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Thread: Observable Evidence

  1. #1
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    Banghead Observable Evidence

    Howdy folks.

    For a very long time now I have been church-less, but at the same time would have packed up and moved anywhere on the planet (literally) to find a church that offered biblical messages to it's congregation on what the life-cost of discipleship is, and even more importantly to me is a church which offers brave and honest biblical messages on what discipleship actually looks like when practiced.

    Anyway, two years ago I finally found a local church, well kind of local, it is a little over 25 miles away from my residence.

    A local church where christian's gather together and at least hear brave and honest truth(s) that were taught by Jesus Himself.
    ....It is a nondenominational church that split from southern baptist about a decade ago, which is another quality in fellowship that I desire: nondenominational.
    It is a church set-up in a way that I can only describe as a hub system of churches 'the father church' and 'sister churches' that were planted over the past two years by the father church.
    ....All of these churches are within 40 miles of one another and, all are under the pastor-ship of one head pastor at the "father church" who also guides and councils the junior pastors at it's two sister churches.
    ....I see that as remarkably similar to the governing structure of historical churches set up by Paul the apostle.
    And to add even more biblical church-ness to this; we also divide up into small groups by-weekly for bible studies with shared meals in private homes.

    The messages delivered here at my local church immediately began deeply convicting me of previously unrecognized sin(s) and brought repentance from my ugly heart and spirit, weekly. The small group bible studies also help keep me on the narrow path.
    Also, those messages that I hear at church are mysteriously timely and on target to what was or is still currently going on in my life's day to day personal struggles toward becoming more Christlike. IE: loving folks the way Jesus loved and treated them, instead of how I wanted to love and treat them.
    Yay for me right ?

    Well, I thought so too ...for awhile.
    Maybe I am trying to pick out splinters from folks eyes even before removing the logs still jammed in my own eyes.
    Because, after assuming for two years that Jesus finally led me to a place where I could grow into a strong tree and burn my candle on a huge fortified hilltop.
    ....Sadly, all of that biblical church-goodness that I was craving for years and thought that I had finally found, well it was just a silver lining, so to speak.
    Imagine my disappointment after years and years of searching for a place where earnest believers gathered and practiced what Jesus literally taught.
    Meaning, once I got semi-settled in at this new church, I began to notice a lack of love and fellowship.
    But, I did not recognize these recent fast growing sprouts of snide, chide, shunning spirits until after I began to shed this crusty shell of carnal/fleshly-christianity that made up my old-man that I previously thought was saved/redeemed from sin.

    It's like: yeah we will prove our love and fellowship toward you as long as you stay where you are and don't grow into anything resembling a reborn image of Christ.
    No fellowship for you unless you stop growing and trying persistently to follow the One we call our Savior and redeemer.
    I define 'true' fellowship as:
    John 13:34
    A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
    John 13:35
    By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

    After reading my cry rant/here, does anyone have any advice as to if there is something that I am overlooking or have forgotten that maybe causing this recent but growing perception of mine ?
    ....Look, I love/crave rebuke and correction, it edifies and encourages me !
    Meaning; any reflections or insight offered pointing to what maybe is still in me that causes this recent but ever strengthening perception of mine, well that insight would be a blessing and more so an answer to prayer more than anything.


    Thanks for your time and consideration folks, God bless you more and more.

  2. #2
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    Re: Observable Evidence

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob's Ladder View Post
    After reading my cry rant/here, does anyone have any advice as to if there is something that I am overlooking or have forgotten that maybe causing this recent but growing perception of mine
    The realisation that there is no perfect church perhaps ?

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    Re: Observable Evidence

    That's a tough one for sure. First I think you need to realize that some of this could be a spiritual attack on you because you are growing in Christ, as a way to discourage you. Satan often does use others to be a stumbling block to us. Its pretty unnerving to see and confusing! For now I would just suggest you first avoid those people but watch them and most of all pray for them because something is affecting them too. I wouldn't give up on this church though since you are getting so much out of the sermons and growing so much. Just be prayer about the church and pray for everyone their including the pastor.
    "People do not drift toward holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort, people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith, and delight in the Lord. We drift toward compromise and call it tolerance; We drift toward disobedience and call it freedom; We drift toward superstition and call it faith. We cherish the indiscipline of lost self-control and call it relaxation; we slouch toward prayerlessness and delude ourselves into thinking we have escaped legalism; we slide toward godlessness and convince ourselves we have been liberated?" - D A Carson

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    Re: Observable Evidence

    @ ProDeo
    Good point, maybe I am still to eager to place trust in my fellows rather than putting all of my trust in my Creator and His Lamb.

    @ moonglow it is discouraging yes indeed.
    I'm almost sure at this point in time that I will not stop physically going to this particular church, even though I can watch the sermon messages on youtube a few days after every Sunday.

    I know you did not mention this here, but as for forsaking the gathering of ourselves together being a big no no.
    I have a friend close by (walking distance) who is crippled by scoliosis since birth.
    He's a christian too and an earnest one at that, so if I do decide in the near future to stop going to this church I can still gather together with my friend at his house, so gathering wont be forsaken anyway.

    But yeah, I think God is possibly using some folks (good or bad) there at my church to teach me somethings He is aware I still need to learn, as painful as that lesson is.
    And He could possibly have been or will use me to bless them too.
    Which are the only reason that I have not made a firm decision as to if I will stay or leave there yet.
    Your prayers on my wisdom in that decision would be awesome reinforcement !

    Anyway, Thank you both for your replies.
    God bless.

    @ ProDeo
    Good point, maybe I am still to eager to place trust in my fellows rather than putting all of my trust in my Creator and His Lamb.

    @ moonglow it is discouraging yes indeed.
    I'm almost sure at this point in time that I will not stop physically going to this particular church, even though I can watch the sermon messages on youtube a few days after every Sunday.

    I know you did not mention this here, but as for forsaking the gathering of ourselves together being a big no no.
    I have a friend close by (walking distance) who is crippled by scoliosis since birth.
    He's a christian too and an earnest one at that, so if I do decide in the near future to stop going to this church I can still gather together with my friend at his house, so gathering wont be forsaken anyway.

    But yeah, I think God is possibly using some folks (good or bad) there at my church to teach me somethings He is aware I still need to learn, as painful as that lesson is.
    And He could possibly have been or will use me to bless them too.
    Which are the only reason that I have not made a firm decision as to if I will stay or leave there yet.
    Your prayers on my wisdom in that decision would be awesome reinforcement !

    Anyway, Thank you both for your replies.
    God bless.

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    Re: Observable Evidence

    I don't know why that last post double posted.
    I cannot edit it out either, my apologies.

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    Re: Observable Evidence

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob's Ladder View Post
    I don't know why that last post double posted.
    I cannot edit it out either, my apologies.
    It's a sofware bug that slipped in waiting to be fixed. Do a "preview post" first before you post, it avoids the double.

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    Re: Observable Evidence

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob's Ladder View Post
    @ ProDeo
    Good point, maybe I am still to eager to place trust in my fellows rather than putting all of my trust in my Creator and His Lamb.
    The 7 churches in Revelation, the church of Corinth, the church of the Galatians. Even back then in the apostolic age it wasn't perfect.

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    Re: Observable Evidence

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob's Ladder View Post
    @ ProDeo
    Good point, maybe I am still to eager to place trust in my fellows rather than putting all of my trust in my Creator and His Lamb.

    @ moonglow it is discouraging yes indeed.
    I'm almost sure at this point in time that I will not stop physically going to this particular church, even though I can watch the sermon messages on youtube a few days after every Sunday.

    I know you did not mention this here, but as for forsaking the gathering of ourselves together being a big no no.
    I have a friend close by (walking distance) who is crippled by scoliosis since birth.
    He's a christian too and an earnest one at that, so if I do decide in the near future to stop going to this church I can still gather together with my friend at his house, so gathering wont be forsaken anyway.

    But yeah, I think God is possibly using some folks (good or bad) there at my church to teach me somethings He is aware I still need to learn, as painful as that lesson is.
    And He could possibly have been or will use me to bless them too.
    Which are the only reason that I have not made a firm decision as to if I will stay or leave there yet.
    Your prayers on my wisdom in that decision would be awesome reinforcement !

    Anyway, Thank you both for your replies.
    God bless.
    Good, I'm glad you have a plan. I'll keep you in my prayers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob's Ladder View Post
    @ ProDeo
    Good point, maybe I am still to eager to place trust in my fellows rather than putting all of my trust in my Creator and His Lamb.

    @ moonglow it is discouraging yes indeed.
    I'm almost sure at this point in time that I will not stop physically going to this particular church, even though I can watch the sermon messages on youtube a few days after every Sunday.

    I know you did not mention this here, but as for forsaking the gathering of ourselves together being a big no no.
    I have a friend close by (walking distance) who is crippled by scoliosis since birth.
    He's a christian too and an earnest one at that, so if I do decide in the near future to stop going to this church I can still gather together with my friend at his house, so gathering wont be forsaken anyway.

    But yeah, I think God is possibly using some folks (good or bad) there at my church to teach me somethings He is aware I still need to learn, as painful as that lesson is.
    And He could possibly have been or will use me to bless them too.
    Which are the only reason that I have not made a firm decision as to if I will stay or leave there yet.
    Your prayers on my wisdom in that decision would be awesome reinforcement !

    Anyway, Thank you both for your replies.
    God bless.
    Good, I'm glad you have a plan. I'll keep you in my prayers.
    "People do not drift toward holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort, people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith, and delight in the Lord. We drift toward compromise and call it tolerance; We drift toward disobedience and call it freedom; We drift toward superstition and call it faith. We cherish the indiscipline of lost self-control and call it relaxation; we slouch toward prayerlessness and delude ourselves into thinking we have escaped legalism; we slide toward godlessness and convince ourselves we have been liberated?" - D A Carson

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    Re: Observable Evidence

    @ moonglow
    Thank you for your prayers on my behalf.
    I want to share this with you after sleeping on my burden:
    The more that I have prayed about this situation, I am feeling that until Jesus resolves this with either me or them, then if I returned to try and fellowship with them again, I would actually be obstructing any growth that God has planned for them, and more than likely cause them to sin even further at the same time.

    Thank you again.




    @ ProDeo
    I am thinking, or have always thought when it come's to Jesus's indictments aimed at the seven churches in Rev chapter 2, that for believers to get a meal from those rebukes offered by my Lord to those churches, then we need to apply other parts of the new testament.
    Such as: Don't separate the wheat from the tares 'before' His Father's appointed time, found in Matt chapter 13.
    ...Which in this case directly applies to the situation or issue that I requested advice about in the OP here.
    Applies in regard to my asking advice as to whether I am mistaken in thinking that before a professing christian is to be shunned, well there first needs to be given an opportunity for that professing christian to first; be made aware of his or her offence against the body of Christ, and secondly given an opportunity to confess/admit and repent.
    ....Which in my case neither a rebuke nor any evidence of any offence that I may have committed has been offered nor presented to me before this growing shunning spirit from them envelopes me in their presence.
    So, as far as I know from a biblical stand point, I should not contest their efforts to alienate me via their shunning, because if I did, then I would end up being knowingly guilty of making an effort to separate the wheat from the tares before the appointed time.

    And as long winded as my OP was here, I did not think it would be practical to add even more babble in efforts to explain my thought in more detail.
    So, I apologize now for not being more precise as to what advice I was looking for.
    ....Which was and still is: Am I out of line, or thinking incorrectly for thinking those folks were being unloving in their treatment of their fellows ?
    And why I quoted to adjoining passages from John as references in the OP along with my windy ranting plea to you folks here.
    John 13:34
    A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
    John 13:35
    By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

    Also, I am not looking for validation of my flesh's feelings.
    I am angry at my perceived hypocrisy of this churches staff, but I also think it is very possible to be angry and not sin as we are commanded to in
    Ephesians 4:26.

    Anyway, I do appreciate your efforts to communicate your point of view in the form of advice.
    And I apologize again for not being a practical communicator with out dozens and dozens of paragraphs in efforts to effectively express my points.

    Thank you again.

  10. #10
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    Re: Observable Evidence

    Hi there Jacobsladder!
    I love how passionate you are about being what the scriptures teach us to be. I wonder how you could pray for this passion to spread through the body of Christ. I lovethat you appreciate correcting and rebuke too! But it's more than ok to accept encouragement so we can be built up as well. After all, that is what that gifts are for, building up and strengthening. Maybe consider that each of us is in a different place in our walk with the Lord and see how the Lord leads you in praying according to that knowledge.
    Don't seek too much knowledge. You just may be putting more weight on your shoulders than you're able to bare. Let God be the one to decide how quickly you grow.

  11. #11
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    Re: Observable Evidence

    JacobsLadder,

    I’m glad you found a place and I’m sorry about your current struggles with it. I’d encourage you to hang in there. They need you. You need them unless there is another body that you fit better.

    I don’t quote The Message Bible very often. But one section captures the heart of Paul very well. This is from 1 Corinthians 12.... it’s long. I apologize.

    1 Corinthians 12:4–31 (The Message): God’s various gifts are handed out everywhere; but they all originate in God’s Spirit. God’s various ministries are carried out everywhere; but they all originate in God’s Spirit. God’s various expressions of power are in action everywhere; but God himself is behind it all. Each person is given something to do that shows who God is: Everyone gets in on it, everyone benefits. All kinds of things are handed out by the Spirit, and to all kinds of people! The variety is wonderful:

    wise counsel
    clear understanding
    simple trust
    healing the sick
    miraculous acts
    proclamation
    distinguishing between spirits
    tongues
    interpretation of tongues.

    All these gifts have a common origin, but are handed out one by one by the one Spirit of God. He decides who gets what, and when.

    12–13* You can easily enough see how this kind of thing works by looking no further than your own body. Your body has many parts—limbs, organs, cells—but no matter how many parts you can name, you’re still one body. It’s exactly the same with Christ. By means of his one Spirit, we all said good-bye to our partial and piecemeal lives. We each used to independently call our own shots, but then we entered into a large and integrated life in which he has the final say in everything. (This is what we proclaimed in word and action when we were baptized.) Each of us is now a part of his resurrection body, refreshed and sustained at one fountain—his Spirit—where we all come to drink. The old labels we once used to identify ourselves—labels like Jew or Greek, slave or free—are no longer useful. We need something larger, more comprehensive.

    14–18* I want you to think about how all this makes you more significant, not less. A body isn’t just a single part blown up into something huge. It’s all the different-but-similar parts arranged and functioning together. If Foot said, “I’m not elegant like Hand, embellished with rings; I guess I don’t belong to this body,” would that make it so? If Ear said, “I’m not beautiful like Eye, limpid and expressive; I don’t deserve a place on the head,” would you want to remove it from the body? If the body was all eye, how could it hear? If all ear, how could it smell? As it is, we see that God has carefully placed each part of the body right where he wanted it.

    19–24* But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of. An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn’t be a body, but a monster. What we have is one body with many parts, each its proper size and in its proper place. No part is important on its own. Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, “Get lost; I don’t need you”? Or, Head telling Foot, “You’re fired; your job has been phased out”? As a matter of fact, in practice it works the other way—the “lower” the part, the more basic, and therefore necessary. You can live without an eye, for instance, but not without a stomach. When it’s a part of your own body you are concerned with, it makes no difference whether the part is visible or clothed, higher or lower. You give it dignity and honor just as it is, without comparisons. If anything, you have more concern for the lower parts than the higher. If you had to choose, wouldn’t you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair?

    25–26* The way God designed our bodies is a model for understanding our lives together as a church: every part dependent on every other part, the parts we mention and the parts we don’t, the parts we see and the parts we don’t. If one part hurts, every other part is involved in the hurt, and in the healing. If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance.
    27–31* You are Christ’s body—that’s who you are! You must never forget this. Only as you accept your part of that body does your “part” mean anything. You’re familiar with some of the parts that God has formed in his church, which is his “body”:
    apostles
    prophets
    teachers
    miracle workers
    healers
    helpers
    organizers
    those who pray in tongues.
    But it’s obvious by now, isn’t it, that Christ’s church is a complete Body and not a gigantic, unidimensional Part? It’s not all Apostle, not all Prophet, not all Miracle Worker, not all Healer, not all Prayer in Tongues, not all Interpreter of Tongues. And yet some of you keep competing for so-called “important” parts.
    But now I want to lay out a far better way for you.

    End of quote.

    Don’t be a separated limb. An arm by itself is gross. ProDeo is correct. Every NT church had problems and the apostles were still walking this Earth!

    I’m praying for you, Friend.

    In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity. - Rupertus Meldenius

    Read your Bible and pray every single day. - Pastor Jon Courson

    If your grace ain't greasier than a bucket full of chitlin's and gravy, you might be a legalist - an internet friend.

  12. #12
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    Re: Observable Evidence

    Thank you Saved7, and thank you TrustGzus.
    I did intentionally missed church the last two Sunday's of July because I knew my heart was still not in the correct place over this.
    I finally had the opportunity to speak with my local Pastor about it, he offered good biblical advice to me.
    I was expecting our meeting to be something much different than what it was, for whatever reason I was expecting to be the one doing the majority of the talking, but it wasn't so.
    My Pastor did almost all of the talking, it was essentially like a Doctor's visit (seriously) but without me first describing any individual pains, disappointment or unhealthy symptoms.
    He did not offer any excuses or apologies, he just simply reminded me in a few different ways that as chrstian's we are to bear one another's burdens, period.
    Scripture says if I only love those who loves me, then what have I profited.
    My Pastor did not raise that particular scripture when we spoke about this, but that scripture is the solid summary of what I needed to know/remember to heal in this.


    Also @ TrustGzus and ProDeo
    I am 99% positive that neither of you were or are making excuses for sin (any sin) just because we are not 100% christlike yet.
    I will be brave enough to suggest that excuse such as "we are not perfect yet" that excuse is only worthy of soothing a guilty/seared conscience.
    ....Many folks that I know who live in the world (do not claim to be christians) the single reason that they offer for not even giving church a chance to change their life, is because of the blatant-gross-fearless-hypocrisy of the professing christian's that they encounter there.

    Now hear me out:
    It is not the devil's fault that this is the worlds perception of professing christians.
    It is definitely not Jesus's fault for that perception.
    Nor is it the gross blatant and fearless sin that is at fault for that perception.
    ...It is the fault of the content church goers who never examine themselves for sin, or if they do bother to examine themselves they afterward make silly excuses for their and their fellow's sin such as "we are not perfect yet". Excuses only to sooth their own lustful passions that they have no intention to surrender to Jesus.

    Those hypocrites not only do they make the eye of the needle smaller for themselves, but they also obstruct the paths of their fellows for just only the comfort-sake of their own seared conscience.
    They persuade honest folks to be content with falling short of what Jesus Christ's life lived example was and is.
    These things rob and murder folks who show a genuine desire to find peace between themselves and their Creator.

    Which leaves me where I am now:
    Not to concerned anymore about casting my pearls, I expect to be rend, I expect to be lied to and about, I expect to be excluded and demeaned, I expect and am prepared for the cost of living as close to Jesus's life example as possible for me.
    ....Never could understand why Paul suggested that Jesus's earnest followers stay un-wed if they are not wed already. <--- I fully understand now.

    Thank you Saved7, and thank you TrustGzus.
    I did intentionally missed church the last two Sunday's of July because I knew my heart was still not in the correct place over this.
    I finally had the opportunity to speak with my local Pastor about it, he offered good biblical advice to me.
    I was expecting our meeting to be something much different than what it was, for whatever reason I was expecting to be the one doing the majority of the talking, but it wasn't so.
    My Pastor did almost all of the talking, it was essentially like a Doctor's visit (seriously) but without me first describing any individual pains, disappointment or unhealthy symptoms.
    He did not offer any excuses or apologies, he just simply reminded me in a few different ways that as chrstian's we are to bear one another's burdens, period.
    Scripture says if I only love those who loves me, then what have I profited.
    My Pastor did not raise that particular scripture when we spoke about this, but that scripture is the solid summary of what I needed to know/remember to heal in this.


    Also @ TrustGzus and ProDeo
    I am 99% positive that neither of you were or are making excuses for sin (any sin) just because we are not 100% christlike yet.
    I will be brave enough to suggest that excuse such as "we are not perfect yet" that excuse is only worthy of soothing a guilty/seared conscience.
    ....Many folks that I know who live in the world (do not claim to be christians) the single reason that they offer for not even giving church a chance to change their life, is because of the blatant-gross-fearless-hypocrisy of the professing christian's that they encounter there.

    Now hear me out:
    It is not the devil's fault that this is the worlds perception of professing christians.
    It is definitely not Jesus's fault for that perception.
    Nor is it the gross blatant and fearless sin that is at fault for that perception.
    ...It is the fault of the content church goers who never examine themselves for sin, or if they do bother to examine themselves they afterward make silly excuses for their and their fellow's sin such as "we are not perfect yet". Excuses only to sooth their own lustful passions that they have no intention to surrender to Jesus.

    Those hypocrites not only do they make the eye of the needle smaller for themselves, but they also obstruct the paths of their fellows for just only the comfort-sake of their own seared conscience.
    They persuade honest folks to be content with falling short of what Jesus Christ's life lived example was and is.
    These things rob and murder folks who show a genuine desire to find peace between themselves and their Creator.

    Which leaves me where I am now:
    Not to concerned anymore about casting my pearls, I expect to be rend, I expect to be lied to and about, I expect to be excluded and demeaned, I expect and am prepared for the cost of living as close to Jesus's life example as possible for me.
    ....Never could understand why Paul suggested that Jesus's earnest followers stay un-wed if they are not wed already. <--- I fully understand now.

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