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 The Unchurched Submission Issue

The Topic of Submission, Head Coverings and the like have been frequently popping up on SI and I thought of adding my two cents worth (which ain't much).

It says, Romans 13:5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.

What if one doesn't go to a Church to be Pastored? After all, that is where your going to find them in some type organization.

Let me put myself out there to be stoned. I don't go to any assembly whatsoever, in fact, I haven't been to Church since 2004. I am not proud of that but I have prayed so many times as to where the Lord would have me go but no answer eventually I gave up on asking. I have prayed, fasted to find out if there be anything hindering the flow of guidance and I have many leadings in other areas but this one thing and received many answers to prayer since. I have made an attempt to 'try' to force the issue but the door keeps closing in my face so I have left it alone. Whenever I feel the need to be with other believers, God orders my steps and one right after the other I bump into brethren I haven't seen in ages and oh the fellowship is so sweet.

Now, I am NOT looking for advice, I am looking to find out how you see the scriptures for someone like myself who is not under a Pastor.

Does being in a church/homechurch/under a Pastor mean that your subjected?

 2012/2/19 11:26









 Re: The Unchurched Submission Issue

If we are born again, we are under a pastor - His name is Jesus Christ. He is the good Sheppard of the Church of the first born whose names are written in heaven. My pastor said we are all brethren. So I could care less how many men say some are clergy and some are laity. It is meaningless to me. Denominations too are meaningless as they are nothing but mans carnal religious kingdoms. I long to see true brethren and elders come out of them.

As far as submitting, my wife covers her head at home meetings, bible studies, etc and we are all in subjection to each other as brothers and sisters in Christ (more so to elders who are proven in the faith and worthy of double honor). Its hard to even talk about these issues really when we are trying to apply them to the modern religous scene. The apostles instructions were designed for the type of fellowship we see in the new testament.. not that of Rome in the dark ages or modern American Christianity.

Approved - don't stop looking for fellowship, for a casual bible study or prayer meeting with a couple of brethren. We know there are very few institutional churches that a true believer would feel comfortable in today. Most are part of the harlot imposter bride of Jesus. To paraphrase Carter Conlon - better to find a Bible study with a few brethren who care for the poor than go to one of these places.

Here is an experience I had where I was lead to submit to a brother in the Lord in a home fellowship setting.

http://fleebabylon.wordpress.com/2011/08/16/submit/

Be blesed in Christ -Jim

 2012/2/19 12:24
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 Re:


Dear Brother,

God has many of His people outside church buildings right now and this is because of the times. If there are true brethren that you know you will want to fellowship with them. Also we must protect against a individual spirit for this spirit never builds or is part of building the body of Christ.

Even myself who has traveled much constantly for seasons of my christian life I have endavoured whereever possible to be under authority. Even submitting to bad authority will grant God's blessing on your life.

This book has helped me much and encouraged me on this subject: Touching Godliness Through Submission: http://www.sermonindex.net/pdf/touchinggodlinessbykpyohannan.pdf


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2012/2/19 12:56Profile
roadsign
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Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776


 Re:

Approved, I’m sure your own thoughts resonate with many others. I'll toss in a few "coins" here.

Quote:
What if one doesn't go to a Church to be Pastored? After all, that is where your going to find them in some type organization.

Remember, you are applying a modern western design of “church” to a biblical principle. We can’t overlook Paul’s Body imagery – how the parts are all needed amongst each other. When God puts you in a context with others, you have a give-and-take responsibility: “Submit to one another.” How effectively you integrate this into the Body of “parts” in your life depends largely on your own spiritual maturity and your attitude towards God, others, and yourself.

Quote:
Does being in a church/homechurch/under a Pastor mean that your subjected?


Yes or No. Submission is not about lining yourself up in a hierarchal line of authority figures. That is worldly submission. If you are trying to apply a definition that can only work one way, you must redo your own definition – rather than the intended Biblical expectation for you.

Quote:
Whenever I feel the need to be with other believers, God orders my steps and one right after the other I bump into brethren I haven't seen in ages and oh the fellowship is so sweet.

Praise God! No doubt God brings people into your life for more than merely to fill your loneliness. He is sensitizing you to your own responsibility towards mutual growth - going in both directions. For example: Receiving from one who is truly an elder in the Lord, is a way of honoring that person. So is contributing something from yourself to another who is needy of it.

Quote:
Let me put myself out there to be stoned.


You don’t mind being tarred and feathered do you? Actually, you can hardly consider yourself to be a believer apart from a connection to the Body – that is, as a member of the Kingdom of heaven. In that sense there are no “individual” believers.


Quote:
I have made an attempt to 'try' to force the issue but the door keeps closing in my face so I have left it alone.

Praise God for resisting your own attempts to open doors! No doubt God has a specific agenda for you right now.
Quote:
I am looking to find out how you see the scriptures for someone like myself who is not under a Pastor.


I trust I addressed this request by using Paul’s Body imagery - which you can apply in your own life context.

Oh… and remember also the “cloud of witnesses” (Rom. 12:1). You are in fellowship with those in the past too – through their offerings to us – books, testimonies, faith, etc. And even here, God is most capable of guiding you – if you are open for it.


One more consideration: One current Christian writer notes that our western understanding of Christian life separates the spiritual from the practical, whereas the biblical world view integrated them. Submission, then is not merely something you apply to a “spiritual” realm, but it has a practical outworking in every day life. It’s not merely a Sunday-morning-at-church issue.


Would any of these points make a difference to you in your present relationships?

Diane





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Diane

 2012/2/19 13:23Profile









 Re: Approved

Brother welcome to the wilderness. I believe Christian in Pilgrim's Progress had only Faithful for fellowship. I have not been involved in an organized 501c3 church for quiet sometime now. I do try to get fellowship as Jesus brings people across my path. Except for reading and posting in the forum much of my ministry is through conference prayer calls with other people across the country. God had used me to facilitate the only conference call of its kind to pray for the persecuted. As far ad I know this is the only call of its kind in the country.

Much of the feeding I get from Jesus is spent in prayer and the word. Mainly in that secret place with him. I have tried many times to find a fellowship of believers. But to know avail. Years ago God gave me a wotd. . He said do not commit yourself to a church or an organization but commit yourself to Christ. When I have stayed with that wotd, blessing. When I went against that wotd, heartache anf disappointment.

You don't have to be in the organized structure to be used of Jesus. You need simply to be in Jesus.

Blaine

 2012/2/19 13:38









 Re:

"You don't have to be in the organized structure to be used of Jesus. You need simply to be in Jesus."

Still we should also not forsake the gathering together - if possible. There is nothing greater than having fellowship with Jesus and real relationships with real saints apart from the system. No saint should stay in the wilderness longer than God appoints to them.

I am not talking about going to the local IC for "service" or so we can feel like we are under "authority" or in "fellowship" either.. just looking for true brethren to meet with(who probably will be out of the system too or at least heading that way).

in Christ -Jim

 2012/2/19 13:53









 Re: The Unchurched Submission Issue

Since nobody is going to say it, I will.


Deuteronomy 12:5—
But you are to seek the habitation of
your Father; the
place which Yahweh your Father shall
choose out of all your tribes to establish
His Name—and there you must go.

The keyword there is to SEEK - that means it's not that easy to find. Now after you've found this place and it's too far; this is what you Father in heaven says, "GO ANYWAY" Deuteronomy 14:24

He did'nt say we should start making excuses why we can't go. Convert your tithe to money and go there.That's what he said. I know people are going to cry foul, but that's all they do anyway when they disagree with scripture. I didn’t make this up, I got it straight from the scriptures. Read it for yourself. Salvation is not in the church.

Seek the habitation of your Father, where HE CHOOSES, not where people choose to put up a church. I know what most of you are thinking, "but he lives in my heart" NO he doesn't!

 2012/2/19 13:59
murrcolr
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Joined: 2007/4/25
Posts: 1529
Scotland, UK

 Re: The Unchurched Submission Issue

I haven’t been a member of a church since 2000. I have been to the occasional meeting or conference for example the “sermon index” one in Scotland. I have no inclination in the least to be a member of a church, so the only dealings I have with Christians is on SI and that I was considering ending that just last week…

I would say that I have developed more as a Christian being away from the church that when I was a part of it…

Paul, an apostle—sent not from men nor by a man, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father. Gal 1:1

Paul’s immediate response was not to consult any human being. He did no go up to Jerusalem to see the apostles before I was, but I went into Arabia. Later I returned to Damascus. Then after three years, he went up to Jerusalem to get acquainted with Peter.

I guess the key here is Paul and Apostle sent by Jesus Christ and God the Father, that’s who he is submitted to Christ and the Father…


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Colin Murray

 2012/2/19 14:42Profile
twayneb
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Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 2002
Joplin, Missouri

 Re: The Unchurched Submission Issue

Approved: Jim is right I think. You are "under" a pastor and His name is Jesus. We are called as a body to be interconnected with every joint supplying as it is anointed to do so by the Lord. Eph. 4. We are to be in mutual submission on to another. 1 Peter 5:5. God has set some in positions of leadership in the body of Christ. In the early church is was a plurality of eldership in each city. Perhaps in modern America it may be leadership in a local fellowship where you might be attending. Or, it might be men that are recognized by God and other believers as christian leaders in your community. We need to honor those leaders and be in submission to them as they lead us in the Lord. This is a far cry from many of the shepherding movements that have gone forth that teach that every believer must be "under" someone. Actually a Christian leader following the example would be "under" the people he leads girding them up and preparing them for the work of the ministry, not lording over them as the manner of the corporate world.

My wife and I served in various fellowships in our area. In each case we were in submission to the leadership in that place until God called us to leave that place. We are now without a permanent local fellowship. We are traveling around the city getting to know the body of Christ in the city. We are making connection with believers and leaders in the city and are loving it. God is showing us the body in a greater way than before. But we still think it vital to have intimate relationships with other believers and have our lives submitted to them in love. This we do, and we are growing greatly.

Body life and subjection is not about a leader/follower or pastor/laity paradigm but rather about intimate relationship and fellowship in the Lord in which we are open to other believers. I don't believe God ever intended any of us to be lone rangers. This is actually dangerous. But likewise there is never an example of the "over/under" paradigm given in the New Testament. There is much said about our interdependency on the rest of the body.

That is my take anyway.


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Travis

 2012/2/19 16:37Profile









 Re:

Quote:
I know what most of you are thinking, "but he lives in my heart" NO he doesn't!

Brother, perhaps you can explain this as to why He is not in our hearts?


As to all of you who wrote, such wonderful grace fell in your posts as if speaking to you face to face. I did not ask for advice, but you gave it anyway and I thank you.


Quote:
He didn't say we should start making excuses why we can't go.

I can assure you brother that there are no excuses being put forth. I have always been a stickler of being led by the Spirit. When He told me to go to the last Church, I went. When He told me to leave it, I left. If I go ahead of Him because I think it's the right thing to do, I get into trouble. It has taken many years of failings to realize what Jesus meant when He said, "Mary hath found the best part".

The best part was waiting for instruction instead of going about thinking what pleases the Father. Obedience is better than the sacrifice of thinking that I am doing God a service by applying His word without the Spirit giving the command. Jesus lived that life of waiting on God for His daily bread that He would give to the people each day. He is the example that we should live after, waiting on God receiving His instructions doing the perfect will of God.

Quote:
I would say that I have developed more as a Christian being away from the church that when I was a part of it…

Sadly I have to agree. The Church that God told me to leave dissolved within a couple of years and the members scattered. They were a great set of people. After leaving that God began to open my understanding of the scriptures like never before. It frightened me because what He was revealing was not popular and there were times I had to step back and take a breather. When you pray for truth, know what your praying about and be prepared to receive something that your flesh is not going to like, but we are born of His Spirit, our flesh is not our identity, so we are going to like His truth, we just need to make the adjustments.

 2012/2/19 18:34





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