd of CC pastors has been able to keep most (yes, there are exceptions) of the 40’s to 50’s age bracket out of the power structure for too long. Now the majority of men within that age bracket (40’s to 50’s) are being passed over in favor of some younger guys who many, but not all have been hand picked by the old guard. Trouble is, (again with some exceptions) the young crop of the new guard really has much of any thing substantial to say and they are being groomed for a mantle that does not fit them. Calvary lost its cool factor long ago, and they’re gonna get it back.

    I understand that there are some within the 40’s-50’s age group that have influence. Brodersen is not old guard, and he has his allies in that camp. Looks to me like he is trying to reforge CCCM’s image and is offering a latent invitation for some to come to the new party. His staff is rather effect at networking that feels more like corporate relationship than the fellowship of the ecclesia.

    In the mean time, there is a rather large group, again the 40’s-50’s segment that still doesn’t have a voice. Some of them are independent thinkers, some have been well trained after years of drinking the kool-aid an will offer no resistance when the new boss tries to put a ring in the their nose.

  164. Pastor X says:

    One other thing. Those who are in the position to have their influence extended are loyal to at least one major player in the old guard. Loyalty is a premium in CC, along with avoiding conflict at all costs. That’s why some of them hate The Phoenix Preacher. It is also why some of them love The Phoenix Preacher.

  165. Steve Wright says:

    Sincere question.

    What are you guys TALKING about? Passed over? Having a voice?

    Is this just about speaking gigs at the annual SPC?

  166. Monk says:

    Seriously Steve?

  167. Ps40 says:

    # 149 “I don’t care about that seminary thing”

    Andy,
    This is really too bad. You strike me as a man zealous for his faith. You seem to see yourself as non-compromising, and there is an aspect of that that I truly respect and resonate with. But your posts grieve me and this is why.
    I remember being a lot like you: exactly in fact.
    But I have since learned that until those who aspire to seek out God’s ways recognize their own lenses, and the lenses of those who have influenced their conclusions, there is little hope of discovering what you are after in this life.
    While I hold a high regard for Charles Stanley, George Bryson [whose wife is a dear friend of mine] Tony Evans, Charlie Bing, and J. Vernon McGee, I’ve still concluded that If we depend solely upon a small-group sampling’s ability to interpret said Scriptures, we cannot retain our integrity as ardent and genuine students of the faith. These teacher’s particular lenses need to be recognized as Protestant, American, evangelical, fundamental, patriarchal and very 20-21 century-esque. Recognize their lenses and yours, and you may be approaching the start of a learning stance.
    To learn, one must humbly remain a student for life…resisting the urge to think of one’s self an expert.
    Unless… of course…you are an expert in ALL Biblical languages, an expert in every language the Bible has been interpreted into, an expert in every culture the gospel has been shared in, and finally an expert in every aspect of human history, then I would say you can confidently relinquish your “student” status and state things in a factual way. [i.e. “The Bible clearly says….and so I conclude….and you cannot refute God’s voice [as interpreted by me…but that’s not important]”]
    But if you are like the rest of us, you are really only repeating what you have heard from those you happened to be influenced by. We all are merely offering our best conclusions-some more informed than others.
    Seminary [that worthless institution you probably refer to as cemetery] could inform you of a wider context. Even a denominational seminary would afford you an exposure to your faith’s wider history. Without that exposure, you are defending only a tiny slice of the Christian pie.
    Or did God hold His power back until the hippy movement of the 1960’s? reserving it for the select American post-modern evangelical age???
    I suspect He has been working effectively through our entire faith-families’ existence-and doing it in spite of our ineptness. And until you recognize the limitations of your own lens, and your selective exposure to Judeo-Christian history, you cannot effectively establish a credible stance on issues of soteriology, ecclesiology, eschatology, and the like.
    I’m not saying God cannot save you, or work through you in some capacity: I’m just saying you should not attempt to speak as a theological authority if you haven’t given it some serious allocation of your resources and time. Nor should you discourage others from pursuing said helpful information.
    You referred to the “narrow way” in one of your previous posts. If you had been immersed in the wisdom literature of the OT [perhaps in seminary?], you would have recognized Jesus’ quote as from the book of Proverbs, referring to the way of wisdom versus the way of foolishness. Perhaps you wouldn’t have used that verse to make people fear falling into the broad road of destruction to everlasting torment [anyone other than your tiny sect], and into the unsaved category of educated fools. Soteriology is more nuanced than the Four Spiritual Laws could possibly allude to in that bright yellow tract.
    Perhaps you would learn to contextualize yourself into a bigger narrative and not think so much of your personal place, time and significance. Perhaps you would learn that there is more mystery in the Scriptures than doctrines that are provable and written in stone. Perhaps you would learn the value of realizing that we are more capable of getting it wrong than getting it all right?
    And all of this and your previous comments make me sad because the very things you seek could be affirmed with a brief season dedicated to learning, rather than remaining in your expert’s perch.
    And perhaps, like the brother who supposed that I was trying to “impress” you by stating that I studied under expert scholars, you might not conclude that my journey is worthless because I’m choosing now only to speak of things I have wrestled with for myself, and no longer resort to parroting my “convictions” as though they are my own.
    And yes, I lend more credence to my professors who refer to N. T. Wright as “Tom”, than radio personalities who have become adept at listening to Chuck tracks, and
    CSN every day from 3 to 4pm.
    And perhaps it is a grave mistake to assume that dedicated learning was not a huge part of Biblical cultures-both OT and NT. Weren’t heir learning “institutions” were an integral part of their culture? Being a disciple of a rabbi was the highest privilege of one’s community in Palestine. Was it not?
    Furthermore, even Jesus recognized the value of philosophy (even quoted some), world history, Jewish history and many schools of learning. So why would you assume that formal education plays no part in seeking the wisdom that the Scriptures speak of?

    And why do you constantly assume that I place no value in the Spirit’s primary role in this whole human process of learning? I do. The Spirit uses all of these modes/mediums to bring me to the knowledge of Him. He makes His presence known constantly if I want It to be known.
    Furthermore, Jumping to conclusions about my motives will never prove helpful if we are to attempt to search out the truths of God in community—which was God’s design in the first place. Which seems farther from reality with the development of every new denomination and non-denominational sect.
    There is so much more to consider, Andy, than your limited understanding of what the Bible states—so much more. I sincerely hope you discover that reality and stop defending your illusions.
    Your faith family might just be bigger than you realize?

  168. Steve Wright says:

    Yes, Monk. If the complaint is about who the poster boys are for regional conferences and the annual SPC, then fine. We just counter that by having our own conference and inviting the guys we want to invite.

    But the complaint seems to be something weightier. Is it about getting on staff? On the a church Board. Maybe about the makeup of the CC Assoc?

    I served in Calvary in my 20s, my 30s, my 40s….lots of others doing the same.

    Lots of age variety at every senior pastor lunch I attend. Lots of younger folks serving at every Calvary I know.

    I suggest guys worry about pastoring their own churches first….there ought to be enough there to keep us all busy.

  169. Michael says:

    Ps40,

    That was gold.

  170. Michael says:

    Steve,

    My phone started ringing this morning shortly after I posted this and I just hung up on the last call of the day.
    All the guys I spoke with are very dedicated to pastoring their own local churches.
    They are also sick and tired of not having a voice in the direction the group they have belonged to for years is going.
    There is a whole generation of CC pastors that have faithfully kept their hands to the plow and been completely ignored…and now they are being marginalized even more.
    There are a lot of unhappy campers out there.

  171. Michael says:

    Pastor X has spoken for a bunch of men I’ve spoken with today…

  172. Steve Wright says:

    They are also sick and tired of not having a voice in the direction the group they have belonged to for years is going…There is a whole generation of CC pastors that have faithfully kept their hands to the plow and been completely ignored…and now they are being marginalized even more.
    ———————————————————————-
    Oh I get that. Believe me.

    Maybe I need to learn about this “ring in the nose” that the “new boss” is going to fit me with one day.. 🙂

  173. Steve Wright says:

    Michael, my questions were more geared to what David wrote that you amen’d

    Like:
    ————————
    If they had allowed younger men to participate in ministry more over the years there would have been more life and vitality. The zealousness of youth adds much.

    CCCM needs to look within their own ranks for those that God is raising up and give them opportunities to serve.
    —————————
    That sounded more like a complaint of the local church and not about the makeup of the new CCA or who speaks at the SPC…speaking as a (then) younger man who certainly found plenty of opportunity to participate in ministry at Costa Mesa..to serve.

  174. I love the hypocrisy that is now jumping up and biting these CC pastors in the butt.

    What is this I hear? They are tired of not having a voice or a vote in determining their direction with in an organization?

    LOL, Eddie Murphy funny 🙂 Aren’t these ALL the same people up to this very day who absolutely refuse to give the attendees the very same thing they are now crying about – a voice and a vote?

    When I see some of these guys start have a membership, skin in the game people, and perhaps quarterly voter assembly meetings that discuss real issues, then and only them will I shed a tear about their unfair plight with CCA.

    Oh thou hypocrites!

  175. Ps40 says:

    #161,164,168
    baaahahaa! I am not alone. Love these chirps.

  176. Brian says:

    I had a long very nasty diatribe but I have not been impressed for a long time.

  177. Bob says:

    “A church goes on an outreach for the homeless and also gives them the gospel along with food. The homeless person accepts the Lord and becomes Born Again. Here is the question, do we, as the homeless persons brethren, take him/her in and give him/her shelter or do we just leave them on the streets?”

    This post seems to imply the person here only becomes a brother when he accepts Jesus as Lord and then the church has to decide about taking him in.

    1st answer/response?

    Who’s your neighbor or brother and are they limited to those in your immediate household.

    2nd

    Everyone has to work and contribute to the community in some form.

    3rd

    How does your community fit these in?

    As the cable guy says, “get er done.”

  178. Raul says:

    Michael: “A contingent from Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa met with the boys from Mars Hill over the weekend to learn from each other. Be afraid…be very afraid.”

    Be afraid? Of what?

  179. Ricky Bobby says:

    1. Agreed.

    2. Very much agreed.

    3. Birds of a feather…and no fear, bring it on and let’s get it on.

    4. Very much agreed.

    7. Sterling is a whole different level of bad…legit racist, child abuser and total immorally rich narcissist a-hole.

    9. Amen.

    10. Amen.

  180. Andy says:

    Derek, thank you. I appreciate to see that someone understands. Independent thinkers are going to be mocked. I’m used to it. 🙂 Get outside the blob of “Christendom” and the way they want it defined, and you’ll be mocked.

    P-s-4-0, no offense, but i have never seen someone write so much, and say nothing. 🙂 I believe the Bible, I’m convinced of its meaning by the Holy Spirit, I’m content with that.

  181. Dusty says:

    MLD, #177 LOL I second that!!!

  182. Dusty says:

    A-n-d-y said,’P-s-4-0, no offense, but i have never seen someone write so much, and say nothing.’

    no offense, but why do you have to be so rude?

  183. Andy says:

    Dusty, I didn’t consider it rude. There have been many rude things said to me here, that I consider rude. Maybe you don’t consider them rude. So it is a matter of opinion.

  184. Andrew says:

    MLD @ 177 Amen! and Amen!

  185. Dusty says:

    There have been rude things said to you and you came back just as hard so I left it alone.

    Honest question, if the Bible is enough for you, why do you read here? are you trying to convert us? Just trying to understand where you are coming from.

  186. Andrew says:

    ps40 said “You referred to the “narrow way” in one of your previous posts. If you had been immersed in the wisdom literature of the OT [perhaps in seminary?], you would have recognized Jesus’ quote as from the book of Proverbs, referring to the way of wisdom versus the way of foolishness”

    ___________________________________________________________________

    So what are you saying here? Are you saying Jesus Himself is not the “only way” which is the “narrow way” but rather He was just quoting from OT saying Wisdom is the way opposed to foolishness? I agree with much of what you state regarding education but if your conclusion is what it sounds like to me, I would have to agree with Andy that I have no interest in this kind of higher criticism.

  187. Andy says:

    Andrew, thank you. You are starting to see the kinds of things that I am talking about. This higher criticism masked in the veil of “education”, just ends up attempting to diminish the absolute truth in the minds of the hearers. I’m not sure what the point of it all is. Except that it sounds like, “ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth”.

  188. Andrew says:

    Andy, I see exactly what you are seeing but not all seminary learning is like this. Maybe a lot is but some is really good and only strengthens my faith.

  189. Andy says:

    Andrew, I’d agree. There are seminaries that teach the Bible. But the Bible is the key. They teach the Bible, so, that’s good. Just as there are churches that teach the Bible, and churches that don’t teach the Bible. If someone ends up with a seminary situation where the Bible is not the authority, then they would rightly have to call that “cemetery”. And people have noticed over time, how a seminary that started with just teaching the Bible, over time diverted off into unbiblical directions, and that is why they say what they say.

  190. Steve,

    You typed:
    “…speaking as a (then) younger man who certainly found plenty of opportunity to participate in ministry at Costa Mesa..to serve.”

    The only service available at CCCM was anything but ministering when I was there for 30+ years.

    For instance, when pastor Tilson Shumate wanted to help pray over the sick at the Saturday night men’s prayer meeting he went to Romaine, the then assistant pastor who was in charge of that meeting and asked him if he could do that.

    Romaine instructed him to sit in the back of the room and just observe. So Tilson did that faithfully for one year. After which he then once again asked Romaine if he could pray over the sick with the men of God.

    Romaine then told him he could sit up in front and just observe. So after a very long time of not being able to pray over the sick and having to jump through the hoops, Tilson eventually got frustrated and left CCCM.

    Oden Fong was the only man there who allowed others to participate in ministry during his Tuesday night fellowship. And he took a lot of flack for it. Pastors there actually mocked him behind his back for encouraging the usage of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in his fellowship.

    One fellow called Oden’s fellowship “The Christian gong show.”
    http://timstvshowcase.com/gongshow.html

    And yet even in Oden’s fellowship there at CCCM it was still a “one man ministry” in actuality.

    The truth is that the initial thrust that developed the Greg Laurie’s and the Mike Macintosh types diminished and the “old guard” formed up.

    Every conference and every event over the many years only advertised the same old tired names as the speakers. Never any new young names coming up through the ranks.

    Anyone who brought up these things ALWAYS got invited to “leave if your not happy and go start your own church.”

    I was privileged enough to have Jeff Smith himself invite me to leave and go start my own church if i was not happy with the way things were during our last face to face conversation back in the early 90’s.

    Jeff, back then, told me, “My dad did what he was called to do. He brought the hippies to Christ and now he is just coasting down the other side of the hill.”

    Don’t get me wrong, i love and respect Jeff and we still email now and then. I have known him since we both were freshmen in high school together.

    That is the problem. Once CCCM got established and set in it’s ways there was no true opportunity for the young men God was calling into ministry to serve there.

    If they really wanted to actually minister they had to leave and go else where.

    I know a lot of us who did leave out of frustration. Being passed over was a very real situation that has born fruit today at CCCM.

    It is full of older people today and the youth are going elsewhere; why?

    Because every single minister in the Old Guard is a “one~man~ministry.” No room for young men who are called of God to be recognized and encouraged to minister and be mentored in ministry there.

    O you can minister but you will never be able to join the ranks of the Old Guard at CC.

    There is hope.

    God has always moved forward in restoration of the New Testament church.

    I have recently addressed this on my blog:

    http://shekinahfellowship.blogspot.com/2014/04/vineyard-community-church-laguna-niguel_30.html

  191. Andrew says:

    And here is another quote from Ps40 “Perhaps you wouldn’t have used that verse to make people fear falling into the broad road of destruction to everlasting torment [anyone other than your tiny sect], and into the unsaved category of educated fools”.

    Gosh, Jesus himself used it this way and talked about Hell more than anyone in the NT. I’m not sure why everybody is giving praise to Ps40 on here. I see a bit of deception going on here.

  192. Andy says:

    Andrew, that is the whole thing. That is why I said of that post from P-s-4-0, writing so much but saying nothing. It doesn’t sound like what Jesus meant by His Words in the Bible, as you correctly pointed out. So thank you.

    davidsurfer51, in fairness to CC, most churches (at least large attendance churches) work that way today. And it is right. They need to protect their ministry. They have to be very very very very sure about who is involved. If you have ever been in a high leadership position of a church, and been burned by giving every Tom, Dick, and Harry a ministry position only to watch them later turn on you and walk through the congregation with a sword, then you would understand. 🙂

  193. Andrew says:

    Andy, your welcome.

  194. Andy,

    Thanks for the reminder about church splits. That is a whole nother topic.

    Selfish ambition etc.

    I was only thinking about the sincere young men I knew who were being called into ministry only to be stonewalled by the many hoops they would have to jump through to encourage them to go away by those in authority.

    Any one who was there and is honest will understand.

    If you were not in the inner circle you didn’t have a chance.

    In Chuck Smith’s book “The Harvest” there is absolutely no mention of Oden Fong, who was there from the beginning, nor the evangelist Lonnie Frisbee who helped grow CCCM.

    And no mention at all of those of us who tirelessly combed the beaches and the high ways and by ways evangelizing and bringing in the sheep to CCCM.

    Only the Old Guard made it into that book.

    Fish rots from the head down. What leadership does gets replicated down through the ranks…

    And you do point out a valid reason of why this may have been at CCCM.

    The Body of Christ is an organism not an organization. There is only one Body of believers recognized by the Bible.

    http://shekinahfellowship.blogspot.com/2014/04/doing-church-at-mission-viejo-vineyard.html

  195. Steve Wright says:

    David, I don’t doubt your stories, but the thing is, the conclusion you draw from them is disproven by my own story, and the stories of a lot of other men I know.

    Thus the problem with anecdotal evidence to make all encompassing points.

    I also note that you refer to an earlier time than I – for my experience is in the 1990s. So is it possible your complaint is accurate, but quite dated?

  196. Andrew says:

    Andy says, ” If you have ever been in a high leadership position of a church, and been burned by giving every Tom, Dick, and Harry a ministry position only to watch them later turn on you and walk through the congregation with a sword, then you would understand. :)”

    Andy, are you saying you were in a high leadership position in church and you do understand?
    ________________________________________________________________________

    Steve however, what David says is also proven many times over throughout the country in CCs today not just in Costa Mesa but other places as well. It appears to be part of the DNA of CC. It happened to me very recently.

  197. Steve Wright says:

    MLD – I know you think you really came up with a good one there earlier.

    However, as you yourself have said many, many times, the people that go to churches like CC typically are ones who don’t want votes. Don’t want that involvement. Don’t want a membership process. Those Christians who do want such things can go to your church or others like it. The quickest way for me to lose a whole lot of people at our church would be to start a formal membership process. My entire Board (who do have a vote) would likely all vote against me, and using your argument for my justification for such a massive change at our church (and something so foreign to CCs in general) would mean nothing.

    The difference is that CC affiliation, as you know, is among the pastors personally (Churches are not CC per se, churches have CC affiliated pastors) – with the emphasis on pastoral fellowship, interaction, and mutual support. So if a a small handful of self-appointed (or even Chuck-appointed) pastoral leaders see the rest of us as second-class in some manner, it is not an issue of hypocrisy, but an issue of being true to what makes CC what it is and why we are a part of it, and a subsequent going away from that.

    Most of us learned a long time ago not to expect a call to speak at a big conference, and most of us really don’t care. However, if a small handful of guys think they can make choices that will then dictate how all OUR churches are actually run, then there will be issues.

    However, so far I have never once even seen a hint of such a thing coming down the road to our place.

  198. Steve Wright says:

    I guess addressing MLD sends one’s post to moderation…?

  199. Bob Sweat says:

    Steve,

    MLD makes sure all posts are moderated if they disagree with him!

  200. Michael says:

    I don’t have any posts in moderation.

  201. Andrew says:

    Steve, I hope you take this the right way. Its not about what the people want or what you want but rather what is best in God’s eyes. In half the people leave because you institute something that God wants than why are you worried about that? Its about pleasing God isn’t it? Its not about pleasing man which you are making the case it is.

  202. Steve Wright says:

    I was only thinking about the sincere young men I knew who were being called into ministry only to be stonewalled by the many hoops they would have to jump through to encourage them to go away by those in authority.
    ——————————————————————-
    Any sincere young man called into ministry by our Lord is not going to let that stop them. Of course, none of us can gauge “sincerity” and certainly none of us can gauge whether one has been called by God or is just seeking their own little slice of power over others and limelight.

    I was applauded here for having a 6 month waiting period and background checks for anyone who wants to serve in ANY capacity – do you not think we get a complaint or two from someone who calls these “hoops to jump through” – who no doubt can then go on a blog to complain about CC DNA and such.

    I got on a plane to minister in India knowing only one man, who was going to be in another country when I arrived and arranged for others to drive me around. I didn’t need some papal dispensation from Romaine or Chuck to serve the Lord. Just do it.

    In 2001 when the CCOF hoops seemed a little much to me, we just started our own church, ran it like a CC but without any official affiliation. Stepped out in faith because it was what the Lord was calling us to do.

    I went to school of ministry at CM with dozens of supposedly “sincere young men being called into ministry” – pastoral ministry at that. By week two of that school I was leading Sunday services at an Alzheimer’s home and I could almost never get even one of those “sincere young men called into ministry” to even sub for me a given week at the nursing home. And the ones who eventually did, universally (with one exception) told me they could never go back…it was too hard. I did it for six years. It wasn’t HARD, it was service to the Lord with no spotlight, no feedback of “great message pastor”, occasional challenging smells from an adult diaper accident, and half the people either sleeping, wandering in and out, or seemingly staring off into space.

    Oh, but the things I saw the Lord do there. And how much a blessing it was.

    Postscript, many if not most of the “sincere young men called into ministry” are not serving the Lord today, 20 years later, a few are not even walking with Him, and I am sure they all have someone in CC to blame as to why.

    I have a heart for the people here who feel like they got stomped on by abusive leadership, but I dont’ shed a lot of tears for men who tell the world how the Lord has called them into ministry only to quit and blame others for why they gave up on this supposed call.

    (Hey, THERE is a lesson from church history we could all learn. How many of the historical giants faced “hoops” from the established leadership of their day. It didn’t stop them from serving Jesus in the power of the Spirit, did it?)

  203. Steve Wright says:

    Michael it is out now. But it was there for minutes (my 201)

  204. Steve Wright says:

    Andrew @205 – so if I took a formal congregational vote, and asked them if they wanted us to have a formal membership process, and the vote went down in flames, then that would be evidence of the will of God, right?

    If I had an elder Board vote, same question, (and I abstained) and the vote went down in flames..that too would be the will of God.

    You seem to think that the will of God, 100% for all churches, is for formal membership with voting rights. Yet if those voting rights are exercised and the vote is against formal membership…then there is a disconnect in your thinking, no?

    Yes, I agree with you that pastoral leadership is about pleasing God and doing His will, but a lot of what we do for the people God has called us to serve is not simply discounted as “men-pleasing”

    Because we exist to serve THEM.

  205. Pastor X says:

    Pastor Wright,
    “I suggest guys worry about pastoring their own churches first….there ought to be enough there to keep us all busy.”

    Isn’t that an ideal that should be applicable to everyone, including all the big shots? Is there no room for attempting to preserve and speak into the movement?

    You also described the purpose of affiliation “with the emphasis on pastoral fellowship, interaction, and mutual support.” Those attributes, to be fully and truthfully engaged, require interact with all those involved, not a top down oligarchy. How can one be encouraged to engage in an affiliate relationship as you described and yet be told to worry about their own churches? You cannot have one with out the other, and to do is akin to setting up a kool-aid drinking stand.

    In reality, there is more that should concern the average pastor (whoever or what ever that is) than just the scope of their own churches. To be dismissive and tell someone to mind their own business creates undercurrents and feeds the elephant in the room. Many of those who have been in Calvary have a vested, personal, emotional interest in the future. Everyone bought in and they have a right and a responsibility to contribute to the wellness of its future.

  206. once a cc guru says:

    “Many of those who have been in Calvary have a vested, personal, emotional interest in the future. Everyone bought in and they have a right and a responsibility to contribute to the wellness of its future”…

    That’s what I thought to be truth within CC until I opened my mouth and got kicked out for stating my opinion… Lesson learned, Don’t touch the CCCM family a$$ets!

  207. Michael says:

    Raul,

    I was joking…kind of.
    What can Calvary Chapel learn from Mars Hill?’
    Mars Hill is Calvinistic, CC is not.
    Mars Hill is allegedly elder led, CC is not.
    Mars Hill currently is awash in scandal, pastors and elders are leaving in droves, and attendance is shrinking.
    What can CC learn from Mars Hill?
    Marketing.
    Period.

  208. Steve,
    I wasn’t talking about you – I was talking about the CC pastor’s that were bitching and moaning on the phone all day with Michael.

    But I don’t know if I could trust the vote of a board on this topic when the board has longer guaranteed terms than Supreme Court Justices. 😉

    ***PS – yes, if you do speak against my views, they go right into moderation. 🙂

  209. Steve Wright says:

    Pastor X – If you read everything I have written in this thread (and for that matter over the last several years at this blog), you will see that I agree with you about influence in the movement and the future direction it takes.

    My comment about worrying about our own churches was only related to moaning we don’t get invited to speak at some big conference.

    Apples and oranges…in my opinion

  210. Andy says:

    Andrew wrote: “Andy, are you saying you were in a high leadership position in church and you do understand?”

    I’ve had some painful learning experiences. God uses it all.

  211. Dusty says:

    the pastor who took the congregational vote away from the CC I attended said something like this….on a day out of the blue he announced a congregational vote on a small matter after service today. at the vote he said it was unbiblical to have a vote and the only biblical way was to give up our right to vote. it was almost a landslide….but for me….I refused to vote one way or the other…it was a joke and it was plain fraud in my opinion. The pastor had the nerve to question me after as to why I did not vote. I told him it was wrong in too many ways. should have walked way from that church right then….but I was stupid then…..

  212. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD said, “I love the hypocrisy that is now jumping up and biting these CC pastors in the butt.

    What is this I hear? They are tired of not having a voice or a vote in determining their direction with in an organization?

    LOL, Eddie Murphy funny 🙂 Aren’t these ALL the same people up to this very day who absolutely refuse to give the attendees the very same thing they are now crying about – a voice and a vote?

    When I see some of these guys start have a membership, skin in the game people, and perhaps quarterly voter assembly meetings that discuss real issues, then and only them will I shed a tear about their unfair plight with CCA.

    Oh thou hypocrites!”

    Wow, I largely agree with MLD for once.

    Though, I would call them hypocrites for it, I would encourage the many CC Pastors who are starting to wake up and see the problems with lack of transparency and lack of sharing the power to assert themselves and push for changes.

  213. Dusty says:

    there are three CC pastors I completely trust….centorian, and DMW and Oden

  214. Ricky Bobby says:

    “wouldn’t call them hypocrites” above. typo.

  215. Steve Wright says:

    the pastor who took the congregational vote away from the CC I attended said something like this
    ————————————————
    Dusty, your CC had congregational voting at one time? Or did your existing congregational church become a CC and then take away the vote?

    (I am not familiar with all your story…)

  216. Ricky Bobby says:

    There’s been a big shift in CC lately as it appears “God” (possibly) is exposing some stuff and folks are finally taking notice. I haven’t seen this sort of mass willingness to talk and to deal with the serious issues violating the “no-talk rule”.

    I think the Trend is turning the corner, finally.

    People are waking up and starting to take some responsibility for calling out the bad stuff and saying, “no, this is wrong and needs to be dealt with”.

    It’s been very encouraging to see (and hear).

    It is the calm before the storm.

  217. Michael says:

    Dusty,

    Your trust in Centorian and Oden is good.
    DMW turned out to be as bad as any.
    i don’t want anyone thinking that I endorse him in any way.
    We can discuss this privately.

  218. Ricky Bobby says:

    You can make a difference.

    When one person stands up and says “enough, this is wrong”…it helps another person stand up. Then another. Then some more. Etc etc.

    Keep standing up. Don’t give up. Trust your Conscience. There are some things you know are wrong and some things you know should change. Be a change-agent, don’t buy into the churchy no-talk garbage. When something is wrong, you speak up and you do something about it.

  219. Dusty says:

    Michael said, “DMW turned out to be as bad as any.” WHAT!!! 😥 so I’m still stupid

  220. Ricky Bobby says:

    None are good, but I agree that there are some decent folks who aren’t nearly as evil as others and have a Conscience that keeps them in check.

  221. Dusty says:

    I feel like I have had the wind knocked out of me and stabbed though the heart… 😥

  222. Michael says:

    Dusty,

    Not stupid…he fooled many.
    You’re just behind on the news.
    We’ll talk offline.

  223. Ricky Bobby says:

    I chalk up DMW’s stuff more to his circumstances. Stress and pressure can tempt normally decent folks to act badly.

    I’ve made a decision not to pick on Steve’s flaws any longer to forge some detente here and elsewhere and I’ve alway acknowledged the good he’s done. One of the best things I’ve ever seen is how Steve handled the church money. Steve isn’t in it for the money and didn’t take much from the church for a long time…while money was diverted to help the former pastor’s tough situation. In a perfect world where you could print your own money like our FED, you could pay everyone what they felt they needed. It isn’t a perfect world and that particular situation was remarkable…in Steve’s favor, IMO (and this coming from someone who has been a critic of Steve’s in other areas).

  224. Dusty says:

    steve, i’m sorry 🙁

  225. Ricky Bobby says:

    Ya, I actually feel sorry for Steve, too. I also feel sorry for DMW. Sad and very difficult situation.

  226. erunner says:

    I read DMW’s posts and it’s clear he’s in a terrible position with his wife’s health. Being familiar with everything I’m torn when I see his comments and have refrained from responding.

  227. Andy,
    Regarding your #184, no problem.
    I love learning more, but sometimes people on here get on their high hobby horse and start pontificating and they sound like the snobs they can be sometimes.
    If their learning makes them look down on those who don’t have either the time or inclination to learn as much as they think they have….well then they have forgotten the most important thing about being a Christian and that is love.
    If you sneer and mock people that have Jesus and the bible and that is enough for them then you yourself are in need of a bit more simple learning that is found in just reading the epistles of John.

  228. Derek,
    That is not what Andy was saying. Andy was saying that he purposely stays away from formal training. Formal training at any level, especially seminary training, to Andy is equivalent to opening yourself up to the ‘doctrines of man’ as he put it.

    He is satisfied getting his ‘training’ fro J. Vernon McGee. No one was putting down people who do not have a strong biblical education.

  229. I am not talking about what Andy may have been saying. I was talking about the vibes one gets on here when their learning is questioned.
    Mockery and snobbery seem to be the order of the day when that happens.
    I know plenty of Christians who think the bible is enough for them.
    Am I supposed to go to all of them and tell them how dumb they are?
    Would that be the “Christian” thing to do?

    Sorry, but in defending positions on here people show that they may have learned a lot, but show that they practice little.

  230. In fact for a place that seems to like a multiplicity of thoughts, the first ones to be told “Why are you here?” (meaning: go away) are those that hold to the bible as their sole authority.
    So, if you hold to universalism then no one here should dare question this person as to why they hold these beliefs that are basically borderline, if not outright heresy.
    But, if you believe in the bible and don’t express any heretical views you are mocked and scorned.
    Got it.

  231. Derek,
    You don’t get it – When Andy says the Bible alone is enough for him, what he is saying is that it should be enough for all of us. That in the end, we seek the education because we are seeking after the ‘doctrines of man’

    Andy is not say “aw shucks guys, I only have the opportunity to read the Bible” – he is using those as statements of superiority.

    He has suckered you in.

  232. MLD,
    This is not about if I agree with Andy on every point. I don’t.
    It is about how y’all treat him.
    My wife holds a lot of the views regarding the bible as Andy.
    I argue with her sometimes over it, but not to the point of alienation.
    This is like you are scorning and mocking my wife.
    This is about behavior.
    It is about being loving and how you can sit here and quote someone on it and say how historically it has been understood, but the fact is it is obvious that many here don;t understand it.

  233. Derek, I haven’t screamed at Andy – i just question what he says and why he says it.

    Look, it is Andy who always takes the first shot and it is usually with the smug attitude that he has it right – Look at his #8 on the Links thread – everyone talking along about the Orthodox position on the atonement and enter Andy;

    “That first link is a jumbled confusing mess to me. Talk about not being the “simplicity of the Gospel”.

    Without going into his whole post – you can go over and read it – he gives the reductionist position on salvation and assumes that no one else holds to that.

  234. MLD,
    I have seen really only two people being hateful to him.
    One is the blog owner who conflates his views to moon landing hoaxes.
    The other is G, who loves to throw his pithy images up…how very SCCL.
    I would have to look back throughout the thread to see if you have said anything mocking and truthfully I don’t feel like it.\

    I remember when the SCCL thing happened and Xenia said this:
    “SCCL is pretty funny until you find a photo that’s being made fun of and you recognize someone you love in one of the photos. Then it’s not so funny anymore.”

    Well, that is how I feel when Andy is ganged up on and made a mockery of right now.
    Sorry, this is my cranky day.

  235. It’s funny, because I see Andy here mocking us. But to each his own – hey he told me I wasn’t Christian because i believe in baptizing babies. No matter how many times I tell him baptism is the work of God in a person’s life – he signs me off as adding works to people.

    Hey, to each his own.

  236. Andrew says:

    MLD, The reductionist version of the gospel that supposedly Andy espouses and you take issue with is actually tolerable to me if you are explaining the gospel to a child. It may be overly simplified but most kids need it that way.

    However the overly educated universalist version of the gospel that is espoused by many on here that I don’t see you commenting on at all seems to be contradicted straight up by Jesus in the bible. Why go after Andy when you can go after Ps40 in his lecture @ 170. Is seminary education or is the simple words of the Bible more important to you?

  237. Andrew,
    There is a reason that you don’t see me argue with the universalists
    .
    RB – because I have to tone down my conversations with him or Michael moderates me. But I think I can say without fear of contradiction, that I am the only one here who states out loud that RB is not a Christian (based on his own words) now if he is pulling our legs, well that’s another story.

    G – I used to debate G’s universalism but I gave up. G and I used to be friendly, meet for lunch and or coffee – but I think I ruined that relationship over the past year … so I backed down

    Now back to Andy, his reductionist view is not for kids and it is the view he thinks we all should have and go no further in the study or investigation of soteriology.

  238. ” Is seminary education or is the simple words of the Bible more important to you?”

    I would suggest that most here and especially Andy do not follow “the simple words of the bible”

    2 examples and I know you saw them coming.
    1.) This is my body… this is my blood – pretty simpl words
    2.) “and this baptism now saves you” – again, they don’t come any simpler than that. 🙂

  239. Michael says:

    Derek,

    When someone chooses to ignore all the data of church history and deny it’s veracity and reality that is every bit as inane in my mind as denying the moon landings.
    He mocks me…mocks learning, mocks exploration, mocks seeking any understanding other than his own.
    Any understanding of “The Gospel” other than his own is called a “false Gospel”…and I’m the one who’s hateful.
    He is not here to promote simple faith…he’s here to promote his views and scorn ours.
    No one forces anyone to click on this blog and engage in debate over issues and doctrines.
    If you do make that choice, then expect some of us to argue back.
    Ignorance is not a virtue, it’s a scourge and I’m sick and tired of being mocked for trying to lessen my own.
    Hateful bastard that I am.

  240. Michael says:

    Andrew,

    I don’t agree with many of the doctrines espoused here.
    I don’t have to argue with all of them every time they are written.
    The Christian faith walk is a journey…and as much as I can I try to respect where people are on that journey.
    When G or others are ready to question their doctrines they will ask…we have established enough relationship to enable that kind of conversation.

  241. Ricky Bobby says:

    Yes, hashing stuff out is good and I don’t think it’s wrong for folks to disagree and present their opinions and challenge the opinions of others. It’s generally seen as a healthy dynamic in searching for some shred of truth.

    MLD, I am as Christian* as anyone on here….and as non-Christian* as anyone on here.

  242. Michael says:

    While I’m at it…Andy actually is a proponent of a pretty developed, very specific, theology from Dallas Theological Seminary.
    The “no Lordship” position is well known and I’ve had people leave my church over it.
    He’s not some poor, beaten up, innocent without a doctrine.

  243. Xenia says:

    You can’t follow the simple words of the Bible because the Bible is not a simple book. It’s not like the instruction booklet I got with my blender, it’s a huge melange of writings that take considerable insight (Holy Spirit insight) to put together into a cohesive set of doctrines that make sense. One person alone cannot do this, that was never God’s intention. Even the basic doctrines we take for granted today, such as the two natures of Christ and His deity, were hammered out in councils. Sure, we read the
    Bible now and (forgetting all the decades of teachings we have heard) imagine that when we read the Scriptures, the doctrine of the Trinity is so crystal clear that a child could catch it on first reading, but this is not the case.

  244. I’m sorry…can you point to me the comment where he actually specifically called your doctrine false?
    I can’t find it.
    All I can see are generalities when looking through.
    It seems to me that a lot of people on here read a lot into Andy’s statements and then get there but up on their shoulders over things they read into Andy’s statements.

    BTW, MLD you aren’t the only one who doesn’t believe RB is a Christian.

  245. Xenia says:

    And if Andy comes from the DTS crowd, his Rapture theology is probably the most complicated thing I have ever seen attached to the Christian religion and in no sense at all could be called “simple.”

  246. Should have been ” then get their butts up on their shoulders”

  247. Don’t want G, the Special Investigator in Charge of Spelling and Grammar, to fine me or anything.

  248. He did it first explanations usually come off as lame.

  249. Michael says:

    Derek,

    I’m not going through weeks of comments to accommodate you.
    Andy has presented himself as a proponent of the “free grace”/”no lordship” doctrines that state (and he has affirmed) that adding anything to simple belief is a false Gospel.
    Beings I’ve actually read and debated their material when I have my butt on my shoulders, I know that their literature states that even repentance is a work and is unnecessary for salvation.
    They hold to a host of other doctrines that I hold with equal contempt.
    If you’ve read carefully, you will also have read where I affirmed Andy as a brother despite finding his doctrines odious.
    I haven’t “read” anything into his comments…he has stated his positions over and over again if one knows what he is saying.

  250. Ricky Bobby says:

    Derek, I don’t believe you or MLD are truly Jesus followers. You may be Christians* in terms of as a political association, like republican or democrat, but if it is truly some sort of heart-change or spirit thing…no, I have serious doubts about both of you.

  251. Ricky Bobby says:

    If it’s all real, I think I can pick out several I’m convinced are truly Jesus followers on here…and several I’m convinced are not. Most…I’m not sure.

  252. Michael says:

    The personal stuff stops now, from everyone.

  253. Michael says:

    Xenia,

    Andy is a dispensationalist filtered through the teachings of Zane Hodges and Bob Wilken.
    I had two just like him try to split our church.

  254. Ricky Bobby says:

    Wasn’t personal, just my take from years on here and testing and observing and watching how people respond and what they do vs. their professed doctrine/theology etc. I’m a student of people and humanity and generally get a pretty good read on folks over time.

  255. Nor am I going to hunt down where he actually called you a purveyor of a “false gospel”, usually it ends up like your #44 where you assume that is what he means and then run with it for the rest of the comments.
    That is called taking offense when none has actually been given.
    If he had actually flat out called you a purveyor of a “false gospel” at some time in the past then would you not have remembered it?
    In fact I think most on here would have remembered it.
    Instead from #44, it seems his views, in your mind necessitate these thoughts about you and therefore he must think them

  256. Ricky Bobby says:

    A couple on my “convinced” list might surprise you 🙂 while some are probably consensus picks.

  257. Michael says:

    Derek,

    I am going by his stated beliefs.
    Is that not the fair and righteous thing to do?
    Those in his camp believe that those in fine teach a false Gospel.
    That is an irrefutable fact.

  258. Also, Michael, you get mad when someone compares you to some Calvinist you disagree with.
    Why do you do the same with Andy?

    Michael, who cares what RB says?
    His words are like farts in a wind…they quickly dissipate.

  259. See #261 shows that you think the same thing that you yourself decry often.

  260. Ricky Bobby says:

    I believe it is Andy who has stated that Calvinism is a false gospel. Not taking sides, just stating what I believe to be fact. Andy has a right to his opinion and I think he’s been allowed to express it and argue his side quite a bit and others have the right to push back and disagree and they have. I don’t see a problem. I’m the most ganged-up on person in the history of PhxP, I don’t think Andy is a blip on the radar in that regard.

  261. See, I am not so much worried about his views, but as to how he is interacted with.
    Throwing up some link to Lordship Salvation does not make me think that Andy can be stereotyped into some pigeonhole.
    And, his beliefs do not excuse how we act towards him.
    I pray people on here don’t act in real life like they do on the internet like that link from the other thread.

  262. Michael says:

    Derek,

    You are wrong.
    Andy has stated that he belongs to this very narrow, very small sect whose beliefs are well known and published.
    There isn’t a large diversity of thought in the camp, there is clear doctrinal teaching.
    They are on record very clearly as stating that even adding the need for repentance to a Gospel message is “another Gospel”.
    Andy has made it very clear that he agrees with that position.
    Because you personally are ignorant of these teachings, you are making false assumptions about me…doing exactly what you have accused me of doing.

  263. And I am done.
    I need to go water the garden.

    I am serious though, if it was someone you knew IRL, are you going to say the same things or be a bit more careful?

  264. Fine Michael, I am as guilty as you are.

  265. Ricky Bobby says:

    Derek said, “And, his beliefs do not excuse how we act towards him.”

    Hmmm. Interesting take. Can you describe with specifics what sort of tone or word choice is not excusable…and would you classify questioning someone’s salvation as excusable or inexcusable?

    Hear that noise? It’s my Irony and Hypocrite Meter blaring…you can hear it from Boise! 🙂

  266. Michael says:

    Derek,

    I’m not guilty of a damn thing in this issue.
    You simply decided for reasons known only to yourself to take up the cause of someone you didn’t even understand and attack me.
    He has chosen to come on this blog, spend much time here, and engage in the discussions with a confidence that most don’t have.
    He has not been abused or treated badly in the least.

  267. Steve B says:

    I too am a “bible only” Christian. While I will be the first to admit that my outlook severely handicaps my opportunities for intellectual expansion, I would also note that everything vital to the Christian is indeed encompassed in said limited scholarship.

    I see nothing wrong with studying church history or opinion pieces on essential & non-essential doctrines, but merely have no inclination to approach outside texts, especially when I found the church could not even answer the simplest of questions.

    Mainly, “how does one become saved”? I believe there are currently 5 prevailing opinions on the method for salvation in the church today. I feel that when the church can reach an accord on ‘how one becomes saved’, at that point I could be more confident in entertaining texts outside the scriptures.

    I agree with Andy that the scriptures are enough.

  268. Michael says:

    SteveB,

    Nonsense.

    Your view of the scriptures that are enough have been mediated through someone else whether you acknowledge that or not.

  269. Michael says:

    Andys view of scripture that is enough is mediated through the lens of a twentieth century American seminary.
    Now that he has their perspective, he thinks scripture is enough.
    All our views have historic mediation.

  270. Steve B says:

    Michael @ 273 “Your view of the scriptures that are enough have been mediated through someone else whether you acknowledge that or not.”

    I agree and see no reason to mask my Mediator (Prov 3:6)

  271. Steve B,
    They have all agreed – salvation comes through the works of Jesus Christ on the cross. I do not know a Christian group that denies that.

    Now, what you may be talking about is how is salvation distributed and applied to the Christian … but that may take a bit of theological training.

    Let me ask, do you read the Bible in the original languages? If not, how would you know if they were translated correctly and if the Bible in your hands is reliable. All translations are done by ‘man’ with all of their faults and presuppositions.

  272. Steve B

    What defines scripture and where did it come from? If you believe the scriptures are enough then tell us where we got an authoritative text? How did we get scripture?

  273. Steve B says:

    MLD @ 276 “They have all agreed – salvation comes through the works of Jesus Christ on the cross. I do not know a Christian group that denies that.”

    The demons even believe this.

    “Now, what you may be talking about is how is salvation distributed and applied to the Christian … but that may take a bit of theological training.”

    Yes, but which course? There are multiple choice answers depending on the branch you study under.

    “If not, how would you know if they were translated correctly and if the Bible in your hands is reliable”

    I trust that God is Big enough to preserve His Word through translation. If He is not, then I end up in hell and the point is moot.

  274. Michael says:

    BD,

    That would require a knowledge of church history…which we know never happened. 🙂

  275. Steve B,
    “Yes, but which course? There are multiple choice answers depending on the branch you study under.”

    But what you are saying is that you refuse to investigate for truth because there are options.

    Do you do this with any other part of your life – or do you investigate some things? When you sit down to watch TV tonight, do you just watch what comes on and assume it is Holy Spirit led – or do you investigate and look at the TV Guide? 🙂

  276. Geez, now you gang up on SteveB.
    I would hate to see how you would treat my wife in real life
    Y’all are vicious to the bible-only Christians in a unique way here.

  277. Michael says:

    Derek,

    SteveB made an assertion.
    It was challenged.
    How is that vicious?
    Are we supposed to affirm everything someone says?

  278. Michael says:

    In “real life’ I wouldn’t bring these issues up with your wife and if she brought them up I would assume that she wanted a response.
    If I knew that this was a contentious issue between us, we wouldn’t discuss it.
    If someone goes on a blog, makes an assertion, then expects no response…then that person obviously doesn’t understand the point of blogging.
    Steve B has every opportunity to counter…

  279. Dusty says:

    Derek, everyone here takes the Bible at it’s word and get up in arms if they think someone is presenting it in the wrong light. They get passionate about their debates. Sometimes over zealous. 😉 and they don’t like using the smiling faces 😉 as much as I do, so sometimes it is hard to read their intent.

    then I come in and spray them all with cold water and they calm down a bit for a bit.

  280. Dusty says:

    Derek, they would treat your wife with respect if they met her in real life. I have met most of these guys in person and they are true gentlemen.

  281. Dusty, they are so intent on defending their learning and position that they don’t take into context that they may hurt someone and refuse to see them as a real life person.
    Instead they become “That Lordship salvation guy” that must think that I am preaching a false gospel, because don’t all those guys believe the same thing.
    Stereotyping is fine…till the master of the house is stereotyped. Then it isn’t fine and misrepresentation is yelled to the high heavens.
    This is just some point-counter point argument that never ends and engulfs all who become involved till the argument means more than the person behind it.
    People become so entrenched in what they think someone thinks about them that that becomes reality in their mind and the person is reduced to a stereotype.

  282. I am out of this argument.
    SteveB, if you want to stick with the Bible then you do that.

  283. Dusty says:

    sometimes we get a tag’team kind of group of strangers come on here to stir things up…they come here looking for trouble and get our guys all up in arms. just happens sometimes. iron-sharpens-their butts (tag’team) sometimes and they cry foul.

  284. Michael says:

    Derek,

    It’s not a stereotype if the person states his position over and over again.
    You stuck your foot in it, won’t engage with anything to the contrary, and persist in making me the bad guy.
    That’s bearing false witness and is pure pride.
    People come here to discuss things and to learn.
    That sometimes includes discussions with passion and debate.
    If you are offended by that (as you are obviously offended by me and I’m offended by your false accusations) then there is an easy remedy.
    You don’t have to come here.
    I don’t understand why people would rather insult me than just go where they find the company more to their liking.
    You add value here…but I’m not going to be your whipping boy.

  285. Michael says:

    The funny thing is that if Andy were allowed to offer his doctrines in full flower then I would have been accused of harboring another heretic…can’t win.

  286. Michael says:

    Derek,

    Where did I tell SteveB or anyone else to abandon their Bibles?
    What I said is this…that even the “Bible only” people have received their interpretation of what that means from someone else.
    All of our theologies are historically mediated at some point.
    Most, if not all of the “Bible only” people i know hold to some form of dispensationalism and 18th to 20th century fundamentalism.
    You don’t acquire that in a vacuum.

  287. Dusty says:

    Michael, you are doing the right thing by not allowing false teaching to go on here and correcting it. there are too many (like me) who need the teaching – correct teaching – that happens here

  288. Derek,
    Sorry you’re having a day.

    “SCCL”?

    As far as grammar, I ain’t got a care, phrase it as you wish.

    As far as spelling, it was about the earlier poster, sorry you missed the irony.

    As far as doctrine, I’m not so much about thinking my doctrine is possible to be a deal-breaker with The Creator of The Universe. He is big enough for my doctrine, correct, incorrect or in-process.

    As far as posting images, I’m a graphic artist and often the images communicate in one link what I am at a loss for words to say.

    Words aren’t my strong suit, it’s why as a musician I’m a composer, an instrumentalist and not a lyricist.

    We good?

    Have a much better day, ok?

  289. “When G or others are ready to question their doctrines they will ask…we have established enough relationship to enable that kind of conversation.”

    Michael has invested years in establishing a relationship and we love Jesus, and the readers of this blog enough to tone it down when we hurt each other and recognize it. We journey together.

  290. Michael says:

    Dusty,

    No one has it all right.
    The value here is in the exchange and debate of ideas and doctrines so that we all learn.
    I’m not Eastern Orthodox…but I really enjoyed reading and pondering the link I posted on the other thread about it.
    If I challenge someone, or they challenge me, it requires us to muster our best reasoning in front of others…and we all gain.
    That’s the goal.

  291. Michael says:

    G,

    It’s been a mutual investment and it’s been worth it for me.

  292. Derek,

    I have not read the whole thread. Neither have I followed every line but I am confused as to your feeling that anyone is being ganged up on. When people post here it is a public forum it is not Sunday School. They come here to make an argument. Thus they are required to give an account. They are not harmed by being challenged as to the consistency of their argument.

    I for one have offered no remarks that are personally attacking or insulting. No one who says I just believe the Bible is standing without some interpretation. Most of us own our biases and our backgrounds. We are unperturbed by questions about how and why we hold our positions.

    If people get their feelings hurt they need to stay on the sidelines. Don’t bring your personal sensitivities to a public message forum. Just make an argument. Having your argument challenged is healthy and helpful.

    I wonder why you are personally bothered about this stuff I have not found you to be tentative. Anyway, I appreciate you so much and hate to see you pick up unnecessary offenses but I welcome you to advocate for those you perceive to be mistreated.

  293. Ricky Bobby says:

    Steve B said, “I too am a “bible only” Christian.

    I agree with Andy that the scriptures are enough.”

    This statement is really what most evangelicals believe as what Steve B is really saying is that you are the authority, your personal interpretation of the bible with the Holy Spirit (it is assumed) telling you what it means is “all you need!”

    But, it’s still Individual as Authority vs. Church as Authority.

    Packer laid out a three tiered Authority structure…but the “Scripture as Authority” isn’t really valid after much testing….as it necessarily requires interpretation of the text…which really makes it a function of either Individual as Authority or Church as Authority.

    There really are only two options, not three as Packer proposed…or a combo of the two.

    Often, in real life, it is a function of several Gurus/Sects/Denominations as Authority and the Individual picks from a buffet of Gurus/Sects they feel are more correct and make more sense than all the others.

    That’s how it is.

  294. Ricky Bobby says:

    If “Scripture as Authority” was a valid claim…there would not be such a broad divergence of doctrinal/theological opinion and 9,000 to 30,000 Sects/Denoms all appealing to the same text/scripture.

    View/opinions given high regard and followed as “correct interpretations” are a function of Consensus from a particular Group/Sect. In a “Church as Authority” structure, the official Consensus of a very strict church hierarchy with a Pope as Central Figure etc and Councils set the “official” position on a particular issue.

    In Protestantism, it is a similar dynamic….but multiply it by 9,000 to 30,000 times…

    Then the Individual picks from the buffet of Boxes and constructs their own view of “thus sayeth the Lord!” completely based on the views/opinions of a Group/Sect that has interpreted the text in a manner the Individual agrees with.

  295. Ricky Bobby says:

    It is absolutely impossible to remove the human dynamic of Interpretation from written text. Written text, unless it is a Mathematical Formula with a precise answer, cannot be non-Subjective and cannot be completely Absolute and Objective. It, necessarily, requires Subjective Interpretation…even when we have an author of the text to explain his/her purpose/intent of the communication…how much more so an ancient text without.

    It is assumed that the “author” is the Holy Spirit in each Individual Believer….yet the same author gives each Individual a broad array of differences of opinions.

    This begs the question: Either there is a very narrow and select Group out of the many who is the “True Christians” who hear correctly from the Holy Spirit…and all others don’t….OR, the bible is intentionally ambiguous and there are a whole host of “correct” and “right” answers and there isn’t one true and correct Theology and Doctrine and Interpretation of the bible.

    My view is it is possible the bible is intentionally ambiguous and not meant to be “God”…more of a riddle and a test.

  296. RB,
    So on what authority do you say Jesus is Lord – just something you made up in RDism?

  297. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, we’ve gone over that a zillion times:

    Conscience, Reason applied to the very limited info we have.

    MLD, does the bible save you? Or does God (assumed through the Holy Spirit) save you?

    Can you be saved apart from the bible? Has anyone been saved apart from the bible?

    How were folks saved before Jesus walked the earth? Before the bible?

  298. “more of a riddle and a test.”

    Something like Jesus really isn’t the way of salvation?
    Perhaps something like God really wants us to hate our neighbor?

  299. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, my personal opinion, informed by my Conscience if God is truly “good” and truly “love” and Jesus truly exists and truly “paid the penalty for sin!” and God truly “loves his enemies” etc…

    …is that Jesus is Salvation. Done. Game over. Nothing else required. God, IMO, if all those things above are true…has Free Will and will redeem the whole of his creation at some point and that he/it did not create the Universe and Multi-Verse etc, having not provided the “official correct Gospel!” to most of the living sentient human souls throughout human history…and only showed himself to a very select few…to damn and torture forever the vast majority of his creation.

    You may have a belief in that sort of apologetic fairy-tale…but I have faith in a “good” Creator.

  300. Ricky Bobby says:

    “general revelation” and the fact there is “good” and evidence of the fruits of the Spirit in all walks of life, all religious backgrounds, all philosophies, even hardcore Atheists…is evidence that God provided a way out for man. It isn’t all sin and all evil all the time and the Christians* exhibit “good” and “evil” and the Atheists exhibit “good” and “evil” the same as anyone else.

    The bible narrative is very likely a macro-narrative of Mankind’s Duality and a struggle of Good and Evil that was settled long ago…and we’re merely experiencing the earthly dimensional journey of our eternal souls in linear physical time with no concept of how the multi-dimensional reality and complexity of the Universe and “God” really works.

  301. Xenia says:

    but I have faith in a “good” Creator.<<<

    I do too.

  302. Ricky Bobby says:

    You all really do believe that your “soul” is “you”….not your flesh…as everyone on here to the person has expressed belief that when a person dies, they are immediately in heaven or hell….without their resurrected bodies.

    This has massive philosophical implications about the soul and human sentience and what is the essence of “you” as an eternal being.

  303. “if God is truly “good” and truly “love” and Jesus truly exists and truly “paid the penalty for sin!” and God truly “loves his enemies” etc…”

    This is why you cannot be a Christian. You cannot even affirm that God exists or if Jesus actually did anything.

    This is OK, a billion Buddhists have the same opinion and since God is a universalist then everything is OK – – but quit with the claiming to be a Christian.

  304. “You all really do believe that your “soul” is “you”….not your flesh:

    I don’t believe that – how can a Christian believe that they are not their flesh? That renders the incarnation as totally useless and a hoax. My body buried in the ground is still me.…

  305. Xenia says:

    No! Christianity teaches that “we” are our bodies + our souls. Not just our souls.

    The Gnostics believed that the bodies (and all matter) were evil. The goal for the Gnostic was to eventually escape their evil old bodies and live on as a spirit or as light (depending on the group.)

    Christianity teaches that our bodies are good, not evil. Death, which is bad, is the unfortunate separation of soul and body. The resurrection puts them back together again. We are not a complete whole person, not really “ourselves” until we are reassembled at the resurrection.

    So the disembodied spirits you were talking about last week is a regrettable unnatural state of being that will be rectified at the resurrection.

    So, quite opposite from Gnosticism. A Gnostic would never want to re-unite with his old body.

  306. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, do you believe you have consciousness when your physical body dies? Do you believe in Soul Sleep?

    If you believe that you go to “paradise” or heaven upon death, then you believe your soul is the sentient part of you, that it is your Consciousness, your Essence…and not your flesh that is rotting in the ground.

  307. RB,
    I missed this – “Can you be saved apart from the bible? Has anyone been saved apart from the bible?”

    If you mean apart from the paper and ink – Yes
    If you mean apart from God’s word – No

  308. Ricky Bobby says:

    X, your belief that your “you” as your soul goes immediately to heaven upon physical death contradicts the non-gnostic position you stated above. The two are mutually exclusive.

    You cannot be a Conscious Being in heaven…without any physical human matter….and not really hold to a gnostic position…though by a different name.

  309. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD said, “If you mean apart from God’s word – No”

    Define “god’s word”…if you mean Jesus, the logos of God…then I’m with you, Jesus…if there is any truth to the macro-Christian narrative…paid the price, paid the penalty whether literally or metaphorically.

    If you mean the bible, then you are incorrect as you assume many were saved before there was a bible and many were saved before there was even an old testament, etc. or so your apologetic expresses.

  310. Steve Wright says:

    No! Christianity teaches that “we” are our bodies + our souls. Not just our souls.
    —————————————————-
    Yes, and another reason why we do not exist until conception…until there is a physical being….any teaching of eternal unembodied souls/spirits BEFORE conception is a great error.

  311. I mean you cannot be saved without hearing God’s word. Even a baby at baptism hears God”s word spoken into their life.

    Faith comes by hearing God’s word… just like it says in the Bible that you seem to think is flushable.

  312. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, how were all the folks saved in the OT then? I am assuming you mean the “gospel message” as “god’s word”?

    Did all the folks pre-Jesus hear a gospel message? Nope.

  313. Xenia says:

    Gnostics hate matter. This is the entire point of their religion, to escape matter.

    Christians do not hate matter. One of the basic goals of the Christian is to re unite with their material bodies.

    Exact opposite.

    And what’s wrong with being a disembodied spirit for a time? The First and Third Persons of the Trinity are Spirit and so are the Angels, both good and bad.

  314. Xenia says:

    Did all the folks pre-Jesus hear a gospel message? Nope.<<<

    Yes! When Christ descended into Hades, He proclaimed the Good News.

  315. RB,
    You sorely need a bible education. From Gen 3:15 on, people heard God’s message of salvation. God always held out a redeemer.

    “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.”

  316. Ricky Bobby says:

    Steve said, “we do not exist until conception…until there is a physical being”

    “Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”

    “My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.”

    “Before I formed you in the belly I knew you; and before you came forth out of the womb I sanctified you, and I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”

    “even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love”

    Maybe, maybe not.

    You do agree that we are Eternal Beings at minimum once conceived, correct?

  317. Ricky Bobby says:

    X, Jesus preached the “good news” to the folks souls…not their bodies, correct? Bodies in the ground, souls in hades?

    These folks had the opportunity to repent after they had already died a physical death according to your view, correct?

  318. Steve Wright says:

    You do agree that we are Eternal Beings at minimum once conceived, correct?
    ———————————————————–
    immortal…not eternal.

    I know in English the two are often used almost as synonyms but theologically I do see a very significant difference.

    Only God is eternal – the word should not apply to any created being, including the angels.

  319. London says:

    So do you guys who say you are “Bible only” christians go to church or do you just stay at home and read the bible to yourself?
    Honest question. I can not figure out what you mean exactly by Bible only.
    Cause it would seem to me if you listen to some preacher on Sunday, you’re getting his/her take on what the Bible says, their interpretation of what the Bible says. Unless they just stand up there and read it aloud.

    What does that term “Bible Only” mean to you?

  320. Bob says:

    RB

    The idea of when people actually begin to exist is a very Platonist, and philosophical discussion. It was greatly debated about regular humans he Jesus I the first few centuries of the church. The thing I always wondered is this. What difference does it make if a person is created at conception or in the idea or the mind of the creator before time began?

    Jesus was pretty practical and said I have to live today and every day after that.

    Oh and I believe everyone has been given the opportunity to “hear” the gospel (good news) that God is salvation (which I believe is what “the Name means).Ok I’ll be more accurate, the Greek name Jesus translated from the Hebrew, Yeshua, has it etymology from both Jehovah and shua, therefore it literally would read “cry out to Jehovah.”

    So can people call on the name above all names, literally cry out to God, without knowing he was born, died and resurrected in Israel?

    Oh well, I think so therefore I’m wrong quite often.

  321. Ricky Bobby says:

    “immortal” as in eternal from the point of creation forward, correct? You, for instance, will always exist…eternally…now that you are “you”, correct?

  322. Steve Wright says:

    To be clear, I most certainly am NOT opposing the belief that the eternal, omniscient God knew His plans for our existence before our physical conception….but to equate that reality to our “existing” is to wreck havoc on language.

  323. Xenia says:

    RB, the OT people did a lot of repenting before they died and went to Hades. The OT sacrificial system was full of rules and regs for repenting. OT people surely did repent of their sins.

    Come to think of it, the entire city of Ninevah repented under a few words from Jonah. Probably the whole city went to Hades and heard the Good News from Christ Himself.

    Awesome to think of it!

  324. London, you are right with your question. I was going to ask Derek the same thing about his wife, but he was getting upset so I didn’t want to get personal.

    But even look at Andy who was the first to claim “Bible Only” but then he went on to list the people he liked to listen to – Charles Stanley – J. Vernon McGee and a couple of others.Well, that knocks his “Bible Only” off the pedestal.

  325. Ricky Bobby says:

    Steve, can you “know” a sentient Being that doesn’t exist?

    Bible verse says God “knew” him…before he formed him. That’s what the text states “simply”

  326. Xenia says:

    In Eternity where God dwells it is always “now.” This being the case, God knows the past, present and future all at once. So yes, God can know someone He hasn’t physically created yet. He would not be God if He couldn’t.

  327. Xenia says:

    Do you not think, Ricky Bobby, that a thousand years ago God knew all that there is to know about you?

  328. Steve Wright says:

    That’s why I made the distinction between eternal and immortal.

    If our existence is pictured as a ray (a starting point with an arrow that never ends) it is a mistake to then think of God as simply a line with no beginning and ending. That would be a faulty comparison….God is not even on the coordinate plane

  329. Ricky Bobby says:

    Doesn’t say he “knew all about me”…says he “knew” “me”…my essence.

  330. Michael says:

    I’m out till the morning…good night.

  331. Brian says:

    I understand this request is a bit emotional thus basically useless and that is being nice. But is there a way to actually “know” or even get a hint that we can think God does not literally loath us with a deep eternal conviction and that we were not created as vessels of wrath that can only be cast into the pits of hell. I would find great comfort in such understanding, I understand I should not need that, and I get that, and would never expect God to actually commit to me. That is a line I would not cross, but just a hint, the slightest hope. I would find comfort in that, granted I should not need said comfort but I do find it healing.

  332. Steve B says:

    MLD @ 280 “But what you are saying is that you refuse to investigate for truth because there are options.”

    Not at all. Just that if man is confused (no consensus) then I should rely on the only Source Who is indisputably correct….Jesus Christ and His Word. In my mind, the pursuit of multiple choice answers on so sensitive a topic is illogical.

    It also makes a rather bold assumption…that if I seek only God and His Word, that He will not mislead me.

    “When you sit down to watch TV tonight, do you just watch what comes on and assume it is Holy Spirit led”

    I do not watch much television, I find most programming unprofitable to the Christian walk. But in answer to your question, how I approach the Lord (faith by hearing, and hearing by the Word) is much different than how I approach daily life hobbies (time passing filler).

  333. Steve B says:

    Derek @ 281

    Thank you for your concern, I am accustomed to questioning and welcome it. Constructive criticism can only help bolster my faith and I am getting better at honing my emotions toward ‘peace’ if any jesting does arise.

  334. Steve B says:

    Michael @ 282 “SteveB made an assertion. It was challenged”

    And the challenge was both welcomed & accepted

    “How is that vicious?”

    It is not (at least to me), it is intellectually stimulating and assists in my walk.

    “Are we supposed to affirm everything someone says?”

    Please don’t, you would be doing me a disservice.

  335. Steve B

    B is for Bigboy … Thanks for owning your assertions and facing responses without needing to be covered.

  336. Steve B,
    “Just that if man is confused (no consensus) then I should rely on the only Source Who is indisputably correct….Jesus Christ and His Word. ”

    So why are the rest of us who rely on Jesus Christ and His Word.considered confused (no consensus) but when you do it, you are not confused … and in the end, who do you have consensus with?

  337. Steve B says:

    Ricky Bobby @ 298 “This statement is really what most evangelicals believe as what Steve B is really saying is that you are the authority, your personal interpretation of the bible with the Holy Spirit (it is assumed) telling you what it means is “all you need!””

    The Lord’s admonitions to ‘work out our own salvation in fear and trembling’, ‘in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path’, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life’ (just a small list) are why I believe the main focus of the Christian should be to trust in God and His Word alone. Because He told us that He literally ‘is’ Truth.

    I arrived at this conclusion after more than 20 years of being a Christian. Raised a pre-trib dispensationalist and studying most of the prevailing theologies of the day as well.

    Of course the church debates, till blue in the face, about non-essentials. But the church, as I mentioned above, cannot even agree on the method to become saved. They agree on the reason for salvation (as do demons), but not ‘how’ one becomes saved.

    With so much confusion in man, one day the Lord spoke to my heart and said “Why not just follow Me?” and I have never looked back.

    Unfortunately with this stance I become the enemy of Jesus Merchandise Inc. because I no longer buy the self help books or financially support Christian media in any form…I’m bad for business…but content in Christ.

  338. Steve B.,
    “They agree on the reason for salvation (as do demons), but not ‘how’ one becomes saved.”

    Do you not allow for mystery in your Christianity?

    So, you have done all of this “me and my Bible” stuff – you have depended solely on Jesus Christ and His Word…. what has been revealed TO YOU as to how we are saved?

  339. Steve B says:

    MLD @ 341 “So why are the rest of us who rely on Jesus Christ and His Word considered confused (no consensus) but when you do it, you are not confused … and in the end, who do you have consensus with?”

    I am just as confused as you. I do my best not to rely on my own understanding, but in all my ways acknowledge Christ, so He can direct my path. The thought of me relying on my own understanding is frightening!

    As for why the church as a whole is confused? Merely the only the logical conclusion that can be drawn for multiple choice answers to a single-answer question such as “how do I become saved?”

    For consensus? I defer to God’s wisdom and allowing Him to reveal whatever He chooses to in His timing. I am okay with waiting on Him alone for wisdom.

  340. Confusion on any topic gets cleared up through teaching and conversation.

    Is it possible that we are confused because we each understand only parts of what we read and have revealed to us? So, 10 of us sit down and discuss it – and one says to another, “did you notice this passage?” and the other says “no, but now that i look at it I see how it does fit into what I was trying to figure out.

    This is called education. Now I share what I have figured out with others who may have a gap in their knowledge and so on and so forth.

    And this builds and builds until you have the whole Book of Concord that does contain all the truth of scripture. See how that works? 😉

  341. Steve B says:

    MLD @ 343 “Do you not allow for mystery in your Christianity?”

    Not when my soul is on the line, no.

    “So, you have done all of this “me and my Bible” stuff – you have depended solely on Jesus Christ and His Word…. what has been revealed TO YOU as to how we are saved?”

    John 3:16, John 14:6, Matt 3:16, Matt 10:32, Rom 10:9, Rom 10:17, 1 Cor 13:13

    I think the “short answer” would be to mimic the life of Jesus Christ.

  342. Steve B,
    Do you know any Christians who do not believe those verses? Do you knw any christian organization that teaches those verses as false?

    Perhaps there is more consensus than you realize.

  343. London says:

    Steve B,
    Do you mind answering my question before MLD sucks you into a never ending debate? 😉

  344. Mark says:

    RB are you actually questioning anything that God can do? If yes then you do not understand Gods nature. God can do anything ( except sin). Unless we accept that totally and unconditionally we can begin to understand any if the tough issues. I know u need to come to logical conclusions. But logic is mans faulty wisdom. It is meaningless with God

  345. Ricky Bobby says:

    Mark, I agree in the sense that the bible is not logical and that doctrine and theology is not logical either. Yet, all of you seem to assert that it is…and I continue to point out that it isn’t…and then you agree with me…but then you fall back to disagreeing and asserting it all makes sense and is logical.

    One of the first challenges I made on this blog many years ago now was the Dave Rolph Theo-logical or Theo-logos discussion in which I asserted that theology based on the bible is illogical, not logical, etc.

    Many cried foul…oh you could hear the screams!

    Well, when pressed, every single on here ends up admitting it isn’t logical…but then always wants to revert back to claiming their particular doctrine and theology adds up and makes perfect sense.

  346. Bob says:

    Steve B

    I love with people say stuff like this:

    “I think the “short answer” would be to mimic the life of Jesus Christ.”

    Because I get to ask this, “so tell me what stuff Jesus does I’m supposed to “mimic”?”

  347. Because I get to ask this, “so tell me what stuff Jesus does I’m supposed to “mimic”?”

    I quickly crossed off “water into wine” & “walking on water”…

  348. Ricky Bobby,
    “Well, when pressed, every single on here ends up admitting it isn’t logical…but then always wants to revert back to claiming their particular doctrine and theology adds up and makes perfect sense.”

    I’ve concluded, along with you, that my beliefs are illogical.

    No matter, I still hold to a profoundly unfair God who is more interested in us being engaged into the present age abiding life than treating that life as a long distant after-death destination.

  349. Steve B says:

    London @ 324 “So do you guys who say you are “Bible only” christians go to church or do you just stay at home and read the bible to yourself?”

    I assemble in various locations for fellowship, yes. Buildings, homes, beach, wherever the place may be.

    “Honest question. I can not figure out what you mean exactly by Bible only.
    Cause it would seem to me if you listen to some preacher on Sunday, you’re getting his/her take on what the Bible says, their interpretation of what the Bible says. Unless they just stand up there and read it aloud.”

    I prefer the reading aloud of scripture, exactly right (verbatim reading). I’m not particularly interested on individual’s “takes” on scripture. Often times these “takes” lead to “adding to and/or taking away from” the Word of God.

    “What does that term “Bible Only” mean to you?”

    If an individual says ‘this is bible truth’ and it doesn’t line up with scripture verbatim, or if they add to or take away from the Word (topical) I am not interested in the message.

    If I go to a church and the pastor is telling me about a funny movie he saw, or his favorite sports team, how his family vacation went, his favorite brand of clothing (basically anything outside of scripture) that is not a message I am interested in hearing.

    Now, if the service is not in session and those topics come up, great, I just would prefer to not have to listen to those when I am assembled for fellowship. The world has heavily influenced the modern day church, I can barely tell the difference nowadays.

  350. Steve B says:

    Bob @ 351 “Because I get to ask this, “so tell me what stuff Jesus does I’m supposed to “mimic”?””

    What has God asked you to do? If He has asked you to walk on water or raise the dead, then by all means follow His command.

    If, like me, God has (so far) simply asked you to follow Him minus performing miracles, then by all means follow His command.

    Basically, I think you should mimic what God tells you to. He is Sovereign and if you ask, you shall receive.

  351. Steve B.,
    You were the one who brought up confusion and lack of consensus – and here you are trying to help us come to some consensus – I like that.

    So,what does it mean to follow Jesus? I remember him saying to take up my cross and follow him. He went to crucifixion in real life … am I to do the same?

    Help me here.

  352. Steve B says:

    MLD @ 356 “You were the one who brought up confusion and lack of consensus – and here you are trying to help us come to some consensus – I like that.”

    I’ve attempted to hold a form of consensus. Mine is that the Bible & God have the answers, and we do not.

    “So,what does it mean to follow Jesus?”

    Matt 4:4 & John 14:15

    “I remember him saying to take up my cross and follow him. He went to crucifixion in real life … am I to do the same?”

    Possibly. Depends on the Lord’s will for your life.

  353. Steve B

    I never got Andy to answer this…

    I am still waiting to know from one of these Bible guys how they got the books called the Bible. What books constitute the Bible and by what authority do they constitute the Bible?

    If that has been answered someone can point me to a number…too many words have preceded this for me to catch up.

  354. Ricky Bobby says:

    Ooo! Oooo! I know the answer!

    The “bible” canonization was a process ordered by Roman Emperor Constantine and books were chosen as official bible books and discarded as not official scripture (even though many were quoted by Church Fathers and even quoted from non-scripture…

    …and Paul the Apostle quotes from the Apocrypha (not considered scripture by protestants, even though it’s quoted in their official scripture) and Jesus quoted from the Septuagint and from Deutero-canonical texts.

    Big problem for “bible is all I need!” folks.

  355. Ricky Bobby says:
  356. RB,
    Why does the mere quoting of some outside literature automatically elevate it to scripture in your view?

    And I don’t think you even know what the Septuagint is if you list it with the others.

  357. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, I am well aware of what the Septuagint is, the Masoretic text, the Latin Vulgate, etc.

    You don’t understand why I’d list the Septuagint that Jesus quoted from in a discussion regarding biblical canon? You are the one who doesn’t seem to understand the nuance and implications….

  358. So explain why it is significant that Jesus quoted from the common translation of the day?

    Also go back to my first question in #362

  359. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, let me help out out a little…which version of the “bible” do you read? Which translation?

    As a Lutheran, are you familiar with Textus Receptus?

    I don’t think you have a clue about these matters as illustrated by your confusion as to why I’d make a big deal about the Septuagint…

  360. Ricky Bobby says:

    I want you to think it through…you seem to continue to make errors over and over in our discussions b/c I give you the answers too easily. I want you to struggle with it and learn something.

  361. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD said, “Why does the mere quoting of some outside literature automatically elevate it to scripture in your view?”

    It’s not “merely quoting” when it is Jesus or Paul…and it is one of the criteria that was used by the church fathers to make something official canon.

  362. RB,
    Let me help you out – the Septuagint is the Greek translation of the Hebrew scriptures done about 250 yrs BC. = Old Testament

    The Textus Receptus are a grouping of documents that are the New Testament.

    I won’t embarrass you further.

  363. Ricky Bobby says:

    You have no clue.

  364. “It’s not “merely quoting” when it is Jesus or Paul…and it is one of the criteria that was used by the church fathers to make something official canon.”

    Perhaps I will embarrass you a little more. All canon discussion are related to the NT. Jesus did not quote other NT books … legitimate or not.

    But your though is that is Jesus had said “I was reading in the Jerusalem Gazette yesterday and it said …. ” that all of a sudden someone would have to consider the Jerusalem Gazette as scripture? Come on –

  365. “You have no clue.” You are 100% correct – when I converse with you, I have no clue.

    When I speak with someone educated in the Bible and areas surrounding it – I get it. 🙂

  366. Well, while I drive home, you try to untie your issue of making the Septuagint part of the Textus Receptus

  367. Ricky Bobby says:

    Didn’t do any such thing, as usual, I’ll have to spell it out for you and connect the dots. You are about as deep as a puddle, unfortunately.

  368. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, again, I asked you what bible version you think is the truly inspired version: King James I’m assuming?

  369. Ricky Bobby says:

    I’m assuming you don’t use the Luther Bible, correct?

  370. Ricky Bobby says:

    Here’s another clue for you and “the bible is all I need!” folks:

    Jesus and all the New Testament figures had to quote from the Septuagint, the Masoretic Text was not around until 1000 AD.

    Why is it then, that most all the “Bibles” are based on the Masoretic Text and not the Septuagint?

  371. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, you seemed to state you are aware of Textus Receptus….have you studied it and its use in the various “Bibles”? Are you aware of the nuance and many textual variants say between Luther’s use of early Textus Receptus in the Luther Bible vs. the King James bible?

    Are you aware of Textus Receptus vs. Westcott and Hort?

  372. Ricky Bobby says:

    I run across a lot of folks in my many hours of blogging and discussions on forums.

    MLD is one of the most hilarious. He is a likable figure, like a court jester…though I believe him to be sincere in his bravado and relishing in his ignorance. I think he really thinks he knows something…when he lacks a depth of knowledge on many issues outside of Lutheran doctrine…yet he fakes his intellectualism better than most…or at least he doesn’t seem to blink or have a sense of embarrassment when he is clearly shown to be wrong and rather foolish.

    I’ve grown to enjoy it LOL.

    The Macro-Point:

    “I believe the Bible! Every jot and tittle! Don’t add or take away from any jot or tittle! The BIBLE is all I need! I believe the bible alone!”

    Well, the “bible” you hold in your hands is not the “bible” Jesus quoted from. He quoted from the Septuagint, a different translation with many differences compared to the Masoretic Text of which your “bible” is constructed from.

    Your “bible” is also likely built upon a version of Textus Receptus which is textually imprecise as well, compared to the translations of the original greek done by guys like Westcott and Hort.

    It is what it is.

    You use the term “the bible!” as if it is one, specific, precise text…and nothing could be further from the truth. There are a lot of variations depending on which canon, which translation, which “bible” you choose to call the “bible”

  373. Ricky Bobby says:

    Romans 3:28 Luther Bibel 1545:
    So halten wir nun dafür, daß der Mensch gerecht werde ohne des Gesetzes Werke, allein durch den Glauben.

    “Thus, we conclude that a man is justified without works of the law, by faith alone.”

    Romans 3:28 King James
    Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

    Romans 3:28 ESV
    For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law.

  374. Obviously someone here has not studied the dead sea scrolls (from around 150 BC to 75 ad … oops, is that Jesus time?) and what they say about the Masoretic texts. From the texts they have Isaiah is almost identical – most variations being lettering that changed over the 1,000 year period.

    But what’s the big deal, we have the Septuagint – it’s not like it’s a mystery book.

  375. Ricky Bobby says:

    And, here’s the best literal text we have of the most original greek we have:

    Romans 3:28 λογιζόμεθα “We-forthee-through-to” γὰρ “therefore” δικαιοῦσθαι “to-be-en-course-belonged” πίστει “unto-a-trust” ἄνθρωπον “to-a-mankind” χωρὶς “of-spaced” ἔργων “of-works” νόμου. “of-a-parcelee.”

  376. So let’s look at the Luther quote vs the others

    What does “by faith without the deeds of the law.” and “by faith apart from works of the law.” mean? What does it say about faith? RB, what do those Romans passages isolated by themselves say.

    It’s plain English (apply a little of your logic you brag about) – it means that faith stands alone in the justifying process. Luther’s translation adds nothing to the meaning.

  377. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, the Dead Sea Scrolls are used as proof the Septuagint is more accurate than the Masoretic Text.

    There are over 300 variations between the Septuagint and Masoretic Text.

  378. You know nothing of translating and what you have to do to make a translation understandable.

    Translate this for me – casa blanca.

  379. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD said, “Luther’s translation adds nothing to the meaning.”

    That is funny.

    Luther added faith “alone”…added a word. Many many many disagree that this didn’t wholesale change the meaning. It did change the meaning to Luther’s preferred doctrine.

  380. “There are over 300 variations between the Septuagint and Masoretic Text.”

    Now you are just Googling. 300 variations don’t bother me when we talk about 100s of pages. I said most of the variations are lettering and language changes over the 1,000 years … otherwisw we would all still be speaking Elizabethan English.

    You know if I translate the text as color and an Englishman translates it colour … voila! we have a variation.

  381. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, of course they don’t bother you b/c you will say whatever you need to to protect your apologetic.

    The facts are the facts.

    The “bible” you read from is not the bible Jesus quoted from. The bible you read from is not the most precise greek translation available.

    The bible is not “god”…it is text on a page and has been translated, re-translated, has many variations, nuance, differences of opinion etc.

  382. “the Dead Sea Scrolls are used as proof the Septuagint is more accurate than the Masoretic Text.”

    Not so my good friend. When the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered the great joy from the Jews was that, and this is especially Isaiah scroll from 200 BC validated the Masoretic texts that were being used in 1947.

    Why would a Jew care about a Greek translation?

  383. Ricky Bobby says:

    MLD, I’ll have to talk later, it’s too hard to have a dialogue, I’m stuck in moderation and you post and then my replies don’t show up until much later.

  384. Ricky Bobby says:

    It’s my fault for cussing and breaking the rules, not arguing I shouldn’t be moderated, just stating that it makes it hard to have a real flow of conversation, plus I’m sure folks are well sick of the discussion by now already.

  385. “The bible is not “god”…”

    I don’t know why you keep saying this – this must be your apologetic. I have never once heard a single person refer to the Bible as God. If you want to quote someone to me I will listen – otherwise that is just your strawman.

    And what is this that you and brian keep referring to as “well that is just your apologetic”? No body talks like that.Makes you sound like you are making up new terms to place in the middle of your arguments.

    Talk plainly so you don’t sound like you are getting everything off of a bad web page.

  386. RB,
    That’s OK – we probably took it as far as it would go. Have a good evening.

    Michael – take RB out of moderation – he promises to be a good boy . 🙂

  387. London says:

    Steve B,
    Thanks for the answer.
    I’m sure that would not work for me, but if it works for you, more power to ya.

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