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todd
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Joined: 2003/5/12
Posts: 573
California

 I Know (I Think)

I am starting this thread in light of recent events on the site concerning disagreements and the junk manifested by them. As some expressed on the "By His Stripes" thread, I too beleive that the way we deal with disagreement, especially amongst the community of faith, reveals what's in our hearts.

When one sheep bites, do we immediately bite back- harder? Must we have the last bite? What fruit is manifested? The fruits of the Spirit or the fruits of the flesh? Do we get easily offended?

I think God uses disagreement amongst His children in two primary ways.

Firstly, disagreement is used for good by God in that it is a quick revealer of our heart. So then, we can clearly see the junk we've produced and realize something is very wrong inside that might have gone unnoticed or, at least, wasn't as clearly seen. So then we can deal with the problem that is manifested by turning to God for repentence and help.

Second, if properly dealt with, disagreement can lead to greater intimacy with God. When we present what we believe to be the truth (especially with a right heart), and we come into disagreement, it hurts a little. It's like that thing where you have a CD that you have been so blessed by and it means so much to you so you share it with a friend and they're like, "It's alright." Ouch.

When you share things that mean a lot to you, you kind of put yourself on the line and are made vulnerable. Now, those who you've shared with are empowered. Whether they agree or disagree, they are empowered to build you up or cut you down.

And either response, if handled correctly, can lead to greater intimacy with God. If they build you up, you are affirmed and love and joy is easily manifested. But you can observe your reponse in that situation and see what happens. Do you get proud (of yourself) or grateful (to God)? If you notice pride coming to the surface, you can humble yourself and deal with that in secret with God, and this will lead to greater intimacy.

If they cut you down, you now have an opportunity to humble yourself before God by taking the cut in stride (which I have found for myself usually means simply shutting up) and maintaining a right heart towards the person. This victory of maintaining a right heart will likely have to be fought for in secret with God, and this increases intimacy.

Also, if our efforts to explain what we believe are inadequate to change the other's mind (as I have found to commonly be the case), in humility we can respond in two ways. First, we can assume that we might not have done the best job of explaining and put the burden of the situation on ourselves. And second, we can sincerely [b]consider the possibility that we are wrong[/b]. If we act this out in fellowship and conversation with God, I believe it will lead to more intimacy with Him. It will deepen our relationship with Him.

I'm coming to realize that [b]every[/b] situation in life can be an opportunity to be humble and thereby invoke God's grace. "For God is opposed to the proud, but [b]gives[/b] grace to the humble" (1 Peter 5:5). Grace is for the humble, and they get it.

The above is kind of my experimental thoughts and I would appreciate any feedback concerning what I've said.

I also want to share this quotation I just read a few days ago that is so powerful:
"Thank God that human sympathy did not blind me to eternity, [b]for you may live in a crowd, but you meet God and face eternity alone[/b]."
- Rees Howells

 2004/7/11 13:59Profile
lwpray
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Joined: 2003/6/22
Posts: 3318
Sweden

 Re: I Know (I Think)



A small cut from Todd's piece of special worth:

I'm coming to realize that every situation in life can be an opportunity to be humble and thereby invoke God's grace.
"For God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble" (1 Peter 5:5). Grace is for the humble, and they get it.


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Lars Widerberg

 2004/7/11 14:03Profile
crsschk
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Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Re: I Know (I Think)

Love the topic header! That sums up my life in a nutshell... :-)

Excellent points Todd.

Quote:
It's like that thing where you have a CD that you have been so blessed by and it means so much to you so you share it with a friend and they're like, "It's alright." Ouch.


Yes, some times it seems 'where my head is at' comes into play. Given a different atmosphere you can get a whole different perspective. Often have gone back to some of the messages that I thought were just 'alright' and upon listening again, thought, 'Wow, how'd I miss that?'

Quote:
Also, if our efforts to explain what we believe are inadequate to change the other's mind (as I have found to commonly be the case), in humility we can respond in two ways. First, we can assume that we might not have done the best job of explaining and put the burden of the situation on ourselves. And second, we can sincerely consider the possibility that we are wrong. If we act this out in fellowship and conversation with God, I believe it will lead to more intimacy with Him. It will deepen our relationship with Him.



Absolutely. Think there is always going to be a lot of second guessing or there should be anyways. We are foremost accountable to God and it is a clever trick of the mind (or maybe it's the devil) to think "Well, God's on my side on this one" Hmmmm, are you sure about that? With a wealth of knowledge and experience behind us and a huge resource of such right here in our midst with the messages, articles and our fellow brethren, many who have walked further down this road for a lot longer than others..You would think that we are often more wrong than 'right'. If we are learning anything it would have to be because we either didn't know something or what we did know was incomplete, lacking, skewered or just flat out wrong. We can become so enamored with pleasing men rather than God. Sure it's nice to have your fellow brethren support you and affirm you but it is a strange cruelty to not point out the blind spots in each other and then say 'O bless you brother'. It's disingenious. Of course we can have some tact in doing so, something that can get pushed to the side if the right buttons get pushed and I can only cry; Guilty!

Quote:
The above is kind of my experimental thoughts and I would appreciate any feedback concerning what I've said



Todd, think this is more profound than you might have thought..."[i]my experimental thoughts"[/i]
In a sense that is a great deal of what goes on here. (I think) :-)


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Mike Balog

 2004/7/11 14:54Profile
sermonindex
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"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11

Online!
 Re:

Quote:
I am starting this thread in light of recent events on the site concerning disagreements and the junk manifested by them. As some expressed on the "By His Stripes" thread, I too beleive that the way we deal with disagreement, especially amongst the community of faith, reveals what's in our hearts.


Brother Todd, I do think you have brought out many good things in this post but I would like to address you main premise that there was 'junk' brought out in conversations with Mitch where people were clearly standing up for the truth of Scriptures and their convictions.

"We are speaking the Word of God, and instead of bringing the Word back to us, you make fake videos of us. That in itself, is enough to show any man with common sense, who is more Christ like. I will keep you in my prayers, but I shall not visit here anymore. I will pray the Lord of Harvest will remove junk like this from the Internet, I will never allow my child to grow up and see so much doubt and unbelief amongst Christians." [i]-Mitch from the "By His Stripes" thread[/i]

I firmly am going to state that their was not 'junk' shown, some of the posts might have not been written in the best tack but their was clearly a witness for truth in that thread. Mitch's attitude towards others on the forum and the site content itself is alarming and really don't take much thought to realize that he is [b]speaking[/b] of things he knows NOT. This does not mean I don't care for him with the love of Christ or am not giving him due respect, but there is a place amongst Christians to not sit on our hands but confess what we believe in the scriptures and in our experience of God. This website is not a apologetic's ministry or discerment ministry site but rather is clearly a website ministry that shows the truth in a paramount way through these old speakers from the past. I cannot in good conciense allow a brother to spread doctrine and scriptural beliefs that arent true. It's not just to defend the forums themselves but rather the hearers and readers of the forums.

I think there is healthly disagrement that is shown in daily or weekly in scriptural debates and in the forums. But I would not classify discussions on clearly false happenings and teachings to be disagreeing but rather holding and proclaiming the truth in opposition of lies and deception. If you read the new testament aright you will notice that Paul the apostle clearly shows between these two different disagreements.


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2004/7/11 15:39Profile
KeithLaMothe
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Joined: 2004/3/28
Posts: 354


 Re:

Titus 1
5 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you would set in order what remains and appoint elders in every city as I directed you,
6 namely, if any man is above reproach, the husband of one wife, having children who believe, not accused of dissipation or rebellion.
7 For the overseer must be above reproach as God's steward, [b]not self-willed[/b], [b]not quick-tempered[/b], not addicted to wine, [b]not pugnacious[/b], [b][u]not fond of sordid gain[/u][/b],
8 but [b]hospitable[/b], loving what is good, sensible, just, devout, [b]self-controlled[/b],
9 [b]holding fast the faithful word[/b] which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will [b]be able both to [u]exhort[/u] in [u]sound doctrine[/u] and to [u]refute[/u] those who contradict[/b].
10 For there are many [b]rebellious men[/b], empty talkers and [b]deceivers[/b], especially those of the circumcision,
11 who [b]must be silenced[/b] because they are upsetting whole families, teaching things they should not teach [b]for the sake of sordid gain[/b].
12 One of themselves, a prophet of their own, said, "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons."
13 This testimony is true. For this reason [b][u]reprove them severely[/u] so that they may be [u]sound in the faith[/u][/b],
14 not paying attention to Jewish myths and commandments of [b]men who turn away from the truth[/b].
15 To the pure, all things are pure; but to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure, but both their mind and their conscience are defiled.
16 They [b]profess to know God[/b], but [b]by their [u]deeds[/u] they deny Him[/b], being detestable and disobedient and worthless for any good deed.

Not that we all have to be fully qualified as elders, but we should meet the character requirements or strive to do so by the grace of God. Nor that Paul was specifically addressing the health n' wealth types here (he was more concerened at the time with Judaizers and the like), but a number of the principles seem to apply.

Pity about the other discussion, but I guess it just wouldn't be the internet without the occaisional irrational explosion.

Lord, please guide us, that we seek first Your kingdom and Your righteousness, and also and Your truth. Also manifest in us the fruits of Your Spirit; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control and have us seek and ask You for the wisdom which comes from heaven which is first of all pure, then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of good fruit and mercy, impartial and sincere.

And Lord, please help any prosperity-gospel types who wander by to understand that this is probably the place on the internet most stuffed to the gills with opposition to that kind of teaching.

 2004/7/11 16:35Profile
Jimm
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Joined: 2004/4/27
Posts: 498
Harare, ZIMBABWE

 Bring not railing accusation.

Greetings all!

I have been learning a lot about the way we relate to each other as Christians. I suppose the biggest one is:

1 John 5: 1 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. 4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. 5 Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Paul and John speak very tenderly about those who are “weak in the faith”, or growing in faith. They often describe them as “little children”. Obviously as apostles, they had a vantage point in the outpouring of the spirit. They did not condescend with their vantage point and say to other Christians, “well, you obviously do not have the understanding I have so I will no longer communicate with you”. They were truly confident that the spirit was able to teach us all things. Now say you have a revelation about a passage of scripture and thereby some sort of vantage point. If you insist that a person learns your revelation immediately or perish, how does the love of God dwell in you? We are all saved by grace, not by doctrine or by diligence. In a great many things, we must forbear with one another. It is being like-minded as Christians that allows us to stand as a church

“Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.” Col3:13

“Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”~1Col1:10

And again, “Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.~Rom12:16

Finally the thing that stands out to me about disputes is this:

2 Peter 2: 11 Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord. 12 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption;

James


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James Gabriel Gondai Dziya

 2004/7/11 16:42Profile
crsschk
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Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
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 Re:

Keith,

Sometimes perhaps we just need to be blunt.
Thanks.


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Mike Balog

 2004/7/11 17:04Profile
Chosen7Stone
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Joined: 2003/7/21
Posts: 268
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 Re:

A lot of wealth to be found within this thread. I feel like God snuggly sewed together more Scripture here for me in order to teach yet another sweet lesson.


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Mary M.

 2004/7/11 21:35Profile
sermonindex
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Posts: 37087
"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11

Online!
 Re:

I felt that this is quite applicable to the thread discussion:

---

[b]Standing for Truth[/b]
We have developed in recent times a peace-loving, soft-spoken, tame and harmless brand of Christian of whom the world has no fear and for whom it has little respect. We are careful, for instance, never to speak in public against any of the false cults lest we be thought intolerant. We fear to talk against the destructive sins of modern civilization for fear someone will brand us as bigoted and narrow. Little by little we have been forced off the hard earth into a religious cloud-land where we are permitted to wing our harmless way around, like swallows at sundown, saying nothing that might stir the ire of the sons of this world. That Neo-Christianity, which seems for the time to be the most popular (and is certainly the most aggressive), is very careful not to oppose sin. It wins its crowds by amusing them and its converts by hiding from them the full implications of the Christian message. It carries on its projects after the ballyhoo methods of American business. Well might we paraphrase Wordsworth and cry, "Elijah, thou shouldst be living at this hour; America has need of thee." We stand in desperate need of a few men like Elijah who will dare to face up to the brazen sinners who dictate our every way of life. Sin in the full proportions of a revolution or a plague has all but destroyed our civilization while church people have played like children in the marketplace. What has happened to the spirit of the American Christian? Has our gold become dim? Have we lost the spirit of discernment till we can no longer recognize our captors? How much longer will we hide in caves while Ahab and Jezebel continue to pollute the temple and ravage the land? Surely we should give this some serious thought and prayer before it is too late--if indeed it is not too late already.
-A.W. Tozer


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2004/7/12 8:25Profile
todd
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Joined: 2003/5/12
Posts: 573
California

 Re:

Thanks everyone.

Quote:
"but I guess it just wouldn't be the internet without the occaisional irrational explosion."

Good point, and I think things are usually done in good taste around here. And I have probably had my own fair share of "the occasional irrational explosion."

Also, the Titus reference seems somewhat relevant here but I think a few things should be added in comment. The "sound doctrine" spoken of here was directly passed down from Paul to Titus to teach to the brethren. And Paul's doctrine came directly from Jesus Christ. Titus and Paul were so well aquainted that Paul could call him his true child in the faith (1:4).

Today, nearly 2000 years later, there is much disagreement about what is "sound doctrine" amongst sincere believers. And who has the kind of authority that Paul did, directly from the Lord, to pass on to leaders (who will pass it on the other leaders)?

Can we get such authority from the Scriptures alone? Isn't that how the Pharisees believed authority worked? What they based their perceived authority on?

Should we not tread very humbly, slowly, patiently, and gently into areas of doctrinal disagreement?

I, for one, am unconvinced that the Faith camp is [i]mostly[/i] unsound doctrinally. Their are certain extremes and excesses that I don't agree with, just like with many camps in the "common faith."

 2004/7/14 9:09Profile





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