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Vacation Bible School

June 12 2013 at 12:48 PM
William  (no login)
from IP address 108.18.178.58

When I was rather young and VBS was new in the churches of Christ there was a bit of controversy about it. I think there still is. I fully agree with the purposes and goals of VBS, but I wonder about the materials a bit. In my congregation, this year we are going to use materials by Group Publishing. I do not see any particular flags, but I have not reviewed the materials in detail, either. It is not necessarily my job to do that. I know that Group Publishing has at least a very trinitarian tilt to their materials.

Occasionally, I will see a review of VBS materials published by Truth Magazine, but I do not subscribe to that magazine.

Who out there has reviewed the potential VBS materials for 2013. I wonder why we do not lean more towards materials published by our own brotherhood, yet vetted by a congregation's elders?

 
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AuthorReply
Donnie Cruz
(Login Donnie.Cruz)
ConcernedMembersMadison
99.177.250.192

Re: Vacation Bible School

June 13 2013, 2:59 AM 

I have done very little research on VBS materials used in congregations of the church of Christ.

I think that even though Truth Magazine is affiliated with the church of Christ, its VBS materials may be considered as "limited and narrow" as the church's teachings. [My basis is that change agents operating in the brotherhood have this mindset about the church of Christ -- narrow-minded and non-inclusive.]

Group Publishing is interdenominational in scope, I think, with emphasis on the youth, the youth ministry, growth of the church with its youth. For this reason, some of our church leaders may find Group's VBS materials more appealing.

A Trinitarian tilt to teaching materials is not uncommon even among churches of Christ. (As we know from our Restoration Movement history, our forefathers questioned so many denominational teachings, doctrines and creeds -- that's what made the RM so unique as it emphasized New Testament teachings and principles and disregarded human creeds. The Trinity Creed is one of those. Even the hymn "Holy, Holy, Holy" in our songbooks has the modified version of "God overall, and blest eternally" instead of "God in Three Persons, Blessed Trinity." That's a strong indication that even our hymn publishers and compilers in the past were aware of the very popular Trinity doctrine.)

You brought up an excellent point in your last sentence concerning the non-use of "materials published by our own brotherhood...." I'm afraid this is a lost cause -- thanks to the change agents who consider the NT church as just one of the world's religious denominations.

 
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Scripture
(no login)
98.87.35.4

Decadence of the Teaching

August 13 2013, 10:06 AM 

The importing of literature from the Internet and from pop religious literature, without regard to church history and root doctrine, is the established pattern now in many congregations. Perhaps these choices give a comfort that "something is being done" to protect against congregational decline, but all too often this is just a placebo that makes them think that something "has really been accomplished." What happens instead, is that the literature drives away the devout, while appealing to the sense that "all is good in Zion."

It is a mystery to many how the literature is chosen, and who chooses it. One might think that the literature is chosen at the highest levels of church government, since the elders are to "guard the flock against ravening wolves" (Acts 20:29). One good way to get literature is to take those best qualified in doctrine and in understanding the interaction of motivation and teaching, and to get these persons to choose the program of the church. Another way is to bring the teaching staff into the picture, and make a choice based on their knowledge.

We could measure the attendance before the adoption of new teaching literature with the attendance after its application, and if it fails QUANTITATIVELY to gather in new sheep, then some modification must be made to the group choosing the literature. Then we might be closer to Paul's admonition "over the which the Holy Ghost has made you overseers" (Acts 20:28). The Holy Ghost does not make overseers who allow the church to decline year after year. There must be some accountability. The Holy Ghost expects accountability.


 
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Bill
(no login)
74.179.249.158

Re: Decadence of the Teaching

August 13 2013, 11:23 AM 

Scripture wrote: "The Holy Ghost does not make overseers who allow the church to decline year after year. There must be some accountability. The Holy Ghost expects accountability."

Does that mean the Holy Ghost is a person who makes us overseers of the Church and takes note of our accountability?

 
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Ken Sublett
(Login Ken.Sublett)
ConcernedMembersMadison
70.197.163.155

Re: Decadence of the Teaching

August 13 2013, 11:31 AM 

Paul commanded Titus to "identify" men who were "laboring to the point of exhaustion in preaching and teaching." Their OWN spirit made them APT to teach.

In Ephesians 4 the Spiritually gifted men...

Ephesians 4:7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to
.....the measure of the GIFT of Christ.
Ephesians 4:8 Wherefore he saith,
.....When he ascended up on high,
.....He led captivity captive,
.....and [He] gave gifts unto men. given grace according to
.....the measure of the GIFT of Christ.
Ephesians 4:8 Wherefore he saith,
.....When he ascended up on high,
.....He led captivity captive,
.....and [He] gave gifts unto men.

These men were supernaturally gifted until the MATURITY or perfection. Later Paul commanded that the ELDERS teach that which had been taught.

This continued the command from the wilderness onward to PREACH the Word (ONLY) by READING the Word for Comfort and Doctrine.

The only way any person protects their WILL is by having it written down to MARK and AVOIDE those who "private interpret" or further expound as false teachers says Peter after HIS part of the memory had been delivered to the PERFECT will.


    
This message has been edited by Ken.Sublett from IP address 70.197.163.155 on Aug 13, 2013 11:43 AM


 
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Bill
(no login)
74.179.210.243

Re: Decadence of the Teaching

August 13 2013, 12:32 PM 

Scripture quoted part of Acts 20:28, which says, "Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood" (KJV).

Paul says that it is the HOLY GHOST who makes us overseers of the Church. Hmmm. Now even though Paul mentions nothing about the Holy Ghost in his salutations (which some interpret to mean Paul doesn't regard the Holy Spirit as a "person"), based on Acts 20:28, it surely sounds more like Paul DOES regard the Holy Spirit as a "person."

 
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Donnie Cruz
(Login Donnie.Cruz)
ConcernedMembersMadison
99.177.250.192

Re: Decadence of the Teaching

August 13 2013, 11:21 PM 

Good quote by Scripture.

The word "us" in Bill's remark ("... who makes us overseers..."). Were/are you an overseer of the flock?

The passage quoted is an excellent reference.

Problem is that Bill gets overly excited at the mention of "the Holy Ghost" and automatically [as preconditioned] perceives a [any] ghost as a person.

I do not see the word "who" in the passage. (In fact, there are quite a few passages making reference to "the holy Spirit" as "which" [rather than "who" or "whom"], as "itself" [rather than "him" or "himself"] -- perhaps another sub-topic concerning the Spirit.)

As much as it has been discussed, an astute Bible student should already be scripturally-oriented to the truth that "the Spirit of the Lord, the living God" is "the Holy Spirit" spoken of in the Bible.

We can NEVER separate "the holy Spirit OF God" from God Himself ... and create a separate Divine Being out of His Spirit.


 
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Ken Sublett
(Login Ken.Sublett)
ConcernedMembersMadison
70.197.163.155

Re: Decadence of the Teaching

August 13 2013, 11:24 AM 

The Spirit of Christ defined it: "Women and BOYS are ruling over you."

The BOYS whine that the women now need the pulpit when we all know that they have usurped the role of NOT APT eldlers long, long ago. I believe that Madison had a female Campus Mistress? So, they rule from cradle to the grave and a noted christian publisher told me that "we don't do evangelism: we are in the publishing business."

I remember a youth minister when the women and BOYS wanted him to use the cut-out and paste-up literature for the 12 grade.

My daughter refused to teach a class where a PIG was the character in teaching the Old Testament.

They tried to infiltrate the music thingy by teaching the story of Hezekiah who didn't care about his children and grandchildren AS LONG AS IT DOES NOT HAPPEN IN MY TIME: Meaning while he hung around the temple-NEVER INSIDE SILLY PEOPLE--and played the harp.

Muslim warning; "If the father plays the tambourine his children will dance." Yea, says Jeff Walling daring to dance with God." Out of Harding they teach at SOUTHWEST "a church of christ" Delighting in the Holy Spirit. Christ in Isaiah 58 COMMANDED the antithesis of the Civil-Military-Clergy and commands that we delight in the WORD not seeking our own pleasure and NOT speaking our own Words.

non invenitur voluntas tua ut loquaris sermonem

 
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Scripture
(no login)
98.87.35.4

Devil's person?

August 13 2013, 12:44 PM 

1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour:

Does this verse mean that the devil is a person?

It's more like the presence or spirit of the Devil goes about, energized by our own covetousness and vice.

 
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Bill
(no login)
74.179.249.68

Re: Devil's person?

August 13 2013, 3:15 PM 

Just as some folks regard the Holy Spirit as a person, so some folks also regard Satan or the Devil as a person.

 
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Donnie Cruz
(Login Donnie.Cruz)
ConcernedMembersMadison
99.177.250.192

Re: Devil's person?

August 13 2013, 11:40 PM 

The Bible tells me that "the holy Spirit OF God" is "the Holy Spirit." God's Spirit and God Himself are INSEPARABLE -- they're not even identical twins.

Yours is a statement for those "folks [who] regard the Holy Spirit as a person." Aren't you one of those folks?

"Holy Spirit as a person"? I do not recall God being referred to as a "Person" in Scripture. Now, "the person of Christ" is mentioned in II Cor. 2:9.

 
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Bill
(no login)
74.179.249.68

Re: Devil's person?

August 13 2013, 3:32 PM 

I don't recall the KJV having wording such as "the spirit OF Satan/the Devil." Rather, the Bible makes reference to Satan/the Devil is if he were a distinct entity. Paul makes reference to the Holy Spirit (who makes us overseers of the Church) in Acts 20:28 as if the Holy Spirit were a distinct entity. This should make those who think otherwise think again.

 
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Donnie Cruz
(Login Donnie.Cruz)
ConcernedMembersMadison
99.177.250.192

Re: Devil's person?

August 14 2013, 12:01 AM 

Acts 20:28 has been explained above -- God's own holy Spirit is that Holy Spirit which cannot be separated from God.

There's that contrasting "spirit of the Lord" and the "spirit of an unclean devil" in Luke 4:18-33. The Lord is distinct; so is the devil. Evidently, the spirit of the Lord cannot be separated from the Lord Himself as another being; neither can the spirit of the devil.

II Cor. 2:11-12 also contrasts "the Spirit OF God" and "the spirit of the world" -- just cannot make the "spirit" into a separate being.

I John 4:2-6 also contrasts "the Spirit of truth" and "the spirit of error" -- just cannot transform the "spirit" into a "being."


 
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William Hall
(no login)
108.18.179.191

General Reply

August 29 2013, 2:30 AM 


I was traveling on vacation during our VBS this year and missed all but one day, so I did not have a chance to participate. Somehow, I have developed the perception that not much is being taught anymore in VBS, but it is a magnet of sorts. We attracted at least two new families and several new young folk this year, so hopefully we are teaching them now.

It is always interesting to see how these threads morph about. Doesn't Romans 8:26 refer to the Holy Spirit with a personal pronoun: "the Spirit himself intercedes for us"? 8:27 makes it clear that the Spirit "himself" acts in accordance with the will of God, but a separate entity somehow.

 
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Donnie Cruz
(Login Donnie.Cruz)
ConcernedMembersMadison
99.177.250.192

VBS and "a very trinitarian tilt to..."

August 29 2013, 4:33 AM 


You raised a great question in your initial post: "I wonder why we do not lean more towards materials published by our own brotherhood...." I don't know if research has been done regarding the use of non-church of Christ materials in VBS, i.e., the extent of it. I suspect that it's no different from the materials used by some of the theological seminary-educated preachers and teachers in the brotherhood.

As to "how these threads morph about," this thread may be a good example of that. In the initial post, it stated the following: "I know that Group Publishing has at least a very trinitarian tilt to their materials." I agree -- it was a "slight" mention of the expression "trinitarian tilt," and note how the discussion has expanded to "the Holy Spirit."

I think we've discussed this subject very extensively already, and ... ... ... it is really not finished yet. happy.gif We've dealt with definitions of words and expressions, parts of speech, grammatical structures, translations, history, origin, etc.

I would simply point out the significance of the preposition "OF" in the expression that we find in some 70 passages, both OT and NT. This is a strong case for identifying "the part versus the whole." A "part" and the "whole" are both entities -- that should be a given. However, in the case of "the Spirit OF the Lord," we cannot separate or segregate "the spirit" from "the Lord." God's holy spirit cannot be separated from God -- it simply means the spirit [which is "holy"] belonging to God.

It's very important to learn that the NT refers to "the Holy Spirit" as "the Spirit of the Lord," "the Spirit of Jesus Christ," "the Spirit of the Father," "the Spirit of the Living God."

Translations of the original NT Greek manuscripts play a major role in the confusion. The Trinity Creed was invented several centuries preceding some of our major translations including the KJV, and such doctrine certainly influenced [sorry!!!] translators, coupled by the fact that where it was necessary to supply a personal pronoun, there was a difficult choice between:

(a) "he, him, himself, his, who, whom"
----------------- versus ----------------
(b) "it, itself, its, which."


I have reviewed several passages in the past [I'm not sure where my notes are now], comparing the use of pronouns, etc. [There may be about the same number of masculine vs. neuter references in those passages.]

What comes to mind where "the Holy Spirit" is not masculine gender are these references:
  • "[2] As God liveth, who hath taken away my judgment; and the Almighty, who hath vexed my soul; [3] All the while my breath is in me, and the spirit of God is in my nostrils; [4] My lips shall not speak wickedness, nor my tongue utter deceit." (Job 27)

  • "[16] The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." (Romans 8)

  • "[24] And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us." (I John 3)

  • "[11] Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow." (I Peter 2)

  • "[12] Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God." (I Cor. 2)


There may be more....

 
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ken sublett
(Login Ken.Sublett)
ConcernedMembersMadison
70.210.11.46

Re: General Reply

August 29 2013, 10:30 PM 

Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities:
for we know not what we should pray for as we ought:
but the Spirit ITSELF maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.


I think that it is OUR spirit which groans and then HE that searches the Heart makes intercession.

Romans 8:27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because HE maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

That intecessor-mediator is now Jesus Christ:

1Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;

And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever. 1 Chronicles 28:9

Then hear thou in heaven thy dwelling place, and forgive, and do, and give to every man according to his ways, whose heart thou knowest; (for thou, even thou only, knowest the hearts of all the children of men;) 1 Kings 8:39

But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7

And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen, Acts 1:24

And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God. Luke 16:15


Jesus received the PROMISE of the Holy Spirit: that is Jesus as the living WORD is now The Holy Spirit. Promise means the assignment or office of Spirit. Spirit still means BREATH: when Jesus received that promise He appeared in the upper room "and poured out what you see and hear." They HEARD the BREATH or spirit of God. When god breaths someone speaks.

And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works. Revelation 2:23

Jesus addresses the seven Churches and at the end identifies Himself as THE SPIRIT. 2 John 1 says that the "another Comforter" is still named Jesus Christ the Righteous in his Spirit form which is different in some respects.

Revelation 2:29 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

At least 7 times when Jesus speaks it is the personal SPIRIT speaking.


    
This message has been edited by Ken.Sublett from IP address 70.210.11.46 on Aug 29, 2013 10:36 PM


 
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Anonymous
(no login)
108.18.190.68

Re: General Reply

September 1 2013, 4:01 AM 


You posit this conclusion: I think that it is OUR spirit which groans and then HE that searches the Heart makes intercession. I cannot find any translation that supports this conclusion. The passage clearly expresses that the Spirit intercedes (or pleads) for us with groanings that cannot be articulated. It is also clear, unless one unnecessarily contorts reasoning, that it is the Spirit pleading over us (us holy ones).

The second point, from 1 Tim 2 is interesting. Lawyers sometimes take a course of study in conflict of laws. Thankfully, as an engineer I can rely on the laws of mathematics and science, and a law is a law. Ideas and language are not always so precise. Paul's letter to the Romans does not read in any way like the Spirit and Christ are the same, nor does it read as if the Spirit is the spirit of Christ. But we all believe that Christ is making intercession for us.

 
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Dave
(no login)
162.229.28.209

Been Taugh Well

August 29 2013, 7:52 PM 

You can bet on two things happening here at concernedmembers.
1) Doesn't matter what the subject is, Ken can always turn it around towards bashing the music.
2) Donnie has learned from the master.....now even an "of" preposition can be used to turn any subject into a discussion of the trinity, or lack thereof.

 
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ken sublett
(Login Ken.Sublett)
ConcernedMembersMadison
70.210.11.46

Re: Been Taugh Well

August 29 2013, 10:26 PM 

When doctor ken gives kitty an enema she turns perfectly good food into really vile stuff. She is sooooo human.

 
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ken sublett
(Login Ken.Sublett)
ConcernedMembersMadison
70.210.11.46

Re: Vacation Bible School

August 29 2013, 10:59 PM 

I have just been feeding information from another NACC kidnapping of a Church of Christ to become INSTRUMENTAL. All of the 'scholars' out there keep promoting the using instrumental machines FOR worship. And they whine that piney is obsessed with instrumental music. Now as long as the Musicators are Fornicating in the face of God we will just have to keep up the dripping into your faces. Sure, it would be nice if everyone kept silent but Martin Luther defined a coward who did not address the error at hand.

If you SELL any of your body parts or skills using the Christian Logo you ARE a prostitute. Christ in the prophets kept on keeping on defining Jews who joined in the hypocritic arts worship services PROSTITUTES. Why should we despise a poor girl who sells her body and WORSHIP men who sell their RHETORICAL voices and body persona the work of the holy spirit?

[linked image]

 
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