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What do you say?

Discussion in 'Same Faith Debates' started by HOGCALLER, Jun 13, 2006.

  1. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    No doubt there are truly diabolical persons in this world. At the same time that we are forced to make that admission we are also forced to admit that none of us can see into another’s heart and thereby know with certainty that they are; not even their actions are proof positive! That being the case, a true worshipper of the God of the Bible should carefully avoid the usual human tendency of assigning motives (improper judging) which, all to often, is closely followed by thinking, then loudly declaring and finally acting upon: “The only good Indian is a dead Indian.” Especially we should avoid that usual human tendency after we consider God’s clearly demonstrated willingness to use the most unlikely of persons, from a human standpoint, Saul of Tarsus.

    You may remember that even though Saul had close relatives that had for a time been members of a new religion, Saul chose to become a persecutor, no, even more than that, he chose to become an accomplice to the brutal murder of and also to become directly involved in abducting, wrongfully imprisoning and even torturing members of his relative’s new religion, viz. the religion later known as Christian. No doubt if Saul from Tarsus were around today he would be referred to as a religious extremist and terrorist.

    Now if you will, please carefully consider for a moment this possible scenario: Had the inclination been there, it would have been quite possible for those early Christians to have come to know that “Saul, still breathing threat and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest (2) and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, in order that he might bring bound to Jerusalem any whom he found who belonged to The Way [as it was then called], both men and women” (Acts 9:1-2), and knowing that Saul was going to be on that road to Damascus they could have arranged for an ambush. Today, given that set of facts and those circumstances, that is exactly what one would expect to happen and what most “Christians” would enthusiastically advocate, well perhaps not an ambush but at least a Predator UAV drone equipped with a Hellfire missile or a couple of well aimed 500 lb. bombs. Is that also what you would advise?

    But is that how the God of love and free will or choice and his son, Jesus, handled the matter? No, not at all! If those early followers of Jesus, later called Christians, had thought and acted like the vast majority of professed Christians think and act nowadays we would be missing a great deal of the Bible for Saul from Tarsus later became Paul, the apostle who wrote several books of the Bible. Even though Saul’s actions seemed to be diabolical there must have been something in Saul’s heart, not shown by his actions and thus unrecognized by his human victims, that caused Jesus to make himself visible to Paul as he set Paul straight. Unfortunately, even though recorded in the Bible for more than 2000 years now, the lessons taught in that situation are lost on the majority of people, of all religions, who seem bound and determined to go on repeating the mistakes of Adam, Eve and Cain while, no doubt, operating under the same influence. Please read and compare Genesis 3:1-4:16, Luke 4:6, John 8:42-47, 2 Corinthians 4:4, 1 Timothy 2:14, 1 John 3:11-12 and Revelation 12:9 as the following comments are based the words and lessons found therein.


    If you have read and compared the above-cited verses you should be able to answer: What had Cain done that warranted a warning from God? Can you tell me? Let me give you some help.

    The Bible does not provide in-depth details but it does tell us just enough to make it plain that Cain was not “doing right”. We know that because Genesis 4:7, NIVR, says: “Is it not true that if you do what is right, you will be fine? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at the door. It desires to dominate you, but you must suppress it.” Cain had fallen into false worship by doing what was pleasing to himself rather than doing what was pleasing to God. Read it again and you will see that the problem involved what Cain did in his worship.


    We do know God made Cain understand that what he was doing was wrong and that what Abel was doing was right. And we know of Cain’s reaction to that message from God, he got very mad and upset about it. Now one would think that after it had been made clear to him that he was displeasing God that Cain would have responded in a positive way and would have made a change for the better, but not so.

    In-depth details of Cain’s thinking are not provided but we do have a record of God’s continued efforts to reach out to and to help Cain preserved for our benefit. As we consider what God said to Cain as he tried to warn him we come to the realization that instead of contemplating how to do the right and good thing and how to obey and conform to what would please God and warrant His favor, even His praise, Cain has become even more rebellious and increasingly angry and upset with Abel who was guilty of nothing more than faithfully doing what he was supposed to do. Cain chooses to follow in his parent’s footsteps by thinking he can ignore God instructions and commands and can do as he pleases and still have God’s favor.

    It seems to have been the action of making the offering that brought the issue to a head or at least the occasion of the offering was the opportunity seized upon by God to reveal his acceptance of the one and disapproval of the other. Again there are just enough details provided for us to understand the definite and identifiable attitude, actions and worship of Cain that result in God’s displeasure. One thing is certain Cain’s choice to ignore God’s repeated efforts to help at the very least reveal a bad heart. So from the very beginning we find clearly distinguishable patterns of thinking followed by actions which differentiate worshippers who are pleasing to God from those who are not. That brings up these questions: Are their any issues and standards we can use today as legitimate indicators, as identifying marks, of whether a home church group or a Mega-church or a denomination whether small or large is pleasing to God and not just pleasing to its members? Is there acceptable and unacceptable worship, especially as it applies to groups and organizations, that is as clearly identifiable today as it was between Cain and Abel? Is it also the case that most “worshippers” in our day are choosing to ignore God’s continued help and warnings regarding their unacceptable worship, faulty thinking and bad actions? For example, what difference is there is between what Cain did and the Hellfire missiles and 500 lb bombs mentioned above? What do you say?


    .
     
  2. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    I think you're falling into the trap of making religion, worship and human motive too formulaic. But you're correct about one thing: What matters is what's in the heart.
     
  3. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

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    It appears that you have read Genesis 4 and have ASSUMED that it was merely the types of offerings that were at issue. I suggest to you, that it was their HEARTS that made the difference. God has always been more concerned with our hearts. If our hearts are right, our actions will surely follow.

    Matthew 15:16 "Are you still so dull?" Jesus asked them. 17 "Don't you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? 18 But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man 'unclean.' 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what make a man 'unclean'; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him 'unclean.' " NIV

    But, the subject at hand seems to be worship, so let's concentrate on that.

    Romans 12:1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. 2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. NIV
     
  4. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    Sojourner,

    Please remember that a sheep chooses to enter and to stay within the fold because he understands the security of walls whereas a wolf sees the fold as a trap and feels threatened so jumps over the wall to get out. As he trots away into the wild he looks over his shoulder and we hear him say: “We don’t need no stinking walls!”

    That’s the wonderful thing about free will; if I want to fall into a trap I can and will. But I hate traps, don’t you? And I certainly am not interested in falling into a trap here if one exists. Will you please be so kind as to point out the trap and the consequences of becoming ensnared?
     
  5. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    I think what you've said here in red sums it all up. You're building walls for security where walls do not (and should not) exist. It's a trap. Your insecurity tells you that walls are needed. Yet, the walls serve to keep out what are perceived as wolves. Have you ever considered that God's world might not contain wolves, or anything that might prey upon your faith? Maybe you're fighting only shadows.
     
  6. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    Apparently how I said it is different than how I thought it; you are the second to say that. No! I do not think that the ONLY issue was the offerings. I will have to do some rewriting and editing and see if I can make the point I had in my mind, that is, that their actions actually their choices made when given input from God reveal what is in their hearts, more easily understood. Obliviously it needs some work.

    The account is short on in-depth details and yet details of their offerings are included. Even though not the ONLY issue, the offerings are definitely part of the main issue otherwise the details of them would not have been included and other details that are germane to the main issue would have been. Including those particular details makes no sense unless they tell us something not otherwise spelled out. Again, if the account is to be understood ONLY as a juxtaposing of the heart condition of the two men then where are the details of Abel’s attitude, thinking and course of good actions? OR, are we to assume that all it takes to be seen by God as faithful and righteous is being murdered? THAT IS NOT SO! Therefore the details of the offerings are helping us to understand the main point of the account: Faith in God means obeying God and doing things to please him rather than our self. This is the point I am trying to make above.

    (Deuteronomy 5:29) If only they would develop this heart of theirs to fear me and to keep all my commandments always, in order that it might go well with them and their sons to time indefinite!

    (1 John 5:3) For this is what the love of God means, that we observe his commandments; and yet his commandments are not burdensome,

    NetDoc, I agree that the constitution, the national law code of the ancient nation of Israel is no longer binding on us—we are not physical Israelites. But spiritual Israelites must still make sacrifices; they still must be circumcised just not in the flesh; they still are definitely under law the “law of the Christ” (Galatians 6:2) or the “royal law” (James 2:8) and not the Mosaic Law. Therefore the issues raised in Genesis chapters 3 and 4 are still issues we must face. Will we obey God or will we insist on doing things our way and being God’s equal? That is what Satan wanted; that is what Satan deceived Eve into believing she could be and so she did not need to obey God’s plainly stated prohibition and we soon learn that the idea seems to have rubbed off on Cain and also survives to this very day.

    (Matthew 7:21, CEV) Not everyone who calls me their Lord will get into the kingdom of heaven. Only the ones who obey my Father in heaven will get in.

    Both you and sojourner are right, the heart is at the core of the issue as it was with Cain and Abel. Still it was the offering that brought the issue to a head and seems to be the starting point of the problem with Cain and it is the offering that made the point about Abel telling us of his righteousness, faith and obedience. So what issues and standards can we use today as legitimate indicators, as identifying marks of whether a home church group or a Mega-church or a small or a large denomination is pleasing to God and not just pleasing to its members? What about Hellfire missiles and 500 lb bombs? What do you say?
     
  7. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

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    I would suggest that God was pleased with Abel FIRST and so was pleased with any offering he would have chosen to give. I don't see anywhere where God asked for these offerings, so I can only assume that they were freewill offerings. The issue at hand was Cain's jealousy and not the composition of their respective offerings.

    So what should we listen to? Our hearts. That's where God has written his real laws.

    II Corinthians 3:2 You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody. 3 You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. NIV

    Ah, but the heart is decietful above all else, right? Not the heart that belongs to Jesus.

    Note the role the Spirit plays in all of this:

    II Corinthians 3:16 But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18 And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. NIV
     
  8. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    sojourner,

    I do not agree with your assessment of me and my needs, but for the sake of discussion let’s say you are right—so what?! Where is the problem and where is the downside? Why make an issue of my so-called ‘insecurities’ if there is no problem or downside?

    If I also choose to tilt at windmills, so what? If there is no prohibition or warning in the Bible along with a spelled out downside against tilting at windmills what is the problem, other than your dislike for us tilters? That is a joke of course—I am not accusing you of anything. But I do want to make for sure that we are not just engaging in a discussion about your personal preferences versus my personal preferences—interesting but of no great importance. Whereas, if I am in some real danger and if I need to change what I believe then I need to know what and why?
     
  9. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

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    For those who would tilt:

    Colossians 2: 16 Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. 1718 Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you for the prize. Such a person goes into great detail about what he has seen, and his unspiritual mind puffs him up with idle notions. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ. NIV

    Galations 5:1 You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. 2 I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard? 3 Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort? 4 Have you suffered so much for nothing—if it really was for nothing? 5 Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you because you observe the law, or because you believe what you heard?
    NIV
     
  10. SoyLeche

    SoyLeche meh...

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    Just curious:

    This is in the Same Faith Debates section, but I can't see which faiths are invited. Could someone please clarify?
     
  11. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    Then why mention the offerings? Please tell me.

    Let me show you what I mean:

    (Genesis 4:2-7, HC Version) . . .And Abel came to be a herder of sheep, but Cain became a cultivator of the ground. And it came about at the expiration of some time that Jehovah was looking with favor upon Abel but he did not look with any favor upon Cain. And Cain grew hot with great anger, and his countenance began to fall. At this Jehovah said to Cain: “Why are you hot with anger and why has your countenance fallen? If you turn to doing good, will there not be an exaltation? But if you do not turn to doing good, there is sin crouching at the entrance, and for you is its craving; and will you, for your part, get the mastery over it?”. . .

    Stated that way there is no doubt about it; the only issue is the one stated in verse 7, “If you turn to doing good”. Saying it that way it is clearly understood, even though not stated, that Cain had not been “doing good” and all the was necessary to have God’s favor and praise or “exaltation” was to “turn to doing good”. NetDoc, we really agree more than we disagree because I do very much believe that Cain and Abel were following their hearts and that the ultimate approval and disapproval was based on what was in their hearts. But that still does not change what was actually recorded at God’s direction about the issue:

    (Genesis 4:2-7) . . .And Abel came to be a herder of sheep, but Cain became a cultivator of the ground. 3 And it came about at the expiration of some time that Cain proceeded to bring some fruits of the ground as an offering to Jehovah. 4 But as for Abel, he too brought some firstlings of his flock, even their fatty pieces. Now while Jehovah was looking with favor upon Abel and his offering, 5 he did not look with any favor upon Cain and upon his offering. And Cain grew hot with great anger, and his countenance began to fall. 6 At this Jehovah said to Cain: “Why are you hot with anger and why has your countenance fallen? 7 If you turn to doing good, will there not be an exaltation? But if you do not turn to doing good, there is sin crouching at the entrance, and for you is its craving; and will you, for your part, get the mastery over it?” It was said that way for a reason. Including the details about the offerings explains what it was that triggered God’s response to the two men. Did it involve more than just a simple offering? You betcha! Just as there was more to it than simply stealing a piece of fruit.

    Regardless of whether you and I totally agree on whether or not the offerings were part of the issue, we do agree that “If you turn to doing good” was the solution specified for Cain’s problem and therefore that God differentiated between Cain and Abel based on what they were “doing”, correct? Also God specifically warned Cain that he must turn to doing good to have His favor. I agree with you 100% that that meant Cain had to change more than just his offering and I agree with you that it meant changing his heart and that it included changing all the bad qualities and attributes you and I have mentioned about him. Can we agree that at least that much is obvious?

    If so then, in spite of the rough start, the questions still remain to be answered: “Is acceptable and unacceptable worship as clearly identifiable today as it was back then and is it also the case that most “worshippers” in our day are choosing to ignore God’s continued help and warnings regarding their unacceptable worship, faulty thinking and bad actions? What do you say?”


    Even though I do not think it is what you mean, that statement sounds like you are saying any law found in writing in the Bible is a ‘fake’ and therefore whatever ‘law’ we find written in our heart takes president even over God’s Word. If it is what you mean to say, then I have a real problem with that and look forward to you either correcting my misunderstanding or defending it.

    2 Corinthians 3:16 is one of my favorite scriptures. You probably already know it but perhaps not all are aware that Paul was paraphrasing Exodus 34:34 which says: “But when Moses would go in before Jehovah to speak with him, he would take away the veil until his going out. And he went out and spoke to the sons of Israel what he would be commanded.” Yes absolutely when there is a turning to Jehovah the veil is taken away. There is a term used there that was used in Genesis also and we should look at it as we progress in the discussion. It is turn/turning.
     
  12. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    SoyLeche,

    I originally had in mind "Christian" when I chose to put my remarks here. Then we moved a discussion here from another thread where we were getting too far off the subject.

    I have tried to make this thread broad--all I ask is that we not discuss many different things all at once but rather discuss many different things one after the other.
     
  13. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    NetDoc,

    This my last post on the home churches thread:

    PLEASE EXPOUND. PLEASE EXPOUND. PLEASE EXPOUND.

    You now seem to be accusing me of something but of what I am not sure.

    As I said to sojourner:


     
  14. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

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    Let's let Jesus elucidate just what he is looking for here:

    Hosea 6:6 For I desire mercy, not sacrifice,
    and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings.
    NIV

    Matthew 9:10 While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew's house, many tax collectors and "sinners" came and ate with him and his disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and 'sinners'?"
    12 On hearing this, Jesus said, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners." NIV

    Matthew 12:1 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. 2 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, "Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath."
    3 He answered, "Haven't you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? 4 He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread—which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests. 5 Or haven't you read in the Law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple desecrate the day and yet are innocent? 6 I tell you that one greater than the temple is here. 7 If you had known what these words mean, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the innocent. 8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath."
    9 Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, 10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, they asked him, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?"
    11 He said to them, "If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath."
    13 Then he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus. NIV

    Again, just where are Cain and Abel commanded to make these sacrifices? If the Bible is as verbose in all details as you suggest, we will surely see that here. It's not there. Being brothers, I am sure that there was a RIVALRY going on: at least on Cain's side. Cain was clearly jealous of his brother, and so his sacrifice was not "clean".

    Matthew 5:21 "You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.' 22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,' is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell.
    23 "Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.
    25 "Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still with him on the way, or he may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. 26 I tell you the truth, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny. NIV

    Notice that Jesus was speaking about MURDER and then uses a "therefore" in the next paragraph. Was the GIFT the issue? NO! It was the HEART of the person giving the gift.
     
  15. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

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    Drawing a line in the sand for me means creating BOUNDARIES that God never made. We do that to either keep people out or to control their behavior while inside the barrier.

    It is human nature to be controlling, but that goes against the freedom we have in Christ. Speak where the Bible speaks and be silent where it is silent when it comes to doctrinal issues. Unless it is clearly stated, forebear all other's opinions.
     
  16. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

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    Let's look at a BEAUTIFUL act of worship...

    Matthew 26:6 While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, 7 a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table. 8 When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. "Why this waste?" they asked. 9 "This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor."
    10 Aware of this, Jesus said to them, "Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. 11 The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. 12 When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial. 13 I tell you the truth, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her." NIV

    Now, is there ANYWHERE in scripture that AUTHORISES or commands this type of worship? No.

    Is there ANYWHERE in scripture that PROHIBITS or condemns this type of worship? No.

    But man did not like it! Simon thought it quite wasteful. Jesus found it beautiful. Simon could only see this worship from a legalistic perspective. Jesus recognised love overflowing from the heart and was touched. Simon was drawing a line in the sand and Jesus told him to mind his own business. Yay, Jesus!
     
  17. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

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    Alright Doc! I agreed with you already!!


    I probably agree with very word of that—though I need to know more about BOUNDARIES. I did not have time to do an exhaustive search but so far I cannot find the word used in the Bible the way you are using it. Therefore, can you please define it by giving me examples of BOUNDARIES that God created and especially of BOUNDARIES God did not create since they are the ones that seem to bother you the most?


    I will reply to your last post after we get these two items settled.
     
  18. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

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    I thought my last post illustrated that beautifully. Simon was ready with a limit on how to worship: Jesus was not.

    Here are a few more:

    Drinking. Generally regarded as a sin by most of those who are regarded as "fundamentalist". It was not only Jesus' first miracle, but one of the criticisms of him by the religious fundamentalists of the day.

    Gambling. Again, seen as a sin by many, but not really covered one way or the other in the New Testament scriptures.

    Many churches have split over mere opinions about "proper worship". Instruments in the church or not? How about a kitchen? One cup or many for the Lord's Supper? Wine or "Near Wine" for the same? Methods or intensity of evangelism?

    As a dear friend/preacher often put it: "Brethren, this ought not to be!"

    Romans 14:1 Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters. 2 One man's faith allows him to eat everything, but another man, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. 3 The man who eats everything must not look down on him who does not, and the man who does not eat everything must not condemn the man who does, for God has accepted him. 4 Who are you to judge someone else's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. 5 One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. 6 He who regards one day as special, does so to the Lord. He who eats meat, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who abstains, does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7 For none of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone. 8 If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.
    9 For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living. 10 You, then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God's judgment seat. 11 It is written:
    " 'As surely as I live,' says the Lord,
    'every knee will bow before me;
    every tongue will confess to God.' " 12 So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.

    13 Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother's way. 14 As one who is in the Lord Jesus, I am fully convinced that no food is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for him it is unclean. 15 If your brother is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy your brother for whom Christ died. 16 Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18 because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men. NIV
     
  19. HOGCALLER

    HOGCALLER Active Member

    Joined:
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    NetDoc,

    Thank you for indulging me and providing the additional answer. It really told me much more than your previous answer did. And I now am comfortable with the term BOUNDARIES. At this point let’s only discuss one of those boundaries, drinking, so that I can get an even better idea of what all you have been saying to me.

    Based on the above I think we agree on this but, just in case, I believe the Bible allows for drinking in moderation while at the same time condemning in no uncertain terms drunkards, drunkenness, excesses in wine and other similar things. The Bible not only condemns those thing many times and warns of the downside but it also goes much further and orders:

    (1 Corinthians 5:9-13, NLT) When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. 10 But I wasn't talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or who are greedy or are swindlers or idol worshipers. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that. 11 What I meant was that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a Christian yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or a drunkard, or a swindler. Don't even eat with such people.

    12 It isn't my responsibility to judge outsiders, but it certainly is your job to judge those inside the church who are sinning in these ways. 13 God will judge those on the outside; but as the Scriptures say, "You must remove the evil person from among you."

    Yes according to God’s word we are to “remove the wicked” from among us! Doesn’t that fly in the face of what you said earlier about controlling “their behavior while inside the barrier”? If not, then please explain this statement, “Speak where the Bible speaks”?

    And what about the church that says, “We no longer see the need to enforce God’s commands regarding drinking” are not they even in worse trouble with God than the wicked they allow to remain in their midst?

    If so, then could not their loyalty to God and to his stated boundaries be something we could use to identify a group as acceptable or unacceptable to God?
     
  20. Scuba Pete

    Scuba Pete Le plongeur avec attitude...

    Joined:
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    Christian Taoist
    Hmnnn, that is a boundary that the Apostles have set up... However, it sounds reasonable to me though.

    A truly man made boundary would be expelling someone because they had a beer and declaring that they are ergo a drunkard.

    Now take a closer look at that list of sins: are they at all consistent with the pivotal two commandments? Love god and Love everyone else? This whole passage is about someone in denial about what it is to be a Christian.
     
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