Party Spirit/ Schisms vs. Love

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Heavenly Pilgrim, Dec 26, 2009.

  1. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    1. Does not every denomination or group that exists has some principles, beliefs, doctrinal positions etc that define that group, written or unwritten?
    2. Does one not become a part of a specific denomination or group by stated adherence to the beliefs held by the group or denomination?
    3. Is not the basis of association directly connected with the beliefs of what it means, or how to become, a Christian believer and in some cases that which they feel is the Scriptural mandate to remain in the faith?
    4. Is not the very purpose of association to align oneself with men and women that agree doctrinally with not only what salvation and or the Christian walk entails, but to keep apart or insulate themselves from those that would differ from the agreed upon statement of faith or doctrinal positions?
    5. If a certain group holds to doctrinal positions that are NOT a matter of salvation, and in doing so in effect cut of other brothers or sisters in Christ from being treated as an equal, how is that not showing partiality or respect of persons as directly forbidden by Scripture itself? Jas 2:1 ¶ My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons.
    Jas 2:9 But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.

    How would such an attitude of self-segregation be not precisely what the Apostle Paul condemned as having a party spirit? 1Co 1:12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.
    13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?

    I would like to see every believer on this list would be to make a list of absolute essential doctrinal beliefs you feel are necessary for fellowship. We could then query each other if in fact they are all essential for salvation and see if we are walking in unity and love as the Scripture commands us to or if in fact we are guilty of creating a schism in the body of Christ.
     
  2. Salty

    Salty
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    Let me start with one doctrine. Baptist - I believe that immersion is the only valid form of baptist. In order to be a member of our church, you must be - or have been - immersed, and of course hold to that doctrine belief.
    Now when it comes to fellowship with other Christians - I have absolutely no problem do so with Methodists, and others who accept sprinkling.

    Of course you could factor in the Church of Christ - who believe that baptism completes salvation. I can fellowship with them, but who would be the first to make a point of the doctrine of baptismal regeneration?


    The same can be said of all doctrines, as well as the importance of such. Some believe that a man can not be a preacher if his hair touches his ears. (it is a shame for a man to have long hair..Romans) Since they have a biblical principal - to them it is a non-negotiable doctrine.


    Salty
     
  3. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Salty, forgive me if I get personal here. I mean no offense. I am simply interested in getting us to look introspectively at our attitudes and actions, to see if we are in accordance to the Word of God.

    What constitutes ‘having fellowship’ to you? Can you fellowship with them in your Sunday School class, or in the worship service, etc? Can you treat them as you would so that men treat you seven days a week anywhere they are found, or does that fellowship have to happen outside the walls of your denominational church? Do you grant to them the same freedoms you so desire to enjoy? Are they allowed to speak and share their doctrines, songs, etc. at times you are allowed to freely do so as long as done decently and in order? Is true fellowship time and place sensitive?
     
  4. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: They have no such Biblical principle. If in fact Scripture clearly stated that if hair on a man touches ones ears it constitutes having long hair, I might agree with them. In that Scripture does not draw any such distinct conclusion I personally would feel that such rules constitute a schism. Being a ‘Biblical principle’ to some, in no wise makes it a true Biblical principle, would you not agree? Those drawing such unbiblical conclusions need to be exhorted, in a Scriptural manner of course, concerning their error.
     
  5. billwald

    billwald
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    Does not every denomination establish requirements based on their best understanding of the information available to them?

    Your questions beg the big question: Why do Christian denominations exist? Id est, why does the Holy Spirit not give the same teaching to every Christian?
     
  6. Amy.G

    Amy.G
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    He does.

    Eph*4:4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
    Eph*4:5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
    Eph*4:6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.


    The problem is not with God, but with human beings. People have presuppositions when they come to the bible and they read it through these presuppositions. This is because we are still living in sinful flesh and yield to the desires thereof. We must all pray and yield ourselves to the Spirit instead of the flesh and then and only then will we be able to discern the truth.
     
  7. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: While I understand what you are saying, and tend at least at times to somewhat ponder that perspective…………. but I find myself unwilling to act or operate under that assumption at least at times. I have had the privilege of intermingling with several godly men and women of differing denominational backgrounds that I would not for a minute accept the notion that it was sin in their lives that was a the heart of their obvious differences. Ignorance in some areas maybe. Inability to escape some teachings from childhood, maybe, but sin? I would not necessarily believe so. I have known them to be humble, caring, and willing to overlook even the prejudices of others for unity and fellowship, including others that even excluded them in ways. Treating others as equals that were not treated as such by those they fellowshipped with. I am truly a blessed man to have been able to rub shoulders with such men and women!

    In a ministry I am personally aware of, there are at least 4 distinctly different theological perspectives represented leading the group, and many others represented in attendance. There are Pentecostals and non Pentecostals. There are Independents and Baptists. Face it, we all do not think alike. Could the ‘possibility exist’ that God uses even differing doctrines at times to minister in different ways to different individuals at different places in their walk with the Lord? None of us have all the truth. Could God even blind us to some knowledge or understanding to keep us humble and even to test us and others in the love we have one for another?


    Lu 6:32 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.
     
  8. Amy.G

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    The only examples of blinding that I have read about in the Bible is God's blinding of unbelievers. It is His will that we know all that He has revealed to us. We are to seek the milk of the word.
    1Pe*2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:


    We are to seek it in order to grow. But there are some Christians who do not grow because they stay on baby food all of their lives. They are saved, but they are ignorant of God's word. I see this everyday. Our churches are full of baby Christians. This is one way that false doctrines spread, sheer ignorance and trusting in man's doctrines instead of seeking the meat as did the Bereans.
     
  9. FriendofSpurgeon

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    I think the answer is -- I simply don't know. I, too, have known many Godly people who simply don't agree on certain issues. It's not an issue of sin and it's certainly not an issue of "milk, not meat." And it's not that one's a conservative and one's a liberal. They simply disagree.

    Personally, I don't have a problem with this. In essentials, unity. In non-essentials, liberty. In all things, charity.
     
  10. Amy.G

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    So, the reason people disagree is because they just disagree.

    That's deep. :sleeping_2:
     
  11. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Amy, you well may have made an good point. Let me strike the word “blinding” and insert the word ‘witholds.’ I would certainly say God has withheld truth from myself for I am not infinite, and have sought God for answers that I have yet to receive answers to. I believe we all would admit to that would we not? Does he not withold soem level of truth in different manners to different people? Could that possibly be a source of disagreement between brethren?

    If the unity Scripture calls us to involves total doctrinal agreement, somehow I feel we are all in trouble. It would appear to me that the unity we are called on has as much or more to do with how we treat others that we disagree with as it does coming into doctrinal unity on every point.

     
  12. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    .


    HP: God help me.
     
  13. FriendofSpurgeon

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    Perhaps not deep. Just true. They each have their own interpretations. As it says in Corinthians, "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even
    as also I am known."

    There are a lot of differences out there between good men and women of faith on important issues -- Baptism, Communion, Eschatology, Gifts of the Spirit, Cal/Arm, etc. to more "soft issues" such as Worship Style, Scripture Translation, Separation, etc. Of course, there are those would even disagree with these being "soft" issues. And, I'm sure we can all think of additional differences.

    Wouldn't it be great though, if the body of Christ could actually focus more on what unites us than on the differences that divide us? Just thought.
     
  14. billwald

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    Godel's incompleteness theorem see google

    Kurt Godel demonstrated that every formal logic system or formal model ultimately breaks down. I suppose this would apply to theology as well as math. See

    http://www.ltn.lv/~podnieks/gt.html

    for a simple explanation.
     

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