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Monday, November 23, 2009

95 Theses to the Evangelical Church

To the Evangelical Church
"I have been writing this volume while residing in Germany for a teaching trip. I am humbled by penning these 95 theses in the same country as Martin Luther did many years ago. I submit these to the evangelical church of our day and pray that God would allow anything of truth in these pages to bend and change men's hearts back to God." - Greg Gordon

Thesis 1 - The evangelical church at large has forgotten that the chief end of man is to glorify God.(Romans 16:27, 1 Corinthians 6:20, Mathew 6:9).

Thesis 2 - Evangelicals ignore most of the methods, practices and principles found in Acts chapter 2.(Acts 2:42,44, Acts 2:46, Acts 2:38).

Thesis 3 - We meet for one hour a week and consider that apostolic church. Many evangelicals treat church like any other social club or sports event that they attend.(Acts 2:46, Hebrews 10:25, Acts 1:14).

Thesis 4 - We have made Christianity about the individual rather then a community of believers.(1 John 2:19, 2 Timothy 4:16, Jude 19).

Thesis 5 - In evangelical churches the priesthood of all believers is not acknowledged and the role of pastor is abused. The biblical view of a plurality of elders is practiced by very few.(1 Peter 2:9, 1 Corinthians 12:12, Ephesians 4:11-13).

Thesis 6 – The evangelical church as a whole has lost the concept of their being engrafted into the promises given to Israel.(Romans 11:17-18,20, Romans 11:25, Romans 11:15).

Thesis 7 - There needs to be a recovery back to teaching through the whole counsel of God expositionally.(Acts 20:27, 1 Timothy 4:6, 2 Timothy 2:15).

Thesis 8 - We take it too lightly, the blessing and honor of having God’s Scriptures in our possession.(Psalm 119:16, Acts 13:44, Nehemiah 8:9).

Thesis 9 - There has never been more access to the word of God yet so little reading of it.(1 Timothy 4:13, Nehemiah 8:1-3, Psalm 119:59).

Thesis 10 - Some read the Scriptures to attain knowledge and do not practice what they read.(James 1:22, Matthew 7:21, 3 John 4).

Thesis 11 - Worship has become an idol in many churches. The music resembles the world more than anything else. (Amos 5:23, Philippians 4:8, 1 John 5:21).

Thesis 12 - The world is shaping the views of the evangelical church more than the church shaping the views of the world. (Romans 12:2, Matthew 5:13, 1 Corinthians 1:22-23).

Thesis 13 - The evangelical church spends more money on dog food then missions.(2 Corinthians 9:6, Luke 21:2, Acts 4:34-35).

Thesis 14 - We take lightly the cost of discipleship laid out by Jesus Christ and consider following Him a sort of jovial thing rather then it truly costing us our actual entire lives.(Luke 14:33, Luke 14:26-27, Matthew 8:19-20).

Thesis 15 - There is a lack of true discipleship and making others to be obedient disciples.(Matthew 28:20, 2 Timothy 2:2, 2 Timothy 2:14).

Thesis 16 - The modern day evangelical believes the error that parts of life are to be spiritual while other parts are to be worldly and secular. Rather than our entire life’s being spiritual and our walk with God. (1 Peter 4:2, Colossians 3:3, 1 John 2:6).

Thesis 17 - The modern day evangelical finds Jesus’ command to sacrifice and serve abhorrent.(Philippians 2:21, James 3:16, Romans 12:1-2).

Thesis 18 - Self disciplines in the Christian life such as fasting, praying, suffering are considered legalistic.(2 Timothy 2:21, 2 Timothy 1:8, Matthew 6:17).

Thesis 19 - Little thought and contemplation is put towards the lostness of men, the seriousness of the gospel, and the sacrifice of the call of Christ.(Philippians 3:8, Galatians 2:20, Hebrews 10:34).

Thesis 20 - We are living with an epidemic of cheap grace in the Church. Flippant confession, shallow consecration, superficial surrender.(Luke 14:28-30, Luke 14:26, James 4:8).

Thesis 21 - Since the inception of the Church, the Gospel of Jesus Christ was preached with the requirements of repentance and discipleship.(Acts 2:38, Luke 14:26, John 8:31).

Thesis 22 - Presently, the “High-Calling in Christ Jesus,” has never been offered at such a low level. Forgiveness without repentance, discipleship without obedience, salvation without sanctity, confession without consecration.(Hebrews 10:29, Hebrews 4:11, Luke 13:24).

Thesis 23 - Such terms as: Introspection, counting the cost, godly sorrow over sin, repentance from dead works, are all foreign to this church age of cheap grace.(Acts 2:37, Psalm 119:9, Hebrews 6:1-2).

Thesis 24 - The modern evangelical church loves itself more than its neighbor. (1 Corinthians 3:3, Galatians 5:13, Philippians 2:3).

Thesis 25 - The church must repent of its idolization of personality and business principles.(2 Corinthians 2:17, 1 Corinthians 3:5, 1 Corinthians 12:23).

Thesis 26 - The elders and pastors of the church, as ministers of the gospel, are charged by Jesus to feed the sheep. But sadly many are fleecing the flock to supply their wants.(John 10:12-13, 1 Peter 5:2-3, Revelation 2:15).

Thesis 27 - The qualities most in demand in today's pastorate are frequently foreign to the qualities which are made most important in Scripture.(1 Timothy 3:2-3, 1 Timothy 3:5, 1 Timothy 1:5-7).

Thesis 28 - The professionalization of the pastorate is a sin and needs to be repented of.(2 Corinthians 11:13, Galatians 3:1, Galatians 2:6).

Thesis 29 - There must be repentance for the ambitious desire and idolization of the celebrity pastorate.(3 John 9, Jeremiah 17:5, 1 Corinthians 12:22).

Thesis 30 - The evangelical pastor must trust the Spirit, not statistics.(2 Samuel 24:1, 1 Corinthians 1:25, Romans 8:14).Thesis 31 - Modern day prophets are being stoned by criticism and neglect.(2 Timothy 4:3-4, Galatians 1:10, Jeremiah 1:7-8).

Thesis 32 - God’s prophets are ill treated and shunned by most evangelicals and considered too extreme or harsh.(Jeremiah 6:10, Isaiah 6:9-10, Galatians 4:16).

Thesis 33 - An astonishing and horrible thing has been committed in the land: The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule by their own power; And my people love to have it so. But what will you do in the end?(Matthew 24:4,11-12, 1 Corinthians 1:19, Jude 8).

Thesis 34 - There are many false gospels being preached from pulpits. God has no interest and is not required to honor a gospel that is false.(2 Corinthians 11:4, Galatians 1:8-9, Jude 16).

Thesis 35 - There is an epidemic of a sort of “mock” salvation being preached from many pulpits today. It is a gospel message that is not authentic. It is correct in doctrine but false in reality.(2 Corinthians 3:6, 1 John 5:11-12, Romans 8:9).

Thesis 36 - What is this “mock” salvation that is being spoken of? Simply defined it is a salvation that does not make men holy.(Jude 4, Romans 8:1, Romans 6:17-18).

Thesis 37 - No other evangelical phraseology has caused more damage to true gospel preaching then this simple coined phrase: “we are all just sinners saved by grace.”(Ephesians 1:1, Hebrews 6:11-12, Hebrews 10:26-27).

Thesis 38 - There is a gospel message that keeps men sinners and never allows them to change and become saints in actual experience.(1 John 2:29, Colossians 3:5-8, Titus 3:8).

Thesis 39 - The warning of Christ is against this gospel where professors of religion are forbidding people to be a part of the holy body of Christ.(Matthew 23:13, Psalm 119:1-2, 2 Peter 1:3-4).

Thesis 40 - Preaching has become all about the happiness of man and not the glory of God.(John 6:26, Romans 4:20, 1 Peter 4:11).

Thesis 41 - Preachers give smooth words to entice men, yet very few give any words of correction or rebuke.(Jeremiah 6:14, Proverbs 1:23, 1 Timothy 5:20).

Thesis 42 - Run from gospels that focus on your success and prosperity. From those that use the name of Jesus Christ only for personal gain. (John 2:16, Acts 20:33, Jeremiah 6:13).

Thesis 43 - Run from gospels that focus only on self-improvement.(1 Timothy 6:5, Hebrews 12:14, James 4:14).

Thesis 44 - Run from churches where men and not Christ are glorified.(Colossians 1:18, Jude 25, John 16:14).

Thesis 45 - Run from churches where there is no Bible, no cross, no searching Word, no repentance from sin, no mention of the blood of Christ.(1 Peter 1:18-19, Ephesians 3:13, Revelation 1:5).

Thesis 46 - Run from churches where the worship leaves you cold, where there’s no sense of God’s presence.(1 Corinthians 5:4, Psalm 80:14-15, Jeremiah 12:11).

Thesis 47 - Run from churches where you’re comfortable in your sin.(1 Corinthians 14:25, Hebrews 10:30-31, Hebrews 4:13).

Thesis 48 - Run from churches that use the pulpit of God for a personal agenda.(Jude 10-11, Jude 19, 3 John 9).

Thesis 49 - Run from those who preach division between races and cultures.(James 2:4, Galatians 3:28, Revelation 5:9).

Thesis 50 - Run from ungodly, spasmodic movements and endless empty prophesying.(Jeremiah 5:13, 1 Corinthians 14:33, 1 John 2:16).

Thesis 51 - Run from preachers who tell only stories and jokes.(Ephesians 5:4, Titus 1:8, Titus 2:12).

Thesis 52 - Run from those that are only after money and they use one gimmick after another to get your money.(2 Peter 2:3, 2 Corinthians 12:14, 1 Corinthians 9:18).

Thesis 53 - The phrase “accept Jesus as your personal Saviour.” Is not found in the Scriptures.(Romans 10:9-10, Colossians 1:13, Acts 26:20).

Thesis 54 - Evidence of true conversion is something that does not seem important to modern day evangelicals.(1 John 2:6, 1 John 4:17, Matthew 7:20).

Thesis 55 - In result thousands of sinners think of God having only one attribute, love! which has allowed multitudes to sit at ease with their sins.(Romans 1:18, Acts 5:11, Psalm 2:12).

Thesis 56 - God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life has caused much confusion in evangelism to the lost.(Romans 3:19, Acts 26:18, Philippians 3:18-21).

Thesis 57 - A Gospel of love and grace only without the law of God is being preached. Martin Luther called this gospel a doctrine of Satan.(2 Timothy 4:3-4, Romans 2:4-5, Romans 3:19).

Thesis 58 - We have inherited a system of evangelistic preaching which is unbiblical. This has clearly arisen from the careless mixture of 20th century reasoning with God’s revelation.(Colossians 2:8, Romans 1:25, Galatians 1:6).

Thesis 59 - Decisionism and the sinners prayer has been the major cause of false conversions in the evangelical church.(2 Peter 2:1-2, Ephesians 2:4-5, 2 Corinthians 5:17-18).

Thesis 60 - Evangelicals are swelling the ranks of the deluded with a perverted gospel! Many who have made decisions in churches have been told in the inquiry rooms their sins have been forgiven will be surprised to hear “I never knew you depart from me.”(Matthew 7:22-23, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Galatians 5:19-21).

Thesis 61 - Men have taken the place of the Holy Spirit of God in confirming men in their supposed salvation.(1 John 2:3-5, 2 Thessalonians 1:8, Galatians 6:12-15).

Thesis 62 - The doctrine of hell and eternal suffering is something little grasped by most evangelicals.(Matthew 13:42, James 5:1, Psalms 9:17).

Thesis 63 - The judgment seat of Christ is perhaps one of the most neglected topics in the modern evangelical pulpit.(2 Corinthians 5:10, Romans 14:10, 1 Corinthians 3:13).

Thesis 64 - The second coming of Jesus Christ needs to be re-instated as the general thrust and burden of the church. (1 John 3:2-3, Colossians 3:4-6, 1 Thessalonians 4:14-17).

Thesis 65 - The evangelical church has lost the fear of God and has over emphasized the love of God. (Hebrews 12:28-29, Luke 12:5, Hebrews 10:31).

Thesis 66 - The church has left evangelism to a few trained professionals rather than simply obeying the Scriptures call to personally evangelize themselves.(Acts 8:1,4, Acts 4:29, Romans 10:14).

Thesis 67 - Repentance is considered a one-time act in modern evangelism rather than a way of life.(Revelation 3:19, Hebrews 12:17, 2 Peter 3:9).

Thesis 68 - The Lordship of Jesus Christ is something that is not imposed on sinners initially and creates half-saved people who have a Saviour but not a Lord.(Acts 2:36, 1 Corinthians 12:3, Romans 6:18).

Thesis 69 - We are not open to correction, discipline or rebuke. And most would rather just move to another evangelical church somewhere down the road.(1 Corinthians 5:5, 1 Corinthians 11:31-32, Hebrews 12:7-9).

Thesis 70 - There is a great deal of preaching that amounts to a mere believing of the different theories about salvation, instead of persuading men to come to Christ and be saved.(John 5:40, Colossians 1:28, 2 Corinthians 4:5).

Thesis 71 - There has been a loss of the fullness and majesty of the gospel.(1 Timothy 1:11, Jude 25, Romans 15:29).

Thesis 72 - There is little mention of sin or the depravity of man from evangelical pulpits.(John 3:20, Galatians 5:19-21, Ephesians 5:5).

Thesis 73 - Covetousness, consumerism, and coddling the world’s goods is something that does not appear wrong to evangelicals.(Jeremiah 22:17, 1 John 2:15-16, 1 Timothy 3:3).

Thesis 74 - Little is made of the resurrection of Jesus Christ in churches or in evangelism. Yet it was one of the major themes and glories of the apostolic church.(1 Corinthians 15:14-15, Acts 4:10, Acts 4:33).

Thesis 75 - The evangelical church has relied more on technology then God.(Zechariah 4:6, 1 Corinthians 1:21, 1 Corinthians 2:4).

Thesis 76 - The prayer meeting is considered in the evangelical church one of the least important meetings. The idea of meeting for an entire day together seems ridiculous and a waste of time.(1 Timothy 2:1, Acts 4:31, Philippians 4:6).

Thesis 77 - Pastors have never prayed less than they do in the evangelical church in our day.(Jeremiah 10:21, Philippians 2:21, Ephesians 6:18-19).

Thesis 78 - Very few are waiting on God for His direction and purpose for the church.(Ephesians 1:11, Psalm 37:7, Isaiah 40:31).

Thesis 79 - The evangelical church has many organizers but few agonizers.(Philippians 3:18-19, Romans 9:1-3, Jeremiah 9:1).

Thesis 80 - We need to have the gifts of the Spirit restored again to the Church. The one gift we need the most is the gift of prophecy.(2 Timothy 4:2, 1 Corinthians 14:39, 1 Corinthians 12:31).

Thesis 81 - The evangelical church at large has never been more frivolous about the things of God. A serious, sober, self-controlled Christianity is very seldom found or preached. (2 Peter 3: 11, 1 Peter 4:7, Jude 3).

Thesis 82 - The evangelical church at large has forgotten how to pray.(1 John 3:22, Acts 6:4, 1 Thessalonians 5:17).

Thesis 83 - Churches are more dependent on tradition rather than on the leading of the Holy Spirit. (Mark 7:13, Acts 16:6, Acts 13:2).

Thesis 84 - It might seem strange to say that ministers of religion are “pleading for impurity and sin.” Yet this is exactly what multitudes of professors preach and teach that you cannot be free from sin. That you must sin!(Romans 16:18, Romans 6:1-2, 2 Peter 2:1).

Thesis 85 - The Apostles and Christ always preached from the vantage point of the possibility to walk holy and free from sin.(Titus 2:11-12, 1 Peter 1:14-16, Romans 6:19).

Thesis 86 - Sinners are not saved to sin but rather saved to holiness and good works.(Romans 6:13, Ephesians 2:10, 2 Peter 3:14).

Thesis 87 - Cheap grace means the justification of sin without the justification of the sinner. Cheap grace is the deadly enemy of the church.(2 Timothy 2:19, 1 Peter 4:17-18, 2 Timothy 3:12).

Thesis 88 - A baptism of holiness, a demonstration of godly living is the crying need of our day.(1 Timothy 6:3, 2 Thessalonians 3:6, 2 Thessalonians 2:13).

Thesis 89 - Most in the Church are utterly confused about the practical godliness, obedience, and good works which the Scriptures readily mentions.(Titus 3:8, John 10:32, Revelation 3:15).

Thesis 90 - Little or no emphasis is put in evangelical churches on the plan of God to make us like Jesus Christ, conforming us to His image.(1 Peter 1:14-16, 1 John 2:6, 1 Peter 4:1).

Thesis 91 - Christ did not die on the cross to obtain a worldly Church or for worldly Saints but for a “glorious Church.”(Ephesians 5:27, Titus 2:14, Colossians 4:12).

Thesis 92 - Christ does not come into our unregenerate, sickly, impure hearts as many contemporary theologians say. He gives us a new heart to dwell in wherein is found holiness and righteousness.(2 Corinthians 5:17, Matthew 5:8, Ezekiel 18:31).

Thesis 93 - A holy Church is God’s blessing to the world; an unholy Church is God’s judgment upon the world.(Matthew 5:14,16, Ephesians 4:1, 1 Thessalonians 2:12).

Thesis 94 - If Christianity is to make any headway in the present time, it must be proved to be more then a theory.(2 Thessalonians 3:6-7, 1 Thessalonians 4:1, 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12).

Thesis 95 - Unbelief has us captive; the evangelical church is gagged and bound as risen Lazarus, it needs release in this final hour! (Hebrews 3:12-14, 1 Corinthians 3:21-23, Hebrews 11:6).

This was borrowed from an online friend Victoria Rebecca

Monday, November 9, 2009

Alternatives to ultrasound technology

Many who choose home birth do so to avoid the heavy use of medical technology. Often times this means that ultrasound technolgy is not used to check the unborn baby for problems with the internal organs. However, this does not mean that there are absolutely no clues about the condition of the baby to the mother. In fact, simple movements inside the womb indicate a great deal about the health of the baby that is soon to come.

First of all, when a kick is first felt inside the womb it is indicative that the baby does indeed have arms and or legs. Unfortunately, it is hard to know if all appendages are in tact but this doesn't mean that God loves the child the way it was created.

Secondly a very vital indicator of the health and condition of the baby soon to arrive is the simple hiccup movement ;) When a repetitious jolt is felt intermittently within the womb, there is a very high indication that the internal organs within the baby are working well.

According to the following information one can see that many organs are needed to produce a simple hiccup or two:

"In mammals, breathing in, or inhaling, is usually an active movement, with the contraction of the diaphragm

Diaphragm may refer to any of the following:Anatomy* Thoracic diaphragm, a tissue of muscle separating the thorax and abdomen of mammals...
muscle. This is known as negative pressure breathing. Normally, the diaphragm's relaxed position recoiled (decreasing the thoracic volume) whereas in the contracted position it is pulled downwards (increasing the thoracic volume). This process works in conjunction with the intercostal muscles connected to the rib cage. Contraction of these muscles lifts the rib cage, thus aiding in increasing the thoracic volume. Relaxation of the diaphragm compresses the lungs, effectively decreasing their volume while increasing the pressure inside them. The intercostal muscles simultaneously relax, further decreasing the volume of the lungs. With a pathway to the mouth or nose clear, this increased pressure forces air out of the lungs. Conversely, contraction of the diagraphm increases the volume of the (partially empty) lungs, decreasing the pressure inside, which creates a partial vacuum. Environmental air then follows its pressure gradient
Pressure gradient

In atmospheric sciences , the pressure gradient is a physical quantity that describes in which direction and at what rate the pressure changes the most rapidly around a particular location....
down to fill the lungs.

In amphibians, the process used is positive pressure breathing. Muscles lower the floor of the oral cavity, enlarging it and drawing in air through the nostrils (which uses the same mechanics - pressure, volume, and diffusion - as a mammalian lung). With the nostrils and mouth closed, the floor of the oral cavity is forced up, which forces air down the trachea into the lungs.

At rest, breathing out, or exhaling, is a combination of passive and active processes powered by the elastic recoil of the alveoli, similar to a deflating balloon, and the contraction of the muscular body wall. The following organs are used in respiration: the mouth

The mouth, buccal cavity, or oral cavity is the first portion of the alimentary canal that receives food and begins digestion by mechanically breaking up the solid food particles into smaller pieces and mixing them with saliva....
; the nose

Anatomically, a nose is a protuberance in vertebrates that houses the nostrils, or nares, which admit and expel air for Respiration in conjunction with the mouth....
and nostrils; the pharynx

FunctionsThe pharynx is part of the digestive system and respiratory system of many organisms.Because both food and Earth's atmosphere pass through the pharynx, a flap of connective tissue called the epiglottis closes over the trachea when food is swallowed to prevent choking or Pulmonary aspiration....
; the larynx

The larynx , colloquially known as the voicebox, is an organ in the neck of mammals involved in protection of the vertebrate trachea and sound production....
; the trachea
Vertebrate trachea

The traceartes, or windpipe, is a tube that has an inner diameter of about 20-25 mm and a length of about 10-16 cm in humans. It commences at the larynx and bifurcates into the primary bronchus in mammals, and from the pharynx to the syrinx in birds, allowing the passage of air to the lungs....
; the bronchi and bronchioles; the lungs; the diaphragm

Diaphragm may refer to any of the following:Anatomy* Thoracic diaphragm, a tissue of muscle separating the thorax and abdomen of mammals...
; and the terminal branches of the respiratory tree
Respiratory tree

The respiratory tree describes the branching structure of the vertebrate lung. Beginning with the top of the respiratory system, the Vertebrate trachea, the order of branchings is as follows:...
, such as the alveoli." "

Of course at the unborn stage in development, the baby is not able to breath air, however it is obvious that those muscles are preparing themselves to meet the outside world. So one can see that a simple hiccup, indicates a great deal about the health of an unborn child ;) God is the perfect creator.

Of course if physical indicators are not used, basic intuition, prayer and meditation can also reveal a great deal about the health of an unborn child. A little wisdom from above can go a long way....

Songs of Love and Hope