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Re: The "rpna(gm)" Scandal

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  • Tim Cunningham
    As a survivor of a nasty church split, I would like to interpose some comments below. ... mess. ... laymen in The Effort was in any way sinful or not is not
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 5, 2007
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      As a survivor of a nasty church split, I would like to interpose some
      comments below.

      --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Susan Wilkinson"
      <gpyp@...> wrote:
      > I've been noting and wondering a few things regarding this whole

      > First, it seems to me that whether or not the participation of some
      laymen > in The Effort was in any way sinful or not is not nearly as
      important as the much greater issues in question regarding the
      leadership of the rpna(gm). How the Charitable Inquiry came to be is
      a lesser issue than the weighty > questions that paper poses or the
      other more fundamental things in question such as elder character.

      Tim-Looking at a church fight from the outside in is not the same
      thing as looking at it from the inside. Looking from the inside the
      question really is not 'which sin or error' is bigger, but 'is
      the 'sin or error' real? The danger that arises is to become so
      convinced of a 'sin or error' of one person or party that one
      overlooks any sins or errors commited by the individual or party
      taking the differing view. In church disputes everybody involved will
      do well to examine their own spirits carefully before condemning
      others or refuting their alleged sins or errors. In those situations
      I have found that much of what we think is "righteous anger expressed
      in a righteous way against evil" is sinful anger unrighteously
      To everybody involved may I suggest: "Search your hearts and guard

      > Third, I've read many of the documents by the 3 elders in question
      and I > don't understand why they continue to "beg the question" so
      much, even when > called on it their answer is to simply reassert
      themselves, and I especially > wonder why so many are letting them
      get away with it.

      Tim-For someone from my background this is an easy if sad question to
      answer. The people in the rpna(gm) have not only become Christians
      which is a committment involving a tremendous emotional cost, loss of
      reputation etc but have also joined a splinter group of the church
      which they believe is the only church in good order. Now the
      Scripturalness of their church order has been challenged and they
      have seen that the challenge has led to the excommunication of the
      dissenters. Under such circumstances having to decide whether or not
      their church is wrong, (in which case they have made fools of
      themsleves by committing to it and if they go public with their
      opinion they will lose their church family), is a severe emotional
      strain. Under that strain, it is hard to think clearly (I know this
      from first hand experience, in my situation I was one of those whose
      thoughts were muddled for a long time).

      To those who are trying to convince such people by argument, may I
      suggest that you must spend 2 hours praying for these people for
      every hour you spend writing or talking against their alleged sins
      or errors, because arguments alone simply do not work with such
      people in the stage they are in. The only way their eyes will be
      opened is by the Holy Spirit. The battle is not for minds but for

      > Lastly a question: If it's true that,
      > 1. You cannot possibly govern souls effectively or in love over
      > internet (which I believe is true and I think Stan B. is doing a
      stellar job
      > demonstrating) and;
      > 2. At least two if not all three of the elders in the rpna have
      > questions over their heads of whether or not they are currently even
      > qualified for their office-to the point that they have gained
      > reputations, and;
      > 3. No sufficient answers are forthcoming from the elders
      > matters 1 & 2,

      > Why is anyone talking about anything else? I don't get it.

      Tim-Suppose the CI is correct in its facts and deductions and assume
      also that some in the rpna(gm) cannot emotionally face the situation
      and reason through the challenge presented to them by the CI. For a
      time such people may fall victim to the temptation to quiet their
      consciences by talking about the sins and errors of the other side as
      a way of avoiding facing the possibility (or the fact) that they have
      made sins and errors of their own.

      In Christ's love and service

      Tim Cunningham

      It seems to me
      > that these two things must be dealt with first in order to see what
      > remain to be addressed. If it's true that you cannot effectively or
      > lovingly govern souls over the internet and if it's true that even
      one of
      > the three men isn't currently qualified for office then wouldn't a
      lot of
      > the other matters more easily be resolved or even become
      > Susan
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