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Offline Thor

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What exactly is a change agent?
« Reply #90 on: April 10, 2003, 03:59:36 PM »
Steve,
You can call it a cop out or whatever. The plain truth is Your Application Of The Verse IS Incorrect, and Nonsensical.
Isaiah WAS writing to a specific audience. That audience did NOT have freedom from sin because it is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats could wash away sin.
Jesus alone can provide the blood that does that and then it is only promised in baptism. The sacrifices they made NEVER freed them of their sin. They had to WAIT until Christ came. Their works of righteousness did not avail because only Christ's blood washes away sin. HOWEVER, without those sacrifices they would have been unpleasing to God and rejected from His people. Then the blood of Christ would never have been applied to their sin. The Jews recieved forgiveness ONLY in promise of Jesus, and that only as they remained true to their works of righteousness! Without both they have no hope.

Just as today we have Christ's blood, THE ONLY thing that can free us of our sin. It is however applied only at baptism.
Acts 2:38, Acts 22:16, Mark 16:16, 1 Peter 3:21............
btw,
Under the Old Law people were physically born into covenant with God.
In the New people are born into that covenant by water and spirit. (baptism)

btww,
People argue over baptism I suppose, just as they would have over the sin sacrifices of the Old Law. Because they are arbitrary commands of God. We don't understand exactly WHY God ordained baptism as the door of enterance into the kingdom. He just did. Just as we don't know why He chose the blood/ sacrificial Lamb to rid man of sin in the OT. We make some good arguments, we look to what He has given us, but basically it comes down to the fact that we do it because "He said so."

btwww,
Faith without works is dead.
The OT examples are valid.
God is just in His demands.
For just a moment consider IF the New Testament was somehow more clear than 1 Peter 3:21 "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:" Though I don't know how it could be MORE clear. And Peter, and Paul had said- If you are not immersed in water you will die in your sin. But if you submit your will to God and are immersed you shall be saved.
What then?
What would your argument then be?
Would you no longer be seeking after Christ?
Would you reject God for 'placing such a horrible burden on man?'
What then?

If Peter and Paul had not place such an emphesis on baptism if there were not so many verses that showed its necessity, I would gladly recieve admission into the kingdom prior to and without baptism.
The problem is that God says it is necessary. It saves 1 Peter, It washes away sin, Acts; It is the new birth, John....

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What exactly is a change agent?
« Reply #90 on: April 10, 2003, 03:59:36 PM »

Offline Lee Freeman

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What exactly is a change agent?
« Reply #91 on: April 11, 2003, 08:22:37 AM »
Thor, I meant that at baptism, a person's sins are washed away. That IS what we all still believe isn't it?              

remit: to release one from the guilt or penalty of; pardon: forgive - Webster's Third International Dictionary

Pax vobiscum.
"Brethren, for the sake of our souls, let us never get too big to restudy our position." - Bro. KC Moser (1893-1976)

"I propose to finish my course without ever, even for one monent, engaging in partisan strife with anybody about anything." - Elder T. B. Larimore (1843-1929)

"Let the unity of Christians be our polar star." - Elder Barton Warren Stone (1772-1844)

"It is wrong to make anything a condition of fellowship which is not essential to salvation. We draw the line here. That which will damn a soul and separate us in the next world should divide us in this; nothing else should. " - FD Srygley (1856-1900)

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What exactly is a change agent?
« Reply #91 on: April 11, 2003, 08:22:37 AM »

Offline brandt

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What exactly is a change agent?
« Reply #92 on: April 12, 2003, 08:59:49 AM »
I have very much enjoyed the debate on this thread and have intensely read every post.  I would like to offer my limited view on the thread topic and the direction this "Change Agent" thread has taken.

Each side to this topic has adequate scriptural basis for their position.  Also, each side puts baptism as an ultra-important part of obeying Christ.

Since no one is really discounting baptism, is this really the definition of a Change Agent?  

The Questioning Brandt
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« Reply #92 on: April 12, 2003, 08:59:49 AM »

Offline kanham

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What exactly is a change agent?
« Reply #93 on: April 14, 2003, 10:23:02 AM »
Boringoldguy,

Good point about change. I have read it takes 3-5 years to see any real change in direction for a church. It reminds me of when colleges hire coaches. They usually give them five years to get the program going. Change is slow and we are all in this together as a church.

One other key about change, there has to be an agreement that change is needed. Many times people don't see the need to change. In this case no amount of time will make something change.
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« Reply #93 on: April 14, 2003, 10:23:02 AM »

Offline segell

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« Reply #94 on: April 15, 2003, 11:44:49 AM »
Sorry, this part did not get copied in the last post:

~ gracEmail ~
Edward Fudge
___

ONE LORD



A sister in California asks what Paul means in Ephesians 4:5, when he says that there is "one Lord, one faith, one baptism." This gracEmail concerns the "one Lord."



*          *          *



The "one Lord" common to all Christians is Jesus Christ, God's Son, our substitute and Savior. Jesus' saving work included both his life of perfect human obedience in our place ("dressed in his righteousness alone, faultless to stand before the throne," as the hymn rightly puts it), and also his atoning death for our sins. We are saved by Jesus' life (Rom. 5:10). Jesus lived out God's will fully in his human body, then offered that body on the cross to make his people holy and perfect (Heb. 10:10, 14).

One way to describe Jesus' representative work for sinners is to speak of his faith or faithfulness to the Father -- a faithfulness we should have shown but have not, a faithfulness which is reckoned to all who place trust in Jesus for right standing with God. Paul literally says that we are "justified by the faith(fulness) OF Christ" and not by our own imperfect obedience to God's commandments (Gal. 2:16). We believe God's promise that he has set us right with himself through the faithfulness of Jesus Christ our representative.

By the sacrifice of his fleshly body, Jesus presented God with his perfect life of human obedience (Heb. 10:4-14). Jesus' blood constituted the atoning sacrifice for our sins (Heb. 1:3;  9:11-14). There is no other sacrifice for sin, and no other offering which can set sinners right with God (Heb. 10:26). All that Jesus accomplished for sinners by his perfect "doing" and his perfect "dying" he did gratuitously, out of God's kindness for sinners, and wholly undeserved by any of us. Our salvation is therefore "by grace" -- for we do not deserve it, earn it, or contribute anything to it.
Ephesians 2:8-10  Who saves, how He saves, why He saves.

"8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

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What exactly is a change agent?
« Reply #94 on: April 15, 2003, 11:44:49 AM »



Offline kanham

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« Reply #95 on: April 17, 2003, 01:20:54 PM »
Josh,

I’m not sure why you ask? Does my post to you smack of univeralism? If so I apologize to you. I reread it and am not sure how you see me saying people who follow Satan and the world could be seen by any, no matter what they may personally claim, to be children of God.
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Offline Thor

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« Reply #96 on: April 25, 2003, 09:38:46 AM »
Lee,
John had a lot to say about knowing we are saved.
[!--QuoteBegin--][/span][table border=\"0\" align=\"center\" width=\"95%\" cellpadding=\"3\" cellspacing=\"1\"][tr][td]Quote [/td][/tr][tr][td id=\"QUOTE\"][!--QuoteEBegin--]1 John 2:3-5 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.5 But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.

1 John 3:18-24 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.20 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.21 Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.24 And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.

1 John 4:2-3 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

1 John 5:2-3 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.

1 John 5:13-15 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:15 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.[/quote]
What things did John write about which should allow us to KNOW that we have eternal life (5:13)? It seems that John speaks a lot about following the commands of God as they are coupled with Christ….

Steve:
This is your opinion of how one gets into Christ…
[!--QuoteBegin--][/span][table border=\"0\" align=\"center\" width=\"95%\" cellpadding=\"3\" cellspacing=\"1\"][tr][td]Quote [/td][/tr][tr][td id=\"QUOTE\"][!--QuoteEBegin--]As to how do we get into Christ?  By God's grace through faith.  There is no guessing there, Thor.  It seems that you espouse a need to have some kind of outward physical manifestation that can/must be done by a person in order to be saved so that you will know who you can fellowship with.[/quote]
I would rather obey Paul as to how one gets into Christ….
[!--QuoteBegin--][/span][table border=\"0\" align=\"center\" width=\"95%\" cellpadding=\"3\" cellspacing=\"1\"][tr][td]Quote [/td][/tr][tr][td id=\"QUOTE\"][!--QuoteEBegin--]Gal 3:27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.[/quote] There is NO guessing there!

As for baptism…Mr Fudge says “What does baptism have to do with salvation? It is for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38)

Offline segell

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« Reply #97 on: April 21, 2003, 02:13:33 PM »
Thor

By the way, I don't know if you know Edward Fudge, but he is a world renown Bible scholar and will be teaching at Pepperdine during the Bible Lecture series where Bobby Valentine will be attending and teaching.  Finally, not to disparage your contributions, but Mr. Fudge's credentials should be examined a little more carefully.  I don't say this so that you should accept what Mr. Fudge writes, but that what he writes should warrant respect and consideration.

Your accusation that he asserts his own theology is really kind of funny.  After all, that's what you are doing, Thor.  That's what I am doing.  To assert that your view is the only scriptually correct view is, frankly, not founded.  And it smacks a bit of the Pharisee, in my view.  

And like you will respond to my commentary, you can expect my comments on yours, as well.  We can't let the wrong views go unchallenged, can we?  ;)

Steve
Ephesians 2:8-10  Who saves, how He saves, why He saves.

"8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

Offline James Rondon

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« Reply #98 on: April 25, 2003, 11:41:18 PM »
I've stayed away from these threads for quite some time, and not necessarily by design. Due to recent circumstances that have occurred (and have been occurring) in my life, as most of you know, I have not been active on this Board. Needless to say, I am back.

Prior to my extended absence, and even now, I have made an observation that I would like to share... Granted, I may be completely wrong in what I am about to say, but I've been wrong before... What I've noticed is that it seems that some treat baptism almost as if it is the single most important "issue" in the world. In fact, some that would maintain dialogue on this subject seem uncompelled to discuss any other topic. This is evidenced by their absence on the other threads, which, by the way, cover a myriad of compelling, and important topics. It also seems that some of these ardent "defenders" of baptism treat baptism as some treated circumcision in the first century. (If need be, I will elaborate more on this later, if necessary.)...

I write this with love, and not to cause offense. I use to be on that side of the fense. I know what it's like to think that way... But after God's grace was truly revealed in me, the layers of legalistic thought began to melt away. The scales started to fall from my eyes, allowing me to see much more clearly.

I only hope that I might have something to offer in such a discussion, especially considering my "law-centered" past.

May God open all of our eyes, that we might truly see.

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« Reply #98 on: April 25, 2003, 11:41:18 PM »

Offline charlie

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« Reply #99 on: April 28, 2003, 04:32:28 AM »
We seem to have no problem agreeing that the Lord's Supper is a kind of re-enactment of the last supper that Christians do regularly in memory of Jesus. Why is it so hard to think of baptism as a re-enactment of the crucifixion, burial, and resurrection of Jesus? Baptism is only important insomuch as it points to Jesus' death for our sins and resurrection for our hope. It makes our faith solid by underscoring what it is that we put our faith in. When we talk about how necessary it is for US to be baptized so WE can be saved (by God's grace, of course), we kick Jesus off center stage and yell to the world that WE DID IT! WE GOT SAVED! Well, I'm sorry, that's not what baptism is for. Even when you acknowledge God's part in making a promise to save those who are baptized, you still put the emphasis on our part, and as you can see, that always, always, always, without fail, leads to division. There has never been a single act of man in the history of God's people that has not ended up in division when the act itself is the center of attention. Baptism is no exception.

There's a pattern for us to follow:  Focus on man's part = division. Focus on God's grace = unity. And in case you didn't know, division = bad. unity = good.

Offline charlie

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« Reply #100 on: April 28, 2003, 10:08:03 AM »
I'm glad somebody brought up Acts 19. Notice that when Paul arrived he found "disciples". And when he finds them he assumes two things about them: 1. that they believed, and 2. that they had been baptized. Based on that, he could ask them about the variable effect of the Holy Spirit upon them. We know that repentance and baptism result in forgiveness and the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts. 2:38). Paul is asking if these disciples had received the Holy Spirit when they believed (not when they were baptized, although he does assume that they had been baptized). What we seem to be arguing here is exactly what salvation will look like when we dissect it into its various components. I'm waiting for someone to start a thread on "what saves us, grace or faith?" Paul encountered "disciples" and correctly assumed that they believed and had been baptized. After all, according to Jesus, that's how you make disciples.

So now we come to people who claim to be disciples, find that they believe and have been baptized, but we then whip out our scalpels and cut into their conversion and find that their hope of heaven is on the wrong side of their baptism! Horrors! How is grace ever going to flow over that sin with that blasted hope blocking the passage coming out of baptism!

What we've done is cut into perfectly healthy saints and tried to fix what wasn't broken. Judge them by their fruits, not by your semantics. Jesus promised that a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Well, when you see a fruitful believer, you'd best be believing that there's a saved Christian in there somewhere.

Offline Thor

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« Reply #101 on: April 28, 2003, 12:40:55 PM »
[!--QuoteBegin--][/span][table border=\"0\" align=\"center\" width=\"95%\" cellpadding=\"3\" cellspacing=\"1\"][tr][td]Quote [/td][/tr][tr][td id=\"QUOTE\"][!--QuoteEBegin--]By the way, spiritual gifts were bestowed by men other than apostles, according to 1 Tim. 4:14:"Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of hands of the eldership." [/quote]
I.   Timothy's spiritual gift had been imparted to him through the apostle Paul. "Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands" (2 Tim. 1:6). Our text indicates that the presbytery (the eldership) was involved in the operation in some way.
1)   The elders joined with Paul when he actually imparted the gift; they did not have the ability to impart the gift, for only apostles had that power (Acts 8:14-17; 19:6; Rom. 1:11). On the occasion in which Timothy received the gift, Paul laid hands on him to impart the gift; the elders also laid hands on him, but for another purpose.
2)   Another explanation offers the proposal that there was a prophecy regarding Timothy and his reception of the gift, and that this was the elders' connection with the case; that they laid hands on him in connection with the prophecies that were revealed concerning Timothy. "This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare" (1 Tim. 1:18).

Acts 19 Continued:
"Verses 3-4: "And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism. Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus."
a.   Because of their answer to his opening question, Paul saw something was wrong. He asked them about their baptism. They had been baptized according to John's baptism. The apostle accepted as a basic premise that they had been baptized, because they had believed.  Nothing had been said about baptism till now, but their belief included baptism. However, the baptism they received was not the baptism of the Great Commission.
b.   Paul properly appraised John's baptism; it was valid for a time.  But when it was being practiced with God's approval, it pointed forward in time to the coming of Christ.  New Testament baptism (Mark 16:15-16; Matt. 28:18-20; Acts 2:36-38) points back in time to the fact that Christ has come and has completed his mission.  
c.   This relatively "small" matter was sufficiently important to make their immersion inadequate.  Many today think that believers are to be immersed, but assign to baptism a role that is unscriptural: "One is first saved by faith only, and then he is immersed as an act by which he joins the church; baptism is, they say, an outward demonstration that he has been saved."
d.   But since it was the case that these disciples had been baptized, being told to believe on Jesus who was to come, and since their immersion was flawed, the immersion of believers for the wrong purpose today nullifies their immersion. For baptism to be correct and beneficial, it must be done by the right people (people who believe and repentCHeb. 11:6; Mark 16:15-16; Acts 2:38), it must be done in the right manner (immersion in water), and it must be done for the right purposes (Acts 2:38; 22:16; Rom. 6:3f; 1 Pet. 3:21; Mark 16:16).  Anything short of this makes it ineffectual.  One cannot be taught wrong and be baptized right!
e.   John's baptism was for the remission of sins (Mark 1:4); the remission offered was prospective, in that it looked forward to the death of Christ (Heb. 9:22; 10:1-4; 1 Pet. 1:18-19; Rev. 1:5; Col. 1:13-14; Eph. 1:7).  It looked to the coming of Christ and the completion of his mission (Matt. 3:11; Mark 1:7; Luke 3:16; John 1:15).
f.   It is clear from the context that these disciples had been taught and baptized by Apollos (18:24-28; 19:1).  At the time he worked with these individuals, all he knew was John's baptism. We speak of being "re-baptized," but that is a misnomer.  If one has been baptized, he is baptized correctly; if he has received sectarian "baptism," he has not been scripturally baptized; he is no better off than these disciples were.  Those who received John's baptism when it was valid, were not subsequently immersed again; but these who received it after it was replaced by the Great Commission, were.
 "When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied. And all the men were about twelve."
 
a.   When these men learned this new and updated information, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.  That is, they submitted to the authority of Christ fully, and for the first time received the baptism of the Great Commission.  Matthew 28:18-20.
b.   After their genuine conversion, Paul laid hands on them; they received the gift of tongues and of prophecy.  Notice that the Spirit did not, apart from the apostle's actions, come automatically upon them; it was necessary that Paul lay hands on them.
c.   If the gift of the Spirit was a natural indwelling, such as many maintain is taught in Acts 2:38, Paul would have had no need to ask; that would have been assumed. But the apostle had in mind the miraculous gifts which the early saints needed.  In those passages where the "gift of the Holy Spirit" is exemplified or discussed in detail, the gift is miraculous (Acts 8:5-24; 10:19-48; 11:1-18)."

Offline segell

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« Reply #102 on: April 29, 2003, 10:00:41 AM »
Thor

[!--QuoteBegin--][/span][table border=\"0\" align=\"center\" width=\"95%\" cellpadding=\"3\" cellspacing=\"1\"][tr][td]Quote [/td][/tr][tr][td id=\"QUOTE\"][!--QuoteEBegin--]If I am pugnacious its only because I HAVE experienced God's grace and know that it is more than an emotional response. [/quote]

You know, I thought I wouldn't write another post on this thread, but, Thor, old buddy, just reading your commentary causes an urge too bold to ignore.   :D

With regard to God's grace, I thought you would have said something along the lines of "I am experiencing God's grace every day."  Didn't know it was a one time thing that you "HAVE experienced".

Also, seems to me that experiencing God's grace is a continued humbling experience as we grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus.  I don't know where you got the idea that some say its just an "emotional" experience.  

Your writing gives a sense, at times, of setting you apart.  It's just interesting to me, Thor.

Take care,

Steve
Ephesians 2:8-10  Who saves, how He saves, why He saves.

"8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

Offline Sylvia

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« Reply #103 on: May 07, 2003, 05:56:52 PM »
[!--QuoteBegin--][/span][table border=\"0\" align=\"center\" width=\"95%\" cellpadding=\"3\" cellspacing=\"1\"][tr][td]Quote [/td][/tr][tr][td id=\"QUOTE\"][!--QuoteEBegin--]The dictionary won't help you find the usage of change agent by the branch of the cofC that finds the gc movement unsettling.

In its common usage it means people who come into a cofC and don't like the status quo and start yammering for changes like praise teams, clapping, hand-raising, discussion of baptism outside the standard answer. It is also used for people who believe in embracing Christians outside the Church of Christ SOF congregations, especially those who would dare to work on an outreach or benevolence with non-cofC. It is applied to those who believe that the focus of ministry should be Jesus instead of teaching the five steps to salvation.

In the mind of those opposed to change agents, these are people trying to push the cofC down the slippery slope of denominationalism and ecumenicalism and away from its distinct and exclusive heritage.[/quote]
It appears that those who use the term are afraid of change and want to maintain the status quo.  People can fear new ideas because they tend to fear the unknown.
 
I agree very much with what you are saying, and although I had to look up ecumenicalism, I think the CoC desire for unity is at odds with their resistance to a world wide universal church, if that is really the case. Do such people who resist change on this basis really know what Christ wanted, or are they more concerned with protecting their own turf and position?  Maybe some people confuse conformity with unity.
 
The slippery slope of denominationalism?  I love it. I love it.
Show me a faith group with unique or common viewpoints and I'll show you a denomination.  Like it or not, the CoC movement is very much like a denomination in the abstract sense.
 
All that heritage and tradition plus a buck will get you a coke at McDonalds.  We can and should profit from the experiences of those that have preceeded us, but living in the past just doesn't sell these days.  Modern people have modern needs and a good responsive religion will adapt in order to try to serve those needs.

Offline segell

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« Reply #104 on: February 27, 2003, 02:12:52 PM »
I thought a "change agent" was a necessary machine found at laundromats.
Ephesians 2:8-10  Who saves, how He saves, why He saves.

"8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."