Monday, February 24, 2014

Resumé Please

Bible verses are powerful.  They can wake you up, make you think, give you information you can use, be a catalyst for God to bless you with the Divine Spirit.  The problem is some pastors use them to manipulate and beat their sheep and then lead them off a cliff.  
I haven't been to church in a while.  I had been struggling to bite my tongue constantly. I started to be overly critical of everything that was being said in every church I went to, and over the last few months, I have been to a lot. Several funerals, all right in a row, lead me to churches of various denominations.  It really made me take some steps back to gain some insight on the many beliefs that are out there.

The primary thing that kept running through my mind was the leaders of these churches have a responsibility, an obligation, given to them by God.  He sets the job description and it is up to the pastor/priest to follow it to the letter. I realize they are human and sinners like the rest of us, but they are to be an example, not a replacement God. There are many examples in the Bible of what is expected of these leaders, so I am pretty sure God felt it was important. Included with these examples of the false teachers and an glimpse of what will happen to those who are really not qualified.  I guess my question is this:  Where is Crossing Church looking for their job description for their pastoral staff?

To be fair, I did listen to a couple of recent "sermons", each "preached" by one of the Dykstra's.  The Bible verses that were used were mostly one verse, thrown out so quick, you barely realized they were reading from the Bible, or they were verses used inappropriately.  I actually chuckled to myself when Eric threw out Jeremiah 29:11.  That particular verse is one that makes me cringe when I see a sign or reference to it, as if God is speaking to you or me today.

Here is the job description. Does Crossing Pastoral Staff measure up? Not from my view. Scripture should be read in church, more than a verse here or there. You just may awaken you own mind to what you should be fed in church. Don't take my word for it, read the Bible yourself. Big chunks, chapters, READ IT.

1 Timothy 3    Qualifications for Overseers   English Standard Version (ESV)   
1 The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God's church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.

1 Timothy 6       English Standard Version (ESV)
1 Let all who are under a yoke as bondservants regard their own masters as worthy of all honor, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled. 2 Those who have believing masters must not be disrespectful on the ground that they are brothers; rather they must serve all the better since those who benefit by their good service are believers and beloved.
False Teachers and True Contentment
Teach and urge these things. 3 If anyone teaches a different doctrine and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching that accords with godliness, 4 he is puffed up with conceit and understands nothing. He has an unhealthy craving for controversy and for quarrels about words, which produce envy, dissension, slander, evil suspicions,5 and constant friction among people who are depraved in mind and deprived of the truth, imagining that godliness is a means of gain. 6 But godliness with contentment is great gain, 7 for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. 8 But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. 9 But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.

1 Peter 5  Shepherd the Flock of God  English Standard Version (ESV) 
1 So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: 2 shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.

Titus 1      Greeting   English Standard Version (ESV)   
1 Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God's elect and their knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness, 2 in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began 3 and at the proper time manifested in his word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by the command of God our Savior;4 To Titus, my true child in a common faith: Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.
Qualifications for Elders
5 This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you— 6 if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or  insubordination. 7 For an overseer, as God's steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, 8 but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. 9 He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.

You may also want to look at Eric's track record of "prophecy". I don't remember all that he has claimed God has said to him, but if you can find the old CDs (they removed the evidence from the internet) and listen. I am positive you can find one or two that never came to pass.

Deuteronomy 18    English Standard Version (ESV)
19 And whoever will not listen to my words that he shall speak in my name, I myself will require it of him. 20 But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die.’21 And if you say in your heart, ‘How may we know the word that the Lord has not spoken?’— 22 when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him.

I think the Dykstra's are being tempted by their own power. Their sheep following them blindly. They want to "thrill and move" people worldwide and they have the right idea of reaching out to the lost and weary, but they are not following God's plan for pastors and they are leading their starving flock astray. They follow their own desires, rather than the desires written in His book. When the review comes, I hope they have listened and repented.  I pray that one day, hopefully soon, they use that power for good.

James 1:13-15  English Standard Version (ESV)
 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. 14 But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.

1 comment:

  1. Very good article. This is a clear example of soooooo many churches today. These pastor's and leaders fill the bill for all the scriptures that speak of false prophets, teachers and doctrines. Discernment is and has been sorely lacking in the pews for decades.....then again discernment is not really a hot teaching topic for those in the pulpit, least their own deceit comes to light. Instead they cherry pick scripture. I can recall years of sermons with one or two scriptures taken out of context and turned into lies, when God finally brought me out and broke me, I had to almost start from scratch in understanding His Word and spent months and years deprogramming the voices in my head when I would read a certain "pet scripture verse". Even today at times I struggle with certain verses because they were drilled into me from the pulpit as saying and meaning one thing when in context of scripture it didn't mean that at all and I can even hear the ex pastor or renowned speaker in my head (hence the voices in my head) reinforcing the lies.
    It's been several years since I have attended the institutional church of course I've had to deal with that guilt and condemnation within and without, I'm sure you understand what "not going to church on Sunday" means to most that do. I'm so thankful to God for rescuing me out of this religious system and especially the brokenness (I can say that now but it was very bleak for a long time). Many days I didn't know if I was going to make it.....but there was simply no turning back and I certainly didn't want to stay where I was at with anger, frustration, wounded and condemned by "church" family I once held dear. I realized that I had held this system higher and above all else, including God.

    Philippians 2:12-13 "Wherefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which works in you both to will and to do his good pleasure."

    This where I'm at today and will continue to be.....with much fear and trembling, remembering all the years I thought I was right by following mere men. God bless you.