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Smith Springs, Nashville (Part I)

July 17 2003 at 12:55 PM
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Smith Springs church of Christ Nashville

At least 2 elders have begun a extensive ministry
designed to defend Calvinism, which they call the
doctrines of grace. It has been promoted congregationally, as well as by radio, audio tapes, regular classes at a local denominational church,and the web (at )

The mailing address for this organization (Blair
LaVergne Tenn.) is also the home address for one of
these elders. One of their chief spokesmen, a former
pulpit minister a Smith Springs, is also a history
professor at Lipscomb University, Dr David Lawrence.
You are challenged to investigate this ministry and
see if you can tell any difference in their message
and the complete TULIP of Calvinism.

For a quick overview go to
" " " " " /12.30.02
" " " " " /01.20.03
" " " " " /03.17.03

This message has been edited by Donnie.Cruz from IP address on Oct 18, 2008 12:00 AM

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July 18 2003, 8:19 AM 

God picked Abraham for the purpose of being a blessing to ALL NATIONS. By going to Egypt the Israelites fell under the idolatry of the nations. Therefore, rather than being a blessing the Jews thought of themselves as PREDESTINATED. This meant, of course, that the NATIONS were NOT predestinated. This was not theology but arrogance. This was the MARK of their failure. Paul does not speak of the Gentiles as "dogs" but the victims of Jewish PREDESTINATION.

Paul shows the Gentiles who might feel INFERIOR that it was ALWAYS God's plan that the Jew and Gentile be one body. That is the MYSTERY of God's PRE-PLANNING. Because there was no MAN who could intercede God sent His RIGHT ARM as LORD to carry out His etrnal PLAN or predestinated purpose. When there is ONE BODY there will be ONE SPIRIT or the spirit of UNITY or ONENESS.

All people were God's people: the Jews were chosen for a SPECIAL PURPOSE and utterly failed because they substituted FAITH in their system for OBEDIENCE to the Word of God.

--Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. Isaiah 12:2
----Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. Isaiah 12:3
------And in that day shall ye say, Praise the Lord, CALL upon his NAME, declare his doings among the PEOPLE, make mention that his name is exalted. Isaiah 12:4

--For the kingdom is the Lords: and he is the governor among the NATIONS. Psa 22:28

Jesus said that the Great Commission was to EVERY CREATURE because it is clear that God predestinated the Gentiles to be part of the ONE BODY having ONE SPIRIT.

--And he said unto them, TO ye into all the WORLD, and preach the gospel to EVERY creature. Mark 16:15 (creature does not mean Jews)


----HE that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but HE that believeth not shall be damned. Mark 16:16

The DIRECT STATEMENT of Jesus shows that the SAME GOSPEL was to be preached to ALL CREATURES.

--But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be WITNESSES unto me both
----in Jerusalem, and
----in all Judaea, and
----in Samaria, and
----unto the UTTERMOST (Gentiles) part of the earth. Ac.1:8


--Having made known unto us the MYSTERY of his WILL, according to his GOOD pleasure which he hath PURPOSED in himself: Eph 1:9


----"God has told us his SECRET reason for sending Christ, a plan he decided on in MERCY long ago; Eph 1:9LIV

Contrary to the eternal superiority of the Jews, God ALWAYS intended them to be reconciled to the GENTILES. Only the SPIRIT of Christ in dying for ALL MANKIND had the power to persuade even Jewish apostles:


--THAT in the DISPENSATION of the FULLNESS of times he might GATHER TOGETHER in ONE all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: Eph 1:10
----In whom ALSO WE have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: Eph 1:11

IN EPHESIANS CHAPTER TWO The Jews still made the Gentiles aliens and strangers but Paul proved that God's predestinated plan was for ONE BODY. The view of the Jews as superior and that of the Gentiles as inferior and without hope was NOT in God's Mind but in the minds of the two factions.

--That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: Eph 2:12
----But NOW, in Christ Jesus, ye who sometimes were far off (Gentiles) are made NIGH by the blood of Christ. Eph 2:13
------For he is our PEACE, who hath made both ONE, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Eph 2:14
--------Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain ONE NEW MAN, so making peace; Eph 2:15

--And that he might reconcile both unto God in ONE BODY by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: Eph 2:16
----And came and preached peace to you (Ephesians) which were AFAR OFF, and to them that were NIGH (Jews). Eph 2:17
-----For through him we BOTH have access by ONE SPIRIT unto the Father. Eph 2:18

You cannot miss the fact that Paul did not speak of THE HOLY SPIRIT as a TRITHEIST person (a heresy) but the ONENESS spirit which is brought to the ONENESS BODY by the death of Christ. When Paul asked the name of this Spirit Lord, the answer was, "I AM JESUS OF NAZARETH." God's invitation is to WHOSOEVER WILL and not those whom I have already REDESTINATED so that the invitation is a cruel mocker.

Our problem is that we don't read the REST OF THE STORY.

Ken Sublett

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the oasis is a mirage

August 12 2003, 11:25 AM 

I will admit to being one of the people who got drawn into this neo-calvinist camp for a while thanks primarily to the influence of leaders and members at this congregation. They even helped influence one of my best friends to go on to a reformed seminary so he could understand this all better. I've heard they're still doing this today with some select college students. Calvinism, at least their new version, as clarified by R.C. Sproul (a modern author and lecturer who the Engedi leaders all hold in high regard) seemed to offer some pretty simple answers to some very complex questions, early on. But for every leak it seemed to patch a couple of new ones would start somewhere else. My biggest problems were their inconsistent word games with Bible concepts like chosen and dead in sin. It got even more complicated the deeper I got as I started to realize that my own pride factor would make it hard to admit that I, and some smart men I knew, could be mistaken.

When I raised some serious questions I would be told that I just needed to give it some time since these were such new ideas to me and so deep. They actually told me that 'you just have to give it some time.' I couldn't help but think of another time I'd heard that phrase: During my first weekend visit to my first college men's dorm I was stunned by the aroma. You know the mildewed towels, the sneaker odor, the gym clothes, etc. I asked my host how he stood it. His answer? 'You jut have to give it some time!'

Here's what I saw, and still see, in some of my friends /students who are still deep in this: when all you surround yourself with is this teaching - it's all you read, study, listen to, breathe, talk about, it's the only people you associate with - you just get to the saturation point where you don't even notice the haze in the room anymore; it becomes WHO you are. And it is really appealing to young people because it's advertised as NEW and DEEP. I finally realized that it is only deep like quicksand is deep.

One author expresses it this way: "The problem as I see it now is that I had gained my identity through an association with a particular historical tradition. I think it would have been appropriate to accuse me of being a Calvinist first and a Christian second. I never would have admitted it, but the fact is that this was true."

I beg those of you who may have doubts about this, open a window, open a door, open books from other deep theologians with the other viewpoint, for God's sake open all of God's Word! This new improved reformed stuff makes God much more like some cosmic czar from Greek mythology [fatalism] than what is revealed in the Bible. It goes right against the grain of the parable God's own son used to enlighten us about the true nature of his Father regarding a prodigal son: a God who is genuine enough to allow creatures, created in his image, to respond to him out of unmanipulated love (agape); and it is a misrepresentation to label this as some type of 'legalistic work'.

So here's my personal experience: this teaching is NOT an oasis of water; it is some sort of post-modern MIRAGE.

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August 12 2003, 5:13 PM 

One of the goals of postmodernism is to induce schizophrenia. I suggest that those who believe that ALL TRUTH got sucked into a black hole must have been brain washed in a cult before they believed that they and "church councils" now determine the HIDDEN dogmas in the Bible. I wonder about the council of the Episcopals?

What you are describing seems to be something you might have heard as Jones Town or Waco.

I noticed that Michael Mosss held a series of meetings at Sycamore church in Cookeville on SECURITY. Is he one of them? I noticed that in one of David's articles that he seemed to gloat over rescuing a student from another professor's denial of the Calvinistic I of the Tulip.

Did you find yourself an OUTCAST when your brain wouldn't wash any further?


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August 22 2003, 3:27 PM 

From my associaton with a couple of Lipscomb students from Smith Springs, I had the chance, a few years back, to attend one of Engedi's off campus Bible studies (it was held in the home of one of the Eng. leaders.) After about 30 minutes it almost felt like I was watching a high school play - you know where everyone has memorized their lines they've been given beforehand, and they try so hard to make it sound unrehearsed. It became clear that of the dozen or so students there, that I was the only one who didn't know the words to the club song or the motto.

As long as everyone stayed with the expected verses & line everything went smoothly. It seemed so loical at first. "You do believe God is all powerful and all knowing, don't you?" (Well yes) "Then it only follows, doesn't it, that God already knows who will be in heaven eternally, so how could He NOT use his Sovereign (a favorite word of theirs) power to make sure that all the one's he's chosen will make it? You do know that nothing God plans can be thwared (another favorite word)- it tells us that in the Bible." The session almost had the pressure feeling of one of those time-share, condo sales pitches, and I really believe an observation that has already been made is true about Engedi: "most of the Calvinistic teaching are delivered in small doses so it is not possible to get a coherent picture."

My own Bible study lead me to see some real problems with of of their first major points - total depravity (Mr. Lawrence refers to 'depravity' often in his Short Studies Textual Studies, on their web page; see Genesis, Romans, & John). Am I honestly supposed to believe that the Bereans, mentioned in Acts 17:11, were more noble because God had irrestibly chosen for this depraved group to understand, and want to study the Scriptures, but God chose, conversely, for the Thessalonicans to NOT have a desire to know the Truth? It just seemed to me that this line of logic is closer to ancient Mayan's in Mexico who had god's that demanded regular human sacrifieces to appease their desire for justice!

Another verse they mentioned was from Ezekiel. This very verse is the topic of Mr. Lawrence says Ezek. 14:9-11 is a major problem for those of us who belive that God has nothing to do with the "bad" things of life. What these guys have obviously chosen to stay blinded to is their major problem this raises: If God causes come of the 'bad' things, and God cause everthing (as they boldly teach), then God causes, always had, caused ALL 'bad' things, too. And I don't care how slick one gets with that politician double talk, or how divine & wise the medieval renaissance men chose to label themselves (see 'Divine Men's Club', in this forum), or how lofty, eloquent, verbose (and confusing) you get with the King's English (and his political aspirations), or how hard you scourge your own back with a leather strap while you chant 'God is not the author of sin' -- if you just shove their creedal theories into reverse and follow their logic back as far as you can go, you finally see where their teaching says that sin originated. (P.S. it wasn't Satan.) No wonder R. C. Sproul calls this their 'excruciating problem'. Since they teach that the will of man or angels only moves when given the desire by God, then the only way Lucifer & Adam (before the fall) could have sinned was for God to have given them that desire!

Welcome to the new 'joy and assurance'; be sure you read the fine print before you but!

OF COURSE Calvinists ALWAYS ignore the context: perhaps they are predestinated?.

And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, Ezek 14:2

Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them? Ezek 14:3

Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God;
.....Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart,
.....and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face,
.....and cometh to the prophet; I the Lord will answer him that cometh
.....according to the multitude of his idols; Ezek 14:4

That I may take the house of Israel in their own heart,
.....because they are all estranged from me through THEIR idols. Ezek 14:5

Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God;
.....Repent, and turn yourselves from your idols;
.....and turn away your faces from all your abominations. Ezek 14:6

Ezek 14:7 For every one of the house of Israel, or of the stranger that sojourneth in Israel,
.....which separateth himself from me, and setteth up his idols in his heart,
.....and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face,
.....and cometh to a prophet to enquire of him concerning me;
.....I the Lord will answer him by myself:

Ezek 14:8 And I will set my face against that man, and will make him a sign and a proverb, and I will cut him off from the midst of my people; and ye shall know that I am the Lord.

And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing,
.....I the Lord have deceived that prophet,
.....and I will stretch out my hand upon him,
.....and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel. Ezek 14:9

And they shall bear the punishment of their iniquity:
..... the punishment of the prophet shall be even the punishment of him that seeketh unto him; Ezek 14:10

So,since David Lawrence SPEAKS ON HIS OWN he will be assisted by God.

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What's next on their agenda?

September 15 2003, 9:08 AM 

I became one to shun by the Engedi faithful when I challanged their claims about being "non-traditional". (Non-traditional in the Church of Christ, for sure but TOO traditional for even a lot of Presbyterian and Lutheran Churches out there.) Another reality I had was that, if their SYSTEM is right, then an old friend of mine who died, quite unrepentant, as a result of a sinful lifestyle, was in that position not so much due to his ungodly choices but because a Soverign God chose, before he was born, to NOT allow him saving faith and grace. Ditto for every family black sheep and the spouse of every woman out there who married a guy who had, to his dying day, no interest in spiritual matters. Too bad, God's wisdom predestined them only to punishment. Talk about a real nasty twist on the old phrase "there but for the grace of God go I" - straight to hell!

Its no wonder these reformers huddle together. Everyone around them who isn't chosen to understand "truth, justice, and the Systematic way" is probably in some damnable state and possibly not chosen for heaven. They just draw that circle tighter and tighter. Believe me, this is not your father's "blessed assurance".

So I'll let you in on a theory I have regarding HOW this group will attempt to slip carefully and quietly into the church. It'll be by two ways. First, the "we're not traditional" thing I've already mentioned but, secondly - late in the game - they've tried to hop onto the "no legalism in the church" bandwagon. I'm not kidding about this! I found one of the old church history tapes by Lawrence recently (most all of the tapes are so pro-presbyterian biased as to lack basic historical credibility). Here's how the legalism line is slipped in:

"The enemy is not people, the enemy is HUMANISM itself and that we deal with straight-forwardly. Now what am I talking about? What are some of the disquises that humanism can take!"
"An example: Legalism. LEGALISM is similar to moralism and usually uses moralism as a part of its system, but legalism is saying "man gains justification by keeping the law of God - keeping the commmandments of God." That's good, we are told to keep God's commandments. That sounds wonderful, 'Keep the commandments' but the problem is again, if I trust in what I'm doing - if I trust in keeping the commandments, then I'm not trusting in God, and the cross becomes unnecessary. And yet they will talk about obedience to God. Obedience is very important but it's YOUR obedience that YOU have done, by yourself. And then you have to say, when it's all said and done 'I DID IT', and that's dangerous."

"..The insistence on FREEWILL LIES AT THE HEART OF HUMANISM. When we say that man, not God makes the ultimate choice, basically, we're saying that "my will is stronger than God's". If God wants me saved, and I don't want to be saved, I'll win.''If God loves me' - you've heard people say this - 'I can walk away from God.' 'In a test of will between me and God, I'll win!"

[Forum note: notice how D.L. conveniently omits the other side of the coin: 'If God wants me to go to hell, there I'll go - nothing I can do about it' or 'If I want to be saved, but God has decided NOT to give me faith, before I was even born, then there is literally NO WAY for me to be saved, praise God!' Then their distorted logic forces them to respond by saying that a depraved person would never have a desire for God in the first place, so he'd never think to think such a thing. (I'm not making this up. That is how they will respond. I guess that shoots down Jesus' request for us to be light in a dark world - they are all blindfolded and can't even see us!)]

(D.L continues)
"thus man ultimately trusts in that choice to save him. 'I made the choice, I trust in the choice' and , as a STUDENT once said to me, if that's the case THE CHOICE ITSELF BECOMES A WORK and you're trusting in that work to save you. The ultimate end of HUMANISM IS DAMNATION - THAT'S WHERE IT LEADS TO." (Matthew 7:23 is next used as a proof text.)

(the tape ends with several questions posed by D.L.)

- "Is personal salvation of people the most important matter to God? (Be) careful how you answer that!"
- "Am I able to do ANYTHING without God's enabling grace?"
- "Are my beliefs shaped by what God has said, or by what I want to believe?"
- "Do I believe that in a contest of wills, my will shall prevail over God's?"
- "Do I believe that I am a Christian because I chose to be one?"
- "And WHAT, ultimately and finally, do I really trust in for my salvation?"

"I would suggest that at the bottom line, if you trust ANYTHING but the finshed work of Jesus Christ upon the cross, YOUR SALVATION IS IN SERIOUS JEOPARDY." (The tape ends, and fades to the orchestral musical theme song of Engedi)

[Forum notes: In other tapes they produce, they talk out of the other side of their mouth and say that they're "not questioning anyone's salvation"!
A couple of paraphrased scripture references probably also came to your mind in reponse to some of the questions raised:
- Joshua: CHOOSE ye this day whom you will serve...but as for me and my house we will serve the Lord.
- Jesus: Oh I have longed to gather you as a hen gathers her chicks. BUT YOU WERE NOT WILLING.
So, let's re-submit one of his questions: 'Are my beliefs shaped by what God has said, or BY WHAT I WANT TO BELIEVE?'

So how will these teachings be introduced into the Churches of Christ? In a manner similar to the tactic that gays and lesbians have used to jump on the "No Discrimination!" bandwagon in our society, this group is trying to climb aboard the "No Legalism!" bandwagon in our churches. If this theory is accurate, then the first congregations they will probably target as prospects will be those with a recent history of embracing the themes of being 'Non-Traditional' or 'Non-Legalistic.' - - - Just watch and see.]

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Have they really not seen "The Passion of the Christ"?

May 5 2004, 6:58 PM 

In a devotional on the official Engedi website there is a recent (Spring 2004) Devotional thesis by D.Lawrence entitled The Effectiveness of God, Part 1: Introduction.

In it, he contrasts his personal views (which he always refers to as the biblical view, naturally) with the idea of a plan of salvation, as taught by the churches of Christ:
(referring to current misunderstandings regarding salvation) "A prevailing concept among Christians is that GOd is good and has a great plan for man, but because he has left it up to man whether or not her will accept the plan, God is likely to wind up disappointed. In the end, God's plan will be thwarted by many people, and it will wind up being ineffective for a great number of people it was intended to save."
(He then proposes several questions which, he implies, are all to answered with a resound "NO" based on the typical proof-texts, including as always, Ephesians 1:11) "Has God ever fained in what he set out to do? Is God ever ineffective? Has he ever left the accomplishments of his purposes in the hands of man? Has he made himself vulnerable?"
(The closing states) "These and other passages teach quite plainly that God's work is effective, that God has an eternal purpose and that he successfully works everything in accordance with it."

I still find it incredible that a man who claims to know the Word so thoroughly can't see some very plain teachings in the Word!
So let's rethink a couple of his posed questions:
1. HAS GOD EVER FAILED IN WHAT HE SET OUT TO DO? So from the beginning it was God's plan for people to become so wicked that he could drown most of them? That is what he set out to do? And it was his mission to have the Israelites having a big orgy while he etched the 10 commandments in stone?
God WANTED David to do his adultery / murder scenario?
2. Is God ever ineffective? Has anyone out there read the prevailing theme of the history of God's CHOSEN people in the Old Testament? Is it not a too-familiar theme of the message of the prophets being ineffective to the point that God was forced to send severe punishment on said people! And has this man simply cut out Matthew 23:37 from his Bible (in my Bible it's even in red letters!)
3. HAS HE MADE HIMSELF VULNERABLE? If anyone seriously answers that question as "NO" they must have not seen the movie "The Passion of the Christ", or at least they haven't read the book!

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Stu H.
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Have they really not seen "The Passion of the Christ"?

May 5 2004, 7:10 PM 

In a devotional on the official Engedi website there is a recent (Spring 2004) Devotional thesis by D.Lawrence entitled The Effectiveness of God, Part 1: Introduction.

In it, he contrasts his personal views (which he always refers to as the biblical view, naturally) with the idea of a plan of salvation, as taught by the churches of Christ:
(referring to current misunderstandings regarding salvation) "A prevailing concept among Christians is that God is good and has a great plan for man, but because he has left it up to man whether or not her will accept the plan, God is likely to wind up disappointed. In the end, God's plan will be thwarted by many people, and it will wind up being ineffective for a great number of people it was intended to save."
(He then proposes several questions which, he implies, are all to answered with a resounding "NO" based on the typical proof-texts, including as always, Ephesians 1:11)
"Has God ever failed in what he set out to do?
Is God ever ineffective?
Has he ever left the accomplishments of his purposes in the hands of man? Has he made himself vulnerable?"
(His closing states) "These and other passages teach quite plainly that God's work is effective, that God has an eternal purpose and that he successfully works everything in accordance with it."

I still find it incredible that a man who claims to know the Word so thoroughly can't see some very plain teachings in the Word!
So let's rethink a couple of his posed questions:
1. HAS GOD EVER FAILED IN WHAT HE SET OUT TO DO? So from the beginning it was God's plan for people to become so wicked that he could drown most of them? That is what he set out to do? And it was his mission to have the Israelites having a big orgy while he etched the 10 Commandments in stone?
God WANTED David to do his adultery / murder scenario? These were all some type of "accomplishment" of God? This was part of "everything" he wanted to occur?
2. IS GOD EVER INEFFECTIVE? Has anyone out there read the prevailing theme of the history of God's CHOSEN people in the Old Testament? Is it not a too-familiar theme of the message of God's selected voices, the prophets being ineffective to the point that God was forced to send severe punishment on said people! And has this man simply cut out Matthew 23:37 from his Bible (in my Bible it's even in red letters!)?
3. HAS HE MADE HIMSELF VULNERABLE? If anyone seriously answers that question as "NO" they must have not seen the movie "The Passion of the Christ", or at least they haven't read the book! It represents the EPITOME of vulnerability; focus on the words the next time you sing "He Could Have Called Ten Thousand Angels" - that WAS "making himself vulnerable"!

(resubmitted with typos corrected)

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You should have left the typos...

May 6 2004, 2:49 PM 

Your comments were no better spelled correctly. You still have no idea what Dr. Lawrence is saying. Keep spinning your wheels, you are definitely getting nowhere.

You do no good posting your comments here. You are always more than welcome to discuss any email devotional with Dr. Lawrence himself. He always tries to make himself accessible. Maybe then he can go further in addressing your concerns, and in a godly way.

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Re: You should have left the typos...

May 6 2004, 7:01 PM 


One of the charges of fist-person account is that the system is a cult: if you have a question they just "wear out the saints of God."

A sign of one under dominion is a constant denial that the leader said what everone knows the leader says. If Dr. Lawrence cannot deny his statements on the forum it is likely that you think that scripture can be TRUMPED by David when he pours out the out of context passages and YOU don't have the context hand.

The Five Solas: Soli Deo Gloria: To God Alone Be The Glory!
By David Lawrence in red
    David Lawrence: It is only when we fully understand and personally believe that salvation is from first to last the exclusive work of God that we shall truly give God the glory.
    For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, [Or 'is from faith to faith'] just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith." [d] Rom 1:17NIV

If you look at the other passages the subject is RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD REVEALED from faith to faith. Habbakuk didn't say what David Lawrence "interprets"
    Behold, his soul which is LIFTED UP is not upright in him: but the JUST shall live by his FAITH. Hab 2:4
    For therein is the righteousness of God REVEALED from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith Rom 1:17

They CAUSED the wrath of God
    Because that, when they KNEW GOD, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but BECAME vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was DARKKENED. Rom 1:21

There is not doubt-in spite of church councils-that we can DO things to bring down the wrath of God on our heads. This proves that God did not bring down His wrath from eternity past. A person who DOES RIGHT is righteous but they may not be SAVED in the sense which Jesus Christ made so clear that NO ONE can mistake it unless they are trying to drag you off into the spiritual bushes.

We KNOW that we cannot contribute to our SALVATION but Dr. Lawrence actually denies that GOD CAN CONTRIBUTE. He absolutely DEMANDS that God decreed who would burn in hell and the ELECT (meaning invited) is lost because, in effect, God cannot change His mind or Have Mercy on whom He will have mercy.
    David Lawrence: Yet Paul wrote "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-- not by works, so that no one can boast" (Eph. 2:8-9).
When you denounce the Spirit of Christ to say what He wanted said, and insist that church councils REVEAL what God COULD NOT reveal because everyone was too busy, then God sends you trong delusions. Then, you can quote Ephesian 2:8-9 and use it to deceive thousands of souls--yea, even infiltrate and divert colleges and churches--you are BLIND and cannot even "lift you your eyes" and read the first part of Ephesians.

There, any one whose eyes have not been blinded by God will clearly see that paul is speaking of BAPTISM as the SOWING FORTH of grace through faith down through time. I have tried to post Ephesians 2 and leave out the dozens of back up passages.

Ken Sublett

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May 6 2004, 10:41 PM 

You are absolutely amazing! You have a gift of being able to see "baptism" in EVERY passage in the Bible. I bet you could close your eyes, point to a verse in Habbakuk and get "baptism" out of it somehow. Instead of all of Scripture pointing to Christ, you have all of Scripture pointing to "baptism."

You, sir, are the one with the "strong dilusion."

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Tim Alexander
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Some questions

May 14 2004, 5:13 PM 

How much does God know and when did God know it?
Is the knowledge of God also the determination of God?
Can God be God and not know whatever can be known?

I will not classify myself as a 5-point Calvinist. I am quite comfortable being labeled a conservative evangelical. Reading with mixtures of disgust and amusement, I can only hope my good brother "Anon." will find a way to draw back from his ongoing puking contest with the pack of buzzards that generate the bulk of this web site.

I cast no stones at the Churches of Christ. This tradition is the tradition in which I learned to love the authority of the Bible and came to know Almighty God. I know my extended church family sparkles with good, kind, irenic, humble brethren.

However, those are not the people who saw away at this site. My brother is absolutely correct: every tradition does have its interpreation of truth. He is also right in that the admission of this fact is not an admission of the absence of any universal absolute truth. It is the apex of arrogance to walk around with a paper bag over your head and castigate others for failing to get out of your way. The people who write with such certitude about the crystal clear truth flowing from the fountain of the Restoration Movement are painfully, woefully, embarassingly ignorant of the context of that Movement.

The planks and platforms of the Restoration Movement that provided the theological rational for the existence of the Churches of Christ were dry rot to begin with and have long since been revealed as hopelessly inadequate. In that way, this pristine recovery of God's plan has no basis for continued survival. The sludge pumped out in this site in defense of the Movement is merely a failing attempt to perpetuate a necrotic institution. Just admit its rationale for existence is long since dead and move on.

I am glad the educational institutions are elevating their standards of theological learning and that the ripple effects are being felt in Churches of Christ across the land. It is long past time for such to happen. I long for the day when "our" institutions will hire and promote Bible faculty from other like-minded conservative traditions and more new wine is added to "our" mix.

This will be the last you hear from me. I hope my dear brother will listen to my plea and follow my example of shaking the dust off his feet and never visit this site again.

Tim Alexander
Minister, Smith Springs Church of Christ

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Some Questions

May 15 2004, 11:23 AM 

    Alas for the day for the day of the Lord is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come. Joel 1:15

    Is not the meat (covenant) cut off before our eyes, yea, joy and gladness from the house of our God? Joel 1:16

    The seed is ROTTEN under their clods, the garners are laid desolate, the barns are broken down; for the corn is withered. Joel 1:17

    How do the beasts groan the herds of cattle are perplexed, because they have no pasture; yea, the flocks of sheep are made desolate. Joel 1:18

    O Lord, to thee will I cry: for the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness, and the flame hath burned all the trees of the field. Joel 1:19

    The beasts of the field cry also unto thee: for the rivers of waters are dried up, and the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness. Joel 1:20

    BLOW ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand; Joel 2:1

    A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. Joel 2:2

    A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. Joel 2:3

    The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen, so shall they run. Joel 2:4

Prophesies can be fulfilled many times.
    And the shapes of the locusts (Muses-musical or rhetorical PERFORMERS who drive away the FAITHFUL who have the MARK of the Word) were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men. Rev 9:7
    Charles Spurgeon said: in "The Sword and the Trowel", 1880 ' "I am told that many in the Church of England preach against her own teaching. I know they do, and herein I rejoice in their enlightenment, but I question, gravely question, their morality.

    "To take oath that I sincerely assent and consent to a doctrine which I do not believe would to my conscience appear little short of PERJURY, if not absolute, DOWNRIGHT perjury; but those who do so must be judged by their Lord.

    "For me to take money for defending what I do not believe--for me to take the money of a church, and then to PREACH AGAINST what are most evidently its doctrines--I say for me to do this (I shall not judge the peculiar views of other men), for me or for any other simple, honest man to do so, would be an ATROCITY so great that, if I had perpetrated the deed, I should consider myself out of the PALE [boundaries] of TRUTHFULNESS, HONESTY, and common MORALITY.

    Complicity with error will take from the best of men the power to enter any successful protest against it. It is our solemn conviction that there can be no real spiritual communion there should be no pretense of fellowship. Fellowship with known and vital error is participation in sin. As soon as I saw, or thought I saw, that error had become firmly established, I did not deliberate, but quitted the body at once. Since then my counsel has been, 'Come out from among them'. I have felt that no protest could be equal to that of distinct separation from known evil. That I might not stultify my testimony I have cut myself clear from those who err from the faith, and even from those who associate with them. Cost what it may to separate ourselves from those who separate themselves from the truth of God is not alone our liberty, but our duty." (15)

Charlton T. Lewis identifies DRY-ROT as what happens when a ship gets away from the water.

cares , em, e- (other cases appear not to be in use)

II. Trop., in RIDICULE, of old, withered persons: nemo illa- vivit carie cariosior, Afran. ap. Non. p. 21, 27; Turp. ib

Isn't it just wild that you are a MINISTER who is a co-conspirator but have never LARNED that the Bible and the totality of church history--especially note John Calvin--repudiates the idea of a HIRED MINISTER. Jesus repudiated the doctors of the Law and Paul claimed that the GOSPEL which is free cannot be preached except by those who, as Paul commanded Timothy, to WORK as Paul worked--to the point of travail--so that he could exercise charity in feeding the DESTITUTE:

For those who see "godliness as a means of financial gain--occupation--tithing is a terminal sin which rejects the sacrifice of Christ and THERE IS NO LAW OF GIVING. The message is that those who have PROSPERED during the week should give to those who were DESTITUTE. LayByInStore.html

Can't you grasp the minimal ethic for a "christian" that to ride tandem on the backs of widows and the hard working people struggling to get health-care for their children, and then participate in chasing the OWNERS out of their houses like an invading skunk, and then RIDUCULING the beliefs of your EMPLOYER makes one worse than an Arab who is MUCH KINDER by sawing the people's head off?

The Campbells grasped what any literate person MIGHT grasp--If God in Christ had not blinded them--: that the CHURCH is a "school of Christ." Worship is, as Paul insisted, reading and dialoging the Word. No! The word is not preach but Dialog. Jesus went into the CITIES and preached but he went into the Synagogues to TEACH. Get it: Jesus the approved example.

If quoting the Bible is IGNORANCE then you must be a Lawrenceite who believes that God was incompetent and the "church" was too busy to REVEAL Calvinism which is the most evil dogma ever pushed onto mankind and depends on the preachery metod which can read "Salvation by Grace through Faith and cannot even SEE the first part of the chapter which uses words which define ONLY baptism.

Ken. Scripture says "give an answer" and not slander and lie about the urge to get back to the Bible as the eternal principle of God and denominations.

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Smith Springs Church of Christ?

May 15 2004, 5:41 PM 

Tim Alexander

You openly admit to being the preacher for the Smith Springs Church of Christ. Shame on you for being such a rude, revolting, repulsive and rampaging "Church of Christ Destroyer". This seems to be your type of name calling and ridicule. How could people sit and listen to you week after week if this is the ghist of your messages and style of delivery?

You sound like a very angry little boy who will do and say anything to get his way and a better paycheck even if it destroys a church that so many good and Bible sound Christians (the grey hairs)in past years built and maintained. Many of those "good folk" are to some degree responsible for providing, at one time, a christian education for you and other well intentioned young men only to see you stab them in the back.

Why do those in your playpen continue to "steal Churches" rather than work and raise the money to construct your own facilities and name it whatever you think is more appealing? I'll bet I know. It's easier and cheaper when you can steal the building and substantial number of those too old, feeble or easily mislead people that once were able to trust those who proclaimed the word of God, in it's purity.

How many "Good folk" have you and your present leaders driven off to look for a sound Church of Christ congregation unpolluted by divisive, sneaky, and destructive so-called Church of Christ preachers and elders?

God will judge you and all those like you who are more interested in "getting the Numbers" than preaching and teaching the truth and long held beliefs of the Church that was established long before radical, liberal and progressive "Christian" colleges and universities made their shift with little thought for anything other than additional money and numbers.

You said you would never visit this site again, but you will. Your type cannot resist putting down the Biblical Church of Christ in support of your apostasy. Shame on you for receiving a pay check for slandering the Church that Christ died for and for changing it into a meaningless denomination.

The Bible is very clear but you and those like you continue to wear very dark glasses looking for those scriptures or "no scriptures" to promote and defend your apostasy.

Shame on those who continue to listen to you and dish out the cash for your support. I know nothing of the Smith Springs church but this letter clearly defines the leaders attitude and direction towards failure and loss of many souls to the devil and his angels. It speaks volumes about your congregation, its biblically illiterat leaders and their goals of making the Church of Christ more like the worlds various religions rather than more like what it's founder had in his plans.

I know you will read this and would certainly like to see you tell the readers of this site why everyone should adopt your policies that obviously contradict the Biblical stand taken by those before you and your lberal ideas. Tell us, please, why anyone should want to be a member of the Church of Christ if it is no different than what the Baptise, pentecostal, methodist, etc. believe, teach and practice.

Any one can talk, preach and write in a hostile fashion such as is seen in your writings but is this really a mark or identifying characteristic of a Christian? I challenge you to reple to this without hostil, unchristian-like words and tell me and others why we should follow or adopt your teachings that so clearly contradict the Bible.


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Angry little boy

May 29 2004, 12:39 PM 

We will probably have to get used to this type of rhetoric in our congregations if this new wave of change agents are allowed to have their way.
I attended a forum recently which discussed Calvinistic-based groups like Brother Hale's Engedi which are subverting our congregations with their version of what they insist is the Truth. A phrase was mention which seemed quite appropriate: Parasite. For many reasons, usually including fear and financial issues, these people lack the integrity required to claim public association with those that they share beliefs with, namely the Presbysterian church, (or at least one of the many splits in that denomination.) Instead they simply attempt to parasite off of our congregations, which they know, lack a common heritage with their version of Truth.

Those of us who, along with the majority of the Christian community at large, teach free-will, while being referred to by these people as "our Arminian brothers", have our teaching slanderously characterized as "trying to save yourself" and attempting to rob God of his glory, since only He will save whom he wants to save, etc., etc. (exact phrasing is explicit at the Engedi site) - - these save people demand that we accept them as "brothers"! I can't help but think of the saying, "with friends like this, who needs enemies?"

Yes, as a teacher, I can tell you it is indeed the angry little boys - the squeaky wheels - that often are heard the most, but it is never for any flattering reason.

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Ellis M.
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No stones?

June 4 2004, 2:23 PM 

Bro. Tim's says he doesn't want to cast stones?
It sounds like what he just means is "I like the church, I just can't stand its shallow beliefs, its unbiblical teachings, its rotten origin, its sordid history or what it now represents. Other than that, I'm fine with it and would love to serve as your minister. O.K.?"

Neurotic? That has to be one of the more neurotic compliments our fellowship has received lately.

Really Tim, why waste time with mere stones when your trunk full of hand grenades will do just fine?

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Stop Sensationalizing

July 11 2004, 8:27 PM 

I attend Smith Springs Church of Christ and not once have I ever heard Tim Alexander 'slander the Church that Christ died for' (if you are indeed refering to the Churches of Christ). Quite the opposite, he heaps generosity and love upon this tradition. I have actually heard him defend it on more than one occasion. I consider myself an old-school, traditionalist but find myself impressed by his willingness to re-evalute and re-think his former beliefs and education. You must remember that the members of every Church of Christ have a hand in selecting their elders and ministers. Tim is very straightforward, open and honest about his philosphy. It is not this covert plan at which you hint. We are not hostages, held at his mercy. I'm sure it's much more interesting to take that position, but it's just not the case. B

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Members Input

August 9 2004, 11:54 AM 

Contrary to what you wrote, the members apparently did not have a say so about hiring Tim Alexander. Other better qualified speakers with an actual degree in bible were passed over in favor of Tim by then elder Danny Hale (presumably because he shares the same doctrinal beliefs as Mr. Hale.

As to members selecting the elders that is not true as well. One deacon's name was "accidently" overlooked when names were submitted by individuals for the congregation's consideration. That man happened to follow the traditional "Church of Christ" belief of man having free will. He withdrew his membership from Smith Springs after that.

Tim - He took Romans out of context and screamed the part of "we are predestined" and said to the congregation " you believe what the bible says".

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Re: Members Input

August 9 2004, 3:44 PM 

According to the Gnostic myth, through some tragic failure a spark of the divine was planted in some (but not all) persons and the memory of its divine origin erased. Humankind continued in its ignorant stupor until the high God had mercy and sent Christ to remind man of his true origin. Salvation, therefore, came through knowledge(gnosis) but this gnosis was more than just intellectual awareness of the divine origin of one's true self. Knowing for the Gnostic went beyond mental recall; it meant active reunion with one's divine source through all kinds of ecstatic experience--dreams, visions, speaking in tongues, etc. In this return to the divine source, one is liberated from the bodily prison (Roetzel, Calvin J., The Letters of Paul, John Knox Press, Atlanta, p. 83)

Not all men are created with similar destiny but eternal life is foreordained for some, and eternal damnation for others. Every man, therefore, being created for one or the other of these ends, we say, is predestined either to life or death." (Insti. 111, Ch. 23).

By the decree of God for the manifestation of His glory, some men and angels are predestinated into everlasting life, and others foreordained into everlasting death. These angels and men, thus predestinated and foreordained, are particularly and unchangeably designed; and their number is so certain and definite that it cannot be either increased or diminished." (Confession of Faith, pp 23-24).

It is all paganism and refutes EVERY proof text they take out of context. Paul, in fact, Pauses in Romans to "preach" chapters 9 through 11. The Jews also believed that they were predestinated (Just terminal arrogance). If Paul was correct and PREDESTINATION meant that God offers salvation EVEN to Gentiles then surely either God or His Word failed. Paul blames the Jews for the failure. The examples of god picking certain people to carry out His plan had nothing to do with predestination to Hell or Heaven. They just FABRICATE this scam and the TONE proves that the goal is to take you captive so that when THEY make a decision YOU will believe that they are guided by a HOLY spirit: It is not holy.

Ken Sublett

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not sensationalized

August 10 2004, 12:17 PM 

It is certainly NOT sensationalized to state the fact that literally dozens of people have felt pressured to leave this church because of the language and actions of the reformers in the group. The fruit of their grace was an extreme lack of grace toward those who followed the traditions (as supported by the scriptures) of the fellowship they seek identification with. This church has been undergoing a slow-motion split for many months and it is a smoke screen to blame the division on those who simply pointed out the divisive doctrine which had been introduced.

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Yes, sir!

May 15 2004, 8:32 PM 


I sit under your ministry on a weekly basis and am extremely blessed. Your words to me to leave these people to themselves and never visit this web site again will be heeded. This counsel to me is wise and a long time coming. I repent of my activity on this web site and the cowardly way that I have been responding without using my name.

I must go now. I have better things to do.

Jason Charlton

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This tells us a lot

August 12 2004, 1:12 PM 

So an Engedi board member, J. Charlton, feels blessed to hear the teaching of Bro. Alexander on a regular basis. Well this tells us a lot about the type of teaching and beliefs Tim must be proclaiming.

Also, in regard to D. Lawerence being back at Smith Springs: this may be a very positive sign that the tide is starting to turn against this movement in our sister congregations. Maybe word is getting out about this element in our fellowship and these reformers are being forced to circle their wagons and take a defensive mode now, something they are not used to doing. (And from their frail responses and defenses that have appeared on this site, they aren't doing a very good job of defending themselves, either.)

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Brass knuckles

September 1 2004, 12:10 PM 

Poor old Bro. Lawrence continues to try to infer that the majority of the world's theologians try to 'defang' God with their theology. (See Engedi web site, Devotional, 08.03.04) It's a shame that he's just blinded to the fact that the archaic theology he advances (by copying arguments of Luther, J. Edwards, Sproul, attempts to put brass knuckles on God's unchanging hand. Sadly, Lawrence contines to mislead with passages like Malachi 3:6 (see his 08.23.04) regarding the characteristic of God that doesn't change. It's right there in the following verse! "Return to me and I will return to you" says the Lord Almighty. (They want to rewrite it to say "if I will for you to return to me, then you may return to me") God's arrangement isn't unclear. It's the same as Jeremian 18:7-10.

A very prominent Baptist author has uncannily exposed Engedi's base of human philosophy years ago. In an article entitled "Calvinism Is a Philosophy of Human Reason, No Divine Revelation" we read the following: "The writings of hyper-Calvinist abound in terms like 'then it must logically follow that...' The doctrine is based on human reasoning. For example, the hyper-Calvinist reasons that if God forknew what would occur, then He must have ordered it. If he know sin would come, then He must have planned the sin. Of coures the Bible never says that. It is a conclusion based only on the human reason."

So listen to Lawrences very works:
(08.09.04) "Anyone with a modicum of logic knows that if God has foreknowledge...then everything is really foreordained..." and later in the same article: "it is logically impossible in that God..."

So let's LOGICALLY see the real answer to their question of WHY DO PEOPLE HATE GOD, (part 6)
A. If I John 4:19 ("we loved because he first loved us") only applies to the predestined elect, as Engedi infers (07.26.04) then we simply delete I John 2:2 and 4:14 to make that piece logically fit.
B. So, if God's dictatorship-nature demands that "everything is foreordained" (08.09.04)
'anyone with a modicum of logic' can see that
C. God wanted - no, demanded - that many of the people he created, hate him.
Furthermore, we can deduct that
D. The non-elect really hate God because he first hated them and he designed them to hate him so that he could show how loving he is to the ones he chose not to hate, right? Amazing grace or psychotic grace?

So, logically, God loves for most of the people in the world to hate him. He planned it this way and it can't be stopped / thwarted. He created men to be fall guys. So by simply omitting that pesky John 3:16 verse also, we logically conclude that God's love demands a hate/hate relationship with most of humanity. And this MUST be the LOGICAL reason people hate God.

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Re: Brass knuckles

September 1 2004, 5:43 PM 

David Lawrence defines the "trinity" not after John Calvin or the Bible but the neo-Trinity which John Mark Hicks claims to have been promoted by Max Lucado and Rubel Shelly. This is not the classical trinity which shows that the personae of God are totally internal.

The tritheism which was uniquely invented by H. Leo Boles in 1942 is the true source of GRADING God 1, 2 and 3. And it is Rubel Shelly (Joke, ha, ha) who sees the Father "god" and the holy spirit "god" acing out the little naieve "son" god to get him to volunteer to come and die for mankind. David Lawrence agrees with this heretical view which WAS NOT held by the Restoration scholars:
    The wonderful meaning of the Trinity comes to personal reality for all of us Christians as we read the first chapter of Paul's letter to the Ephesians. The Triune God has accomplished our salvation. Each person of the Trinity contributes.
It must come as a surprise to history's scholars who declare that Paul NEVER speaks of the GODHEAD as separated into three persons. He never uses The Holy Spirit as one of the "gods" who CONTRIBUTES for this, HIS, dispensation. The Spirit is always the Spirit OF God or the Spirit OF Christ. Here is a quick look at Ephesians One where David Lawrence cannot get the OBJECT of predestination sorted out: The Bible never hints at God predesinating a PERSON to heaven or hell. But then the EXEGESIS is pretty warped. Did you know that the Greek resources directly connect words such as Musica, Cantus, Exegetice, Hermeneuto and others to MAGICA and SORCERY

In discussing we GOD HATERS for denying that God JUSTIFIES His own righteousness by picking out whom He will send to hell, David Lawrence appeals to Jonathan Edwards who was clearly a Calvinist. However, in an unpublished paper which he dared NOT publish Edwards had another view of the trinity.


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The Doctrine of Justification by Faith Alone

September 4 2004, 12:35 PM 

This is the title of Engedi's fall classes 2004, which will be conducted at some local denominational church in Nashville. I've been searching high and low and still can't find the Bible passages where 'faith alone' appears.

Lawrence says, in this article "when people encounter...God's grace, they weep, they rejoice", and "if any doctrine displays good fruit, it is surely this one" and "this rich and joyful doctrine...IS the Gospel."

It brings tears alright, when we consider all the people we've known over the years who did not name the Name of Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Tears to think that GOD himself expressly and individually chose for them to NOT see the Light. For every tear of joy there must be a thousand tears of agony that have been shed over this doctrine. Isn't 'Gospel' supposed to mean 'Good News'?
Where's the joy in God's unconditional hatred?

If the shedding of tears of joy is supposed to somehow validate a religious belief system how do you explain the dozens of tears many of us have seen shed after an individual gives their life to God and partakes in believers baptism? If tears of joy become the subjective way of knowing if a thing is right or wrong then maybe our spiritual goal should be to win an Olympic medal. We saw a lot of those folks shedding tears of joy, didn't we?

And regarding fruit, let's take a closer look at the general state of religion in the cradle of the Reformation movement: Europe. There's plenty of empty bushels and tree stumps over there today that bear witness to the transient nature of the fruit of this misleading doctrine. Ever wonder if one of the reasons God chose to bless America is because this barren teaching has been contested and rejected by so many believers for so long?!

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Ellis M.
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September 8 2004, 11:51 AM 

When Lawrence uses to docile phrases of 'faith only' and 'doctrines of grace' doesn't he actually mean PREDESTINAION?
Why doesn't he say this up front?
And why does Engedi's web page never name the people
which he often refers to as 'the board'? What ever
happened to integrity with these people?

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Honorable actions

August 14 2004, 12:11 PM 

If one didn't know any better you'd almost think Mr. Charlton is attempting to somehow act honorably in regard to this situation and his past actions. Would it not, therefore, behoove him to do the TRULY honorable thing and, as several former Smith Springs members have already done, formally affilitate himself with a religious group which DOES accept the tenets of the Westminster creedal system?

This would be the first step in a truly honorable repentance and maybe then we could actually give honor to whom honor is due.

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you are ignorant of the facts

May 18 2004, 4:11 PM 

I have had my doubts concerning the restored Church or what i believe to be faithful churches but through diligent study ,I, like the early restorers and prophets as they were told by God and faithful Saints throughout all of time came to the conclusion that man cannot get to heaven by any man-made doctrine or church. It would seem that peoples' lack of faith in God lead them to believe there is no absolute truth, doctrine or church. however the Bible teaches quite the opposite. many times in the old testament when the Hebrews would fall away from God the prophets would plead for restoration they(just as we) had adaquete documents and recordings to know how it was prior to their falling away. Before one comes to such outrageous conclusions one should examine their views and convictions more carefully. Compare and test them because if you speak the truth you will not fear sharing and defending those views and if they are found to be wrong do take a lesson from Biblical characters and change those wrong views. I constantly battle ignorance in science, religion, history, and polotics and I hate it when people are not willing to reason and come to a logical conclusion because faith is not irrational it is logical and can be proven. The type of ignorance and disreguard as was stated in the message i am responding infuriates God(not speaking for the Almighty) and me the most classifying oneself according to worldly standards remember this, "I am quite comfortable being labeled a conservative evangelical." well iI am not comfortable wearing any man-made name but I will settle for child of God, offspring of God, Christian, Saint, disciple of Christ, son of God. Adopting names that man has come up with so as not to offend non-Christians or denominationals is being carnal and it is impossible to please God if you are carnal I would not mind if carnal people would not teach anything that they are unsure of or say anything in rebutlebeing as they are never really sure of their own beliefs. So for all concerned come on keep challenging faithful churches maybe someday something will be said or done that will shine light on erraneous beliefs. Oh yeah did I mention I go to East Main church of Christ and am a member of the faithful Church it may very well be that not only churches which are called "churches of Christ" are faithful but it sure does seem that way.

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I am truly shocked and disheartened by what I have read here.

May 22 2004, 2:24 AM 

(I Corinthians 1:10-15, NAS) Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment. For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe’s people, that there are quarrels among you. Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, “I am of Paul,” and “I of Apollos,” and “I of Cephas,” and “I of Christ.” Has Christ been divided? Paul was not crucified for you, was he? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, so that no one would say you were baptized in my name.

Verse 12 (NIV) says, “What I mean is this: One of you says, ‘I follow Paul’; another, ‘I follow Apollos’; another, ‘I follow Cephas’; still another, ‘I follow Christ.’” This might be presently applied: You are a Calvinist (in this board, but one may insert any other label), but I am a Christian. Yes, Paul did not elevate those who said, “I follow Christ.” This was considered divisive.

So, what strikes me is this same type of labeling, intended, at least in part, to polarize the discussion. That is generally why the opposing sides use labels. How many Arminians are willing to acknowledge that they are, in fact, Arminians? How many Arminians have ever really studied Calvinism—that is, more than simply to refute predestination. I have met many Arminians who despised Calvinists and had never even heard of TULIP! Then again, how many Calvinists know anything more about Arminianism than “free will?” People are generally brought up one way or the other and with this is a genuine dislike and distrust for the opposition, usually set off by the use of labels. These people cement their beliefs by listening to like-minded individuals present the pros and cons of the different points of view, and most fail miserably at being truly impartial in their delivery. This does have an effect on less astute—that is, most—listeners.

We are faced with only two ideal and productive (yet, I realize, unrealistic) options: First to do away with the labels and treat people as individuals and address specific topics directly; and second, to embrace these labels. In this, everyone must accept his own position and stop defending his position as “non-denominational” or too pure to be labeled. If you use a label, it is an acknowledgement that labels exist and are worthy of use—therefore, you must accept labels of your own beliefs. It would be helpful if everyone took the time to educate themselves about these labels and were aware of the wide-ranging beliefs covered by them. Without a common language, or, at least, an understanding of these labels, discussion is doomed to frustration and, ultimately, to failure.

Besides, what is this website about? No one has solved any problems only publicized them. No Calvinist has been persuaded. No Arminian has been challenged. It seems to be a place where people can agree to rehash all of the differences they have with some other group or just to vent.

To my knowledge, Engedi Ministries has never denied its ties to the Reformation and Calvinism. If these terms are left out, I am sure it is only because of the baggage they carry before the message is heard. The basic message is one of hope and assurance in Christ, not that one has to be Reformed in order to pass through the pearly gates. Please notice that their first conference speakers represented more than one denomination—both Arminian and Calvinist. The topic doesn’t sound problematic either—“Restoring the Joy of Our Salvation.” It seems like they were trying to be thorough and encourage discussion based on different views of a specific topic—by the people who hold that particular view without any prejudice given by Engedi either for or against specific ideologies.

The Church of Christ, and all other Christ-believing denominations, needs to accept its place in this world and in God’s kingdom—we are all a part of both. There are things that need to be resisted, but it might be best if we started with fewer generalizations about “everyone” else who is doing it wrong. (Matthew 7:1-5, NAS) Jesus says, “Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” Perhaps we could spend more time trying to “get the log out of our own eyes” and less time calling others “heretics” and “cults” because we disagree with them—hey, maybe we could let God decide that. All we are doing is showing the world that we can’t get along with each other. What’s wrong with Calvinism? No free will? What’s wrong with Arminianism? Humans have too much of a role in securing salvation? Not enough focus on God’s sovereignty? I see no one is disputing that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who came to Earth and died for the redemption of sins. Bottom line, there are enough points of fundamental convergence for us all to get along. Are there too few lost souls out there for both? Why are we arguing? Not all Arminians agree with each other and not all Calvinists agree so why should we expect all Christians to agree? Is there an absolute? Yes. There are lines that Christians may not cross and remain Christians—but I have yet to see any such issue on this board. After all, man’s choice is presented in the Bible as are the terms “predestination” and “elect,” etc. The real disagreement seems to be a matter of degree. This will eventually and finally be settled—at judgment day by God himself!

If we concentrated a small percentage of the effort that we (Christians of all denominations) use to try to convince each other how wrong they are on the rest of the world, the lost world (if you remember the part still following Satan) wouldn’t stand a chance!

Both Calvinists and Arminians are arguing from the same book. To incorporate an analogy, they have both met at the tracks after approaching from different sides. They are still separated by the tracks yet are united by what they see. Each side has a slightly different view, based upon the point of origin, but neither can see everything and has to realize that their perception is incomplete and imperfect.

Consider what good we could be doing: most likely someone who sat near you last Sunday could have used a word or two of encouragement or there is someone in your neighborhood who needs help; meanwhile, we are too busy arguing amongst ourselves to see that our fruitless disagreements are keeping us from those who really need our help—many of whom need to hear about God! I guess it’s much easier to attack those with whom we disagree than those who are not exhibiting any desire to expand God’s kingdom on Earth.

Some need to deal with topics—instruments in worship, predestination, free will, baptism—and not people or denominations in generalities. Some of you have tried to do this, others may have tried but have failed. Some capitalize “presbyterian” as if it is a theological point of view. It is not. It is a form of church government (churches led by elders) which is applied to many groups who do not always see eye to eye or associated with one another because of their widely different views.

If you have a problem with a brother, take it to him, not cyberspace. If you have a problem with your congregation, take it to the elders or ministers or pastors, etc. Discuss your problems and issues with them. If they will not discuss it with you to your satisfaction then leave. The leaders of a congregation should be open to the members and anyone with specific and genuine questions, yet they must, and should, do what they believe Scripture teaches, even if you disagree. There are enough Bible-believing churches in most areas of the U.S. to accommodate the full range of beliefs held by Christians.

Part of that which separates us from the world is how we handle these disagreements. Coming here and slandering people, groups, and specific churches is 21st Century gossip emboldened by the fact that you can then remain anonymous. If you have specific problems then, by all means, bring them here and ask for prayers and ideas and encouragement—but leave out the names. Most of us can deal with these topics as hypothetical.

Stop letting Satan divide us. We all have the same enemy, and it is not other Christians.

(Matthew 13:24-30, NAS) “Jesus presented another parable to them saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went away. But when the wheat sprouted and bore grain, then the tares became evident also. The slaves of the landowner came and said to him, “Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?” And he said to them, “An enemy has done this!” The slaves said to him, “Do you want us, then, to go and gather them up?” But he said, “No; for while you are gathering up the tares, you may uproot the wheat with them. Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, ‘First gather up the tares and bind them in bundles to burn the up; but gather the wheat into my barn.’”

(Matthew 25:31-33, NAS) “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; and He will put the sheep on His right, and the goats on the left.”

God has told us that He will do the separating at the harvest.

Are there some things a Christian must believe and do as revealed in Scripture? Yes. Are there not many shared beliefs? To both the Calvinist and Arminian Scripture is infallible. Both believe in the importance of personal belief, confession, faith, repentance, baptism, etc. Could not both sides agree with the content of the Apostles’ Creed? What does this bickering gain us? Nothing, unless the goal is the irritation of both sides and mutual frustration at the unyielding opposition? This is not edification. This is not the way the “stronger brother” should act. I encourage everyone to read and study and pray over passages such as Romans Chapters 14-15 on this matter. Each of us has our gifts and may be the stronger brother in some areas while being the weaker brother at other times. Deal with your brothers as you would like to be treated, but deal with your brothers. Approach the brother or brothers with whom you have a problem, not the rest of the world—your brother has learned nothing. Belittling fellow Christians is not one of the attributes of a Christian revealed in Scripture. Be patient and kind. When we speak we must ask ourselves if it is for the purpose of edification or of encouragement. We must not let our disputes sever our common bonds and goals.

E. H.

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May 22 2004, 12:24 PM 

Dear, sweet, sweet E.H.

I suppose you would NOT be shocked if your elders were spooks from Gaylor, etc. What if they scrape the bottom of ethics and morality bucket and try to INFILTRATE Engedism into a college and church they KNOW does not believe in Calvinism. Presbyterianism speaks of church leadership: Calvinism teaches like the Old Testament pedagogue who is inconsistent with a Christian and Christianity.

Calvinism, engedi, Gaylor and SUBVERSIVELY at Smith springs believe that God picked US out from eternity past by a random sample to go to hell so that He could PROVE how glorious he is.

God then GIVES others faith, repentance and the Holy Spirit person to PUNCH THEIR TICKET that they are one of the few, the rare His Corp. Since historically few have gotten the signs because most Calvinistics are not charismatic, others have used antics like witchcraft, devil worship and Awakenings to GENERATE the feelings through "external means" just like Nimrod at the Towers of Babylon. Then, like the Calvinists TOKEN to be affirmed for "communion" this mental (sexual) breakdown is pawned for certification that you are PREDESTINATED.

They USE the faith- only passages by being BLINDED to the fact that God PREDESTINATED all sinful Jews and Gentiles to be united in one body (unified and not have the deliberate sowing of discord to steal a church building and part of the flock). Nor, can they read the faith or grace passages without understanding the rest of the evidence that baptism is the SHOWING ACT of the death and resurrection even as the Lord's Supper is the showing act of His Death. This is HOW God saves by grace through faith. Not, by "faith IN Grace."

Love is telling the truth. I am afraid that I suspect that the love you grasp is that the INVADED must not turn and ATTACK the INVADERS (A Rubel Shellyism)

There is NO BROTHERHOOD: the gospel is telling the truth without respect of persons or INVADING INSTITUTIONS. I do not WANT anyone to "join" a church institution like the PCA which is hyper Calvinistic. If you believe that God has selected and predestinated you without respect to your ethics or morality or spirituality, it is logical that you can STEAL the flocks of others without a shiver.

I can tell you that Jesus DID NOT build a secular institution called CIRCE after the holy whore of John's Patmos area. Nor did He say that we should worship GOD or GAD who is the tribal enemy of spiritual and the GOD OF FORTUNE. Jesus built a synagogue which is a school of the Bible. The elder's authority does not reach beyond ruling by teaching that which has been taught and REFUTING men like the Engedeites. Jesus said that the clergy laden people can come to Him for rest when we COME LEARN OF ME.

Islam is just as cock sure as the Engedies of the world and they are a LOT MORE ETHICAL and KINDER. Sure, it is much kinder to cut off a head than it is to deliberately sow discord and destroy the happy life of widows who labored and gave the UNLAWFUL and UNGODLY tithe and obeyed "the law of giving" to jack up the CIVIC PRIDE of the elders "more apt to chase a coon than teach the Bible "as it is written" in Paul's command to SYNAGOGUE in Romans 15 to solve the diversity of Romans 15.

Love is increasingly used as psychological violence to silence those who speak because they ARE OUTLAWED from speaking in the building they paid for.

I think not that you are AWAKE with your clothes with you. John Calvin notes that when a heresy is introduced it is resisted. However, as time goes on the heretics claim that you CANNOT RESIST because change is impossible (Isn't that your idea?). However, he refutes the idea that heresy gains credibility by how long it has existed. Change is not the idea: being end-time witnesses is what is going on and the COMMAND to go into all the world must begin at Smith Springs as a prime example of how Satan "steals your food" to kill you. As Amos would say: "hungering and thirsting for the Word of God and not being able to find it." How better than to take over largely- repudiated human instutations which are not REMOTELY what ekklesia or synagogue means.


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Re: Shocked

May 26 2004, 12:34 AM 

I am curious why you treat E.H with such condescension. It seems that he/she was quite reasonable, respectful, and loving in his/her tone, and I do not believe that the post was rude or abrasive.

I grew up at Smith Springs Church of Christ, and I am related to people on “both sides.” I witnessed the beginning of this conflict, and having been in such close proximity to the battles in question, I can say from experience that E.H.’s message is an important one.
Let me explain.
The situation at Smith Springs did not begin with a couple of elders or preachers and their hidden agendas; it began within the community. Although some studies were being conducted by the preachers and elders – and we would all hope that our elders and preachers would hold regular studies with the church members – they were ALL new to Calvinist theology. In fact, most of the elders did not even look at it until after it became an issue for the community as a whole. The issue of predestination came up, as it often does, as many members of the congregation – independent of any preacher’s or elder’s influence – were studying the Bible in their homes and in the classrooms, and when the eldership was asked to go on the offensive in an effort to quash such studies, they decided to study the issue thoroughly before proceeding. The fact is that a few people found these ideas fascinating because they had never heard of them before, or if they had, it had not been from an objective vantage point. There were so many questions to answer? What now? Here were several passages in the Bible that seemed to be suggesting that God had predestined individuals independent of what they had done or would do. Could we, as humans, have gotten it wrong? There are many denominations out there; were we all simply lucky enough to be born into a family that had all the right answers? Did other people know they were wrong? Could there be other perspectives with which one could read the Bible without compromising the integrity of the text itself? They were investigating these issues when the eldership was approached. The eldership came to a consensus, and plans were laid out concerning how best to bring this to the congregation. What followed was pain unlike any I had ever seen or experienced. Theological debates became personal attacks. Name calling. Labeling. Judgments. Make no mistake: BOTH sides were acting in a way that was so unloving that – even though none of it was directed at me – it is still painful for me to remember. The only thing that separated one side from the other was the terminology. I would rather forget about it, but I see it in on this page. I hear some say that the content is all important, and while I don’t downplay the importance of speaking the truth, I know from experience that words – even words in Scripture – are EMPTY without the movement of God’s love, power, and mercy through them as mediated through an individual’s relationship with Christ. Is that heresy? No. Satan used Scripture to tempt Christ, yet the message was distinct because it was not accompanied by the attributes of our God. As the conflict at Smith Springs worsened, I kept wondering: as Christians, shouldn’t something ELSE separate the truth from the lies? Shouldn’t the truth transform our entire being such that people will know by the manner in which we conduct ourselves – especially those with whom we disagree – that we are being molded by God? I have no illusions that such transformations are complete, but they are surely evident in one’s behavior. Is God more concerned that we won the argument, or that we mediated the Love of God in such a way that both individuals involved in ANY interaction felt uplifted? Truth is not only made up of factual information, but also of behaviors, thoughts, and actions. If the truth is in your words, let your actions demonstrate this truth by walking in love as Christ loved us. I see little of that here save in E.H.’s message. E.H. has simply asked that we find a loving way to engage each other in the debate, and this involves setting aside our self-righteous notions and allowing the love of God to direct us as we proceed. Maybe someone will even develop some friends in Christ as a result of a conversation rooted in mutual love for each other and for our Lord.
Well said, E.H. I thank God for demonstrating His Love through you.


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Smith Springs, Hohenwald, ETC.

May 22 2004, 8:49 PM 

It seems, in looking back to some of the early entries, that the reason for this forum was not to tear down, divide, or critize congregations of the Church of Christ that are attempting to worship as the Church of Christ has worshipped for centuries but rather an attempt at stopping the theft of Churches by infiltrating them with doctrines long held by other dissimiliar churches.

An already established Church, any Church, has a right to teach and practice according to the founders faith and practice as long as it is bible authorized. An already established church has the right to be protected from those who will bypass the normal route of buying property, borrowing to build the place of worship only to take over or "steal" this already established Church.

This type of theft would never be tolerated in the secular world. Imagine going to work for an established business or becoming a student of a college or university and by cunning deceit and over a period of time simply say to it's owners "Hey, I am taking over your business or college". You can stay or leave but if you remain you will do as we say. This has worked in many of our so-called christian colleges.

This theft of church property and membership has not been restricted to the Church of Christ but seems to be more pronounced because of the Church's long held beliefs regarding the type of music authorized by the bible, the position of women in the worship, reason for baptism, etc.

To take control of a church by deceit, fraud, misrepresentation,and run off a large percentage of it's members should be accepted as "theft". What other description could apply? The take-over is very subtle and secret until too late to be stopped.

The Lords's church is worth defending and protecting. Who is to do the earthly business of protecting the sheep when the shepherds become sick from eating the wrong spiritual food?

It is true that name calling can be hurtful but then how is the christian world to know what is attacking the flock and what is making them sick?

Again, this is not only happening in and to the Church of Christ but is gaining momentum in the Baptist and other religious groups. It is gaining everywhere due to Greed and greed only. It is happening because everyone wants a quick fix to the problem of lower church attendance and the book sellers, lecturers, preachers and leaders only will win as many churches trying the "Purpose Driven approach" are falling behind in numbers and spirituality.

I personally would like to see this forum deal more with eradicating (impossible)preachers, elders, writers, etc. who have only their own self interest in mind. Gods word is enough if we would only follow it. God's word has been watered down by the NIV to the point that it is not a safe guide. Is this an opinion? The facts speak for themselves. Just check the comparison and discover that the NIV was written by liberal writers wishing to make it attractive and appealing to the holders of big bucks and those wanting it their way rather than God's way.

If you are a critic of this forum and its founder, that is fine. If you disagree with the method, that is fine. If you have a better, biblical way to stop the spread of this infectious disease called liberalism you should submit it. If you believe liberalism is the way to go then you are disbelieving the scripture which teaches that that there is "one way" and not many ways.

It is disappointing to see the lack of responders wanting to see this disease stopped. It is discouraging and heart breaking to see so many responders with a total lack of love for truth and their fellow man. One old preacher used to say that you can catch more flies with honey than you can with vinegar.

Not everyone who disagrees is a sexual pervert. I am wondering if a person can teach or preach or learn the route to salvation with the New Testament only? Do we really need the Old Bible which was nailed to the Cross for our proof text? If it were totally destroyed, could we learn the plan of salvation and worship according to Gods desire? Why not restrict our discussions to the New Testament, after all any new testament voids the prior one doesn't it?


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You still don't get it

May 27 2004, 12:57 PM 

Interesting statement: "An already established Church, any Church, has a right to teach and practice according to the founders faith and practice as long as it is bible authorized. An already established church has the right to be protected from those who will bypass the normal route of buying property, borrowing to build the place of worship only to take over or "steal" this already established Church."

It is Christ's church. He founded it. He died for it. He died for us. I will follow his teachings and practices as simply outlined in the Bible. Not what I feel, not what I think. He is the master. I am the servant.

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Re. You still dont get it

May 28 2004, 8:22 AM 

If you are a servant, then I trust you will not be introducing any practices that would harm or destroy Christ's church.

Ephesians 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.

Notice no autority for destruction, but only the authority to build/edify. You won't find authority to destroy anywhere else in the NT either. So, I'd be pretty safe in saying that man's selfish desires are authorizing the destruction that is occuring.

As to BJ's statement about founders, how do you know he was not referring to The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit? Quit getting so hung up on semantics. Even if he/she did mean someone from the 1800's if their faith followed Christ and the example set for us in scripture would it matter? Wouldn't the "founder" really have been Christ reflected through that person anyway? Then we have gone full circle back to Eph 4:12. Where is the authority to destroy. Upon that destruction who should have a millstone tied around their neck when someone falls? The ones trying to help the one who is falling, or the one who is causing the fall?


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"T" misunderstands founders

May 28 2004, 4:38 PM 

1 Corinthians 3
5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

Thanks Steve Black for attempting to explain to T what I failed to accomplish. Every new organization, club, church, etc. has a founder or founders. Any new congregation of the Lords Church obviously accepts Christ as it's founder but mortal man is the tool(founder) used to personally call in the people and rent or build a facility to meet in. To say that any congregation of the Lords church just mysteriously happened would be foolish. That is not the way the master founder works.

If a Baptist church is planted then it should follow the baptist theology. If A Church of Christ congregation is planted, it's planters,(founders) should expect to worship according to the founders (Christ) wishes and not be taken over or stolen by those desiring to follow, Max, Rubel, Jeff, T, Anon, etc. driving away countless precious souls who have attempted for their entire lives to worship as the bible teaches. Those folks knew nothing of Rubel, Max, liberalist, progressives, promise keepers, Purpose Driven, Jubilee, Winterfest, etc. They only knew Jesus, Paul, The other apostles, prophets,and Peter and their teachings.

T, that is what this writer meant and if my explanation seems a little juvenile then so be it.
Maybe I should have used the term "planted" but then I suppose there would have been objections and possibly a little sarcism.


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June 3 2004, 9:38 PM 

Interesting site here especially with the apparent double standard one side feels God allows them to have. How interesting that one side's response is unholy sawing while the new kids on the block whack away with the axe they've apparently been grinding for a few years, and that represents godly behavior. They feel the liberty to be allowed to flail away but the minute the termites in their 'grace' theology are exposed then the language suddenly becomes unholy and unwholesome talk (complete with proof text.) Please..........maybe there are a few needy, gullible folks out there who'll fall for this old ploy but surely the majority can see this hypocrisy.

This is the type of distorted eloquence and nonsensical phrasology (used by T.Alex.)that one would expect from the enlightened rhetoric of someone who attends Vanderbilt for their religious training.

And to infer that informed men haven't made an honest attempt to discuss these matters with D.Lawrence is not reality. Do you really think this man has been banned from speaking in chapel at Lipscomb for no reason? Awaken from your trance people.

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Anon and G.L

June 5 2004, 8:20 PM 

Please explain the content of your message in laymen terms. May seem clear to the writer but this reader is in the dark trying to understand your references. You probably have good points but please clarify in simple language and what exactly you have reference to. Sorry if I am slow.

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Dean similiarity

June 3 2004, 7:50 PM 

I've read the accusations and sometimes boastful claims (including the alleged imminent demise of the church of christ) by those who've aligned themselves with Lawrence, Hale,
I feel like I'm reading memos from Howard dean's campaign manager:
"He didn't say that" or
"He didn't mean that". It's so predicatable that we already know the next smoke screen:
"He didn't mean to say that - not like that."

Haven't we all heard this mumbo jumbo before; doesn't Washington already have enough of it?

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the oasis is a mirage

August 13 2003, 10:46 AM 

Don't forget that Engedi was on the way to MASADA! And it was the favorite watering hole of the GOATS!

Here is some of the HERD Engedi browses with:

Edward Fudge's page announced:

Sunday, November 21, 1999 - North Madison Church of Christ - Madisonville, Texas.
.....Three sermons on ways that God GUIDES his people TODAY. Audio tapes are available for a gift of $15, videotapes are available for a gift of $25. Send your check with your order to North Madison Church of Christ, P.O. Box 520, Madisonville, TX 77864. Phone: (409) 348-1025.

April 11, 2003 - Faith Christian REFORMED Church - Nashville, Tennessee.
.....Edward spoke on the topic "What is the Gospel?" at Faith Christian Reformed Church in Nashville, Tennessee, as part of a gospel forum sponsored by ENGEDI MINISTRIES. To order an audio tape, see

April 30 - May 2, 2003 - Pepperdine University Annual Bible Lectures - Malibu, California.
.....Edward taught three classes on the GIFT of Christian PROPHECY during the PEPPERDINE University Annual Bible Lectures in Malibu, California on April 30 - May 2. Tapes of the classes are available from Gaylor MultiMedia, Inc. by phone (1-615-641-6411), by mail (3026 Owen Drive., Suite 108, Antioch, TN 37013) or via website (

Edward Fudge's defense of instrumental music and ANTI- EVERTHING held by churches of Christ.

Fudge: "As a Christian, I applaud Zoroastrianism as a precurser to Christianity."

The core or BULL'S-EYE-THING gospel. This is a Shellyism

Fudge: Baptism a SIGN and SEAL. The REFORMED creed.

You CAN define BIRDS by their FLOCK and GOATS by their SMELL.

Ken Sublett

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John 3:1"A" Sproul connection

August 18 2003, 9:24 PM 

Sorry, I just looked at the mailbox: thanks for your kind words and documentation. One background article shows just how easy it is to PROP UP a false dogma by NOT paying attention to the pseudo-"scholarship."

David Lawrence quotes R. C. Sproul on 1 John 31A! He attempts to blow up the words BEHOLD and CALLED and LIMIT God's love. He says that "Behold is a FORCEFUL COMMAND to pay attention." The reason for such a SPECIAL word "BEHOLD" is that John is about to tell us: that we are CALLED the sons of God. Apparently this has some PREDESTINATION message. The NIV overlooks the word "Idete" which, David Says is an IMPERATIVE FORM of the verb "to see." This is SPECIAL that we hold our thoughts long enough to see that we are CALLED.Here is the NIV which "misses the point." But this is not the fact.

...."How GREAT is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be CALLED children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 1 John 3:1NIV

Here is the KJV which REVEALS this word "behold" that we don't mistake the idea that God REALLY DOESN'T love everyone.

...."BEHOLD, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be CALLED the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. 1 John 3:1

What we MIGHT miss if we don't get AROUSED by the word BEHOLD is just this:

DAVID LAWRENCE: "The Holy Spirit has John write these words because the announcement is something so AMAZING and WONDERFUL that it should absolutely overwhelm us every time we confront it. And what is it? That the Father loves us! He has lavished his love on us! But what is so special about that? Doesn't God love everybody?
....Not in this sense, he doesn't'! Because not everybody is called a child of God!

I am not sure that I would be happy and AMAZED with my departed mother if she had ever said: "I love you but I despise bubba so much that I am going to use him as fuel under the SOAP POT." I would think about locking old mom up. I certainly COULD NOT love her. Mom loved us all because we were UNLOVABLE.

But when NO ONE was lovable God concluded ALL under sin. This puts ALL including the "predestinated Jews" on the same level with Gentile "dogs." Then, He LOVED us all enough to reveal Himself is a lowly Jew "predestinated" to be clased with the DESPISED. WHY would God go to all of that trouble if His (God's) LOVE is LIMITED only to those whom He, not just KNEW would accept Him, but those whom He had PICKED OUT and given the power to become the CHILDREN of God. Not to those who had been PREDESTINATED but John said:

"He came unto his own, and his OWN received him not. Jn 1:11
..."But AS MANY as received him, to THEM gave he POWER TO BECOME the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Jn.1:12

Why wouldn't John speak of predestination?

Those who RECEIVE Him are made children by the WILL of God. Of Course, God's WILL is predestinated or predetermined. God makes us SONS by HIS WILL when we RECEIVE Christ. The HUMANITY of God in the flesh is the FOCAL POINT. Can we believe that--

...."For God so loved the WORLD, that he gave his only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH in him SHOULD NOT perish, but have everlasting life. Jn.3:16

Is God a liar? God is pictured as FATHER who will not give his child a SNAKE when he asks bread. Is that a lie? Does THIS Father love ONLY the PREDESTINATED while secretly planning to BURN your child in an eternal hell? No. There is NO WAY to modify CALVINISM without believing this because it is BUILT ON THE FOUNDATION of "original sin." YOUR child burns in hell because ADAM and EVE were wholly seduced by Satan. Since it is clear that only a TINY REMNANT will be saved, WHY doesn't this make Satan more powerful than God?


The verb used by John DOES NOT CARRY the pregnancy claimed by Sproul and David Lawrence:

....Eido (g1492) i'-do; a prim. verb; used only in certain past tenses, the others being borrowed from the equiv. 3700 and 3708; prop. to SEE (lit. or fig.); by impl. (in the perf. only) to KNOW: - be AWARE, behold, * can (/ not tell), consider, (have) know (-ledge), look (on), perceive, SEE, be sure, tell, understand, wish, wot.

In the Gospel of John the word simply means SAW or SEE. There is no remote connection to John using the word BEHOLD as a way to ALERT just SOME of us to the secret message in the word "love of God" or "called." This is just getting pregnant on stubble and giving birth to straw.

....Jesus SAW Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile Jn.1:47

This is the common word used for SEE:

....And when he came to his disciples, he SAW a great multitude about them, and the scribes questioning with them. Mk.9:14

So what? This proves that Sproul who identifies with Engedi and therefore Smith Sprints is just FLAT WRONG. If you examine THE REST OF THE STORY of ANY Calvinist, however HIGH, you will find that they DECEIVE by taking bits and pieces. In this passage it is 1 John 3:1"A". Furthermore, Sproul looked up the NORMAL word for SEE and substituted the word for SURPRISE. The word PREDESTINATED traps them in a CLOSED LOOP. They knew that it was IRRATIONAL to see God giving a new mother a new child to train her up as a Christian while the mother, totally ignorant, WONDERS if she is investing ALL of her life on this lovely child not knowing that it is a DRACULA. NOT LOVED by a God who is SPIRIT but also LOVE. I don't believe that even Hitler would do that to a good Gentile mother.

WE CAN LOOK AT SIMILAR WORDS TO GAIN INSIGHT BUT IT IS NOT HONEST TO DO SO AND BUILD THE DOGMA OF ORIGINAL SIN AND PREDESTINATION ON IT AND DECLARE THAT THOSE WHO DO NOT ACCEPT THIS AS ATHEISTS. This lie gives assurance ONLY to those who gain assurance by repudiating the WORD of the SON. It creates a life of ANXIETY for those who CANNOT see the MYSTERIES. This is like ASKING God for bread and having God give them a serpent to STING for their life and for eternity. It is as insane as the postmodern view spewing out of universities and pulpits. But, H. Bamford Parks identiefs the PRIEST CRAFT as the Oldest profession. Prophets and priests were ELECTED because of some emotional or sexual abnormality. So, don't be surprized that if over 900 will go to Jonestown, many in your church will drink Calvinistic Koolaid to GAIN APPROVAL of the cult-like leaders

The AMAZING word does not appear in First John:

...IDE (g2396) id'-eh; second pers. sing. imper. act. of 1492; used as interj. to denote SURPRISE; lo!: - behold, lo, see

An example of SURPRISE is:

....The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, Perceive ye how ye prevail nothing? BEHOLD, the world is gone after him. Jn.12:19

...."BEHOLD, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. Ga.5:2

And Jesus asked:

...."Why askest thou me? ask them which heard me, what I have said unto them: BEHOLD, they know what I said. Jn.18:21

The STARTLING fact is that "BEHOLD, Jesus said GO into ALL the world and preach the gospel to EVERY CREATURE. And the PREDESTINATED PLAN was that "he THAT BELIEVES and is baptized shall be saved." Faith in the man Jesus was the KEY which gave one the POWER TO BECOME SONS (children.)

What a lie if Jesus was giggling KNOWING that only those to whom He was preached, and those TO WHOM He would give faith, and to whom He would GIVE REPENTANCE and to whom He did not really mean ALL CREATURES who believed and were baptized but ONLY those He knew from eternity- past that He as Father WOULD NOT EVEN LOVE THEM.


David Lawrence really TELLS the question: Are they CALLED to be sons in a predestinated sense: is a SON one who has been predestinated, called, given faith, given repentance, given remission of sins, given salvation and GIVEN direction for EVERY act of their lives?

Or does God CALL us sons when we are CALLED by the gospel and have faith through hearing, have power to repent or change our minds and direction and have power to REQUEST a clear conscience or A holy spirit promised ONLY to those who are baptized in water and purged of sin IN their spirit? Where is it promised that God remits the sins ONLY of the predestinated? Where is it promised that God ADD to the body ONLY those who are predestinated.? At Jerusalem, those who believed, repented and were baptized received A holy spirit which is the spirit OF sonship. They were then ADDED to the church and CALLED children of God because they were added to the BODY of Christ.

The word CALLED does not mean the ELECTING of PREDESTINATION. That is, God does not CALL those predestinated and bestow A spirit of Sonship. The word CALLED never means PREDESTINATED. It means that in the view of baptism one is CALLED when Aaron the master tentmaker puts out a CALL for an apprentice, a possible disciple CALLS BACK in response, and the tentmaker calls him to "sonship" only after baptizing him. He is not then called John ben Joseph but John ben Aaron. The word CALLED is:

..KALEO (g2564) kal-eh'-o; akin to the base of 2753; to "call" (prop. aloud, but used in a variety of applications, dir. or otherwise): - bid, call (forth), (whose, whose SURNAME (was [called]).

...."And she shall bring forth a SON, and thou shalt CALL his NAME JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. matt 1:21

...."Whereunto he CALLED you BY our gospel, to the OBTAINING of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Thes 2:14

It is not PREDESTINATION where God put the POWER but in the Gospel. Those who are CALLED by the Gospel then obey it and then give glory to the Lord Jesus Christ by PERMITTING the holy God of the universe to DECIDE how he will accept the ALL SINNERS into relationship as sons. You cannot GLORIFY GOD by accusing Him of "having respect of persons" in hand selecting His sons. James says that respect of persons makes one guilty of ALL of the laws of Moses. Can you glorify GOD by accusing Him of being a MASTER LAWBREAKER?

The prophesy or PREDESTINATED PURPOSE of God was that ALL CREATURES be given an opportunity to become as LITTLE CHILDREN and be enrolled as children of God. The method of adoption is to give the child your name. Thereafter, the child is CALLED your child. Because ADULTS must conform to the plan of Christ to adopt them, they must RESPOND to the CALL and they are not FORCED to be children of God when they HATE God, hate His Son, hate the very concept of living a disciplined life and cannot stand to be in the presence of Christians. And especially when one hates the church of Christ so violently that he can CALL them ATHEISTS! The "new style worship" hates the SON because they want to make intimate contact with the SPIRIT father. They repudiate God's call for us to follow the pattern of Christ and speak only what He has told us to speak. And Jesus NEVER spoke of predestination. Therefore, this and the dishonest use of proof 1/2 verses proves that THEY know that they do not have a case. However, when you repudiate the body of Christ and the Word you have been blinded "by the sharp corner of your own wisdom."

Children are already HUMBLED and have not taken on the hatred of God. They simply obey the laws of childhood even if Chuck Swindoll identifies their cries of pain or want as PROOF that they are born as little devils. They have no sin because sin is "the violation of a law." Where there is no law their is no penalty. The Hebrew people live hundreds of years without Law. Those who violated natural law DID NOT participate in Adam's sin.

Jesus said EVERY CREATURE of all nations (Gentiles) are CALLED by the Gospel. Jesus apparently did not know that God only loves those whom He has predestinated. The "name" singular of father, son and spirit is Jesus or Jehovah- Saves: you cannot accept Calvin without calling Jesus and the apostles liars. It is no wonder that Calvinism is increasingly repudiated when people grasp that they have God-given FREE WILL as Augustine confessed.

Commentary on Homer

...."Castor and Polydeuces are both CALLED SONS of Tyndareus, while their sister Helen is CALLED a DAUGHTER of Zeus, and Clytaemnestra, again, a CHILD of Tyndareus. In the Homeric hymns (17 and 33) the two sons are CALLED both Dios kouroi and Tundaridai...

Ken Sublet

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Re: John 3:1&quote;A&quote; Sproul connection

August 31 2003, 12:05 PM 

A Presbyterian speaks of the STANDARD CODA and 1 John 3:1

"Let me first note that I truly love this passage especially because it has become the standard coda (musical ending?) of our congregation's (infant) BAPTISMAL, when the pastor, accompanied by the parents, carries the child away from the baptismal (sprinkling) font toward the congregation, then goes all the way down the center aisle, showing him/her to the congregation, and concluding with those words:
...."SEE what love the Father has given us: that we should be CALLED God's children--AND SO WE ARE!"

David Lawrence giving R. C. Sproul the GLORY notes:

"LISTEN to this! BEHOLD! We are "called" the sons of God. John adds simply but powerfully: "esmen," which the KJV does not translate at at all, and the NIV translates
...."And that is WHAT WE ARE!" It really says simply but proufoundly AND WE ARE!

However, this Presbyterian infant was CALLED in the Calvinistic sense and had some water thrown in its face to cleanse if from ADAM'S SIN. One does not BECOME a child of God by a predestinated CALLING: one becomes a SON by a NEW BIRTH of Water and Spirit AFTER they have been born as FLESH.

DANGER XXX: Paul associates the ORIGINAL SIN with one who is WHOLLY SEDUCED in the same way that a Wife fornicates before marriage. Contemperaneous literature sees the ORIGINAL SIN as SODOMY. Because Lucifer was bisexual and the literature has her transforming herself into an image of male and female, later literature interprets the sin as singing, dancing, playing instruments, using seductive clothing and resulting to sexuality and PERVERTED sexuality. This is the same LUCIFER as the singing and harp-playing prostitute as the king of Tyre and of Babylon.

THE GREEK ESMEN does not carry any CALVINISTIC message that we are sons of God by being "called" or "ELECT" sense.

...Esmen (g2070) es-men'; first pers. plur. indic. of 1510; WE ARE: - are, be, have our being, * have hope, / [the gospel] was [preached unto] us.

The element of CALVINISM is not there. The word is used in both the KJV and the NIV to mean WE ARE: It was a Greek parable or saying that we are not JUST ADOPTED but are regenerated and become children of God. In the Bible we are adopted to Christ in the physical sense but we are BORN OF GOD at baptism.

....For in him we live and move and have our being.' As some of your own poets have said, 'We are his offspring.' Ac.17:28NIV
....For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own POETS have said, For we are also his offspring. Ac.17:28KJV

...."Castor and Polydeuces are both CALLED SONS of Tyndareus, while their sister Helen is CALLED a DAUGHTER of Zeus, and Clytaemnestra, again, a CHILD of Tyndareus. In the Homeric hymns (17 and 33) the two sons are CALLED both Dios kouroi and Tundaridai...Homeric Hymns


THE KJV uses the word "Emsen" in verse 2 so it cannot be charged with failing to support some NEW REVELATION:

..BEHOLD, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be CALLED (addressed, not ELECTED) the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. 1 John 3:1KJV
....Beloved, now ARE (Emsen g2070) we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. 1 John 3:2KJV


1Joh 3:1 (GNT) idete potaphn agaphn dedwken hmin o pathr, ina tekna qeou klhqwmen, kai esmen. dia touto o kosmos ou ginwskei hmas, oti ouk egnw auton.
....1Joh 3:1 (NASU) See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and [SUCH] we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.

In another passage the NIV fails to be consistent:

...And hereby we know that we ARE (emsen) of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. 1 Jn 3:19KJV

..This then is how we know that we BELONG to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence 1 Jn 3:19NIV

Homer continues to show the source of a superstitious view that pagans were SONS OF GOD:

Hermes, crawled out of his BIRTH BED, found a turtle, made it into a GOD by gouging out its life and stringing its guts to make a harp. With this harp the infant stole Apollo's cows (worshipers) and forced them to walk backward to hide his THEFT BY MUSIC: a God at birth. DOES THIS SOUND POSTMODERN, POST-BIBLICAL AND POST CHRISTENDOM ERA?

(ll. 503-512) Afterwards they two, the all-glorious SONS of Zeus turned the cows back towards the sacred meadow, but themselves hastened back to snowy Olympus, delighting in the LYRE. Then wise Zeus was glad and made them both friends.
....And Hermes loved the SON of Leto continually, even as he does now, when he had given the LYRE as token to the Far-shooter, who played it skilfully, holding it upon his arm.
.....But for himself Hermes found out another CUNNING ART and made himself the PIPES whose sound is heard afar.

(ll. 513-520) Then the SON of Leto said to Hermes: `Son of Maia, guide and cunning one, I fear you may steal form me the lyre and my curved bow together;
....or you have an office from Zeus, to establish deeds of barter amongst men throughout the fruitful earth. Now if you would only swear me the great oath of the gods, either by nodding your head, or by the potent water of Styx, you would do all that can please and ease my heart.'

But as for sooth-saying, noble, heaven-born child, of which you ask, it is NOT LAWFUL for you to LEARN IT, nor for any other of the deathless gods: only the MIND of Zeus knows that.
....I am pledged and have vowed and sworn a strong oath that no other of the eternal gods save I should know the wise-hearted counsel of Zeus. And do not you, my brother, bearer of the golden wand, bid me tell those DECREES which all- seeing Zeus INTENDS.

As for MEN, I will HARM one and PROFIT another, sorely PERPLEXING the tribes of unenviable men. Whosoever shall come GUIDED by the CALL and flight of birds of sure omen, that man shall have advantage through my voice, and I will not deceive him.
....But whoso shall trust to idly-chattering birds and shall seek to INVOKE my PROPHETIC ART contrary to my will, and to understand MORE than the eternal GODS, I declare that he shall come on an IDLE journey; yet HIS GIFTS I would take.

By pointing us to the POETS we discover the FATHER of the notion of PREDESTINATION fro ZEUS.

Ken Sublett

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Smith Springs: the ELECT

July 24 2003, 9:07 AM 

--"Elect according to the FOREKNOWLEDGE of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. 1 Pet 1:2

God elected because He FOREKNEW but He did not pull the strings. To know before does PREPLANS or pre-invites but does not RESTRICT FREE WILL. What God KNEW he foreknow: Know is:

--Proginsko (g4267) prog-in-oce'-ko; from 4253 and 1097; to KNOW BEFOREHAND, i.e. foresee: - foreknow (ordain), know (before).

People FORE knew Paul but they did not predestinate him:

----Which KNEW me from the BEGINNING, if they would testify, that after the most straitest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee. Ac.26:5

"Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye KNOW these things BEFORE, beware lest ye also,

-----being led away with the error of the wicked, FALL FROM your own stedfastness. 2Pe.3:17

Peter understood that God FOREKNEW that people would be saved at the time and place of baptism:

--The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us

----(not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer (request for) of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ: 1 Peter 3:21

And Paul understood that baptism was an option:

--Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Heb.10:22

We become the elect when we become children:

--THE elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth; 2 John 1:1

----For the truths sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever. 2 John 1:2

------I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father. 2 John 1:4


Does God MAKE both Jew and Gentile SINNERS?" No, He KNEW that all had sinned and come short of the PRE-PLAN for all people.

---But the scripture hath CONCLUDED ALL under sin, that the promise by FAITH of JESUS Christ might be given to them THAT BELIEVE. Gal 3:22

---FOR ye are ALL the children of God BY FAITH in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:26

---FOR as MANY of you as have been BAPTIZED into Christ have put on Christ. Gal 3:27

What is that PREDESTINED plan? None are justified by keeping the LAW OF MOSES. IN Jesus Christ, BOTH Jew and Gentile are One Body. The PREDESTINATED PLAN was made by the Spirit of Christ to Abraham:

--There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are ALL ONE in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:28

----And if ye be Christs, then are ye Abrahams seed, and heirs according to the PROMISE. Gal 3:29

Did God's PROMISE cause all to be ELECTED? No, ALL receive the PRE-promise who are baptized into Christ. God's promise is God's pre-destined will for everyone.

--Epaggelia (g1860) ep-ang-el-ee'-ah; from 1861; an announcement (for information, assent or PLEDGE; espec. a divine assurance of good): - message, promise.

----Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the PROMISE might be sure to all the seed; NOT to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the FAITH of Abraham; who is the FATHER of us all, Ro.4:16

Remember that Abraham was NOT a Jew.

Abraham lived BEFORE the Law of Moses and therefore was justified WITHOUT THE LAW. However, God says that Abraham was justified BY FAITH when he kept God's commandments.

--And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; Gen 26:4

----BECAUSE that Abraham OBEYED my voice, and kept my CHARGES, my COMMANDMENTS, my STATUTES, and my LAWS. Gen 26:5

We will post a fuller study later at this page:

Ken Sublett

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Fallacy #1: 'it alone gives God the glory'

August 14 2003, 8:57 PM 

"I want to do everything I can in my life that gives the most glory to my God." That just sounds right and honorable doesn't it?

It has become a sort of rallying cry of many calvinists over the years. Even at the conclusion of many of his weekly devotional presentations Mr. Lawrence, of engedi,
(their not for profit ministry that has been up and running about 3 years now) signs off with the latin phrase that Luther coined for this: SOLI DEO GLORIA.
So what could possibly be misleading about such a spiritual sounding phrase: 'to God alone be the glory'?
Just this: if someone's personal ideas, biases, and
experiences have created some distortion in God's true
will, a leader can MISlead people in some detrimental ways, even if done with a clear conscience and good motives. Just look back at the first sentence of this
message: "I" & "my" got 4 times more recognition than God himself!

There are no clearer examples of the weakness of this
logic than the two Sauls of the Bible.
1. God had given King Saul specific instructions about
what he considered the most GLORIFY-ing way to deal with conquered heathen nations: completely destroy them. But we read in I Samuel 15 that Saul, in all sincerely apparently, had an even better plan: offer some of the spoils as additional sacrifices (v.15).
I'm sure all of his aides were there giving big nods of approval and saying "brilliant idea King - bonus
offerings - ingenious!" But we know the story, and how
God's prophet Samuel went so far as to call Saul's
actions actions EVIL (v.19). Even though he thought
he had obeyed (v.20) Samuel told him that to TRULY
"obey is better than sacrifice" (v.22). Saul was honest enough with himself and those he had unintentionally misled to confess that he had indeed
done wrong, even though he acted with an honest and
sincere heart.
2. In Acts, a young Pharisee, the other Saul, was just
certain that he had been divinely prompted to seek to
give the most possible glory to God by persecuting a
newly formed sect, started by someone he considered
a misguided Jewish Nazarene extremist. It took a physically blinding experience for Saul to comprehend
just how blind he had been in his attempts to glorify
God. Could this very group, this engedi, be doing the
same thing in their community today - thinking they are glorifying God to the highest when they are actually,
like sincere Saul, persecuting God's church??

This reformed misconception - that their way is the ONLY way that gives God all the glory - has been so
overused over the centuries (and continued by many of
them even to this day) that it has received it own
official descriptive term in theological circles today.
It is the fallacy called THEOLOGISM.

NONE of this is new, people. Some new group has just
decided to put a new wrapper on the leftover Halloween
candy from last October.

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Touch E.
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exposing the 'glory to God' business

August 22 2003, 6:38 PM 

When a student of the Word begins to get his ears tickled by how one particular group of church fathers (i.e. humans) interpreted the Word (i.e. human creeds
and councils), as he does the Word itself, he begins a
perilous journey into the very heart of Humanism. History, especially religious history, shows just how
clearly this THEOLOGISM is actually a form of idolatry.

Humanism assumes that MY understanding, especially if I'm merely echoing 'fathers' that I happen to agree with at the time, (even if the logic is based on human philosophers and forces me to ADD TO the scriptures) must be the one right way, and exactly as
God sees everything. Now my human understanding becomes my god.
* Celibacy. In the opinion of those who are so inclined, this lifestyle gives more glory to God. Just think about it: by not having to devote time to a spouse and family you have more time to give more glory to God! There's even a verse that says that very thing (I Cor. 7:33,34) and Jesus himself, a bachelor, used similiar language (Matt.19:11,12).
But when remaining single becomes the ONLY way for everyone, problems arise. See I Timothy 4:3.
**Missionaries. 'I can give more glory to God by sacrificing comforts I would have back home and devote my time to spreading the gospel.' It's correct thinking, until you begin to think that everyone who ISN'T a foreign missionary is intentionally choosing a lifestyle that gives less glory to God than yours.
***More than a few cults have been able to convince their followers that you can glorify God most by being willing to sacrifice your own life for the Cause. They can even point to Foxe's Book of Martyrs as proof.
****With this reasoning it is only a small step for a devout Muslim to say to a Christian 'the most glory can be given to Allah by doing exactly what you say the God of Abraham was willing to do (and what he even suggested to Abraham himself): sacrifice his own son.' And in Jerusalem another bus is destroyed killing innocents, by a bomb laden firstborn.

Romans 14:16 reads "Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil."

A noted contemporary author and scholar, Norman Geisler, has devoted a great deal of his recent study to exposing many of the core errors in this new version of reformed thinking. He clearly explains the error of this 'all glory to God' approach in a recent book.
"Etienne Gilson, in his classic work THE UNITY OF PHILOSOPHICAL EXPERIENCE, identifies an error at the heart of extreme Calvinism: 'theologism.' Briefly, this is the fallacy of assuming that the view that seems to give the most glory to God is true. Extreme Calvinists resort time and again to this position.
After all (even) deist have argued that it gives more glory to God to believe that he created a world in which He never intervenes in the same way that it brings more glory to a mechanic to make a perfect machine that never needs repair.
...Extreme Calvinists argue that the less credit given to man, the more glory given to God. And, God will get the most glory if creatures have absolutely nothing to do with their saalvation, not even exercising their free choice to receive it."
[Forum note:compare Engedi, Short Studies, Ephesians]
"However, this does not follow since truth is NOT DETERMINED BY WHAT APPEARS TO GLORIFY GOD but by what actually fits the facts..evidence of Scripture and good reason..."

God gets the most glory when we stop trying to complicate the simple Truth with analytical pre-Christian era philosophers and take it back to the
seaside, like Jesus did.

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Sharon M.
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Calvin's branch office

August 5 2004, 12:40 PM 

I am pretty familiar with what has happened to this church. The parents of one of my best friends in college left Smith Springs when they began to realize what was happening and became frequently persecuted by the reformists.
Just how bad has it gotten? Engedi is led by a couple of the elders and tolerated by other elders. Both the pulpit minister, and the youth minister, Ron (who just happens to be Bro. Hales son-in-law), both support the teaching. Most adult Bible classes in the past 2 years have been taught by those who support the Calvinist view. All the members of the Engedi board of directors now call Smith Springs their home including their chief spokesman, David Lawrence (seems even the liberal Woodmont Hills couldn't buy into his doctrine). A majority of the deacons support the teaching and several contribute money to the effort. If this isn't some sort of take-over I don't know what you'd call it!

This isn't grace but it is a disgrace.

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Smith Springs: Predestination the Elect #2

July 24 2003, 10:40 AM 

Davad Lawrence: "No, what Peter is saying is that the mighty, decretive will of God has ruled and ordained that none of His elect, his precious chosen ones, his beloved children through Christ, none of them shall perish, but that all of them, all of us, shall come to repentance. We must never forget that repentance is itself a gift from God (Acts 11:18, 2 Tim. 2:25), and God will use this gift of His grace to bring all His children to repentance.


Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost. Acts 11:16
----Forasmuch then as God gave them the LIKE GIFT as he did unto us,
----who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ;
-----what was I, that I could withstand God? Acts 11:17

The only thing God GAVE was their speaking in tongues to CONVINCE the Jews:

Peter has not yet told Cornelius what he MUST do. The task here is that PETER was told to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles because that was always GOD'S PLAN. However, now, the GIFT convinces Peter that he COULD NOT withstand God's will that Gentiles also could be baptized.

--When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying,
-----THEN hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life. Acts 11:18

They didn't see Cornelius as PREDESTINATED to repent. Rather, the proof was that God's predestination was that both Jew and Gentile be one body. Cornelius was a God Fearer or worshiped like the Jews. He needed no repented but the GENTILE NATIONS needed to repent.

God's GRANTING repentance means exactly what "He granted to us the FREEDOM OF SPEECH."

---Didomi (g1325) did'-o-mee; a prol. form of a prim. verb (which is used as an altern. in most of the tenses); to give (used in a very wide application, prop. or by impl., lit. or fig.; greatly modified by the connection): - adventure, bestow, bring forth, commit, deliver (up), give, grant, hinder, make, minister, number, offer, have power, put, receive, set, shew, smith (/ with the hand), strike (/ with the palm of the hand), suffer, take, utter, yield.

--Or: When the others heard this, all their objections were answered and they began praising God! "Yes," they said, "God has given to the Gentiles, too, the privilege of turning to him and receiving eternal life!" Acts 11:18LIV

Peter didn't know that the people on the day of Pentecost HAD NO CHOICE. His response is quite identical to the Great Commission of Jesus:

--Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Acts 2:37

-----Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. Acts 2:38

The Great Commission GRANTED salvation but not unconditionally: those who BELIEVE and are BAPTIZED shall be saved. The First Ammendment GRANTS us the right to speak: it does not FORCE us to speak. Being of age GRANTS us the right to vote: it does not FORCE us to vote.

David Lawrence: We must never forget that repentance is itself a gift from God (Acts 11:18, 2 Tim. 2:25), and God will use this gift of His grace to bring all His children to repentance.

But, Paul made their repentance DEPEND on how the Gospel which 'grants' is presented to the unbeliever:

--But FOOLISH and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do GENDER STRIFES. 2 Tim 2:23

--And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be GENTLE unto all men, apt to TEACH, patient; 2 Tim 2:24

--In meekness INSTRUCTING those that OPPOSE themselves;

--if God PERADVENTURE will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; 2 Tim 2:25

------Tacha (g5029) takh'-ah; as if neut. plur. of 5036 (adv.); shortly, i.e. (fig.) POSSIBLY: - peradventure (-haps).

---Be humble when you are trying to teach those who are mixed up concerning the truth. For if you talk meekly and courteously to them, they are more likely, with GOD'S HELP help, to turn away from their WRONG IDEAS and believe what is true. 2 Tim 2:25LIV

--And that they MAY recover THEMSELVES out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him AT HIS WILL. 2 Tim 2:26

Satan also has his PREDESTINATED WILL but we are not CAPTIVES without our own will. In the same way, each individual may or may not exercise their free will and come to REPENTANCE which only God can grant. By analogy, only God can GRANT forgivene of sins, but God does not PREDESTINATE US to obey His plan for our lives.


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Smith Springs

July 25 2003, 7:53 PM 

Thanks for the links. I am reading what I can find and am surprized at how weak the proof-texting for predestination is. The context will not find a single bit of evidence that God CREATES certain individuals to either be saved or sent to hell.

People who claim an intimate relationship with the "holy spirit person" invented only recently and those who claim to be predestinated are victims of the Jewish arrogance.

The Jews were ARROGANT: they believed they were predestinated. The result was that they became evil and claimed that IF the Gentiles could be saved then GOD and HIS WORD had failed. Paul disputed that in Romans 8 and began a "synagogue sermon" to the Jews:

--Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; Rom 9:4

-- Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. Rom 9:5

-- Not as though the WORD of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: Rom 9:6

-- Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In ISAAC shall thy SEED be called. Rom 9:7

-- That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are COUNTED for the seed. Rom 9:8

This is because the overwhelming majority of Israelites MARRED in God's hand first at Mount Sinai where they rose up to play in MUSICAL IDOLATRY. God turned them over to worship the STARRY HOST. When they demanded a king LIKE THE NATION God knew that they wanted to WORSHIP LIKE THE NATIONS.

-- What if God, willing to shew his WRATH, and to make his power known, ENDURED with much longsuffering the VESSELS of WRATH fitted to destruction: Rom 9:22

---- And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the VESSELS of MERCY, which he had afore prepared unto glory, Rom 9:23

------ Even US, whom he hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the GENTILES? Rom 9:24

God's PREDESTINATED PLAN was to make the remnant Jews and Gentiles into ONE body. God never PREDESTINATED a single infant--not an inch long--to burn in hell. Here is what Paul saw. The MARRED VESSELS trusted in their own PREDESTINATION or superiority as well as the Law which had been added BECAUSE OF THEIR TRANSGRESSION.

-- Wherefore? Because they SOUGHT it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone; Rom 9:32

-- As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. Rom 9:33

Paul referred them to Jeremiah 18 to explain predestination.

--Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? Rom 9:20

----Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto HONOUR, and another unto DISHONOUR? Rom 9:21

The Potter takes a batch of clay. He never sets out to make a vessel just to "burn it" in hell forever and forever.His predestination is that the clay will be a prize "Ming vase." The clay, without any influence from the potter, mars because of some flaw.The potter changes his Pre- or first goal to another which fits the "clay"

-- Then I went down to the potters house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. Jer 18:3

-- -- And the vessel that he made of clay was MARRED in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Jer 18: 4

The potter DID NOT MAR the clay INTENTIONALLY. The defect was in the clay and it would not be conformed to the potter's hand. However, the Potter did not BURN the vessel but turned it into something more utilitarian.

-- Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, Jer 18: 5

---- O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potters hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. Jer 18: 6

-- At what instant I shall speak concerning a NATION, and concerning a KINGDOM, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it; Jer 18:7

-- IF that nation, against whom I have pronounced, TURN from their EVIL, I will REPENT of the evil that I thought to do unto them. Jer 18:8

Therefore, the predestination Paul spoke about was God's PRE PLAN. Those who refused to obey God were devoted to very common purposes. Those who proved to be HARDENED, the Potter broke into pieces and threw out.

However, in 2 Cor 3 Paul speaks of these vessels which had hardened even in Egypt but forcefully with their musical idolatry at Mount Sinai. He told them that they had a veil over their eyes and ears. However, this whole BATCH could repent and TURN TO CHRIST instead of rituals and suddenly SEE Christ the Holy Spirit in His Word.

The Jews were thinking of NATIONAL PREDESTINATION and Paul used Jeremiah and the Potter to speak of NATIONAL PREDESTINATION. God never FORMED a human being just to smash him and burn him in hell. Neither did He ever FORM a human being just to save him. God picked certain people to carry out His will but we have no evidence that even Pharaoh was designed for HELL.

Ken Sublett

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July 27 2003, 4:00 PM 

I have posted a fuller review of the Calvinism which seems to exude from the Lipscomb crowd.

David Lawrence is ready to reject the clear statements made by Peter that God's PREDESTINATED will is that everyone might repent. He rejects the same Peter because he used the word ELECT earlier.

But, scholars particularly, seem cursed with the inability to read Scripture or history. Here is what Peter said:

. PETER, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered thoughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 1 Peter 1:1

. ELECT according to the FOREKNOWLEDGE of God the Father,

But HOW are they ELECTED?


. unto OBEDIENCE and SPRINKLING of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. 1 Pet 1:2

Believing in PREDESTINATION allows Clvinists to believe that FAITH ONLY is proof of their ELECTION and therefore repudiate baptism and therefore, like the Jews, fail to give the glory to God and in effect, call Him a liar.

The WORD of Christ is the SEED. When it touches the human spirit it germinates and produce obedience and the sprinkling of the blood. That initial pricking of the Spirit or Word moves us toward BIRTH. To Paul this meant:

. Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith,

. having our hearts sprinkled FROM an evil CONSCIENCE,

. and our BODIES WASHED with pure water. Heb.10:22

Those washed by water and the Word are children of God. Those baptized are ADDED to the body or church of Christ. Therefore, John wrote:

. We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.1 JOHN 5:18

. And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.
1 JOHN 5:19

. And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath GIVEN us an UNDERSTANDING, that we may know him that is true,
. and we are IN him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life. 1 JOHN 5:20

. Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.
1 JOHN 5:21

. THE elder unto the ELECT LADY and her CHILDREN, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth; 2 JOHN 1:1

Those who PERMIT Christ to give them A holy spirit or a clear conscience at the time and place of Baptism are added or ELECTED which means SELECTED to be added to the body or church of Christ. There is NO HINT that individuals are ELECTED to personal salvation or damnation.

That is a LIE which defines the Jews in Rome. Their belief in JEWISH PREDESTINATION led to predestinated evil and arrogance.

Ken Sublett

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Thank you!

July 28 2003, 9:44 AM 

I want to thank you...that was very well said. (or actually very well quoted from the bible),

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Smith Springs

July 29 2003, 12:21 PM 

Having attended Smith Springs previously for 13 years,It is so sad to have it berated on this evil site. The elders in question are two of the most Godly men I have ever known, one of which I have known for 25 years. Once one of the leaders in the Nashville area, Smith Springs has been destroyed by people like the one who posted this topic.

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Guilt Clause

July 29 2003, 1:39 PM 

Beginning in the garden of Eden, that has been called the guilt clause. I like one of the many invented by Abraham Lincoln.

"There were those saying that they could "not abide the election of a Republican President." In which event they would destroy the Union.

...."And then, you say, the great crime of having destroyed it will be upon us!

....That is cool.

"A highwayman holds a pistol to my ear, and mutters through his teeth,

...."Stand and deliver, or I shall kill you,
and then you will be a MURDERER." Abraham Lincoln, Frost, Vol. 1, p. 274

A rich man does wrong, and he even adds reproaches; a poor man suffers wrong, and he must add apologies Ecclesu 13:3.

Martin Luther:

5. The best rule to follow in such matters is the rule of love. You should hold the same attitude toward these two classes that you would toward a wolf and a sheep.

."Suppose a wolf were to wound ALMOST FATALLY a sheep,
and you were to proceed with RAGE against the SHEEP,
declaring it to be wrong in being wounded, that it should be sound;

.....and you were violently to compel it to follow the other sheep to the pasture and to the fold, giving it no special care;

.....would not all men declare you inconsiderate?

"The sheep might well say: "Certainly it is wrong for me to be wounded, and unquestionably I OUGHT to be sound;

..."but direct your anger toward the INFLICTER of my wounds, and assist in my recovery."

..."So should these Romans have done and have faithfully REPELLED the WOLF-like teachers.

So, which came first: the DESTRUCTIVE DOGMA OF PREDESTINATION and ETERNAL SECURITY (Calvinism) which INFLICTED the wounds of the SHEEP; or the FLIGHT of the little LAMBS being MOLLESTED by the wolves?

The sincerity ploy counts for nothing: what do you say of the heresy which destroys whole churches proving that it is NOT from the Bible? Being a "scholar" in my research almost guarantees that the FALSE DOGMA comes from quotes from quotes from quotes and NOT from the Bible.

God NEVER created an infant "not an inch long" just so He could burn MOST of His creation to prove how MIGHTY He is. This sounds like some child in a sand box who smashes his sand castle to prove that He is superior to his own creation.

It is not evil to test the spirits and warn that the boast is that the WOLF is going to teach his false dogma to his students and sphere of influence. If you saw an adult ESCAPING LEGALISM and bashing in heads like false teachers bash in souls would you say: "Hay, he must be sincere or he would not be so COCKED and AIMED at the children of SUPPORTERS who DO NOT and will never agree with what Calvin admitted "gags me." Don't parents and "old widows's" children being seduced out their heritage have a right to know the "shady side" of most "once-christian" colleges?

There are NO PREDESTINATED TO HEAVEN Jews and there are NO PREDESTINATED Gentiles to hell. Therefore, Paul was hated and destroyed by Jews because he told them that ALL are sinners and there is NO MERIT in either Jew or Gentile to cause them to be acceptable to God.

Therefore, the PREDESTINATED targets are not INDIVIDUALS selected for hell from eternity past. Rather, God's PRE-PLAN even to Abraham was that His family should be a BLESSING to the NATIONS or GENTILES.

God is characterized by LOVE, JUSTICE AND MERCY and NOT by a worse-than Count Dracula lust to destroy his subjects.

Maybe someone who FLED will tell us why they fled. Was it because they were evil or because Satan LUSTS to get into the midst of successful churches: he will get ALL of the big ones. God never offered any protection to temples for those who had repudiated His rule over them where NO Godly king manufactures citizens just to destroy them.

Please respond to our REQUESTED reviews but don't destroy the chapter while dragging a proof-text out by its roots.

I am just now posting a review of Galatians where Paul clearly defines the PREDESTINATED ones.


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July 29 2003, 2:40 PM 

I never cease to be amazed at the confusion that has taken over and weakened so many in a once strong and respected brotherhood. The destruction we see happening is directly propartional to the "lack of knowledge" displayed. Mr. Sublett is doing an excellent job explaining the real substance of the situation as it occurs. It would be a great day indeed to see the various sides on all of these many issues come together and debate in the halls of Lipscomb, Harding, Abilene, Oklahoma, Pepperdine, and so on. Oh well, so much for my feeble ramblings. By the way, can anyone tell me why these things aren't being debated by Shelly, Lucado, Flatt, Lawrence, Beam, Anderson, and so on. I thought they were supposed to be the tops academically and so forth. Geniuses!!! Oh well...


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Smith Springs

July 30 2003, 12:07 PM 

The problem is not lack of knowledge. This is simply studing and yeilding to God's will, instead of the traditions of men. The ones mentioned are teaching what God has shown them to teach. We must not look back the old ways, but the God ways. That is where our fellowship is going. Praise God!

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Top Gun
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Who's who?

July 31 2003, 3:18 PM 

More insights, in their own words at

God wants these men to smear the Lord's
church like this?
and even back to
Two years of this? Whoa, how long has this
been going on?

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did you mean 07.30.01?

August 28 2003, 5:55 PM 

One responder [Anonymous 8/18/03, 7:21am] raises an interesting question of why to even implicate Smith Springs in this since "David Lawerence has been gone from there for years." It seems this actually raises more question than he asks. Based on some intensive inquiry that has been done recently, some other questions seem pertinent.
1. Is Mr. Lawerence now attending another congregation of the Church of Christ? If so, is he teaching there?
2. Isn't it true that with the exception of Mr.Lawerence all of the other leaders of Engedi are still members at Smith Springs, many as church leaders?
3.Are we actually to believe that as Engedi continues its media blitz that their main spokesman (Mr.L) doesn't continue to have regular, even frequent, contact with several members at Smith Springs, at least his fellow board members?
4. Is it not true that a significant percentage of the families at Smith Springs, including deacons and elders, are regular financial contributors to Engedi. And aren't most of these same families also recepients of Mr. Lawerence's weekly devotionals, which are sent to those on their web mailing list?
5. According to a Mr. Danny Hale is mentioned by Mr. Lawerence as being a board member. Isn't Mr. H. still on the board? Is he not, in fact, the primary driving force behind Engedi, and listed also as an elder on the web page for Smith Springs, and is the most tenured elder there now? Has Mr. Hale not said, on one of his Sunday radio broadcasts that Engedi is "a dream of his" and is the direct result of the "marvelous way" that he was financially blessed by God, a few years ago?
6. Doesn't another elder there serve as the salaried president of Engedi?

Can Anonymous 8/18/03 clarify any of this? Are there those out there, in the know, who can correct any misrepresentations posed by these questions?

Even if half of this information is based on fact,
how could anyone NOT see the continued connection between Mr. Lawerence and Smith Springs?

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November 10 2003, 9:46 PM 

why then does a man worth millions of dollars need to take $10, $20, etc. every month from widows, struggling young couples, single moms, and retirees, for something he feels is his ministry?

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investors wanted
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if you'll just invest

December 22 2003, 10:06 PM 

It is an old ploy from the world of business and finance: It is much easier to persuade someone to defend your cause or product if you can first get them to make a financial investment in said product. Organizations like this often make passionate pleas for your contributions to them to not interfere with your support of your local congregation. It's not as much about the money as it is in getting to invest emotionally.

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evil site?
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evil site?

July 31 2003, 9:36 PM 

What a veiled threat from Anonymous July 30, 12:07pm!
I pray that everyone is witnessing this as it unfolds.
This seems to be their revised version of 'you must not have the right spirit' (see my previous input)

So let me see if I'm getting this right: if Engedi's own words are evaluated in light of Scripture, as Kenneth continues so aptly to do, he is criticizing the very working of God himself in the lives of another???????? (how do YOU spell 'ex cathedra'?)

Question: How you you know God doesn't also control the spirit filled men giving input to every single thing that is here on this place, which one of your cohorts has labeled an 'evil site'? I thought a foundational principle of Reformers was that God CAUSES every single thing, period. Well does he? Maybe God is using Engedi and ConcernedMembers BOTH as 'evil sites'.

Welcome to the other side of the looking glass and to
the realm of the king of 'old, traditional beliefs',
Augustine, and his legacy: Christendom's version of
the TV reality show, THE MOLE. (psst.......I'm a good
guy; did you get picked to be a good guy, too?)
Whew, I need an aspirin.

But before I go, repeat after me 100 times:
'If anyone investigates us they probably have impure
motives. If anyone investigates us they-------------'
(from The Branch Davidian Manual, Chapter 3/Paranoia,
page 95).
{And just so you'll know what's right around the corner, it's what one writer has called 'My. Mart'.}

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Top Gun
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Surely not back there again

August 1 2003, 10:19 AM 

I beg all of you to read the whole texts of
the Engedi links, in their own words, before posting
further rebuttals here. There is certainly a lack of
basic knowledge, even of history.

Granted there are some significant ways that the Church
can improve and adjustments in most organizations comprised of humans are often needed, but let's not make the treatment worse than the disease!

Engedi's message is anything but 'new.' It is almost
straight Presbyterian doctrine, I just can't yet tell for sure which division of the Presbyterians this is from. (I don't mean that to sound slanderous - it's not
a falsehood or misrepresentation - it's just commonly
known historical fact. My husband has had relatives and close friends in that denomination.)

The teaching literally came to this country with the
Pilgrims on the Mayflower. Even today most Christian
periodicals refer to the Reformed Calvinism view as
'the traditional' or the 'old belief'. It is the very
teaching (the 'room of mirrors') that God's Spirit, by meditative study of the powerful Word, led the Campbells of about 200 years ago, is it not?

Call this new is about like me dragging my old manual
typewriter out of the attic, gluing a thousand sequins
on it, and calling it a 'new' form of communication.

Is this REALLY where the Church is heading?
The Lord really laid this passage on my heart today:
II Peter 2:21,22.

Praise God, indeed, that scholarly men like Bro. Sublett are making us, and our families, aware of
what's happening here in Middle Tennessee.

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Yes, surely back in time.

August 2 2003, 1:08 PM 

I am sorry for the LONGS but reading is an option. Top Gun made some good points and I want to respond to her. The POSTMODERN scam says that TRUTH disappeared into a BLACK HOLE. Now, it is travelling through a WORM HOLE. Soon it will emerge in a WHITE HOLEfor churchs of Christ as something like WITCHCRAFT. But this theory puts you WAY BACK into the past. So while these 13th apostles are polishing their crystal balls they tuned in to Satan's old channel.

Top Gun: Call this new is about like me dragging my old manual typewriter out of the attic, gluing a thousand sequins on it, and calling it a 'new' form of communication.

Ken: You have it right, Top Gun but you don't have to be much of a scholar NOT to byy a ten year old computer. During college (c. 1954) I bought an old but grand Remington for $110.00. My daughter made it a DECORATOR'S ITEM for the house. I even have my first Apple II. But even if you are the slow one in the slow group no one is going to sell you a five year old computer. The whole NEW STYLE WORSHIP was produced by "restorers" who flew over Jerusalem and landed in downtown Babylon at the foot of the old pyramid of power. That fulfills the prophecy of Revelation including the music and musicians but they will not be reserved this time but will suffer.

Top Gun: Engedi's message is anything but 'new.' It is almost straight Presbyterian doctrine, I just can't yet tell for sure which division of the Presbyterians this is from. (I don't mean that to sound slanderous - it's not a falsehood or misrepresentation - it's just commonly known historical fact. My husband has had relatives and close friends in that denomination.)

Ken: This is correct. Their links are to Calvinists including Baptists. The baptism seems to be immersion but it is the ZWINGLI "faith only" view which Zwingli CLAIMED TO INVENT and Luther agreed that Sola Fide or Faith Only came from Zwingli and other fanatics and not from God or His Word. Zwingli was seeking a way out of WATER REGENERATION practiced by all INCLUDING Presbyterians or anyone who DEDICATE or SPRINKLES little babies. Since he concluded that infants are saved WITHOUT baptism the BAPTISM IS NOT NECESSARY. However, this was the EXTREME solution to try-- to use ENGEDI'S COUNCILS as the means of DEFINING the unclear Bible-- to refute Baptismal Regeneration by the Catholics.

So, since it is obvious that the ELDER and DAVID LAWRENCE (DL) the David Lipscomb teacher have NO MARKS which would identify them as remotely related to the church of Christ, just how did either BAPTISTS (Calvinists) or Presbyterians SLITHER into a church of Christ, take over and chase the members of the church of Christ out? I want some input from a lawyer and exmembers should investigate this. If a Chevy dealer INFILTRATED a Ford dealership and DIVERTED Ford buyers to the Chevy dealer would this be CRIMINAL FRAUD? That would be technical but the ETHIC is identical to the Red Tailed Hawk which ate a mouse in my drive this morning: the survival of the fittest. But the Presbyterian- Baptist elders and preacher HAVE A CHOICE: they can rise to the level of their moral incompetency and begin a new church. But, Satan's goal is to DESTROY churches and not just DIVERT them.

Top Gun: The teaching literally came to this country with the Pilgrims on the Mayflower. Even today most Christian periodicals refer to the Reformed Calvinism view as 'the traditional' or the 'old belief'. It is the very teaching (the 'room of mirrors') that God's Spirit, by meditative study of the powerful Word, led the Campbells of about 200 years ago, is it not?

Ken Engedi has only REFORMED links and there are some to the Puritans. I have posted a lot of Colonial literature and the PREDESTINATION thing gave them total authority to decide, as David Lawrence advises, translate the Bible to allow them to murder the innocent JUST to validate the ministry of Paris etal.

Ken: One of the things I have noticed that God often attaches a MARK or a FLAG to false teachers. For instance, PRAISE TEAMS (Traffickers of the false word) have names like ZOE (the Gnostic MOTHER of little Jehovah: the only way Jehovah could get out of the pit was to PRAISE Sophia and Zoe), HALAL (the 'praise word' most often meaning to "make self vile" or repulsive: you know, like a dog returning to its vomit, as David went naked and was PRAISED by the slave girls (camp followers?). And don't forget A Cappella which means the Pope's castrated WORSHIP TEAM to be USED in the Sistine chapel because no one dared play instruments in the Pope's masses. Madison even has a plan to LEAD THE CHILDREN MUSICALLY INTO CANAAN LAND which was turned from the promised land to the killing fields.

If you look up ENGEDI you will discover that it literally means THE PLACE OF WATERING FOR THE GOATS. It was the DWELLING PLACE of the Amorites. I don't know that SHEEP ever watered there?

....Engedi is also Hazazon-Tamar which defines DIVISION. it is made up of two parts:

FIRST......Chacac (h2686) khaw-tsats'; a prim. root [comp. 2673 to CUT OR DIVIDE]; prop. to CHOP into, PIERCE or server; hence to CURTAIL, to distribute (into ranks); as denom. from 2671, to SHOOT an ARROW: - archer, * bands, cut off in the midst.

TRANSLATED "The LOCUSTS have no king, yet go they forth all of them by BANDS; Pr.30:27

The LOCUSTS in John's symbolism were the MUSES who were turned into LOCUSTS. They were resurrected to DIVIDE the end-time church. The DIVISION or ENGEDIing is to separate those with Apollo or Abaddon or Apollyon's MUSES MARK, from those who had the MARK of the Word of God in their forehead (mind) and hands (action). The LOCUSTS also had SCORPION STINGS in their tails. The PLAGUES sound much like AIDS which has gulped up to 38% in some African countries and the SWARMS are growing in the USA. And, I want to tell you with ALL KINDNESS, that history and the Bible knows no role for music which is not the innocent playing of usually female youth, and religious uses by the Levitical "sounders" mocking the TYPES of Jesus (but never in the holy places), prostitutes or Sodomites. The PAGAN GODS were almost always homosexual or Goddesses. The priests were emasculated and had a SEX CHANGE operation (Going all the way to being emasculated) to make them more acceptable in the festivals which were almost ALWAYS their religious rituals. Get the connection? Only males could perform the LITURGICAL functions but we emasculate them and MODIFY them so that they sing and perform JUST LIKE GIRLS. ALL priesthoods have encouraged young men and even held contests for those to be sent to the HEADQUARTERS. It is NOT just a Catholic problem. So, why should churches have a WORSHIP CHANGE OPERATION which makes the whole process disgusting to those who FLEE.

The last part of the word is TAMAR which speaks of sitting under palm trees. A woman wearing that name seduced Judah. You remember that TAMAR, Judah's daughter in law trapped Judah into PAWNING the symbol of his KINGDOM because CANAAN got him drunk. Well, the WEB OF "POSSIBLE" MEANING GOES ON AND ON. You remember that the Jews looked to their OWN SPRINGS as the source of living waters and ENGEDI looks to the place of DIVIDING and SHOOTING ARROWS. You know, MELODY or PSALLO'S primary meaning is to TWANG BOW STRINGS TO SEND SINGING ARROWS INTO THE HEART OF THE ENEMY.


Top Gun: Granted there are some significant ways that the Church can improve and adjustments in most organizations comprised of humans are often needed, but let's not make the treatment worse than the disease! Is this REALLY where the Church is heading? The Lord really laid this passage on my heart today: II Peter 2:21,22.

Ken: me too. Once you grasp EATING the sacrifices made to Baal Peor you truly grasp that the NEW BABYLON is explained by Peter. And Hebrews 6 notes that once you BLASPHEME the Spirit by repudiating the Word by putting your TRUST in church councils so powerfully that you STEAL CHURCHES, you have committed an unforgivable sin.

The history of MUSIC in the Bible and the contemporaneous secular commentaries gives you NO HOPE that any church which has SIPPED from ENGEDI's SPRING FOR THE GOATS and ARROW TWANGERS will ever recover from this fatal error. But, that is the way the REMNANT concept is SUPPOSED to play itself out:

The ELECT will NOT be singing, clapping, making music and gloating over "infiltrating and diverting" churches to where WE want to go. The ELECT will be a tiny, huddled, band of exiles. When you ELECT to join Jesus Christ you will have no spiritual pillow to lay your head because the THIEVES will even steal that:

..And shall not God avenge his own ELECT, which CRY day and NIGHT unto him, though he BEAR long with them? Luke 18:7
....I tell you that he will AVENGE them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of man cometh, shall he FIND FAITH on the FAITH? Luke 18:8
......And he spake this PARABLES unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Luke 18:9

David Lawrence etal trusts in THEMSELVES by claiming that the Bible writers were TOO BUSY to make the trinity, faith only and predestination clear. Well, just how long would it take the HOLY SPIRIT to say "God is a Family of Gods"? Or how long would it have taken the Holy Spirit to have left out THE NATIONS or THE GENTILES who were predestinated and just say GOD ELECTS THOSE HE WANTS TO GO TO HEAVEN AND HE SELECTS THOSE HE WANTS TO BURN IN HELL? The Engedi arrow shooters CLAIM that it was only LATER COUNCILS who made the TRINITY clear to those who never dreamed of such a Babylon Triad. But the councils nor ANY Literate scholar ever went so far into APOSTASY as to suggest that God was three INDEPENDANT gods. Rather, the word they used was NOT persons but PERSONAE.

We are ALL finding ourselves STRANGERS AND PILGRIMS on te earth where the MAJORITY still belong to the ruler of the physical world. Our only hope it to ESCAPE the world rather than to BE CONFROMED TO THE WORLD AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE TO WIN THE WORLD (quoting Rubel Shelly).

So-called believer's baptism demands the same real, literal presence of Christ just like the Eucharist. It is similar to pagan baptism in that the individual is totally passive and CANNOT even believe without a direct movement of God's Spirit to point out or identify one as predestinated.

Those who believed in predestination, like the JEWS and later Calvinists such as the Puritans,

.."were obsessed with a TERROR that they would NOT be saved.
....Conversion became a central PREOCCUPATION, (Legalism)
......a violent, tortured drama in which the sinner and his spiritual director wrestled for his soul.
........Frequently the penitent had to undergo severe humiliation or experience real despair of God's grace until he appreciated his utter dependence upon God." (Karen Armstrong, A History of God, p. 283).



Ken Sublett

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August 1 2003, 3:16 PM 

Dear Anony,

As per your letter July 30, 2003 12:07PM, could you enlighten me with a little comparison and contrast of the "old ways" and "God's ways". Can one yield to God's will without knowledge? Can we know that what is being taught is in fact consistent with what God has shown should be taught apart from knowledge of the scripture? Please show me The Way. Thanks in advance for your kind response.



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Evil Site?
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Evil Site?

July 30 2003, 8:47 PM 

I must respond to Anon. 7-29-03, 1:21.
Unfortunately we're getting a chance to see firsthand the actions of some who claim to now have a better, more complete understanding of grace. When they have to deal
with honest, open, clear Biblical teaching like Ken has shared they often resort to just attacking their brother
who shared a different view. What seems to be lacking
maybe grace?

I've attended a congregation that has become home to many
of the wounded families who have fled from Sm. Springs over all of this in recent years. It's amazing how many of them share a similiar story. If they pointed out scriptures or quotes from noted theologians which exposed
some of the obvious inconsistencies of the Calvinistic
system, or Reformed theology, they were accused of not
approaching the Bible with an open mind, or not having
the right spirit, or of being legalist attempting to
take glory from God. It is a demeaning diversion that
seemed to have worked on several, but it is just to
bypass the real point: What is being taught, and why
is it that most of the Christian world rejects their
ideas, as Engedi even admitted. (see devo link, 03.17.03) Is everyone else just not chosen to see it?
And how come these concepts somehow got completely
overlooked for the first 500 years of the church?

Regarding Godly men being involved in this at Smith
Springs, the Bible is replete with honest Godly men
who were often mistaken or had some profound errors in
their judgment. Abraham, Moses, David, Peter and Paul
are but a few.

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Re: Evil Site?

July 31 2003, 8:03 AM 

Yes, Most of the bibles heros mentioned did have problems at times with sin, but where did they end up? In the Bible as "heros of faith". Seems God has a different standard from we humans. I might also ask, Is this site honest disagreement or slander?

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on berating

July 31 2003, 6:15 PM 

My brain must be playing tricks on me. The Anonymous
7-29, 12:21 seems to charge participants of this web
site with BERATING individuals in the Church. I'm
wondering if he/she even took time to read the suggested Engedi devo links! (see TOP)

Is it not D. Lawrence of this Engedi that has implicated and berated the Church of Christ repeatedly here on the Internet, and apparently for YEARS?
Is HE not the one who has inferred that - -
a. the Church of Christ' basic beliefs are legalism and
even goes so far as to compare it to some Saturday
morning cartoon? (12.30.02= link #2)
b. that the Church is "steeped in heresy and error" and
has disdain for the past, with indistinct views of
many key doctrines, and has a trait common to cults?
(see link #3 at start/top)
c.that what the Church teaches "cannot give God all the glory"
(see link #4)

Also, on some other related sites I found where he's
d. that 'baptism is not a saving act', just a seal
e. that people who don't subscribe to this Reformed
teaching are 'deceivers' who 'lead people astray.'
f. specifically naming the 'Church of Christ' and saying it is full of mistakes with heresies, schisms,
and 'behavior hardly worthy of the name of Christ.'

So I'm hoping those who respond here can be a little
less cavalier -and a LOT more accurate- with that word
BERATED. Yeah, let's talk about slander shall we!

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The Other Side

August 1 2003, 12:05 PM 

This is almost too predictable. Not long ago I read a book THE OTHER SIDE OF CALVINISM by Laurence M. Vance.
I simply must share some quotes and see if this sounds
familiar to the situation at hand.

"When a Calvinist aspires to draw attention away from the name of Calvin he normally uses te phrase 'Doctrines of Grace' "(compare links 11.25.02 and 10.21.02 of
"But if Calvinism is the doctrine of grace found in the
Bible then this implies that if you disagree with Calvinism then you are denying salvation by grace.
The theological implications can be found in the writings of all who hold the Calvinistic system. And this is just the beginning of the other side of Calvinism."

"To further bolster their position Calvinist insist that there are really only two tenable schemes among
real Christians: Calvinism and Arminianism."
(next) "the Calvinist begins by making a disdainful
contrast between Calvinism and Arminianism." (See

"...if Biblical Christianity is Calvinism, then any
other system is necessarily false. Accoding to the
Calvinist, Calvinism is not just 'a' scriptural system
-it is the 'only' scriptural system." (see
02.24.03 and 03.17.03)

"The Calvinist insinuate that anything short of his
position leads to heresy and worse" (see 01.02.03html)
Kenneth Talbot and W. Gary Crampton caution us that
'any compromise of Calvinism is a step toward humanism.' Boettner doesn't stop with humanism:
'There is no consistent stopping place between Calvinism and atheism.' " (I'm not sure if engedi has
put anything that strong in print yet.)

"Calvinism is the Gospel and to teach Calvin is in
fact to preach the Gospel. Calvinism is the Gospel.
It's outstanding doctrines are simply the truths that
make up the Gospel." (see 10.21.02html)

"The gospel of Calvinism is likewise good news - but only if your are one of the elect" (see 12.23.03).
" the is an eternal death sentence."

"Calvinism is, in many of its facets, a human philoso-
phicl system. It is a constantly divisive element in
the church."

My brother, who has studied this quite a bit while in
seminary, says that this is probably along the lines of
the Presbyterian PCA (as opposed to the Presbyterians
USA or the Cumberland Presbyterian factions.)
The PCA, the newest of their schisms, was founded in
the 1970's, and they were so aware of their past track
record that they've semi-officially encouraged some of
their congregations to primarily focus their identity
as a 'Community Church' in several cases. He also says to not get distracted in your study by the 'slander' charges or their other common claim when
faced with obviously conflicting Biblical concepts:
'it's just a mystery of God that we can't understand';
that has become their ROOK card for years. The New
Testament is pretty clear about the mysteries it refers to (often regarding Gentiles being saved.)
The only mystery here is how unsuspecting people have been thrown off by this line for so many years.

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I wonder why Engedi left that part out?

August 28 2003, 10:30 AM 

According to the web page Engedi held it's first conference in Nashville a couple of years back. The theme was "Restoring the Joy of Our Salvation."
It was held at the "Faith Church". I wonder why they forgot to mentioned that it is actually listed in the phone book as the "Faith Christian REFORMED Church"?

At the conference one of the keynote speakers was "Scotty Smith of Christ Community Church in Franklin, TN." I wonder why they forgot to mention the fact that this congregation is actually affiliated with, and a part of, the PRESBYTERIAN, P.C.A. Churches?

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which Engedi came first?

October 29 2003, 4:16 PM 

According to the web pages for the Presbyterian Church of America they have a summer camp that they call Engedi. I wonder if this Church of Christ group just borrowed their name?

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another engedi

October 27 2003, 5:38 PM 

Yet another interesting coincidence: The Presbyterian Church of America (PCA) has several summer camps. It just so happens that the name of one of them is "Camp Engedi." So which one came first, the Presbyterian Engedi or this Church of Christ Engedi?

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Re: Re: Evil Site?

August 2 2003, 2:51 AM 

o.k. so i'm a relative newcomer to the wide world of theology so i need some straight answers. is it true
that reformed stuff is really called traditional nowdays?? and do reformers actually teach and believe
that God causes everything, like everything (like 9-11)?

i mean if that is right what do reformed missionaries
even say? "look i have less sin in my life now so i know i'm elect. let's all look closely over the next
few days (months, years, decades?)so we can witness
who else God has chosen to save here. it'll be real
obvious, or it may be real suttle."
i guess this explains some things i picked up about
geneva when j.calvin was their mayor-pastor thing. the
history books all say there wasn't much joy at that
place at that time. well duh!

i used to think the reformed deal offered some clear
answers until i realized i was having to twist too many
scriptures. i guess i'll have to get a few more university degrees before i have the courage to add to
even john 3;16 to make it say ' for God so loved the
elect of the world that whoever he allows to believe
on him-----' i just couldn't do it. my roommate said
we never did learn all the steps to do the 'westminster
waltz' around all of those passages about Jesus dying
for all. i just couldn't get away from 1 john 2:2 -
'and he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for
ours (the chosen? o.k. i'll even give you that but keep
reading!!!!!!!!!!!!) BUT ALSO FOR THE SINS OF THE WHOLE
WORLD.' can that get any clearer??? how? how? and
don't even get me started on 1 timothy2:first 6 verses.
(and i've heard them spin the verse in peter also; really week unless you've already decided what you want
it to say.

i listened to one of d.lawrence's tapes about augustines and his neo-platonic background. it took me about 6 months to figure out august. formula: mix a bushel of wild oats (his own) , a packet of yeast from pagan plato, a gallon of vinegar from catholic church and waa-laa - the best theology ever to come along in the history of mankind? (well second maybe only to joseph smith with the ummun and thummin.) but lawrence presents augustine as the greatest thing to ever come along! i mean really you use socrates' student to figure out the mysteries of the God of the Bible?
'scuse me i think i'll move over away from you, i think
that's lightning i see coming this way!

this week i read several of the engedi devos mentioned. just reading them straight, several of them
seemed way too spicey (almost whitie-tightie-in-a-wad
stuff) with a dash of garlic? no its, its arrogance
-definitely too much arrogance (my/our way is the ONLY
correct way, da da da da)

on the home page of it says its name is an
o. testament reference to 'living water'. if this is water i think i may just stay thirsty - or better yet -
got milk? just gimme another glass of milk (and meat)of the Word Bro. Kenneth. i'll admit the meat is a
little chewy for me at times but i need to be challenged. (but please answer my 2 questions at the
start, and is it possible to keep it brief? sorry.)

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Re Evil Sight!

August 2 2003, 5:50 PM 

Now, I am not sure what the real questions are. Restate them and others will help. But, when a mother's three year old child gets run over by a drunk in the street I repudiate anyone who tells the mother: "Waal, it's just God's will." If that is a fact then God deliberately made the drunk and the baby meet in the streets. Waal, "all things work for good." No, God's work is for our good but we KNOW that the sudden death of a loved one does not drive most people to Christ. God has no purpose if I hit myself in the head with a hammer. And God is probably not going to make me BETTER for it. If I believe that God CAUSED me to hit myself in the head then I am likely to turn back to Baal. And that is what is happening to those who have SELF DELUDED themselves for the mess or red beans called a Phd. Joseph Campbell says that when we lose our way we CRACK AWAY and rush for cover back to the archaic. The "christianized" Indians back to dancing and Peyote, the LOST SCHOLARS back to musical morphine (endorphins) hoping that their pain at loosing connection to the HEAD will go away. And the story of Enoch etal says that MISERY created by musical idolatry DEMANDS COMPANY.

God pre ordains laws. If one of our Calvinists jumps off a high building (many have) thinking that it is God's will then I want to guarantee you that chosen brother is predestinated to go splat. They say that it isn't the fall but the sudden stop which kills you.

If God's predestinated plan or COUNSEL for even Pharisees and Doctors of the Law was to be baptized; and they REJECT God's plan for their lives then it seems inferable to me that they have rejected God's plan.

Now, don't be TOO tough on Calvin. You remember that Calvin had put out an ALL POINTS BULLETIN on Severus who disagreed with Calvin's trinity. Well, Severus slipped into town and was burned at the stake: the SLOW ROAST style. Well, Calvin had wanted him to be burned with GREEN WOOD. That would mercifully smother him before he died from the burns. Now, isn't that true charity for Severus who was predestinated to burn?

When you believe that you are PREDESTINATED to a position there is NOTHING you will not do AGAINST free will people because they are PROVEN to already be damned. I was reading some Hitler (to bone up on the change agents). I was shocked that he felt PREDESTINATED to eradicate the Jews. His proof? Well, didn't Jesus predict the fall of Jerusalem

God's sovereignty always reigns. But Calvinists would FORBID God to exercise his righteous mercy by giving mankind a choice. Who wants to spend eternity with a bunch of robots? Unconditional love demands that God give unconditional freedon of choice.


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Greek Mythology
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More Plato

August 27 2003, 9:56 PM 

As I read Engedi links I realized that they've swallowed the entire Augustine - Calvin system hook, line and sinker. They seem to be almost ENCHANTED by it all, like some kid in a candy store. What makes this SO interesting is that it was Plato himself (Augustine's soul mate) who said:
"Everything that DECEIVES also ENCHANTS !"

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Re: Re: Evil Site?

August 2 2003, 9:51 PM 

We all need to pray diligently for this congregation, I mean seriously pray people.

So much of the communication contained in the devos of
this Engedi group is 'closed' language:

-us versus them (and the them is the Church of Christ!)

-good guys, hand-picked by God, who now cannot be
controlled by sin vs.\
semi-pelagian legalist: battle-lines drawn BY THEM with
extra labeling at no additional cost; dingy black uniforms standard)

-no room for further discussion, except for us to use
our web as a filter to decide to tell what parts of our
logic can be proved by what verses, because we're right
(this time)

-minds made up because we know we have finally figured
out some mystery - at least we know you haven't come
even close to grasping it.

This combined with the apparent allegations (and now
quite believable) from former members all point toward
one thing: CONTROL. The alarming part is that the
controllers often have not idea they are doing it because it usually evolves so slowly over time.

It's sad to say, but the Church has often fostered this
very mindset. We must be man (and woman) enough to stand up and admit this fault, but then TO LEARN.
With this very situation we may be reaping something we ourselves have been sowing for years. Can I get and
"Amen" out there? Guilty as charged? O.k. then let's
move on.

This type of control is an extremely frightening arena
and is highly volatile politically (pick a dictator, any dictator), corporately (Enron & Co.), in families (an abuser who says 'you made me hurt you') but especially religiously (Jim Bakker, Jim Jones, etc.) These situations often have agonizing outcomes as the sometimes passive-aggressive leaders (who incidentally
are usually extremely sincere, at least in the religion
area) begin to lose their grip and the average guy in
the pew begins to realize that they have been LIVING

Rest assured, the next probably language will be that of "look we're suffering for the sake of God, just like
Jesus" or "Jesus said there'd be division for his name
sake, hallelujah." It typically just happens this way.
But some will not be able to see through the control
because it has become normal. It's like a fish - they
don't even realize they're wet!

So, please, please pray for this congregation TODAY.

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What does West End have in common with Smith Springs?

August 3 2003, 11:05 AM 

First, good for you Pierce, you are a credit to your
generation! You are a modern day version of Acts 17:11, 'searching the scriptures daily <to see> whether those things were so.' Be on guard. Remember a couple of chapters later <20:29> Paul specifically warns about 'grievous wolves entering in
AMONG YOU.' So never stop testing , <I John 4:1>
things that you will hear about God, even from us or
anyone from this forum. DO NOT take OUR word for it -
take only GOD's WORD and hide it in your heart. <one
insignificant thing, my SpellCheck says 'suttle' is
spelled 'subtle'; and I'm betting you're probably a
boxer guy!)

Kenneth I think Pierce is asking about #1, is reformed theology commonly called 'traditional' today. The answer is an absolute yes. It's that way
even in common magazines like CHRISTIANITY TODAY and in the dozens of recent books on Open Theism <and they have really done their homeword regarding the
reformed's connection to the pagan Greek philosopher's idea about the Creator being some sort of Unmoved Mover>. And I think question #2 dealt with reformers teaching that God CAUSES everthing. Again the answer is absolutely yes. It's one of the first
major points in the creed of Westminster, which they
call a confession. I don't remember the exact wording <I'm sure a search engine will make it an
easy find>, and it's in ye ole english style but it's
something like 'God hath from all time preordained all that is to be' ,sorry that's too loose of a
paraphrase but that IS the basic idea it portrays -
look it up. <On no, not homework it's summer!>
An ex-presbyterian friend of mine once observed 'I
guess you have to be sent away to reform school before
you can believe all that.'

But now, on to what I'm really writing about: Piney is
an easy and quick way for me to get a good overview from time to time of the dynamics of some things which
are causing pain in a some of our congregations. But I
still take a LOT of it with a grain of salt because we
are all biased in some way, we just can't help it, we're all human. At times there seems to be an overabundance of 'I heard' or 'he said-she said' things, but this one has primarily been 'here's what David Lawrence chose to make public for the whole world to see', is it not? It IS slander if, since that time, he has been making similiar public statements retracting these beliefs; then we're guilty, WE are sinning, and WE need to confess that and apologize to this man - I'm betting he's just honestly searching for answers, like we all should be. <If there's anything that even hints of misinformation or false information up to this point it might be the very first message that almost seem to imply that this Engedi has 'just begun'; that does seem a bit misleading because this thing appears to have been going on for several years. And another thing: I work in media and I can promise you all of this radio, internet, audio series, etc. doesn't come cheap.>
My personal opinion is that the serious fundamental questions this congregation seems to be struggling with make the 'can we scripturally have four song leaders or does it have to be only one like we read of in the book of III Opinions 4:8' sound
pretty petty.

I just want to borrow a few sentences from a hurting
lady from the West End congregation, <see adjacent site here at Piney, it's near the bottom> because my
hunch is that there are, or at least were, people at
Smith Springs who share some similiar emotions and
thoughts. Or possibly not, but he who has ears to hear, let him hear:

entitled <What Is Love, July 29, 7:59>
"When a small group comes in and changes the whole basis of the church and splits the church, that is NOT LOVING. We have had families torn apart - very
loving families. It cannot be right when it is so divisive. It is not LOVE to sit by and say 'Let's just love each other and all get along.'
Please, those who want to <change>, do the loving
thing and leave and start your own congregation. Don't take over a long-standing Church of Christ and
split it apart, tearing up families and friends. THAT
is the real UNLOVING GROUP, not those who are trying to alert you and preventing these destructive takeovers. Are these men 'therefore now your enemy
because they tell you the truth. <Gal.4:16>'. "

Indeed. Lord be with our brothers.

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Divine Men's club

August 4 2003, 4:34 PM 

So here's what's printed on the copy of the West. Confession of Faith I got today.
"The Westminster Assembly of Divines, convened by the
English Parliament in 1643 (completed 1647)
These documents have served as the doctrinal standards,subordinate to the Word of God, for
Prebyterian and other churches around the world"

It's chapter 5, section I that says:
"God the great Creator of all things doth uphold, direct, dispose, and govern all creatures, actions,
and things, from the greatest even to the least..."

And check out this heartwarming thought for the 'elect'in the same chapter, section V:
"The most wise, righteous, and gracious God doth
oftentimes leave, for a season, his own children to
manifold temptations and the corruption of their own
hearts, to chastise them for former sins, or to discover unto them the hidden strength of corruption and deceitfulness of their hearts, that they may be humbled; and to raise them to a more close and constant
dependence for their support upon himself..."

These self-professed 'Divine' men realized they were
painting themselves into a corner Biblically so they
tried to save face by knocking out a couple of holes in the wall (can you say 'loophole') in 2 ways:
1. by calling things that were illogical a 'mystery':
Chapter III, Section VIII: "The doctrine of this high
mystery of predestination is to handled with special
prudence and care........."
because 5 sections earlier it says:
Sec.III "By the decrfee of God, for the manifestation of his glory, some men and angels are predestined unto everlasting life and others foreordained to everlasting

2. and at least twice they say that even though God does cause every thing all the time, he doesn't ever
cause evil or sin (got that?)
Cpt3,Sec.1: "God from all eternith did by the most wise
and holy counsel of his own will, freely and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; yet so
as thereby neither is God the author of sin...."
Cpt5, Sec.4b: "...yet so the sinfullness thereof proceedeth only from the creature and not from God, who being most holy and righteous neither is not can be
the author of approver of sin."

Methinks thou holy dudes hath spendeth too much of thy
time in the ale at ye local tavern.
Incidentally, the reason I personally don't put too much stock in some of the present reasoning that "The NIV version is responsible for most of the problems in
the church" is that MOST of the men who translated the
KING JAMES version were Calvinist themselves; they got
exactly what they wanted, as far a wording, with the KJV.

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August 5 2003, 11:10 AM 

To doctor up history, as this outfit {Eng.} seems to be doing and infer that church history has had a majority of intellectuals solidly in support of Augustine's dogmas of determinism, esp. for the first several hundred and the last several hunred years, is just irresponsible.
It only adds insult to injury that this is being presented in such a one sided manner to some of our
young people.
How can brethren just let something like this blow over?
I sincerely believe that people are entitled to personal convictions and beliefs and our congregations can remain autonomous and independent but how can it
be the loving mature thing to masquerade THIS as a
Church of Christ, and as an accurate presentation of history at one of our schools?

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non-calvinist are atheist?

January 4 2004, 12:26 PM 

i'm almost positive lawrence HAS stated that those who don't buy his perversions are teaching atheism. A friend of mine has kept their e-mailings from 2001-2003. i'll have him search to document this claim.

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January 4 2004, 4:52 PM 

It is false to say that Dr. Lawrence believes that those that do not agree with him are teacing atheism. You may search all the records but you will not find it.

What they are saying is that the Arminian position is inconsistent in their theology and soteriology and if they ever attempted to make their positions consistent, they would come out at atheism, which is where "Open Theism" is headed right now. But you would probably not know about "Open Theism" because the proponents are not "church of Christ."

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church of christ atheist?

January 12 2004, 7:33 PM 

O.K. I'll just quote directly and let YOU decide exactly what D.L. HAS said. This is from the July 9, 2001 installment of his weekly devotional that was sent to the Engedi faithful.

"...That reminds me of a very good book that all of you should read. It is by R.K. McGregor Wright and is entitled NO PLACE FOR SOVEREIGNTY. I have read it twice and found it one of the most valuable books of human authorship I have ever read. It approaches Christianity from a historical perspective, thus it is rooted in reality, and develops the thesis that the logical conclusion of free theism is atheism. It would be interesting to read someone's attempt to refute his well developed narrative. Mr. Wright argues that freewill theists con continue to believe in God only by being inconsistent with their theology.
I BELIEVE HE IS RIGHT, and that the logical consistency and rationality (and God is a rational God, after all) of theology I espouse are further reasoons to believe it is accurate..
...The sovereign God who reigns over all created reality has a grand purpose which he carries forth in Christ, and everything that happens in the universe fits into that grand schema."
(after parrotting several verses he has picked up from men like R.C.Sproul, and company, he concludes with these words:) "An older gentleman once told a younger man who challenged him and pointed out, in kindness, that his doctrines were inconsistent, 'I have just learned to live with inconsistencies.' I cannot. Can you?"

If you'd like a complete copy of the entire article I'm sure you can get it via or by writing to Mr. Lawrence, %Campus Mail, Lipscomb University, Nashville.
So tell me again how he his agenda isn't labeling everyone who disagrees with him as atheist? How much more proof could a rational consistent human need?

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It doesn't fall far from the tree.

January 15 2004, 8:12 PM 

Let's see, where have I heard this type of language (the phrasing Lawrence uses) before? Oh yeah, now I remember:
You better see it our way - "were the only ones going to heaven." Amazing how this man has come to the absolute truth so many DIFFERENT times ! (Oh, but now he's finally got it right THIS time...he's using bigger, deeper theological wording, and determinist of all ages are solidly on his side.

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Re: It doesn't fall far from the tree.

January 16 2004, 8:44 AM 

The issues is not a person's right to express an opinion: Jesus said to preach and MAKE DISCIPLES by:

Continued teaching of what Jesus taught and inspired.

A person is NOT a disciple until they have believed and obeyed Jesus to KEEP from calling God a liar. Only after He has sprinkled his blood at the time and place of baptism does he ADD you to His church or kingdom.

Because DISCIPLES were FOLLOWERS OF CHRIST they were known as CHRISTIANS; not as a term of derision.

Therefore, the phenomena of an UNBAPTIZED BELIEVER or CHRISTIAN is not known in the Bible.

RELIGIONISTS who deny this are, according to Jesus Christ, the Apostles and church history, NOT Disciples of Christ and they are not CHRISTIANS. You simply CANNOT be a Christian and claim that Christ (God) and the writers were TOO BUSY to reveal "predestination to hell of infants" the REVELATION came through CHURCH COUNCILS: the same good people who gave you a "practicing homosexual bishop." Therefore, they are CALVINISTS or followers of Calvin but not of Jesus Christ who died for the sins of the WHOLE world.

"Two or three" means a very small number. As two or three berries left on the bush as the REMNANT. Jesus WENT OUT to preach because the market places were almost devoid of good grapes. Two or three are also enough to establish a WITNESS to the world.

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. Mt.18:20

A "school" exists with a teacher on one end of a log and a DISCIPLE on the other. Gathered means sunago. For emphasis the word is doubled to mean SYNAGOGUE or school of the Bible with ONLY CHRIST as the Master Teacher. He now teaches through His word as it has been taught.

I contend that it is IMPOSSIBLE to do synaogue with Christ teaching when you have 2 or 3 thousand people being misled.

EVERYONE believes and preaches that they are going to heaven and "those who say it" are somehow evil.

CONCLUSION: Please name me a "non-instrumental" preacher or group which has conspired to INFILTRATE and DIVERT a Calvinist church into the bank account of the churches of Christ. THAT is the issue being debated.

Saying "you're another one", as children believe, does not make the FIRST CHARGE to be dismissed.

Ken Sublett

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familiar language

January 18 2004, 9:49 PM 

The more I discover about Lawrence's convoluted logic and his apeing of the same old Augustinian distortions the more I'm reminded of people like him mentioned in II Timothy 3:7 who are "always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth." It's too bad his spiritual journey has lead him into such a blind cave as this. He's no modern-day Luther; just a misguided pied piper.

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Again,,,That is NOT what he said...

January 19 2004, 1:08 PM 

Dr. Lawrence argues that "the logical conclusion of free will theism is atheism." Now he is not saying that Arminians are atheist. His point is that Arminianism IS INCONSISTENT and doesn't seem to care. Arminianism is NOT atheism. Arminianism has an inconsistent view of theology and soteriology. That is Dr. Lawrence's point, I believe. If Arminianism ever went to it's logical conclusion, it would cease to be Arminianism and would become atheism.

Conclusion: In this article, Dr. Lawrence is NOT calling Arminians atheists. But why do you even care. You already consider his apostate (to your own shame). Sticks and stones may break your bones, but...

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get real

February 21 2004, 10:39 AM 

please spare us the linguistic technicalities; you're just playing word games! Does D. Lawerence not consider the Church of Christ to be teaching a type of Arminianism or not? Just be honest! You can dance around the issue all you want to but the reality is still there. And his spin on the Open Theism concept, which you people seem to arrogantly feel no one else is aware of, is so grossly distorted on the Engedi web-page as to lack any real credibility.

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No word games here....

February 21 2004, 4:17 PM 

I am not attempting to play word games with you. This is defintely not a game. Let me explain my point by numbering them. Maybe this will make it easier for you to understand.

1. Yes, I am sure Dr. Lawrence thinks that the churches of Christ teach Arminianism. (It could be worse, they could be teaching Pelagianism; which some do)

2. However, this does not mean that Dr. Lawrence believes that they are atheists.

3. Dr. Lawrence believe that Arminianism is grossly inconsistent in it's theology and soteriology.

4. The argument goes like this: IF Arminianism was consistent in terms of the character of God and the way that one is saved, then in it's theology and soteriology, it would wind up at Atheism.

5. As is, Arminianism SEEMS, from a Calvinistic view (which I obviously hold), to be at peace with it's inconsistencies.

6. Now, I know many brothers in Christ that are Arminians in their view of things, but they are still my brothers. The things that we "debate" on are those things in which I find them to be inconsistent on. Now I am sure that they find at least an equal number of things in my Calvinistic view that they think are inconsisent; hence the need to "iron" these issue out so that we may be of one mind. What you feel is a "slam" against the church of Christ view of things is no more of a "slam" than you guys claiming that those that hold to a Calvinistic view or even a different view on instruments are not even saved. There is the BIG difference. We are able to debate our Arminian brothers on the terms that we are brothers seeking one mind. You are not able to debate us on the same level. You do not believe that we are even brothers in the Lord. This is why nobody takes you seriously. You shut off the debate when you should be embracing those that embrace Christ through faith.

Can you do that? Dr. Lawrence can.

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not a primitive baptist
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get beneath the surface, please.

March 3 2004, 9:39 PM 

Dr. L's beliefs are well documented and I just wish we could learn something from another religious group who thoroughly explored these same ideas about 60 years ago and found them seriously lacking in Biblical scholarship. I beg any of you who are getting lured into these beliefs to do some investigation along these lines to see just how the entire Arminianism language is just the some old distortions. As a 60+ year old man who studied his way OUT of the Prebyterian church several years ago told me "(Calvinism) just can't deliver what it claims to promise: assurance." But more on that later.

Please go visit the web address: Bible and look under the topic of "Calvinism Refuted". You will read the following: "Many of the errors in the Catholic Church today can be traced to the writings of Augustine...Today, people are taught by some that a Christian must be either a Calvinist or an Arminian. This is not true. A Christian can and should be a Biblicist. We do not claim to fully understand the mind of God concerning sovereignty and free will. However, we do understand clearly the teaching of the Word of God concerning man's having a God-given free will to choose between good and evil and a free will to accept or reject Christ as Savior...John Calvin added to the word of God by taking the Biblical doctrine of Total Depravity and expanding it to an ultra-extreme, totally unBiblical position...The Bible clearly teaches that God enlightens sinners (John 1:9, 12:32, and 16:8). The Bible also teaches the free will and free exercise of that will by man...
Fundamental Baptist World-Wide Mission totally rejects the teaching of John Calvin concering Total Inability. .. (concerning Unconditional Election) This is totally contrary to the Word of God...(it) is to add to the Scripture things which God did not teach and never intended on men teaching...As John Calvin taught (it), it is not election at all. It is "selection."
(We do) not accept Calvin's teaching of Uncond.Elect...but rather believes and teaches that whosoever will may come to Christ by the exercise of his own will. It is our responsibility to give people the Gospel message, thus giving them the opportunity to choose Christ and be saved or reject Christ and be lost. The word predestination is found in only two books of the Bible, Romans 8:29-30 and Ephesians 1:5,11. In both texts predestination speaks not of people being lost or saved, but rather of position or privilege to be shared in the future by those who are already saved.
...We find the modern day Calvinist trying to disguise or hide his doctrine. They have changed the name of this teaching Irrestible Grace to a different name, but it is the same heresy...Irrestible Grace, within itself, is a phrase of contradiction. If it is irrestible, it is not grace at all....There is not one passage of Scripture that teaches that grace is irrestibly bestowed...Calvin's teaching was totally different from eternal security and totally foreign to the Bible.
Fundamental Baptist world-wide Mission rejects all five points of the doctine called Calvinism which was founded in Hell...
The teaching of doctrine of John Calvin, the Reformer, causes confusion everywhere it is discussed, leaves unanswerable questions, and creates strive and division. We have seen works and entire mission fields divided and destroyed by the doctrine of John Calvin. God keep us from this heresy..."

Some incredibly un-loving language, wouldn't you say, or is it just that we don't have the history in the Church of Christ in the past century to understand, so 'those who do not learn from history are destined to repeat it.' What an incredibly eroded embankment this would be for the church to slide down. But to point this out shouldn't be considered unloving or dogmatic. A few months ago a neighbor of mine began yelling frantically at another neighbor as she was backing her car up. How unloving! What the driver could not see wash that a small child had crawled up under here car! The point: if we try to warn you of impending danger and even use forceful language, please do not judge and assume that to be somehow unChristian. Remember grace?

Would you eat at a restaurant that said you had "a pretty good chance of not getting food poisoning here" or a hospital that said "we're pretty strongly convinced that our heart surgeons know what they're doing" or an airline that had a big sign at the check-in desk saying "we're pretty sure we can get you to your destination today."?
Yet after listening to one of Mr. Hale's tape series recently that is his phrasing: (paraphased).."if you notice a pattern of less sin in your life and you love your brother that is a strong sign that you are chosen." As my aged brother said, the doctrine, taken to it logical conclusion never can deliver what it seeks: assurance.

Do we now have to go through this only to discover in the phone book 60 years from now "Free-will Churches of Christ" and "Primitive Reformed Churches of Christ?"
PLEASE lets learn from the heartache and division of others!

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Billy G.
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Learning from the Baptists

March 6 2004, 6:42 PM 

Amen, amen and amen. Let's please learn from the grief others have gone through. A friend of mine, Kyle, who works for Turner Broadcasting in Atlanta, said that his grandfather remembered the time when their Baptist church was divided by all of this years ago. A prominent pastor of their has written an excellent and consise book, PREDESTINED TO HELL? NO! that outlines their experience. If any of you live anywhere near the Murfreesboro, TN area you can still get this book from Sword of the Lord Bookstore (615) 893-6700. If you are out there and wondering if there's something Engedi has been leaving out then please GET THIS BOOK!

Here's a few quotes:
"Calvinism especially appeals to those who think that Hyper-Calvinism is the only answer to Arminianism. (They) would like to make people believe...that if one does not teach universal salvation, he must be either a Calvinist or an Arminian."
..."the doctrine that God predestinated some men to a doctrine of Calvinism...It is a sectarian tenet ...a radical heresy, not taught in Bible."
"(It) is not evangelical Christianity; that is not the Bible doctrine that God is "not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance" (II Peter 3:9)

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BIlly G.
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(more on the Baptist experience with Engedi's message)

March 6 2004, 7:04 PM 

Sorry, but I left out some of the most pertinent quotes regarding to divisive, negative consequences of this teaching of another religious group:
(More from the book, PREDESTINED TO HELL? NO!)
p.16 "The simiple truth is that probably not one out of ten, even of Presbyterians, in the U.S. believe in Calvin's position on the matter of salvation. Almost no Baptists believe that. And yet these groups are not Arminian...The great evangelists and soul winners have usually been men who are not Arminian....none of these men believe that people are saved by irrestible grace...or that God has foreordained others to be damned without a chance to be saved."
"Do Baptists believe in "The Five Points of Calvinism?" They do not. Many years ago there was a DIVISION among Baptists in the southern U.S. on this subject. THe two bodies were called "Primitive Baptists" and "Missionary Baptists." There are not 8 million Southern Baptists, many other Missionary Baptists, but only a handful of Primitive Baptists, not more than a very few thousand. It is a dying group..."
"Wherever people gather without the bias of a sectarian denominational spirit, and study the Bible with earnest, believing hearts, then hyper-Calvinism losts out as it has lost out in the fundamental Bible institutes of America, on the principal Bible conference programs of America."
...hyper-Calvinism is a philosophy developed by men and depending on fallible logic and frail human reason, with the perversion of some Scriptures, the misuse of other Scriptures, and the total ignoring of still other Scriptures."
"It is an obsolete human philosophy which never did properly represent the Scriptures."
"The Bible has no doctrine of 'reprobation' and the Bible does not use that word, nor any word like it, in reference to predestination"
(Depravity): ...the Bible never even hints that there are many people who have no ability to be saved...the idea that many men, women and children are totally unable to not scriptural."
(Unconditional election)...Is there any such languahe in the Bible? There is not...concerning all men everywhere and on the matter of salvation, the Bible has no teaching...and the language itself is not Bible language."
"Limited atonement is not a Bible term because it does not represent a Bible doctrine. It represents a philosophy of men."
(Irrestible grace)...That terminology is not Bible terminology. The idea is not a Bible idea...(it) is not the Bible doctrine of grace."

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Nice try...

March 6 2004, 10:02 PM 

Let me tell you what is happening.

There are many churches of Christ that are coming to an understanding of what you call "Calvinism" (which I call "Biblical Theology") and it scares you guys to death. There is not, and has never been, anyone within the churches of Christ that can hold a candle to the scholarship of the "Calvinists". Also, there is a movement (by those paying attention) within the Southern Baptists today that is moving them back to a "Calvinistic" understanding of salvation. Praise God!!!

Sorry Billy G. There is a movement toward the wonderful Doctrines of Grace and cannot stop it.

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March 7 2004, 5:43 PM 

I agree about John Calvin. However, when he gets to Augustine he begins to mutter. He has the chore of defending something simply because the word "predestinate" shows up. If you will read Augustine you will discover that everyone has free will until they throw it away.

If you read Calvin you will see him using the same "prooftext" used by Lawrence, etal. They can take one verse out of its context and make it call God a liar. Paul leaves no doubt that God's predestinated plan for all brands of sinners was to CALL or INVITE both Jew and Gentile. He would unite them into one body.

God picked certain people for tasks but you WILL NOT find any "person" predestinated to heaven or hell.

If you ever knew you must have forgotten that the Campbell's were Presbyterians and had to work their way out of Calvinism.

Now, since believing that little one-celled thingys contract ORIGINAL SIN if its mother enjoyed the conception is such a wonderful doctrine, why not take JUST ONE part of Calvinism and give us your "proof texs" and we will show you where you were blind-sided by the Word because you didn't "care enough to read the rest."

I have reviewed many of David Lawrence's "papers" and he always sees Scripture as his "proof-text grab bag" and never even indicates that he has read Paul's message in its context. If you defend Calvinism you will have to do the same thing but WE are waiting for you to debate. The inability to read the Text "as it has been taught" was explained by Paul for the Jews in 2 Cor. 3. As a nation they had been BLIND and DEAF from the time of their rejection of THE BOOK OF THE COVENANT by rising up to PLAY which means musical idolatry. God gave them their prayer but "sent leanness into their souls." Only by turning to Christ at baptism could they receive A holy spirit or A clear conscience so that the Word flashes forth so powerfully that a "believer" [believers are always baptized believers in the Bible] COULD NOT look to CHURCH COUNCILS to define what the Holy Spirit simply didn't have time to WORK OUT.

Since D. Lawrence CONFESSES that Calvinism had to await a council (Synod of Dort?] he simply has no need to quote the Bible as the Holy Spirit delivered it. Hebrews 6 places all such teachers and their defenders "beyond redemption" for rejecting the WORD'S authority.

Ken Sublett

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What are you guys scared of?

March 8 2004, 5:04 PM 

Mr. Sublett,

I simply do not understand what scares you guys who groan about the teaching of the doctrines of grace. They have proven themselves to be uplifting doctrines to myself and many others who are led to embrace them.

I would debate you if you would concede that I am indeed a believer in Christ and am covered, as are you, in His shed blood. If you will not debate me as a brother based upon that confession, then I will not debate you. I am willing to debate you only on the grounds that we are believers seeking to be of one mind. I do not accept that I am the heretic attempting to be kept from the burning stake or even the eternal fires of hell.

The demeaning tone must stop and the stone throwing must as well (even from myself). Let us unite and even engage in debate. However, let us do so in love and with the goal of glorifying God by becoming like-minded in all things.

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March 8 2004, 7:47 PM 

Scared people don't post their name!

I don't DEBATE: I simply ask that you give ONE proff text for say FAITH ONLY. The truth of the Bible does not rest on whether ANON is or is not covered. I would say that if you have not been baptized and further taught to become a DISCIPLE of Christ the Bible simply defines you out as a Christian.

Speaking of burning:

"The Reformer called Servetus arrogant (he had dared to criticize the "Institutes" in marginal glosses), and uttered the significant menace, "If he comes here and I have any authority, I will never let him leave the place alive." The "Restitutio" appeared in 1553. Calvin at once had its author delated to the Dominican inquisitor Ory at Lyons, sending on to him the man's letters of 1545-46 and these glosses.

Hereupon the Spaniard was imprisoned at Vienne, but he escaped by friendly connivance, and was burnt there only in effigy. Some extraordinary fascination drew him to Geneva, from which he intended to pass the Alps. He arrived on 13 August, 1553. The next day Calvin, who had remarked him at the sermon, got his critic arrested, the preacher's own secretary coming forward to accuse him. Calvin drew up forty articles of charge under three heads, concerning the nature of God, infant baptism, and the attack which Servetus had ventured on his own teaching. The council hesitated before taking a deadly decision, but the dictator, reinforced by Farel, drove them on. In prison the culprit suffered much and loudly complained. The Bernese and other Swiss voted for some indefinite penalty.

"But to Calvin his power in Geneva seemed lost, while the stigma of heresy; as he insisted, would cling to all Protestants if this innovator were not put to death. "Let the world see" Bullinger counselled him, "that Geneva wills the glory of Christ." While Calvin may have opted for a faster death, he was assuredly responsible for the burning death of one who had disagreed with him.

"Others burned at the stake usually had the fuel piled at their feet. The flames were inhaled with the smoke, and the victim was speedily unconscious to suffering. For Servetus Satanic ingenuity arranged the burning fagots at a distance. He literally roasted alive, in horrible torture, nearly five hours --in the name of God, of Jesus, of Righteousness, Truth, Justice, Love, Christianity and Civilization."

This is the John Calvin whom David Lawrence trusts to define CALVINISM because they were "too busy" when the Apostles had the writing task.

Ken. Just one proof text!

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My response...

March 9 2004, 2:39 PM 

1. I am hardly scared. The reason that I do not post my name is that I know that there are those on this site who, if I posted my name, would take it and run and do all kinds of ungodly things with it. I do not want to encourage sin on their part. (And I DO know who you all are)

2. You told me that you are waiting for me to debate. Now, if you "don't DEBATE," and you are waiting for me to DEBATE, pray tell, who is it that I should DEBATE.

3. I have many "proof texts" that I could cite for you. You know where they are, but I know that you would take each of them, connect them with the James passages and (erroneously) say that we are justified by faith AND works. The debate has travelled down this path many times, and the churches of Christ still disagree with the majority of the Protestant Evangelical churches. However, if I may: "But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through FAITH in Jesus Christ to all who BELIEVE. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through FAITH in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished - he did it to demonstrate his justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those wo have FAITH in Jesus." Romans 3:21-26 (and I could go on)

4. About Calvin: Come on now! The anti-Calvinists harp on this all of the time and never put it in it's proper CONTEXT. It is very similar to the Democrats always whining about the number of jobs lost under President Bush's first term WITHOUT putting it in it's proper CONTEXT. Please allow me to do that for you with someone elses words (because they can do it much better than I):
"Calvin has, however, often been criticized with undue severity as though the responsibility rested upon him alone, when as a matter of fact Servetus was given a court trial lasting over two months and was sentenced by the full session of the civil Council, and that in accordance with the laws which were then recognized throughout Christendom. And, far from urging that the sentence be made more severe, Calvin urged that the sword be substituted for the fire, but was overruled. Calvin and the men of his time are not to be judged strictly and solely by the advanced standards of our twentieth century, but must to a certain extent be considered in the light of their own sixteenth century. We have seen great developments in regard to civil and religious toleration, prison reform, abolition of slavery and the slave trade, feudalism, witch burning, improvement of the conditions of the poor, etc., which are the late but genuine results of Christian teachings. The error of those who advocated and practiced what would be considered intolerance today, was the general error of the age. It should not, in fairness, be permitted to give an unfavorable impression of their character and motives, and much less should it be allowed to prejudice us against their doctrines on other and more important subjects."


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After thought
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" I shall return"

March 10 2004, 6:33 PM 

Gen. Douglas MacArthur uttered these words as he left the Philipines in the early stages of World War II. The situation was that many countries were not even aware that they were at war! So Japan and Germany stormed over unsuspecting countries almost at will. But we know the rest of the story when people realized they were under attack: they prepared to defend their honor. Their original actions may have been driven by a type of fear but as the initial shock wore off they were moved by honor and respect for truth and freedom. And Douglas did return as promised, with a vengeance.

This new, archaic movement you speak of in Christendom has been able to achieve a great deal of its early victories by what many are calling near-underhanded techniques: infiltrating unsuspecting Christian communities under the disguise of "Community" churches or "reformed" or "grace fellowship", etc. (Surely you are aware that this has been one of the strategies of the P.C.A. since its inception back in the 1970's)
But just give people some time and they will begin to realize what is going on and they will defend their honor and that of a loving God, and this stellar theology you speak of will be exposed for what it really is.
Time will tell if this is some new wave in the Churches of Christ or simply an unfortunate, tragic tsunami that has devastated a couple of small congregations in our fellowship. True, there are some doctrines we need to do better at, but the answer is not to over-compensate as Engedi is attempting. It's just like the driver who veers off of the shoulder of the road only to lunge back onto the highway, throwing his vehicle into a violent roll.
But time will tell.

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Stu Haynes
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Candle in the wind

March 22 2004, 12:21 PM 

"There is not, and has never been, anyone with the churches of Christ that can hold a candle to the scholarship of the 'Calvinists'." Really?

Since C-ism is based on human reasoning, esp. of the Classical Greeks, we should not be surprised by "puffed-up language" such as this. Historically this mindsed has teemed with intellectual arrogance, and no doubt most of these adherents (the "fruit") pass on this genetic defect flawlessly.

We've been given many N.T. warnings regarding the application of human reasoning to spiritual matters. It's just the only way they can fit their square peg in the round hole of God.

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The Unscholarly educators at ACU?

April 23 2004, 2:41 PM 

As one Engedi-ite has expressed herein "there is not, and has never been, anyone within the churches of Christ that can hold a candle to the scholarship of the 'Calvinist' ."

This seems quite a stark contrast to a recent e-mail I received 4-1-04 from Jack Reese, the Dean of the College of Biblical Studies at Abilene Christian University, a school known for its progressive thinking:

"...not only are the Bible faculty at ACU not Evangelical in terms of our theological positions, we are often in situations where we challenge the tenets of Evangelicalism publicly. We are clearly not proponents of Evangelicalism, especially the strong Calvinism and weak position on baptism that is typical of most Evangelicals. We are certainly not encouraging our churches to merge with Evangelical churches."

So I guess ACU is another of those places full of weak theoligians. It's just too bad that none of these faculty members have studies the Bible deeply, or possibly they are all just "scared."

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January 13 2004, 11:23 AM 

David Lawrence (aka David Lipscomb University with John Mark Hick's Phd from Westminister and working with Rubel Shelly), who denies GOD the FREE WILL to give free will, also says that FREE WILLERS are also Idolaters. Rubel Shelly says that to argue the NON-INSTRUMENTAL position makes us idolaters. But, WE thought that music began as idolatry in heaven, in the garden of eden, in many Biblical examples and the end-time Babylon Whore worship.

Now, here is how James says that sin goes through a proces--just like faith--which leads to DEATH or SALVATION or PERFECTION.

    Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. James 1:12
    Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: James 1:13
    But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed (entrapped, deluded). James 1:14
As God does not DRAG us into His body, the EKklessia, He does not DRAG us into sin

Ecelko (g1828) ex-el'-ko; from 1537 and 1670; to drag forth, i.e. (fig.) to entice (to sin): - draw away.

"His OWN" is idios: one's own, separate, alone.
These people who are ENTICED have followed a DECOY or BAIT .Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. James 1:15
"Then, when
    desire has CONCEIVED ,
    it GIVES BIRTH to sin ;
    and sin, when it is FULL-GROWN ,
    brings forth death. James 1:15NKJ
    [g5088 Tikto=produce from seed, be born]

Finished is Apoteleo (g658) ap-ot-el-eh'-o; from 575 and 5055; to complete entirely, i.e. consummate: - finish.
Teleo (g5055) tel-eh'-o; from 5056; to end, i.e. complete, execute, conclude, discharge (a debt): - accomplish, make an end, expire, fill up, finish, go over, pay, perform.
Telos (g5056) tel'-os; from a prim. tello, (to set out for a definite point of goal); prop. the point aimed at as a limit, i.e. (by impl.) the conclusion of an act or state (termination [lit., fig. or indef.], result [immed., ultimate or prophetic], purpose); spec. an impost or levy (as paid): - / continual, custom, end (-ing), finally, uttermost. Comp. 5411

I'll bet it works the same way for PLANTING the Seed which leads to a SPIRITUAL Birth. Believing means that the SEED has been RECEIVED.

Ken Sublett

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True Two!

January 13 2004, 1:10 PM 

We noted that people are not born sinners: they are NOT OF THE SPIRIT but are DECOYED or BAITED by Satan to do those tings which appeal to the FLESH. In Romans 7 Paul had to WRESTLED DOWN being led by his FLESHLY nature. However, being IN CHRIST he was led by his own spirit made HOLY at the time and place of Baptism.

Do not err, my beloved brethren. James 1:16

Err speaks of the "wandering stars" or "planets" or the STARRY host personified by Satanic "gods." When Israel ROSE UP TO PLAY at Mount Sinai this was ERRING. They worshipped the Egyptian Triad under the golden calf with musical idolatry. God accepted this as THEIR PRAYER. He answered their prayer by turning them over to worship the STARRY HOSTS, the Law of Sacrifices (which were not good but were part of the worship of Chiun, Saturn the chaldee 666) and the PRIESTHOOD to quarantine the PEOPLE'S CONGREGATON from the sacrificial system.

Jude refers us to THE BOOK OF ENOCH whice defines these as Satan's "elders" who seduced the faithful Sethites with mixed-sex choirs, musical instruments, wine and other ENTICING rituals to silence the LIVING WORD of God.

Therefore, as God DOES NOT DRAG people into SPIRITUAL death, they must be aware that God does not DRAG people into spiritual birth. The WORD rather than human sensuality is the SEED which begets us, but FAITH ONLY does not produce a spiritual birth.

However, Satan DRAGS red herrings or DECOYS under the face of all of us. Those who do not WALK IN THE SPIRIT will follow the BAIT and be lost.

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. James 1:17

    Telos (g5056) tel'-os; from a prim. tello, (to set out for a definite point of goal); prop. the point aimed at as a limit, i.e. (by impl.) the conclusion of an act or state (termination [lit., fig. or indef.], result [immed., ultimate or prophetic], purpose); spec. an impost or levy (as paid): - / continual, custom, end (-ing), finally, uttermost. Comp. 5411
    Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures. James 1:18
    Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: James 1:19
    For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. James 1:20
    Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. James 1:21

Emphutos (g1721) em'-foo-tos; from 1722 and a der. of 5453; implanted (fig.): - engrafted.
Phuo (g5453) foo'-o; prim. verb; prob. orig. to "puff" or blow, i.e. to swell up; but only used in the impl. sense, to germinate or grow (sprout, produce), lit. or fig.: - spring (up).

    But be ye doers of the WORD, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. James 1:22
    For if any be a hearer of the WORD, and NOT a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: James 1:23
    For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. James 1:24
Hearing the instructions for assemblying a baby crib does not EDUCATE. We look and look but until we are DOERS the instructions don't mean anything.

But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his DEED. James 1:25

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Atheism? That is what DL agrees with.

January 5 2004, 2:28 PM 

I have added a digital copy of the E-MAIL sent to me here.

"It approaches Christianity from the historical perspective, thus it is rooted in reality, and develops the thesis that the logical conclusion of FREEWILL THEISM IS ATHEISM. It would be interesting to read someone's attempt to refute his well developed narrative....I believe he is right...

Soli Deo Gloria
David Lawrence

Ken Sublett

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Not even close
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Identifying the destroyer

September 1 2003, 7:08 PM 

After reading through the evidence presented on this forum thus far I think even Helen Keller would be able to see what has been DESTROYING this congregation, and it has been in a destruct mode months and YEARS before this web page even began, partner. So NOT guilty as charged.

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Mardi Grah
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Say what? Reformed is better than restored?

August 24 2003, 8:03 PM 

On the home page for under 'Short Studies' is a real beauty entitled REFORM OR RESTORATION. This is an interesting little diatribe about the unreasonableness of attempting a Restoration Movement, since the early church had so many problems and there was, therefore, no good pattern to follow. The article goes on to attempt to defend the premise of the benefits of reforming a church that had been perverted for 1500 years!

To add to the interesting logic, Mr. Lawrence says in one paragraph that the church of the apostolic age was "fresh and uncorrupted, when doctrine was simple.." Then only 3 paragraphs later he says that "the early church did not have a clear picture of doctrines"!?!?! So which was it?

It has to be very uncomfortable trying to straddle a fence with one foot on a reformed catholic church (but at least it's comfortable on that side since it has a nice soft straw padding), and one foot stuck in what they consider a deluded denomination filled with division and heresy.

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Reform or Restore? A parable

August 27 2003, 10:21 PM 

I have a neighbor who reconditions old clocks. He's told me that there was usually at least one problem with every old model out there, but still, the real value lies in attempting a complete RESTORATION, with original wood, finish, glass, weights, and gears. Granted, there still could be some manufacturing flaw along the way, but at least we knew what the ideal was, so he knew where to aim.

I asked him how many times someone had brought in a jury-rigged clock, maybe with an old wasp nest in it, an old roller skate key for a crank, baleing wire strapped around the back, cracked glass, rusted hands, dusty gears with broken teeth, and so on - how many people have brought in such a monstrosity and simply asked "could you fix this but leave the flaws, it gives it character and I really appreciate all the input others have made - just REFORM it so this thing will still run."
His answer: "No one, that's absurd!"

When you have the blueprints to attempt a full RESTORATION - and he knows he'll never get it perfect, he's human - you realize that there's little true value (except sentimental to hold on to some old family tradition) in an illegitimate reformation.

As Lawrence accurately points out, there were many problems in many first-Century churches, and the New Testament exposes them to give us clearer insights regarding how the church should NOT function. We are encouraged in the Word to learn from their mistakes, NOT to repeat them or somehow model ourselves after their flaws.

Lawrence also makes the false assumption that as the Spirit guided the Catholic church fathers through the centuries, that it reached its final destination (the "we've arrived" idea) in the 1600's, and our goal now is to just stay there spiritually, polishing that old silverware. Maybe it was also the Holy Spirit (and not the Enlightenment, as Engedi claims) that has led most of the Christian world AWAY from Luther's over-reaction to the indulgences problem. Or has the Holy Spirit been on vacation for the past four centuries, as these Calvinists seem to imply? How do you know that it wasn't the Holy Spirit that reformed the Reformation by inspiring Godly men with the concept of a Restoration?

You DON'T know, unless there's a vestige of some defective sin gene (so much for being a "new creature") that is blocking you (thanks to legalistic pride) from even considering such a scenario.

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To Pay
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Hair Club for Men

August 28 2003, 9:05 AM 

Why are balding men willing to pay a few hundred dollars for a Reformed version of their original hair, in the form of a "rug", but are willing to pay
THOUSANDS of dollars, and go through painful surgery, in order to have their hair RESTORED. Which do they consider to be of greater worth, and why?

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July 31 2003, 2:25 PM 


Remember that Jesus spoke PARABLES to the MASSES because they had no interest in Jesus or His WORD. JESUS said in Matthew 13 that truth had been hidden FROM THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD to keep the mysteries out of the hands of the TRAFFICKERS. Therefore note that there are TWO CLASSES in John 6: the Masses to whom Jesus spoke of the LITERAL water and food in the wilderness. The ANTI-TYPE could not be literal EATING OF FLESH and DRINKING of the blood of Christ as the Jews were contaminated by those who literally ATE AND DRANK THE GODS. The Anti-type was then revealed to the Disciples and Jesus even gave those whom HE had PRE-CHOSEN to defect from Him. The other class could not grasp the LITERAL meaning of eating flesh and drinking blood. The DISCIPLES were sorted out based on those who DID NOT DEPART but actually CHALLENGED Jesus.

Not every element connected with SALVATION is repeated each time. God gave Jesus DISCIPLES who were, in the secular world, baptized and became "children" of the master teacher. Neither Jesus nor anyone else ever speaks of God GIVING or ELECTING individuals to heaven or hell except those who ACCEPT the counsel of God for their lives.


The first "FORMULA" to the LITERALISTS:

...."Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? John 6:28

.........Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that YE BELIEVE on him whom he hath sent. John 6:29

You must note that BELIEVING is not the WORK which GOD DOES. Rather, YE BELIEVE. Period. But that is just ONE CYCLE as Paul cycles through the process in Romans 10. The Jews were still interested in how JESUS DID HIS WORK: they were not asking WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED? Jesus then told them that the MANNA was the work of God and not Moses.


..For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven and giveth life unto the world. John 6:33
....Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore GIVE US this BREAD. John 6:34
..And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life:
....he that COMETH to me shall never HUNGER;
....and he that BELIEVETH on me shall never THIRST. John 6:35

But, this is not a TWO STEP process to be saved but to have ACCESS to the Word of God. In Acts 2:38 Peter promised what Walter Scott and Greek usage defines as A holy spirit. In 1 Peter 3:21 Paul identified the REQUESTED gift at baptism as "A clear conscience." A conscious cleared of sin removes the VEIL of 2 Cor 3 and MARKS one as a DISCIPLE of the Words of Christ

..But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and BELIEVE NOT. John 6:36
....All that the Father giveth me shall come to me;
......and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. John 6:37

How does God DRAW of GIVE people to the Son Who is Master Teacher? God draws people to Himself by spirit influences: those who are LED become the children of God. You will note that people become initial disciples the moment the stand still and listen to His words which are Spirit and Life. However, as in all discipleships, one must not DEPART when the FUN AND GAMES AND FOOD is depleted. Those faithful disciples, a tiny few, did not DEPART from Him.

..........Those who yielded were accepted as children (disciples) of Christ:

.........those who did not yield to these drawings HAD NO INTEREST in being DISCIPLES. They went on to become "worshipers" but NOT of the SPIRIT God.

Even though the Israelites RESISTED the work of the Spirit of Christ He continued to work on their behalf proving that they were not PREDESTINATED from ETERNITY PAST to burn in hell:

....Ye stiff necked and UNCIRCUMCISED in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. Acts 7:51

--------One of the MARKS of one who has BELIEVED, turned AWAY from sin and TURNED TOWARD Jesus is that they will not WHINE about Baptism as a work when Scripture clearly makes the spiritual effect of baptism the WORK OF GOD THE SPIRIT:

.........In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Col 2:11
.........Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. Col 2:12

The Jews were God's CHOSEN PEOPLE to be a blessing to all nations including the GENTILES. They were Jesus' OWN people. However, SILLINESS about predestination to be BELIEVERS was not a fact because they could and did resist OR there would have never been any NEW TESTAMENT discussion of PREDESTINATION.

....Jesus came to His own but His own received Him not:
.........O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often WOULD I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and YE WOULD NOT Matt 23:37


ANOTHER CYCLE which adds other RATIONAL steps which are not LEGALISTIC.

..And this is the Fathers will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath GIVEN ME I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. John 6:39
How does John define these:
..And this is the will of him that sent me,
..that every one which SEETH the Son,
..and BELIEVETH on him,
..may have everlasting life:
...and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:40

And how does God DRAW US? You will notice that Jesus didn't PREDESTINATE people to HEAR THE GOSPEL.

..No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:44
....It is written in the prophets, And they shall be ALL TAUGHT of God.
....Every man therefore that hath HEARD,
....and hath LEARNED of the Father,
........COMETH unto ME. John 6:45

But, Jesus speaks of DISCIPLESHIP and the ability to EAT Spiritual FLESH and DRINK Spiritual Blood as opposed to Literal Manna or lots of bread and fishes.

....And Again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that BELIEVETH on me hath everlasting LIFE. John 6:47
LIFE is dispense through the SPIRIT flesh and blood.


The DISCIPLES of a Public Lecturer are the ones who REMAIN after the applause. That is how God SELECTS and gives DISCIPLES to Jesus. They are exposed to the Words of Christ which are Spirit and Life and therefore have "life" in themselves. But one does not become a CHICK by getting warned by the HEN.

People REBEL and run from the teachings of PREDESTINATION to heaven or hell. History of the Great Awakenings proves that there is no more ANXIETY PRODUCING and even Suicide producing burden that that which is laded on people. Along with PREDESTINATION must be the PROOF of some "spirit" activity. MOST never get that experience and therefore MOST go through life convinced by SINCERE? people that they will burn in hell. This leads to MORE LEGALISM by those who spend their lifetime struggling for a SIGN from God.

Grace gives total conficence or A holy spirit or A clear conscience by FAITH ONLY in Luther's Sense of accetping THE WORD ONLY which you must obey or you HAVE no faith. Therefore, predestinaiton also leads the blind away from baptism as the most GRACIOUS gift God could give us.

Next, we will hear Jesus explain the PARABLES.

Ken Sublett


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John 6: the SPIRITUAL food and drink

August 1 2003, 10:30 AM 

Eating and drinking the LITERAL FLESH AND BLOOD tripped up the Catholics who claim that Jesus must DIE and be resurrected at EACH MASS as a perverted Lord's Supper or the pagan, obscene AGAPAE or love feast. Unfortunately, when you BELIEVE that you are one of God's chosen people you must also believe that God SPEAKS AUDIBLY to you. Don't DRINK NO KOOLAID from such people. If only they could keep their eyes on Christ by keeping their ears open for a few more verses they would not look so silly.

Jesus disqualified the FLESH thinkers by saying:

..Whoso EATETH MY FLESH, and DRINKETH MY BLOOD, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:54

This even disturbed the Disciples but they remained for the SPIRITUAL explanation.

....Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? John 6:60

....When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto THEM, Doth this offend you? John 6:61


....What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? John 6:62
........It is the SPIRIT that quickeneth; the FLESH profiteth NOTHING:
........the WORDS that I speak unto you, THEY ARE SPIRIT, and they are LIFE. John 6:63
..........But there are some of you that believe not.
..........For Jesus KNEW from the BEGINNING who they were that BELIEVED NOT, and who should betray him. John 6:64

So, when people hate the WORD God pours out His WRATH by turning them into BUFFOONS. But lots of people enjoy buffoons, jesters, rhetoricians and that is how the BLIND get led by the BLIND and there is NO MERCY for blind leaders of blind shepherds leading you over rocky ground.

Jesus FORE-KNEW who would believe but He did not FORE-DESTINATE. The PREDESTINATED part of John 6 was to the masses to whom Jesus never preached EXCEPT IN PARABLES. The "NO MAN can come" was rounded out by Jesus sending the JEWISH apostles out to teach ALL NATIONS or Gentiles. As we have seen in the Apostles, the PREDESTINATED had always been God's PURPOSE to include the GENTILES. It took a lot of effort to dissabuse the Jews of the notion that only THEY were predestinated to hear the word.

...And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can COME unto ME,
....except it were GIVEN unto him of my FATHER. John 6:65

John 6:45 quoted Isaiah 54:13. Isaiah 55 begins shortly and God WARNS against those who would peddle what HE gave for free:

..HO, every one that THIRSTETH, come ye to the waters, and he that hath NO MONEY; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine (A food product) and milk WITHOUT MONEY and without price Isa 55:1 .
....Wherefore do ye spend MONEY for that which is not BREAD? and your LABOR for that which satisfieth not? HEARKEN diligently unto ME, and eat ye that which is good, and let your SOUL delight itself in fatness. Isa 55:2
......Incline your ear, and COME UNTO ME: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. Isa 55:3

Isaiah, under the Spirit of Christ (1 Pet 3:21) identifies the FOOD and DRINK as the WORDS of God poured out like RAIN. The WATER will recycle through others and RETURN to God as PRAISE (using His words) and the WORD will accomplish God's Will. He did not hint that only the PREDESTINATED few but the ones attracted by GOD'S words rather than THEIR words.

If you PAY super apostles the word HUPER is a form of the word HYPOCRITE which was an eternal SECT which sucks your blood and spreads DISEASES. You are like the Corinthians identified by Paul as, I paraphrase, FOOLS WHO LOVE TO BE FOOLED. Nothing works like removing the BLOOD supply from the PARASITES (false speakers, sophists, singers and musicians).

One of the BURDENS the FALSE CLERGY would lay on the people was "spiritual anxiety created by religious rituals." The Greek sources add "an EXTRA TAX when the nation is not at war." It is interesting that sick people MAKE WAR on God's people "trying to wear out the saints" and the push TITHING as a tax which Jesus removed. That is why the Greek world recognized rhetoricians as PARASITES who FURTHER EXPOUND or privately interpret in direct violation of Peter's charge that INSPIRED TEXT is NOT your "wine to water."

Before it is possible to come to the MAN Jesus Christ you must understand that He is manifestation of the ONE SPIRITUAL GOD. Jesus said "I and the Father are one" and that "I have the Father with me" and the "spirit is within me." Therefore, it is not possible to identify with the PHYSICAL image of God unless you grasp that He is God Incarnate. But HOW does one COME to Christ. People OF THE FAITH like that of Abraham always OBEYED whatever they were commanded: no one was justified by FAITH ONLY.

.... By faith Abel OFFERED unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh. Heb 11:4
...... But without FAITH it is impossible to please him: for he that COMETH to God must BELIEVE that he IS,
........AND that he is a REWARDER of them that DILIGENTLY SEEK him. Heb.11:6

The Jews DID NOT SEEK God by faith and they had ORDAINED that they had no interest in Spiritual things.

Not FAITH- ONLY but that God REWARDS those who DILIGENTLY SEEK Him in the sense of worship IN THE SPIRIT or Mind. Church is about DILIGENTLY SEEKING God through His Word. It is not a pagan WORSHIP CENTER. What you are PAYING is the Doctors of the Law condemned by Jesus because THEY TAKE AWAY THE KEY TO KNOWLEDGE. Faith is not FAITH ONLY but faith in the OPERATION of God through Jesus which SPIRITUALLY CIRCUMCIZES both Jew and Gentile so that salvation does not REST on Physicl circumcision. This would prove that the Jews were NOT UNIQUELY PREDESTINATED.

..In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Col 2:11
....Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him
....through the FAITH of the OPERATION of GOD, who hath RAISED him from the dead. Col 2:12

DILIGENTLY SEEK is Paul'a almost unique WORSHIP word:

..Ekzeteo (G1567) ek-zay-teh'-o; from 1537 and 2212; to SEARCH out, i.e. (fig.) investigate, crave, demand, (by Hebr.) worship: - en- (re-) quire, SEEK after (carefully, diligently).

....Of which salvation the prophets have ENQUIRED and SEARCHED DILIGENTLY, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:1Pe.1:10
.......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. 1 Peter 1:11


..Zeteo (g2212) dzay-teh'-o; of uncert. affin.; to seek (lit. or fig.); spec. (by Heb.) to worship (God), or (in a bad sense) to plot (against life): - be (go) about, DESIRE, endeavour, ENQUIRE (for), require, (* will) seek (after, for, means). Comp. 4441.

Charismatic MUSIC is so evil because it INTENDS to make it impossible for the "worshipers" to Seek or worship God in the PLACE of their own spirit or mind. The LUCIFER PRINCIPLE is to BLEED OFF worship from God through her agents. That is why the agents such as the king/ queen Tyre was the "Harp playing prostitute." He/ she WHOLLY SEDUCED Eve in the garden. In the garden She had her wind, string and percussion instruments.

Now, Jesus has trimmed the qualified SEEKERS to twelve:

..From that time MANY of his DISCIPLES went back, and walked no more with him. John 6:66
....Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? John 6:67
......Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? THOU hast the WORDS of ETERNAL LIFE. John 6:68
......And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. John 6:69

If Jesus is the CHRIST who left His own throne to take on human form then He is the One SPIRIT GOD (there are not three members of the Family of God.) Jesus identified His SONSHIP by the fact that He spoke only what He heard from the FATHER who was within. Therefore, the WORDS of a SPIRIT GOD must of necessity by SPIRIT and give LIFE. The ANOTHER COMFORTER is defined by Jesus who said I WILL COME TO YOU.

Jesus CHOOSE the twelve including Judas who defected. However, Jesus PRE-CHOOSE the other disciples and yet He asks: "WILL YE ALSO GO AWAY?" Why ask the question if those whom Jesus had PRE-SELECTED for a specific task could refuse it? Predestination says that they are IMMOBILE except as moved by God like puppets.

That is PSYCHOLOGICAL VIOLENCE using the CHANGE METHODS derived from Machiavelli, Hegel and Hitler. They have to convince you that EVERY EVIL has been created by churches of Christ and NO DOCTRINES held by churches of Christ are correct. Being, simpletons, some fall into the desired SCHIZOPHRENIA created by false teachers-- for a price. Only if they can get you flat of your spiritual, emotional and physical BACKS will you TITHE or fall sucker for the LAW OF GIVING and pay you to FIX YOU UP. Of course, they CANNOT tell the truth about the Bible or the Restoration Movement. If our false teacher BOASTING about diverting the precious children of SUPPORTS of Lipscomb has been PREDESTINATED how can we know that he is not one of the end-time LOCUSTS (musical performers) with an plague bringing, AIDS-like sting in their tails?

....Jesus answered them, Have not I CHOSEN you twelve, and ONE of you is a DEVIL? John 6:70
.......He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that SHOULD BETRAY him, being one of the twelve. John 6:71

The most common understanding of the trinity was that God the Father was THOUGHT, God the Son was WORD and God the Spirit or BREATH of God "blew" the WORDS out into the world. Scholarship never saw the Godhead as the latter-day Lucado - Shelly "three independant members of the Family of God."

Jesus didn't send the EVANGELIST out (always out) to MAKE WORSHIPERS but to MAKE DISCIPLES. Christianity as it assembles in Paul's letters is a form of the word SYNAGOGUE which is no more a pagan worship center than the EKKLESIA which was like our County Courts. The synagogue was a SCHOOL OF THE BIBLE. It never had "a praise service" which is pagan superstition and as the QAHAL or church in the wilderness, instruments and making a joyful noise WERE prohibited. Not legalistic, just common sense. You cannot provide Sunday Morning as a place where people SEEK God and then turn it into a VOODOO like pagan temple.

ALL false religious rebels have ALWAYS carried the fatal sting in their "tales": the resulting PLAGUE is not pretty if history knows anything

Ken Sublett

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Church Councils

August 2 2003, 8:32 PM 

By David Lawrence

Apparently the Holy Spirit and the "inspired writers" were TOO BUSY to clarify things like predestination, the trinity and GRACE ONLY. This sounds as if a FAIR reading of the Scriptures, sealed up in the belief they were the Words of Christ, WOULD NOT lead you to believe in these concepts. But, since the SPIRIT Had enough time to REPUDIATE the MODERN view of the trinity, predestinaiton and Faith or Grace only, we just don't have the need for COUNCILS to define doctrines for for us. This confession is proof that the people in control are not members of the church of Christ and have no right to take the property and SOW DISCORD.

David Lawrence: Look how far God has BROUGHT US! The early church was CONFUSED about so many matters that have been defined in the course of history as God has led his people with his Holy Spirit.

Ken: Now, God was too busy.

The loss of the love for the Words of Christ which He defined as SPIRIT and Life leads one into the delusion that the modern believer, just like Jesus, was INCARNATED with the Holy Spirit. Jesus identified the Father within as instructing what to put into Words. The Spirit had been with the Apostles and would be IN them later. The ANOTHER COMFORTER Jesus identified by saying "I WILL COME TO YOU." (John 14:18)

When the LORD appeared to Paul He said "I am JESUS of Nazareth." He appeared to Paul as an apostle born AFTER THE APOSTLE SEASON to focus on th Gentiles. He promised to guide Paul as He promised the TIMELY BORN apostles. Therefore, to use the COERCIVE power of the claim to be LED by the Holy Spirit to reveal dogmas not contained in the Bible is the claim, as some do, to be the "Christ for this church."

David Lawrence believes and teaches and proselytes in the belief that the CHURCH COUNCILS developed these new views. But the councils NEVER derived a trinity system of three separated beings as a committee. That was left to H. Leo Boles, the GA, Max Lucado and Rubel Shelly.

David Lawrence: Look at what the early CHURCH COUNCILS accomplished in DEFINING Christian doctrine, such as the nature of Christ, the TRINITY, and the doctrines of SALVATION by GRACE.
...."ALL of these matters were INDISTINCT to the earliest church that had to devote their energies simply to SURVIVAL from persecution.
...."Heresies gave the impetus to the early church scholars to search the Scriptures and define CORRECT Christian doctrine. We are the beneficiaries of their efforts today, but we know of these great accomplishments only through history.

Nicea was over the DEITY OF CHRIST and did not pronounce a trinity of separate beings. This is a vew slithering out of once "Christian colleges" which can NEVER remain faithful and become universities.

GOD IS ONE and the name (singular) of Father, Son and Spirit is Jesus Christ. God makes the test TOUGH by insisting that if you want to come to the SPIRIT God you have to approach Him as He lives in "a body prepared for me." A poor, homeless, despised and rejected of men. No PERFORMING CLERGY can qualify. To reject the Words and demand a direct revelation from the SPIRIT is to deny that Christ was fully revealed in the flesh.

Richard Hamm, the "Pope" of the Disciples Denomination says about the same thing. This is the High Church position of a LIVING REVELATION. One pope tried to deny that Scripture gave authority for instrumental music. However, the Emperor always TRUMPS the Pope and he had his mind changed. The later church of England tried to deny instrumental music because the church had NO RIGHT to add to the Word. Queen Elizabeth had another opinion because her STATE worship rituals need the pomp and ceremony. Therefore, the HIGH CHURCH position has NO council authority among protestants.

However, the dogma of the trinity has caused probably more discord than any other thing. However, this was not a COUNCIL DERIVED addition to the old, incomplete Bible. ALL scholars define the "trinity" which ABSOLUTE repudiates the David Lawrence, Rubel Shelly derived "trinity." The church Fathers insist that the God head is NEVER separated and CANNOT be a Shellyite Family of Gods, independent with their own dispensational skills. Trinity is almost always defined as Father is THOUGHT, Son is WORD and SPIRIT is BREATH which "blows" the word out between the lips or double-edged sword. The church scholars got that idea from God who inspired Psalm 33:

...."For the WORD of the LORD is right; and all HIS works are done in truth. Psa 33:4
......"By the WORD (1) of the LORD (2) were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the BREATH (spirit) (3) of his MOUTH. Psa 33:6

..Mouth: Peh (h6310) peh; from 6284; the mouth (as the means of blowing)
......Breath is SPIRIT: Ruwach (h7307) roo'-akh, roo'-akh; from 7306; wind; by resemblance breath... by resemblance SPIRIT, but ONLY of a RATIONAL BEING (includ. its expression and functions)

Yes, God, His Word and His breath (Spirit) Spoke the Worlds into existence. "They" were all there but John said that it was Jesus the Word Who created all things. You cannot DILUTE the full Deity of Jesus the "son of Man" and not be ejected by God. THEN you are predestinated as the anti-christ.

The Pope claimed to have the power to change the rules of the church, or how the Bible would be APPLIED in their church. However, only fanatics give themselves the power to claim the HOLY SPIRIT by slicing Him off from the Father and Son to reveal NEW truths. For instance, NEITHER John Calvin nor Luther ever saw the "spirit" giving anyone power to CHANGE the word:

John Calvin wrote

1.The fanatics wrongly appeal to the Holy Spirit

Those who, REJECTING Scripture, IMAGINE that they have some peculiar way of penetrating to God, are to be deemed not so much under the influence of error as MADNESS. For certain GIDDY men have lately appeared, who, while they make a GREAT display of the SUPERIORITY of the Spirit,
....reject all reading of the Scriptures themselves, and deride the simplicity of those who only delight in what they call the DEAD and deadly LETTER.
....But I wish they would tell me WHAT SPIRIT it is whose inspiration raises THEM to such a sublime height that they dare DESPISE the doctrine of Scripture as mean and childish.

If they answer that it is the Spirit of Christ, their confidence is exceedingly RIDICULOUS;
....since they will, I PRESUME, admit that the APOSTLES and other believers in the primitive Church were NOT illuminated by any other Spirit.
....NONE of these thereby learned to DESPISE the WORD of God, but every one was imbued with greater reverence for it, as their writings most clearly testify.

And, indeed, it had been so foretold by the mouth of Isaiah. For when he says,
...."My SPIRIT that is upon thee, and my WORDS which I have put in thy MOUTH, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the Lord, from HENCEFORTH and FOR EVER,"

he does not tie down the ancient Church to EXTERNAL DOCTRINE, as he were a mere teacher of elements; he rather shows that,
....under the REIGN of Christ, the true and full felicity of the new Church will CONSIST in their being ruled not less by the WORD than by the Spirit of God.

Hence we infer that these MISCREANTS are guilty of fearful SACRILEGE in tearing asunder what the prophet joins in indissoluble union.
....Add to this, that Paul, though carried up even to the third heaven, ceased not to profit by the doctrine of the law and the prophets, while, in like manner, he exhorts Timothy, a teacher of singular excellence, to GIVE ATTENTION to reading, (1 Tim. 4: 13.)

GIVING HEED is Paul's unique word for worship in Spirit and in Truth: give attention or give heed. This is the same word in Hebrew used by David when he "worshiped" and sang songs upon his bed and meditated in his heart.

And the eulogium which he pronounces on Scripture well deserves to be remembered, viz., that
...."it is PROFITABLE for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be PERFECT," (2 Tim. 3: 16.)
........What an INFATUATION of the DEVIL, therefore, to fancy that Scripture, which conducts the sons of God to the final goal, is of TRANSIENT and temporary use?

"Again, I should like those people to tell me whether they have imbibed ANY OTHER Spirit than that which Christ PROMISED to his disciples. Though their MADNESS is extreme, it will scarcely carry them the length of making this their boast.

But what kind of SPIRIT did our Saviour promise to send? One who should not speak of himself, (John 16: 13,)
....but suggest and INSTILLS the TRUTHS which he himself had "delivered through the WORD."

Hence the office of the Spirit promised to us, is NOT to form NEW and unheard-of REVELATIONS, or to coin a NEW FORM of DOCTRINE, by which we may be led away from the received doctrine of the gospel,
....but to SEAL on our MINDS the very doctrine which the GOSPEL recommends.

John Calvin said that "If the WORD is dead then the SPIRIT must also be Dead."

Whether you buy all of Calvin's views he makes it clear, as will looking at all of the early scholars, that the "spirit" works through the Word. That is the meaning of A holy spirit following faith, repentance and baptism or A clear conscience which we REQUEST when our bodies are washed.

The POSTMODERN people swarming all over once- Christian colleges claim that there IS NO Biblical truth LEFT: it has been Shelly-Sifted through "philosophy and the Bible writer's own personal agenda." The neo trinity confessed to be promoted (but invented by the GA) by Max Lucado, Rubel Shelly is so RADICAL that it has only a minor precedent in church History.

See Rubel Shelly promoting TRITHEISM:

And the Lucado -Shelly revisionism which comes close to denying that Christ came fully in the flesh. That would be the sign of anti-Christ.

The RACA words of slander are PSYCHOLOGICAL VIOLENCE: by labeling you as a LUNATIC or PERVERTED PORNOGRAPHER they are like the BIRDS plucking up the SEED of the kingdom before they can germinate. The Birds are identified as demons. They can shout BOO but they have no way to hurt you.

Ken Sublet

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August 4 2003, 11:40 AM 

Zag, I believe there is a difference between questioning a denominations teachings, as apposed to attacking an individual. There are an awlful lot of personal attacks on here. I really don't know why I expected anything else, that seems to be the standard
procedure for the natural man.

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Attacks? Aug. 4, 11:40

August 7 2003, 2:36 PM 

So when you are referring to personal attacks here are you referring to Kenneths word for word quotes OR are
you referfring to all of Mr. Lawrence's insults directed at the church? You do realize, don't you, that the church IS people. These personal attacks are
at PEOPLE's understanding of the Word.

I guess the
president at UT and the governor of California are also
moaning 'attacks' but it's just based on their own words and actions.

You just can't help but wonder now how much of the
financial support for such a group comes straight
from the pockets of members of the Presbyterian church. They must be elated.

I don't think Kenneth's used of the word FRAUD, in this
case, is far from fact.

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Missing pieces?

August 28 2003, 6:03 PM 

It took a little searching but I knew my sister, a former member at Sm. Springs, kept back a copy of this for a day like today. Here's the first paragraph announcing the first Engedi conference:

"Engedi Ministries has scheduled its first conference for the Nashville area to be held April 19 and 20 (2002?) at Faith Church in Nashville. Tennessee. The conference theme is "Restoring the Joy of Our Salvation," and will feature well-known Nashville ministers Rubel Shelly of Woodmont Hills Church of Christ and Scotty Smith of Christ Community Church in Franklin, TN.
Other speakers include
David Gaylor of Southeastern Church of Christ in Indianapolis, Dan Francis of Crossroads Community Church in Franklin, TN and Charles Bradley of Hopewell PRESBYTERIAN Church in COlumbia, TN."

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orlando here we come

February 21 2004, 10:51 AM 

Mark your calenders, we're only weeks away from the big
Westminster Calvinist Convention, not to be confused with a big dog show with a similiar name.
That's right the big Ligonier Conference is almost here, March 11-13, 2004 in Orlando at the Calvary Assembly (guess what, it just another Reformed, Presbyterian-based group. Surprised? Us neither.)

Get your registration in to an Engedi leader by the end of the month any you'll get a free coffee mug signed by Mr. Sproul himself! And if things work out and we can borrow a van from the Covenant Presbyterian church in Green Hills (Nashville) we can cut our cost per-person singnificantly, compared to the similiar trip in the past several years.

It don't get any more uplifting than this folks. This year's topics include:
"Father don't forgive them - they're Depraved"
and "How God causes rape in his marvelous plan"
and "Sovereignty, Neo-Platonist's Style: The life of Saint Augustine" and "Why God sends a lot of people to hell", and finally, the big keynote: "It's all a Mystery to Me: Why I was chosen and you weren't."

It's just business as usual, this time of year for the Engedi crew I guess.

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Faith from First to Last?

August 4 2003, 9:38 AM 

By David Lawrence

It is only when we fully understand and personally believe that salvation is from FIRST to LAST the exclusive WORK of God that we shall truly give God the glory.

Ken: Any EFFECTIVE work in our spirits is always the WORK OF GOD. however, connecting SALVATION to FAITH ONLY and make FAITH ONLY the exclusive gift to SOME is not what Paul said. In fact, by his quotation of Habakkuk he REFUTES the concept of FAITH ONLY.

One of God's EXCLUSIVE works is to regenerate our spirits and give us A holy spirit at Baptism. Sprinkling our hearts CLEAR of sin and its life- hindering effect is the EXCLUSIVE work of God. Peter said that we REQUEST that when our bodies are washed for THAT purpose rather than to get clean outwardly. No one believes that they can PURIFY their hearts or minds by getting dipped in water. But the UNJUST are proven to be FAITHLESS when they do not HAVE FAITH in the VISIONS which God has caused to be written. To Martin Luther FAITH ONLY meant faith in THE WORD ONLY. Faith Only in the Word Only, he insisted, means that we OBEY the direct command to be baptized. If we quibble about it he insists that we, as Luke 7:29-30, REJECT the counsel of God because WE cannot see that God has the power to put HIS power in the water of baptism ONLY.

Here is the unquoted proof text:

For I am not ashamed of the GOSPEL of Christ: for it is the POWER of God unto salvation to EVERY ONE that believeth; to the JEW FIRST, and ALSO to the GREEK. Rom 1:16
....For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. Rom 1:17KJV

Verse 17 logically follows verse 16: salvation is from faith (of the Jews) to faith (of the GREEKS ALSO). This is God's predestinated plan. Even the NIV which David Lawrence quotes as PROOF admits it. By faith from first to last does not mean that God GIVES us the faith in EVERY event in our lives.

"For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from FIRST (Jews) to last (Gentiles), [c] just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith." [d] Rom 1:17NIV
....c17 Or 'is from faith to faith'
....d17 Habakkuk.2:4

This is quoted from Habakkuk. The Lord told him to WRITE a VISION. This would be a PREDESTINATED plan but for the future. The Romans thought that God had failed because the Gentiles were INCLUDED in God's plan, they grew impatient with both God and His Word, Calvinists and Mormons seek to SUPPLY an explanation to why SOME do not respond to the gospel or HOW God will save the pagans in the deepest jungle.

Paul them pointed them to Habakkuk where God told him to trust the WRITTEN vision and RUN with it to its destination. The vision was prophetic--for an appointed time--and God will fulfill His predestinated plan. The HERALD or Evangelist is to take the WORD and RUN WITH IT. He has no authority to private interpret or FURTHER EXPOUND a letter written by the hand of the King of the Universe.

Therefore, the JUST should live by FAITH in the WRITTEN WORD because it was God's promise:

..I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will watch to see what he will say unto me, and what I shall answer when I am reproved. Hab 2:1
....And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. Hab 2: 2
......For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. Hab 2: 3
........Behold, his soul which is lifted up (presume, swell) is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith. Hab 2: 4

God's plan does not materialize at our command. A good person HAS FAITH that what God has said and has WRITTEN will come to pass. The CREATURE has no faith if he debates with God. Rather, he should just PREACH THE WORD and leave the hard problems to God. The Jews in Rome really doubted when Paul began to show that the PREDESTINATED were not the JEWISH NATION but that part of the nation who had always lived by faith. These were quarantined from the temple and worshiped God by GIVING HEED to the study of the Word.

The JUST person who is righteous: he keeps God's Laws.
..Caddiyq (h6662) tsad-deek'; from 6663; just: - just, lawful, righteous (man).
...Therefore the law is slacked, and judgment doth never go forth: for the WICKED doth compass about the RIGHTEOUS; therefore wrong judgment proceedeth. Hab.1:4

The FAITH of those who are JUST are those who obey the WRITTEN VISION for God's future plan. They rested on the fact that the record was God's PREDESTINATED PLAN and they should not try to guess when it would happen.

However, the SWELLED up did not trust God to work things out DID NOT have any faith in the written message.

..Behold, his soul which is lifted up (presume, swell) is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith. Hab 2: 4

Predestination CONTINUES to hold that some are the elect in spite of the fact that the Bible identifies the GENTILES as the objects of God's WRITTEN VISION. For instance, David Lawrence teaches that Calvinism was NOT CLEAR in the Bible because everyone was too busy to write it down. However, future church councils would MAKE IT PLAIN.

The Jews were PROUD MEN and saw no connection between the WRITTEN WORD of God and living BY FAITH. They were PREDESTINATED and did not WAIT for God:

....Yea also, because he transgresseth by wine, he is a proud man, neither keepeth at home, who enlargeth his desire as hell, and is as death, and cannot be satisfied, but gathereth unto him all nations, and heapeth unto him all people: Hab 2: 5

We have noted that the EVIL of Calvinism is that it teaches a MASTER RACE who despise those who do not have God's care flowing in their blood. Therefore, to them, it is NOT evil to infiltrate into a peaceful church, divert it from EVERY SINGLE ITEM OF FAITH of those who built the local congregation, EXCUSE those who object as NOT being of the MASTER RACE and therefore dismissing those who can easily prove them wrong. But, the Jews to whom Paul yanked their predestination and therefore SUPERIOR status, had no trouble STEALING THE HOUSES OF WIDOWS.

This is why we are experiencing a SWARM of what the Greek world identified as PARASITES. God continued through Habakkuk:

...Shall not all these take up a parable against him, and a taunting proverb against him, and say,
......Woe to him that increaseth that which is not his how long? and to him that ladeth himself with thick clay! Hab 2: 6
.........Shall they not rise up suddenly that shall bite thee, and awake that shall vex thee, and thou shalt be for booties (plunder) unto them? Hab 2: 7

Thick Clay is something taken in pledge or pawned or entangled. Clay would be money EXTORTED under THE LAW OF GIVING.

The LEGALISTS tries to FURTHER EXPOUND the Word and is therefore can have no more motive than to INCREASE THAT WHICH IS NOT HIS. However, the one who LIVES BY FAITH also RUNS BY FAITH with the Vision of God who DOES HAVE THE POWER to make FAITH ONLY clear is He wishes; and COULD HAVE committed those places which say that FAITH COMES BY HEARING THE WORD. Those who reject the VISION WRITTEN FOR US will not, therefore, RUN WITH it having FAITH ONLY that GOD ONLY has the power to MAKE IT PLAIN unless we have DELIBERATELY closed our eyes, plugged our ears and hardened our heart so that even Jesus WILL NOT SPEAK to us through His Word.

....And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. Hab 2: 2

The HERALD or evangelist was to RUN WITH THE GOSPEL. A herald OF FAITH does not alter the content of the VISION WRITTEN. He delivers it to the recipient and the POSTAGE has been paid by the sender. If a herald began to tamper with or modify the VISION or if he tried to collect money for delivering it then he was FRAUD and usually was treated with a sword.

The vision does not have to be totally understood. For instance, Peter said that the elder OF FAITH must "teach that which HAS BEEN taught" and correct those who refute it. God is God and we are not. Therefore, He does not need us to COOK IT. If we deliver the VISION written down for us then we have no right to get impatient and try, for instance, to explain why those in the jungle do not hear God.

Ken Sublett

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Predestination Arnobius c 300

August 6 2003, 7:03 PM 

Arnobius C 300 PREDESTINATION as a pagan idea.

64. But, my opponents ask , if Christ came as the Saviour of men, as you say, why does He not, with UNIFORM benevolence, free ALL without exception?

I reply , does not He free all alike who INVITES all alike? or does He THRUST BACK or repel any one from the kindness of the Supreme who gives to ALL ALIKE the power of coming to Him,-to men of high rank, to the meanest slaves, to women, to boys?

To ALL, He says, the fountain of life is open, and NO ONE IS HINDERED or kept back from drinking. If you are so fastidious as to SPURN the kindly offered gift, nay, more, if your wisdom is so great that you term those things which are offered by Christ RIDICULOUS and absurd, why should He KEEP ON inviting you, while His only duty is to make the enjoyment of His bounty depend upon your OWN FREE choice?

God, Plato says, does not cause any one to CHOOSE his lot in life; nor can another's choice be rightly attributed to any one, since FREEDOM of CHOICE was put in His power who made it. Must you be even implored to deign to accept the gift of salvation from God; and must God's gracious mercy be POURED INTO your bosom while you REJECT it with disdain, and flee very far from it?

Do you choose to take what is offered, and turn it to your OWN ADVANTAGE? You will in that case have consulted your own interests. Do you reject with disdain, lightly esteem, and despise it?

You will in this case have ROBBED YOURSELF of the benefit of the gift. God COMPELS no one, TERRIFIES no one with overpowering fear. For our salvation is NOT necessary to Him, so that He would gain anything or suffer any loss, if He either made us divine, or allowed us to be annihilated and destroyed by corruption.

65. Nay, my opponent says , IF God is powerful, merciful, willing to save us, let Him CHANGE our DISPOSITONS, and COMPEL us to TRUST in His promises.

This, then, is VIOLENCE, not kindness nor the bounty of the Supreme God, but a CHILDISH and VAIN strife in seeking to get the MASTERY.

For what is SO UNJUST as to FORCE men who are reluctant and unwilling, to REVERSE their inclinations; to impress forcibly on their minds what they are unwilling to receive , and shrink from; to INJURE before benefiting, and to bring to another way of thinking and feeling, by taking away the former?

You who WISH yourself to be changed, and to suffer violence, that you may do and may be compelled to take to yourself that which you do not wish, why do you refuse of your own accord to select that which you wish to do, when changed and transformed?

I am unwilling, He says, and have no wish. What, then, do you BLAME GOD as though He failed you? do you wish Him to bring you help, whose gifts and bounties you not only reject and shun, but term empty words, and assail with jocose witticisms?

Unless, then, my opponent says , I shall be a Christian, I cannot hope for salvation. It is just as you yourself say. For, to bring salvation and impart to souls what should be bestowed and must be added, Christ alone has had given into His charge and entrusted to Him by God the Father, the remote and more secret causes being so disposed.

For, as with you, certain gods have fixed offices, privileges, powers, and you do not ask from any of them what is not in his power and permitted to him, so it is the right of Christ alone to give salvation to souls, and assign them everlasting life.

For if you believe that father Bacchus can give a good vintage, but cannot give relief from sickness; if you believe that Ceres can give good crops, Aesculapius health, Neptune one thing, Juno another, that Fortune, Mercury, Vulcan, are each the giver of a fixed and particular thing,-this, too, you must needs receive from us, that souls can receive from no one life and salvation, except from Him to whom the Supreme Ruler gave this charge and duty. The Almighty Master of the world has determined that this should be the way of salvation,-this the door, so to say, of life; by Him alone is there access to the light: nor may men either creep in or enter elsewhere, all other ways being shut up and secured by an impenetrable barrier.

Ken Sublett

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Augustine Letter and Spirit: Free will

August 12 2003, 11:07 AM 

Augustine Spirit and the Letter:

OUR preachers love to say that LETTER is the Bible: EVEN the WRITTEN words of Jesus Christ and ESPECIALLY the EPISTLE writers who are claimed to have just written their confused, waring opinions. SPIRIT to them is a third person of the Godhead whose NAME is Holy Spirit. But, Holy is not a name. The conclusion is that, to our peril, those who determine faith and practice by SCRIPTURE are called legalistic. They, on the other hand claim to hear the AUDIBLE voice of the Spirit telling them to VIOLATE the WRITTEN Word.

Our reviewed teacher claims, in effect, that "Faith and Practice is fully explained ONLY in church councils." But AUGUSTINE would define such people PREDESTINED to their views because God gave them a FREE WILL and foolish people give them a soapbox. By minimizing the WORD which is SPIRIT, Augustine would say that they are not SPIRITUAL.

Augustine makes it clear that by LETTER is meant THE LAW OF MOSES which even when obeyed is out of fear and against what they would RATHER do. Spirit to Augustine is the Law of Christ. Those who OBEY the commands and examples of Jesus Christ do so WILLINGLY because their SPIRIT is made HOLY and LOVES to follow in the steps of the Spirit of Christ. SPIRIT does not play DOCTOR OF THE LAW looking for loopholes around what they LOVE to do because THEIR spirit is holy.

We will quote several chapters to prove that Augustine saw certain things PREDESTINATED specificially because God created mankind with FREE WILL. If one willingly violates the LAWS of God his fall is PREDESTINATED because God gave him the power to exercise HIS OWN free will. Legalism even under Grace is one saying: "I HAD RATHER live by my own will."

The modern SCHOLARS are simply not prepared to read at the AUGUSTINE level. This fails to grasp that Augustine argues predestination according to his oponents views. To Augustine EVERYTHING comes from God but, for instance the GIFT OF FAITH derives solely because of the REVELATION of God to us. FREE WILL is never destroyed.

Pelagians, quoted by Augustine, believed: "But," say they, "we do praise God as the Author of our righteousness, in that He gave the law, by the teaching of which we have learned how we ought to live." But they give no heed to what they read: "By the law there shall no flesh be justified in the sight of God."

However, those who obey the commandments of the Word do not believe that righteousness is in their own power. Augustine argues from the EXTREME at times but here never denies FREE WILL.

Chapter 52 [XXX.]-Grace Establishes Free Will.

Do we then by grace make void FREE WILL? God forbid! Nay, rather we establish free will. For even as the law by faith, so free will by grace, is not made void, but established.

For neither is the law fulfilled except by FREE WILL but by the law is the knowledge of sin, by faith the acquisition of grace against sin, by grace the healing of the soul from the disease of sin, by the health of the soul freedom of WILL, by FREE WILL the love of righteousness, by love of righteousness the ACCOMPLISHMENT of the law.

Accordingly, as the law is not made void, but is established through FAITH, since faith PROCURES grace whereby the law is fulfilled;

so FREE WILL is not made void through grace, but is ESTABLISHED, since grace cures the will whereby righteousness is FREELY LOVED.

Now all the stages which I have here connected together in their successive links, have severally their proper voices in the sacred Scriptures.

The LAW says: "Thou shall not covet."

FAITH says: "Heal my soul, for I have sinned against Thee."

GRACE says: "Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee."

HEALTH says: "O Lord my God, I CRIED unto Thee, and Thou hast HEALED me."

FREE WILL says: "I will FREELY sacrifice unto Thee."

LOVE of RIGHTEOUSNESS says: "Transgressors told me pleasant tales, but NOT according to Thy law, O Lord."

How is it then that miserable men dare to be PROUD, either of their FREE WILL, before they are freed, or of their own strength, if they have been freed?

They DO NOT OBSERVE that in the very mention of FREE WILL they pronounce the name of LIBERTY.

But "where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty."

If, therefore, they are the SLAVES of sin, why do they boast of FREE WILL? For by what a man is OVERCOME, to the same is he delivered as a SLAVE.

But if they have been FREED, why do they vaunt themselves as if it were by their OWN DOING, and boast, as if they had not received?

Or are they FREE in such sort that they DO NOT CHOOSE to have Him for their Lord who says to them: "Without me ye can do nothing;" and "If the Son shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed?"

Chapter 53 [XXXI.]-Volition and Ability.

Chapter 54.-Whether Faith Be in a Man's Own Power.

Ken Sublett

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Letter and Spirit: Corrections invited

August 14 2003, 8:56 AM 

Both Augustine and Calvin have been FILTERED through David Lawrence's CHURCH COUNCILS such as the Synod of Dort. Thus "Calvinism" grows and grows. The experience of the GREAT AMERICAN AWAKENINGS leads me to believe that the theory is PSYCHOLOGICAL VIOLENCE to put people under the domination of those who might POSSIBLY lead them into some experience which could be sold as PROOF that God loves them and the LEADER. When people in history have lost their love for the FACILITATOR they lost their SIGN such as speaking in tongues and were thrown into suicidal depression.

Chapter 7 [V.] -What is Proposed to Be Here Treated.
We will, however, consider, if you please, the whole of this passage of the apostle and thoroughly handle it, as the Lord shall enable us. For I want, if possible, to prove that the apostle's words, "The LETTER KILLETH, but the spirit GIVETH life," not refer to figurative phrases,-although even in this sense a suitable signification might be obtained from them,-
.....but rather plainly to the LAW, which FORBIDS whatever is EVIL.

Augustine always holds LAW to be the LAW OF MOSES and not obedience to Christ. By analogy, one is not COMMENDABLE for not driving 100 in a 35 mile speed zone: he is only PUNISHED if he is caught. Like Augustine we believe that faith comes from hearing the word. It is a GIFT of God because God gave us free will. We believe that this faith INVITES God to wipe away our sins as the gift of A holy spirit, A clear concience (and consiousness) or as Paul explains in 2 Cor 3 OUR turning to CHRIST so that He removes the "veil." However, most of us do not believe that we are PERFECTED by our own power when we believe the Word.

Secondly, the ISSUE is not the INITIAL FAITH which flows from FREE WILL because this "faith" leads to a growth of faith: "from faith to FAITH." Most of us, however, believe that our initial faith grows to MORE FAITH only when we exercise that initial faith by FREE WILL which is the GIFT OF GOD. We do not EXPERIENCE a perfected faith simply by "letting go and letting God" give it to us.

Thirdly, the point is PERFECTON. Augustine does not argue against modern free will but the Pelagians who ALLOWED God's grace only in initial remission of sins. Everything else was man's FREE WILL just doing what Scripture commanded. Of course most of us believe that God's grace is necessary for the PERFECTION of God.

Augustine spoke of the need of God's grace to bring us to PERFECTION of the predestinated. Many argued with Augustine's claim to be perfected. Modern Calvinists, however, claim that HOWEVER evil we become we CANNOT fall from grace while AUGUSTINE would look for PERFECTION.

"When I shall have proved this, it will more manifestly appear
..that to LEAD a holy life is the GIFT of God,-
....not only because God has given a FREE-WILL to man, without which there is NO LIVING ill or well;
....nor only because He has given him a COMMANDMENT to teach him how he OUGHT to LIVE;
....but because through the Holy Ghost He sheds love abroad in the hearts of those whom he foreknew, in order to predestinate them; whom He predestinated, that He might call them; whom He called, that he might justify them; and whom he justified, that He might glorify them.

The PERFECTED do not INFILTRATE and DIVERT to steal the "church houses of widows" and Augustine would spit them out of his mouth. Claims of predestination MUST demonstrate PERFECTIONISM which is the PROMISED proof of their predestination.

I remember a lady about 60 years ago who refused to eat the Lord's Supper on Sunday because she BELIEVED that she had committed "A" sin during the week. That is holiness or perfectionism. To Augustine "initial faith" is possible to mankind; perfection is possible only by God's work. Who could deny it?

"When this point also shall be cleared, you will, I think, see how vain it is to say that those things only are unexampled POSSIBILITIES, which are the works of God,-
.....such as the passage of the CAMEL through the needle's eye, which we have already referred to, and other similar cases, which to us no doubt are impossible, but easy enough to God;

"and that MAN'S righteousness is not to be counted in this class of things, on the ground Of its being properly man's WORK, not God's;
....although there is no reason for supposing, without an example, that his PERFECTION exists, even if it is possible.

"That these assertions are vain will be clear enough, after it has been also plainly shown that even man's righteousness (perfection) must be attributed to the operation of God,
.....although not taking place WITHOUT MAN'S WILL;

and we therefore cannot deny that his PERFECTION is possible even in THIS LIFE, because ALL things are POSSIBLE with God, -
.....TYPE ONE:...."both those which He accomplishes of His OWN SOLE WILL,
.....TYPE TWO:...."AND those which He APPPOINTS to be done with the COOPERATION with Himself of His CREATURE'S WILL.

Sure, faith is a GIFT because who could believe without hearing the Word? However, neo-Calvinism believes that one CANNOT believe unless God puts FAITH into them even AGAINST their will if they are PREDESTINATED. And our reviewed Calvinists claim that you cannot even REPENT unless God puts repentance into your will.

You can see how difficult it is at times to grasp Augustine's meaning but this chapter means (to me) that we act the way we do because God CREATED FREE WILL. We can read the Word, understand it and believe it. However, he sees "faith to FAITH" as initial free will faith which cannot grow TO PERFECTED FAITH without God's help. I don't see Augustine, however, saying that god PUTS PERFECTION into us against OUR FREE WILL.

You can see how easy it is from this short article that one "scholar" could quote Augustine to defend PREDESTINATION while another could proof-text him in favor of FREE WILL.

To Augustine, God works ALL ALONG to bring some to PERFECTION where Pelagius thought that after the remission of sins WE achieve perfection ALONE by obedience to the commands of God grasped by free will. However, our OPTION does not rest with being a disciple of Augustine OR Pelagius.

God works WITH us with the cooperation of our FREE WILL. God brings us to perfection ONLY when we are IN Christ because ONLY GOD can remit sins and man's FREE WILL cannot. However, God's PREDESTINATED WILL is that we BELIEVE based on HEARING the Word. Our choice is based on His giving us FREE WILL. The modern form of HIDEOUS CALVINISM makes all into organic robots. This, historically, has never given ANYONE assurance unless they have a charismatic fit and believe that they ARE God.

But, don't forget what we have noted above: neither Augustine nor David Lawrence grasp that the PREDESTINATED PLAN the New Testament speaks of is NOT personal predestination to heaven or hell. God CHOOSE certain people for certain tasks but none of his sovereign choices relate to heaven or hell.

Furthermore, we note the fact that Paul speaks of bringing Gentiles into fellowship with all of the Saved as God's PREDESTINATED PLAN.

Ken Sublett

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David Lawrence: Ephesians One

August 15 2003, 10:44 AM 

David Lawrence, Yet I remember someone telling me that passages referring to the church refer to the plan for the church. Thus God really chose a plan, not people. However, Eph. 1:11 tells us that God chooses and predestines people according to the plan.
....If God chose the church, then he chose every member of it. And He made that choice before the foundation of the world (Eph. 1:4).

If you read the WHOLE chapter which Paul PREDESTINATED that we do, you will discover as in all of the predestinated passages that God says that ALL are sinners. How could even God say that if there had ever been a single INDIVIDUAL who was predestinated and made holy by God's GIFTS of faith and repentance? Therefore,

First, ask: "To whom was Paul writing?"

....PAUL, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the SAINTS which are at Ephesus, and to the FAITHFUL in Christ Jesus: Eph 1:1

Paul never wrote to an individual and said that THEY personally were predestinated to heaven or hell. Therefore,

Second, ask: "To WHAT was they predestinated"? Certainly, Paul did not say that they were SAVED because individuals were predestinated. Verse 11 says "predestinated ACCORDING TO HIS PLAN."

...In whom also we HAVE OBTAINED an inheritance, being predestinated
.....ACCORDING to the PURPOSE of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: Eph 1:11

Verse 11 is very closely attached to verse 10. God didn't pick individuals but:

...That in the dispensation of the FULLNESS of TIMES he might gather together in ONE all things IN Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: Eph 1:10

This same Paul explains this to the EPHESIANS if we can read and does it again to the Galatians:

...But when the FULLNESS of the TIME was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, Gal 4:4
.....To REDEEM them that were under the law, that we MIGHT receive the adoption of SONS. Gal 4:5

We become "sons" when we become LIKE LITTLE CHILDREN. In the mindof the People this meant to be BAPTIZED to be regenerated with A new spirit or mind. Calling on His Name was the custom of adoption or DISCIPLESHIP. I know of nothing else where SONSHIP is promised.


..Howbeit then, when ye KNEW NOT God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods. Gal 4:8

David Lawrence: If God chose the church, then he chose every member of it. And He made that choice before the foundation of the world (Eph. 1:4).

Jesus died by a predestinated plan to INCLUDE ALL in one BODY. However, on the day of Pentecost, Christ ADDED those who were being SAVED by obedience of His PREDESTINATED will that they CANNOT come to God unless they BELIEVE on God. If they believe, repent and are baptized then they are "LIKE LITTLE CHILDREN" and are adopted into the household of Christ. Why would Peter tell them what THEY MUST DO if God was there sorting out the lambs from the GOATS?

This same Paul proves that God DID NOT KNOW these people in a PREDESTINATED to heaven or PREDESTINATED to hell sense.

....But now, "AFTER" that ye have KNOWN God, or rather are KNOW of God, how TURN AGAIN to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Gal 4:9

God does not KNOW us in a true sense until we choose to KNOW Him by believing what we read or hear. IF they turn back to a RITUALISTIC religion Paul said that those who KNEW GOD and WERE KNOWN BY GOD could turn back and it would all be in VAIN. Their KNOWING God and BEING KNOWN by Him would not PRESERVE or SECURE them if they TURNED BACK like a dog (musician-catamite) to its NEW WINESKIN induced VOMIT which was their PROOF that God was IN them. If is a fact that no one can yank us our of God's secure hands. However, FREE WILL endorsed by Augustine gives US the power to leave His SECURITY.

...Ye observe DAYS, and MONTHS, and TIMES, and years. Gal 4:10
......I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour IN VAIN. Gal 4:11


..MANY will say to me in that day, LORD, LORD, have we not PROPHESIED in thy name? and in thy name have CAST out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? Mt.7:22
....And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that WORK INIQUITY. Matt 7:23

Prophesying in the Lord, Lord sense was the babbling of singers and musicians who claimed the power to cast out demons. This is seen in modern Praise Teams. This is intimately connected to the THEOLOGIANS and the ZOE GROUP or other Musical Worship Teams CLAIMING to bring you life through music. A body of prophets or SINGERS, Vulg. 1 Par. 15, 27 et saep.

The church is the body of Christ which is the FULLNESS of purpose. Why would Paul care about people if they were PREDESTINATED to worship Satan?

..And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Eph 1:22
......Which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all. Eph 1:23
..........Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Eph 2:2

THIRD. Now, we know that Paul is not addressing INDIVIDUALS but CLASSES of people who are IN CHRIST.

Turn, Turn has stormed my brain about theologians or Doctors of the Law. More later.

Ken Sublett

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Smith Springs

August 18 2003, 7:21 AM 

Mr Sublett,
Whay do yo keep blasting David when he has not been at Smith Springs for several years?

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Does God send false prophets to convert?

August 19 2003, 12:55 PM 

By David Lawrence
David Lawrence: And if the prophet be deceived and speak a word, I, the LORD, have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand against him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel. And they shall bear their punishment--the punishment of the prophet and the punishment of the inquirer shall be alike-- that the house of Israel may go no more astray from me, nor defile themselves any more with all their transgressions, but that they may be my people and I may be their God, says the Lord GOD." (Ezekiel 14:9-11)
Let's try chapter 44.
Son of man, these men have set up their IDOLS in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their INIQUITY before their face: should I be ENQUIRED of at all by them? Ezekiel 44:3
..Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; EVERY MAN of the house of Israel THAT SETTETH up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet;
....I the Lord will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols; Ezekiel 44:4
....That I may TAKE the house of Israel in their OWN HEART, because they are all ESTRANGED from me through their idols. Ezekiel 44:5

NOTE THE CAUSE AND EFFECT. Rather than asking of God, the people ENQUIRED of idols. Even musical instruments were the IDOLS or the HOMES of the idols. Prophets who were ALREADY false can on the dole would, like the Witch of Endor mumble into her FAMILIAR SPIRIT which was an old wineskin as an echo chamber to which strings were later attached. She would normally interpret her own ventriloquism as the answer of the "gods" for which you must PAY.
David Lawrence: What will you do with this passage? For those who do not believe that God is SOVEREIGN and believe rather that he has NOTHING to do with the "bad" things of life, it would create a major problem. Some would ignore it. Others would simply say, "That's a difficult passage to understand." Others would say that the Bible is not verbally inspired, so Ezekiel just got carried away and exaggerated.
....For those who are committed to the belief that all Scripture is God-breathed, and have taken the time and effort to READ the Bible, it presents no problem at all. God inspired Ezekiel to write just exactly what he wanted him to write.

BUT, they were not predestinated because they COULD repent but God never FORCED repentance:

.."Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God; Repent, and TURN YOURSELVES from your idols; and turn away your faces from all your abominations. Ezekiel 44:6

This was not a NATIONAL DELUSION: Those who sinned and of his FREE WILL separated from God and worshipped idols in their hearts. Only EVERY ONE who was guilty was DELUDED:

.."For EVERY ONE of the house of Israel, or of the stranger that sojourneth in Israel, which separateth HIMSELF from me, AND setteth up his IDOLS in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face,
....and cometh to a prophet to enquire of him concerning me; I the Lord will answer him by MYSELF: Ezekiel 44:7

THE PROPHETS were almost always FALSE PROPHETS AND PROPHETESSES. People went to THESE already false prophets to SEEK the will of God rather than the writing prophets who WROTE the will of God and preached it.

.."And I will set my face against THAT MAN, and will make him a sign and a proverb, and I will CUT HIM OFF from the midst of my people; and ye shall know that I am the Lord. Ezekiel 44:8

...."And if the prophet be DECEIVED when he hath spoken a thing, I the Lord have DECEIVED that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel. Ezekiel 44:9

Remember that those who had SEPARATED THEMSELVES from God and TURNED THEMSELVES to the worship of idols, sought advice from PROPHETS, ALWAYS FOR PAY, would seek to know GOD from one whom everyone KNEW to be a false, commercial prophet. The "musical prophesiers" could find you a lost goat or tell you when to plant barley FOR A PRICE. Except for ONLY A FEW writing prophets, the word PROPHET always speaks of men who were commercial, not commissioned by God and therefore FALSE PROPHETS.

And THEY shall bear the punishment of THEIR INIQUITY: the punishment of the PROPHET shall be even as the punishment of him that SEEKETH unto him; Ezekiel 44:10

David Lawrence: Why are there false prophets, then and now? Because God has DECEIVED them! He has ORDAINED their false teaching. But why? God answers. So that Israel will no longer go astray, nor defile themselves with sin, and he will be their God.
.....But how can false teaching HELP people be faithful to God? In this case, through the punishment of the and those who follow him. Then Israel will know that the Lord is God. In some way God uses false prophets and false teaching to help the true child of God understand the difference between truth and error and preserve him from deception. This he does sovereignly by RAISING up and DECEIVING false prophets. And he still holds the prophet accountable for his false teaching!
Sure, Calvinism must GIVE GOD THE GLORY by insisting that FALSE TEACHERS are God's Plan to PREACH THE GOSPEL. NOPE: false preachers are usually ADMIRED while true preachers are DESPISED AND REJECTED BY MEN. False preachers get rich and are applauded and PEOPLE look at that and say, HAY, I WILL SEND YOU TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS AS SEED MONEY.

ONLY those INDIVIDUALS who had separated (themselves) from God and turned TO idolatry were DECEIVED by already false prophets.

....That the house of Israel may go no more astray from me, neither be polluted any more with all their transgressions; but that they may be my people, and I may be their God, saith the Lord God. Ezekiel 44:11

When people turn to FALSE PREACHERS they do it by FREE WILL. If so they DO NOT LOVE THE TRUTH and God sends them STRONG DELUSIONS that they believe a lie and be DAMNED. He DOES NOT sent false preachers to convert the world!!

..AND it came to pass in the seventh year, in the fifth month, the tenth day of the month, that certain of the ELDER of Israel came to ENQUIRE of the Lord, and sat before me. Ezekiel 20:1

..Then came the WORD (Dabar, Logos, Christ) of the Lord unto me, saying, Ezekiel 20:2

..Son of man, speak unto the elders of Israel, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Are ye come to enquire of me? As I live, saith the Lord God, I WILL NOT BE ENQUIRED of by you. Ezekiel 20:3

..Wilt thou judge them, son of man, wilt thou judge them? cause them to know the abominations of their fathers: Ezekiel 20:4

..And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; In the day when I chose Israel, and lifted up mine hand unto the seed of the house of Jacob, and made myself known unto them in the land of Egypt, when I lifted up mine hand unto them, saying, I am the Lord your God; Ezekiel 20:5

..In the day that I lifted up mine hand unto them, to bring them forth of the land of Egypt into a land that I had espied for them, flowing with milk and honey, which is the glory of all lands: Ezekiel 20:6

..Then said I unto them, CAST YE AWAY every MAN the abominations of his eyes, and defile not yourselves with the idols of Egypt: I am the Lord your God. Ezekiel 20:7

..But THEY rebelled against me, and WOULD NOT HARKEN unto me: they did NOT every man cast away the abominations of their eyes, neither did they forsake the idols of Egypt:
......then I said, I will pour out my fury upon them, to accomplish my anger against them in the midst of the land of Egypt. Ezekiel 20:8

But I wrought for my names sake, that it should not be polluted before the heathen, among whom they were, in whose sight I made myself known unto them, in bringing them forth out of the land of Egypt. Ezekiel 20:9

God sent FALSE TEACHERS to them ONLY AFTER they had polluted THEMSELVES. God did not say, 'Goody, these false teachers will CAUSE THEM TO REPENT.' Nonsense.

....But the house of Israel REBELLED against me in the wilderness: they walked not in my statutes, and they despised my judgments, which if a man do, he shall even live in them; and my sabbaths they greatly polluted: then I said, I would pour out my fury upon them in the wilderness, to consume them. Ezekiel 20:13

God then and there turned many of them over to worship THE STARRY HOST. This was the worship of Molech, Remphan, Chiun (Saturn or 666) and other STARS. It was not uncommon then that even David had his own STAR GAZER.

GOD deceives completely only those who are SELF DECEIVED because they hate the very notion of a God. God never sends FALSE PREACHERS to convert people because FALSE PREACHERS are NOT destroyed by God as a SIGN to all others. The false teacher lives out his life in glory and prosperity. If HERESY is GOOD then why is Smith Springs treated so harshly?

Ken Sublett

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Re: Does God send false prophets to convert?

August 20 2003, 11:30 AM 

You really do need to see a professional for help.

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false prophets

August 21 2003, 9:56 AM 

You need to get new glasses:

Calvinist claim that false prophets are sent to convert.

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Counseling for everyone

August 22 2003, 6:46 PM 

When you call the psychiatrist office could you please schedule a couple of extra appointments.\

One for people who cause division in the body of Christ, try to blame God, and then cry 'look how we're being mistreated by those we persecuted.'0
The other for people who are deluded into thinking that they are only doing God's will when they are on the hot seat, which they heated themselves, and then
expect the object of their blasting to pay for the
electric bill that it took to heat the seat up with in the first place. There has to be some fancy name for such messed up thinking.

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Thanks, Sig

August 23 2003, 12:03 PM 

I will add that to my collection of GUILT CLAUSES. If you wish you can e-mail me and I will put your name on it.

This began in the garden of Eden but it became famous when the musical SECTARIANS forced organs into churches after 1850 years of being rejected as anti-Biblical.

Those who deliberately SOWED DISCORD and OFFENDED MANY little ones PRETENDED that "unity" meant that no one could object after the PIG HAD BEEN SACRIFICED. Luther- paraphrased called the organ the MARK OF BAAL.

When people left they were literally PROHIBITED from speaking against the now-installed organ: that would be "sowing discord if we let you preach the Bible and history" It happened real time in Seattle just a few years ago. The ZOE group and "look to the hills" as CORE SHELLY is the "Mother" of it all.

This was dubbed the GUILT CLAUSE: "I was quite sincere when I shot you in the heart: but you turned HOSTILE and squirted blood on my dancing shoes."

Rubel Shelly can be paraphrased to speak of the Aztecs who burned down old houses and sacrificed thousands of victims. It went something like this: "Those being
invaded turn HOSTILE and mount an attack against the invaders."

This is Satan, Machiavelli, Hitler and Hegel the darling of the change agents: You must be ruthless in declaring the OLD ORDER as Shelly would declare of churches of Christ, "decadent and deleterious." To those without Phds that means "rotten and destructive."

This is psychological violence intended to intimidate ANYONE who would dare defend things like FREE WILL from challenging the "decadent and deleterious" SCAM of predestination. It is gleaned from select Augustine and Calvins views withoug comprehending that it is a CULT infinitely more dangerous than that of David Koresh (Koresh was the craftsman, artificers in the CAINITE family of Lamech. They are the "techne"of the end time church where SINGERS and MUSICIANS are defined in the Greek Word as "sorcerers" an therefore PARASITES.)

Predestination DESTROYS confidence and STRIPS God of ALL GLORY by making Him into the image of deliberately-deceptive people and God haters.

Ken Sublett

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Has Mr. Lawrence's statements been taken out of context?

August 27 2003, 12:50 PM 

Since there may be others out there who initially doubted the extent of what is being said, the full context of some statements can be easily accessed via the web.
a. "Baptism is not a saving act." See
b. "Original sin is an unpleasant reality!"
See, Short Studies, Topical Studies, Sin
c. "Unbelieving man is seen throughout the book (of John) as unable to come to Christ, unable to believe, unable to hear, unable to go where Christ is..."
See, Short Studies, Textual Studies, John
d. "The insistence of freewill lies at the heart of
humanism...the ultimate end of humanism is damnation."
This is taken from one of the Engedi tapes dealing with Church History in the 1500's. The tape is entitled "Humanism." The following is the lengthy transcript of the last 3/4 of that tape. (due to length it will be presented in four parts.)

"...if it's not built upon God it's going to end in ruin and disaster, and a civilization is the same way, but you see, humanism does not always appear as an enemy. Like Satan, it disguises itself often as an angel of Light. You have to be careful about this. We have to be careful about judging people because many Christians are involved in humanism to some degree. That does not mean they are not Christians. All of us have this impulse within us - all of us do, but at the same time it is wise, proper, and good that as Christians, we recognize the enemy for what it is. The enemy is not people, the enemy is humanism itself and that we deal with straightforwardly. Now what am I talking about, what are some of the disguises that humanism can take? Why can it appear so good when it is ultimately very deceptive? You know that fruit (in Eden) looked very good and that fruit tasted very good, but that fruit led to ruination, to disaster in the fall. So things that seem to be very good can really be very dangerous.

For instance, Moralism. Remember we talked in the first part of our study about Pelagius. Now Pelagius was a monk from Britian who believed in being moral. So he based his religion on morality. That sounds really good: he wants people to me moral and he was concerned that if you teach them that salvation is of God and it's by grace, then they will relax their morals and be loose in their morals. So what Pelagius was teaching, the church recognized as heresy. It was as false as it could be, but it sounded good because it sounded very moral and that sounds good to Christians. But the problem with moralism is this: if you are saved, and if you're right with God because of what you do, then you have saved yourself and your trust, then, rests in your being good, and the question is "can I ever be sure that I'm good enough?" But of course if you could be good enough to save yourself, you wouldn't need Jesus Christ. You wouldn't need the cross, and it's very humanistic, but it sounds very good.

Another example: Legalism. Legalism is similar to moralism and usually uses moralism as a part of its system but legalism is saying "man gains his justification by keeping the law of God - keeping the commandments of God." That's good. We are told to keep God's commandments. That sounds wonderful: "Keep the commandments." But the problem is, again, if I trust in what I'm doing, if I trust in keeping of the commandments, then I'm not trusting in God, and the Cross becomes unnecessary, and yet they will talk about obedience to God. Obedience IS very important, but it's YOUR obedience, that YOU have done, by yourself, and then you have to say, when it's all said and done, "I did it, I did it", and that's dangerous.

Another disguise of humanism is that it is reasonable. It can be very reasonable. Remember Peter Avalard, very reasonable. It's very interesting, too, that I mentioned a great scholar - I won't mention his name - a great theologian, one of the greatest theologians of the 20th century, who normally is SO reliable, and so good, but he reads Bernard and Avalard and he says "Bernard is a muddle-headed mystic" and I like Avalard. Well of course, we should be reasonable. It is right to be reasonable. God's a reasonable god. When we understand the doctrines of Christ through the help of the Holy Spirit, there's a certain reasonable system to it, of course. But the danger of reason, as Avalard was teaching reason, is ultimately, what I believe is derived from my reasoning power. I've reasoned it through, so my faith, as Bernard put it, is only an opinion. It is YOUR conversion, having examined the evidence. There's no glory to God to that: "Hey I've decided. It isn't that God has given me this faith, I've done it. I've reasoned my way to God."

Then there was Erasmus: Intellectualism. Your salvation lies in what you know. That's what caused the fall - the knowledge, wasn't it? Knowledge of good and evil? The quest for knowledge caused the fall, but Erasmus says we have problems: we are corrupt and immoral because we don't know. So knowledge is the answer, and you see knowledge becomes the god, knowledge becomes the savior. Intellectualism, just like obedience, becomes the savior, morals become the savior, and these are all things WE have done.

And perhaps, most deceptive of all was Arminius who just wants to get God off the hook, and wants God to come of sounding "just", and it just doesn't sound "just" for God to save some and not save everybody. So he devises a system whereby God gives everybody a fighting chance. Make God appear "just", but who is man to justify God? Why does God need justification from man? And if man can sit in judgment upon God and say "God this is unjust", he becomes the standard of right, and God is under him and THAT'S SIN! He becomes the god who is the arbiter, who decides what is just and what is unjust, and who decides who God is, and what GOd is going to do, based on his understanding of justice, and orders his entire life and beliefs based on HIS concepts. THAT is HUMANISM, but humanism is deadly to the Christian faith, and that's the point I want to get across. It's what we've seen in example after example. That's why this is a serious study: HUMANISM in ANY form is deadly to the Christian faith.

(to be continued)

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counseling for whom?

August 27 2003, 10:00 PM 

We'll have to get confirmation from Freud himself but knowing the Engedi guys and their martyrdom syndrome, I'm guessing this writer was suggesting that if Ken needs prof. help then the Engedi leaders probably need it even worse.

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Engedi Humanism taped lecture (part 2 of 4),by D.Lawrence

August 28 2003, 9:35 AM 

(Humanism in any form is deadly to the Christian faith) "Why, Why is it deadly?
First of all it robs God of his glory. Anytime we give the credit to anything that we have done, whether it is our intellect, whether it is our system of arranging the universe and arranging God, our reason, our obedience, our morals - whatever it is, it robs God of his glory. Isaiah 42:8 says "I am the Lord, that is my name. I will not give my glory to another, or my praise to idols." I challenge you to go through the Bible and you identify the times when God gets the most upset, where his wrath breaks out, and you will find in many,many cases it is when somebody doesn't give God the glory, as it was with Moses. Remember when Herod did not give God the glory in Acts 12 and God caused him to die on the spot? It robs God of his glory.

Secondly, it further's man's pride. Any of these symptoms on humanism are areas where we can trust, and if you can trust in it - if you can say, "I am saved because of the fact that I did THIS..."then you can take pride in that and you can boast in that. That is humanism. That appeals to the part of man that says "I am my own god. I am god over my life. God I don't want you ruling my life. I'll make the decisions, thank you. I'll run my own life. If I want you I'll call on you and if I'm tired of you I'll leave you." That's humanism. It furthers man's pride, but notice - I could site many passages and you know many of them."

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August 30 2003, 12:32 PM 

David Lawrence: (Humanism in any form is deadly to the Christian faith) "Why, Why is it deadly?
First of all it robs God of his glory. Anytime we give the credit to anything that we have done, whether it is our intellect, whether it is our system of arranging the universe and arranging God, our reason, our obedience, our morals - whatever it is, it robs God of his glory. Isaiah 42:8 says "I am the Lord, that is my name. I will not give my glory to another, or my praise to idols."

Along with most of HUMANENESS, there is nothing which deprives God of his GLORY by calling Him sovereign which makes Him into a petty tyrant much like Zeus (you know as in "Je ZEUS" flowing out of young preachers) who show NO HUMANITY to their children. The "sins" of Erasmus was being a superior scholar (dying of syphilis not withstanding). His target was the SECULAR HUMANISM of the CHURCH which claimed the "divine rights of kings." In the beginning the term meant to be HUMANE by an appeal to earlier times when religion was HUMANE. Sure, even without revelation, normal people live by humanistic standards SUPERIOR to either Calvinism or Catholicism. Calvin spread INHUMANITY on a grand scale and that made me an American rather than French. Rejecting Deity came later and assuredly is part of a LATER or CALVINISTIC view of sovereignty.

Erasmus is brutal in describing a STAFF INFECTED religion much like today. See our Erasmus Annotated Index:

Erasmus "was the chief proponent of liberal Catholic reform that attacked MORAL abuses and popular SUPERSTITIONS in the church and urged the IMITATION of Christ, the supreme teacher. By criticizing ecclesiastical ABUSES, while pointing to a better age in the distant PAST, he encouraged the growing urge for reform, which found expression both in the Protestant Reformation and in the Catholic Counter-Reformation. Finally, his INDEPENDENT (Non-Cult) stance in an age of fierce confessional controversy--rejecting both Luther's doctrine of PREDESTINATION and the POWERS that were CLAIMED for the PAPACY--made him a TARGET of suspicion for LOYAL PARTISANS on both sides and a beacon for those who VALUED liberty more than ORTHODOXY. Erasmus notes of the Monks or preachers:

"And of these, a great part build so much on their ceremonies and petty traditions of men
...that they think one heaven is too poor a reward for so GREAT MERIT.


Isaiah 42:8 has some other SCRIPTURE attached to it. If you read the context, it rejects PERSONAL PREDESTINATION. God is not deprived of GLORY if we show that He approves those who live according to His standards.

"WHO raised up the RIGHTEOUS MAN from the east, CALLED him to his foot, gave the NATIONS before him, and made him rule over kings? he gave them as the dust to his sword, and as driven stubble to his bow. Isaiah 41:2
....Who hath wrought and done it, CALLING the generations from the BEGINNING? I the LORD, the FIRST, and with the LAST; I am HE (Not WE). Isaiah 41:4

God CALLED or ELECTED (invited) Noah because Noah honored or gave glory to God. He PREDESTINATED the others to drowning because they were CONTINUALLY EVIL.

.....AND the Lord said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I SEEN RIGHTEOUS before me in this GENERATION. Ge. 7:1

"The isles saw it, and feared; the ENDS of the EARTH were afraid, DREW NEAR, and came. Isaiah 41:5

THIS is fulfilled when God sent His ARM as intercessor mediator: "For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a LIGHT of the GENTILES, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ENDS OF THE EARTH. Ac.13:47

People turned to the LIGHT and right living. However, ISRAEL was elected to be a witness to ALL PEOPLE and not just the Elected. Those who responded were then ELECTED. God picked Noah because Noah picked God by His life of righteous living.

But thou, Israel, art my SERVANT, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of ABRAHAM my friend. Isaiah 41:8

Chosen means TO TRY, be acceptable, excellent

Lot found the plain of Jordan ACCEPTABLE for his purposes: he did not therefore, repudiate the rest of the world.

"Thou whom I have TAKEN from the ends of the earth,
..and CALLED thee from the CHIEF MEN thereof, and said unto thee, Thou art my SERVANT;
....I have CHOSEN thee,
....and NOT cast thee away. Isaiah 41:9

In Isaiah chapter 42:

"BEHOLD my SERVANT, whom I uphold; mine ELECT, in whom my SOUL DELIGHTETH;
..I have put my SPIRIT UPON him: he shall bring forth JUDGMENT to the GENTILES. Isaiah 42:1
....He shall not cry (call assemblies), nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. Isaiah 42:2

"To OPEN the blind EYES, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house. Isaiah 42:7
..I am the Lord (Jehovah); that is my NAME:
....and my glory will I not give to another (name),
....neither my praise to graven images. Isaiah 42:8

God will not be glorified under any other name. According to Zechariah, the BRANCH would be NAMED Joshua or Jesus which meant Jehovah- Saves. God will not be glorified by those who REFUSE to obey His commands and REFUSE to treat Him as a FATHER. The "son" came to show the NATURE of "the father" and we never see Jesus hinting at HAND PICKING those to be saved: The FATHER gives FREE WILL and if we call Him SOVEREIGN He can no longer be a FATHER.

Father sends his servants OUT to call ALL people including Gentiles into His "family." He CALLS, they RESPOND one way or another out of FREE WILL.

"Sing unto the Lord a new song, and his praise from the END of the EARTH, ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein; the ISLES, and the INHABITANTS thereof. Isaiah 42:10

"Let them GIVE GLORY unto the Lord (Yehovah),
....and DECLARE his praise in the ISLAND. Isaiah 42:12

Declare means to ANNOUNCE as an EVANGELIST is to go well beyond the land of the Jews. The ONLY way to GLORIFY God is to live right and treat others right. When you do it in the name of Adonay Jehovah or Lord Lord, you give glory to GOD. When you call Him Sovereign Lord you put Him in the class of human tyrants who PICK this one to live and that one to die: The most faithful person in the kingdom is chosen to live and the most wicked person in the kingdom can COMMIT NO EVIL which can POSSIBLE ALLOW the sovereign to punish him. That makes GOD into the image of man. SOME He DOES give a deadly viper when they cried out for breat??

THE NEW TESTAMENT FULFILLMENT. look again at Isaiah 42:6

I the Lord have called thee IN RIGHTEOUSNESS, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee,
....and give thee for a COVENANT of the people,
....for a LIGHT of the GENTILES; Isaiah 42:6

Paul understood the PREDESTINATED PLAN OF GOD:

"Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the WORD of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing YE put it from you, and JUDGE yourselves UNWORTHY of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. Acts 13:46
..For so hath the Lord COMMANDED us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the GENTILES, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ENDS of the earth. Acts 13:47
....And when the Gentiles heard this, they were GLAD, and GLORIFIED the WORD of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. Acts 13:48


....When the Gentiles heard this, they were very glad and rejoiced in Paul's message; and as many as WANTED [j] eternal life, believed. j48 or "were DISPOSED to," or "ordained to." Acts 13:48LIV

The word is not PREDESTINATED but "addicted"
..And I said, WHAT SHALL I DO, Lord? And the Lord said unto me,
....Arise, and go INTO (Eis) Damascus; and there it shall be told thee of all things which are APPOINTED for thee TO DO. Ac.22:10

God had CHOSEN Paul to hear the voice of the JUST ONE. Then he was to go out and be a witness. He was not to go "BECAUSE OF" Damascus but "INTO Damascus" as in Acts 2:38 we are baptized INTO the remission of sins: we are NOT baptized BECAUSE of the remission of sins. That would deny that Jesus Christ HAS a will. I NEVER de-Glorifie God when we obey Him: never is that ever stated even of the Pharisees.

Here is what Paul was TOLD TO DO:

And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and WASH AWAY thy SINS, CALLING on the name of the Lord. Acts 22:16


....Epikaleomai (g1941) ep-ee-kal-eh'-om-ahee; mid. from 1909 and 2564; to ENTITLE; by impl. to INVOKE for AID, worship, testimony, decision, etc.): - "APPEAL" (unto), call (on, upon), surname.


..BAPTISM, which corresponds to this, now SAVES YOU, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an "APPEAL" to God for a CLEAR CONSCIENCE, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 1 Pet 3:21

Does it GLORIFY God by refusing to EVEN ASK Him for a clear conscience? We note that the ANSWER used by the KJV of baptism (not a pledge) was like a CALL AND RESPONSE SONG. In Isaiah 66:4 below the word ANSWER.

....Anah (h6030) aw-naw'; a prim. root; prop. to eye or (gen.) to heed, i. e. pay ATTENTION; by impl. to RESPOND; by extens. to begin to speak;

"I also will CHOOSE their DELUSIONS, and will bring their fears upon them;
.....because when I CALLED, NONE DID ANSWER; when I SPEAK, they did not HEAR (Pay attention and OBEY): but they did evil before mine eyes, and CHOOSE that in which I DELIGHTED NOT. Isa 66:4

"Hear the WORD of the Lord, ye that tremble at his word; Your BRETHREN that HATED you,
..that CAST YOU OUT for my names sake,
....said, Let the Lord be GLORIFY: but he shall appear to your joy, and THEY shall be ASHAMED. Isa 66:5

Ken Sublett

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Engedi Humanism taped lecture (part 2 b, of 4),by D.Lawrence

August 28 2003, 9:53 AM 

(you know many of them)
"Proverbs 8:13 - "I hate pride and arrogance". 'I hate it', God says.
Ephesians 2, you know the passage, "it is by grace you've been saved" - I love that passage - "through faith, this not of yourselves"- not of yourselves-this salvation, this faith even, is not of yourselves - "it is a gift of God, not of works."
Why Paul? "Lest anyh man should boast." Now if ANY part of salvation, and specifically in that text, our faith, but if ANY part of salvation is of us then our salvation is by WORKS and we can boast in it. That's the logic tht Paul if following right there. It is not of man and it is not of works, lest any man should boast, because if it is of man, then it is of works and you can boast in it, I don't care what IT is. If the bottom line is man, if at the bottom line man has made the difference between being saved and being lost, then he can boast in that and he's saved by works - by HIS works, not by the works of Christ - he's not needing the works of Christ. That's the logocal conclusion of it, of course, and thus it makes the cross of Christ, ultimately, unnecessary. It's the argument Paul makes in I Corinthians 1:17. He is saying that you CANNOT come to God by your own wisdom. You cannot reason it out, and he said if you did, if you did, then you would empty the cross of its power. And he says "that is why I preach Christ. That is why I don't use words of man's wisdom. I don't want to empty the cross of its power because you make Christ superfluous - unnecessary. It's the argument Paul makes in Galatians 2:21, when he's talking about circumcision. Circumcision was a requirement of God, a commandment of God, for God's covenant people atd that time. But if you say "This the the thing that SAVES", then, he said, "Christ died for nothing." In other works, if you do the deciding thing yourself then Christ died for nothing. If you can handle it on your own, you don't need Jesus Christ, and that's what Paul got so exercised, so upset about - this wanting to add circumcision, in the Galatian letter. "
(to be continued)

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Engedi Humanism taped lecture (part 3,a. of 4),by D.Lawrence

August 28 2003, 3:14 PM 

(...the Galatian letter.)
"Another consequence: it disenfranchises man of his assuranced. Now what do I mean by that? It can either take his assurance away or give him a false assurance. Let's talk about the first part.
Let's suppose that you do trust in something you've done. Now sincere and honest people will eventually come to doubt that and that's why so many people are so miserable today. Because if you've been told "You're going to heaven because you're good enough" and you really believe that, and you're honest with yourself, you know that you can't be good enough. You cannot be good enough, and so where goes your assurance then? This was the problem that drove Luther eventually, that God used Luther to bring to understand the cross. Because he tried everything that the Roman church told him to do and still didn't fee - - he knew that he was a sinner. I can't handle this myself and if you're hones with yourself you know you're going to trust in your human wisdom, your human reason. You know that you're not that smart. Your reason is not that good. You trust in your obedience? Your obedience is not that complete. Jesus said "Be perfect. Your righteousness must exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees." You can't do that. If it's knowledge - you can't know enough. It just doesn't work, and if you're honest with yourself you know that and so you have no assurance, and that's why there are people today who, if you ask them, "Are you absolutely sure if you died tonight, absolutely beyond any shadow of a doubt, sure that if you died tonight you'd go to heaven?" You'd be surprised - maybe you wouldn't - how many people will say "No, I'm not sure. I don't know whether I'd go to heaven or not." And I think they're hones people, but the problem is they're trusting in themselves. You always know that, and that's a good question to ask people. It starts a good discussion because if they say "No" and they claim to be Christian, then you know that they're trusting in themselves because if they were trusting in Christ there's no hesitation by saying, in saying,
"Yes I am sure that if I died tonight that I'd go to heaven." "
(To be continued)

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Engedi Humanism taped lecture (part 3,b. of 4),y D.Lawrence

August 28 2003, 4:25 PM 

(I'd go to heaven)
"But it also can, of course, lead to a FALSE sense of assurance because some people are simply deluded and they really think that they are good enough. I remember a man one time who really thought he was so good that God, as he put it, "owed him salvation." He really did, he thought that, and some people do think that they're good enough, smart enough, do enough good things - - well, of course, that is a false sense of security. Another thing Luther got upset about was the selling of indulgences. It gives people a false sense of security, and scripture says in Proverbs 28:26 "he who trusts in himself is a fool." Proverbs 3:5 says "trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path." Obadiah 3 says "you have reaped evil because you have depended on your own strength." And you remember when Jesus introduced the parable of the Pharisee and the publican in Luke 18. Jesus did it, and Luke by inspirition, said he did it. He told the parable because of those who were confident in their own righteousness, and wanted to break through those who trusted in their own righteousness and show them they were the Pharisees, and it was the publican who went down to his house justified.
Isaiah 30:2 says "stop trusting man who has but a breathe in his nostrils." All we've got is a breathe in our nostrils and the Lord put it there, and he can take it away in a moment. That's all we have. Don't trust in yourself, that's all youve go. Hosea really nailed it. He said "Cursed is the man who trusts in man who depends on his flesh for his strength and whose heart turns away from the Lord." Now everytime we trust in man, everytime we depend on the flesh for our strength, Hosea says your heart turns away from the Lord. (Do) you hear it? Your heart turns away from the Lord when you trust in your own strength. Jesus put it very succinctly: "The flesh profits nothing."
(to be continued)

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Engedi Humanism taped lecture (part 4,a. of 4),by D.Lawrence

August 28 2003, 4:45 PM 

(The flesh profits nothing)
"But the battle goes on. Humanism manifests itself in our everyday lives, in our worship. My son said one time, "Dad, let's go through the song book." And he had the song book here and he said "look at all the 'I' songs." It's amazing how many songs begin with the pronoun 'I', and we tell God, in these songs, HOW GOOD WE ARE. There's a song, Mark and I have discussed it, I SURRENDER ALL. I don't sing that song because it's a LIE. I haven't surrendered all to Jesus. How can I sing that? I'm not going to tell God I've surrendered everything when I haven't! Whatever I've surrendered, by his grace, he's led me to surrender, but I can't - I'm not that good.
Or, another song: I HAVE DECIDED TO FOLLOW JESUS. "Though none go with Thee, I still will follow." The point is we're saying "everybody falls away, I will follow the Lord." That is an arrogant statement - (I) don't mean to blast - that's just an example. But you know Peter once said that: "If everybody falls away, I'll still follow." He was humbled, wasn't he? Don't make statements like that.
Sometimes it creeps into our songs. Sometimes it creeps into our prayers, and lots of times it creeps in OUR TEACHING. Listen to teaching and when teaching is man-centered, it's always "you do this, you do this, you do this" - granted preaching should be balanced - but if its all man-centered, and we're not preaching the cross, we're not talking about what Jesus did... You know the question is not so much "What would Jesus do?" (but) "What has Jesus done?" You know that needs to be taught; that's the cross. People lead self-centered lives because they're trusting themselves. That hurts marriages. I'll tell you the best thing for marriages is a good dose of theology, because when we understand we're FALLEN and dependent upon the grace of God, we're not going to be living so much to satisfy ourself. We're going to learn we're not as good - and we know we're not good - and that's going to be a humbling thing, and husbands and wives need that humbling.
People without joy, people who do what they do because they think they have to, and then there's that logical conclusion of Secular Humanism. Secular humanists today don't even believe in God, but where did it start? It started with so-called Christian humanism, but when you logically believe "I don't really need God and this is left up to me" then finally God gets totally removed and that's where we are today with humanism. The Secular humamist who doesn't even believe in God - that is the logical conclusion of humanism.
The insistence of FREEWILL lies at the heart of HUMANISM."
(to be cont.)

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Response to our songs TELLING GOD HOW GOOD WE ARE

September 1 2003, 7:40 PM 

These types of misleading generalizations, that most 18-19 year olds aren't able to see through, are just the kind of thing that give us a clear glimpse at the basic lack of integrity in many of the teachings of this organization. Granted there are several of our songs, especially HEAVEN songs, which employ Paul's basic theme of II Timothy 4:7,8 ("I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith, finally there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness...") [I wonder if Dr. L. has cut this section from his Bible since he probably finds it offensive and arrogant? How dare Paul tell how good he has been!]

But I was just reflecting on his charges while looking through our church hymnal at several older songs. Here is the reality which Doctor Lawrence distorts:
1. Nothing But the Blood: "nothing can for sin atone,
naught of good that I have done"
2. "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a WRETCH like ME."
3. At the cross: "would he devote that sacred head for such a WORM as I?"
4. When I Survey the Wondrous Cross: "and pour comtempt on all MY pride." [I wonder if Dr. L. refuses to sing this sweet old hymn since it has the line - "all the vain things that charm me most, I sacrifice them to his blood." How arrogant! He hasn't sacrificed ALL for Him! He's singing a LIE.]
5. I Stand Amazed: "and wonder how he could love ME a sinner condemned, UNCLEAN."
6. Just A Closer Walk with Thee: "I am WEAK but thou are strong."
7. To God be the Glory: "the VILEST offenders who truly obey..."
8. The Love of God: "we his glory must reflect lest our DIMNESS and neglect keep some soul from its God."

As you know, the list of songs with similar ideas goes ON and ON. This is NOT the language of believers TELLING GOD HOW GOOD THEY ARE.
Engedi's accusation on this point is probably just the tip of the iceberg regarding the distortions and misrepresentations this speaker is doing to the very brotherhood that he asks to support him.

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Engedi Humanism taped lecture (END), by D.Lawrence

September 4 2003, 9:34 AM 

"The insistence on freewill lies at the heart of humanism. When we say that man, not God, makes the ultimate choice basically we're saying that 'my will is stronger that God's.' 'If God wants me saved and I don't want to be saved, I'll win.' 'If God loves me', you've heard people say this, 'I can walk away from God.' 'In a test of wills between me and God, I'll win.' Thus man ultimately trusts in that choice to save him. 'I made the choice; I trust in the choice', and as a student once said to me, 'If that's the case, the choice itself becomes a WORK and you're trusting in that work to save you.'
THE ULTIMATE END OF HUMANISM IS DAMNATION, that's where it leads to. Now why do I say that? Let's go to Matthew 7:23. Remember those people that came to Jesus on the day of judgment, or will come to Jesus on that day of judgment, and say 'Lord, Lord' and Jesus said 'get out of my sight, depart from me, I never knew you.' All these good works that you've done, to offer them to God, to get into heaven, it becomes EVIL. You are workers of evil, doers of evil. The ultimate end of humanism is damnation.

Think. I'm asking all listeners of this tape just to think and let me ask you some questions real quickly. You think about how you'd answer this.

_When I do something for God is it because Christ died for me? If it's for any other reason than because Chrust died for you, you better think again.

_Is the reason for my action, whatever it is, that God may receive glory?

_Is personal salvation of people the most important matter to God? Careful how you answer that!

_Am I able to do ANYTHING without God's enabling grace? Do you think you can do anything without God's grace?

_Here's a good question: Will God's purposes fail without my effort? Will God just not get his job done? Is he dependent upon me? It just won't happen unless I do it?

_Is God in ANY way limited by my ability, my choice? Does anything I do limit the power of God?

_Are my beliefs shaped by what God has said, or by what I want to believe?

_Do I believe that in a contest of wills, my will shall prevail over God's?


_And, what ultlimately and finally do I really trust for my salvation?

I would just suggest that at the bottom line, if you trust ANYTHING but the finished work of Jesus Christ upon the cross, YOUR SALVATION IS IN SERIOUS JEOPARDY!"

{Tape ends, fades in instrumental music theme of Engedi presentations}

[and this was supposedly a tape dealing with "Church History"]

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Another school of thought

August 28 2003, 10:37 AM 

When choosing to attend a "Church of Christ" congregation or any other congregation, one would normally decide to become a member based on the fact that basic beliefs held by that church are the same as your own. It is generally accepted in "Churches of Christ" that we have free will and we must be baptized by immersion to be saved.
FACT: David Lawrence, Danny Hale, Carl Conway, Tim Alexander and others do not share the same beliefs as what Smith Springs was founded on. Instead of moving to a different church, they decided to "enlighten" this congregation to their way of thinking.
FACT: The stance taken by the elders now, as it was published by the elders in the not too distant past, is that "no one man has authority over the interpretation of the bible". Basically their stand is that they don't take a stand on any beliefs and your children might be taught anything. Which is what happened at Smith Springs. The teens were taught predestination and many adopted that belief. It caused a great rift and sorrow for some families.
FACT:The elders were approached repeatedly by members asking them to stop the teachings of David Lawrence and his followers and they didn't.
FACT: Almost half the members of Smith Springs are now gone. They lost their church home because they stood up for what they believed in but the leaders wouldn't. They had to seek new church families that did share the same belief as them, other churches of Christ.
Personal Observance: As to David and the others I mentioned, how loving is it to destroy a church in order to establish your doctrine which is contrary to that churches foundation. That is not loving, that is arrogance. That is not men serving God, that is men serving themselves. Shame on you.

I do not wish to split hairs over which doctrine is true. My point is, if you don't like the teachings of a particular church, you should not seek to divide and destroy it, you should move on to one that you do agree with.

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Pebble and Bam-bam
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Directly from God?

August 30 2003, 12:40 PM 

Not only have THEY decided to enlighten these unsuspecting members to their way of thinking, they've been able to take it to the next level and even convince some of their followers that they are just "teaching what God has SHOWN THEM TO TEACH...God's ways." (See earlier response from one Anonymous in the middle of this forum.)
Simply incredible.

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Answer the Question - Pebbles and Bam Bam

August 30 2003, 8:43 PM 

If you do not follow the teachings of the Church of Christ as Smith Springs was founded on, then why wouldn't you go to another church that did share your same beliefs? For example, you could go next door to the Presbyterian church. Why not go to a church that agrees with you rather than tear Smith Springs apart. Again, I ask you, do you really believe the actions of these men was one of love? Are you proud of the fact that you lost half the congregation because men insisted on teaching that which was contrary to Smith Springs' foundation? Also, How can you so arrogantly sit there and claim that the Calvinist teachings are right and everyone else is wrong.
Don't delude yourself. Some people were convinced but also a large number of people who remain are simply trying to wait it out. They are digging in their heels to hold on because they refuse to be run off.

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NOT the loving thing

September 3 2003, 9:18 AM 

Just because I made an observation from one of their followers does NOT mean I agree with it. I think it is horrible what has happened at this congregation. When I moved to their area a few months ago my wife and I considered going there until we had a conversation with a former member. Thank God, we were warned and avoided the situation altogether, but many others have not been so fortunate.

Some of the clandestine techniques this organization has been employing would not be tolerated even in the SECULAR business world. It is not dissimilar to the soldier from Ft.Campbell who rolled the grenades into the tent of his superiors, killing some of them.

They will stand guilty before God of being involved in something that the Bible says that GOD HATES: "he that soweth discord among brethren." (Prov. 6:19) It remains to be seen if they are guilty of some of the other six items mentioned: a proud look, a lying tongue, heart that devised wicked schemes, feet that be swift in running to mischief, a false witness that speaketh lies..." However I do believe that what has happened is scriptural in the sense that the N.T. warns us of people getting to the point that God allows them to believe a lie. (and from Engedi's information it is clear that they are absolutely convinced that the entire Church of Christ has bought into a lie., which people that they echo have labeled a type of legalistic humanism.)

In regard to why they will not go to the Presbyterian church even though, as you point out, there is literally one within 100 feet of their front door, is that this is the wrong 'model' of Presbyterians. The churches that are affilitated with the Presb.,U.S.A. are too liberal for them (U.S.A. no longer teaches that God condemns some babies to hell; they have softened their beliefs in several regards over the older, traditional hard-liners that the P.C.A. group teaches and supports.) That is another REAL irony of Engedi: they claim it is unwise to attempt to restore the first century church; they think it makes more sense to restore the 15th century church!

One of the wisest elders I ever knew, Bro. Ferguson, told me one time that whenever you see something like this happen to a church it either centers around ANGER or FEAR. Someone either is mad at the Church as a whole for some past offense, or they are mad at someone in the Church and that know how much they can harm them by attacking their faith. OR they are afraid that if they show their true allegiance they will lose something. I don't know, you tell me, does either of these apply to what's happened?

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About not a loving thing

September 6 2003, 10:58 PM 

I thought about what you said about this kind of thing happening to a church because of anger or fear. I think that the reason people have not stood up to this teaching from Engedi is because of fear. The fear of being known as unloving. We were told that it was unloving to stand up and say that we do believe in free will, we don't want instruments, we believe in foreknowledge, not predestination... We were told that it was unloving not to allow different schools of thought. No one wants to be thought of as unloving!

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About not loving

September 7 2003, 7:49 PM 


I have posted some Machiavelli who is quoted by a lead change agent, some Hitler who showed how the INTELLIGENT LEADERS can overcome the HUMAN MATERIAL with FEAR and great Wagnerian festivals. Hegel shows how it is done.

The keys, which I don't fully understand are:

Reactionary & Nostalgic
Pastiche (scrambled music from bits and pieces)
Social & Technological Realism
Overproduction of artifacts & inflation of theory (like Modernism)

THE FIRST STEP is to ridicule the OLD ORDER. They disparage the Restoration Movement and it is clear that they belong to the SECT of the Know Nothings. They CANNOT but lie about the meaning of the movement.

They brag about INFILTRATING and DIVERTING: At Madison, they publically bragged: "You bought a train ticket to Atlanta but WE GONNA divert you to Chicago. We gotta teach, teach and teach to overpower you."

Some even boasted that the OLD FOLK will soon die! Here is what they HAVE to do:

Schizophrenia: "a mental disorder characterized by a separation between the thought processes and the emotions, a distortion of reality accompanied by delusions and hallucinations, a fragmentation of the personality, motor disturbances, loss of basic intellectual functions."

From my wife's Niece, Jeanne: "Schizophrenia beats being alone."

Dissociation: is "a split in the conscious process in which a group of mental activites breaks away from the main stream of consciousness and functiona as a separate unit, as if belonging to another person. The abnormal separation of related thoughts."

While most of us think that we are fairly strong, the PROCESSES which have been well organized and put into practice in once "Christian Colleges" and pulpits are so SUBTLE that the fragmentation of personality goes on for a year or so until something KICKS IN and you refuse to drink the Jonestown KoolAid.

HITLER SHOWS THE WAY and I doubt that Hitler would send you to the eternal gas furnace because YOUR FATHER enjoyed Sex when you were conceived:

"But the COMMUNITY of the GREAT DEMONSTRATES not only strengthens the individual, it also unites and helps to create an esprit de corps.

.."The man who is exposed to grave tribulations, as the first advocate of a new doctrine in his factory or workshop,

....absolutely needs that strengthening which lies in the conviction of being a member and fighter in a great comprehensive body.

"And he obtains an impression of this body for the first time in the MASS demonstration. When from his little workshop or big factory, in which he feels very small,

..he steps for the first time into a mass meeting and has thousands and thousands of people of the same opinions around him, when, a SEEKER, (Als Suchender.' A Wagnerian phrase, which Hitler was apparently determined to use at all costs)

....he is swept away by three or four thousand others into the mighty effect of suggestive intoxication and enthusiasm,

"when the VISIBLE SUCCESS and agreement of thousands confirm to him

..the rightness of the new doctrine and for the first time

....AROUSE DOUBT in the truth of his PREVIOUS conviction -
.....then he himself has succumbed to the magic influence of what we designate as 'mass suggestion.'

"The WILL, the LONGING, and also the power of thousands are accumulated in every individual. The man who enters such a meeting doubting and wavering leaves it inwardly reinforced:

....he has become a LINK in the community."

The claim that one can be ASSURED that they are one of the FEW ELECT will, MUST be based on arousing doubt in the "old legalistic group.

We often wonder: What would I have done with Jesus? Well, time has come and only FEARLESS FIGHTERS will make it. The damnable lie is: If you object then you are SOWING DISCORD and you DON'T LOVE. They KNOW that they can use LOVE as psychological violence. If they spread the LIE that to object to US proves that you don't love JESUS, they they have INTIMIDATED you into silence while they crucify Jesus all over again.

It is not too late to reclaim your church as Jesus cast out the abominators who desolated Judaism. You cannot counter teach by being outside. If you were ever members you are still members.

my e-mail is always open

Ken Sublett

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P & B.B.
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More Fear?

September 8 2003, 8:51 AM 

I was notified very recently that it could be fear from the fact that several families deep into this thinking, still at Smith Springs, have jobs at several of our Christian schools & university, as well as several Christian organizations, like Healing Hands. Does this sound feasible, too?

Is it also true that the leaders involved in this teaching have taken the stance that "Yes, we believe in predestination, etc. but we're not going to teach it here in classes or from the pulpit anymore?"

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More Fear.

September 8 2003, 11:46 AM 

Remember that Rubel Shelly and Look to the Hills, brought to you by the Zoe Group, wanted a facilitator to move the worshipers into the presence of God:

Facilitation meaning: Psychologically increased ease of performance of any action resulting from the lessening of nerve resistance by the continued successive application of the necessary stimulation." (Webster).

Lynn Anderson: "People cannot endure sustained disequilibrium! Here is where most eye-on-the-goal, can't -wait-for-the-PLODDERS style of change agents mess up.

..They PUSH people into ACUTE disequilibrium and hold them there till an EXPLOSION comes. So, what to do! "

..Weave! Alternate between SAFETY and DISEQUILIBRIUM. Teach NEW ideas a while, STRETCHING your church out beyond COMFORT ZONES and into fresh thinking...Bend but don't break!
....Employ prayerful brinkmanship!..

Promise Keepers claim that:

"The SPIRITS are energizing the "revival" through a sense of love, joy, peace, compassion and the need for accountability" through SMALL GROUPS. The pronounced method of changing a group from where they want to be to where you want them to be to upset their equilibrium by "moving them out of their comfort zone."

In Brain Washing:

"The first step in religious or political brainwashing is to work on the EMOTIONS of an INDIVIDUAL or group
until they reach an abnormal level of anger, fear, excitement, or nervous tension.

"The progressive result of this mental condition is to IMPAIR judgment and increase suggestibility. The more this condition can be maintained or intensified, the more it compounds. Once catharsis, or the first brain phase, is reached,

..the complete mental takeover becomes easier. EXISTING mental programming can be REPLACED with NEW patterns of thinking and behavior.

"Other often-used physiological weapons to modify normal brain functions are fasting, radical or high sugar diets, physical discomforts, regulation of breathing, mantra chanting in meditation, the DISCLOSURE of awesome MYSTERIES, special lighting and sound effects, programmed response to incense, or intoxicating drugs.

"The same results can be obtained in contemporary psychiatric treatment by ELECTRIC SHOCK treatments and even by purposely lowering a person's blood sugar level with insulin injections.

When you PUSH TOO HARD, you RETREAT but not for long. When things die down you PUSH AGAIN to the brink of disaster. Sooner or later you BRAIN WASH people into GETTING IN OR GETTING OUT.

How can one LEAD without continuing to MOLE in among those who will BEND without BREAKING. Just don't take the pressure off.

When you have a DOMINANT LEADERSHIP and people FEAR "spiritual" leaders because there are roots into their jobs or social position you have a FULL BLOWN CULT.


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Re: More Fear?

September 8 2003, 2:09 PM 

Yes. We were told that they would no longer teach it in the classrooms or from the pulpit. We were not told that they wouldn't teach it in members homes or on church retreats, etc. But still, the question is why do these men persist in being leaders in the Church of Christ if they don't believe the Church of Christ teachings. I would think an honorable man, a man of integrity would step down.

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September 8 2003, 7:23 PM 

Charles Spurgeon said it:

"I am told that many in the Church of England preach against her own teaching. I know they do, and herein I rejoice in their enlightenment, but I question, gravely question, their MORALITY.

"To take oath that I sincerely assent and consent to a doctrine which I do not believe would to my conscience appear little short of PERJURY, if not absolute, downright perjury; but those who do so must be judged by their Lord.

"For me to take money for defending what I do not believe--for me to take the money of a church, and then to PREACH AGAINST what are most evidently its doctrines--I say for me to do this (I shall not judge the peculiar views of other men), for me or for any other simple, honest man to do so, would be an ATROCITY so great that, if I had perpetrated the deed, I should consider myself out of the PALE [boundaries] of TRUTHFULNESS, HONESTY, and common MORALITY.

"Sirs, when I accepted the office of minister of this congregation, I looked to see what were your articles of faith. If I had not believed them I should not have accepted your call; and when I CHANGE my opinions, rest assured that, as an HONEST MAN, I shall RESIGN the office; for how could I profess one thing in your declaration of faith, and quite another thing in my own preaching? Would I accept your pay, and then stand up every Sunday and TALK AGAINST the doctrines of your standards?

"For clergymen to swear or say they give their solemn assent and consent to what they do not believe is one of the GROSSEST pieces of IMMORALITY perpetrated in England, and is most PESTILENTIAL in its influence since it DIRECTLY TEACHES men to LIE whenever it seems necessary to do so in order to GET a LIVING or increase their supposed usefulness. It is in fact an open testimony from priestly lips, that at least in ecclesiastical matters, falsehood may express truth, and truth itself is a mere unimportant non-entity.

"I know of nothing more calculated to DEBAUCH the public mind than a lack of straightforwardness in ministers; and when worldly men hear ministers denouncing the very things which their own Prayer Book teaches, they imagine that WORDS HAVE NO meaning among church men; and that vital differences in religion are merely a tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum [totally unimportant things], and that it does not much matter what a man does believe so long as he is CHARITABLE towards other people."

Is that something like Madonna (the holy whore of Babylon) publishing a CHILDREN'S BOOK?

Ken Sublett

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P & B.B.
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Fear factor?

September 9 2003, 5:48 PM 

I'm sorry but you really missed the point of my question regarding fear. I understand very clearly why YOU, and the long-time members, would be afraid for the reason you mentioned: being accused of being unloving (incidentally that is nothing but soft intimidation; it's a type of CONTROL); my point is what are the ENGEDI people afraid of by not admitting on the sign outside the building what they are on the INSIDE of their hearts? You are absolutely right to say it is about honesty, integrity, and openness when something like this happens within a 'ministry' (see Ken's Spurgeon quote below.) So why would men who are apparently Godly in some sense, & honest in some sense, WHY would they act this way?

And honestly, the fact that this is their belief system but 'it won't be taught in classes or in sermons' makes about as much sense as asking Al Gore to teach a college class on politics without expressing any bias toward the Democratic party! Gimme a break! If you see most of humanity as depraved you don't think it will show in everything you do?! And while we're on the honesty topic, has Engedi been as forthcoming in releasing some type of financial statement to you people as they have been in getting their tapes distributed out there?

It just doesn't add up. Why would people who claim to be blessed with so much more insight act so ungodly? Someone's not coming clean on something.
Maybe you need to get a mailing list (with just HALF as many names on the Engedi one; of course, there's even more of the secrecy: they probably wouldn't release their mailing list if asked! Why the fear?) to get the word out about this web-page. As many hits as this is getting should give you some indication that you have a LOT of people who are sympathtic to your unfortunate situation. (Ken has a section on here where he can help get the word out FOR YOU if you just provide him the names and addresses.) Don't give up, and don't try to go it on your own. There are too many people in this fellowship who are NOT ready to see the birth of the first Presbyterian-Church of Christ. We've come too far to go back there now.

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manipulation alert

September 9 2003, 6:54 PM 

if this group is acting so unlovingly toward you and families at your congregation and then claiming that YOU are being unloving by questioning them, then wake up and smell the coffee: you are being manipulated and in the worst way.

some day a psychiatrist will be entertained by reading this forum and he'll be able to spot all of the dysfunction contained here, and he will know the motivation behind engedis taliban tactics, but it seems to me this outfit is perpetuating two of the least flattering attributes of the churches of christ, and even taking them to new levels, i mean depths:
1. paranoia - what is the issue that threatens us this quarter and who is behind it, and 2. exclusivism - we're the only ones going to heaven. i guess the fruit doesn't fall far from the tree, and in the mean time a little family church gets smashed just so somebody can prove some point.

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Directly from God?

August 30 2003, 9:38 PM 

This is worse than I thought. I have wondered why there is a little "hit and run" at some passage of Scripture and then a retreat into showing how everyone was wrong. However, it is more than John Calvin at work. For instance, the postmodern view is that ALL of Scripture has been lost to the world. We have to get a new BATCH from the Holy Spirit Person because we have reached the end of the CHRISTendom era. Rubel Shelly invites you to hear from the Spirit personally: Yeh, even hear his voice AUDIBLY.

The view is that you are out on a limb and have to TAKE LIBERTIES and compose your own NARRATIVE to fit your life. Nevertheless, it is HONEST and acceptable to teach ORIGINAL SIN when they cannot find a single person who was spiritually dead because of Adam. On the contrary, ALL of the evidence shows that people who were CAST OUT by God sinned with a high hand and simply had no place in their heart for God. They were, in fact, not people who sinned but people who hated God and His Word. I don't know these people but I would advise: "Don't drink no Koolaid."

John Calvin never hinted that we could hear either original or NEW truth by the Spirit. Rather, the Spirit works through the Word:

"1.The fanatics wrongly appeal to the Holy Spirit
Those who, rejecting Scripture, IMAGINE that they have some peculiar way of penetrating to God, are to be deemed not so much under the influence of error as MADNESS. For certain GIDDY men have lately appeared, who, while they make a great display of the superiority of the Spirit,

.....reject all reading of the Scriptures themselves, and deride the simplicity of those who only delight in what they call the dead and deadly letter.

"But I wish they would tell me WHAT SPIRIT it is whose inspiration raises them to such a sublime height that they dare despise the doctrine of Scripture as mean and childish.

"If they answer that it is the Spirit of Christ, their confidence is exceedingly RIDICULOUS;

....since they will, I presume, admit that the apostles and other believers in the primitive Church were NOT illuminated by any other Spirit.

"None of these thereby learned to despise the word of God, but EVERY ONE was imbued with greater reverence for it, as their writings most clearly testify.

"And, indeed, it had been so foretold by the mouth of Isaiah. For when he says,

"My Spirit that is upon thee, and my WORDSrds which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the Lord, from henceforth and FOR EVER,


...he does not tie down the ancient Church to external doctrine, as he were a mere teacher of elements; he rather shows that,

...under the reign of Christ, the true and full felicity of the new Church will consist in their being RULED not less by the WORD than by the Spirit of God.

"Hence we infer that these MISCREANTS are guilty of fearful SACRILEGE in tearing asunder what the prophet joins in indissoluble union.


"Add to this, that Paul, though carried up even to the third heaven, ceased not to profit by the doctrine of the law and the prophets, while, in like manner, he exhorts Timothy, a teacher of singular excellence, to GIVE ATTENTION to reading, (1 Tim. 4: 13.)

"But what kind of Spirit did our Saviour promise to send? One who should not speak of himself, (John 16: 13,)

...but suggest and instil the truths which he himself had delivered through the word.

"Hence the office of the Spirit promised to us, is not to form NEW and unheard-of revelations, or to coin a new form of doctrine, by which we may be led away from the received doctrine of the gospel,

...but to seal on our minds the very doctrine which the gospel recommends.

See the rest of Calvin on the Word here:

The claim of a direct operation of the Spirit is psychological violence: it is to instill the fear of TESTING the spirits.

The earlier concept of "original sin" was a PRECONCEIVED IDEA which needed Scripture to back it up. But there is NO evidence that babies come into the world as little Draculas. Calvin had problems with Calvinism. He would define the slip into the claim of supernatural power THE original sin of Satan or Lucifer, the harp- playing prostitute right there in heaven and in the garden of Eden. Modern science would never find the SIN GENE.

Ken Sublett

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Smith Springs

August 28 2003, 12:00 AM 

Reviewing parts of

David Lawrence: Others believe that salvation in some way is found in themselves, in something they have done, or in some movement of God's Spirit in their hearts. Salvation belongs to God (Rev. 19:1) and in no way is of us (Eph. 2:8-9). Others believe that salvation is found in the sacraments, particularly BAPTISM. While baptism is a required act of all Christians and certainly both SIGNIFIES and is a SEAL of our salvation, baptism is not the saving act. We do not look to baptism for our salvation, but we can look to baptism as a sign of our salvation.

I don't know how this is meant: Max Lucado says that baptism is our PLEDGE to be good boys. A pledge means that WE have something to PUT IN PAWN as a GUARANTEE that we ARE ALREADY SAVED even before we "accept the counsel of God for our lives." The NIV is the source of this but the old word ANSWER means our RESPONSE to God's CALL. When Christ DEMANDS baptism, our ANSWER it to obey and CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD: The word is never a PLEDGE.

....Eperotea (g1906) ep-er-o'-tay-mah; from 1905; an INQUIRY: - answer.
....Eperotao (g1905) ep-er-o-tah'-o; from 1909 and 2065; to ASK FOR, i.e. inquire, SEEK: - ask (after, questions), demand, DESIRE, question.

The same Peter who said that at Baptism God remits sins and gives us A holy spirit, says in 1 Peter 3:21 that baptism doesn't wash the flesh but is a REQUEST or "calling upon God" for A clear conscience which is A holy Spirit. Faith only never promises that.

How could anyone claim to AID in getting A holy spirit if Peter says that at BAPTISM we ASK FOR IT. How can those saved by faith only receive something from God for which they REFUSE to ask?

God FOREORDAINED that IN CHRIST we should walk in good works:

For we are his workmanship, created "IN" Christ Jesus unto good works,
..which God hath before ordained that we should WALK in THEM. Eph 2: 10

.."Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past GENTILES in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; Eph 2: 11
...."That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: Eph 2: 12

They were not WITHOUT GOD because they were Gentiles or predestinated: they, including Paul, were, in fact, exercising their FREE WILL to follow Satan. When they refused to walk by the light of nature which PROVES that all sins are disgusting, God gave them up to their vile affections. People who walked in righteousness and justice were always God's people long before there was a law. However, any sin violated these principles upon WHICH HANGS the Law. Sin is the RESULT of failing to hold God in the heart.

.."Wherein in time PAST ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the PRINCE of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of DISOBEDIENCE: Eph 2: 2

...."Among whom also WE ALL had our conversation in times past in the LUSTS of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the FLESH and of the MIND; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. Eph 2: 3

Don't blaspheme by attributing the work of Satan to the Holy God of the Universe.

Nature does not PREDESTINATE but they walked after the PHUSIS which did those things which are NATURALLY REPULSIVE. All people who are SPIRITUALLY estranged from God have been given over to evil because having FREE WILL they rejected God. If they HAD AN OPTION about REPUDIATING God then they have an option about ACCEPTING HIM.

....For this cause God GAVE THEM UP unto vile affections: for even their women did change the NATURAL use into that which is against nature: Ro.1:26

..But now, IN Christ Jesus, ye who sometimes were FAR OFF are made nigh by the blood of Christ. Eph 2: 13

..For he is our peace, who hath MADE BOTH ONE, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Eph 2: 14

....Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; Eph 2: 15

......And that he might RECONCILE BOTH unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: Eph 2: 16


Ephesians 5 especially identifies the nature of PREDESTINATION: That all followed NATURAL LAWS but ALL may be added to the one body by Christ. That Jesus died for SOME PEOPLE limits God's grace to those WE want to identify as saved.

All are CONCLUDED in sin. Therefore, at the time of Christ how can one say that SOME were PREDESTINATED to life? God is not like John Calvin who would have you burned at the stake for opposing his trinity views. GOD is not like ANY people in history who HAVE NO RELATIONSHIP to the Bible meanings.

God did not CAUSE everyone to be a sinner because Paul defines their sins and attributes them to Satan. Therefore, when Christ paid the price at the Cross that did not CAUSE everyone to be free of sin. No one can pay any further but, properly taught, Baptism which saves and remits sins is GETTING WITHIN THE arena where Jesus commanded us to be to CONFESS His total work.

If God put Himself in flesh and put our CONFESSION at the time and place where we REQUEST a clear conscience then to question GOD'S MEANS is to "reject the counsel of God for our lives." It is not an expression of SUPERIOR FAITH but rejecting the clear words of Christ. This is the meaning of GRACE: how can we repudiate the MEANS of God's Grace?

..But God, who is RICH in mercy, for his GREAT LOVE wherewith he loved US, Eph 2:4
....."Even when WE (all) were dead in sins, hath QUICKENED us TOGETHER WITH Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) Eph 2:5

Quicken means to regenerate but we need to see how and when by looking further:

..Suzoopoieo (g4806) sood-zo-op-oy- eh'-o; from 4862 and 2227; to reanimate conjointly with (fig.): - quicken together with.

This SAME PAUL explained it to the Colossians so that we cannot make a mistake without trying really hard.

...And ye are complete "IN" him, which is the head of all principality and power: Col 2:10

....In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made WITHOUT HAND, in PUTTING OFF the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of CHRIST: Col 2:11

Those who have personal faith must also have faith IN THE OPERATION OF GOD. Jesus says that the OPERATION takes place at water baptism.

The Pharisees and scholars "rejected the counsel of God for their lives" by refusing John's Baptism which was Christ's baptism through other hands. God predestinated baptism as the TIME and PLACE where he would remit sins. I don't ever want to question God's right to put his power in water since He put FULL DEITY in a body which is about 75 percent water.

This same circumcision by Christ happens at only ONE time and place and that is NOT when we initially believe that Jesus is the Christ. There is no predestinated promise to CIRCUMCISE our heart nor is there any FAITH ONLY promise. Only at water baptism do we obey the FORM of doctrine preached as the death and resurrection. This is being IN THE WILL OF CHRIST and expressing faith in the OPERATION OF GOD.

..BURIED with him in baptism, wherein also ye are RISEN WITH HIM through the faith of THE OPERATION OF GOD, who hath raised him from the dead. Col 2:12
....And you, being DEAD in your sins and the UNCIRCUMCISION of your flesh, hath he QUICKENED together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Col.2:13

"IF ye then be RISEN with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Col 3:1
..Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. Col 3:2
....For ye are HID, and your life is HID with Christ in God. Col 3:3

Salvation is 100% in Christ but we are baptized INTO Christ. In Galatians 3 this is the PREDESTINATED salvation by Grace and it is the same PROMISE BY THE SPIRIT of Christ made to Abraham:

..."FOR" ye are all the children of God by FAITH in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:26
..."FOR" as many of you as have been BAPTIZED into Christ have PUT ON CHRIST. Gal 3:27

There are no BELIEVERS added to the church or body of Christ who are not baptized believers. People should not be diverted by those cases where preachers push "baptism for the entry into the account book." But, if 100% of church of Christ preachers were LEGALISTIC that would not change the clear teachings of the Bible which were not attacked until Zwingli in 1525. Assuredly Calvin and Luther would repudiate David Lawrence. Luther sorta "retained" infant baptism as a way to let little children come to Christ. However, his message on baptism taught the truth: that Jesus Christ put the remission of sins where HE ordained to meet us to wash our spirits or circumcise our hearts. Even the water has power if Christ PUT IT THERE. To repudiate His POWER would be to repudiate His GLORY by LIMITING His power.

Theologians cannot quite get there: you have to BECOME AS A LITTLE CHILD which speaks directly of the known meaning that baptism is where we experience the birth of water and spirit. Why? Because as the OPERATION OF GOD raised Jesus from the death, our faith IN THAT OPERATION OF GOD puts us in the tomb with Christ and resurrects us with the same power.

Grace is not "unlimited forgiveness for unlimited sins" but it is the POWER to do what Christ commanded us to do. If Jesus connected salvation to baptism where we invoke the name of Jesus Christ, who am I to spread doubt which has to overcome most of church history and destroy ALL confidence or assurance which God provided at the time and place of water baptism. It is well taken that people should be but often are not taught that baptism isn't to get to eat that bread and drink that juice while I pop my bubble gum. Too often children get as "scared as hell" and ARE NOT subjects of baptism.

We agree that any thought that one can WORK to earn their salvation as a wage is just as repulsive as God planning to send my child to hell without telling me.

Ken Sublett

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Saving faith demands baptism

August 28 2003, 12:52 PM 

David Lawrene: Others believe that salvation in some way is found in THEMSELVES, in something they have DONE, or in some movement of God's Spirit in their hearts. Salvation belongs to God (Rev. 19:1) and in no way is of us (Eph. 2:8-9). Others believe that salvation is found in the SACRAMENTS, particularly BAPTISM. While baptism is a required act of all Christians and certainly both SIGNIFIES and is a SEAL of our salvation, baptism is NOT the SAVING act. We do not look to baptism for our salvation, but we can look to baptism as a sign of our salvation.
I suppose that one could say that SALVATION is not by the BLOOD of a human Jesus. Rather, salvation is in the WILL of Christ who WAS GOD and who laid aside His "garments" of Majesty and Glory and indwelled a huma Jesus. Jesus said that salvation depended of FAITH and (kai) BAPTISM. Those who DO NOT BELIEVE are damned already. I buy that because Jesus said it. Peter said that BELIEVERS must REPENT and BE BAPTISED for (in order to) the REMISSION OF SINS. Then, Christ gives us A holy spirit. I buy that and so did the totality of scholarship until ZWINGLI who invented "believer's baptism" which was a pagan baptism because ALL scholars who came before him were WRONG. That is the Baptist form of baptism: I don't buy that.

I want to RECYCLE a bit to prove that salvation by grace through faith is at the TIME and PLACE of water baptism. I don't want to fail to GLORIFY Lord Jesus Christ by picking and choosing. I know that it is long reply but not as long as a sermon, contains more truth and I won't SEND YOU A BILL for the FREE WATER OF THE WORD.

LOOK AGAIN "having eyes and ears": The PREDESTINATED plan of God as promised to Abraham who was justified by FAITH...
....because Abraham OBEYED my voice and kept my CHARGE, my COMMANDMENTS, my STATUTES, and my LAWS." Genesis 26:5

Paul continues to repudiate the Jew's belief that they were PREDESTINATED, by leap-frogging the Law of works and upholding the "law" of FAITH demonstrated by the FAITH of Abraham:

..."FOR" ye are all the children of God by FAITH in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:26
..."FOR" as many of you as have been BAPTIZED into Christ have PUT ON CHRIST. Gal 3:27

Is one PREDESTINATED to be IN CHRIST when they repudiate the ONLY MEANS which He PREDESTINATED to show His Glory as Full Deity? Where does faith only promise that Christ Himself will CUT OFF sins and REGENERATE our spirits so that we have A holy spirit, A clear conscience and become A new man of victory?

.....Why, Ephesians 2:4-5, of course. But maybe "by grace ye are saved" tries to GLORIFY God so much that it FORBIDS God to use MEANS of bestowing His Grace by regenerating our spirit:

..But God, who is RICH in MERCY, for his GREAT LOVE wherewith he loved US, Eph 2:4
...."Even when WE (all) were dead in sins, hath QUICKENED us TOGETHER WITH Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) Eph 2:5

Mercy means COMPASSION which the NIV sees as SOVEREIGN in the Old Testament translation of JEHOVAH. Quicken means to restore life or regenerate

..Suzoopoieo (g4806) sood-zo-op-oy- eh'-o; from 4862 and 2227; to REANIMATE CONJOINTLY with (fig.): - QUICKEN TOGETHER with.
....Zoopoieo (g227) dzo-op-oy-eh'-o; from the same as 2226 and 4160; to (re-) vitalize (lit. or fig.): - make alive, give life, quicken.

This SAME PAUL explained it to the Colossians and included baptism as the MEANS of, in Paul's words, REQUESTING regeneration or sprinkling of the heart:

.....And ye are complete "IN" him, which is the head of all principality and power: Col 2:10

History sees baptism as the time and place where the OPERATION OF GOD circumcises our spirits and REGENERATES us. It makes no points to show that MOST people believe that in baptism or sprinkling they EARN regeneration. Water regeneration exists ONLY where infants have a few drops of water thrown into their faces. This was what Zwingli repudiated while insisting that only those who believed should be baptized.

....In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made WITHOUT HAND, in PUTTING OFF the body of the sins of the flesh
......BY the circumcision of CHRIST: Col 2:11

HOW or the MEANS where God OPERATES on us?
....BURIED with him in baptism, wherein also ye are RISEN WITH HIM through the faith of THE OPERATION OF GOD, who hath raised him from the dead. Col 2:12
........And you, being DEAD in your sins and the UNCIRCUMCISION of your flesh, hath he QUICKENED together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Col.2:13

.."And corresponding to that, baptism now SAVES you-- not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an APPEAL to God for a good conscience-- through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 1 Pet 3:21NAS, RSV,

While the LIV adds commentary, it is a fact that ALL were concluded in sin because there is no personal righteousness which could save ANYONE and had caused God to predestinate them to salvation. By one act of one Adam, all mankind was cast out INTO THE WORLD and subjected to sin NOT LIKE that of Adam. All died but only those who BY THEIR OWN FREE WILL died spiritually in that God cast them out.

"In the same way, one Man, Jesus Christ, died for ALL MANKIND
....But not as the offence, so also is the FREE GIFT: For if through the offence of one MANY (the general POLUS or populace) be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto MANY. Rom 5:15

"And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of MANY offences unto justification. Rom 5:16
....For if by one mans offence death REIGNED by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall REIGN in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Rom 5:17

THE ALL: "Therefore, as by the offence of one judgment came upon ALL MEN to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon ALL MEN unto justification of life. Rom 5:18

HOWEVER, FOR THE MANY: "For as by one mans disobedience MANY were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall MANY be made righteous. Rom 5:19

Those who died spiritually died but their SIN was not that of Adam. The MANY who are made righteous obey the FORM of that ONE DEATH was available to ALL.

Condemnation is to ALL: God has concluded ALL under sin. Righteousness is for ALL but it accepted only by the MANY. Salvation was PURCHASED for ALLl at the cross but only the MANY were baptized ASKING God for that salvation or A holy spirit or A clear conscience. Jesus calls THE MANY through the Gospel which is to be preached TO THE ALL.

Those who have obeyed THAT FORM OF DOCTRINE are to RECKON themselves dead to sin but they are not PREDESTINATED to be sinless:

"God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? Rom 6:2

Were they DEAD IN SIN because they had no choice? If so, how did they QUIT living in sin? How did they become DEAD TO SIN rather than DEAD IN SIN?

"Know ye not, that SO MANY of us as were baptized INTO (Eis, not BECAUSE OF) Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Rom 6:3
.....Therefore we are BURIED WITH HIM by baptism into death: that LIKE AS Christ was raised up from the dead by the GLORY of the Father, even so we ALSO should walk in NEWNESS of LIFE. Rom 6:4

....For if we have been PLANTED (SOWED alongside) together in the LIKENESS (Resemblance) of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Rom 6:5

...Knowing this, that our old man is crucified (Impaled IN COMPANY) with him, that the body of sin might be DESTROYED, that henceforth we should not serve sin. Rom 6:6

However, there must be a LIKENESS to His resurrection:

..."Knowing that Christ being RAISED from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more DOMINION over him. Rom 6:9

Crucifixion by being "impaled on a tree" meant to first die, and then be burried as a CRIMINAL. This was about the most HUMILIATING way to die. Predestination is a way to AVOID the status of a criminal by contacting the Blood without having to confess one's helplessness. Everyone must take up the cross as a BURDEN which is defined as the "Invoice" whereas the predestinated clergy sought to LADE you down like a ship or pack animal who had to carry the FULL BURDEN. Baptism, like an invoice, carries NONE of the cargo.

"Know ye not, that to whom ye YIELD YOURSELVES servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of "OBEDIENCE" unto righteousness? Rom 6:16
....But God be thanked, that ye were the SERVANTS of sin, but ye have OBEYED from the heart that FORM (Type) of DOCTRINE which was delivered you. Rom 6:17
......Being then made FREE from SIN, ye became the servants of righteousness. Rom 6:18


Faith-- only is never said to FREE one from sin. Baptism is the ONLY form or TYPE of teaching which demanded a CONDITION and which could be OBEYED. You simply CANNOT command someone to have faith.

Predestination decrees that one is JUST PICKED and are saved by FAITH ONLY. Is there some unholy and unglorifying fear which repells MOST of the world from acknowledging that God PREDESTINATED that all are sinners? And that one must HUMBLE themselves in baptism to CONFESS their dead spirit and REQUEST (humbly and meekly) that God in Christ GIVE THEM, FREE OF CHARGE, A new spirit, A clear conscience or a regenerated spirit? Baptism REQUESTS, predestination DEMANDS; baptism is the seal or ASSURANCE that we have DIED WITH CHRIST and are REQUESTING a new spirit, there can NEVER be any assurance for those who believe that they are part of the SELECT FEW.

MOST reject death or HUMILITY that they are a sinner worthy of death. This is to refuse to be IMPALED or stuck on a tree where some confess Jesus as the Christ (God) rather than a common criminal. Confessing Christ carried a STIGMA. A Jew could have FAITH IN THE HEART but to CONFESS it in baptism meant that one left the culture and security of a tribal or communal SAFE HOUSE and went out to be despised and rejected of men.

They reject being PLANTED as a SEED which germinates with new life to GROW ALONGSIDE Lord Jesus Christ. This rejects the only form of doctrine which promises that we will SPROUT and bear fruit to Christ. Faith puts us within the ZONE of the cross but refuses to climb up on the cross.

(That, by the way, is what baptism pictures for us: In baptism we show that we HAVE BEEN SAVED from death and doom by the resurrection of Christ;[c]
....not because our bodies are washed clean by the water but because in being baptized we are TURNING to God and ASKING him to CLEANSE our HEARTS from sin.) 1 Pet 3:21LIV

A cleansed heart is A holy spirit. Because we cannot force a seed to DIE, be RESURRECTED and bear fruit to the GLORY OF GOD, we SHALL NOT say that it is LEGALISTIC to plant, water and let God give the increase:

..He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath SET the WORLD in their HEART, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end. Eccl 3:11
....I know that there is no good in them, but for a man to rejoice, and to DO GOOD in his life. Eccl 3:12
......And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his LABOR, it is the GIFT of GOD. Eccl 3:13

If in minimizing baptism we refuse to plant and to water then God WILL NOT give the increase. Demanding LIFE and FRUIT before the DEATH, Burial and resurrection is to REFUSE TO GIVE GOD THE GLORY. It is to demand that all of the Bible is a huge mistake: that the whole process is predestinated so completely that even honest men REFUSE to give God the Glory by obeying Him for fear of UPSETTING God's sovereign will.

Next, let's look at the SOVEREIGN FETISH which refuses to give God THE GLORY under the name of Jehovah or Jesus as Jehovah- Saves. Sovereign is not a KJV word and the NIV rejects the TRUE LORD by its deliberate use.

Ken Sublett

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Sovereign includes HUMANS.

August 29 2003, 3:47 PM 

The NIV translates Adonay or Jehovah as "sovereign." Adonay speaks of God's Name but sovereign speaks of God's power or human power. The English word sovereign might apply to a savage with an IQ of 68 being sovereign over those with an IQ of 60.

The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia does not even list a word for SOVEREIGN. "LORD, THE LORD or "Adonay Jehovah" was the covenant name of the One True Elohim or "god."

Websters 1913: "Sovereign: The PERSON, body, or state in which independent and supreme authority is vested; especially, in a MONARCHY, a king, queen, or emperor."
....A sovereign implies that a king need not consider others. Therefore, the word SOVEREIGN does not appear in the KJV. God's sovereign will is to show COMPASSION rather than partiality or respect of persons.

The word Sovereign in the Greek is:

....I. to be a TURANNOS, an absolute SOVEREIGN or despot, and in aor. to become such, Hdt., etc.: to be a prince or princess, Eur.
....2. c. gen. to be despotic ruler of a people or place, Solon, Hdt., attic
....3. c. acc. to govern, Luc.:--Pass. to be governed despotically, Hdt., Thuc.
....II. to be tyrannical, imperious, Plat.

The word the NIV translates as SOVEREIGN is and others translate as LORD is:
..Adonay (g136) ad-o-noy'; an EMPHATIC form of 113; the Lord (used as a prop. NAME of GOD ONLY): - (my) Lord.
....Yehowih (h3069) yeh-ho-vee'; a var. of 3068 [used after 136, and pronounced by Jews as 430 (Elohiym), in order to prevent the repetition of the same sound, since they elsewhere pronounced 3068 as 136]: - God.

However, the word Adown (h136) includes the idea of SOVEREIGN. It applies both to God or Humans. Adonay, is a personal name and is restricted to God. By translating LORD as sovereign it assigns to God what can also be applied to Humans like Abraham.
....Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my LORD (adown) being old also? Ge.18:12
......And he said, Blessed be the Lord (Jehovah) God (Elohim) of my master (Adown) Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master (Adown or sovereign) of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way, the Lord led me to the house of my masters brethren. Gen 24:27

The NIV is not, however, much help to Calvinists:

....For the LORD (Jehovah) your God is God (El) of gods (Elohim) and Lord (Adonay) of lords ( sovereigns, Adown), the great God, mighty and awesome, who SHOWS no PARTIALITY and accepts no bribes. Deut 10:17NIV

God is not A SOVEREIGN: He is the Adonay of sovereigns.
..Adown (h113) aw-done', or (short.) ·adon, aw-done'; from an unused root (mean. to rule); SOVEREIGN, i. e. controller (human or divine): - lord, master, owner. Comp. also names beginning with "Adoni-"

God is NOT like the world's sovereigns but He is a God of compassion:
....He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to DO JUSTLY, and to LOVE MERCY, and to HUMBLY with thy God? Mi.6:8
....The Lords voice crieth unto the city, and the man of wisdom shall see thy name: hear ye the rod (Branch), and who hath appointed it. Mic 6:9

The word SOVEREIGN would tend to make Calvinism more rational becase they come to believe that God burns babies as John Calvin the SOVEREIGN helped burn Servitus. John Wesley wrote:

..."I dare not insist upon any one's using the word Trinity, or Person. I use them myself without any scruple, because I know of none better: But if any man has any scruple concerning them, who shall constrain him to use them? I cannot: Much less would I BURN a MAN ALIVE, and that with moist, green wood, for saying,
....'Though I believe the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Ghost is God; yet I scruple using the words Trinity and Persons, because I do not find those terms in the Bible."
...These are the words which MERCIFUL John Calvin cites as wrote by Servitus in a letter to himself. I would insist only on the direct words, unexplained, just as they lie in the text: "There are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: And these three are one."

To deny that Jesus IN FACT DID connect salvation to baptism as the time and place to REQUEST a renewed or regenerated spirit, is to take GLORY from Him as God Incarnate. To claim (with never any assurance) that God has PRESELECTED one and PASSED them over without dying, being burried and resurrected with a REGENERATED SPIRIT, it to REFUSE to participate in the FAITH OF THE OPERATION OF GOD where we are spiritually circumcized, saved, have sins remitted, are regenerated and IN CONSEQUENCE enrolled in heaven. It is to REPUDIATE the Glory of Christ in His last instructons to include ALL NATIONS as the predestinated plan of God.

God is the LORD of SOVEREIGNS and the Father of Love, Grace, Mercy, Compassion not willing that ANY SHOULD PERISH but that all should come to repentance. No, David, he didn't say SOME but ALL. As Father of us all He DOES NOT give us a serpent when we request bread. Neither does He toss us on the Jew's and John Calvin's burning stake while we are in Calvinistic words: "There are babies not an inch long burning in hell right now." (An old sermon)

Having grown up in the church of Christ my lowest level of ethics and morality, along with all preachers as far as I can discover, would never slink into a Presbyterian church and SUBVERT the principles which caused them to sacrifice to purchase the property, and as at Madison "infiltrate and divert" the church into another church. I don't believe that you can discover one such preacher in the church of Christ. They simply COULD NOT wear the name of Christ and even think about "stealing the church houses of widows."

Ken Sublett

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Original DEATH.

September 2 2003, 8:55 AM 

Original Sin: Remember that Peter warned you that Paul was hard to understand. Just as Jesus used PARABLES from the foundation of the world to keep the truth out of the hands or RETAILERS, Paul speaks in very symbolic language. And only by taking Paul out of context will you find any HINT that babies are declared "children of the DEVIL" because they carried the genes of Adam and Eve. We told you that the original sin which made Satan more attractive than God is widely acknowledged to have been SODOMY. EVE worshipers have since used homosexuality to "bind the flesh and spirit together." More later: but do you want to trust and support people who tell you that your infant BEARS the PENALTY for sodomy?

Look briefly at Romans which CAN be understood unless you are blinded by minimizing the Word of God (Heb 6)

Satan sought to defeat man's rule of HIS kingdom by causing them to sin and REJECT the WORD of the LIVING WORD. When Eve was "wholly seduced" but Adam "went willingly" they allowed Satan to get access to all people. Therefore, read HONESTLY: Sin did not ENTER INTO all of Adam's descendants but:

...Wherefore, as by one man SIN ENTERED into the WORLD, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that ALL have SINNED: Ro.5:12

Everything which follows must be interpreted by this: SIN entered into the WORLD and NOT innocent infants.

Not ALL but MANY were made sinners. If All then the Obedience of Jesus Christ made ALL KEEP THE LAW

...."For as by one mans DISOBEDIENCE MANY were made sinners (BECAUSE THEY SINNED), so by the obedience of one shall MANY be made righteous. Rom 5:19

Disobedience is:

...Parakoe (g3876) par-ak-o-ay'; from 3878; inattention, i.e. (by impl.) disobedience: - disobedience.

You don't CATCH sin: it is an ACTIVE VERB. You must KNOW the law and deliberately VIOLATE the Law to be guilty. After the Law you are guilty of sin (but rarely TOTALLY DEPRAVED) because there was a LAW and because YOU violated that sin.

Sin is:

Hamartano (g264) ham-ar-tan'-o; perh. from 1 (as a neg. particle) and the base of 3313; prop. to MISS the mark (and so not share in the prize), i.e. (fig.) to err, esp. (mor.) TO SIN: - for YOUR FAULTS, offend, sin, TRESPASS.

....For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every TRANSGRESSION and DISOBEDIENCE received a just recompence of reward; Heb.2:2
......How shall WE escape, if WE neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; Heb 2:3
........God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will? Heb 2:4

Sin is something you DO and not something you inherit. The DEVIL is the FATHER of those who sin ON THEIR OWN

Sin ENTERED into our world order because Adam opened the door. However, sin IS NOT IMPUTED when there is no law. There was no law for INFANTS for MOST of the Old Testament, NO INFANT was a SODOMITE because there was no law until the Law of Moses.

..WHOSOEVER COMMITH sin transgresseth also the law: for SIN IS the TRANSGRESSION of THE LAW. 1 John 3:4
....He that COMMITTETH sin is of the DEVIL; for the DEVIL sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might DESTROY the works of the DEVIL. 1Jn.3:8

If an infant inherits ADAM'S SIN then he is genetically related to the Devil. Why would a GLORIOUS God do that? He would have to HOLD A GRUDGE for thousands of years so He could punish a child who COULD NOT commit sin.

People do not SIN until they are old enough to make their PERSONAL choice:

"Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14
..Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to REFUSE the evil, and CHOOSE the good. Isaiah 7:15
....For before the child shall know to REFUSE the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings. Isaiah 7:16

God saw that there was NO MAN to mediate or be His Intercessor to protect people. Therefore He sent His own HAND OR ARM to protect people. When Jesus died, returned to the Tabernacle in Heaven with His own blood, He returned in Spirit to dwell as "father, son and spirit" in the hearts of baptized believers. This disabled Satan's power over those who did not want to sin and be God haters.

However, when all sins, past, present and future were paid for, only those who ASKED for A holy or regenerated spirit BY BEING baptized INTO CHRIST and are protected. However, they ARE NOT ALL TOTALLY REGENERATED when Christ died for ALL sin, past, present and future.

Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that DOETHY evil; of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; Rom 2:9

....But GLORY, honour, and peace, to every man that WORKETH good; to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: Rom 2:10

WORKETH is the word from which we get ERGS or units of work done. Why will EVERYONE receive GLORY for what they have done? Because those who love God just want to keep His commandments. That is why Abraham was justified by FAITH: when faith became an ACTIVE VERB.

......For there is no respect of persons with God. Rom 2:11

For as many as HAVE sinned without law shall also PERISH without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged BY the law; Rom 2:12
...(For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the DOERS of the law shall be justified. Rom 2:13

For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by NATURE the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: Rom 2:14
..Which shew the work of the law written in their HEARTS, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;) Rom 2:15
....In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel. Rom 2:16

That's what PAUL MEANT: you deliberately translate DEATH as original sin at your peril. By killing the TREE OF TRUTH by pulling it out by ITS ROOTS you deliberately TAKE the glory from God.

Ken Sublett

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Psalm 51 Original Sin

September 2 2003, 12:00 PM 

The old PSALM 51 TRICK

David Lawrence: "David understood that he came into this world as a SINNER (Ps. 51:5),

Scripture never says any such thing:

"Wash me throughly from MINE iniquity, and cleanse me from MY sin. Psa 51:2
..For I acknowledge MY transgressions: and MY sin is ever before me. Psa 51:3
....Against THEE, thee only, have I sinned, and done this EVIL in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. Psa 51:4

Then, David blames his MOTHER for his sinfulness "from the womb" which means "in my youth."

Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. Psa 51:5

It is perfectly clear that the MOTHER sinned when David was conceived. However, POEMS tend to be POETIC:

First, Job explains FROM MY MOTHER'S WOMB to mean FROM MY YOUTH:

...(For from my YOUTH he was brought up with me, as with a father, and I have guided her FROM my MOTHER'S WOMB;) Job 31:18

Secondly, still speaking poetically:

"DO ye indeed speak righteousness, O congregation? do ye judge uprightly, O ye sons of men? Psa 58:1
..Yea, in heart YE work wickedness; YE weigh the violence of YOUR hands in the earth. Ps 58:2
....The WICKED are ESTRANGED from the WOMB: they go ASTRAY as soon as they be BORN, SPEAKING LIES. Ps.58:3

Not: "The wicked WERE estranged." According to Job, they are estranged IN THEIR YOUTH but sin is not a congenital disease.

Thirdly, Jesus was conceived in his MOTHER'S womb but he was not CONCEIVED in sin. Nor, did He inherit Adam's sin:

"And, behold, thou (mother) shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. Luke 1:31
..He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: Luke 1:32

Now, go back and see what David said that he did in the WOMB or after he was able to speak evil and personally GO ASTRAY:

.Evel (h5766) eh'-vel; or avel aw'-vel; and (fem.) avlah , av- law'; or owlah o-law'; or 5930 o-law'; from 5765; (moral) evil: - iniquity, perverseness, unjust (-ly), unrighteousness (- ly), wicked (-ness.

"Therefore hearken unto me ye men of UNDERSTANDING: far be it from God, that he should do wickedness; and from the Almighty, that he should commit INIQUITY. Jb.34:10
.."Wherefore now let the fear of the Lord be upon you; take heed and do it: for there is NO INIQUITY with the Lord our God,
....NOR RESPECTS of PERSONS, nor taking of gifts. Job15:16

"How much more abominable and filthy is man, which DRINKETH INIQUITY like water? 2Chr.19:7

We warned you that CALVINISTS claim that your innocent child is an ADULTERER and SODOMITE from the womb:

Estranged is:

Zuwr (h2114) zoor; a prim. root; to TURN ASIDE (espec. for lodging); hence to be a foreigner, strange, profane; spec. (act. part.) to commit adultery: - (come from) another (man. place), fanner, go away, (e-) strange (-r, thing, woman).

Astray is:

..Taah (h8582) taw-aw'; a prim. root; to vacillate, i. e. REEL or stray (lit. or fig.); also caus. of both: - (cause to) go astray, deceive, DISSEMBLE, (cause to, make to) err, PANT, SEDUCE, (make to) stagger, (cause to) wander, be out of the way.

....And the Levites that are gone away far from me, when Israel went astray, which went astray away from me after their idols; they shall even bear their iniquity. Eze.44:10

...Thus saith the Lord; For three transgressions of Judah, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have
....DESPISED the law of the Lord,
....and have not kept his commandments,
....and THEIR LIES caused them to ERR, after the which their fathers have walked: Am.2:4

My people ask counsel at their stocks, and their staff declareth unto them: for the spirit of whoredoms hath CAUSED them to err, and they have gone a WHORING from under their God. Ho.4:12
...Zanuwn (h2183) zaw-noon'; from 2181; adultery; fig. idolatry: - whoredom.

Because of the multitude of the whoredoms of the wellfavoured harlot, the mistress of witchcrafts, that selleth nations through her whoredoms, and families through her witchcrafts. Na.3:4

David was not a sinner because David didn't cause his own conception. David didn't inherit ORIGINAL SIN because from the womb he was SPEAKING LIES. Therefore, David became a sinner when he was old enough to be drawn away from the Laws of God.

Calvinists cannot have Psalm 51. Nor, can they have ANY proof text when we look at the whole context.

Ken Sublett

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Why aren't babies born DEAD?

September 2 2003, 6:39 PM 

David Lawrence "Is Original Sin Biblical": God considered Adam's sin a very serious matter. Adam, whose name means "man" in Hebrew, stands as the head of the human race as Jesus Christ stands as the head of the redeemed race (1Cor. 15:22).

Don't ever forget that Jesus said that truth had been hidden in parables from the foundation of the world. This was even in Isaiah 48 to hide the truth from false teachers. In Job 27:1 and 29:1 he spoke of purely spiritual language and called it a PARABLE. This does not mean myth but a superior form of speech. Seems that it works because DEATH is translated into "original sin."

What Adam "passed on" was DEATH. The Tree of Life was in the garden of Eden and as far as we know Adam and Eve could have lived forever. Only those who HAVE EARS and EYES can grasp it:

"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that OVERCOMETH will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the PARADISE of GOD. Re.2:7

Those who are regenerated become the NIKE:

....Nikao (g3528) nik-ah'-o; from 3529; to subdue (lit. or fig.): - conquer, overcome, prevail, get the victory

Nike (g3529) nee'-kay; appar. a prim. word; conquest (abstr.), i.e. (fig.) the means of success: - victory.
....For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. 1Jn.5:4

..In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the TREE OF LIFE, which bare twelve manner of FRUITS, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. Re.22:2
....Blessed are they that do his COMMANDMENTS, that they may have RIGHT to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. Re.22:14

By the sin of ONE, Death passed on to all people because they were cast out of the garden which was paradise. By one man came DEATH and not SIN. People in the world or kosmos were tempted by their own lusts; and when lust matured they sinned. As a result of sin, they died.

"But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 1 Cor 15:20
....For since by man came DEATH, (NOT SIN)


"by man came also the RESURRECTION of the dead. 1 Cor 15:21
....For as in Adam all DIE,
....even so in Christ shall ALL be MADE ALIVE. 1 Cor 15:22


THE SUBJECT IS NOT ORIGINAL SIN BUT "DEATH." If this "thing" is inherited then why are not all children born DEAD. NO, he is not speaking of "spiritual death" but death as in death.

"But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christs at his coming. 1 Cor 15:23
..Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule, and all authority and power. 1 Cor 15: 24
..For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 1 Cor 15: 25
....The last enemy that shall be destroyed is DEATH. 1 Cor 15: 26


"Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. 1 Cor 15: 33
..Awake to righteousness, and SIN NOT; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame. 1 Cor 15: 34

Ken Sublett

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Born in sin Jer 17:9

September 2 2003, 9:22 PM 

David Lawrence: David understood that he came into this world as a sinner (Ps. 51:5),and Jeremiah wrote that the human heart was deceitful above all things and beyond cure (Jer. 17:9).

Let's look at some context. Jeremiah didn't hint, but denied, that they were cursed with the ORIGINAL SIN. Rather, even Calvin would say that they were predestinated to sin because God gave them FREE WILL. These people are CERTIFIED SINNERS but God didn't blame Adam.

"Thus saith the Lord; Cursed be the MAN that TRUSTETH in MAN, and maketh FLESH his arm, and whose heart DEPARTETH from the Lord. Jer 17:5
..For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited. Jer 17:6


"Blessed is the man that TRUSTETH in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. Jer 17:7
..For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit. Jer 17:8


..The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Jer 17:9

It is important to be connected to th WATERS because the heart of SOME were evil. They are not evil by BIRTH but because they have been led astray by THEIR OWN SINS. You don't trust MAN or FLESH because men are TRICKY like Jacob who was fraudulent, crooked, deceitful, polluted. This is related to the word:

..Aqab (h6117) aw-kab'; a prim. root; prop. to swell out or up; used only as denom. from 6119, to SEIZE by the HEEL; fig. to circumvent (as if tripping up the heels); also to restrain (as if holding by the heel): - take by the heel, stay, supplant, * utterly.

The SEED OF THE SERPENT or the DEN OF VIPERS or the sons of he Devil were, apparently, predestinated for the burning hell reserved for them because they were led by Satan to try to steal the glory from God:

"For I desired mercy, and NOT sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings. Hos 6:6
..But they like MEN have TRANSGRESSED the covenant: there have they dealt TREACHEROUSLY against me. Hos 6:7

"And he said, Is not he rightly named Jacob? for he hath supplanted me these two times: he took away my birthright; and, behold, now he hath taken away my blessing. And he said, Hast thou not reserved a blessing for me? Ge.27:36

Desperately Wicked is;

Anash (h605) aw-nash'; a prim. root; to be frail, feeble, or (fig.) melancholy: - desperate (-ly wicked), INCURABLE, sick, woeful.

"Why is my pain perpetual, and my wound INCURABLE, which refuseth to be healed? wilt thou be altogether unto me as a LIAR, and as waters that fail? Je.15:18

"Why criest thou for thine affliction? thy sorrow is INCURABLE for the MULTITUDE of thine INIQUITY:
....because THY SINS were increased, I have done these things unto thee. Je.30:15

Why didn't God know that they were DEPRAVED? Here is how they BECAME depraved all by themselves

"I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to HIS WAYS, and according to the FRUIT of his DOINGS. Jer 17:10

Doings are:

..Maalal (h4611) mah-al-awl'; from 5953; an act (good or bad): - going, endeavour, invention, work.

"The Lord shall send upon thee cursing, vexation, and rebuke, in all that thou settest thine hand unto for to do, until thou be destroyed, and until thou perish quickly;
..BECAUSE of the wickedness of THY doings, whereby thou hast FORSAKEN me. De.28:20

"Lord, the hope of Israel, all that forsake thee shall be ashamed, and
..they that DEPART from me shall be WRITTEN in the earth,
....because THEY have FORSAKEN the Lord, the fountain of living waters. Jer 17:13 O

These people, if real, judge falsely, have a false measure, were "mote pluckers," were hypocrites, gave holy things to dogs, cast pearls before swine. However, not even the VILEST sinner would slip his child a deadly serpent into his bread bowl. But, Calvinism says that God does even worse: he casts little babies into hell to GLORIFY Himself.

Is it to GLORIFY GOD by claiming that even unborn infants are guilty of these because of ORIGINAL SIN? No. They were guilty on their own and could not play THE BLAME GAME by claiming that "GOD MADE ME DO IT."

Ken Sublett

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Christ DRAWS by the Cross

September 3 2003, 11:35 AM 

DAVID LAWRENCE: We sin because we are sinners, because it is our nature to sin. In such a state, we CANNOT COME to Christ, because we have NO ability to come (John 6:44, 65).

Jesus Christ is the ARM of God. He is the visible manifestation of an invisible God. He said that He had the FATHER and SPIRIT with Him and IN Him. The Jews understood that to mean that He claimed to BE God. Paul said that FULL DEITY dwelled in him.

No NATURAL person can grasp that unless God draws us to Jesus as the MANIFESTATION of the person He wants to be the witness of righteousness and justice. But HOW does God draw people to Christ?

.."Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. John 6:43
....No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me DRAW him: and I will RAISE him up at the last day. John 6: 44


It is written in the prophets (Isa 54:13) , And they shall be all TAUGHT of God. Every man therefore that hath HEARD, and hath LEARNED of the Father, COMETH unto me. John 6: 45


..And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? Lu 6:46
....Whosoever COMMETH to me, and HEARETH my sayings, and DOETH them, I will shew you to whom he is like: Lu.6:47
......He is LIKE a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a ROCK: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. Lu 6:48

John continues the Words to show that the gospel is the WAY God draws us to Him. The Gospel shows that GOD submitted Himself to suffer as a MAN. Therefore, if God sends HIMSELF as a human willing to DIE then those who have a spiritual nature will BE DRAWN to the foot of the Cross. There simply is NO hint that God calls us to be saved apart from the Gospel. Why else would He send EVANGELISTS and fire the Doctors of the Law?

"Not that any MAN hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. John 6: 46
....Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. John 6: 47

"For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the POWER of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Ro.1:16

The cross is the DRAWING power of God. Drawing is the Greek:

Helkuo (g1670) hel-koo'-o; or helko +tx hel'-ko; prob. akin to 138; to drag (lit. or fig.): - draw. Comp. 1667

Because the NAME of Father, Son and Spirit is Jesus, Joshua or Jehovah- Saves, Jesus said that HE would draw people to Himself:

"Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the PRINCE of this world be CAST OUT. Jno 12:31
..And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will DRAW all men unto me. Jno 12:32
...This he said, signifying WHAT DEATH he should die. Jno 12:33

Jesus draws us by the cross: we don't love a "god" who burns little babies but who LOVES us when we are all unlovable. A mother loves us IN SPITE OF our actions after we have "moved out and beyond the womb."

The story of God so loving that He would lay aside His "garments" of Glory and Majesty and fully indwell a lowly human being. This is the ULTIMATE picture of God's love. But, that is not all: He will suffer as a criminal and DIE ON THE CROSS.

This and not PREDESTINATION of of infants but the predestinated plan of God to save the meek and lowly who would LAY ASIDE any feeling of superiority they have and condescend to be crucified or impaled on a tree just like criminals, die alongside Jesus Christ while ALL the world is seeing the SPECTACLE and the Levitical MOCKERS attempt to defeat Him with the prophesied music of warriors.

Then, we agree to lie in tomb with Christ, AND be resurrected with him. That FORM OF DOCTRINE is COMMANDED by Lord Jesus Christ as the ONLY TIME and PLACE where He will wash away our sins, save us, give us A holy spirit or A clear conscience: and yes, regenerate our SPIRITS.

People hate baptism because it is the ULTIMATE act of humility and self abasement. To claim that "Oh, I have been predestinated and saved and I don't have to" is to REJECT the Glory and Majesty of Full Deity which YOU can put on only AFTER you have walked in the steps of Jesus which DRAWS you to the cross and death.

If the CROSS as the power of the gospel doesn't DRAG you to water baptism where you REQUEST a clear conscience, they you WILL NOT BE DRAGGED even by God.

..."FOR" ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:26

..."FOR" all of you who were baptized INTO Christ have clothed (PUT ON) yourselves with Christ. Ga.3:27

Faith only does not cause Christ to CLOTHE you in his bosom or "folds of the garment."


Ken Sublett

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September 3 2003, 8:58 PM 

LOCKED IN A BATTLE WITH HUMANISTS WHO DETESTED "CLERGY" FOR ATTENTION (GLORY) CALVIN WOULD CONSENT TO THE BURNING AT THE STAKE. He must have been SELF LOATHING. At Salem or Nashville they are still dangerous people because SOMEHOW they have declared that THEY have been selected and those who do not agree are just part of the DUNG HEAP. The methods are defined clearly by Hitler who saw the masses as "human material."


Source: WordNet (r) 1.7 depravity
..n 1: MORAL PERVERSION; impairment of virtue and moral principles: "the luxury and CORRUPTION among the upper classes"; "moral degeneracy followed intellectual degeneration"; "its BROTHELS; its opium parlors; its depravity" [syn: corruption, degeneracy]
....2: a corrupt or depraved or DEGENERATE act or practice: "the various turpitudes of modern society" [syn: turpitude]

Source: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
"DEPRAVITY \De*prav"i*ty\, n. [From Deprave: cf. L. pravitas crookedness, perverseness.] The state of being DEPRAVED or corrupted; a vitiated state of moral character; general badness of character; wickedness of mind or heart; absence of religious feeling and principle.
....Did not the people themselves, because of the depravity of the popular orators, desire the oligarchy which was established under the Four Hundred?


Neither the Bible nor history has a record of those BORN DEPRAVED. Therefore, Calvin spread the DUNG on innocent babies because he could not explain evil or adult DEPRAVITY. In the Greek dictionary, DEPRAVITY IS:

akatharsia, hê, uncleanness, foulness, of a wound or sore moral sense, DEPRAVITY, D.21.119. [See Below]

IN THE BIBLE: Is your infant guilty?

Akatharsia (g167) ak-ath-ar-see'-ah; from 169; impurity (the quality), phys. or mor.: - uncleanness.

....Wherefore God also gave them up to UNCLEANNESS, through the lusts of THEIR OWN hearts, to DISHONOR their OWN bodies between themselves: Ro.1:24

....Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Ga.5:19

D.21: Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics (ed. H. Rackham)
.."Other morbid propensities are acquired by habit, for instance, plucking out the hair, biting the nails, eating cinders and earth, and also SEXUAL PERVERSION. These practices result in some cases from NATURAL DISPOSITION, and in others from HABIT, as with those who have been ABUSED from CHILDHOOD.

A similar word in the Greek is:

rhup-asma atos, to, dirt, filth, pollution, Apollon.
...luma 1 [louô]
......I. mostly in pl. the water used in washing, washings, OFF-SCOURINGS, filth, Il.; lumath' hagnisas ema, of blood on the hands, Soph.
......II. moral filth, defilement

Similar Greek:

koprion , to, = kopros
..2. generally, dirt, filth, in MAGIC, dirt taken from spot where a CORPSE has lain

......I. DUNG, ordure, MANURE
......II. a farm-yard, home-stead, Hom.
skubalon dung, filth, refuse

.And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of ABOMINATIONS and FILTHINESS of her fornication: Re.17:4

....And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. Rev 17:5

If anyone can convince you that you were DUNG or a SODOMITE within your mother's womb. And if they can convince you that THEY are CLEAN by God's hand pick, then you are in a cult situation. Jesus only treated the PROFESSIONAL class of clergy as being DEPRAVED by their own rejection of the Word of God and substituting THEOLOGY.

You CANNOT make children DEPRAVED without agreeing with the JEWS which are approved for saying of Jesus: "You are the child of fornication."

You cannot WASH AWAY the charge of DEPRAVITY and I doubt that God will. By their FRUITS shall you KNOW them.

Ken Sublett

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Romans 5

September 5 2003, 2:16 PM 

DAVID LAWRENCE: When Adam sinned in the garden, he made sinners of all mankind, for all men were now CORRUPTED by one man's disobedience.
....Paul states clearly five times in Rom. 5:12-19 that Adam brought death and condemnation on the whole human race and that men were now constituted as sinners.


The effect of ONE MAN'S SIN created ANOTHER EFFECT. Jesus said that CONDEMNATION is an EFFECT of those who WALK after the FLESH.

"I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. Rom7:25

...."THERE is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who WALK not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Ro.8:1

Sin did not ENTER INTO all of Adam's descendants but:

....KJV: Wherefore, as by one man SIN ENTERED into the WORLD, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, FOR (because) that ALL have SINNED: Rom 5:12

....NKJV: Therefore, just as through one man sin ENTERED the world, and death through sin, and thus DEATH SPREAD to all men, BECAUSE ALL sinned Rom 5:12NKJV

Sin did not ENTER into CAIN at birth and it did not ENTER anyone. What Romans 5:12 says that sin ENTERED into the WORLD which is:

...Kosmos (g2889) kos'-mos; prob. from the base of 2865; orderly arrangement, i.e. decoration; by impl. the world (in a wide or narrow sense, includ. its inhab., lit. or fig. [mor.]): - adorning, world.

The WORLD is the realm where the Devil REIGNS with limited power:

..Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the KINGDOMS of the WORLD, and the glory of them; Mt.4:8

....Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this WORLD, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Ep.2:2

The concept of "original sin" demands that "BECAUSE all sinned" be translated "IN WHOM all sinned." However, the word because does not mean "IN WHOM" but:

..Hoti (g3754) hot'-ee; neut. of 3748 as conj.; demonst. that (sometimes redundant); caus. because: - as concerning that, as though, because (that), for (that), how (that), (in) that, though, why.

Paul uses BY WHOM immediately before Romans 5:12

..And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, BY WHOM we have now received the atonement. Romans 5:11

Sin entered the WORLD. Then all died BECAUSE they all sinned. Because ALL sinned they died. Can anything be simplier?

They did not "ORIGINALLY SIN"; they violated natural principles which had not been put into CODIFIED LAW.

..(For until the law SIN was IN the WORLD: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Rom 5: 13


CAIN was evil because "he was OF that evil one." He was not a sinner because of ADAM. Sin is like a "lion" crouching beside the door. Why did God say that and not say that "sin lies in your own wretched, fornicating, sodomizing heart from CONCEPTION?" This is not extreme: Calvin says about the same thing.

SIN was not IN Cain but sin would be the result of NOT doing well. There was nothing in Cain which could not have been cured by FREE WILL obedience of God. Why would God lie to Cain if he COULD NOT change?

KJV: "If thou DOEST WELL, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest NOT well, sin LIETH at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt RULE (MASTER) over him. Ge.4:7

LIV: "It can be bright with joy if you will do what you should! But if you REFUSE to obey, watch out. Sin is waiting to ATTACK you, longing to destroy you. But you can CONQUER it!" Gen 4:7

Sin originates in our own LUST for things of the WORLD such as a money-making "ministry" (some slavery!). Each of us CAN DO what we WANT TO DO. Calvinism just completley steals GLORY from God by having Him create ROBOTS and then smash them up when the DESIGNED BAD GUYS do BAD THINGS.

DID GOD MAKE A MISTAKE BY NOT ASSIGNING THE SIN TO "ORIGINAL SIN?" If CAIN lived in ORIGINAL SIN and he was predestinated to DAMNATION then why did God tell Him that he could CHANGE what he was doing because what he was DOING was by FREE WILL.


"But EVERY MAN is tempted, when he is drawn away of HIS OWN lust, and enticed. James 1:14
..Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth SIN: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. James 1:15
....Do not err, my beloved brethren. James 1:16

If EVERY MAN follows this process then we understand that "from the womb" in Psalm 58 does not mean that we SPEAK LIES seconds after our birth. The meaning is that we GO FORTH from the womb to SIN and SPEAK LIES and LOOK AFTER WIDOWS.

The FULL ATONEMENT of Jesus does not PRECLUDE free will which still allows people to lie, cheat and steal. ONLY those who KEEP HIS COMMANDS love the Lord and this is THE WAY to glorify God.

Remember, verse 12: SIN ENTERED the WORLD but people were NEVER CALLED SINNERS because of Adam's sin but because SIN was now made attractive to them through the prince Satan.

Paul says clearly that people died for their own sins and NOT because Adam sinned.

..Nevertheless DEATH REIGNED from Adam to Moses, even over them that had NOT SINNED after the SIMILITUDE of Adams transgression, who is the FIGURE of him that was to come. Rom 5: 14

As plain as words can make it, you CANNOT repeat Adam's sin and therefore you CANNOT be guilty of HIS SIN. You sin after a different SIMILITUDE and you die for your own sins. Remember that Calvin's EXTREMISM showed up in his battle against HUMANISTS whose "humaneness" in men like Erasmus TOTALLY REPUDIATED a "protestant domination" just as Calvin fought against a Catholic domination. Erasmus wickedly cut into THEOLOGIANS who just make up stuff while failing to GLORIFY GOD by replacing His Word. Erasmus said that the Monks claimed to "Never touch a penny" for their sermons "WITHOUT two pairs of gloves."

Ken Sublett

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Sin Transmitted by recreational SEX!

September 6 2003, 11:29 AM 

On Marriage and Concupiscence to Valerius

Chapter 27 [XXIV.]-Through LUST Original Sin is Transmitted; Venial Sins in Married Persons; Concupiscence of the Flesh, the Daughter and Mother of Sin.

Wherefore the DEVIL holds infants GUILTY who are born,
..not of the good by which marriage is good,
....but of the EVIL of concupiscence [sexual desire],
..which, indeed, marriage uses aright,
....but at which even marriage has occasion to feel SHAME.

Marriage is itself "honourable in all" the goods which properly appertain to it;

..but even when it has its "bed undefiled" (not only by fornication and adultery, which are damnable disgraces,
....but also by any of those EXCESSES of cohabitation such as do not arise from any prevailing DESIRE of CHILDREN,
......but from an overbearing lust of PLEASURE, which are VENIAL sins in man and wife),

..yet, whenever it comes to the actual process of generation, the very embrace which is lawful and honourable
....cannot be effected without the ardour of LUST, so as to be able to accomplish that which appertains to the use of reason and not of lust.

Now, this ardour, whether following or preceding the will, does SOMEHOW, by a power of its own, MOVE the members which cannot be moved simply by the WILL,
..And in this manner it shows itself not to be the SERVANT of a will which COMMANDS it,
....but rather to be the punishment of a will which disobeys it.

It shows, moreover, that it must be excited, not by a FREE CHOICE, but by a certain SEDUCTIVE STIMULUS, and that on this very account it PRODUES SHAME.
..This is the CARNAL CONCUPIDISCENCE, which, while it is no longer accounted sin in the regenerate,
....yet in no case happens to nature except from sin.

"It is the DAUGHTER of sin, as it were; and whenever it yields assent to the commission of SHAMEFUL DEEDS, it becomes also the mother of many sins.

"Now from this concupiscence

..whatever comes into being by natural birth is bound by original sin, unless,

....indeed, it be born again in Him whom the Virgin CONCEIVED without this concupiscence. Wherefore, when He vouchsafed to be born in the flesh, He alone was born without sin.

But, then, the child mut be "baptized" or burried in a few drops of water ON THE FAITH of the same parents who enjoyed the sex which CAUSED the infant to be a Child of the Devil or guilty of ORIGINAL SIN.

Calvin calls the EXORCISM: to free the child from the grip of the DEVIL. Oooo Eeee Oooo: Witchcraft.

Ken Sublett

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do you doubt it?

October 4 2003, 10:42 AM 

Anyone out there who doubts that Engedi is all about promoting Calvinism needs to consider this. It is taken directly from their Forum on their web site from 9-04-03 and 9-13-03. Someone named 'Aleks' writes: "Hi, I am interested in learning more about the differences between Calvinism and Armenianism. I come from an Armenianist background, but I am open to learn more about Calvinism." The response from David Lawrence? "I would suggest you obtain Danny Hale's excellent tape series 'The Doctrines of Grace' from Engedi. You can order from the web site." (The next response is from a few minutes later as Lawrence describes how the Catholic church rejected Arminianism in the 17th century. This exactly fits the comments later on this web site regarding quotes from a book "The Other Side of Calvinism."

Do you doubt that is what this Church of Christ-based group is teaching? Just study it for yourself.

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Do you doubt it

October 4 2003, 6:16 PM 

David's problem is that he believes that the Bible is dated. Therefore, we need CHURCH COUNCILS to make new rulse which the SPIRIT OF CHRIST was unable to anticipate. What does he think of the recent CHURCH COUNCIL which admitted a PRACTICING HOMOSEXUAL?

Here is his statement which bases truth on the DOCTRINES OF MEN.

DAVID LAWRENCE:"Aleks, As far as Arminianism is concerned, it originated with Jacob Arminius of the University of Louvain in the early 17th century when he challenged accepted evangelical theology in 5 points.

ONE POINT: "He said that man is NOT fallen to the point he needs DIVINE GRACE to come to Christ, and the theologians meeting at Dordt said that he IS (1 Cor. 2:14, Jn 6:44);


The subject is not DIVINE GRACE but DIVINE KNOWLEDGE in 1 Cor. 2. God reveals His SPIRIT as the MIND OF CHRIST. Christ spoke and empowered the Apostles. They wrote and declared it to be eye-witness. That WITNESS never gives a hint that their parent's enjoying their conception passed on ORIGINAL SIN becase "sex is dirty." Those who seem destinated beyond redemption was the CLERGY who pretended that THEIR MESSAGE was more important than the Old Testament.

..2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath PREPARED for them that LOVE him.

You see, right up front you have a CONDITIONAL STATEMENT which demands free will. God prepared for them that LOVE Him. If we love God we WILL Obey His commandments. He did not say: NO one can hear, believe, repent, confess and be baptized.

2:10 But GOD HATH revealed them unto US by HIS Spirit: for the Spirit SEARCHETH all things, yea, the deep things of God.

God created mankind with a SPIRIT. Only after baptism is it said to be A holy spirit or A clear conscience. It is true that no man can know the THOUGHTS of of another MAN. Only the SPIRIT OF the man knows the THOUGHTS of the man.

2:11 For what MAN knoweth the things of a MAN, save the SPIRIT of MAN which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

Paul draws us some GEOMETRY:

God's Spirit is to God what man's spirit is to man. This utterly repudiates the SPIRIT PERSON who directly informs David Lawrence. There are MANY spirits in the world.

Therefore, the Spirit OF God is the MIND or thinking quality of God. After the ONE GOD thinks as "father" He puts it into effect with His Word as "son" as He breaths (the Spirit which is HOLY).

This is the most common understanding of those who call themselves Trinitarians: God is never cut up into separated beings.

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.

2:13 Which things also we SPEAK, not in the WORDS which mans wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

If it takes the SPIRIT PERSON in addition to a CHURCH COUNCIL then we have ASCENDED ABOVE THE GODHEAD.

Paul as a SPIRITUAL Apostle SPOKE that which he was enabled to hear from the APPEARANCE of the Lord who was "Jesus of Nazareth." Another man told Paul to be BAPTIZED to WASH AWAY his SINS as he called upon God asking for A clear conscience (1 Pe 3:21)

God saw that there was not a single MAN. Therefore, He sent His Arm to Intercede and Mediate the Word to man. He did that through the "WE" which was the APOSTLES as opposed to the YOU in Corinth who DID NOT RECEIVE A SINGLE WORD directly from God.

However superior a MAN is, he cannot read the MIND or SPIRIT of God:

2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
2:15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man

The Spirit OF God is the MIND of Christ because the WORD was WITH God because He WAS God. When Jesus spoke the WORD it was from the FATHER within spoken with His BREATH or Spirit.

2:16 For WHO hath known the MIND of the LORD, that he may instruct him?

.....But we have the MIND of CHRIST.

If councils can KNOW THE MIND OF THE LORD to CHANGE God's Mind then they claim to have power 2:16 says they DO NOT HAVE.

Paul, as part of the WE who were empowered by the Spirit of Christ said:

1 Cor 3:1 AND I, brethren, COULD NOT SPEAK unto YOU as unto spiritual, but as unto CARNAL, even as unto babes in Christ.

Paul MINISTERED the SPIRIT by speaking or preaching. They were NOT ABLE yet to hear. Therefore, he preached the MILK OF THE WORD. Why didn't Paul just say: "Give it up, you are not ignorant, you are not carnal, you are just NOT CALLED." He did not because it would be nonesense.

The fact that they were CARNAL was based on their inability to EAT THE MEAT of the Word. Paul did not tell them that God would INFUSE them with new truth. Rather, Paul would come to them or write to them because only the apostles had the MIND OF CHRIST which is the SPIRIT OF GOD by direct teaching and being "guided into all truth.

Point Two by David Lawrence being MISGUIDED by some "spirit" so that he cannot even read the context:

John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me DRAW HIM: and I will raise him up at the last day.

But the very next verse turns and bites David Lawrence and proves that when you LOSE the love of the Word, God blinds you:

John 6:45 It is written in the PROPHETS (by the Spirit of Christ 1Pe 1:11), And they shall be all TAUGHT of God. EVERY MAN therefore that hath HEARD, and hath learned of the Father, COMETH unto ME.

FAITH still comes by hearing based on the Bible and to reject the Bible is to cease to be a Christian.

Those who hear, believe and COME to Christ are GIVEN TO CHRIST to be adopted children. Only after baptism are they ADDED to the body or family of Christ.

The IMPOSSIBILITY of a human to read God's Spirit or the Mind of Christ proves that NO ONE is going to get the CALL if, as confessed, they CANNOT hear the Word.

Because God KNEW that this was impossible, He laid aside His Majesty and Glory and as the WORD was incarnated in a human body to SPEAK that word with His Breath or Spirit. The chosen and empowered Apostles claimed that the RECORDED Word to be REMEMBERED of Christ and the Apostles were God's UNIQUE ACT IN HISTORY to make possible that which was impossible. If we reject the "once for all times revealed Word" what keeps us from rejecting the "One act of Righteousness" of Jesus Christ?

If God comes and pecks you on the shoulder, then the entire Bible is a scam and the death of Christ as the WORD was wasted. And such preachers are the ULTIMATE scam artists.

Ken Sublett

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Re: Do you doubt it

October 6 2003, 5:31 PM 

Question for Bro. Sublett, only. A couple of weeks I was able to access the complete discussion you had put together regarding Engedi from the main page of
This week I don't see it listed there. Where can I find that information now?

This web page has been invaluable to our friends who are trying to equip themselves to defend against this Calvinistic teaching that was beginning to gain some headway in our brotherhood. Thanks for the service you are providing.

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Re: Re: Do you doubt it

October 7 2003, 7:04 PM 

It's Back: sorry,


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now you see it, now you don't again

October 20 2003, 5:04 PM 

Some friends have been checking out the main home page and have been unable to find the invaluable information that was posted there earlier.
Is it listed under some other heading than Engedi (like Calvinism, Predestination) ?

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Ephesians 2

November 12 2003, 11:03 AM 

By Abe Goolsby at Engedi:
"In chapter 2, Paul brings these transcendental concepts to home by showing what all of this means for us, which is truly good news. We learn that each of us who believes was once in a state of spiritual death (vs. 1); that in such a state we were objects of God's wrath (vs. 3); but that God in His mercy made us alive through the riches of His grace and (vs. 4 and 5). The very essence of Biblical teaching is found in verses 8-10 where Paul asserts that our salvation, every aspect of it, is the work of God from beginning to end and not due to anything inherent within us."
The Ephesians were not born CHILDREN OF WRATH. Paul clearly said that they were dead because they WALKED that way:

..."AND you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and SINS; Eph 2:1

..."Wherein in time past YE WALKED according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit (An unholy spirit) that NOW worketh in the children of DISOBEDIENCE: Eph 2:2
....... 2:2LIV You went along with the crowd and were just like all the others, full of sin, OBEYING SATAN, the mighty prince of the power of the air, who is at work right now in the hearts of those who are AGAINST the Lord.
..."Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of OUR flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. Eph 2: 3

Next, Paul did not define SALVATION in a Calvinistic sense. The next verses have the SAME Paul defining baptism as the NEW BIRTH: spiritual regeneration.

But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Eph 2: 4
..Even when we were dead in sins, hath QUICKENED (regenerated) us together WITH Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) Ephesians 2:5
....And hath RAISED us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places IN Christ Jesus: Ephesians 2:6

Paul used the same description of Baptism so that the highway is there but fools cannot stumble into the right way: The same Paul defined this as baptism to the Colossians:

Buried with him in BAPTISM, wherein also ye are RISEN with him through the faith of the OPERATION of God, who hath raised him from the dead. Col.2:12
....And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Col 2:13

Baptism is not just our faith that Jesus is the Christ: it is our faith in the OPERATION OF GOD in that He had the power to REGENERATE and resurrect. If you BELIEVETH NOT that fact then you CANNOT be baptized and have Him save you: you call God in Christ a liar for claiming that you are saved AFTER faith obeys in Baptism.

Paul calls the MOST IMPORTANT part of the gospel the PROTOS or form or PATTERN. Mark 1 says that the foundation principle of the gospel to those of us WHO ARE NOT JESUS CHRIST is baptism as John and the disciples of Jesus began baptizing REPENTANT sinners FOR the remission of Sins. And Paul tells the Romans what He told the Ephesians and Colossians. Rather than being dead IN sins, a baptized believer had better be dead TO sins in a willful sense

God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? Rom 6:2
..Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized INTOnto his death? Rom 6:3
....Therefore we are buried WITH him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was RAISED up from the dead by the GLORY of the FATHER, even so WE also should walk in NEWNESS of life. Rom 6:4

For if we have been planted together in the likeness (Form) of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Rom 6:5
....Knowing this, that our old man is crucified WITH him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. Rom 6:6

Jesus Christ directly commanded baptism to GLORIFY His power to save as long as time shall last. Only baptism SHOWS that God's grace is powerful enough to keep His WORD from becomming obsolete. Baptism is Christ's work: don't repudiate Him. His message does not change to fit our "enlightened" minds.

....That in the ages to come he might SHEW (indicate by an act) the exceeding riches of his GRACE, in his kindness toward us, THROUGH Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2:7


If you are not baptizing and are minimizing baptism then Jesus claims that you are a treacherous, slippery fellow. This is the only visible ACT where we declare the GLORY OF GOD before witnesses in relation to His resurrection.

The assembly glorifies Christ through the Lord's Supper where we show forth or preach His DEATH.

The assembly also glorifies Christ by focusing on baptism as the only showing ACT of grace in His resurrection. If a church does not it simply denies that salvation is by Grace through faith where faith obeys:

....For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the GIFT of God: Ephesians 2:8

The CONTEXT means "saved by grace through faith in the operation of God in baptism." Paul says it several times so lifting Ephesiand 2 out of context will not work.

Note the parallelism between not of yourselves and not of works.

....Not of works, lest any man should boast. Ephesians 2:9

Paul says that faith comes by hearing the Word. The Word is a gift of God preached to produce faith. While the gift is GRACE and not FAITH, it is a fact that no one could believe without a message from God. Again, God is the "Fuller" who washes us and clothes us with His own shining garments. Workmanship is related to washing us:

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Eph 2:10

Conclusions: Ephesians 2 which is used as the KEY proof for salvation by Grace through Faith WITHOUT baptism mystically and with a show of end-times "supernatural" help CANNOT SEE that Paul proves that baptism is where we are REGENERATED by God. When churches almost universally REFUSE to show forth BAPTISM as the time and place where God washes our spirit and regenerates us, they REPUDIATE Grace through Faith and it seems like an end-time MARK. In effect, those who "Believeth not" CANNOT be baptized and the words Jesus used shows that they are treacherous infidels.

Ken Sublett

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November 21 2003, 10:13 AM 

I have updated the Engedi Ministries Home Page.

The new link is


Eklektos (g1588) means favorite or select.

Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God CHOSEN the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him? Ja.2:5

This does not mean that only the poor can be become part of Christ's Kingdom.

Eklegomai (g1586) ek-leg'-om-ahee; mid. from 1537 and 3004 (in its prim. sense); to select: - make choice, choose (out), chosen.

God elects us by calling us out of the world. Many are called but few are chosen. Thi word is made up of two parts:

Ek means "out of."

Lego (g3004) leg'-o; a prim. verb; prop. to "lay" forth, i.e. (fig.) relate (in words [usually of systematic or set discourse... by impl. to mean: - ask, bid, call,

Peter invited the Jews on the day of Pentecost. The gospel went out into Judea and into the UTTERMOST part of the world meaning "gentiles." Luke was a "gentile."

Paul said that MY GOSPEL is CHRIST'S GOSPEL. So, there are not two gospels and not TWO or more crucifixions.

Paul used another word:

Unto the church (ekklesia g1577) of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: 1 Cor 1:2

Called is:

Kletos (g2822) klay-tos; from the same as 2821; invited, i.e. appointed, or (spec.) a saint: - called.

Klesis (g2821) klay'-sis; from a shorter form of 2564; an invitation (fig.): - calling.

Kaleo (g2564) kal-eh'-o; akin to the base of 2753; to "call" (prop. aloud, but used in a variety of applications, dir. or otherwise): - bid, call (forth), (whose, whose sur-) name (was [called]).

Those who are CHOSEN by being CALLED OUT by the INVITATION of the Gospel by the Word are added to the church. Note: both ekklesia and Synagogue are GREEK words. The church is not a Jewish sacrificial center but a SCHOOL OF THE BIBLE.

Ekklesia (g1577) ek-klay-see'-ah; from a comp. of 1537 and a der. of 2564; a calling out, i.e. (concr.) a popular meeting, espec. a religious congregation (Jewish synagogue, or Chr. community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both): - assembly, church.

The only way to be ADDED to the ekklesia is to be baptized into Christ.

Ac.2:41 Then they that GLADLY RECEIVED his word were BAPTIZED: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.

Those who BELIEVETH NOT were not just those without faith: the word defines them as treacherous or infidels.

Acts 2:47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the CHURCH daily those who were BEING saved.


Read the GOSPEL which includes BAPTISM. Jesus said so and if you reject it you call Him, based on the words He used, a liar.

Here Rubel Shelly claim that there is a LEAP from repenting to receiving the Direct Gushing Forth of the Holy Spirit which he claims is one of the members of the Family of God.

The prophet Rubel Shelly uses to claim the Holy Spirit Gushing out actually proves that those who do not SPEAK THE WORD OF GOD are cracked pots. The self-dug cisterns speak directly of the FURTHER EXPOUNDING or PRIVATE INTERPRETATION about which Peter warned. This, he says, is a MARK of a false prophet. And Jesus said that those who speak on their own are sons of the Devil.

Jesus said "My Words are Spirit and Life" so don't get too cozy with people who claim to hear the audible voice of the Spirit. Sure, I know that "fools love to be fooled" but,

Isaiah 35:8 And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not journey on it; it will be for those who walk in that Way wicked fools will not go about on it.

GOD NEVER CREATES AN INDIVIDUAL JUST TO SEND THEM TO HELL: YEA, NOT EVEN AN INCH LONG. Remember too, that we found the way ORIGINAL SIN is transmitted: If your mother enjoyed conceiving you then you are an adulterer, yea even a Sodomite.

Ken Sublett

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Ephesians 1

December 11 2003, 1:34 PM 

I never cease to be amazed that people can build a whole destructive religious scheme: even one which questions the goodness and justice of God. I was giving a bit of attention to Ephesians One because Ephesians Two defines GRACE THROUGH FAITH as baptism if you can bare to look at the beginning of the chapter. Here are my gleanings:

God spoke to the Israelites:

For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God: the Lord thy God hath CHOSEN THE to be a SPECIAL PEOPLE unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. Deut 7:6

The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: Deut 7:7

Did the Israelite keep all of God's commandments? Did He not treat other nations as His? Israel had the mandate to be a blessing to the nations; not to be a SELECT, SUPERIOR MINORITY.

And the Lord hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people, as he hath promised thee,
.....and that thou SHOULDEST keep all his COMMANDMENTS; Deut 26:18

IN EPHESIANS ONE before defining baptism in Ephesians 2 Paul wrote:

PAUL, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus: Ephesians 1:1
..Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 1:2
....Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: Ephesians 1:3

Remember that God choose Israel as a special people: their task should have been to be a blessing to all nations as commanded to Abraham. The message is ALWAYS that God picks peole TO BE HOLY AND WITHOUT BLAME.

According as he hath CHOSEN us in him before the foundation of the world,
....THAT we should be HOLY and without blame before him in love: Ephesians 1:4

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto GOOD WORKS,
....WHICH God hath before ORDAINED that we should WALK in THEM. Eph 2:10

That doesn't sound like those SELECTED in the Calvinistic sense who REPUDIATE the words of God and claim that we should listen to CHURCH COUNCILS.
God also CHOOSE the GENTILES or predestinated to be Holy:

.."Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past GENTILES in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands Eph 2: 11


And you, that were sometime ALIENATED and enemies in your mind BY WICKED WORKS, yet now hath he reconciled Col 1:21
.....IN THE BODY of his flesh through death, to present you HOLY and UNBLAMEABLE and unreproveable in his sight: Col 1:22

For God hath not CALLED us UNTO uncleanness, but unto HOLINESS. 1 Thess 4:7

God PREDESTINATED us to salvation THROUGH Baptism where the FAITHFUL receive A holy spirit or A clear consciousness.

.."But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning CHOSEN you to salvation
....THROUGH SANCTIFICATION of the SPIRIT and BELIEF of the truth: 2 Thes 2:13
.......Whereunto he CALLED you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Thes 2: 14


Jesus commanded that the gospel be preached to the NATIONS or Gentiles: This was God's predestinated purpose. But, very few obey the gospel in baptism.

This does not guarantee that all will REMAIN faithful:

Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle. 2 Thes 2: 15
ELECT according to the foreknowledge of God the Father,
......through SANCTIFICATION (making it HOLY) of the Spirit, unto OBEDIENCE and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. 1 Peter 1:2

Let us draw near with a TRUE heart in full assurance of faith, having our HEARTS SPRINKLED from an evil conscience, and our BODIES WASHED with pure WATER. Heb.10:22

Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God CHOSEN THE POOR of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom
-------which he hath PROMISED to them that LOVE HIM? James 2:5


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engedi exposed

January 18 2004, 10:01 PM 

Ken, with the informative web-page you've assembled (entitled ENGEDI MINSITRIES REVIEW) and with all the people who casually surf the web, if it is possible from a technology standpoint, I feel it would be of a real spiritual service to those who may stumble upon the Engedi site without realizing their old heresies, if you would retitle your page ENGEDI MINISTRY EXPOSED.
Two reasons for this: it seems there is only one Engedi Ministry, but more importantly, to make people aware, up front, that this organization (like most with a Hyper-Calvinistic base,) rarely point out the horrible negative implications of their false teachings (ie. that it somehow 'pleases' God to send so many people to hell, that God 'causes' and uses the rape of innocent children as some part of his grand 'plan', etc. -this is Good News???????)

I beg you to consider this simple change for your web page; it could make the difference in the spiritual direction of MANY people. What you have shown us is truly ENGEDI MINISTRY EXPOSED>

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January 19 2004, 11:12 AM 

Take a look:

I have some other stuff I need to post. E-mail all of your friends. They are working in Hohenwald, TN now and there is a TROUBLED church tending toward replacing CHRIST with COMMUNITY. And their plan is to infiltrate and divert churches.

Anyone who would steal your church should be considered dangerious: the sweeter the more dangerious I have found.

A small add directing people to Concerned Members and
my fuller comments is someting everyone can afford to do in every newspaper in the country.

Thanks, Ken

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Doers explained as FREE WILL

January 13 2004, 12:28 PM 

    Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. James 1:12
    Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: James 1:13
    But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed (entrapped, deluded). James 1:14
As God does not DRAG us into His body, the EKklessia, He does not DRAG us into sin

Ecelko (g1828) ex-el'-ko; from 1537 and 1670; to drag forth, i.e. (fig.) to entice (to sin): - draw away.

"His OWN" is idios: one's own, separate, alone.
These people who are ENTICED have followed a DECOY or BAIT .Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. James 1:15KJV

The DECOY or BAIT of Satan USING the Lamech family where HANDLE instruments meant WITHOUT AUTHORITY is to turn evil females and perverted males loos to SEDUCE those who have used PERSONAL CHARISMA to be able to SPEAK without being challenged as one does not question a LOVER.

"Then, when
    desire has CONCEIVED ,
    it GIVES BIRTH to sin ;
    and sin, when it is FULL-GROWN ,
    brings forth death. James 1:15NKJ
    [g5088 Tikto=produce from seed, be born]

Finished is Apoteleo (g658) ap-ot-el-eh'-o; from 575 and 5055; to complete entirely, i.e. consummate: - finish.
Teleo (g5055) tel-eh'-o; from 5056; to end, i.e. complete, execute, conclude, discharge (a debt): - accomplish, make an end, expire, fill up, finish, go over, pay, perform.
Telos (g5056) tel'-os; from a prim. tello, (to set out for a definite point of goal); prop. the point aimed at as a limit, i.e. (by impl.) the conclusion of an act or state (termination [lit., fig. or indef.], result [immed., ultimate or prophetic], purpose); spec. an impost or levy (as paid): - / continual, custom, end (-ing), finally, uttermost. Comp. 5411

I'll bet it works the same way for PLANTING the Seed which leads to a SPIRITUAL Birth. Believing means that the SEED has been RECEIVED.

This is an important connection with DOING as the only way to enliven or FAITH stick in the mind. So, we will do a separate article which will be at:

Ken Sublett

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Denying God's Sovereignty

February 21 2004, 12:55 PM 

The DIONYSUS or BACCHUS worshipers among the clergy tried to TRIUMPH OVER Jesus. That is they tried to perform a SPECTACLE where Jesus was the VICTIM to be mocked in the Arena of Death.

However, Jesus triumphed over the ancient, AND MODERN pagan priestcraft. The PREDESTINATED plan was that His Adopted children might sit in the SPECTATOR'S seat and watch the pagan mockers be destroyed before their eyes. One such PREDESTINATION word is;

proor-izôdetermine beforehand, hêmeran Hld.7.24 ; predetermine, predestine, hêmas eis huiothesian Ep.Eph.1.5 ; ti genesthai Act.Ap.4.28 ; tinas summorphous (sc. genesthai) Ep.Rom.8.29.

The CHOREGO or Chorus leader who will LEAD US IN TRIUMPH is the SPIRITUAL opposite of the Satanic "worship leader." Even at his worst, he provided beforehand for the entire SPECTACLE. He did not PREDESTINATE the musicians but he PROVIDED BEFOREHAND the whole dramatic crew and for the SPECTATORS. The CHOREGO does not CHARGE for the spectacle or he would be dishonored. He is to

prochorêgeô, provide beforehand, to analôma par' heautou SIG679.30 (Magn.Mae., ii B.C.).

adoptio , o-nis, f. [v. adoptatio] , a taking or receiving of one in the place of a child (also of a grandchild, Dig. 1, 7, 10), an adopting, adoption (properly of one still under paternal authority, in patria potestate; on the contr., arrogatio referred to one who was already independent, homo sui juris. The former took place before the praetor or other magistrate and five witnesses, by a threefold mancipatio

II. Transf., of plants, the ingrafting, Of bees, the admittance to or reception in a new hive: in spiritual sense of adoption as children of God: adoptionem filiorum Dei, Vulg. Rom. 8, 23 ; ib. Gal. 4, 5; ib. Ephes. 1, 5.

God planned beforehand that he would engraft us as children: an adopted child was WASHED and then added to the adopting family.

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, Eph 1:5

Peter said that at baptism we REQUEST Christ to give us A holy spirit or A clear conscience.

praedestino , a-vi, a-tum, 1, v. a., to determine beforehand, to predestine (not ante-Aug.): triumphos, in ADOPTION filiorum, Vulg. Eph. 1, 5

Jesus will turn the BACCHUC TRIUMPH as part of the "Abomination of Desloation" in the Temple and the same BOWING DOWN to be perverted by the Jews BACK ON these religious and Jesus will lead US in a triumph over Bacchus:

triumphus (in the earliest per. written triumpus ; v. the foll.; and cf. Cic. Or. 48, 160; Quint. 1, 5, 20; and the letter P), i, m. [cf. thriambos, a hymn in honor of Bacchus] .

II. To provide beforehand: cavea modico praedestinata pretio, App. M. 4, 15 .


modicus , a, um, adj. [modus] , having or keeping a proper measure, moderate

summetr-os , on, ( [metron] ) commensurate with, of like measure or size with

pretium That for or by which any thing is bought or sold (class.). Price or worth </br>
We are called according to his PROPOSAL:

Prothesis (g4286) proth'-es-is; from 4388; a SETTING FORTH i.e. (fig.) proposal (intention); spec. the show-bread (in the Temple) as exposed before God: - purpose, shew [-bread].

EVERYONE went out to be baptized of John and the disciples of Jesus. However, the wicked would have to REPENT before they could be baptized. God elected or INVITED people as HIS PROPOSAL. However.

And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. Luke 7:29

But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him. Luke 7:30

Boule (g1012) boo-lay'; from 1014; volition, i.e. (obj.) advice, or (by impl.) purpose: - / advise, counsel, will.

A word with the same meaning of of God's PRE-PURPOSE for all:

Prothumia (g4288) proth-oo-mee'-ah; from 4289; predisposition, i.e. alacrity: - forwardness of mind, readiness (of mind), ready (willing) mind.

No one at Smith Springs can point to any person in the Bible who was predestinated to heaven or Hell. God PROVIDED BEFOREHAND that the Gentiles would sit in the same SPECTATORS SEAT to watch the BACCHUS or perverted musicians destroy themselves.

People who will steal the REST Jesus died to give, and who will steal your "building" will steal your souls.

When Israel's elders fired God and HIS PREDESTINATED PLAN for Canaan, they wanted A KING SET OVER US. This brought on the Monarchy and the KINGS destroyed the nation. The Ekklesia or synagogue of Christ is a school of the Bible. It has no STANDING ARMY. When the assembly disbands the "leaders" do not have their clammy hands on your finances, the classes you attend or the SECULAR organization they set over you. If they attempt to extend their DOMINION over your righteous life OUTSIDE of the assembly then you are in a CULT. Jesus said that two or three ASSEMBLED or synagogued would also have Him there. He would be the Master Teacher through His Word "taught as it had been taught." Don't let yourself get in the new style churches where the MINISTERS ride on the back of WIDOWS and then "steal their church houses."


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Anon. What are you guys scared of

March 10 2004, 2:36 PM 

Moved back to give more room:

    Anon says: 3 God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through FAITH in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished - he did it to demonstrate his justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those wo have FAITH in Jesus." Romans 3:21-26 (and I could go on)

One of the big mistakes of Zwingli and the Baptists who followed is that he makes RIGHTEOUSNESS mean SALVATION or REMISSION of Sins. The second problem with understanding Romans is that Paul is fighting the Jewish converts who believed that they were made righteous by simply being born a Jew and being circumcised. But the BOOK OF THE LAW was added because of transgression to regulate a lawless tribal people and not to make them righeous. That specific sin called RISING UP TO PLAY was the musical idolatry of the Egyptian Triad.
Under Abraham and under THE FAITH If God told Abraham to "fold thy tent" then Abraham would be justified when he simply folded his tent. Abraham lived under a SYSTEM OF FAITH long before the SYSTEM OF LAW which was added as a curse. THE Faith OF Christ is contrasted with THE works of Law.

The KEY NOTE is not a plan of salvation but THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE: the Jews failed UNDER the Law of Moses and the Gentiles failed UNDER natural religion. The death of Christ would demonstrate God's righteous judgment upon all sinners and HIS righteousness to those who lived before and during the LAW period. No one was ACTUALLY freed from sin until Christ came. Faith still justifies but does not WASH our spirits to enable a dialog with God the Holy Spirit as the ONLY type of Worship He accepts in the NEW PLACE of A holy spirit which enables us to "come boldly before the throne of grace." No person or institution can do anything but HINDER our personal worship. That is why Jesus built an ekklesia or synagogue where two or three might meet to "Learn of Me."
    Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare HIS righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; Ro.3:25

    To declare, I say, at THIS TIME his righteousness: that HE might be just, and THE justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. Rom 3:26

A person who is counted righteous has "equity of character."

The word BELIEVETH means more than "believe the facts ABOUT Jesus."
    Pistis (g4102) pis'-tis; from 3982; persuasion, i.e. credence; mor. conviction (of religious truth, or the truthfulness of God or a religious teacher), espec. RELIANCE upon Christ for salvation; abstr. constancy in such profession; by extens. THE SYSTEM of RELIGIOUS (Gospel) TRUTH itself: - assurance, belief, believe, faith, fidelity.

    Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay; but by the law of faith. Rom 3:27

    Then what can we boast about doing to earn our salvation? Nothing at all. Why? Because our acquittal is not based on our good deeds; it is based on what Christ has done and our faith in him. Rom 3:27LIV

Some people trust THEIR FAITH and some trust THEIR BAPTISM but "becomming right with God" is based on what Christ has DONE. If Christ has gone through the PROTOTYPE gospel in His death, burial and resurrection then Paul says that we TRUST in His actions. We cannot JUST BELIEVE in what Jesus did but we must TRUST or have faith in THE SYSTEM OF FAITH rather than our ability to believe.

SAVING FAITH is not just believing facts but TRUSTING that God who raised the Son can also REGENERATE us spiritually:
    Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through THE FAITH of the OPERATION OF GOD (energy) , who hath raised him from the dead. Col 2:12
Paul says we do that in the FORM which is water baptism.
THE OBJECT OF THE TEXT is not a one-step LAW of salvation but it is;

    Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the DEEDS of the LAW. Romans 3:28
    Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also: Rom 3:29
JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH VALIDATES the Law which was given to punish the Lawless and not to save sinners. Paul leapfrogs the Law of Moses and returns to the Abrahamic covenant:
    WHAT shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the FLESH, hath found? Rom 4:1

    For if Abraham were justified by works (of the LAW), he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. Rom 4:2

    For what saith the scripture? Abraham BELIEVED God, and it was COUNTED unto him for RIGHTEOUSNESS. Rom 4:3

    Now to him that worketh (expend energy=ergs) is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. Rom 4:4

    But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that JUSTIFIETH the UNGODLY, his faith is counted (spoken of as) for righteousness. Rom 4:5

Righteousness does not mean actual REMISSION of Sins or SALVATION. When Abraham did what God told him to do, each and every time, God considered him to have faith. Abraham was not LOST.

The people of Tyre and Sidon would receive more mercy than the people who saw Jesus' miracles. Justification or righteousness speaks of one's CHARACTER as seen by God:
    Dikaiosune (g1343) dik-ah-yos-oo'-nay; from 1342; equity (of character or act); spec. (Chr.) justification: - righteousness.
    Dike (g1349) dee'-kay; prob. from 1166; right (as SELF- EVIDENT), i.e. justice (the principle, a decision, or its execution): - judgment, punish vengeance.

ABRAHAM WAS NOT JUSTIFIED BY PERSONAL FAITH-ONLY BUT HE LIVED BEFORE THE LAW OF MOSES and had to be COUNTED or spoken of as righteous because God loves all who believe in Him and obey Him. GOD TOLD ISAAC:
    And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed (singular) shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; Gen 26:4

    Because that Abraham OBEYED my voice, and KEPT my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws. Gen 26:5

    Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing. KEEPING God's commands is what counts. 1Co.7:19

The COMMANDMENTS of THE FAITH of Christ are not THE LAW of Moses (added because of musical idolatry). But we are never ABOVE obeying the commands of Christ. One of His last Commands was to MAKE DISCIPLES by baptizing and teaching what Christ revealed. A disciple is a Christian and must be baptized.
    Entole (g1785) en-tol-ay'; from 1781; injunction, i.e. an authoritative prescription: - commandment, precept.

    For IN Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that COUNTS is faith expressing (working) itself through love. Ga.5:6

Paul does not rail against obeying COMMANDMENTS. His goal it to dissuade the Jews that they were predestinated by the LAW OF MOSES. If you don't love Jesus then don't obey His commandment about baptism. Remember that you cannot COMMAND faith but you can command obedience.


People who lived under the Law of Moses, according to David, who walked by FAITH did not have their sins COUNTED against them. However, in time, both they and we would become--not just counted--but ACTUALLY regenerated to become a NEW MAN of victory. As long as a person has faith they are COUNTED or spoken of as righteous but they ARE NOT in fact Righteous. This righteousness of SPIRIT is what Jesus died to give us.
    Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to ALL the seed; not to that only which is OF THE LAW, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, Rom 4:16

    (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things WHICH BE NOT as though they were. Rom 4:17

COUNTED or RECKONED is God speaking approval over us even though we are NOT righteous. When we follow Jesus in THAT FORM of doctrine (Rom 6) then God TRULY forgives all of our sins and gives us A new spirit which is HOLY because He purges it of sin when we REQUEST A clear conscience at Baptism.
The UNrighteous were not approved until they repented:
    When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. Mark 2:17
God SPEAKING approval (counting as righteous) over us when we believe does not do what God has promised to those who obey Him:
    And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of GOD IN CHRIST, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect. Gal 3:17

    For if the inheritance be OF THE LAW, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise. Gal 3:18

    Wherefore then serveth the law? It was ADDED because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. Gal 3:19

    Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one. Gal 3:20

There was no LIFE under the law. Under THE FAITH we are still COUNTED righteous when we believe. This faith gives us THE POWER to become children of God and become SPIRITUALLY RIGHTEOUS because we permit God to "sprinkle our hearts" when we "request" a clear conscience or A holy spirit as our 'BODIES ARE WASHED."
    But as many as received him, to them gave he POWER (privilege or ability) to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: John 1:12
God GIVES us actual life rather than just COUNTING us righteous because he HAD FAITH before or during the Law period.
    Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. Gal 3:21

    But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith OF Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. Gal 3:22

    But before FAITH (THE system of faith) came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto THE FAITH which should afterwards be revealed. Gal 3:23

    Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Gal 3:24

    But after THAT FAITH IS COME, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. Gal 3:25

    FOR ye are all the CHILDREN of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:26
    FOR as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Gal 3:27

We are "counted" as righteous when we have faith IN Christ as the Son of God. Until God "counts" us as being what we are not He does not make us ACTUALLY, spiritually alive by being CUT OFF from sin:
    In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Col 2:11

    Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through THE FAITH of the OPERATION OF GOD (energy) , who hath raised him from the dead. Col 2:12

When Jesus gave the Great Commission He used a word BELIEVE which includes OBEDIENCE in Baptism. Those who HAD FAITH must also believe what JESUS actually commanded. Those who BELIEVETH not were lost already because they were hostile to the very idea of God. The concept of BELIEVETH NOT included the idea of calling God a liar.

We should see Romans 6 as going beyond living RIGHT and therefore being RIGHTEOUS, and being baptized to destroy the body of sin so that we can walk in newness of life. People who live a righteous life need to submit to THE FAITH of THE COMMAND to be baptized asking that God MAKE US new creatures in fact rather than just being COUNTED right by God's forebearance.


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You are right about one thing...

March 10 2004, 7:38 PM 

"'Some people trust THEIR FAITH and some trust THEIR BAPTISM but "becomming right with God" is based on what Christ has DONE."

This is a very profound statement. Thank you for saying it. However, what do you mean by "System of Faith" in the following sentence: "We cannot JUST BELIEVE in what Jesus did but we must TRUST or have faith in THE SYSTEM OF FAITH rather than our ability to believe."?

Also, I fear that you think that I believe that baptism is not an essential element in the saved persons life. I absolutely believe in the commandment of God that every believer wear the sign of the new covenant. This is not an optional thing for any believer. I do, however, believe that baptism is not efficacious in and of itself. It is simply a sign of salvation and not a cause of salvation. It only identifies me with Christ, it has no power to save.

By the way, you never responded to my quote on Calvin and Servetus. I was looking foward to your response.



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Faith only

March 11 2004, 10:53 AM 

You gave me a PROOF TEXT for faith only.

I read the broader context to show that Paul was contrasting THE FAITH with THE LAW. THE FAITH defines the Gospel plan as THE LAW defines the Old Covenant.

Before THE FAITH came people were still justified by PERSONAL FAITH but their sins were not remitted.

You respond with the usual DEVIOUS "agreement"
...."Also, I fear that you think that I believe that baptism is not an essential element in the saved persons life. I absolutely believe in the commandment of God that every believer wear the SIGN of the new covenant. This is not an optional thing for any believer. I do, however, believe that baptism is not efficacious in and of itself. It is simply a sign of salvation and not a cause of salvation. It only identifies me with Christ, it has no power to save."

No one thinks that BAPTISM is efficacious in and of itself if you mean immersing in water. Just as God placed FULL DEITY in a human made of over 75% water He has the power to make baptism following faith, repentance and confession EFFICACIOUS or we call Jesus Christ a liar. Jesus commanded it, Peter, Paul and others obeyed it IN ORDER to the remission of sins and everyone believed it in one form or another until Zwingli in 1525. The BAPTIST faith is clearly identified as a Gnostic, American religion blossomed out in 321 forms following the First Great American Awakening.

But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Rom 4:5

Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Rom 4:6

But, let's see that David did not speak of FAITH ONLY.

Paul quotes David so again look to see that David was in a relationship with God so he is not discussing FAITH AS A ONE STEP FORMULA FOR SALVATION.

(A Psalm of David, Maschil.) BLESSED is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Psa 32:1

What happiness for those whose guilt has been forgiven! What joys when sins are covered over! What relief for those who have confessed their sins and God has cleared their record. Psa 32:1LIV

Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile. Psa 32:2

When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. Psa 32:3

For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah. Psa 32:4

I acknowledged my sin unto thee,

and mine iniquity have I not hid.

I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord;

and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. Psa 32:5

For this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto him. Psa 32:6

So, what do we have?

Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Rom 4:6

One is not justified BY FAITH by:
Being without guile,
Admit one's sins and not hide iniquity
Confesses to God
Prays to God
THEN God forgives iniquity.
This is TO WHOM God does not IMPUTE iniquity.

But God NOT IMPUTING sin means the same as ONE RECKONED RIGHTEOUS. God could see faithful people as having a standing before Him. However, he "passed over" the sin and WINKED at both Jew and Gentile

And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to REPENT: Ac 17:30

Command is one of those "hateful words"

Paraggello (g3853) par-ang-gel'-lo; from 3844 and the base of 32; to transmit a message, i.e. (by impl.) to enjoin: - (give in) charge, (give) command (-ment), declare.

Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead. Acts 17:31


In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Col 2:11

FAITH- ONLY does not trust the OPERATION OF GOD:

Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through THE FAITH OF THE OPERATON of GOD, who hath raised him from the dead. Col.2:12

FAITH in Lord Jesus Christ INSISTS that one believe Jesus who commanded that the TWO parts of being "washed" to be a DISCIPLE of Jesus is:

Baptizing AND teaching them Christ's teachings.

One who is a BAPTIZED disciple of Jesus is called a CHRISTIAN and no others are so identified. No one is called a BELIEVER who is not baptized INTO Christ.

You can be MORE RIGHTEOUS than others and you can be more RELIGIOUS than others but Christianity is NOT a religion: it is a School of the Bible where the DIRECT COMMAND is to shuffle off the ANXIETY OR LABOR LADING of "exciting" rituals and COME LEARN OF ME.


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March 11 2004, 2:38 PM 

Mr. Sublett,

I am not attempting to be "DEVIOUS," I am simply attempting to show you where I am coming from in my belief of baptism. I can tell where our disagreement is, I just believe that you are not giving me the benifit of the doubt with regard to where I place the emphasis on baptism. Are you saying that since Christ instituted baptism, that he can make it the effectual act that one must undergo to be saved (much as God did with circumcision in the Old Testament)? And since Christ made baptism the effectual act, that it cannot be considered among the "works" that we are told cannot be done in order to be saved?

I have a tendency to get lost in your statements. I am sure it is my lack of understanding. But I do appreciate what appears to be a great amount of time, effort, and thought that you put into your statements, even though I am tending to disagree with more than I am agreeing with. Hopefully, these things can be worked through.

Thanks again.

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Mark Waggoner
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Re: Response...

March 13 2004, 10:39 AM 

Dear Anon

We must be careful when "we" place the "emphasis on baptism". Christ did make immersion for the forgiveness of sin the "effectual act" of obedience as long as it is preceded by belief that leads to repentance. Christ has "all authority" (Matt. 28:18) to do so and reminded the disciples of this prior to giving His command to go make disciples, immerse, and teach. When we read of being saved by faith in the New Testament, it is referring to whatever actions God has specified as being necessary. "You see that faith was working with his works, and as a result of the works, faith was perfected;" (James 2:22). "You see that a man is justified by works, and not by faith alone. For as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead." (James 2:24, 26). If salvation is by grace alone, Peter would not have responded as he did in Acts 2:38. Also, notice that Saul had to "get up and do something" in order for God's grace to wash away his sins (Acts 22:16).

The Bible clearly shows that there are conditions for pleasing God. The conditions do not nullify the grace of God, which with Christ's blood constitute the grounds of our salvation. Immersion constitutes the condition of our salvation.

Mark Waggoner

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March 13 2004, 12:36 PM 

So true. I don't argue from OUR grasp of baptism but from the Bible. History helps confirm our belief in the Bible.

We can say that only those who believed in ORIGINAL SIN believed in baptismal regeneration. However, the scholars used by faith only people never minimized baptism but always qualify it as BAPTISM without faithful obedience which was impossible for infants. The logic is missed from people like John Calvin or Spurgeon who reasoned:

Baptism WIHOUT FAITH (arguing against the Catholics) does not save.

Therefore BAPTISM DOES NOT SAVE. That is true but they always meant sprinkling infants WITHOUT PERSONAL FAITH.

Modern faith-only people derive from Zwingli who made the same argument and belittled baptism. But the CONTEXT was of infants who COULD NOT BELIEVE.

Luther saw infant baptism much as some see BABY DEDICATION. However, his writings on adult baptism could be accepted by all. So also with Calvin who often used the SYMBOL but warned that it was more than SYMBOL because Christ promised remission at baptism. Again, and we agree, it is not the act or water disconnected from the WORD and FAITH which saves. But, none of them would tear up a check for a million dollars because it was JUST A SYMBOL.

Now, for us. Yes, probably most among us deny baptismal regeneration (or water regeneration) but in effect practice it. A 9 year old who is baptized "because I don't want to go to hell" is being deluded into "baptismal regeneration." That may be why they slip away very early because they have gotten their ticket to heaven punched and have NEVER grasped that baptism is into discipleship to Christ so that we can "come learn of Him."

I don't know how that is to be corrected. But, the REMNANT fact sees the MAJORITY as always wrong and therefore teach wrong. The horrors of rejecting baptism is that Ephesians 2 shows that it is a "continuing act" which proves that salvation is "by grace through faith."


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Now I am really lost...

March 13 2004, 6:55 PM 

Can one be regenerated by the Holy Spirit, not yeild to the act of baptism and therefore be lost, sending a regenerated, yet unbaptized person, into everlasting hell? Is it possible for one to be regenerate, not submit to baptism, and be lost (yet remain regenerate)?

To me, your view of baptism is as clear as mud. I can agree with you that the act of baptism is not the regenerating force in the heart of the believer. I think that we would all agree that the Holy Spirit regenerates the believer. I further agree that baptism is commanded by Christ for every believer that comes to faith. I guess where I would draw the line, and I confess that this is a very important line, is that I cannot in Scripture tie the actual "washing away" of my sins with my baptism. I can, and do, attach my outward identification with the inward reality that I am connected to Christ by faith.

Can we "WISELY" add these words to the great hymn:
What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus and my baptism.

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March 14 2004, 4:46 PM 

ANON: Now I am really lost... March 13 2004, 6:55 PM

Can one be regenerated by the Holy Spirit, not yeild to the act of baptism and therefore be lost, sending a regenerated, yet unbaptized person, into everlasting hell? Is it possible for one to be regenerate, not submit to baptism, and be lost (yet remain regenerate)?

KEN: The Holy Spirit (the Words of Christ) does not REGENERATE one who believes. Regeneration or a "new birth" or "raised with Christ" or "put on the new man" is ONLY connected with baptism. The gift of A holy spirit comes only by REQUEST of believers when they CONFESS JESUS and request it at baptism.

To me, your view of baptism is as clear as mud. I can agree with you that the act of baptism is not the regenerating force in the heart of the believer. I think that we would all agree that the Holy Spirit regenerates the believer.

Ken: You could STRETCH the revealed word to fit hypothetical situations all day long. The Bible says that baptism CONNECTED to faith and repentance WASHES AWAY OUR SINS, forgives us, remits sin: what can I say other than what the Bible says. God who is PURE SPIRIT always connects with humanity through EXTERNAL MEANS. Since our brain is a physical thing, faith comes through external, objective things like "hearing the Word." Don't try to make exceptions for God and then use your exceptions to RETRANSLATE the clear text.

The WORD of God is the SEED. When it is planted and germinates we can call that life in the sense that a fertilized egg begins to develop when the sperm is added to it. However, the end result is called the NEW BIRTH or it is a still birth and most often ABORTS because it is planted in hard ground or the "bird demons" pluck up the seed. We cannot say that a germinated corn seed is a CORN PLANT able to bear fruit.

Let me say it again:

Catholics and all who teach ORIGINAL SIN sprinkled water on an infant and CALLED it Baptism and taught that it saved the child.

Most protestants call that "baptismal regeneration."
They say that DIPPING or SPRINKLING does not save BECAUSE the child cannot BELIEVE.

Therefore, they conclude WITHIN THAT CONTEXT that "baptism does not save."

They APPEND that Baptism of BELIEVERS who are able to disciple to Jesus Christ DOES BRING LIFE.

Jesus said "He that believes AND is baptized shall be saved." He would agree that baptism without faith in Him does not save. However, don't make the most fatal leap in church history and force Jesus to say: Therefore, baptism does not save.

Peter said that BELIEVERS must repent AND be baptized FOR the remission of sins. FOLLOWING that they would receive the gift of A holy spirit which goes beyond the GERMINATING analogy. A holy spirit is the same as A clear conscience which Christ gives us so that we are able to be FULLY DISCIPLED by Him through His WORD which He said IS SPIRIT and is LIFE (John 6:63).

Therefore, a person is not fully REGENERATED to become a NEW PERSON until they REQUEST it at baptism (1 Peter 3:21)

The equation of God in christ is:

Preach and then DISCIPLE by BAPTISM and ongoing TEACHING of what Jesus Christ taught or inspired.

It simply would not make any difference if the "church" baptized the whole city if they PRESUMED to teach what comes out of their little dunce heads. They would be ALL WET but not DISCIPLES to Christ the Holy Spirit through His Word where exegesis or "further expounding" insults the Holy God of the universe.

In the GRACE THROUGH FAITH passage in Ephesians 2 Paul earlier uses the imagery of BAPTISM as the time and place where we are RISEN WITH CHRIST. Jesus enacted the PROTOTYPE Gospel. We go through the FORM of that gospel and the value of His blood is applied in our resurrection in baptism or we would still be spiritually dead.

Peter says that we are CIRCUMCIZED by Christ at the time and place of baptism. Until Christ CUTS OFF our sins we are NOT SUITABLE for the by faith indwelling of God in our spirit where ALL true worship takes place.

Paul said that we are crucified with Christ and burried with Christ and Risen with Christ by submitting our bodies and spirits to the FAITH IN THE OPERATION OF GOD who raised the Son from the dead. Who would say that we have a NEW SPIRIT before we are resurrected with Him.

ANON: I further agree that baptism is commanded by Christ for every believer that comes to faith. I guess where I would draw the line, and I confess that this is a very important line, is that I cannot in Scripture tie the actual "washing away" of my sins with my baptism.

Ken: Paul had come in contact with the Spirit Lord Who identified Himself as Jesus of Nazareth. This is the same ANOTHER (fuller) comforter who would come when Jesus said "I will come unto you." Paul believed in Jesus and confessed His authority. However, only when Paul had been cured of external blindness did Jesus send the message:

And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and WASH AWAY thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord. Ac.22:16

The same Jesus in the flesh said he that "believes AND is baptized shall be saved." Peter said that BELIEVERS who had been convicted by the SPIRIT in the preaching of Peter were told to "repent AND be baptized for the REMISSION of their sins."

Lord Jesus Christ who commanded PREACHING the gospel by which the SPIRIT WORD is communicated (Paul ministered the Spirit by preaching) that one becomes a DISCIPLE of Him by

Baptizing believers
ongoing preaching of what Christ delivered

And Acts says that the DISCIPLES were called CHRISTIANS (followers of the Words of Christ) at Antioch.

Therefore, you CANNOT be a Christian without being baptized as a RESULT of believing and repentint.

If you DON'T have faith is this STATEMENT of cause and effect by Jesus Christ then you are simply an unbeliever.

Jesus, Peter and Paul connect the ability to HEAR Jesus' teachings through the Word with Baptism. Jesus said "My WORDS are SPIRIT and they are LIFE." Whatever supernatural SIGN of the Apostle's authority in preaching to the GENTILES,

ANON: I can, and do, attach my outward identification with the inward reality that I am connected to Christ by faith.

Ken: Indeed, all who have faith are in connection with Christ by faith. But, as I have explained that will show up as RIGHTEOUSNESS and not SALVATION, REMISSION OF SINS, BEING BORN AGAIN, BEING RESURRECTED WITH CHRIST, BE CIRCUMCIZED BY CHRIST. A person who DOES RIGHTEOUSNESS is righteousness. But, our Lord God who is preparing a place for us in ANOTHER DIMENSION can not use people who MAKE EXCUSES.

ANON: Can we "WISELY" add these words to the great hymn:
What can wash away my sin?

Nothing but the blood of Jesus and my baptism.

Ken: Jesus shed His blood at the CROSS. Our OBEDIENCE means that we are CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST. Under the law righteousness was IMPUTED by God so that people would not be destroyed. However, only by being IN Christ are we truly righteous because we PUT ON Christ or are enfolded in His righteous clothing.

Gal 2:21 I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.

Gal 3:1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not OBEY the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, CRUCIFIED among you?

Gal 3:18 For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise

Paul goes on to say that we are Children of God by FAITH, because we are baptized INTO CHRIST. One who believes is not connected with being IN Christ.

Paul in Romans 6 shows that baptism is our FORM of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. The only time the BLOOD is connected to believers is at the time and place of Baptism.

Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Heb.10:22

WHEN we are baptized in water Christ SPRINKLES his blood in a spiritual sense. Baptism is the only connecting point to the shed blood of Christ.

And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, Re.1:5

---And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.1:6

And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Rev 7:14

You know, after Zwingli INVENTED faith-only in 1525 people have made a massive more than COTTAGE INDUSTRY out of trying to make Jesus say what He did not say. Why is it that the MAJORITY are attracted to a scheme which Calls God and Jesus Christ and Paul and Peter and most of church history LIARS? TRUTH is never attractive to most: the Jews BELIEVED but refused to CONFESS for fear of being cast out of the synagogue or worse.

To me FAITH just believes what Jesus said and obeyes it without mumbling and grumbling and trying to make EVERY baptism passage means something OPPOSITE of what we all grasp as truth. I believe that it is PRIDE and fear of being CAST out of the "majority" religions and having to be cast "outside the camp" or city to meet Jesus Christ and grasp church or ekklesia mean nothing more than COME LEARN OF ME. I warn you that when people have repudiated the plain truth of God's Word He sends them strong delusions.

Try to be open to the fact that "believe AND baptized" spoken by God in Christ may mean just what it says. I believe honestly that pride will not allow people to even believe and to fight against God's clear statement which CANNOT be misunderstood without a lot of help. Your FAITH is intended to "give you the power to become a child of God" but believing does not produce a new birth which is defined absolutely as a REGENERATED SPIRIT by Christ but AT baptism where we REQUEST it.

Don't fight God too long. MANY are called (invited) but FEW are chosen because they have no oil for their lamps, are not washed and have no "wedding garments."


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The Definition of "Dead" and other things.....

March 15 2004, 2:38 PM 

Mr. Sublett and Mr. Waggoner,

First, you guys say that you do not believe in baptismal regeneration but when you explain your definition of baptism, you say something very different. You connect regeneration with the asking of it in baptism. This leads to a much bigger problem that I find in your theology.

Please get rid of the mindset of: "I don't have a theology. My theology is what the Bible says and that's it." It is the same old "I have no creed but the Bible." Each person has their interpretation of the Bible. Now, I am not saying that there is not one universal truth in the Scriptures. What I am saying is, "You don't have it." You make yourself out to be the one who is right and all others that disagree with you are idiots and are deceived.

Now to the big problem in YOUR theology. You need to explain how someone can ask to be regenerated. If, as the Scriptures say, a man is "dead" in his transgressions, how can he ask to be made alive. I am not interested at this point to get into the doctrine of election, I am just interested in the question of "how does a dead man come to life?" You seem to be saying that he just asks to be regenerated, and then he is. You never tell me how he comes to life. This seems to be the question of the day and nobody from the churches of Christ circles has given me an answer other than: "He just does."

I am purposefully choosing to not comment too much on your treatise on baptism because it seems to be the same old argument that does not hold water (no pun inteneded).


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March 15 2004, 4:21 PM 

The gospel is the POWER which arouses us from spiritual death. The DRAWING power to those who WILL accept it is the cross. Jesus died and bled and shed forth water on the cross. Most people do not come to Christ because giving us a new SPIRIT means that God must cleanse the OLD mind. We OPEN our minds to God and MOST people simply cringe at confession. I am afraid that you are trusting in YOUR FAITH IN FAITH but cannot yet reach the faith that ULTIMATE GRACE is that our spirits can be regenerated simply by OBEDIENCE to a simple command. The faith of Abraham claimed in the Christian System is that FAITH and BAPTISM are coupled together by God in whom you say you have faith. You are telling God that He CANNOT use an external MARK of one's ability to JUMP at wanting to do what God askes us to do. Trying to EXPLAIN AWAY every Baptism example and the PROPHETIC model of the Flood and the Red sea is NOT what faith wants to do.

If you cannot find room in your spirit to KEEP a command of the God of the universe then how can you say that you have FAITH?

People who are dead in their trespasses and sins means that they are separated from God in Christ. They are not unconsious or they could not HEAR the gospel message.

For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. Tit 3:3

But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared , Tit 3:4

Not by WORKS of RIGHTEOUSNESS which WE have done, but according to his mercy he saved us,
    by the WASHING of regeneration,
    and RENEWING of the Holy Ghost ; Tit.3:5
Washing is NOT a spiritual thing. Everyone knows that when we are baptized we are baptized by CHRIST who is uniquely qualiified to cleans our spirits. Washing means in IN WATER:
    Loutron (g3067) loo-tron'; from 3068; a bath, i.e. (fig.) baptism: - washing.
That HE might SANCTIFY (make holy) and cleanse it with the WASHING of water by the word, Ep.5:26

Louo (g3068) loo'-o; a prim. verb; to BATHE (the whole person; whereas 3538 means to wet a part only, and 4150 to wash, cleanse garments exclusively): - wash.

Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Heb.10:22

And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth.

Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, Re.1:5

Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. 1 Pet 3:20

The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh,

but the answer (request for) of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ: 1 Pet 3:21

For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 1 john 5:7

There are NOT three Gods. The invisible God is made known to us by the Father (always considered the Thought), the WORD (The message) and the Holy Spirit (the force by which God works.) The ONE Godhead is in heaven.

The three witnesses in our lives are:

And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one. 1 Jn 5:8

Jesus said that the WORDS revealed by the FATHER and spoken by the SON are "spirit and they are life." JOhn 6:63

When we are baptized we are CERTIFIED by God that we are believers because we obey the FORM of Doctrine where Christ shed His blood mixed with water. When we are baptized God also washes us with his SPIRIT WORD

And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness. 1 Jn 5:19

And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life. 1 Jn. 5:20

For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:26

For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Gal 3:27

FAITH just accepts that without contending that Father, Son, Peter, Paul and most of church history are liars. If you believe in predestination then you must grasp that baptism is the only SIGN you have from God. Baptized believers simply have no interest in getting involved in those rituals which are attempts to "lead the worshipers into the presence of God." Baptized believers accept the REST and refuse to be BURDENED by those trying to manufacture CARNAL feelings that they claim prove is the HOLY SPIRIT in you.


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Mark Waggoner
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Re: The Definition of &quote;Dead&quote; and other things.....

March 17 2004, 9:11 AM 

The Bible says; "Or do you not know that all of us who have been immersed into Christ Jesus have been immersed into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through immersion into death, in order that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall be also in the likeness of His recurrection," (Romans 6:3-5).

In order to be born again, one must die to self. This passage clearly states that this death, burial, and resurrection of our spiritual selves takes place during immersion - in the likeness of Christ's death, burial, and resurrection from the cross.

Continuing in verse 6, "our old self was crucified with Him, that our body of sin might be done away with... for he who has died is freed from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, ...Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus."

II Cor. 5:14-17 basically says the same thing. We arise from the water as a "new creature" or a new person as our old selves have been done away with. Why did you not comment on the Scripture's direct answer to your question concerning the washing away of our sins that takes place during immersion (Acts 22:16)? "The same old argument" is what the Bible clearly states so you're not arguing with me, you're arguing with God.

Mark Waggoner

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Stu Haynes
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What really doesn't hold water

March 22 2004, 12:07 PM 

What fails to hold water is the mis-named engedi (living water). With this recent attack on baptism you are witnessing the shaky foundation that these Calvinistic beliefs are based on. They must distort the Biblical concept of "flesh" to mean "sinful nature" in select (i.e. proof-text) passages in the NIV (which at least had the integrity to footnote the accurate meaning of "flesh".) There was an excellent article in the Gospel Advocate a few months ago which clearly exposed this point. Anyone out there have that issue handy?
Similiarly they must distort Ephesians 2:8 to make "faith" the gift even though the Greek gender endings render such a conclusion impossible.
In the same way they must distort the Biblical concept of "dead in trespasses and sins" (Eph. 2:1, etc.) The noted theologian, Norman Geisler points this out in his recent publication, CHOSEN BUT FREE on pages 236,237: "Extreme Calvinists deduce from this that since dead persons cannot believe, they must be made alive (regenerated) first in order that they can believe. RESPONSE. This does not follow from the text for two basic reasons. First, spiritually "dead" persons CAN believe (see chapter 4 and appendix 5), since "dead" means separation from God, not annihialation. The image of God in not erased by the fall (Gen. 9:6; James 3:9) but only effaced. Otherswise, God would not call on unsaved people to believe (Jn. 3:16-18; Acts 16:31, 20:21) and second death (rev. 20:14) would be annihialation - which extreme Calvinists reject. Second, in this very passage the apostle lists faith as logically prior to salvation. He declares: 'For it is by grace YOU HAVE BEEN SAVED, THROUGH FAITH - - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God" (v.8) Clearly, faith is the means where salvation is the end. But the means come before the end. Hence, faith is logically prior to being saved. "

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March 23 2004, 12:50 PM 

Some of the most noted and prominent theologians of all time including today are "Calvinists." I would hardly call the ground that they stand on "shaky." I would, however, call the publication "Gospel Advocate" a shaky publication as it provides (as does the church of Christ theology) nothing substantive in the way of anything exigetical.

Your arguments against the "Calvinist" position have been disproved time and time again and no elementary article from the Gospel Advocate will do it either.

The "Calvinist" position has brought peace and assurance and a love for holiness to many people, including myself. You may continue your bashing of this line of thinking, but I will only continue to smile as my relationship to Jesus Christ grows closer and closer. In all of the attempts to disprove "Calvinism," one has never been able to address the fruit of such a theology. I can, however, disprove the theology of the churches of Christ from the Bible, plus the effects that it has on a members life. Having seen its dreadfully depressing effects on many people, including myself, I can understand why they are leaving the church of Christ denomination in masses.

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Firm Foundation

March 23 2004, 3:14 PM 

If calvinism had brought anything but stark terror there would have been no American Restoration Movement. In fact, the exercises at Cane Ridge directly parallels devil or fire worship in its effects. However, people were so frightened that they looked for some external proof that God loved them. When the same sermons were preached in North Alabama nothing happened because there was not as much frontier violence. Some began to preach baptism FOR the remission of sins and the Bible believers accepted the preaching. Here is a Calvinist speaking:

James R. Rogers

5. His Mind is Greatly Agitated by Calvinistic Speculations--He Re-examines the Scriptures, arid Cordially Abandons Calvinism --Hears of a Great Religious Excitement in Logan...

About this time my mind was continually tossed on the waves of speculative divinity, the all-engrossing theme of the religious community at that period. Clashing, controversial opinions were urged by the different sects with much zeal and bad feeling.

No surer sign of the low state of true religion. I at that time believed, and taught, that mankind were so totally depraved that they could do nothing acceptable to God, till his Spirit, by some physical, almighty and mysterious power, had quickened, enlightened and regenerated the heart, and thus prepared the sinner to believe in Jesus for salvation.

I began plainly to see that if God did not perform this regenerating work in all, it must be because he chose to do it for some and not for others, and that this depended on his own sovereign will and pleasure.

It then required no depth of intellect to see that this doctrine is inseparably linked with unconditional election and reprobation, as taught in the Westminster Confession of Faith. They are virtually one; and this was the reason why I admitted the decrees of election and reprobation, having admitted the doctrine of total depravity. They are inseparable.

Scores of objections would continually roll across my mind against this system. These I imputed to the blasphemous suggestions of Satan, and labored to repel them as satanic temptations, and not honestly to meet them with Scriptural arguments.

Often when I was addressing the listening multitudes on the doctrine of total depravity, their inability to believe, and of the necessity of the physical power of God to produce faith, and then persuading the helpless to repent and believe the gospel,

my zeal in a moment would be chilled at the contradiction. How can they believe? How can they repent? How can they do impossibilities? How can they be guilty in not doing them?

Such thoughts would almost stifle utterance, and were as mountains pressing me down to the shades of death.
I tried to rest in the common salvo of that day; i.e., the distinction between natural and moral ability and inability.

The pulpits were continually ringing with this doctrine, but to my mind it ceased to be a relief; for, by whatever name it be called, that inability was in the sinner, and therefore he could not believe nor repent, but must be damned.

Wearied with the works and doctrines of men, and distrustful of their influence, I made the Bible my constant companion. I honestly, earnestly and prayerfully sought for the truth, determined to buy it at the sacrifice of everything else.

You have to believe that you are one of the SELECT FEW to be saved. You cannot know that by faith because every PROOF TEXT of Calvinism is dishonestly yanked out of its context by its roots. Therefore, you have to trust some EXTERNAL charismatic experience and you don't want to know the implications of CHARISMATIC in the Greek literature. Because you have been HANDLED by experts of disguise, you MAY or you MAY NOT have any confidence. I prophesy that you doubt at every test. However, the Bible makes BAPTISM one of the MARKS or SEALS so that you can have assurance as a TOKEN until you become fully spirit in nature.

As has been noted you guys are just now lapping up an extreme Calvinism and I SAY that your "assurance" is whistling in the Cemetary.

The Restoraton Movement led by the Campbells saw the SIGNS demanded by their old Presbyterianism as fanaticism.


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What a waste of typing...

March 24 2004, 7:04 AM 

This former Calvinist fellow was led away from his view because of the wrong reason. He had questions that he could not answer. He needed only look to the Bible to find them. In his sad and pitiful commentary he offers no Scripture to disprove a previously held posistion. He, too, was caught up in an emotional experience of not being able to find particular answers to his questions. He must not have wanted to find his answers because they are found in the Bible.

Your comment about assurance is an ignorant statement because the VAST MAJORITY of members of the churches of Christ have no assurance of their salvation at all. This type of fruit shows that your theology tree is rotten. The Bible says that "HE who began a good work in you WILL bring it to COMPLETION." Go ahead, get your "GREEK LEXICON" out and start fumbling around this one. The "Calvinistic" view of assurance is not "whistling" in the Cemetary but rather will be made know by it's shouts of praise at the Gates of Heaven.

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Re: What a waste of typing...there ARE readers, you know.

March 26 2004, 12:23 PM 

CONTEXT: always a context. Paul pronounces peace and grace from God as a common Greeting:

Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Phil 1:2
I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, Phil 1:3
Always in EVERY PRAYER of mine for you all making request with joy, Phil Phil 1:4


For your FELLOWSHIP in the GOSPEL from the first day until now; Phil 1:5
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will PERFORM it until the day of Jesus Christ: Phil 1:6

PERFORM MEANS: Epiteleo (g2005) ep-ee-tel-eh'-o; from 1909 and 5055; to fulfill further (or completely), i.e. execute; by impl. to terminate, undergo: - accomplish, do, finish, (make) (perfect), perform (* -ance).
    When therefore I have PERFORMED this, and have sealed to them this fruit, I will come by you into Spain. Ro.15:28
    Insomuch that we desired Titus, that as he had BEGUN, so he would also finish in you the same grace also. 2Co.8:6
    Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are ACCOMPLISHED in your brethren that are in the world. 1Pe.5:9

What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice. Ph 1:18

For I know that this shall turn to MY salvation through YOUR PRAYER, and the SUPPLY of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, Ph 1:19

Apobaino (g576) ap-ob-ah'ee-no; from 575 and the base of 939; lit. to disembark; fig. to eventuate: - become, go out, turn.

Soteria (g4991) so-tay-ree'-ah; fem. of a der. of 4990 as (prop. abstr.) noun; rescue or safety (phys. or mor.): - deliver, health, salvation, save, saving.

God begins HIS WORK through the PREACHING of the Gospel. Preaching SUPPLIES or MINISTERS the Spirit of Jesus Christ:

It is the SPIRIT that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the WORDS that I speak unto you, they are SPIRIT, and they are LIFE. John 6:63

Paul works and Paul prays and Paul supplies SPIRIT. This hardly speaks of God predestinating some and MANIPULATING their lives to assure that they are saved.

If God works everything to SAVE the predestinated to SALVATION then He MUST work everything in the lives of the LOST to make sure that they are not SAVED. This is smacking the Holy FATHER God of the Universe in the face while as SON He proves that He will not give a SERPENT to one who asks for bread. Shame!


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Try again...

March 26 2004, 4:10 PM 

You obviously do not understand the Calvinist position or else you would not have finished your comments like you did. You are so out in the left field of "church of Christism" that you cannot intelligently carry on a theological discussion with anybody.

Please learn what the Calvinists believe (really believe) not what Alexander Campbell and David Lipscomb said that they believe. Once you (and others) do that, they you will not say many of the things that you say about that line of thinking.

Once you can precisely articulate what a Calvinist believes, then I am afraid that we will not have a very fruitful disussion. I am always wanting to know exaclty what you are trying to say so that I do not run off on a tangent saying things that do not accurately portray what you are saying.

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Stu H.
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Re: Try again...

April 15 2004, 7:30 PM 

Before continuing much further down this path of extreme scrutiny of the fundamental teaching by the Churches of Christ on baptism it only seem appropriate to turn an equally critical eye to the alternative proposed by the Hyper-calvinist in our midst. I am assuming (and this could be a false assumption) that to quote from their beloved mentor R.C. Sproul is quite different from quoting from D. Lipscomb or Campbell.

From his book CHOSEN BY GOD it seems clear that, according to his understanding of the Bible, not only is a person saved before baptism (and therefore baptism is not essential for salvation), but he is saved even before he professes faith and belief in Christ. He is saved before he is born, if he is in the fortunate group which God has chosen, (apparently a vast minority - "narrow is the way") by his "loving sovereign justice", not to condemn to hell.
According to Sproul such an individual is saved even before he realizes it - before he even knows he is saved!

So why would Christ go on to say that "few there be who find it" if, in fact, the reality is "few there be who are given it"? And what cruel language of "Ask and it shall be given" if the reality is "To those of you who God will persuade / force to ask - to them alone it shall be given."

I guess it's not difficult to do if you read the gospels with preconceived notions in advance.

Maybe our discussion can proceed to deal with some of these equally troubling and illogical conclusions.

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Try Again

April 17 2004, 9:49 AM 

Probably most (noted above) people who divide the church over Calvinism will say: "But, we don't believe that anymore." People have tried to purify their Engedi form of Calvinism by denying what is taught. More observant readers have posted proof that the INMATES do not know what they are joining.

If I am confused so was Calvin and Augustine to a lesser extent. I have posted REAL copies of both Augustine and Calvin--and I need to get them lined up and add--so I don't quote the Campbells.

Both Augustine and Calvin spoke of predestination but then made it clear that people LOSE their free will (true) by some fault of their own. Scripture blames it on being deceived (decoyed) by Satan. Scripture, ancient commentaries and human experience identify trying to worship a Spirit God with "music" is being "decoyed" by Satan and ALL of the documents make it plain that those who FELL could never recover. Modern science can be used to prove that when you associate the feelings (mostly sexual) with the worship of a Spirit God your brain can be rewired as quickly as Crack addiction. The Old Testament was NEVER for public worship but for REST in their residences or community READING of the Word. Christ died to give us REST from the clergy "creating spiritual anxiety through religious ritual." Jesus said where two or three are gathered He will give us REST and said "come learn of Me." Paul identified reading and dialoging Scripture as the only REST. Calvinism destroys ALL security unless someone has associated your salvation with some EXPERIENCE of the flesh. Don't let them take you captive in what people have described as a cult where you DARE NOT question the guru.

Here is where I have posted some real documents which I have annotated and cross linked:


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Where'd ya learn this?

May 1 2004, 11:40 AM 

I just wondered if March 16, (4:10) Anonymous would mind telling this forum where he went to college?

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I'd be delighted...

May 4 2004, 7:04 AM 

However, I am not sure what this brings to this discussion.

I admit, this will be a very interesting answer for you:
1. Harding University (one semester)
2. Freed-Hardeman University (one year)
3. David Lipscomb University (graduated)
(4. Middle Tennessee State University: but who cares about that one?)

P.S. I was accepted and heading to ACU but followed my future wife to Harding because her's was paid for.

Enough information for you? By the way, my Social Security number if off limits.

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A common belief?

May 29 2004, 12:46 PM 

I think it is important to see if there is indeed some type of pattern evolving in our universities. What percentage of the faculty members at the 3 church schools you mentioned would you estimate hold to these Calvinistic teachings? Just a guess; I realize it isn't some official poll. What has your experience been in this regard?

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No Longer Christian Universities

June 4 2004, 7:55 AM 

It is all about money. The "use to be Christian Universities" have sold out to the denominational world to bring in more students because more students means more money. You bring in professors that have strayed from the truth, teaching diversity and nonbiblical doctrine to satisfy the denominational world and now you have more students who want to attend these "use to Christian Universities". These universities didn't start out that way, but we live in a money hungry, materialistic society, men who won't stand up and be men in the home and in our Churches. Women are having to step up to the plate and do what spineless men should be doing. Men "Wake up".

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Why be a member

August 11 2004, 12:41 PM 

I would like to know why J____ C_____ and other people who do not subscribe to the beliefs of the traditional Church of Christ (especially free will) attend Smith Springs Church of Christ. O____ C______, J____'s grandfather, is one of the founding members of Smith Springs Church of Christ. O___ helped build that church and he does not subscribe to the belief of "the Chosen". J____, why not attend another church that shares your belief. Was it worth ripping a church apart because you wanted to go to the same church that you attended as a child? Did "heritage" give you a right to cause dissention within the church, to turn child against parent? J_____, you have to know that it breaks his heart to see his church home divided this way. And, believe it or not, the fact that others do not agree with David Lawrence's message does not mean they don't get it.
We believe in grace. We do not have to believe that God allowing us to choose him makes him any less sovereign.

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Mark Waggoner
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Re: Now I am really lost...

March 15 2004, 7:27 AM 

Immersion is where we come in contact with the blood of Christ. As we are immersed into the water, Christ's blood is what does the washing. As for the scriptures linking the actual washing with immersion, study Acts 22 where Paul reviews his own conversion. In verse 16, he tells us what Ananias told him; "And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on his name."

Let the word of God draw the lines.

Mark Waggoner

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Too bad the same can't be said for Lipscomb University.

April 23 2004, 2:52 PM 

Per a recent correspondence from the Dean of the College of Biblical Studies at ACU, we begin to see that what has been labeled our "traditional" view on baptism is, in fact, not lacking in scholarship. And this institution is not ashamed of what they believe. The following are a few lines from Bro. Jack Reese's extensive letter:

"Let me be absolutely clear, all ACU faculty believe in the full authority of scripture, believe in baptism by immersion for the forgiveness of sins, believe that baptism puts us into Christ, that no one is saved other than by the blood of Jesus. If a person believes other than this, they cannot be appointed to the faculty of this university. If any current faculty doesn't believe in these core doctrines, they would be terminated."

He later goes on to add: "We are clearly not proponents of Evangelicalism, especially the strong Calvinism and weak position on baptism that is typical of most Evangelicals."

It can't get much clearer than that. I wonder if we'll EVER see such a statement from Lipscomb.

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Too Bad

April 24 2004, 12:55 PM 

Is Carroll D. Osburn still at ACU?

He writes:

"There should be room in the Christian fellowship for those who differ on whether more than one cup in communion is acceptable, whether the communion bread is to be pinched or snapped, whether one can eat in the church building, whether funds can be used from the church treasury to support orphan homes, whether the Lord's Supper must be taken every Sunday, or whether instrumental music is used in worship.

There should be room in the Christian fellowship for those who believe that Christ is the son of God, but who differ on eschatological theories such as premillennialism, ecclesiological matters such as congregational organization, or soteriological matters such as whether baptism is 'for' or 'because of' the remission of sins.

Leonard Allen - Richard Hughes: "Luther believed that Zwingli's insistence on making scripture the exclusive norm for the entire life of the church, including its forms of worship, turned gospel into a new legalism (p. 28).

"Even believer's baptism, acknowledged by practically all Stoneites as apostolic, was simply left to the discretion of the individual."

When the charismatic rituals which Layard defines almost perfectly--but he is speaking of Devil worshipers in Iraq--did not work to give one the PROOF that God had picked them out, revivalism simply stopped. Most of the Stoneite preachers joined the Campbells. Stone was slow in accepting BIBLICAL baptism because it CHILLED THE charismatic outbreak. The Stoneites long believed in "believer's baptism" based on FAITH ONLY invented in 1525 by Zwingli.

But, "Believer's baptism" had meaning only to people like Baptists. They say that we are baptized to be ENABLED to join the church because THEY have decided that one's life proves that they was chosen by God to be saved." The Britanica and other resources make it clear that Believer's Baptism is a form of pagan baptism."

"As the years passed, Campbell and his followers...increasingly accepted unity in pluralistic diversity and subtly downplayed a strict adherence to the restoration ideal" (p. 109).

That is simple an untruth. Since the Campbells came out a Calvinistic background, they believed that there were Christians in the denominations. The punch word, however, was that they should "come out of Babylon." The Campbells never fellowshipped those who rejected the teachings of the Restoration Ideal.

"All the external marks and structures were expendable in restoring and preserving this gospel, the living Word" (p. 117).

There can be no doubt that Max Lucado repudiates baptism as having any role to play in salvation an yet he is honored by ACU

It would indeed be grand to see LU make the statement. But that will be meaningless if they keep inviting people just to make money. Doesn't David Lipscomb have a right to keep his name on the university? I suspect that lots of younger teachers have been cowed into speaking the mantra of a few foul birds boasting of changing the old "conservative" church of Christ.


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Church Councils as Authority

March 12 2004, 2:12 PM 

David Lawrence claims that the whole church was too busy to fully explain dogma like predestination and the trinity. Therefore, CHURCH COUNCILS must be seen as explaining these dogmas. This is, of course, a confession that the trinity, faith only and predestination was NOT explained in the Holy Spirit's work.

I have updated my reviews of At

NEW #4: David Lawrence: Church Councils determine DOCTRINE?

NEW John Calvin Spirit and Word 1.The fanatics wrongly appeal to the Holy Spirit

NEW Calvin's Institutes: Of the Knowledge of God the Creator THE WORD ONLY

NEW Calvin AGAINST Church Councils

Calvin agrees with "Calvinism" very little in fact. I will post his comments on Baptism to prove it.

Ken Sulett

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Useless wrangling

May 18 2004, 8:08 AM 

This is really amazing. This whole pointless tirade went on for 7 months (from August 2003 to March 2004) and no one convinced anyone that they were right! But now it's been quiet for 2 months. What did any of you gain from it?? If all of you had put as much energy into actually spreading the Gospel to the lost instead of browbeating each other, just think of the countless souls that could have been saved!

Poor Timothy dealt with this same problem in the Ephesian congregation. No wonder he had "frequent infirmities" (stomach ulcers, perhaps??), (1 Tim 5:23). Remember what Paul told Timothy to do in Ephesus? "Charge them that they teach no other doctrine, nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith" (1 Tim 1:3-4). He also described how some had strayed from the truth, turning aside to "idle talk" (1 Tim 1:6).

The Ephesian believers were encouraged to listen to "wholesome words" (1 Tim 6:3), but there were many who had become obsessed with "disputes and arguments over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth" (1 Tim 6:4-5). The Ephesian church was ruined by "profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge" and Paul sadly reports that "by professing it [idle babblings] some have strayed concerning the faith" (1 Tim 6:20-21).

Does history repeat itself? No, only fools repeat history.

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Re: Useless wrangling

May 19 2004, 10:36 AM 

Is it really that useless?

You stated earlier, "If all of you had put as much energy into actually spreading the Gospel to the lost instead of browbeating each other, just think of the countless souls that could have been saved!".

Now I have a question for you. If a congregation divides because of its desire for feeding a steady diet of "milk" and no "meat" for those who are already attending, are souls at risk? Wouldn't a balanced diet make the most sense? If so, then why are all of today's "scholars"(men) implementing changes that guarantee that those who are mature will either become weak or leave. The purpose of this forum although some would disagree, is to save souls.

If you have never been through a split you do not know what it feels like to dispise "church" but love the Lord. At that time of disconnect souls are in danger. It is too easy to love the Lord and go to the lake, golf course, river, or getaway when you are in that state. Then just like a battery in a car with no alternator you begin to fade. Perhaps the focus of some who say, "X is not a salvation issue" lack distance vision. Again I will ask you if all of this wrangling is worth it. If this forum will prevent a split. Or if it changes the minds of some who would have unleashed the doctrines that are tearing apart churches and causing life long friends to be enemies. Then this "wrangling" is worth it.

Decide which side of history you will be on. God's foolishness is far wiser than any wisdom man posesses.

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God predetermined our every act?

June 22 2004, 5:38 PM 

This page has some of the things which God controls including the time of or death.
    Matt Perman: Third, and most importantly, Scripture is clear that God's purposes are specific and very detailed. Job 14:5 says that man's "days are determined, the number of his months is with Thee, and his limits Thou hast set so that he cannot pass." God has determined how long each person will live; you cannot die until God's purposes for you on earth are finished. This is good news, for it means that if you are alive, it is for a reason.
Our response: I would bet that God thinks that it is because my parents obeyed the conditional laws about generating children! We have seen that people want you to believe that when you decide to do something it was God's predestinated will that you do so. Furthermore, Calvinists believe that THEY lead you to God's will by putting you through a 40 day process. Fact is, the 40 days at Sinai and of Jesus' temptation was an attempt to BRING THEM DOWN to accept something COUNTER to God's Will. Then, you are a Watch Tower slave: they become AGENTS through whom God communicates to you. This is, in fact, a denial of the work of God in Christ as the One and only Mediator.

Seems they, with a little help from Lipscomb, are infiltrating Warren's Purpose Driven Cult in Murfreesboro.

We believe that it can be shown that Job did not say that God set the day of one's death. In Job 14:4 he said:
    Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one. Job 14:4

      Matt Perman's quoted passage: Seeing his days are determined, the number of his months are with thee, thou hast appointed his bounds that he cannot pass; Job 14:5
The word "determined" does not mean a specific age for death. It can define the general age for mankind but not the date of one's death predestinated from eternity past.The Greek word for "determined is"
    Charac (h2782) khaw-rats'; a prim root; prop. to point sharply, i. e. (lit.) to wound; fig. to be alert, to decide: - bestir self, decide, decree, determine, maim, move.
The "days" of all of us are limited. God certainly is sovereign although this is not a Biblical word. A similar concept by Isaiah is:
    Now therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord God of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth. Is.28:22
God has set a nominal age for mankind of 120 years. Yet, not all live to that determined age.
    And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. Ge.6:3
The nominal age of people is limited becase the older they get them more power they have to rise up against God. If people lived according to God's Laws it could be said:
    There shall be no more thence an infant of days, nor an old man that hath not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed. Isa 65:20
There is no hint that God picks the specific day and hour to "put us to sleep."
If a man destroys himself at age 21 we cannot say that God predestinated that he hang himself at exactly that time. If a man lives over 120 years has he violated God's predestinated age?
    But Jehoiada waxed old, and was full of days when he died; an hundred and thirty years old was he when he died. 2Chr.24:15
The writer did not say that he died because he reached his predestinated age. He died because he was "full of days." That means that he died of old age. If something else doesn't get us, God has predestinated that "old age" will. Furthermore, he died and was not "terminated."
Job also says that man is of few days. Rather than being determined (charac) they are full of trouble (rogez)
    MAN that is born of a woman is of few days and full of trouble. Jb.14:1
If a person lives an ordinary life of 130 years they live 43800 days: that is more than a few.
The word "trouble" has much the same meaning as "determined": neither means that God picks the age at which we die. It means that we can normally live to be 80 years old but can die as an infant or die over 100. The view that God creates an embryo to live for 100 days also claim that "infants not an inch long are burning in hell ritht now. Why? They say that this proves that God is stronger than we. The word "trouble" is:
    Rogez (h7267) ro'-ghez; from 7264; commotion, restlessness (of a horse), crash (of thunder), disquiet, anger: - fear, noise, rage, trouble ing, wrath.
This word is used earlier by Job:
    He teareth me in his wrath, who hateth me: he gnasheth upon me with his teeth; mine enemy sharpeneth his eyes upon me. Jb.16:9
Notice the phrase: "sharpened his eyes" and the definition of Charac above which is translated as "determined." "Determined" has the Greek number 2782 while Job 16:9 uses the Greek word:
    Charaq (h2786) khaw-rak'; a prim. root; to grate the teeth: - gnash.
There are many passages which show that God does not determine when to CAUSE people to die. For instance,
    Therefore I am full of the fury of the Lord; I am weary with holding in: I will pour it out upon the children abroad, and upon the assembly of young men together: for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days. Je.6:11
This does not say that the time of one's death is predestinated: these people bring on their own death. The next verse would make no sense if God determined one's time of death:
    Ifa man beget an hundred children, and live many years, so that the days of his years be many, and his soul be not filled with good, and also that he have no burial; I say, that an untimely birth is better than he. Ec.6:3
Why wouldn't those who steal glory from God not strip the word IF out of their Bibles.

Because words speak louder than words we believe that people USE Calvinism to get themselves accepted as AGENTS of God. This is the eternal urge to control the minds, lives and "worship" by those for whom Jesus DIED to free them from "spiritual anxiety" from such people.

Jesus was not a "pulpit man" in a house built by human hands. The idea of a Shepherd is that he GOES OUT and collects the strays. He puts them behind fences to keep the WOLVES wearing still-bloody sheep skins from fleecing them and gnawing their bones.

An elder or Pastor is 100% defined by one who goes out to the feeding grounds which are always outside the city or camp. An elder has the restrictive duty to "teach that which has been taught" and "refute those who oppose it." Please obey Jesus who as God in Christ died to free you from the people who would wrap training programs around you so that--too late--you discover that you are in the sheepfold of the wolves.

Anyone have a list of proof-texts for the idea that God moves us like a puppet?


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Re: Smith Springs, Nashville

June 24 2004, 10:07 PM 

The Jews thought that the word CHOSEN meant PREDESTINATED. Father Abraham was supposed to stand beside the gates of hell and prevent any Jew from entering in. If Paul was correct and Gentiles were acceptable to God then either GOD FAILED or the WORD FAILED. Paul made it clear that THEY failed.

Contrary to Calvinistis, we GLORIFY God by "permitting" Him to found a SCHOOL of the Bible to which EVERYONE is invited to "come learn of me." If Calvinists suddenys hear that God elects or INVITES all to the EKklesia or synagogue of Christ and they repudiate God's right to invite all and disenvite the Apistos or "believeth nots" where "believe" means the fact that "Jesus is the Christ the son of God." Then BELIEVERS believe that Jesus meant that salvation is based on obedience.

God is not worse than Adolph Hitler: He NEVER says or hints that he PRESELECTS some to go to heaven and others to "burn in hell." It is 100% prefabricated and prevaricated and spits in the face of a GLORIOUS God.

Matt Perman: The Apostle Paul tells us that God "has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires" (Romans 9:18) and that SALVATION "does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy" (Romans 9:16)
    For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. Rom 9:15
    So then IT is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy. Rom 9:16

What is IT? Matt Perman claims that IT is salvation. Paul does not mention salvation in Romans 9. IT is God's right to show compassion and mercy without somehow invalidating man's free will and God's claim that THEY are guilty by their own free will.
    For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might SHEW my power in THEE, and that my name might be DECLARED throughout all the earth. Rom 9:17
First, you should understand that God rescued Israel because He had made a promise. They were worse than the Egyptians and God's RIGHTEOUS JUDGMENT would leave them in Egypt to self destruct. God brought them out knowing that Canaan land would be on the way "beyond Babylon" to carry out the death sentence assuredly imposed when they engaged in the musical idolatry of the Egyptian trinity at Mount Sinai.

However, in bringing Israel out of Egypt, the plagues were to prove that Jehovah was the true God and the "gods" of Egypt could be defeated. God had no motive to prove that He was superior to Pharaoh. Why would a Holy God get GLORY out of smashing a flea?

The word RAISED UP does not mean predestinated from eternity past!. The word is:
    Ecegeiro (g1825) ex-eg-i'-ro; from 1537 and 1453; to rouse fully, i.e. (fig.) to resuscitate (from death), release (from infliction: - raise up.

    Egeiro (g1453) eg-i'-ro; prob. akin to the base of 58 (through the idea of collecting one's faculties); to waken (trans. or intrans.), i.e. rouse (lit. from sleep, from sitting or lying, from disease, from death; or fig. from obscurity, inactivity, ruins, non- existence): - awake, lift (up), raise (again, up), rear up, (a-) rise (again, up), stand, take up.

Rather than predestinating Pharaoh to hell, God preserved him and gave him life. He had a useful purpose to play just as did Cyrus who was God's Shepherd.

Matt Perman:
    Similarly, the apostle Paul asks rhetorically in Romans 9:19, "who resists His will?" The answer, of course, is no one.
Paul begins to discuss the Potter and the Clay. Bad pottery results when the "clay mars in his hand." Even so, the Potter can make the bad clay into something utilitarian. In no sense does the Potter make a vase planning to smash it like a peevish child.

God "hardens" in a permissive sense.
    But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. Heb.3:13

    Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts . Heb.4:7

If we are hardened then God hardens us. But how? Because God is God and we are not; and because God wants all to be saved, He sent His Arm or Word to instruct us. If we reject the Words of God in Christ then we are hardened just as one who violates stop signs becomes hardened. If we reject the Word of God then He sends strong delusions. He does not delude one to dedicate their life to evangelism KNOWING all the while that the dirty little secret is that the man was doomed.
    Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. James 1:12

    Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: James 1:13

    But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. James 1:14

    Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. James 1:15

God does not tempt because it is not part of His Nature. He does not play crap with souls because that IS NOT His nature.


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Predestination c. 2004

August 12 2004, 5:26 PM 

By David Lawrence writes:
    The word that is translated predestinate in Eph. 1:5, Eph. 1:11, and Rom. 8:29-30 comes from a Greek word meaning to determine beforehand. It is the word "pro-oridzo," and refers to marking something out in advance. We also obtain the English word "horizon" from it, because the word denoted the rising of the sun when the early morning light made a demarcation from the area of darkness.
God (just one) does not live in TIME. Therefore, it is futile to try to attach TIME to Him (not them). When David sinned by numbering the people did God tempt him or did the Devil or did NEITHER?
    AND again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah. 2S.24:1

    AND Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel. 1Chr.21:1

God permits but God does not tempt anyone: people
    But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Ja.1:14
Paul never speaks in isolated verses. In Ephesians 1 he begins by drawing an identity between God the "father" and Christ as "son" or Lord. Both God and Lord speak of the Supreme Deity. Thomas identified Jesus as "My Lord and My God." Jesus minimized the flesh (John 6:62) and identified SPIRIT with His Words. There are too many statements to make any mistake: all that we know of God is that He was INCARNATED in "a body prepared for me."
    PAUL, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus: Ephesians 1:1

    GRACE be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 1:2

    Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: Ephesians 1:3

God chooses those who ACCEPT His call. He planned to redeem mankind from the beginning. He called out or INVITED all mankind. Those who accept His CALL are pre-planned to be MADE HOLY.

By showing PARTIALITY or respect of persons. But, James claim that showing partiality is evil: brings down the whole weight of the Law of Moses on your head:
    MY brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. Ja.2:1

    Are ye not then PARTIAL in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts? James 2:4

The same Spirit judges partiality or a RANDOM SELECTION evil. Therefore, take a look at the word "chosen"

    According as he hath CHOSEN us in him before the foundation of the world, THAT we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Eph 1:4

    Eklegomai (g1586) ek-leg'-om-ahee; mid. from 1537 and 3004 (in its prim. sense); to select: - make choice, choose (out), chosen. [call out]

    Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? Jn.6:70
    Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not
      God chosen THE POOR of this world
      rich in faith, and
      heirs of the kingdom
      which he hath promised to them that love him? Ja.2:5

      But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors. Ja 2:9
That is a direct statement from Christ the Spirit: the rich of Engedi CANNOT be selected. Didn't Jesus prove it when He said to them, "Go sell all that you have and give to the poor?" Well, I will leave that to the slow one in the slow Card Class group.

Jesus predestinates by MARKING OUT THE HORIZON or BOUNDARY:
    Jesus cried and said, He that believeth on me, believeth not on me, but on him that sent me. John 12:44

    And he that seeth me seeth him that sent me. John 12:45

    I am come a light into the world, that WHOSOEVER believeth on me SHOULD NOT abide in darkness. John 12:46

That does not mean that believers CANNOT abide in darkness!

The Effectiveness of God? This was the problem with the Jews in Romans 9-11. If it is true and the "non-predestinated" Gentiles are acceptabl after all, doesn't this mean that we CLAIM that God is ineffective?

Ken Sublett

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Predestination c. 2004 #2

August 12 2004, 10:05 PM 

In Ephesians 1:4 God did not CHOOSE us with a period at the end. Rather, He choose us THAT we should be holy and without blame. We saw the foolishness of being CHOSEN in the earlier study and we don't believe that God only GIVES faith to the poor. Whomever accepts God in Christ has been called out: if they respond they are the called. Most of the time the "common people" hear God willingly but the "doctors of the law" are more likely to take away the keys to knowledge.

David Lawrence notes that:
    The word that is translated predestinate in Eph. 1:5, Eph. 1:11, and Rom. 8:29-30 comes from a Greek word meaning to determine beforehand. It is the word "pro-oridzo," and refers to marking something out in advance. We also obtain the English word "horizon" from it, because the word denoted the rising of the sun when the early morning light made a demarcation from the area of darkness.
The word predestinate does not mean to SELECT for heaven or hell to prove that God is more powerful than we. That would not define a Glorious God. The word in Greek usage is "DETERMINE:" God pre-determines some things but He does not predestinate one to heaven or hell:

The word Paul uses twice is:
    Proorizo (g4309) pro-or-id'-zo; from 4253 and 3724; to limit in advance, i.e. (fig.) predetermine: - determine before, ordain, predestinate.

    Pro (g4253) pro; a prim. prep.; "fore", i.e. in front of, prior (fig. superior) to: - above, ago, before, or ever. In comp. it retains the same significations.

    To DETERMINE in the Greek resources is also:

    Hodoô, lead by the right way, who put mortals on the way to wisdom, of THINGS, direct, ordain,Pass., to be on the right way,

    This is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger BEFORE thy face, which shall prepare thy WAY before thee. Lu.7:27

    Hodos (g3598) hod-os'; appar. a prim. word; a road; by impl. a progress (the route, act or distance); fig. a mode or means: - journey, (high-) way.

God predetermined the WAY and MARKED IT out beginning with John who was the HODOS or road marker. Eishodos is to be IN THE WAY until we get to the door and then we enter IN whiich is EIS: INTO and never BECAUSE OF.

The only word you will find in the Greek resources is pre-determine. Furthermore, it does not seem to have any usages related to selecting persons. Rather, it defines a set of laws or boundaries: God pre determined THE WAY in which people would be called and chosen. The second part of pre-determine or predestinate is:
    Horizô(g3724 fom above) means "boundary" or mark out terms:

    Ordain, determine, lay down.. on certain DEFINITE TERMS

    IV. Med., mark out for oneself, tina horon horizêi what CRITERION do you ASSIGN, set up stones as boundary marks

These pseudo-Calvinists have MOVED THE BOUNDARY STONES! That is why YOUR church is now THEIR church. But God knows what is picked from whose pocket.

The word rarely means to SELECT in a personal sense. The word predestine is used in Ephesians 1:5 and proves that God did not predestinate in a PERSONAL sense because the word has no such usage that we can find. Rather, note the BOUNDARIES or conditions which are MARKED OUT.

Having predestinated us unto the ADOPTION of children
    1. by Jesus Christ to himself,
    2. according to the good pleasure of his will, Ep.1:5

The GOOD PLEASURE of the will of Jesus Christ is marked by the PREDETERMINED conditions of faith, confession, repentance and baptism. Then, he adopts us into His family. This is not unlike the normal human adoption procedure.

What was the good pleasure of the will of Jesus Christ? In Matthew Jesus said that we are made disciples (students) by baptism and further teaching. Our spirits or minds are not SUITABLE to be students of a Holy Word. Therefore, in Mark 16 Jesus said that "He that believes AND is baptized will be saved." In carrying out this predestinated will Peter commanded that believers repent and be baptized. The end result would be the REMISSION of sins (from the mind or spirit) and therefore receiving A holy or regenerated mind or spirit.

The PURPOSE of Jesus was to be the ONLY Teacher through His Word and the WAY is that of the student and not a ritualistic WORSHIP calculated to worship the leaders:

HODOO: Put mortals on the way to wisdom!

Paul understands this when he wrote:

Having MADE KNOWN unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath PURPOSED in himself: Ep.1:9

Purpose is much like "pre-purpose" or predestinate:
    Protithemai (g4388) prot-ith'-em-ahee; mid. from 4253 and 5087; to place before, i.e. (for oneself) to exhibit; (to oneself) to propose (determine): - purpose, set forth.

      Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through FAITH in his BLOOD, to declare his righteousness for the REMISSION of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; Ro.3:25

Jesus didn't say to baptize those who just believe in Jesus, but his WAY, which we MUST believe, is that through BAPTISM where He applies the healing power to our SPIRITS or MINDS. We must have faith in his BLOOD. Or we must have faith in the OPERATION OF GOD. If we do not believe that He has the power to wash us and regenerate our own spirits requested at baptism then we simply do not have the SAVING faith. People hate water because they hate the blood.

That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might GATHER together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: Eph 1:10

In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated [not JUST predestinated but following the boundary marks]
    according to the purpose of him
    who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: Ep.1:11

The pleasure of His will as HIS last expression was to MAKE DISCIPLES by baptizing IN ORDER TO the remission of sins. Then, He would show the WAY to those who CAN BELIEVE that "faith which is baptized saves or remits sins." If you do not believe that then you have no faith. The WAY he shows is again:
    hodoô , lead by the right way, who put mortals on the way to wisdom
The BOUNDARIES marked out as God's predestined PLAN was to be articulated by God in Christ. That WAY says that FAITH COMES BY HEARING:

That we should be to the praise of his GLORY, who FIRST TRUSTED in Christ. Eph 1:12

In whom ye also TRUSTED, AFTER that ye HEARD the word of truth, the GOSPEL of your SALVATION: in whom also, after that ye BELIEVED, ye were SEALED with that holy Spirit of promise, Eph 1: 13

If some cannot hear Paul in Romans 10 say that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God then this "prooftext" says it again: you CANNOT have faith without hearing what it is you are supposed to believe. Therefore, Engedism is wrong: faith is not a GIFT to a select few.

That SPIRIT OF PROMISE was announced on the day of Pentecost and it was the SAME promise made by the Spirit of Christ to Abraham. As the gift of the Spirit is the gift which SPIRIT gives, the promise of the Spirit is the promise made to Abraham. The Jerusalem Jews were sons of Abraham but not Israelites and WE are the only spiritual Israelites by connecting to Abraham and NOT to the Law of Moses:
    That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the PROMISE of the SPIRIT through faith. Ga.3:14

    For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:26

    For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Gal 3:27

    There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:28

    And if ye be Christs, then are ye Abrahams seed, and heirs according to the promise. Gal 3:29

That was the PLAN at the time of Abraham and beyond. Therefore, it had to be a PRE-plan of God. However, as proven by Ephesians 1, the predestinated WAY included baptism which IS the meaning of faith which includes TRUST.

The SEAL of the Holy Spirit is A holy spirit or A clear conscience. Because God pre-purposed to make us DISCIPLES to Lord Jesus Christ, the MARK or SEAL of the Spirit is that we are always pointed to the Word of Jesus Christ and the Name (singular) of Jesus or Jehovah- Saves. If we do not SEE the clear words on print then we are still blind and God has not RIPPED the veil into the Most Holy Place where the Word is under the Mercy Seat.
    And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, WHEREBY ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Ep.4:30
The PREDETERMINED WAY expressed in the Last Will and Testament of God in Christ was expressed by Peter to show HOW we are sealed with that holy Spirit of PROMISE:
    Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. Acts 2:38

    For the PROMISE is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. Ac.2:39

Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory. Eph 1: 14

Sorry about that but MY Spirit God is named Jesus or Jehovah- Saves: He is not my SONG WRITER and DANCE MASTER. He is the Incarnate God of the Universe the THESAURUS of every bit of infinite knowledge. He invites us ALL to let Him do the Teaching. He years to teach us the secrets of the Spirit world and He DOES NOT get His kicks out of thinking about BURNING fetuses to prove how Great He is. Disgusting! Utterly without redemption.
    That the God OF our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit OF wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: Ep.1:17

    But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. 1Co.1:24

    But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: 1Co.1:30

    Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. Col.3:16

God Pre-determined A WAY or plan to become our MASTER TEACHER. By forming an ekklesia or synagogue to include EVERYONE he did not clutter it with divisive people or programs. God ELECTED us in that He CALLED US OUT as the people were invited to a feast. Those who believe that He is and that He is the rewarder of them that diligently SEEK Him, are the EKklesia or Called Out body or Assembly. God dose not CALL us INTO a human institution cluttered up with Jewish and pagan trappings: Paul said that we are CALLED OUTSIDE of the city or polis or crowds where twos and threes are invited by Jesus to COME LEARN OF ME. Human false doctrines are PRE-DESTINATED to keep people AWAY from the simplicity that is IN CHRIST. Just say NO!


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Lots of time on your hands

August 31 2004, 8:22 AM 

When on earth do you find time to write all this?? Do you not sleep or eat? Do you not have a regular "9 to 5" job or a hobby to keep you occupied? I usually check out this website once every other month or so just to see if the same old arguments are being dredged up, and as usual, it's the same old mindless, rambling babble. And what's amazing to me is the fact that no one is engaging you in debate on this website anymore. It's just you grinding your axe over and over. Why not just accept the fact that there are people out there who disagree with you and there's nothing you can do to change their minds, and get over yourself??

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David: NOT as MANY as JESUS!

September 1 2004, 10:42 PM

As Many As: A Study; Part 1, Introduction By David Lawrence

Several times, at very critical points, the Scriptures use the expression as many as. Because these passages are all key in understanding our salvation, we shall devote a few weeks to an analysis of each of them. However, before beginning, we should try to apply a little logic to understanding this expression.

Now let's take an example that will lead to our study. "I am going to invite as many as I want to come to my graduation party." The category is the graduation party. It will contain units, in this case, people.
    Those people are defined by the fact that they have been chosen by the person graduating.

    All those whom he chooses will be invited. No one will be left out of those he wants to come.

    But NO ONE will be invited whom he does not want to come.
You can probably come up with many valid examples of your own, as we use this expression in everyday speech. But it is how God uses it that concerns us, and to that we shall turn for the next few devotional studies. Please stay with us. (If you would like to check out some Biblical examples of the phrase in preparation for next week's study, here are a few: Gen. 35:22, 2 Sam. 2:23, 2 Chron. 29:31, Matt. 14:36, Matt. 22:9-10)

    Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many: Luke 14:16
Bade is the INVITATION to everyone to come OUT of the WORLD or POLUS and come to the GREAT SUPPER.
    Kaleo (g2564) kal-eh'-o; akin to the base of 2753; to "call" (prop. aloud, but used in a variety of applications, dir. or otherwise): - bid, call (forth), (whose, whose sur-) name (was [called]).

    THE MANY includes ALL who are invited into the ekklesia or SCHOOL OF THE BIBLE:

    (g4183) pol-oos'... much (in any respect) or (plur.) many; neut. (sing.) as adv. LARGELY; mostly, largely, abundant, altogether Comp. 4118, 4119

POLUS is translated DOZENS of times as ALTOGETHER. Another comparable word is:
    Pleistos (g4118) plice'-tos; irreg. superl. of 4183; the LARGEST NUMBER or very large: - very great, most.

    Pleion (g4119) pli-own; compar. of 4183; more in quantity, number, or quality; also (in plur.) the MAJOR PORTION

    And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready. Luke 14:17

The Bidden are:
    Ekklesia (g1577) ek-klay-see'-ah; from a comp. of 1537 and a der. of 2564; a calling out, i.e. (concr.) a popular meeting, espec. a religious congregation (Jewish synagogue, or Chr. community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both): - assembly, church

    And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused. Luke 14:18

    And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused. Luke 14:19

    And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come. Luke 14:20

    So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. Luke 14:21

    And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room. Luke 14:22

    And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. Luke 14:23

      Go ye therefore into the highways, and AS MANY as ye SHALL FIND, bid to the marriage. Matt 22:9

    For I say unto you, That NONE of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper. Luke 14:24

    Kaleo (g2564) kal-eh'-o; akin to the base of 2753; to "call" (prop. aloud, but used in a variety of applications, dir. or otherwise): - bid, call (forth), (whose, whose sur-) name (was [called]).

Many Called--Few Chosen: Again, the Church is:
    Ekklesia (g1577) ek-klay-see'-ah; from a comp. of 1537 and a der. of 2564; a calling out, i.e. (concr.) a popular meeting, espec. a religious congregation (Jewish synagogue, or Chr. community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both): - assembly, church.
Ek means OUT OF. Therefore, the ekklesia or ELECT or church consists of those who were INVITED and ACCEPTED the invitation
    And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to EVERY creature. Mark 16:15
Every means EVERYONE you can FIND:
    Pas (g3956) pas; every, the whole: - all (manner of, means), any (one), ever, every (one, way), AS MANY AS, thoroughly, whatsoever, WHOLE.

    He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. Mark 16:16

God is NOT glorified when we create a picture of Him like a teenager who decides to invite Sally but EXCLUDE Susy. I shudder at people who are so "evangelistic" in maring the image of a Holy God.

My studied opinion is that people NEED others to depend upon them for what they believe and what they practice. If JESUS is correct in INVITING all and ELECTING those who accept the invitation then we should listen to Paul say:
    It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Gal 5:1
Ken Sublett

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September 3 2004, 4:37 PM 

    "Out of the Canaanites' belief in local gods with restricted spheres of influence arose a tendency to minimize the extent of God's claims and to bind Him by necessity to the people of a given area. God and His people came increasingly to be felt to exist for each other and to be mutually dependent. As certain of the false prophets expressed it, 'Is not Yahweh among us? None evil can come upon us!" (Micah 3:11). Again, while Israel might reject the pagan's belief in the masseva, or pillar, they could and did transfer the masseva-concept to the ark. With God thus 'contained,' they fell prey to the delusion of being able to control God's power for their own ends." (Theo. of OT, p. 105).



Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the Lord. Jere 8:7

How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of the Lord is with us? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the scribes is in vain. Jere 8:8

The wise men are ashamed, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of the Lord; and what wisdom is in them? Jere 8:9

Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall inherit them: for every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness, from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. Jere 8:10

Hear this, I pray you, ye heads of the house of Jacob, and princes of the house of Israel, that abhor judgment, and pervert all equity. Micah 3:9

They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity. Micah 3:10

The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the Lord, and say, Is not the Lord among us? none evil can come upon us. Mi.3:11

The head is "ROSH: that which is most easily SHAKEN)

Rosh (h7219) roshe; or rowsh (Deut. 32:32), roshe; appar. the same as 7218; a poisonous plant, prob. the poppy (from its conspicuous head); gen. poison (even of serpents): - gall, hemlock, poison, venom

The Jews believed that they were GOD'S ELECT based on their own SELECTION. If they had not been special then WHY were they selected. They were not elected or known before to be SAVED while everyone else went to hell. Rather, the children of ISRAEL among the descendants of Abraham were selected as EVANGELISTS: they were to be a blessing to all of the 70 nations. Gentiles were justified even though they did not SEEK it through being connected to God through the Law of Moses. The key HOOKS on which approval hung was living righteously and practicing social justice: loving God and loving others.

The Israelites lost their jobs as EVANGELISTS and not the power to walk by faith.

God had not CAST AWAY the elect which were those of Israel He KNEW BEFORE. However, most had rejected God and His Word and were responsible for their own REJECTION. Most Gentiles did not SEEK God through right living but through NATURAL RELIGION of which seeking God through charismatic music and sexuality were key "hooks." Therefore, there were no righteous people and THEREFORE no elect to salvation. God ELECTED a remnant to bring forth Messiah based on the SIMPLE test of whether you trust God's WORD (synagogue) or trust charismatic or musical rituals (church usually).

The Jerusalem CLERGY were of the SEED of Abraham but Jesus denied that they were ISRAELITES. Therefore, they had no role to play in redeeming all who OBEY in contrast to those "Jews" who did not obey God:
    I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. Rom 11:1

    God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying, Rom 11:2

    Lord, they have KILLED thy PROPHETS, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. Rom 11:3

    But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have RESERVED [kept] to myself seven thousand men, who HAVE NOT BOWED the KNEE to the image of Baal. Rom 11:4

    Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the ELECTON of GRACE. Rom 11:5

    And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work. Rom 11:6

These people were not RESERVED or elected because they kept the LAW but because they DID NOT bow to Baal. Bowing to Baal was intimately tied up with singing and playing instruments which is defined as "prophesying" in the pagan sense. The ISRAELITES or the total group which God KNEW BEFORE did not receive what they SOUGHT because they sought it through a system in Jerusalem quite identical to pagan Baalism.
    What then? ISRAEL hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the ELECTION hath obtained it, and the rest were BLINDED Rom 11:7

    as it is written: "God gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes so that they could not see and ears so that they could not hear, to this very day." -- Rom 11:8

    And David says: "May their table become a snare and a trap, a stumbling block and a retribution for them. -- Rom 11:9

    May their eyes be darkened so they CANNOT see, and their backs be bent forever." -- Rom 11:10

God called the Israelites: those who obeyed the WORD of God were the ELECT. God reserved them BECAUSE they did not fall into the charismatic worship of Baal. Those worshipped Baal even though God KNEW THEM BEFORE or FORKNEW THEM were not reserved because of THEIR OWN SINS. God did not force some to be OF THE TRUTH or OF FAITH and others to be OF THE LAW meaning OF the worship of the astrial deities to whom God TURNED THEM OVER at Mount Sinai BECAUSE they rose up to play meaning the MUSICAL IDOLATRY OF THE EGYPTIAN TRIAD who were ultimately wrapped up in the term Baal.

Notice that the BLINDED were those who BOASTED that they were the ELECT and said:
    None evil can come upon us!"
Do YOU know someone like that? There is GRACE and ELECTION only to those who ACCEPT the OUTCALLING and are baptized and added to the church, the body of Christ. Believers will know that they are saved by GRACE by being ELECTED because they ELECT God's will.


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listening, but no one is home

September 7 2004, 9:42 PM 


Do you think ANYONE ever reads your diatribes anymore?

I don't.


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JD Why are you here?

September 9 2004, 12:20 AM 


If you are not here to participate in this dialogue with questions, comments, or Biblically backed counterpoints then, what is your purpose? You claim that you do not read Ken's diatribes and that no one else does. How could you know of his "diatribes" lest you read them or maybe someone else reads them for you. Some how you must get divine foreknowledge that Ken has posted again. Otherwise, you hide in your closet, log in and read away. Without foreknowledge, your response makes you a liar.

Is it easier to cast daggers at others behind the veil of initials? Thus, making it easier to lie.
I KNOW IT IS HARD to put away earthly things. If they make us feel good it must make God feel good also to include it in worship. Instead of Jesus coming to show us a "better way" he could have just used the liberal slogan "Can't we all just get along?" I find it disheartening to see churches of Christ reconcilling with denominations. How far will this reconcilliation go? I have read about some religions that still sacrifice animals.

One suggestion JD; Keep reading Ken's diatribes. Read Donnie Cruz, Dr Crump, Kevin Hamm, and Joe McKnight also. Do your best to find them lying. Maybe, in the end you will learn something.

Wil Montero

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Well Willy....

September 12 2004, 9:06 PM 

Willy! You have not been here very long have you? I have read and read Ken's DIATRIBES. And that is JUST what they fact they are RELIGIOUS PORNOGRAPHY. Ken quotes many OTHER sources than the Bible for the informations he gets, some of which I think he actually believes. Other times his posts all look alike. They all talk about ZOE and DANCING and HIS TAKE on MUSIC. Did you know that Ken believes that SINGING in church is wrong???? I bet you didn't know that.

Willy, Kenny has insulted me and called me EVERY NAME in the book,, yet he administrators of this site say I am the name caller and Kenny can do NOTHING wrong!

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Wil Montero
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Name Calling

September 13 2004, 8:17 PM 

Dear J.D.,

I have been on this site and have read many documents posted by Ken and others( for and against) for nearly 3 months. I have conservatively put in 70 hours to research in those 3 months. I don't know about you JD but I went to a church of Christ high school and attended David Lipscomb College. I have learned more about the Bible, Religions and Biblical history in 3 short months than in 7 years of schooling.

I took a detour in my adult life that led me to a wordly walk that was not at all Christian. During this time, the coc has gone through some dramatic changes. Coming back I could see things with a fresh pair of eyes and it does not look so different from the ungodly life I walked. It is probably harder for those that stayed in to see the dramatic changes. That is normal. I am in the restaurant business. It is hard for me to see the filth of my restaurants while I am there day in and day out. Once I leave for a short while, I come back with a fresh pair of peepers and can see the filth. Not that my restaurant is actually filthy, I can just see things more clearly.

JD, you started your response to me by calling me Willy. Even after I signed my name. I am not afraid to let you know who I am. I understand that the moderators of this site allow some flexability as long as you do not hide behind an alias. Is this where you have chosen to begin calling me names?

When I first began reading on this site, I did not understand much of what has been written. The more I read, the more I learn. It has been absolutely more profitable to me for Ken and others to begin at the beginning rather than starting at the middle. After a few times I get it and can scroll down to the meat of what is new. If you have ever trained anyone; repetition, repetition, repetition. If I have had any questions about a subject matter that I do not quite understand, I have written Ken personally and have received a response with an answer within a day or two. I admire directness. Do not skirt the issues and candy coat it for me.

I do not wish to have a "relationship" with you that begins with name calling. There are others besides myself that have learned much from this forum. I am sure that I could also learn from you. Contextual scriptural and or historical facts will suffice with me. I am not into the "I know, that I know,that I know" FEELINGS that I get from charismatic worshippers. I studied biology, physics and chemistry and things have to follow certain paths for me to accept them as truths.

I would like to suggest that you read some Bible archaeology, Egyptian/Roman history and some of the Greek scholars. This will give you some insight to the times and events that occurred during the time of the Bible writers. Will I ever be as well read as Ken Sublett, Donnie Cruz, Dr Crump, And Joe McKnight and many others on this forum? Probably not. I can only narrow the gap of my ignorance.

JD, I wish you all the best in your search for all truths. If you find any blatant lies and have the documentation to prove it please feel free to share it with us. I will be able to sleep better if you can prove these men wrong. There is so much more fun I could be having right now.

Best Regards,

Wil Montero

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...........................THE BOOK

What Happened At the Madison Church of Christ?

There are thousands of churches being taken over across America.

This book is only about one of those churches. It's about the Madison Church Of Christ. By studying the methods used here along with the resource references you might be able to inoculate your church. At the very least you will recognize the signs early on.

Many of the current members of the Madison Church of Christ still don't know what happened.
Some never will know! This book is for them as well.

Madison Church of Christ was a 60 year old church. At one time it was one of the largest churches in the US, and the largest Church of Christ.

It thrived for many years on the vision of it's elders and those of it's ministers. Those visions undoubtably came from the the inspired word of Jesus Christ.

At sometime in the last 10 years there was a deliberate plan by a majority of the elders to take the Madison Church of Christ into a more worldly realm.

They used secrecy, covert planning, and outside sources to scheme and to change the format and direction of the Madison Church of Christ.

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At the heart of the plan was the fact that old members were going to be driven off so new techniques could be used to go out and reach the unchurched through new "Contemporary Holy Entertainment" methods developed by the "Community Church Movement"

Old members had to be kept on board long enough to get their plans ready, or the funds would not be there to pay for the new building. So by the plans very nature, it had to be secret.

The church had no plan in effect to renew or approve elders. There was never any need. The elders had always been "as approved by God". 10 of the last 15 elders would begin to shed some doubt on that.

The Elders did not even need a majority at first, because some of the elders went along unwittingly.

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Here is the list of players;

5 Godly Elders
10 Not so Godly Elders
120 "Deacons" (allegiance unknown)
2,800 - 4,000 church "members"
2 "teners" (people who have publicly confessed to have broken all ten commandments)
Unknown number of "sinners" (This is what the 10 elders call us.)
Unknown number of "demons" (Flying everywhere, to many to count)

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