Please keep the following individuals in your prayers:
1) "Hello, 6 and a half days till my MCAT and I would like someone to pray with me so I do on the test. Its been real hard on me, and I know that everything is God's will, but I really, really want to pass this test-and hopefully be a great doctor someday." -Yelena;
2) AN asks for our prayers. She writes, "I thank God everyday for all of my blessings. Right now, my roof is leaking and I've got more bills than I can pay. Can you please pray for the repair of my roof and the end of my family's financial troubles. Thank you.";
3) "Please help me pray that i would be able to get back home for a visit where my children are, i miss them so much it has been 2 yrs i havent seen them. please help me pray too for a good job with great pay for me to be able to support my children financially." -Jad;
4) LP asks for us to pray: "that my neck and left elbow pain be completely gone. thanks and God bless!";
5) "I was able to consult with another doctor over the phone free of charge to discuss my chemical spill. She took interest with my story because it's something she is seeing more and more these days and she experienced something similar working on a farm as a child spraying herbicides. ---There are 3 places I have been considering. ---So far I have consulted with some of the top doctors and centers. My issue is not gonna go away on its on and the longer I wait to get treatment my health and symptoms will continue to stay the same or get worse. The doctor I spoke with is exteremely confident that I will be able to get better and she said I will be amazed that the symptoms I am experiencing now will be gone. She said go after the cause and the cure. It may take a year or two or maybe less. It could be dramatic or more gradual. I have been procrastinating doing anything. I would just ask for prayer that God would direct me to the right doctor and for the financial resources to pay for this as well as the health and strength I need as well as the drive I need. I put it in the Lord's hands on where I need to go and how I will pay for it. Thanks again for standing in the gap!" -Pat;
6) "My prayer request today is for a gentleman, Ron, I met in a Donut Shop and his wife, Dina and son, John. Ron is going to be praying for his son's heart to be softened by the Holy Spirit. Please pray for Ron, Dina and John that GOD'S hand is upon them and GOD almighty will shine his mercy and love and grace upon them. That Ron will be a witness of his son's change of heart, in JESUS name, Amen. Thank you." -Pinkgram;
7) Lisa Dawn asks for us to remember her in our prayers. She writes, "I would like to ask for prayer concerning my co-workers. There are five of us in my department and we are all Christians. However, only two of us are strong in our faith, my friend Michelle and myself. The other three bring us down all of the time, my supervisor being the ring leader. They can be sweet at times, laugh, and act as friends one minute and then hating us the next. My friend Michelle and I have even heard them all talking about us behind closed doors. It wasn't what they said, which was very hurtfull, but the way they said it, with so much anger and hate behind it. I have to tell you that it has taken all of my christian strength and courage to forgive these women who so righteously claim that they are christians. I sometimes, no, I often feel that I work with the devil. I don't know what to do nor do I know how to handle this. Please pray for me and my friend Michelle. Thank you and God bless!";
8) "I just got bad and confusing news about my interview scheduled for Wednesday. I am so discouraged and frustrated. Please pray that I can relax and believe strongly that God has me in his love. I am starting to waiver and it makes me feel awful. I'm in a bad place. please pray for me. I don't want to feel desperate. i want to be filled with faith and know God will provide. Please pray for me." -C;
9) Dorothy asks for our prayers. She writes, "Would you pls. pray for a firefighter in Ca., who is fighting for his life right now. His name is Don ---. His wife , Rose and his 2 daughters and sister Gail , also need your prayers. May God bless all of you at Silent Unity!!!";
10) "Please pray for healing for Tom and for Carole's son." -Marilyn
11) Loney asks for our prayers. He writes, "I have been single and saved for some years now. Please pray for me to be free of guilty feelings and shame for all sexual sins. I just want to be free!";
12) "MY TRUCK IS BROKE DOWN AND I KNEED IT TO DO MY JOB, I AM A CAREGIVER FOR TWO MENTALY SLOW GIRLS, I SET ALL THEIR DR. APPOINTS AND THEN TAKE THEM, I TAKE THEM OUT WHERE EVER THEY HAVE TO GO. PLEASE HEP ME FOR A NEW (NEW TO ME) BUT DEPENDABLE CAR,TRUCK, OR GET MY TRUCK FIXED. ALSO SO WE MAKE OUR RENT PAYMENT AND HAVE MONEY LEFT FOR FOOD." -scarlet;
13) Cordell asks to be remembered in our prayers. He writes, "My Prayer Is That My GirlFriend Angela And I Cordell Get Married By The End Of The Year.";
14) "Please pray for a quick sale of my house and pellet stove. thank you." -Lynne;
15) AN asks for our prayers. She writes, "please pray for my relationship with my non-christian parents, sisters and entire family.I've been praying for them for over 18-years, and am getting farther away from them emotionally and relationally.";
16) Raquel asks for us to pray "for the revival of righteousness, Christ being our righteousness, to places of authority.";
17) "I need prayer for me and my daughter as well her her three kids. We need the LORD to show us the way. I reach up to you Lord with my hands held high and my heart wide open Amen!" -Jonni;
18) Tim asks for our prayers. He writes, "I need financial help, please pray for me.";
19) "Please pray that I find a way out of my financial problems. I know everything is "in God's time", but I need to resolve matters before I lose my home. I am deeply in debt and am being sued by one creditor. All of my accounts have gone to collections. Please pray that I can get back on my feet again, soon. Thank you for your prayers." -Teri;
20) Peter asks to be remembered in our prayers. He writes, "Brothers and Sister, please pray for healing for me. I went to do blood work and the results show something unexpectedly very wrong with my kidney. I know our God who created us is the only One who heals us. Please pray with me and for me, that God will have mercy on me and give me rapid healing. I’ll have to do the blood work again in two weeks and I pray that by this next test everything will be alright. I am trusting God for this. Amen! Amen! Amen!";
21) "We have an urgent prayer need in our family...my cousin, Nicole Menard was shot by her boyfriend twice...with a shot gun! Then he turned the gun on himself. She is thankfully still with us, but she's in bad shape, as you can imagine. She's 27 years old. She might lose her left hand, her right arm & her shoulder is shattered completely. She has pellets in her liver, too. It's soooooo hard to understand someone who says they love you doing that, we don't know what the whole thing was about, because she's not yet come to long enough to say." -Tam;
22) Mary asks for our prayers. She writes, "Please pray for our business. Please pray that they get busier today. Please pray that I can pay some bills Monday, and me. Please pray that I can pay the rent. Please help me through another day. Please pray for our elderly parents in assisted living. Please pray for our children in their daily lives. Please pray for Edna with Lymphoma and Janes granddaughter with CF. Please pray for Gail and Rose who lost their husbands recently. Please pray the I make it through another day. Thank you for what you do.";
23) "Lord, let there be honesty between Mary and me and help her sell her properties. And prepare me for interviewing Connie and writing the article...give me the heart and enhusiasm. Please guide and heal Audrey in her back and from fybermyalgia. In Jesus name, Amen." -Flora; and lastly ...
24) Symilia asks to be remembered in our prayers. She writes, "I am a 19 year old mother i need prayer i just dont know what to do am a single mother i have not finish school its hard every time i try to make a change it just seem like i keep on going back i want to change i want to give my life to god but i need help, my name is symilia ---please pray for me."
**God bless you for caring enough to pray!!!**
A real friend is always and under all circumstances a friend (Proverbs 17:17a).
By Bill Keller
What are you supposed to do when you are down, when the walls of life seem to be closing in, and you have no joy in your heart? Praise God!!! In my darkest moments, in those times when I am most down, I have always found the express lane out of the valley back to the mountaintop is by praising God.Trust me, I know it is at those moments in life when we least feel like praising God.
Our natural inclination often is to curse God. That is a human reaction. But it is in our praise that we recognize who God is. It is in our praise that we realize how much He loves us. It is in our praise that we understand God is on our side. The quickest way out of the valley is by praising God! The way we often end up in the valley is because of our rebellion. Not always, but we often end up in the valley because we have been disobedient and tried to do it our way, instead of God's way.
Normally, there is no one to blame for being in the valley but ourselves. God understands our weaknesses. He understands our nature. He also loves us enough that even when we rebel and disobey Him, He doesn't abandon us. We may abandon Him, but He NEVER leaves us! It is that unconditional love He has for us that we must tap into when we are down and need to get the joy back into our life.
The way we tap into that love is through our praise. Our praise tells God that we acknowledge Him. We thank Him for loving us and not leaving us. We may try, but can never live a successful, happy, blessed life without Him. Our praise is our recognition that He is our God and we are His creation.
I want to encourage you today. No matter what may be going on in your life. No matter how difficult things may be, take some time today to Praise God. Praise Him for all the good things, all the blessings.
As bad as things may be, they could be much worse. His love and mercy has kept you and helped you through the difficult times, now praise Him for loving you so much. Show Him how much you love Him this day by your praise offering to our God and Creator.
I love you so much. I really do care about you. I want you to know the great joy and peace and blessing of this life. Don't let some bad decisions destroy the most important thing you have in this life, your relationship with God. You can reconcile that relationship right now, this very day. You can start on that road by simply giving God the praise He deserves. Recognize Him for who He is-God Almighty-.the Creator of heaven and earth-your Father! Tell Him today how much you love Him through your praise.
Remember, God is on your side and will restore your joy, your peace, and your happiness if you simply go to Him and let Him. Get out of the valley, praise your way out of the valley and back onto the mountaintop today!
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So Jesus Never Claimed to be God?
By Miles McKee
Every so often some ‘smart alec’ gets on TV and claims that the early Christians did not consider Jesus to be God. “This belief”, they say, “started some 400 years after the gospel events transpired. “And”, they continue, “Jesus himself never once claimed to be God. All he said was that he was the Son of God!”
What are we to say in the face of such onslaughts? Are they true? Did Jesus ever claim to be God? Did the early Church believe that He was God? The answers are in the scriptures. Take the question about whether or not Jesus ever claimed to be God. Did you know that in John’s Gospel, chapter five, Jesus makes no less than 7 claims to being God! ----------------- Not one, but seven claims!
For the next few weeks we will consider each of these claims. If ever we are to be strong in the gospel we need to be established in the grand truth of the Deity of our Lord Jesus Christ.
As we come to the first claim in John 5, we should note that Jesus has just done the ‘inexcusable’; He has healed a man on the Sabbath day. This brings Him into direct conflict with the Jewish authorities, and it is during this confrontation Jesus strongly testifies to His deity.
John 5:16-18 “And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the Sabbath day. But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work. Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the Sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.”
The Jewish folks were furious because they believed Jesus to be a Sabbath breaker. However, Jesus did not actually break the law of God. The law of God made no specific prohibition against healing sick folk on the Sabbath! But, by healing on the Sabbath, Jesus stepped on ecclesiastical toes and barbequed sacred Jewish cows! The Jews, you see, had gone way beyond Moses and, like all good religionists, had made up their own rules and regulations. They had decided that one couldn't do excessive things like healing on the Sabbath, -----it was wrong simply because they said it was wrong.
I always think the attitude of Christ’s enemies was, in one sense, vaguely amusing. Had an angel healed on the Sabbath they would have, no doubt, welcomed him. They would have in no way tried to rebuke or censure him. Angels, of course, would obviously have been exempt from the slavish Jewish adherence to the Sabbath. Sabbath observance was, after all, for men, not angels.
Likewise, God was exempt from Sabbath observance. God can do whatever He pleases, whenever He pleases…. that’s one of the advantages of being God! So what was it exactly that now enraged the Jewish leaders? They were incensed because, not only had Jesus healed on the Sabbath, He had had the audacity to claim the same Divine exemption from Sabbath observation as belonged to God. He says, in effect, “My Father can work on the Sabbath and so can I.”
God, in actuality, had always been exempt from Sabbath observance in that He had made the Sabbath for man and not for Himself. In fact, He had never stopped working at any time. True, He rested on the first Sabbath, but this rest was only from His works of creation. And ever since that first day of rest, He has been actively involved and working with mankind regardless of what day of the week it is.
This claim to Sabbath exemption was serious enough, but Christ goes even further by referring to God as uniquely being His own Father. To the Jews it was clear that Jesus by this statement had blasphemed for, after all, He was, in their estimation, a mere man and, therefore, in no way equal with God. Think about it, if a man claims equality with the omnipotent Deity then he’s claiming to be God.
It would indeed have been a great blasphemy for Jesus Christ to claim to be God ---if he was lying about it! There's no greater blasphemy than that. The Jews said, “You can't claim to be God, that's blasphemy.” And of course they were right, anybody who claims to be God, who isn't God, is blaspheming.
Let’s face it, when Jesus Christ stood up and said, "I'm equal with God," He was either God or the greatest blasphemer who ever opened his mouth. And when some person comes along and says, "Well, Jesus was just a wonderful human teacher, but not God” you can reply TWADDLE!
And when somebody comes along and says, "He was an elevated human, a great moral example, but not God” you can say “Double Distilled Twaddle!
Don’t allow any of this patronizing dribble that says He's a good teacher, but not God. Good teachers don't claim to be God. Blasphemers do! And God does! There's no middle ground.
The Jews were enraged. That’s why the religious leaders of Christ’s day were out to kill Him! At least they clearly understood what today’s critics do not: they were very clear on this matter; Jesus had claimed to be God. They had heard Him, there was no mistaking Him, there was no ambiguity. Jesus could easily have backed down and averted the ensuing storm by saying, “That’s not what I meant.” But He didn’t! He stood by His statement. Both He and His audience knew what He had said.
It is only if one dismisses the clear statements of Jesus that one can conclude that He is not God!
Since Jesus was God clothed with humanity, He claimed, therefore, equality with the Father and the divine right to heal and work on the Sabbath.
And that’s the Gospel Truth!
Which sermon to deliver?
One beautiful Sunday morning, Samuel, a priest, announced to his congregation: "My good people, I have here in my hands, three sermons...a $100 sermon that lasts five minutes, a $50 sermon that lasts fifteen minutes, and a $10 sermon that lasts a full hour. Now, we'll take the collection and see which one I'll deliver."
Without the Spirit of God, there can be no true healing.
AWMF seeks to minister to both body and soul.
Dispensationalism vs Covenantalism (cheat sheet):
Here is a list of essential differences between dispensationalism and covenantalism (D= dispensationalism, C = covenantalism)
D 1. May be Arminian or modified Calvinist. Almost never 5-point Calvinist.
C 1. Always Calvinist. Usually 5-point.
D 2. Stresses literal Interpretation of the Bible.
C 2. Accepts both literal and figurative interpretation of the Bible.
D 3. Usually does not accept the idea of the 'Analogy of Faith
C 3. Almost always accepts the idea of the 'Analogy of Faith.'
D 4. 'Israel always means only the literal, physical descendants of Jacob
C 4. 'Israel' may mean either literal, physical descendants of Jacob or the figurative, spiritual Israel, depending on context.
D 5. 'Israel of God' in Gal. 6:16 means physical Israel alone.
C 5. 'Israel of God' in Gal. 6:16 means spiritual Israel, parallel to Gal. 3:29, Rom. 2:28-29, Rom. 9:6, Phil. 3:3.
D 6. God has two peoples with two separate destinies: Israel (earthly) and the Church (heavenly).
C 6. God has always had only one people, the Church gradually developed.
D 7. The Church was born at Pentecost.
C 7. The Church began in the O.T. (Acts 7:38) and reached fulfillment in the N.T.
D 8. The Church was not prophesied as such in the O.T. but was a hidden mystery until the N.T.
C 8. There are many O.T. prophecies of the N.T. Church.
D 9. All O.T. prophecies for 'Israel' are for literal Israel, not the Church
C 9. Some O.T. prophecies are for literal Israel, others are for spiritual Israel.
D10. God's main purpose in history is literal Israel.
C 10. God's main purpose in history is Christ and secondarily the Church.
D 11. The Church is a parenthesis in God's program for the ages.
C 11. The Church is the culmination of God's saving purpose for the ages.
D 12. The main heir to Abraham's covenant was Isaac and literal Israel.
C 12. The main heir to Abraham's covenant was Christ and spiritual Israel.
D 13. There was no eternal Covenant of Redemption within the Trinity.
C 13. The eternal Covenant of Redemption was within the Trinity to effect election.
D 14. There was no Covenant of Works with Adam in the Garden of Eden.
C 14. God made a conditional Covenant of Works with Adam as representative for all his posterity.
D 15. There was no Covenant of Grace concerning Adam.
C 15. God made a Covenant of Grace with Christ and His people, including Adam.
D 16. Israel was rash to accept the Covenant at Mt. Sinai.
C 16. Israel was right to accept the Covenant at Mt. Sinai.
D 17. The 'New Covenant' of Jer. 31:31-34 is only for literal Israel and is not the New Covenant of Luke 22:20.
C 17. The 'New Covenant of Jer. 31 is the same as in Luke 22; both are for spiritual Israel according to Hebrews 8.
D 18. God's program in history is mainly through separate dispensations.
C 18. God's program in history is mainly through related covenants.
D 19. Some Dispensationalists have said that O.T. sinners were saved by works.
C 19. No man has ever been saved by works, but only by grace.
D 20. Most Dispensationalists teach that men in the O.T. were saved by faith in a revelation peculiar to their Dispensation, but this did not include faith in the Messiah as their sin-bearer.
C 20. All men who have ever been saved have been saved by faith in Christ as their sin-bearer, which has been progressively revealed in every age.
D 21. The O.T. sacrifices were not recognized as the Gospel or types of the Messiah as sin-bearer, but only seen as such in retrospect.
C 21. O.T. believers believed in the Gospel of Messiah as sin-bearer mainly by the sacrifices as types and prophecies.
D 22. The Holy Spirit indwells only believers in the Dispensation of Grace, not O.T. and not after the Rapture.
C 22. The Holy Spirit has indwelt believers in all ages, especially in the present N.T. era, and will not be withdrawn.
D 23. Jesus made an offer of the literal Kingdom to Israel; since Israel rejected it, it is postponed.
C 23. Jesus made only an offer of the spiritual Kingdom, which was rejected by literal Israel but has gradually been accepted by spiritual Israel.
D 24. O.T. believers were not 'in Christ', nor part of the Body of Bride of Christ.
C 24. Believers in all ages are all 'in Christ' and part of the Body and Bride of Christ.
D 25. The Law has been abolished.
C 25. The Law has three uses: to restrain sin in society, to lead to Christ, and to instruct Christians in godliness. The ceremonial laws have been abolished; the civil laws have been abolished except for their general equity; the moral laws continue.
D 26. O.T. Laws are no longer in effect unless repeated in the N.T.
C 26. O.T. laws are still in effect unless abrogated in the N.T.
D 27. The Millennium is the Kingdom of God Dispensationalists are always Pre-Millennial and usually Pre-Tribulational.
C 27. The Church is the Kingdom of God. Covenantalists are usually Amillennial, sometimes Pre-Millennial or Post-Millennial, rarely Pre-Tribulational.
D 28. The O.T. animal sacrifices will be restored in the Millennium.
C 28. The O.T. sacrifices were fulfilled and forever abolished in Christ.
D 29. The Millennium will fulfill the Covenant to Abraham. Israel has a future.
C 29. Christ fulfilled the Covenant to Abraham. Some Covenantalists believe in a future for literal Israel, most don't.
D 30. David will sit on the Millennial throne in Jerusalem.
C 30. Christ alone sits on the throne. Saints rule under Him.
Church Membership or Biblical Fellowship?
By Terry Rayburn
Over the years the question of Church Membership swirls around the Christian world, and is debated and discussed, sometimes fought over, and sometimes just taken for granted.
Now by "Church Membership" here, I mean it in the commonly used sense of the phrase, referring to formally joining a particular local church, in a formal way, maybe agreeing to some doctrinal statement, or agreeing to some written covenant, and actually being put on a list of "Members".
Is that Biblical? Is it O.K.? Is it demanded? Is it optional? And so forth.
Today I want to open a discussion in what I think is a new direction regarding Church Membership, especially as it relates to Fellowship.
See, I believe that the discussion of Church Membership is in one sense missing the real point of what the Church is to be about.
Is Membership Fellowship?
There's a big elephant in the room that no one mentions. This elephant is ignored, walked around, or maybe mentioned only in passing. The big elephant in the room is Fellowship.
Now I've read many extensive studies which attempt to prove from Scripture that Membership Lists are taught in the Bible. And I will admit some of them SEEM logical, and SEEM to make sense in a certain way.
But the truth is, there are no commands for Church Membership Lists in the Bible. There are no examples of Church Membership Lists in the Bible. And there are no examples of formal joining of the local church in the Bible.
Because of this, and in relation to Biblical Fellowship, I have come to believe that Church Membership Lists, and the formal joining of a local church, is a man-made result of a lack of true Biblical Fellowship, or what the Bible in Greek calls Koinonia.
No let me make a disclaimer, before I go any further. If you attend a local church that practices Membership Lists, I'm not saying you shouldn't join, or formally become a member. Because the Bible also does not PROHIBIT the making of Membership Lists. So I want to be clear on that. The Membership List itself is not the problem.
With that, I want to look at three aspects of this question of Church Membership:
1. What does the Bible teach about membership in general?
2. What made one a member of a local church?
3. What does Fellowship have to do with it?
1. What does the Bible teach about membership in general?
Romans 12:4,5, "For as we have many MEMBERS in one body, but all the MEMBERS do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually MEMBERS of one another."
1 Cor 6:15, "Do you not know that your bodies are MEMBERS of Christ? Shall I then take the MEMBERS of Christ and make them MEMBERS of a harlot? Certainly not!"
1 Cor 12:12, "For as the body is one and has many MEMBERS, but all the MEMBERS of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ."
1 Cor 12:18, "But now God has set the MEMBERS, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased."
1 Cor 12:20, "But now indeed there are many members, yet one body."
1 Cor 12:25, "...that there should be no schism in the body, but that the MEMBERS should have the same care for one another."
1 Cor 12:26, "And if one MEMBER suffers, all the MEMBERS suffer with it; or if one MEMBER is honored, all the MEMBERS rejoice with it."
1 Cor 12:27, "Now you are the body of Christ, and MEMBERS individually."
Ephesians 2:19, "Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and MEMBERS of the household of God."
Ephesians 4:25, "Therefore, putting away lying, let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor, for we are MEMBERS of one another."
Ephesians 5:30, "For we are MEMBERS of His body, of His flesh and of His bones."
Acts 2:47, "...praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved."
2. What made one a member of the local church?
Acts 15:41, "And he went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches."
Acts 16:5, "So the churches were strengthened in the faith, and increased in number daily."
"The Church" vs. "the churches"
Belief in Jesus Christ, baptism, and then practicing "church".
Acts 2:42, "And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers."
3. What does fellowship have to do with it?
Fellowship = "koinonia", "commonality", as in "koine" greek.
1 John 1:3, "...that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have FELLOWSHIP with us; and truly our FELLOWSHIP is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ."
1 John 1:6, "If we say that we have FELLOWSHIP with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth."
1 John 1:7, "But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin."
Now we get back to Membership Lists, regarding church discipline and dis-fellowshiping a member.
Biblical "membership" involves "fellowship" --- a commonality of spiritual Life in prayer, teaching, breaking of bread, drinking of cup, knowing one another, bearing one another's burdens, sharing in one another's financial needs, fervently loving one another, recognizing the hurt in one another and applying the balm of Jesus with warmth, stirring one another up to good works, exhorting, encouraging, blessing, hugging, welcoming, caring about, feeding with the true Bread, Who is Christ.
In other words, church discipline which may lead to dis-fellowshiping someone presupposes there is something to be dis-fellowshiped *from*. Something infinitely valuable, something one doesn't want to miss, if they are a believer.
The modern American "church service", where everyone files in at 11 and files out at Noon, with a, "How you doing?", "I'm gr-r-r-eat!, how about you?" to a few people, followed by going home for another week apart from everyone else (or maybe till Wednesday for the truly "spiritual") --- doesn't know what fellowship is. So it substitutes Membership Lists.
Then it either never dis-fellowships anyone, because "who cares?", or it practices the church discipline of taking the unrepentent publicly sinful "off the Membership List", whereupon the unrepentent publicly sinful either goes to the next church, or is "shamed" back onto the Membership List, not because they really miss the so-called "fellowship", but because they are humiliated (too often they remain humiliated, with a red letter on their back...marked as a lesser being, not ike "us" who are incapable of falling so low..."How are you doing, Lesser being? ...O.K.? ...go-o-o-d...see you next week...Ciao!").
This is not meant to be a cynical comment at all, but a mere observation of many churches over many years, and a heart's cry for a continual renewal of Biblical Fellowship.
"Church Membership Lists" is not primarily an exegetical question, it's a spiritual one.
May God work His Fellowship in the churches.
"Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares
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""But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut. Later the others also came. 'Sir! Sir!' they said. 'Open the door for us!' But he replied, 'I tell you the truth, I don't know you.' Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour" (Matthew 25:10-13 - NIV)
"Envy someone and it pulls you down.
Admire them and it builds you up.
Which makes more sense?"
We hope you have found today's newsletter encouraging to your
walk with Jesus Christ. Please send all prayer requests and
praise reports to us by using the "comments" hyperlink, which
can be found at the end of each blog/article. God is Good!!!
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"The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. Life Through the Son 16So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jews persecuted him" (John 5:15-16 - NIV).