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#4516 - Sun Aug 10, 2003 10:13 AM Calvinists Can Dance  

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I thought this might be interesting to some of you. It comes from The London Times August 9th 2003.<br><br> "A Dutch minister has held a service in a disco in an attempt to attract young people to Church. More than 100 peolple attended the event held at the Havana Club by the Calvinist community in Urk. The Rev. Jan Pieter Overduyn said it initially felt strange to be preaching to an audience puffing on cigarettes but as I was going on I realised that even in a disco people could come to God."

#4517 - Sun Aug 10, 2003 10:22 AM Re: Calvinists Can Dance  
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No Compromise

This is the suggestion of the present hour: If the world will not come to Jesus....Shall not the church go down to the world? Instead of bidding men to be converted, and come out from among sinners, and be separate from them, let us join with the ungodly world, enter into union with it, and so pervade it with our influence by allowing it to influence us. Let us have a Christian world.

Certain ministers are treacherously betraying our holy religion under pretense of adapting it to this present age. The new plan is to assimilate the church to the world by semi-dramatic performances they make the house of prayer to approximate to the theater; they turn their services into musical displays in
fact, they exchange the temple for the theater, and turn the ministers of God into actors, whose business it is to amuse men. This then is the proposal. In order to win the world, the Lord Jesus must conform himself, his people, and his Word to the world. I will not dwell on so loathsome a proposal.

My dear hearers, how much I long to see you saved!! But I would not belie my Lord, even to win your souls, if they could be won so. The true servant of God is not responsible for success or non-success. Results are in God's hands.

-Charles H. Spurgeon

It is an inexpressible grief to me to see the church spending its energies in a vain attempt to lower its testimony to suit the ever-changing sentiment of the world about it.

- Benjamin B. Warfield



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#4518 - Sun Aug 10, 2003 2:09 PM Re: Calvinists Can Dance  
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To evangelize in a disco is one thing. To boldly proclaim (preach) the Gospel in a disco is one thing. To go to a disco and try to incorparate what is going on there into a worship service is a profane thing.<br><br>I'm all for people taking the Gospel into every nook and cranny. But the Gospel cannot be compromised in the process. I have preached in public places and it can be very uncomfortable. It should be.

#4519 - Sun Aug 10, 2003 2:45 PM Re: Calvinists Can Dance  
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Indeed, a sad day when you see things like this taking place. It makes one wonder if "some" live out their Theology they claim they believe? Case in point--some do not.


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#4520 - Mon Aug 11, 2003 1:04 AM Re: Calvinists Can Dance [Re: J_Edwards]  

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I see no problem if a pastor holds a service in a disco in the hope of young folk might go to church.<br><br>We are commanded to go into the world and preach The Gospel.<br><br>Discos are very much wordly places and therefore a good place to preach - In my opinion.<br><br>Would you forbid this Dutch Calvinist from his work ?<br><br>howard

#4521 - Mon Aug 11, 2003 2:05 AM Re: Calvinists Can Dance  
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Greetings, Howard.

Would you mind clarifying what you mean by "hold a service"?

Are you thinking along these lines:

1) a handful of godly men goes into a public place, gains the attention of the crowd, and one preaches the Gospel while the others pray and speak to individuals, exhorting them to repent of their sins, believe on Christ, and be discipled by the Church;

or these:

2) the entire parish--from nursing babes to great-grandfathers, meets in the public place along with the crowd of worldlings, and attempts, decently and in order, to worship the Lord, confess their sins, partake of the Sacraments, attend to the lively preaching of the Word, and encourage one another in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit?


In Christ,
Paul S
#4522 - Mon Aug 11, 2003 2:57 AM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They? [Re: Paul_S]  
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And to add to PaulS' excellently phrased questions "How are you thinking the pastor [color:red]gains the attention of the crowd</font color=red>?" Does he and the elders disco a few steps with their wives to Saturday Night Fever (or Sunday Night Fever as may be the case)? How much like the world does this pastor need to become to gain the world's attention? This sounds seeker friendly to me!<br><br>IMHO there is a difference in [color:red]in holding a service</font color=red> and evangelizing? The PRIMARY purpose of a SERVICE is for the Lord's people and not necessarily the evangelizing of the disco crowd. A By-Product of genuine worship may be the conversion of many, but this should not be the PRIMARY PURPOSE of worship in spirit and truth. Sorry, I just cannot see discoing to Amazing Grace. Something just does not seem right about it. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/grin.gif" alt="grin" title="grin[/img]


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#4523 - Mon Aug 11, 2003 9:57 PM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They? [Re: J_Edwards]  

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IMHO there is a difference in in holding a service and evangelizing? The PRIMARY purpose of a SERVICE is for the Lord's people and not necessarily the evangelizing of the disco crowd. A By-Product of genuine worship may be the conversion of many, but this should not be the PRIMARY PURPOSE of worship in spirit and truth. Sorry, I just cannot see discoing to Amazing Grace. Something just does not seem right about it.


AMEN

#4524 - Tue Aug 12, 2003 12:54 AM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They?  

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I do not expect that the "service" held in the disco was a fully- fledged Lords day service.<br><br>If the pastor simply turned up at the disco Friday or Saturday night and explained the Gospel to the revellers then who knows how many could turn up at church one day ?<br><br>Clearly, the pastor was led to do this and who are we to argrue with his conscience ?<br><br>howard

#4525 - Tue Aug 12, 2003 8:06 AM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They?  
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Howard,

I'm a bit confused at this point after reading your reply to Prestor and then reading the quote you provided from the London Times:
"A Dutch minister has held a service in a disco in an attempt to attract young people to Church. More than 100 people attended the event held at the Havana Club by the Calvinist community in Urk. The Rev. Jan Pieter Overduyn said it initially felt strange to be preaching to an audience puffing on cigarettes but as I was going on I realised that even in a disco people could come to God."
Now, from reading this report, it would seem that this Dutch Minister held a [worship] service in a Disco where he preached, etc. I doubt there was an administration of sacraments, although anything is possible. whistle Now, perhaps it is just language differences which are problematic? Generally, the word "preach" is not used outside of church worship services these days. What is said more often is that someone "witnessed" to a group of people, or taught a group of people, etc., but rarely is it said that one "preached" to a group of people. Although there are those self-proclaimed and self-appointed "Street Preachers" who say the do "preach" to people as they walk by. whistle

It is also true that I have preached on many occasion in Gospel Missions to a captive audience. There was no administration of sacraments but the intent was to specifically "preach" from the Scriptures the Gospel of Christ and call all in attendance to repentance and faith in Christ. But there is a huge difference between that scenario and one where one incorporates the world in an attempt to "attract" the worldly to visit a church. Or worse, to incorporate the things of the world into the actual church service, aka: "seeker-friendly", "contemporary", etc., worship. So, did this minister put on a Disco program wherein he then stopped the music or at least turned it down and then gave a "message" to the audience? Did he enter a Disco during its normal operational times and try to "witness" to some of the attendees? Did this man rent a Disco building simply because it could hold a large group of people, as a newly forming church might rent a school gymnasium to hold church services?

Perhaps you could provide more details? grin
In reply to:
[color:"blue"]If the pastor simply turned up at the disco Friday or Saturday night and explained the Gospel to the revellers then who knows how many could turn up at church one day ?

If this was the case, which I allowed above, then there is certainly nothing objectionable to what the man did. Of course, if he did enter a Disco when it was going, it must have been rather difficult to speak and hear with the music blasting away, eh? laugh

In His Grace,



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#4526 - Tue Aug 12, 2003 8:35 AM Re: Calvinists Can Dance  

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While I don't think that he was in the wrong to be sharing Christ in a disco, I do think that his holding a church service there was a bit off. I am all for using "modern"? (for lack of a better word coming to mind) means for sharing, but I think there is a line. And holding a church service in such a place is across that line. Church is a place of reverence, and in, from how it appears, holding his church service in that place, he is not being reverent. <br><br>That is part of why I have a hard time dealing with a "contemporary" service on Sunday mornings. Blasting music and 10 minute blips of Jesus love YOU and died for YOU are just not the most effective way to have converts. And preaching in a disco is the same way. There are more effective ways of sharing the Gospel. <br><br>Yes, we are to be all things to all people <blockquote>[color:blue]To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some.</font color=blue> 1 Corinthians 9:22 (ESV)</blockquote>but I do not think that Paul was sacrificing his effectiveness so that by these means he might save some. We need to give God the best when we are sharing Him with people, and that doesn't always mean being "cutting edge". Sometimes it means living our witness. And if to be "cutting edge" it means to compromise that which is set down in Scripture, than I would rather be old and crusty and dull [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/gramps.gif" alt="gramps" title="gramps[/img]

#4527 - Tue Aug 12, 2003 2:08 PM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They? [Re: Pilgrim]  
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Pilgrim,<br><br>Am I right to assume by the rolling eyes emoticon in your post, that you take a dim view of "self- proclaimed, self-appointed" street preachers. I am one myself, and I hope and pray that the Lord will call many more. <br><br>Stucco

#4528 - Tue Aug 12, 2003 2:44 PM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They? [Re: Stucco]  
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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Am I right to assume by the rolling eyes emoticon in your post, that you take a dim view of "self- proclaimed, self-appointed" street preachers.</font><hr></blockquote><p>[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/yep.gif" alt="yep" title="yep[/img] You assumed right! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/evilgrin.gif" alt="evilgrin" title="evilgrin[/img] Don't misunderstand my "dim view" to mean that I have a low or negative view "street preaching", in and of itself, although most of the "street preachers" I have encountered are obnoxious and over-bearing. It is the "self-appointed" aspect which I find unacceptable, for the most part. I believe that such "street preaching" should be done under the auspices of a local church which can provide oversight, instruction, support and prayer for those who are wanting to "hit the streets". Without such, there is no accountability to what and how things are done in the name of Christ. Secondly, God doesn't call sinners to repentance and faith in Christ in a vacuum. They are called to become part of the Body of Christ; to become members of an assembly of the saints. If the "self-proclaimed, self-appointed" street preacher is not associated with a local church, then where would this individual lead those who he is seeking to convert where they would hear the pure preaching of the Gospel, participate in the right administration of the sacraments and be subject to church discipline? (ala: Belgic Confession's marks of a true church)?<br><br>In His Grace,


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#4529 - Tue Aug 12, 2003 4:44 PM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They? [Re: Pilgrim]  
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Pilgrim,<br><br>I'm afraid that if "those who want to hit the streets" wait for all the conditions you listed to happen--they will still be waiting when the Lord comes back. It would be wonderful if the ordained, seminary trained ministers would hit the streets, but so far I've seen about, hmmm, lets see..how many? Oh yeah, zero. Same pretty much goes for convalescent homes and jails too. <br><br>What is more important to me than the matter of them being self- appointed or appointed by any other man/men, is if they are called to preach by God. It's my humble opinion that there is probably a higher % of truly called street preachers than there are in the pulpits. Its sad, but I think its true. I think street preaching should be a seminary requirement. It might weed out a few of the career minded academics who tend to gravitate towards the ministry. Ain't much money nor prestiege to be found in street preaching. Matter of fact, to most it will come across as "obnoxious and overbearing". The typical seminary approved McSermon that plays so well in church (3 points, 3 sub-points, and a story with a hook) generally wont hold the passer-by's attention. Preaching the Gospel straight foreward (no sugar-coated version) can be very effective though.<br><br> Personally, I try to direct converts to a Church which agrees with the Westminister Confession of Faith.<br><br>Stucco<br>

#4530 - Tue Aug 12, 2003 5:22 PM Re: Calvinists Can Dance, but Should They? [Re: Stucco]  
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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"] Personally, I try to direct converts to a Church which agrees with the Westminister Confession of Faith </font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Would that include Westminster Larger Catechism Question #158?<br><br>Q158: By whom is the word of God to be preached? <br><br>A158: The word of God is to be preached only by such as are sufficiently gifted, and also duly approved and called to that office.<br><br>There are a host of problems that I see as interwoven with this "self-appointed" mindset. For a different perspective on evangelism than what is popular today, but I think clearly more consistent with what the Westminster divines had in mind, I submit the following paper attached to this post.<br><br>Sincerely in Christ,<br><br>~Jason<br><br>

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