Do you remember?greenspun.com : LUSENET : church of Christ : One Thread
at one time the CoC was one of the fast growing assemblies in the nation. Can even remember it listed as such in an encyclopedia. Now it is not unusual to see congregations, that once had a growing membership, dwindling away. Many built larger facilities to gather for study, worship, and fellowship. A large number of these are now setting almost empty and once the 'old timers' pass away ...then what?
There are some that I find interesting that the membership # never varies much over the years. Just when they gain a few new members, a family moves away. Just seems to stay status quo.
It makes me sad.
-- no longer acceptble (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 31, 2002
IMO the answer lies in what has been made out of our gatherings. In the infant body the Christians got together in small groups in their homes for encouragement and edification. They interected together. The gatherings were not for the purpose of bringing the alien sinner to Christ. They were for their own benefit...then they went out about their lives telling about Jesus (doing the works of God.) The body grew by leaps and bounds.
Today formality has set in. One man is hired to do the encouragement and edifying instead of the interaction. Nowhere in scripture was such done. People sit and listen while someone gives his opinion on what the scriptures say. No one even interacts with HIM as he pontificates. No one makes comments or asks questions, UNTIL all is over and while the preacher stands at the door you might be able to make your comment or clear up a misunderstanding, but it is too late. The sheep have gone with a one-sided *discussion.* That is not what happened in the infant body....where the people were taught by the inspired apostles on interacting with one another.
-- Nelta Brock (email@example.com), January 31, 2002.
Nelta- sorry for posting again under a false ID. Think you will find many will do it for various reasons. Two main ones I believe are..1) it make it easier for some to be hateful, and 2) it keeps hate mail from flooding into ones email box.
This has been the first time I have ever ventured a posting to any of the reglious forums set up. Have been pondering the last few days why I had bothered posting to this one. I had run acrossed it many months ago and have check it several times wondering about it. My current thought is perhaps it was to help send a 'more calming influence' to another forum. I do believe in those mysterious ways:).
I do enjoy lurking and viewing everyone's thoughts and ideas on passages.....as long as everyone plays nice. Reading someone's writings takes a bit more caution, IMO, cause there is more of a chance to take something the wrong way and feelings and tempers can spin out of control a bit more until a clearer statement is made. I for one get a little lazy in typing and probably should expound more on thoughts.
I do think there is a need, and it is the talent for some to teach and dig out specific meanings of words and scripture. However, I believe also there is room for us to have our own take on things. I devive this from Romans 14. I also think it is one of the hardest things for us to accomplish and accept of one another. Somewhat human nature to expect the other person to give up their thought/belief/actions.
When the time comes, I believe I will have to account for my forsaking the assembly rather than if I used church, congregation, assembly, or community in speech. Course the Lord may correct me on that one:). And am not picking on you....that example was the most recent one I have at the moment. Personally I like community too...I have sort of gotten myself out of the habit of using church all the time, cause so many think of a building first thing.
Anyway, I suppose my personal agenda is what I perceived as keeping our works within the body. We have a tendency to throw money in a pot and figure a portion is supporting the missionaries, perhaps an orphanage or two and our work is done. For some that very may well be the only thing they can do. I am more concerned with hearing....we don't take time to find needy families and provide everyday needs 'cause so many do not join, or if they do they don't stay....or we may be throwing money away on someone who is capable of doing for themselves. That thinking drives me nuts, and yes have & do on a personal basis....but think of what good could be done as a collective group. So much under our noses that is being ignored.
I am rambling and this board is not for my agenda:). I wish you all well, thanks for indulging me.
-- NLA (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 01, 2002.
One more thing,
The Bible says in 1 Cor. 1:21, “It pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.”
Please show me when this was changed? If you can't give me BCV of where this was changed, then you are arguing from silence.
-- Kevin Walker (email@example.com), February 01, 2002.
You said: “Today formality has set in. One man is hired to do the encouragement and edifying instead of the interaction. Nowhere in scripture was such done.”
The Bible says that Paul told Timothy in 2 Tim 4:2 to: “Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.” This is example number 1.
Example number 2, Col 1:28: “Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.”
Example number 3, Phil 1:15-18: “Some indeed preach Christ even from envy and strife, and some also from good will: The former preach Christ from selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my chains; but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel. What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached; and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice.”
Example number 4, Eph 3:8: “To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,”
Example number 5, 1 Cor 9:14: “Even so the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel.”
So, we can see from these scriptures that your statement "Nowhere in scripture was such done.” is incorrect.
And there are many more…
-- Kevin Walker (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 31, 2002.