Would you have taken me in?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Benjamin, Jun 22, 2006.

  1. Benjamin

    Benjamin
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    In another tread one said something to the effect that, “if you walked into my church spouting of that kind of thing I would have personally escorted you out.” Let me put this in regards to a person thinking they knew God but were living like the Devil.

    I partially agree with that there may be an occasion to do such a thing but wonder where the line should be drawn and how tolerant the church should be on one that is searching. Looking at my own life when I was in my late teens to mid-twenties, if you would have asked me if I believed in God I would have told you yes I did, yet I didn’t live my life for Him nor did I even know how He truly wanted me to live my life.

    I knew/thought that if I went to a church they would see the way I was living and would tell me either I didn’t believe in God or I was going to Hell anyway because of how I was living and if anything start dictating to me how I should live.

    Knowing myself I also knew that if someone tried to tell me I didn’t believe in God there was going to be trouble and if someone were to escort me out at that time it had better been handled delicately and dare not put their hands on me for I may have wiped the floor with that person and probably several others in the congregation if they wanted a piece of it, regardless it would have been ugly. Though because of my perceived respect for God and His church and its people at that time, and fear of God, and not knowing what to expect should I go while I was still messing up I just stayed away from it, not wanting to deal with it all, though I dreamed of walking in one and being warmly greeted and loved.

    Now regarding this following statement which I have taken out of context:

    “I cannot imagine meeting at church with a congregation that was full of people who do the things you say they can do and all of you be of one mind and one accord and worship God. There are a lot of groups like that but I don't call them churches.”

    Would you be patient with them telling you they believed in God while they lived like the Devil? Can you imagine meeting at a church that would allow itself to be full of them or possibly could there be a balance but that it should not get out of hand?

    If your church allowed people that were obviously sinning, (not even pretending or overly presenting themselves to be someone they weren’t and probably incapable of fooling anyone who could see) into “your” church or would you consider it a group that did no longer qualified as a church?

    Could your church recognize and help with the needs of a stubborn, messing up, but yet searching person who didn’t understand these church things given that person was not there to start trouble but sincerely wanting to know God?

     
  2. Gina B

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    Of course. That's a major and basic Christian duty, to teach and encourage new believers.
    It's also one of the most rewarding parts in my opinion, to watch someone grow. And to have people helping me out too. It works for all stages of Christian growth!

    If you're in a church that doesn't do that, I'm sorry.

    I've been there too. I had one woman get frustrated and upset and "talk to someone" about how hard it was to help me. She'd come over to my house and I had Barney on, and her 15 year old daughter was with her. Apparently, I was a "tough" case, it had been difficult for her to be there and have her daughter corrupted by having seen part of that show. :laugh:

    Yeah...if you're somewhere that acts like that, people are going to want to keep their families "clean" by staying away from you. The less of a legalist type of church you're in, the more prone to LOVING discipleship it will be, rather than putting up with you until you'll clean enough to not corrupt everyone else. :eek:

    A few warning signs that a congregation might have trouble with gentle discipleship: (this is meant with some humor, although it does happen in some places)

    1. Being asked "how are you" and the person keeps walking as you're attempting to reply, or they slap you on the back while they ask and then look around and not pay attention to your answer.

    2. Someone anonymously leaves a bag of "church-appropriate" clothing on the seat of your car.

    3. You do something wrong on Wednesday, and the next Sunday the sermon is specific to your sin, right down to the time and place, although nobody names any names, despite them having your description down right to the cut of the jeans you were wearing.

    4. You're invited to stay for a potluck, but they discourage you from sitting by the kids/teens.

    5. It's your 3rd -5th week there. The sermon lays down the beliefs of the church and it's stated that if people don't like it, he'd rather see people leave than compromise. This message is common in churches that have up to 200 members, usually under 100, and is directly aimed at the newcomer. It's a test. If you come back after it, they expect that you're gonna be changed and you weren't scared away by their holiness. You're gonna get a lot of handshakes and backslaps after this sermon, some from people meaning "it was nice to know you", and others who do it meaning "hope ya stay". If you miss the week AFTER this sermon, you won't get a phone call or a card in the mail like before, they'll just assume you're a dirty rotten scoundrel.
     
  3. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob
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    Now, being you are talking about me Ben lets put this in some kind of perspective. First of all the part of "being escorted out" had nothing to do with just members but a preacher who was preaching false doctrine that a soul could be "born again" but not have eternal life. Again, I say I would not tolerate such doctrine in our church. As far as escorting him out I went to extremes, as long as he sat down and kept quiet he could stay but if he disturbed the church he would be shown the door.

    Now the second part where you say if someone touched you that you would of wiped the floor with them. Well maybe, but then again, have you ever felt the arms of some of the older brethren. There are many I just would not want to fool with. Also, we too were at one time young and know all about being "rough house".

    The third part I was talking about a congregation filled with people I had just been told could be serial killers and that is why I made the statement of not wanting to worship with them if they pretended to be saved and a member of that church. I can not tolerate a hypocrit and that is exactly what that would be.

    Now, if these beliefs go against your beliefs then I am sorry but they are what I said and I stand behind them all the way. As far as being good to sinners we are a good to sinners as anyone I know for that is where we get our membership and would be fools to be otherwise. So I wanted to set the record straight about the sayings of mine that you used to set up this thread.

    God Bless,
     
  4. Benjamin

    Benjamin
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    Thanks Brother Bob, and I hope you’re not offended by my using your statements to form a scenario to build upon. They helped me to make my point and ask the questions so I did use them along with stating they were taken out of context.

    I have seen you and others state on a several occasions about things you would and would not allow in your church. If you remember I once asked you what you would do in a case with a member.

    I‘m interested to hear how far different people would go in allowing someone who is stubborn, and strong headed, yet searching, to exist with them in a church.

    What if per say I had brought my girlfriend who was hanging on me and really wasn’t dressed appropriately for the high standards of that church? And what if a couple weeks later I brought a different one, lol? Or what if I had a slip of the tongue (foul language) just outside the door or came in hung over and with battle scares. Would you come down on me or just delicately point me to the truth of the blessings of a godly life? Remember I would have not tolerated someone getting in my face, especially a bully type and would be quick to let one know, while not intending to cause trouble, I still needed a delicate touch or I’d have…never mind…:saint: machismo aside would you have been patient with me?

    What would you do? Would you still have made me feel welcome or thought we need to clean house here because he’s obviously not saved and is too disruptive to the membership by his lifestyle. (of course the extreme of a serial killer would not be logical and hopefully that person would be in jail anyway)

    With love and warmth I could have been taken in but with judging and hardness it would have been a catastrophe so how far would you go to accommodate me seeing where I was at and who I was?

    How far should a Christian’s responsibility go if they truly understand the situation in trying to deal with it?
     
  5. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob
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    Ben;
    If you are talking about the vistors to a church then I would not say anything to you and hope from the preaching and others around you that you will feel condemned. I go the way I felt when I was a lost. I didn't want anyone telling me nothing and you keep talking about being rough well I could tell you stories that I doubt if you have ever been there but thanks to God I humbled down under Him.

    If you were a member of the Church it would depend on what you did on what I would say to you if anything. If you were doing something bad enough I would deal with you in some way and if you did not agree to the rule of the church then after working with you a while and you still were argumentive, I would have the church withdraw fellowship from you and then you could do what you wanted to. God's children are easy to be entreated with.
     
  6. Benjamin

    Benjamin
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    How do you know Bob, why doubt, there’s no new thing under the sun. Anyway, all I’m saying is simple respect of my thoughts and belief wouldn’t have been an option back then, and if one was to escort me out because I confessed a sin along with belief in God unfortunately he’d been best to not get in too big a hurry. I too thank God for changing my heart, in my case I must say that my wife who’s major in college was social rehabilitation helped by showing me a complete opposite view of handling things, a gift from God.

    I’m much newer in my walk with the Lord than you and having lived a hard life myself and often thinking of where I came from and where I am now I wonder why I didn’t start sooner. Well one definite factor would be hearing a preacher talk about booting people out of “his” church while judging their sins and salvation is the kind of thing I didn’t want to have to step in a church and deal with. You seem to be more worried about one teaching it’s okay to sin but the truth is it’s God who changes the heart and through faith of God’s love and conviction of price paid the HS will do the work, He is capable of doing so without a schoolmaster.



    I am glad you would have worked with me and there are many ways I could have been dealt with but having to agree with everything you said was a rule for salvation would have been met with argument. On the other hand knowledge of God’s Word alone would have done the job while using my own God given mind and heart to reason righteousness.

    If I was ever a pastor of a church, and I do hope to a start formal education soon, :praying: , you would be hard pressed to even find the appearance that I would be un-accepting of a sinner. Jesus talked about going out and finding, then rejoicing more over that one sheep that had gone astray than the other 99 in the pasture and if one stepped into my church my greatest priority is to keep him in and feed him while letting God do the work and judging.

    I’m not sure if you would have taken me in or put me to the test at this point.
     
  7. Jack Lavictoire

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    Personally I think you did the right thing... I mean really - how can someone be born again but not have eternal life? It's just not possible! I'm sure it wasn't a pleasent experience for you but I praise you for protecting God's people from this kind of none-sense. I hear this kind of stuff all the time and I know that the devil is a liar and a thief. Hey, Satan doesn't want God's people to find peace so he'll do whatever he can and if that means to deny the very words of God Almighty then that's what he'll do.

    Thankfully God is faithful in teaching the elect!

    Anyway, my wife is going to give birth in a few months and you can rest assured that whatever he/she does he/she will always be my child. Now seeing that we have been born of God it stands to reason that we belong and thus have been given eternal life. Oh many of us have gone our own way but God has always been faithful to His word and as we all know He will not suffer lost.

    His name is eternally praised... And for good reason!!!

    Thank you for sharing... Thought it was very interresting. :thumbs:
     
  8. Brother Bob

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    Ben;
    I am still in the dark of whether you are talking about a member or non-member. A church has certain "articles of faith" that all have to live by and if its a member and you did some of the things you spoke of, I am just the overseerer of the Church but we all have to live by the rules including me. If you are talking about a member and they refuse to obey church rule then they cut themselves off from the flock. A man is responsible for how he lives and belong to a church and if the time ever comes that you don't believe what a church stands for then the right thing to do so as not to cause that church trouble is to withdraw yourself from them. If I ever come to the point I don't and will not accept the rules of our church then I will not trouble them anymore. The devil would like for me to stay and cause all the trouble I could but if my heart is right then I would leave them in peace, amen You seem to be saying that even though you are sinning and being a rebel the church should still just leave you alone and let you do your thing. Well, it don't work that way. As the prodical son, (the one that was lost) he became humble and said I will go home to my Father and say I am no longer to be thy son, make me as thy hired servant. The Father received him with open arms then. If the son had of come and stood outside calling him all kind of names and threatening him I don't think the Father would of welcome him back, but that is me. Because of the statements I made you judge me but I was talking to an adversary who kept calling me different things and saying people could even be serial killers and be saved. Well I told him and I tell you, I don't believe such doctrine.
     
    #8 Brother Bob, Jun 23, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 23, 2006
  9. Benjamin

    Benjamin
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    When I walk in the door saying I believe in God, needing help, what is the first thing I should be worried about that I need to live by, church membership rules? I think there are too much emphases being put on membership rules.



    Huh??? I don’t know what to say about this Bob, but it reminds me of the Pharisees and scribes.



    I wouldn’t have come in to that church to cause trouble though. True a man is responsible for how he lives and with a lack of knowledge and wisdom he isn’t going to do a very good work in/for Christ. “cut themselves off from the flock” ? I’m not sure I would have the time to do so, not even having the chance to discern the right thing to do. Is first priority to obey church rules or Church rules?



    Amen, but would the new believer have the knowledge and understanding to leave in peace or would the devil win out first by devising rules of the church and sending him away angry at it?



    Not at all, I’m saying there is a great need for patience and understanding to take precedence over making church rules. If a new believer was being disruptive solely based of the judgment of his sins as the problem, then the problem is more with the judgment than with the sinner. And, no, he shouldn’t be left alone, he is there to hear the Word, so preach it, this is, His words and judgment, not your own.



    I am a firm believer in the blessings of being humble before the Lord. The demon possessed dudes acted in that way and said to Jesus what do you have to do with us, you come to punish us already, but Jesus cast the evil away from them.



    I did not judge you; I came asking questions even changing the scenario. As for the serial killer thing:

    In theory, rather I should say truth, a serial killer could be saved. I know you don’t like hearing that and neither do I. Would I think that he was living in Christ? Not by the looks of it but I can’t see his heart, and I know two things about it:

    1) I am not to judge him and what I judge him with will be upon me, Now, I don’t want it upon me that I believe that there is anything that I can do or not do (no matter what) to save myself, because I BELIEVE that Jesus paid the price for ALL my sins. So if I believe there is even one sin that I can be held responsible for, that Jesus didn’t pay for, on judgment day which one is it??? because that was my judgment.

    2) Even the Devil believes but he is not born again from above, not sanctified, not doing the works of Christ, Jesus is the ONLY way and the Devil doesn’t have faith in that (couldn’t) and it is love of His Truth in faith that saves you, sets you free, “If the Son therefore shall set you free, you are free indeed.” I will live in belief of that doctrine, I will not be a servant to sin, the Lord is my Master, He paid the price and overcame sin, I will be judged by Him, not sin of this world, that’s it faith + nothing. That enough!
     
  10. Jack Lavictoire

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    1 John 3:15 NIV
    Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.


    God is more then able to save whoever He wants but from reading the above it should be clear that once someone is saved they are no longer murderers. I hope you guys come into agreement because I can see that your speaking from the heart.

    May Jesus personally bless you for that! :thumbs:
     
  11. webdog

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    David and Urriah?
     
  12. LeBuick

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    Brother Bob, people think this is easy but I know first hand how hard it is to make that desicion to sit a preacher down. However, in the end that flock has been placed in your care and woe unto you if you let a wolf bring strange doctorine and lead your sheep astray at the very place they are feed.

    On the other hand, I had one preacher that was so far out there I could look at the members faces and knew he wasn't doing any harm. Talk about serving canned food, this guy was reading from some book. I had several members walk out of service, a few were sleep and one of the mothers said, "now tell us about Jesus and them".

    He and I had a long talk in the office that evening and he now attends the Siminary. I've had him back and he's progressing well. My point is, be careful not to destroy one who is sincere but un-taught.
     
  13. Brother Bob

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    Oh, I got 34 years experience LeBuick but thanks. I was talking in this case about someone preaching that the Children of God could be serial killers and not be lost.
     
    #13 Brother Bob, Jun 23, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 23, 2006
  14. LeBuick

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    I agree, pull his coat tail and if he disagrees with that have one of the deacons hand him his hat! :thumbs:
     
  15. Benjamin

    Benjamin
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    That’s your privilege LeBuick, it’s your church, so you go right on ahead. :thumbs:
     

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