We need more seeker friendly churches!

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by annsni, Nov 30, 2015.

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  1. annsni

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  2. Internet Theologian

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    Now that's what I'm talking about!
     
  3. BrotherJoseph

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    Sister Ann,

    I have to admit when I saw the title of the post, I was skeptical of the link, but after reading it I agree. The environment does not create seekers as the world thinks, but rather God does by changing their hearts! Indeed those who seek after Christ already show sign of spiritual life and thus are already regenerated, but in need of gospel conversion. Any church that teaches the five points of grace is in my opinion a "seeker friendly" church. Those that appeal to the flesh will get fleshly results such as those who followed Jesus simply because he fed them food. Paul went to evangelize in the synagogues, the places in which those seeking God can be found. Seekers need gospel conversion not to "become saved", but to learn how they are saved (through Christ's sacrifice alone). My church does not have soup kitchens, Sunday schools, established seminaries, missionary societies, or even musical instruments (all of which are the inventions of men) in the service, but it does have the preaching of the sweet doctrine of grace which will appeal to every true seeker whom God has already given them "ears to hear" and "eyes to see". Good article!
     
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  4. Martin Marprelate

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    Who is the Seeker in our churches today?
    Read John 4:23 and find out. Cool
     
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  5. robustheologian

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    Great article written by a great guy.
     
  6. FriendofSpurgeon

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    Great article.
     
  7. steaver

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    Amen! Good article! It is God who draws men to Christ. When the Spirit moves them to come into our churches we need to give them just that, Jesus Christ, so they may hear the gospel and call upon Jesus Christ for salvation/regeneration.
     
  8. steaver

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    Does it use a church building, electricity, indoor plumbing and heating, paper and pencils, English version bibles? Does the preacher ever quote any commentaries? (All inventions of men).
     
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  9. Internet Theologian

    Internet Theologian
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    Chairs, pews, floors, walls, pulpits, offering plates, envelopes, communion cups, steeple, cross, building name, paint, parking lot...

    sigh
     
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  10. BrotherJoseph

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    Hi Brother Steaver,

    All of the above such as a building, plumbing, heating, paper, and pencils do not have anything to do with spiritual matters, thus your analogy is not valid. The things I mentioned my church does not have such as Sunday schools, established seminaries, missionary societies, unlike the items you compared them to are all in place for spiritual reasons (although invalid ones). If you wish to read why such things do not hold the test of scripture, I suggest you study The Black Rock Address written by the Particular Baptists in 1832 who opposed such things. There are links to each section (Sunday Schools, missions, theological schools, etc.). Here is the link http://asweetsavor.info/exc/rock.php

    And no, the Elder does not quote commentaries during the sermon.
     
  11. annsni

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    Matthew 25:34-36

    Psalm 34:11, Matthew 4:23

    Titus 1:9

    Mark 16:15, Acts 13:3-4

    Psalm 150
     
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  12. steaver

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    How about using English version bibles? And do you sing praise songs written by men and women?
     
  13. steaver

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    Does he add his own commentary? If you want to be consistent and non hypocritical you would have to do a read only with scripture and use the original Greek and Hebrew language.
     
  14. Internet Theologian

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    We don't have 'Sunday School', we call it Bible Study, but we do the same things, it's just a different name. I wonder, and no offense intended, but is it still wrong??? :)
     
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  15. BrotherJoseph

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    Sister Ann,

    This is the verse you replied to me to support soup kitchens in churches, “35 For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: (Matthew 25:35). This verse does teach Christians should feed the needy, etc., but is it talking about every homeless person in the world as soup kitchens do? No because Jesus replied, “as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me”, thus it is talking about taking care of “brethren”, this would be believers. A soup kitchen is open to anybody, it does not care if they are “brethren”, and it is often used by churches as a draw technique to convert the homeless. This will produce followers no doubt, but unfortunately many will be just like those who followed Jesus because he gave them bread. "26 Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled" (John 6:26). Indeed Jesus feeding them did produce "seekers" as it says "Ye seek me", but they did so for the bread, not the Man.

    Also, nothing in the verse says it is the function of the church to be operating soup kitchens. If this is what the verse taught, why didn’t the churches do so in the book of Acts, or did the churches just evolve over time and become better when they finally started establishing soup kitchens, thus finally obeying Mathew 25:35 per your interpretation?

    While I agree believers have a responsibility to feed and cloth fellow believers, this should be done in private and secret. Let me ask you this, does operating a soup kitchen open to the public to all who desire to come in a busy side of town, "3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly." (Matthew 6:3-4). It seems to me a public soup kitchen located say in the run down side of the city of Chicago by a church would more appropriately fit the following verse, "Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven." (Mathew 6:1) and perhaps also this verse, "But all their works they do for to be seen of men" (Mathew 23:5)

    Lord willing as I have time I will reply to the other scriptures you provided to support other so called church authorized functions.
     
  16. steaver

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    But with this position you are declaring that YOU can know who is one of Jesus' brethren and who is not. YOU determine who gets food, water and shelter, and this according to YOUR judgment as to whether they are brethren. Is this what Jesus meant when He said "Love thy neighbor as thyself"?
     
  17. BrotherJoseph

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    Sister Ann,

    Here are the verses you provided me to advocate the church should have Sunday schools for small children, "11 Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the Lord." (Psalm 34:11). Who wrote this? Aas it not David who was obviously ordained by God to preach and teach as he wrote much of the Old Testament, but now let me ask you this, at the majority of "Sunday Schools" for children, are the teachers usually preachers (or to use the commonly used term "pastors") who are called by the Holy Spirit to preach and teach the word of God and "ordained" by the church members as such? I would argue the majority of the time it is simply members of the congregation who simply volunteered and use some sort of prewritten curriculum to teach and they also are not ordained. Now, tell me what scriptures talk of using prewritten curriculum to teach children and also that just any "member" can go ahead and teach Sunday schools? Further, do you realize the high percentage of "Sunday School" child sexual abuse there are in the churches?

    This is the other verse you gave to support "Sunday Schools" for children, "23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people". Notice first it was Jesus who was the one doing this, I do not believe most Sunday school "teachers" can teach as he does, do you? Further, the verse also says he also did "healing", are the Sunday school teachers going to do that too if this is what the verse is talking about, that Sunday schools should be established?

    Bible study is greatly to be commended, and there are definite benefits to studying and discussing scriptures with other Christians; however, scriptural example dictates that such activities should be conducted in contexts other than formal church worship. There is nothing in scriptures to indicate that worshippers, either in the church or in the law, were ever segregated by knowledge, age, sex, marital status, or any other criterion. Instead, all worshipped in a common assembly.

    The importance of adherence to scriptural example on this and other matters is considered in the question treating scriptural precedent.

    Some will say that Sunday schools are necessary for the instruction of children; however, the Lord cautions against assuming a posture which views the understanding of children with slight or disdain. He tells us that their understanding can exceed that of the wise and prudent (Mt 11:25, Mt 21:15), and that God has ordained praise in the utterances of babes (Mt 21:16). Accordingly, Jesus rebuked His disciples for denying admittance of children to His presence (Mt 19:13-15, Mk 9:36-37, Mk 10:13-15). Hence, it should not be assumed that children are incapable of receiving proper instruction from the general assembly. The modern practice of denying children entrance to church sanctuaries is very much against the spirit of the scriptures.
     
  18. BrotherJoseph

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    Scripture is clear alms should be done in secret, a soup kitchen does anything but that! Further, as I said there is no verse telling us that churches should be running soup kitchens, if they were supposed to why didn't they do it in the churches in Acts and the New Testament? Moreover, why isn't there a single verse in the entire New Testament that states churches should establish such?

    In answer to your question, Jesus said "ye shall know them by their fruits", also 1 John tells us signs of true believers (they will love the brethren and obey God's commandments). James tells u s they will also have good works, also they are those who believe and confess Christ as savior.

    Consider what Jesus said, "Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you" (Matthew 7:6) I am afraid the typical "soup kitchen" often is in violation to Mathew 7:6 with their "indiscriminate" public open door policy catering to every homeless person on the street.
     
  19. JonShaff

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    Please help me understand how Matthew 7:6 has any bearing on a soup kitchen?
     
  20. BrotherJoseph

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    Sister Ann,

    You provided Titus 1:9 as a scriptural justification for seminaries. Here is what that verse says in context, "4 To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour.5 For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:
    6 If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.
    7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;8 But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate;9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers." (Titus 1:4-9). Paul is writing this to Titus, tell me what was the name of the seminary school Titus attended? Further, verse 5 talks of Titus ordaining elders in every city. Paul then goes on to list the qualifications for these elders in verses 6-9, and in verse 9 (the verse you appeal to for seminaries), states, "holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught", can you name me one Elder, preacher, in the New Testament that went to "seminary"? If not, then this verse obviously can't be referring to such. Who were the most educated, schooled people of religion in the gospels, was it not the Pharisees who crucified Christ? Who were the apostles who wrote the New Testament? A bunch of unschooled fishermen.

    Not only did the apostles not go, but men such as Stephen and Apollos who did not sit under the ministry of Christ were preachers in Acts and had no such training. These institutions are man made and have their origin in none other than the mother of harlots the Catholic church themselves. "The establishment of modern seminaries resulted from Roman Catholic reforms of the Counter-Reformation after the Council of Trent.[5]" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seminary

    The Holy Spirit in combination with the written word of God is more than sufficient. "But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him" (1 John 2:27)

    Also, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, "16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." If the scripture makes a man "thoroughly furnished" and "perfect" then I do not see what seminary could add as nothing further needs to be added upon (so as long as the reader of scripture has the Holy Ghost in him to teach him).

    Other verses in scripture are clear enough to establish my case,
    "33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.
    34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, " (Jeremiah 31:33-34a)

    John 6:45, "It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God"

    An elder is one who is called of the Holy Spirit and ordained by the church to preach the gospel. Seminary is not listed as a means of becoming an "elder" in the New Testament or a way to become "trained to preach". It is funny how Paul, Peter, John, Jude, Luke, Matthew, Mark, and James failed to leave out this important institution in all their epistles, isn't it?
     
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