Rosemary earned her M. She also earned her M. This team went through the introductory material and every lesson word by word looking for grammatical errors, biblical errors, confusing directions, poor illustrations, culturally bound language, outdated practices, and more. Beyond revisions, a few new stories have been developed where we felt there were holes in the curriculum. Most importantly, we listened to you! The emails and letters with questions, suggestions for enhancements, and more were always on our mind as we worked through each lesson—and in the development of new lessons.
The illustrations in the original lesson show it both ways. After some debate, it was agreed to fix the illustrations so they all go clockwise. In addition, a second white block has been added to Christmas to indicate that the season of Christmas is longer than a single day—and oftentimes not on a Sunday.
In some settings Christmas is even longer than that, and we encourage you to add as many white blocks as you need to make it match your practice! As we pondered this conundrum, the team thought it would be helpful to have a new Core Lesson about the Holy Bible that could be used with all ages and would be less costly. The material is simply a large, beautiful Bible on a bookstand, which may be purchased from Godly Play Resources.
The Holy Bible lesson introduces a special new practice into a Godly Play session. It is suggested that before you sit down to tell a story from the Bible, you open the presentation Bible to the passage from which the story comes. Children can go over to the Bible during work time and read the passage—or they can make a bookmark to mark the passage.
In the original Volume 2, this Enrichment Lesson was riddled with problems as many of you told us in countless letters or emails. We listened to you and spent a considerable amount of time revising it. But now, like the other Old Testament lessons on individuals found in Volume 6, we are calling it an Extension Lesson. It is so sad that we have taken Christ out of Christianity. I left the Catholic church before my confirmation, because of how little women matter in their worldview.
I have ovaries, and therefore I am not worthy of a position of leadership? I come from a big Irish Catholic family—my mother has 7 brothers and sisters—and of the 19 children and 7 couples, only one couple is still Catholic. Everyone else has split for another church or for private beliefs. The church is just becoming irrelevant. Man, each of these points resonates deeply with me. We attended one for several years whose pastor turned out to be a demagogue.
He openly insulted Catholics in a community with tens of thousands of people from Catholic backgrounds, many right in his own congregation. Then he flat-out lied to the church board about something that had happened in the missions department. The associate pastor who runs the place now knew that he had lied but remained silent about it because he believed it was a bigger sin to contradict the guy in charge than to let him lie to the congregation. The next church we tried had megachurch ambitions and few principles.
Aside from running an expensive private school on campus, that church did literally nothing for the community AT ALL. No food bank, no clothing drive, no toy drive for the holidays, just glitz and show. Once I had to help a disabled newcomer in and out of a bathroom stall; I was blessed to assist him but unhappy that he had to endure that embarrassment in the first place.
On and on and on it went: too little Christ, too much agenda that avoided or directly contradicted what Christ Himself taught. It was about four years ago that we dropped the church altogether. I decided if I was going to be a Christian, I had to be a red-letter Christian because without following the specific teachings of Christ, that title is worthless. My faith in Christ has never changed, but I actively hate the state of the Church in general and will never return.
I feel your pain, Todd. My husband and I were in some really bad churches and were terribly hurt more than once. I almost gave up hope but I knew I needed the fellowship of other believers. I have since found a church home where I am comfortable, but I am not highly involved, too much pain mistrust still lingering to allow myself to get overly involved, but I enjoy the worship services, I think the pastor and others who teach there are Spirit-inspired for the most part and I see them reaching out into the community in many and varied ways.
I hope you can find some sort of community of believers at some point. My prayers are with you. This was a great article. The Church continues to live in the past and pretends that women are not holding down full time jobs outside the home. Would love to hear things from your perspective Virginia! Shogren, I beg to differ.
We do have a place in the body of Christ. I have to conclude that you completely misunderstood me, Mildreanne, or else I did not express myself clearly. Of course women have a place in the Body of Christ. Half of the people I train for Christian ministry are women. Nor would I sit still if someone said there there is a monolithic manly point of view. We are all individuals, that is to say. Virginia, I do find that there are churches that are less hostile toward women who work outside the home and recognize their needs, though they may be hard to find.
The problem I have is that even most of these churches see women having divinely decreed roles that are subordinate to men, both in the church and in relationships. A growing number of Christians, including myself, see this as an error, with the verses commonly cited at restricting women from certain roles in the church and the home taken out of context.
I for one like to consider my partner an equal partner. This is one thing I do see driving some people away from the Church. I have needs and those needs were not being met by the Church. I was supposed to give and give and get nothing in return but shame and guilt. Not all of them can be stay-at-home moms. It isnt fair, and it certainly isnt what i think of as love becoming of a group of believers who claim to emulate the God of love.
Steve and Rueban, obviously not Virginia, my spouse was cheating regularly, church said I had to forgive, he moved in with his lady friend, I had to forgive. Work in the church? Taught 2 classes, did the funeral lunches, worked the food pantry, the homeless week, food drives, sat on committees. A young man was beating his child and abusing his wife, she was told to forgive even as her spouse was sent to jail. Where is the compassion for the woman? To forgive is a conscious decision to not hold something against someone weather they ask for forgiveness or not.
Forgiveness does not mean you must continue in an abusive relationship. Matthew explains why we must forgive. If we walk with an unforgiving heart we are not walking in the fruit of the Spirit and we allow the devil access. Also the body of the church people with Jesus as the head should be showing compassion for any of their brothers and sisters that are abused and for that manner helping anyone that needs help.
Scripture in Hebrews specifically tells us to be kind to strangers. Scripture in Corinthians specifically tells us to help widows and orphans. In all things we must act out of love. We must always forgive for our own sake. But that does NOT mean we have to maintain relationship with unrepentant or dangerous people. Any Church or Pastor that would recommend staying in those relationships you described does NOT understand the love of God. What a Pharisee.
This is the reason churches have become void of the work Jesus and Five fold ministry is supposed to. Approved by God unashamed.. The religious Elites. That seems to ring a bell. The only time the Jesus ever woed anyone. And you profile them. They never had a chance be loved by Christ loves us. Through you and your religious rhetoric. Your job is to love them, and if you truly love God and had the power of salvation? Yes, you can hang out with whoever you like. The mind of Christ. To obey Jesus and the words he said. Is what a wise Builder does.
Read Sermon on the Mount. The poor, of spirit. Those who mourn. The center, and those who love Jesus the most. Those who are forgiven much. No they have much to be forgiven for. With my long hair. My background, and the homeless people I work with every day. They smell like urine. They do meth.
They received the gospel, and they love to be loved. Your problem is your love is superficial. I read and you made so much sense.. It was the time of holy laughter and churches passing around huge baskets where women threw in their wedding rings and we said Glory Halleluja and suddenly I knew in my knower I have to get OUT!!! A man or woman should not put away his spouse except for the cause of fornication. This is a direct teaching of Jesus Christ that is in the new testament. Jesus understands the breaking of the solemn bond of matrimony and what mental damage this does to the relationship, which is why this is the only exception made.
Blessed be the woman who can forgive a spouse of this. But yea, unto you is also given permission to leave upon the breaking of this bond. Sorry where does it say blessed be the woman who can forgive a spouse of this???????? Where women have married devils, it is a certainty that God was not in it in the first place. Same with men who marry devils. It can happen. Looking forward to your reply, Virginia. Pressuring her even though she had Type 1 Diabetes, which had been destroying her body, since childhood.
Wanting the mothers to marry the same kind of jerk they divorced in the first place, just to be married. If after tabulating your needful expenses and paying those things, what is left over would be your increase. If you are barely paying your bills, then you owe no tithes. THIS is the way of the Lord. If however you voluntarily pay more than a tenth of your increase, then blessed be ye.
And if you are a needful recipient of tithes through your church, then also may the Lord bless you. But this is why people do not want to attend church. My sister decided to leave this church, but she felt she had not right to go to another. There are good churches. Focus on worshipping the Almighty God, not finding wrong in the church. Find a church where the Word of God is being taught and attend. I agree! There are many God seeking churches out there, we just hear about the not so good ones.
If your heart truly wants to find a good church, God will send you there! Not really. If a shepherd had less flock one year than he had the last, he was operating at a loss, and therefore had no increase. Eventually your flock would dwindle away. This would be bad accounting and makes no sense. It is also important to interpret needful things and expenses, not optional luxuries.
If you split hairs too much with the Lord, he will split hairs with you. And also any extra milk gained in excess of the family needs would be tithed too. When he has that, it all works out, giving, living, loving, etc. Now you are actively redefining your definitions. In your example, going from 10 sheep to 5 sheep, there is an increase or an income of 5 sheep. That increase IS your entire income from sheep anyways. Saying elsewhere that you only tithe on net and then claiming that to be increase shows a lack of understanding.
Do you think anyone is claiming that what you already have and have already tithed on it income for a second time? Please examine the heart with which you are approaching these conversations. You appear to be very willingly seeking confrontation, but at the expense of being dishonest. Even in the LDS faith is this how you believe you should act? Does this fall under milk before meat lying to non-believers in order to convert them?
Do you believe your spirit in these conversations is choosing the right? That you have done all that you could do? For if you are seeking contention, then have you not sinned? And if you have, have you done all that you could do and made all of the right choices? Per the LDS faith, your approach is very likely affecting your faiths idea of salvation. All the costs in maintaining the herd and household are base costs. Sorry, no time to go into it. Have fun. Like it or not the church has expenses.
In the years following the ascension of Christ to heaven, followers of Christ provided the needs of the apostles. We should be doing same now so the pastor can pastor instead of selling coffee to make ends meet. The LDS church seems to function fabulously. The LDS works well because it is a corporation which owns gigantic business ventures and funds its chapters from its bureaucracy. It also deviates from true scripture and adds its own heretical apocrypha to its teaching. Remove the beam from thine own eye, before the mote from thy brothers, that ye may see clearly.
Such hate is clearly rooted in evil. Judge a tree by the fruit it bears. Quick question for you. And just exactly how would the resurrected Christ visit them? Much as he visited his disciples? To believe that his disciples in Israel were the only people on the planet he visited is quite closed minded, and clearly contradicted by his own words. Gal Paul, an apostle not sent from men nor through the agency of man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised Him from the dead , Gal and all the brethren who are with me, To the churches of Galatia: Gal Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, Gal who gave Himself for our sins so that He might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, Gal to whom be the glory forevermore.
No Other Gospel. Gal I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; Gal which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. Gal But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!
Gal As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed! That is what the bible says no Book of Mormon needed, when Christ sets you free you are free indeed and will look and assist others with compassion since they received the love of God, and are forgiven on the basis of faith alone.
Do you even know what the Bible is? It serves only the arrogance of surety that you would accept only the one compilation The Bible and no others. I smile widely in disbelief also knowing that the included gospels of the old and new testament were hand picked and groomed to the tastes of King James by the autocratic servants of the monarchy. Such ignorance to think that it is by any means the complete and only truth. What a total lack of understanding of the origins of the words you and I both hold so dearly. I know. An angle presenting a different gospel from plates by mr smith with no archeological evidence found in the us saving a different gospel does no make it.
You know little of what you are commenting about. The evidence is strewn about the Guatemalan and Yucatan peninsulas. One only needs to look. The plates were commanded to be carried for many months and buried where they were in upper state NY. It says this in the book itself, which is a compilation of many authors testimony of what happened. It is becoming more and more clear that these were the pre-mayan peoples. The main reason I am disillusioned with the church is because of the corruption.
I could go on and on. The reason to be disillusioned is their own apologies. Excuse me! That was written before Mormon plates and it is different gospel altogether based on a false christ whom Mormons say is created and not the Real Christ who cheated the universe man who left his Heaven to become man and died for our sin. Col To trust in a different christ one that was created , is no christ at all. And in the end, whoever trusts in the christ instead of the Living Chirst will still be in their sins. Which is why the correct Christ Deity not the plate man made one christ who as created Is pivotal to where you will spend eternity in heaven with God forever forgiven by Christ Deity who paid the price for our sins or hell paying you your sins yourself, without God, forever.
Because the created mormon christ can not forgive sin. The mormon may spell the same but eternally different. Still sounds like you are taking it wrong. You still seem to know little of what you are talking about because what you are spewing is really confusing. You must have gotten this stuff from some hateful evangelists. What are you talking about? The teachings of Christ in the book of mormon are almost a perfect mirror of those in the new testament. Who told you these lies? If you would like to ask some basic questions about our beliefs, then I will answer them for you.
Not confusing at all I know a lot of Mormon there lives look better cleaner than mine they are knowledgable and a lot of good works. The thing is that has nothing to do with sin how good you are. His birth He was born of a woman and by Gods Spirit. Isaiah ; Matthew ; Luke , 34 which make Jesus able to give salvation to those who call on his name by Faith alone and not works. Works will never save anyone because works can not erase sin. And I do not disagree with your words or quotation so please tell me exactly what it is you think you are saying about mormons?
Of course everyone sins. Who told you we believe otherwise? You need both. Jesus said I am the way the truth and the life no man comes to the Father but by me. If any man is in Christ he is a New creation Titus God gives us the desire to do good works to please Him and gratitude for what he has done for us.
We will want to do good works God puts His Holy Spirit into our heart to know him. I pray that He will you insight into this. Salvation is found in no one else their is no other name by which we must be saved. This site explains it better. That branch of my family believes they are the only Church because Joseph Smith is the only one who got the right temple plans, the right doctrines and covenants and the best testimony ever from the angel, and confirmed it all with the burning in his bosom that it was the right way.
Because all the denominations around were false and displeased God so much he appeared to JS. So if it is indeed the only church, why frequent a site not even talking about the LDS church. Seems strange, the missionaries that have come to my door tell me your Church is growing leaps and bounds, so why are you coming to a website for Church plants, that are not being done by your church. The BOM is not based on Biblical christianity, because remember JS was given the right gospel and doctrine because the current ones were lacking, right. And he had more revelation for going back to taking more than one wife, because that was what was done in ancient days, right?
Even though the actual temple ceremony has NO origin in Hebrew culture but in the occult practices of ancient times, that were heathen and paganistic. Messiah never had a brother, in Satan. The fact is Joseph Smith had a whole different occupation, something quite contrary to ALL scripture. He created a new religion based on some obscure notions, and tried to pawn it off as the new deal. He got quite the following and it is still going. LDS build churches and perpetuate a very large real estate venture adhering to good moral principles.
Jesus Christ, Messiah, came to build a Kingdom not of this world, not associated with Kolob, but to have a Bride saved by grace, by HIS shed blood, period. Not rituals, not works, not anything that man can do gets them to the spiritual Kingdom. The Body of Christ is the Bride, the only heavenly marriage happening there. No extra planets, no need for anymore priests as He alone is our high priest.
No need to create more spiritual progeny. Do you feel like you grow more spiritually by helping a stranded motorist or by looking at wrong images on the internet? I would adamantly say the former. By practicing righteousness we strengthen those spiritual muscles. If we fail to take action, the next time it will be easier to do the same. Faith is all that is needed for salvation. Jesus died not just for original sin, but for ALL of our sin.
We can only accept his offer of salvation. All of our works are but as dirty rags so that no man may boast that his salvation comes in any way from his own effort. If it were, how then did the thief on the cross go to Heaven? Either Jesus was wrong not possible or the belief that baptism would be required for the thief or anyone to go to Heaven is wrong.
BBC - Religions - Christianity: Original sin
But back to your point, Jesus said you will know a tree by the fruit it bears. A dead tree bears no fruit. A dead faith bears no fruit. But the act of bearing fruit doing works is not what makes the kind of tree works is not what makes a Christian , it is how they are identified. In addition to this, many people also make the mistake of thinking that all works have to be outward.
This very egregiously overlooks the most important works, those of growth and change in the believer. Many of these works will not be observable at a casual glance, but only through detailed retrospection and an examination of your past vs your present self. Faith and works go hand-in-hand as one responds in trust and obedience to God. It is obedient faith that saves. LDS go around baptizing dead corpses. The Gospel of Christ is for the living — not the dead.
Once you are dead its too late to accept Christ. Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles off, and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother. So when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, but Mary remained seated in the house.
But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this? Not what you assume….. Just to clarify, LDS do not baptize corpses. And never have. It is proxy baptism performed by the living in behalf of the dead. I agree with just me, you dont need works for salvation. Many a man have confessed on their death bed, were baptized and saved.
Does that mean they dont receive the same reward? The problem is thier version of the Bible changes the words and tus the meaning of referenced verses. You cant get through to them. No Holy Spirit dwelling on the inside of them. And no, the claim that they both draw from the same source material is not an answer. This is text that was added by the KJV translators to clarify passages that did not easily translate into English. In other words, they are additions that had to be added during the act of translation, they were not present in the original text.
It tries desperately to please the political climate as far as possible. First is was sanctioned as what God intended, so the brethren needed to get more wives, then in comes the government sanctioning it illegal for impending statehood, and gee, it went away mostly. Dud you are a clown, that is destined to an eternal he l if you do t denounce your pride, repenting of your sins to the living God that He mat extemd salvation unto you. You can perhaps infer it from the text, if you are so inclined, but there is no question that understanding is not taught in the bible, if so, will you show me where?
To the contrary He reaffirmed the teaching of one God in Mark Jesus kept dietary laws AND the sabbath before and after His resurrection, but modern Christianity uses weak verses to abandon those. The problem with this idea is that Joseph Smith himself claimed that upstate New York was the site of the climatic battle. I understand that since then, as no archaeological evidence is present, the church has revised the location to the Guatemalan and Yucatan peninsulas. The problem this presents though is that Joseph Smith made these claims based on divine revelation and was a prophet i.
However, the need for revision shows that he clearly was fallible, therefore his claim to be a prophet is shown to be false. The Bible is very clear on this for how we are supposed to test a prophet. Additionally, that is not the only instance in which Joseph Smith was wrong when claiming to speak in his role as the prophet. Or any number of other issues, claims, doctrines that the church has since had to revise.
They are not of faith, they are false, they are crazy, etc. Why because if you are LDS you accept and believe and are convinced that he alone was infallible on such matters. It is JUST that the rest of the world is hateful towards the true church, right? I challenge you to read the Book of John, chapter one. Sue, I think you lost translation somewhere. She is a Christian with LDS family members.
Read the posts toward the top. And Joseph Smith tells us God came from the planet Kollob, almost spells something else in reverse. Please know this. You cannot serve GOD with your head, you serve him with your heart. Serving GOD with their heads is the main cause of division in the church today. Serving GOD with your heart requires faith, requires love, requires grace, mercy and all other fruits of the spirit. If we, as a church, unite in serving JESUS, in spirit and in truth, then we will impact the world more effectively and our intentions, for the world to be saved, will be effective.
GOD bless you all. None of us including you my friend were there but you choose to believe that. And for that matter, why are you on here trying to argue the facts using what is in our own opinions a false doctrine? I am sure you know by now that you are talking to us as if we were part of the LDS community. None of us except for you are LDS. I know that I am not. I live with my LDS friends too. We definitely are family to each other but we are and always will be in separate churches.
I will be straight forward with you and tell you right here that us Christians do not believe in the Book of Mormon. Most of us see the Mormon church as a cult and false religion. Now I personally say that you really should see your way out of this conversation since we are not going on your mormons blogs and trying to prove our point there. My friends and I have a solid respect for each other.
We agree that we all believe in God. But we also agree that we have completely different beliefs. I am a Christian and they are Mormons. And that is how it will always be. Of all the places Joseph Smith mentioned, not one trace has been found.
He also mentioned items,such as swords that have not been found on this continent. His writings are so obviously a fraud, that I wonder anyone is fooled. Grace means unmerited favor. It has nothing to do with being righteous. We are saved by Grace not by our works. When we are in Christ Jesus, we have a rudder where we know in ordinary things what is right or wrong. So in this life we will have troubles.
Also we repent very quickly and go to bed forgiven in mercy. Jesus is the only one to follow….. Jesus said….
Remember he still has a thorn in his side…True! You said…. If not check with G-d…….. No one comes to the Father except by ME…. Your Church nor your Pastor is the way…. Bless you. That hardly seems fair to anyone except your group. It is called the Fires of Faith and is freely available. It very clearly disputes your ideas that the books were handpicked and groomed to the tastes of King James.
If you are LDS then you should know that your opinions on this differ from what your church officially states…. Oh that your eyes and ears could receive the revelation that your religions serves man and NOT a Holy God. Jesus is the Head and the church is His body.
What happens when the head is severed from the body? Jesus and His church are one. The church is also the bride of Christ. There is so much more. The Bible as we know it was actually determined in CE with Constatine and the leaders of the various factions of the Church. King James was the one who got the Bible translated into the KJV as it was before all the other various translations of the Bible came to be. He only commissioned a translation of the very same books translators had been rendering in English since the beginning of the Reformation starting with Tyndale, continuing through the very popular Geneva Bible, etc.
To his own Master he stands or falls. So now we want you to meet God Himself for yourself, even if you never become part of our church again. We recognize that rebellion against the Church of God is not necessarily rebellion against God. So this is what we want to say to you now from the depths of our heart:.
No matter what message you may have received from us over the years, God Himself is the most loving Being in the universe, and He wants to have a close, personal relationship with you, the object of His love. It's not about the do's and don'ts. It's not about which church is right.
- plantilla de plan de negocios para abrir una pizzería en español! (Spanish Edition)!
- World Changers: Fascinating Figures from Church History?
- Till You And I Found Us.
- See a Problem?.
- La Femme Mariée (French Edition)?
It's about finding the peace, love, security, and significance that only a living relationship with a loving God can bring to you. We beg you, in spite of whatever you might think about us as your childhood church, PLEASE discover this living relationship with God as soon as possible.
For all of our shortcomings, we ask your forgiveness and pray that you don't blame God for our failures. God Himself has truly never done you any wrong. He truly loves you more than you love yourself. Many of us believe that this statement of clarification was due you. Maybe you have already discovered for yourself what we have written here to be true, but we just wanted you to know our feelings.
We are trying to get to heaven ourselves, and do not want to cause anyone else to stumble and miss heaven because of us. I recognize that not everyone will agree with this statement of clarification. But I believe that God has encouraged me to take personal responsibility because, to me, somebody has needed to do this for years and generations. But I still believe, with conscience toward God, that this must be done.
And we still have no proper forum where issues like this can be discussed, resolved, and acted on , although we hope to see such forums in the future. We cannot afford for any more people to die or go to hell because their experiences in our church have played a role in keeping them from coming to God.
It is not wrong to objectively evaluate our doctrines in the light of God's Word. It is the only way to discover or re-affirm the truth, especially in a religious environment where literally everyone and every group is claiming to have or be the truth. Truth will always withstand close scrutiny. So you should even question everything that is written in this letter to see if it is sound.
Pray about it, think for yourself, check it all out by the Bible, and even find a time to ask your current or former spiritual leaders about whatever you might question. Take this letter to church to discuss it. This letter is meant to help, not to hurt, to build up, not to destroy. Truth is all we seek. Truth will set us free. I must say a few things to those current COG members and former associates who might still ask the question, "When did the Church of God do any of these awful things?
I never saw any of this. It's still a great, loving body of holy people as far as I'm concerned. Why is this clarification even necessary? This is why so many of us have remained in it for so long. But not everyone has seen only this good, loving side of the church. Many have received rejection, confusion, disillusionment, and worse, and it has greatly disturbed their entire lives.
These people are the target audience of this statement. If, thankfully, you are not one of these, then this letter is not primarily written for you, and you can continue on your way as before. You are still free to practice what you believe to be God's will for you, which is all anyone can ask from their church.
- Le droit de vieillir (Documents) (French Edition).
- Die Bedeutung der Unternehmenskultur für die Unternehmensentwicklung (German Edition)!
- The Church Publishes a New Triple Combination.
- Matthew 23 CEV - Jesus Condemns the Pharisees and the - Bible Gateway.
- The Essential Handbook of Womens Sexuality [2 volumes] (Womens Psychology).
- A Sailor Goes Ashore.
I would also suggest that the church begin rapidly moving from its undeniable emphasis on faithfully maintaining the past and begin to concentrate on following the Holy Spirit's desire to actively reach out in love to the lost and dying world around us in a relevant manner. That is our only New Testament reason for existence. Doing so will require the church to make several positive adjustments in its attitudes and practices, and its openness to God and others.
Please understand that many of us leaders, with conscience toward God, believe we must teach from a biblical perspective only, not from a historical perspective. That is, if we don't have plain Bible to support a teaching, then we don't believe we have authority to teach it, even if the church has taught it for years. We are not just being contrary. In response to the first version of this letter, several of our leaders have recommended and agreed to hold ministerial forums to study and re-evaluate our doctrinal issues and to begin dialog concerning our evangelistic techniques and emphasis.
This Great Commission covers all of the work of the church: Seeking the lost efficiently, assimilating them into the local fellowship of believers, discipling and developing them into mature Christians, and equipping them to do the work of Kingdom building. We should fulfill this primary responsibility even as we deal with our doctrinal issues: The world cannot wait. Nothing written here should be used by anyone as an excuse to live sinfully or selfishly.
We believe in liberty but not license. That is, we are free to do only God's will.