Attendance update at Madison
|October 23 2012, 2:03 PM |
October 7, 2012 Attendance 1402
October 14, 2012 Attendance 1363
Re: Attendance update at Madison
|October 23 2012, 4:03 PM |
Does that count Tom Haddon's flock?
Re: Attendance update at Madison
|October 23 2012, 4:21 PM |
Donnie or Scripture, I have been to Nashville one time in my life and no nothing about the town or the area around Madison. I'm curious as to whether the demographics around the congregation has changed over the last 30 years? I suspect (and this is only a guess) that many years ago, Madison was located in an affluent area. Has this changed or was it ever true? I just have this nagging feeling that much of the drop off in attendance may be due to a changing neighborhood as much as a changing congregation. Would really love to read your thoughts on this subject. Thanks!
|October 23 2012, 4:38 PM |
Yes, this neighborhood contributes, but does not explain the most recent downturn (last two months).
Some feel run out of their Wednesday classes, and are temporarily going elsewhere. This creates a vulnerability that the Holy Spirit must not have told the elders.
One elder, said that he would now "allow" Madison to become like "Charlotte Avenue", which disbanded due to poor attendance. But the elder blamed in on poor leadership (translated, poor elders).
Madison, he said, would avoid that.
Neighbor change would explain the change as long range, but turbulence in doctrine explains another lethal long range threat.
A number to any power is lethal. Neighborhood change, scripture deprivation, misunderstanding of eldership, short-term organization and program changes, and driving away members temporarily all help explain decline.
It's hard to blame all this on "traditional" teaching, or "Church of Christ" narrowness.
Re: Neighborhood Change
|October 23 2012, 4:56 PM |
As I remember it the number was about 3300 when the 'worship minister' began. I remember that shrinking to about 1300 or a bit more and I think they included about 300 who were in jail.
Sometime before the elder discord brought in a Conflict Resolution Team and their surveys a newspaper quoted an elder to say that they had about 5000 members and only lost about 50.
So, the cultural and staff sorting probably happened before the elders thought that they could "grow" by using performing musicians. The problem may go back to Rubel Shell and the Jubilee Movement which intended to use the MASS MEETINGS (a hitler ploy) and the SEEKER term (a hitlear ploy) to PRACTICE such things as stand-up, speak-out women, praise teams and even learning how to Lift Holy Hands. The Power Points of this planned discord were Max Lucado and Rick Atchley. Steve Flatt was also involved.
Someone made a secret recording of Tom Haddon's plan to turn the church into "a theater for holy entertainment." They went to the Purpose Driven church to learn how to replace the preacher and preaching with musical performance to attract the butterflies.
They discussed how to console the widow-owners weeping about losing their whole life's work and family. They would have to be told that "it's now our time.'
|October 23 2012, 4:58 PM |
Yes, machines are lying underneath much of this.
|October 23 2012, 5:30 PM |
There is a "competitor" up the road, a "community" church--although its origins are mystical. I have not idea how many former Madison members are going there now, but maybe Madison's elders could supply a count for us. It's probably a minority, since most have gone to "our" "satellite" churches.
Going to a community church is what they call a "Faustian" bargain, or what the scriptures say is "sweet in the mouth" but "sour in the stomach."
I know that there are "Grace, Grace" community churches. My understanding of scripture is that God's grace through faith creates our workmanship such that we are obedient to his will. Saying
"Grace, Grace" and leaving it just at that, stops short.
What is a great shame is this: Our members know so little about the past, and are so deficient in core teachings, and Biblical foundations, that they have literally NO IDEA WHAT CHANGING CHURCHES means to them. They simply do not realize that this represents a tremendous CHANGE IN CULTURE, and represents a threat to both them and their children.
I think all that SMOOTH preaching from about 1954 until the present has contributed to the dearth of spiritual depth.
|October 23 2012, 4:47 PM |
There are Churches of Christ in Nashville that are declining in WEALTHY neighborhoods.
Church growth specialists have traced this to denial that there is decline, and they stated that the deacons should be appointed by the "congregation." These are Harding-friendly growth specialists and its my take that they are not for instrumental music.
Operation of the Holy Spirit is not so much the problem as is the "operation of the Shepherds (elders)". I have seen a melt-down of an elder on a Wednesday night, when it looked as it he was about to snap because his decisions were questionned. "It is not a salvation issue" he said, as if nothing else counts.
40 Days in the Word (40DITW) man doesn't mind the worship machines, and this may be reason that 40DITW was chosen rather than Harding growth specialists.
I think if you have a even a small number of people who "hate" the traditions, that this is the recipe for long term problems.
Re: Attendance update at Madison
|October 23 2012, 5:38 PM |
On a recent TV movie (the title doesn't matter), some young, hip song leader at a denominational church remarked that the way to make a church "grow" (in attendance) was to provide more "upbeat music." That mindset is not surprising, given that denominational churches and even some churches of Christ today believe that people will flock to church if they are suitably entertained with contemporary rock music and glitzy performers. Demographics may be part of the reason why church attendance falls off, but if a church caves in to denominational tactics and gives people what they want, that church will physically "grow"; however, such a church becomes nothing but a spiritual wasteland, where "good feelings" and adrenalin highs are mistaken as manifestations of "faith."
Counts of Attendance
|October 23 2012, 4:26 PM |
These synchronize with the last figure that Donnie gives (above).
This is said to include "all campuses," and if so that includes the flock of one that they wanted to get to another "campus." Theory is, to get him away from the "main campus." Maybe this was done to "calm things down" (just a guess).
Boycott seems to include both contributions and attendance--just a guess.
Re: Counts of Attendance
|October 23 2012, 4:41 PM |
I have spent my last 70 years involved with church in one capacity or another. I cannot remember a time when the elders had congregational agreement and wanted to raise money for one purpose or another that the need was met jiffy quick. After I moved back to Tennessee in 1980 I have been one of the jiffy quickers.
It was about the time that Tom's ex preacher and a band of merry men decided to restructure ALL churches of Christ primarily by adding musical performers to the staff. The "worship teams" (a blasphemy) began the demise of once-great congregations. Because the singing (sanging and clanging) was made for instruments the demand for literal instruments grew louder. I think that this was from people who boasted about "infiltrating and diverting" congregations. Lynn Anderson was a chief tutor of CHANGE using the language of Wicca.
My last two "investments with the Lord" were intentionally diverted after the group thought that they could handle the finances with a loss of up to half of the "owners" or "investors." Madoff must have learned the ropes from people like Promise Keepers and the Purpose Driven Cult.
Hesiod Works and Days
http://www.piney.com/DocHesWorks.htmlHes. WD 194 Thereafter, would that I were not among the men of the fifth generation,  but either had died before or been born afterwards.
For now truly is a race of iron, and men never rest from labor and sorrow by day, and from perishing by night; and the gods shall lay sore trouble upon them.
But, notwithstanding, even these shall have some good mingled with their evils.
 And Zeus will destroy this race of mortal men also when they come to have grey hair on the temples at their birth. [I.e. the race will so degenerate that at the last even a new-born child will show the marks of old age.]
.....The father will not agree with his children, nor the children with their father,
.....nor guest with his host, nor comrade with comrade;
.....nor will brother be dear to brother as aforetime.
 Men will dishonor their parents as they grow quickly old,
.....and will carp at them, chiding them with bitter words,
.....hard-hearted they, not knowing the fear of the gods.
Rumored: Even hold prayers that the old people would pass on or get out 'cause it's out time to rule.
They will not repay their aged parents the cost of their nurture,
.....for might shall be their right:
.....and one man will sack another's city.
A REAL sectarian or heretic is one person sacking another's church property.
 There will be no favor for the man who keeps his oath or for the just or for the good; but rather men will praise the evil-doer and his violent dealing.
Strength will be right, and reverence will cease to be; and the wicked will hurt the worthy man, speaking false words [muthoisin skoliois] against him, and will swear an oath upon them.
muthos 2. fiction (opp. logos, historic truth) 3. generally, fiction, m. idioi Phld.Po.5.5; legend, myth, plot of a drama
 Envy, foul-mouthed, delighting in evil, with scowling face, will go along with wretched men one and all.  And then Aidos and Nemesis,2
.....with their sweet forms wrapped in white robes,
.....will go from the wide-pathed earth
.....and forsake mankind to join the company of the deathless gods:
.....and bitter sorrows will be left for mortal men,
.....and there will be no help against evil.
2 Aidos, as a quality, is that feeling of reverence or shame which restrains men from wrong; Nemesis is the feeling of righteous indignation aroused especially by the sight of the wicked in undeserved prosperity cf. Psalms,lxxii. 1-19.
Let us hope that this is that final shaking as at Mount Sinai where God sentenced the musical idolaters back beyond Babylon. This was understood to mean "from there there is no return."
Hebrews 12:25 See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:
Hebrews 12:26 Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.
Hebrews 12:27 And this word,
Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken,
as of things that are made,
that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.
Hebrews 12:28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
Hebrews 12:29 For our God is a consuming fire.
The "locusts" in John's secret message are the MUSES as the worship leaders of Apollo, Abaddon or Apollyon. Their job was not to HURT God's people but to separate the ungodly. Maybe that is to make being left behind easier. The trumpet will blow when Madison and others are listening to a trumpet quartet and just like the first advent, Jesus will be here and gone before the vipers sober up.
Anything that obscures the word is CLOWNISH
|October 26 2012, 8:39 PM |
Plato Laws: working really hard to make sure the music is perfected is what is defined as LEGALISM.
Plat. Laws 2.669b first, a knowledge of the nature of the original; next, a knowledge of the correctness of the copy; and thirdly, a knowledge of the excellence with which the copy is executed?
It would seem so, certainly.
Let us not hesitate, then, to mention the point wherein lies the difficulty of music. Just because it is more talked about than any other form of representation, it needs more caution than any. The man who blunders in this art will do himself the greatest harm, by welcoming base morals;
Plat. Laws 2.669c and, moreover, his blunder is very hard to discern, inasmuch as our poets are inferior as poets to the Muses themselves.1 For the Muses would never blunder so far as to assign a feminine tune and gesture to verses composed for men, or to fit the rhythms of captives and slaves to gestures framed for free men, or conversely, after constructing the rhythms and gestures of free men, to assign to the rhythms
Note 1 In what follows, the main features censured areincongruity, when the words, tunes and gestures of an acted piece of music are out of harmony; senselessness, when tunes and gestures are divorced from words; barbarousness, when the thing represented is paltry or uncouth (such as a duck's quack); virtuosity, when the performer makes a display of the control he has over his limbs and instruments, like a mountebank or contortionist. All these are marks of bad music from the point of view of the educationist and statesman, since they are neither correct nor morally elevating.
Plat. Laws 2.[669d] a tune or verses of an opposite style. Nor would the Muses ever combine in a single piece the cries of beasts and men, the clash of instruments, and noises of all kinds, by way of representing a single object; whereas human poets, by their senselessness in mixing such things and jumbling them up together, would furnish a theme for laughter to all the men who, in Orpheus' phrase, have attained the full flower of joyousness. For they behold all these things jumbled together, and how, also, the poets rudely sunder rhythm and gesture from tune, putting tuneless words into meter, or leaving time and rhythm
Plat. Laws 2.669e without words, and using the bare sound of harp or flute, wherein it is almost impossible to understand what is intended by this wordless rhythm and harmony, or what noteworthy original it represents. Such methods, as one ought to realize, are clownish in the extreme in so far as they exhibit an excessive craving for speed, mechanical accuracy, and the imitation of animals' sounds, and consequently employ the pipe and the harp without the accompaniment of dance and song;
If you are going to MAKE MUSIC you must absolutely DANCE. If there is a command for MUSIC then each member must PLAY and DANCE or they are NOT performing "worship."
|john watson smith|
Consider the Revelation letter
|October 28 2012, 7:24 PM |
These new reformers and those that wish to sympathize with them would do well to remember the admonition of Revelation chapters 1 ,2 , and 3.
In chapter 1 we are introduced to the speaker and giver of the judgements found about churches that say or have a title as the church of christ. We should note that the human involved in this narrative falls on his face as dead. The speaker then says that is the first and the last and that he is alive - forevermore. This should cause us to pay attention to his words and judgements that follow!
In chapter 3 the it is said that the judgement of the church at Thyatira was not that of a man, a group of men, the praise of glory of men nor that which has the social or political approval of men. It is the same son of God we are introduced to in the 1st chapter. We should pay attention to what he has to say and consider his words as crucial and essential in spiritual matters.
In chapter 3 vs 23 we are advised that this same son of God is the one who searches the minds and hearts of all of us and who will give to each one of us according to our true works. There is no motive, agenda or plot that he is not aware of and will provide a just and correct reward according to his word.
All christians should consider these sobering passages when reviewing the various digressions taking place in the brotherhood.
If it is not found in Gods word we should have no part in it! If we could see a vision of who is watching we would fall on our faces as one who is dead!
Saddleback off the saddle?
|October 29 2012, 9:26 AM |
The irony of the 40 Days in the Word at Madison is this.
1. The preaching has been skewed in the past to the program of the" bishops." I think this is a good name for them since the word evokes authoritarianism and dominance, rather than using other words. All along many had the suspicion that not enough Word was being preached, with the preacher spending his Sunday mornings on the "program" and not enough on the Word. If the bishops desire to get away from those weekly and personal attacks by the membership, they are going to have to take care for what the membership wants. Don't they get tired of being attacked for decisions they make to present innovations on the stage, when all they have to do is represent the congregation. This must be bad on their health. Oh, for the days when the church was truly "congregational."
2. Now that Saddleback has made Bible Study the center of the sermons, suddenly the preacher announces that future lessons will be on various books of the Bible with his interpretation given. This method falls short of what we think he needs. We would like to see some scriptural exposition of the verses IN DETAIL. That is the preacher should read the text, verse by verse, and explain them at the micro level. Not just a macro overview from above, where clusters of verses are covered in a general kind of way. With a micro (verse by verse explanation), we can determine what kind of honesty there is in handling the Word of God). We actually feel sort of sorry for the preacher here, because he seems never to be able to present the Scriptures from himself, but it's always coming from some other direction, such as from the bishops or the coercion of the bishops toward Saddleback. But even Saddleback will be thrown off the "saddle" as we predict in the following words.
3. With all the heritage we have in the Churches of Christ in studying IN DETAIL the Word of God, it is bizarre that the preacher has to suggest that Saddleback is what's getting him back into scripture. What about the rich history of scripture and his use. The fact is that past sermons and knowledge has been relatively devoid of detailed attention to scripture. So Saddleback has to come to the rescue!
4. We think that there is an inherent contradiction here. That is, the elders will want to maintain supremacy of their new programs, so this will undermine the proposed study of Biblical passages on Sunday morning. We predict that even the Saddleback program will be undermined.
5. Look forward to renewed interpretation of general passages and texts from various books of the Bible. In this, for a while, there will be the impression that Biblical knowledge is being regained.
6. But long range, expect this--a gradual erosion of the macro preaching of Biblical texts, and a return to the old preaching of the program of the elders.
7. We would like to see the preacher to get into his own saddle and preach the Word of God.
Re: Madison's New (Instrumental) "Vision": Cymbals, Psalteries, Harps
|October 30 2012, 12:21 PM |
I have prayed for the elders at Madison and will continue to do so.....especially if Scripture and Donnie's values and opinions represent even a small percentage of the membership at Madison. Evident here is that the elders aren't the problem.
"I have prayed for the elders at Madison and...."
|October 30 2012, 10:44 PM |
Did you thoroughly "masticate" and digest Scripture's messages? Or, simply speed-read with very low comprehension?
Praying for those in government and public service is fine. Praying for the elders of a congregation is fine. We pray for praise, for thanksgiving, for spiritual needs and requests, etc. So, as an elder yourself, you've been praying for them for whatever reason(s). What might they be?
- Do you praise them for following the Saddleback Community Church way?
- Do you praise them since it takes a "Pastor Rick Warren" to motivate the congregants to study the Bible only to depart from continuing "thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; ... that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus"?
- Do you praise them since it does not take a "II Timothy 2:15" to study and rightly divide the word of truth?
- Do you support their new musical scheme to retard the departure of more brethren which seems to be what's happening instead?
Re: Madison's New (Instrumental) "Vision": Cymbals, Psalteries, Harps
|October 30 2012, 11:42 PM |
When elders engage in practices that are contrary to New Testament teachings, and if Dave is "praying" for them, then Dave is praying that elders continue to engage in those unscriptural practices.
Dave believes that congregants should bow to any and all dictates of elders, even when those elders disregard the New Testament. Dave believes that all elders are infallible, just like the Catholics believe the pope is infallible. Such people have decided that they will not rightly divide the Word of Truth but will do as they please instead.
David NEVER wrote worship songs NEVER led the SANGING
|November 8 2012, 11:18 AM |
Coffman's Commentary Speaks for the total Bible view that Israel's rejection of God as King, Judge and Priest set the stage for their later repudiation of Jesus Christ in order to keep the evil Temple-System like all other nations. Remember that the clergy was still seeking a king "like the nations" and had not a hint of looking for a Spiritual King, Prince and Mediator:
The great Cambridge scholar, Henry McKeating, has the following comment on this passage from Hosea:
"Hosea is not only antagonistic to the northern kings but to the monarchy as such. The monarchy is powerless to save the nation. Israel was wrong to ask for a king. Her punishment was that she got what she asked." 7: Henry McKeating, Amos, Hosea, and Micah (Cambridge: University Press, 1971), p. 148.
Coffman: "We are aware that it is popular among many able commentators today to make apologies for Israel's monarchy and to apply what the Scriptures plainly say about it to some specific monarch, Saul, for example, as did Dummelow, or to the kings of Northern Israel as did Hailey;
but it is the conviction of this writer that
Israel was totally and completely wrong in asking a king and that this rejection of God (that is what the text calls it) contained embryonically all of the later sorrows of the Chosen People.
Throughout the whole history of Israel, there were very few monarchs who even tried to serve the Lord. Solomon was to be blamed for the division of the kingdom under his son, because the people simply rejected the excesses of Solomon; and yet, even after God took the monarchy away from them, the nation wanted nothing in heaven or on earth as much as they wanted the restoration of that scandalous Solomonic empire.
It was this, more than anything else, that motivated their rejection of God Himself,
finally and irrevocably,
in their rejection of God's Son, Jesus Christ the Holy One.
Go down the list of Israel's kings, David, the very best of all of them, was an adulterer and a murderer; and he also corrupted the worship of God by two sinful things:
(1) his initiating the events that led to the building of the temple (the den of thieves and robbers in Jesus' times); and
(2) his introduction of instruments of music into the worship of God. We do not have the space here to outline all of the misdeeds of Israel's shameful monarchy,
but it is clear enough that God's disapproval of the monarchy was no late thing, applicable only to the phantom kings of Ephraim's final years, but it rested upon the monarchy from the very beginning of it as outlined in this chapter.
First Samuel Chapter eight: you know, that one the scholars missed
|November 8 2012, 11:37 AM |
I have been reading all of the hate mongering against Harding University bemoaning that the directors have selected a man who will be faithful to the Word. This includes one of Donnie's leaderettes. They are not progressive and remain LOYAL to their founders. Why, they should lie cheat and steal and just SWIPE that remaining university and be like we progressive TEXANS (Texas has always been the breeding ground of spiritual banditos). While they wring their little hands they are absolutely ignorant of the Word because God MADE IT SO. Instruments does not CAUSE the problem: it is the MARK of Jesus visiting and removing the Menorah of seven spirits OF God. Not even Davey can read the Word?
1Samuel 8:7 And the LORD said unto Samuel,
.....Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee:
.....for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me,
.....that I should not reign over them.
1Samuel 8:8 According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt
.....even unto this day, wherewith they have forsaken me,
.....and served other gods, so do they also unto thee.
1Samuel 8:9 Now therefore hearken unto their voice:
.....howbeit yet protest solemnly unto them,
.....and shew them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.
1Samuel 8:10 And Samuel told all the words of the LORD unto the people that asked of him a king.
1Samuel 8:11 And he said,
.....This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you:
.....He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself, for his chariots,
.....and to be his horsemen; and some shall run before his chariots.
1Samuel 8:12 And he will appoint him captains over thousands, and captains over fifties;
.....and will set them to ear HIS ground, and to reap HIS harvest,
.....and to make HIS instruments of war, and instruments of HIS chariots. [musical]
1Samuel 8:13 And he will take your daughters to be confectionaries, and to be cooks, and to be bakers.
1Samuel 8:14 And he will take your fields,
.....and your vineyards,
.....and your oliveyards,
.....even the best of them, and give them to HIS servants.
1Samuel 8:15 And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards,
.....and give to his officers, and to his servants.
1Samuel 8:16 And he will take your menservants, and your maidservants,
.....and your goodliest young men, and your asses, and put them to HIS work.
1Samuel 8:17 HIS will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be HIS servants.
1Samuel 8:18 And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you;
.....and the LORD will not hear you in that day.
1Samuel 8:19 Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel;
.....and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;
1Samuel 8:20 That we also may be like all the nations;
.....and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.
1Samuel 8:21 And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of the LORD.
1Samuel 8:22 And the LORD said to Samuel,
.....Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king.
.....And Samuel said unto the men of Israel, Go ye every man unto his city.
How do you suppose one can be a lefty preacher or a righty preacher and NEVER be aware of the story line? Well, Jesus said that God HIDES from the Wise meaning SOPHISTS meaning slick speakers, singers and instrument players.
|This message has been edited by Ken.Sublett from IP address 22.214.171.124 on Nov 8, 2012 11:44 AM|
Influence toward a King
|November 8 2012, 9:41 PM |
Good passage 1 Samuel 8.
Again, this is a passage that you won't see much preaching about, in the modern "Church of Christ."
You're correct about some trends from Texas, historically. Here's some changes that Texas influenced:
1. Elevation of the God of War.
2. Restrictions on the style of baptism beyond what the scriptures warrant.
3. Thirst for numbers in attendance rather than quality of worship.
4. Fossilization of the Church into a mere form, without the Word being implanted in the Heart.
I'm not criticizing Texas, but the population there is much greater, and the wealth of oil has empowered its influence in the churches, and so, its influence in other states has been significant.
Ed Harrell pointed out in his book, that many times the truth or error of a statement, does not depend on the logical and deductive application of scriptures, but on WHO says it. Prestige, rather than truth, often determines the outcome. That is, the church has followed a King, a la 1 Samuel 8.