Calvary Chapel Visalia Personal Story: Tina’s Story

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Calvary Chapel is a “franchise” of churches with over 1,500 churches founded by Pastor Chuck Smith.  There is no hierarchy structure in place to hold pastors accountable if they behave like bullies or abuse their authority.  In light of the upcoming hearing March 4/5, 2013, I want to highlight personal stories.

Please be sure to read these posts for further information on this case.  Tina’s story is only one of countless stories.  Other stories are of alleged money corruption, alleged physical and sexual abuse.

More articles can be found in these posts:

#WhoWouldJesusSue: Media FAQs and Resources

#WhoWouldJesusSue: Breaking News Advisory – Press Release #1

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In August of 2012, I visited Calvary Chapel Abuse blog after noticing hits on my blog from that site (Huge legal victory for Free Speech and Church Abuse bloggers).  After reading Alex’s story, I reached out to him, encouraging him as he was hearing rumblings of the possibility that his father might sue him.

Weeks later, Calvary Chapel Visalia Pastor Bob Grenier’s attorneys issued a press release acknowledging their intentions to file a defamation lawsuit.  One person named as defendant on the press release was Tina Jenkins.  In September of 2012, Tina contacted me.  We exchanged several e-mails and I asked if she could tell me her story for publication on my blog.  She agreed and started working on her story.

Eventually, Bob and Gayle Grenier did file a lawsuit against their step-son/son and former church member, Tim Taylor; however, Tina’s name was absent from the lawsuit.  Of course that was a huge relief to Tina, but she said I could still tell her story.  She was strongly connected to the situation and wanted something to be done about the problems she saw at Calvary Chapel Visalia.  I’ve been saving her story all this time.  Tina had been sharing bits and pieces of her story on the Calvary Chapel Abuse blog, but here it is in its entirety.   It is a bold and brave step to speak out against an abuser.  Thank you, Tina.  Your voice is one of many who has suffered this kind of treatment from a pastor.

photo credit: heanster via photopin cc
photo credit: heanster via photopin cc

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O Lord, who may abide in Your tent?
Who may dwell on Your holy hill?
He who walks with integrity, and works righteousness,
And speaks truth in his heart.
He does not slander with his tongue,
Nor does evil to his neighbor,
Nor takes up a reproach against his friend;
In whose eyes a reprobate is despised,
But who honors those who fear the Lord;
He swears to his own hurt and does not change;
He does not put out his money at interest,
Nor does he take a bribe against the innocent.
He who does these things will never be shaken.

Psalm 15

The following is Tina’s story, in her own words, reflecting her thoughts and opinions of  her experiences at Calvary Chapel Visalia under Pastor Bob Grenier.

Tina’s Calvary Chapel Visalia Story

September 28, 2012

Written by Tina Jenkins

I started attending Calvary Chapel Visalia in the fall of 1988. What appealed to me at that time was the very relaxed style, the jeans, shorts and flip-flops. I was born Catholic and married a man who was Methodist, so we had to find a church we both agreed upon. I had a wonderful friend who attended CCV at the time and she encouraged me to come check it out.

The first year or so, I volunteered in the Children’s Ministry where I taught third and fourth grade. It was there I met Paul Grenier, he was in my class. Those were good memories for me. Paul was both smart and funny. He always held a special place in my heart along with a handful of other students. I was newly married with no kids of my own, probably about 21 or 22.

As a new Christian, I was eager to serve and learn. The first interesting thing I remember was, the name changed to Immanuel Christian Fellowship. If my memory serves me right, Bob told the congregation it was so he could teach freely. I never questioned it, I trusted Bob. I also noticed during that time, that many really good people left.  I was too young to question anything, I loved this new church I found.  I trusted Bob and had no idea he had a sinister side to him.  Knowing what I do now, I wish I would have left like the rest of them.

Years, had gone by and I had four children and I was busy with them.  I only attended church and was not involved.  As the kids began to get a little older around 2002, I was approached by a pastor on staff and asked if I would be interested in the Children’s Ministry.  That was something I had never considered and didn’t think I could run three services.  After some thought, I decided that I would give it a try.  I loved it!  Working with the children and awesome teachers that we had, blessed me so much!

I served with my whole heart as unto the Lord.  I even set my family aside many times to serve, which I shouldn’t have.  I did notice from time to time there was an over emphasis on the building, café and church grounds at the expense of the people.  The children’s ministry and the youth ministry struggled while the main sanctuary and anything that had to do with the adults was deluxe.  It made my heart ache.  But I did what I could to make the children’s ministry the best it could be.

During that time Bob hired a good friend of mine who worked hard, from sun up to sun down.  I never and I mean never saw him sitting around being lazy.  This man was a brand new believer and was eager to serve the Lord.  Bob capitalized on that and began to work him relentlessly.  It was almost disgusting the way that Bob had this gentleman cater to him, like Bob was the president and he was his slave.  But this guy loved Bob and would have done anything for him.   Something happened that Bob decided to let him go. Bob said that he wasn’t performing his job.  Ok that’s fine, but there are ways to let people go especially in the church. I believe that it should have been handled in a way that didn’t crush his spirit.  When he was let go, I was very disturbed by it because I knew he did work hard and I couldn’t understand it.

Something about this whole situation didn’t make sense. When it was announced in a staff meeting, they asked if everyone was OK with that or something to that manner.  I remember saying, “No.”  As I can recall, I was the only one that had anything to really say.  Everyone was just quiet. I looked around and thought what is wrong with you people, you’re all ok with it?  (Now I know why they were silent, they knew Bob better than I did apparently.)  I left that meeting shaking my head, but I didn’t know that I would be continually harassed by Bob from that point on.  He was always asking me how I was doing and not in a concerned way, more like trying to find out what side of the fence I was on.  One afternoon while I was working in one of the classrooms, the church secretary came in and said, “Bob wants to talk to you.”  I told her that I didn’t want to talk to him.  She left and then came back and said, “Right now.”  At this point I was crying and I walked out to the hallway and Bob and Greg Dowds quickly rushed me to Bob’s back office behind the church where no one would be.  Bob sat me down and began to try to explain why he had fired this guy.  I just looked at him, finally he got frustrated and began to proceed to raise his voice at me telling me how lazy and blah, blah, blah my friend was.  After he vented his anger out, he then said, “And if you repeat that, then you can leave to!”  I was in shock!  I looked over at Greg who stared at the floor and didn’t even make eye contact and I just thought this guy isn’t who I thought he was at all.

He can’t kick me out of the church?  Can he?  This man isn’t a pastor at all, he just basically told me to hit the door if I repeated what HE just vomited all over me.  It was at that instance that I knew there was something wrong Bob. He was now trying to bully me into submission.  I felt such a demonic feeling that it made me sick to my stomach. I went home that night and I thought how could this be… the church that I loved so much and raised my kids in and now I’m being bullied around by my pastor? I really couldn’t wrap my mind around it. I felt as if my soul was molested.  Greg Dowds called me that night to tell me what a wonderful person I was and how much I did for the children’s ministry. I think it was Bob’s way of doing a little damage control.  There was never an apology from Bob.

Many might wonder why I stayed after that.  It was very complicated in my mind.  My children were born and raised in this church and this was our social life.  I also loved the people there like family and I didn’t want to “disturb the church.”  So I decided to stay which continued the abuse.

Anyway, I stayed and kept my mouth shut so my children would not have to leave the church they loved.  Shortly after that meeting with Bob and Greg, I went into pastor Jim’s office and told him that I never wanted to be left alone with Bob again and if he could please be present if Bob ever needed to talk to me.  Jim’s words were something like, “Did he say something to you?”  I just shook my head no because I didn’t want to disclose what Bob had said and risk being kicked out of the church.  I continued to serve as the Children’s Ministry Director but I had a plan to get out of leadership quietly.  I was not going to be a part of a corrupt leadership.  The weeks following this harassment I just about had a nervous break down. I tried to hide the pain but it was showing and the people who knew me began to ask if I was ok.  I just shook my head “no” but I didn’t say a word. There is nothing worse than seeing the man who is bullying you around with intimidating stares, and a threat hanging over your head, then speak about the love of God from the pulpit.  It was the most disturbing thing in the world. Being the type of person who wears my emotions on my sleeve, my face showed the grief I was feeling.  I was told that I couldn’t go around looking like that and I needed to basically plaster a smile on. This was even more abuse and every time I pulled up at the church I would just start shaking and crying.  I finally went in and told Assistant Pastor Jim that I couldn’t work like this anymore.  I had to step out of the ministry.

Just about the time I stepped out of ministry, they hired a new pastor for the youth. He was a breath of fresh air and had a genuine love for God and the youth. He asked me if I would help in the youth department and I told him I would assist but I wouldn’t get back into a position where I was being paid.  I didn’t want to be a part of leadership there, I saw the arrogance and mean spirit of Bob firsthand.  Well as I helped in the youth, I ended up loving it as well.  I was still very gun-shy and tried to keep my distance.  I don’t know exactly what happened but Bob let him go too. I venture to say because he wasn’t a yes man.  He would speak up when he needed to and that is just not acceptable to Bob.  Bob runs the show with an iron fist.  He basically told him on a Wednesday night that he was to perform worship and someone else would teach.  I was called aside and told that he quit to pursue his music career.  My first thought was, “What?” Then I thought, “I know him and he wouldn’t just leave the kids he loves, that’s not like him.” The look on his face that night was hurt beyond measure and I knew something was wrong. It all came back to me again, how they treated my friend a year prior and how Bob bullied me around and I thought I’m not going through this again.

Because this youth pastor was let go so suddenly, we decided to have a going away party for him at my friend Deanna house. We invited the youth group and anyone else who wanted to say good-bye and good luck. After that evening, it was decided that we would start a Bible study there and he could lead it. Anyone was invited to come, even those who didn’t attend Calvary Chapel.  My husband and I intended to purchase Deanna’s home and continue to have the study.  Pastor Mike called me to ask me how the move was going and I told him fine. He then proceeded to ask me if I was going to continue having that Bible study in my home after I bought the house and I said, “Yes, is that a problem?” His reply was, “Well…not for me.” I knew exactly who had the problem with that, the man who needs to control everything. It was then that I decided to leave. I thought to myself, I will never go to a church that feels they have the authority to tell me I cannot have a Bible study in my home. Prior to that call from Mike, Bob glared at me in the foyer of the church with his arms folded. My husband walked right up to him and said, “Hi Bob how are you this morning?” Later Russ said, “Wow did you see him staring you down?” I said I was aware he was trying to intimidate me into submission again. He continued to pick apart the Bible study in my home until everyone finally quit coming. In my opinion, he is relentless and ruthless.

I first stayed because I didn’t want to remove my children from the church they loved and then I left so Bob could never harm my children spiritually. I had suffered enough under his leadership and in the end my children were indeed effected by all of this….they should have been able to have a wonderful church to attend all their lives, with wonderful memories and now all they have is the memories of a pastor who bullied around their mother. We attend church now but it is very few and far between and my children just sit with us and they don’t get involved and neither do I. My heart and soul are still damaged.

After I left, I began to wonder about a few things…

Why was the name changed from CCV to Immanual Christian Fellowship?

Why did all those good people leave around this time?

What was Glick going to bring forward to the church?

How come I never saw a church budget the entire time I was there? Didn’t even know there was such a thing until after I left and noticed other churches were completely transparent with the financial records.

Where is all the tithe money going exactly?

Why wasn’t it ever made known who the board was? I guess it wouldn’t have mattered anyway if they really weren’t able to make a difference if you had a complaint.

Who actually owns that church property? Who is on the deed?

Then the blogs began to roll and new info was coming out….what happened to the Grenier boys? Paul? It was then I knew I needed to take a stand to give these boys some credibility to their accusations. After experiencing what I had personally, I could see those things happening to them.

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In addition to sharing with me her personal story, Tina also sent me a copy of the letter her family sent to Pastor Bob Grenier saying they would no longer be attending the church.  Here it is:

Sent May 11, 2007 at 8:57 am

Dear Pastor Bob,

This email is to inform you that we will no longer be attending Calvary Chapel Visalia for the following reasons:

I believe it is my duty to you, and the wonderful people of Calvary Chapel, to speak the truth in love. I have prayed for you that love and compassion would fill your heart, and I will continue to pray for you and the Body of Christ that God has placed in your care.

I would first like to say that back in 1988, I was saved under your ministry, and my husband shortly afterward. We have raised 4 wonderful children in the Lord, under the teachings and leadership of those at Calvary Chapel. We have also built many deep and loving relationships with the members of the body, as we consider them family. I appreciate all of the wonderful things that you have done for Calvary Chapel and the community as a whole. Your work as a police chaplain, the starting of Reaching Youth, the starting of a Community Prayer, all of which God has blessed, and may more I’m sure.

However over the past 5 or 6 years, while I was in leadership, I have observed some things that have broken my heart.  One of which is the lack of love and compassion from you as the senior pastor.  In the Bible, 1 Corinthians 13:1 says, “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.” I will tell you with a sincere heart, that you are one of the best Bible teachers I have heard and because of this I would consider myself to be well grounded. I believe it is God’s will that you represent Him correctly to the Body of Christ, that is in your care, not only in word but actions (with compassion and love). As you know, our actions speak louder than our words. As a senior pastor the love & compassion for his flock should be a given and should be overflowing.

I have watched and seen many in leadership just disappear.  I have also observed that the church is run by fear and intimidation. It appears that our church is run like a corporate business, with you as the CEO, rather than a shepherd taking tender care of the flock. I learned very quickly not to do or say anything that might upset you out of fear, not respect. While at a staff meeting you mentioned, “This is not a country club and I know a pastor that fired his whole staff and replaced them.” This type of statement is very offensive, shows no love nor appreciation, and would offend those on a construction site, let alone the house of God. Another thing I guess I just never got over was when I was taken to the back room and where you shared your disgruntled feelings toward someone I hold dear to my heart and then told me if I repeated it to him than I can also leave. That blew me away and needless to say showed me your heart. Just to make you aware, XXXX got saved at Calvary and was a new believer when you placed him in a position of leadership. He loved and respected you and as far a I could see would have done anything for you, even given his life. You in your wisdom, if you weren’t pleased with his service, could have let him go in a way that would have spared his heart. Since he left, he has questioned his faith and really has not found another church family. If things were handled the way Jesus would handle them, then he would still be attending Calvary.

I know that you have a deep relationship with God, but intense stares of disapproval in the foyer because of a Bible study, that by your standard, is not “Calvary ordained”, does not show God’s love. This Bible study is for adults as well as children to hear the Word of God and there have been many people who do not even attend church, come and hear the Word. It wasn’t meant to cause waves, nor was it meant to be Calvary ordained. It was meant to be “God ordained”. It’s just good Christian people getting together for the Word, worship and fellowship. Pastor XXXX has a gift from God as you well know, otherwise you wouldn’t have hired him. Please don’t let your sense of having to be in control, and pride hinder the work of God. Just as a sub note, I lead a Bible study with my parents that is not “Calvary ordained ” and my parents have grown in the Lord and my mom is now saved. I’ve seen a lot of half-truths being spoken to the flock and knew my head was on the chopping block for extending to Pastor XXXX our future home for a Bible study.

In addition, it is apparent to all that visit our facility, that it is beautiful and well maintained. But there is an overemphasis on this, while other ministries suffer financially. The youth and children’s ministry should always be above the facility, since they are the future church. Unfortunately, having worked in the children’s ministry I know they come last. Honestly, we could do without all of the elaborate things we have obtained. I personally would rather sit on a lawn chair in the park and hear the Word preached by a loving pastor, than sit in a cathedral with one who lacks love and compassion. Where did this all go wrong?

I really believe the Lord is grieved. Yes, we should love and respect our pastor as I know the Word says, but you have an obligation to the Lord not to abuse the flock. We are not disposable, we are the Body of Christ. Perhaps you have forgotten this is not your church, it’s God’s and placed in your care. I want it to be known that I love everyone at Calvary but I just can’t stay where I don’t feel the love from you and I refuse to be intimidated and made to feel uneasy when I go to church. If someone asked me why I left, I’ll say I needed a loving and compassionate pastor. You may share this email with anyone you see fit. I have emailed this to Pastor Mike and Pastor Jim so as to keep the record straight. No response is necessary, I have nothing more to say. Except “Love the flock”.

Respectfully,

The Jenkins Family

584 comments on “Calvary Chapel Visalia Personal Story: Tina’s Story

  1. “Inasmuch as I have not been where some of you have been and still are are, I fear that my words are but spewing gravel. I know that I haven’t a clue. Yet, maybe there is comfort in being reminded of what you already know: that Jesus Himself shared, and I believe still does share, in your suffering.

    O, but Gary, You do have a clue, and your compassionate insight or revelation, is anything but gravel… I echo Julie’s words… Thank-You, you have given me much to consider.

  2. Gail, I think I may need to issue posting rules like this one: no apologizing for posting comments about yourself. That is what this place is for. When I read your story, I automatically see if I can relate with your experience. That is how we connect. So….if you don’t tell your story, we won’t know that we connect. :)

    Have fun with your grandchild!

  3. You, Julie, are a astute gatekeeper for us/me….

    Hopefully I will grow in the grace & knowledge of our Lord Jesus… I believe in sharing from the heart, HOWEVER, I don’t want to be a victim or a narcissist by always bringing the conversation back to my story…
    Gary W’s comment just blew me away… As, did, a few others. I know I sift all this through my own lens, perhaps that is where I need to be for now.
    Nonetheless, I appreciate the freedom, love & grace you offer here. xo

  4. monax

    WOW – Like much you’ve wriiten @ APRIL 14, 2013 @ 11:04 AM…
    So much to comment on – So little space, time. ;-)

    Hmmm? Never thought about this one – But – I like this alot. ;-)
    “we might also consider the cross of Christ as both a tree of life and a tree of death.”

    Yes – “‘in dying you will die.” – But never saw it as TWO deaths – good stuff – Thanks.
    Yes – “Your sins have separated you from your God.” – Death – Spiritual Seperation.
    Yes – “even so in Christ all shall be made alive” – A free gift.
    Yes – “spiritual life is defined in terms of knowing, …an eternal relationship. – Jesus.

    ————

    Question – you write – “Ever since the Fall.” – Which is a “Common” “Tradition.”
    But – In the Bible – How do “WE” know there was a “Fall?” Who taught “US” that?
    Does the Bible say Adam and Eve “Fell?” Or, had a “Fall?” “Fall” from what?

    Or, is this those Pesky “Doctrines” and “Traditions of Man?” “WE” are warned about?

    And – In case you’re wondering – When I capitalize “US” and “WE” – I’m thinking – the Body of Christ – the Church – the Ekklesia – the Called Out Ones – You – Me – ALL who have put their faith in Jesus – “WE.”

    Because “WE” is one in Christ. :-)

    ————

    Jesus said…
    “the words” that I speak are Spirit and they are Life…

  5. monax

    And again @ APRIL 14, 2013 @ 11:43 AM…

    Yes – “there was at the very beginning of human time “a blood” sacrifice.”
    Yes – “the killing of an innocent animal foreshadowed the mysterious and amazing way God would, in time, use to forgive and reconcile man back to Himself.”
    Yes – “The clothing of sacrifice itself was a sign of God’s future provision in Christ.”
    Yes – “atonement—kaphar—means ‘to cover, to cover over.’

    1 – The Garden of Eden – Innocent Blood is shed to “Cover” our sin.

    ————

    And again – In Egypt – There is a “Blood Sacrifice” of an innocent animal.

    God brings 10 Plagues on Egypt. When Pharaoh, who’s heart is hardened by God, refuses to set His People Free. The tenth plague is “the Angel of Death ” will “Passover” and the first born of all Egypt will die. The Death sentence is Given. – For the Israelites to be protected from Death – “The wages of sin is Death” – An innocent lamb, an unblemished lamb is slain. Innocent Blood is shed…

    Exodus 12:21-23
    …take you a lamb according to your families, and kill the passover.
    …take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the bason,
    Strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the bason…
    For the LORD will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and
    when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts,
    the LORD will pass over the door…

    2 – In Egypt – Innocent Blood is shed and God’s people are protected from Death.

    ————

    And again – In the Wilderness – There is a “Blood Sacrifice” of an innocent animal.

    Lev 4:1-6
    …a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering…
    …the priest that is anointed shall take of the bullock’s blood,
    and bring it to the tabernacle of the congregation…

    3 – In the Wilderness – Innocent Blood is shed for a sin offering.

    ————

    Then when John the baptist, saw Jesus coming, he said…
    Behold the Lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world. John 1:29

    …and “The Blood” of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. 1 John 1:7

    In whom we have redemption through “His Blood,” the forgiveness of sins: Col 1:14

    Thank your Jesus – For “Your Blood.” – Worthy is the Lamb

    http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=K7WZYPNX

  6. Oh the Blood of Jesus

    B. L. O. O. D.

    B.ountiful L.ove O.vercomes O.ur D.eath
    by the precious BLOOD of Christ.

    B.ountiful L.ove O.vercomes O.ur D.efects
    by the precious BLOOD of Christ.

    B.ountiful L.ove O.vercomes O.ur D.isobedience
    by the precious BLOOD of Christ.

    B.ountiful L.ove O.vercomes O.ur D.eceitfulness
    by the precious BLOOD of Christ.

    B.ountiful L.ove O.vercomes

    Our Doubts – Our Dark Deed’s – Our Demons – Our Damnation
    Our Defiance – Our Demands – Our Darkness – Our Delusions – Our Desires

    by the precious BLOOD of Christ.

    B.ountiful L.ove O.vercomes O.ur

    Delusions – Distrust – Despair – Derision – Despising – Desolation – Difficulties
    Disappointments – Deadness – Doublemindedness – Dryness – Distresses – Divisions

    by the precious BLOOD of Christ.

    O the Blood of Jesus

    “O the blood
    Crimson love
    Price of life’s demand
    Shameful sin
    Placed on Him
    The Hope of every man

    O the blood of Jesus washes me
    O the blood of Jesus shed for me
    What a sacrifice that saved my life
    Yes, the blood, it is my victory

    Savior Son
    Holy One
    Slain so I can live
    See the Lamb
    The great I Am
    Who takes away my sin

    O the blood of the Lamb
    O the blood of the Lamb
    O the blood of the Lamb
    The precious blood of the Lamb
    What a sacrifice
    That saved my life
    Yes, the blood, it is my victory

    O what love
    No greater love
    Grace, how can it be
    That in my sin
    Yes, even then
    He shed His blood for me”

  7. Hi GaryW, Norris Lee, Monax, Amos, Julie Anne and any others who are reading…

    I am trying to write a short note to a dear sweet 80 year old man whom my husband & I befriended last Sept. in a nursing rehab home. My husband was getting P.T. after having his hip replaced and the man we met was recovering from a knee replacement. Unfortunately for our new friend, his knee became infected and he was readmitted to the hospital & spent another four months in a wound clinic. He finally came home in mid Jan. and was making progress.

    Last week, we thought he had a stroke, but after Cat scan & MRI he was diagnosed with: Glioblastoma multiforme “it is the deadliest and most common form of malignant brain tumor. Even when aggressive multimodality therapy consisting of radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and surgical excision is used, median survival is only 12–17 months.” His family and Dr.s thought it would be best for him not to have the surgery so he is home now with palliative care.

    I am asking for counsel and prayers from you guys. Our friend is a Christian, but he is depressed, rightfully so, but he said to me yesterday that he wished he had my husband’s strength & attitude. He is said he was sorry that he wasn’t a strong man like my husband. Without going into great detail, my husband was 5’11 when we married 25 years ago, A.S. has bent him over to 5’1. He has been through so many surgeries & suffering, came very close to death three times, but he has never been diagnosed with a death sentence.

    I told our friend, that my husband & I had watered our couch with tears when he was in horrid pain after 3 back surgeries in NYC, and that he is be strong now because he has recovered from his surgeries. I shared with my husband what he said to me & he is going to tell him about his pain, depression & struggle when we see him.

    Do you think I am on the right track to tell him that even Jesus was reluctant to suffer & die: Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

    My heart is sad. If I could have had my picked choosing a dad, this guy would have been my first choice. He is funny, gentle & kind.

    Maybe I should say nothing. And just be with him. We will be seeing him on Wed. morning. I want to comfort him. What would you you say to him? Thank-You for letting me pick your brains, hearts. Please pray if you don’t have any wisdom to share with me.

  8. Gail, I cleaned it up a bit. It’s funny, but I missed them when reading it – – but that’s because I was too into your story (and I think most people here would be, too).

    You have such a sweet heart. I love that you and your husband will be seeing him and that your husband wants to share his experience of pain/depression. That’s good because he has walked in those shoes and can relate. People who are depressed often turn inward and so being heard is so important. Maybe play it by ear with primarily listening. It is by listening that you can really tell where his heart is. I also think it would be cool to tell him that you secretly wished he could have been your father. He would probably be very touched by that.

    I look forward to reading what others have to say. And please report back how your visit goes, Gail. I hope you had fun with your grandchild today :)

  9. Though I will share some thoughts, let me first and foremost suggest that you hardly need advice. Having suffered, you and your husband know how to comfort others who suffer. You need only to be yourselves. Don’t force anything. Your presence with your friend will be enough. The gift of your presence will be the one gift Jesus earnestly desired of his friends in Gethsemane; you will be granting the very gift Jesus’ friends refused Him. I believe that from your presence with your friend, all else that is good and necessary will flow. It may be that in knowing and sensing and sharing in your friend’s pain, in feeling what he is feeling and going through, you will lift his burden just enough so that he can carry what is his to carry. He will know and be encouraged by the recognition that you do not have mere sympathy, which is only feeling sorry. No, he will know that your empathy, your empathetic identification, is an actual entering into his life and its trials, and in this he may even find a quiet joy. Remember that, though you may play part in lifting his burden, it is ultimately his, not yours, to carry. You could not fully carry it for him if you tried. I need not remind you to weep with those who weep. I need not suggest that you, maybe, hold his hand or touch his shoulder–if he is receptive. Hoot! I don’t know. Throw your arms around him if it seems right and natural. Unless you find him in a jocular mood, do not try to cheer him up. That would be a scraping of fingernails across a very dry chalk board. While you are with your friend, don’t try to think what to do. It will just come. You will know whether and how to talk about Jesus. Jesus will be with you. If anything I suggest does not speak to you, if anything seems forced or somehow just not right, ignore it. Go with your own intuition, your own gut. You have already been prepared.

  10. Thank-You Gary,

    That was such a great reminder, here I was planning ahead, wanting to comfort him with the reminder that even Jesus asked the father if possible…
    I can rest in your wise counsel. Thank-You for taking the time to respond.
    Just be, and let Gods presence flow back & forth between us.

    Julie Anne- I might tell him that! I will be sure to report back. We will see him on Wed. morning, then they are coming here for dinner on Friday…
    Playing again today with 2 year old, pure joy in my heart, but back & knees beg to differ.

  11. Gail my prayers will be with you.

    I’m so touched by the love and responses you all have for one another.

  12. Gail

    Gail, you are precious. I’m blessed, and thankful, to know you.
    How cool has this thread been – I look forward every morning to see the gems here.
    And I agree with Gary – You’ll know what to do, and when…
    It’s Christ “in you” the hope of Glory.

    —————-

    You said your friend is a Christian.
    He might enjoy hearing “you” read “The Word of God” to him. Ask him.

    Here is something I do when visiting folks who are sick.
    It’s Reading and Praying the Scripture – So everyone can hear you – Out Loud. ;-)

    Praying the Scriptures is simply taking Bible verses
    and turning them into an unending supply of prayers.

    When you visit a hospital, instead of asking the patient about the pain and what the doctor has to say, (an answer they repeat over and over again to visitors – Words of pain.) you can suggest that they close their eyes, relax and listen as you read God’s Words of Life to them. I’ve found most folks enjoy being read to. And what better way to show your love and support than to read The Words of the one who truly loves them?

    When you visit your friend, or the sick, you can spend thirty or forty minutes reading scripture after scripture on God’s Healing, God’s Mercy and God’s Love and turn them into prayers. Remember, prayer is good medicine. There are no bad side effects. It will be a tremendous blessing for you also, reading and hearing the Word of God out loud. You could also ask the Holy Spirit to guide you in the prayers that you speak. Then it’s fresh and exciting each time because you never know how you’re going to pray. Try it!

    Jesus said – The Words that I speak are Spirit and they are Life.

    —————-

    I’ll leave an example in the next post.
    If you like, or anyone here, I’ll email you 10 topics of Scriptures in PDF.
    You can print them out – They are in 16 point type, large print…
    So, if you want to leave them with your friend, the large print might help. ;-)

    —————-

    God’s Words of Comfort & Healing About

    Prayer – Healing – The Word of God – Faith –
    – Love – Mercy – Trust – Joy – Forgiveness – Comfort

    From The Word of God.

    —————-

    More coming…

  13. Gail – Everyone

    When visiting the sick – anywhere…
    Often I’ll spend 30 – 45 minutes just reading and praying the Scriptures.
    For me it has been a real blessing – And often, all, can sense His Presence. ;-)

    For practice, everyone can try the 23rd Psalm.

    Psalm 23
    The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    He makes me to lie down in green pastures:
    He leads me beside the still waters.
    He restores my soul:
    He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
    Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil: for You are with me;
    Your rod and Your staff they comfort me.
    You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies:
    You anoint my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
    Surely goodness and mercy
    shall follow me all the days of my life:
    and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

    —————

    And all you have to do is fill in the blanks.

    “The LORD is ______’s shepherd; ______ shall not want.
    He makes ______ to lie down in green pastures:
    He leads ______ beside the still waters.
    He restores ______’s soul:
    He leads ______ in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
    Yea, though ______ walks through the valley of the shadow of death,
    ______ will fear no evil: for you are with ______;
    your rod and your staff they comfort ______.
    You prepare a table before ______ in the presence of ______’s enemies:
    you anoint ______’s head with oil; ______’s cup runneth over.
    Surely goodness and mercy
    shall follow ______ all the days of ______’s life:
    and ______ will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.”

    ————

    And remember Jesus has set you free.
    You can also be creative and add a little to make it more personal.

    The LORD is GAIL’S shepherd; GAIL shall not want.
    The Lord God almighty makes GAIL to lie down in green pastures:
    Jesus, the Prince of Peace leads GAIL beside the still waters.
    Jesus, The Lord our Healer restores GAIL’S soul:
    The Holy Spirit will lead GAIL in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
    Yea, though GAIL walks through the valley of the shadow of death,
    GAIL will fear no evil: for You, the God of all comfort, is with GAIL,
    Your rod and Your staff they comfort GAIL.
    You Lord Jesus, prepare a table before GAIL in the presence of her enemies:
    Lord, You anoint GAIL’S head with oil; GAIL’S cup is truly overflowing.
    Surely goodness and mercy shall follow GAIL all the days of her life:
    And GAIL will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.
    Psalm 23:1-6.

    ————–

    Gail – Everyone
    Just try putting your loved onesname in the blanks – husband, wife, kids. etc.
    Ask them to close ther eyes, lean back and relax, take a deep breath, and listen.

    Read the 23 Psalm out loud. It only takes a few minutes.

    Then read it with their name – and see what happens…

    I double dare you… ;-)

    Love to ALL

    A. Amos Love
    love101faith@me.com

  14. I agree with Tina, it’s refreshing and healing to see the tender responses on here.

    Gail, I agree with Gary that since you do know suffering, you will be a natural at it. In some areas I’ve experienced real suffering, when I find someone who understands I want to hear their story and perspective -and- I want to share mine. It’s all about knowing and being known … understanding and being understood. It’s salve on the wound.

    Just yesterday, I got a call from someone I’ve not talked with in 10 years. She and I have many suffering stories in common. We each were genuinely interested in the other and freely shared our own paths we’ve walked. Neither of us had any clue we had talked for 4 hours! But then we only do this every 10 years, so it was like a visit in person.

    Gail, I think it will depend upon the the man’s personality as to whether or not he wants to share where he’s at medically. What I find is that if I give them a chance to tell me, they either jump on it or change the subject. I make sure to communicate that we are there for him and whatever he wants to share or not is up to him. Truth is, though, I’ve never met a dying person who didn’t want to tell me in detail what’s going on. Understandably, many people feel uncomfortable talking about death, but the dying usually are desperate to do so.

    Just prayed for you, may God use you as His hands, feet, mouth and presence to bring God’s love with skin on to this precious dying saint.

  15. I keep coming back to this thread and smiling at the sweetness here. I’m wondering if I should make a post specifically for this kind of interaction? Would that be helpful? One idea is having a weekly “open blog” thread where people can share whatever they want. Having it posted weekly would help in that the post won’t get buried like this one. Thoughts?

  16. All you precious Saints: Tina, A.Amos Love, Katie, Julie Anne,

    My granddaughter is napping, so I have minute to catch up with your thoughts…

    From the bottom of my heart, I thank each & everyone here that has shared & prayed. I love the company I am in here, it is the type that I had longed for when I was going to churchprison. It has been so healing to my soul to engage here with people who are tender, wise, open. O, I know we hit a couple of bumps in the road, but the healthy way people modeled it here, was to discuss it.

    I was brought to tears over the way forgiveness was asked for, love & acceptance was given. I have wept more over the postings here, than I have wept over the things that life has brought my way this past month. And these are the cleansing kind of tears that open up that vein of tenderness in my heart.

    Katie this is so good to know: “Truth is, though, I’ve never met a dying person who didn’t want to tell me in detail what’s going on. Understandably, many people feel uncomfortable talking about death, but the dying usually are desperate to do so.”
    I will walk softly with it!

    Thank-You, Tina.

    Please Amos – I would love to have you e-mail me PDF.

    Julie Anne- Yes, I think that would be cool, with a place for prayer requests.

  17. this blew me away, how Gary answered Gail: you hardly need advice. Having suffered, you and your husband know how to comfort others who suffer. You need only to be yourselves. Don’t force anything. Your presence with your friend will be enough. The gift of your presence will be the one gift Jesus earnestly desired of his friends in Gethsemane; you will be granting the very gift Jesus’ friends refused Him.

    Gary, can you go more into your reasoning on why you believe the separation between the Father and the Son may have commenced in Gethsemane? (( hinging this on his sweating blood alone, for me, is not enough ))

    Amos, i hope to respond to your question of the “Fall” asap. i played along—read out loud and then inserted my loved one’s name. it was a good exercise, and i thank you.

    fwiw, ja, i like the intimacy this thread affords us knowing we’re hidden a bit away from the eyes of the rest of the flock. . that’s just the present mood i’m in

  18. David,

    I will be happy to elaborate on what I believe happened in Gethsemane. I won’t be able to do so instantly. My ideas on the matter were planted some 11 years ago when I read something written by John Loren Sandford. It was only later I realized that what Sandford wrote is not universally accepted. I frankly couldn’t tell you what the “accepted” view is. Maybe you could get me started by telling me what your understanding is. Who knows? Maybe I’ll end up changing my mind, though I frankly hope I don’t have to. What I currently think just seems to have a very satisfying fit with what I understand to have been the infinite sacrifice of our Lord on our behalf. More to follow, maybe this evening, but maybe not.

  19. cool, Gary. . i’ll need a few hours to weave something together along the lines of what you and Amos have given me. . hope to have some free time tomorrow. . looking forward to where this discussion is going. . happy for the night to sleep on it. . my most sincere blessing to everyone here. .

  20. monax

    Thanks for letting me know you tried “Praying the Scriptures.”

    The first time someone showed me how to do it – I thought it was way cool. And they had me put my name in the blanks. When you do that just a few times – A little practice – It becomes second nature. And it is a simple way to show new believers a way of praying for others. :-)

  21. monax

    And – I’m looking forward to your answers to the questions about “The Fall.”
    “How do “WE” know there was a “Fall?” Who taught “US” that?
    Does the Bible say Adam and Eve “Fell?” Or, had a “Fall?” “Fall” from what?”

    And a new question – Who are “The Lost?”
    And – I mean – In the Bible – Who are “The Lost?”

    Because – Jesus did warn “US” about – Commandments of men – Doctrines of men…

    And “Traditions of men”- Stuff – NOT found in the Bible – Inventions of man…

    Mark7:13
    KJV – Making the word of God of “none effect” through your tradition…
    ASV – Making “void” the word of God by your tradition…
    NIV – Thus you “nullify” the word of God by your tradition…

    What is popular is not always “Truth.”
    What is “Truth” is not always popular.

  22. monax

    I’m also hopeing you’ll answer these questions asked @ APRIL 12, 2013 @ 5:17 PM – When we were discussing Elder/Overseers being paid and you challenged me with…

    1 Tim 5:17-18…
    “Let the elders who lead well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. For the Scripture say, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.”

    Then you ask…
    “Is it not—a la Scripture—our Christian duty to provide for those *good elders* who labor in preaching and teaching? Why should we be against paying *our faithful pastors* and *teachers* for the difficult tasks they’ve been gifted and called by God to do?”

    ———-

    Well, In My experience – And – My undertanding “a la Scripture” – My answer is NO.

    Because – “a la Scripture” – I’ve never met an “elder” who qualifies as elder/overseer according to 1 Tim 3:1-6, Titus 1:5-9, and other tuff qualifications. ;-)

    What I have noticed is congregations, and wanna-be Pastor/Elders, “Ignore” and “Twist” the “Qualifications” in 1 Tim 3:1-6, and Titus 1:5-9, so they could obtain for themselves this “Position” of pastor/elder/overseer.

    And, IMO – When someone who claims to be an elder/overeer takes a “Title/Position” pastor/leader/reverend that is NOT in the Bible – By example – they are NOT good teachers. And do NOT qualify.

    That’s why I asked you…

    1 – In the Bible, Where does it say an “elder” is a – “pastor?”
    In the Bible, can you name one “elder” that had the “Title” – pastor?
    In the Bible, can you name one “elder” that called them self – pastor?

    If there are NO elders called “pastor” in the Bible?
    Does this non-biblical pastor still “deserves his wages?”

  23. Amos & All,

    Our time with Frank this morning was sweet. Amos, I printed the doc. Ps. 23 prayer with Franks name in it.
    After we prayed he expressed how much he appreciated it with moist eyes.

    Julie A- I was able to share with Frank how hard my dad was on me, and told him what I had shared earlier about wishing I could have had the choice, that I would have chosen him to be my dad. He told us about how hard his dad was on him, and that he made the decision to never be that way with his children, and that he loved every step of his journey of being a dad.

    Lots of other sweet, holy moments together.

    All who shared with me, played such a part in helping me to just show up, listen & let God’s love communicate.

    Another round of thanks to the body of Christ that I connect with here.
    Looking forward to having him & wife to dinner on Friday

  24. hey peeps—just want to register with y’all that it doesn’t look like i’ll be afforded any free time until maybe Friday. .

    glad you’re time with Frank went so sweetly. .

    David

  25. David,

    Regarding my undertaking to address the question as to when Jesus was forsaken by the Father (whether in Gethsemane as I propose, or not) progress is not what I would have hoped. I expect I will not be able to produce a satisfying and definitive proof text. Rather, I am in pursuit of a narrative that is comprehensive, consistent and coherent. It is rather like a jigsaw puzzle, except that in this puzzle many pieces share the same shape and will fit in multiple locations, only one of which is correct for each piece. All pieces must be used, for comprehensiveness. They must all fit together, for consistency. They must form a picture, for coherence.

    To complicate the metaphor, however, it seems that the current undertaking something of a multimedia jigsaw puzzle, if that were possible. To the usual puzzle pieces of Scripture, it appears that it will be necessary to turn to the subordinate contributions of reason (i.e. the objective faculties by which we, among other things, attempt to piece together Scripture), experience (i.e. the subjective faculties, by which we may, among other things, attempt to identify with Jesus in his experience), and tradition (i.e. theology, which I hope to be able to largely eschew, except perhaps to identify positions for which others have advocated).

    What I have accomplished so far is the assembly of a 3 column harmony of the Gethsemane accounts in Matthew, Mark and Luke. Although making it easier to follows the Gethsemane events, it is to large to post here. I will need to figure out how to make it useful to the current project.

    More to follow.

  26. Gary – If you are trying to get this specifically to David – I can connect you two behind the scenes or figure out a way to post it on the blog if others are interested, too. The formatting available in the comments section is limited, I’m sure. ~ja

  27. “The Fall” is shorthand for the spiritual death Adam and Eve experienced when they rebelled against God and ate of the forbidden fruit. Seems we lacked a simple Scriptural term for the Genesis Three account—for the historic crisis of man being separated from God’s Presence and driven from the Garden of Eden—so the Church at some point adopted “the Fall” as signifier of these realities.

    Amos, consider “the Fall” akin to another term we find in our Christian lexicon. As the word “Trinity” is not found in the Bible—it nevertheless signifies a Biblical reality. Trinity is shorthand for “the Godhead comprising the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” When we speak of the Fall it is simply an economic way of referencing the events and effects of Genesis Three.

    Fall = Genesis Three

    [[ Online Etymology Dictionary for “fall”: Old English feallan (class VII strong verb; past tense feoll, past participle feallen) "to fall; fail, decay, die," ]]

    Note how our English word “fall” is derived from expressions that mean “to fall; fail, decay, die,”–-all of which transpired on the day of Adam and Eve’s decision to disobey God.

    Amos asks, How do “WE” know there was a “Fall?” Who taught “US” that? Does the Bible say Adam and Eve “Fell?” Or, had a “Fall?” “Fall” from what?

    The effects of Adam and Eve’s rebellion involved a fall from a state of innocence to that of the knowledge of good and evil. Again, although the word “fall” is not found in the Bible to refer to Genesis Three—it, nevertheless, is essentially a Biblical expression. It indicates Adam and Eve’s downward direction from abiding in the Presence of God to being driven out of His Garden.

    Genesis Three marks the division between God and Man—even between heaven and earth.

    Where is heaven? we may ask. Well, wherever God is—there is heaven.

    So we see this structure to human history (if we are to believe the accounts of Scripture) of Creation—Fall—Redemption. The First Man and his wife were created to be one with God; because of their sin they fell out of proper relationship with Him; yet, God promised a Redeemer [the “Seed of the Woman” (Genesis 3:15) who is our “Last Adam” (1 Corinthians 15:45)] to reverse the effects of the Fall—to make us, in time, eternally one again with our Creator.

    First, man experienced a state of oneness with God, others, nature—Then they fell into a state of separation from God, others, nature—And, finally, redeemed man will be raised to a state of at-one-ment with God, others, and nature.

    Life—Death—Life

    At-one-ment—Separation—At-one-ment

    Paradise given—Paradise lost—Paradise regained

    Creation—Fall—Redemption

    Where do we see the tree of life? First in the Garden of God at the beginning of human history (Genesis 2:9), then we see it in the new Jerusalem at the beginning of “a new heaven and new earth” (Revelation 22:2). Man once had access to the tree of life; Now he doesn’t; Someday he will again.

    John from Patmos wrote, “And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God’” (Revelation 21:2-3).

    Here is imaged for us the uniting of heaven and earth. The new earth will be the dwelling place of God and man—it will be ours and Immanuel’s eternal heaven. As God and man will be at one—so will heaven and earth.

    Presently, there is a division between heaven and earth. We know our Adversary once had access to heaven. Jesus said, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven” (Luke 10:18; see Isaiah 14:12). And John from Patmos recorded the war that took place in heaven between Michael (and his angels) and the dragon (and his angels.) “And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him” (Revelation 12:9).

    Notice how our account of the Fall in Genesis Three begins with the temptation of the serpent. We shouldn’t loose sight of this—especially since the first gospel message (what academics call the protoeuangelion) was spoken to the serpent in Genesis 3:15.

    We know Satan to be the presiding god of our present world system. And more could be said of this, but for now I bring this up to show how the idea of “the Fall” is a Biblical concept. Both Paul and James warn us against falling into sin: Let us not “fall into the condemnation of the devil” (1 Timothy 3:6; see James 5:12). And in connection with temptation we’re admonished—“Let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12). Also, rebellion is Biblically worded as an “apostasy”—a literal “falling away.”

    . .

    I want to expand on this (hopefully tomorrow) toward the direction of Gethsemane and the cross, toward an understanding of the timing of the separation that occurred in the Godhead between the Father and the Son.

    I do hope what I’ve shared concerning the Fall is enough for us to feel confident in using this term to refer to the crisis events of Genesis Three.

    I like Gary’s metaphor of a multimedia Jigsaw Puzzle. For our purposes here we don’t as yet have a clear image of what we’re putting together—like we would if we had a box top with a picture on it. But for now may our comments serve as singular pieces of a puzzle we might first flip upright, then examine closely to see where and how our understandings fit to clarify our bigger picture. I admit this will be quite an ambition project—for there are pictures within pictures with pictures. But I do love puzzles. . and i’m game

  28. Monax, you articulated and eloquently put that together. I couldn’t have done it better. I might not be responding, but I’m reading as y’all go along. Keep it up. Love Bro. Lee

  29. David, and anybody else who might care,

    As we consider the Gethsemane events, perhaps it will be useful to synthesize the accounts of Matthew 26, Mark 14 and Luke 22 into a single narrative. Here is what I have put together:

    Mt26:36a Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, Lk22:40 And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” Mt36b and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I go over there and pray.” Lk41a And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw. . .

    Mt37 And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful (Mk33: greatly distressed ) and troubled. Mt38 Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” Mk14:35 And going a little farther, he fell on the ground and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. Mk36 And he said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” Lk43 And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. Lk44 And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.

    Lk45 And when he rose from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping for sorrow, Lk46 and he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? (Mk37: . . .and he said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Could you not watch one hour?) Mk38 Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Mt42 Again, for the second time, he went away and prayed, “My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.” Mk40 And again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy, and they did not know what to answer him. Mt44 So, leaving them again, he went away and prayed for the third time, saying the same words again. Mk41 And he came the third time and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? (Mt45: Sleep and take your rest later on.) It is enough; the hour has come. The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Mt46 Rise, let us be going; see, my betrayer is at hand.”

    Now some minutia. All Scripture is ASV. Comparison of other translations and the Greek, at least by me, will have to wait. I first prepared a 3 column harmony, which then combined into the single synthesized narrative. In case of similar verses from the three accounts, only one was used, but with difference note parenthetically in a couple of instances. Matthew and Mark track each other quite well. It is not always so clear where all of Luke’s passages should be inserted. Luke doesn’t even mention Gethsemane, only the Mount of Olives.

    A quick observation: Going forward I expect it will be the middle paragraph of the synthesis that receives most attention from me, although the preceding and succeeding paragraphs are not without relevance.

    Finally, the next project I propose to assign to myself is to identify verses that reveal the burdens, and especially what I will call moral burdens, imposed on Lord between the Last Supper and the Resurrection, burdens that might or might not have been imposed, and received, in Gethsemane.

  30. Aachh! In my previous post, at 6:16 pm, all Scripture is ESV, not ASV as stated.

    Norris and monax, thanks for the positive feedback.

    Norris, glad to see you’re still here.

    Amos and David, interesting discussion on the use of the word Fall. On the one hand, I appreciate Amos’ point about the dangers of using words that aren’t from Scripture. On the other hand, I’m O.K. in principle using even words that are not in Scripture as a sort of shorthand to describe Scriptural concepts–so long as the shorthand words do not take on a misleading life of their own. I’m thinking maybe Amos is going to have some ideas to the effect that the concepts that get wrapped up in the word Fall are questionable? I’m curious. Maybe the thought is that Adam didn’t so much fall as that he got expelled, expelled from the garden and expelled from God’s presence? Maybe the thought is that Adam, having never eaten of the Tree of Life, had no place from which to fall? Maybe I’m just making this all up?

  31. David, and all,

    Sometime between the Last Supper and the Resurrection the following happened:

    . . . [T]he Lord has LAID ON HIM THE INIQUITY OF US ALL. Isaiah 53:6b. [H]e poured out his soul to death and was NUMBERED WITH THE TRANSGRESSORS; yet he BORE THE SIN OF MANY, and makes intercession for the transgressors. Isaiah 53:12b. . . . Jesus our Lord . . . was DELIVERED UP FOR OUR TRESPASSES . . . . Romans 4:24b-25a. Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by BECOMING A CURSE for us. . . Galatians 3:13a. [S]o Christ, [was] (text = having been) offered once to BEAR THE SINS of many. . . Hebrews 9:28a. He himself BORE OUR SINS in his body on the tree. . . 1 Peter 2:24.

    And, most astonishingly: For our sake he MADE HIM TO BE SIN who knew no sin. . . 2 Corinthians 5:21a. Compared to this, what is described in the preceding paragraph seems to me almost euphemistic. Let me repeat: For our sake he MADE HIM TO BE SIN who knew no sin.

    Then this from the Eternal Son of God: And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?” Matthew 27:47.

    All Scripture is ESV, emphasis is added. When I return I maybe will be able to begin to tie all this back to Gethsemane.

  32. monax – Gary W – ALL

    Wow – A place to love and be loved – to understand and be understood – to throw out thoughts and ideas – a place to explore – and NOT be condemned – or even feel condemned – A place to dis-agree and still maintain communication.

    Me-thinks this is a “notable miracle.” Acts 4:16 KJV. :-) :-) :-)

    I’m enjoying these edjumacated convesations. Gives me lots to think about and ponder. Lots of stuff I never thought about, or questioned before. Could this be what Paul talked about in – 1 Cor 14:26 – ALL can participate – ALL are important – ALL can teach – ALL can get revelation from Jesus – ALL are important – Let ALL things be done unto “edifying.” :-)

    And “Edify” here also mens to “build up” – And is very similar, the femine form of, Where Jesus says – I will “build” my church. Mt 16:18. That could be translated – I will “edify” my church.

    And you guys “Edify” me – Well, The Christ in you “Edifies” me. – Thanks

    Just want y’all to know I really appreciate the effort that goes into your writings.

    And who knows – we might even bumble across some “Truth.” :-)

  33. monax – Gary W – Anyone interested

    I’ve read Davids response to the questions about “The Fall” quite a few times. David, you certainly did an excellent, and detailed, presentation for why the use of “The Fall” in your opinion is – “akin to another term we find in our Christian lexicon. As the word “Trinity” is not found in the Bible—it nevertheless signifies a Biblical reality. “

    Well, now we have a difference of opinion – Because – Today – From my research…
    I NO longer think the terms – The Fall, – Or, The Trinity – “signifies a Biblical reality.”
    And, I’ve learned the hard way…
    NOT to except – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon” if they are NOT in the Bible.

    And it looks like Gary is on a similar track with my thinking when is says…
    “about the dangers of using words that aren’t from Scripture.“
    “the concepts that get wrapped up in the word Fall are questionable?”
    And, IMO – The concepts that get wrapped up in the word “Trinity” are questionable?

    IMO – When you try to take shortcuts – monax says – “The Fall” is shorthand” – The Fall”…“an economic way” – “Trinity is shorthand.” You often create many more questions, and a longer path, to try and understand – “The Shorthand.” ;-)

    Now “Shorthand” is an interesting word – Years ago – before our digital age – before tape recorders – secretarys would take dictation – and to speed up their writing – they used a special technique called – “Shorthand.” Is was a type of code, lots of squiggly lines, that to them meant something – BUT – The common folks – The ones who were “NOT Trained” in the code – They could NOT understand the writings – The common folks “Did NOT” have a clue to what it meant. If the common folks wanted to understand – And each secretarys squiglles were a little different – So – If the common folks wanted to understand – They had to get the Secretary who wrote the squiggly lines to interpret their particular code. Word for Word – Squiggly line after Squiggly line – And, Who knew if what they were saying was correct? If you do NOT know the code? Their private code?

    So, If you want to know what the “Shorthand” for “The Fall” and “Trinity” means.
    You have to ask the one who invented the “Shorthand.”

    You have to go to Man – NOT the Bible.

    Seems our “shorthand” is NOT so short after all. ;-)

    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “Short Hand” – I’m a fan of “The Bible.”
    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon”
    That are NOT in the Bible. ;-)

  34. monax – Gary W

    Lets take a quick look at “The Trinity.” And some problems with using “Short Hand.”
    “The Trinity.” – A -“term we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT – NOT in the Bible.

    Danger Alert – Danger Alert…

    Here is where the danger lies in using – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon” if they are NOT in the Bible.” – If – Some think it’s okay to use “Trinity” as shorthand. – And, since “Trinity” is NOT in the Bible – I can NOT go to the Bible to see what it means – If I want to understand “The Trinity” I have to go to the ones who use this “Shorthand.” “Mere Fallible Humans” – To get their code for “Trinity” and what it means. And, I have to believe them – Because “They” say “Trinity” “Signifies a Biblical reality.”

    So, because I NO longer trust in the “Mere Fallible Humans” who I know personally – Those who have taken a “Title/Position” pastor/leader/reverend – A “Title/Position” pastor/leader/reverend that is a – “Term in our Christian Lexicon” – But – NOT found in the Bible – Those who have taught me about “The Trinity” – BUT I NO longer trust for many reasons – One reason being God says, many different ways – “Cursed is the man who trusts in man” – I begin my own research…

    And, to my surprise, I find there are different types of “The Trinity” – Yup – NOT ALL who use this “Shorthand” agree when they interpret their “Shorthand” – Their understanding of “The Trinity.”

    WOW – Different – Trinitarians – Believing – different things – about “The Trinity.” :-)

    Now when some one says – “I believe in “The Trinity” – I ask – “Which One?”

    Often I get a quizzical look – Most believe their “Trinity” – That they learned about in their “Denomination” is the correct one. I ask – “If you do NOT know there is more then ONE explanation for “Trinity?” Given by different “Edjumacated Cemetarians Theologins?” – How do you know your “Trinity” the correct one?

    1 – I’ve noticed – “Some Trinitarians” – Believe there is a “Hierarchy” in the God Head.
    Number one is #1 – The Father – #2 – Is the Son. #3 – Is the Holy Spirit.
    “Some Trinitarians”- NOT ALL – Call it ESS, Eternal Subordination of the Son.

    1 – “Some Trinitarians” – Believe there is “NO Heirarchy” in the God Head.
    These “Edjumacated Cemetarians Theologins” say, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are “Equal” and use another whole bunch of “terms in our Christian Lexicon” – But – NOT found in the Bible. – Omniscience – Omnipresent – Omnipotent – To describe God. To other “Edjumacated Cemetarians Theologins.” But – Because “US” common folks do NOT understand these big words – We just go along with these guys with the Big words. ;-)

    2 – I’ve noticed – “Some Trinitarians” Believe – With out a Bible verse to back it up…
    The Father is NOT the Son.

    2 – I’ve also noticed – “Some Trinitarians” – Believe – Isa. 9:6, Where it says…
    Unto us a Son is Given – Is refering to Jesus. And this son is called…
    “The mighty God – “The Everlasting Father” – The Prince of Peace.
    And Jesus did say – I and the Father are “ONE.” – You see Me you see the Father.

    So, now we have more division in the Body of Christ over a word – Trinity –
    A “terms in our Christian Lexicon” – But – NOT found in the Bible.

    And there are many more differences about “the Trinity” – But you get the Drift.
    Now when some one says – “I believe in “The Trinity” – I ask – “Which One?”

    The Trinity with “Heirarchy?” – Or The Trinty with “NO Heirarchy?”
    The Trinity with “The Father is NOT the Son?” – Or, The Son is The Evelasting Father?
    The Trinity with 3 distinct persons – Or, The Father, The Word, The Holy Spirit – ONE.

    So the “Shorthand” winds up being – NOT so short… ;-)

    And leads to a lot of confusion…

    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “Short Hand” – I’m a fan of “The Bible.”
    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon”
    That are NOT in the Bible. ;-)

  35. monax – Gary W

    Now about this term “The Fall” – “Short Hand” – I see ”concepts that are questionable.
    “The Fall” – A -“term we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT – NOT in the Bible.

    monax – You answer the question – “How do “WE” know there was a “Fall?” With…
    “so the Church at some point adopted “the Fall” as signifier of these realities.”

    Question – What is “The Church? I mean – In the Bible – What is “The Church?”

    Is it a building with a steeple? – A Pastor – in a Pulpit – Preaching to – People – in Pews?
    That’s what the world thinks – Unbelievers – What most believers think – Because – We’ve been taught – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT – NOT in the Bible. Terms like – “Go To Church”- “Join a Church” – “Tithe to a Church” – “Bring your friends to Church” – “Apply for Church membership – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT – NOT in the Bible.

    I think you’ll agree – In the Bible – “The Church of God” refers to believers – “US” – “WE” – The Body of Christ – Called out ones – Assembled – NOT assembled – People – God’s People.

    In the Bible – “The Church” never refers to – a Building – An Organization – An Institution – A Denomination – A 501 (c) 3, Religious Corporation – The IRS calls church. And “WE” have deceived the very folks we’re supposed to be reaching out to by using – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT – NOT in the Bible.

    So, I would offer another option – I do NOT think we learned “The Fall’ from “The Church of God” “US,” God’s people, The Ekklsia. – “WE” learned about “The Fall” from “Mere Fallible Humans” – NOT from the Bible – From – “Church Leaders” who took a “Title/Position” pastor/leader/reverend NOT found in the Bible. “Church Leaders” -A “term we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT is NOT in the Bible.

    So, now, Am I supposed to listen for “Biblical Truth?” From “Church Leaders” who do NOT know that – In the Bible – Jesus told His Disciples NOT to be called “Leader?” And NOT one Disciple called themself “Leader.” And, most likely, if someone calls themself a “Church Leader” – they are NOT one of His Disciples. ;-)

    monax – you write…
    “Notice how our account of the Fall in Genesis Three
    begins with the temptation of the serpent.”

    And where did you hear this? – Because it is NOT in the Bible? Oy Vey!!! Danger…

    What about Eve? – Before the temptation? – Misquotes God’s Words?
    And Adds to Gods Words?

    Eve speaks to the serpent and says in Gen 3:3 …
    “God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, “neither shall ye touch it,” lest ye die.”

    So, before Adam and Eve eat from the Tree – Before the serpent – Tempts”
    Eve is already adding to God’s Words. (This is added – “neither shall ye touch it,”)

    Gen 3:4, the serpent speaks a lie against God – “Ye shall not surely die:”
    IMO – the Temptation comes when the sepent says in Gen 3:5…
    “For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof,
    then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”

    Isnt adding to God’s Word – kinda like we do when we use?
    “terms we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT – NOT in the Bible?

    Could this account in the garden be for “US” – “The Church of God” – *to learn* from…
    NOT to add to God’s Words?

    Rom 15:4
    For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for *our learning,*

    1Co 10:11
    Now all these things happened unto them *for ensamples:*
    and they are written for *our admonition,* (Warning.)

    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “Short Hand” – I’m a fan of “The Bible.”
    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon”
    That are NOT in the Bible. ;-)

    Can’t God have written? – What He wants written? – Where and When He wants it?

    Do we really help Him? When we ADD to God’s Words?

    Don’t you ever wonder “Why God” did NOT use the terms we use?
    If God thought there was “The Fall” in Genisis 3 – A going down…
    That would have been a good place for Him to say it. Yes?

    But He did NOT.

  36. monax – Gary W

    One danger I’ve noticed with using “terms we find in our Christian lexicon” BUT – NOT in the Bible – Is – Once we start to do that – The skys the limit – and we have to use other terms NOT in the Bible to descibe or make understood – our secret code – for the terms we use – that are NOT in the Bible? Huh??? ;-)

    monax writes – @APRIL 18, 2013 @ 11:11 AM…
    1 – The effects of Adam and Eve’s rebellion
    2 – involved a fall from a state of innocence
    3 – to that of the knowledge of good and evil.
    4 – Again, although the word “fall” is not found in the Bible
    to refer to Genesis Three—it, nevertheless, is essentially a Biblical expression.
    5 – It indicates Adam and Eve’s downward direction
    6 – from abiding in the Presence of God
    7 – to being driven out of His Garden.

    And, at first glance, it sounds like it’s coming from the Bible. And “is essentially a Biblical expression.” Because we’ve heard it so often from “Church Leaders.” But – Looks to me like – They are “Doctrins of men” “Commandments of men” “Traditions” that nullify God’s Words – that Jesus warned “US” about.

    1 – Gen 3 – Does NOT mention “Rebellion” – “Rebellion” is added to God’s Words.
    2 – Gen 3 – Does NOT mention “State of innocence” – Term is added to God’s Words.
    3 – Yes – BUT – NOT a Fall to
    4 – Yes – Fall – NOT found in the Bible – NO – Fall – NOT a Biblical Exprssion.
    5 – Gen 3 – Does NOT mention a downward direction.
    6 – Yes
    7 – Yes

    So Now – we add to “The Fall” other terms NOT in the Bible to describe “The Fall.
    Rebellion – State of innocence – Downward direction.

    Was Eve in a “state of innocence?” When she added to God’s Words?
    Before the serpent tempted her?

    Seems our “shorthand” is NOT so short after all. ;-)

    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “Short Hand” – I’m a fan of “The Bible.”
    NO – I am NOT a fan of – “terms we find in our Christian lexicon”
    That are NOT in the Bible. ;-)

  37. I confess to you, Gary and friends, that as my understanding of this deepens—so does the mystery.

    I commented above how I believe Jesus experienced two deaths that day on the cross. And Gary responded with his belief that Jesus’ Separation from His Father (and ours) actually took place in Gethsemane. . . that it was in Gethsemane that He took our sins upon Himself, that this is when He became separated from the Father, and that this, therefore, is when he effectively died for our sins.

    Building on the comments and especially the verses Gary provided above—let me drop another crucial piece of the puzzle into the comments.

    The Christian doctrine of Imputation

    “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity” (Psalm 32:1-2).

    The Hebrew word for atonement is kaphar which means to cover, to cover over. The sacrificial blood of Christ has covered the penalty of our sins.

    The Hebrew word for impute is chashav which means to think, to regard, to reckon oneself, to be accounted, to credit, to consider. When God is the Subject of chashav the word is weighted with the highest of legal considerations.

    The first time we encounter chashav in the Torah is in Genesis 15:6—“And Abram believed in the LORD, and He counted it to him as righteousness.”

    Three biblical instances—from God’s perspective—of imputation:

    1—the sin of Adam is imputed to his children
    2—the sin of Christ’s people are imputed to Him
    3—the righteousness of Christ is imputed to His people

    From Isaiah 53 (vss 6, 10b, 11):

    All we like sheep have gone astray;
    We have turned every one to his own way;
    And the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him [the Suffering Servant].

    When You make his soul an offering for sin…

    Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied;
    By his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant,
    Make many to be accounted righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities.

    I’m certain the Apostle Paul had Isaiah 53 in mind when he wrote: For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God (2 Cor 5:21).

    “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:22).

    Amen

    . .

    According to the righteous law of God—the penalty of sin is death. Someone had to pay the price for man’s transgression against Him. The perfect Substitute would be none other than God Himself. God’s Amazing Love worked out a way to satisfy his Holy Justice so that Jesus would be the sacrificial “Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).

    We read in the Suffering Servant passage of Isaiah 53 how the Messiah “was lead as a lamb to the slaughter.” And “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins” (Hebrews 9:22). “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul” (Leviticus 17:11).

    The words of Jesus on the night before Gethsemane: “For this is my blood… which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins” (Matthew 26:28). While in Gethsemane Jesus prayed, “My Father, if it be possible let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will” (Matthew 26:39).

    The cup Christ was to drink was the measure of judgment due His people. The physical and spiritual sufferings of this judgement would culminate in his spiritual and physical deaths on the cross.

    Gary, I’m not sure Jesus experienced a spiritual separation from the Father in Gethsemane. Reason being: We see him praying to the Father all the way up until he pronounces that “the hour has come—the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners” (Matthew 26:45).

    As those who have been tortured know: the anticipation of the pain and suffering is often more torturous than the actual torture. Jesus was agonizing in a prayer to the Father so fervently “his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground” (Luke 22:43-44; note: some manuscripts omit these two verses).

    Again, Gary, as I’m reading it, He had not yet been separated from the Father in the garden of Gethsemane. And this experience of a Separation from the Father who had from all eternity been one with the Son—I believe was experienced by Jesus as a spiritual death of a magnitude not a one of us will possibly even begin to properly appreciate until deep deep deep into our time with the Father in Eternity.

    So the question for me, then, is When were the sins of His people placed on His person?

    I see the timing of this transference of sins upon Jesus as possibly the moment when He began experiencing a true spiritual and physical dying. For the Prophet tells us “Your sins have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you” (Isaiah 59:2).

    . .

    On the symbolic transference of sins found in Leviticus One

    Much of the book of Leviticus gives instructions on how Israel is to approach the LORD and find acceptable atonement for their sins.

    In Leviticus One we see a symbolic transference of sins from the sinner seeking atonement to his sacrificial substitute—such as a bull or ram without blemish.

    “He shall bring it to the entrance of the tent of meeting, that he may be accepted before the LORD. He shall lay his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it shall be accepted for him to make atonement for him. Then he shall kill the bull before the LORD.”

    The man seeking atonement would lay his hand on the head of the sacrificial animal to identify himself with it in such a way as to understand that although he absolutely deserves to die for his sins, the animal, instead, is dying in his place.

    The man would cut the throat of the bull or ram and the priests would collect the blood in a bowl and then sprinkle it upon the alter.

    We see images of Christ’s atonement everywhere in Scriptures—in the clothing God provided Adam and Eve; in the story of Cain and Abel (( man’s first physical death being a murder-of-an-innocent-and-righteous-shepherd )); in the provision of a ram in Genesis 22; in the blood of the Passover lambs of Exodus 12; in the Feasts of the LORD of Leviticus 23; and in the OT sacrificial system.

    “For the penalty of sin is death, However, the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

  38. Amos, my contrary friend, you’re killing me— i’m only able to answer one question at a time. Also, there is only so much time afforded me to interact here. And it takes a good concentration of it to economize my writing to a shape and size that is both relatively readable and understandable.

    In my efforts, here, I employ terms that carry volumes of meaning. I do the best I can to define them in the context of our discussion. I went to great lengths to relate to you how I was employing the term “the Fall.”

    Simply this and nothing more: The Fall = Genesis Three

    Consider how the Apostle Paul employs the salvific word grace as shorthand for “God’s redemptive act of love and mercy whereby he grants eternal life to those who put their faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ.” The idea of Grace embodies enormous territory, but used and read in context we find its meaning.

    The context of Genesis Three is the rest of the Bible that provides commentary on the mystery and meaning of what transpired in the garden of Eden at the beginning of human time.

    For instance we read at the very end of the Bible in the book of Revelation that the ancient Edenic serpent is identified as the dragon, who is the devil, or Satan.

    So we can ascribe things to Genesis Three that later Scripture enlightens us to—as a rebellion that involved man in a fall from a state of innocence to that of the knowledge of good and evil.

    Disobeying the word of the LORD is characterized as rebellion. “Rebellion is as the sin of divination, and presumption is as iniquity and idolatry—for you have rejected the word of the LORD” (1 Samuel 15:23).

  39. David,

    You’ve obviously put way more thought into the atonement, how it works, and so on than I have! Still, I’m hoping to be able to share some more thoughts as to when Jusus’ separation from the Father might, or might not, have occurred. In the meantime, you go and start using the word “impute” and its cognates! Now, I’m not quite ready to get distracted from the question of Gethsemane, but let me see if I can get you thinking some more (or else maybe convince you I’m a total, raving heretic). While I haven’t reached total conviction on the matter, I am having real difficulty with the whole concept of imputation. Contrary to what I recall Wayne Grudem as having written, I question whether Adam’s sin was merely imputed to us. I begin to rather strongly hold that Adam’s sin was actually imparted to us. Further, I begin to doubt whether our sin was merely imputed to the Son of God, as I’m sure Grudem writes. Rather, I begin to find it more credible to suppose that His having been “made sin” was no mere abstraction or legal fiction, but that he actually somehow identified with us to the point of truly and really and tangibly taking on our sin, and becoming sin, so that he actually, really and tangibly reaped the full consequences of all the sin sowed by Adam and his descendants. If these suppositions are true, it brings into question the whole notion of “penal” substitutionary atonement. There was simply a substitutionary atonement–no need to pay a penalty to satisfy the supposed wrath of God (who, by the way, is Love), only a need to satisfy the law of sowing and reaping. Well, there, I’ve done it. I’ve just walked away from 40 some years of life in the Evangelical tradition. But I just have trouble with the notion that God acts on the basis of any kind of fiction, legal or otherwise.

    O.K. I let myself get distracted. I hope to return to Gethsemane in my next post.

  40. Gary, I see the sin of Adam being both imputed and imparted to man. And I’m open to seeing how our sin was both imputed and imparted to Christ. So I’m listening (i.e., waiting to read what you have for me).

    Regarding “the supposed wrath of God”

    God is not only a God of love, He is also a God of wrath. We His redeemed children are not appointed to wrath—we won’t know it. But the wicked will—on the Day of the LORD—which is also prophetically known as the Day of Wrath.

  41. Well I have, and it is deep. I would love to respond to the trinity part when I get back. Amos you’re a sharp individual and strong in your statements. You present some strong arguments. However the bible does have the answer to your arguments. I would love to share ( the bible’s version of the trinity) with you, so please be patience, Always Bro. Lee in=Christ.

  42. David, and anybody else who is interested our discussion of Gethsemane,

    Again, this Scripture: And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Matthew 27:46, ESV. From this we know that the Father forsook or had forsaken His Son no later than about the ninth hour, which I take to be 3 o’clock in the afternoon, next following the night time events in the Garden of Gethsemane. But was Jesus crying out immediately upon His being forsaken?

    Jesus’ words were the opening words of David’s cry as recorded at Psalm 22:1-2: My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning? O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, and by night, but I find no rest.

    Jesus’ predecessor, at least, appears to have been in distress for some period of time prior to actually crying out. If Jesus’ use of the Psalmist’s words-become-Scripture were meant to communicate the fullness of the Psalmist’s sentiment, Jesus’ cry is indicating the culmination of His distress following some period of having been forsaken by the Father.

    Similarly, might not any one of us cry out to God only after some extended experience of God’s seeming abandonment? Might it not be that we would be most likely to cry out only after his seeming absence had become unbearable. (Except that for Jesus, of course, the Father’s forsaking was not a mere seeming.)

    It turns out that I am not alone in reading the matter this way. At page 576 of my copy of Grudem’s Systematic Theology, Grudem writes that we may understand Jesus’ cry “as meaning ‘Why have you left me for so long?’ ” I am not saying anybody should accept my argument because Grudem is some sort of final authority on the matter. I only wish to point out that my views are not unique to myself.

    Is all of this proof that Jesus was forsaken by His Father while Jesus was in Gethsemane? No, but the possibility remains open. Further, there is evidence that the forsaking had taken place some significant period of time before Jesus cried out “My God, my God, why have you forsaken Me?”

    More to follow. Probably not this evening, at least on this topic.

  43. David, I may find myself backpedaling on the matter of the wrath of God. My hope is that God’s wrath should turn out to be directed more at sin than at the sinner, else how could it be said the Jesus is the perfect representation of the Father? But for now the limited nature of the availability of time will require that I focus on Gethsemane. Alas.

  44. Gary, fwiw, as I was looking at the Hebrew of Psalm 22:1-2 yesterday, this is how I translated the verses into English—My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me [according to] the words of my roaring cry? O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, and by night, but I find no rest.

    His cry ((as read in the Hebrew)) is like that of a lion.

    . .

    Gary, I think proof of Jesus NOT experiencing a spiritual Separation from the Father in the Garden of Gethsemane was that he was praying to God—spiritually connecting to the Father—all the way up until he pronounced that His Hour Had Come when he was then seized and taken to Caiaphas the high priest, the Sanhedrin, Scribes, Elders, and other religious rulers who were seeking false testimony against him that they might put him to death.

    I don’t see a Separation of the Father occurring here in the Garden of Gethsemane for that reason.

  45. Hello Amos, well i would like to respond to your thought on the trinity. Yes the word trinity is not found in the bible, however the definition is. The bible teaches 3in1 or 3 distinct person who share the same attributes and/or character. When I say three in one I mean I must find each scripture that bears this out. Now I will choose a scripture, however this will not be an exhausted work. There are many other scripture that bear this out.

    Lets start with the attributes of God the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost.

    The word Title: each must share in scripture that they are spoken of as God
    scripture references: Ex 20:2, John 20:27, Acts 5:3-4

    Sovereign: Is 40:13-14, Jo 3:31, 1cor 12:11

    Eternal: Rev 22:13, Rev 1:8, Heb 9:14

    Love: 1Jo 4:8&16, Eph 5:2, Rom 5:5

    Righteous Ps 145:17, 1Jo 2:1, Heb 10:16-15

    Holy: Ex 15:11, Acts 4:27, Rom:1:4

    Just: Is 45:21, Acts 22:14 1Cor 6:11

    Omniscience: Is 46:10, Jo 2:24-25, 1Cor 2:10

    Omnipotent: Rev 19:6, Jo 10:17-18, Rom 15:13&19

    Omnipresent: Jer:23:23-24, Eph 1:23, Ps 139:7-10

    Veracity: Deu 32:4, Jo 1:14, Jo 14:17

    Immutable: Mal: 3:6, Heb 1:12, Ps 102:24-27

    These attribute all share. The bible plainly teaches that there are one in Character and Attributes. Though the word is not found in scriptures we can plainly see their definition are. These attribute covers all the small ones like forgiveness, wisdom, mercy etc……

    I know you have a response, so I’ll be waiting. Love your bro. in Christ.

    My bad all scripture reference are king James version, also the first scripture references the Father, the second the Son and the third the Holy Ghost.

  46. David,

    Please allow me to submit for your consideration alternative inferences to be drawn from the record of Jesus’ praying in Gethsemane. Yes, Jesus prayed, first that “the hour might pass from him,” and second that the Father would “remove this cup from me.” Both petitions were denied, or at least neither was granted. This in and of itself is a forsaking, or so I submit. Is it even reasonable to suppose that there had been any other occasion, throughout all eternity past, that the Father had denied the Son’s request?

    I submit that Jesus would not have made petitions that He knew were contrary to the Father’s will. Therefore, the very making of such petition is further evidence of Jesus’ separation from the Father. I submit that the making of requests that were contrary to the Father’s will are evidence that, though Jesus prayed, there was no spiritual connection.

    After Jesus’ petitions were denied, or left unanswered, He did not repeat the petitions. Rather He prayed “My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.” As I understand the record, he prayed this same thing a second time. That he prayed the same thing twice may indicate a disconnect between Jesus and the Father. Why say the same thing twice if you know you were heard the first time?

    We have left the arena of revelation and are engaged in the application of reason, in the drawing of inferences from the Texts. Let us proceed with caution. As difficult as I find it to type, I make no claim to infallibility. I dare do nothing more than submit my views for your consideration. Fortunately, we have the same Spirit who Jesus promised would guide the apostles into all truth. John 16:13.

    More to follow, I hope tomorrow.

  47. Also David, thank you for your translation of Psalms 22:1-2. Your ability to work with the Hebrew requires me to labor at resisting the sin of envy.

    Amos,

    Do you recognize how much it will be necessary for me to unlearn, how difficult it will be to break habitual ways of seeing and thinking and understanding, if I begin to toss out every concept and word that is not actually printed in the Bible? Actually, if I visit my old Sunday school class tomorrow, it will be for the (admittedly mischievous) purpose of trying to hold them to what the Bible actually says. Seriously, though, about 12 years ago I embraced a prayer somebody said over me to the effect that I would be able to begin to take the Bible at face value, setting aside all doctrinal filters. I have been getting in trouble with “the corrupt religious system” ever since.

  48. Gary W

    Enjoying your explanations – and David’s also – You bring out some excellent points – I never really thought about where the seperation occurred – Jesus being forsaken – Just assumed it was on the Cross – That’s what I was taught – Ouch!!! – **Danger Alert** – Do NOT trust “Church Leaders.” Trust NO man – Jesus wants to teach us – Jesus is the best teacher – Yes??? ;-)

    John 6:45
    It is written in the prophets, And they shall be ALL taught of God.

    Isa 54:13
    And ALL thy children shall be taught of the LORD…

    Deut 4:36
    Out of heaven HE made you to “Hear His Voice,” that HE might “instruct thee:”

    Gary – You write…
    “Both petitions were denied, or at least neither was granted.
    This in and of itself is a forsaking, “

    … Hmmm? Yes – Makes sense —– And, in the past, Jesus, when NOT forsaken, said…

    John 5:19
    …The Son can do nothing of himself, but what *he seeth the Father do:*
    for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

    John 5:30
    I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just;
    because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

    John 8:28
    …I do nothing of myself; but *as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.*

    Hmmm? Jesus, NOT forsaken says – The Son only does what He sees the Father doing.
    BUT – that does NOT seem to be happening in Gethsemane. Forsaken??? – Probably.

    “I submit that Jesus would not have made petitions that He knew were contrary to the Father’s will. Therefore, the very making of such petition is further evidence of Jesus’ separation from the Father.”

    … Hmmm? Yes – Makes sense – I appreciate your thoughts and reasoning.

    “That he prayed the same thing twice may indicate a disconnect between Jesus and the Father. Why say the same thing twice if you know you were heard the first time?”

    .. Hmmm? Yes – Makes sense…

    And – You are studying – when Jesus was forsaken – because – Why?

    I mean – Is there another reason – outside of seeking the “Truth.” – Jesus. :-)

  49. Gary W

    You write…
    “Do you recognize how much it will be necessary for me to unlearn, how difficult it will be to break habitual ways of seeing and thinking and understanding, if I begin to toss out every concept and word that is not actually printed in the Bible?”

    Yes – I do. :-)

    I’ve been at it since 1988 – over 20 years now – And Jesus is still showing me where “My Religious Traditions” Make Void – And Cancel – the Word of God. :-(

    Yes – Much to un-learn – Very difficult to – Break from “Commandments of Men” – “Doctrines of Men“ – “Tradition of Men” – That I believed to be “Truth.” But – only “Cancelled the Word of God – Only nullified The Word of God.

    Wow – Something so powerful it can Make Void, Cancel – “The Word of God.”
    And – I figure “the Bible” is The Word of God – And Jesus, is The Word of God.
    Seems man made traditions “Shorthand” make “the Bible” of “none effect.””
    Seems man made traditions “Shorthand” make “Jesus” of “none effect.” :-(

    Mark 7:13
    NLT – So “you cancel” the word of God in order to hand down your own tradition.
    ………. And this is only one example among many others.”
    KJV – Making the word of God of “none effect” through your tradition…
    ASV – Making “void” the word of God by your tradition…
    NIV – Thus you “nullify” the word of God by your tradition…

    Yes – It became mandatory, a quest, for me to seek out ALL these man made “Traditions.”
    And “Cancel” these “Traditions.”. ;-) With what the Bible actually says. ;-)

    And – NOT many appreciate their “Traditions” being challenged. What they have believed for 10 – 20 – 30 – years – as “Truth.” They defend at all costs – Jesus was a “Tradition” breaker – Telling the “Truth.” And look where He wound up – BUT – when your eyes are opened you want others to enjoy the freedom – the liberty in Christ. And NO longer be in bondage to “the Commandments of Men” – These “Traditions.”

    And – Like you write…
    “I have been getting in trouble with “the corrupt religious system” ever since. ;-)

    What is popular is not always “Truth.”
    What is “Truth” is not always popular.

  50. Amos, thank you for sharing what you have learned along your journey! I’ve learned a lot from you.

    And as I was just reading this I remembered I owe you an e-mail. I haven’t forgotten. I’m away at volleyball tournament all day today. Soon!

  51. Gary, when I grow up, I want to be able to talk/write like you. :)

    This sentence: Your ability to work with the Hebrew requires me to labor at resisting the sin of envy. cracked me up!!

  52. Julie Ann, I suggest that you never grow up. I’m over here in a corner engaged in conversation with a small handful of people. You write in a style that enables you to communicate with and positively impact tens and hundreds and maybe thousands of people–people who would otherwise be in a very real place of spiritual abandonment.

  53. Reflections on Gethsemane, the Next Installment:

    And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful (Mk 14:33: greatly distressed ) and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” Matthew 26:37-38 ESV.

    Here we have the beginning of the description of whatever it was that Jesus experienced in Gethsemane. I suggest that Isaiah 53 may be viewed as commentary or elaboration on these and the following verses (although this is not to exclude other applications of Isaiah 53). Beyond this, whatever exegetical skill I may have fails me. Other than in the parallel passages in Mark and Luke I, at least, find no other Scriptural illumination of these particular events.

    Perhaps we can draw useful inferences from that fact that Jesus says “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death.” By “soul” I take it that Jesus is speaking of his bodily life. When Jesus says He is sorrowful “to death” (Gk., ἕως θανάτου, heos thanatou), I conclude from lexical authorities, as confirmed by other English translations, that Jesus is saying that He is sorrowful to the very point of death. Whatever the cause, Jesus has begun to suffer in His body. However, neither from the Gethsemane passages themselves, nor from the application of reason to these verses, can it be determined one way or the other whether Jesus had already suffered or was beginning to experience separation from the Father. Personally, I can go no further by the application of reason to revelation.

    Yet, if knowledge in the Biblical sense is a knowing that goes beyond the mere acquisition of facts, if knowledge in the Biblical sense is gained experientially and relationally, we may in prayer legitimately seek understanding by way of entering into Jesus’ experience, that is: by empathetically identifying with him in His distress, by feeling what he felt and, at a distance at least, suffering what He suffered. We must be careful. This approach simply will not allow us to satisfy the demands of the Enlightenment goddess whose name is Reason. Each of us will tend to project their own experiences, prejudices and perceptions onto the experience of our Savior. Yet in community, with each person sharing what they see and have received, I have hope that we may more nearly approach the truth (or should I say Truth?) than if the attempt were not made. My personal take follows.

    It is possible that Jesus was sorrowful, distressed and troubled out of fear, anxiety, dread, or some such, triggered by the anticipation of being made sin, of bearing the consequences of sin, of being separated from the Father, or all these things. In the alternative, He may have been sorrowful, distressed and troubled because the things he had to suffer had already come or begun to come upon Him. Regarding these contrasting possibilities, I would note Jesus’ statement recorded at Luke 22:15: “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.” At least at this point Jesus had not yielded to fear, anxiety, dread or the like.

    Yet the question remains whether Jesus could have yielded to fear, anxiety, dread, etc. by the time the Gethsemane events were in progress. It may well be that the dread of pain and suffering can be worse than the event itself. If this is being read by anybody who has given birth, perhaps they could tell us whether the dread of labor tends to be worse than the pain of labor itself; although each mother’s experience may be different. For my own part I can say this: The removal of an ingrown toenail from one of the large toes, without the benefit of local anesthesia, is torture, literally, if only for the briefest of moments. My first experience of the procedure was not preceded by fear, anxiety, dread, etc. I simply did not know what to expect. The second time around, some time later, the procedure most defiantly was preceded by anxiety and dread (though pride forbids I admit to fear). Still, the sweating of bullets, as it were, did not come until the procedure itself was underway.

    I once again submit that Jesus was no Coward. If He was experiencing sorrow “even to death,” it was not from the mere anticipation of what he was to experience; it was not because of fear, anxiety or dread from the mere anticipation of what He was about to suffer. Either He had already been made sin, or else He was being made sin. I submit that if He had already been made sin, or if He was already being made sin, He also had been forsaken, or was being forsaken, by the Father.

    All of these considerations would also apply, at least generally, to Jesus’ sweating of blood.

    And there you have it: puzzle pieces in three dimensions–the dimensions of revelation, objective reason, and subjective experience-based intuition. No room here to add anything from the dimension of the theological traditions of men.

  54. Norris, I have printed and intend to go through each of the verses you posted last night. I don’t know if I will have anything to add to your discussion with Amos. He doesn’t need my help. However, I do wish to thank you for your contribution.

  55. Thanks, Gary and Amos. You two are so kind. I have to think of how words affect me when reading.

    I remember reading Brad’s very logical comments and I confess at times I would skim. What a shame, because now I know better. I have to really slow down and ponder each word. And since doing that, I have learned so much from him. He has great wisdom. And of course tucked in that wisdom sometimes he sneaks in some Bradisms that can make you split a gut laughing.

    Let’s face it. We were all created in His image and have something beautiful to offer to others. I’ve learned so much from so many of you.

  56. monax

    You write…
    “Amos, my contrary friend, you’re killing me.”

    Yup – That’s the idea. – ;-)

    At least *killing* “Traditions of Men” in you – And – I found out – We ALL got em. :-)

    And *killing* “Traditions of Men” that had me in Bondage is now a favorite sport. – In me and others. – More fun then playing basketball. For “WE” wrestle NOT against Flesh and Blood. The adversary is accomplished at what he does. It ALL looks so good at first, so correct. And when someone “Gets It” it’s Priceless. NO longer being in Bondage to man made rules and “Traditions.” AAAHHH Liberty. ;-)

    When Jesus opened my eyes – To His Word – NOT what I was taught by Man. I Kinda felt like Paul – Who was Saul – Until Jesus removed the scales – and said, “I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake.” Acts 9:16. Yes – there will be a price to pay.

    But – Paul/Saul/Amos – A “Religious Leader” – with Power – Profit – Prestige – Finally – Eventually – Denied Self – Left ALL – Forsook ALL – Power – Profit – Prestige – To be one of His Disciples. ;-)

    Paul went off for around three years – Learning directly from Jesus – NO middle man. When Jesus showed Himself to Paul – Immediately Paul conferred NOT with Flesh and Blood. Gal 1:16. That’s what I recommend today. Go to Jesus and “Get It” from Him. Throw out ALL you think you know and start from scratch. Read the Gospels over and over again – Read the Red – again and again – Get to know Jesus – He’s the Best. ;-)

    Found out – most of the time – you have to dig your own wells – to find “living water.”

    Lord – You’re killing me – And, that’s what I cried out to Jesus when He was stripping away ALL I had believed and came to “Trust” in. – I’ve believed so many lies – So many “Traditions” NOT in the Bible.

    Would you like a list? My list? ;-)

    Or, maybe you can ask Jesus to show you? – You’re list – of your “Traditions?”
    That Cancel and Make Void – “the Word of God” – We ALL got em… ;-)

    And Today – I only desire to be “contrary” to “The Doctrines of Men” – “The Commandments of Men” – “the Traditions of Men” that have so many in Bondage, and have wounded so many.

    David – I like You – And to write those four comments to you about – the “Dangers of Shorthand” – “the Trinity” – “the Fall” – took many, many, hours. And I re-read your answers about “The Fall” many times.

    Just want you to know – I do NOT take this conversation lightly.
    And I thank you for reading – and responding…

    You were very close to convincing me…
    “Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.- Willing to use “shorthand.”

    Mal 3:16
    Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another:
    and the LORD hearkened, and heard it,
    and a book of remembrance was written before him
    for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name.

  57. Norris

    Thanks for your response – And the scriptures.
    Glad you are still reading along. And these are some long comments – Oy Vey!!!

    I could be wrong, but, Seems I did NOT explain myself properly about “The Trinity.”

    What I was questioning, and challenging, was David @ APRIL 18, 2013 @ 11:11 AM…
    Where – IMO – David is trying to convince me it’s okay to use the “Shorthand” term “The Fall” – a “term we find in our Christian lexicon” – But is NOT in the Bible.

    By pointing to another “Shorthand” term “The Trinity” – Another “term we find in our Christian lexicon” – But is NOT in the Bible.

    I experience this often – But find it to be a “Strange B. S.” – “Strange Belief System.”
    Trying to prove a “Term” is okay to use – Even though it’s NOT in the Bible.
    By pointing to another “Term” – NOT in the Bible.

    Why do we NOT use the Bible? To describe what is in the Bible?

    And I attempted convince David why the use of “The Trinity” was NOT a worthwhile “Shorthand” to use to convince me that it was okay to use “The Fall” as “Shorthand.”

    The term “The Trinity” is so well ingrained in our brains NO one questions it.
    And – when someone does question it – Most will defend “Their Trinity.” To the Death.

    So, I question “The Trinity” – And what it means – because I’m on a quest – to find My Traditions that Make Void the Word of God in MY life – I find “The Trinity” is very suspect for many reasons. Some of which I stated if you re-read that comment @ APRIL 20, 2013 @ 11:31 AM.

    “I begin my own research…

    And, to my surprise, I find there are different types of “The Trinity” – Yup – NOT ALL who use this “Shorthand” agree when they interpret their “Shorthand” – Their understanding of “The Trinity.”

    WOW – Different – Trinitarians – Believing – different things – about “The Trinity.” :-)

    Now when someone says – “I believe in “The Trinity” – I ask – “Which One?”

    Did you know there are different ways “Church Leaders” explain “The Trinity?

    I’m questioning the use of “the Trinity” a “Shorthand” term NOT in the Bible.
    To say it’s okay to use “the Fall” a “Shorthand ” term NOT in the Bible.
    Because there are different ways to explain “the Trinity” it is NO longer “Shorthand.”
    IMO – the term “The Trinity” and the different opinions about it – Is questionable.

    And – you and many say… “The bible teaches 3in1 or 3 distinct person.”

    Please – show me where in the Bible you find – 3 distinct persons?

    God being a person makes it sound – so – eeerrr – how do you say it – So human.
    Person – Dictionary – A human being regarded as an individual.

    NO – My God is NOT a human being. NOT a person. ;-)

    I find in the Bible – God is Spirit – God is Light – God is Love…
    And – “God is NOT a man” – Nu 23:19.

  58. Hello Amos, Yes i know you like to challenge the status quo. You have every right to question what you don’t/or do know about the bible. However you shouldn’t be combative or argumentative when simple truths are shown to you. Experience does not supersede the Word of God. In your quest to reach the truth, you void some simple explanations. When you speak of Pastor/elders you speak in the negative as thou all Pastor are evil and corrupt. Seeking power, prestige, profit and the likes. This is a description of a false Pastor/Elder(2Cor 11:13) there are many good men who have given there lives for the gospel. To gather them with these false Apostle/Pastor/Elder seems unfair, because you have personally been involved in such activities. To expose such men are actually a good thing, however don’t linked them with these evil and corrupt men. Jesus said He came to heal the broken hearted (Lu 4:18). You seem to have a grip on what you are learning. Why not move forward with that? Bible say in Jo 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. What are you lifting up? Christ is full of Grace and Truth and Love with the forgiveness of sin. That’s the Christ I want to exalt. That’s the Christ i want to lift up. When we lift up negativity and the likes, Christ is not being glorified in that. Every time in scripture when the men of God were done wrong THEY ask that God would not count it against there adversaries. Titus 3:2-3″ To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness to all men. For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lust and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another”. Today it is about GRACE. What God has done for us, That should be our focus and energy. Time is to short to focus on any thing else. Christ and the Cross. Hallelujah for that. Father I pray that you soften Amos heart that he may focus on you and your Greatness and let it shine through out his life bringing much glory to your name. I know Amos I may have missed the mark on my analyzation of you, however that what I felt in my spirit. You maybe a big whig in knowledge, yet you lack the most important ingredient LOVE. Love covers a multitude of sins. (1Pet4:8) love your bro. in Christ. May He richly bless you and yours.

  59. Norris,

    Amos loves you. I say this with complete confidence. Still, I have some understanding how it is that you are not feeling the love. I myself have come from a background where I didn’t feel loved if somebody disagreed with me. I still cannot fully explain how this could be, but I think it has to do with important people in my life having beaten up on me if I didn’t think what they thought. Therefore, in my immature heart, I just automatically and habitually assumed that ANYBODY who disagreed with me thought I was a bad person, or worse. Even if somebody was trying to help, disagreement felt like hate, not love. The reality, as best as I can see, is that Amos is demonstrating his love toward you by counting you worthy of his time and effort. He is exhibiting his love toward you by counting you as one he can trust with what is near and dear to his heart. I would go so far as to suggest that he is exhibiting his love toward you by risking your rejection. He is exhibiting his love toward you by treating you as a brother. If his words seem to wound, they are not intended to do so. To the extent that his words do wound, however unintentionally, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy. (Proverbs 27:6, ESV)

  60. Norris

    Sorry you can not feel or understand the Love, many here have shown you here.
    How you have been accepted, forgiven, and asked forgiveness of.

    You might NOT have noticed, or even recognized, that the very thing you have accused “US” at SSB of doing – And me, Amos, – You are doing yourself. In your first comment @ APRIL 3, 2013 @ 12:31 PM – you say “However I will hold judgement for God to sort this out.” But – You do NOT hold Judgement on me.

    You also say in that first comment…
    “May we not assassinate the character of a pastor as if it does not matter.”
    Yet – you have NO problem when you “assassinate the character” od A. Amos Love.

    Yes – You are forgiven – I hold NO ill will – I am used to it – Deal with it often… ;-)
    With pastor/elder/overseers who do NOT qualify. Seems these “pastor/elders who Abuse” attempt to silence folks who dis-agree with them by calling them names – To try to marginalize them and what they say.

    And – maybe you forgot – But – You are the one who asked for “this as a stepping stone to teaching.” And I’ve done the best I know how to write out and share what I’m understanding now.

    Even said I could be wrong. – @ APRIL 10, 2013 @ 8:14 AM –
    But – In my research – and God forbid, my research can be wrong… :-)

    And again I said I could be wrong. – APRIL 12, 2013 @ 5:17 PM
    But – Since leaving “The Religious System” I see it a little different.
    NOT that I have “The Final Answer – I do reserve the right to be wrong.
    Been wrong a few times in the past and have changed my mind.

    And I constantly ask you to show from Scripture where I’m missing it.
    But – You refuse to answer the simplest of questions – and we know why – Don’t we?

    Just because I do NOT like the terms “The Trinity’ and “The Fall” – NOT in the Bible. You say I’m NOT showing LOVE. Just because I can NOT find, In the Bible, one of His Disciples who had the “Title/Position” pastor/leader/reverend and choose to let others know that – You accuse me of – NOT showing LOVE.

    You accuse me of saying – “all Pastor are evil and corrupt.” Nope Never said that.
    Please do NOT put words in my mouth – I have enough of my own.”
    And – If I did say that? – Can you please show me where I said it?

    You accuse me – “yet you lack the most important ingredient LOVE.”
    And say – “Love covers a multitude of sins.”

    Can you show me – by your actions – If I’m in Sin by NOT showing LOVE…
    How would you go about showing LOVE? – That covers my Sin.

    Would you do like you did here? – Point it out to every one?

  61. Gary W

    WOW – I was writing when you posted – Just read your remarks after I posted.

    WOW – From what you said – I must be a really nice guy… ;-)

    And – Yes – Your explanation is out-of- sight…

    “The reality, as best as I can see, is that Amos is demonstrating his love toward you by counting you worthy of his time and effort. He is exhibiting his love toward you by counting you as one he can trust with what is near and dear to his heart.”

    When I first read – Norris – It was – Frustrating to say the least – Lord help – what else can you do – hours and hours of writing – Trying to stick to scripture – Trying to help Norris understand what I’m seeing – And Norris goes back to how he started here – condemning – and judging – everyone in sight.

    Thanks again for having my back. Much appreciated. ;-)

  62. Norris – monax – anyone

    If you would still like to fellowship – Celebrate Communion with “US”…
    Can you please answer these questions?

    “And – you and many say… “The bible teaches 3in1 or 3 distinct person.”
    Please – show me where, In the Bible, you find – 3 distinct persons?”

    Because – I can NOT find in the Bible – God – refered to as a Person.
    Now, Jesus, as Man, was a person – But – The Father and The Holy Spirit are NOT.

    Personally, I can find verses, in the Bible, that say…
    The Father – is God.
    The Son – is God.
    The Holy Spirit – is God.

    Does that put me in good standing with you. You probably can agree with that – Yes?

    BUT – Once we say “The Trinity” – Along comes a host of other “Questionable Stuff” NOT in the Bible – To Explain “The Trinity” – Which is NOT in the Bible.

    Sounds like you think it’s okay to use “The Trinity”- It’s okay to ADD to God’s Words.
    If Norris is saying – “I believe in “The Trinity.” – I ask – “Which One?” Which Trinity?

    The Trinity with Heirarchy? – Or The Trinity with “NO Heirarchy” in the God head?”
    The Trinity with The Father is NOT the Son? – Or, The Son is The Everlasting Father?
    The Trinity with 3 distinct persons – Or, The Father, The Word, The Holy Spirit – ONE?

    And I think we can agree – God is “Infinite.” Yes?
    Psalm 147:5 – Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is “infinite.”

    Infinite – Strongs – *innumerable* – among a few definitions.
    Infinite – Thayers – *innumerable* – among a few definitions.
    Infinite – Dictionary – – limitless, extent, or size; impossible to measure or calculate.

    Job 9:10 – Job speaks about God – His **wonders without number.** Yes?
    Which doeth great things past finding out; yea, and **wonders without number.**

    Rom 11:33 – Paul – Speaks about God – **His ways past finding out!** Yes?
    O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
    how unsearchable are his judgments, and **his ways past finding out!**

    Hmmm? Seems “The Bible” describes God as…
    Infinite – Wonders without number – His ways past finding out – Inumerable – Linitless – Impossible to measure or calculate.

    Heb 12:22, Speaks about an – “innumerable company of angels,”
    So, we have an “Infinite God” – Who is – Omniscient – Omnipresent – Omnipotent.
    Who creates an “innumerable company of angels,”- Heb 12:22

    So Norris – here is a question for you – About the term “The Trinity.”

    Does this term “The Trinity?” – Describe God as…
    Infinite? – Doing, Wonders without number? – His ways past finding out? – Inumerable? – Linitless? – Impossible to measure or calculate?

    “The Trinity” – A term NOT found in the Bible – An invention of Man. ;-)

  63. Hello Amos, I knew that this would turn into something I didn’t want to happen. I have a problem expressing myself with this computer. I didn’t mean it that way. I was saying it seems to me that you were always harping about Pastor/Elder/Overseer and the things they were seeking after. However you never gave credit to men who hold those position any credit. Men who have given their lives for the gospel.It seems to me (speaking for myself) you were holding a grudge because of what may have happen in your life. The bible paints a lovely picture of men leading (not in Webster terms) the church in the different church history. The word of God is being preached and souls are being saved. I truly am sorry if I seemed to have attempted to assassinate your character. My point was, why not let God heal your broken heart in this matter. One thing I’ve learned about this Christianity is to forgive and move on. To allow God the time and space to reconcile or redeemed and restore. I know it is not all about having a knowledge about a person. It’s showing the love that He showed. When Christ walked this earth He met needs. People came because He was meeting peoples needs. No He didn’t judge he said He came to save the sinner. So when i come to this internet I’m hoping to see that type of love. I know that I have said somethings that were wrong, whether it be toward people or the bible, for instance, I never meant to assassinate anyones character, I have mis-spoken when I said three distinct person. You were right in your assessment when you said Jesus was the only one with a body. God is Spirit (Jo 4:24) What I meant when I said they were 3 distinct persons is they have the same personality in attributes and character. To answer your questions: Yes it describe God as infinite (all knowing), Yes He has shown many signs and wonders when He walked the earth(Jo2:25), His way past finding out Yes as you have described. Innumerable, limitless Yes those are all the attributes of the trinity. That the bible truly defines. I say this with all my heart for you Amos and those who reside on this blog. I truly love each and every one of you with the love of Christ. Continue to pray for me that I grow into the person He has called me to be. Love your bro. in-Christ Norris Lee

  64. Norris

    You write…
    “His way past finding out Yes as you have described.
    Innumerable, limitless Yes those are *all the attributes of the trinity.*

    NOPE…

    “The Trinity” – As invented by man…
    “Numbers God” – Decided by man to be – Three…

    And God is NO longer – “Innumerable.”

    “The Trinity” – As invented by man…
    *Limits God* – to Three.

    And God is NO longer – “Limitless.”

    If God wanted to known as, or revealed as – “The Trinity”
    He could have had it “Written” – in His Word – The Bible…

    But – God did NOT have it written – “The Trinity.”

    Do you know of any scriptures that say – Inventions of Man…
    “Traditions of Man” that Cancel, Make Void, “The Word of God” – Are…
    “profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”

    And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold:
    them also I must bring, and they shall “hear My voice; “
    and there shall be “ONE” fold, and “ONE” shepherd.
    John 10:16

    One Voice – One Fold – One Shepherd

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}

  65. Norris

    You write…
    “seems to me that you were always harping about Pastor/Elder/Overseer and the things they were seeking after. However you never gave credit to men who hold those position any credit. Men who have given their lives for the gospel.”

    He who flatters his neighbor spreads a net for his feet. Pro 29:5

    I was flattered – You should be a pastor – a teacher – I fell into the net – The Trap. I was ordained – I was in Leadership – And I have seen the dangers of “Titles,” of being known as “pastor/leaderr/reverend.” Spiritual abuse for both the “leader” and those “being led.”

    I’m not new to “ministering healing” to those who have been “Spiritually Abused” by “Today’s Religious System” – Both – Pastors in Pulpits – and – People in Pews.

    Folks who have been *burnt,** burnt out,** kicked out,* and *crawled out* of “Today’s Abusive Religious System.”
    With it’s leaders, submission to spiritual authority, Tithes and offerings, and other unbiblical “heavy weights” put on folks shoulders.

    I also spend a fair amount of time with pastor/elder/overseers, “so called “Church Leaders,” who can’t do it anymore. Trying to run the show and please so many masters. Trying to please the denominational leaders. Please the congregation, Please the congregations leaders, Their own family, and of course Jesus.

    And Jesus, is often relegated to last place. Hmmm?

    Peaching every week… and it better be good, being the CEO, the team leader, counseling, marrying, burying, smiley face. No time for the family – etc. etc.

    Statistics say 1600 pastors a month are forced out – that’s 19,000 a year.
    That’s a lot of broken hearts, disappointments, feelings of failure, pain, abuse.
    80% say pastoral ministries has negatively affected their families.
    80% of spouses wish they would choose a different profession.
    77% sat they do NOT have a good marriage.
    70% suffer depression – burn out…

    You have NO idea – NO clue – I’m loveing them – I’m warning them – Danger Danger.
    And your concerned about me NOT giving these guys credit???

    Wake up Norris – Families are in pain. Lots and Lots of Pain.

    What? – Give credit? – For destroying their families??? For destroying themselves??? – By believeing the lie – I’m called to be a pastor/leader/overseer – Have to tuff it out. – Even when my family suffers – When no one in the Bible was called to be a pastor/leader/reverend – leading a church?

    Give credit? When they teach by example it’s okay to take a “Title” – NOT in the Bible?
    And now others believe the lie – That they are called – and their families suffer?

    Give credit? For taking a “Title/Position” pastor/leader/reverend – NOT in the Bible?

    Give credit? Why? They take a position with tuff qualifications – they do NOT meet?
    Now have to go about living the Lie – trying to convince folks they meet them…
    1 – Must be Blameless. 2 – Holy. 3 – Just. 4 – Manage well the home. – 80% Do NOT…

    NOT interested in giving credit – Interested in giving “Truth” that sets them FREE.

    Almost every time I meet someone who has suffered “Spiritual Abuse.”
    Pastor In Pulpit – Or – People in Pew. I ask some questions…

    I ask – In the Bible – How many people are called pastor?

    When they answer “Truthfully” – None – the healing begins.

    In the Bible – Did anyone – Go to Church – Join a Church – Give money to a Church?

    When they answer “Truthfully” – None – the healing begins.

    When I ask the Pastor/Elder/Overseers who are Hurting – Left in failure – Quit
    Do you meet these tuff qualifications in 1 Tim 3 and Titus.

    When they answer “Truthfully” – No, I do NOT – the healing begins.

    The “Truth” shall set you FREE…

  66. Hello Amos, I have read your last couple of posts. Where are you quoting these numbers from, what percentage is it in the overall perspective. who qualified these people. is this all of christianity? Amos do you believe people are being saved in these churches today? Do you believe that people are being healed today in these churches? Do you believe that the Spirit is working through men today in accomplishing God’s will? What part does man play in reaching God’s will for today?

    Amos you say that i have limited God when I placed a number on Him. God say He is one (Deu 6:4)Now the word one in the hebrew is define as “unity” unification of what? The word Lord in the hebrew is elohim, that is the plural of El. In the hebrew its three or more. (I know I’m preaching to choir). Paul shouts in (1Tim 2:5) that He’s one God, with one mediator, Jesus Christ. In Titus 1:4 (and a host of other places) It say God AND the Lord Jesus Christ. Jo 1:1 says “In the beginning was the Word, AND the Word was with God, AND the Word was God,” And stipulate another. You have mixed my words when you say that I have limited God from being innumerable. God is innumerable in His attributes, character and action. He is one God displayed in three personality. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

    Now Amos I agree with your assessment of the scripture, however it doesn’t stop there. You must examine all other scripture which bears further light. For example, You say that God is to be man teachers. That’s correct.. Yet God has shown us the formula He has chosen to accomplish this feat. He will empower man by living in Him to teach others (Jo16:7&13). That’s why paul told Timothy to teach others so that they may teach others.(1tim 2:2), Jesus said to the disciples, God ye therefore and teach all nation, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and the Holy Spirit: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen (Matt 28:19-20). In Acts 18 there was a man named Apollos who knew the scripture up to a point, yet he hadn’t been expose to the whole gospel. Then came Aquila and Priscilla who expounded on that way more perfectly. As I said before all scriptures must be in harmony. There are no contradiction in the bible, none. All things can and will be explained. Always yours in Christ, Bro. Lee

  67. David,

    My previous post (April 21, 10:40 AM), plus my observations concerning the significance of Jesus’ Gethsemane prayers (April 20, 10:22 PM), are, I think, the main substance of my views concerning the Gethsemane accounts. This post will fill in some empty corners.

    When I read the accounts of the Last Supper through the Crucifixion, I find only two occasions on which Jesus exhibits the kind of distress from which we might conclude that He is reacting to His separation from the Father. There is Gethsemane, and there is the moment when He cried out at being forsaken by the Father. I have previously reviewed how Jesus’ recital of the opening words of Psalm 22, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” may be construed as evidence that He had been forsaken at some earlier point in time. The period of time between Gethsemane and Jesus’ bodily death was relatively short, maybe on the order of 15 to 18 hours; I am not aware that we are told at what time of night Gethsemane occurred. From the accounts we have, Jesus, though abused and tortured, exhibited only aplomb during the entire time between Gethsemane and the moment he cried out in distress at being forsaken by the Father. Again, other than on the Cross, Gethsemane is the only account we have of Jesus’ being distressed, and this to the point of death and the sweating of blood. I submit that all of this points to Gethsemane as the place and time when Jesus was made to be sin for us, resulting in His spiritual death, which was His separation from the Father.

    I wonder if the sending of an angel to strengthen Jesus might be evidence of his being separated from the Father at that point in time. If Jesus was still in the presence of the Father, why would He need to an angel to strengthen Him? The other time Jesus was strengthened by angels was following the Temptation. Matthew 4:11. My understanding is that Jesus endured and overcame the Temptation in, and only in, His humanity. Otherwise, how could it be said that he was “in every respect has been tempted as we are.” Hebrews 4:15. So, perhaps God sent angels when Jesus did not, and could not, have access to His Father. There is much in this paragraph that can legitimately be questioned, though I hope my observations here may be worth pondering.

    Then there is this verse: For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. (Matthew 12:40, ESV) This verse perplexes me. It is easy enough to see how Jesus can be said to have been three days in the heart of the earth—Friday afternoon of the Crucifixion, all day Saturday, and early Sunday morning of the Resurrection. This, however, spans only two nights—Friday night and Saturday night. While other arguments have been made, the conundrum seems to me to be solved if Jesus’ separation from the father—that is, his spiritual death—took place the night before the Crucifixion, in Gethsemane.

    This, I think, completes my observations. I dare not present my views as authoritative. Your views concerning the significance of Jesus’ Gethsemane prayers, for example, are certainly as worthy of consideration as anything I have had to say. It may be that Jesus’ Gethsemane prayers are an example of, as it were, one of multiple round puzzle piece that you and I would each seek to place in different parts of the puzzle, each of us thereby hoping to contribute to the formation of a coherent whole.

    Finally, let me leave you with one puzzle piece that, in a sense, blurs all that I have said on these matters. If KJV is correct in following of the word order of the Greek (as opposed to the recent translations’ theologized re-ordering of the Greek) Jesus is “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Revelation 13:8. It just may be that, no matter when Jesus was forsaken by the Father vis à vis the Passion events, the God’s-point-of-view reality has it locus completely outside of time.

  68. Norris

    You ask…
    “Where are you quoting these numbers from,”

    From ministries helping hurting pastors and their families – There are lots of them.
    Here is info from just two Ministries for hurting pastors. – There are lots of them.

    Let’s look at just a few statistics, and dangers, for the Pastor/Leader/Reverends and their families who take a “Title/Position” – NOT found in the Bible.

    —————–

    This is from – The Francis A. Schaeffer Institute – Into Thy Word.
    http://www.intothyword.org/articles_view.asp?articleid=36562&columnid=

    They say… “pastors are in a dangerous occupation! We are perhaps the single most stressful and frustrating working profession, more than medical doctors, lawyers, politicians…”

    * 80% of pastors feel unqualified and discouraged in their role as pastor.
    * 77% say they do “NOT” have a good marriage.
    * 70% of pastors constantly fight depression.
    * 70% do not have someone they consider a close friend.
    * 57% said they would leave if they had a better place to go – including secular work.
    * 50% of pastors’ marriages will end in divorce.
    * Fifteen hundred (1,500) pastors leave the ministry each month
    ….due to moral failure, spiritual burnout, or contention in their churches.

    This is serious business – Yes?
    These folks are supposed to be running the show. And their family lives are a mess.
    And – they do NOT qualify if they do NOT “Manage Well” their family. 1 Tim 3:4-5.

    And their treasured “Title/Position” that they paid $ for, “Pastor/Leader/Reverned.”
    Is quite hard to find in the Bible.

    Pastoral Care. Inc.
    http://www.pastoralcareinc.com/statistics/

    90% feel they are inadequately trained to cope with the ministry demands.
    80% of pastors’ spouses wish their spouse would choose a different profession.
    80% believe pastoral ministry has negatively affected their families.
    …….. Many pastor’s children do not attend church now because
    …….. of what the church has done to their parents.
    70% of pastors constantly fight depression.
    70% do not have someone they consider a close friend.
    50% of the ministers starting out will not last 5 years.
    50% of pastors feel so discouraged that they would leave the ministry if they could.

    #1 reason pastors leave the ministry — Church people are not willing to go
    …… the same direction and goal of the pastor.

    ——————

    These Ministries are trying to help hurting pastors to stay in this unbiblical position.

    My recommendation is – If you do NOT qualify as – pastor/elder/overseer…
    Remove yourself – Be a good example to the flock – And go do something else.

    If you’ve taken a “Title/Position” – NOT in The Bible – pastor/leader/reveremnd…
    Remove yourself – Be a good example to the flock – And go do something else.

    And – Become one of “His Disciples.” Become a “Servant.”

  69. Norris

    You write…
    “Amos do you believe people are being saved in these churches today?”
    Hmmm? In the bible- Can you name anyone who was saved – “in these churches?”

    First – These are NOT the Church in the Bible. The Ekklesia, The Body of Christ. They are 501 (c) 3, non-profit, tax deductible, Religious Corporations, the IRS calls church.

    Maybe… Some YES and Some NO – God’s ways are beyond finding out. Limitless.

    It’s amazing to me that God saves people in a Jehovahs Witness Churchs, In the Roman Catholic Churchs, In a Barnes & Nobles book store. On a basketball court. In Patriarchial Churches, in these Reformed Ultra Authoritarian Churches. In Neo-Calvinista Churches – ALL these Churchs – that Exercise Authority like the gentiles – and Lord it over God’s heritage. Both Big NO, NO’s in the Bible.

    Seems God can save folks anywhere at any time.

    Do you believe that God’s Sheep are being “Spiritually Abused” in these churches?
    When they “Exercise Authority” like the gentiles? Lord it over God’s heritage?

    What if there is a “Hero Fireman” living on your block – He Saved many, many, Lives.
    And he is only “sexually abusing” one child on the Block – And you know about it.
    Do you call him Hero? – Or, Heinous? – What are you required by LAW to do?

    When you see abusive churches – err – Corporations – Abuse just one of His Sheep???
    When you see abusive pastors – “Church Leaders” – Abuse just one of His Sheep???
    Do you call them “Heros of the Faith? Or, Do you call them “Pastors who Abuse?”
    How many do they have to Abuse – before you call them “Pastors who Abuse?”

    Do you – Warn His Sheep? Protect His Sheep? Care for His Sheep?
    Or, Do you Protect, and Defend, the “The Abusive Religious System?”
    And, Do you Protect, and Defend, The Abusive – pastor/leader/reverend?

    Do you believe people are being saved in Barnes & Nobles today? And healed?
    With NO pastor/leader/reverends present? – NO collection plates? – NO programs?
    Just “US” little sheepies? Just one little lost sheepie feeding another lost sheepie?

    Hmmm??? Saved???
    John 10:9 – I am the door: “by me” if any man enter in, he shall be saved…
    John 3:17 – For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world;
    but that the world “through Him” (Jesus) might be saved.

    Me-thinks it’s Jesus that does the saving – How ever He chooses…

  70. Norris

    You ask…
    “Where are you quoting these numbers from,”

    From ministries helping hurting pastors and their families – There are lots of them.
    Here is info from just two Ministries for hurting pastors. – There are lots of them.

    Let’s look at just a few statistics, and dangers, for the Pastor/Leader/Reverends and their families who take a “Title/Position” – NOT found in the Bible.

    —————–

    This is from – The Francis A. Schaeffer Institute – Into Thy Word.
    http://www.intothyword.org/articles_view.asp?articleid=36562&columnid=

    They say… “pastors are in a dangerous occupation! We are perhaps the single most stressful and frustrating working profession, more than medical doctors, lawyers, politicians…”

    * 80% of pastors feel unqualified and discouraged in their role as pastor.
    * 77% say they do “NOT” have a good marriage.
    * 70% of pastors constantly fight depression.
    * 70% do not have someone they consider a close friend.
    * 57% said they would leave if they had a better place to go – including secular work.
    * 50% of pastors’ marriages will end in divorce.
    * Fifteen hundred (1,500) pastors leave the ministry each month
    ….due to moral failure, spiritual burnout, or contention in their churches.

  71. Norris

    This is serious business – Yes?
    These folks are supposed to be running the show. And their family lives are a mess.
    And – they do NOT qualify if they do NOT “Manage Well” their family. 1 Tim 3:4-5.

    And their treasured “Title/Position” that they paid $ for, “Pastor/Leader/Reverned.”
    Is quite hard to find in the Bible.

    Pastoral Care. Inc.
    http://www.pastoralcareinc.com/statistics/

    90% feel they are inadequately trained to cope with the ministry demands.
    80% of pastors’ spouses wish their spouse would choose a different profession.
    80% believe pastoral ministry has negatively affected their families.
    …….. Many pastor’s children do not attend church now because
    …….. of what the church has done to their parents.
    70% of pastors constantly fight depression.
    70% do not have someone they consider a close friend.
    50% of the ministers starting out will not last 5 years.
    50% of pastors feel so discouraged that they would leave the ministry if they could.

    #1 reason pastors leave the ministry — Church people are not willing to go
    …… the same direction and goal of the pastor.

    ——————

    These Ministries are trying to help hurting pastors to stay in this unbiblical position.

    My recommendation is – If you do NOT qualify as – pastor/elder/overseer…
    Remove yourself – Be a good example to the flock – And go do something else.

    If you’ve taken a “Title/Position” – NOT in The Bible – pastor/leader/reveremnd…
    Remove yourself – Be a good example to the flock – And go do something else.

    And – Become one of His Disciples. Become a “Servant.”

  72. Norris

    You write…
    “Amos you say that i have limited God when I placed a number on Him.”

    NOPE – I’ve asked you before – Please, do NOT put words in my mouth.

    But – Maybe I did say that…
    Can you show me where I said, you, Norris, have limited God?

  73. Hello Amos, thank you for showing me where you received this information, You still left some things unanswered. (Deu 6:4) the word “one” in Deu 6:4, with the word “Lord”.

    When we are in dialect together, I assume that all of the conversation is directed at me and the responses are too. So with that being said, since I believe (according to what man teaches) in the trinity or the concept of one of the version stipulated by you.

    BUT – Once we say “The Trinity” – Along comes a host of other “Questionable Stuff” NOT in the Bible – To Explain “The Trinity” – Which is NOT in the Bible.

    Sounds like you think it’s okay to use “The Trinity”- It’s okay to ADD to God’s Words.
    If Norris is saying – “I believe in “The Trinity.” – I ask – “Which One?” Which Trinity?

    The Trinity with Heirarchy? – Or The Trinity with “NO Heirarchy” in the God head?”
    The Trinity with The Father is NOT the Son? – Or, The Son is The Everlasting Father?
    The Trinity with 3 distinct persons – Or, The Father, The Word, The Holy Spirit – ONE?

    And I think we can agree – God is “Infinite.” Yes?
    Psalm 147:5 – Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is “infinite.

    Here’s the place I believe where you said I put a number on God.

    The Trinity” – As invented by man…
    “Numbers God” – Decided by man to be – Three…

    And God is NO longer – “Innumerable.”

    “The Trinity” – As invented by man…
    *Limits God* – to Three.

    My response:

    You have mixed my words when you say that I have limited God from being innumerable. God is innumerable in His attributes, character and action. He is one God displayed in three personality. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

    Amos as I have stipulated before. You MUST allow all scripture to be interpret in context.
    Go ye therefore and teach all nation, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and the Holy Spirit: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have COMMANDED you: and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen (Matt 28:19-20) We see God is commanding men what to say. That is how He is teaching today through man.

    Always yours in Christ Bro. Lee

  74. Norris

    Please give me “Your” answer for this @ APRIL 24, 2013 @ 9:22 AM…
    What do you call the Hero Fireman who saves many?
    And is “sexually abusing” only “one child?”

    —————–

    Do you believe that God’s Sheep are being “Spiritually Abused” in these churches?
    These 501 (c) 3, non-profit, tax deductible, Religious Corporations, the IRS call church?
    When they “Exercise Authority” like the gentiles? Lord it over God’s heritage?

    What if there is a “Hero Fireman” living on your block – He Saved many, many, Lives.
    And he is only “sexually abusing” one child on the Block – And you know about it.
    Do you call him Hero? – Or, Heinous? – What are you required by LAW to do?

    After all – He is only “sexually abusing” one child on the Block – And saving many?

    When you see abusive churches – err – Corporations – Abuse just one of His Sheep???
    When you see abusive pastors – “Church Leaders” – Abuse just one of His Sheep???
    Do you call them “Heros of the Faith? Or, Do you call them “Pastors who Abuse?”
    How many do they have to Abuse – before you call them “Pastors who Abuse?”

    After all – He is only “spiritually abusing” one child of God – And seeing many saved?

    Do you – Norris – Warn His Sheep? Protect His Sheep? Care for His Sheep?
    Or, Do you, Norris, Protect, and Defend, the “The Abusive Religious System?”
    And, Do you Protect, and Defend, The Abusive – pastor/leader/reverend?

    Do you believe people are being saved in Barnes & Nobles today? And healed?
    With NO pastor/leader/reverends present? – NO collection plates? – NO programs?
    Just “US” little sheepies? Just one little lost sheepie feeding another lost sheepie?

    Hmmm??? Saved???
    John 10:9 – I am the door: “by me” if any man enter in, he shall be saved…
    John 3:17 – For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world;
    but that the world “through Him” (Jesus) might be saved.

    Me-thinks it’s Jesus that does the saving – How ever He chooses…

  75. Hello Amos, I will come back later and respond to your last post today. Today is my birthday, haven’t had one of these with my family in seventeen years. So I’m going to party like it’s 1999. May God continue to bless you and yours through out this day. Bro. Lee in-Christ.

  76. Happy Big Fiftieth to you Norris Lee—I pray God’s richest blessings for you and your family!

    Gary, forgive me. I have a few thoughts for you, however, it may not be until Friday or this weekend again before I’m afforded time to respond.

  77. David,

    I’ll be looking forward to hearing from you, but on your time for sure. In fact, don’t feel obligated to even read everything I’ve put out there. I got started, didn’t want to quit, and just kept going. And going.

  78. Norris,

    I hope you were celebrated & loved on your birthday. Blessings to you. How glorious to share this day with love ones after 17 years… Happy Birthday to you…

  79. Hello Amos, You ask what would I called this person? I would call the police. No doubt there’s no excuse for this type of behavior. Would I see it through (no doubt). However my involvement would stop there until I here the final adjudication from the authorities. Allegations are just that until they are proven in a court of law. It has always been innocent until proven guilty. That’s even in the bible. A man had always been given a chance to prove his innocents also there would have to be more than one witness. To slander someones name across the internet without letting him have his day in court is SLANDER. Now if this fireman was proven not guilty, the slander he received would no doubt kill his reputation as a fireman, however if he is found guilty he will receive his just due. The order has been established through out the United States, innocent until proven guilty. Remember the Ramsey in Colorado, when Jon Benet had died and they were accused of the killing. Only later it was found to be not true. (oops) However they went about with the stigma of maybe they did or maybe they didn’t. Even when it seemed the evidence was over whelming, some how they were cleared. In the case of the fireman it could have been his twin brother. ( you forgot to mention him). (smile) We have to be patience and wait on Him. Love your bro. in-Christ.

  80. Hello Monax and Gail, Thank you for your well wishes. I have had a great day, God is Good! I wish I had another birthday tomorrow. Well, I will continue to pray and ask God to continue to reveal His plan and purpose. In Christ name amen.

  81. Good morning Norris. I hope yesterday was your best birthday ever. 50 years old? You are still young.

  82. Norris

    Wow – Look at all the love being shown to you.

    And I hope you had a good day as well.

  83. Norris

    Now – Am I imagining things – Did I NOT explain myself properly – Again.
    Or, did you skillfully avoid the questions? About these churches who Abuse “ONE?”
    And change the subject to “Slander” and to the people who “Slander?”

    Good answer about the Hero Fireman – And kinda like “Innocent until proven guilty”
    But – in this situation I added – “And you know about it.”
    “And he is only “sexually abusing” one child on the Block – And you know about it.”

    So, you know it’s true – It is NO longer a question of – “Innocent until proven guilty” – It is NOT an issue of “Slander.” I asked – “Do you call him Hero? – Or, Heinous?”

    But – you skillfully go off into a story, explanation, about “Slander.” You change the subject from “God’s people” being “Spiritually Abused” in todays churches – And warning other believers about the Abuse – to “Slander.”

    APRIL 6, 2013 @ 2:11 PM –
    “I don’t sling mud nor will I use information given to me to “slander” someone..”

    APRIL 25, 2013 @ 8:03 PM – And you use it again, Now – Why?
    “To “slander” someones name across the internet
    without letting him have his day in court is SLANDER.”

    Now, you might NOT realize it – BUT – Calling it “Slander” is a favorite tactic, scheme, dodge, subterfuge, used by “Pastors who Abuse” and “Pastors addicted to Exercising Authority” to change the subjest. To change the subject to “Slander” and the person revealing the truth about these pastors who are “Spiritually Abusing” Gods sheep. These “Pastors who Abuse” want to “Silence” people who know the truth and are warning folks. So, they call what people are saying – “Slander.” And the subject is changed.

    It’s NOT about “Slander” at all – Is it? – It’s about “Silencing” the wounded Sheep…

    Your statement about “Slander” is NOT refering to the Fireman. Is it?

    And – IMO – you use the word “Slander” here trying to “Silence” folks.
    And skilfully avoid the questions I asked…

    “Do you believe that God’s Sheep are being “Spiritually Abused” in these churches?
    These 501 (c) 3, non-profit, tax deductible, Religious Corporations, the IRS call church?
    When they “Exercise Authority” like the gentiles? Lord it over God’s heritage?

  84. Norris

    Can you please answer these questions about…
    God’s Sheep being “Spiritually Abused” in these churches. Todays churches.
    Run by pastor/leader/reverends who have taken a “title/Position” NOT in the Bible.

    Do you believe that God’s Sheep are being “Spiritually Abused” in these churches?
    These 501 (c) 3, non-profit, tax deductible, Religious Corporations, the IRS call church?
    When they “Exercise Authority” like the gentiles? Lord it over God’s heritage?

    What if there is a “Hero Fireman” living on your block – He Saved many, many, Lives.
    And he is only “sexually abusing” one child on the Block – And you know about it.
    Do you call him Hero? – Or, Heinous? – What are you required by LAW to do?

    After all – He is only “sexually abusing” one child on the Block – And saving many?

    When you see abusive churches – err – Corporations – Abuse just one of His Sheep???
    When you see abusive pastors – “Church Leaders” – Abuse just one of His Sheep???
    Do you call them “Heros of the Faith? Or, Do you call them “Pastors who Abuse?”
    How many do they have to Abuse – before you call them “Pastors who Abuse?”

    After all – He is only “spiritually abusing” one child of God – And seeing many saved?

    Do you – Norris – Warn His Sheep? Protect His Sheep? Care for His Sheep?
    Or, Do you, Norris, Protect, and Defend, the “The Abusive Religious System?”
    And, Do you Protect, and Defend, The Abusive – pastor/leader/reverend?

    Do you believe people are being saved in Barnes & Nobles today? And healed?
    With NO pastor/leader/reverends present? – NO collection plates? – NO programs?
    Just “US” little sheepies? Just one little lost sheepie feeding another lost sheepie?

    Hmmm??? Saved???
    John 10:9 – I am the door: “by me” if any man enter in, he shall be saved…
    John 3:17 – For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world;
    but that the world “through Him” (Jesus) might be saved.

    Me-thinks it’s Jesus that does the saving – How ever He chooses…

  85. Hello Amos and God bless you this morning. I have read your last post, I will answer best to my abilities. Now as you state I knew that this was occurring, what would I do then. I would be a witness in the court of law against that person.

    You ask are sheep being spiritually abused in the church today? Man, that’s a tough one. I would say a resounding yes, when the Pastor/Elder is a false teacher. God gave us plenty warnings about a person who would mistreat the flock of God. (Lu 12:46-47, Acts 20:29-30, 1Cor 11:13-15, Tit 1:16) I could go on and on. Amos we must show the flip side to that also, will sheep lie on the Pastor to defame him for whatever reason? Scripture covers that also. (2Tiim 3:8-9, Acts5:3-5, 3Jo:9-10)
    and so on.

    Are people being saved in Barns & Nobles and being healed today. Yes they are. However it’s through sheep who are being raised in and through the church. You can’t win souls if you don’t know the scriptures.(2Tim3:15-16) Imagine the Apostle Phillip in the 8th chapter of Acts when he met the Ethiopian. The Ethiopian didn’t know the scriptures, he needed someone to show him. Now imagine any saint sharing with him not knowing how to be saved and grow in Christ. It would be like the blind leading the blind. (Lu 6:39) The bible teaches the concept of the church through scriptures. (Eph 4:16) When we love one another we will grow as a church.

    Once again I agree with you that it is Jesus who saves. However because of other scripture which sheds more light on the issue we can clearly see how he wants us to go about it. God uses the Holy Spirit to equip men to do His bidding.

    Do I warn God sheep to watch out for wolves. Yes

    Do I care for the sheep. Yes

    Do I protect the sheep

    I do not protect the abusive religious system as you call it.

    Love Bro. Lee in Christ.

  86. Hello Bro Norris! Good to see your voice. .

    Was your son’s hamstring healed enough to run this past weekend in his conference meet? How’d he do? And how are you doing?

    David

  87. Hello and good morning, Well David, it didn’t work out for my son, he tore his hamstring up pretty bad. Is out for the season. He is really down and out, so keep him in prayer. I’m okay just trudging along, I must say it’s better than being in prison.(smile) Been studying the word of God and fellowshipping. I have another son who name is Andras keep him in prayer he is out of control right now. Driving his mother crazy. Lost his job, wreck his car and then went on a binge for three days in the rental car. He moved out yesterday. I gave him to the Lord. He doesn’t see his wrong and is in denial big time. Well enough of that. Thank you David for hearing me out.

    Hello Tina, love to hear you had a great laugh. Keep up the positive attitude.

    Gary W. where are you at. Do I have to send out a A.P.B. for you. I was just about to put my two cents in on your posts.

    Earth calling Amos, come in Amos ten-four good buddy.

    Love all of you in Christ, Your humble servant in the Lord.

  88. Norris, when you told us about his torn hamstring I assumed he’d be out of commission for awhile. What a terrible disappointment!

    How old is Andras? I’ve written his name down to remind me to pray for him later.

    Just curious—have you been fellowshipping at Calvary Chapel Visalia? And if so, what’s your feel on the spiritual climate there?

    Fyi: I’m facing a pressing project deadline, however I’m taking some time right now to pound out a response to Gary. So I expect to get back to y’all later today with whatever I’ve got—polished or not.

  89. Norris

    Ten-Four good buddy??? You’re showing your age… ;-) And mine… ;-)

    Sorry to hear about your boys – Sounds like they are both going through tuff times.

    And you also… I hurt with you… mercy Lord…

  90. Hello David, my son is 22, about to be 23.

    Yes I have, The worship is beautiful, the word is strong and contextual.
    The fellowship is complimentary and gracious. I have been accepted as a brother.
    So it is my new church home. Yes I’m praying for my Pastors.

  91. Gary,

    after reading Norris’ Hello I decided to finally take some time to respond to your rather deep thought-provoking reflections. I read your April 20, 21, and 23 comments probably a dozen times over the last week. . . and appreciate your word of caution and understand we’re dabbling in mere (wondrous) speculation.

    As Scripture is silent on so much, our knowledge of these things (this side of eternity) will be partial and incomplete. Scripture tells us as much. Yet as we pursue these mysteries with all our sanctified hearts and minds something happens—at least for me. We begin to perceive mysteries and dimensions of reality we never knew existed. Our faith deepens. Our understanding broadens. There may be no greater joy for me than giving myself over to the pursuit of God’s mysteries and theological conversations like this. And Gary, you’ve helped broaden the bounds of my understanding. Thank you.

    Yahweh to Jeremiah: “Call to me and I will answer you. I will tell you great and mysterious things you do not know” (33:3).

    . .

    Gary writes: I submit that Jesus would not have made petitions that He knew were contrary to the Father’s will. Therefore, the very making of such petition is further evidence of Jesus’ separation from the Father. I submit that the making of requests that were contrary to the Father’s will are evidence that, though Jesus prayed, there was no spiritual connection.

    and

    Why would Jesus say the same thing twice if he knew he was heard the first time?

    As I bend your above comment around in my mind this morning (and I only mean for the highest of compliments by saying this) I’m reminded of those little plastic pictures the size of trading cards that animate when turned and effect a shiny stereoscopic depth when viewed from different angles. You know—those lenticular images that are sometimes buried inside boxes of Apple Jacks? I’m especially noticing this time around how your words shine differently when approached from a fresh perspective.

    Personally, I find great encouragement knowing that Jesus prayed the same thing thrice. I never saw this as “evidence of Jesus’ separation from the Father”—but now you have me considering this as a possibility.

    Throughout my entire life I’ve been in the habit of praying the same thing over and over again. Requests for the salvation and/or deliverance of loved ones, for instance. So Jesus’ exact repetition of words to the Father a third time [Matt. 26:44] has given me confidence that my own repeated petitions suggest no lack of faith in the offering. In fact, Jesus’ parable of the persistent widow tells me that I should never give up praying faithfully day and night for such things (as peace and justice) until I have it.

    As we know that we can pray the same words over and over again and still know that we’ve been heard—the same must stand for Jesus. (?)

    The fact that Jesus had a will of his own also encourages me as I pray and relate to God. Our Lord modeled how it’s perfectly good to express to the Father our own perspectives on things, our own working desires—However, just like Christ prayed so must we. “Father, this is my desire, my personal request, nevertheless, over and above my own will—Your will be done.”

    When Jesus prayed in the garden of Gethsemane he did not ultimately ask for anything outside the Father’s will. Again, we can express our personal desires—but must encapsulate them with this faithful understanding—“not as I will, but as you will.”

    Gary, I think the clinching verse (as you point us to) that provides the best evidence toward a separation in Gethsemane is Matthew 26:38—“My soul is very sorrowful, even to death.”

    I believe you’re right in reading “soul” here as speaking primarily of his bodily life—even though I’d otherwise lean toward a more spiritual reading of the word psuche here. The reason for me agreeing with you on a more bodily meaning is for what we read in Hebrews 5:7—“In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence.” This verse, although not referring directly to Gethsemane, has an indirect reference to that moment.

    Your April 20, 21 and 23 comments are really really good. I’m still reflecting on them. Yes, it may very well have been in Gethsemane that he began to become sin for us. I wish I had more time today to comment more on your reflections. There’s a lot there. It’s deep. And I’ve only been able to pound out here but a fraction of all of what’s going on in my head.

  92. Norris,,, those years 22, 23—are some of the most difficult years of life. They were for me, as they are for many many others. Difficult years, indeed.

    Keeping Andras in my prayers. .

  93. Norris,

    I’m still here, and saddened at the report of the hard stuff your sons (and you and their mother) are dealing with. I would not wish to be their age again. It’s all quited difficult for a parent to watch, but we still love. Will be looking forward to reading your two cents worth, and more than that I expect.

    David,

    Thank you for your encouraging words. You are seeing things that had not occurred to me. Among other things, I’m looking forward to pursuing your observations regarding Hebrews 5:7. Another piece of the puzzle. For myself, I would say that our little exercise has been most rewarding at the intuitive and, therefore, subjective level. I have some sense of having in some small, small way entered into Jesus’s experience. It’s interesting that the thing that is most rewarding, at least to me, is also the thing that is least susceptible of sharing. I suppose that’s how it is with all knowing of the sort that can flow only from relationship.

  94. dropping a few more pieces of the mosaic onto the thread (( some tangentially related to Hebrews 5:7 )) :

    I have a local friend who read through some of these comments a week or so ago and in an email to me expressed how he found it hard “to fathom that the Father ever left the Son on the way to the cross” and wondered “if the parallel to Abraham and Isaac would give some insight as we have the father who was asked to sacrifice the son, but the father was with him every step of the way.”

    Judaism calls the Gen 22 “binding” of Isaac the Aqedah. Surely it was more terribly heart-breaking for Abraham to actively offer his son as a sacrifice then for Isaac to be passively bound and set upon the wood. (( It may be interesting to note how Abraham laid the “wood” of the burnt offering on Isaac—made him carry the etz, which is our Hebrew word for both “wood” and “tree” . . . the cross of X was called a “tree” in the NT, and in the OT we read, “Cursed is anyone who hangs upon a tree.” X became a curse and sin for us that we might be blessed with becoming the righteousness of God ))

    Isaac, as he carried the wood to Mount Moriah, said, “My father! Behold the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham answered, “God will provide for himself the lamb for burnt offering, my son.”

    We know the story: Abraham bound Isaac, and as he raised the knife to slaughter his son the angel of Yahweh called out, “Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you are a fearer of God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.”

    And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, there was a ram caught in a thicket by his horns so he offered it up to Yahweh instead.

    In Abraham’s day there was not this individualistic sense of identity that we now have in the modern west. Abraham’s sense of self would have involved a more corporate appreciation of who he was. So much so that when God directed Father Abraham to sacrifice his son—he was being asked (( in a very real sense )) to sacrifice his very own self. As Abraham’s self was so bound up with Isaac I see a parallel here in the words from 2 Cor 5:19—that “God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself.”

    In relation to the Aqedah I’m thinking of the words of Jesus, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matt 16:24-25).

    There’s a play on the word for “seeing” in Gen 22. Abraham was directed to go to the land of Moriah—to the land of “seeing” or “vision.” After Abraham offered the ram in Isaac’s stead he named the place Yahweh Yireh—“the LORD will provide (see to it).” As it is said to this day, “On the mount of the LORD he will be seen.”

    Who will be seen? And where is Mount Moriah?

    In both the Judaic and Xn traditions Mount Moriah is in Jerusalem where Solomon’s temple was built, at the Jebusite threshing floor where the plague was stopped [see 1 Chron 21:15 and 2 Chron 3:1]. Golgotha, btw, may have been one with Mount Moriah before Solomon et al quarried the mountain stone for the building of the city.

    A short distance from Mount Moriah and directly east of the temple is the garden of Gethsemane (( Gat-Sh’manim means “oil press” )) located on the Mount of Olives.

    Jesus left the earth from there and will make his return there. “On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives that lies before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall be split in two from east to west by a very wide valley, so that one half of the Mount shall move northward, and the other half southward” (Zechariah 14:4).

    As X hung on the cross we read in Matthew 28 how after three hours of a darkness Christ cried out with a loud voice, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” And then with a final loud cry wherein he yielded up his spirit—the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom, the earth shook, and the rocks were split.

    The rending of the temple curtain signifies the access we now have to the Most Holy One—an access we were denied prior to X dying for our sins. And let us keep in mind that the darkness covering the whole land couldn’t have been a result of an eclipse—for it was a Passover full moon. Strange this darkness! What was that about?

    Maybe the splitting of the rocks foreshadows the commencing of the Day of the LORD when Christ will return to the Mount of Olives splitting it open into a wide valley?

  95. You identify much that I had never considered. Good stuff. I’m wondering, do you think Abraham may point to the fact that Jesus was not the only one Who experienced the pain of separation and loss through His death on the Cross. Father God also experienced separation from (dare I say death to?) His Son.

  96. Yes, exactly, Gary. .

    As spiritual death is defined as a relational separation then certainly the Father also died a spiritual death at His end that day within time and eternity when Jesus took upon himself the judgment for our sins.

    Thank You, Father. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.

    . ;

    {{{ appreciated the conversation }}}

    David

  97. Monax, how could the Father experience Spiritual death when He is eternal? If at any point he experience Spiritual death he ceased to be eternal. Something to ponder. The son died as a man, not as God or else the scripture in jo 10:17 would not be true. Jesus raised Himself up because He never ceased to be God. Hallelujah for that one yours sincerely. Bro. Lee

  98. Bro. Lee,

    In our conversation here I’ve defined spiritual death as “relational separation.”

    Both God the Father and God the Son are eternal persons. How does a momentary separation in the Godhead make the Father or the Son cease from being eternal?

    And Jesus when He died on the cross was both fully God and fully man. At no point did the Son ever cease from being God.

    (( am i reading a contradiction in your comment? ))

  99. David no your not reading a contradiction in my comment. I stated that at no time can God be killed by anyone. Man nor anything else. When Christ Died He died as the perfect sacrifice for man. The perfect man. That is what the Levitical priesthood was about. Jesus is the Eternal God at no time can He die, or He would cease to be the Eternal God. Jesus fully man was separated from God not Jesus fully God ever was separated from God the Father nor God the Holy Ghost. That is what eternal means always existence. That is the reason He states I will raise myself again, because the Father has given Him the power to raise His self again. Psalms 22 Is Jesus the man crying about separation. Just as in Jo 10:29 when Jesus states that the Father is greater than all. Once again He’s speaking as a Man. Fully Man and fully God.

    Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

  100. Fwiw, Bro. Lee, what you seem to be saying is not only considered unorthodox but heretical.

    You write, “The son died as a man, not as God. . . . Jesus raised Himself up because He never ceased to be God.”

    It’s contradictory to say that Jesus died not as God, yet never ceased to be God.

    The eternal, ontological, spiritual, bodily and interpersonal nature of the Godhead is a deep deep mystery. And in no way can we assert a logic (as it seems you are doing) that contradicts his own Word on Himself in Scripture.

    One can be eternal and still die—still experience a separation between persons (i.e., spiritual death) and experience a separation of spirit from body (i.e., physical death)—as our Lord Jesus both experienced.

    At no time was Jesus ever not God—even when dying upon the cross. To even suggest as much is considered heresy.

  101. Hello David, well i want to take the time out to show you what scripture has to say about this issue.

    I don’t want to be offensive, however the truth is the truth. I need not defend the bible, God does that with His word and scriptures.

    Now you say that God the Son died momentarily and did not cease to be God,

    David that is heretical teaching no doubt about it. For the very word Eternal means in the Hebrew: Strongs (6924) qedmah: eternal, everlasting. Scripture references (Deu 33:27, Ps 41:13, 90:2, 106:48, Pro 8:23, Is 40:28, Hab 1:12,).

    In the greek it means Strongs (165) Aion: Perpetuity, age, present or future, eternal , without end, scripture references (1Tim 1:17, Heb 9:14, rom1:20, Rom 16:26).

    God the Son MUST have all the attributes of God the Father as well as God the Holy Ghost.

    God the Father God the Son God the Holy Ghost

    Sovereignty

    Dan 4:35 Jo 3:31 !Cor 12:11

    Eternal

    Rev 22:13 Rev 1:8 Heb 9:14

    Love

    1Jo 4:8 1Jo 3:16 Rom 5:5

    Righteousness

    Ps 145:17 1Jo 2:1 Heb 10: 14-15

    Holy

    Ex 15:11 Acts 4:27 Rom 1:4

    Just

    Rom 3:26 Acts 22:14 1Cor 6:11

    Omniscience

    Is 46:10 Jo 2:24-25 1Cor 2:10

    Omnipotent

    Rev 19:6 Jo 10:17-18 Rom 15:13

    Omnipresent

    Jer23:23-24 Jo:3 13 Ps 139:7-10

    veracity

    Deu 32:4 1Jo 5:20 Jo 15:26

    Immutable

    Mal 3:6 Heb 1:12 Ps 102:24-27

    these are the attribute they ALL MUST Possess in order to be God. Lacking any one makes them fall short of being God. Now when the Deity of Jesus is under attack, I become concern about your salvation. That’s a ploy of satan to get you to think he could kill God.

    Bible says God is a Spirit, (Jo 4:24) how can you kill a spirit (not with weapons of our makings, Man couldn’t make anything to destroy God. Even in scripture bible teaches the spirit of man goes back to the Father. (Ecc 12:7). The spirit never dies. We are talking about human spirit let lone God’s Spirit. So, if you can’t kill a human spirit, how can you kill God’s spirit. Bible teaches death is separation from God. We see that in the garden with Adam and Eve. Never can God be separated from self, they are all God, in essence and attributes. AT NO TIME EVER HAS GOD BEEN SEPARATED FROM GOD AS GOD, but as a man who died on the cross for mankind. Bible teaches us in 2Cor 10:4 the weapon of our warfare is not carnal. Nothing carnal can kill a spirit. No spirit in the bible has ever died nor can you show me that. Willingly or unwillingly. They can however be punished, but not killed (2:4). I have more but I am now tired will talk later Love Norris lee.

  102. For those of you who have posted above,
    Thank you for your courageous words and observations about the darkness of the Calvary Chapel movement. Pray that God will bring this darkness into the light and heal it as only He can. I am one more witness to the fact that abuse, deception, lack of love, bullying, and financial shenanigans exist in Calvary Chapel “churches” other than Visalia. Gossip, character assassination, and cronyism is raised to an art form, and the closer the ties with Costa Mesa, the worse it becomes. I am speaking from a place of familiarity with this system and its leadership. God bless you all for your support of the truth – keep praying that God will soon judge and expose this corruption in His bride.

  103. Gracie,

    I echo your prayers. . also, if you are able to share with us either privately or openly the various abuses, deceptions, lack of love, bullying, strongholds, etc, that you witnessed at Calvary Chapel—we absolutely need your stories (in our arsenal) to help in the war against the dark spirit of authority ruling these Houses of Bondage.

    We need both exposure and education. Please contact Julie Anne if you’re willing.

    Julie Anne: SpiritualSB @ gmail.com

  104. Norris Lee,

    after reading your comments several times I’m left with an imprecise impression of your position. Perhaps the confusion between us is a result of our utilizing different terms and approaches in our understanding and articulation of the spiritual and physical deaths Christ experienced on the cross.

    I agree with you—the spirit is eternal and never dies. When I speak of spiritual death
    I’m not meaning to suggest the death of spirit, only a relational separation of persons.

    This was the spiritual death that Christ experienced, not a ceasing from being Spirit, but a momentary separation of the Father from the Son.

    Is this what you’re saying: that Jesus Christ at no time ceased from being God—even when He experienced a forsakenness by the Father on the cross ?

    If this is what you’re saying we’re in agreement.

  105. AT NO TIME EVER HAS GOD BEEN SEPARATED FROM GOD AS GOD,

    That’s my point. Jesus has never been separated from God as God they have share perfect unity forever. Now as man, He atoned for mankind with His blood (Lev17:11) He poured His blood before God as an anointed priest, a picture that the old testament portrays. (Heb 9:11-12) says it all this is how Christ redeemed mankind with His blood,” NOT SEPARATION FROM GOD AT ANY TIME” it is because of the BLOOD we have been restored, redeemed and reconciled. We are now justified, sanctified and glorified forever because of the blood (Rom 8:30). He was the perfect Lamb of God which takes away the sin of the world (Jo 1:29). We were washed in His blood (Rev 1:5) THE BLOOD, THE BLOOD AND THE BLOOD is the sole reason why we were saved. He had as man enjoyed perfect fellowship with God and when the sin of the world was placed on Him this is when he cried my God my God why have you forsaken me. He had never experience separation up til that point. (Jo 8:29) He always did what the Father ask of Him, so the Father had never left Him alone. When He died he experience abandonment for the first time ever as a man. So that is my point right there. Now that it’s clear I’ll be expecting to hear from Amos, Gary W. and of course you David. Love your Bro. in Christ Norris Lee

  106. Norris Lee,

    Woody Allen is attributed as saying: “Eternity is an awful long time, especially toward the end.”

    Even with eternity in our hearts—we are still finite beings attempting to grasp the infinite.

    Spurgeon once said: “You don’t need to defend the bible anymore than you need to defend a lion—just open the cage and let it defend itself.”

    That said, I find no biblical defense for the theological idea that “[t]he son died as a man, not as God,” as you first stated, for I’m taking your words to mean that you believe Jesus was NOT God when he died in the flesh.

    Again, our personal objections I hope are merely misunderstandings over each other’s approach and articulation of the mystery of Christ’s sacrificial death on the Cross.

    As I read it, the spiritual death within the Godhead was experienced as some sort of relational separation between God the Son and God the Father. It’s a mystery. I don’t understand it. Yet this I know—as “our iniquities have affected a separation between us and our God, and our sins have caused God to hide his face from us” and as “He became sin for us” I take that to mean that God the Father separated Himself from God the Son while Jesus (( fully God and fully Man )) became sin for us. That is my understanding of spiritual death.

    . .

    Is it possible to define God in such a way as to confine him? I fear some bible teachers have created for us rigid theological boxes to hold our proper understandings of God. I think they’re guilty sometimes of putting the mystery of the Eternal Nature of the Godhead in a box.

    Mike Mason writes, “Implicit in the book [of Job] is the lesson that theology must not try to be any clearer about God than God is about Himself. This is where so much fundamentalist religion goes astray, as it seeks to pin things down that are unpinnable, to systematize truths that by nature are unsystematic. Pharisees theologize the life out of truth. They are so wrapped up in expounding the Word of God that they forget it is the Word of God which expounds us.”

  107. hey everyone. . i’m wondering if y’all would be willing to keep me in your prayers this week. . i’m tackling a difficult writing project and need the wisdom and inspiration of the Spirit to guide me. . David

  108. please let me express how comforting it is to know that my dear sisters are holding me up in prayer. . comforting indeed

    thank you

  109. HEY JULIE ANNE

    i think i’m comment 430. . are we close to breaking any records in relation to the SSB post with most comments?

  110. You are right, David – the next highest is 405 on the Homeschooler’s Anonymous thread with RD.

    This thread has kind of created a private group where that other thread pretty much stayed on the original topic. (Both are fine with me – just noting the differences.)

  111. good to be privately #1

    thanks for confirming it

    should we have a private party or something to celebrate? i’ll bring the steaks and beer.

  112. Yes, I’m back David to share just a little more insight on the matter.

    Let me compare some thoughts on the issue and see if it brings clarity.

    Do you believe in the Son of Man, as well as the Son of God?

    Can you separate some scripture by that thought?

    In John’s gospel 10:29 was he speaking as God or Man?

    In the gospel of Matthew chapter 24:36 was he speaking as God or the Son of Man?

    In Mark’s gospel chapter 10:18 was He speaking as God or the Son of Man?

    I could go on and on, however I just want to show you how we can come to the conclusion that Jesus separated the two.
    I would love to build on this premise if given a chance.

    Sincerely Bro Lee. In Christ.

  113. Gracie said, “I am one more witness to the fact that abuse, deception, lack of love, bullying, and financial shenanigans exist in Calvary Chapel “churches” other than Visalia. Gossip, character assassination, and cronyism is raised to an art form, and the closer the ties with Costa Mesa, the worse it becomes.”

    And I am one more witness agreeing with Gracie and taking it one step further, as our last CC took all of the above to a whole new level and it didn’t have any ties to Costa Mesa, other than the official affiliation.

  114. i’m typing on the fly here. . need to disappear for awhile. . thanks Katie for your prayers. . and it’s not a party until you crash it!

    Norris, Son of Man is a Messianic title (from Daniel) for the Son of God. . gotta run. . all my LOVE

    David

  115. Hello David, Well what I would like to do is build on the premise I started with you on. Showing you in scripture the separation of the Son of Man and the Son of God.

    It clearly show the two. The Son of Man came with a purpose and plan to fulfill all of God’s righteousness through the law. The Son of man can be said His work is earthly. Well as the Son of God could be said His is Heavenly. Son of man did not know the hour when the Son of God should appear. Son of God knows “EVERTHING”, (Jo 21:17) First point. will be back later.

    Bro Lee

  116. Hello David, I’m sad at your no response, it’s says a lot about you, also this site.

    I have personally spent time at Calvary Chapel for the last few months and I see nothing that you say according to this blog. What I have seen is the love that abounds from the Pastoral staff and it parishioner. I will say this on your behalf you have successfully destroyed what God is doing there. Yet that’s not the final word, I witness the resolve that the leadership have and there determination to overcome this obstacle that Satan has put in front of them. You would think there would be bitterness there and contempt. Yet prayer is being offered up for you to come to the knowledge of the truth, and you will, you can believe that. God always prevail in these types of situation, you may think you have a victory only to see the hand of God come smashing in. Read (Ecc 8:11) it says it all. As my Pastor has no ill will against you, neither does I, however i will advice you to repent and turn to the Lord that you may be forgiven for this awful attack on Calvary Chapel.

    I say this in love not anger. Venom is of the devil.

    So to this blog Tina, Amos, David, Gary W, and the others, stop your assault on the truth and repent, repent, repent, repent. Have forgiveness in your heart (Eph 4:32)
    allow God to heal you from this lying attack.

    Always your Bro. in Christ.

    .

  117. Norris:

    Your statements contradict themselves. How can you say that David has destroyed what is going on at CCV in one sentence and then in the next sentence say that love and resolve abounds in the leadership there? Which one is it? It’s either destroyed or it is not.

    Have you spoken with Paul or Alex Grenier? Have you read their story? Have you spoken with Tina or Tim? How many witnesses do you need?

    I have a large file of personal accounts from CCV. So these people are all lying?

  118. Oh, and please do not tell my readers to repent. That is completely inappropriate. My readers are defenders of those who have been harmed by abuse in church.

  119. Norris,

    I removed your last comment. It was very inappropriate. Have you actually read this story – Tina’s story? By saying what you said, you called her a liar. You also have called everyone who shared their CCV stories liars. You will not be allowed to re-victimize here. If you are enjoying your time at CCV, then stay. Most likely, when you least expect it, BG will show his true colors to you. And when he does, then you will know where to find us. And you will be welcome here.

    ~ja

  120. Norris Lee,

    I didn’t respond because I was waiting for you to draw out your argument. Your last words were “First point. will be back later.” So I assumed you were developing something for me. So I waited.

    As far as the Calvary Chapels (including Bob Grenier’s Visalia operation)—consider reading this thread on CalveryChapelAbuse with nearly 1,000 posts detailing the abuses.

    Shalom

    David

  121. .
    Julie Anne

    So – Who wudda thunk it? – Norris Lee, who calls himself a “Pastor.”

    Also says – “I am a *grace* teacher,” – APRIL 9, 2013 @ 2:05 PM…
    And again – “As I said before I am a teacher of *grace.*” – APRIL 10, 2013 @ 7:59 AM

    But? – Does anyone notice much “Grace” in Norris Lee’s words? Comments?
    Seems – His agenda is protecting “The Abusive Religious System” – “The Abusers.”

    OT – Gen 6:8 – But Noah found “grace” in the eyes of the LORD.

    NT – John 1:14 – And the Word was made flesh… full of “grace” and truth.

    OT – Grace – is Strongs #2580 – khane – In the KJV it is translated
    KJV – grace 38, favour 26, gracious 2, pleasant 1, precious 1, wellfavoured
    And means – kindness, favor, beauty, pleasant, precious, well favoured.

    NT – Grace – Is Srongs #5485 – charis – In the KJV it is translated
    KJV – grace 130, favour 6, thanks 4, thank 4, pleasure 2,

    Thayers has – Grace – charis – as…
    that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech

    What is it with this word “Grace?” – And “Spiritual Abusers?”
    Norris might think he is – “a teacher of *grace.*” But – is Norris a “doer of Grace?”

    Seems to me, Norris Lee, is another “Pastor” – A “Title” NOT found in the Bible…
    Who claims to be “a teacher of *grace.*” – Proving another theory I have…

    If a “Pastor,” anyone, has to “tell you” – “I am a *grace* teacher,”
    Most likely – They are NOT living examples of Grace.
    And will NOT show you much Grace.

    Norris Lee is a good example – or is it a bad example?

    How about – Norris Lee is a another example of why
    I NO longer trust anyone who tells me they are pastor or has the “Title” pastor.

    Jer 50:6
    “My people” hath been “lost sheep:”
    **their shepherds** have caused them to *go astray,*

    1 Pet 2:25
    For ye were as *sheep going astray;*
    BUT are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

    I’m Blest… I’ve returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of my soul…

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}

  122. .
    Julie Anne, – “this blog. Tina, Amos, David, Gary W, and the others”

    Looks like Norris is leaving – The same way he arrived here at SSB…
    Judging and Condemning the commenters at SSB. Go figure – Anyone surprised?

    And he is doing the very things he is telling the folks here NOT to do.

    Norris is another fine example of a wanna-be “Religious Leader”
    Saying one thing and doing another.

    And didn’t Jesus call the “Religious Leaders?” of His Day? – “Hypocrites?” ;-)

    ———

    First – Norris Lee – in his first comment at SSB – @ APRIL 3, 2013 @ 12:31 PM – says…
    “…This is not the venue where these allegations should be broadcasted…”
    “… However I will hold judgement for God to sort this out.
    May we not assassinate the character of a pastor as if it does not matter…”

    Last – Norris Lee – in his last comment – @ JUNE 22, 2013 @ 8:38 PM – says…
    “So to this blog Tina, Amos, David, Gary W, and the others,
    stop your assault on the truth and repent, repent, repent, repent.
    Have forgiveness in your heart (Eph 4:32)
    allow God to heal you from this lying attack.

    Always your Bro. in Christ.

    ————

    So, Norris, in his “First” comment says..
    ““…This is not the venue where these allegations should be broadcasted…”

    But, Norris, in his “Last” comment broadcasts allegations in this venue against SSB.”

    He says – “…stop your assault on the truth and repent, repent, repent, repent.”
    “…allow God to heal you from this lying attack.”

    So, contrary to what Norris says in his first comment – He willingly, in this venue…
    broadcasts an allegation that SSB has an “assault on the truth.” – A “lying attack.”

    ———-

    And again – Norris, in his “First” comment says..
    “… However I will hold judgement for God to sort this out.
    May we not assassinate the character of a pastor as if it does not matter…”

    But, Norris, in his “Last” comment does NOT…
    “hold judgement for God to sort this out” with his dis-agreement with SSB.
    He has been consistently – Judgeing the comments at SSB as – A “lying attack.”

    And, Norris has NO problem attempting, over the last three months – To…
    “assassinate the character of the commenters at SSB as if it does not matter…”

    ————–

    So Norris – “I say this in love not anger. Venom is of the devil.”

    In the Bible, NOT one of His Disciples took the “Title” – pastor/leader/reverend.

    Are you taking the Name of the Lord thy God? Is your “Pastor” taking that Name?

    And – Are you both – taking that Name – In Vain?

    Ex 20:7
    Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain;
    for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

    In the Bible, this “Title/Position” – pastor/leader/reerend – belongs ONLY – To Jesus.

  123. Wow – Very, very interesting, indeed, Amos. Thanks for pointing those out.

    Norris??? I hope you are reading this and will ponder Amos’ words. You are always welcome to comment, but they will have to pass my moderation first.

  124. Norris,

    As you depart, know that your are loved. It likely seems to you that you have been roughly treated here. Please understand that, in part, it is because we love each other enough to be protective of each other, and you have had a way of saying things that hurt. More importantly, though, it is because we love you enough to hold you accountable when you seem to be taking a self destructive path. My prayer for you is that you will choose your friends carefully. I do not know, but I strongly suspect that a large part of the reason you found yourself in trouble with the law is that you did not choose your friends wisely.

    You do not have to prove anything to anybody. You are valuable enough that the eternal Son of God shed His innocent blood for you.

    Find your way to the least important place in every room you enter. Volunteer for the most humble and least visible service you can find. If you do, you will be exalted; otherwise you will be humbled. Do not be too quick to put yourself forward as a pastor or as anybody else important. I perceive that this would be a deadly trap for you.

    Please know that, though I do not know the full circumstances of your life, I find much in you to admire. Based on just a little you have told us, I perceive that you have overcome great adversity, some of which you do not yet even recognize as having been that big a deal.

    When you are ready, please come back. Just understand that we will love you (and each other) enough to hold you accountable–especially if you, without warrant, say things that hurt.

    God bless.

  125. Gary W- You sir, have a gift, or a way to express what I would say if I could find my words. I whole heartily agree with what you wrote. My prayers are with Norris, I suspect he means well, even though what he said in his last few posts seemed to be coming from his inner Pharisee.

    I recall seeing glimpses of his heart: his sorrow, his struggle, his vulnerability to share he was abused…

    Whew, I remember a time when I was full of zeal for Christ, glossing over how abuse shattered my heart & soul.

    I hope for his sake, he doesn’t taste the suffering of spiritual abuse. If, that happens, he will be welcomed & heard here because this is a safe place.

  126. Gail said: I hope for his sake, he doesn’t taste the suffering of spiritual abuse. If, that happens, he will be welcomed & heard here because this is a safe place.

    Gail, these were my thoughts, too. Norris could be in a vulnerable place and I really do not want to see him hurt – – – and we know so many have been hurt there.

  127. Norris, my friend. As you can see here you are sincerely loved.

    I hope you have some good Christian men in your life (they’re actually hard to come by) who you can sharpen irons and work out the issue of life with (we all need at least one good friend like this—again, they’re rare). That said, I’d like to offer you my phone number if you ever want to just talk about anything at all—I’d be honored to give you my ears. You already have my heart.

    In Christ,
    David

  128. I know what happened to me at the hands of someone who I loved and respected. So if Norris thinks Im lying it makes no difference to me. We told him to be watchful and Im confident that he will have his own eye opening experience, its just a matter of time. Hopefully it wont steal the love of Christ from him or throw him into a tail spin. Best of luck to you. :-)

  129. You’re so right, Tina. What’s sad is that we’re trying to protect Norris from the inevitable. But he is being deluded and won’t learn from people who have already gone down that difficult path.

  130. Norris, as I read your last comment I need you to know that the people are good people, I still have friends there. It is not the people who attend there that should concern you. Who is sueing who? It is not what one says its what one does that shows his heart.

  131. And we have not destroyed anything we have exposed the truth. I hope he is acting in a godly manner now, he should be. He knows the truth and God sees his heart.

  132. He knows the truth and God sees his heart . . . . yet he’s still suing. That says it all for me. Norris, why are you following a pastor who goes against scripture and sues?
    And sues even his own son and former church member? What does that say about Pastor Grenier adhering to God’s word?

  133. .
    Was wondering…

    Since Norris is concerned about us – Asking us at SSB to repent…

    Was wondering if Norris Lee has the courage to restore Bob Grenier – his pastor?
    And ask him to “Repent” from taking a believer to court? And forgive?

    Now – Wouldn’t that be a notable miracle?

    The good news is – It would be “Biblical” to restore “a man be overtaken in a *fault.”
    And Norris could show his pastor Gal 6:1…

    Gal 6:1
    Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a *fault, (*Taking a believer to court.)
    ye which are spiritual, restore such an one
    in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself,
    lest thou also be tempted.

    And then Norris could show Bob Grenier these verses and ask – Why, Bob,
    would you – “choose as judges those who count for nothing in the church?”
    When The Bible has a better way?

    Do NOT go to law in pagan courts.

    1 Corinthians 6:1-8 J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)

    When any of you has a grievance against another,
    aren’t you ashamed to bring the matter to be settled
    before a pagan court instead of before the church?

    Don’t you know that Christians will one day judge the world?
    And if you are to judge the world do you consider yourselves
    incapable of settling such infinitely smaller matters?

    Don’t you also know that we shall judge the very angels themselves—
    how much more then matters of this world only!

    In any case, if you find you have to judge matters of this world,
    why choose as judges those who count for nothing in the church?
    I say this deliberately to rouse your sense of shame.

    Are you really unable to find among your number one man
    with enough sense to decide a dispute between one and another of you,
    or must one brother resort to law against another
    and that before those who have no faith in Christ!

    It is surely obvious that something must be seriously wrong in your church
    for you to be having lawsuits at all.

    Why not let yourself be wronged or cheated?
    For when you go to law against your brother you yourself do him wrong,
    for you cheat him of Christian love and forgiveness.

    ———-

    Was wondering if Norris Lee has the courage to at least “TRY” to “restore” his pastor

  134. What happened Norris, just a couple of months back we were wishing you happy birthday and now you start bible slapping the wounded. Whats up bro? Youcan go where you choose but dont think for one minute you can put a gag on me for speakingof what I personally experienced. Is what I said offencive because it was the truth? Do I wish things were different? Absolutely.

  135. I think you mean well, you are just basing your opinion by what you have experienced. Had I not had those experiences, I might sound just like you. When I look at Bob I dont see goodness, I see deception. Its my oppinion based off of my experenice with him.

  136. I like how you bible slapp us and say always your bro in Christ. Lol Really? That is comical. Like a cherry on top to sweeten the deal. Give me a break. Be real dude. Dont refer to yourself as my brother if you cant be loving and kind to the abused. Just say what you mean, dont coat in Chrisianeese and then slap an I love you at the end.

    Better to say it has been my experience, bla, bla, bla and I dont see what your saying then to call someone a lier when you really dont know the truth. And try a little sensitivity, that goes a long way.

  137. ok, ja, i hope this isn’t too much. .

    but i thought it might sit well with Tina at the moment. .

    all this above reminded me of a tweet i came across last month:

  138. Hey you can thank Brother Lee, he keeps this thread alive. I was all sleeping and everything and he decided to light me on fire! Lol Honestly I forgive his ignorance. He just doesnt know. How can he, he has only been at CCV for a couple of months. I WAS THERE ALMOST 20 YEARS.

  139. Hey Fellow Saints- Off thread, just wanted you dear ones to know that I have moved to our cottage for the summer, company from weekend just rolled out. We have 20 coming for the fourth. So, I am swamped with entertaining which is a glorious work!

    All that to say I haven’t abandoned this blessed place, if I don’t post it just means I am busier than I am in the fall & winter. I love you people, you have supported me even though you are probably unaware.
    On a sad note, our precious friend Frank died on Monday. Thankful to Amos for prayers on 23rd psalm where I inserted Frank’s name, and grateful for the wise counsel that many gave me. xo

  140. So sorry, Gail, to hear of Frank’s passing.

    Also happy to know that you’re now at Lake Charlevoix!

    Have a most enjoyable and blessed Summer up north!

  141. Gail

    Sorry to hear about Frank’s passing…

    And – Happy to hear about Frank’s Passing…
    With you for a friend, by his side. :-)

    Oh Lord – That I would be so blessed at my graduation party… ;-)

    Gail – Have a great, great, time this summer – The Lord Bless you…

    And I’m sure Jesus will provide a way for you to be a blessing.

  142. Everyone,

    Thank-You. I appreciate your thoughts & prayers! I love how truth & mercy flow here at SSB. My best to everyone. Monax, if you make it to MI this summer send me a e-mail.
    Mercy and truth are met together ; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

  143. .
    Tina – Love the Fire… ;-)

    Yes…
    “What happened Norris, just a couple of months back we were wishing you happy birthday and now you start bible slapping the wounded. Whats up bro?”

    “dont think for one minute you can put a gag on me
    for speakingof what I personally experienced.”

    “I like how you bible slapp us and say always your bro in Christ. Lol Really?
    That is comical. Like a cherry on top to sweeten the deal. Give me a break.”

    “Dont refer to yourself as my brother if you cant be loving and kind to the abused.”

    ———-

    Tina – Me thinks – Your recent Fire comments, really honest from the heart comments…

    Are the real “Cherry on Top” of this post, and thread of comments… :-)

    Thank you Jesus…

  144. Hello SSB family, I have purposely waited to respond. My bible says “the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God” I was upset at the response that was given by most. Surely I was misinterpreted by your blog. Yes I am a grace teacher, however God has other attribute too. One is just. He is a God of Justice. It can’t always be mushy mushy love. He holds us accountable also. I apologize for calling you a liar Tina that’s not my point. I have seen and experience true love from Pastor Bob, He has shown me and others who i have brought to the church an welcoming hand. Not only him also Pastor Mike. His lovely wife has extended her love. Yes I have only been there a short time, yet i’m drawn by the Holy Spirit to stay. I never put my trust in man, yet I will trust the Spirit of God. I will not get into a shouting match with you or anyone else for that matter. I will jus say time will tell. I have no ill feeling toward anyone of ya’ll I just call it as I see it. Yes you and this blog are in my prayer for all sorts of reason. One is because God has giving me a love for ya’lll. Yes monax if you ever want to speak one on one I would love that my number is (559) 636-3683

  145. excellent, Norris Lee, i wrote down your number and would like to call you sometime this weekend just to chat. thank you.

    i’d recommend that JA edit out your phone number so you don’t inadvertently get spammed or harassed in any way.

    you can email me privately what may be a good day and time to connect with you:

    “DiscerningSpiritualAbuse” AT “gmail.com”

    looking forward to hearing your voice

    shalom

  146. I accept your apology. Its all good. You are right in saying time will tell, and I honestly hope your experience is different than mine. Brother Norris do me a favor though, don’t Bible bash. Do you know what I mean? If you wish to connect with me as a person, I have seen scripture twisted and missused. Its not what scripture you use, I could care less. I sat under scripture for 20 years. Show me by a gentle and understanding spirit. You want to pray for me? Great! I WILL NEVER TURN AWAY PRAYER :-) BUT WHEN YOU PRAY, PRAY FOR TRUTH TO BE EXPOSED. You do want that right?

  147. Norris

    You write…
    “Yes I am a grace teacher…”

    Can you explain? – What does – “I am a grace teacher” – mean?

  148. Norris

    And – Do you really think it’s a good idea to call yourself – Teacher?

    When Jesus instructed “His Disciples” – NOT to be called – Rabbi/Teacher?
    For you have “ONE” teacher? The Christ?

    Norris – Here’s Jesus, warning His Disciples about – The scribes and Pharisees.
    “The Religious Leaders” of His day.

    Mat 23:4-8 NKJV
    6 They (The Religious Leaders) love the best places at feasts,
    the best seats in the synagogues, (congregation, assembly)
    7 greetings in the marketplaces, and to be called by men, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi.’
    8 But you, (His Disciples) do NOT be called ‘*Rabbi’; (*Title for Teacher)
    for “ONE” is your Teacher, the Christ,
    and you are all brethren.

    Mat 23:4-8 The Message
    Instead of giving you God’s Law as food and drink
    by which you can banquet on God,
    they (The Religious Leaders) package it in bundles of rules,
    loading you down like pack animals.

    They seem to take pleasure in watching you stagger under these loads,
    and wouldn’t think of lifting a finger to help.

    Their lives (The Religious Leaders) are perpetual fashion shows,
    embroidered prayer shawls one day and flowery prayers the next.

    They (The Religious Leaders) love to sit at the head table at church dinners,
    basking in the most prominent positions,
    preening in the radiance of public flattery, receiving honorary degrees,
    and getting called ‘Doctor’ and ‘Reverend.’

    Don’t let people do that to you, put you on a pedestal like that.
    You all have a single Teacher, and you are all classmates.
    Don’t set people up as experts over your life,
    letting them tell you what to do.
    Save that authority for God; let him tell you what to do.

    And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold:
    them also I must bring, and they shall “hear My voice; “
    and there shall be “ONE” fold, and “ONE” shepherd.
    John 10:16

    One Voice – One Fold – One Shepherd – One Teacher

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}

  149. You have been on my mind all morning Norris. Here is my suggestion to you. Work your way into the inner cicle. If you dont know what that means, you will. Watch and observe. It may take a couple of years, when the honeymoon is over. Dont become financially dependent on him. And know we love you and will be here for you. Who knows you might live next door to me. You could find me if you try, ask Bob where I live. He knows. We can have a BBQ :-)

  150. Norris have you ever looked into the eyes of someone who has been spiritually abused? Gaurd your heart. Its satans way of trying to destroy Gods kingdom. Its pretty effective and it can knock you down for years. But what satan doesnt realize is that when you are able to get a footing again you are a heck of a lot tougher and you are able to stand.

  151. Ephesians 6:13-18

    Stand therefore, having taken up the whole armor of God, fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all to firmly stand.

    http://spiritualauthority.wordpress.com/2013/06/22/who-are-the-children-of-light/

  152. Hey I heard my first locust of the Summer last evening here in Highland Park Pittsburgh. . I SO LOVE the sound of cicadas—iz an absolute symphony!

    The Tour de France begins tomorrow!

    Anybody swimming in Lake Charlevoix? If so—how’s the water?

    Have a blessed/happy weekend friends. .

    David

  153. Fun, David. I remember the cicadas when we lived in the Philippines. They were so loud.

    My daughter and I arrived in Dallas for her volleyball Nationals, so this will be a fun sports weekend. Go team!!!!

  154. Sure! Thanks!!

    Oh David, I can tell you’re from my generation. Now it’s pass, set, hit – lol. Lots if changes in the volleyball world.

  155. back in the early 80’s before my freshman year of high school my Grandfather relocated us from Michigan to Pennsylvania and built us a house atop a hill on some old nursery land he referred to as ‘the farm.’ The sunsets there were absolutely stunning. And the landscaping and trees were like the garden of eden. There was no other hillside in that area of PA as gorgeous as ours.

    In between a series of 70 foot Norway Spruce trees hedging the hillside I made my sanctuary. It was a huge wooden spool that a cable company left for me (they had built there tower on the hill next to our land.) I set the the spool flat and would sit upon my wooden altar and commune with God from there hidden among the trees. It was heaven.

    Also, behind the house I build a volley ball pit. We made good use of it too. Even would put lights in the trees to play by night.

    All that to say Volleyball is my game, girl. .

    was like this: the opponent serves and I SPIKE then pound my chest like King Kong.

    I was a bit cocky back then. .

  156. Volleyball is a great game. You can play for many years, unlike some other sports. Ok you spike and my daughter will hit. Lol.

    First game coming up in 15 min.

  157. actually i’ll adopt the more comprehensive ‘hit’ language. . it makes sense. . because most of our deadly hits were ‘soft’. .

    so what’s at stake here for your daughter. i know this is big. but how big IS IT. does she have scholarship somewhere. ?

  158. Kayaking yes, swimming not yet, bit too chilly. Throwing rocks galore in lake with 2 year old granddaughter.

    J.A. Good luck to team!!

  159. Yeah, I thought it would be a bit chilly. You know, Gail, my favorite time of year to hit the water of Lake Michigan is somewhere around the last week of August and first week of September—the beaches are then empty (with everyone going back to school and such) and the Lake has had all Hot Summer to heat up. My favorite body of water in the world is Michi Gami.

    As a walking baby one hot spring day I wanted to run into the water of Lake Michigan and so my Dad let me. What a shocking surprise that was! B.bb.brrr—FREEZING COLD

    Wonderful thing about Michi Gami—sometimes it rages violently with waves crashing upon the beach; other times it is a still as glass—so that you can skip those smooth stones across the water. SKIP. .SKIP. .SKiP. .SKip. .Skip. .skip.skip.skip.plunk

    Up your way have you found any nice smooth Petoskey Stones on the beaches? They’re so rare anymore

  160. Monax,

    Wonderful memory ( :
    Our beach front is all rocks, no sand, so we find a few Petoskey Stones every summer. Dang you must have the wrist action down when skipping stones! 8 skips?! I can manage 3 skips if I am lucky, boys next door have tried to teach me to little avail. Water temps on Charlevoix are lovely in July & August.

    Why you should visit Lake Charlevoix – USATODAY.com
    travel.usatoday.com/destinations/…/post/…lake-charlevoix/…/1‎

  161. from link: “Lake Charlevoix is where the Gods swim….other lakes may be pretty, but Lake Charlevoix is spiritual in its beauty, clear, clean, deep, and big, situated on hills and a hundred shades of green.”

    sounds most wonderful. . i’d love to get over to Michigan. . but i’m fairly certain—for want of time and money—that it won’t happen this year. . but Lake Charlevoix has now made my must-visit-destination list

  162. JA, How’s your daughter fairing?

    Norris Lee, I called and left a message at the above number this afternoon. I trust you now have my number. Call me whenever and for whatever.

    David

  163. Monax, I would be really surprised if he coctacts you. Its Bob’ s MO to cut people off from others who might influnce clear thinking. Im sure if Bob is reading this blog, he is pouring it on thick right now and keeping a close eye on Norris. Poor Norris, I wish the best for him.

  164. David, they won 2 out of the 3 matches yesterday. They lost the first match today, barely. Bummer. They will play their last game in a few minutes.

    I got a real special treat and met a blog reader who will remain nameless unless he/she wants to disclose. But what a sweet time of sharing. Wow. I am blown away by the people here.

  165. Yes, Julie Anne, your “Jezebelian ways” brought so many beautiful people together and I, myself, can’t wait to meet them all face to face some day.

    Never met you or Brad or Alex etc, etc, in person but all of you have an extra-special place in my heart. I treasure you as some of my most trusted friends.

    Fwiw, in the last year I’ve prayed for you and Brad and Alex more than any other persons on the planet. Invested much of my life around my blogger friends.

    God brought us together. . this side of eternity—a remarkable thing, and thanks to technology too (“And knowledge shall increase.”)

    He is even now working something beautiful out in us. . with and through and for us. . for the advancement of His Kingdom, for the deliverance and education and healing of His People. Even now (beyond the veil of our words) I see the glory of Christ shining through—a glory that will one day be completely revealed and shown.

    So who’d you meet? I’m curious. .

  166. hey, TJ, just got off the phone with our beautiful brother. .

    Gail, I may want to come back to you later with an explanation of that “Wonderful memory” . .wasn’t my memory I was going off of—but my dad’s. . there’s something more to this incident. . something more

    but off to bed now so i can be up bright and early for the second stage of the Tour de France. .

  167. David – I’ve cried a few times tonight and here go the waterworks again. I have so appreciated your friendship and prayers. I know the prayers sustained me when I have been so sleep-deprived last year. Thank you, brother. And I appreciate your continued prayers because I’m continuously dealing with people privately who are hurting so badly. Who would have thought my lawsuit experience would have done this? wow.

    hugs!
    ja

  168. “Yes, Julie Anne, your “Jezebelian ways” brought so many beautiful people together and I, myself, can’t wait to meet them all face to face some day.”

    Truly Monax, there are some remarkable people who gather here, I know I am new on the block, however I appreciate the kindness, wit, wisdom, & warmth that flows from most who comment here. I am with you on wanting to meet them face to face someday. My house is going to be full with family & friends tomorrow, but before Iay me down to sleep I will be reading and praying for all the lovely, kind, gracious people who share here.

    David, I am all ears if you decide to come back with an explanation…

    I find our stories so much more intriguing than our doctrines, you have peaked my curiosity that it wasn’t your memory & that there is something more…

  169. Hello and God bless Amos, I will keep it short. I am a grace teacher, i teach the covenant of grace established by our Lord Jesus Christ. Heb 1:1-3, Yet i also teach the whole counsel of God Acts 20:27, Yet in all this i remain teachable in the right Spirit comes along. I will listen, yet i reserved the right to rebuttal. So may God richly bless you and yours.

  170. Norris

    You write recently @ JUNE 30, 2013 @ 3:43 AM…
    “Yet i also teach the whole counsel of God Acts 20:27,”

    Was wondering…

    How did you come to know? – “The Whole Counsel of God?”

  171. Norris

    Was wondering…

    If you teach – “The Whole Counsel of God?”

    When you teach about “The Lost?” – Who are you referring to? – Who are “The Lost?”

  172. Update on my daughter’s volleyball. Today we had a very nice lunch with her potential coach. She will watch my daughter play this next game at 3pm and said we will meet on Monday with an offer. I told my daughter to play her ____ off. :). Lets hope her coach gives her decent playing time.

  173. Hello and God bless Amos, you ask who are the lost? Bible declares all have sinned and falling short of the Glory of God, so that would include you and me. We are the lost. So thow your curve ball, i’m a specialty hitter. LOL

  174. Norris

    I like your answer to – “Who are The Lost?”

    IMO – You correctly say…
    “We are the lost.”

    But – for the wrong reason…

    You say -“We are the lost.” – because we sin…
    “Bible declares all have sinned and falling short of the Glory of God,
    so that would include you and me. We are the lost.”

    Now – How do we, believers, forgiven, who belong to God, become “The Lost?”

    Hasn’t Jesus – “washed us from our sins in his own blood?” Rev 1:5.
    Hasn’t – “the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin?” 1 John 1:7

    Now we, His Church, His Body, belong to God, Purchased with His Blood.

    And God has said – “their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.” Heb 10:17
    “I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” Jer 31:34.

    If “WE” belong to God? – And God NO longer remembers our sin? – Why do You?

    So – How do “WE”, believers, His Ekklesia, His Church, His Body…
    Cleansed from ALL sin by His Blood, Purchased with His Blood, and belong to God…

    How did “WE” become “The Lost?”

  175. Julie Anne

    How cool is that – The Nationals – And an interested coach…

    Blessings…

  176. .
    And Norris

    Seems you forgot to answer this question @ JUNE 30, 2013 @ 6:58 AM…

    ———-
    Norris

    You write recently @ JUNE 30, 2013 @ 3:43 AM…
    “Yet i also teach the whole counsel of God Acts 20:27,”

    Was wondering…

    How did you come to know? – “The Whole Counsel of God?”

  177. Was wondering…

    How did you come to know? – “The Whole Counsel of God?”

    “God and him went on double dates all the time.”
    — Woody Allen, Sleeper

  178. Oh No. . looks like HUG found us. .

    Gail, I just sent you a friends request on fb. .

    Ok. . . i’ve been sitting on this for a few days.

    the explanation is short, but tell me what you think.

    again, this “Wonderful memory” is not mine. . it was a memory my father shared with me over half my life ago.

    Ok. . . [i’m taking a deep breath here] . . tell me what you make of this:

    after High School in the late 80’s I moved back to Michigan for a short time. One afternoon I came into where my father had been taking an afternoon nap; he was awake and might have been reading. Whatever the case my father and I entered into conversation.

    I don’t remember what we were talking about. But at some point something happened and my dad began abreacting something awful. He was lying down at the time and began to curl up clutching at his stomach in evident agony. All over his face I could see pain. I heard it in his moans—it was deep . . . and this went on for awhile. I wasn’t sure what was happening. I didn’t know what to do. Was he having an heart attack? In between grimaced sobs he assured me he wasn’t having any medical situation serious enough for me to call 911. I watched him then writhe and cry.

    “You Ok, Dad?” I asked. “You alright?”

    He began sobbing violently—uttering to me “I’m sorry. . I’m so sorry. . . I’m so sorry. . .”

    “It’s Ok, Dad. I forgive you,” I said. “I forgive you.”

    After he recovered a bit I asked him what he was sorry about.

    He became incoherent. Might have abreacted a bit more with pain.

    At some point he was able to pull himself together. I asked him again, “What’s this about? Why are you sorry?” And that is when he related to me this story—this memory of when his mother [we called her “Mom Mom”] was visiting and they decided to show my grandparents Lake Michigan. So we went to a private beach front property. And it was a warm spring day.

    You see as he’s telling me this I’m hunting around in my mind for a memory of this. He’s highly detail-oriented at times with his descriptions—sometimes he does this to mask things, to throw up a barrier. He described the empty house that was for sale where they entered the beach from. So I have a photograph in my mind now of this place in shades of green shadow and yellow light all over the trees and lawn. There are no people in this image. Don’t know if I merely concocted it or if I anchored this slice of memory to the story being told me.

    So this flash of shadow and light amidst the trees above the shore of Lake Michigan is the only personal image-memory I have of this.

    When we get down to the beach Mom Mom suggested I go jump in the lake. (( Come to think of it that was a favorite expression of his—go jump in the lake. ))

    Well, keep in mind I’m a walking baby—I’m new. And I loved the water. And it was a warm day. So at this suggestion I wanted to tear of my clothes and run into Michi Gami.

    “No,” someone said, “The waters way too cold for that.”

    But my father let me. And he’s bawling while he’s telling me this. He’s so sorry that he let me go into the freezing water.

    I didn’t get it. Really? Why on earth was he so writhing in pain over letting me go jump in the lake.

    I don’t necessarily see this as an abusive thing. Who knows, if I had a boy and he begged to go jump in Lake Michigan that time of year—I’d probably say “Go—but it’s cold. I don’t recommend it.” Right? I’d want him to have at least a dry towel first though.

    So I tell you all this much to say: there’s certainly something more to this story.

    He told me this when I was 18. His mother was not dead at that time. She’s dead now. Not sure she’s w/ the Lord although she taught Sunday School and was a staunch fundamentalist. Bottom line she was a wicked woman, and I’m sure she was responsible for much of my dad’s sickness. Thank goodness we rarely saw her.

    Four years later when I remembered fragments of the abuse I suffered at the hands of my father I then confronted him. He was already forgiven as far as I was concerned. But he denied doing such a monstrous thing.

  179. thanks for the email, Gail

    ja, i trust you’re well. . i was rereading just above and am now remembering what those vicious wolves did to you. . how they stole so much from you—including your sleep. . i wonder about the judgment of God when it comes down to their abuses. .

    i hope you’ve been able to sleep well where you’re at (despite being woken up in the middle of the night by fire alarm). i hate sleeping at hotels. unless they’re nice ones—which i’m too cheap to spring for. nah, i love my own bed, pillow, fan and controlled environment. ever get a room by an elevator? or a room above a rock concert?

    how was your daughter’s meeting w/ the coach? i bet she’s having the time of her life.

    HUGs and blessings to everyone here. . you are some sincerely beautiful people. . except for Alex—he’s as ugly as a bulldog. . (( just kidding ppl. . i said that to see if he’s reading us. . he commented five hundred some posts ago. . perhaps he scans our comments via email. . who knows ))

  180. You’re funny, David. Sleep is still difficult for me. I’ve never had a room above a rock concert, thankfully. Our room has been very nice except for the fire alarm incident.

    We had a great meeting with the coach. She got a sizable scholarship, both academic and athletic which will cover a good bit of expenses. She’s thrilled. I was thrilled, too, until the coach mentioned the date she needs to show up: August 4th. After attending a few weeks of camp, she’ll only have one more week left at home before heading off to college. That’s crazy.

  181. sizable scholarship! very nice. . i bet that put a smile on Mr and Mrs Smith’s face. . congratulations to your daughter, to you and Steve too. . what a blessing

  182. Good Morning Amos,

    I see that Born4Battle is demanding just a yes or no answer from you. At least he admits, however tacitly, that his views can prevail only when he is allowed to set the rules of engagement. Well, I am willing to engage you (Amos) in full and open discussion. I am even willing to put myself at something of an handicap by submitting to B4B’s rules of engagement. I will also agree to do my best to limit myself to B4B’s exegetical principles.

    We know from his defense of corporal punishment that B4B insists that single passages of Scripture must be accepted as establishing generally applicable principles. Therefore, I must identify the particular passage that will enable me to answer, yes or no, whether God has given and equipped teachers as gifts to the church. Being careful to use a translation/interpretation we know is used by B4B, the obvious passage, Jesus speaking, is:

    But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one TEACHER, and you are all brothers. And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Christ (Matthew 23:8-10, ESV).

    Well then, Has God given and equipped ‘teachers’ as gifts to the church? Using B4B’s own exegetical principles, and conforming myself to his rules of engagement, the answer is (get ready):

    No.

    If you (Amos) would like to contest my conclusion, I invite you to do so. Feel free to answer fully, openly and honestly, being under no constraint to abide by any rules designed to manipulate a particular answer. I think I can deal with it if your views are different than mine (although I may exhibit the audacity to attempt to engage you in further discussion).

  183. Hi Lovingkindness

    You ask…
    “Has God given and equipped ‘teachers’ as gifts to the church?
    Just a yes/no question.”

    That might be “a yes/no question” – for you…
    But – for a yes/no answer – from me – I need some additional info.

    First – Which Church are we talking about?

    1 – “The Church of God?”
    Where Jesus, He is the head of the body, (The ekklesia, the called out ones),
    The Church? :-)

    2 – the church of man?
    Where a “Mere Fallible Human” goes to a secular governmental organization, IRS,
    and asks permission to be called a “church” by filling out a form called a 501 (c) 3.

    If and when approved, they become a Gov’t approved, Gov’t inspected….
    501 (c) 3, non-profit, tax $ deductible, Religious $ Corporation. The IRS calls church.

    Thanks

  184. God morning to you – Gary W

    Your comment was not there for some reason, when I left my comment at 8:03

    Seems your comment just showed up on my screen.

    When I was about to post this next comment…

    Seems we’re on the same page… ;-) ;-) ;-)

  185. And Lovingkindness

    Second – When you refer to ‘teachers as gifts to the church”
    Are you refering to His Disciples – as gifts to the church?

    Because Jesus taught “His Disciples” to teach
    And He taught them to teach – “What” He taught them.

    Mat 28:19-20 NKJV
    Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations…
    **teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you**

    And – Jesus taught “His Disciples” NOT to be called – Teacher. – Go figure… ;-)

    1 – NOT to be called rabbi/teacher for you have “ONE” teacher, Christ. Mt 23:8 NASB
    2 – NOT to be called leader for you have “ONE” leader, Christ, Mt 23:10 NASB
    3 – ALL shall be taught of God. Jn 6:45
    4 – ALL things, shall be taught you by the Holy Spirit, God. Jn 14:26
    5 – ALL truth, will come as the Spirit of truth guides and leads. Jn 16:13
    6 – Jesus, as man, does nothing of himself, and is taught of God. Jn 8:28
    7 – Peter, knowing Jesus was the Christ, the Son of the living God,
    received the revelation from Father God, and NOT from man. Mt 16:17
    NOT even from Jesus, as a man. Jesus gave “All” the glory, all the credit to God.

    John the apostle, a “Disciple of Christ” taught what Jesus taught.

    1 – ALL know, discern, all things. From the anointing in you. 1 Jn 2:20
    2 – You need not any man teach you. Some will seduce you. 1 Jn 2:26:27
    3 – ALL things, are taught to you by the anointing. 1 Jn 2:27

    Paul the apostle, a “Disciple of Christ” taught what Jesus taught.

    1- The gospel, NOT taught to me by man, but by revelation. Ga 1:11,12
    2 – I conferred NOT with flesh and blood. Ga 1:16
    3 – You have heard Jesus, and have been taught by Jesus. Eph 4:21
    4 – You are taught by God to love one another. 1 Thes 4:9
    5 – When together, all can teach, all can get revelation. 1 Cor 14:26
    6 – Be led by the Spirit of God, and be a son of God. Rm 8:14

    So – If someone tells you they are a “teacher”

    Are they one of His Disciples? ;-)

  186. A. Amos

    It’s a yes/no question. BTW I’n not demanding anything from anyone. You can keep your answer to yourself, but It should be easy for the Biblically literate.

  187. Lovingkindness

    You write…
    “but It should be easy for the Biblically literate.”

    Or – Easy for those in bondage to the traditions of “The Corrupt Religious System.”
    Traditions that jesus warned us about that “Make Void” the Word of God.

    Mark 7:13
    NLT – And so you “cancel” the word of God in order to hand down your own tradition.
    KJV – Making the word of God of “none effect” through your tradition…
    ASV – Making “void” the word of God by your tradition…
    NIV – Thus you “nullify” the word of God by your tradition…

    When you believe the lie you start to die…

    —————-

    What is popular is NOT always “Truth.”
    What is “Truth” is NOT always popular.

  188. Lovingkindness

    Would you please answer this question?

    “Which Church are we talking about?”

    1 – The Church of God? Where Jesus is the head of the Body?

    2 – the church of man? Where “Mere Fallible Humans” Take the name of God in Vain?

  189. Lovingkindness

    Here’s a yes or no question for you. ;-)

    If someone tells you they are a “teacher”

    After knowing that Jesus taught His Disciples – NOT to be called teacher?

    Are they one of His Disciples?

  190. Oh – And Lovingkindness

    The reason I ask – Which Church are we talking about? – is…
    When I was a part of “The Corrupt Religious System” of today – The…
    501 (c) 3, non-profit, tax $ deductible, Religious $ Corporation. The IRS calls church.

    My – pastor/elder/overseers – told me, over and over again…

    That a good christian would always

    Join a church
    Go to a church – Every Sun – And Wed nights – And prayer meetings – And…
    Tithe to a church
    Give money to a church
    Volunteer, give time to a church
    Submit to the leaders of a church
    Apply for membership in a church

    After I left “The Corrupt Religious System” I had a rude awakening…
    I read, and re-read, every verse with the word “church” in it for myself…

    Lovingkindness – Don’t know if you ever checked or not – But…
    In the Bible, I found…

    NO one ever *Led* “A Church.”
    NO one ever *Joined* “A Church.”
    NO one ever *Went to* “A Church.”
    NO one ever *Tithed* to “A Church.”
    NO one ever “Taught” Go To “A Church.”
    NO one ever brought their friends to “A Church.”
    NO one ever applied for membership in “A Church.”
    NO one ever gave silver, gold, or money, to “A Church.”
    NO buildings with steeples and crosses called “A Church.”
    NO – Pastors – in Pulpits – Preaching – to People – in Pews – in “A Church. ;-)

    Seems – that’s what happens, and is taught, in the church of man. Yes? – The…
    501 (c) 3, non-profit, tax $ deductible, Religious $ Corporation. The IRS calls church.

    In the Bible… Believers become “the Church of God.” – His Ekklesia – His Body. :-)
    Believers become – Kings and Priests unto God – The Bride of Christ – Sons of God – Servants of Christ – Disciples of Christ – Ambassordors of Christ.

    So, turns out, these – pastor/leader/reverends – A “Title/Position” NOT in the Bible.
    Who told me they were “Pastor/Teachers.” Told me they had the “Gift of Teaching.”
    Told me, they as “Teachers,”were “This Gift from God” to the church, me, His body…

    Turns out – They were teaching – Doctrines of Men – Commandments of Men…
    That became our “Traditions” that Makes Void the Word of God. Mark 7:13.
    That Jesus warned us about.

    Turns out – they taught lot’s of stuff NOT in the Bible…
    Turns out – they taught by example – You can have a “Title/Position” NOT in the Bibe.
    Turns out – they “Ignored’ and “Twisted” the qualifications for elder/overseer…
    Turns out – they never were “This Gift from God”- never had this “Gift of Teaching.”

    I mean – How many errors are allowed – If you say you are “This Gift from God?”

    If they can NOT get it right about the word “church” – Well – False Teacher anyone?

    Jer 50:6
    “My people” hath been “lost sheep:”
    **their shepherds** have caused them to *go astray,*

    1 Pet 2:25
    For ye were as *sheep going astray;*
    BUT are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

    I’m Blest… I’ve returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of my soul…

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}

  191. Was wondering…

    If you teach – “The Whole Counsel of God?”

    When you teach about “The Lost?” – Who are you referring to? – Who are “The Lost?”

    Yes Amos, you mention nothing about believer in your question. However you come back later and ask me according to believer’s how can we be lost.

    This is what frustrate me when dealing with you. When you ask me a question, give me the whole question. That I might give the right response. I’m not trying to show you up, I’m trying to be ministered too and to minister. I hate playing games.

    May God richly bless you and yours.

    Bro. Lee in Christ

  192. Norris

    You write…
    “When you ask me a question, give me the whole question.”

    I did give you the whole question – What I did NOT give you is the answer. ;-)
    Most folks I ask that question answer – “The Lost” are the unsaved, non-believers.
    That’s what my “Church Leaders” and my “Pastors/Teachers” taught me. :-(
    BUT, Then I read the Bible for myself. And looked at every verse with “Lost” in it. :-)

    This is another reason I NO longer trust those who call themselves pastor/leader.
    And, you Norris, have NOT been a help in my recovery, calling yourself pastor.

    But, you Norris, to my surprise gave an answer I agree with. A notable miracle. ;-)
    And I congratulated you for giving the right answer. “We are the lost.”

    And then I said – “But – for the wrong reason…”
    Here – read that again at – A. Amos Love @ JULY 1, 2013 @ 7:38 AM…

    I do NOT believe we are “The Lost” because we are “sinners.” As you stated.

    Can a dead person be “Lost?” Don’t you have to be alive, have life, – To be “Lost?”
    At one time -“WE”, Believers, were dead in sins – BUT – God gave us new life. :-)

    Eph 2:1
    And you hath “he quickened,”
    who were *dead in trespasses and sins;*

    Eph 2:5
    Even when *we were dead in sins,*
    “hath quickened us” together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

    Col 2:13
    And you, being *dead in your sins* and the uncircumcision of your flesh,
    hath “he quickened” together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;

    So – I figure – I once was dead – But now I have new life… Thank you Jesus…
    And, Dead men are dead – NOT lost. – BUT believers have life and can be “Lost.”

    So – I ask you Norris – “How did “WE,” Believers, His Church, become – The Lost?”

    Hint – Hint – This is an open book exam… ;-)

    What is popular is NOT always “Truth.”
    What is “Truth” is NOT always popular.

  193. Hello Amos and good morning, I have reviewed your question. I find that your off centered jut a bit. I looked up the word lost in the VINES, ALSO THE STRONG, you have misapplied the usage of that word. It simply means to destroy fully, to perish or to lose. It never refers to the believer at all I examined alll the new testament scripture to see how you applied it and it just isn’t there. The lost always refer to those who don’t know Christ. Also it’s impossible for you to be lost as a believer, when your trusting in Christ to bring you home. Salvation belongs to God, not man, (Ps 3:8) It is kept up in heaven for you where no one can take it away, because it is kept by the power of God (1Pe 1:5) When He (Jesus) starts the work He (Jesus) will bring it to completion. (Philipians 1:6) Yes, I could go on but i will pass to see what’s your take on this.

    Always in Christ Bro.Lee

  194. Norris

    I certainly agree when you write about me…
    “I find that your off centered jut a bit.” : role :

    Then you write today – after checking – BUT – Only checking the NT.
    1 – “The lost **always** refer to those who don’t know Christ.”

    But – didn’t you say? @ JUNE 30, 2013 @ 4:27 PM…
    2 – “all have sinned…” “We are the Lost.”

    And – didn’t you say? @ JUNE 30, 2013 @ 3:43 AM…
    “Yet i also teach the whole counsel of God Acts 20:27,”

    Well, if you teach “The Whole Council of God?

    Which one is your final answer?
    1 – “The lost **always** refer to those who don’t know Christ.”
    2 – “all have sinned…” “We are the Lost.”

  195. Norris

    Would you like another hint? Some more clues to “Who are The Lost?”
    So you can learn – “Who are The Lost?

    So far you’ve given two answers – Two different answers.
    1 – “The lost **always** refer to those who don’t know Christ.”
    2 – “all have sinned…” “We are the Lost.”

    I ask because you have said that you have a “Teachable Spirit.” “willing to listen.”
    Along with teaching “the Whole Council of God.”

    Norris, you said on APRIL 10, 2013 @ 8:42 AM…
    “… If what you say is true then I do have a teachable spirit. I’m also willing to listen.”

    And again on APRIL 10, 2013 @ 12:56 PM…
    “…As I have said before I have a teachable spirit and I’m willing to learn…”

    And again on JUNE 30, 2013 @ 3:43 AM…
    “Yet i also teach the whole counsel of God Acts 20:27, Yet in all this i remain teachable”

    Now, I could be wrong in your case – Time will tell…

    But from my experience with those who think they are “Special” – pastor/teachers.
    They often say one thing – The proper Christian Religious thingy – and Do another.

    Jesus warned us about “Religious Leaders.” “…for they say, and do not.” Mat 23:3.

    Today – My *rule of thumb* is – My first reaction is…
    If someone has to tell me, They are a “Teacher of Grace.” – They Ain’t.
    If someone has to tell me, They have a “Teachable Spirit” – They Don’t.

    If I’m spiritual at all – I should be able to discern – If they *Teach Grace.*
    If I’m spiritual at all – I should be able to discern – If they have a *Teachable Spirit.*

    If I’m NOT spiritual, NOT born again, Telling me means nothing at all.
    Don’t know what Grace is. Don’t know what a “Teachable Spirit” is. Why tell me?

    Unless, of course, you are trying to promote yourself as someone “Special.”

    When you believe the lie you start to die…

  196. Monax July 1, 2013 @ 6:09 PM
    Ok. . . i’ve been sitting on this for a few days.
    the explanation is short, but tell me what you think.

    Monax, First, please accept my apologies for being slow to respond, you have been on my mind…

    It doesn’t make sense to me that your dad reacted like this over letting you run into freezing water.

    “curled up clutching at his stomach in evident agony, his moans—it was deep, writhe and cry, sobbing violently became incoherent.”

    I agree with you, there certainly is more to this story. I suspect that your dad wanted to ease his guilt & shame by confessing to a smaller sin against you…

    I am not saying he did that consciously, but something more had to be driving his dramatic out burst.

    But, that is only a guess, I do not know that for sure, just my gut reaction.

    Do you know if your dad was sexually abused? Sounds like spiritual abuse was a given…

    My dad was a nightmare and I still carry the scars inside today of being verbally, physically & sexually abused by him.

    I was in constant agony for years. As I began to unpack my story, after several years in therapy, I became curious about my dad’s story.

    I wondered why he was the way he was.

    My dad’s sister gave me some history. My dad’s Mom was evil. He was her punching bag since he was a baby, my aunt recalled when he was in high chair and spilled his food,

    Grandma went into a rage and slapped him across the face, she was wearing a ring, and it cut him, blood speckled her fine wallpaper, from there it only gets uglier. He suffered horrifically.

    Not that his abuse towards me was OK because of what he endured, no,no, no, but understanding him opened a door in my heart and as I grew stronger I was able to love him boldly by asking him questions, listening, praying with him.

    A wise counselor directed me to be curious, ask questions, be direct on how his abuse impacted me, and when I did this he broke like a baby, however, he never owned up to the abuse.

    His tears which I had never seen, spoke volumes.
    I was at a point where I realized how much I had been forgiven for… though I had prayed for years and told our Lord that I forgave him as an act of my will. My heart changed after we talked. No, it wasn’t a Hallmark movie, even after my carefrontation, we had a strained relationship, yet he made it a point every time I saw him to tell me he loved me, which I didn’t hear growing up.
    Is your dad still alive? Do you talk?

  197. Yes, Gail, my dad’s still alive and still lives in Michigan. I talk to him often and we have a fairly good relationship. As Christ has forgiven me, so have I forgiven him. He’s free at my end—and has been free from the day I realized his wicked sins against me. But I’m not so sure how free he really truly is in his own heart. He can be miserable. I have a 72 hour threshold limit if I spend time with him, then I have to exit. And, yes, my father was sexually abused as a child.

    Thanks for your take on my story. “Carefrontation,” huh? Interesting how your dad’s mom, just like my dad’s mom, was evil. What a world we live in!

    So from the pics i saw on fb looks like you had a happy week with family and friends on the Lake.

    Blessings. .

  198. hey Tina. . i studied Tang Soo Do for a time when I was young. . in fights (not that i got into many of them; hardly any at all, really, but) in fights my feet were always one of my best assets. . for their reach. . saw your pics on fb

  199. Monax: “Carefrontation,” huh?
    I cared enough for my dad’s soul and mine to confront him… I had to handle him with kid gloves, so I say I care-fronted him, using strength that was tempered by sorrow & tenderness as the Holy Spirit graced me with the ability to speak the truth to him.

  200. Monax,lol thats great you studied martial arts. I love it! Bet you couldn’t tell by some of my comments that I had a fiesty side :-) I study Shotokan Kenkojuku.

  201. Gesundheit, girl! You study Whuut?

    In my youth I self studied mostly, and mastered about eight signature moves that were enough to keep me. . In high school I was known to be a kid not to be messed with, but my reputation was far greater than my ability. . i think my greatest asset was my mind. . when engaged if you can get inside someone’s head you’ve nearly got `em. .

    After high school I signed up for a class of Tang Soo Do. . but it was hard for me to keep up with the rigors of the discipline, so after a short time I dropped out. . Master was not pleased with my missed classes and how far I had gotten behind, so one day he took this six-year-old boy aside to teach me the proper moves. . i learned a lot from this little kid, and from the Master. . most especially what I had been doing wrong, and how I was opening myself up for injury and such if ever were to encounter a real fighter. .

    After this and on my own i mastered a couple nice moves the Master had taught me. . those were fun days. . i used to spar with my young cousins who were advanced in their Tae Kwon Do. . i could take them on until they turned 17. . thereafter i’d get my butt whoooped!

    Tina, i’m assuming i wouldn’t have a chance against you. Unless that Shotokan Kenkojuku is a cooking school. Not a cooking class you’re taking, is it?

  202. Lol, its a form of karate. But as you know if you master a few good moves, you should be able to survive. Stong legs, a good opposite punch and being able to deflect or avoid their attack. I am always learning and training, and I feel like I have so much more to learn. True about getting in someones head, and don’t let them know if they hurt you. Show no emotion. THATS HARD FOR ME! LOL

  203. My husband probably wishes it were a cooking class. :-) My cooking stinks! I hate cooking. I like working in the garden and mowing the lawn, he is actually a better cook than I am. I’m a lucky woman :-)

  204. Yeah, that’s my area of endeavor—cooking!

    i love to cook and feed people. . love to experiment with things and invent new dishes. . speaking of which, i believe it’s feeding time for me. .

    What’s your garden—Veggies and/or Otherwise?

  205. I tried my hand at veggies but my property doesnt’t get enough sun. So for now I’m sticking to flowers. :-) I might try growing tomatoes in large pots next year and place them on the cement. Nothing like fresh tomatoes! What do you grow?

  206. i don’t grow. . but if given the option between sun or shade. . i’d opt for less sun and more shade and go about creating my own little secret garden. . tried tomatoes a few years back, but realized it’s more cost-effective to go to ALDI’s for them. . i did, though, learn what the Best Tasting Tomatoes are. . they’re always the Ones you grow yourself. . right?

  207. Hello and good morning Mr. Amos, My bad I have been very busy, I have not chose to neglect you at all. Do I hear a tone of mistrust coming from you. I have shown that I will listen and respond when ask with courtesy and tact. I have said some wrong things on this site in which I had to apologize for, However to keep hearing you assault my character based on your past is unacceptable to me. I will converse with you and try to be prompt. However keep your sarcasm to yourself or say you no longer wish to dialogue with me any longer, I will understand. I hear everybody speak of love, yet you show contempt. I will pray that God give you peace in the area you have been hurt the most. I’m not at all out to hurt you I just want to converse in a civilized manner. Be taught or to teach. If you choose to say anything that’s off the wall I can except that as long as it’s genuine and the truth, but to assault my character based on others is not worthy of my time.

    May God richly bless you and yours

  208. Norris

    Nice to hear from you. :-)

    You write…
    “Do I hear a tone of mistrust coming from you.”

    Yes…

    And it’s NOT just based on my past. I’ve trusted paster/teachers and been burned.
    It is also based on my experience with you on this site.

    And it is based on the Bible. – Warnings in the Bible to beware…

    Colossians 2:8
    Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit,
    after “the tradition of men,” after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

    Ephesians 5:6 Let no man deceive you with vain words…
    2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means…
    1 John 3:7 Little children, Let no man deceive you …

    You call yourself pastor – But NOT one of His Disciples calls themself shepherd…
    You call yourself teacher – But Jesus taught His Disciples NOT to be called teacher…

    If someone calls themself “Teacher?” – Are they one of His Disciples?
    Do you want to be known as “Teacher?” – Or, one of His Disciples?

    And – You tell me – You teach “The Whole Council of God.”

    Forgive me – But – I do NOT believe that – I do NOT trust you when you say that. Because you miss Jesus teaching His Disciples – There is “ONE” Shepherd. – There is “ONE” leader. – There is “ONE” teacher…

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}

    Jesus warned us – “He who speaks of himself seeks his own glory…” John 7:18

    The Bible warns about 1-False apostles. 2- Many false prophets. 3- False teachers 4- False brethren. 5- False Christ’s (false anointed ones).6- Deceitful workers. 7- Evil workers. 8- Dogs. 9-Swine.

    Wow – Lots of Dangers – Lots of bumps and potholds on this road to “Truth” – Jesus…

    And – “Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man… Jer 17:5

    Psalm 118:8-9
    It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.
    It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes.

    Sorry Norris – Jesus asks me to trust in Him – And NOT trust “Mere Fallible Humans.”

  209. Norris

    Would you like another hint? Some more clues to “Who are The Lost?”
    So you can learn – “Who are The Lost?

    So far you’ve given two answers – Two different answers.
    1 – “The lost **always** refer to those who don’t know Christ.”
    2 – “all have sinned…” “We are the Lost.”

    Hint – What you said here @ JULY 6, 2013 @ 5:35 AM…
    Can be looked at again – Me- thinks you missed something. You write…
    “I looked up the word lost in the VINES, ALSO THE STRONG, you have misapplied the usage of that word. It simply means **to destroy fully, to perish or to lose.**

    What is popular is NOT always “Truth.”
    What is “Truth” is NOT always popular.

  210. Hello Amos, I’m so happy to hear the real you, I have not come to change you, only

    to dialect with you. However that being said I believe it’s time to cut ties with you while everything is still alright between the two. I don’t think your going to see things
    the way God has shown them to me, vice versa. So let’s be cordial about it and move on. I respect you as person and wish nothing but the best for you and your, May God richly bless you.

  211. Norris

    I’ll leave you with this – Just to complete this question…
    Who are “the Lost?” – In the Bible?

    You are correct when you say, the Greek word for “Lost” in the NT means…
    **to destroy fully, to perish or to lose.**

    Let’s look at the last one – “To Lose.”

    When you “lose” something – don’t you already have that thing.
    One Dictionary definition of “lose” is…
    1. To be unsuccessful in retaining possession of;
    And – When you “lose” your keys – Don’t you tell someone – You “Lost” your keys?

    How about – When you “lose” your way?
    You get directions to your friends house, your mind gets distracted…
    And – You “lose” your way. Yes?
    Don’t you tell your friend – Who’s house you were going to…
    Hey, I messed up on the directions you gave me – And now I’m “Lost.”
    Can you help me get back to the correct way to your house?

    Another Dictionary definition of “lose” is…
    2 – to wander or go astray from – To “lose” your way.
    So, when you “lose” you’re way? – You’re now “Lost” – Yes?)

    So, seems to “Lose” – and be “Lost.” Are very closely related – Yes?

    Next – I’ll give you what I found in the Bible…

  212. Norris

    In “The Abusive Religious System” I was raised in, they taught it was
    the unbeliever, those who do NOT know Jesus, are the “lost.”

    I found some scriptures that seem to indicate it’s God’s people who are “lost.”

    But First – There are scriptures that say, before we come to Christ we are dead?

    And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins…
    Eph 2:1

    Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ,
    Eph 2:5

    And you, being dead in your sins… hath he quickened together with him…
    Col 2:13

    Don’t you have to have life, be alive, in order to be “lost?”
    In order to “Lose” life? In order to “Lose” your way? And be “Lost” on the Way?

    1 – In Luke 15, there are two parables, that seems to be about “Lost” believers.

    1a – A man had a hundred sheep – and if he “Lose” one – sheep…
    He leaves the ninety and nine and goes after – that which was “Lost.” Luke 15:4.

    “Lose” and “Lost” here is the same Greek word. – Strongs #622 apollumi.
    And it’s NOT refering to anything being “destroyed, or perishing.”

    And, sheep in the scriptures often refers to believers, His Body, His Church. – Yes?
    The shepherd says – “Rejoice with me; for I have found **my sheep** which was “lost.”

    1b – Then there is the prodigal son. He was both dead and “lost.”
    And, he was already a son. – Yes?

    Luke 15:24
    For this “my son” was dead, and is alive again;
    he was “lost,” and is found. And they began to be merry.

    2 – The Psalmist, a lover of God, saw himself as a “lost” sheep.

    I have gone astray like a “lost” sheep…
    Psalm 119:176

    3 – Even though the shepherds, in Ezek 34:1-16, caused “God’s Flock”
    to be driven away and “lost” God Himself would be their shepherd.

    I will feed **my flock,** and I will cause them to lie down, saith the Lord GOD.
    I will seek that which was “lost,” (My flock?)
    and bring again that which was driven away.
    and will bind up that which was broken,
    and will strengthen that which was sick:
    Eze 34:15:16

    4 – Jeremiah seems to indicate it was God’s people who were “lost,”
    “lost sheep,” led astray by **their shepherds.** Seems similar to Ezek 34:1-16. Yes?

    My people hath been “lost” sheep:
    **their shepherds** have caused them to go astray…
    Jer 50:6

    I’ve been down a few paths that I thought was the “Truth.” How about you?
    And – I’ve certainly been “Led” astray by those who taught me they were shepherds.

    Norris – Could it be that “WE,” His called out ones, His Church, His Body…

    His Sheep – Are “The Lost?” In the Bible?

    “Led” astray by todays shepherds/leader/reverends?

    Who take “the Name of the Lord thy God – Shepherd/Leader/Reverend – In Vain?”

    And “WE” looked to a “Mere Fallible Humans” to be our shephered…

    When Jesus says – He is the “ONE” Shepherd?

  213. Great insight Amos, however you miss one key point in your understanding. The lost comes from adam when he sinned in the garden, then mankind became lost. He died separated from God, until God’s plan of redemption took place through Jesus Christ His Son. So when 1 point is off the whole view can be tainted. Adam lost his way and God brought him back by way of Jesus. Hallelujah for that. Like i said we will not agree, so lets agree to disagree and keep it in love, Always yours in Christ Bro. Lee

  214. Norris

    You write…
    “Great insight Amos, however you miss one key point in your understanding. The lost comes from adam when he sinned in the garden, then mankind became lost.”

    Norris – Do you really think that is accurate? In the Bible?
    Did you, Norris, miss more than one key point in Gen? ;-)

    Where did God say – In the Bible – “The lost comes from adam when he sinned?”
    “Mankind became lost?” “Adam lost his way?”

    Did You add that to the Bible? ;-)

    God told Adam, in Gen 2:17…
    But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt NOT eat of it:
    in the day that thou eatest thereof **thou shalt surely die.**

    And “death reigned” over all mankind…

    Rom 5:14
    Nevertheless **death reigned** from Adam to Moses,
    even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression,
    who is the figure of him that was to come.

    Rom 5:17
    For if by one man’s offence **death reigned** by one;
    much more they which receive abundance of grace
    and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.

    Before we know Jesus, Believe in Him, “WE” are “Dead.”

    Eph 2:1
    And you hath he quickened, who were “dead” in trespasses and sins…

    And “death reigned” over all mankind – Until Jesus gives His Sheep, Eternal Life.

    1 John 5:11-13
    And this is the record, that God hath *given us eternal life,* and this life is in his Son.
    He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
    These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God;
    that ye may know that ye have eternal life,
    and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

    So, now “WE,” His ekklesia, His Body, His called out ones, His Church – have “Life.”

    And “WE,” His people, become “Lost Sheep” because of “Human shepherds.”

    Jer 50:6
    “My people” hath been “lost sheep:”
    *their shepherds* have caused them to *go astray,*

    And – Jesus calls Himself the “ONE” Shepherd.
    And – His Sheep – Hear His Voice – and – Follow Jesus.

    So – we agree when you say…
    “So when 1 point is off the whole view can be tainted.”

  215. Amos you make a compelling point, only you don’t get the point. Man became lost in the garden of eden. Yes he did die, however before his death he enjoyed true fellowship with God in the cool of the day. When he chose to disobey God He died and all of mankind with him we were lost or dead in our sin(s). God in Gen 3:15 came with a plan of redemption to restore man unto Himself. He demonstrated that by slaughtering the lamb to clothe adam and eve. The same would happen to the Saviour. So Amos you do make a compelling argument only it’s fruitless according to scripture.

    Always in Christ/

  216. Norris

    You write…
    “Man became lost in the garden of eden.”
    Can you show that from the scriptures? – Where, in the Bible, does it say that?

    You also write…
    Amos you do make a compelling argument only it’s fruitless according to scripture.

    I think I agree – NOT quite sure what you mean “fruitless according to scripture.”

    You said on – JULY 6, 2013 @ 5:35 AM…
    “The lost” – *always* refer to those who don’t know Christ.”

    And – In the Bible, There are scriptures saying – It’s God’s people who are “Lost.”

    “My people” hath been “lost sheep:”
    **their shepherds** have caused them to go astray…
    Jer 50:6

    I think I agree with you – When you say…
    Amos you do make a compelling argument only it’s fruitless according to scripture.

    Are you saying…
    These verses, saying God’s Sheep are lost, “Led” astray by their shepherds…
    Are fruitless – bearing NO fruit…
    *In the shepherds?* – That are leading them astray?

    Are you saying…
    God has turned pastor/teachers over to a “Reprobate Mind?” And NO matter how well scripture makes a “compelling argument?” – “My people have been “Lost Sheep.” – They – Todays pastor/teacher/reverend – “resist the truth?” And – God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.

    2 Tim 3:8
    Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses,
    so do these also “resist the truth:”** men of corrupt minds,**
    *reprobate* concerning the faith.

    Tit 1:16
    They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him,
    being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work *reprobate.*

    So, according to scripture…
    It’s fruitless to inform Todays pastor/teachers with a “compelling argument?”

  217. Norris

    Sorry – But – This is an another excellent example of…
    Why – I NO longer trust those who call themselves pastor/teacher.
    Why – I do NOT trust those who say they – “Teach the whole council of God.”

    Why – “WE,” His Sheep, His Ekklesia, His Body, His Church, are warned in the Bible.
    It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. Psalm 118:8-9
    Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, Jer 17:5

    They, pastor/teachers, you, have a tendency to “ADD” stuff to the Bible.
    Then – Speak it as truth from the Bible.

    You write..
    “God in Gen 3:15 came with a plan of redemption to restore man unto Himself.
    He demonstrated that by **slaughtering the lamb** to clothe adam and eve.”

    In Gen 3, there is NO **slaughtering the lamb** to cloth Adam and Eve.
    It might have been a lamb – And God might have slaughtered that lamb…

    BUT – That is NOT written – in Gen 3, in the Bible – You ADDED that. ;-)

    In the Bible, it just says – “coats of skins” – NO lambs – NO slaughtering.

    Gen 3:21 KJV
    Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins,
    and clothed them.

    We are also warned – Beware – Commandments of Men – Doctrines of men.
    That become our “Traditions” – that “Nullify” the word of God…

    Mark 7:13
    NLT – so you “cancel” the word of God in order to hand down your own tradition.
    KJV – Making the word of God of “none effect” through your tradition…
    ASV – Making “void” the word of God by your tradition…
    NIV – Thus you “nullify” the word of God by your tradition…

  218. Amos, It doesn’t changed the fact that an animal was killed for the sin of adam and eve. It was a picture of the Christ to come, also in the old testament all were blind and in sin according to scripture. So how could the shepards in the old testament lead anyone. God was showing that he was to be followed even in the old testament. In samuel the people wanted a king like other nations, therefore setting aside God’s Authority for man. This why He said don’t trust in man, Israel was trusting in it’s government and leaders. This is what God was speaking on. (Jo 9:38-41) Amos your not to trust anyone except the Holy Spirit, He will guides us into the truth, however don’t do it on your own that is when we get off course and the bible say and i quote, God will make you believe the deception (2Thesss 2:9-12) So Amos I hear you and that is loud and clear, however search the scripture for they speak of Jesus and His life. Not are mistrusts and doubts. (jo 5:39)

    Always in Christ.

  219. Norris Lee, good to hear from you. I’ve been wanting to get back to you, to thank you for your book. I’ve been reading it here and there. There’s quite a bit of insight in your writings. Thank you!

    Gary W, I’ve been doing my research as time allows. I haven’t forgotten our engagement in the other thread. I know I’m at least several days away from being able to respond. I have a few good irons in the fire this Summer, and thankfully the issues of spiritual authority brought up in our other thread is one of them.

    Gotta run. . work to do before company arrives.

    Peace and Love to y’all.

    David

  220. A few problems exist with the Calvary Chapel movement. There is the Moses Model, which is not a biblical way for a church to operate. The book of Acts suggests a plurality of elders and congregational input was the early way of the church. Another issue is cultural. Calvary Chapel has a culture of authoritarianism due to its polity. In addition, it remains rather fundamentalist, which is to say that its theology is pretty narrow and unreflective, and that it possesses some ideology. When you combine authoritarian, one-person rule with fundamentalism, you get a church that is more concerned with power and ideas than with truth revealed in love. And that, as I see it, is the drawback to this movement.

  221. Welcome, Jon! You are correct. I believe the Moses Model has contributed to the problems some churches have had in heavy-handed authority structure, leading to spiritual abuse.

  222. Thanks, Julie Anne, for your response. Yes, the Moses Model has created a corrupt scenario throughout the movement. I would not have any further involvement with CC until its power-structure is reformed. And for me, that means instituting a plurality of elders and enabling more congregational input and participation in church operations. It also means a move away from simple-minded fundamentalism toward a more theologically-informed and reflective stance toward Scripture. Once church government and theology are in place, I believe the other issues will find easier resolution.

  223. The central problem of leadership anywhere in the world at all times is corruption. People’s power goes unchecked and no one can hold them accountable. It’s a perennial issue.

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