Evangelical free Church-Armenian?

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by 12strings, Jun 24, 2004.

  1. 12strings

    12strings
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    Does anyone know if Ev. Free churches are like "free-will" churches?
    what are thier beliefs about eternal security, soverignty, etc.

    thanks,
    -andy
     
  2. Eric B

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    I had gone to Free Churches for years,and only recently, when getting seriously involved in the C vs. A debate, did I start wondering what they were.
    I don't think they had a hard stand on that. You could believe which ever you thought was biblical. I did not hear preaching on it.
    One clue, however, is it seems that when people wanted to become particularly Calvinist, they left for Reformed seminaries. There was one person in the church I was attending years ago, and right after that, the well-known person who seemed to be the head pastor or pastor of the flagship church (or something like that), Chuck Swindoll, did the same. So it might lean to Arminianism, but still, I'm sure you can be whichver you are convinced of.
     
  3. Joseph_Botwinick

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    I have attended an E-Free Church here in Arkansas and discussed this issue with the Pastor. The sense he gave me was that they are firmly Calvinist, and not much, if at all, Arminian. I could be wrong, but, I think the Free refers to the independence of the denomination (IOW, they are not tied to a convention).

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  4. Karen

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    20-plus years ago, I was very well acquainted with a District Superintendent of the E. Free Church, read the Beacon magazine, and attended some district conferences. I also met several times one of the authors of the Twelve Points.
    As a denomination, they, at least then, were neither Calvinist nor Arminian. However, an individual church might lean one way more than the other. They emphasized unity on essential doctrines such as the Trinity and the Resurrection, and charity on interpretational issues. Free refers to their historic European roots, in which free churches were separate from state churches.

    The historic roots of the E. Free churches in this country are in states such as Minnesota and Wisconsin, with their Swedish and Norwegian immigrants. The seminary is Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, in Deerfield, IL. In Arkansas, for example, a number of the E. Free churches were intentional plants in places like Hot Springs and Rogers, where a number of northerners had retired and were able to devote a lot of energy to aiding the pastor.

    Karen
     
  5. Eric B

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    Yeah, that pretty much sums up what I knew about the denomination
     
  6. DeclareHim

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    Do they have a website? And do they lean towards being Pentecostal or charismatic. Just wondering.
     
  7. Karen

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    They would be neither Pentecostal nor charismatic.

    Karen
     
  8. Dr. Bob

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    I work as a missionary helping closed churches, new church plants and churches without pastors.

    The local E-Free church began with four baptists who got tired of the "exclusive" position of baptists - you must believe "xyz" or you cannot be part of a church. The Free church is "inclusive" - as long as you believe the basics, you are welcome.

    I have worked with such often. I am preaching there next Sunday (July 4).

    The Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA) was formed in 1950 by the merger of two church bodies: the Swedish Evangelical Free Church and the Norwegian-Danish Evangelical Free Church Association. Both of these groups had sprung out of the revival movements of the late 1800’s that had swept those ethnic immigrants in America.

    The Swedish Evangelical Free Church was organized in 1884 in Boone, Iowa. The Norwegian-Danish Evangelical Free Church had its origins that same year, with a nationwide association formed three decades subsequent.

    Representing about 275 local churches, these two associations laid aside outdated ethnic diversity and were formally merged in June 1950 at the Medicine Lake Conference Grounds in suburban Minneapolis. Under the leadership of Dr. E.A. Halleen in its first year, the initial offices, policies and procedures of the Evangelical Free Church of America were established. Dr. Arnold Olson then followed as president, and for 26 years led the new association from its Scandinavian roots into the mainstream of the evangelical movement.

    Succeeding leaders of the EFCA were Dr. Thomas McDill, Dr. Paul Cedar, and presently, Dr. William Hamel. These men have carried on the godly heritage intrinsic to the movement since its earliest days. This association of independent local churches, joined together in the bond of love for the purpose of developing and carrying on ministries that are most effectively accomplished by mutual cooperation within the Body of Christ, continues to grow and flourish, presently comprising 1250 autonomous churches.
     
  9. Dr. Bob

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    EFC Doctrinal Statement (When you evaluate it, you see that it is in line with 99% of our Baptist churches)

    We believe the Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, to be in the inspired Word of God, without error in the original writings, the complete revelation of His will for the salvation of men and the Divine and final authority for Christian faith and life.

    We believe in one God, Creator of all things, infinitely perfect and eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

    We believe that Jesus Christ is true God and true man, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He died on the cross, a sacrifice for our sins, according to the Scripture. Further, He arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven, where at the right hand of the Majesty on High He now is our High Priest and Advocate.

    We believe that the ministry of the Holy Spirit is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ, and during this age to convict men, regenerate the believing sinner, indwell, guide, instruct, and empower the believer for godly living and service.

    We believe that man was created in the image of God but fell into sin and is therefore lost and only through regeneration by the Holy Spirit can salvation and spiritual life be obtained.

    We believe that the shed blood of Jesus Christ and His resurrection provide the only ground for justification and salvation for all who believe, and only such as receive Jesus Christ are born again of the Holy Spirit and thus become children of God.

    We believe that water baptism and the Lord’ Supper are ordinances to be observed by the Church during the present age. They are, however, not to be regarded as a means of salvation.

    We believe that the true Church is composed of all such persons who through saving faith in Jesus Christ have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit and are united together in the Body of Christ of which He is the Head.

    We believe that only those who are thus members of the true Church shall be eligible for membership in the local church.

    We believe that Jesus Christ is the Lord and Head of the Church and that every local church has the right under Christ to decide and govern its own affairs.

    We believe in the personal and premillennial and imminent coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and that this “Blessed Hope” has a vital bearing on the personal life and service of the believer.

    We believe in the bodily resurrection of the dead; of the believer to everlasting blessedness and joy with the Lord; of the unbeliever to judgment and everlasting conscious punish-ment.
     
  10. PastorGreg

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    Doctrinal statement of EFCA is great. My problem is with their 5 distinctives, one of which is ecumenicism. Big problem here.
     
  11. DeclareHim

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    Thanks for all the replys What exactly does ecumenicism mean.
     
  12. Dr. Bob

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    I helped an EFree church for 16 months as interim until they found a pastor. These "distinctives" are NOT fundamental Baptist for certain sure!
     
  13. DeclareHim

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    Thanks for the post Dr. Bob. Very informative.
     
  14. Gina B

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    Ecumenical
    (a.) General; universal; in ecclesiastical usage, that which concerns the whole church; as, an ecumenical council.

    Declare Him, to many baptists who don't know any better the word "ecumenical" is a cuss word. I've seen a baptist church use it to describe another baptist church and declare they were ecumenical because they attended a pro-life rally at a *gasp* e-free church, and since e-free'ers ain't baptist they of course are heathens on a fast track to hell...
    That's not the right use of the word though, as you can see. BTW if I wasn't in a decent baptist church already I'd be in our local e-free one.
    I'm considered a heathen in my town by a lot of the IFB's though. [​IMG] I even believe the local Methodists and (don't pass out now) Presbyterians are Christians too.
    Gina
     
  15. DeclareHim

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    Yea I definetly know what you mean. I think many of our IFB friends are going to be shocked when they get to heaven and see all the differant people from differant churches that used differant versions that are there. gasp what if Assembly of God and other pentecostals are there. Boy cant wait to see the look on there faces. [​IMG]
     
  16. Major B

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    Dr. Bob,

    I attended an E-Free church for awhile, and I know several of them. I always described them as "Baptist without the attitude."
     
  17. mozier

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    And what might even be more shocking is just how many Roman Catholics there are! :eek:

    Some Baptists will think that they're in the wrong place. [​IMG]
     
  18. DeclareHim

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    They will think there in the wrong place I had never thought about that before it really cracked me up. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  19. PastorGreg

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    Boy, this thread degenerated in a hurry. Standing against ecumenicism has nothing to do with saying Methodists, Presbys, etc. aren't saved. It has everything to do with obedience to Scripture and the integrity of Bible doctrine. BTW, there will be very few Catholics in heaven. You cannot believe the doctrine of the Catholic church and be saved.
     
  20. Johnv

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    Not unlike Baptists, EV-Free denoms aren't doctrinally strict Calvinist or Arminian. They vary from church to church. Again, not unlike Baptists.
     

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