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  1. 7 points
    DaveW

    Merry Christmas to all.

    Over here we are about to head into the last bit of Christmas eve, so I want to wish you all a merry Christmas. Argue all you like about the terminology, the day, the date, the theology, etc, but I mean it in the simplest and nicest sense. Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.
  2. 5 points
    I love the way you mischaracterise the literal interpreter so that you can then discredit them. That is what is called a "Straw man argument". The literal interpreter takes the literal interpretation unless there is a reason to take it otherwise. The reason could be a literary mechanism, such as when the Bible uses the term "like", which indicates that something is not the literal stated item but is "like" it. Mat 3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: Not an actual dove, but "like a dove". Or it might be where the context clearly indicates a literal interpretation is not intended. Mat 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Jesus was not saying the Pharisees and Saducees were actually descended from snakes....... The ones leaning to their own understanding are the symbolisers. They decide what the symbols mean based on nothing more than their desires to find a particular interpretation or doctrine. Of course there are some literalists who do the same, but the safest way is to let the Bible tell us clearly what is literal and what is symbolic, and that lies with the literal interpretation. The point is that the literalist will accept symbolic meaning not at a whim as you suggest, but when it is clearly indicated, and will them interpret that symbol within the context of the passage. The symboliser takes whatever he wants as symbolic when it fits his purpose and then interprets it to mean what fits best with his doctrine. One is clearly not relying on the words of the Bible to define symbolic and literal.
  3. 5 points
    weary warrior

    Starting Again

    We had a NY's fellowship last night here at the church, with games and finger food planned. Well, instead of just the core 10 church members showing up, 34 people arrived. People I had never met before. Including about 10 teenagers from town who are totally unchurched and unsaved. I spent the entire evening policing. Don't get me wrong, everyone had a great time, although the carpet in the fellowship hall may never recover. When everything was done, and all were gone, I found myself upstairs in my office at about 12:30am this morning praying. There had been no preaching, no evangelism, no "church". I had no plan or desire to provide a teen shelter, I'm not interested in intertainment or compromising for numbers. This was soooo outside of my comfort zone and realm of experience. As I prayed, trembling at my desk before God, fearful that I had somehow, unwittingly begun a path that would ultimately weaken and cheapen the church and the gospel, I was compelled to randomly flip open my Bible that was laying there in front of me. It fell open to Hosea 6:6, "I will have mercy and not sacrifice..." The Spirit gave me great comfort as I sat there in that chair, assuring me that these lost, cussing, promiscuous kids (and adults) need to be loved too, and that it's not their job to come to where we are, it's our job to go into the gutter and meet them where they are. With mercy. So yeah, the carpet downstairs may never recover. Words were said in the church building that ought not be said anywhere (yes, they were gently corrected). Public displays of affection were ended with a word and a look by me, teens were run back inside from the dark parkinglot and I ended the night a nervous wreck. A joyful, amazed, exhausted nervous wreck. (Kids are not my thing) A number of people have said they will difinitely be in church Sunday because of last night, a service which is held upstairs, which does produce the truth and gospel without reserve, without compromise. So, in the end, I left my study fully at peace, went to bed and slept like an exhausted baby.
  4. 5 points
    Ah, but this report is wherein the incorrect estimation lies. Actually, some Christians have Christmas trees "in spite of Jeremiah 10" because they do NOT believe that Jeremiah 10:1-16 is talking about Christmas trees, but that it is talking about idols formed and carved from trees. They are not seeking to stand in stubborn disobedience against the Lord. Rather, they simply do not believe that this passage at all reveals our Lord's viewpoint concerning Christmas trees, but only His viewpoint concerning idols. They believe this because of the statements made throughout the WHOLE context of Jeremiah 10:1-16 -- "Hear ye the word which the LORD speaketh unto you, O house of Israel: Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They [the heathen people] deck it with silver and with gold; they [the heathen people] fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. They [the things made from the trees, decked with silver and gold] are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they [the things made from the trees, decked with silver and gold] must needs be borne, because they [the things made from the trees, decked with silver and gold] cannot go. Be not afraid of them [the things made from the trees, decked with silver and gold]; for they [the things made from the trees, decked with silver and gold] cannot do evil, neither also is it in them [the things made from the trees, decked with silver and gold] to do good. Forasmuch as there is none like unto thee, O LORD; thou art great, and thy name is great in might. Who would not fear thee, O King of nations? for to thee doth it appertain: forasmuch as among all the wise men of the nations, and in all their kingdoms, there is none like unto thee. But they [the heathen people] are altogether brutish and foolish: the stock [the thing made from the tree, decked with silver and gold] is a doctrine of vanities. Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the workman, and of the hands of the founder: blue and purple is their [the things made from the trees] clothing: they [the things made from the trees] are all the work of cunning men. But the LORD is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation. Thus shall ye say unto them, The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth, and from under these heavens. He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and hath stretched out the heavens by his discretion. When he uttereth his voice, there is a multitude of waters in the heavens, and he causeth the vapours to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasures. Every man is brutish in his knowledge: every founder is confounded by the graven image: for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them [in the graven image made from the tree]. They are vanity, and the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish. The portion of Jacob is not like them: for he is the former of all things; and Israel is the rod of his inheritance: The LORD of hosts is his name." Take notice of the word "vain" in verse 3, the word "vanities" in verse 8, and the word "vanity" in verse 15, which all help to tie this entire context together. Certainly, I agree that there is much hypocrisy within the Fundamentalist movement; and it grieves my heart deeply. (Although it is also likely that there is yet such hypocrisy within my own heart to which I remain blind.) However, when we Biblically assess the position of others on a matter, it behooves us to do so with as precise accuracy as possible. (There, I have finally contributed to this thread discussion.)
  5. 5 points
    Jer 10:1 Hear ye the word which the LORD speaketh unto you, O house of Israel: That was spoken to Israel, and it refers to worshipping false gods/idols/graven images that were crafted from the wood of the tree by a "workman". For example... Isa 44:13-17 13 The carpenter stretcheth out his rule; he marketh it out with a line; he fitteth it with planes, and he marketh it out with the compass, and maketh it after the figure of a man, according to the beauty of a man; that it may remain in the house. 14 He heweth him down cedars, and taketh the cypress and the oak, which he strengtheneth for himself among the trees of the forest: he planteth an ash, and the rain doth nourish it. 15 Then shall it be for a man to burn: for he will take thereof, and warm himself; yea, he kindleth it, and baketh bread; yea, he maketh a god, and worshippeth it; he maketh it a graven image, and falleth down thereto. 16 He burneth part thereof in the fire; with part thereof he eateth flesh; he roasteth roast, and is satisfied: yea, he warmeth himself, and saith, Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire: 17 And the residue thereof he maketh a god, even his graven image: he falleth down unto it, and worshippeth it, and prayeth unto it, and saith, Deliver me; for thou art my god. Jer 10:5 They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good. ...and there is the proof that these false gods/idols/graven images...which couldn't move on their own, couldn't do evil on their own, nor could do good on their own...were being worshipped. It's not about the tree; it's about what is crafted from the tree...aka...false gods/idols/graven images. I personally don't know anyone who decorates a Christmas tree with actual silver and gold (that is what the verse says after all), nor do I know anyone who bows down and worships a Christmas tree...praying that it won't move on its own and sneak into their bedroom at night, pleading to it not to bring evil upon them, or petitioning it to bestow good favor upon them.
  6. 4 points
    Ha! Took the punch and am still breathing just fine. Handled it with Spirit-filled love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, and meekness. No band-aid even needed.
  7. 4 points
    Well, since you haven't been around, then I can only assume that you aren't familiar with Totoosart nor his background. I warned HIM...with a level of warning that I felt HE should hear and would benefit from. There was enough information given in my warning that it should give enough reason for others (who aren't HIM) to seek more information if they are unfamiliar with John Ogwyn or "Tomorrow's World". ...just like you did.
  8. 4 points
    DaveW

    Away for anniversary

    The Lord provided for us and I was able to take my wife away for our 31st anniversary- not "away - away", just to the south-west of our state (about 200km away from home), to stay in a little cabin in the bush for a few days. Anyway, one of the things we did was to find a popular off-road track down here called Three Bears. We have a 1985 Toyota Landcruiser - it is not new, but it is in good condition, and they are a capable truck. Anyway, we got a little video of the track. 31 years married and she still comes 4x4ing with me (on the rare occasion we get to go.) I hope you enjoy this few minutes as much as we enjoyed the hour of track work. a888c6703cca18dec3123e60981cca03.0.mp4
  9. 4 points
    Rebecca

    Music help?

    I'd like to add a suggestion. At the church I attended during Bible college, occasionally the song leader would bring out an interesting fact about the hymn we were about to sing, whether about the song itself or the author of the song. It really helps with the understanding or appreciation of the hymn. It would take some effort on your part to do some research about one of the hymns, but if you do this than the folks who know nothing about the hymns will grow in their understanding and appreciation of why we sing the traditional hymns. It's not something you need to do for every song and not needed every service, but just once in awhile bring something interesting out about what you are singing. Nothing more than a minute or two of talking, especially if you just had the people stand for the song! I would also like to encourage you not to worry about whether or not you have a singing talent. Just keep up what you are doing and some day God will lead someone to help lead the singing. With the way the church is growing, it's possible God has already put this on someone's heart, they just might not be ready yet.
  10. 4 points
    Invicta

    Ethiopia

    Our Pastor is going to Ethiopia on Wednesday to support an Ethiopian friend Pastor xxxxx who has a church about 100 km (abt 63 miles) from Addis Ababa. Pastor xxxxx has had at least two attempts on his life and been threatened many times. We are praying for the Gospel that our pastor will preach and for the safety of both pastors. Pastor is also going to the midlands here on Monday, to preach at a funeral of his former boss who was not a believer. He accepted as long as the family knew that he would preach a message from the bible.
  11. 4 points
    DaveW

    Fires in Austrailia

    Just an update. There are people worldwide who are blaming the recent and current bushfires on "climate change". As I have already mentioned, fires such as these (this scale) are not common, but also not unprecedented. Twice in the last 40 years we have seen fires similar to this. I don't know if it is being reported, but over the last 2 - 4 weeks there have over 180 arrests of arsonists related to the recent and current bushfires. This is unprecedented. We do have fire bugs of course, but a bad year would be 30 arrests through the nation over the entire summer. 180+ is astoundingly out of proportion. I am not really one for conspiracies, but with all the protests about climate change shouting about the fires, and all the accusations against our PM, along with a hugely disproportionate number of deliberately lit fires........ well, it all just seems a little bit...... coincidental. But is it really possible that people would risk causing death and horrendous damage to property, just for political gain, and to advance the "environmentalist agenda"?
  12. 4 points
    DaveW

    Fires in Austrailia

    Ok then - a few bits about this. The article is referencing the fires on the East coast - I am on the West Coast. That means that those fires are not affecting me. However, there are extensive fires along the east coast and in fact all over Australia. Every State and Territory is suffering fires at the moment. But it is summer in Australia, and we ALWAYS have fires in summer. These are worse than recent years, but really only because the last several years have been relatively mild. The stuff about our Prime Minister is political fluff from his opponents. The PM is not responsible for the fires and cannot do anything about them. The fire services are State controlled, not federal. But for context - Western Australia (where I am), currently has 40+ Bush fires raging through the state, including one that has cut the main transport route between the east coast and the west coast. But the majority of these fires are in unpopulated areas, and so there is almost no news on the WC fires situation. On the East coast, the population is far greater, and spread wider in the country, so many smaller country towns are suffering. The suffering is widespread and real, but not extremely unusual. The problem is that the progressive political parties have managed to stop all sorts of management of bushland areas (like cool weather burning of bush areas, cattle grazing of bush areas), and now they are blaming our (conservative) PM for the results of their own policies. We have had two bushfires within 3 miles (5km) of our house, but in WA most houses are built with a construction that makes fires less of a threat. Double brick walls, tin or tiled rooves, and not generally right against bushland. Remember that I put up a photo of our fire danger signs? They start at "low moderate" and the second level is "high" which is every day from spring through autumn that it isn't raining. We currently have a total fire ban - if you go into the bush you cannot light any campfire, and can only cook with a controlled, contained bbq flame. You cannot drive through bushland off the well defined tracks for fear that your exhaust may light scrub. No harvesters can be moved through fields. No welding, grinding, or anything else that could throw sparks. And those are normal summer restrictions. In short - the bush fires are worse than the last few years, but we always have them.
  13. 4 points
    I do a lot of expository preaching and I try to find something in the passage, usually a story, or an incident, that shows that the scriptures, and the truths contained therein, are for our good. I would like to mention two scripture verses to point out my thoughts. Moses said, "And the LORD commanded us to do these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as it is at this day." Deuteronomy 6:24 Paul said, "Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come." 1 Corinthians 10:11 In our work on the field, when we first started the work, we did not always have a Wednesday night service for several reasons. So, our experience is not so great a scale as in numbers. But, we have seen some good spiritual growth, and we have experienced, on a small scale, that once saints realize that the scriptures are beneficial for our well being, and that further attendance, or work in the church, is good for their spiritual development, and family life, than they may want to come out of joy to learn more and not come out of duty. I still remember the day when some of the folks in our latest work, even though small in numbers, decided among themselves to start doing some of the maintenance work on the building, attend visitation services, and help with the daily routine of starting a church. These blessings started when the folks that were saved started to see that the scriptures were written for our good, and that serving the Lord out of a heart of love, and not duty, was a blessing to their lives.
  14. 4 points
    PastorMatt

    Merry Christmas to all.

    I had a great Christmas. My church surprised us and flew in my daughter and Son-in-law from CA to Ct.
  15. 3 points
    There. I fixed it for you.
  16. 3 points
    I've.... never seen anyone hollering or throwing books at preachers in any IFB church I've attended. If they did so, I'd leave. That's not 'decently and in order'. I'm not too impressed with too much 'amening' either (thankfully our church doesn't do this). You're painting with a broad brush, and the colours don't match.
  17. 3 points
    Most commonly the argument in favor of "cultural relevance" is founded upon 1 Corinthians 9:20-23 -- "And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; to them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law. To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you." Indeed, this passage DOES indicate that some consideration of "cultural relevance" is of value in our evangelistic ministry. However, the full context around this passage includes 1 Corinthians 9:18-27; and this full context indicates that our consideration of "cultural relevance" should be governed (restricted) by at least three principles -- "What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel. For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; to them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law. To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you. Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: but I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway." 1. Our consideration of "cultural relevance" should be governed (restricted) by the sacrifice of self's freedoms and rights. 2. Our consideration of "cultural relevance" should be governed (restricted) by submission "under the law to Christ" (Biblical righteousness). 3. Our consideration of "cultural relevance" should be governed (restricted) by bringing into subjection our own fleshly (selfish) desires.
  18. 3 points
    Well...I hate to have to admit this, but my assessment of you appears to be correct...and I was hoping that I may have been wrong. I was cautious about your style of interacting with others here, but I actually agree with some of what you say. However, you've lost me now. You have no idea who Scott Markle is, do you? You obviously don't, because of your own words. In your gusto to "contend", you have made some very misguided judgments against Scott that come no where even remotely close to the truth. You maligned his character (which is above reproach). You maligned his biblical knowledge (which is vast). You maligned his intent (which is honorable and godly). You maligned his methodology (which is biblical). You basically maligned the whole man when you didn't have a clue what he believes or promotes. Oh yeah...you "contended" alright. You really showed him. ...and you showed us your folly. Shame on you. Perhaps next time you might want to back off from being so quick to be contentious...I mean so quick to "contend"...before you stick your other foot in your mouth.
  19. 3 points
    Jim_Alaska

    Eternal Security vs O.S.A.S

    Jude 1:24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, 25 To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen. It's not my salvation to lose. The deal (covenant) was made in eternity past between God The Father and God The Son. The ONLY part I have in Salvation is accepting it. Once I accept it there is no provision in God's Word to un-accept it, or discard it.
  20. 3 points
    BALONEY! Please allow me to LEEK a little iinformation for you. The last THYME that I MUSTARD enough energy to KETCHUP on important things in life, it was needful, because I had been working 12-16 hours a day...7 days a week...for several years. I had to STEW over my predicament for quite some time afterward. I was tired, and my countenance was PASTE-like. LETTUCE move beyond this. Perhaps we can learn to SQUASH our differences, and STEAK a claim; in that, to KETCHUP or not to KETCHUP...there is no question. We all must KETCHUP on some things at some point. Posted with love, respect, and admiration to my brothers and sisters of Online Baptist. If I could give you each a FLOUR, I would. Respectfully, NN
  21. 3 points
    NO NO NO -- when things need to be done, the energy is to be MUSTARD that no KETCHUP be required..
  22. 3 points
    Rebecca

    The beauty of creation

    Hermit crabs are an interesting critter. They use the empty shells of other critters for their protection since they don't grow their own shells. Usually when they outgrow the shell they are in they have to go in search of an empty shell large enough to fit them, and if another Hermit crab is nearby that also needs to upgrade they will wait in line to take the hand-me-down shell. I thought I was witnessing that when I saw these three Hermit crabs surrounding a larger shell. However, it turns out that there was a fourth crab inside the large shell! Two crabs were trying to evict the one in the large shell while the smallest was just waiting for the winner to leave its shell so it could take it over. I wasn't able to stay to the end of the fight to see the outcome, unfortunately.
  23. 3 points
    My wife, upon hearing all this, said, "Hast thou considered that thou mayest just be a picky old man?"
  24. 3 points
  25. 3 points
    Rebecca

    The beauty of creation

    I'm going to change it up and show an ugly creation: the Black sea cucumber/Black tarzan (both names are common). I at first thought this creature was a piece of garbage floating around in the shallow tide pool, but on closer inspection, it turned out to be a creature that is very ugly. However, when I looked closely at its head, it was interesting how the tendrils flowed out and around in search of food. The video quality isn't very good and my dog is splashing around, but you can see it moving its tendrils in search of food.
  26. 3 points
    DaveW

    The beauty of creation

    Sunset from Gracetown, South West of Western Australia
  27. 3 points
    DaveW

    Away for anniversary

    3 bears carpark and surf breaks in the background, our old Cruiser in the fore.
  28. 3 points
    OLD fashioned preacher

    Major changes

    ¡Que interesante! (How interesting!). I assume that the majority of folks here have already learned that the Lord directs and coordinates things without consulting us and sometimes without showing us where it "makes sense". Our job is not to be able to explain or understand "why", but rather to determine that it is indeed Him and be obedient (and without griping, murmuring, disputing - ie. be content and trust Him. Therein lies our greatest failure.) Anyway, I had the "Holiday Season" approaching, one son and his family were in the lower 48 having a youngun' and we saw them in the Chattanooga, TN area. We were leaving the motorhome in W. Memphis, AR for a month and driving the van to Dodge City, KS to spend a month with 2 of the boys and their families at Thanksgiving while another grandchild was born. My plan was to try for meetings in MS, AL, NW FL, Central FL, S FL as I sought to get to the Miami area where I knew I a definite meeting in Jan. Alas, one meeting in Tallahassee in Jan (500 miles from Miami) and 3 brethren want me in the churches in TN in Feb (875 miles from Miami). I picked up ONE other Miami area meeting but the pastor was going on vacation and wanted me to fill in the Wed before the meeting (Sun AM). It's an hour and a half from Miami. I developed vehicle problems with the motorhome and couldn't try to book any definite dates due to not knowing when I can be where. I couldn't get peace about cancelling any of the meetings. Not the way I want to spend money (at 5 miles per gallon fuel consumption). Fast forward: I'm in the middle of the largest Seminole reservation in Florida (Big Cypress) an hour from anything. The Hispanic church we had a meeting at gave us a huge love offering - it covered the expenses of traveling here and up to TN!! The pastor of the church here on the Res is the one I'm filling in for. We found out that this was not "merely" a vacation, 3 months ago they unexpectedly lost their 38 year old son and haven't had any chance to get away, slow down, or grieve. I'm SOOOO glad I didn't cancel for my inconvenience or personal concerns! The Seminole Indians only became a recognized tribe in the 1957, they were a loose band of Indians from several tribes (mostly Creek) who were hiding from US soldiers and living in the swamps and their descendants. This reservation is in the Everglades. They have a Chairman who may or may not choose to use the term "Chief" - some have , some have not. Their first chairman was a saved man who was also an Independent Baptist preacher! He started this church (Big Cypress New Testament Baptist Church). The large Bible on the communion table was presented to him in 1973 and cost $39.95
  29. 3 points
    weary warrior

    Music help?

    I appreciate all of the advice and encouragement. We had 28 present again yesterday. I chose "O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing" because of its very short verses and modest range. And with 6 verses, there was opportunity for them to kind of learn it by the time we were done. It went much better...no one's ears were bleeding by the time we finished. It all actually is a blessing in a way. We sing the one song, I rattle through 1/2 dozen announcements and then go straight into the preaching. As you might imagine from reading my posts on here over the years, my preaching is not what one might call fluffy and light. It's not harsh or mean, and I'm definitely not a screaming wind-sucker, but it is very direct and to the point, so a 30 minute message is usually enough. We then dismiss and go downstairs for a church family Sunday dinner every week. So the timing is working out well. The weekly meal after church? It's our version of "breaking bread" together, and Im finding that the benefits of this to the people individually, and to the cohesion of the church as a whole, are so much more than I ever imagined. Have you ever noticed how many important things in scripture Christ did with the disciples were done over a meal?
  30. 3 points
    Alan

    Music help?

    A word of encouragement. At our last church we started, in Taiwan, in the Chinese language, with just me and my wife, and no piano player, with me as the song leader. We sang traditional Baptist hymns every Sunday. Most of the folks who came, one by one, did not know any of the songs and a lot of them learned new words every service. A lot of the Bible words, and expressions, were new to them as well as the tune they were sung in. So, every month or so we sang some of the same songs until the folks started to learn them and the meanings. After awhile, a long while, Rebecca came and helped with the piano playing and the songs got more better. After a while one of the young adults felt led to take piano lessons. The church paid for the piano lessons and then another young person (very young), also took lessons. Eventually, the young people took over the piano playing and, at the same time, the folks took over the whole service. All in all, the church, Victory Baptist Church, has three young people who play on a rotating schedule (that they set up themselves and not me). In the photo below the song leader is one of our converts and the piano player is also one of our converts. Here is my word of encouragement and my suggestion. Keep on singing the same hymns out of the traditional song book. Yes, most do not know the words nor the meaning of the words. Yes, you do not have a piano player. So, you just sing the best you can and if you have grace to bear the members mistakes they will bear your mistakes. By the way, my mistakes in the song services, and my preaching, were the mistakes I made was not only in my lack of singing ability but also in the language. So, I had to endure smiles of folks holding down a laugh at my language mistakes besides my lack of singing ability. Eventually, God, will move your converts, or folks moving from one church to your church, to play the piano. God bless.
  31. 3 points
    Alan

    Revelation Bible Study.

    Evil Beasts The “evil beasts,” and “children of wickedness, is a direct reference to the false shepherds, or religious leaders, and the national leaders in the nation of Israel. False shepherds, in either the economy of the nation of Israel or in the churches in the Church Age, are like “evil beasts.” The Lord Jesus referred to the lost religious leaders in Israel as serpents and Herod, the leader in Israel, as a “fox.” Serpents and foxes are ‘brute beasts’ who destroy and not help. In Daniel 7 the great four kings of the earth are compared to beasts. In 2 Peter 2:12 the apostle Peter refers to the false prophets and teachers in the churches as, “natural brute beasts.” 2 Peter 2:12, “But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption.” “… out of the land ...” is a direct reference to the land of Israel. David as Prince Also, the “prince,” it is a direct reference to the “prince’ in Ezekiel 44:1-3 and 46:1-18. The prince is to offer burnt offerings, peace offerings, meat offerings, voluntary burnt offerings, and the prince will inherit land (Ezekiel 46:16), and have sons: “Moreover the prince shall not take of the people’s inheritance by oppression, to thrust them out of their possession; but he shall give his sons inheritance out of his own possession: that my people be not scattered every man from his possession.” Ezekiel 46:18 The Lord Jesus has never had to offer an sin offering nor will He ever have physical sons according to the nature of man. It is a scriptural impossibility for the “prince” to be the Lord Jesus in any manner; whether prophetically, literally, symbolically, allegorically, or any other sense of the word. And, up the time of the apostles, David, the prince of Israel, was not resurrected. Acts 2:29, “Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day.” Unmistakable Literal Prophecies of the Restoration of Israel “And I will make them and the places round about my hill a blessing; and I will cause the shower to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing. And the tree of the field shall yield her fruit ...” As with other prophecies of the Old Testament, the physical blessings of the natural fruits of the trees of the field, the abundance of rain in the land of Israel, will cause an abundance of food productivity in Israel. Isaiah 35:1-10 “… and they shall be safe in their land ...” Since the days that Ezekiel penned these words, until this very day, this prophecy has not been fulfilled. Even from the days when the Israel became a nation in May 1948, the Jews in Israel have not dwelled safely in the land. “… in their land ...” is clearly a reference to the physical land of Israel. There is absolutely no way “… in their land ...” can be construed in any other manner. Again, this is another reference (verse 13 & 25 and now verse 27), to the Jews being safe ‘in their land.’ The prophet Zechariah prophesied, “And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.” Zechariah 14:11. The only time the nation of Israel, will be inhabited safely is during the reign of Christ as revealed in Revelation 20:4-6. “…and shall know that I am the LORD, when I have broken the bands of their yoke, and delivered them out of the hand of those that served themselves of them. And they shall no more be a prey to the heathen ...” To this day, the Jews are despised among men, a shame among men, and a physical prey to the Muslim world and a verbal prey to those who despise the Jew. Psalm 124 In this Psalm King David expresses his thanks to God for His protection from the ungodly who ‘prey’ upon the Jews, with their ‘teeth.’ The haters of Israel, in their wrath, or anger, or envy, use their ‘teeth,’ the words of their mouth, because they despise the Jews, to scorn, ridicule, malign, the nation of Israel with their tongues.“If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, now may Israel say; If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, when men rose up against us: Then they had swallowed us up quick, when their wrath was kindled against us: Then the waters had overwhelmed us, the stream had gone over our soul: Then the proud waters had gone over our soul. Blessed be the LORD, who hath not given us as a prey to their teeth. Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers: the snare is broken, and we are escaped. Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.” Psalm 124:1-8 “… neither shall the beast of the land devour them; but they shall dwell safely, and none shall make them afraid. And I will raise up for them a plant of renown, and they shall be no more consumed with hunger in the land, neither bear the shame of the heathen any more.” The “beasts of the land” is a reference not only to the animals of the land, Isaiah 11:6-9, but, in the context of Ezekiel 34:1-12 and 2 Samuel 7:10, the beasts of the land is a figure of speech concerning the wicked rulers, enemy nations, and false shepherds, who act like beasts of the wilderness. Hosea 1:10-11 The Promise of a Future ‘Great Day’ Hosea 1:10-11, “Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God. Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land: for great shall be the day of Jezreel.” The ‘great day’ for the nation of Israel will be fulfilled during the 1,000 Year Reign of Christ. At that time, the nation of Israel will be completely free of the haters of Israel, and their fiery tongues, and will not suffer shame any more. “… in the land ...” is another clear reference to the physical, literal, land of Israel. The prophecy by Ezekiel is crystal clear that all of these promises of the reign of David as King, Prince, and the shepherd of Israel will take place ‘in the land.’ The “plant of renown” is a figure of speech in a reference to the Messiah, the Lord Jesus. William Kelly stated, “It is absurd on every point of view to interpret these prophecies of the church or of the gospel. Then the very beasts will have their nature changed, and the earth yield its increase: for it will be the day for which creation waits, groaning still and travailing in pain, but then it is to be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the liberty of the glory of the children of God. It is the day when Messiah is raised up for them, not now rejected and despised as once, a plant of renown, and Israel shall no more either pine with hunger in the land or be a reproach of the Gentiles. Jehovah will be with them, their God, and they His people. Has He spoken, and will He not make all good? Is aught too hard, too good, for the Lord?”1 “Thus shall they know that I am the LORD their God am with them, and that they, even the house of Israel, are my people, saith the LORD God. And ye my flock, the flock of my pasture, are men, and I am your God, saith the LORD God.” This prophecy is unfulfilled to this day. Once the remnant of the Jews return to the Lord, and trust in Christ as their Messiah and Saviour, this prophecy will be fulfilled as revealed by Paul the Apostle in Romans 11:26-27, “And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob. For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.” God, through the prophet Ezekiel, Hosea, and Jeremiah, is crystal clear that all of these prophecies will be fulfilled after they are gathered “in the land,” and “upon the mountains of Israel.” At that time, the fulfillment of the unconditional covenant given to David in 2 Samuel 7:12-7 will be fulfilled. Therefore, all of the prophecies of Ezekiel 34:23-31 are literal and can not be construed as ‘allegorical,’ or ‘spiritual,’ or fulfilled in heaven with Christ on His throne in heaven. All of the prophecies have not been fulfilled up to our day, were not given to the church but await a literal future fulfillment. This prophecy of Ezekiel in Ezekiel 34: 23-31 has not been fulfilled in any sense of the word and can only be fulfilled, in every sense of the word, during the reign of Christ as written in Revelation 20:4-6 1Kelly, William, Notes on Ezekiel, (London: G. Morrish), n.d., page 167.
  32. 3 points
    Alan

    Fires in Austrailia

    We appreciate the update on the fires and are thankful that you have not been affected. We also appreciate your political analysis of the situation. Liberals are the same throughout the world and it seems a lot of politicians use disasters for their own agenda and let the environment, and people, and nature, suffer for their own agenda. Did not King Solomon say, "If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they." Ecclesiastes 5:8
  33. 3 points
    weary warrior

    Starting Again

    Well, after 10 years since the last one, we've accepted a request to take a pastorate of a little church in Washington State 40 miles south of Spokane. They've been looking for a pastor with "callused hands and muddy boots" who can relate to the farmers, ranchers and working men of the area. When they first contacted me back in June, we turned down the offer, not feeling we were up to it. But they never found a pastor they were looking for, and we never found the ministry we were looking for. So when they came back around again last month, we accepted after much prayer. I'm taking off with a truck and u-haul here in about 3 days for the 2500 mile trip out there. I have no support, no job and no salary waiting. (The church has shrunk to a congregation of...6). We are not worried at all, but are excited to see what God does. Our plan? To simply preach straight truth, pray much prayers and love unlovable people. Beyond that, it's in God's hands.
  34. 3 points
    Jim_Alaska

    Starting Again

    It sounds like the exposure that some of those unchurched people had may just bear fruit in time to come. I will pray to that end.
  35. 3 points
    Well, my wife put up a 12" white ceramic christmas tree on our kitchen counter. I guess we're okay? This is my opinion, and my opinion is worthless...but I think too often, we look for boogeymen in too many places. If someone is against a Christmas tree, that's fine...I understand. If someone is fine with a Christmas tree, that's fine...I understand. Just as Paul was inspired to write about observing certain days, my opinion (which is worthless) about this is the same... Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.
  36. 3 points
    Growing up, the church I attended only had Sunday morning service (with sunday school). Maybe a lot of people don't realize it's different sermons each time? They don't see the importance of attending as many services as you can. Providing good health. Our church is broadcast live online. So if we miss a sermon we're able to catch up online. Not very many churches at all that do that. Not every one is at the same stage of spiritual growth to want to attend 3-4 times a week. As you grow spiritually, speaking for myself, you can't get enough true Biblical preaching!
  37. 3 points
    Good news to report. She and I discovered we both like to color. I like coloring the journal/ art coloring Bibles and she like to color the very detailed coloring books. So for Christmas I got her a journaling/ coloring Bible. She seemed to really like it. She lets me pray for her whenever I want. I hold her hand and she bows her head and closes her eyes. So I don't think she believes in reincarnation that much. Every week I ask her if she wants to come to church with me, she always says no. I asked her many times to come to Christmas eve service. Always said no. I pray I will break her down and she'll come one day! When we visit, I always talk about what God had done for me that day or another day. And even she'll say sometimes "I pray …". Or she'll tell me "you better pray for that". So I'm much more encouraged than my first post.
  38. 3 points
    1Timothy115

    Merry Christmas to all.

    Merry Christmas everyone and have an especially blessed New Year. Sitting here listening to some great Christmas Christian Hymns. Praise our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Amen!
  39. 3 points
    DaveW

    Jehovah's Witness

    I did wonder what their apparent beauty or otherwise had to do with anything. I sure hope looks are not a part of pleasing God because I fear that I am not too easy on the eyes myself........
  40. 2 points
    DaveW

    Eternal Security vs O.S.A.S

    So in other words you, like everyone else I have asked, cannot answer the simple matter of the names God chose to use for salvation life, but choose instead to sidestep, redefine, and ignore the plain and basic truth. Eternal life cannot be eternal if it ends for any reason. Everlasting life isn't and NEVER WAS everlasting if ends for any reason. And OF COURSE we want Scriptures for your points. We are not interested in Calvin's lies and false doctrines.
  41. 2 points
    LYDIA WESTERN

    Cherith

    Cherith Thy camp is pitched by Cherith stream, The hamlet of thy love, thy means, And running low the crystal drains away, Sinks into the burning sand, the hardened clay. From its waning freshness thy spirit found its share, And foolish fear has told thee thy Jesus doesn’t care. That little shall drain till nothing left But turbid leagues of hearts bereft. Greater eyes have seen the stream has dried, The fainting spirits died. And comes the voice of One beholding, Guiding words, His new unfoldings. Get thee hence, my will is thy supply. Let Cherith’s blessings die, If once supplies thy soul hath cherished Turned to dust and perished. Let Jesus be thy guide. He shall not mock nor disappoint thee. Trust his promise for the need. New morning joy, the night its fears assuage, And wipes the burning tears away. L.Western
  42. 2 points
    That's it! I'm starting a new movement...a new charity...a new cause! Save the Ketchup Donations accepted at nonicolaitans.org to help save ketchup from extinction.
  43. 2 points
    Never, ever be alone with the opposite sex or someone else's children/grandchildren. That way you are far less likely to be falsely accused. And never leave your kids alone with someone else, even a preacher or deacon: If a preacher or deacon is what he ought to be, he will insist on that as well. Our church always has two attendants in the nursery, and "children's church" at all times.
  44. 2 points
    HappyChristian

    Music help?

    I don't know why anyone would accuse you of compromise! This is a very real issue. We face it somewhat ourselves, although we do use our pianist (she is in her 80s and has requested that we begin praying for another piano player...there are many evenings she is not able to be here). Our son is the song leader, and he also is not fond of the high notes (it seems like most of the songs we sing get pretty high!). I am a natural alto, but due to the lack of many to carry a tune, I have to sing the melody...and the songs get high for me, too! LOL I'm thinking we need to specify with our prayer for a new pianist that she (or he) be able to transpose! A friend of our son's visited and, while she said she liked us, she told him that our church is not her cup of tea...and the music was a good part of that. She attends (when she isn't working) a much more, shall we say, musically energetic church. Anyway, we have some friends who spent several years in Wales as missionaries. None of them could play, nor could they sing very well (according to them). They had an electric piano that had hymns recorded in it. Their son was their "pianist" and would hit the proper hymn when it was time to sing it. Good quality music, not CCM or anything. Some might think that is close to canned music, but I don't. It was a great help to them. A church we know of in CA uses a psalter form which to sing. Rather than hymns, it is the Psalms. There isn't any music written, so I'm not sure how they get the tune - and that might be more complicated than needed. Would you consider using Youtube instrumental videos as canned? If you chose your songs, and then found the hymn on Youtube, you could download it, and then play it while folks sing. It might be too close to canned, though, I don't know. If you come up with a solution, please share it. I'm sure it will be a blessing to others!
  45. 2 points
    Rebecca

    What happened in church today?

    In Sunday school we are finally back to our series on Moses, where we had left off after switching to a few weeks of lessons about the birth of Christ in December. Today we have started learning about the ten plagues. In the main services, the pastor taught on Matthew 25:34-40 After services, people like to stay and fellowship for awhile before heading home. These two girls decided to take that time to finish coloring and to chat a bit before their parents were ready to go. No, they don't sit on the table during class!
  46. 2 points
    HappyChristian

    What happened in church today?

    Hubs preached on being a living sacrifice yesterday. I taught the kids about Jesus' baptism and temptation. One of the girls took it on herself to speak up and tell God that she accepted Jesus. When I questioned her, she didn't know why yet. So I told her we would discuss it more as time goes on. Neither of the two girls has any previous church experience, so they don't understand sin and salvation yet. But I think the older one is coming close! So that was exciting. The first Sunday of the month we have lunch followed by an afternoon service (with no evening service). Then we head over to the nursing home. Yesterday, after the afternoon service was over, a gentleman joined the church! Praise the Lord! It's been just over a year since the split, so this was exciting! The nursing home service was good - one of the ladies asked me afterward if we could sing more songs during the service. I think it's a good idea - it seems that as we sing one or two wander in. We don't have many folks, but we're thankful for the ones who come out. The Sunday school girls went with us again yesterday (they went last month because they came home with me every Sunday in Dec. except the last one). They seem to enjoy it, and I'm glad. I want them to think of church/church activities as home-away-from-home.
  47. 2 points
    Alan

    Revelation Bible Study.

    Jim, I agree. Your post was pertinent and not off topic. The priests were leaders and they miss-used their position of authority over the people. As a person reads the prophets, in this case Malachi and Ezekiel, the religious leaders, the national leaders (after King Josiah especially), the priests (not all of them), and the many false prophets, as a whole, were abusing the office(s) that God gave them. Also, one of the reasons why I brought the subject of the shepherds out in the forefront was that Ezekiel makes it plain in Ezekiel 34:24 that David is called a Shepherd: a national leader, that will lead the nation of Israel in righteousness. Alan
  48. 2 points
    Salyan

    Baptists and Catholics

    To be honest, your writing sounds rather like you have been convinced of their doctrine. I'd encourage to you to look at their claims more critically and compare it to Scripture. Regarding the so-called passage about Peter (we're all saints in Christ, so it's silly to call him Saint Peter anymore than I'd call you Saint Angel), let's take a look at the passage in context. "When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Matthew 16:13-18 The context shows that Jesus had asked His disciples a question, and Peter had answered it with a statement of faith - "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God." This is the 'it' that Jesus later told him had been revealed to Peter by the Father. He follows that up with a play on words. You see, 'Peter' in Greek is 'Petros'. The word Christ used for 'rock' is 'petra'. 'Petros' refers to a pebble; a small stone, while 'petra' refers to a large rock; bedrock. Peter himself was only a pebble, but the statement of faith he spoke was to be the bedrock of Christ's church - the fact that Jesus is the Christ (Messiah), and Son of God. You see? Jesus wasn't establishing Peter as the rock of the church (unstable Peter? that would be a poor foundation indeed). Rather, it was the illustrated faith and confidence in Jesus the Son of God that would be the bedrock of all believers. Furthermore, the Gentile Church (which is what the first church established in Rome would be primarily comprised of) was largely evangelized and led by Paul. Peter stayed in Jerusalem and was a chief elder to the Jewish believers. As far as Mary, she is called a co-mediatrix by the Catholic organization. This means they believe that she is a co-mediator between God and man. This is blasphemy. 1 Timothy 2:5 says: "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." Also, Hebrews 1:2-3 says: "...his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high:" The co-mediatrix doctrine is also where they get the idea of Mary praying for us. But as we see from 1 Timothy, the only mediator between God and man is Jesus - not Mary, not the saints. Only Jesus. As far as that passage in John, let's take a look at the wording: "When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home." John 19:26-27 First, a grammar lesson. The translators of the KJV were attempting to translate languages that used both singular and plural second-person pronouns (unlike modern English, which uses the generic you/your/yours for both singular and plural uses). In order to translate the sense of the words accurately, they chose to use thy/thine to translate singular pronouns, and you/your for plural pronouns. For this reference to be applicable to all of us, Jesus would have had to say 'behold your mother' (as you incorrectly quoted). Rather, he said 'behold thy mother'. The use of the word 'thy' indicates that he was speaking to a singular person - the disciple He loved (i.e. John). The Catholic understanding that she was given to all of us is thus grammatically inaccurate. The Catholic organization also teaches that Mary was herself immaculately conceived (i.e. of a virgin) and without sin. This extrabiblical teaching would make her the promised Messiah, not Jesus - you see the doctrinal problem with this? They call her 'mother of God' - but God by definition has no parent - only the human body of Christ had a mother. They also call her Queen of Heaven. The Bible references a Queen of Heaven. She was a false goddess sinfully worshipped by the Israelites in the time of Jeremiah (Jeremiah chapters 7, 44). The Catholic representation of Mary thus traces back to an ancient false religion that provoked God's wrath against the Israelites.
  49. 2 points
    Totoosart

    Merry Christmas and Happy 2020

    It's a bit late, but better late than never: Merry Christmas, everyone, it's been one whole year since i've joined you kind and nice people. It's been a full year full of ups and downs every new convert might face. i've been struggling and trying and asking and searching for answers. Thanks Goodness and thanks to the Holy Spirit i've been able to find some replies and many of my questions have been answered. i'm still learning, though i have not been on the site very much, but i have been studying, reading the Bible, or listening to the Good Book. Bless your hearts and many many thanks again for your guidance and assistance. Totoo
  50. 2 points
    Well now, IF I am compelled to take up personal experience as my guide in this matter, then all that I have said thus far is emphatically verified by my own experience in the ministry. Through my own experience I could provide a long list of cases, including names and details, that would support my point. In my own experience the very same preaching/teaching of God's Word feeds some as the savor of life unto spiritual growth, while it also is found to be dull unto others as the savor of death unto spiritual withering. In my own experience our Lord's warning is quite appropriate, "Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have." (See Luke 8:18) In my own experience those who attend only for one Sunday service generally do so out of some religious duty, and then live for the priority of self and the world throughout the remainder of the week. In my own experience the problem truly is a matter of sin in priorities, not only concerning church attendance, but also concerning the entire focus and direction of their lives. In my own experience the Word of truth has been choked out in their hearts by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. In my own experience the only real solution is for such individuals to come unto a broken and contrite heart of repentance over the sin of wrong priorities. But remember, that is only my own experience. Apparently it is not everyone's experience. (1st Note: Throughout this discussion I have maintained the premise with firm conviction that the problem is the sin of selfish and worldly priorities. Nothing thus far has moved me from that conviction.) (2nd Note: Any preacher/teacher who "does ministry" out of religious duty alone, and who maintains selfish and worldly priorities is also in sin. And such a preacher/teacher also needs to come unto a broken and contrite heart of repentance over his sin.) ____________________________________________________________ So then, what is the Biblically faithful preacher/teacher to do in such cases? I would present the following: 1. "Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood." (Acts 20:28) 2. "Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. Take heed unto thyself and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee." (1 Timothy 4:15-16) 3. "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." (2 Timothy 2:15) 4. "Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and doctrine." (2 Timothy 4:2) And one of the reason that you need to be so firmly consistent is because "the time will come [not might, but WILL] when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they SHALL turn away their ears from the truth, and SHALL be turned unto fables." (2 Timothy 4:3-4) 5. "And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; and that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will." (2 Timothy 2:24-26) (Note: I am sorry. I pushed a wrong button on my keyboard, and the posting posted before I was finished. Such is the reason for the lengthy "addition-edit.")
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