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Old 10-19-2013, 02:31 PM
 
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The change should be positive. But it shouldn't be a 360 in doctrine like alot of these churches are doing nowadays. The problem with people today - especially my generation - is that they don't want to hear anything. They don't want to hear that they are sinners in need of a savior. They want to sin and be saved. Can't happen. Now, I'm not saying to be like the old days where they kept bashing it in that we are sinners. I'm all about showing and preaching God's love. But seriously, this generation needs to realize that our behaviors are not acceptable to a holy God. There is still a Heaven and Hell. And people die everyday and end up in either one. You need to be prepared to see your God.
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Old 10-19-2013, 03:50 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
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Default Churches have been changing into political institutions

If you look on the internet there are literally dozens of articles on the decline in recent years of virtually all mainstream churches. In the middle of one article I read there was an advertisement to "get your doctorate of religion" online. No wonder the faith is suffering, it's moved from personal witness to technological religious education.

But I think there are other reasons as well. One of them is the attempt by churches to become basically political institutions and in America that is frequently about making God a Republican. My own former denomination, where I was saved, where I attended a denominationally related institution for my higher education, and in whose churches I preached dozens of times has fallen prey to that "apostasy" IMO.


[vimeo]12404642[/vimeo]
Why Baptist Churches are Declining from Bruce Prescott on Vimeo.
Until 1979 all Baptists used the word "revival" to refer to the power of the Holy Spirit to transform hearts and change lives. Change began within an individual and spread from one person to another. Revival was a spiritual movement, not a political movement.

In 1979 Fundamentalists began twisting the meaning of the word "revival" and used it to talk about the power of a social movement to change the culture. Today, even the revivalist altar call has become a tool of politics.

This emphasis on politics and cultural salvation diverted attention from sharing the gospel of personal salvation. It led to the end of more than 100 years of uninterrupted growth among Southern Baptists and marks the real beginning of the decline of the denomination.

Jerry Falwell started the Moral Majority in 1979. That same year, Fundamentalists with similar secular political ambitions in the Southern Baptist Convention, began a takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention. Falwell was not a Southern Baptist at that time -- he was the leading figure in the Independent Fundamental Baptist movement.

In 1989, when the Fundamentalist takeover of the SBC was complete, Falwell disbanded the Moral Majority and became a Southern Baptist. Today, the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the SBC, led by Richard Land, does the political work that the Moral Majority began.

The video provides brief quotations from Jerry Falwell and Ed Dobson. Dobson, who served as Vice President of Falwell's Moral Majority, eventually repudiated Falwell's political gospel in his book "Blinded by Might: Can the Religious Right Save America?"

Mainstream Baptist: Why Southern Baptist Churches are in Decline

So some of the changes made in mainstream churches may be the REASON for their declining membership.
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Old 10-19-2013, 05:13 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bartstarr1960 View Post
Much is being made lately that, at least in some Christian faiths, changes are afoot. These changes are reported as 'changing with the times,' or 'modernization' by the media and much hoopla and praise is being made about it. While I think the reasons are profoundly deeper seated, regardless the reason, it is timely.
1. Is the Church under any obligation to reflect the times we live in?
2. Should we go along with all 'modernizations' or is there a line in the sand believers should not cross?
3. Is it the role of Church hierarchy to decide the Church's direction or is it the role of those in the pews?
4. Would you continue to blindly support a Church whose changes became unacceptable to you and why?
Actually, I believe that the Church is under the obligation to respond to God's directions. There are obviously certain things that are never going to change. We can't just decide today that pre-marital or extra-marital sexual relations are any more pleasing to God today than they were in biblical times. I believe that certain policy changes may occasionally be warranted, but doctrine -- true doctrine -- is eternal and unchanging.
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Old 10-21-2013, 01:21 PM
Status: "The nicest curve on a woman's body is her smile" (set 13 days ago)
 
Location: Florida/Tennessee
2,365 posts, read 4,302,446 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katzpur View Post
Actually, I believe that the Church is under the obligation to respond to God's directions. There are obviously certain things that are never going to change. We can't just decide today that pre-marital or extra-marital sexual relations are any more pleasing to God today than they were in biblical times. I believe that certain policy changes may occasionally be warranted, but doctrine -- true doctrine -- is eternal and unchanging.
Well said.

For me ... I see virtues and values as two distinctly different lenses through which I measure change.

Virtues are unchanging and few. They emulate from God. Man practices virtue.

Values are changing and many. They emulate from man. Man loves values 'cause they change like the value of a used car.

Churches should "practice virtue". Leave values to Big Dog Dave's used cars.
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Old 10-21-2013, 01:44 PM
 
4,456 posts, read 3,702,624 times
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You know if we take a look at Church history we can certainly see she has managed to exist in much turbulent times where she was attacked, maligned and brought to task for her profilgate 'mismanagement' of the faithful and those who are non-believers. Of course, I think it is the strong, substantial core belief in her mission that enables her to steer through and effect 'change' within its walls through the course of human history. She still exists regardless of the great pressures coursing around her. She has been and still is a great player in the spiritual guidance of mankind for centuries. The new Pope certainly knows the environment today and I think history will show him to be a great Church 'captain' of change. He will know how to marshall the Church's 'dna'.
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Old 10-21-2013, 03:16 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travric View Post
You know if we take a look at Church history we can certainly see she has managed to exist in much turbulent times where she was attacked, maligned and brought to task for her profilgate 'mismanagement' of the faithful and those who are non-believers. Of course, I think it is the strong, substantial core belief in her mission that enables her to steer through and effect 'change' within its walls through the course of human history. She still exists regardless of the great pressures coursing around her. She has been and still is a great player in the spiritual guidance of mankind for centuries. The new Pope certainly knows the environment today and I think history will show him to be a great Church 'captain' of change. He will know how to marshall the Church's 'dna'.
Man, do I hope you are correct with regard to Pope Francis. But history shows that when people in power REALLY stand up for the down and out, the poor and disenfranchised, they usually are displaced or come to a tragic end.

I've been reading quite a bit about James the Just, the brother of Jesus, who was well respected in Jerusalem by both Jewish Christians and orthodox Jews as well. One of his great emphases was to provide for the poor, and that Christians should live modest lives (read his letter in the Bible for some flavor). Between times when the Roman procurator was being changed in Jerusalem, a new high priest seized power. He saw James as a threat to the moneyed people who were in Rome's pocket.

Quote:
According to Josephus, Ananus became the high priest of Jerusalem after the procurator, Porcius Festus, died. While the new procurator, Albinus, was on the way, Ananus saw the opportunity to get rid of James.

Josephus does not say why Ananus wanted the death of James other than that he "was of an exceeding bold and reckless disposition."
Death of James, Jesus' Brother
James, the most dedicated of all Christians with regard to Jews remaining faithful to the Law while still believing in Jesus, was killed for being "bold and reckless?" But the people had rallied to James because he preached a gospel of fairness. The rich and powerful would have none of that.

There are both Jews and early Christians who have written that they felt the murder of James was the catalyst for the downfall of Jerusalem just a few years later. That may be far fetched, but the lesson is still unmistakable---challenge the powerful at your peril.

I hope Pope Francis ushers in a new and more viable Catholic church---one that truly has not changed WITH the times, but against the times which just keep repeating themselves.
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Old 10-21-2013, 08:53 PM
 
4,456 posts, read 3,702,624 times
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Quote:
Man, do I hope you are correct with regard to Pope Francis. But history shows that when people in power REALLY stand up for the down and out, the poor and disenfranchised, they usually are displaced or come to a tragic end.
You know just having the job of being 'keeper of the keys' brings the problems of the world on the shoulders of those who accept the great calling. I'd think getting murdered, hated, vilified, mourned and loved all come with the job. These are different men transformed by great spiritual and temporal beliefs and they know the consequences they face. If they have fear it is certainly sublimated in their consuming work.
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Old 10-21-2013, 09:10 PM
 
Location: Nanaimo, Canada
1,808 posts, read 1,588,363 times
Reputation: 967
Quote:
Originally Posted by bartstarr1960 View Post
Much is being made lately that, at least in some Christian faiths, changes are afoot. These changes are reported as 'changing with the times,' or 'modernization' by the media and much hoopla and praise is being made about it. While I think the reasons are profoundly deeper seated, regardless the reason, it is timely.
1. Is the Church under any obligation to reflect the times we live in?
2. Should we go along with all 'modernizations' or is there a line in the sand believers should not cross?
3. Is it the role of Church hierarchy to decide the Church's direction or is it the role of those in the pews?
4. Would you continue to blindly support a Church whose changes became unacceptable to you and why?
1. The church needs to reflect the modern era, and stop trying to apply 1st-century ideals to a 21st-century population. Change is necessary for growth.

2. I'm not a believer, but I also feel that each person has to decide where 'the line' is on their own terms.

3. The church must make policy in synergy with those in the pews; that is, the chuch must consult the people, and the people must add their voice to the decision-making process.

4. Were I still Christian, I wouldn't support a church that can't find a direction and stay the course. 'Don't change horses in mid-stream' may be a cliche, but it applies. Nothing erodes morale faster than waffling between decisions.
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