church searching...

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by gekko, May 20, 2007.

  1. gekko

    gekko
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    hey all.

    in the town i'm in right now - i don't know which church to go to -- to be a part of. i've got a couple in mind. but i don't know which one to stick with.

    wondering what kind of questions are good to ask the pastor(s) of the churches to see if they are standing on the Word or not?

    maybe some questions to see if they've got biblical doctrine or something along those lines?

    any suggestions?
     
  2. Hope of Glory

    Hope of Glory
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    Here's the list that I use. Note that I don't always use them all, depending upon answers to previous ones:

    What is adoption? (Romans 8:15, 23; 9:4; Galatians 4:5; Ephesians 1:5)

    Am I failing my child by not adopting him into my family?

    What must I do to be saved? (Acts 16:31)

    What does John 3:16 mean?

    What is the hope of a Christian? (Hope of Glory; Crown of glory is in 1 Peter 5:4)

    What is redemption? (It’s a family matter; you can only be redeemed by a near kinsman; the kinsman redeemer.)

    Why did Jesus die?

    Who did he die for? (2 Corinthians 5:14-15)

    Who was his blood shed for? (Matthew 26:28; Mark 14:24)

    Is justification the same thing as spiritual salvation?

    If Jesus died for out justification, what does Romans 4:25 mean?

    Was the prodigal son saved or not? Were the servants his or not?

    If we are all equal in the eyes of the Lord, how was John the apostle the most loved? Why have some have been placed over 10 cities, some over 5, some over none.

    What is hell?

    What is your doctrine of hell?

    “Born of God”, “Born Again”, “Born from Above”. What do these mean? (Jesus was born; but God said,

    Who is the bride? Who are the types of Christ and the types of the bride? (Adam, Isaac)

    Who are the elect?

    Who are sons? Bastards are children, but are bastards sons? (Hebrews 12:8)

    What is the Promised Land? The Children of Israel were already in the Promised Land. (Genesis 15:18) They were saved while they were still in Goshen. So, what were they journeying toward?

    What are crowns? (Stephanos: Matthew 27:29; Mark 15:17, John 19:2, 5; 1 Corinthians 9:25; Philippians 4:1; 1 Thessalonians 2:19; 2 Timothy 4:8; James 1:12, 1 Peter 5:4; Revelation 2:10; 3:11; 4:4, 10; 6:2; 9:7; 12:1; 14:14. Diadema: Revelation 12:3; 13:1; 19:12)
     
  3. D28guy

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    Those are good things that HoG brought up.

    Along with that, try something that I have had good success with.

    When I am looking for a fellowship...and maybe considering a few...I just take it to God and ask Him to *speak* to me (not in an audible voice, but speak none the less), clearly and unmistakably, when I am where He wants me to be.

    God has a way of making things clear, and this type of prayer has worked very well for me.

    God bless,

    Mike
     
  4. Chemnitz

    Chemnitz
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    This is where being a Lutheran is much easier. The only question needed is "do you accept with reservation the Book of Concord as the correct exposition of Scripture?"
     
  5. J. Jump

    J. Jump
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    I think HoG has put forth a good list of questions and as he said you probably wouldn't need to even ask them all. I know where I am there isn't a single church that I have found yet that would get very deept into that list :( And we are still currently searching.

    I would just like to find a place that could answer this question according to Scripture:
    What must I do to be saved?
     
  6. SaggyWoman

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    I always watch to see how he treats people.

    I always listen to see how he speaks about his people and his family in his sermons.

    Example is everything.
     
  7. billwald

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    What town?

    Does the congregation put on a decent pot luck?

    Could you tolerate the worship format and preaching for the next 10 years?

    Are these people you want to invite into your home?

    Could you trust any of the enough to spill your guts to them?

    Do they suit your family situation?
     
  8. gekko

    gekko
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    huh? what do you mean by that?
     
  9. Hope of Glory

    Hope of Glory
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    I used to have that one first, but I discovered that if you put it third, the first two will cause them to think.

    I've discovered that if you get past the first three, then you can have a pleasant afternoon or evening of fellowship, discussing the rest. This is especially true if you get past question 5.
     
  10. Eliyahu

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    Gekko,
    I think Hope of Glory explained the basic requirements very well.

    In addition to the basic requirements, as you may remember, there are so-called Church Truth or Truth of Church Gathering.

    This apply to how the congregation should gather and remember the Lord.

    For example,
    Some pastors of the churches are emphasizing the Donation so much, or so-called Tithes so much. Then, if you look into detail, about 40% of the donations and tithes are spent for the Pastor or Assistant pastors etc. They ask a lot for the construction of huge church buildings.
    They don't know the Church Truth on the donation ( 2 Cor 9:7-9, 8:14)

    Then as for Baptism, I hope you can check it at least, if either Believers Baptism by immersion, or even the sprinkling is tolerated or not. Infant Baptism cannot stand on the Bible at all, and only Believers Baptism by Immersion should be accepted.

    As for Lord's Supper, I mentioned this is to be weekly or at least often as we read 1 Cor 11:23-30 and Acts 20:7.

    Gekko, I hope you understood about the Head-Covering.

    Then the next is very important in choosing the church for you.
    Do the church allow the men believers to pray, preach, and teach the people and the children according to the teachings by the Holy Spirit?
    Some churches require the people to ask the permission from the pastor for every bit of activities. If the Pastor say No, nothing can be done there. If the Pastor say Yes, no one can prevent him. In other words, the Pastor sits on the seat where the Lord Jesus Christ should sit. Only the Pastor can baptize the people in such church.

    In such church, the talents and gifts of the believers can hardly be developed. Therefore Mono-Pastoral system is to be seriously reviewed when you choose a church to participate. In Mono-Pastoral system, even though the pastor committed a grievous sin, he is often exonerated from the discipline, which is a nonsense. Actually there is no office or job title " "Pastor" in the church. Eph 4:11 Pastor is a wrong translation from Poimen which should be rendered as " Sheperd", not an office, but a gift as we have only 2 offices in the church, Elder( called Overseer as well) and Deacon

    YOu may have much difficulty in finding the right church to serve the Lord there. But remember this:
    Heb 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went

    The best way for you to find the right church is to pray God. He will surely let you know where you should go.
     
    #10 Eliyahu, May 21, 2007
    Last edited: May 21, 2007
  11. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    Here's my short list:

    1. What is your view of the nature of scripture?
    2. What is your view of baptism' mode, design, subject and administrator?
    3. What is your view of the Lord's Supper, it's design and participants at the
    Lord's table.
    4. How does one come into a saving relationship with God?
    5. What is your view of the Trinity. Is Jesus God in the flesh?

    Not an exhaustive list, but enough to extend the conversation for a while.
     
  12. Dustin

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    I don't think mode of baptism is dogmatic, or at least it shouldn't be. My own conviction is, reading through Acts, it could be any mode is acceptable. I'm still not clear on the believer's only, or believers AND the household. But from my own thinking, I would go for pouring.

    Just a few thoughts.


    Soli Deo Gloria,
    Dustin
     
  13. Eliyahu

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    I am very sure that the Believers Baptism by Immersion is the only mode permissible according to the Bible.

    1) Believers Baptism:
    Acts 8:37 - Philip said, "If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest" . And he answered and said, " I believe that Jesus christ is the Son of God"

    Matt 28:19 - Go ye therefore, and TEACH all nations, baptizing them...
    We cannot teach the Infants.

    Mark 16:16 - He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved
    He that doesn't believe is not expected to be baptized.

    Acts 2:38 - Repent and be Baptized...
    Baptism without repentence means nothing but a disobedience.

    Acts 16:31 - Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house(hold).
    " If you believe in Jesus, you will be saved, and then your household will believe in Jesus and they will be saved"

    This happened actually there:

    Acts 16:34 -And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, Believing in God with all his household
    Jailor's household all believed in Jesus and therefore they were baptized.


    2) Baptism by Immersion

    - Word Baptizo itself means Immersion.
    - Matt 3:16 - Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of water ( from inside of the water)
    - Acts 8:38 -and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the enuch, and he baptized him.
    8:39 - and when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip,.

    - Romans 6:3-4: Baptism by sprinkling cannot give this teaching-

    4 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.

    John 3:23 - And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there, and they came and were baptized.

    If they were baptized by sprinkling, they didn't need much water.

    Baptism by sprinkling came from the paganism, sprinkling so-called " Holy Water" which is quite popular all over the world such as in Asia, Andes Indians, Egypt, Babylon.

    3. Why is the Infant Baptism a problem?

    Thereby Satan could bring millions of unbelievers into the Christendom, and the churches have become the assemblies of the mixtures of believers and unbelievers, eventaully the corruption of the church.

    4. Why is the Baptism by Sprinkling a problem.

    It doesn't teach the Death and Resurrection Truth, and moreover the Sprinkling method was never thought about by the believers until the pagan, fake Christians brought it into the church. If the sprinkling was OK, Jesus didn't have to travel from Nazareth to the Jordan river for a long journey. Throughout the history, millions of true believers were killed by the brutal "so-called" Christians who claimed the Baptism by Sprinkling or Infant Baptism. If they were just, they would not have murdered those millions of Christian believers, as Bible never teaches killing people just because of any heresy.

    This is why the proper and correct performance of Baptism is so important in choosing the church to attend as Baptism is the starting point of all the obedience after the Salvation. Baptism doesn't give the Salvation. Baptism has nothing to do with the Salvation. It is to be performed unto the person who was already saved by believing, already born again by Holy Spirit.
     
    #13 Eliyahu, May 22, 2007
    Last edited: May 22, 2007
  14. thomas15

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    Does the (local) Church have a web site? Check it and see what it says. Ask for a copy of the church statement of faith. If they don't have one, run. If they do have one, study it in great detail. Then when you attend a service, you will know what they are supposed to believe and you can see with your own eyes and hear with you own ears what they do believe.
     
  15. DQuixote

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    Or, you could join a Southern Baptist church, where all of this has already been "worked out." If there are several SBC congregations in town, you could attend each one, always praying for spiritual insight. God will eventually unite you with one of the several.

    :wavey:
     
  16. StefanM

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    I believe Gekko is Canadian. It may be hard to find an SBC church.
     
  17. DQuixote

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  18. gekko

    gekko
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    thanks for the suggestions. i'll use some of them.

    i found a list of questions the other day - what are your thoughts?

    i'll try and find the references they used with those questions..

    God bless!
     
  19. Hope of Glory

    Hope of Glory
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    In response to number 1, self-esteem is the center of all sin.
     
  20. gekko

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    it may be so -- but sin is still man's biggest problem. since self-esteem is sin - therefore sin is a very general term. :p

    hmm.
     

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