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  • The Gospel as a Stumblingblock

    June 20, 2012 | 20 Comments

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    In our desire to avoid controversy and be “relevant,” we have ceased to preach the real gospel and have thereby become irrelevant. A challenging show from Dr. Brown today.

     

    Hour 1:

     

    Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: It is time for us to speak the truth, and not be ashamed, cower, compromise, or water the message down. People need the truth and we have the truth. Do not hold back in the sight of God or man.

     


    Hour 2:

     

    Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: Will the fear of man stop you from telling the truth? Should not the fear of God and the love of man cause us to tell the truth?

     

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    Other Resources:

    Taking a Stand for Truth (with Dr. Fazale Rana)

    It’s Time to Take a Stand!

    Is the Church Changing the World or Is the World Changing the Church?

    Ten Things YOU Can Do To Change Society!

    Ten Commitments of a Jesus Revolutionary

    Are We Really Called to Change the World? (And More Thoughts on Jesus Revolution)

    AS A JESUS REVOLUTIONARY…

    1. I will spend quality time with God every day in prayer and the Word.
    2. I will walk in purity of heart and integrity of life, in thought, in speech, and in deed.
    3. I will not be ashamed of Jesus but will confess him boldly as Lord and Savior.
    4. I will commit myself to the Great Commission, looking for opportunities to win the lost, restore the backslidden, and make disciples.
    5. I will seek to be a peacemaker and ambassador of reconciliation, forgiving those who have offended me and seeking the forgiveness of those whom I have offended.
    6. I will walk in love towards those who despise and reject me, overcoming evil with good and hostility with kindness.
    7. I will pursue fellowship with brothers and sisters of like mind and will not separate myself from the Body.
    8. I will be involved with a ministry of mercy, through serving or through giving, helping to relieve human suffering in a tangible way.
    9. I will stand for righteousness and justice, enlisting myself in a moral cause for the honor of the Lord and the good of society.

    10.  I will seek the fullness of the Spirit, availing myself of everything God has made available for His people today.

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    Comments

    20 Responses to “The Gospel as a Stumblingblock”

    1. Mark Phillips
      June 20th, 2012 @ 9:29 am

      Michael has in the past spoken of a ‘toothless’ gospel ; more recently a ‘spineless’ one !

      In ‘How Saved Are We’ he said this :

      ‘This much is apparent : Because our gospel message has been deficient,our disciples are now deficient…’ (Preface)

      ‘For years we have preached a cheap gospel and peddled a soft Savior….Our “instant salvation” message has dishonored God…’(Chapter 1)

      ‘They [i.e. responders to modern evangelism] prayed a small prayer and went home….Can we say they were born from above?’

      A fellow Apollosian (!) from across the pond is on a similar wavelength – one David Pawson.

      Watch this short video advert for his book ‘Is John 3:16 the Gospel’ ? It lasts around 7 mins.

      http://davidpawson.org/resources/resource/1199

      Do watch it.

    2. Dan1el
      June 20th, 2012 @ 5:54 pm

      Dr. Brown,
      While the gov’t is suppressing Christians, it is honoring Islam, Mohammad.

      http://www.faithinallah.org/the-u-s-supreme-court-honors-muhammad-prophet-of-islam-source-of-law-and-justice/

    3. Bro Joe
      June 21st, 2012 @ 11:57 pm

      As someone who came out of the world. My observation is each church has its own agenda. Very little unity. The services very much mirror secular motivational speakers. In northwest Chicago American youth are turning to other religions. There is no outreach. What I see in so called church growth is a mega corporation.

    4. Bro Joe
      June 22nd, 2012 @ 2:03 am

      Simple answer…Job Security???

    5. ron david metcalf
      June 22nd, 2012 @ 9:46 am

      If the Church had followed the Father’s Instructions as to Caring for the Destitute (aka Tithing) instead of Making Superstars, the US wouldn’t be in its present crisis of gov’t handouts for the vote. But to do this, there must be Correct Teaching: that the Law has not been Replaced; and that Capitalism is not indistinguishable from the Gospel. Here Relativism plays a big role; if the Bible is seen as ancient (archaic and obsolete) history that is mostly myth, then the Current Leader (Middleman of GOD to the masses) becomes the Ultimate (present) Authority; Revelation calls this system the Whore of Babylon. Maybe the SBC should discuss THIS!
      In Him, Ron M.

    6. Ray
      June 23rd, 2012 @ 3:15 pm

      People can go to any church and there will be somebody in charge who will be to them as a spiritual father and that church will be to the one in charge as his family where he is the head. Each weekly meeting will be like a family meeting and he will do his apparent best to minister to every spiritual need and in so doing he will be well provided for by that church. The main book he will use is the Bible and he will talk quite a bit about some of the things in it.

    7. ron david metcalf
      June 23rd, 2012 @ 8:01 pm

      Really, Ray? A “family meeting”? You mean like where people sit around a table and share a meal and conversation? Please include location and videos! The ONLY type of local ‘service’ I have ever attended (not conferences or evangelical crusades, though the format is usually similar) is to sing a few songs and listen to a Preacher teach; not much interaction; very little room for genuine discussion at all. Sometimes a guest preacher will come in for a few days, and that’s called ‘revival’. I’m going a bit overboard here, but not much, after decades of sitting in pews and attending nearly every mainstream denominational-type meeting there is; being a member of congregations for years in volunteer sacrifice, etc. In my lifetime, I’ve seen very little change at all, except in technology. The memorable experiences, the excitement and joy close to heaven (on earth as…) have been very few and far between. So should I sit down, shut up, and sacrifice without grumbling; or continue to Write the Vision as to What Is Possible?
      BTW, the Don’t Make Waves Tribunals can get quite ugly when kindly father-figures feel the slightest bit threatened. If you want to know what I’ve been through the past 20+ years, go to your senior pastor and tell him you think the Tithe belongs to GOD and not him, and see what happens.
      In Jesus’ love and name, Ron David Metcalf

    8. Ray
      June 24th, 2012 @ 8:32 am

      Ron, what is your vision for a church? What should it be like? What should be different?
      What is it lacking? What doesn’t it have that it should have in your opinion?

    9. ron david metcalf
      June 24th, 2012 @ 8:06 pm

      This is Ron’s son Jeremy.

      In answer to your question, although I realize you did not ask me:

      My vision for a local church is one in which the members, and especially the 5-fold ministry members of the church, have an ACTUAL, TRUE REVELATION OF THE TRUTH OF THE BIBLE, AND ARE THEREFORE (according to Jesus’ words in the Gospel of John, whom says that if you sin (implying iniquity) you are a slave to sin and not free) COMPLETELY SET FREE OF INIQUITY (I.E. ANY FREQUENT OR EVEN OCCASIONAL WILLING SIN AGAINST THEIR CONSCIENCE (DAVID IS ONLY RECORDED IN THE BIBLE AS HAVING 10 SINS AGAINST GOD IN HIS ENTIRE LIFETIME WHILE WALKING WITH GOD), which includes sins that would cause weaker brethren to stumble and things that are not done in faith, because whatever is not done in faith is sin. The local church would be full of people like Charles Finney, John Wesley, George Whitefield, etc.

      When these people have such a revelation of the truth and are therefore free of the world in every sense of the word because of this revelation of the True Gospel, they would never DREAM, because of fear/love of God and hatred/absolute disgust for sin, of taking any more of the tithe than was alloted to the priests in the Old Testament Scriptures concerning the dividing up of the tithe for the storehouse. Also, they would be more like the Apostle Paul, whom did not take from those he taught but instead worked sacrifically with his hands day and night with sacrificial love in order to be a financial blessing and not a burden upon those around him, and whom when he did take monetary offerings, took them only to give away to others or to meet his own basic necessities, which he himself defined in one of his own letters as: being content with food and clothing/raiment. Some could interpet this as shelter as well, but I hardly can believe the Apostle Paul, who mentions that he was often homeless, in prison, and without food, was talking about a plush, cushy half million dollar house and brand new cars for himself and all his family members when speaking of raiment.

      I think the Apostle Paul would have been disgusted with such a use of money if he were alive today when he saw the opportunity to use that money to instead build orphanages to take care of orphans, drill wells in Africa etc., fund the anti-abortion movement, fund the anti-sex slave movement done by ministries such as Robisons’ Life Today, and build adoption houses for women brave enough to say “no” to abortion without support from their boyfriend, family, etc.

      So, the local church would be full of people like the Apostle Paul, Charles Finney, John Wesley, and other such people who had a true understanding of the Gospel (not the pseudo understanding of the Gospel that is today being widely propagated by so called “ministers” of the Gospel who say “He is the Christ,” but who are in fact false teachers who do not have a real understanding of the Gospel like Finney, Wesley, Apostle Paul did and therefore do not LIVE the Gospel, but only teach about it with words) and therefore preach with burning fire that slays people with conviction over their lives of hatred toward a God of such holy love, which previously they were so deceived by their own wickedly deceitful hearts that they didn’t even understand how much they had offended God with their sin/selfishness and therefore the presentation puts them on the floor and on their faces before God in conviction and repentance, especially because the preacher not only preaches what he preaches, but daily lives what he preaches and therefore convicts everyone around him in every way.

      So a church full of people like that would be ideal. If all the people in a local church have a true revelation of the true Gospel of Christ, instead of the pseudo Gospel that has been fed to them by the demons of hell by so-called “ministers” and “pastors” and “teachers” etc., we would not even have to ask “What is lacking?” or “What should the vision be?” because all the members of the church will know:

      nothing is lacking because we finally understand the true Gospel and the vision is to burn with such holy firey love that we light ourselves on fire by the Holy Spirit and let the world watch us burn, like John Wesley did, and as we do, the lost are gloriously brought into the true understanding of the Gospel as well, and therefore LOVE is the totality of the local church and therefore AGAPE LOVE triumphs in every way in every part of the church, and therefore soon you have entire communities under the heavy glorious conviction of the Holy Spirit just like in the Great Awakenings in U.S. of Jonathan Edwards’ and Charles Finneys’ day and of Evan Roberts’ day in Wales.

    10. Mark Phillips
      June 25th, 2012 @ 1:06 am

      Ray,Ron,Jeremy – see the following book :

      (It is available in paperback or ebook,so do download a free sample to your Kindle or computer if you can.)

      http://www.amazon.com/Biblical-Eldership-Restore-Leadership-ebook/dp/B004RRB3LW/ref=cm_cr-mr-img

    11. ben
      June 25th, 2012 @ 4:18 am

      Imagine a church where everyone shares all their possessions like the hebrews of old (excepting sapphira and ananias)…………that would be truly miraculous.

    12. Ray
      June 25th, 2012 @ 5:16 am

      So why would a church put up with leadership that isn’t walking right with God? What might prevent them from speaking up against sin? Is it that the church would rather have sin in leadership and be hypocritical than be burning in a love for righeousness, truth, and the mercy of God given to us by the Gospel?

    13. Mark Phillips
      June 25th, 2012 @ 8:51 am
    14. ron david metcalf
      June 25th, 2012 @ 9:52 am

      My second son and I have a running debate about idolizing leadership. Other than that, he gave a good synopsis.
      There is an old English word, Pedology, that means both a study of soil and of children. In the Parable of the Sower, Jesus speaks of good soil producing good fruit; so the Church should be this well-plowed field, removed of boulders, fertilized, watered and ready for the Seed.
      Similar words often have similar origins; so in this I also see: Pedagogue, a teacher or schoolmaster; Pedantry, which can be best-described as the old ‘yardstick’ (applied to the flesh) method of teaching by rote, formal, precise, and boring; Peddler, someone selling something; Pederast or Pedophile, someone who has sex with children.
      We have a Modern Parable being played out that both secular humanism and the Church refuses to discuss for the most part, beyond the usual National Inquirer Scapegoat of Condemnation: Papa Joe and Penn State Football, and the evil Mr. Sandman lurking just below the surface. Whether Respected Coaches or Catholic Bishops, the Lesson is the same: the exposure of the Ahab spirit, and how do we exorcise it from our midst?
      Having been to State College, Pa., the shock from pride to shame in a close-knit community must be nearly overwhelming; the outrage against the perpretrator justified; but refusing to discuss ALL the issues now that they have been brought to the Light would be SIN!
      You can blame it all on Lust: the Unlawful sex (now in a struggle to become the law of the land); the abortions; but what about the Authority that has allowed it? How did this happen? For one thing, giving one person way too much fame and control over others. The Structure, Model, or Wineskin has allowed this, from Hollywood filth, to Mammon kingdom-building of a faith-prosperity gospel that allows the ‘king’ to dole out all the resources to whoever he (she) chooses. This is a Solomon solution: quasi-biblical, good but not best, ultimately dangerous because it makes man the power-broker instead of GOD.
      So instead of a military-school-type Premier Tour of Severe Sacrifice for our youth (inviting abuse and exploitation by leadership) why not return to the Levitical model of Shared Blessing? My first answer to my own question is that most Gentile leadership hates the Law, and has no intention of giving up their ‘rights’, though I see it as stolen rather than GOD-given, bringing a curse with it. Is this too simplistic? Not in my observation; when mankind collectively follows the Law, there is peace in the land; the further we stray, the worse things get. Jesus of Nazareth came in the flesh to fulfill the Law, not give the world an excuse to hate and kill Jews and whatever other race they don’t belong to. Don’t get me wrong: I am not advocating a return to Pharisee religion; Yeshua Messiah is full of Grace; but we can’t continue this vicious cycle of self-promotion that gets people what they want for awhile, but in no way furthers the Kingdom of GOD.
      In Him, Ron M.

    15. Ray
      June 25th, 2012 @ 9:28 pm

      I’d like to talk a bit about the structure, model, or wineskin.

      All it takes is a bit of pride, self-righteousness, and the “friends” such spirits bring with them, a bit of the spirit of religion,
      and there ya go. All it takes is a bit of leaven.

      If it gets in the leadership, then ears become deaf, people honor leadership sometimes too much.

      I suppose people tend to feel safer that way. But to some such a church is a very dangerous place. It can make a Christian feel very uneasy, very unsettled, very much not at rest or peace, for they know that trouble is lurking.

      So how about a different model? Where’s the pastor that says something like, “In this church we believe in the gospel of Christ which liberates. In heaven everything is right all the time because Jesus is there. God is there in his fullness. This earth hasn’t yet been redeemed fully. We still wait for the kingdom to come. In this church we have a love for righeousness. Isn’t what’s right always at the heart of every matter?

      If ever any of you feel oppressed by anyone, by their behavior toward you which isn’t right, true, honest, or just, and you have gone to them first and haven’t been heard by them, and don’t have a brother or sister who you feel is qualified or properly equipped with the gospel of peace, you may call upon anyone you wish in this church. We do have some elders I could recommend to you, but you can go to anyone you please, anyone you believe is willing to hear your case, whatever it is that is the cause of any present distress, anyone who isn’t willing to hear evil for the sake of evil, anyone who will not allow one person to attempt to control the behavior of another, or attempt to manipulate through craft in order to exercise some type of carnal effect upon the life of another, but one who is willing to hear both sides of any matter which is the cause of some present distress, willing to check out the facts as best they can, to verify that something which they hear is true, did in fact happen and is indeed wrong and is indeed a cause of some present distress, one who is willing and able to be impartial, to the best of their ability, one who is indeed able to find light on any page of scripture, point it out, say what it is, give God thanks for whatever it is that they see that is good, give God a praise for it, is willing and able to receive something of it, able and willing to put it on and walk in it, can indeed find water in dry places, will walk through dry places with you, with staff in hand, support the feeble, encourage the weak, feed the hungry with righteousness if that’s what they hunger for, offer cold glasses of water when they can find it, willing to do for one the same as for the other, without partiality or hypocrisy, has been trained up in the gospel and found to be able to do these things, will pray with you…”

      Now where is the place given in a church like that for anything like pedophilia, religious witchcraft, or anything of the flesh?

      Shouldn’t I think that anyone who truly does hunger and thirst for rightousness, would be lined up at the door waiting to get in, for who is it that likes to be oppressed by another? Who enjoys abuse? Who doesn’t want a fair deal? Who is it that if they knew how right and good heaven is, that wouldn’t want to go there and be ready to enter in?

      Maybe all the Church needs today is to find that right way, the ministry of reconciliation, or whatever you want to call it, and learn to walk in it.

      It’s up to the leadership isn’t it?

    16. Ray
      June 25th, 2012 @ 9:31 pm

      And when they plead the cause of the oppressed, at the proper time, when everything is in place, when the case has well been made, they make the plea….”Please have mercy.”

    17. ron david metcalf
      June 26th, 2012 @ 9:42 am

      Perhaps too much burden is being placed upon one person to ‘be like Jesus’; maybe this is why Jesus chose twelve.
      What is the most despised branch of gov’t in the U.S.? Congress. We have been conditioned to count on Superman to save the day. But WE are the ones GOD wants to be Kings and Priests in Humility. How is that possible under the ‘present wineskin’?
      What if ‘the dance of the two camps’ (S of S 6:13) became a Shared Vision of cooperation of the Good of the Tribe, with all of US being the Tribe: One Nation Under GOD once again? Oh no, can’t have that; tramples on the ungodly’s right to do whatever they want. Okay, so we must SEPARATE from that in sanctified Holiness, yet inviting everyone into the Outer Court. Outside the Camp is where the cross is; but Jesus may not have been on the cross for more than three hours (Luke 23:44): many preachers make their life ministry from this! The Sacrifice changed the world; but it doesn’t give leaders an excuse to abuse and manipulate; where is the fear of GOD?
      Mark is talking about License on another blog; this is a good place for him to reenter the conversation.
      In Him, Ron M.

    18. ron david metcalf
      June 27th, 2012 @ 12:11 pm

      re: today’s (6/27) radio discussion on ‘love of the world’; it occurred to me that a counter-argument may be made about discipline (sanctification) necessary to become ‘cut off’ from the world that might require a Schoolmaster instruction on ‘crucifying the flesh’; or strict measures justifying what some would consider ‘abuse’. An example would be the historic Shawnee mission school in Kansas City; were these techniques necessary to ‘reeducate’ the Native children? Without the guidance of the Holy Spirit, this could become polarizing rather than edifying; and often has. If both sides (clergy/laity) agreed to discuss this together In Love, no hidden agendas, it would be a start.
      In Him, Ron M.

    19. Mark Phillips
      June 28th, 2012 @ 3:12 am

      Ron,you mentioned ‘clergy/laity’,so just a quick comment.

      Check out this book :

      http://www.amazon.com/Biblical-Eldership-Restore-Leadership-ebook/dp/B004RRB3LW/ref=cm_cr-mr-img

      It is available in ebook form (as well as paperback),so if you can,do download a free sample to your Kindle ; or (if you have the Kindle App),onto your smartphone,tablet or computer.

    20. ron david metcalf
      June 28th, 2012 @ 8:18 am

      In behalf of ‘laity’, I see the chief charge of abuse of authority as exploitation of the poor to finance world-wide crusades. How can the gospel be preached to the world in the Name of Jesus the Way Jesus expects of us? Revising the collection for missionaries could be the start of ‘the new wineskin’ discussion. There has to be a righteous distribution that restores respect for authority.
      In Him, Ron M.

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