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Steve Schwenke

Independent Fundamental Baptist
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Everything posted by Steve Schwenke

  1. Pastor Markle, Thank you for taking time to respond to my question. I do not wish to belabor the point on this question. I will simply say, with all due respect, that I disagree with you on this point, based on my earlier question. If the Lord Himself grants that under the circumstances of adultery (Matthew 19) or desertion (I Cor. 7) divorce is acceptable, though not the original intent, nor the ideal situation, that therefore remarriage would be acceptable (though again, not ideal.) The original reason given for marriage all the way back in the garden of Eden was that "it is not good for man to be alone." I believe this statement is still operable. It would be cruel indeed to condemn a man or woman to live a single life because of someone else's sin! Sure, SOME could do it, but Jesus Christ Himself and Paul both admit that these individuals are RARE. It should not be forced upon them! God created us to be together, and to compliment each other and help each other through the Scriptural institution of marriage. One person's sin should not deny the innocent party's ability to enjoy what God ordained. That's how I see it. Again, thank you, and may the Lord's blessings be upon your family and ministry!
  2. Pastor Markle, If our Lord Jesus Christ grants that it is permissible (though not desirable) to divorce in the case of unrepentant adultery, then how could it possibly be a sin to remarry under that circumstance? This conclusion does not seem to follow. A divorce is the END of a marriage! And if God Himself recognizes adultery as a legitimate end of marriage, then how could remarrying someone be constituted as adultery? The act of adultery is in fact a dis-annulment of the marriage. The marriage relationship itself has been broken and violated. The hope would be that the offending party would repent, and that the marriage would resume. While the marriage may be still legally binding, the moral, ethical, and physical aspects of the marriage cease at the point of adultery. The fact is that the marriage has already ended in all practical aspects although not legally. Again, we would hope for restitution, repentance, and restoration. Now, if Jesus Christ said that under the circumstance of adultery that divorce was permissible, then a remarriage by the innocent party would then ALSO be permissible. It seems to me that the matter is clearly stated in the gospel narratives on the subject. As I highly respect you, I look forward to your response.
  3. I see the same problems, Mike. I believe one of the reasons we have this problem is because the "big shots" have glamorized "the ministry" to the point where young men don't want to go out into some relatively unknown place, put their heads down, and work. The ministry IS work. They want to be another "big shot." Regarding your questions on "calling." I believe God does give a certain specific call in most cases. You would have to be crazy to want to be in the ministry for any other reason. A person simply cannot be effective in teh ministry without a definite calling. There are too many reasons to not want to do it - at least to do the job properly and scripturally. I believe this is the reason there are so many hirelings today. They have no calling. Without a definite call from God to the ministry, it is nothing more than a vocation. They have no sense of purpose and no passion for the Lord. I believe there is also a definite call to the place God puts you. I have no reason to be in the Panhandle of Texas. I am from Minnesota. But when the Lord sent me here, I immediately fell in love with this region, and these people. Why? It makes no sense. All I know is that God called me here, sent me here, and this is where I KNOW God wants me to be. I can't explain why. I just know it. What else could this be but a definite call from teh Lord for me to minister here? Unfortunately, because the calling of God to the ministry, and to a location, is quite subjective, it is easy to counterfeit. ANYONE can make the claim. But to those who are truly called, the hirelings are easy to spot. The question I always ask myself is this, "Would that man stay here if he half of his church walked out, along with his paycheck?" Good questions. Things I have pondered deeply for a long time! In Christ,
  4. Mike Great question. I think part of the answer lies in the decline of the USA in spiritual matters. Our Independent Baptist churches are shrinking, and the KJV IFB churches are even smaller. Furthermore, what we perceived to be "large" churches and a "big movement" within our IFB churches, in the greater context of all of Christianity, and all of the USA, our movement was minor - at best. What I am getting at is this - our Nation is falling, in part because we did not do a very good job. On top of that, we got complacent in our mission. Our large metro areas are really suffering spiritually, and are in dire need of real Bible Believing churches. Here are my thoughts on this issue. I would support the idea of Home Missions, but I would be very careful in how I would implement the support. 1. Is there a definite need in the area? We recently had a missionary come off the field, and decided that God had called him to start a church in Amarillo, TX. I have a hard time believing it. In Amarillo, population 200,000, we already have 8 Bible Believing IFB churches - why exactly do we need another one, when there are small towns all across the Panhandle of Texas with NO Bible Believing churches??? 2. In keeping with the Biblical model of missions, I would expect that a Home Missionary would go to a major population center, build a church, and send out others to the less populated regions in his "Judea." In my paradigm, it is my belief that our 8 churches in the Amarillo area should be training men to go out into these small towns and get some churches started. Just as i would expect a foreign missionary to go to a population center, start a church train the nationals, then send them out to their own people, so I would expect a home missionary to do the same thing. 3. My support would be limited. I would put a definite time limit on any financial support. We would expect the church to grow to the point where they would be able to adequately support him. I know first hand how difficult it is to work a job and pastor a church and raise a family. I don't have a problem supporting home missions TEMPORARILY to give the guy an opportunity to at least get the church "off the ground." 4. I would really grill the person to make sure of his calling. Here is why. There are too many phonies out there begging for money. It makes me sick. I get fliers, letters, and phone calls all the time for all kinds of things. I figure, if God wants them to have their building, or whatever else they are begging for, God will do it without me. It is THEIR church. Just as George Mueller prayed and God supplied, and many other missionaries and preachers prayed and God supplied, so God can supply the needs of these beggars! Whatever happened to us living by faith, trusting God to supply our needs, and being content with what God gives us??? I have the same problem you have Mike. I have seen how God has taken care of our little church here, and the struggles we face, and then get flabbergasted at the audacity of some of these charlatans. I get even more incredulous that they get support! Unbelievable! While we labor away unnoticed, without begging, and we are happy to be in the Lord's service without the limelight, attention, accolades, or anything else! Little is much when God is in it! In Christ,
  5. Thank you GP for providing the Scriptures to reveal your line of thinking. I disagree with your conclusions.
  6. Wow. After reading through all of this, that's about all I can say. WOW! Ok, look, GenevaPreacher, you have berated us up and down for holding to this "concocted" story, yet you have failed - miserably to persuade us otherwise. You have given us assertions and claims, but have not really addressed the substance of the issue, as your antagonists have, namely DaveW and Pastor Markle. Yet you continue with your assertions and claims as if no substantial arguments have been made. I know what it is like to have limited time, having to work overtime, etc. I get it. But after all of your bellowing about this subject, you owe us an explanation and dissertation on the subject. For as much noise as you have made, and with no substantial arguments made from Scripture, despite repeated calls to do so, you have failed miserably to provide any sound exposition of the subject. The arguments against you are overwhelming. Pastor Markle did an excellent job (as always) of carefully expounding the Ezekiel passage. I would encourage you to do likewise! Absolutely. I believe the first part of the chapter is a "dual reference" applicable to both the physical prince of Tyrus, and the devil. The second part is solely the devil, in my view.
  7. Geneva - please provide Scripture to support your claims. There was a list of 4 questions that were asked for clarification, which you answered, but you gave no Scripture for them. Perhaps if you build your thesis from those questions, and provide Scriptural support so we can understand where you are coming from, it might make things easier. Thanks!
  8. I would really like it if you could provide Scripture to support each point. You lecture us for just following the teaching of man, but then when asked to clarify what you believe, you provide no Scripture to support it. Further, each one of your points flies in the face of very clear Scripture (except for point one...)
  9. Inasmuch as we are made in the image of God, and in His likeness, and inasmuch as the three components of our being are, spirit, soul, and body, I would say the answer to the question is yes......I think. I have taught for many years the following: God the Father = the Soul of God God the Son = the body of God God the Spirit = the spirit of God The last two are without question. Jesus Christ is referred to several times in the NT as "the image of God," "God manifest in teh flesh." God the Father functions as our soul would function. Perhaps it is more correlation, I don't know. There is so many things about God that our finite brains cannot comprehend!
  10. GP - your theory makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Genesis 1 is clear - everything God created was VERY GOOD. Does this include Satan? Oh, I think I am going to be sick!!!
  11. Swathdiver, I understand where you are coming from regarding keeping a pure church. One of the most important things to guard is our doctrine. I get that. I am a pastor, so I REALLY get that! My point here is that I believe there is a difference between heresy, error, and non-essential differences. Some people teach it as DOCTRINE that a woman must always wear a dress. To me that is not doctrine, that is preference, and certainly nothing to divide over. Immodesty is something that should be warned against, the older women should teach the younger women what modesty is, with emphasis on "the inner man" (I Peter 3). But to call it "heresy" to NOT teach that a woman should always wear a dress is a bit too far. The same point applies to the gap. There are plenty of good, sound churches who hold to the Gap, have good clean music, have modest women, and all of the above. We as human beings are never going to fully agree on every little point, and the Bible does not expect that. In fact, the Bible anticipates that we have minor differences. But the Bible also expects us to set aside our minor differences, and come together into the unity of Christ. This was the whole idea behind teh Fundamentalist movement in the early 1900's. Rally around the fundamentals to fight against modernism and liberalism. And here I think we can be gracious enough with others on this Gap issue, if they are sound in most other places. I am thinking of people like Oliver Greene and the like. Good, sound, Bible believing people who have much truth and who can help us a great deal. If you can't look past something like the Gap, and focus on what is good, in my opinion, we are not much better than any other cult. We can only listen to THESE preachers, and read THESE books, but anything with what I consider an ERROR cannot be read!!! Yep, that has "cult" written all over it!
  12. Jim, you are correct on the names. Lucifer means "light bearer" Satan means "adversary", and is called the prince of darkness, even though he is transformed into an angel of light.
  13. Mike and Dave i understand your objections. However, those who hold to the gap - at least in the IFB world - do not deny a literal 6-day re-creation as listed in Genesis 3. This comes down to a matter of interpretation. They believe every word literally. To say otherwise is disingenuous. What you are saying is that if they don't agree with you, then they are not Biblical literalists. This is not true. If it were true, then we would be able to find major doctrinal problems across the board in their teachings. If they were not Biblical literalists, then they not only take liberties in Genesis 1, they would also take liberties throughout the Bible. They don't. There is no slippery slope here, so far as I can see. Blessings! In Christ,
  14. Do you know any pastor who has every single doctrine and preference 100% correct? I don't. NOBODY has EVERYTHING correct. We are all still sinners, and we are all prone to error. Oliver Greene taught the gap. John R. Rice endorsed the NASB. John R. Rice's reference Bible was not a pure KJV. This is not to disparage either of those men, because they both did great good in their ministries! But they were wrong on THOSE points. So let's call a person out on their errors, and be edified by them where they are right. There are many people who teach the gap who have tremendous insight into Scripture on many points, and we can all be edified by them. Why toss them out over the gap? To me that is total nonsense. Now if it is the case as Mike made, then sure. Or if they get off into "weirdology" fine. But if the core of their teaching and preaching is in the main sound, good, and edifying, then I believe it is a bit reactionary to toss ALL pro-gappers out. So I think there is a distinction to be made between essential doctrine, and non-essential doctrine. That is, doctrine that we cannot budge on at all, then other doctrines where we can respect each other where we don't agree. IMO, since the Gap does not affect major doctrine, I would classify it as non-essential. Do as you please! I see no reason to divide over the issue.
  15. Mike, I am not going to debate you on the gap. The point I was trying to make was this. All of your objections have been noted. But do the people who are teaching the gap teaching the things you are objecting to? If they are not teaching the things you are objecting to, then the doctrine has NOT been affected. I do not know any IFB's who believe the Gap to teach anything about evolution, or deny the 6 literal days of creation as listed in Genesis 1. They simply move it as a re-creation. the time element before the Gap is completely irrelevant to the pro-gappers. In short, your objections are based on things that are NOT being taught by the pro-gappers - at least not by the IFB version of it. They still believe in the distinction between Israel, the church, the OT, the NT, the sufficiency of the Cross, the Blood of Christ, Heaven, Hell, New Heaven, New Earth, etc. etc. etc.
  16. Not going to say much on this topic. Scofield and Larkin (both baptists) taught the gap as well. Here is the thing. OK, so somebody teaches the Gap. I guess I am not seeing it as a "problem" if you are for or against it. I don't see how it affects the doctrine on anything else. I don't see how it affects the OT Law, or how it affects the NT church. It is one of those things that is debatable (to some at least!). If you don't agree with it, fine. To me, it is something worth discussing and debating, but it is certainly not something worth dividing over. It has little to no effect on our core doctrines. That's all I will say.
  17. Brother, it is not my intention to be mean or anything like that. Those of us who have been on this board for any length of time know that you have a major hobby horse. I understand that it is not a hobby horse to you. However, in the greater context of things, I see no reason for you to not keep a lid on it, and get along with what you have available. I know, I have been in that position myself, where I had to swallow my pride, and attend a church that I did not agree with on some major issues - meaning they were major issues to ME, and my position was not very well received by the Pastor or leadership. What did I do? I attended that church because it was the best church in the area (45 minutes away), and I told the PASTOR where I stood, and also promised him that I was not there to stir up trouble, but to receive instruction. I did it to be obedient to my Saviour who DIED FOR THE CHURCH. "Only by PRIDE cometh contention...." Sometimes we need a good dose of humility to please God. The end of the story is that when I left that church, I left on GOOD TERMS with the Pastor, who THANKED me for not causing him trouble. AND - I maintained my own convictions on those areas where we disagreed. I have a tremendous amount of respect for that Pastor and their ministry, although we are not in agreement on many issues. IT CAN BE DONE. IT SHOULD BE DONE. There is no "excuse" clause in the New Testament Scriptures. If there is no church "good enough" to attend, then invite people over to your house and hold a Bible Study or something. BUT DO SOMETHING with other believers, or set aside time on Sundays to worship God, and try to get others involved.... Whatever you do, don't sit around and do NOTHING, and then blame it on everyone else! In Christ,
  18. The verse says that their "PART" would be taken away, not their name. I know for a fact that genuinely saved people can pervert God's word. I grew up in those circles. They do it out of ignorance, sincerely believing they are "helping" God's people. My understanding of this verse is that they lose their "part", i.e. their rewards. They do not lose their salvation.
  19. Ge 49:16 Dan shall judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel. Ge 49:17 Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward. Judges 18:1 In those days there was no king in Israel: and in those days the tribe of the Danites sought them an inheritance to dwell in; for unto that day all their inheritance had not fallen unto them among the tribes of Israel. Judges 18:30 And the children of Dan set up the graven image: and Jonathan, the son of Gershom, the son of Manasseh, he and his sons were priests to the tribe of Dan until the day of the captivity of the land. 1 Kings 12:29 And he set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan. Amos 8:14 They that swear by the sin of Samaria, and say, Thy god, O Dan, liveth; and, The manner of Beersheba liveth; even they shall fall, and never rise up again. It is my opinion that Dan is excluded from the list in Revelation 7 because they were the first tribe to go wholesale into idolatry. Further, they were leaders in the idolatrous revolt against the worship of Jehovah. I realize the list of verses I provided is a bare-bones outline, but if you are willing to put some more research and thought into this line of thinking I believe you will understand my position. When a person studies the depths of depravity idolatry brings a person to, that person will begin to understand why God hates it so much. It is not only that idolatry takes away from the worship of the true God, but it encourages all manner of immorality and unspeakable things. Our God is gracious enough to couch that immorality in appropriate terms for us so as not to defile the innocent among us, but we adults should be able to grasp the significance of it. Leviticus 18 is most instructive in regards to the gross immorality that accompanies idolatry. Pay close attention to the last several verses. My opinion. Hope it helps. In Christ,
  20. Simple Everything that is prophesied in the chapter comes to pass in ONE GENERATION. It all culminates with the physical, bodily return of Jesus Christ mentioned 7 times in Mt. 24, and described in detail in Revelation 19. Since this has not yet happened, we know it must be future. It COULD be our generation, but we don't know. NOBODY knows WHEN. The chapter is one prophecy. It is a series of events leading up to the return of Christ.
  21. You can look at it any way that you want to. The fact is that Jesus Christ gave 7 specific statements about His physical return to this planet in the chapter. I listed the references earlier in this thread. The physical return of Jesus Christ to this planet is described for us very clearly in Revelation 19. He comes on a horse with His army, and physically destroys the army of the Anti-Christ. He takes the AntiChrist and the false prophet (both described in Revelation 13) thrown into the lake of fire. Revelation 20 continues the narrative by describing a reign of Jesus Christ on this earth that lasts 1,000 years, with Satan being bound in chains in the bottomless pit. There is a resurrection of SAINTS at this time. At the end of 1,000 years, Satan is loosed. He deceives the nations and gathers an army for one final attempt to dethrone Jesus Christ. It ends in utter failure, once again. This event is then followed by the final judgment, which is then followed by the New Heaven, New Earth, and New Jerusalem. That is the Biblical order of events. Matthew 24 and 25 prophecy of the events that culminate in the return of Jesus Christ as described in Revelation 19. The Lord Jesus Christ tells us that "this generation" would see ALL of the events in their lifetime. Perhaps the generation that heard Jesus Christ make this prophesy thought it would be THEIR generation. But the fact that not all of the events actually happened only proves that the physical return of Jesus Christ to this planet is yet future. As such, the rest of the events in Matthew 24 are also future, in that these were a series of events that lead to the physical return of Jesus Christ to this planet. Thus, the prophecies in Matthew 24 are a series of events that are all inter-related to one another, and that would all happen in a brief period of time (i.e. within in one generation), and would all lead up to one major event - the physical return of Jesus Christ to this planet. Therefore, it makes no difference if you try to make three questions from the verse - the answer to the (1) question or (3) questions are the same. The prophecy is the same. It is all related to the Second Coming of Christ as described in Revelation 19. The rest of the prophecies are confirmed by John the Apostle in Revelation 6-19. These prophecies are not scattered events over the last 2,000 years. These prophecies may have a partial fulfillment IN TYPE (say like in 70AD), but inasmuch as the entire series of events has not yet been fulfilled, nor has Jesus Christ physically returned to this earth as He Himself foretold in the chapter (7 times!), and as John the Apostle confirmed, then the only logical and sane conclusion is that these events are yet future. In Christ,
  22. The "coming" in that parable is the same as the "coming" in Matthew 24. The Fact is that Jesus did NOT come at all in 70 AD. Thus, He has yet to return and fulfill these prophecies. The generation that is alive when the prophecies begin to be fulfilled, will see ALL of the prophecies fulfilled in their lifetime. 70 AD was just "batting practice."
  23. Yes, the "coming" is His return." I like how you complicate matters by introducing foreign elements into the text. Matthew 24 is self-explanatory. The other references you introduce are not necessarily parallel or related passages. Let's deal with Matthew 24 and what it says FIRST before we move on. The text is clear. The only way you can come to your conclusion is by making it say something it does not say, with a very stretched interpretation of "clouds." In previous discussions, we have discussed "this generation." The generation that is alive when these events begin to take place will live to see ALL EVENTS, including the coming/return of Christ.
  24. Let me clarify something about the Gap. I believe it, but I don't make it a point of division. Everything works out the same in the end with or without it. I believe it for very sound reasons, and I understand both sides of the issue. All of my reasons have solid standing in Scripture, without twisting or wresting Scripture. I have absolutely no quarrel with those who do not hold to the Gap. That being said, I decline to argue the point. In Christ,
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