I don't believe problems within the fellowship and especially the workership should be allowed to grow unchecked to the point the authorities need be be called in. However, it is apparent that those in control feel otherwise. I respect that, but it does cause me to wonder, more than a little!
Hi Ron, my view on CSA is pretty hardline. CSA is not a problem that should have its growth checked. CSA is CRIME, and should be reported to and dealt with by the authorities as soon as it is dertected. Yes there is an element of SIN in CSA, and it is appropriate that the church should deal with SIN, but the church has no commission or authority to deal with CRIME apart from reporting it to the appropriate agency.
There is nothing about the CRIME aspect of CSA that the workers should be involved in adjudicating on. There must be NO DOUBT or HESITATION in reporting CSA to and cooperating with the authorities.
Anything less than full disclosure is concealment and enabling the offenders to continue offending.
I will not resile from this position.
Admin By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.
In your opinion, do the workers see problems that are brought to their attention as opportunities for improvement?
Are the friends that raise issue just complainers that like to complain and cause trouble? Are the folks that raise issues simply troublemakers that are disgruntled? Do the workers just want the friends to keep silent about abuse (via gossip, the threat of excommunication, etc.)? Is it in the friends best interest to keep silent about abuse if they want to be a member in good standing in the fellowship?
Is one being a coward before God if one sees his brother being mistreated but keeps silent? What is the friends responsibility toward righteousness and bringing that before the workers?
Growing up, I learned to spend a great deal of mental energy justifying the status quo. The rich were rich because they worked hard. The poor were poor because they were lazy and immoral. Those with power and privilege were justified in whatever they were doing, because they probably had very good reasons I wasn't aware of. Things were the way they were for a reason. The nail that sticks up gets pounded for good cause.
I think many of us get a lot of this type of training, which leads to willful blindness to abuses of power, especially within "God's Way". Perhaps more than a question of morality, the issue is one of thinking habits.
One of the great strengths of Christianity is that it is steeped in the tradition of that dangerous business of speaking uncomfortable truths to the powers of the day. Just don't be surprised if you get cut down and cast out for it.
I'd like to hear the less "simplified" version if you have time.
It's worth doing a study on the position of elder and their duties. Follow the threads through the NT bearing in mind that the position was based on the Jewish concept of elder who could serve full-time in the synagogue. If you have access to historical resources to aid your study, so much the better.
With respect to 1 Tim 5:17-18 -
"Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.”" (1 Timothy 5:17-18, ESV)
"You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain" is from Dt.25:4. The practice being that oxen working at grinding grain were allowed to eat the grain. Using a rabbinical principle of 'from the lesser to the greater' ie. if a principle applies in a lesser situation, it applies more so in a more important situation, Paul taught that where an ox receives its living from its work, so too should a spiritual leader receive their living from their work. Cf.1Cor.9:3-13.
The same principle Paul discusses in 1Cor.9 is applied in this Tim. passage. It's worth noting that where it receives extended discussion in 1Cor.9 it's mentioned in Tim. (written later) almost in passing, perhaps as a reminder, as though the church should already understand this.
"The laborer deserves his wages" is taken from Jesus' teaching (Mt.10:10) with a change from 'food' per Jesus to 'wages' here, probably reflecting the later church development of having full-time ministry where Jesus' initial teaching refers to the short-term commission of the 12. It probably also reflects the Jewish tradition that a person's wages were due to them at the end of the day and that it should not be held overnight (Lv.18:13; Dt.24:15). Those laws were in relation to their agrarian economy, however it shouldn't be forgotten that their full-time priesthood was supported through tithing. The point being, not that an elder was necessarily to be paid at the end of every day, but based on the principle of a fair day's pay for a fair day's work, those who worked in full-time ministry ought to be paid for their work.
Then there is the word 'honor'.
57.167 ôéìÞd, ῆò f: compensation given for special service, with the implication that this is a way by which honor or respect may be shown—‘compensation, pay, honorarium.’ ïἱ êáëῶò ðñïåóôῶôåò ðñåóâýôåñïé äéðëῆò ôéìῆò ἀîéïýóèùóáí, ìÜëéóôá ïἱ êïðéῶíôåò ἐí ëüãῳ ‘the elders who do good work as leaders should be considered worthy of receiving double compensation, especially those who work hard at preaching’ 1 Tm 5.17. ôéìÞd in the sense of ‘compensation’ is related in meaning to ôéìÜùc ‘to support, to provide for’ (57.117) and ôéìÞc ‘cost’ (57.161), but in 1 Tm 5.17 it is also possible to understand ôéìÞ in the sense of ôéìÞa ‘honor, respect’ (87.4), and therefore one may speak of the elders as ‘receiving double honor.
Louw, J. P., & Nida, E. A. (1996, c1989). Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament : Based on semantic domains (electronic ed. of the 2nd edition.) (1:575). New York: United Bible societies.
e. honorarium, compensation (test. of Lycon [III bc] in Diog. L. 5, 72, a physician’s honorarium; Sir 38:1; s. 2a above), so perh. 1 Ti 5:17 (MDibelius, Hdb. ad loc. and see s.v. äéðëïõ̂ò.—Mng. 2b is also poss. In that case cf. Ael. Aristid. 32, 3 K.=12 p. 134 D.: äéðëῃ̂ ôéìῃ̂ ôéìç̂óáé.—JoachJeremias combines both mngs.).—MGreindl (s. äüîá, end).
Arndt, W., Gingrich, F. W., Danker, F. W., & Bauer, W. (1996, c1979). A Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament and other early Christian literature : A translation and adaption of the fourth revised and augmented edition of Walter Bauer's Griechisch-deutsches Worterbuch zu den Schrift en des Neuen Testaments und der ubrigen urchristlichen Literatur (818). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
EDIT: All the Greek is showing as gobbledy-gook. I don't know how to correct that.
ts, the real workers are those who do the will of their Heavenly Father. Jesus calls everyone into the harvest field to bear witness to Jesus Christ through the gifts, abilities and callings which God blesses us with.
Everyone who responds to God's calling upon their life is a worker. We are ALL IN THE WORK !
Focus on the blood sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, not the apparent sacrifices of men and women, for your salvation. Become a true worker for Jesus by allowing his spirit to work in and through you, allowing it to produce good works according to his will.
This is what I was taught as a child, and my mother in her latter years has lost whatever ability she might have ever had to think objectively about this religion and bunch of people, which she has informed her children, she loves more than any and all of us. "OF COURSE I love my meeting more than my family! They are my TRUE family."
One of my professing aunts has expressed that also, both verbally and with her actions. She'll bend over backwards for her 'professing' nephews and nieces ... but does not treat her unprofessing children with the unconditional love. That's a very hurtful position to take, and I respect you for wanting to be fair in your daughter's spiritual education & with her future spiritual choices. That's how it should be.
Yes, you're right, it IS incredibly hurtful! Especially in view of the fact that I am the one who 'takes care of her' - keeping her from a nursing home after my father's death, and keeping him from a nursing home for 6 years before his. My brothers have been far less forgiving, and stay away. Of course, there's more to it than just the words that she loves her meeting more than she loves us. It was proven time and again to our detriment by the way we were treated, and the way no one came to our aid in situations where we needed it most as children. It's a parent's responsibility to protect our children, to love and defend them. Subsequently, I want to be VERY sure that my daughter knows she is loved deeply!
I've learned that the pain you've experienced is a commonplace. Not only through posts like yours, but through a growing number of ex-s that we've come to know personally. Often the individuals who cause the pain in their children or relations are well-meaning and can't be said to be unloving. I have a tentative idea about the cause and wonder what you (or anyone) might think about this. I think it comes from a misplaced notion about love, and what giving God the first place really means. That is, it's often said that God has the first place, family the second, and self or work (depending) the third place. The problem is that this kind of thinking will set up oppositions in peoples' minds that are unnecessary. Let's say that you have a Wednesday study and a serious problem at work. A commonsense application of the "God over work" rule would imply that the Wednesday study is more important. But is that necessarily so? Is that giving God the first place? If loving God, means love of your fellow man, it may in fact be "unloving" to leave your co-workers hanging with a serious problem because you have Wednesday study. It might also be the case that you're asked to stay late because you're a tool and you probably should go to the Wednesday study. There is no simple right or wrong here; but to some of the friends there is - work should never take the place of a Bible study. Understanding what love is all about, should tell a person that sometimes it may be right to stay at work. We make these kinds of trade-offs in life all the time, and there is a basic calculus you can use in making these decisions. Love shows the way. Love of your neighbour or your family is not fundamentally opposed to love for God. It may happen, and then you must choose God, but those circumstances, as when Abraham was asked to slay Isaac, are monumental and rare, not the everyday case. This kind of behaviour seems to more common with the personality type that loves imposed order and the structure of the religion, rather than coming to grips with true Christian principles. It is not the mark of a well-adjusted, principle-based Christian person.
But there is another side to this. Sometimes children can be very demanding in their expectations of parents. Any parent will know that, and know that sometimes they "fail" the child. If religion is a barrier between the parent and child, then sometimes religion becomes the explanation for every failure. That is, the religion takes undue heat in the explanation for dysfunction. I don't mean here that the religion is actually without fault or not to blame. But it seems that the religion becomes the explanation for every little thing that is wrong.
Who has authority over the overseers that misbehave. It seems pretty obvious that no one does. The friends that care and love this fellowship that point out the wicked men that are hurting the sheep, are turned on by the wolves and either excommunicated, or shunned, and worse, lied about and demonized. This has been documented time after time. It takes YEARS to get an overseer removed, and someone has said that it can take up to 8 other overseers to get a problem overseer removed- therefore it is obvious, that some of them aren't accountable to a chief overseer.
These men preach their authority, they would do well to remember that with great authority comes great responsibility. Accountability is the missing part of the equation. Some of these men openly brag about not being accountable to the saints. One common saying that some of the workers will say and then laugh heartily (I've heard it), is, "the friends didn't hire me and they can't fire me!"
Admin By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.
For me I find it incredible how easy some can be buffeted this way and then that way by whatever wind of doctrine or explanation or change that comes their way.
I will have to say that when I finally found the time to dig into the "truth" to become knowledgeable of the "truth" I was left with a definite gap in my basic understanding.
While I was aware of this over 20 years ago when many professing folks in our area left, I chose to put the issue on the back burner at the time yo just wait and see how this all boiled out over time. As I was at the height of my career, I really didn't have time to personally dig the truth out. I was also satisfied with my place in the fellowship (and still am) and those who left didn't attempt to sway me at all.
It was just in the past couple of years that I was again confronted with this issue. This time, as a retiree, I had the time, the energy, the interest and the internet to sort it all out. While I could focus on the error of others, I choose to consider this as my spiritual journey, to bring me where I am today. In this way anger is swallowed up in mercy and forgiveness as mercy and forgiveness has been afforded freely to me.
I see the truth fellowship in a new light, not as a straight arrow freeway to heaven, but as the way Jesus and his workers are leading his people (including me) through the wilderness journey of our modern times similar to how Moses & Aaron led the Israelites through the convoluted wilderness journey of their time. As with them in their day, it is most important to believe that I can inhabit the promised land. It is also important that I not be put off and out over the incidents and wandering from a straight arrow approach that becomes apparent when looked back in a historical sense.
So while I certainly do understand and empathize with Scott's response (and find myself there at times also) I am glad for the greater history given in the Old Testament. I have always wondered what it might be like to be amongst the Israelites on their wilderness journey. Now I realize it is and has been my experience all along and I just didn't recognize it.
So much for thinking those old Bible stories were of another era and another people. I've got news for you. We are there. God's way doesn't change. And that's the Good News! :>)
Last Edit: Mar 22, 2011 12:42:41 GMT -5 by Scott Ross
Greg, if people have a close relationship with Christ and the fruits of the Spirit are evident in their lives, would they be considered Christians?
A good question JO. I am professing in the F&W's fellowship and my wife is a B&R member of a traditional church; when we got married I was not professing nor was I a member of any church, even though I was born and raised in the F&W's.
Friends now refer to my situation as being in a divided home and therefore being unequally yoked. I sometimes get some pressure from some friends to get my wife to gospel meetings so she can make her choice. My wife is very happy where she is and is aware of the stand-offishness (if there is such a word) of the friends and of my professing family and she really resents it. She said that she feels very comfortable with me worshiping God where I am comfortable and I should also feel comfortable with her choice of place of worship as she also is a Christian believer.
The question is, am I unequally yoked?
Below is one answer I have been given after researching the question on the internet.
A. If your husband is a believer then you can’t be unequally yoked, because by definition unequally yoked means being married to an unbeliever. But even if you were, Paul spoke against leaving an unbelieving spouse because of religion. (1 Cor 7:13) In verses 17-24 Paul repeatedly advised us to remain in the position to which the Lord has assigned us.
As stated on many occasions on this forum, I believe that there are many faithful folks in other Christians churches that will be saved.
The world didn't end, it is just being rebooted. Please be sure your security software is up to date. Run a full scan of your life and remove any malicious files which may be damaging your joy, stealing your hope, or slowing down your blessings. If you need more instructions, please refer to the user's manual, readily available in B.I.B.L.E. format or put your hands together, bow your head and contact tech support. : ;D
My experience is partly similar to that of Noels. I 'professed' as a teenager, based on a belief in God through my study of the bible and the testimony of my parents. I see many other young people go through the same experience. At the time it all seemed quite simple, and so it should be: each person having an individual revelation and Godly experience. However as you get older, you become more aware that the friends and workers around you put quite a lot of emphasis on things such as long hair for women, attending meetings, speaking in meetings, not having TV or radio, the homeless 2x2 unmarried ministry with no church buildings etc etc. Things which aren't essential elements of salvation. Things which change with time and differ between countries, demonstrating that they aren't possibly an essential part of doctrine. [Remember black stockings? Remember burying silver cutlery? Remember women having to wear hats in a meeting? Remember married preachers?] You notice more the shunning of friends who don't quite fit the mould, a very hurtful and quite unchristianlike experience. You notice the emphasis on 'this way', meaning the meetings rather than 'the way that Christ taught' and nothing more. You notice the pharisee-like attitude that anyone outside our church isn't saved, isn't really lead by the spirit, is only focused on doing good works etc etc. You notice the outright criticism of all other religions. Thankfully that is starting to change, but only very slowly. You wish you could be excited and proud of the message Jesus brought to this earth, but in our way it is often overshadowed by many other [non]issues. You notice the next generation not professing at the same rate as previous generations as they are more aware of the warts in our system and less willing to overlook them. You notice people leaving because they didn't fit in, they were hurt, they were unsatisfied, they found something more satisfying, and for many other reasons. Sometimes because they felt deceived about our history. And you notice people joining our group because they were unsatisfied with other religions, so it isn't all one way.... Key problems seem to be that we claim to be the one right way, either overtly or covertly, yet we have some of the same problems as other churches; we have changed our beliefs and probably will continue to do so; we don't have consistent or well understood beliefs in different countries around the world; and we focus on many outward issues to the detriment of Christ's teachings. For me, our way isn't so wrong that I should leave, as I don't rely on our 'way'. I have my own beliefs and do my own thing. However I grieve for the many who have been or are being hurt, disenfranchised, or ignored. I see the Kropp web site as a useful window on history that is sometimes shameful but should not be hidden. I make no judgement on why CK created the site and think it is useful. If we didn't claim to be uniquely right then we wouldn't have to hide our history, or claim history that doesn't exist, such as 'going back to the shores of Galilee'. Sadly it seems that our group started with wonderful intentions that might have been divinely inspired, but has become burdened by some structures, methods, rules and beliefs that have no basis in Jesus' teachings. Over the last 100+ years the other churches that our founders broke away from have rejuvenated their thinking and in some cases seem to have gone back to a closer model of what Jesus taught than that which we teach. The NT writings show the same problems, where they struggled to understand Jesus teachings, resolve interpersonal and cultural differences, and focus on the essence of Salvation. The leaders then didn't necessarily try to create 'rules' and 'methods' but it seems a common occurrence that people look for rulings from leaders so they can act according to such rules without having to make their own decisions. Our children will be Kropp proofed when they can understand our history, strengths, weaknesses, and can communicate clearly and confidently about our doctrinal beliefs as taught by the NT scripture.
My definition of bridge building: Breaking down communication barriers (especially on sensitive issues) so both parties can express their views. In an ideal world, the two parties could agree to disagree on certain issues, without unnecessarily sacrificing important personal relationships.
Some of the most common things I've heard from people who leave meetings is that their professing friends or family members exhibit unpleasant behaviors: 1) shunning, 2) dropping unwanted hints about local gospel meetings or sending the workers over for a surprise visit, 3) avoiding important religious milestones for children/adults that take place in another church.
To me, building bridges means making it possible to talk about these types of issues and reactions to those behaviors. When I hear that someone is "burning all their bridges", that means that they are cutting off those relationships completely--and expressing a desire not to be contacted by the people on the "other side" of those bridges. In my opinion, that can mean disastrous results for family relationships.
When someone's child/parent/brother/sister/best friend leaves the meetings, it's often the first time that professing person has had to deal with that type of situation. The professing person may react badly, and likely won't understand the other person's motivations for leaving unless both parties are willing to talk about it.
Sometimes, old habits need to be validated. "Dad, I may not be at Sunday morning meeting, but that doesn't mean I will refuse an invitation to go fishing with you on Saturday."
Sometimes, new boundaries need to be defined. "Auntie, I know you love the workers, but please don't send them over to my house for a surprise visit."
Sometimes, questions need to be asked. "I know you recently left meetings. I thought we were friends who shared an interest in woodworking/sewing/cycling. Why have you stopped returning my calls? Is there something I've said? Is there something prohibiting us from spending time together now?"
Building bridges is not a one-sided activity. If someone on either side says or does something hurtful, the other party needs to speak up and explain why it is hurtful. When someone's worldview changes--as often happens when people leave meetings, get married, have children, or go to college--their reactions and priorities also change. If both sides have respect and value the relationship enough to work out some of the problems, they can both grow from the experience.
A few key things to remember: 1. Professing people shouldn't shun their friends and relatives who leave meetings. It reflects poorly on them. 2. People who leave meetings need to be clear about their boundaries when friends or workers try to get them to return to gospel meetings. Also people who leave meetings need to be aware of boundaries when they say things to professing people that might be considered proselytizing ("come to my church with me so you can get saved") or insulting ("you belong to a cult"). That's a quick way to shut down communications in both directions. 3. Building bridges is NOT trying to get people to return to meetings.
20 Since you died with Christ to the elemental spiritual forces of this world, why, as though you still belonged to the world, do you submit to its rules:
21 “Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!”?
22 These rules, which have to do with things that are all destined to perish with use, are based on merely human commands and teachings.
23 Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking there is any security in that being part of the “group” is going to save you. I have heard workers say (and I have said it myself) that going to meetings isn’t necessarily going to save you. If you think that you need to be part of the “group” because it is the “group” that is right, and it is the “group” that will be saved, then you need to change your thinking. It is this type of thinking that is the seed of the “exclusive” rant that happens on this forum. We are all individuals before God and will be judged as such. There is no security in being part of a group when you are considering salvation. There is something special about having fellowship with, and the support of unity with like believers, but even then, I would imagine people would feel more secure in knowing that it is in the name of Jesus they are gathered, and not in the name of the 2x2 organisation.
I would challenge you if you say you are any more than Christians gathering, and therefore when you profess, you are professing to belong to nothing more than Christianity.
Last Edit: Oct 15, 2011 19:29:36 GMT -5 by Scott Ross
In my humble opinion there are no true religions/churches only a true Gospel.
"For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ: for IT is the power of God unto salvation...For THEREIN is the Righteousness of God revealed..." (Romans 1:16,17)
"For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is THE POWER OF GOD" (1 Corinthians 1:18)
For Bert who doesn't know if he is saved or not the true Gospel gives that assurance. It is in believing the Gospel and belonging to God that assurance is found.
For peacefulheart this is the truth of God that dissolves all fear. Religions bind, the Gospel frees. Religion says it's what we do, the Gospel says it's what Christ has done. May God's blessings be with you.
Not answered. The fact is that tattoos for women are where smoking, short hair, trousers...
Tattoos, trousers, studs, miniskirts, muscular bodies in tank tops, shaved legs, faces, or beards--these are all just physical things that we adorn ourselves with for one reason or another. The things themselves are meaningless. The thing that has meaning is why people choose the things that they do. Why body art or studs? Is banning those things from people going to change them? I sincerely doubt it. But that is where the rule and judgment mentality comes in. You don't wear body art, piercings, you aren't into cross dressing, you don't workout so you can display your fine physique, but does any of those things change who you are? Does it change your SELF? The answer is no. Banning or restricting certain clothing or body art only causes frustration because the person who desires those things think that if they have them it will change who they are. This too is an illusion. True peace and happiness is not in getting what you want, but in wanting what you have. In truth, we have very little. Even our health and mental faculties are ours but for a moment. So when you meet the girl with the dragon tattoo, strike up a conversation with her about how nice it looks on her. Reach out. Don't judge. Because inside, we are all the same mess of desires, insecurities, conditioning, fears, and pride.
Thanks Scott, as Gene said: "Post of the week! Cuts to the heart of the matter - it's the inside that matters."
I doubt if that would happen as the recipe for convention stew is a closely kept secret ;D
Start by braising 15 gallons of 1" cubed beef in two cups of corn oil in a 40 gallon cast iron kettle with a ring burner or a stainless steel steam cooker
Add one gallon of chopped onions and 1/2 gallon chopped celery, continue braising on med-high heat
When the onions are translucent, add: 1 cup salt (sounds like a lot, but you'll be adding potatoes, flour and water later - and they soak up a lot of salt) 1 cup black pepper 1 cup worcestershire sauce 6 cups fresh chopped parsley 1 cup rubbed marjoram 2 lbs butter (because butter makes ebberything taste better) 8 ounces Kitchen Bouquet (caramel coloring) 10 bay leaves loosely wrapped in a cheese-cloth sachet, tied shut (so no one chokes on them)
On the side, prepare one gallon of flour and milk mixture for thickening -- approximately 6 cups of flour to one gallon of milk.
After the beef is well browned, add enough water to cover the beef; about 5 to 7 gallons. Bring to a boil
Add 2 gallons carrots and 10 gallons potatoes, cubed
Cover the kettle; add water if necessary to not quite cover the potatoes. Bring up to a boil again, maintain a low boil for 30 minutes.
Stir in the flour thickening mixture; one quart at a time, bring to boil between adding each quart and add additional quarts only as needed to make a nice thin gravy. Simmer for another 30 minutes. Potatoes should be falling apart, carrots should be soft.
Taste to check the seasoning - you may need more salt.
Add another gallon of celery -- this is for color and texture - the earlier batch of celery was for flavor, and it's disappeared in the mix by now.
Check to be sure everything is cooked through and that the thickness is where you want it. If so, turn off the heat and let it rest. The residual heat will turn the last batch of celery a nice bright green - it will still have its crunch.
why, oh why, do people keep mixing the high-christology biblical opinions with the low-christology ones? Non-trinitarians, you'll ALWAYS win the argument if you refer to Mark. Trinitarians, you'll ALWAYS win the argument if you refer to John. Can we just pick one Bible book at a time and argue that opinion?
Specific questions like "Is Jesus God?" can be argued either way as you indicate. But if one simply argues that the Trinity theory is not correct, without a substitute theology, then it's enough to cite the non-conforming verses. There is an answer for every non-conforming verse, I realize, but the semantical twisting on items like "the begotten Son" strains the credibility of the theory. The ultimate defence is that it's all a mystery.
I was in my mid-teens when allegations of Syd Lee’s sexual misconduct came to light in the 1970’s. Admittedly my view of the situation at the time may have been somewhat limited and there’s a lot I don’t particularly remember (I was way more interested in other concerns of my teenage world) but it still stands for me an example of how these types of problems could be handled within the 2X2 church itself (law enforcement, professional counseling aside).
To my knowledge, the leadership did not try to conceal that it happened, but dealt with it openly, to the best of their ability. Perhaps there were circumstances that kind of forced their hand. Perhaps the blessing of the situation was that Syd could never bring himself to “repent” for what he had done –so “forgiving” him and moving him to another geographic location so that he could re-offend was never really a viable option to church leadership.
Syd’s brother, Stanley, was overseer in Manitoba at the time. Not sure who all he involved, but I do believe that at least neighboring overseers were consulted.
The whole Manitoba staff was informed.
They held meetings with all the elders of the Manitoba churches and disclosed fully what had happened. They told the elders that they were to tell the individual members of their churches how much/what they saw fit, based on their assessment of the member’s capacity to handle it. My father was an elder at the time – he was a totally open individual – and this was dinnertime conversation at our house.
People were horrified, found it difficult to believe that such a thing could happen. The more “system-minded” people had a great deal more difficulty than the “individual-faith-inner-experience” kind of people.
I do believe that the “open-ness” was confined to the province of Manitoba, and the situation was not much discussed even in neighboring provinces.
Syd was kicked out of the work, and moved to a city in a neighboring province. He never again was part of the 2X2 fellowship, but was a fixture in the back row of gospel meetings for the 10 years I lived in Regina – and I believe for many years after - until his death.
As far as Stanley Lee was concerned, it broke his heart, his spirit, and compromised his mental state to think that his own brother was capable of such misconduct. He was no longer capable of being overseer or even of being in the work.
Stanley Sharpe became overseer in MB. The following years were good years for 2X2’s in MB. Stanley was so humble and unassuming that it humbled everyone else. For a few brief years, the Manitoba workers did follow the biblical injunction of “But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves.”
NZ worker Graham Thompson has devoted a full sermon to speaking against CSA at Special Meetings in Auckland NZ on June 4, 2012.
He speaks clearly and definitively. This is how the truth should be preached. No beating around the bush. People want the truth and good guidance and they can accept this. This sermon indicates what is known as "moral clarity".
For me, this is a "sermon of the year" and I want to thank Graham Thompson for allowing the spirit to move him to address this vital matter.
Here is a transcript of the sermon. Hopefully, this will become a model sermon for workers all over the world who are willing to mobilize in favour of the protection of children everywhere.
Graham Thompson – Auckland Special Meetings 4th June 2012
Mark 10: 13 And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. 14 But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. 15 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. 16 And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.
It tells us here about the people bringing children to Jesus. The disciples discouraged them. It tells us the reaction of Jesus. In this bible it says He was much displeased. I was looking at the meaning, the way it was originally written, the word. It says that the word used for the reaction of Jesus is a word of very strong emotion which literally comes from the root which means He felt pained. I t is commonly taken to mean that He felt great indignation. I love to see the care that Jesus had for the children.
Today I want to speak about the care of children. Amongst the things that we are speaking of is a matter that is referred to often in current terminology as CSA. The first word of these three is child and the last is abuse or assault and the middle one I am not going to voice but it begins with s and refers to a kind of physical mistreatment that is of the cruellest, basest, most defiling and most damaging kind.
There are some things that we don’t like to speak of and don’t ordinarily speak of so openly and there are some things that are so distasteful that we don’t even like to feel it might be necessary to speak about them so we are not going to voice that word but I must say that if anyone has the slightest doubt about what is going to be referred to, please ask afterward.
Paul when he wrote to the Ephesians said about things to keep away from. In Ephesians 5:12 he said it is a shame even to speak about those things that are done of them in secret. But there are times when it is necessary to say something because it is not always done of them.
There have been times and occasions when things have been done which should not have been done among the fellowship.
There have been times when things have been done which should not have been done by members of the ministry.
Today we want to speak about these things as discretely as possible and as clearly as necessary.
In the last year or so there has been quite a lot of discussion about matters in Victoria, Australia. I find it very saddening and have to say that I feel that the response of the ministry has not been adequate. There is no point in trying to make an apology because words can’t deliver. But what is really needed is that most profound of all apologies and that is reform of attitude and beginning to acknowledge where there has been error and the committed purpose and earnestness to ensure that where there has been error that there will not be error again.
One thing that needs to be remembered very clearly in this matter of treatment of children is that we are talking about crime, and more than that we are talking about the most heinous kind of crimeof all. The various crimes that are committed, some are against property, some against the interests of society or the state, and there are some against the person. Of all crimes, the crime of one person against another person is the worst.
The crime of a man against the person of another man is bad. The crime of a man against the person of a woman is worse. The crime of a man against the person of a child is the worst of all. It has the worst disastrously damaging effect and leads to a legacy of challenge that is mostly carried the life-long through.
So we come to the question of what one does to handle such a thing. I Corinthians 6 there is advice given about not letting matters go to law or to be heard before the court. I have heard people express the view that this applies to the matter to which we are referring today but it does not. This is not a matter of criminal wrong doing in this chapter that Paul is talking about. He is talking about what we would call in today’s legal proceedings a civil suit. A matter of one person against another person in the matter perhaps of being defrauded or suffering loss or some contest or dispute about property or something of that nature. That is what he is speaking about on this chapter. We must never fall into the error of suggesting that because a person is in the fellowship of the children of God that there are things they are sheltered from in terms of not having penalties applied. It must never be thought that the gospel or fellowship presents an umbrella under which people may hide and the law may be broken with impunity or the law-breaker find shelter and not face the consequence of breaking the law and it must never be seen or seem to be that the fellowship of God’s people presents an opportunity or place where there is scope for the breaking of the law.
Think about Jesus and His love and His feelings and His purity and how he valued little children because in them He saw the essence of purity and lack of defilement that He loved because it spoke of what He lived himself and that is why there is a respect toward children in Jesus. Think of Jesus who felt so toward little children and how He would feel if there was anything to which His name was attached which could be used in a way in which children could suffer or in which suffering was allowed.
Scripture which applies to matters of criminal breaking of the law, one of the passages, is found in Romans 13:1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. 2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: 4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
Peter also wrote some words that are relevant to this. I Peter 2: 13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; 14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.
Those scriptures are those that apply to the attitude toward the criminal breaking of the law. We are very favoured people in this country that we live and have lived in a society with wonderful liberty because of the rule of law and a general orderliness. There are some things that we should give thanks to God for because we read in Revelation about a time when that will be taken away from the earth. We hardly bear to think about what that may be like.
We in this country are in a favoured and fortunate position that the rule of law and general orderliness is the norm. We are favoured because of that great freedom and great security. We have good government. I’m not speaking about the currently elected members but about the system of government that we have and the rules and protocols, the way the country is ordered, we are a favoured people.
There are powers that remain with God and they are under His rule. There are agents appointed by God as the ministry of God to attend to matters of evil doing and wrong doing and it says there the ministry of God is not to be resisted but to be dealt with as necessary according to the mind of God. It is necessary to thank God for this wonderful environment of orderliness in which we live.
So the process of the law is not to be resisted. There is to be a cooperation, there is to be an acceptance, there is even to be a thankfulness to God for the very same because it is of God.
So there is the question now of what do we do if there should seem to be a risk somewhere to the children. The safety and welfare of the little children must never be compromised by anything. There must never be anything that is allowed that could impact upon it or threaten or give the slightest measure of risk to the children. Where there is a known risk there must be openness so the risk can be avoided. Failure to do so is as much an offence as the offence itself.
Where there is known to be or even thought to be reasonable grounds, a suggestion of risk, in that also there must be advice and counsel given in sufficiently clear terms that all measure of risk is avoided.
I believe that there is a good parallel to this and the attitudes toward this to those that we find toward people who have a problem with alcohol. It is very difficult to get over that. This problem that we are speaking about today is also extremely difficult one to get over and one that carries with it an extremely high incidence of reoccurrence or re-offense.
In the matter of those who have a problem with alcohol, amongst them there is sometimes a willingness to acknowledge the problem and to seek help for the problem. It is a very courageous step and one which the community at large applauds, strongly, a willingness to accept that there is a problem and to address the problem with the help of others. And furthermore when a person takes steps to address the problem they are supported wholeheartedly by everybody and there is an immense feeling of respect and admiration for the courageousness of those who are able to confront the problem and do something about it. That is the community attitude toward that particular thing.
But this particular problem about which we speak today, whilst it has a certain parallel to that, it has the much much more serious side to it that the effects of the problem impact on others, very directly and very damagingly and for that reason also, very clear steps must be taken. Where there is willingness for openness and willingness to courageously confront a problem and address it with necessary help that is available to make effort to overcome it, there is a great fund of goodwill and support for those who will do that, and a great willingness to assist in whatever way is possible.
We are speaking of cooperation. When we speak about a necessity for openness and avoiding risk we are speaking about cooperation. We are not speaking about vindication or vengeance or any such thing. We are speaking about cooperation whereby someone who may have a problem is able to have the benefit of everybody’s support and help, that opportunities are not created or allowed, but that encouragement and support is given in every way possible.
So we come to the question then of how do we move forward and work toward an acceptance that there is rehabilitation. There are some guidelines for that in scripture.
Let’s look at II Corinthians 7 where Paul refers to problems that were amongst the Corinthians and he has done so in very clear terms.
8 For though I made you sorry with a letter, I do not repent, though I did repent: for I perceive that the same epistle hath made you sorry, though it were but for a season. 9 Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. 10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death. 11 For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.
In the last verse of that chapter he has these words
I rejoice therefore that I have confidence in you in all things. There had been a problem. The problem had been addressed. The problem had been dealt with. We see the kind of marks that Paul could see or were evident in those who were moved toward repentance. Very clear marks, very heartfelt things, very sure signs that their attitude of dealing with things, not trivialising matters, not pretending to minimise things but rather the opposite ability, to maximise the application to oneself that it may be treated as it ought to be treated.
He speaks of these things: indignation, fear, vehement desire, zeal, revenge. We will speak on that word in a minute. The words speak of very very strong feelings and very very concrete measures taken that there might be a change. Not trivialising matters, rather the opposite. Indignation, the very same word here that Jesus used in the first verse we read when he said he was much displeased. Strong emotion. Greatly stirred. Jesus when He said that He was really telling the people ‘that is not me, that is not my position’. He strongly put His case that ‘That is not me’. And where it says the same thing that this people amongst whom there had been a problem and now they had cleansed themselves, not by denial, but by acceptance and addressing the matter, dealing with the desire for revenge.
Looking at the meaning of that word, it is an unfortunate use of that word really although it was no doubt apt when this bible was translated, because we are inclined to think of the word as get back or pay back. It doesn’t mean that at all in this case. It is not used in that way. It means simply, the even handed and effective application of justice. Even handed and effective. Just treatment, of everything and everybody.
So Paul was able to say to them ‘I have confidence in you’. Steps had been taken which would allow the rebuilding of confidence. It’s not easily done but it can be done. Repentance is much more than just verbalising a statement that ‘I am sorry’. T his matter of mistreatment of children, there are 3 components to it. One is that it is criminally wrong. Another is the mental health aspect as well. The other is that it has an element of spiritual health aspect. Those three things, differing as they do, need to be addressed by those who are competent to do so.
We are faced as shepherds and pastors of the flock, with the help of God and with the aid of His spirit, we seek help in matters of the spirit and in spiritual welfare for individuals of the flock but we are not equipped for those others and they need to be left where they belong.
Matters that relate to criminally breaking of the law need to be dealt with by the law, and matters that relate to mental health and those sorts of concerns need to be dealt with by those who are competent to deal with them.
Repentance, the thought or suggestion or feeling of repentance will have no value at all unless all those matters have been addressed, and there is a willingness for the law to be followed and the penalties to be faced and accepted without appeal. I don’t understand how anyone who could appeal against a penalty could consider themselves to be fully remorseful.
There must be a willingness for the acceptance of penalty. There must be a willingness to seek help that is necessary and effectively from those who are clinically equipped and enabled to deal with matters of process and proper mind, and there must be very clear and definite and concrete steps that speak of change from the depths of the heart and then , and only then, can there be a feeling that there has been repentance. Then, and only then, can there be the possibility of beginning, rebuilding confidence. It is possible, if the process is followed.
We are thankful that we have the example of Jesus, to strengthen us and teach us and guide us in all that is acceptable to peace. May God help us that in all matters and at all times that we are allowing Christ to be our guide and teacher, that He could be dwelling in us, and that He would be stronger than us to make us like Himself, and that He would be manifesting Himself through us, that in this world God’s people may be the salt of the earth and the light of the world and speak of things that belong to Christ. ***
Last Edit: Jun 4, 2012 10:17:28 GMT -5 by Scott Ross
The topic of dating/marrying an "outsider" frequently surfaces on this board and it always puts a bad taste in my mouth. These "rules" (or "guidelines" if you live in a loose region) against fraternizing with the enemy, er, outsiders sure seem to aim at keeping the race pure and avoiding the taint of us heathen folk. Perhaps there is a perception that most "outsiders" are devil worshipping, smoking, drinking, cursing and otherwise unsavory and will drag your sons and daughters to the depths of hell?
Let me tell you a bit about me. My parents did drink and smoke and it wasn't always very pleasant at home. Our family was not churchy. Perhaps for me my parents were counter-examples. I have never smoked and I do not drink. I don't even drive over the speed limit. I remember vividly in college my freshman year far, far from home when a bunch of the guys wanted to go to a bar (legal age then). That was my moment to decide. I said, "no thanks. I don't want to be that." I didn't rub their nose in it and they didn't push back. Nobody made these rules for me but me. I just wanted to be someone with an honorable reputation -- even if nobody but me cared.
Started dating a girl I knew from junior and senior high school. Very smart and cute and also not into "distractions". We dated during college. At some point I tagged along with her family to a gospel meeting. Everybody was friendly. The social dynamic was tame and safe and that was fine by me. It became clear to me that the workers were saying "this way is from the beginning." I asked my girlfriend if I was understanding that correctly: is this church really a continuation of the NT church going all the way back to the days of the apostles?? She answered "yes". (It was what she understood, too.) I felt like I'd discovered the lost city of Atlantis. Wow! Who am I to argue with that? I had sort of felt disenfranchised with a Missouri Synod Lutheran church as a kid, so to think that they were indeed wrong sure seemed plausible.
We were engaged and soon after that I professed (late 1970s). We were married and I continued in meetings for 20 years. Lived in the same town as folks and if we didn't conform to the image of perfect truthers, we heard about it from her parents. It was as if their reputation within the 2x2s was based in no small part on our conformity. If my wife's hair bun wasn't perfect for every meeting, she would be scolded or at least scowled at. Many Sunday mornings my wife would be in tears if her hair did not cooperate. Mind you she was in her 30s and a professional career woman reduced to tears because of her bun not meeting some ideal standard.
When we found out about this way actually beginning in the late 1890s founded by a "worker" from the Faith Mission in Ireland I felt soooo betrayed and stupid. My wife did, too. But it was what happened after this "news" got out that really grabbed my attention and testified to me as to what this group was really made of. Workers spread the word: "ignore these lies; they're not true. Burn any letters you may have received." Pretty soon the story changed to, "it doesn't matter. We know this is God's way." Then, "we didn't mean 'from the beginning' we meant 'as in the beginning'." And then, "oh, we have known about the origins all along. You didn't really think this was an unbroken chain from the apostles did you? Oh silly you! Ha Ha Ha" Where is the integrity in that? Are you lying to yourselves or just me now?
All these rules, all these practices are just your interpretations on verses here and there from the Bible. They evolve and yet you claim they don't change. You impose a frumpy dress code on the women and don't seem to understand that it is just a time warp: the styles of 1900 just locked in place (or at least very slow to evolve) and you seem to think the women are poster childs of modesty? You don't even realize they've substituted other things to be vain about.
Both times my wife was pregnant she prayed that we'd have boys. She couldn't stand the thought of girls having to conform to all the dress code rules. (Ironically, she was very, very slow to put aside those deeply conditioned rules herself after we left meeting.)
The world is full of denominations and sects that believe only they have it right -- that only they understand scripture and follow it. Blah blah blah. What do these groups all have in common? Pride and vanity masquerading as piety. Just like the publican and sinner in Luke. You call yourselves a special and chosen people. You call ALL other churches "worldly". You call all other pastors/ministers "hirelings". Sure sounds like the Pharisees of NT days, doesn't it? By now you are foaming at the mouth concerning me, I bet.
Do you really think God chose a people to sit around and smugly claim they're special and to critique the women's dresses and hair? There are so many Christians out there who are so thankful for Jesus' sacrifice for them who are trying to live as God's hands and feet on this earth and serve as the channels for His everyday miracles that help others. And you scoff at them and call them worldly and go to hymn sings and potlucks and warn your sons and daughters about dating outsiders.
Last Edit: Jun 29, 2012 10:43:05 GMT -5 by Scott Ross
One thing I have noticed on just about every thread on this board is that the posters seem to enjoy arguing about nothing. There is very little attempt to get along. If someone feels they are offended they lash out and I'm pretty sure that some folks blood pressure rises way too high. There is too much justifying. I think the people on this board when replying to any post know very well that what they are saying is offensive but they don't care. It seems they just want to stir other people up. I think that is a poor testimony for any in the truth and for any who have left the fellowship. Put this post anywhere because I feel it fits just about anywhere.
Admin By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.
oldsoul could you please explain to me your meaning of "work out our own salvation"? I would like to hear your underderstanding.
What is it to work out our own salvation?
I believe that everyone's salvation is very individual and personal to that individual alone. We can look at the woman at the well. She wanted to follow Jesus that day, but He sent her back to be an example in her home. Another person Jesus worked with was a young man who had earthly riches. His salvation was dependant on leaving the riches behind and following Jesus. So both were given the possibility of salvation, even though each path was completly different.
There could have been an issue over alchol consumption in Jesus' day. Have you ever heard that that's against our religion? So do you follow John the Baptist? He didn't consume alchol. Then there came Jesus. His first miracle was to turn water into wine. So would you like some wine? Now how would we work out out own salvation with fear and trembling? It is up to each individual alone to take enough wine to enjoy the celebration. There may be some who would do best to not take a drop, such as the town drunk. But Jesus left it up to each guest to work it out.
Every person has a completly different set of circumstances. If God laid it on your heart to go take a prostitute for a wife, would you do it? Might you say that it's against my religion! - I would never be with a prostitute! And yet, that's exactly what He asked Hosea to do. Imagine being Hosea and working that out.
We often get wrapped up in hot topic issues that arise in the lives of those we are in fellowship with. Sometimes we tend to get some pretty strong opinions about what a brother our sister should do. It's their salvation, let them work it out. And if God gives them an answer that goes against our opinion, remember that God didn't ask us to bring a brick to meeting to stone the poor soul, but bread is always in season, and in time (sometimes years) God's work can be clearly seen in their life.
Television is seen as wrong because of the ungodly content you find on it. If we work out our own salvation, we may find that there's nothing wrong with television as long as we are disciplined in what we watch. If you think television is bad, consider the internet! I think you will find far worse content available on the internet, but it is up to each individual alone to work out their own salvation concerning what they look at and how they spend time online.
As much as the religion may try to govern the flock, we are all responsible to what God lays on our heart.
Admin By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.
This is what was mailed to all NZ workers (snail mail not email, as email addresses aren't readily available):
2 August 2012 To All New Zealand workers For some time, friends in New Zealand and other countries have been concerned about sexual immorality and in particular child sexual abuse (CSA), amongst the workers and friends. This includes male-male, male-female, and female –female interaction. A number of cases have become well known, including in Scotland, England, Australia, USA, South Africa and New Zealand. Some are relatively recent, and others date back many years but have become exposed recently due to the long lasting harm that has been caused, especially where the occurrence hasn’t been acknowledged or dealt with properly. The attitude of society and enforcement agencies has changed in recent years so it is no longer acceptable to deal with such matters privately. For example, charges were laid against the Michigan overseer because a CSA case there wasn’t reported to the appropriate authorities. We are sure that these matters are abhorrent to you also, so this letter is written to support your efforts to care for the fellowship. It is important that sister workers as well as brothers are given information and guidance on these matters as females have been involved in reported cases of sexual immorality and CSA, either as victims or alleged perpetrators. We believe that the sister workers have the same capacity as the brothers to help overcome this grievous harm that is amongst us. In the recent special meetings Graham Thompson spoke regarding CSA that has occurred in our fellowship and clearly specified the manner in which any cases should be handled according to the teachings of the Bible. His comments have been widely circulated and received positive responses from throughout the world. Thus we have attached a copy of the notes of that meeting so that all NZ workers can be acquainted with what was said there and can then be more prepared to deal appropriately with any victims or perpetrators of CSA. Some guidelines have been drawn up by some of the friends with the assistance of experts in the field of CSA. They are available at sites.google.com/site/csacodeofconduct/ The implementation and ongoing use of the principles, guidelines and resources is intended to: • Reduce the potential for child sexual abuse (CSA); • Establish accepted processes for use in the instance of child sexual abuse allegations; • Reduce the potential for CSA allegations against workers; and • Promote cooperative relationships with, and attitudes toward, law enforcement agencies including the criminal justice and child protection systems We have attached an email which has been circulated in Australia, reflecting the concerns there regarding how CSA cases have been handled, and noting the Government Enquiry into criminal abuse of children. The same concerns exist in New Zealand. In addition we have included a personal story from some friends in NT, Australia, which illustrates the lifelong harm which is worsened when the issues aren’t dealt with properly. Although many are reluctant to publicise these issues, it has become necessary so that any cases are dealt with properly, and perhaps potential future cases might be avoided if potential perpetrators are fully aware that they will not be sheltered, their crimes will not be hidden, and that they will face the full impact of the law regarding such crimes. This is being sent to you with love and respect for your sacrifice and service. **Some Auckland friends** Then followed: 1) Notes of the Graham Thompson sermon professing.proboards.com/index.cgi?action=display&board=general&thread=19325&page=1#471296 2) Email sent to workers and friends in Australia recently professing.proboards.com/index.cgi?action=display&board=wings&thread=19269&page=1#469338 3) Letter by Col Watkins 23 June 2012 wingsfortruth.info/col%20watkins.pdf
Auckland friends Thanks for explaining what led up to the letter being sent out. As explained previously I received a positive response to your information pack from a worker who came from NZ initially. I was actually quite intrigued, in that I personally would consider them quite traditional in outlook( though with the ability to think things though logically all the same). I can not imagine this person reacting well to being lectured to in any way, so I suspect your letter must have been very well worded.
Would you be happy to share your letter here so that others of us can learn what works effectively in communications like this?
I keep wondering what happens after forgiveness. I always understood 2x2 forgiveness to be "get over it, it'll happen again, now learn to grin and bear it! We have no intention of ever dealing with your pain, what caused the problem, and we really, really like the person who hurt you!" It was always galling to hear about the friends and workers discussing forgiveness because that's what they were trying to say, and trying to say it nicely.
To me, forgiveness is about understanding why something happened. Do the 2x2s have a long history of child molesters because we want to worship our leaders and give them sway over us, with our leaders having no sense of responsibility to their followers? Do we not have open financial books because the image of "homeless and penniless" is more important to us than the reality of the overseers' monies? Do we criticize Christian churches because we don't want the friends and workers to understand Christian doctrine? Do we help contribute to the causes of problems between us and others? Do we need better instructions and warnings in certain situations - don't use more than 3 squares of toilet paper on the convention ground toilets - or do we need better plumbing at the convention grounds (yes, this was actually a regulation at one convention)?
To me, forgiveness gets you past the initial pain of the wound. It begins to help you analyze why you were hurt - to understand the situation from a removed stance. You can begin to address whether there will be more victims to this problem, or whether this was simply a freak happenstance. You can begin to help problem-solve.
If, however, the community in which you were wounded doesn't care, then an additional level of problems is generated. This increases the pain because you realize even those who weren't involved don't care. You then not only have to forgive your tormentor, but you also have to forgive those who support your tormentor. You have to problem-solve not just for what happened, but for a community that simply doesn't care.
...and we wonder why some victims simply react in rage and anger...
I am humbled by being in the presence of humble workers.
Others have an air of superiority and man-made authority about them, a controlling attitude. It's counter-productive to a healthy fellowship and needs to change in order to reverse the current decline.
A close friend that I grew up with has been in the work for years. His comment is that the friends need to get the workers off the pedestals because workers are to be servants. His comment was it ruined the ones that liked it and makes it hard for those that don't to keep in the right place.
It seems to me that the nature of Christ, indwelling in the heart of the believer, is expressed through us as the fruit of the Spirit. The life of Christ, being lived out through us, seeks to make disciples of all men. We are the container; the power and the glory belongs to God. We should be thankful for all who love God and love all who don't yet know Him.
Last Edit: Nov 30, 2012 6:42:46 GMT -5 by Scott Ross
Feel free to email me at:
wally: nothing has changed if your wondering....
Jul 25, 2020 21:48:48 GMT -5
faune: Hello again after a long absence. I trust you all keep well and safe during these uncertain times and a global pandemic?
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benar: Perhaps you clicked on the Coronavirus thread...
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wally: proboards can be a bit buggy...i still get virus warnings when clicking on thread links...
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ant_rotten: Does anyone else constantly have a pop up saying “do you want to download index.html” when using TMB desktop version? This happens to me both on my iPhone and iPad..
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wally: you haven't asked me a question or anything or did i miss one?
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ant_rotten: What’s happening Wally? You’ve gone quite on me..
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wally: its no mystery apostate ant_rotten i am quite vocal...
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jetmech: Hello Dennis
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kip: Looking for meetings in Maine.
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