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reply to Dennis

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  • nocost2great
    Hi Dennis, I am wondering if you are one of the fellows from the Netherlands that visited Edmonton several years ago. If not, maybe someone can remember their
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 12, 2007
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      Hi Dennis,
      I am wondering if you are one of the fellows from the Netherlands
      that visited Edmonton several years ago. If not, maybe someone can
      remember their names so you can contact them. They were very
      committed to covenanter distinctives if my memory serves me.

      You mentioned reading my posts. Did you read the entire
      correspondence (all three parts)? I am just curious because you have
      asked about sermons and SWRB materials. Do you have the Terms of
      Communion series? Have you listened to the Presbyterian Govt.
      teaching? The teaching is faithful - but the actions being carried
      out are juxtaposed to the teaching.
      I have to agree with you that Greg Price's sermons are faithful (as
      least I can't recall any that raised significant questions in my
      mind.)You might find him allude to the rpna (then prce I think) as
      the only faithful church in the Micah series. I know there are
      several sermons where he does this, but is very careful in choosing
      his words. It has been years since I listened to those sermons
      though. I and my family have been associated with the rpnagm and its
      predecessors for almost 10 years. Though I had what I would
      call 'checks in my spirit' and questions that I have put on the back
      burner for many years, it has only been recently that I took the
      time to study... Not because of a group called the Effort, but
      because of the mass excommunication of an entire society (along with
      two other brothers.) The actions of the elders caused many of us to
      stop in our tracks and say WHY - and then to go back and revisit the
      email attacks that were made previously by two brothers who are
      apparently above reproach. These brothers were called upon to repent
      because of their public slander; (one of them started the cyber
      brawl.) The elders response was to shut down the forum, and
      formulate the oath for those who had been pursuing answers to
      questions (that had gone unaddressed for many months.)

      One of the biggest issues that needs to be clarified is the oath is
      NOT a reaffirmation of membership vows. If so, I could have sworn it
      (although I would have pointed out that I could only swear it
      because of the safeguards included that everything must be in
      accordance with the word of God.) The oath is not about membership
      vows. It is about swearing that you have no questions regarding the
      lawfulness of the court that has been extra-ordinarily and
      permanently formed. Before tempers flared and arms were folded
      across the chests of folks on both sides, I don't think anyone was
      very concerned with the lawfulness or the faithfulness of the
      office, but the major focus was on whether the elders were being
      faithful to scripture and historical testimony in their jurisdiction
      claims. When fatherly love was cast aside, and the 'peace' of the
      church was so paramount that all questioners were targeted with
      oaths and excommunications, THEN people began to question the
      qualifications for eldership. Dirty laundry began to be aired when
      it looked like there was no other alternative. You mention that some
      of us have been overly harsh, and in many instances I would agree.
      However, a clear understanding of what the Elossais family went
      through leaves the elders with no excuse for their actions and calls
      into question their being qualified for holding the office at all.
      It seems that there is a reoccurring theme. When the elders fear
      being charged with sin, they pull a hidden ace out of their back
      pockets, and play their hand first. It is interesting to note that
      something very similar happened when they pulled out of Dick Bacon's
      group in the very beginning. Maybe someone who has the source
      documents would be willing to share?
      I try to be very careful not to attack anyone personally. I try to
      always speak the truth in love. I think this is something that we
      could all work harder at since our sinful nature is to strike back
      when we have been struck.
      As I mentioned in another post, I see (generally speaking) this as a
      major weakness on the part of all who call themselves Reformed. The
      lack of love/charity shown is shameful. If only we could combine the
      doctrine of the Reformed with the love of the charismatics!
      My suggestion to all has been to examine the evidence and remove the
      faces and names of those involved. Read scripture, and the
      historical documents referenced - not just the snippets included as
      a defence (by either side.) Then start from the beginning reading
      personal/public correspondences. Unless you are willing to trudge
      through all of them, don't read any of them because it would be easy
      to become biased (in either direction) depending on the documents
      you read. It is also helpful to grant some charity, understanding
      that much pain has been caused, and there are times when speech is
      not as tempered as it could be. That does not mean that the
      underlying issues become invalid just because someone doesn't follow
      proper procedure, or doesn't rebuke in the most loving manner. In
      another of pastor Price's sermons, he talks about faithful rebuke,
      and how it should be accepted, even if the manner in which it is
      given isn't appropriate. Talking the talk is much easier than
      walking the walk though. I find this the case with my own children.
      But even if it is difficult, I don't kick them out of the house just
      because they challenge me, or are disrespectful in their manner. Nor
      do I call them to swear an oath acknowledging my authority before I
      discipline them.
      In the same vein, all in authority ought to challenge themselves to
      look for nuggets of truth when they are called upon to examine their
      actions.

      May God have mercy on us all and grant us the grace to continue to
      love one another in the midst of this spiritual holocaust.


      Grieving for the Bride,

      Dee Dee
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