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Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: MarieP] #13548
Thu Apr 15, 2004 6:14 AM
Thu Apr 15, 2004 6:14 AM
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Fort Bragg, NC
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SemperReformanda

"Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!"

Yes, I have, and I have taken a personal interest in the vast amounts of materials written on the RCC. But I am still Catholic and will remain so. I reguard my Catholic Faith as the forum of choice for how I worship God. I also agree with the major tenants of the Catholic Faith, but I am not in agreement with everything. I signed on as a member here because I am Calvinist in my theology, not because I am of the Reformed Faith.

As I stated before, I don't come in a spirit of contention, and will do nothing to undermine the mission of this fellowship. I am glad to discuss my Catholic Faith only as long as such discussion is welcome and only with those who welcome it.

I never got word back from you. I answered one of the points you brought to my attention about RCC, but I refrained from further comment until I could be sure that you are amenable to such discussion. I will always stress our common bond in Christ, for I am a regenerated and reborn soul just as surely as (I assume that) you are, and what we have in common far outweighs our differences.

catholicsoldier

Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: catholicsoldier] #13549
Thu Apr 15, 2004 8:16 PM
Thu Apr 15, 2004 8:16 PM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 2,040
Virginia
CovenantInBlood Offline
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Catholicsoldier,

I'm curious whether you're familiar with Blaise Pascal and the Jansenists? This is probably going a bit off-topic, though . . .


Kyle

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified.
Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: bestrech] #13550
Fri Apr 16, 2004 12:55 PM
Fri Apr 16, 2004 12:55 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 201
Illinois
janean Offline
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I almost cried reading this thread, because many of the "pop" stuff here you are talking about is right in my very church that I am currently "stuck" in. From experiencing it every Sunday, I can tell you the thing that bothers me the most is that it leaves one EMPTY. And that is one of the reasons I think I am drawn to your site. Because for about 5 years now (since we've had a new pastor) and especially in the last 18 months I have just felt more empty. The deceptive things about all of this "Pop" stuff is that it either sounds good or looks good, like the frosting on a cake; but there's no cake underneath. And that pretty much describes my church right now. No real foundation that's very important.

Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: janean] #13551
Fri Apr 16, 2004 1:12 PM
Fri Apr 16, 2004 1:12 PM
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NH, USA
Pilgrim Offline

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Quote
Janean laments:
The deceptive things about all of this "Pop" stuff is that it either sounds good or looks good, like the frosting on a cake;

Dear sister, those of us, and I would dare say that there are many here, who have experienced these things ourselves, know exactly the sadness and emptiness you mention.

The "appeal" to the senses is nothing new. In fact, it was the beginning of the end at the first:

Genesis 3:6 (ASV) "And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat; . . ."


Submitting ourselves to the OBJECTIVE truths of God's Word evokes the affections which flow God-ward. Submitting ourselves to the SUBJECTIVE innovations of man which stimulate the affections results in that we are drawn to them within ourselves. Yes, there are many who would object and say such things increase their worship. But what is it they worship? The Lord Christ said that God desires to be worshipped in "spirit and TRUTH". Anything less than the truth is falsehood and thus not true worship.

Quote
"All men become like the objects of their worship. Our inward character is being silently moulded by our view of God and our conception of him. Christian character is the fruit of Christian worship; pagan character the fruit of pagan religion; semi-Christian character the fruit of a half-true understanding of God. The principle holds good for us all: we become like what we worship for worse or for better. 'They that make them are like unto them' (Psa. 115:8)." Maurice Roberts


In His Grace,


[Linked Image]

simul iustus et peccator

[Linked Image]
Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: janean] #13552
Sat Apr 17, 2004 1:48 AM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 1:48 AM

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Dear Janean it was with much sadness I read your post.I can equate with your experience,please forgive my directness but in my own case in the end I had to leave my church of many years.I now am greatly blessed and am no longer empty attending a church that some would consider rather extreme.Thankfully not so much by those on here,where we practice exclusive psalmody.I believe much of what passes for worship in many of todays churches is nothing short of entertainment."Pop" Theology whereas in catholic circles many look to rome sadly in baptist circles many look to America if it works (sic) there then must be okay.I shall pray my dear sister that the Lord will guide and strengthen you.

Re: "Pop" Theology #13553
Sat Apr 17, 2004 6:11 AM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 6:11 AM
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Pennsylvania, USA
bestrech Offline OP
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bestrech  Offline OP
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Here's another one I was talking about at lunch yesterday with some theologians; those who are enamoured with The Davinci Code.

Folks, we have our work cut out for us....

SDG,
Dan

Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: janean] #13554
Sat Apr 17, 2004 6:26 AM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 6:26 AM

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Hi Janean:

I have noticed a number of insightful things in your posts, which is an encouragement to me.

It is always good to see the Spirit of God at work in one of His children, even when it means that the holy desires He is stirring up cause discomfort and unease with the "status quo". I don't at all mean that it is the pain or discomfort that is encouraging, quite the opposite, this is a source of grief and pain and sadness, and yet beyond that, when He is at work "all things work together for good".

For example, you said:

Quote
The deceptive things about all of this "Pop" stuff is that it either sounds good or looks good, like the frosting on a cake; but there's no cake underneath.


As I read that I thought about the word deceptive. All deception is ultimately the tool of the Adversary, and I believe you have put your finger on the heart of the problem. This foul creature rejoices (to be oxymoronic, for he knows no such thing as rejoicing) in the pain and confusion of the saints and the downfall and distruction of the unsaved. Deception in it's myriad forms, it seems to me is, so characteristic of him.

I also appreciated your use of the word, "EMPTY". As I read it I thought of all those verses that speak of the exact opposite in regard to communion with God, "FULLNESS". One of my favorite is Pauls prayer for the Ephesians in the 3rd chapter of that epistle:

Quote
3:14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
3:15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
3:16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with power by his Spirit in the inner man;
3:17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,
3:18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
3:19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the FULLNESS of God.


It seems to me that since Paul prayed this prayer for all the Ephsian church, it is meant to be prayed for (and by) all believers for all time. What an encouragement. There are so many wonderful thoughts in this prayer that it is impossible to cover them all, but I think a bit of meditation on the words of this prayer and it's purpose, in conjuction with how it intersects with other verses that deal with the FULLNESS of God, will reap rich rewards, as in:

Quote
John 1:4 "And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be FULL."

Eph.1:12 Having many things to write unto you, I would not write with paper and ink: but I trust to come unto you, and speak face to face, that our joy may be FULL."

John 16:24 Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be FULL.

Acts 2:27 2:28 Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me FULL of joy with thy countenance.

Col. 2:2 That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the FULL assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;
2:3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.


Aren't those beautiful promises?

I would say, Janean, that if you keep on listening to the Spirit's voice about the emptiness of the church you are in, and contrast it to the fullness that He promises those that seek Him with their whole their heart, and do so seek Him, you will find that fullness. In other words, I believe that if we ask Him for that fullness, and keep on asking, and really want it, such that we remove those things that impede it, just as Paul asked Him for it for the Ephesians, and taught them to lead holy lives, He will lead you to it, and fulfill what He has led you to seek.

In Him,

Gerry

Re: "Pop" Theology #13555
Sat Apr 17, 2004 9:47 AM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 9:47 AM
Joined: Apr 2001
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NH, USA
Pilgrim Offline

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Gerry,

As you would imagine, I am in full agreement with your words. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> But I would like to append them in regard to this statement:

Quote
I would say, Janean, that if you keep on listening to the Spirit's voice about the emptiness of the church you are in, and contrast it to the fullness that He promises those that seek Him with their whole their heart, and do so seek Him, you will find that fullness. In other words, I believe that if we ask Him for that fullness, and keep on asking, and really want it, such that we remove those things that impede it, just as Paul asked Him for it for the Ephesians, and taught them to lead holy lives, He will lead you to it, and fulfill what He has led you to seek.

The Adversary also often uses deception here as well. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" /> Why is it that the Pentecostal/Charismatic churches, along with the incredible rush to institute the corruption of biblical worship for this enticing "seeker-friendly/contemporary" model? What I can tell you is that in nearly every single case where I have talked to people who are involved in these things, the overwhelming answer has been, "I wasn't being filled, satisfied, etc., in the church I was formerly attending." In some instances, those former churches were faithfully preaching the Word and seeking to glorify God according to His infallible Word. Yes, in some cases, the churches were failing to do this to one degree or another. But, IMHO, what was lacking was a "new heart" in the individual. The love of Christ which only the Spirit of God can give was not present. Thus there was a "hollowness", "emptiness" within these people, which things are by nature, in opposition to the things of God and thus they found no fullness in the worship which is according to "spirit and truth". So, to satisfy this emptiness, they sought out the things of this world which so many churches have adopted to attract people; with great success. People are running wildly to these churches like lemmings. May the Lord turn them back before they through themselves off the precipice and to their deaths.

All this is simply to say that one must be very careful to discern the cause of an emptiness within. It could very well be that the fault lies within and not without. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/idea.gif" alt="" />

In His Grace,


[Linked Image]

simul iustus et peccator

[Linked Image]
Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: bestrech] #13556
Sat Apr 17, 2004 10:18 AM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 10:18 AM

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Are we the only people around who realize that this book is a work of fiction? [Linked Image] I will admit. It bugs [edited] me how stuck on that book Christians are and how seriously they take much of it as fact. But at the same time, it's a work of fiction. I wish the "Christian" community would learn the difference between truth and non-truth...

I guess you could say that's another one. Stupid people...lol

Last edited by Susan; Sat Apr 17, 2004 10:27 AM.
Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: janean] #13557
Sat Apr 17, 2004 10:24 AM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 10:24 AM

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Janean,
My heart goes out to you. I have been in your situation before and even though there were increasing numbers in the church and great plans for a new building, and everyone seemed so excited about "what the Lord was doing" I knew that something was very wrong and that what was going on was empty and was only bringing man the glory, not God. You are right to want to be in a church with sound teaching. Has your husband begun to see those things you have noticed that are wrong in your church? Do you think he is a Christian? Your situation is harder because your husband is one of the leaders in your church. May God give him understanding. I am still praying for you and your situation. It sounds very trying. May God give you His wisdom and guidance and encourage your heart.

Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: Pilgrim] #13558
Sat Apr 17, 2004 12:31 PM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 12:31 PM

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Pilgrim:

You said:

Quote
The Adversary also often uses deception here as well.


I couldn't agree more. Thus the need to teach how to discern the difference between the true the the false, between what the adversary brings and what the Spirit of Truth provides. The Puritans spent a great deal of time doing just that, rather than ignoring or minimizing the issue because they realized, I believe, the dangerous and deadening consequences of the former approach.

Perhaps if we spent less time (not no time, less time) in endless, deadening debates on paedo vs credo baptism, the nature of outward covental signs such as circumcision on the OT and baptism in the NT, we would find that there would be more love in our hearts and true power for service.

In my post to Janean I was emphasizing that Paul taught in Eph 3 that this fullness is for the real and true believer who seeks it. I believe that this truth is ignored, minimized set aside, etc. by the modern church, including the true Reformed church, in part precisely because of a fear of confusion with Charismatic teaching. With Joel Beeke, and the Reformation Divines, I find myself concerned that the doctrine of assurance of faith is so little discussed in the current church; from Beeke:

Quote
In one sense, assurance was the most critical issue of the post-reformation. And the churches, for the most part, benefitted from by it. The post-Reformation expostitions of assurance contributed to the spiritual health of the congregations as long as they did not degenerate into an unbiblical mysticism that was Word-regulated within a Christ-centered and Trinitarian matrix. Out of that grew their strong emphasis on experimental religion that was not intended to lead from but to Christ for increased faith and assurance. By sincerely believing that sound experimental religion was from Christ and his Spirit, they aimed to rest that experience in the objective Gospel.

The divines made no attempt to divorce subjective religion from the objective. That kind of religion, they would have said, may provide a full head while retaining and empty heart."
From the Conclusion of Joel Beeke's "The Quest for full Assurance, the Legacy of Calvin and His Successors", page 275.

You further stated:

Quote
What I can tell you is that in nearly every single case where I have talked to people who are involved in these things, the overwhelming answer has been, "I wasn't being filled, satisfied, etc., in the church I was formerly attending." In some instances, those former churches were faithfully preaching the Word and seeking to glorify God according to His infallible Word. Yes, in some cases, the churches were failing to do this to one degree or another. But, IMHO, what was lacking was a "new heart" in the individual. The love of Christ which only the Spirit of God can give was not present.


It seems to me that you are in full agreement with what I am saying, judging by your last statement at least. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" /> "The love of Christ which only the Spirit of God can give" was, indeed, not present. Or as Paul put it in Romans, "the love of God shed abroad in the heart" had not been shed abroad, or, if it had, in some measure, because of either a lack of teaching on the wonderful gift this is, or an out and out denial of it as a genuine manifestion of Christ's Spirit, it is ignored or minimized and, as Paul said again, "you have forgotten your first love".

I believe that in some measure this love is a real, felt, experienced, divine love, accompanied by a peace that passeth understanding, that, as Edwards clearly taught, cannot be provided by a false spirit, for they do not have or know it. A cheap imitation can be counterfited by the adversary, but it will be seen as such if proper teaching to discern the difference is provided.


Again, from Beeke on assurance:


Quote
Today many, even in the Reformed tradition, suggest that this doctrine is no longer relevant since "nearly all Christians posess assurance". But we are convinced that the docttrine of assurance is relevant precisely because we live in a day of minimal assurance. Sadly, the church, for the most part, is scarcely aware that it is crippled by a comparitive absence of strong, full assurance.
Beeke, "Quest for Full Assurance" pg 279

In Him,

Gerry

Last edited by acts2027; Sat Apr 17, 2004 12:42 PM.
Re: "Pop" Theology #13559
Sat Apr 17, 2004 3:48 PM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 3:48 PM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 13,513
NH, USA
Pilgrim Offline

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Pilgrim  Offline

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Gerry,

Yes I am in full agreement with what you wrote before and thereafter! <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

In regard to the quote from Joel Beeke, where he wrote:

Quote
Today many, even in the Reformed tradition, suggest that this doctrine is no longer relevant since "nearly all Christians posses assurance". But we are convinced that the doctrine of assurance is relevant precisely because we live in a day of minimal assurance. Sadly, the church, for the most part, is scarcely aware that it is crippled by a comparative absence of strong, full assurance.

I would say that the churches today are full of people with assurance. However, once again, this assurance is not that which flows from a regenerate heart by from a fatal deception of the Evil One. The assurance that has permeated so many churches today is one which comes from without; i.e., because some pastor, evangelist, some so-called "soul-winner" has said so, or from what some tract. The biblical teaching on assurance, as you well know, flows from BOTH the inward testimony of the Holy Spirit, Who first brings a conviction of sin and a desire to flee to Christ for the remission of that sin. Thereafter, the Spirit's working also brings forth the "fruit of the Spirit", which can be seen with the eyes and testified to by the individual and others. Assurance does not result simply from a minimalist "confession of faith", e.g., "I asked Jesus into my heart and therefore I am saved." But now, I'm preaching to the choir! <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />

In His Grace,


[Linked Image]

simul iustus et peccator

[Linked Image]
Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: Pilgrim] #13560
Sat Apr 17, 2004 5:45 PM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 5:45 PM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 3,524
Kelowna, British Columbia, Can...
Tom Offline
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Pilgrim

As a former Pentecostal, I would like to say I couldn't agree with you more.
When I think back, I can not help but think just how subjective the Charismatic movement is. Although for the most part they believed in checking everything out with Scripture. Sometimes subjective emotionalism unintentionally takes precedence over objective Scripture. So much so in fact that experience interprets the Scripture, rather than the other way around.
Funny thing though, when you are caught up in it, the truth of the matter is hard to see.

Tom

Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: Pilgrim] #13561
Sat Apr 17, 2004 6:02 PM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 6:02 PM

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Dear Pilgrim:

And I am in full agreement with what you wrote also <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />. Part of which was:

Quote
I would say that the churches today are full of people with assurance. However, once again, this assurance is not that which flows from a regenerate heart by from a fatal deception of the Evil One. The assurance that has permeated so many churches today is one which comes from without; i.e., because some pastor, evangelist, some so-called "soul-winner" has said so, or from what some tract.


Amen to that brother. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/BigThumbUp.gif" alt="" /> The phenomena you describe is, I believe, what is called false assurance, the only true antidote to which is true assurance. May we be blessed to know it and to proclaim it, to His Glory, both now and forever.

In Him,

Gerry

Re: "Pop" Theology [Re: CovenantInBlood] #13562
Sat Apr 17, 2004 7:16 PM
Sat Apr 17, 2004 7:16 PM
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Fort Bragg, NC
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Quote


CovenantInBlood said:

catholicsoldier,

I'm curious whether you're familiar with Blaise Pascal and the Jansenist? This is probably going a bit off topic though...


I can only assume that this is a referrence critical to the Catholic Church, but please forgive and correct me if I'm wrong. Although I welcome anyone who wishes to discuss the tenants of my faith, I'm sure you can understand I can't possibly keep track of every dissident to the RCC. Life is too short and the list too long <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/hairout.gif" alt="" />

Let me know if you have any specific question, I'd be happy to answer, always stressing our common bond in Christ.

"Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen."

catholicsoldier

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