| Re: |
BrotherTom, I bite my tongue quite a bit when I hear this kind of talk. Yes there are problems in the Church and many pastor do exactly what you are saying. But you are twisting and picking and pulling from scripture to bolster your beliefs just as much as those you accuse. The single pastor you mentioned was a single pastor because he alone was mentioned. Nothing is written in the text that says he set himself up as the only pastor. The text says he wouldn't listen to anyone else. This can happen in any model.
Then you mentioned how holy the early church was. It's funny that we know what not to do because of this period of church history. How many clergy/laity model churches do you know of in which members are getting drunk on communion wine and having orgies with each other? Can't think of any actual churches that do this? Me either. Except for the church at Corinth. Pretty tacky for such a holy model.
Most of these responses are only proving what the title of the original post says. The model is not the Gospel. The gospel is the news, not the method of telling the news. It's not good news, it is THE news. Our problem isn't that we have senior pastors instead of a plurality of elders. Our problem is that these senior pastors can be as gospel ignorant as the basic Christian. To get wrapped up in models and what it "used" to be like is what Paul wrote of in Romans 8 - The mind set on the flesh brings death, but the mind set on the Spirit brings life. It matters little what church looks like. What matters is that people know that our sin is offensive to God and because we are exceedingly sinful we deserve hell. But God in His mercy gave us His only begotten Son to be the propitiation of our sins. Upon our repentance, we are forgiven. Upon our belief covered. We are given the righteousness of God, we are regenerated, we are reconciled, we are redeemed. We have the Holy Spirit within groaning for our benefit. We have the Lord Jesus Christ sitting at the right hand of the Father interceding on our behalf.
All of this and you want to reduce the gospel to what model of church we are using? If this salvation is so great and our God is so great do you really think that a model is going to get in the way? God does use the foolish things of this world, or does He not?
You should really examine your thoughts and motives.
| 2011/4/19 11:25||Profile|
| Nicolaitan model.|
RE: to Hoohoou:
Thank-you for your thoughtful post....and I agree with you. In my post, which essentially exposed the Clergy/Laity model...I accentuated an error...Not "THE ERROR."
"All of this and you want to reduce the gospel to what model of church we are using? If this salvation is so great and our God is so great do you really think that a model is going to get in the way? God does use the foolish things of this world, or does He not?"
Amen! I agree with the tenor statement entirely. The model, obviously, sometimes has nothing to do with the Reality of God possessing his church, or Apostasy. You can have a perfect model,...as you noted in Corinth's ugly fruit, and No Holy Spirit....You can have a very Flawed model....and see the Glory of Jesus in Shekinah Glory.
Yet, as in the book of Acts, which is an historical account of the Acts of the Holy Spirit through men, sometimes the model is all we have. The Model is sometimes obscured by the sins of men, yet it was established through the Apostles, as a vehicle that would ensure His resting Place for each of the family of God.
My point is, that we are ALL ministers of the Gospel, and each of us has a ministry....it is NEVER simply regulated to a "PRIEST CLASS"...which has proven, on a massive scale, to have destroyed Body Life, and Body ministry.
Overall...[not entirely] this model has produced the "One Man Show", which has in turn robbed the church of the many ministries which exist within the heart of the Body....even unto the least of the Brothers and Sisters.
Along with this "Master of Ceremonies" concept, comes the liturgy that guarantees it's survival, at the expense of the body, which is taught to SIT, or "LAY", in subservience to the PRIEST CLASS...[ the Clergy/Laity is then accepted as the Norm...it is Not! the norm..]
This, without a doubt has been severely destructive to the Church. Acts 20:30...as Paul speaks of his efforts to establish a Godly model of plurality of Elders...and exposes the dangers of men drawing disciples...."AFTER THEMSELVES"...either willingly, or because their Bible school taught them so.
28. Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
29. For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.
30. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.
31. Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.
Paul taught the Holy Model of the church.
Jesus spoke; "Thus you also have those who hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. Repent, or else I will come to you quickly and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth!"
Nicolaitan means Kings, or Lords over my people, or, "over the lay." What model would you suppose the Lord Jesus was talking about?
| 2011/4/19 12:41|
| Re: Nicolaitan model.|
The "clergy" model has been very destructive to Christianity and the Lord is rightfully indignant against it in Revelation, because it pretty much nullifies His AUTHORITY and VOICE in the life of His sheep.
This battle has been fought for many, many centuries, however, today, most have "rolled over" and accept the clergy/laity system as if it is NORMAL CHRISTIANITY.
Here is an instance in history we should remember.
Waldo and his followers were Catholics, perfectly orthodox in every respect. But problems arose over the question of preaching. At the time, preaching required official Church permission, which Waldo was unable to secure from the Bishop in Lyon. In 1179 Waldo attended Pope Alexander III at the Third Lateran Council and asked for permission to preach. Walter Map, in De Nugis Curialium, narrates the discussions at one of these meetings. The pope, while praising Peter Waldo's ideal of poverty, ordered him not to preach unless he had the permission of the local clergy. He continued to preach without permission and by the early 1180s he and his followers were excommunicated and forced from Lyon.
The Catholic Church declared them heretics - the group's principle error was "contempt for ecclesiastical power" - that they dared to teach and preach outside of the control of the clergy "without divine inspiration". They were also accused of the ignorant teaching of "innumerable errors" and condemned for translating literally parts of the Bible which were deemed heretical by the Church. Waldo's teaching was very similar to that of Francis of Assisi, and his followers experienced a similar fate. St Francis's closest adherents, the Spiritual Franciscans, like Waldensians would be declared heretic and persecuted.
In attempting to justify their right to preach Waldensians read the bible closely and deduced that the papacy was mistaken not only in claiming the right to restrict their preaching, but also in a number of other respects - for example the role of priests as mediators between God and humankind, noting Matthew 23: "All of you are brethren." They also questioned the justification and extent of papal authority, and the interpretation of a number of biblical passages.
Waldensians were declared schismatics by Pope Lucius III in 1184 and heretics in 1215 by the Fourth Lateran Council, which anathemamitised them. The rejection by the Church radicalised the movement; the Waldensians became anti-Catholic - rejecting the authority of the clergy, declaring any oath to be a sin, claiming anyone could preach and that the Bible alone was all that was needed for salvation, and rejecting the concept of purgatory along with the adoration of relics and icons.
| 2011/4/19 13:04|
| Re: Nicolaitan model.|
BrotherTom, While I can't speak on Nicolatian definitions or even the beliefs of these people, I can say that it is involved with a system of thought and not a model. I've seen it many times here on SI. You get a couple of people saying B,B,B and another group of people saying C,C,C. Both are being honest, but both are distracting from the purpose of either B or C. The purpose is to be ministers of reconciliation, and to worship God. You could say that a hundred different ways, but that's the jist of it. However one goes about that is up to them and God. If someone wants to get kids to church by swallowing a goldfish, then so be it. As long as the gospel is preached, what does it matter?
You must understand, as well, that many pastors long to get out from under the pressure to be THE MAN. But people have grown lazy and don't want to feed themselves. Part of the problem is that people will gather preachers to tickle their ears. Don't be so hard on a model when it is usually someone who is giving people what they want. Still not right, though.
I have no choice but to agree with you that the practices that you describe do occur in churches all across the world. The thing is that it is the men in the pulpit and the people in the pews who are the problem. It is unregenerate "christians" who are trying to do the work of God. The difference is that the regenerate will work to do the will of God as he directs. The unregenerate try do the work for God.
| 2011/4/19 13:26||Profile|
| Re: |
May God be true. The spirit of anti-Christ has been and still is. Dark days lie ahead for true Christians, times of darkness that only God can lead us through. If you have "known sin" in your life, repent, get it out. Get all "known sin" out of your life. Half-hearted Christians won't make it. The Islam religion, all that is evil, and led by satan himself is coming not just to America but all lands. This is the anti-Christ. God will see us through! Praise God! We have already won, PRAISE GOD!! PRAISE GOD
| 2011/4/19 16:43||Profile|
| Why are we so far from hoilness and power?|
"I have no choice but to agree with you that the practices that you describe do occur in churches all across the world.
The thing is that it is the men in the pulpit and the people in the pews who are the problem. It is unregenerate "Christians" who are trying to do the work of God.
The difference is that the regenerate will work to do the will of God as he directs. The unregenerate try do the work for God. "...................Hoohoou
Thank-you Hoohoou. The Pharisees of old murdered Jesus....but yet hailed themselves as the most qualified, the most deserved and able to rule and control the holy Church of God; all for their own benefit.
It is written that they concurred; "IF WE LET HIM CONTINUE!!! the Romans will come and destroy our place, and our Nation!"....so they counselled to murder Him, and also poor Lazarus....as a Resurrected witness. [ Did you ever consider how scarred they must have been to become so blatantly cold??]
The Church was and is designed by God, with "every member a part"....and every member giving and serving. How is this possible with a priest/class dominating as the authority? This destroys body life, and body ministry, and must cease for the body to become one....as Jesus prayed.
John 16:1-3 (New King James Version)
1. These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble.
2. They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.
3. And these things they will do to you because they have not known the Father nor Me!"...Jesus...
Jesus agrees with you ...." The unregenerate try do the work for God."
Religion kills....as often does the mindset of the modern hireling Pastors who deem themselves "Ministers."
| 2011/4/23 22:52|
| Re: Today's Gospel is Far From The NT Message|
The LORD is risen!
'And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of [things] in heaven, and [things] in earth, and [things] under the earth; and [that] every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ [is] Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure.' Phil 2.
Here is an instance in history we should remember.
Did you quote this from somewhere, or it's the story in your own words? I am interested, as I've heard of the Waldenses and had no idea their origin as Catholics, or that they became estranged from Rome for believing the Bible.
Quote:First of all it seems AT FIRST incredible that 'the cburch' (of Rome), would deem any part of the Bible heretical. Secondly, that they (Rome) who teach various unspiritual interpretations of scripture (such as transubstantiation), should condemn anyone else for 'translating literally' any part of the Bible.
and condemned for translating literally PARTS OF THE BIBLE which were DEEMED HERETICAL BY THE CHURCH.
This account is yet another which shows that the managers of men in Rome do know and understand what the Bible says, and they still reject it as the Pharisees did, attempting to annul the power of God through His word, although they must also be aware that the word of God is not bound.
Do you have any idea which parts of scripture were deemed heretical? (I am wondering if they have any bearing on the farness of 'Today's Gospel' from 'the NT Message').
| 2011/4/24 7:05|
Whittier CA USA
| Re: |
Hi Alive-to-God, recently I came across the following piece from Wikipedia regarding Tyndale's translation of Scripture. I thought you may find it interesting as it touches similarly on what you posted:
"Reaction of the Catholic Church
Tyndales translations were condemned by both church and state in England, where it must be said it took longer for the reform movement to take hold. Tyndale was forced to flee England for the continent where he found safe haven in pro-reform areas. The church and state reacted strongly against Tyndales work, banning his New Testament of 1526 from England. In addition any copy of his work found in England was to be burned. Many Catholic scholars attacked Tyndale and his translations, the foremost of whom was Thomas More. More and the Catholic Church refuted Tyndales translations because they argued that Tyndale had purposefully mistranslated the texts in order to promote anti-clericalism and heretical views. More specifically attacked Tyndale on the grounds that he had corrupted scripture by changing certain words and thus the meaning of scripture. More focused on four key words that Tyndale had changed in his translation. The terms, as appearing in the Catholic texts, were church, priest, do penance and charity. These words became congregation, senior (changed to elder in the revised edition of 1534), repent and love in Tyndale translation. More and the Church took great offense to these changes because they challenged many of the systems and doctrines that made up the foundation of the Catholic Church during this period of time. In 1536 the crown authorities strangled Tyndale to death and subsequently burned his body.
Challenges to Catholic Doctrine
The Catholic Church had long proclaimed that the church was an institution. The word church to them had come to represent the organizational structure that was the Catholic Church. Tyndales translation was seen as a challenge to this doctrine because he was seen to have favored the views of reformers like Martin Luther who proclaimed that the church was made up and defined by the believers, or in other words their congregations. Some radical reformers preached that the true church was the invisible church, that wherever true Christians meet together to preach the word of God was where the church was. To these reformers the structure of the Catholic Church was unnecessary and its very existence proved that it was in fact not the true Church. When Tyndale decided that the Greek word εκκλησία (ekklesia) is more accurately translated congregation he was undermining the entire structure of the Catholic Church. Many of the reform movements believed in the authority of scripture alone. To them it dictated how the church should be organized and administered. By changing the translation from church to congregation Tyndale was providing ammunition for the beliefs of the reformers. Their belief that the church was not a visible systematized institution but a body defined by the believers themselves was now to be found directly in the Holy Scripture. Furthermore Tyndales use of the word congregation attacked the Catholic Churchs doctrine that the lay members and the clergy were to be separate. If the true church is defined as a congregation, as the common believers, then the Catholic Churchs claim that the clergy were of a higher order than the average Christian and that they had different roles to play in the religious process no longer held sway.
Tyndales translation of the Greek word πρεσβύτερος (presbuteros) to mean elder instead of priest also challenged the doctrines of the Catholic Church. In particular, it asked what the role of the clergy should be and whether or not they were to be separated from the common believers as they were in the current Catholic system. The role of the priest in the Catholic Church had been to lead religious sermons and ceremonies like mass, to read the scripture to the people, and to administer the sacraments. They were considered separate from the common believers. In many reform movements a group of elders would lead the church and take the place of the Catholic priests. These elders were not a separate class from the common believers; in fact, they were usually selected from amongst them. Many reformers believed in the idea of the priesthood of all believers, which meant that every Christian was in fact a priest and had the right to read and interpret scripture. Tyndales translation stripped away the scriptural basis of Catholic clerical power. Priests no longer administered the church: it was the job of the elders, which implied that the power rested in the hands of the people.
Catholic doctrine was also challenged by Tyndales translation of the Greek μετανοείτε (metanoeite) as repent instead of do penance. This translation attacked the Catholic sacrament of penance. Tyndales version of scripture backed up the views of reformers like Luther who had taken issue with the Catholic practice of sacramental penance. Reformers believed that it was through faith alone that one was saved. This differed from the views of the Catholic Church, which followed the belief that salvation was granted to those who lived accordingly to what the church told them and thus participated in the seven sacraments. Tyndales translation challenged the belief that one had to do penance for ones sins. According to Tyndales New Testament and other reformers, all the believer had to do was repent with a sincere heart, and God would forgive them. The believer did not have to earn their salvation; it was given freely to them by God. All they had to do was believe in his promise and live accordingly.
The Tyndale Bible also challenged the Catholic Church in many other ways. The fact that it was translated into a vernacular language made it available to the common people. This allowed everyone access to scripture and gave the common people the ability to read (if they were literate) and interpret scripture how they wished, exposing it to the threat of being "twisted to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures" (2 Peter 3.16) instead of relying on the church for their access to scripture. The main threat that Tyndales Bible caused to the Catholic Church is best summed up by Tyndale himself when he tells us of his reason for creating his translation in the first place. Tyndales purpose was to [cause a boy that driveth the plough to know more scripture] than the clergy of the day, many of which were poorly educated. Thus Tyndale sought to undermine the Catholic Churchs grip on the both access to and interpretation of scripture. They were no longer needed as intercessors between the people and God."
As I read the above I couldn't help but notice a similar kind of challenge and sitiuation going on today within Protestantism, though to a much less extreme.
| 2011/4/24 11:16||Profile|
| Re: Today's Gospel is Far From The NT Message|
Thanks for these quotes. They crystallise some of Tyndale's story with regard to Catholicism. Three years after the New Testament, he published 'The Obedience of a Christian Man', which is a great read, with many comparisons offered between Catholic doctrine and Biblical doctrine. You can look inside.
Tyndale had used the Catholic Erasmus' choice of manuscripts. I'm now wondering what happened to the work Erasmus did in Latin for the Catholic church, which was equally controversial within Catholicism, forcing him to the fore as a Catholic apologist rather against his better judgement. Later the Catholic establishment asked him to refute Luther's work, and he was forced to dig up an old false doctrine (fideism) for the spine of his thesis. This has continued to be a mainstay of Catholicism till today.
| 2011/4/24 12:28|
| Re: |
Yes, the link is in this thread. Perhaps you missed it.
If I dig a bit, I could probably find what translations the RCC deemed heretical.
We have to remember, that the RCC Magisterium has set themselves up as the only authoritative interpreters of Scripture. The individual believer does not have the Spirit of Truth residing in them.
I wonder what the Holy Spirit thinks of that, since He said, "He will guide us into all truth".
Joh 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
1Jn 2:27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.
1Co 2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
| 2011/4/24 13:26|