When there is secrecy involved

In this world there are lots of denominations in Christendom. Lots of Christians say that the non-trinitarian christians belong to cults or sects, but clearly than they forget what the characteristics of a sect or cult are.

The many non-Trinitarians who found one or another denomination in which they go to meetings are all free people with no obligations to that meeting, congregation or church except to live according to the commandments of God. In nearly all other Christian denominations of trinitarians we can find churches which dare to say they are the only church by which people can be saved or “go to heaven”. Nearly all of them are weekly asking money to their parishioners or even ask a tithing. Whilst in most of the non-trinitarian churches the parishioners are free to give or not to give any amount of money and are not pushed to do so. Never are they threatened by a so called burning in hell for ever, because such false teaching even does not exist by them.

Anna in Shadowland is a web-blog from a certain Andrea which represents the view of a disillusioned girl who left her own church to have an experience in a Charismatic church influenced by the New Apostolic Reformation. She writes

Every so often I receive testimonies from people who have read my “Leaving the NAR Church” series. There are more than 50 of them, and I am adding another. These stories are precious to me, and serve as a painful reminder that there is hope for the dear deceived ones caught up in this insidious movement. If you don’t know what NAR is, I hope you’ll take a moment and read What is the New Apostolic Reformation Movement. {Leaving IHOP and the NAR: Sammy’s story}

She has a testimony about how the good and faithful God she loves and wanted to serve opened her eyes and removed her from the clutches of the deception, lack of discernment, and false teachings of a movement that has invaded the worldwide church on a massive scale. {An open letter to the church I left}

In Christendom and Christianity we may see many churches who claim to be adhering to ‘authentic New Testament practices’ but when we look closer at them we find all sorts of practices which are not according to the lifestyle of the first Christians (which we can come to know from the Acts of the Apostles and from civil writings of the first century CE).

Today there are several churches who love to attract people with their “Speaking in tongues” and all sorts of trance movements, even not minding to have people in hysterics, shaking on the floor to the very contemporary music of Hillsong and Bethel (not to be confused with the Bethels of the non-trinitarians), surrounded by all their technological advances, big screens, and coffee bars, and all the other comforts of modern convenience that they manage to accumulate around them.

Although it sure is a whole lot of fun and I have to admit, you had me fooled there for a while.  {An open letter to the church I left}

does the blogger says after her eyes were opened. Continuing

I was really starting to climb up that ladder to sit there with you because I’m sure the view is amazing. But thankfully I could never quite manage to get there, and these days I actually find it rather insulting that anyone can claim to be living ‘authentic Christianity’ just because they belong to a certain kind of church.  {An open letter to the church I left}

The blogger Andrea thinks

seeking after a truly authentic apostolic life and experience would be completely unattainable, because I currently live in 2017. {An open letter to the church I left}

but than she forgets we do have enough civic papers, next to the biblical account, to give us a fair image how life was by the first century followers of the Nazarene Jewish master teacher Jeshua (Jesus Christ).

Naturally she should also know that life 2000 years later is so different that we should take that into account too.

Today we see a growing amount of people loving the ‘New Apostolic Reformation’ (NAR), a movement which seeks to establish a fifth house within Christendom, distinct from Catholicism, Protestantism, Oriental Orthodoxy, and Eastern Orthodoxy. Some of that church, at the moment, say they are ‘Charismatic’ others say they are a ‘New Testament’ or ‘Apostolic Household’ church and do not belong to the Charismatic movement.

For sure all the modern Holly-Bolly-Woody-Booly modern entertainment forms a very attractive asset to lure people in the community. At several places in the United States certain movements took place which were noticed by C. Peter Wagner to fall under the same denominator. Unlike several sects or cults groups it is not some secret society or shadowy organization. They started to find like-minded people who had no intention to overthrow world governments or undermining the Church. For many of them the “New Apostolic Reformation” started off as a name giving for a movement that was going through the established church. Nothing more but a term used to classify a subset of people throughout denominational and non-denominational Christendom who seem to share some common characteristics.

In Christendom we may find lots of churches which not only worship a Trinity, but also believe that the Holy Spirit is with them and moving around in their church even in such a way that this spirit would choose special pastors, giving them a special role in the Church of God and/or in the Kingdom of God. They may come up with many different stories even telling that people got ‘gold dust’ on their hands.

One of them was the wife of one of your pastors/elders, and she very excitedly and animatedly told us how the ‘spirit had been moving’ in a certain meeting, because the people had seen ‘gold dust’ on their hands. {An open letter to the church I left}

Andrea remarks

it is easy to dismiss the ‘manifestations of the spirit’ thing when someone is interpreting a verse of scripture about ‘being filled with the spirit’ or ‘being drunk in the spirit’, while you are sitting under the cloud of false teaching. But when you realize that these kinds of ‘manifestations’ are actually completely absent in scripture, and had been completely absent in the church until only a couple of years ago, that is when you sit up and take notice. And then when you realize that during all that time it had actually been present in the occult and Eastern mystic religions, that is when you start opening up a whole can of worms. That is when you get up and walk out of a meeting before the end, leaving behind some dear friends who are violently convulsing on the floor, and shaking in fits of ‘holy laughter’. That is when you walk out of a large WOF centre from a Jesus Culture ‘revival’ concert, feeling like you had just walked out of the depths of hell, and all the while absolutely hating yourself for having such feelings and for questioning ‘the work that God is doing through the moving of His spirit’.
And you’re asking yourself ‘Is this really the God that I know?’, but still you are convinced that the problem lies with you because you are ‘not open to the spirit’, because that is what you’re being told over, and over, and over again. And then you get pushed, and pushed, and pushed to get baptized so that you can also ‘receive the spirit’, and you’re left scratching your head because you had thought that because you were already a believer, you had already received the Holy Spirit, but the word ‘obedience’ gets thrown at you over, and over, and over again. And this is when you start to see the indoctrination above the doctrine. {An open letter to the church I left}

People should come to see that at such point they do come in the danger zone. There it is, where we would differentiate between a through church and a cult or sect. Whilst non-trinitarians do keep to the biblical teachings and are not pushing people to come into their church, afterwards demanding all sorts of obligations, and not letting people easily go, this is typical for the cult groups we notice in the trinitarian churches. Also when people then want to leave such a church or group we notice the leaders of such community want to give a ‘guilt feeling’ to the person who wants to leave.

Andrea gives a nice example how such cults or groups work

Instead you preyed on my hurt and my weakness, and used it to set your trap, so that you could be the ones who avoided the issue. This leads me to believe that, despite the deceptive façade, you actually have no idea who you are or what you believe, and you are carried about by every wind of doctrine. If this was not so, you would have had no problem answering all the questions I had first, despite any other issues that might have been present. {An open letter to the church I left}

Backsliding term used within Christianity to describe a process by which an individual who has converted to Christianity reverts to pre-conversion habits and/or lapses or falls into sin, when a person turns from God to pursue their own desire. – The story of the Prodigal Son has become a representation of a backslider that repented. Engraving of the Prodigal Son as a swineherd by Hans Sebald Beham, 1538.

In most such dominating churches we can see that they try to put the guilt feeling by accusing that person who has objections of being a backslider. Saying that the faith is watering down because the person is going the wrong way, spiritually. They want to have the doubting person to believe all lies within him or her. Saying that he or she  is regressing rather than progressing and that there is no proof any more of a commitment to Christ or that a certain standard of behaviour is not there any more.

DivideTheWord.blog, a cloud-based ministry who claim to have as purpose to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world in such a way as to be available to all of God’s children, saying it is free from denominational judgmentalism, free from race, colour or creed stipulations, brings a testimony

Having been a member of an independent Oneness Pentecostal (Apostolic) church for fifteen years, gaining a 4-year degree from a Oneness Pentecostal Bible College, and being involved in many ministries within that church, to them, I am now completely backslid. I know the doctrines. I learned the dogma. I defended it ardently.

I justified foul behavior for the purity of the doctrine and I even considered, as they do, all other Christians, lost. According to Apostolic Oneness Pentecostals (the majority, there are personal exceptions) all other Christians, be they Baptist, Lutheran, you name the group, they will not be going to heaven, because they do not follow the Pentecostal doctrines.

And when I finally had enough of the stink of judgmentalism, elitism, self-righteous pomp, the hypocrisy of their holiness standards, I backslid. I left the church. I’ll never return, nor attend another Oneness Pentecostal church again.

But something miraculous happened to me, and to hundreds, and thousands of others I’m connected to via this blog, my YouTube channel and many recovery based online groups;

I backslid, right into Jesus {I Backslid Into Jesus}

Also Andrea writes

I can assure you that I am anything but a ‘lukewarm’ Christian. {An open letter to the church I left}

The woman who likes to think of the NAR as a ‘mega cult’ or an ‘out-of-control cult’ seems to have not such nice experiences, though at first it looked even so attractive she left her ‘old’ traditional church.

For her

Praise and Worship during a Catholic Charismatic Renewal Healing Service.

It is probably important, at this point, to also note its interconnectedness with the Signs and Wonders, and Word of Faith movements. And that it is also known or characterized by a bunch of other terms, like ‘Dominionism’, ‘The Third Wave’, ‘Kingdom Now Theology’, ‘Joel’s Army’, ‘Manifest Sons of God Doctrine’, ‘Charismania’, ‘The Seven Mountain Mandate’, and ‘The Fivefold Ministry’, to name only a few. And that its precursor was ‘the New Order of the Latter Rain’, a discredited movement out of which a lot of current day NAR teachings is derived. It seems to be an ever changing, constantly evolving and expanding movement, which is what makes it so hard to pinpoint and, I believe, is part of its deceptiveness. {Eighteen Months in a Cult: Prologue}

In Pentecostalism there may be found so many subgroups that often people can not see the woods any more because of the trees. Some of those groups evolve around one ‘spiritual leader’ who can have many people under his spell. Some groups have an end to their existence when the pastor dies, others have a longer life.

In the book ‘A New Apostolic Reformation? A Biblical Response to a Worldwide Movement’, Geivett & Pivec writes:

“Whereas the Latter Rain revival lasted only a few years, NAR has been around for more than thirty years – since the 1980s, when the office of prophet began to be restored. NAR teachings have gained enough momentum for an entire generation of young people to be raised in churches that promote them. For these people, NAR teachings are at the heart of Christianity.”

Andrea was raised Reformed, and writes

– that is, the other reformation. Whereas the NAR is a falling away from the authority of Scripture towards ‘experiences’, ‘encounters’, and ‘new revelations’, the Protestant Reformation was a return to the light of Scripture. To the eternal things that God has already promised and revealed in His Word, and to recognizing it as the only truth and authority to live by. Hence one of the battle cries was Sola ScripturaScripture Alone. And even though I do not remember the emphasis ever really being placed on the fact that we were Reformed, or being taught exactly what that even meant, this was very much the culture and mind set I had grown up with. {Eighteen Months in a Cult: Prologue}

For the Mega-churches and Pentecostal Churches youngsters are an easy prey because they are not so much interested in pure words of the Scriptures, but like more “ambience” with song and dance and special actions, like seeing people going in trance or watching unbelievable things like people nearly going mad.

Andrea also admits

when you are a young person, still searching for passion and a sense of purpose, it is very hard to disagree with those who say that the traditional church is ‘dead’. And hymns, structure and doctrine simply does not seem all that relevant and exciting anymore.
So for me, when the opportunity presented itself to become part of a young, vibrant, hip & happening church, suffice it to say that I did not hesitate for very long. Even though the circumstances of how I came to be introduced to this church was accompanied by a sense of hurt and rejection, I nevertheless grabbed the opportunity to join what seemed like a genuinely committed, and caring, community of believers. I was hoping, and expecting, to have my faith nurtured and strengthened in the process. {Eighteen Months in a Cult: Prologue}

Question is how much such attractive groups can nurture a person in the good sense. We should know it is really god’s Word that must give guidance to people. It is the Bible which can give us the most correct education and foundation for a good faith.

When not much attention is given to the text from the Bible, people shall miss out edifying material, for reproof and profitable for correction for building up a life according to the Will of God.

When to much attention is giving to the pleasures of life or to the human or natural flesh the real faith can not grow. Mike sojournerphoto remembers

I (was) removed from these organisations many years ago – initially with judgement in my heart – but have since watched the ‘Toronto ‘blessing’ and such stuff thrive. I became increasingly appalled at what was happening and now am amazed that it continues, ever more subtle. I remember a dark day sitting in ‘my church’ sometime around 1986 or 7 and the band deciding to play on after the service to ‘continue to seek God’ and as looked down it was a though there was a dark pit (not visual, so much as metaphorical) and I felt compelled to leave the building. I later came to recognise so much of this as seeking after ‘the flesh’ and to equate it with James observation on the ‘earthly, natural, demonic’.

Therefore let us remember that a true Christian church should be open, have no secrecy for its members nor for the outside world, and should give most attention to the Word of God, it is to readings from the Bible.

Eighteen Months in a Cult: Prologue

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Preceding

Lovers of God, seekers and lovers of truth

Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing

All Souls’ Day

 

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Additional reading

  1. Ideas about Religiosity
  2. Religions and Mainliners
  3. Parish, local church community – Parochie, plaatselijke kerkgemeenschap
  4. Expenses, costs – Onkosten, uitgaven
  5. Contribution – Contributie, bijdrage
  6. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  7. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  8. Matthew 6:1-34 – The Nazarene’s Commentary on Leviticus 19:18 Continued 5 Matthew 6: 24-34: e) Anxiety and neighbor love
  9. Why we do not have our worship-services in a church building
  10. Why we do not keep to a Sabbath or a Sunday or Lord’s Day #6 Sunday or the Lord’s day
  11. Breaking up with a cult
  12. Evangelicalism in France on the rise
  13. Do those who want to follow Christ to be Jews
  14. What is the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International (FGBMFI)?
  15. What Doctrines came out of the Shepherding/Discipleship Movement (SDM)?
  16. Place for a fifth and sixth house in Christendom
  17. History of the NAR cult infiltrating the marketplace.
  18. Wagner the NAR and new wineskins
  19. C. Peter Wagner – The Don Quixote of Evangelicalism (Part 1): Knighted as a General.
  20. A new bible translation from the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) group
  21. Using Alexander Dowie’s “altar call” system to suggest that they are God’s instrument to furthering the Kingdom of God here on earth
  22. Brian Simmons and The Passion Translation Deception

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Related

  1. Christianity Is Not a Cult, It’s How It’s Taught
  2. So you want to be a Christian? [731]
  3. Cult…
  4. Cults around the World: Heaven’s Gate
  5. 049 :: Cult thinking
  6. Sects in the New Testament
  7. Q17: Sects and conflicts
  8. Cult Accusations Against the Body of Christ
  9. True Talk: What goes on within a sect?
  10. Same God – Different People
  11. #Tupper #Saussy PDF : Exposing the #Luciferan #Jesuit #Cult for what it is. #Catholic #Evil – YouTube
  12. Church of England downplayed extent of child abuse allegations, ritual abuse, padeophile cults, multiple personalities, FLDS – Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
  13. What is the New Apostolic Reformation?
  14. New Series: The New Apostolic Reformation
  15. Churchwatchcentral create a boogie man
  16. Should James White be disregarded as a valid voice in the field of Christian apologetics?
  17. James Goll Is a Tricky Devil: He Deceives After Warning People About the Devil’s Deception
  18. Prophetess Stacey Campbell Participated in and Promoted Catholic Event that’s in submission to the Magisterium of the Church
  19. Make Your Marine Demon Tap Out Through Full Immersion: Jennifer LeClaire’s Spiritual Hacks to Drowning Marine Demons
  20. NAR Nonsens
  21. N’ar John Silver
  22. When Church Invades Your Home
  23. Blame Cindy Jacobs for Terrorist Attacks and Tyrannical Leaders
  24. Psychic Fishing Expedition with John Edward and Shawn Bolz
  25. Cults on the rise in social media
  26. Cults of the World: Synanon
  27. Cults of the World: Aum Shinrikyo
  28. Cults of the World: Lundgren Cult
  29. Cults and sects – Jehovahs witnesses [702]
  30. Cults and sects – Christadelphians [703]
  31. Cults and sect – World Wide Church of God, Herbert Armstrong [706]
  32. Children Of God #Cult Was Hell On Earth. #Scotland
  33. Rating Cult Websites (and some background about the cults)
  34. I said #no ..’#In14ways #MercyfulGrace
  35. When Control Sets In – An Excerpt from my Book
  36. The Fall Rivers Cult
  37. A Bunch Of Rich White People From New York Are Being Arrested In Connection With A Sex Cult
  38. This Isn’t a Culture War — But a Patriotic Defense Against All Cults
  39. “Choose Freedom, Choose Happiness” – introduction
  40. Introduction – Prophet or Profit?
  41. My cult made me do comedy
  42. Card Catalog Review: Breaking Free: How I Escaped Polygamy, the FLDS Cult, and My Father, Warren Jeffs
  43. Bethel School Of Spiritual Drunkenness
  44. Drawning in mystery or Secrets with Courtney – a brief series on Scientology
  45. Video Comparison: Matt Chandler and Bethel Redding’s Shawn Bolz on the Same Page: Kooky Practices of Charismatic Things
  46. Are Phil Pringle’s ‘visions’ from God just as infallible as the NT Apostolic letters?
  47. Todd Bentley’s Vintage Heresy Oil and Prayer Cloths
  48. Experience Outweighs Scripture Implies Apostle Jennifer LeClaire
  49. Dr. Michael Brown Promotes Baby Throwing Evangelist Smith Wigglesworth
  50. Greater Works Epic Fail: Why Did Bethel Redding Need to Buy so Many Groceries for CARR Relief?
  51. I Backslid Into Jesus
  52. “Be strong and of good courage; be not afraid”
  53. Jesus The Way (2)

Lovers of God, seekers and lovers of truth

Accusations

The previous weeks we got very strong reactions at certain things we said about God and His son on the net and on our replies to certain writings on the net about Jesus, God and the Christadelphians.

Title page to the ASV

Title page to the ASV (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On several websites we where accused of being a sect and of being God haters and/or Jesus haters. When we tried to give a polite answer with what we could find in the Bible and how we funded our believes on the Holy Scriptures we were silenced and did not get an opportunity to show where our believes came from and why they are not so stupid.

The bad language send to us, plus other negative elements like viruses and Trojan horses, made us not afraid to find other ways of giving a reply or showing people what we think, why we think it and why there is reason not to consider Christadelphians being a sect or cult.

Apostolic times and Jesus’ definition of God

At the beginning of the apostolic times the followers of Christ Jesus were considered to be a Jewish sect. Their faith was based on the classic traditional monotheist faith of the People of God, the People of Israel, the Jews. Jesus coming from an Essene, and therefore a very traditional devout Jewish family, grew up in a family where they believed in Only One God. Jesus also worshipped the God of Abraham, which was considered by the Jews the Only One True God.

The Christadelphians do have the same faith as the Jews, in the Only One True God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob. Jesus was in perfect agreement with a Jewish scribe, as together they discussed the greatest of all questions we humans must face. Who is God?
So prepare now to hear what Jesus commands us in terms of our definition of God.

In the New testament we do find:

“24 Jesus said unto them, Is it not for this cause that ye err, that ye know not the scriptures, nor the power of God? 25 For when they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage; but are as angels in heaven. 26 But as touching the dead, that they are raised; have ye not read in the book of Moses, in [the place concerning] the Bush, how God spake unto him, saying, {1} I [am] the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? {1) Ex 3:6} 27 He is not the God of the dead, but of the living: ye do greatly err.

28  And one of the scribes came, and heard them questioning together, and knowing that he had answered them well, asked him, What commandment is the first of all? 29 Jesus answered, The first is, {1} Hear, O Israel; {2} The Lord our God, the Lord is one: {1) De 6:4 ff 2) Or [The Lord is our God; the Lord is one]} 30 and thou shalt love the Lord thy God {1} with all thy heart, and {1} with all thy soul, and {1} with all thy mind, and {1} with all thy strength. {1) Gr [from]} 31 The second is this, {1} Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these. {1) Le 19:18} 32 And the scribe said unto him, Of a truth, Teacher, thou hast well said that he is one; and there is none other but he:” (Mark 12:24-32 ASV)

God being the One Who is One

Excerpt of the book of Exodus from the The Gre...

Excerpt of the book of Exodus from the The Great Bible (entitled The Byble in Englyshe), publ. 1540. The English form Iehovah (Jehovah as the “J” stands for both I and the later J) is used for the Tetragrammaton at Exodus 6:3. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Clearly for Jesus the Most High Elohim Creator deity is only One as is also written in the Book Deuteronomy of the Old Testament

“Hear, O Israel: {1} Jehovah our God is one Jehovah: {1) Or [Jehovah our God, Jehovah is one]; Or [Jehovah is our God, Jehovah is one]; Or [Jehovah is our God, Jehovah alone]}” (Deuteronomy 6:4 ASV)
For Jeshua or Jesus Jehovah is his God and is only one, not two or three.
Jesus also added we should love that One God with all our heart.

“And he said unto him, {1} Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. {1) De 6:5}” (Matthew 22:37 ASV)“And he answering said, {1} Thou shalt love the Lord thy God {2} with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; {3} and thy neighbor as thyself. {1) De 6:5. 2) Gr [from] 3) Le 19:18}” (Luke 10:27 ASV)

We as Christadelphians do love God and do love His creation. They want to open their heart to all people and not only just to some who belong to the same denomination as they. We also want to give attention to other minded persons and do respect them for what they think and feel. This cannot be said about those who call themselves Christians and attack us.

Jewish unitarian creed and Jesus’ creed

As we can find in the New Testament Jesus stated that God is a single Lord. He uttered the Jewish unitarian creed and made it the pinnacle of good Christian understanding and practice.

What else can we say about this One God of Jesus’ creed?

He could not possibly be the triune God of traditional Christendom. Jesus is on record as recognizing no god but the God of his Jewish heritage based on the Scriptures preserved as God’s oracles. That God was never the Trinity. Jesus was not a Trinitarian, on the plainest evidence of his testimony in Mark 12:28-34. He himself never claimed to be God and knew very well he could not do anything without his Father in heaven.

“Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father doing: for what things soever he doeth, these the Son also doeth in like manner.” (John 5:19 ASV)

“I can of myself do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is righteous; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” (John 5:30 ASV)

God’s Will and Jesus’ will

In case Jesus is God Jesus would do his own will by doing the Will of God and nothing would be to difficult for him. But Jesus clearly tells us he was placed on this earth not to do his will but the Will of the One Who had sent Jesus and was not him but God. Jesus also submitted himself totally to the Will of God.

 “For I am come down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” (John 6:38 ASV)

“Jesus therefore said, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that {1} I am [he], and [that] I do nothing of myself, but as the Father taught me, I speak these things. {1) Or [I am] he: [and I do]}” (John 8:28 ASV)

Jesus also not speaks out of himself but brings the Word of the one Who sent him and Who commands him. We believe those words written in the scriptures which tell us about Jesus his position.

 “For I spake not from myself; but the Father that sent me, he hath given me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.” (John 12:49 ASV)

“Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I say unto you I speak not from myself: but the Father abiding in me doeth his works.” (John 14:10 ASV)

God’s call to be seekers and lovers of truth

God calls us to be lovers of truth and seekers of truth. Jesus let his followers know that they should search those Scriptures and belief the Words of God.

We would not like it to see our heart hardened like the one of the Pharaoh of Egypt, him refusing to believe God’s agents, Moses and Aaron. The same we would not like our ears to be deaf like the ones of the sons of the prophet Eli to be deaf to Eli’s words of warning so that they did not repent of their sin and turn back to God (1 Samuel. 2:22-25).

For  us it is most important, not to follow human doctrines and as such pleasing man, but following the teachings of Jesus Christ continuing in God’s truth, continuously willing to seek truth and to endure sound doctrine, which is provided in the Holy Scriptures.

Sound doctrine

We do believe God will guide us by His Word and by the teachers he allows us to find, who will encourage us in sound doctrine and not in a teaching according our own, or the majority of man’s own desires, even when they claim to be the majority and therefore being the right ones. It is  not because they belong to the most numerous denomination in Christendom, which are the Roman Catholics, that all others are the wrong ones, not keeping to the main rules and being sects.

We are convinced that anyone, including believers, pastors, church leaders and Bible scholars, can be deluded in some area of their understanding, if they are not always “lovers of the truth,” if they are not always open to criticism, to other perspectives and scholarship which may give new insights and even improve our Bible translations, which in turn may lead to the need to discard some of our pet doctrines or practices.

In fact, we can see a God-sent delusion that has infected much of the Christian Church for many of the last 1900 years in a number of very significant areas of faith and practice! We may wonder if  the traditional Christian Church may not be blind to significant portions of God’s clear truth. for sure we can see lots of Christians who refuse to try to read the Bible without their known doctrine of the Trinity. Are they afraid that in case they would try to leave that doctrine away for a moment, they would loose track?

Why is it that sincere and earnest pastors seem happy to rest in their beliefs that were perhaps ingrained from Bible college or from their time in the pews? Why do so many pastors seem unwilling to read widely, to read honest critiques from Bible scholars, to read the criticisms of their opponents, to be challenged by and confront the beliefs of such ideologies as Catholicism, replacement theology, prosperity religion, materialism, paganism, and Islam, etc?

Insecurity, fear opposite confidence

Is it not best to wonder why people are afraid to put their Trinity doctrine for a moment at the site to read what is really written there black on white in the Book of books. Are they so insecure or fearful to do the test of sound reasoning? Or is it a form of  cowardice or fear or insecurity that prevents many from being earnest and zealous seekers after truth?

Yet are we not all cowards by nature? Are we not all fearful of standing against the tide of this world — standing against the crowd when they practice evil?

When Paul was in prison he was encouraged that many of his fellow believers gained confidence in their stand for the truth of the Gospel.

“Most of the brethren, trusting in the Lord because of my imprisonment, have far more courage to speak the word of God without fear” (Philipeans 1:14).

Each of us has different opportunities to play our part in the teaching of truth. The Church exists mainly to teach the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, and we take to heart Jesus’ warning that we must never be ashamed of him and his Gospel (Mark 8:38).
It is each of us individually and not our pastor or church leader who will stand before the Messiah, the righteous Judge, and have our heart searched on these matters.

Which leader to follow

Christadelphians do not have one specific worldly leader or organisation which we all have to follow. We do not have to be obedient to an overall organisation or church institution. By us no specific gifts or tenths (teeting) obligated. So how can it be certain people accuse us of being a sect, where this are all elements particular to sects.

Jesus in the Gospels

Jesus in the Gospels (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Christadelphians do not follow someone here on earth, but do follow Jesus Christ, who, according to the Holy Scriptures is now seated at the right hand of his heavenly Father to be a mediator between God and man.

We do believe each individual is himself or herself responsible and shall have to be answerable before the judge Jesus Christ on his return, which he even did not know when it would be, though God knows everything.

It is therefore you and I who need to be sure regarding where we stand before God for our own peace of mind and salvation. We ourselves have to make our own choice who to follow, Jesus or those who claim to be the traditional church.

Task to help others

But we also have received the task to help others and to “Rescue those being led away to death” (Proverbs 24:10-12) Therefore we may encounter lots of discouragement but we must continue and may not falter in times of trouble. We should not fear man but more fear God and count on the strength He is willing to give us.

I think perhaps in this issue of God we have to be careful to pay close attention to the unitarian statements of Jesus.

“You, Father, are the only one who is truly God” (17:3).

Is that statement unacceptable?
Does it not obviously tell us that no one else is the true God?

Jesus also tells us that he is the Way to God and we should follow him so that he can lead us through the small gate of the Kingdom of God.

Clearly Jesus being the Way to God and to life, we should focus on him, not as being the God, but as being the Way to God and being part of the Plan of God.

Once we say that Jesus is God we are counting two Gods — and that contradicts the Shema which Jesus says is the most important commandment (Mark 12:29).

Jesus learned everything from God as he grew up in wisdom and stature. If he were God he would have nothing to learn! God also tells us that He does not tell lies, is an eternal Spirit Who cannot seen by man or they would fall death, and that he cannot be tempted. Jesus was seen by many who did not fall death. Jesus also was tempted more than once. God Who knows everything and does not tell lies would not have told the truth when He is Jesus, and was been asked when he would come back and who would be seated next to him. Jesus told his disciples he did not know that and that only his Father knows that. God obviously cannot die. Jesus did die. The Son of God died. This is one of the special elements of our faith or a core element of the Christian faith.

All those facets we should tell others and help them to see what is written in the Bible about Jesus and the Plan of God.

Having no opportunity to explain this and to go deeper into detail, we were confronted with that censorship and saw the necessity to explain this more to the general public.

Therefore we started looking for an other means to show how Christadelphians next to the Word of God put their focus on that Nazarene man Jesus Christ, who we believe to be our saviour and example to follow.

Spokesmen for Jesus

Looking on the internet for means to help others to come to see who Jesus really is and what is really written in the Bible, we tried out some blogging systems.

As such we created:

C4A: Christ for all a site to show the reasons why to love Jesus.

C4U:Christ for you and Christadelphians for you, an other site to site of Brothers and Sisters in Christ, who love the Creator and His creations, to show which way we do have to go and whom to follow.

Both do have some negative points and made us not satisfied. Therefore we went back to a well known source. Once more we decided to go for WordPress and created last but not least the site with the focus all on Jesus Christ our Messiah, a “Messiah for all“.

We invite you to come and have a look at those site and to give your impression, so that we can work on it and improve.

We do hope we can show the world why we need to follow Jesus Christ of Nazareth and how Christadelphians do that, and as such should also been seen as true followers of Christ or real Christians and not as a sect or cult because they do not follow any human worldly leader nor institution of this world.

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Please do find additional to read:

  1. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  2. Background to look at things
  3. Synagogue, Church or Ecclesia for the Christian
  4. Intentions of an Ecclesia
  5. United people under Christ
  6. Disciple of Christ counting lives and friends dear to them
  7. A participation in the body of Christ
  8. Who are the Christadelphians
  9. Christadelphian people
  10. Our Christadelphian faith
  11. What Christadelphians believe
  12. Our Creed and Practice
  13. About Brothers in Christ
  14. What are Brothers in Christ
  15. Often asked questions: faq – English
  16. What Christadelphians teach
  17. Those who call the Christadelphians a cult
  18. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  19. Evangelisation, local preaching opposite overseas evangelism
  20. Those who love Jesus
  21. The Law of Christ: Law of Love
  22. The first on the list of the concerns of the saint
  23. Agape, a love to share with others from the Fruit of the Spirit
  24. The task given to us to love each other
  25. Christianity is a love affair
  26. The Greatest of These is Love
  27. Unarmed truth and unconditional love
  28. Unconditional love
  29. Compassion and Discipline
  30. Character transformed by the influence of our fellowships
  31. Integrity of the fellowship
  32. Fellowship
  33. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom

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  • Rule and Reign (activeinspiration.wordpress.com)
    As reported in the news these days we hear Christians are persecuted at all time highs. Maybe its because perfect love from God our Father that we share with the world is seen as weakness to the world of nonbelievers.
  • Stand Tall In Faith (mylordmyfriend.com)
    Jesus answered Peters confession, “That Jesus is the Christ, and the Son of The living God”Matthew 16 verse 16: Jesus declares that upon that Confession, the He is The Christ, He will build His Church.That is the concrete slab of faith, what Jesus came to do and what He did through the Cross. One of the statements of faith, that was established, by the forefathers, to counteract, heresies and mysticism which tried to wrongly attach themselves to the Truth, about Christ Jesus was.
  • Charles Spurgeon (rulookingforjesus.wordpress.com)
    It is a sweet thought that Jesus Christ did not come forth without his Father’s permission, authority, consent, and assistance. He was sent of the Father, that he might be the Saviour of men.
  • Feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple (emmanuelchatham.typepad.com)
    Almighty and everliving God, we humbly pray that, as your only-begotten Son was this day presented in the temple, so we may be presented to you with pure and clean hearts by Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
  • Scripture of the Day, 2/5 (sowegalive.com)
    And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.
  • Daily prayer (0: have a free day (0: (hmweimar.wordpress.com)
    Lord- thank you for always giving us a way to salvation and peace. Thank you for the grace you cover our lives with and thank you Lord God for your son. In his holy name amen
    Believe and make it so
  • Monday, 26 January 2015 : 3rd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Timothy and St. Titus, Bishops (First Reading) (petercanisiusmichaeldavidkang.com)
    I invite you to fan into a flame the gift of God you received through the laying on of my hands. For God did not confer on us a spirit of bashfulness, but of strength, love and good judgment. Do not be ashamed of testifying to our Lord, nor of seeing me in chains. On the contrary, do your share in labouring for the Gospel with the strength of God.
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    From Paul, servant of God, Apostle of Christ Jesus, at the service of God’s chosen people, so that they may believe and reach the knowledge of truth and godliness. The eternal life we are waiting for was promised from the very beginning by God who never lies, and as the appointed time had come, He made it known through the message entrusted to me by a command of God, our Saviour.

A man from the North wanting to have control in Belgium

A man from the North wanting to have control in Belgium

The association of Belgian Biblestudents can not resist also to tell how ill-disposed it is towards the attitude of the Man from the North. To our great dissatisfaction we also received censorship by that man and his organisation and resists such unsuitable attitude of some who call themselves Christian but undermine the unity on the community of Christians.

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Belgian Biblestudents - Belgische Bijbelstudenten

Figures in history

Photograph of Charles Taze Russell. Photograph of Charles Taze Russell. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Throughout history lots of religions had troubles with certain figures wanting to have control over everything and wanting to be the main leader.

The Biblestudent movement is no different than any other Christian denomination. In its coarse of history there have been strong leaders creating schisms or denying there where divisions having come out of their group.

One of the pupils of Dr. John Thomas never wanted to have a following of a singular person. Charles Taze Russell managed to create a big amount of followers who were genuinely interested to make the best out of Biblestudy. Their leader had arranged that they could have additional literature which could be of help to their study, but it was never intended to replace the Bible.

Centralized authority

Russell did not believe in any centralized authority except

View original post 5,775 more words

Attackers silenced freedom of speech

Warning: Those who like censor could be offended with our open-minded attitude to tackle a problem which we have encountered the last few months.

We do request those who can’t bear open speaking to abandon from reading this article, because they might, perhaps by prejudice or partiality, be offended.

Previous days and years

The last few days there did not seem to have come any opportunity to publish anything on this recently opened website on WordPress.

22102006 AC Distrubitie dag bijeenkomst

Members of our community at a meeting in the Christadelphian ecclesia Brussel-Leuven. – Heverlee, Leuven

The Belgian Christadelphian community has been under attack by a person who lives in the North of Europe and leads a prosperous organisation which tries to bring people all over the world under their spell.

For years now the Belgian Christadelphians had tried to work together with that man and his organisation, with the idea that people should unite in their force to bring people to Christ. It must be told that this guy converts a lot of people to Christianity and gets them baptised under Christ. In previous years he baptised them as Christadelphians, but we came to understand this could be called very doubtful in the present circumstances.

‘Being in’ or ‘Belonging to’ a group

Normally one would think when people are taken into a group, be it for example Anglicans, you would expect such persons baptised in that church would be welcome in any Anglican church and considered as Anglicans. But this man baptising his followers and leading an organisation that calls itself Christadelphian does everything so that their members would not associate with other members of the worldwide community of Christadelphian brothers and sisters.

After loads of correspondence and trials to reconcile the founder of this website, who is also the responsible for the Belgian Christadelphians, and member of the Central Fellowship, with that man and his organisation and the organisation which helps us, the Christadelphian Bible Mission or CBM, in the United Kingdom as in Belgium we came to understand that there is no way to talk reasonably with that man, and the organisation which seems to be blinded by that charismatic figure.

Belgian story

After months of patience, the community of Brethren and Sisters in Christ, under the CBM, came to the conclusion we had to stop trying to come to terms with that man of the North and his organisation. By taking distance from this terrible division we clearly stepped on that man his toes. Probably for that reason he continued even more to twist our words and talked slanderous about Mr. Ampe, calling Marcus Ampe now the cause of all the problems and accusing him of slander. Therefore Marcus Ampe went in to defence and made clear why the Christadelphian community in Belgium could not give any addresses in Belgium of that man his organisation, because they did not allow us to have the addresses where people could come together to study the Bible and to have worship together.

We would have loved to see the different groups of Christadelphians having come together in unity, but because that person and his organisation not willing to share meetings with our members, we just could not help those people who asked us for advice and help.

Not willing to Care

The organisation which has the word “Care” in its name did not seem to care that the very few in Belgium could not have gatherings in unity. It looks like they are more concerned in their own membership and followers who want to say and do everything like they want it to be done. For us this became smelling more like being a cult or sect, which does not wonder us why we often are asked if or are accused of the Christadelphians being a cult. Though normally Christadelphians have no specific worldly leader, or any order of ranking, like you can find in so many Christian organisations or denominations, so no pope, cardinals and bishops. We all consider ourselves under the leadership of Jesus Christ. He is our cornerstone who leads us to his Father. All of those who come to be baptised under the name of Jesus Christ, are considered equal brothers and sisters of Christ.

CIMG0593

Marcus Ampe in 2006

Therefore it is also ridiculous of the organisation to consider that Mr. Ampe from Belgium would have been able to have a worldwide exclusion of the man of the North for the Christadelphian community. He even never disfellowshipped the man of the North, so why should the organisation from the Australian division request Mr. Ampe to restore fellowship in the Christadelphian community. It is to attribute Mr. Ampe with a power no one has in our Christian community. He is well aware of that and never claimed to have such a position or never demanded other Christadelphians not meeting with the Man from the North.

Living in the world obliged to laws and regulations

We do know we are living in this world and as such are bounded to regulations of this world, like having to pay our taxes and to confer other worldly obligations. As such, we also do need a working structure and an office. Mr. Marcus Ampe takes care of those duties in Belgium. For this he also has the responsibility to try to make the daily duties work. He not only has to provide material for the services and make arrangements so that the baptised people can come together; he also has to protect them and to make sure the community or parishes are kept clean of teachings and safe for all members who want to join.

ScreenHunter_35 Feb. 15 10.47

Christadelphia Facebook page not available, or blacked-out on 2014 February 15

Having confronted with the person of the North, trying to jam the Christadelphian movement in Belgium, he felt pressed to undertake action and to defend his actions. For that reason he placed his defence on his religious website Christadelphian World and put notices up on his Facebook and the Christadelphia Facebook page. Being confronted that the truth about this dilemma was put onto the net the accuser felt bitten and wanted to have Marcus Ampe his Facebook close down. We where warned of this request to close down the Facebook account by that man, but the Facebook site of Mr Ampe stayed public. (Though surprise today 15/02/2014 there was a picture of a wounded thumb up saying the page did not exist any-more.)

Black-out of Christadelphian World

Christadelphian World 11 Nov 2013Going further in the attack, we cannot tell if it was the man of the North himself or one of his co-workers, they succeeded to silence Marcus Ampe his voice on Blogger. Incredible, but true, Christadelphian World was silenced under the norm “inappropriate postings”. As soon as Marcus Ampe got to see that his website was obstructed for public viewing he send in a request to Google to reconsider their action. Later that day the main postings seemed to be available to the public again, but all the comments where and are still not visible to the public today (Saturday 15 February 2014).

It is unbelievable that someone could close down a website for reasons which make no serious ground to do such a thing. We do know “truth may hurt one mentally as much as an antiseptic balm may hurt on a wound”, like Vichar Prachar says it so nicely in his article Freedom of Speech and the Right to Offend. Sometimes we come to a point where we do have to bring the dirty linen into the open. First the people in Belgium tried to solve the matter between themselves with the man from the North. Afterwards we brought in the linkman from our British main organisation CBM. Than the CBM linkman tried to bring CBM in reconciliation with the man from the North and the organisation linked with him. Following the Christian rule of have first no witnesses, than two witnesses, then more witnesses from the own community, we did have to bring it more into the open because people from outside our organisation where also affected.

To wash one’s dirty linen in public

We do not like it at all to bring out internal matters, but this situation has ran our of hand and the accuser attacks us with all he can do.

The Belgian Christadelphians have showed patience for more than one year, and tried sincerely to bring all baptised Christadelphian members, be it Amended or non-amended, or from any group linked with one or the other organisation, together.

The Belgian Christadelphian also sincerely tried and still try to spread the Good News of the Gospel, and want to unite all people who would like to follow Jeshua, the Nazarene Jewish rabbi, who is better known in the West as Jesus Christ. He is the Messiah and should be our only mediator between God and man. According to our faith it is Jesus people have to follow and not one or the other organisation. We should all be parts of the body of Christ and feel united as such.

When washing has to be done, those who are made dirty should have to receive the opportunity to be cleansed. We also consider that all things should be made clear and to do so everybody should have the right to speak openly.

The Indian writer says also:

A society that endeavors to consist of an enlightened citizenship will always put Truth central to its constitutional preamble. Our constitutional visionaries took vision from an age old Dharmic saying ‘Satyameva Jayate’ and enshrined it in our Constitution. Yet we have been only paying lip service to the underlying importance this has towards developing an enlightened, civilized and developed society. We have been steadily contorting ‘abuse’ to imply ‘offense’ and ‘hurt’ irrespective whether the hurt or offense is caused by Truth or untruth.

Imposing their will on others

Freedom of Speech (preliminary version)

Freedom of Speech (preliminary version) (Photo credit: cliff1066™)

The person from the North and his organisation do want to have to tell things in the world, want to take on ministerial positions, but do not want to accept the political controversy with it. Those involved in politics should know that they always stand open for criticism. In case they can not endure such criticism they better would withdraw and do other things, but not wanting to take the lead.

In case every politician could silence a website or newspaper when criticism was given on him or her or on the work of the party, or when they told the truth, many websites would face a close-down and many papers would fall in oblivion. But clearly than our world would be in dictatorship. In the West we can not accept that we would be placed under absolute or despotic control or power.

Pointing out such a danger of having being censored, though Marcus Ampe is only a very, very small player on the field, he now had to go into the pen for more than one reason. Such a jamming of his writings and a censoring of the commentators, without him being consulted or having the possibility to keep the postings on the net, are an infringement of freedom of public speech.

Unwanted and dangerous censorship

A good example of how in the past also one certain church wanted to silence other believers. – In “Panegyricae orationes septem” (1596) Henric van Cuyck, a Dutch Bishop, defended the need for censorship. Van Cuyck argued that Johannes Gutenberg’s printing press had resulted in a world infected by “pernicious lies.” He singled out the Talmud and the Qu’ran, and the writings of Martin Luther, Jean Calvin and Erasmus of Rotterdam.

This whole situation seems ridiculous, but we do have to question, in case some organisations can silence ordinary folks, what can be done to silence those who really bring out a voice which can change a country? Such blue-pencil, having done its work, for such a small website should make us all think about the power certain organisations and blog-providers may have. The black-out of Christadelphian World and the censor having brought on by Google on Marcus Ampe his Google+ account should have us all think about the danger of such actions to which the involved persons do seem not to be able to do something against. They even were not consulted or could give any defence for their writing.

We know Marcus Ampe does not take any important position in blogging world, and his writings shall never reach so many people, because the subject he writes about, most people are not interested in. But having him to be silenced, though everybody may come to see his writings are not offensive at all, should make question about the liberty of speaking out freely. When you consider how much spam every day comes into our mailboxes and how many porn sites and websites about violence and with awful words can be seen by many every day on the internet, without them being black-out, we may wonder in what sort of world we have come to live in. Mr. Ampe’s writings are integer and about what is happening in the world as seen from a Christadelphian and Christian viewpoint. If he gets silenced one can wonder why so many others have not been silenced, though they hurt many people, use a much more inappropriate language than Mr. Ampe.
This Marcus Ampe, though coming from the performing world also may not be confused with an other Mr. Marcus, who is an an American pornographic actor who in 2012, was the main person in a syphilis-infection scandal in California when several porn-performers were infected during video production.

Please: Look for yourself

We would like to ask our readers to look for themselves. In case they can (again) view the writings on Christadelphian World, that they let us know if those writings are so offensive or so dangerous as others want the public to believe. Let us also know if the comments are visible again and if in it are used inappropriate words. Our community want to learn, so we do not mind response.

This annoying situation has consumed lots of time of several of our members. We came to the conclusion we shall have to row on our own and shall have to find ways to reach the Belgian public, without help of outsiders.
The Belgian Christadelphians do want to buckle their belt and continue the necessary work of preaching.. We do not mind to make shift with what we may have in our small country. To make the best of it, any help is naturally welcome, spiritual and/or financial support. Mostly we would appreciate already the spiritual support, to encourage us to continue spreading the Word of God.

We shall soon take up again our regular duties and bring the Gospel of the Good News. But this time we were so ‘flappergasted’ (taken by) the bad news, we did have to share it with our regular readers and with those who are interested in what is happening in the religious world in Belgium.

In the time we are

Deutsch: Christadelphian-Gemeindehaus in Esslingen

Christadelphian – Community house in Esslingen (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We do know in what sort of time we probably have come. In the Bible we can find many prophesies and also prophesies about the end-times. A prediction of what shall happen in the world when it comes closer to the end makes us aware we shall have to endure certain attacks, which shall even come from those we considered to be our brothers.
Reading the Bible and finding many answers in it, we also come to know there will be an even greater need for believers to be in harmony and to pray together as our world starts to fall apart. Therefore we would like all those who believe in the Divine Creator, to join hands, preach the Gospel of the Good News and the coming Kingdom of God.

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Please do find

Mr. Ampe his reaction after continued exclusion by the man of the North his continued refusal to allow different Christadelphians meet with each other: No reconciliation possible between CBM and Duncan Heaster from Carelinks

Additional writings by Marcus Ampe concerning the controversial situation in Belgium:

  1. Not words of any organisation should bind you, but the Word of God
  2. Priority to form a loving brotherhood
  3. Disciple of Christ counting lives and friends dear to them
  4. Certain people trying to stem freedom of speech
  5. Censorship possible by a person and his organisation

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Please do find other additional readings:

  1. Belonging to or being judged by
  2. A Voice to be heard
  3. Good or bad preacher
  4. One Mediator between God and man
  5. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  6. Parts of the body of Christ
  7. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  8. Called Christian
  9. Breaking up with a cult
  10. Manifests for believers #5 Christian Union
  11. Making church
  12. When discouraged facing opposition
  13. Fearing the right person
  14. Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing
  15. How to look for and how to handle the Truth
  16. Reasons to come to gether
  17. Congregate, to gather, to meet
  18. Meeting – Vergadering
  19. Parish, local church community – Parochie, plaatselijke kerkgemeenschap
  20. The Church, Body of Christ and remnant Israel synonymous
  21. Many churches
  22. Synagogue, Church or Ecclesia for the Christian
  23. Those who call the Christadelphians a cult
  24. Uncovering the Foundations of Faith
  25. What’s church for, anyway?
  26. Rebirth and belonging to a church
  27. Commitment to Christian unity
  28. United people under Christ
  29. Breathing and growing with no heir
  30. Exceptionalism and Restricting Laws
  31. An ecclesia in your neighborhood
  32. Intentions of an Ecclesia
  33. Christadelphians children of God
  34. Christadelphian beliefs
  35. Major Points of Belief
  36. Christadelphian or My Beliefs and the World
  37. What we believe
  38. What Christadelphians teach
  39. Intentions of an Ecclesia
  40. Politics and power first priority #1
  41. A Society pleading poverty
  42. Proclaiming shalom, bringing good news of good things, announcing salvation
    sssh!

    sssh! (Photo credit: Stephen Dagnall)

     

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From other people, denominations and atheists:

  1. A beautiful photo: #leadership at Inspiration Daily Shared publicly  –  13 Feb 2014
  2. Why so religious?
  3. Freedom of speech or political right to communicate one’s opinions and ideas
  4. Universal Declaration of Human Rights
  5. International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
  6. European Convention on Human Rights
  7. American Convention on Human Rights
  8. African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights
  9. Find also more information on libel, slander, obscenity, sedition
  10. Racial and Religious Hatred Act 2006
  11. Liberty-human-rights – article 10 – freedom of expression
  12. Freedom Of Speech And Expression inclusive Importance Of Freedom Of Speech And Expression
  13. Freedom of speech, of the press, of association, of assembly and petition
  14. The Paradox of Liberty: the Freedom of speech (re)considered

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A screenshot of the default WordPress theme.

A screenshot of the default WordPress theme. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  • On the site of ABC you may find the article Who are the Christadelphians? (blogs.abc.net.au) where a wrong picture is given of our community. Though we do agree like in any denomination you may find very conservative groups but also very progressive groups in our community.+
    “it sounds like Vanessa belonged to an extreme group. Adelaide is not typical of Christadelphians worldwide. I’m a Christadelphian from the UK and I can safely say that those I mix with enjoy a drink, theatre going, football, movies, read lots of novels, wear scarlet – and yes we bring friends home.I’m sorry that Vanessa seems to have had a poor experience of Christadelphians. We’re not all so insular. But yes we believe the Bible and try to follow its principles in our lives. In this messed up world to keep focused on the big picture of the Return of Christ and his kingdom on earth is a certain hope. It’s a true hope – Bible prophecy about the Jews is compelling evidence.” Sarah Joiner
  • Marching not to war (christiantoday.com)
    Britain was virtually alone in recognising the rights of COs and this clause was seen as a major coup for the No Conscription Fellowship and the Fellowship of Reconciliation. The latter was a Christian ecumenical movement which had long campaigned for such recognition.The Fellowship of Reconciliation arose out of a friendship between a German Lutheran and English Quaker. Friedrich Siegmund-Schultz and Henry Theodore Hodgkin met at an ecumenical conference in Switzerland that was disrupted by the onset of war.
  • Cory Bernardi and Freedom of Speech (andrewwhalan.com)
    The problem with that is my explicit and implicit attitude : the only person who should exercise freedom of speech is me and me alone.Which means I can enjoy my moment of free speech. And silence everyone else’s freedom of speech.Which mean freedom of speech is lost in the long run for me and for everyone else.
  • Taking offence and freedom of speech (blogs.spectator.co.uk)
    All religious groups benefit from freedom of speech, because their beliefs have the power to offend others. As our leading article this week sets out, that includes the rather mild and doddery-seeming Church of England, which teaches that personal sin is a serious matter requiring repentance. That’s the sort of thing that can offend people, too, but the Church and other groups benefit from the freedom to say it. Religious groups who argue for curbs on freedom of speech must realise that in the end, this would damage their own freedom too, not just that of others they don’t like.
    +

    Agrippina:

    The fanatical ideologists need to be defeated, either they accept this free democracy or go and live elsewhere. They have nothing to offer us and we do not want anything from them. Spectator journos should pop out to Tower Hamlets or further north, and see the level of islamification of this green and pleasant land.

  • Silence is the true freedom. (priscillaescamilla28.wordpress.com)
    Silence is power, / the freedom of speech is nothing but a lying blood sucking leach,
  • Free Speech or Regulated Silence? (amresolution.com)
    How did our founders ever manage to establish a republic committed to free speech and the rights of the individual without a Federal Election Commission to regulate that speech and force disclosure of the speaker?
  • What if Freedom Meant Exodus? (pumabydesign001.com) +What if Freedom Meant Exodus?
    With our faith being ridiculed and mocked and a government increasingly hostile to our practicing our faith. We see a rampant increase of sexual immorality and perversion along with an assault on a on our children by forcing them to accept this behavior as normal.We pray for wisdom for our leaders and for God to intercede. But what if God has other plans? What if God were to bring a Moses forth? Would we recognise and welcome him? If he wanted to lead us to a different place, would we go?

Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing

Fear to use a name of a ghost, person or group

5. Fear from knowing previous cases

Ghost fear

Ghost fear (Photo credit: @Doug88888)

It is not always from personal history that a person learns to fear. Regardless of whether they themselves have experienced trauma, or if they have observed the fear in others, people are aware in what happens in others and anticipate in what could happen to them when they know what happened to others in a similar situation. History has brought forth that people know how many people were teased, pestered, tormented and even killed for their love of God. Often they become worried to be put in an embarrassing situation if they would mention God or His Name. Their conscience pricks them, not having pangs of conscience, but more of the fear to become confronted with something others do not like, or would not find it ‘cool.’

6. Coming out

They should better have an uneasy conscience why they do not like to come out for those things they do believe. Because as a follower of Christ we should have a beautiful example in what Jesus did for his faith and for those people who even did not like him.

Christ the Saviour (Pantokrator), a 6th-centur...

Christ the Saviour (Pantokrator), a 6th-century encaustic icon from Saint Catherine’s Monastery, Mount Sinai. NB – slightly cut down – for full size see here (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Nobody wants to be a figure of fun or made a fool of, and often it is not easy to be able to take a bit of teasing surely when we know that it easily can take on the form of bullying and going to worse.

Also to fear to be associated with loonies, conservatives, fools or lunatics or with associations or groups which are not so much liked in society.

For this reason several priests and preachers do not dare to use the Name of God. In the fifties we still could find Roman Catholic Bibles with the name Yehowah printed in it. But when a group of lay street-preachers started to put the attention more on God then on his son Jesus and the Church institutions, the Institutions themselves felt taken under fire, and wanted to bring it forth that those people using the name Jehovah were the children of the devil. But then they themselves could not use the same name as those ‘dangerous’ objectors. The growing Jehovah Witnesses became a formidable or fearsome adversary. The church institutions wanted to get rid of this opponent which tried to open the eyes of the unknowing parishioners. According to the Catholic Churches people should not read the Bible because they are not able to understand it. But now those common folk tried to get others to understand that anybody could find the Truth in the Word of God, the Bible.

7. Dangerous folks

Many institutions tried to bring a hate feeling for those ‘dangerous’ people of Jehovah, who had to be avoided at all costs. The fact that those Witnesses also dared to call at the door at the most awkward moments of the day did not make them very popular. That they also showed up at the worst moments was not in their favour. Therefore it was not difficult to have them become a subject of laughter and of hate mails.

According to several studies, when individuals are presented with fearful vs. neutral faces or being confronted with figures clothed in a certain way this triggersthe occipital cerebellar regions including the fusiform gyrus and the inferior parietal / superiortemporal gyri.[1]A fear is created by the looks of the persons. Everybody can see the Jehovah Witnesses from far away. (We probably do not have to have a picture here.)

The cognitive, and behavioural components make that several people come in to a psychological and physiological state whereby they produce worry going into anxiety, angst or in the worst case terror. The Jehovah Witnesses were considered a hazard. Nobody wanted to risk the loss of their members to such an association were everybody seemed so close to each other.They even considered the others in the group as brothers and sisters. That would make such a close relation that they would do a lot to help and protect each other.  It would be more difficult to get them away from the group than when they would stay just some individuals in a community. To make the fear greater for those people the churches found it best to say that those Witnesses of Jehovah were not only the adversaries of faith but also a dangerous sect or cult which would make that families would be broken up.


[1] Radua,Joaquim; Phillips, Mary L.; Russell, Tamara; Lawrence, Natalia; Marshall,Nicolette; Kalidindi, Sridevi; El-Hage, Wissam; McDonald, Colm et al. (2010).”Neural response to specific components of fearful faces in healthy andschizophrenic adults”. NeuroImage 49 (1): 939–946. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2009.08.030. PMID 19699306.

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Additional reading:

  1. 7000 to 20000 words spoken each day
  2. Darkness, light, burning fire, Truth and people in it
  3. Greatest single cause of atheism
  4. Breathing and growing with no heir
  5. Facing disaster fatigue
  6. Fear knocked at the door
  7. 8 fears caused by the fear of Man
  8. Walking alone?
  9. Fearing the right person
  10. Fear and protection
  11. Anxiety is the gap between the now and the later
  12. Vile language and behaviour plus little secrets
  13. Built on or Belonging to Jewish tradition #4 Mozaic and Noachide laws
  14. Condemnation of the World and Illustration of Justification
  15. Fear not tomorrow. God is already there
  16. Do not be afraid. Good news because a Saviour has been born
  17. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #2 Calling upon the Name of God
  18. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #4 Transitoriness #1 Prosperity
  19. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #4 Transitoriness #3 Rejoicing in the insistence
  20. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #8 Prayer #6 Communication and manifestation
  21. I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late !
  22. Look for your Refuge by God
  23. Praying For What We Want or Don’t Want
  24. Prophets making excuses
  25. Would You Run?
  26. Control and change
  27. When discouraged facing opposition
  28. Only the contrite self, sick of its pretensions, can find salvation
  29. Try driving forward instead of backwards
  30. Be strong and take courage
  31. A small trouble is like a pebble
  32. Look for today
  33. Rejoicing in the day
  34. Give your worries to God
  35. God is Positive
  36. God Feeds The Birds
  37. God become master of our passions
  38. No fear in love
  39. Joy: Foundation for a Positive Life
  40. Wondering
  41. Eternal Word that tells everything
  42. Power in the life of certain
  43. Being sure of their deliverance
  44. Jehovah’s Witnesses not only group that preach the good news
  45. Focus on Jehovah’s Witnesses
  46. Focus on Charles Taze Russell
  47. Charles Taze Russell never claimed to have found a new religion, or a new church.
  48. Bringing Good News into the world
  49. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  50. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  51. Those who call the Christadelphians a cult
  52. Breaking up with a cult
  53. Being religious has benefits even in this life

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  • God’s Name is Jehovah, not ‘Yahweh’ (dontbefooled666.wordpress.com)
    When one does more research, they find that there are a multitude of Biblical names of places and people–even names of kings–that have meanings that center around God. These names begin with Jeho in English (Yeho in Hebrew) and some even include God’s whole name: Jehovah.
  • “Do not be Anxious.” An unrealistic expectation? (God’s Law and the Christian Pt. 3) (newjerusalem.net.au)
    If the standard of legalistic righteousness of the Pharisees was above most people’s heads, Jesus comes and shows that the standards of the law are much higher even than that – they are beyond the ceiling!
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    Jesus’ teaching on the Law shows me up. He tells me that lustful thoughts are adultery, so that I will see that I am an adulterer, filled with lust and ungodly desires; he tells me that anger is murder, so that I will see that I am a murderous, selfish person who lives for myself instead of others; He tells me my ‘spiritual life’ must be simple and private, so that I will see that I am craving the attention and approval of others in order to affirm my own sense of self righteousness.
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    Paul’s statement in Philippians 4:6 ‘…do not be anxious about anything…’ does not stand on it’s own; it is sandwiched between ‘The Lord is at hand’ and ‘the Peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.’ Again, the character and faithfulness of God gives us reason to obey His call to trust and not be anxious.
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    Instead of listing the nature of our circumstances and concluding that all will be disastrous, we need to list the nature of our Father and His faithful and righteous acts so that we will conclude that He is good and can be trusted to world for good in whatever may be around the corner, be it gladness or grief.
  • Preaching the Gospel as Gospel: When Law Becomes Torah (afkimel.wordpress.com)
    There is an old story about a Lutheran pastor who, after a long ministry of rightly distinguishing law and gospel, announced on his death bed: “I shall most certainly go to heaven, as I cannot remember ever having done a good work.” The story touches on the great fear we all have about the preaching of the gospel in the performative mode of unconditional promise—it seems to make good works and personal holiness irrelevant. During his lifetime Catholic apologists violently hurled the antinomian accusation against Martin Luther, and he struggled to express why it did not apply to the reforming doctrine.
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    if the preacher is never accused of antinomianism, this probably means he is not preaching the authentic gospel at all.
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    Most preachers therefore prefer the carrot-stick approach, which is simply the way the world works. First tell the congregation that following Jesus is the good and right thing to do, with outstanding rewards in heaven and maybe some perks in the present; and then threaten them with punishment if they fail to comply (fire and brimstone works pretty well). In other words, preachers and congregations prefer the preaching of the law. It’s what comes natural because it is natural: law structures our fallen existence.
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    Proclaiming gospel in the performative mode of unconditional promise can be frightening, both for the preacher and the congregation. Exhortation is so much safer. It maintains the status quo.
  • A Satisfied Spirit Fears Not (asatisfiedspirit.com)
    Throughout scripture we are told not to be afraid.  Why is that?  God knew, when He put Adam and Eve out of the garden, that fear would be a part of everyday life.  So then what do we fear?  For me,  it’s something will happen to someone I love when they are not near me.  Or, there won’t be enough money for everything we need.  Or, not enough time for what I need to get done.  Or, someone will not like how I look.
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    I’m told the only way to conquer my fear is to face it.  Perhaps so but the Word says I don’t have to face it alone.  God is always with me and with Him all the the Angel Armies of Heaven.  Why would I fear with that at my Protector’s disposal?
  • The Right To Be Wrong About Everything (isylumn.wordpress.com)
    everything we know about the universe may be wrong. And Science will correct itself even if men must admit there truly is a Higher Power.Until then and the perspective never, men must question everything they know. So, what if everything we know about the universe is wrong? What then? Wild possibilities feed verdant imaginations. One would have to dream as a child to even contemplate answers. Indeed, the question itself sounds as if asked by a kid in grade school.
  • Man fires 19 rounds at Jehovah’s Witnesses (huffingtonpost.com)
    After telling a group of three Jehovah’s Witnesses to get lost, Centeron, Ark., resident John Baldwin, 35, fired about 19 shots at the group as they were leaving, police said.
  • “Ye Are My Witnesses, Saith Jehovah Baldwin: Arkansas Man Arrested For Firing Shots At Jehovah’s Witnesses Who Approached Him On His Lawn (jonathanturley.org)
    Jehovah’s Witnesses in Arkansas will soon be called to be witnesses of a different kind for John Baldwin, 35. Baldwin is charged with aggravated assault after firing 13 times at the Jehovah’s Witnesses who approached him in his front yard.
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    I guess Baldwin is another one of those “responsible guns owners” we have all been hearing about. The thought that this man could even think that firing shots at these women was appropriate and acceptable conduct makes my blood run cold. He should be put away for attempted murder and they should file a law suit and take his house. While justice in the next world may be the Lord’s Baldwin deserves a little earthly justice as soon as possible!
  • Jehovah’s Witnesses and Pedophilia (alexjamesisnotmyrealname.wordpress.com)
    JWs insist on what they call the “two witness” rule, meaning that there must be two witnesses to any crime for them to move forward with any type of action.
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    Child sex assault rarely if ever has a second witness to the crime.  However, there is no reason that Jehovah’s Witnesses cannot consider it as having happened “in a field.”  I would like an explanation as to why they ignore this scriptural principle and continue to insist that nothing be done to investigate allegations of child sexual assaults in their midst if there is not this second witness to the crime.
  • Rosary No More!! Why I Stopped Praying The Rosary!! (Testimony of a Former Roman Catholic) (soulrefuge.org)
    I write this post as a former Roman Catholic, and as one who has forever stopped praying the Roman Catholic Rosary. For those of you who are not familiar with the Rosary, the Rosary is a set of beads, each bead representing a prayer. The majority of those beads represent a prayer well known as the “Hail Mary” and there are 53 “Hail Mary’s” on each bead set of 5 decades. There are also larger beads which would represent the Lord’s prayer (Our Father) but there are only 6 of them on the rosary. There is a crucifix on the end, and the “Apostles Creed” would be said on that, and there are also “Glory Be” prayers that are said on that Rosary.
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    The Lord Jesus Christ set me free from the darkness of Roman Catholicism, and it’s false Gospel over 20 years ago, and people are being seduced in our day, like never before! There is very little resistance to Rome, in the pulpits in our time, even though many know Rome preaches a false gospel. Many are afraid of offending other “big name Christians” whose ministries are known around the world. Could it be that they are receiving funding from the compromisers, and do not want to lose that funding, should they speak out?