The Quiet Christian wrote: I've heard that argument too: homosexual behaviors exist within the animal kingdom which therefore make those behaviors "natural." No, it only shows that sin's effects from the Fall run greater than we might expect. Romans 8 says that Creation was subject to futility and groans along with us waiting for Jesus' return.
Amen Quiet Brother. We'll never know the full extent of the effects of the fall.
Thanks Chris for your thoughts on this. You seem very sure about it.
I certainly agree with prayer for Catholics. I myself have befriended four Catholics, who all have a great deal of respect for me (I have to withhold the reason), and I realise I must have great wisdom towards them in turning them from religion to Christ.
B. McCausland wrote: "Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth"
Sister B, firstly, you said: "...presently you are assuming things not intended or said..."
My apologies for that, especially if I have caused you grief.
Now this banner business. You have furnished me with a proof text, yes? Well it is a poor one. That is my opinion.
Let us think a minute. How do you analyse a professing Christian or Christian group?
How about: read and re-read, over and over, over and over, the NT texts, and get what the word of God says Christianity is, and what it is like in practice. Once you have that, test any professing Christian or group against that. Let us try that with banner-carrying Protestants found in NI called Orangemen.
So I'm sitting by the roadside watching an Orange march go past. The men are uniformed and they are marching in step like an army; they carry banners and flags; they are accompanied by a marching military style band which makes a huge amount of noise, especially the drums. It is an intimidating presence, scary, which it is designed to be.
I compare notes with my NT blueprint, and cannot find anything like it. So it is NOT Christian.
Sister, let me repeat, just so that you know I am serious about what I say.
"Now beloved sister, if you wish to convince me of anything, you must needs approach me through the apostles' doctrine, not how your local or national church does things."
Of course it is your prerogative to ignore that, but then what are you hoping to achieve? Why are you discussing with me? I ignore everything you say which is not based upon scripture but the tradition of the elders.
Do you wish to convince me of anything? That can be a good motivation, if I am astray in anything. But arguments from anything other than scripture are not going to do me any good, because it is the word of God that is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.
And when I read words like, "Protestants set up our banners!" in that militant way which cares nothing for souls, but simply wishes to be aggressive, in accordance with the sinful nature, then it really turns me off.
I am for Bible Christianity. This is what the Reformers were all about. But you seem to be more interested in the Reformation and huge spiritual leaders than you are in what they sought to restore to the church - THE BIBLE.
Sister B, in mine own opinion, I have never been more sharply in focus than I am today, and it is getting sharper all the time. Whether or not it be by divine revelation I cannot tell, but I do see more and more the need to "Get Back To The Bible" lest the apostasy swallow up every denomination, Christian group, and Fellowship around the world.
The word of God to me is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path, showing me the way, the narrow road which leads to life, the difference between truth and error, the judge between the sheep and the wolf, the direction to go, the commands to obey, the revealer of false doctrine.
You see, sister, this is how the church began, before it went astray:
Acts 2:42 KJV (42)Â And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
Now beloved sister, if you wish to convince me of anything, you must needs approach me through the apostles' doctrine, not how your local or national church does things.
Sister B, you are fast losing the plot and getting further away from scripture, holding to traditions of the elders rather than listen to what God has to say. I'm sorry but that is how it is.
God's word says,
Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Ps 119:105
But the majority of Christians and Christian churches today are saying,
Your word is NOT a lamp unto MY feet and a light unto MY path.
This is the cause of falling away, of course it is.
Instead of "I am of GOD", we get,
I am of Paisley, I am of Spurgeon, I am of Rutherford, I am of Smith, I am of Knox, I am of Graham, I am of Finney, I am of Whitefield, I am of Wesley, I am of Booth, I am of etc. etc.
Sister, your life is your own, and you are responsible for it, not me. So if you want to have a statue of Calvin in your back garden to remind you daily that there was a Reformation, that is up to you not me.
But as for me, I must conform myself to what God says, not what falling away people try to tell me to do.
Oh it is sooooooooo easy to backslide and fall away from God. Unless the church stands together around God, it is doomed, doomed to fail and disappoint God.
B. McCausland wrote: John, you distort what is simple by using hyperbolic reasoning. If there is any thing worthy of praise... think on this. On visiting Belfast Martyr's Memorial complex the visitor gets to seeing captions with brief comments under numerous paintings, photographs and busts representing martyrs, reformers, preachers, biblical commentators, missionaries or evangelists of renown. Never in any of that church's service iconography is preached, exalted or observed. Where the true gospel is preached there is no chance of confusing things. Attenders know well the purpose and difference of culture derived and entail in the true gospel. The memory of the just is blessed
So Sister, you DO justify the erecting of statues within the church building, and would be happy to see all those figures found in the Geneva Wall on display at Martyr's Memorial? Or perhaps have them outside on more public display?
Now if you are going to argue with me on THAT, how on earth are you going to argue for and justify the statues in Geneva?
Frank wrote: Yes brother you are correct. But in this country even the real churches won't preach against him. And, no politician or media personality would have their jobs if they said literally anything negative about him. I only used the word doubt because the internet article I read did. But, I should have said "didn't believe".
You and I aren't what they call politically correct.
Frank wrote: I remember once when I was seeking a church, the pastor started praising Martin Luther King. I simply stood up, gave him a dirty look and walked out. And if memory serves me correctly, my action was disturbing to the service. Anyone who is that blind is completely blind. The below are just some of the things Mr. King believed in. Doubted the virgin birth Doubted the resurrection Doubted the deity of Christ and obviously the trinity He was an unashamed serial adulterer.
From what you say Frank, it appears that Mr King does not know the King of kings. God the Holy Spirit does not introduce doubt but faith.
B. McCausland wrote: The command forbidding images comes related to worship, say it forbids the bowing down to them.
Sister, I truly believe the answer to all these questions and answers is a proper understanding of the commandments, and I am not saying that I have got it yet.
You remember how the Lord Jesus dealt with the commandments, showing how really depthy they were, while the Jews simply took them at face value?
Someone says, "I never killed anyone in my life."
But the other says, "No, but have you ever hated someone?"
Knowing this, and knowing that the commandments are far more complex than appear at first sight, I put it to you that the second commandment has a complexity far beyond what we would imagine it to have. If what you say is true, we could have a line of statues in our church buildings, honouring them and reminding ourselves of their being used by the Lord in history. Eh?
The way you are going, you would have iconography taught in the most robust Christian churches, and have the worshippers use the icons merely as aids to worship God; not worshipping the icons themselves, but only God. But I will disagree with you every time on this.
B. McCausland wrote: Thanks, John. 1. The principle of remembering is Biblical. 2. Honour to whom honour is due. Regards
Thank you Sister B. Now then.....
1. Absolutely! And I'm sure both of us could spend many happy hours recalling scripture where the Lord called upon his people to remember something important, such as Passover etc. What we can't find is a scriptural example of God's people sculpting something to remind them of something, unless you count Aaron's golden calf, who he said brought them up out of Egypt. Naturally we say that is wrong. But why is it wrong? It is wrong because God says it is wrong.
2. Now here is a tricky one, because the text can be used to justify almost anything relating to the exaltation of men by honouring them; or, if you agree, to the exaltation of women also, by honouring them. So how shall we do this?
Hebrews 11 gives us the gallery of people of faith, naming certain men and women and saying why they were so honoured as to be counted worthy of mention in the NT text. But NO statue of them! Why not? Because making statues of men and women is wrong. And why is it wrong? Because God says so.
B. McCausland wrote: John, you are rising humanists straw men. We are not perpetuating men, but the witness of God and his doings in the past. No harm in this. With your kind of thinking you are aiding the efforts of leftist anarchists in their aim to clear out from our history of all traces of Biblical Christianity, morality and order. We have a reasonable faith that has nothing to fear about order and remembrance.
Sister B, you are quite right that there is no harm in remembrance; rather benefit. This is why I have read books about historical figures who inspire me to greater service for the Lord.
But I disagree that "my kind of thinking" aids the efforts of leftist anarchists. I am all in favour of archiving historial documents and records of events, doctrines etc. And I hardly think that a statue serves the population in any form of teaching. Besides which, I always thought that men were mere unprofitable servants, not stars to elevate and worship.
As to "principle", if it is not based upon scripture, it is not a godly principle but a sin, and sin has its consequences.
The Quiet Christian wrote: Just it, Brother John. Running from death right into its clutches, out the first and then the second.
Amen Quiet Brother, what a terrible shock to the system when the truth is finally experienced, and ordinary people catch their first glimpse of their eternal abode, the lake of fire where is no joy or peace.
B. McCausland wrote: 1. People in the past erected 'memorials' in remembrance of the martyrs or other good leaders in Britain, 2. the same as the Lord ordered Israel to built a memorial with 12 stones after crossing Jordan and that was for a testimony to future generations. 3. So the Geneva wall.
Sister B, greetings to you, and thank you for the sole response to what I said. However, let us look at this answer.
1. You are justifying memorials (statues) in the UK because God once told his ancient people to erect some stones as a memorial so that future generations would not forget what happened there? Well I personally would not do that.
2. Yes the people were told to do that by God. It was biblically warranted. This is my whole argument, and always will be. The apostles would have been shocked if anyone had erected a statue after their death. Do you not agree?
3. I don't mind anyone building a wall, but I object to anyone building statues of men, to elevate them (oh yes, to elevate them; have you never been to a Calvin church and heard the reverence for the man and his theologies, even greater reverence than that shown to the Lord Jesus Christ himself?). No biblical warrant - no statue, simple.
Mike wrote: It's hard to identify with the whole world, at least for me, John. I have to be more specific in prayer. The whole world is beyond my ability.
Me too, Mike, which is why I do not personally pray for the whole world, but for those I am in personal contact with, and know that they have heard the gospel or have access to the gospel.
However, if Adriel has such a big heart as to pray for all, I am not going to dishearten his adventure, rather welcome it; the lost need someone to love them, for the devil sure doesn't.
Your second point Mike, is difficult, and I'm not sure I can answer it. Except to say that the OT dispensation appears to be different from the NT dispensation, in the sense that God did deal with entire nations or entire cities such as Ninevah. This he did not do since Pentecost, when even families were divided by Jesus Christ, who brought a sword not peace to family units.
Adriel wrote: John. Howâ€™s it going. Good idea. If God blessed the world then we wouldnâ€™t be too bothered about the nation. But small steps begin a long journey.
Apart from ailments Adriel, it be going fine, thank you.
I like your statement, "small steps begin a long journey". I will remember that.
With regard to God's blessing, it would appear from scripture that we can limit his salvation blessings to a smaller number, on account of his election and other purposes. It also appears rare (from the historical viewpoint) that God will save a whole country. So to say, "God bless America" is manipulation, and what the impression is given and meant to produce in hearts is, "God IS blessing America". Thusly, whatever America is doing is justified by the "fact" that God is blessing America, even if he is not, and his judgment is upon the country.
With regard to temporal blessings, I believe God can bless any individual, having some sort of love for the entire world - see John 3:16, even if there is no intention to save that person.