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Author: CathiB Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 196111  
Subject: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 2:26 PM
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I have it set up so that each month an amount of money comes out of my checking account and goes directly into my investment account. I do this so that I don't have to think about it - I can't not do it (well, I could transfer the money back I guess).

I think it would also be a good idea to have the same kind of situation for tithing. Over the last several months I have accumlated opinions from different sources about this. Now I want your opinions.

This situation could take several forms. 1) You could set up an automatic bill paying service to issue a payment to your church. 2) Your church could offer a "direct draft" kind of thing like my electric company does so I don't have to write a check. I think I remember that Focus on the Family now has this option available.

What do you think? Scriptural? Smart? Evil?

Discuss, discuss!

Cathi B
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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52892 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 2:44 PM
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Cathi ~


What do you think? Scriptural? Smart? Evil?

I think it's a great idea! That way, if you go on a weekend trip or on vacation, or just don't make it to church you can feel good about knowing that you have still been consistent in your tithe to the Lord.

I know that some folks might be worried about how it would look if they aren't seen placing their tithe/offering in but the Lord knows you heart and I wouldn't put any stock in that.

Good thinking!


Robyn



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Author: routerchips One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52894 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 3:37 PM
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I have it set up so that each month an amount of money comes out of my checking account and goes directly into my investment account. I do this so that I don't have to think about it...

I think it would also be a good idea to have the same kind of situation for tithing.


Overall, this does not seem like a bad idea. It certainly would be better to give in this way than to not give or to give less, and it would prevent people from failing to give due to vacations, minor illness, or simple forgetfullness.

However, I would argue that one reason that we give to God is specifically so that we will "think about it:"

You shall surely tithe all the produce from what you sow, which comes out of the field every year. And you shall eat in the presence of the Lord your God, at the place where He chooses to establish His name, the tithe of your grain, your new wine, your oil, and the first-born of your herd and your flock, in order that you may learn to fear the Lord your God always." (Deut 14:22-23)

I would be afraid that by disconnecting my thoughts from the act of giving, this aspect of the tithe would be hindered.



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Author: CathiB Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52895 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 4:17 PM
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Overall, this does not seem like a bad idea. It certainly would be better to give in this way than to not give or to give less, and it would prevent people from failing to give due to vacations, minor illness, or simple forgetfullness.

However, I would argue that one reason that we give to God is specifically so that we will "think about it:"

You shall surely tithe all the produce from what you sow, which comes out of the field every year. And you shall eat in the presence of the Lord your God, at the place where He chooses to establish His name, the tithe of your grain, your new wine, your oil, and the first-born of your herd and your flock, in order that you may learn to fear the Lord your God always." (Deut 14:22-23)

I would be afraid that by disconnecting my thoughts from the act of giving, this aspect of the tithe would be hindered.


This is exactly the kinds of thoughts I'm Looking for. More?



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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52898 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 6:12 PM
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Cathi,

More fundamentally, we need to reconsider the concept of tithing -- which is strictly a concept from the old testament. I challenge anybody who reads this message to find any passage in the New Testament that says, or even suggests, that Christians should tithe.

Tithing is, of course, the practice of giving 10% of your income to the Lord. Far from fulfilling God's will, this practice begs the question of why one is withholding the other 90%. The New Testament demands that we entrust everything to the Lord and use it for the Lord's purpose (see, for example, Acts 4:32-37). It should be clear that God's purpose includes providing for one's legitimate needs and the legitimate needs of one's family -- for which the same texts of scripture clearly tell us that the needy amoung us ought to receive from the offering according to their legitimate need. In addition, those who are able -- and that really is most of us -- ought to contribute our time and talents, in addition to material resources, to meet the needs of our communities of faith, those whom we employ in various capacities of ministry or service, and those in need among us.

I really question the morality of giving to one's church under the guise of "tithing" on the part of those who then lack the means to fulfill their essential obligations, first, to provide for their families' legitimate needs and, second, to pay their just debts in a timely manner.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52899 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 6:23 PM
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Robyn,

That way, if you go on a weekend trip or on vacation, or just don't make it to church you can feel good about knowing that you have still been consistent in your tithe to the Lord.

If you love the Lord, why is "just don't make it to church" a consideration? I would think that the only reason not to "make it to church" would be illness. Many churches have more than one service now, so it ought to be possible to go to one service or another. If not, the situation begs the question of whether attendance at church is getting the priority that it deserves. This is especially true if the situation starts to occur frequently.

Also, if one is "on a weekend trip or on vacation," why would you not attend church at your destination or wherever you happen to be en route? When you do attend church somewhere else while travelling, shouldn't part of your regular offering go to the community who's service you do attend?

Norm.


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Author: JavaFan Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52900 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 8:34 PM
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I am not going to argue with Norm, but I do ask this. If you are not giving to the church, how do you expect it to financially survive?


Charlie

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Author: JavaFan Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52901 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 8:38 PM
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I would think that the only reason not to "make it to church" would be illness.


Well today I was not ill, but I did not go to church. I still spent some time praying though. Was I feeling a bit lazy about attending church today? Yes. I got back recently from a rough business trip, so I decided I would stay in this weekend.

As for giving to other churches when away. While I typically do not attend services on my travels, I do visit churches, and I always contribute something if I see donations are needed.

Hope everyone had a good Sunday.

Charlie

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Author: rbednarski Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52903 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 9:44 PM
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"I would be afraid that by disconnecting my thoughts from the act of giving, this aspect of the tithe would be hindered. "

I think this is an excellent point. Another thing the scriptures say is that God loves a cheerful giver. I'm not sure how cheerful one can be in giving when it occurs automatically without any specific thought or action. The act of giving is essentially an act of worship, IMO, and my own predeliction is to be a full participant in any kind of worship. Giving should be a joyful returning to God of a portion of what He has provided to us. Putting that on automatic pilot would, for me, make it seem like simply fulfilling an obligation, and when we look at giving as an obligation I think we lose a lot of its meaning and benefit.

God bless,

Rich

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Author: lhaselden Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52905 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 11:02 PM
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<<the situation begs the question of whether attendance at church is getting the priority that it deserves. This is especially true if the situation starts to occur frequently.>>


Hebrews 10:24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.




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Author: lhaselden Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52906 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 11:18 PM
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<<If you are not giving to the church, how do you expect it to financially survive?>>

I am more concerned with a church's spiritual survival. The following passage was given to individuals but I think it correlates to what should concern us a bout the church. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Basically if a church does this then financial survival will not be an issue. This does not mean that a church cannot have financial problems. So do individual Christians. Usually caused by gross overspending and too much debt. I have never seen a building that I thought glorified God. It normally glorifies the group who built it. A spiritual church meeting in a tent or someones house on the other hand glorifies God. A spiritual church also glorifies God in a Palace but the building does not change or add to it IMHO. I have seen too many church leaders become distracted from God's work by concerning themselves with fundraising for some building project.

The entire passage from Matthew:
Matthew 6:24 "No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.
25 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?
26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?
27 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?
28 "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin.
29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.
30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
31 So do not worry, saying, `What shall we eat?' or `What shall we drink?' or `What shall we wear?'
32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.
33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

This is how the Apostles handled it:
Acts 6:1 In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Grecian Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food.
2 So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, "It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables.
3 Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them
4 and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word."
5 This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism.
6 They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.
7 So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.




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Author: lhaselden Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52907 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 11:26 PM
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<<I'm not sure how cheerful one can be in giving when it occurs automatically without any specific thought or action. The act of giving is essentially an act of worship, IMO, and my own predeliction is to be a full participant in any kind of worship. Giving should be a joyful returning to God of a portion of what He has provided to us. Putting that on automatic pilot would, for me, make it seem like simply fulfilling an obligation, and when we look at giving as an obligation I think we lose a lot of its meaning and benefit.
>>

I disagree:
Our giving and Good deed should be automatic and we should not be giving it any thought it should be as automatic for us as breathing. Remeber the sheep in Matthew 25. They did not know the good deeds they had done. Jesus at another time said do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing when doing good deeds. (Matt6) As you do to the least of these my brothers you do also unto me. (Matt 25)


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Author: lhaselden Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52908 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/17/2001 11:39 PM
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<<More fundamentally, we need to reconsider the concept of tithing -- which is strictly a concept from the old testament. I challenge anybody who reads this message to find any passage in the New Testament that says, or even suggests, that Christians should tithe.>>

Jesus told the pharasees that they should not neglect tithing. I consider this an endorsement of tithing by the Lord. He also pointed out how it's priority. Other matters are much more important.
Matthew 23:23"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices--mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law--justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.
24 You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.
25 "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.

<<It should be clear that God's purpose includes providing for one's legitimate needs and the legitimate needs of one's family -- for which the same texts of scripture clearly tell us that the needy amoung us ought to receive from the offering according to their legitimate need. In addition, those who are able -- and that really is most of us -- ought to contribute our time and talents, in addition to material resources, to meet the needs of our communities of faith, those whom we employ in various capacities of ministry or service, and those in need among us.>>

I agree whole heartedly with this. I used to give much more than 10% to the church until I realized that the church was not meeting the needs of the "community of faith". I still give to the church but the higher priority is sharing with those in need.




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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52912 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 4:43 AM
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Norm ~

If you love the Lord, why is "just don't make it to church" a consideration? I would think that the only reason not to "make it to church" would be illness. Many churches have more than one service now, so it ought to be possible to go to one service or another. If not, the situation begs the question of whether attendance at church is getting the priority that it deserves. This is especially true if the situation starts to occur frequently.

I guess I didn't feel the need to write down every single situation that may come up that could prevent someone from attending church. Illness is one interuption but other things could come up. I could get a call from a family member or neighbor that they need help with someone. I could get a call from a cousin (this happened to me) from the airport and they really want to see me and could I come right away?

Yes, many churches have more than one service. I disagree that church attendance is a priority in God's eyes. My worship of the Lord is what is important to me. I can do that with fellow Christians and I can do that alone. My focus is my relationship with Him.

I get more out of group, family and personal Bible studies than I do sitting in a chair at a service. There are times that I am ministered to in song by the choir. There are times I am not. There are times when what the Pastor says really hits home or makes me think. There are times when I feel the sermon was a bust.

I am not saying that I forgo meeting with fellow Christians. Attending a service at a church is not my highest priority. I do, however, spend time teaching my children the ways of the Lord and it is a very important part of our family life. I am, also, NOT saying that we don't attend.

I understand that attendance is important to you. I am so pleased that you are ministered to in this way. Being a Christian is not manifested by sitting in the pew.


Robyn




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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52913 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 4:54 AM
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Rich ~

I'm not sure how cheerful one can be in giving when it occurs automatically without any specific thought or action.

I'm not sure that you can say that no thought or prayer has gone into the giving simply because it is sent automatically.

If the only thought one is giving to God is when the check is written out then I imagine that God may prefer a more personal interaction.

I hope that folks give out of gratitude to the Lord. I know some people give out of a sense of ritual. I don't see that one way of giving is any better than another.

I know the Bible says to give as you are paid. Maybe people were paid weekly back in early Bible days. Nowadays most folks are paid every other week or twice a month. My parents were teachers and they received monthly checks. I think the weekly offering/tithe is a matter of church custom and that the Lord will receive the cheerfully given tithe/offering/gift whenever it is paid.


Robyn



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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52914 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 4:57 AM
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<<the situation begs the question of whether attendance at church is getting the priority that it deserves. This is especially true if the situation starts to occur frequently.>>


Hebrews 10:24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Yes, it would have been good to ask first without it seeming as though Norm knew there was a problem because I didn't list all acceptable reasons there might be to not attend on any given Sunday.

Encouragement is always a better solution.


Robyn

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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52915 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 5:04 AM
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Rich said: Putting that on automatic pilot would, for me, make it seem like simply fulfilling an obligation, and when we look at giving as an obligation I think we lose a lot of its meaning and benefit.

I'm glad that you recognize that thoughtful and prayerful weekly giving is the best for you.

lhaselden responded: Our giving and Good deed should be automatic and we should not be giving it any thought it should be as automatic for us as breathing.

It seems that he feels our giving should be an automatic and not something that we have to focus on.

I can see the merits of both schools of thought.


Robyn
**this is fun!**

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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52916 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 5:09 AM
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I used to give much more than 10% to the church until I realized that the church was not meeting the needs of the "community of faith". I still give to the church but the higher priority is sharing with those in need.

At one time our family attended a church that make it clear that God expected us to tithe only to the church. We faithfully honored what the Pastor said for nearly three years.

The Lord had laid a few other foundations on our hearts and that we needed to support them financially. It was our joy to change our offering to the church through reduction and uplift these other organizations with increased giving.

I can only hope that the Lord receives these as we joyfully sent them. I think that many, many organizations and groups can do His will and are worthy of support and prayer.


Robyn


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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52918 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 7:29 AM
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"I am so pleased that you are ministered to in this way."

Thank you. My heart goes into worshipping the Lord when I attend church services. It is so much more to me than, as you called it, "sitting in a pew".

Have a great week, everyone!

Pam

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Author: Sneakpuff Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52926 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 10:33 AM
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What do you think?

Sound like a great idea to me.

Scriptural?

Sure is, here is a link to what our topical guide has for tithing: http://scriptures.lds.org/query?words=tithing&search.x=36&search.y=7

Smart? I think so, since you will be obeying Gods commandment.

Evil? I don't see how.

ES


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Author: Jeffreyw Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52928 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 10:35 AM
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>>one reason that we give to God is specifically so that we will "think about it:"<<

I agree. I also think every taxpayer should have to write a check weekly to the government to pay their taxes, instead of having them involuntarily confiscated. This also will make them think about it, something the government does NOT want you to do.

Jeffrey


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Author: DiabloQueen Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52929 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 11:13 AM
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Another thing the scriptures say is that God loves a cheerful giver. I'm not sure how cheerful one can be in giving when it occurs automatically without any specific thought or action.

I'd be happy that the money was actually going to the church or charity now instead of being yet another thing to do "when I have time" or "when I get around to it" which usually means it's quite a while before whatever-it-is actually happens.

Also, by having a couple of charities automatically charge my credit card a certain amount every month, I'm actually giving more than if I saved up to send them a check once a year or whenever I thought about it.

The act of giving is essentially an act of worship, IMO, and my own predeliction is to be a full participant in any kind of worship. Giving should be a joyful returning to God of a portion of what He has provided to us. Putting that on automatic pilot would, for me, make it seem like simply fulfilling an obligation, and when we look at giving as an obligation I think we lose a lot of its meaning and benefit.

There's nothing preventing you from giving stuff (includes physical stuff, more money, and/or time) in addition to the automatic payments. The local SPCA charges my credit card every month so I regularly donate money to them, but I also periodically donate stuff to their thrift store and I also have bag of old blankets and rugs for the shelter to use.

-- Fran

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Author: DiabloQueen Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52930 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 11:15 AM
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I also think every taxpayer should have to write a check weekly to the government to pay their taxes, instead of having them involuntarily confiscated. This also will make them think about it, something the government does NOT want you to do.

Why not monthly since that's how often most bills are sent out?








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Author: Jeffreyw Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52931 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 11:17 AM
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Old Testament tithing was not just giving 10%, but was giving the firstfruits of the harvest, the best you had to offer God. Jesus Himself was the ultimate offering God provided for Himself, His own Firstfruit, the best, even perfect sacrifice.

Today God does not require animal sacrifice from us, and most of us do not farm, own vineyards, grow spices, or make marketable products. We make money, we offer our services. What God wants from us is obedience, this is our daily sacrifice to Him. Jesus raised the bar from 10% to all that you have, it all belongs to God. We are to be good stewards with every penny entrusted to us by God. Give to the poor and needy that you see, as much as you are able. Give your time to others who are unable to meet their own needs. Comfort the infirmed and homebound. Offer a kind word and refreshment to the homeless you pass on the street, don't cross the street to avoid them. I have spoken with many homeless people, many are Vietnam vets who have been shunned by the country they have served.

I have no idea how much I give, I give as needed and don't keep track. I give regularly to several ministries, shelters and charitable organizations. I try to meet their needs by asking what they need and buying those items, not just giving junk I no longer have use for and deducting from my taxes (which I also do). God has rewarded me tenfold, just as He promised, but that is not why I give. I give because it is the right thing to do, to show love to my fellow human beings and bring comfort and the gospel to those in need. And God is pleased.

Jeffrey

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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52948 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 6:37 PM
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Charlie,

I am not going to argue with Norm, but I do ask this. If you are not giving to the church, how do you expect it to financially survive?

First, I don't think I said that one should not give to one's church -- though I did say that, scripturally, members of the congregation who legitimately are in need should receive from the offering according to their need.

It's important to remember that there are many ways to give. Yes, the church does need money -- but some people simply don't have money to give. In reality, the first obligation is to give one's time and talent because the church's mission -- the "Great Commission" -- is common to all believers. The person who volunteers an afternoon a week to mow the church's lawn, weed the garden, clean the hall, shovel snow, or otherwise maintain the place, or to work in the office sorting mail or keeping the books, or in various areas of ministry such as the youth program, the senior citizen's luncheon, or a church-run child care can spare the congregation considerable expense. One might also donate items to a bake sale, donate produce from one's garden (either raw or in cooked form) toward a church supper, offer one's services for sale at a church auction, or work to organize fund-raising events. I have even heard of congregations in which part of the pastor's congregation was paid in produce from the members' farms or gardens. There are many creative possibilities -- and we ought not denigrade these gifts just because they don't bear the words "In God We Trust" on green paper. There are many gifts and talents (see I Corinthians 12), but the Lord uses all of them to build up the community of faith.

Norm.


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Author: DonTasky Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52949 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 6:41 PM
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In giving to charity, you must consider what is important, what matters, and let that be your guide. Form and detail may mean something, but much less, and I see absolutely nothing wrong in making automatic contributions, making it easier for yourself, but also securing that you don't "forget". The charity is important, and what you give, not the way you make a payment:

Mathew 23 / 23-24: Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law, justice and mercy and faith; these you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel!

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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52950 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 6:47 PM
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Charlie,

Well today I was not ill, but I did not go to church. I still spent some time praying though. Was I feeling a bit lazy about attending church today? Yes. I got back recently from a rough business trip, so I decided I would stay in this weekend.

It's usually when I'm that "run down" that I'm in most need of the spiritual nourishment that the service should provide.

While I typically do not attend services on my travels,...

Why isn't attending services important enough to be a priority even when you are travelling? Perhaps I'm missing something so I don't want to say this in a judgemental way, but not doing so would seem to be indicative of dubious commitment....

... I do visit churches, and I always contribute something if I see donations are needed.

It would seem to me that a church that one attends while travelling is indeed providing a benefit, for which one ought to make some sort of donation to help that community to sustain itself. In many instances, communities in resort areas are particularly dependent upon the support of the "resort" crowd, which is often seasonal, to provide the outreach and the services that the transient "resort" crowd often needs on a stable basis, but the need is present even in non-"resort" areas where the number of transients might not be as disproportionate.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52951 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 6:54 PM
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Larry,

Jesus told the pharasees that they should not neglect tithing. I consider this an endorsement of tithing by the Lord. He also pointed out how it's priority. Other matters are much more important.
Matthew 23:23"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices--mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law--justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.
24 You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.
25 "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.


I really don't see that text as an endorsement of tithing at all. Rather, Jesus is chastising the pharisees for putting disproportionate emphasis on the things that are less important and neglecting what's most important. This passage does not come across as saying that tithing is important at all.

In fact, in the account of the Widow's Mite, Jesus pointed out that her gift (about half a cent in our currency -- and certainly much less than the tithe of the law) was much mroe precious because it was given from her substance rather than from her excess.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52954 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 7:20 PM
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Robyn,

I guess I didn't feel the need to write down every single situation that may come up that could prevent someone from attending church. Illness is one interuption but other things could come up. I could get a call from a family member or neighbor that they need help with someone. I could get a call from a cousin (this happened to me) from the airport and they really want to see me and could I come right away?

I'm not your judge, so I certainly don't expect you to answer to me as to why you are not in church. Yes, emergencies and other unexpected turns of events may sometimes interfere with one's ability to attend services -- but such events probably are not the rule in anybody's life.

Yes, many churches have more than one service. I disagree that church attendance is a priority in God's eyes. My worship of the Lord is what is important to me. I can do that with fellow Christians and I can do that alone. My focus is my relationship with Him.

Another Fool has already posted scriptural citations on the importance of attendance in God's eyes. When the Word of God says not to absent yourself from the assembly, I don't know how much clearer the matter could be.

I get more out of group, family and personal Bible studies than I do sitting in a chair at a service. There are times that I am ministered to in song by the choir. There are times I am not. There are times when what the Pastor says really hits home or makes me think. There are times when I feel the sermon was a bust.

If the service in your church is not a primary source of your spiritual nourishment, something is seriously wrong somewhere -- either in the service itself or with the manner in which you are approaching and preparing for it. This certainly is important enough to warrant asking your pastor for assistance. He might be able to provide some counsel that will help you to approach services better disposed to receive what God wants you to receive, and he might also conclude, through prayer, that there's a need to make some adjustments in certain aspects of the service so that they will achieve the desired end more fully. If you feel that you can't discuss this with your pastor, at least seek out some assistance from another mature Christian.

I am not saying that I forgo meeting with fellow Christians. Attending a service at a church is not my highest priority. I do, however, spend time teaching my children the ways of the Lord and it is a very important part of our family life. I am, also, NOT saying that we don't attend.

I understand that attendance is important to you. I am so pleased that you are ministered to in this way. Being a Christian is not manifested by sitting in the pew.


If you're just "sitting in the pew" during services, something else is seriously wrong. Fundamentally, the Greek word liturgoia (which is the root of the English word "liturgy" that refers to formal services in some denominations) means "the work of the people." The common service ought not be just a place where one "sits" but rather a place where the whole community actively participates to minister to one another. One of the most noteworthy achievements of the Second Vatican Council is its reminder to the members of the Catholic Church that the liturgy -- including even the "anaphora" (or "eucharistic prayer") of the mass that consecrates the bread and wine -- is the prayer of the whole church , both clergy and lay, and not solely the prayer of the ordained ministers.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52955 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 7:28 PM
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Robyn,

... seeming as though Norm knew there was a problem because I didn't list all acceptable reasons there might be to not attend on any given Sunday.

This seems to be a rather distorted characterization of what I actually said. I was pretty careful to avoid pointing fingers, and it's fairly obvious from the fact that a benign comment hit such a raw nerve that the Lord is using what I said to bring that conviction. The Lord never forces us to do anything, of course, so it's up to you whether you want to obey him or not.

I'll be praying for you.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52956 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 7:33 PM
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Jeffrey,

I also think every taxpayer should have to write a check weekly to the government to pay their taxes, instead of having them involuntarily confiscated. This also will make them think about it, something the government does NOT want you to do.

Actually, the truth is tha that most government employees don't care what you think so long as they get their paycheck, too. It's the politicians who really care whether you think about your taxes or not.

And yes, the abolition of the witholding tax would be great. Of course, it won't happen any time soon because it would trigger a taxpayer revolt.

Norm.


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Author: JavaFan Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52959 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 9:33 PM
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Why isn't attending services important enough to be a priority even when you are travelling? Perhaps I'm missing something so I don't want to say this in a judgemental way, but not doing so would seem to be indicative of dubious commitment....


I will try not to get too insulted by that remark, but that was not called for. I have never judged your commitment to to your faith.

If I am in a foreign country, especially where I do not know the language, I find it a bit difficult to go to church. I always visit various churches in Europe, and take time to pray.


Quite often on tours, your time does not allow for attending service. That has nothing to do with your faith, that is just the way some travelling goes.

Norm it would be good to remember that we all worship differently. Some go to church as often as possible, others go once a week. Please becareful in the future when you make such comments.

Charlie


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Author: lhaselden Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52961 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 10:16 PM
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"You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former."

Norm,
The former in this passage refers to tithing.
L


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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52970 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 11:13 PM
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Norm ~

I'm not your judge, so I certainly don't expect you to answer to me as to why you are not in church. Yes, emergencies and other unexpected turns of events may sometimes interfere with one's ability to attend services -- but such events probably are not the rule in anybody's life.

It appears, to me, that you seem to think you speak with some authority about whether or not I attend church services.

I brought up that some people may not attend every single week and that circumstances could account for that. Never, anywhere in my post, did I say that I don't attend church. If I stated that please show me where.

Another Fool has already posted scriptural citations on the importance of attendance in God's eyes. When the Word of God says not to absent yourself from the assembly, I don't know how much clearer the matter could be.

Please show me where I said that I avoid assembly with other believers.

I said:<I get more out of group, family and personal Bible studies than I do sitting in a chair at a service. There are times that I am ministered to in song by the choir. There are times I am not. There are times when what the Pastor says really hits home or makes me think. There are times when I feel the sermon was a bust.>

Perhaps the fact that I said I am ministered to at times and other times not, lead you to think that I do not participate in group worship. Nothing could be further from the truth.

If the service in your church is not a primary source of your spiritual nourishment, something is seriously wrong somewhere -- either in the service itself or with the manner in which you are approaching and preparing for it. This certainly is important enough to warrant asking your pastor for assistance. He might be able to provide some counsel that will help you to approach services better disposed to receive what God wants you to receive, and he might also conclude, through prayer, that there's a need to make some adjustments in certain aspects of the service so that they will achieve the desired end more fully. If you feel that you can't discuss this with your pastor, at least seek out some assistance from another mature Christian.

For goodness' sake! I wouldn't want to have a meeting with the pastor and tell him that some of his sermons don't stir my soul. I have come to realize that some sermons really have an impact and open my eyes. Others do not. Perhaps they do for other folks on any given Sunday.

If your experience is that sermons are always fabulous and eye-opening then .......... I don't know what to say. The pastor is human and can't "perform" on cue. He is lead by the Holy Spirit. There are times that I am certain that the Lord has ordained a particular sermon to reach an individual. Wouldn't that just be like the Lord? He would go out of His way to make sure that just the right sermon was preached on the exact day the right person came to church.

I don't expect everything in my Christian life to be exciting and emotional. There are dull days. There are quiet times of reflection.

I am sorry that you seem to be offended that I get MORE out of Bible study - individual and group. I am not saying that attending services isn't worthwhile.

If you're just "sitting in the pew" during services, something else is seriously wrong. .

Rest assured, I am not just "sitting in the pew".

Thank you for attempting to explain your thoughts.


Robyn





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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52973 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/18/2001 11:20 PM
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Norm ~

This seems to be a rather distorted characterization of what I actually said. I was pretty careful to avoid pointing fingers, and it's fairly obvious from the fact that a benign comment hit such a raw nerve that the Lord is using what I said to bring that conviction.

I am trying to be open to your thoughts. I apologize if I have misread what you are saying.

Your comment didn't hit a raw nerve. You haven't brought me to conviction. There are some folks who post that use words or phrases that appear to be legalistic. At least that is how I read you.

I get a bit tired of folks who never see a reason behind others not following their way of doing things.

I'll be praying for you.

Thank you, Norm, I can always use another person praying for me. We are to lift each other up. I will pray for you, too.


Robyn



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Author: rbednarski Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52979 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/19/2001 2:36 AM
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"Another Fool has already posted scriptural citations on the importance of attendance in God's eyes. When the Word of God says not to absent yourself from the assembly, I don't know how much clearer the matter could be."

I think what mught not be quite as clear is that a church service is the only thing that satisfies the Hebrews verse. Jesus said: (Mat 18:20 NASB) "For where two or three have gathered together in My name, there I am in their midst."

The word used in Hebrews for assembling together and the word used in the above Matthew verse for gathered together have the same root Greek word. I don't think it is unreasonable to interpret the gathering together in Hebrews as any gathering where two or more believers get together to praise/worship/study/pray together. For example, in my Friday night Bible study there are a bunch of people who gather together in the Lord's name. If that is the only gathering together someone participates in then I would say they are satisfying the admonition in Hebrews. Now if someone was actually doing that I would probably counsel them to attend Sunday services, not because of the Hebrews verses but because our senior pastor is a much better teacher than I am.

There are people in my church who, IMO, are of a legalistic bent who will look askance at anyone who does not attend the Sunday morning, Sunday evening, Wednesday evening services and the Tuesday night Men's/Women/s Bible Study fellowships. Personally I think anyone who doesn't attend a small home study is cheating themself of a great blessing and opportunity for spiritual growth. But I don't judge someone's "committment" if they fail to live up to my own personal ideas of what a very "open to interpretation" verse like the cited Hebrews verse says. Personally I think the Hebrews verse is more aimed at the person who says "I don't have to go to church to be a Christian". I base this on the fact that the word translated forsake in the Hebrews verse means to leave behind, desert, abandon, desert, forsake. I don't see it applying to someone who misses an occasional Sunday service, and I certainly don't see it as some kind of legalistic test of committment.

But that is just my personal take on that verse and YMMV.

God bless,

Rich

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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 52980 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/19/2001 2:44 AM
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Rich ~

I don't see it applying to someone who misses an occasional Sunday service, and I certainly don't see it as some kind of legalistic test of committment..

Thank you. I appreciate your take on this and enjoy your uplifting way of looking at it.


Robyn



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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53017 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/19/2001 11:38 PM
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Larry,

The former in this passage refers to tithing.

Not solely to tithing.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53019 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/19/2001 11:44 PM
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Robyn,

For goodness' sake! I wouldn't want to have a meeting with the pastor and tell him that some of his sermons don't stir my soul. I have come to realize that some sermons really have an impact and open my eyes. Others do not. Perhaps they do for other folks on any given Sunday.

I should hope that there's a lot more to a service than just a sermon!

>> 1. Worship

>> 2. Common prayer

>> 3. Proclamation of scripture

>> 4. The Lord's Supper

On the last item, it's important to note that the WCC now says that member churches should celebrate the Lord's supper at least once per week, so this isn't just a Catholic/Orthodox/Lutheran/Anglican thing any more.

Even if the sermon does not nourish you, these other elements certainly should nourish you in one way or another. If they don't, there's a problem.

Norm.


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Author: OzFox Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53024 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 2:35 AM
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rev2217: In fact, in the account of the Widow's Mite, Jesus pointed out that her gift (about half a cent in our currency -- and certainly much less than the tithe of the law)


OzFox: Don't you mean that she gave more than the tithe of the law, since she gave ALL her means and even ALL of her living.

ALL+ALL=100%
no?

Dan

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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53028 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 4:28 AM
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Norm ~

I should hope that there's a lot more to a service than just a sermon!

Of course there is. Was there anything I said that lead you to believe that our church service only contain Pastor Steve's sermons?

>> 1. Worship

>> 2. Common prayer

>> 3. Proclamation of scripture

>> 4. The Lord's Supper


You will be glad to know that #1 - #3 are covered weekly.

On the last item, it's important to note that the WCC now says that member churches should celebrate the Lord's supper at least once per week, so this isn't just a Catholic/Orthodox/Lutheran/Anglican thing any more.

I hadn't ever read anything on the World Council of Churches so I looked up their website. I clicked on a lot of links but didn't come across this statement. Is it very new? Is this a suggestion or a law?

Communion can be celebrated daily in the home. Our Bible study has made a point of doing it at times that don't even coincide with the church's schedule. I am happy to be able to participate but don't feel the need for this to be mandated.

I'm really not trying to open a can of worms.


Robyn








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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53029 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 4:48 AM
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Other CF members have blessed us with posting the links to their churches. I would like to do the same. It's a great website!


http://www.ranchocommunity.org/index.shtml


Thanks for indulging me.:-)



Robyn

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Author: glampig Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53032 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 8:32 AM
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Norm,

< churches should celebrate the Lord's supper at least once per week, so this isn't just a Catholic/Orthodox/Lutheran/Anglican thing any more. >

Christian Disciples and Churches of Christ partake of The Lord's Supper at each Chruch service.

Good fortune. Rick, the glampig

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Author: DiabloQueen Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53037 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 10:22 AM
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>> 4. The Lord's Supper

On the last item, it's important to note that the WCC now says that member churches should celebrate the Lord's supper at least once per week, so this isn't just a Catholic/Orthodox/Lutheran/Anglican thing any more.


Sorry to be blunt, but so what? The church I've been attending on a semi-regular basis (guess I'm going to hell for not going every Sunday) has communion once a month on the first Sunday of the month, which is Family Day (testimony/praise instead of "teaching" sermon, pot luck afterwards, kids stay instead of going to Sunday School). It's a Southern Baptist church, I don't think they belong to WCC. Just because the WCC (or any other group) endorses something doesn't necessarily mean it's right.

-- Fran




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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53049 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 12:40 PM
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Dan,

OzFox: Don't you mean that she gave more than the tithe of the law, since she gave ALL her means and even ALL of her living.

In the gospel account, Jesus does not say that she gave everything. He only says that she gave of her sustenance rather than from her surplus.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53054 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 1:14 PM
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Robyn,

I hadn't ever read anything on the World Council of Churches so I looked up their website. I clicked on a lot of links but didn't come across this statement. Is it very new? Is this a suggestion or a law? (In reply to my comment in a previous post about the WCC statement that member churches should celebrate the Lord's supper at least weekly)

Actually, it was in a common statement that came out of dialog aimed at fostering ecumenical understanding among member chruches back in the 1980's or perhaps even earlier. It was also recognized at the time that some member churches did hold communion services at least weekly and that it would take time to move whole congregations in that direction, but it still seems a noble goal.

Communion can be celebrated daily in the home. Our Bible study has made a point of doing it at times that don't even coincide with the church's schedule. I am happy to be able to participate but don't feel the need for this to be mandated.

In principle, this is true. Nonetheless, from a pastoral perspective, one ought to be very careful of the symbolism of such actions. Since communion fundamentally is an expression of our unity in Christ, the practice of smaller groups holding communion services apart from the larger assembly could become an expression of separation and division rather than of the greater unity of the whole assembly.

I'm really not trying to open a can of worms.

No problem. The worst thing that can happen is that healthy discussion challenges all of us to think more carefully and more deeply and more prayerfully about what we're doing and why. If, in the process, we discover some shortcomings in our walk of faith, we find an open door to more faithful discipleship.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53055 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 1:20 PM
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Robyn,

Of course there is. Was there anything I said that lead you to believe that our church service only contain Pastor Steve's sermons?

Sorry I missed this in my first reply. Perhaps I misunderstood what you intended to say, but I got the impression that your church's Sunday service wasn't spiritually beneficial if the sermon didn't speak to you. I have seen more than a few Protestant churches where the sermon was the centerpiece of the service and the rest was pretty superficial, so I formed the impression -- perhaps wrongly -- that your church probably had that kind of service. Anyway, the worship, prayers, and readings from scripture certainly ought to nourish you as much as any bible study or whatever even if the sermon does not speak directly to you on a particular occasion.

Norm.


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Author: mightywind One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53099 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 4:47 PM
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"You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former."

Norm,
The former in this passage refers to tithing.
L


Yes it does, but the "you" refers to a pharisee - someone attempting to live under Moses' Law and therefore obliged to tithe between 23 (& a bit)% and 25 (& a bit)% of his income. In no way does it refer to someone living under the New Covenant (despite what many churches today would have you believe).

God bless,

mightywind

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Author: lhaselden Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53130 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 7:04 PM
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mightywind,
Welcome back. I have missed your posts!
L

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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53140 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 8:44 PM
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Norm ~

I said: Communion can be celebrated daily in the home. Our Bible study has made a point of doing it at times that don't even coincide with the church's schedule. I am happy to be able to participate but don't feel the need for this to be mandated.

You responded: In principle, this is true. Nonetheless, from a pastoral perspective, one ought to be very careful of the symbolism of such actions. Since communion fundamentally is an expression of our unity in Christ, the practice of smaller groups holding communion services apart from the larger assembly could become an expression of separation and division rather than of the greater unity of the whole assembly.

If in principle it is true then why is there a problem? Are you a pastor of a church and, therefore, are giving me your perspective? Why do I have to be careful of the symbolism of Communion? That is exactly what it is .......... symbolic.

I really disagree that smaller groups sharing Communion are dividing themselves from the larger church body. My husband and I have shared Communion privately when we were on a weekend alone. This brought us closer together and never, at any time, did I feel separated from the Bible study group or the 3,000 people that attend Rancho Community. I enjoy Communion because I am able to focus on what the Lord has done for me. I make sure that I don't partake of the elements if there is discord between myself and another. That would be a mockery of the symbolism.

I just don't see where we are told only to partake of Communion in a church building with the entire congregation. If I wish to maintain a daily Communion time then I should be able to. I don't know what all the legalism is about.

My God is a part of my life and I converse with Him every day. I don't, necessarily, bow my head and close my eyes. I may be doing the laundry and chat with Him.

I see the Lord as my friend. If there is a real problem then I make myself open to correction by those with authority, sincerity (who may or may not know what is going on) and the Lord.

It seems as if some folks who call themselves Christians are very interested in making us cookie-cutters. I don't look like some Christians I know. I don't act exactly like some Christians I know. My sense of humor is very different than some Christians I know.

God made us different. My five children are all different. I have a close relationships with each of them. They each relate to me in a different way. Can you imagine how they would feel if I insisted that they respond exactly the same? What if I only allowed them to do things only in a group or I might think that disrespectful. My stunch/unbending attitude would be what separates us.

Please don't respond that this could relate to grave sin errors. I am talking about folks having the freedom to sing, praise, worship and just be with the Lord in the way that helps them relate to God.

For some reason you don't like that I may only attend church 85-90% of the time. You have determined that, initially, I attend a church who's services only consist of a pastor's sermon.

You don't care for the fact that Communion is celebrated anywhere but in the church building with the whole congregation. Accepting Jesus as my Savior has been the most freeing experience of my life. I am free to worship Him anywhere and at anytime and with anyone or no one.

He's the one I cling to for guidance and comfort. Friends and family are a blessing but He will never leave nor forsake.

Now, I will end this discussion by saying, again, that I am pleased that the style of worship you participate in is meaningful for you. The things I participate in are meaningful for me.

I guess I just don't see what all your "correcting" in my worship style is supposed to accomplish.


Robyn










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Author: GoDucks2001 Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53144 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 8:51 PM
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Robyn said:

Now, I will end this discussion by saying, again, that I am pleased that the style of worship you participate in is meaningful for you. The things I participate in are meaningful for me.
____________

This is very edifying...it is exactly what I am talking about. God is a real inclusive kind of guy...He digs all of our worship and praise. He does not dig our divisiveness and rancor.

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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53146 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/20/2001 8:56 PM
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Norm ~

Perhaps I misunderstood what you intended to say, but I got the impression that your church's Sunday service wasn't spiritually beneficial if the sermon didn't speak to you.

You did misunderstand because I was only speaking of the sermon and nothing else that is part of the service. It is true that not every sermon is life-changing or eye-opening.

Anyway, the worship, prayers, and readings from scripture certainly ought to nourish you as much as any bible study or whatever even if the sermon does not speak directly to you on a particular occasion.

There are many times that the choir's selections do nourish and move me. Other times they don't but they may speak to the person sitting next to me.

There are times that the scripture selection moves me and other times it doesn't BUT it may for another.

It is absolutley alright that we have ebb and flow in how we perceive Him. There are times when I feel so desperately close to the Lord and other times when it seems that I don't feel His presence.

This doesn't make me a bad Christian nor should people get the idea that unless everything is perfect in their lives or worship experience then they have a problem that is separating them from God.

I know that, in your heart, you are trying to help clarify. I will take your comments in that spirit. I hope that you will become more sensitive to people's differing Christian expressions of their relationship with God.



Robyn




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Author: OzFox Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53199 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 6:24 AM
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rev2217, I did a search at Goshen just to be sure, here's the quote from the KJV of the Bible:

but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.


Here's the context:

Mark 12:41-44
41 And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money F38 into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. 42 And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, F39 which make a farthing. 43 And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: 44 For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

Jesus does say she cast in ALL that she had, even ALL her living.

In the book of ACTS we see believers giving all they had to their group they had formed. Another case of giving everything.

Jesus wants us to give Him everything. How that translates into todays society is what I'm wondering.

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Author: Kasuma724 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53239 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 3:55 PM
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<<When you do attend church somewhere else while travelling, shouldn't part of your regular offering go to the community who's service you do attend?>>

I can't speak for others, but as a member of a specific local congregation, I have taken on the obligation to support that local congregation financially (as well as in many other ways). Therefore, whether I am in attendance or not, I believe I am responsible to be giving to that congregation.

As for the congregation that I visit, I will certainly put something in their collection plate as a courtesy - but I do not believe I'm obligated.

In fact... at my church, before the collection plate is passed, the pastor specifically states that visitors are expected to let the plate pass them by... that the collection is for members and regular attenders who choose to give. More than one visitor has remarked they have never heard such an invitation NOT to give in a church service!



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Author: Jeffreyw Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53241 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 4:19 PM
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>>In fact... at my church, before the collection plate is passed, the pastor specifically states that visitors are expected to let the plate pass them by... that the collection is for members and regular attenders who choose to give. More than one visitor has remarked they have never heard such an invitation NOT to give in a church service!<<

Our church makes similar statements regarding both partaking in communion and the offering, especially when we know we have a large number of "visitors" or non-members. We also have Wednesday night Celebration! services, where there is no communion or collection, a great time to bring a friend or first-time visitor. We really do try to make everyone feel welcome and comfortable with what is going on by keeping them informed. It is very disconcerting to attend an unfamiliar church and everyone seems to know what is going on and why they are doing that, except you.

Jeffrey

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Author: DiabloQueen Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53242 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 4:28 PM
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In fact... at my church, before the collection plate is passed, the pastor specifically states that visitors are expected to let the plate pass them by... that the collection is for members and regular attenders who choose to give.

Same here. At the church I've been attending, before the collection plates are passed there's an announcement specifically telling people that guests are not expected to give anything and the service is the church's gift to them.



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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53245 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 5:02 PM
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OzFox,

I found another translation that also contains the word "all" in Mark 12:44. Nonetheless, this wording sound more like a figure of speech than a factual statement.

I agree with your comment about the community of believers in Acts and the notion of giving all one's posessions into the common pot. There's a major difference in that text, though. In the community of Acts, the members then received their subsistence from the common pot. How many communities of believers do likewise today?

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53253 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 6:08 PM
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Robyn,

For some reason, your reply is coming across in an unfortunate light. It sounds like you're taking everything that I said in the worst possible way. I'm not your judge, and I'm not trying to "correct" you. Rather, I'm trying to take what you said at its face value and draw the logical conclusions that follow therefrom.

Let's go through your comments item by item.

If in principle it is true then why is there a problem? Are you a pastor of a church and, therefore, are giving me your perspective? Why do I have to be careful of the symbolism of Communion? That is exactly what it is .......... symbolic.

For the record, I am not a pastor of a church, but I do hold a master's degree in Christian theology with considerable emphasis on worship and sacrament. I'm one of "those" folks who regards tomes like The Shape of the Liturgy by Dom Gregory Dix (an Anglican monk) -- a masterpiece on the history of Christian worship across all traditins -- as a little light reading.

The scriptures themselves contradict the notion that communion is only a symbol. Jesus's words at the last supper were imminently clear: "This is my body..." and "This is my blood..." -- not "this represents..." but rather "this is...." Through the prayer of the church and the power of the Holy Spirit, the elements of bread and wine become what we who are the church already are -- the body (flesh) and the blood (life) of Christ, the pascal lamb of God, present in the world today, and thus the sacrificial banquet of the new covenant. Jesus's words in the discourse on the Bread of Life (John 6) -- "unless you eat (literally, "gnaw at") of the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood..." -- gives witness to this, and it's clear from his listeners' response that his words would not admit an interpretation that they are purely symbolic. The sacrifices of the old testament -- in which the people offering the sacrifice partook of some parts of the animal while other parts were burned for God -- also foreshadowed this reality. So, too, it follows that Jesus is wholly present in the consecrated elements just as he is wholly present in sacred scripture and in the assembly of believers.

I really disagree that smaller groups sharing Communion are dividing themselves from the larger church body. My husband and I have shared Communion privately when we were on a weekend alone. This brought us closer together and never, at any time, did I feel separated from the Bible study group or the 3,000 people that attend Rancho Community. I enjoy Communion because I am able to focus on what the Lord has done for me. I make sure that I don't partake of the elements if there is discord between myself and another. That would be a mockery of the symbolism.

I just don't see where we are told only to partake of Communion in a church building with the entire congregation. If I wish to maintain a daily Communion time then I should be able to. I don't know what all the legalism is about.

If you reread what I said, you will discover that I did not say that a communion service in one's home, or wherever else, is a problem. Rather, I only indicated that such practices might have certain adverse aspects if not kept in proper balance. There are individuals who have "private" communion services at home and never take communion with the larger body. Under such circumstances, the separate communion could become a sign of separation -- in short, a diabol rather than a symbol.

BTW, the word "symbol" comes from the Greek prefix "sym-" meaning "alike" or "together" and the root word "ballein" meaning "to cast" or "to throw" -- and thus means "to cast together" or "to unite." The word "diabol" combines the prefix "dia-" meaning "apart" with the same root, and thus means "to cast apart" or "to separate" or "to divide." It's no accident that we use the adjective form "diabolic" in reference to Satan -- for the devil is the one who "casts apart" or "divides." We see this primordially in the sin of Adam and Eve, which separated them from God. Even today, Satan seeks to separate us from God and from one another. And what does the apostle say? "Make every effort to preserve the unity which has the Spirit as its origin and peace as its binding force." (Sorry, but I don't have the citation at my fingertips.)

My God is a part of my life and I converse with Him every day. I don't, necessarily, bow my head and close my eyes. I may be doing the laundry and chat with Him.

I see the Lord as my friend. If there is a real problem then I make myself open to correction by those with authority, sincerity (who may or may not know what is going on) and the Lord.


That's wonderful. I wish that all people who claim to be Christian had that sort of relationship with the Lord.

It seems as if some folks who call themselves Christians are very interested in making us cookie-cutters. I don't look like some Christians I know. I don't act exactly like some Christians I know. My sense of humor is very different than some Christians I know.

God made us different. My five children are all different. I have a close relationships with each of them. They each relate to me in a different way. Can you imagine how they would feel if I insisted that they respond exactly the same? What if I only allowed them to do things only in a group or I might think that disrespectful. My stunch/unbending attitude would be what separates us.


Of course God made each of us different -- or, more precisely, unique. Nonetheless, God did not intend that we should live out our faith in isolation. Rather, the imagery of the church as the Body of Christ throughout the new testament makes it very clear that God intends that we should live in union and in communion with one another. So, too, does the Lord's prayer for the unity of all believers in John 17. In I Corinthians 12, St. Paul tells the members of the church of Corinth that we're uniquely gifted for the common good rather than for our own individual benefit. We all need the giftedness of others to make up for our own lack -- which is precisely why we all need to be part of the whole community of faith.

Please don't respond that this could relate to grave sin errors. I am talking about folks having the freedom to sing, praise, worship and just be with the Lord in the way that helps them relate to God.

Freedom is a good thing, but freedom also carries responsibilities. So long as these are in proper perspective, there's no problem. The demand for absolute freedom without responsibility is the hallmark of immaturity -- and that's every bit as true in the spiritual realm as in the personal realm.

For some reason you don't like that I may only attend church 85-90% of the time. You have determined that, initially, I attend a church who's services only consist of a pastor's sermon.

First, I had no idea what percentage of the time you attend church and, second, I did not "deermine" anything about your church service. Your pastor and your church board "determine" the content of your church's service -- not me. I only concluded, based on your posts stating that your church's services were not nourising you spiritually because the pastor's sermons did not always speak to you, that there proably was a problem somewhere and, like the sheriffs in the old westerns, proceeded to round up the usual suspects.

You don't care for the fact that Communion is celebrated anywhere but in the church building with the whole congregation. Accepting Jesus as my Savior has been the most freeing experience of my life. I am free to worship Him anywhere and at anytime and with anyone or no one.

I never said anything to suggest that communion should not happen anywhere except the church building. I only said that the practice of smaller groups having communion in other places should not be a substitute for participation in communion with the whole body.

He's the one I cling to for guidance and comfort. Friends and family are a blessing but He will never leave nor forsake.

True. Of course, that's every bit as true of our spiritual family....

Now, I will end this discussion by saying, again, that I am pleased that the style of worship you participate in is meaningful for you. The things I participate in are meaningful for me.

I guess I just don't see what all your "correcting" in my worship style is supposed to accomplish.


Again, I'm not your judge and I'm not writing to "correct" your worship style. For some reason, though, you seem to have taken every comment that I have made as personal criticism even though I did not phrase any of my comments as personal criticism. Thus, the fact that you took them that way and felt a need to respond defensively does indicate a fairly high level of immaturity, insecurity, or both. This is definitely something that you would do well to take up with your pastor.

Norm.


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Author: OzFox Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53257 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 6:26 PM
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I found another translation that also contains the word "all" in Mark 12:44. Nonetheless, this wording sound more like a figure of speech than a factual statement.


What makes you think he is using a figure of speech?



I agree with your comment about the community of believers in Acts and the notion of giving all one's posessions into the common pot. There's a major difference in that text, though. In the community of Acts, the members then received their subsistence from the common pot. How many communities of believers do likewise today?


It would be the most wonderful thing if this could happen today, but there is too much a chance for crooked people to pervert it. Communism comes to mind? It's a shame.



--Dan

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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53258 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 6:29 PM
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Norm ~


Thus, the fact that you took them that way and felt a need to respond defensively does indicate a fairly high level of immaturity, insecurity, or both.

I will always try to remember that, when dealing with you, I will not respond in what you perceive as defensive.

I trust that when you speak with folks of your church body that you do not insult them with phrases about your perception of their immaturity, security or both. It would be very hard to continue a dialog with you.

Thank you for, again, attempting to explain your postition.


Robyn


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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53259 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 6:30 PM
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Sorry , I mean my supposed insecurity.

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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53263 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 6:48 PM
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"I will not respond in what you perceive as defensive."

Norm is not the only one who was given this (mis?)conception.

You posted, he replied. I remember when I was reading the beginnings of this on Monday morning, I was a little surprised at the way you responded to him, and indeed did see some defensiveness in it, particularly at the end when you likened attending church service to merely "sitting in a pew". I remember I responded to that comment. Something did indeed bother you more than you're willing to admit because then not more than 14 or 15 minutes later, you were back posting to someone else (Rich, I believe), about your reaction (you weren't feeling defensive?) and that you felt "encouragement" was always the best way to handle something. Really? You make a dig about attending church and then come back with your blinders on and say encouragement is the best solution?

I had pretty much succeeded in letting this all go this week, until I read your latest post. It really doesn't hurt to admit that sometimes we get defensive. I do at times, I think everyone does at times. We're all human, I don't see the harm in admitting it.


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Author: rbednarski Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53288 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/21/2001 11:54 PM
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"In the gospel account, Jesus does not say that she gave everything. He only says that she gave of her sustenance rather than from her surplus."

Someone may have already posted this (I've been away a couple of days and am just catching up):

(Mark 12:42-44 NASB) And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which amount to a cent. {43} And calling His disciples to Him, He said to them, "Truly I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the contributors to the treasury; {44} for they all put in out of their surplus, but she, out of her poverty, put in all she owned, all she had to live on."

God bless,

Rich



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Author: rbednarski Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53289 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 12:05 AM
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"Since communion fundamentally is an expression of our unity in Christ, the practice of smaller groups holding communion services apart from the larger assembly could become an expression of separation and division rather than of the greater unity of the whole assembly."

This doesn't make sense to me. Say 12 people have communion together, out of a congregation of 1200. How is this any less of an expression of the unity of the Body of Christ than the 1200 people in the congregation having communion together out of the millions of members of the Body of Christ down through the ages? Until the Marriage Supper of the Lamb we are not going to have all of the believers together in one place. What then is the significance of the size of the group having communion together?

God bless,

Rich


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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53295 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 5:43 AM
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"What then is the significance of the size of the group having communion together?"

You're challenging a point that wasn't even made. You've overlooked the words "apart from...could become."

God bless,

Pam



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Author: jrdown Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53296 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 5:48 AM
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Pam ~

I just returned from an evening out and was interested to see your post. I have given some thought to what you said.

You are right. I have been defensive with Norm's comments to me. I have allowed myself to get "out of control" (for me) and allowed what he has said to negatively impact me.

I do apologize for that and I will tell Norm so.

Please allow me to correct a misperception. I do not give "digs" about attending church. Church has always been a part of my life. My children have been raised using church to reinforce our family instruction.

I have only two areas of disagreement. One, I do not believe that it is out of the ordinary (nor divisive) to have Communion outside of the collective church body. Two, I do not believe that a person (or family) that does not attend church every single Sunday (with the collective church body) is, somehow, not in tune with the Lord.

There you have it.

Again, I am sorry for any angst I have caused.


Robyn

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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53298 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:21 AM
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Robyn,

That was a very honest and thoughtful post. Thank you.

"I have allowed myself to get 'out of control'(for me)"--that's exactly what surprised me to begin with, as it wasn't like what I've seen of you. I had my own little dilemma--it was there in black and white, so I wanted to respond, but again as I just said it wasn't "like" you, either, so I tried not to be too annoyed in return. Didn't quite make it, but I did my best.

After all is said and done, I saw a lot of questions but the main point that I saw was the "could be" or "could become". It's unfortunate that all of this began in a response to you, directly, which is why I think the defenses may have gone up and the point(s) lost in the shuffle. I don't think anyone is out of step/going to hell/whatever for not attending church on any given Sunday. I thought he was making the point that there are those (and there are) who make a practice of being mavericks and don't find it important to belong to a body of believers. I'm not him, so I'm speaking for myself, obviously. I don't think anyone, particularly myself, thinks of you as a "lone ranger". I'm not going to beat this to death, it's awfully early and I'm honestly surprised I'm up at this hour, and I'm not sure how coherent I'm being.

I appreciate you taking the time to write, I really do.

Have a blessed day, Robyn. :-)

Pam


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Author: HelenMcMillin Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53301 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 8:55 AM
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Dearest Kay:

From my reading of this board, I have "assumed" that Norm is Roman Catholic. If that is true, then that explains a lot about how he thinks. He seems to be a very intelligent fellow, but he is very dogmatic in his beliefs. I don't think there is any way a Protestant could ever agree with him on all points(certainly not this one!) I have wanted to come to your defense in this exchange, but I knew that any response to Norm, other than complete agreement, would fall on deaf ears and he would vigorously defend his position. I am no match, mentally, for him and I get too emotionally involved.

I want you to know that I agree with you completely in what you were saying and I imagine most of the board does also.

Love,

Helen

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Author: HelenMcMillin Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53302 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 9:04 AM
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The previous post was to have been emailed to my friend - NOT posted on this board. Please forgive. I have asked that it be removed immediately.

Helen

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Author: Jeffreyw Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53303 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 9:17 AM
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Helen,

I don't see anything offensive about it, and I don't think Norm would be upset by it either. I appreciate your honesty.

Jeffrey

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Author: Frecs Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53304 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 9:19 AM
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He seems to be a very intelligent fellow, but he is very dogmatic in his beliefs. I don't think there is any way a Protestant could ever agree with him on all points(certainly not this one!)

1) He is a very intelligent fellow
2) I don't think "dogmatic" is a correct assessment. Zealous. Confident. Scripture says to study so that you can be sure in your heart about what you believe. Norm should be given credit for being able to articulate his beliefs and support them with scripture.
3) I doubt that if you put a group of Protestants in a room you would get them all to agree about everything. Obviously Protestants disagree with Catholics or there wouldn't be the separation. But, equally obviously, Baptists and Methodists don't agree...etc etc etc.

but I knew that any response to Norm, other than complete agreement, would fall on deaf ears and he would vigorously defend his position.

I don't think you being fair to Norm. Just because he doesn't capitulate doesn't mean he turns a deaf ear to other's opinions. I commend him for being willing and able to vigoriously defend his position.

Besides, we Zealots have to stick together....who knows but someday Norm may realize that I'm right and he's wrong....it could happen! ;-)

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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53305 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 9:23 AM
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Hi Helen,

It appears that the post will probably not be removed. I realize you didn't mean it to appear publicly, but since it has I wanted to add a few words of my own.

Norm is my friend. Yes, he's Roman Catholic. I don't think it's done any harm for your remarks about Catholics to be public, it's better than hiding as some do.

Yes, Norm has definite beliefs and clings strongly to them. I think anyone with strong beliefs does just that. In the years that I've known Norm, the quality that I have admired most about him and still do is that he values my relationship with the Lord over and above anything else. To be sure, I've burned the internet wires a few times in my responses, but I've been quick to apologize when necessary and contrary to what some may think, Norm knows how to apologize as well, when necessary.

His faith and his friendship have both been invaluable to me, and I thank God for them both. He is a friend, and I admire him greatly.

Pam

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Author: glampig Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53306 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 9:25 AM
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Helen, Norm is a major asset to this board. He's kind, well reasoned, and he does his homework. It's the last two points that may intimidate some. But those two powerful points are mitigated by his graciousness. I don't think Norm would be offended by your comments. BTW, I've really appreciated your comments concerning McVeigh also. I'm glad your here.

Good fortune. Rick, the glampig

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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53307 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 9:32 AM
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"Norm may realize that I'm right and he's wrong."

You're selling how many bridges today? ROFL

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Author: Frecs Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53308 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 10:17 AM
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You're selling how many bridges today? ROFL

ROFLOLSTC

Hey, it could happen...miracles do happen, ya'know!


Frecs-->having visions of her and Norm before THE HIGH COURT and Norm being told he should have listened to me! There I am, in front of God sticking my tongue out at Norm.... nananananana! ;-)

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Author: GoDucks2001 Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53314 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 12:51 PM
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From my reading of this board, I have "assumed" that Norm is Roman Catholic.

______________

Several of us are.

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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53316 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 1:08 PM
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"Several of us are. " And one who isn't yet is preparing for it for her not too distant future. :-)

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Author: GoDucks2001 Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53317 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 1:34 PM
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Welcome...from a new returnee.

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Author: Jeffreyw Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53324 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 4:01 PM
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>>From my reading of this board, I have "assumed" that Norm is Roman Catholic.

______________

Several of us are. <<

I continue to pray for your enlightenment.

; 0 : 0 ; ) : )

Jeffrey

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Author: GoDucks2001 Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53326 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 4:08 PM
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I continue to pray for your enlightenment.
_________

This is why I am reading H.H. Dalai Lama. :-)

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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53336 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 5:32 PM
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Rich,

This doesn't make sense to me. Say 12 people have communion together, out of a congregation of 1200. How is this any less of an expression of the unity of the Body of Christ than the 1200 people in the congregation having communion together out of the millions of members of the Body of Christ down through the ages? Until the Marriage Supper of the Lamb we are not going to have all of the believers together in one place. What then is the significance of the size of the group having communion together?

The significance is not the size of the group. The issue is whether the group is holding communion by itself in a manner that excludes the rest of the congregation -- and thus making itself into a clique or faction. If so, the act of communion becomes an act of separation from the rest of the body. The scriptures have much to say about such practices -- and none of it is favorable.

There's no problem with a bible study or prayer group holding a proper communion service at its regular meeting time, so long as (1) the whole congregation is welcome at such a communion service and (2) the group also participates in the regular communion services of the whole congregation.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53338 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 5:36 PM
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Dan,

What makes you think he is using a figure of speech?

The phrasing in several translations really does sound like a figure of speach rather than something intended literally, at least to me.

It would be the most wonderful thing if this could happen today, but there is too much a chance for crooked people to pervert it. Communism comes to mind? It's a shame.

There are several communities that do share a common pot -- monasteries and other communities of Catholic, Anglican, Orthodox, and other religious orders, some Amabaptist communities, and even the Protestant community at Taize.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53339 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 5:46 PM
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Robyn,

I trust that when you speak with folks of your church body that you do not insult them with phrases about your perception of their immaturity, security or both. It would be very hard to continue a dialog with you.

Speaking the truth in charity does not "insult" anybody. It's unfortunate that you insist in taking it that way. I wish you and your church the best.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53343 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:08 PM
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Robyn,

You are right. I have been defensive with Norm's comments to me. I have allowed myself to get "out of control" (for me) and allowed what he has said to negatively impact me.

I do apologize for that and I will tell Norm so.


Apology accepted. I'm sorry if my frustrations came out a little too strongly, too.

I have only two areas of disagreement. One, I do not believe that it is out of the ordinary (nor divisive) to have Communion outside of the collective church body. Two, I do not believe that a person (or family) that does not attend church every single Sunday (with the collective church body) is, somehow, not in tune with the Lord.

As Pam pointed out to someone else, you missed some critical words in my first post where I indicated simply that communon "apart from... could become..." -- and thus suggested due caution to ensure that one maintained a proper perspective so that such practices do not become divisive.

I actually have encountered another problem that is not at all unrelated. A prayer group had a custom of holding communion services when it met, even though its membership included Christians from other churches who were not able to share in the communion. To this day, many churches do not practice intercommunion across lines of denominational division because such intercommunion would signify a complete unity that in fact does not exist. The resulting scene was very uncomfortable for everybody. I finally suggested that the group cease having communion services and have a scriptural prayer service in which everybody could participate as equals instead. A couple members chose to leave in their disappointment that the group no longer held communion services when it met, but the divisions very quickly healed and the group grew spiritually through the experience.

These situations don't have "hard and fast" rules, but they do require constant pastoral vigilance to their dynamics. If the practice of holding communion services in a small group becomes either divisive in the larger body, it most assuredly needs to be reassessed. Sometimes it's possible to correct such situations with sound teaching, especially if one catches them early, but not always.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53344 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:10 PM
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Pam,

I thought he was making the point that there are those (and there are) who make a practice of being mavericks and don't find it important to belong to a body of believers.

Bingo! Well said!

Thank you for posting that clarification.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53345 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:15 PM
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Kay,

From my reading of this board, I have "assumed" that Norm is Roman Catholic.

Well, I'm a member of the Roman Catholic Church and I have a degree in theology from an institution that happens to be a Catholic national seminary and monastery. OTOH, I also work very actively for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and, over the years, have particpated in bible studies, prayer groups, and fellowships under many flavors of Protestant leadership. Also, one of the most insightful experiences of my life was assignment to a unit that had a Russian Orthodox chaplain back when I was in the armed forces.

Norm.




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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53346 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:19 PM
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Helen,

The previous post was to have been emailed to my friend - NOT posted on this board. Please forgive. I have asked that it be removed immediately.

Why have it removed? It's always insightful to see other folks' perceptions! It's always beneficial to take them to prayer to see what God has to say. God will use such comments to help some of us to grow, if we're willing to let him.

Again, thank you for your insights!

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53348 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:24 PM
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Pam,

Frecs: "Norm may realize that I'm right and he's wrong."

You: You're selling how many bridges today? ROFL

Am I that stubborn??? ;-)

Seriously, stubbornness and perseverence are opposite sides of the same trait. When we discover what frustrates others, we also discover our own gifts. They are the same.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53349 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:25 PM
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Frecs,

Frecs-->having visions of her and Norm before THE HIGH COURT and Norm being told he should have listened to me! There I am, in front of God sticking my tongue out at Norm.... nananananana! ;-)

It would not be the first time! The best way to learn is to step up and say something that's wrong, then let others correct us.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53350 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:28 PM
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Ken,

This is why I am reading H.H. Dalai Lama. :-)

Actually, the Dalai Lama has published some rather fascinating insights on the gospel!

Norm.


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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53351 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 6:40 PM
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Norm,

"Am I that stubborn??? ;-)"

Ah, you saw that! *g* Well, let me put it this way....your comment was appropriate only insofar as you correctly interpreted what I said...

Now how's that for a dodge? Whoosh, right by me, completely unscathed! I'm telling you, the girl's good. *LOL*

Pam

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Author: OzFox Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53354 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 7:14 PM
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rev2217: There are several communities that do share a common pot -- monasteries and other communities of Catholic, Anglican, Orthodox, and other religious orders, some Amabaptist communities, and even the Protestant community at Taize.



I would really like to check into joining one of these communities.


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Author: Jeffreyw Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53356 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 8:15 PM
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>>There are several communities that do share a common pot -- monasteries and other communities of Catholic, Anglican, Orthodox, and other religious orders, some Amabaptist communities, and even the Protestant community at Taize.



I would really like to check into joining one of these communities.<<

Let me know which ones Bill Gates and Warren Buffet join. I'll join that one.

; )

Jeffrey


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Author: SeekingTruth One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53357 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 9:59 PM
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If the school systems are going to go so far as to endorse one religion by expending public funds to do so with regard to this Buddhist leader, then they had better shut their mouths and leave Christian students alone at school when they have their Bibles and want to read them or pray for their lunch or similar exercise.

They have a double standard and that's it plain and simple. Do you really think they'd give these 9,000 kids the day off and spend public funds to go see Billy Graham? Of course they would not....double standard is my point.

Quite frankly the school should quit wasting public funds to go see religious figures and start figuring out how to help kids read and write since so many of them graduate without any idea.


My family is another, we have a common pot, which we share equally. I put money in and the wife and kids remove an equal amount.

R.

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Author: SeekingTruth One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53358 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/22/2001 10:03 PM
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Ooops, I pasted the wrong quote.

There are several communities that do share a common pot -- monasteries and other communities of Catholic, Anglican, Orthodox, and other religious orders, some Amabaptist communities, and even the Protestant community at Taize.

My family is another, we have a common pot, which we share equally. I put money in and the wife and kids remove an equal amount.

R. - who has problems with Papal infallability yet accepts without qualification his own fallibility

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Author: HisDelight Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53375 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/23/2001 11:51 AM
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Norm,

And now a serious answer *s*

Stubborn? No more so than moi or anyone else that I know.

Committed--very. And I praise God for that.

Pam

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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53408 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/23/2001 5:55 PM
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R,

My family is another, we have a common pot, which we share equally. I put money in and the wife and kids remove an equal amount.

It sounds like it's time to teach them the difference between needs and wants. Jesus promised to supply the former, but not the latter. As the ol' time preacher said, "If yo' outgo exceeds yo' income, yo' upkeep will be yo' downfall."

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53411 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/23/2001 6:09 PM
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OzFox,

If you're a single Christian male who is at least open to consider joining the Catholic Church, you might write to:

Rev. Thomas O'Connor, O. S. B., Vocation Director
Glastonbury Abbey
16 Hull Street
Himgham, MA 02043

and express your interest. He probably will request some preliminary information and invite you to visit the monastery, which is about fifteen miles from Boston. The initial visit probably would be for several days to a week, during which you would meet most of the other monks and have an opportunity to see how the community functions. He probably would meet with you during the visit to get to know you and to discern, with you, whether it's the right community for you. If the discernment is positive, the process would move forward in whatever manner seems appropriate. If that community does not seem to be the right one for you, he can refer you to vocation directors of other communities.

Norm.


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Author: rev2217 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 53413 of 196111
Subject: Re: Tithing Automatically Date: 6/23/2001 6:25 PM
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R,

R. - who has problems with Papal infallability yet accepts without qualification his own fallibility

A lot of us have problems with the popular distortions of so-called "papal infallibility" and the excesses that they embody. The basic principles are:

>> 1. The Holy Spirit protects the magisterium (that is, the teaching office, consisting of all bishops) of the Church from error in her teaching and

>> 2. When the pope issues an official statement in his capacity as chairman the magisterium (thus the Latin term ex cathedra meaning, lieterally, "from the chair"), such a statement is, de facto, a statement of the magisterium rather than his own personal statement.

It follows immediately that an official statement of the type identified by the second principle falls within the protection of the first principle. The First Vatican Council merely articulated this obvious conclusion. Any interpretation of "papal infallibility" that extends it beyond such a statement is an excess worthy of correction.

It should be noted, in particular, that so-called "encylical letters" are not intrinsically infallible since they represent the Pope's personal opinion on a theological subject rather than official teaching. Thus, Catholic Christians -- including Catholic clergy -- are free to hold contrary opinions on any point that is not covered by a definitive doctrinal pronouncement. Of course, it would be awfully arrogant to dismiss the opinion of such a knowledgeable individual summarily without first carefully considering its merit!

Norm.


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