| Re: When hateful dissent is hidden in the smiles of religion, and dogma emerges.|
Thank you Brothertom for your reply. I had in fact read the earlier post and consider it informative, explanatory, well written and of good spirit and intention.
Without doubt, we should be careful to not incite division among brothers in discussion of theological topic just as we should be careful to place authority on the written Word. Sometimes we seem to confuse the two.
My concern stems from a personal distaste of censorship. Did not the religious leaders of the time desire to censor our Lord Jesus and in fact silence him? Can we not also consider the decension between Paul and Peter? Though we are not given detailed word for word accounts it remains quite clear this was much more than a mere passing minor disagreement. This isn't to say everything written within the Word is approved of God and fully acceptable as practice. We know that is not the case.
marcmc stated in part "......I'm curious if any who have debated this subject at length have considered what's at stake for themselves...."
then further states
"It should therefore be one of the highest priorities of believers to find out for themselves the Will of God in this area."
You rightfully state, quoted here in part, "...each contains slivers of truth...."
I tend to apply
Proverbs 14:4 (KJV)
4 Where no oxen are, the crib is clean: but much increase is by the strength of the ox.
All this said I appreciate the attempts to insure and enforce civil discussion within these forums and thankful I do not have to be involved in those matters. Mine is but to follow guidelines and pray always all men attempt to focus on our Lord. For me, censorship is simply disturbing in that I lose opportunity to further understand other viewpoints. Though I may disagree with those views, the understanding extracted, remains in fact gain. (I can always read a book and save bandwidth, lol)
Heavenly Father, praise be unto you for the simplicity of the pure Gospel as taught and given by and in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen
| 2012/7/1 21:47||Profile|
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I'm new around here and probably will spend little time at this. But I'm curious if any who have debated this subject at length have considered what's at stake for themselves and have ever used logic to consider that our Father God would never have left His children with such a complex question unanswered.
I recommend this video by Kieth Daniels about this debate.
| 2012/7/2 2:20||Profile|
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I have been a church member in both camps and over the years have come to see that church creeds or confession statements do not necessarily reflect the way people actually think in real life. Over time, in real life, Ive notice a gradual drifting towards trust in self over and above trust in God. The lingo may sound different, but thats merely superficial. Likewise, I find vibrant believers in either camp those who have practiced a life of trusting faith, regardless of the church trends. And in those cases, the different camps are fairly immaterial.
So why does this debate stay so hot!?
These cav/arm debates only brings the fruit of hate toward each other.
Is this not the same assumption (ie, it only brings hatred) which agnostics use to claim that Christianity should be abolished. It can be another way of saying, I dont want to deal with it. But sweeping the problem under the carpet merely makes for a bumpy floor. And we keep tripping over the bumps and knocking each others heads.
I'm saying is this is a black or white issue and that's why it can't be settled in debate.
This assertion reminds me of a time Jesus was presented with a black and white issue: Who sinned, this man or his parents? Chose one, Jesus! Check off one box. And well tell you what those boxes are.
Do you see the problem here? As long as we insist on only two possibilities we are unable to entertain an entirely different perspective. Can it not be possible that this divisive issue exists so that Gods name might be glorified? Just as for the blind man, resolution requires a healing in sightedness (to the mind).
what's at stake for themselves
This is a valid point. Whats at stake may be the loss of face. I think that's what kept the issue irresolvable at opportune historical points. But never mind that for now. My point is that psychological/emotional factors are involved in a big way. And maybe at the root of our anxious desire for resolution is an idolatrous craving for a conflict-free religion. Whats at stake is our beloved idol: utopia on this side of eternity. And we think we can get there if we avoid the pitfalls of the other camp (remember, its harder to see our own). So we reinforce our position according to what we DONT want to be like and insulate ourselves from the other.
Thats nothing new in human nature, or in historical Christianity. So perhaps the debate can serve us best by teaching us something about ourselves.
My! This is a long-winded post. I could go on and on some more because I've given this a lot of thought. It's an exciting topic to explore.... and there's exciting stuff to discover!
| 2012/7/2 9:06||Profile|
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My assertion that this is a black and white issue is far more basic than your suggesting.
I understand that we live in a society that truly hates absolutes of any kind. And regardless of the subject or field you can find a hot button topic of debate. Typically these debates are over 2 ways to accomplish something with both sides convinced they are right. If you pick any random subject and go to their forums you with find these hot button subjects in a matter of minutes. You will also find Mods running around trying to keep the subject surpressed and cleaning up messes. Threads get locked, members get warned or banned and still the subject comes back again and again. This type of division is everywhere and is not uniques to SI in the slightest way.
The difference with cal/arm is these are not 2 different ways to do the same thing like I mentioned above. They are 2 very different ways that lead down 2 different roads. They are 2 different start points of 2 different paths. One or the other is a massive error and will of course lead to nothing but more errors.
What the enemy has done for years is tuck this debate into the same category as all other human debates. He has kept the fires burning because he knows what is at stake if the Church ever decided to really get to bottom of it.
That's what I mean by black and white.
| 2012/7/2 9:36|
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But sweeping the problem under the carpet merely makes for a bumpy floor. And we keep tripping over the bumps and knocking each others heads.
Well said, Diane! I love the way you word things.
| 2012/7/2 11:13|
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One or the other is a massive error and will of course lead to nothing but more errors.
I find vibrant believers in either camp those who have practiced a life of trusting faith, regardless of the church trends. And in those cases, the different camps are fairly immaterial.
These comments, in themselves, illustrate my point: that there is much more involved in the divide than merely theological propositions. In this example my brother and I are at odds because we READ our own experiences differently; we interpret them with vastly different sets of lens. And indeed, we do end up on vastly divergent paths - BEFORE even talking about theology.
Regarding our mods' way of handling our divisiveness, we may see differently. I see this site as hospitable to both perspectives. I see the alleged suppression and censoring as a strategy to keep dynamite from blowing up and causing further damage. I agree that it is not the ideal means, but maybe the rest of us have closed the door to any other measures! As I have seen over my last 7 years here, we do have a habit of forming premature judgments and reacting emotionally rather quickly. (I include myself) And that inhibits us from leaving room for thinking, reading, listening, and for grace even in the midst of our wrestling. Thus we destine ourselves (pardon the word) to the law; and we destine our mods to becoming policemen.
Marmac, by sharing your perspectives, I think I can understand your sense of futility. There is indeed a lot of truth in what you say. Yet, I cannot validate the need for forming such broad-sweeping negative absolutes. I would even suggest that some of yours can be proven incorrect.
That begs the question: If someone challenges any of your statements above, would you view them as divisive?
So you see, we ourselves can contribute to the divide by forming absolutes that invite rebuttal and indeed, require it!
. even before we talk theology
| 2012/7/2 12:16||Profile|
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I should also add that where I live this is a non debate. There is zero cal/arm up here to my knowledge. I live in Canada and Calvinism has no ground here. This is the Land of the who so ever gospel. If you even mention the name Calvin up here to a mature believer or Paster they will smile and chuckle.
I have formed my opinion based on my personal discovery of it and the realization that my prior path was no longer congruent with a revelation of the first chapter of Ephesians. When the Lord (not man) unfolded what is referred too as Reformed Theology to me, I did not know what Reformed Theology was. I found the writings and books on the subject years later. But they still carry little weight with me. And I would certainly never say I am Calvinist! I'm victorious in Christ, behind closed doors!
| 2012/7/2 14:14|
"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11
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We do not judge or condemn anyone who believes or disbelieves in reformed theology on these forums but we ask because of the divisive nature of this topic that it not be argued and discussed on the forums. There are many other discussion forums in the internet to discuss these things.
A goal of SermonIndex is to Focus on Christ, His person and scriptures alone and not on all the "ism"s men make from them. On this website we have asked and continue to ask people not to contribute or start divisive threads on the subject of calvinism or arminism. Of course we can talk about other scripture topics that are covered in these systems but we encourage the saints not to address these systems because they do bring division.
One of the purposes of these forums is to bring unity to the body of Christ and let believers to come together from all different backgrounds to encourage each other and edify and uplift each other. And also to learn from each other.
here is a note from the about us page: http://www.sermonindex.net/about.php
Q. Does SermonIndex have a certain denominational emphasis?
Answer. No. SermonIndex desires to be a expression of the apostolic church found in Scriptures (Book Of Acts). It is a inter-denominational ministry with 100's of different denominations and ministries involved. Revival, Holiness, Authenticity, and a genuine experience of Biblical Christianity is core the values of this ministry. We believe that the Church of Jesus Christ is larger than any one denomination or group, and that Christ has His love slaves in many different sections of the visible church in many different parts of the world.
I am locking this thread and ask similar threads on these subjects would not be opened on these forums.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon
| 2012/7/2 14:44||Profile|