Thursday, January 24, 2008

Will you fight for Jesus? Part TWO


In my original post dated Jan 17, 2007, I asked the following questions.



"How big are the battles you are facing? Are you willing to go to war for Jesus? Will you fight for Him? I would suspect that many people will say yes, when in fact, they should say no. Let me try to explain this in a way you can understand..."
I then went on to say there are many people who claim to be Christians, when in fact, they aren't. They say they believe in Jesus but they are missing something. Something very crucial. Obedience to God's Word. The need to repent of their sins.

Now we know that those who are truly saved understand that we are in a battle. It is a spiritual battle marked by false teachings (Mormonism, Jehovah's Witness, Scientology, etc), post-modernism thinking, ermergent theology, and of course, the ever present Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, Tony Jones, Brian McLaren and Doug Pagitt's of the world of churchianity.

Well, shortly after the posting went up, I got a response.
Here is a typical response from one who does not want to fight for his faith.
I think that if we showed love (greatest commandment) that we would not have to "fight"

The conversation then went on to "why" we fight. It is a spiritual battle and we know that you cannot expect people to love you back when you love them like Jesus did. If you love Jesus, the world WILL HATE YOU! You will have a battle on your hands! But that is okay.

I would rather fight for Jesus than cuddle up to the world.
The commenter went on to say...
I also would say that if you (christian community - not you in particular) would truly love God and love one another and lived in community as the early church did; you would not have to "fight" as you think and presume. I do not see instructions (please show me them, if they are there) where Jesus instructed us "to fight"

Believers in Christ...


Do you agree that we are in a spiritual battle
and should be ready for battle with Satan and the world?


in my post, I also wrote...
Fight for the Lord? I say to you, they don't know the Lord! Why would they fight for someone they do not know? They are professing Christians but they are not obedient Christians. Jesus said: “If you love me, you will obey me.” This was not stated as an option or a likelihood, e.g. most will obey me or you’ll want to obey me. No, if you love me you will obey me. He continued, “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me.” Jesus continued, “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching.” John defined love for God: “This is love for God: to obey his commands.” God’s commands are the teachings and commands of Jesus. If we love God we will obey his commands.

The commenter also said...
You may be right, the world that surrounds me does not hate me. The reason is simple: when you love them and are showing the fruits of the spirit ... why would they hate you when you are loving them and bring joy to their life ? (this comment is from a youth and family pastor that is seminary trained!)

NOW, look at what the BIBLE says...
If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before [it hated] you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me. *John 15:18-21

Now, you can start to see the battle that we need to fight. There are pastor's who are not saved who are leading the flock astray. They are creating false converts.

Here is another example (again from a seminary trained person)
I love the fact that you bring up homosexuals again. Do you really HATE them ? I will tell them what I tell everyone .. message does not change. God loved you so much that He sent His Son to take your place. (so far, good) Because He died for you / resurrected and seated at the right hand of God; His grace covers your sin. (Whoops, something is missing. Where is the call to repentance?)

To tell someone that His grace covers their sin, does not require them to repent of their sins. Where is the putting away of the old self and becoming new??

here is another point commenter made...
In the situation where it was teenage girls (5) that were part of the group, we told them that we believed that their lifestyle choices were not healthy and that they did not line up with the lifestyle that God has called us to.We, however, did emphasize that you are more than willing to contnue to vcome and be part of the ministry ( this is the welcoming not affirming). We will love you, welcome you but we will (not) affirm or applaud your decisions.

Not once were those lesbian girls told of the need to repent. They just were told the church "believes" that the lifestyle is not healthy. WHY IS IT SO HARD TO TELL PEOPLE THE TRUTH THAT THEY NEED TO HEAR. IT MAKES ME SICK TO SEE HOW PEOPLE WILL WIMP OUT (YOU KNOW, THE WIMPY KIND OF LOVE THAT WAS NOT FOUND IN JESUS CHRIST!!!!)

Again, commenter said... (don't forget, this is a seminary trained pastor)
However, as I look at scripture and see Jesus interact with individuals; can you show me where he said, "repent" ?

From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Matt 4:17
Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel. Mark 1:14-15
And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Luke 13:2-5
Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him. Luke 17:3-4
and out of Revelation we find...
Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent. Rev 2:5
Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth. Rev 2:16
And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. Rev 2:21
Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. Rev 2:22
Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee. Rev 3:3
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Rev 3:19

uh oh, there's a problem, if we LOVE someone we will rebuke and chasten them and tell them of a need to repent!

and let's not forget the woman at the well...
"Go, and sin no more!

Or, how about the rich man?
He brought up several of the Ten Commandments and the man said he had kept them all since his youth (which was obviously a lie), so Jesus then took him to the Second
Commandment and told him to sell all his possession and to come follow Him. The man went away sad. He exposed the man for who he was. A prideful person who loved his money more than God.

Commenter said...
Once again, if you are truly being the hands and feet of Christ - loving and serving them - they are not going to hate you for loving them and serving them. You love reading into scripture to pull out your points that do not really exist.

No response needed on this one! His comments speak for themselves.
Another commenter said (also a seminary trained pastor)
Loving like Jesus is not being wimpy or ignoring Scripture, it is fulfilling it. You know that. When your heart is full of Christlike love for that homosexual or young man whose life has gotten off tract and when you realize that you are no better in God's sight than they are... then you might be ready to engage them. Please don't drag the reputation of Jesus down with misguided attempts at playing the Holy Spirit and feeling that somehow it is your responsibility to point out everyone's sinful ways. It is your responsibility to love people as Jesus did and to deal with your own sin. That is the real fight!

My response...
basically this man does not have a clue as to what the real fight is.

Why did this commenter feel it necessary to post here? The commenter that has been quoted here, went to another blog site and said this...
Everyone:

I am in a conflict over in a blog post and commenting session. Can someone come over and help me :) I am getting slammed:

http://time2changechurches.blogspot.com/2008/01/will-you-fight-for-jesus.html

Sorry for the call out for help. Of course, maybe you will think that I am an idiot there as well :)

Now, at the time it was basically just Michelle, Stella and myself who were conversing with him. You can read the comments yourself and find that they are not "slamming" him. They are sharing with love, the Word of God. As a seminary trained pastor, it surprises me that he would feel we were slamming him. I put all of these comments on here in the hopes that he can see how unbiblical his thinking is. I am sure he is a good person in his mind and feels he will go to heaven based on that alone. Or based on the fact that one day he said "the prayer."

Yes, Christians we are in a battle. It is a fight. Why? Because there are people out there who have taken the Bible and ignored most of it in favor of being a friend to the world.

We are not to be of the world. We are to separate ourselves from the world. If you are obedient to God's Word, the world will hate you. Be ready to go to battle. Satan wants to distort God's Word. He wants just enough of it preached to make people "think" they are saved. But he does not want people to know they need to repent of their sins.

I WILL SAY IT AGAIN AND AGAIN
REPENT, FOR THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS AT HAND!
PUT YOUR FAITH AND TRUST IN JESUS CHRIST ALONE!

When dealing with the proud and arrogant person, we are to preach Law along with the wonderful grace of God! When dealing with a humbled person then give them grace. God's Word is powerful, we need not fear preaching it as others would have you believe.
I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. (Romans 1:16 NIV)

May you challenge the very core of those who would lead you to believe in the foolishness of the Cross. Because those comments are from unbelievers.

Tell them the Truth of God's Word. All of it.
May you go in peace and share God's Word with all you see today and everyday.
**************************************************************************
on a side note, the pastor whose comments appear on here is in need of some prayers for his family. I believe it is his wife that is having surgery today and it will be her 6th one in the last 10 months. Please keep this family in your prayers!

Which goes to show you all the importance of telling people the Truth of God's Word. We do not know when our last days will be on earth. Repent and put your faith and trust in Jesus Christ alone.

28 comments:

stella said...

It strikes me as funny that he would ask for help, since that you ultimately have the power to approve comments or delete them.

Anyway, I think what it comes down to is something you already said:

Perhaps there's no belief that hell exists. Why would a loving God send anyone to hell? I started talking with a "Christian" co-worker of mine from South Africa and he believes that hell doesn't actually exist (based on his study of Hebrew and Greek). He believes that when we die, our spirit just "sleeps." (Hmm...sounds like Hindu and Buddhist ideas if you ask me).

I said, well, if hell doesn't exist, then there is no need for repentance. If there is no judgement, why share the Gospel? And it seems to me that the answer would be just to make people feel good about themselves.

If I'm a woman who never knew her father and is in need of love from a father figure, I just tell her that God is our Father who loves you! He wants to heal you!

So, I reply, "Really? Okay, I'll accept Jesus into my heart!"

I pray all the time, I go to church...but yet, I still feel "empty." Well, there was no real conversion in the first place.

Someone posted on my friend's blog, praising Olsteen because he gives people a "renewed hope." I asked the question, a "renewed hope" in what? More often than not, it's a renewed hope in themselves and not the Savior.

This is his actually comment:

And if people are encouraged by Joel Osteen, and now have a renewed since of hope because of his messages, that's not a false Gospel. It's just incomplete. I think you're wrong.

And that's the message a without judgement gets you...and incomplete Gospel, which disagreeing with the commentor, IS a false Gospel.


(Sorry if this is completely off topic...It's just been on my mind all day).

pastorbrianculver said...

not off topic at all. Osteen is one that we have to battle against. It is that type of teaching that is so dangerous to people!

Jeff Greathouse said...

Pastor Brian:

I asked you to please read my series and wait till the whole story is complete; thus you will know how I enter into he conversation and lead them.

I know that you disagree with my timing but to not know the whole story and how that interacts, does not do my position justice.

I do want to back up a few steps to where you blocked my comment because I would not answer your question.

To me, I did answer the question. I said the answer to am I a good person is irrelevant. The reason for the irrelevance is that it doens not matter what I do as a person (even if i am a great person) if I have not entered into a covenant with Christ.

Now, I think that there are a lot in my town would say that I am a good person (becasue they see the fruits of the Spirit) has I enter their world and they know through conversation that the reason that I am doing thi is loving God / loving others.

If you watch my series when we get to accountability; you will see the word repent(ance) in the story(ies).

A few side notes: The smilies were on there at Glenn's site because I knew no one would come over and comment. Glenndid come over but I knew no one else would.

Also, as I grew up, I did hear the word of God, I believed the word of God and I repented of the sins that I had commited, I confessed Jesus as my Savior and I follwed his example and entered into the waters of baptism.

I also hold very strongly to the baptismal covenant which is the following: following apostle's teaching and fellowship, resis evil, repent, proclaim the good news and seek and serve Christ in all people, strive for justice and peace, respect everyone's dignity.

I will disagree you strongly on the emergent aspect of the issue - most likely. However, that may be because we see them as different definitions.

I do believe that a person has to put away their old self (we can be stronger and say cruicifies) and put on a new self.

Growing in Christlikeness is a daily journey.

Once again, you do not know the whole stories of the girls and our dialogue. We spent countless hours with them going over scriptures, reading books and conversation. To condense everything in a few sentences is very challenging especially in a comments section of a blog.

On the side note with my wife: she has a chronic disease and has been battling for 10+ years. Everything went good for the surgery.

I am sure that I am missing some rebutals and info that I want/need to include. Hopefully, I can comb through it more later.

Then, I am sure here is where you will have a field day and rip it apart (just being homest)

The final word is that God came to the world in Christ in order to redeem the world, and that nothing can come between God’s creation (which includes human beings) and God’s all-encompassing love.

What God has done in Christ is done for all; God’s act in Christ is the way that all come to God. This Good News we are compelled to joyously share with all people: "God has acted in Christ, and you are the recipient of this loving act."

Will, then, all people be saved in the end? "I do not ... know the answer. (That) is stored up in the mystery of God’s own future. All (God) has let us know in advance is that he will judge the world according to the measure of his grace and love made known in Jesus Christ, which is ultimately greater than the fierceness of his wrath or the hideousness of our sin."

michelle said...

wow... i work with a woman from south africa who doesn't believe hell exists either, she also claims to be a Christian... i asked her if she thought it would be fair if God were to let a cold blooded murderer into heaven without his repenting and she said no. despite telling her all the reasons why hell exists, she refuses to accept hell... pray for her please, she is in denial...

as far as evangelizing... the good friend i had who helped me to see the Lord, didn't speak of repentance, but she faithfully put a seed in my heart and stayed by my side and got me to go to church, where the pastor spoke of repentance and our need for a savior... I thank God for her everyday!

i believe her skills have gotten better in the evangelizing department as well... she had just returned to the Lord herself when she reached out to me...

i know when i first got saved i wanted to tell the whole world, but i was clueless in my beginning efforts of evangelism... i had to learn some skills :-)

stella said...

*side note: that thing you told me about is amazing! someone posted as anonymous and i could tell where the person was from...haha...if he/she replies...maybe ill scare them and call them by their location!

pastorbrianculver said...

Actually, I would not allow anyone to post anonymously, I think it is common courtesy to at least give a first name. You have a right to block any comments you deem necessary. Just remember, it is "your" blog so don't let someone come in and be disrespectful to you and try to force you to accept their viewpoint, especially when it is not biblical. I have done that and will continue to do it because I don't want their false teachings to influence my readers.

It is cool to know where people are from, isn't it?

pastorbrianculver said...

Hi Michelle, it does take some work. We need to get into our Bibles and know what it says. It is amazing how many people do not even know some very basic things in the Bible. I am glad you came across a pastor that spoke of repentance. There are way too many pastors who do not talk about sin. They are scared it will send the people running out of the church. Stay faithful to His Word and continue to witness to people. way of the master is a great resource on how to do it biblically!

stella said...

you know what...i can actually figure out who it was because im smart like that...there's little clues...im all like nate the great! (great stories to read to your grandson)!

what do you know about YWAM?

pastorbrianculver said...

well Herbie said he doesn't know much about it, and I would have to agree with him on that!!!!!! ;o)

pastorbrianculver said...

Pastor Brian:
I asked you to please read my series and wait till the whole story is complete; thus you will know how I enter into he conversation and lead them.

(Jeff, this is my blog and I will not let you run it with your "series" to get the whole story. If it takes you that long to witness to people, I hope they don't die before you finish your series with them!)

I know that you disagree with my timing but to not know the whole story and how that interacts, does not do my position justice.

(again, timing is everything. The longer you wait to tell people the Truth the more deceptive it makes you look!)

I do want to back up a few steps to where you blocked my comment because I would not answer your question.To me, I did answer the question. I said the answer to am I a good
person is irrelevant. The reason for the irrelevance is that it
doens not matter what I do as a person (even if i am a great person) if I have not entered into a covenant with Christ. Now, I think that there are a lot in my town would say that I am a
good person (becasue they see the fruits of the Spirit) has I enter their world and they know through conversation that the reason that I am doing thi is loving God / loving others.

(again, here lies the problem, for a pastor, you seem to not know what
the Bible says. Jesus says, there is none that is good but God. That
my friend, is very relevant! None of us are good. Not you, not me,
no one is good! The answer to the question is: I am not a good person by God's standards. EXTREMELY RELEVANT!!)

If you watch my series when we get to accountability; you will
see the word repent(ance) in the story(ies).

(nope, not going to
happen. It's like watching a series of the Waltons. You will put
people to sleep who need to hear God's Word first! I will explain in my post today)

A few side notes: The smilies were on there at Glenn's site because I knew no one would come over and comment. Glenn did come over but I knew no one else would.

(actually several people came over from that site. They stayed long enough to read the whole list of comments and did not back you up with a comment. Only Glenn did and I gave him the truth of God's Word too. He came back once (again, long enough to read everything)and did not bother to reply to my statements. Why? Because he knows that what I am saying is biblical and correct.)

Also, as I grew up, I did hear the word of God, I believed the word of God and I repented of the sins that I had commited, I confessed Jesus as my Savior and I follwed his example and entered into the waters of baptism.

(let me ask you a couple of fair questions. How old were you when you said the sinners prayer? and, Are you without sin now?)

I also hold very strongly to the baptismal covenant which is the following: following apostle's teaching and fellowship, resis evil, repent, proclaim the good news and seek and serve Christ in all people, strive for justice and peace, respect everyone's dignity.

(how about obedience to His Commands?)

I will disagree you strongly on the emergent aspect of the issue most likely. However, that may be because we see them as
different definitions.

(what is your definition?)

I do believe that a person has to put away their old self (we can
be stronger and say cruicifies) and put on a new self. Growing in Christlikeness is a daily journey.

(we are to examine
ourselves daily to see that we are in the faith)

Once again, you do not know the whole stories of the girls and our
dialogue. We spent countless hours with them going over scriptures, reading books and conversation. To condense
everything in a few sentences is very challenging especially in a comments section of a blog.

(but your problem is that you said it in such a
soft, wishy-washy kind of way. "We don't think your lifestyle choice..." Come right out and say the truth. Be upfront with
them. You say you spent countless hours talking with them, I take it
over a course of several days?? Had one of these girls died before you finished your series with them, how would you have felt then?)

On the side note with my wife: she has a chronic disease and has been battling for 10+ years. Everything went good for the surgery.

(I am very happy to hear that. We might disagree on things, but I truly want the best for her and for the rest of your family. I hope you know that!)

I am sure that I am missing some rebutals and info that I want/need to include. Hopefully, I can comb through it more
later.

(use a brush, it leaves the hair fuller looking!! just kidding!)

Then, I am sure here is where you will have a field day and rip it
apart (just being homest)

(please do not use words like "ripping apart" or "getting hammered" or anything else that makes it sound like my readers and I are being mean to you. It is our duty as
Christians to show errors when we see it. Everything that we have
said is biblical. You have been shown where in the Bible it says certain things. The problem with reading some books is you are being led by "them" as opposed to being led by the Holy Spirit and
the Word of God.)

The final word is that God came to the world in Christ in order to
redeem the world, and that nothing can come between God’s creation (which includes human beings) and God’s
all-encompassing love.
What God has done in Christ is done for all; God’s act in Christ
is the way that all come to God. This Good News we are compelled to joyously share with all people: "God has acted in Christ, and you are the recipient of this loving act."

Will, then, all people be saved in the end? "I do not ... know the answer. (That) is stored up in the mystery of God’s own future. All (God) has let us know in advance is that he will judge the
world according to the measure of his grace and love made known in Jesus Christ, which is ultimately greater than the fierceness of his wrath or the hideousness of our sin."

(please Jeff, read your
Bible more. To say you don't know the answer to whether all people
will be saved is sad.
Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide [is] the gate, and broad [is] the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait [is] the gate, and narrow [is] the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing,
but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt
tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither [can] a corrupt
tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and
cast into the fire.
Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the
kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not
prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Matthew 7:13-23

I have to wonder, where did you get your Bible training at? I think you should ask for a refund! Seriously, you have not been trained on the Bible at all. In all the times we have been conversing, Look at all the times where you said that the Bible does not say, and yet I was able to show it to you. And not only me, but Tim and even a couple of girls (who have no seminary training!). Why are we able to do this? Because we read the Bible
and we believe the whole Bible to be fully God-breathed. Please do
not be so stuck on the following of Tony Jones or any of the emergent leaders, or any of Hybels or Warrens teachings to think that you have to continue following them. You will not get lost
without them. But with them, you will remain lost. You "say" the right words as to how you were saved, but just like the people who say, Lord, Lord, he will still say, depart from me you worker of iniquity, I never knew you. Iniquity is lawlessness. It is the
Law of God that you so vehemently deny telling people about. We truly
care about you. If you want to have a conversation outside of
this post, please contact me at my email address of:
brianculver@yahoo.com

I would be happy to help.)

stella said...

thanks for the advice "dad!"
over the past 1 1/2 years, no one cared, so i didn't...but once you put up something that's controversial, people comment...hmmm....

pastorbrianculver said...

seems like they come out of nowhere, doesn't it?

dad? oh come on now, I'm not that old!!!!!!!! haha, oops, I should have said, LOL

Tim Brown said...

"Will, then, all people be saved in the end? "I do not ... know the answer. (That) is stored up in the mystery of God’s own future."

Very sad. The next time someone exalts the importance of seminary, I will remember this.

A good seminary (e.g. Master's Seminary) indeed is good. But seminary in and of itself proves absolutely nothing at all.

stella said...

my mom is only 2 years older than you...te he he...but stick with me, and you'll stay hip

word.

(i never use LOL...that's so like 1998...i gotta keep it real).

the woman i talked with last night suggested that i look into ywam, but i couldnt find a faith statement on their site.

pastorbrianculver said...

I did the math and there is actually about a ten year difference between your mom and me. If you use the TRUST report found in the Journal of AGE, you will find that women age at a rate of 1.078 per every year of life (that would put your mom around 54 or so), now men on the other hand age at a rate of .92, which puts me at 44! And since you are really as old as you feel (I just felt my arm to get an update!) I am actually about 22!! Now before you say I am lying, I honestly made all of that up!!

As for YWAM, I found this:
YWAM Statement of Faith

Youth With A Mission (YWAM) is an international movement of Christians from many denominations dedicated to presenting Jesus personally to this generation, to mobilizing as many as possible to help in this task, and to the training and equipping of believers for their part in fulfilling the Great Commission. As citizens of God's kingdom, we are called to love, worship, and obey our Lord, to love and serve His Body, the Church, and to present the whole Gospel for the whole man throughout the whole world.

We of Youth With A Mission believe that the Bible is God's inspired and authoritative word, revealing that Jesus Christ is God's son; that man is created in God's image; that He created us to have eternal life through Jesus Christ; that although all men have sinned and come short of God's glory, God has made salvation possible through the death on the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ; that repentance, faith, love and obedience are fitting responses to God's initiative of grace towards us; that God desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth; and that the Holy Spirit's power is demonstrated in and through us for the accomplishment of Christ's last commandment,

repentance, faith, love and obedience really stand out!! From what I have seen so far, it does not look bad. I don't want to give a full endorsement without knowing all of the details. I will send you an email if I find more.

pastorbrianculver said...

Stella, you had said,
but once you put up something that's controversial, people comment...hmmm....

you know, people come out more when you stand up for the Bible and against false teachings. From a Christian standpint, it is not controversial, but other people have to defend why they choose to go against the Bible. I would rather be controversial on the side of defending the Bible than trying to come up with new ideas that are supposedly better than what Jesus or the disciples did!

stella said...

I won't call you a liar. I know you made it up! I heard your preaching at the revival! You told your age!! (Busted!!!)

Thanks for finding the statement for me. That helps. I'm also applying for Missions to Unreached Peoples. My only problem is the whole friendship evangelism thing, however, that's what I'm constantly told here. You have to be their friend first. (Well, you know how I feel about that). And generally, when I meet someone who wants to be my friend, I give them the Gospel first. That way, I gave it to them; they know where I stand and what I believe. And if after that, they want to be my friend, I can still minister to them.

I also have to consider the financial aspect as I can't ask people to support my student loan payments...I need to work on the side and MUP would allow that, I believe.

Michelle,
I'll be praying for her. It could be tribal influences on Christianity. I'm not sure. I did a quick word study on hell and it is as I told the guy. But insists that the Bible translation is wrong. I use KJV, but also referenced NIV. And he just started going off how those aren't good translations...I said, well, the best translations would be the original language, but unfortunately I can't read a lot of Hebrew and I can't read Greek...yet!

And I had the same experience with my salvation experience. The girl never spoke of repentence either, but I knew that God was real, so for me it made sense. There was a huge heart change in every area, expect for one: and I was holding onto that sin until someone told me I needed to repent. However, without repenting, I would have gone to hell if I died.

Jeff,
I will be praying for your wife and family. May God be glorified in all aspects of your trial.

stella said...

me too! thanks for expounding (sp?)

note: after 2 years in asia, my english conversational skills are terrible. i feel like i rarely say everything i want because i don't know how to say it in english any longer!

pastorbrianculver said...

I think it was the wind that day that made my age "sound" higher than it might be!!

just wait, your time is coming!

stella said...

I'm laughing soooooo hard right now!!!!

For a jhong-lao ren (that's Chinese), you're pretty funny sometimes...Don't let that get to your head...I said, sometimes. :)

pastorbrianculver said...

why do I get the feeling that the chinese words you wrote stand for OLD MAN???

stella said...

it does!!! but i tried to be gracious toward you and added jhong before lao, which would mean "middle aged man" (i doubt that's the correct chinese, though).

jhong = middle
lao = old
ren = people
nan = male
nan ren = man

there's your chinese lesson for the day!

you do realize, of course, that i'm just messing around...i need to keep myself amused.

pastorbrianculver said...

hey, at least you didn't say...

lao = old
nan = male
nan ren = man
jhong = middle
ren = people

I could have been an old mail (male) man in the middle of people. (I used to work for the post office!)

I know you are kidding. I appreciate good humor!

Tim Brown said...

Not to intentionally promote my own material, but some of what I've been reading has prompted me to post something about the topic of evangelism. It can be found here.

pastorbrianculver said...

Thanks Tim. I read the article and it is a good one. I encourage everyone else to read it too.

lovingtheword said...

Two verses came to me as I read this post. I have not read the thread, so the verses may have already been mentioned, but nevertheless, here they are:

JUDE 1:3 "Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.

Contend: Verb (Action Word):
1. (contend with/against) struggle to surmount (a difficulty or danger) : she had to contend with his uncertain temper.
2. (contend for) engage in a competition or campaign in order to win or achieve (something): the local team should contend for a division championship
3. ( contending) disputes continued between the contending parties.
4. Assert something as a position in an argument : he contends that the judge was wrong.

When I read Jude 1:3 I am reminded that I must contend for the faith, be prepared to take a stand, to fight against the enemy who seeks to destroy faith in Jesus, our Lord and Savior.

Ephesians 6:12 "We wrestle not with flesh and blood but against principalities against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in high places."

Again, "wrestling" suggests that "contending" for the faith may require engagement of battle on many different levels.

The other verse that came to mind was:

Proverbs 27:6 "Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful."

People may not enjoy having their sins pointed out to them, but if it is done in love, with a sincere desire for the person to see the error of their ways that they might be brought to a place of repentance, seeking forgiveness found only at the foot of the cross through Jesus... Then how can the pointing out of ones sins be a bad thing? It is not, so long as it is done in love.

But even done in love, if the sinner seeks instead to justify their sin nature and not look toward their Lord and Savior as their once and for all atonement, that is their choice. At least the believer has been faithful to reach out and point out that the person has a great need for a Savior. We can only love and pray that at the very least, a seed was just planted and that the Holy Spirit might nurture it into abundant fruition.

Contend for the faith that all might come to know the the saving grace of Jesus. Even if it means we are hated while remaining faithful.

"Saul, Saul, Why are you persecuting me?" --Jesus

Remembering always that the hate that will be directed toward us as we go out into the world, making disciples in all the nations... that very hate we receive is because the world first hated Him who is in us.

God, that we might have the fullness of faith to courageously live out these words found at Philippians 1:21 "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain."

pastorbrianculver said...

thanks for the comment! You are right on with Scripture. There is no argument against Scripture when taken in context, and that is what you have done. Good job! The emergent movement will ignore some Scriptures if it meets their need. The bad part is, they tend to surround themselves with like minded emergents, so even though they read Scripture here and elsewhere, unless they are continually being lifted up, their friends will continue to bring them down. If it is our doing, we will fail, but the Word of the Lord will not return void. I put my faith and trust in Him to do the saving. I am just a faithful servant to His Word.

God bless and have a great night!

pastorbrianculver said...

Hey Tim, I saw you new post today on the remote control. Pretty funny and oh so true!!!!! LOL