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Issue No: 638     Published: 06 Jan 2014

WHOSE CHURCH IS IT ANYWAY?

THE POST APOSTOLIC CHURCH
Again I acknowledge that much of the material that follows is drawn from the excellent publication by Eddie L. Hyatt, 2000 Years of Charismatic Christianity. For specific references to the writings quoted, please refer to that publication.

We continue, by looking at prominent spirit filled men who lived during the 16th and 17th centuries AD.

1517-1700

THE ANABAPTISTS

While Luther was open to the supernatural in his own life, he largely rejected it in church life, retaining much of the liturgy and organisational principles of the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) eg. infant baptism and a state supported, territorial church.

THE SO-CALLED RADICAL REFORMERS

The Anabaptist movement began in Zurich, Switzerland, as part of the Reform Movement led by Ulrich Zingli, a contemporary of Luther. A split developed between Zingli and two of his colleagues, Felix Manz and Conrad Grebel, when Zingli decided to co-operate with the Zurich City Council's decree that mass continue to be celebrated and the destruction of images in the churches be stopped. Those who disagreed with this and also refused infant baptism, were banished from the region.

In Switzerland, and throughout Europe, groups of reformers dissatisfied with the 'half way house' reforms of Luther and Zwingli, whom they accused of tearing down the old systems without building new ones, desired to re-establish the pure apostolic order of the New Testament church.

BELIEVER'S BAPTISM

At the heart of Anabaptist beliefs was the need for believers (as opposed to infant) baptism. For this they were heavily persecuted by both the RCC and other Protestant groups, with adult baptism being made an offence punishable by death.

Additionally, they believed in the illumination of the Scriptures by the Holy Spirit - the ability, as we would say, to 'read between the lines'. The persecution led them to meet in homes, forests and fields, where they regularly danced in the Spirit, spoke in tongues and fell under the Spirit's power.

THE 'PROPHETHOOD' OF ALL BELIEVERS

The Anabaptists, in response to the ecclesiastical system of the RCC, extended Luther's 'priesthood of believers' revelation to a 1 Corinthians 14 system, being the exercise of spiritual gifts by all believers during church meetings.

In a Swiss Anabaptist document dated c.1532-1534 entitled 'Answer of Some Who Are Called (Ana)Baptists Why They Do Not Attend the Churches', the author says.....

When someone comes to church and constantly hears only one person speaking, and all the listeners are silent, neither speaking nor prophesying, who can or will regard or confess
the same to be a spiritual congregation, or confess according to 1 Corinthians 14 that God is dwelling and operating in them through His Holy Spirit with His gifts, impelling them one after another in the above mentioned order of speaking and prophesying.


CHARISMATIC-PROPHETIC EXTREMES

It is a characteristic truism that charismatic Christians of every age believe the return of Jesus to be imminent. This apocalyptic expectation was taken to extremes by a few early Anabaptists, and led to the whole movement being discredited amongst many, both then and now.

A writer of the time, Obe Philips, in "A Confession," wrote.....

Now when these teachings and consolation with all the fantasies, dreams, revelations and visions daily occurred among the brethren, there was no little joy and expectation
among us, hoping all would be true and fulfilled, for we were all unsuspecting, innocent, simple, without guile or cunning, and were not aware of any false visions, prophets and
revelations. We supposed in our simplicity that if we guarded ourselves against the papists, Lutherans and Zwinglians, then all was well and we need have no cares. Thereby a man's experience brings him great wisdom.


False prophets who move outside of Scripture to manipulate people for their own ends are a problem in every generation.

Many Anabaptists were martyred in the most horrible ways, both by those inside and outside the church. It is written by Marpeck, an Anabaptist leader in central Germany that.....

tortures inflicted by sword, rope, fire and water and suffering terrible, tyrannical, unheard-of deaths and martyrdoms, all of which they could easily have avoided by recantation.

.....were the fate of many devout, Spirit filled believers.

THE ANABAPTIST LEGACY

Quoting directly from Eddie L. Hyatt, who succinctly sums up the Anabaptists legacy.....

The Anabaptist vision of the separation of the powers of the church and state became a foundational principle of modern Western society. Their rejection of force and coercion in matters of faith and their insistence on freedom of conscience have become hallmarks of freedom-loving people and nations throughout the world. George Williams, former
professor of ecclesiastical history at Yale University, has said:

The whole Western world, not only the direct descendants of the Continental Anabaptists, not alone even the larger Protestant community, but all who cherish Western institutions and freedoms, must acknowledge their indebtedness to the valor and the vision of the Anabaptists who glimpsed afresh the disparities between the church and the world, even when the latter construed itself as Christian.

Direct descendants of the Anabaptists include the Amish, Hutterite and Mennonite churches. In addition, their free-church concept influenced Puritan Separatists, Baptists and Quakers. Even more important is their charismatic influence on succeeding generations.

Mennonite scholar John H. Yoder has said that Pentecostalism "is in our century the closest parallel to what Anabaptism was in the sixteenth." Anabaptism was certainly a Charismatic movement.


So we can continue to say.....

THE TRUE FOLLOWERS OF JESUS ARE ONES WHO ARE OBEDIENT TO THE LEADING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THEIR LIVES.

(Continued next week)

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FROM THE WORD

THE WORDS OF JESUS continued

The Lord has asked me to compile a publication of the words Jesus spoke, as recorded in the New Testament in chronological order. I have got about halfway, and have found it very enlightening and encouraging in my relationship with Him. The final version will have changes of layout and version used, but this is a foretaste of things to come. Of course, it is not a Bible substitute! I Hope you find it helpful too, in your walk with Jesus.

Jesus Heals a Deaf man (Mark 7:31-7)
Brought by people in the Decapolis area.

“Ephphatha!” ( “Be opened!”)

Jesus Feeds 4000 (Matthew 15:32-9, Mark 8:1-10)
Where another crowd had gathered.

“I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. 3 If I send them home hungry, they will collapse on the way, because some of them have come a long distance.”
5 “How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked.
“Why does this generation ask for a miraculous sign? I tell you the truth, no sign will be given to it.”

Pharisees and Sadducees Seek a Sign (Matthew 16:1-4, Mark 8:11-13)
To prove His divinity.

When evening comes, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red,’ 3 and in the morning, ‘Today it will be stormy, for the sky is red and overcast.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. 4 A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah.”

Leaven of the Religious Leaders (Matthew 16:5-12, Mark 8:14-21)
Jesus criticized the religious leaders with metaphor, but the disciples took him literally.

6 “Be careful,” “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”
“You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? 9 Do you still not understand? Don’t you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 11 How is it you don’t understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

Blind Man Healed at Bethsaida ( Mark 8:22-6)
And told to go home.

“Do you see anything?”
“Don’t go into the village.”

(Continued next week)

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DAVID'S DOODLINGS

FAITH

303. An ounce of faith in God's hand is worth a tonne of mans self-belief.

304. Ten men of faith will defeat ten thousand without.

418. Faith and risk are constant companions.

419. Our bucket of faith is filled one drop at a time.

420. Faith is like walking up a hill. You get to the top one step at a time.

421. When you reach the top of the mountain of faith, you look round at the view and see an even bigger mountain to climb.

422. Faith moves mountains - shovel by shovel!

423. Faith comes through experience, not learning. Ask the bumblebee!

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TUESDAY TEACHINGS

THIS WEEK: THE 3 GARDENS OF GOD PLUS ANOTHER YET TO COME

Having spent much of my life involved in the gardening industry, as a grower, wholesaler of flowers, bulbs and plants, and finally as a mail order sell of the same, this revelation has reached into my 'gardener's heart'.

Gardens and nature have a special place in God's heart too. This is not surprising for He is their creator! Not surprising then that He should choose garden settings for key events in His interaction with man to take place.

When given this revelation, I was busy (our eternal excuse!) so I put it to one side until now. But as I am starting to meditate upon it again, my initial excitement is returning.

I trust you will share my enthusiasm, as together we explore the ramifications of the crucial events that took place in these beautiful garden settings.

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LAUGHING AT OURSELVES

***Blessed are those who can laugh at themselves for they shall never cease to be amused***

*** Those who can't laugh at themselves leave the job to others. ***


833.THE EXCESSIVE SIN
Two deacons who were lifelong friends had a disagreement. One had criticized the other for playing cards. As they discussed the ramifications of this perceived "sin" the card player pointed to his accuser and observed, "You criticize me for playing cards, yet you smoke cigars, something that others consider to be a sin. How is it my card playing is sin and your smoking isn't?"

Without hesitation the other deacon offered in his defense, "There is a big difference. Smoking is only a sin if you smoke to excess. I don't smoke to excess."

The first deacon thought for a moment and then pressed his point, "And why is it you don't consider what you do do smoking to excess?"

"I never smoke more than two cigars at a time," his friend replied with a broad smile.

From Sermon Fodder and Joke A Day Ministries. To subscribe drop a
note to Sermon_Fodder-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

832. MARRIAGE COUNSELING
A young man was in love with two women and could not decide which of them to marry. He went to his pastor for counseling.

The Pastor asked, "Please describe your two loves."

"Well, one is a great poet."

"And the other?"

"The other makes delicious pancakes."

"I see," the Pastor wisely observed. "So, you can't decide whether to marry for batter or for verse."

===
Via Daily-Humor-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

831. ALTAR REQUEST
My husband is a minister who generally conducts an expanded altar call at the end of each sermon. He invites those who wish to accept Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior to come forward, as well as those in need of prayers or anyone who has other special requests, to come forward.

To the surprise and delight of the congregation our three-year-old daughter, without saying a word to me, got up and made her way forward.

She waited patiently while the others in line ahead of her made their special prayer requests.

When her turn came, my husband leaned down to ask what she needed.

She whispered, "Can we go to the restaurant after church today?"

>From Da Mouse Tracks by way of Doc's Daily Chuckle at http://family-safe-mail.uslists.html.
===
This post is brought your way by Sermon Fodder and Joke A Day Ministries. To subscribe go to http://www.sermonfodder.com

" FREE DOWNLOAD: You can now download the book 'Laughing At Ourselves' in PDF format at LAUGHING AT OURSELVES One of the most comprehensive sources of Christian Humour on the Net with 800 sermon fillers for your entertainment and use at ...

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FACTS FOR FUN

LAST WEEKS QUESTION: What is the connection of May Day to Robin Hood?

ANSWER: The legendary Robin Hood is said to have died on May Day. (So he ‘may’ be well remembered!)

THIS WEEK'S QUESTION: Where did the expression ‘red herring’ originate?

Answer Next Week.

SOME FUN FACTS

757. IT'S ONLY FAIR, AFTER ALL
The California Board of Equalization has ruled that bartenders cannot be held responsible for misjudging the age of midgets. (A ‘small’ problem solved by yet another layer of bureaucracy.)

758. HORSE SENSE - ITIVITY
Sidewalk acrobatics that might frighten horses are outlawed in Denver, Colorado. (Best not to be caught ‘horsing around’.)

759. SCRABBLE BAN
A local ordinance in Atwoodville, Connecticut, prohibits people from playing Scrabble while waiting for a politician to speak. (Would their minds be thinking too clearly for the politicians liking?)

A WORD PUZZLE FOR YOU

Make another word from this word using all the letters.

CENTROID

Answer at the end of A David Musing

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SERMON ON THE MOUNT

17. What does a good tree bring forth?

a. Bad fruit
b. Good fruit
c. Green leaves
d. Ripe fruit

Source: http://biblequizzes.org.uk

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IF ONLY I'D THOUGHT OF IT!

"""OTHER'S SAYINGS TO ENLIGHTEN, AMUSE, OR BEMUSE"""

!!!!!!! Good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment.

!!!!!! If you're riding ahead of the herd, take a look back every now and then to make sure it's still there.

!!!!! Letting the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier'n putting it back.

!!!! You will always pull the wrong shoelace first.

!!! Just when you get really good at something, you won't need to do it anymore.

!! All people have at least ten faults. Pick ten you can live with.

! Think positive. If you fall in the creek, check your pockets for fish.

100'S MORE TO BE FOUND AT...

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JUST JOKES

331. CHICKENS
The farmer's son was returning from the market with he crate of chicken's his father had entrusted to him, when all of a sudden the box fell and broke open. Chickens scurried off in different directions, but the determined boy walked all over the neighbourhood scooping up the wayward birds and returning them to the repaired crate. Hoping he had found them all, the boy reluctantly returned home, expecting the worst.

"Pa, the chickens got loose," the boy confessed sadly, "but I managed to find all twelve of them."

"Well, you did real good, son," the farmer beamed.

"You left with seven."

330. LOOKING
"I hear the First National Bank is looking for a new teller."

"I thought they just hired a new teller last week."

"Right. That's the one they're looking for."

329. HOPEFUL
"Dear IRS: I would like to cancel my subscription.
Please remove my name from your mailing list..."

328. IT'S ALL ABOUT NUMBERS
A factory owner said to a store owner, "Thank you, Mr Smith, for your patronage. I wish I had twenty customers like you."

"Gosh, it's nice to hear that, but I'm kind of surprised," admitted Smith. "You know that I argue every bill and always pay late."

The factory owner said, "I'd still like twenty customers like you. The problem is, I have two hundred."

327. AN ODD REQUEST
A housewife called up a pet store and said, "Send me thirty-thousand cockroaches at once."

"What in the world do you want with thirty-thousand cockroaches?" asked the astonished clerk.

"Well," replied the woman, "I am moving today and my lease says I must leave the premises in exactly the same condition I found them."

Have more laughs here.....

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The 7 Great Lies in the Church Today

By Steve Hill

Editor’s Note: Most Charisma readers remember Steve Hill as the fiery evangelist from the Brownsville Revival who has since continued to win countless souls for Jesus around the world. But what many readers don’t realize is that Hill only recently came out of a three-year battle with melanoma. During that time, he received a prophetic vision warning the church of an impending “spiritual avalanche” that could kill millions. The following article on deception in the church is part of this timely message, now delivered in his latest book, Spiritual Avalanche.

......No one who loves God willingly preaches deception, yet a spiritual whiteout of unhealthy, unbalanced, and in some cases, unbiblical teaching is blinding the body of Christ in America, and it is quickly spreading around the world.

How Has This Happened?

Unhealthy and destructive teaching can enter the church in various ways. Sometimes a biblical truth is taught to the exclusion of other biblical truths, producing a dangerous imbalance. At other times a biblical truth is taught in an exaggerated way, often going beyond what Scripture actually says, and in the end this does more harm than good. Many times clear, biblical warnings are ignored or reinterpreted so radically that they lose all impact or effect, leaving people vulnerable and exposed.

Paul warned that the “time will come when [believers] will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables” (2 Tim. 4:3-4). Today’s church in America, as a whole, is dangerously close to turning aside to such fables. Millions have already succumbed to these false teachings. Before we lose any more souls, it’s crucial that we identify what I believe are the seven greatest lies that have infiltrated the church and have led to a whiteout of error.

1) Overemphasis of Prosperity

Undoubtedly, some adherents of the carnal prosperity message are motivated by greed. For them, preaching Jesus is a means of financial gain, something Paul rebuked in the strongest possible terms, speaking of men “of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain” (1 Tim. 6:5).

Yet many sincere believers embrace this message too—and back their case with Scripture. They point to the covenant blessings the Lord promised to Israel for their obedience, including financial prosperity (Deut. 28:1-13). They highlight verses in Proverbs and Psalms that link financial prosperity to generosity, hard work, godly living and faith (e.g., Ps. 112). They remind us of wonderful promises, such as those found in Proverbs 3:9-10—and how Jesus reiterated these in the New Testament with teachings such as, “Give, and it will be given to you” (Luke 6:38). And they quote Paul, who wrote about the financial principles of sowing and reaping (1 Cor. 9; 2 Cor. 8-9; Phil. 4:11-19).

Are you with me? I am not against you having money. But I am adamantly against money having you. The problem is, there’s more to the story that the carnal prosperity preachers fail to mention:

Jesus warned against storing up treasures on earth (Matt. 6:19-24) and covetousness (Luke 12:15).

Jesus emphasized caring for the poor (Matt. 25:31-46).

Paul and John both taught that we should not live according to this present age (1 Cor. 7:29-31; 1 John 2:15-17).

Jesus did not die to make us financially wealthy but to save us from our sins (Matt. 1:21).

God chose the poor to be rich in faith and kingdom heirs (James 2:5).

More importantly, the carnal prosperity preachers have ignored other biblical warnings, like Paul’s powerful words to Timothy: “Those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness” (1 Tim. 6:9-11).

Carnal prosperity preachers encourage God’s people to seek after riches—or to seek after God for the purpose of riches—often even judging your spirituality by the kind of car you drive. What does that have to do with the gospel of Jesus?

2) Exaggerated View of Grace

Continued next week.

Source: http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/from-the-frontlines/39026-the-7-great-lies-in-the-church-today

DAVID'S DOWNLOAD

A REVELATION OF……. 3 KINGDOM AGES OF GOD

An excellent tool to help better understand Bible history and God's plan for mankind throughout the ages. Kingdom ages, that is! And to get a glimpse of the kingdom yet to come and how we can participate in it.

Find out more and download your free PDF Files here.....

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WAXING LYRICAL

My mind is abuzz with lots of different noise as I sit here writing this. A band practicing next door for a ball tonight (Saturday), radio going in the shop, people speaking to me, a Christian conference streaming from the internet! Bombarded with noise! Any wonder my brain is addled! This has been the result. Hope it makes some sense to you!

non(SENSE)

Name is Tait.
Life is great.
Something I ate?
Don't know mate!

A nonsense rhyme!
Basil and thyme.
A taste divine.
It's all thine!

Catch the drift?
Mind miffed.
Spirit to lift.
Paradigm shift.

God is good.
He could,
If you would.
Understood?

Excuse the rave.
Jesus does save.
No more a slave.
Mind to behave.

Nomination!
Salvation!
Maturation!
Graduation!

Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

More of David's poetry here.....

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A DAVID MUSING

Today has been very hot for us here in Napier, New Zealand, (31c), with a heat wave in the state of Queensland in our neighbouring country, Australia, where temperatures are upwards of 40c!

On the other hand, in the Northern Hemisphere, temperatures are at record lows in many places in both Europe and the United States with storms and snow grinding cities to a standstill.

Of course, there are arguments as to which is the better, or the least bad, of the two extremes. Personally I prefer the heat to the cold.

Jesus, in his words, through John, to the church in Laodicea, the church widely likened to today's age, decried lukewarmness amongst the people there. For the reality is, we are much more comfortable in the physical, when the temperature is comfortably warm.

But, in the spiritual, God wants us to be 'full on', to be hot for Him. The state of our prosperous societies in the Western world, where self reliance has become the norm, in anathema to Him.

As we enter 2014, may we determine to be 'hot', to commit ourselves 100% to Him.

PS: My wife Kathy is travelling to Scotland in 10 days time, after a 2 year absence, to be with our family there to help celebrate our eldest granddaughter Eva's, 13th birthday. Then to go to Italy to meet the suppliers for our new 'label clothing' venture, Chez Labelle, due to start in February. From heat to cold and back to the heat again, upon her return 3 weeks later. Surely she will enjoy the company, if not the cold weather!

So until next week.....

MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND YOU BLESS GOD

His servant and yours

David Tait

Today's 'Word Puzzle' Answer: DOCTRINE

TODAY'S 'BIBLE QUESTION' a. Narrow gate

REPRODUCTION OF NEWSLETTER CONTENT

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ABOUT US

WALKING WITH JESUS MINISTRIES is a non-profit, non-denominational, Bible based ministry located in Hastings, New Zealand. A ministry dedicated to developing discipleship, fostering unity amongst God’s people to achieve the Great Commission, and in doing so, preparing for Christ’s return. It is securely based upon the foundational principles of the Apostles Creed while recognising the wide and rich diversity of beliefs amongst Christians in other areas. In accordance with the Lord’s direction, materials produced by the ministry are available, free of charge, to genuine enquirers upon request. The ministry is solely funded by donations, as the Lord provides. A list of materials available (plus some fun!) is obtainable and freely downloadable from our website
wwj.org.nz or by contacting us as follows.

Walking With Jesus Ministries
7 Bull Street
Ahuriri
Napier
New Zealand

Phone: (06) 835 0567 International (+64) 6 835 0567

Email: enquiries@wwj.org.nz
Web: wwj.org.nz

Our role is to bless and encourage those in ministry while promoting co-operation and unity of direction amongst the body of Christ, as emphasised 3 times by Jesus in His longest prayer, immediately prior to His arrest and crucifixion. "… so that they may be one as we are one." (John 17:12, 21, 23-4) Our website is currently being developed to encourage your participation one with another, to share resources, and to enable you to promote events and items of interest to the body as a whole – and have a smile while doing it!

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