New Testament Church Proliferation Digest

 

Spreading the Gospel via House Churches

 


New Testament Church Proliferation Digest Monday, February 25 2002 Vol 02 : 048
[NTCP] RE: Confronting the evidence
Re: [NTCP] A Question on "bishops"
[NTCP] Unable to let go. Mono-bishopry at its worst.

Date: Fri, 22 Feb 2002 12:39:50 EST
From: Steffasong
Subject: [NTCP] RE:
Confronting the evidence

In a message dated 02/22/2002 8:12:10 AM Eastern Standard Time,
deborah.millier(--AT--)juccampus.org writes:

>"Why's everybody always pickin' on me?!?!" ;-) These are good thoughts,
>gang. Let me give you my quick (HAH!) reply:
:-)

So glad you are in good humor, brother! It truly makes for good discussion!
>
>"'I hate divorce,' says the LORD God of Israel" (Mal. 2:16).
>
>Stephanie, can we find a similar statement or even an inference that God hates
>mono-bishops; anything firm where we might infer that He hates that kind of
>polity structure?

I cannot, Michael. Not a specific verse like that. The closest I can come is
in the new testament, Jesus' own words as recorded by Matthew. Our modern
notations call it chapter 23. There, right in the midst of Jesus talking about
authority and relationship he explains how religious people treat each other in
a heirarchical way, and he (HE) :-) blatantly says, "But it is not so among
you." He says, "Call no one 'Father'. "-- some versions say "Rabbi."

Truly Michael, I must quote Dan S. when it comes to my reason for quibbling. As
I seek to study and understand God's Word, over the years I always look for
God's real desire in the matter, not the chapter and verse.

The chapter and verse are VERY important to me, however, not as important as
God's real desire in the matter. History points to countless believers and
groups of believers being swallowed up in heresy and fruitlessness because of
an intensity to perfectly quote chapter and verse on every issue we can
discuss. Therefore, it is my desire to always seek the very heart of God's
desire when we discuss scriptural interpretation.

I hope that clears up my reasons, okay?

Much love in the Lamb, Steph B. The Nicolaitans do not count since the
>
>standard house church-- and others'--interpretation of their group depends
>upon the "etymological fallacy" for its "proof" and not on what ancient
>history itself tells us about the schism:
>


Stephanie Bennett


------- <><><> -------


Date: Fri, 22 Feb 2002 12:50:53 -0500
From: David Anderson
Subject: Re: [NTCP] A Question on "bishops"

The one-man-professional-ministry concept is totally unsuited for the body of
Christ. Outwardly it may be successful, but in reality it is harmful to the
sanctification of the members of Christ's body. Biblical Eldership by Alexander
Strauch (Lewis and Roth: Littleton, Colorado, 1988), p. 16.

The idea of every Christian being a minister of Christ is finally dawning upon
the American mind. During a long night, growth has been thwarted by the 'one
minister ã one congregation' concept of ministry. The Equipping Ministry by
Paul Benjamin (Standard Publishing: Cincinnati, 1978), pp. 15,16.


------- <><><> -------


Date: Mon, 25 Feb 2002 20:23:32 -0500
From: David Anderson
Subject: [NTCP] Unable to let go. Mono-bishopry at its worst.

.... McIntire claims he has been illegally kicked out and vows to take the
presbytery to court. The session of his former church is struggling to continue
with a weekly attendance of fifty elderly people, though 1400 persons are
listed as members...

John P. Elliot writes, "mentally, the 92 year old senior pastor has his good
days and bad days. When good, no one is sharper or wittier than McIntire. But
his bad days were increasingly public matters. McIntire's decline could be seen
in the delivery of his two weekly sermons which he insisted on preaching each
Sunday morning and evening. Collingswood elder Stephen Coker said that towards
the end of his tenure they were simply incoherent. At the last celebration of
the Lord&Mac185;s Supper in September he had to be prompted to get through the
liturgy. For these reasons the Session offered McIntire a retirement with a
pension and health insurance. The elders came with a proposal for honorable
retirement in April of 1996. He refused it so the Session took the issue to the
congregation where the two meetings were ...a near riot" ("Christian Renewal"
January 18, 1999, pp. 4&5).

- --------------------------

From an old and very sad article in Banner of Truth Magazine. Yes, much rests
on the issues we are discussing. The unspoken tragedy in this case is that the
gifts of many others were essentially dropped into a "mass grave" as the
mono-bishop performed his office.

David Anderson
 


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