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Author Topic: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"  (Read 14562 times)

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Offline savedbyhim

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Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« on: Thu Mar 19, 2009 - 08:30:57 »
Here is a link to the survey by Flavil Yeakley that is designed to gather information on why some people leave the church of Christ. He routinely puts together statistics about the ups and downs of church growth and it might be helpful to complete the survey if you have been a member of the church of Christ before but left to worship somewhere else.

http://churchesofchristsurvey.com/

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Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« on: Thu Mar 19, 2009 - 08:30:57 »

Offline Arkstfan

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #1 on: Thu Mar 19, 2009 - 09:16:11 »
Filled that out a couple weeks ago after I saw it in the Chronicle.

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #1 on: Thu Mar 19, 2009 - 09:16:11 »

Offline savedbyhim

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #2 on: Thu Mar 19, 2009 - 09:30:16 »
That's where I found the link also. I just thought it might be useful to post it here.

Offline Livelysword

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #3 on: Fri Mar 20, 2009 - 08:59:49 »
Filled that out a couple weeks ago after I saw it in the Chronicle.


Lively:  I just filled it out, but I doubt it will make anyone's highlight list in a paper... LOL

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #3 on: Fri Mar 20, 2009 - 08:59:49 »

Offline Just As I Am

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #4 on: Tue Mar 24, 2009 - 21:58:30 »
Filled that out a couple weeks ago after I saw it in the Chronicle.


Lively:  I just filled it out, but I doubt it will make anyone's highlight list in a paper... LOL

Does this mean you are not in the Churches of Christ?

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #4 on: Tue Mar 24, 2009 - 21:58:30 »



Offline Livelysword

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #5 on: Wed Mar 25, 2009 - 12:17:53 »
Filled that out a couple weeks ago after I saw it in the Chronicle.


Lively:  I just filled it out, but I doubt it will make anyone's highlight list in a paper... LOL

Does this mean you are not in the Churches of Christ?



Lively:  No, it does not mean I am not a member of the church of Christ...  which is why when they read it... it will not make their highlight real...  I did not write down why I left the church of Christ since I have not... but why I remain in the church of Christ... that hell simiply is not that appealing to me that I would openly rebel against God and his commandments...

Offline Arkstfan

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #6 on: Wed Mar 25, 2009 - 13:03:02 »
In other words you wasted their time of trying to understand what is going on.

marc

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #7 on: Wed Mar 25, 2009 - 14:38:59 »
Actually his reply is rather telling and goes a long way toward explaining why people are leaving.

Offline JERRY C

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #8 on: Wed Mar 25, 2009 - 14:58:33 »
hmm...
I just filled out the survey.
I missed the part where one can see the comments of others;
will go back.

for what it is worth, here is my question #3 answer --

Quote
we have visited around, and visit various groups when we travel to see grown children. 
two grown children go to left wing, metropolitan megachurches;
the third goes to a small, rural Ind. Xn Church
(I really like the atmosphere at this 3rd one the best, but that is a long discussion). 
My wife and I currently attend a small community church that emphasizes fellowship, holiness, Bible study, spiritual growth - "Chapel of the Apostolic Faith" is its name (sounds sorta RM?!) 

I just look the other way when some sermon point raises a red flag theologically.  I find myself, an amillenial arminian, among a group of dispensational calivinists, appreciating something different.  It is not "feelings", but a Spirit led group of believers who love each other, and love God.  The finer points of the Law, I just overlook.  I do miss weekly communion.  I enjoy the "pastor's" wife leading the singing along with a lay pianist (another sister). 

The intangibles that make this valuable are hard to enumerate.  I can quote all the verses that contradict some of their practices and doctrines, but in their "error" I find more truth than I have in a long time among "us"!  Strange, isn't it?  we could talk more if you desire.  just leave a message - (tele#) - and we connect.

thanks for the survey and the concern.  but, I suspect the leavers are finding what they were missing, and the stayers are not going to provide what they are finding, not in the near future.  I hope I am wrong.  for Him, Jerry.


Offline Livelysword

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #9 on: Wed Mar 25, 2009 - 18:19:05 »
In other words you wasted their time of trying to understand what is going on.


Lively:  I never think it a waste of time to enlighten someone with the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ and his church... the church of Christ and salvation in Christ, until they have gotten to the point that no matter what one says, they can not recover themselves from the snare of the devil... then it is time to kick the dust and move on...

Offline Just As I Am

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #10 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 01:31:10 »
Filled that out a couple weeks ago after I saw it in the Chronicle.



Lively:  I just filled it out, but I doubt it will make anyone's highlight list in a paper... LOL


Does this mean you are not in the Churches of Christ?




Lively:  No, it does not mean I am not a member of the church of Christ...  which is why when they read it... it will not make their highlight real...  I did not write down why I left the church of Christ since I have not... but why I remain in the church of Christ... that hell simiply is not that appealing to me that I would openly rebel against God and his commandments...


This is interesting.  Why would you even consider filling out this survey when the purpose of this states:

Here is a link to the survey by Flavil Yeakley that is designed to gather information on why some people leave the church of Christ. He routinely puts together statistics about the ups and downs of church growth and it might be helpful to complete the survey if you have been a member of the church of Christ before but left to worship somewhere else.

http://churchesofchristsurvey.com/


Sociologically speaking you really don't fit the parameters to even answer these questions. So your motivation in doing so is questionable and will make this sample not representative of people who have left.

So although your desires are well meaning, it's really unfortunate IMO that you chose to do so. Certainly there could have been a more productive way to talk about why you chose to remain in the Church of Christ than to fill out a survey intended for those who left the Church of Christ.

Offline Arkstfan

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #11 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 08:25:12 »
Lively:  I never think it a waste of time to enlighten someone with the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ and his church... the church of Christ and salvation in Christ, until they have gotten to the point that no matter what one says, they can not recover themselves from the snare of the devil... then it is time to kick the dust and move on...

You didn't enlighten anyone.

The survey was CLEARLY from a church of Christ researcher asking people who left why they left. If it were a survey asking members why they stay then no you wouldn't be wasting their time with your failure to apply simple principles of reading comprehension.

Offline Livelysword

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #12 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 08:50:54 »
Filled that out a couple weeks ago after I saw it in the Chronicle.



Lively:  I just filled it out, but I doubt it will make anyone's highlight list in a paper... LOL


Does this mean you are not in the Churches of Christ?




Lively:  No, it does not mean I am not a member of the church of Christ...  which is why when they read it... it will not make their highlight real...  I did not write down why I left the church of Christ since I have not... but why I remain in the church of Christ... that hell simiply is not that appealing to me that I would openly rebel against God and his commandments...


This is interesting.  Why would you even consider filling out this survey when the purpose of this states:

Here is a link to the survey by Flavil Yeakley that is designed to gather information on why some people leave the church of Christ. He routinely puts together statistics about the ups and downs of church growth and it might be helpful to complete the survey if you have been a member of the church of Christ before but left to worship somewhere else.

http://churchesofchristsurvey.com/


Sociologically speaking you really don't fit the parameters to even answer these questions. So your motivation in doing so is questionable and will make this sample not representative of people who have left.

So although your desires are well meaning, it's really unfortunate IMO that you chose to do so. Certainly there could have been a more productive way to talk about why you chose to remain in the Church of Christ than to fill out a survey intended for those who left the Church of Christ.



Lively:  Because I think people should know that the church of Christ is not what is portrayed by many who up and leave the church of Christ...  I view it no differently then when a web site is opened for members of the church of Christ and like minded friends, and those who were once members of the church but would never return show up for the express purpose of putting down the members of the church of Christ...  the difference being, the faithful speak the truth of Christ and the unfaithful do not... their purpose is simply to cause havoc of the church... and that web site to show the church of Christ as an evil place where God is not... the web site is based upon a lie... and only meant to comfort one who made it in his poor choice in leaving God...  but I will not comfort him in his decision...  Isn't it about time someone stood up for the truth?

Offline Arkstfan

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #13 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 10:03:10 »
I hope you bring more understanding to your study of God's word.

The survey creator is a solid member of the church of Christ. He's not looking to fall away nor rail against it. He is seeking honest answers from people who LEFT. If it were a survey of why you stay it would have been appropriate to resond. I don't know why you are struggling with something so simple and plain for anyone with a pure and uncontrived heart to understand.

Offline Just As I Am

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #14 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 12:00:30 »
Lively:  Because I think people should know that the church of Christ is not what is portrayed by many who up and leave the church of Christ...  I view it no differently then when a web site is opened for members of the church of Christ and like minded friends, and those who were once members of the church but would never return show up for the express purpose of putting down the members of the church of Christ...  the difference being, the faithful speak the truth of Christ and the unfaithful do not... their purpose is simply to cause havoc of the church... and that web site to show the church of Christ as an evil place where God is not... the web site is based upon a lie... and only meant to comfort one who made it in his poor choice in leaving God...  but I will not comfort him in his decision...  Isn't it about time someone stood up for the truth?

I understand what you are saying, but as I said it's really not appropriate in this context. 

This website and survey are for intended for use other than you see it. This isn't about standing up for the truth in the slightest it's about honest answers why people leave to gain insight.



Offline Livelysword

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #15 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 17:19:53 »
I hope you bring more understanding to your study of God's word.

The survey creator is a solid member of the church of Christ. He's not looking to fall away nor rail against it. He is seeking honest answers from people who LEFT. If it were a survey of why you stay it would have been appropriate to resond. I don't know why you are struggling with something so simple and plain for anyone with a pure and uncontrived heart to understand.



Lively:  LOL, i guess I did not know that... chuckle... maybe I will make his highliight real then... LOL

Offline Mere Nick

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #16 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 17:27:54 »
I hope you bring more understanding to your study of God's word.

The survey creator is a solid member of the church of Christ. He's not looking to fall away nor rail against it. He is seeking honest answers from people who LEFT. If it were a survey of why you stay it would have been appropriate to resond. I don't know why you are struggling with something so simple and plain for anyone with a pure and uncontrived heart to understand.



Lively:  LOL, i guess I did not know that... chuckle... maybe I will make his highliight real then... LOL

You would have known if you had simply read.

Offline Livelysword

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #17 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 17:28:33 »
Lively:  Because I think people should know that the church of Christ is not what is portrayed by many who up and leave the church of Christ...  I view it no differently then when a web site is opened for members of the church of Christ and like minded friends, and those who were once members of the church but would never return show up for the express purpose of putting down the members of the church of Christ...  the difference being, the faithful speak the truth of Christ and the unfaithful do not... their purpose is simply to cause havoc of the church... and that web site to show the church of Christ as an evil place where God is not... the web site is based upon a lie... and only meant to comfort one who made it in his poor choice in leaving God...  but I will not comfort him in his decision...  Isn't it about time someone stood up for the truth?

I understand what you are saying, but as I said it's really not appropriate in this context. 

This website and survey are for intended for use other than you see it. This isn't about standing up for the truth in the slightest it's about honest answers why people leave to gain insight.





Lively:  I get it... I had not read through it all to know exactly what it was...  I simply took it to be another of the web sites wanting to hear all sorts of nasty reasons why members of the church of Christ are such horrible people...

Offline Livelysword

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #18 on: Thu Mar 26, 2009 - 17:30:05 »
I hope you bring more understanding to your study of God's word.

The survey creator is a solid member of the church of Christ. He's not looking to fall away nor rail against it. He is seeking honest answers from people who LEFT. If it were a survey of why you stay it would have been appropriate to resond. I don't know why you are struggling with something so simple and plain for anyone with a pure and uncontrived heart to understand.



Lively:  LOL, i guess I did not know that... chuckle... maybe I will make his highliight real then... LOL

You would have known if you had simply read.


Lively:  True...  no excuses...

Offline zoonance

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #19 on: Sat Mar 28, 2009 - 12:13:07 »
Not giving the other half of the audience the benefit of paying any attention while in some form of apparent communitive dialogue is common.

Offline Jimbob

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #20 on: Tue Mar 31, 2009 - 07:51:21 »
Not giving the other half of the audience the benefit of paying any attention while in some form of apparent communitive dialogue is common.
Yup.

Offline memmy

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #21 on: Wed Apr 08, 2009 - 00:16:33 »
Amazing......kinda.

Offline Zora1

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #22 on: Fri Oct 07, 2011 - 11:20:51 »
Just stumbled accross this, albeit 2 years or more late. I agree with the importance of gaining insight. What is truth? Fair question. Sometimes it is asked in a rhetorically cynical manner and other times honestly. Truth isn't what we have merely been taught growing up or simply adhering to true biblical pattern, important as it is. It also includes shedding light on where we need to improve, and sometimes that may come from somone who leaves. I don't mean God's word needs to be improved, but WE need to improve. Specifically improve in our attitudes about people and listening fully to someone else before we make a snap judgment about someone's view or motivation. Our attitudes determine where we truly are, not just by what black and white commandments we obey. Agree or not with someone's position or reasons for leaving the church of Christ, the Lord expects us to have a measure of wisdom and patience when it does.

Offline Snargles

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #23 on: Fri Oct 07, 2011 - 14:20:06 »
Does anyone have a link to the results or conclusions of the survey?

Offline pointmade

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #24 on: Wed Oct 26, 2011 - 05:53:03 »
Snargles: "Does anyone have a link to the results or conclusions of the survey?

Yep...you can find the results in Romans 8:1.....

Offline Johnb

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #25 on: Wed Oct 26, 2011 - 17:19:39 »
I left several years ago.  I was unofficially disfellowshipped.  Although there were no specific charges the elders would not use me in any way in a "worship service".   I finally left and have attended many places since.  I was also an elder in the DoC.  I have always said if there was a choice locally within the RM I would be there.  We now attend a house church made up mostly of folks who have left the CoC.  It is a wonderful experience.  We sing we pray we share and add new members (non CoC non Christians) to or assembly nearly every week. 

Offline pointmade

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #26 on: Thu Oct 27, 2011 - 09:21:03 »
Johnb  "I left several years ago.  I was unofficially disfellowshipped.  Although there were no specific charges the elders would not use me in any way in a "worship service".   I finally left and have attended many places since.  I was also an elder in the DoC.  I have always said if there was a choice locally within the RM I would be there.  We now attend a house church made up mostly of folks who have left the CoC.  It is a wonderful experience.  We sing we pray we share and add new members (non CoC non Christians) to or assembly nearly every week."

Johnb   I have not "disfellowshiped" with you. When the Lord "added" you to His church after you were "baptized into Jesus
Christ for the remission of sins" (Acts 2:38) you were "justified" in His mind as "saved."
I love you as a brother "in Christ" unconditionally!

I have followed most of your "posts" in the past few years......I feel your pain (not to mimic Bill Clinton)
Peter said something in John 6 that haunts me everytime I get down on myself and brothers and sisters in Christ.

Can you see the Lord as He speaks of Himself as the "bread of life," that if any man eat of this bread, he shall
live forever. (John 6:48-58).
These words that He spoke caused many of his disciples to say, "this is a hard saying: who can hear it"?
John, an eyewitness to this account must have seen the anguish on His face as He saw the multitude turn
back and walked with him no more (John 6:66).

John said, Jesus asked the twelve, Will you also go away?
"Lord, to whom shall we go? you have the WORDS to eternal life."
I have often wondered if John recalled Peter's words earlier in Capernaum as he looked
around and Peter was not there in their midst to hear the Lord's final words on the cross....

You and I stand at that cross road every day Johnb....Where do we go?
I stay in the local church of Christ because I believe it is the
Messianic kingdom prophesied in the Old Testament (Dan. 2:44).

I have studied the eschatological theories tossed around about the kingdom "yet to come." etc.
I believe the local church of Christ is the world's last chance; the redemptive work of Christ is
committed to the local church; the local church must understand its own significance, glory,
and responsibility.

Is it perfect? far from it!
With gratitude, I can look to that outfit in Corinth and smile...Why? because I am just like many of em.
As fractional as this church was Paul still called them "brethren."

The local church at Ephesus was FIRST grounded in apostolic doctrine (Acts 20:17, 27),
yet Paul would say to these men, "For I know this, that after my departure shall grievous wolves enter
in among you, not sparing the flock,  
Also of your selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things,
to draw away disciples after them" (Acts 20:27-30).

We read in Revelation 2 that Jesus said to this church in Ephesus, "You have left your first love."
"Remember therefore from whence you are fallen (apostolic doctrine? I believe it is) and repent, and
do the FIRST works (apostolic teaching? I believe it is: note verse 2); OR ELSE
I will come unto you quickly and remove your candlestick out of his place, except you repent" (Rev. 2:2-7).
He that has an ear let him hear what the Spirit has to say unto the churches: to him that overcomes will I
give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God" (Rev. 2:7).

Did this church repent? Is this church still in Ephesus?
Did it fall because it lost its first love of apostolic teaching?

I will go to my grave hanging to those words of Peter...
"Lord you have the words to eternal life."

Hang in there Johnb..."Forever" is a long long time...
« Last Edit: Thu Oct 27, 2011 - 15:42:28 by pointmade »

Offline Johnb

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #27 on: Fri Oct 28, 2011 - 08:18:51 »
Point
Thanks for your thoughts.  I see the CoC as part of the kingdom but not exclusively the kingdom.  I am much more in line with Stone and the original views of the movement.  I love my brothers and sisters in all the assemblies not just the CoC.  I don't condemn others for not having the LS every Sunday but like having it that way.  I actually would rather have non IM singing but don't use it as a whipping boy for other groups.  I also like not having a paid preacher and staff but like the participation of the the house church.  I don't believe any group or set of church traditions equal the kingdom.  We are all humans attempting to serve God to the best of our understanding.  I don't think the CoC has any more or less error than any other group.  When we went from beiing Christians only to believing we are the only Christians I had to part ways with the legalistic branch of the CoC. 

Offline pointmade

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #28 on: Sat Oct 29, 2011 - 07:10:40 »
Johnb: "When we went from beiing Christians only to believing we are the only Christians I had to part ways with the legalistic branch of the CoC".

I know where you are coming from.....What are your thoughts on Jesus' words of "leaving your first love?"
Is there a significance with His words here in Revelation and His prayer in  John 17:20.
I gave into my opinion on His word a long time ago.

Rather difficult for me to lay my opinions at the foot of One who died for me since His word is true and mine a transfer of thought
from the pages of my Bible.
To have ones "candlestick removed" is contrary to the doctrine of "once saved always saved" is it not?

Offline Johnb

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #29 on: Sat Oct 29, 2011 - 07:39:05 »
Point
I am not a believer of OSAS.  Therefore Yes I believe one can leave their first love.  "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world..."
On the other hand I do not believe leaving a specific man made assembly can be equated to leaving Christ. (I don't think that was you meaning just wanted to clarify that point.) 
Even though the 7 churches in Rev had many problems as all assemblies made up of man does they were still addressed as an assembly of God.
The vast majority in all assemblies believe in and want to serve Christ.  The vast majority of Preachers and official leaders of assemblies are also believers trying to serve Christ.  While I don't choose to be part of the institutional church I do consider them as part of the kingdom of God.

Offline pointmade

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #30 on: Sun Oct 30, 2011 - 08:55:55 »
Johnb: "While I don't choose to be part of the institutional church I do consider them as part of the kingdom of God."

Then are you saying that there is a separation of church and kingdom?
One can become a resident in the kingdom and pick the church he attends?

I know that in Catholicism the church is created and shaped directly in the Holy Spirit moving in progressive
revelation.
I have spoken with many of the Catholic faith who believe the Bible as I know it, is not the final word of God.
In other words, Scripture is a product of the church and subject to the interpretative authority of the church,
or tradition emerging from church fathers, councils, and popes.

It seem that whenever I challenge this form of doctrine I am reminded by my Catholic friends that
the Catholic Church is the dominate church on the face of the earth.

When you study the Reformation concept of "ecclesia invisibilis" or the invisible Church I come away with sources as Augustine, Wyclif, Hus, Calvin etc; they attempt to reconcile the corrupted earthly institution with the biblical idea.
But, when you get into their idea it actually comes from "Platonic dualism" or that "the sovereignty of God,
the only free will in the universe and His will is never thwarted," or His will is perfectly unchangeable.
From this comes: Salvation is WHOLLY of God (election). Irresistible grace.

In Catholocism the channel of grace is the sacraments.
The results of salvation: faith, justification, sanctification, perseverance.
In Protestantism: "A visible sign of an invisible grace."
I witness this in Pentecostalism from men and women who claimed Holy Ghost
intervention in their lives from the trip to the alter.

One must ask: In studying the New Testament is the church which is "built upon the apostles and prophets"
a non movable foundation to be occupied by the local body of believers? or is church membership a
mystical connection to a transcendental ideal?

The best to you in your journey Johnb

Offline Johnb

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #31 on: Sun Oct 30, 2011 - 20:13:30 »
Point ask
Then are you saying that there is a separation of church and kingdom?

Actually what we call "church" was simply an assembly of members of the kingdom.  It was a spiritual kingdom ( Jesus said His kingdom was not of this world) I take Him at his word.  We are told to assemble together but the forms and traditions of those assemblies are of mans making and understanding.  So yes I believe all who come to Christ become members of His kingdom.  I see no "one true church" in the NT.  Look at the 7 churches of Asia.  They all had sin and problems yet they were still called an assembly of God.  There simply is no "one true pattern "to follow.  There have always been those who assembled with the children of God who were not part of the kingdom yet it was still Christ's assembly.

Offline pointmade

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #32 on: Mon Oct 31, 2011 - 06:30:50 »
OK..great study.....just trying to follow your line of reason....

You say: Actually what we call "church" was simply an assembly of members of the kingdom.  It was a spiritual kingdom ( Jesus said His kingdom was not of this world) I take Him at his word.  We are told to assemble together but the forms and traditions of those assemblies are of mans making and understanding.  So yes I believe all who come to Christ become members of His kingdom.  I see no "one true church" in the NT.  Look at the 7 churches of Asia.  They all had sin and problems yet they were still called an assembly of God.  There simply is no "one true pattern "to follow.  There have always been those who assembled with the children of God who were not part of the kingdom yet it was still Christ's assembly.

How does one get into this "spiritual kingdom"?
Wasn't this the problem Nicodemus was having when he asked "How can a man be born when he is old?
can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?"

Evidently, the physical cannot enter into the Spiritual for Jesus said, "Except a man be born a new, he cannot see
the kingdom of God.

The church in Jerusalem must have had a "pattern," or it may as well of been the Monkey Mutual Aid Society
where a vote is taken on your being accepted as a new monkey in the assembly of primates.

Interesting that Jesus said to Saul of Tarsus, "Why persecute me?" (Acts 9:4).
The question here would have to be, In what way was Saul persecuting Jesus?
Up until his meeting the Lord on the road to Damascus, as far as we know, Saul had no physical contact with Jesus.
I believe we find the answer in verses 1 and 2 of Acts 9.
Saul was persecuting the church in Jerusalem.

Was there a pattern in this church that Saul was persecuting?
Must have been.....Luke said they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine" (Acts 2:42).
Luke said, "the Lord added to the church daily."
Must have been some requirements for the Lord to "add to His church."
Interesting that Jesus uses the term "church" and "kingdom" synonymously in Matthew 16.
This kingdom must have come, or Jesus' words in Matthew 16:28 is a farce.
He said to his disciples: "There be some standing here which shall not taste of death, till
they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom."
According to Colossians 1:13 Paul said that the Colossians had been "translated into the kingdom of his dear Son."
Would this be a physical or spiritual transfer?
Which gets us back to Nicodemous' question: "how can these thing be?"

 

Offline Johnb

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #33 on: Mon Oct 31, 2011 - 09:18:33 »
Point
If you look at all the assemblies in the NT there is no one pattern except they met, spread the good news and shared one another's joy and problems.  Some lived and met in a communal type environment sharing all things in common.  Is that the pattern we are to follow?  Others met in houses, some spoke in tongues and prophesied as moved by the spirit, women could prophecy as long as their head was covered  are these part of the pattern?  They greeted one another with a a holy kiss and widows washed the feet of the saints are these part of the pattern.  There are no paid preachers, church buildings or staff and the elders never made a decision without the consent of the whole assembly are these part of the pattern?  
No I do not believe there is a specific pattern nor a church started in 303 AD, 1500s, 1800s nor the CoC that started in 1906 contain the whole of the Kingdom of God.  Like Thomas Campbell in the Declaration and Address I believe the kingdom of Christ is one made up of all those who have come to Christ.  He understood that the Kingdom of Christ was not of this world something lost in the later RM.  

Offline pointmade

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Re: Survey for those who are leaving the "Church of Christ"
« Reply #34 on: Tue Nov 01, 2011 - 10:51:24 »
Do not get me wrong Johnb.....I am not disagreeing with you on a pattern.....
As I have said many times, when I was baptized into Jesus Christ for the remission of sins I stand on
that "promise."

If He did not "add" me to His "Spiritual" church/kingdom in His mind by obeying Peter's words:
then there is not a thing I can do about it.
No amount of alter calls, praying through, Lord Supper's attended; singing with the instrument or without
will "translate me into the kingdom of His dear Son" (Col. 2:13).

Now, I know this goes against the Reformed teaching of the "faith only."
This theory of teaching which originated in the mind of Luther (faith only), tweaked by Augustine that faith
comes wrapped in a package of "election" and "infused grace" or that salvation is wholly of God.

You say: " Like Thomas Campbell in the Declaration and Address I believe the kingdom of Christ is one made up of all those who have come to Christ.  He understood that the Kingdom of Christ was not of this world something lost in the later RM."

I am not a "Campbellite." I have read most of his works and history of his coming from Presbyterianism/Baptist doctrine.
When I read the principles embodied in the "Declaration" I see where Thomas had a plan for "unity."
He said that he had a plan for unity of all Christians and describing the means in which this unity could be achieved.
He addressed this plan as a formal plan or reform before the Christian Association of Washington (Sept 7, 1809).

Their motto: "Where the Scriptures speak, we speak; where the Scriptures are silent, we are silent.'
has fallen on deaf ears today in many "Assemblies" who seek unity.
But, Campbell's unity is not the unity which Jesus speaks of attaining in His high priestly prayer in John 17.
The formula is, "I pray that they believe on me through THEIR word" (v. 20).
Quite frankly, I can find no other verse in the New Testament that informs me how to believe on HIM.
 
So, I am not convinced that Campbell believed water baptism is for the remission of sins.
Like many in the church of Christ today, Thomas and Alexander seemed to waffle and go back to their
roots in the Reformation.

True, the Campbells were brilliant scholars, but so was Apollos from Alexander, Egypt, "mighty in the
scriptures, a man instructed in the way of the Lord, and being fervent in the spirit, he spoke and taught
diligently the things of the Lord knowing only the baptism of John.
The text in Acts 19 goes on to say that when Aquila and Priseilla had HEARD
him speak they took him aside and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly."

In my opinion, the Campbells were so entrenched in Calvinism as young men that I do not believe
they ever truly escaped Calvin's tulip garden theory of total depravity, unconditional election, limited atonement,
irresistible grace, and preservation of the saints found in his "Institutes of the Christian Religion."

Thomas' son Alexander wrote in his book "The Christian System" in 1863 in an attempt to set forth the
unchangeable aspects of the Christian religion:
"Hence the faith, the worship and the righteousness; or the doctrine, the piety, and the morality of the gospel
institution are not legitimate subjects of human legislation, alteration, or arrangement.
No man or community can touch these and be innocent. These rest upon the wisdom and authority of Jehovah."

It was, in fact, Campbell's own theology. The cry was raised "Campbellite Creed!"  
Alexander wrote in his Lunenburg Letter (1837), "Who is a Christian?"
I answer, Everyone that believes in his heart the Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah, the Son of God;
repents of his sins and obeys him in all things according to the measure of his will."

He writes "A perfect man in Christ, or a perfect Christian, is one thing; and a "babe in Christ," a strapling in the faith,
or an imperect Christian, is another. The New Testament recognizes both the perfect man and the imperfect man
in Christ."
Campbell goes on to say, "We cheerfully agree that the term "Christian" was given first to immersed believers
and to none else; but we do not think that it was given to them because they were immersed, but because
they had put on Christ."

Here, Campbell skirts around Peter's answer at Pentecost that  "baptized IS for the remission of sins".
Campbell speaks of "putting on Christ," but is implicate in how this connection is accomplished.
I believe the answer does lie in Scripture and in the mind of God.
Paul is absolutely correct when he writes "There is therefore now no commendation to them which are
IN CHRIST JESUS" (Romans 8:1)
A "babe in Christ," if taught correctly, should be aware of this "promise" before stepping into the water.
I can say this, because I hold no allegiance to the Augustinian/Calvinistic idea of "infused grace."




 
« Last Edit: Tue Nov 01, 2011 - 10:57:42 by pointmade »