Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Worse Geeky!!

I blame Pete Day for this one. We spent an awesome day together yesterday waiting on God in prayer and prophecy - seeking His will and His direction for our lives. We also got to go visit Spurgeon's tomb which was a very emotional experience. Pictures are here! But even worse he convinced me to join Twitter. Shame oh shame I know!

Even though I was quite tired from driving to London and back and I'm off to Bristol and back again today - I found myself up late seeking interesting people to follow! I found Barak Obama and Christianity Today and Hillsongs Church in Australia as well as some friends and the odd hero like Jon Daniel from Coastlands Church in Adelaide and Joseph Prince. If anyone is on Twitter then look me up and I'll follow you!

We'll see how it all turns out! Probably more random than Facebook! I was hoping to blog a bit this week as I'm off but it's packed out trying to catch up with friends and family. All normal service to resume next week!


Ursula Kuba said... and I need to chat about some of those people you are following. I'm mostly concerned about the people/organisations that I personally know mix law and grace, or even are mostly law.....

There is some stuff I think you don't know about them that I have insider info on... ;-)

Seriously, I'm just coming to the conclusion more and more since HK...just a little bit of poo in a big glass of water murkies up the whole glass and makes it undrinkable....

I've always said that we need to make sure we drink from a pure well...and that includes those that we drink from and making sure they drink from a pure well!

Dan Bowen said...

Being legalistic about not being legalistic are we?! ;)

Ursula Kuba said... of the things I hate is the whole idea of being a grace exclusivist and coming across legalistic about get where you are coming from.

More...I think I'm coming to realise that when legalism comes into the mix, and control, it stifles you. And I happen to know that two of those ministries have very well disguised control spirits, both of them I have experienced....and know how well disguised they are. I just think...why allow mixed teaching? Because even a little bit of law permeates into the whole thing...and there is not much good that can be taken out of there. If it was pedantic stuff, that is one thing....but man...the control spirit and legalism has me running a mile. Screaming really. Its a witchcraft spirit that I will never let touch me again. Funny enough neither am I a Rufus, De Gersigny exclusivist...far from it. Its just...two of those ministries I know you can't know the inner workings of...and I do.

Peter Day said...

While it is vital not to imbibe everything that people say, there is something to be learned from knowing what people say. The deeper in grace we become through where we feed, the more discerning we can be of mixture in what we read (or listen to). We mustn't be foolish and swallow things without question, be we can alert ourselves to what is being said so that we can be equipped through grace to demolish the lies.

But if you are being stifled by what you read, then don't follow, don't read. On Twitter it is very easy to click the "remove" button and you no longer follow them.

jul said...

For me, the more I get into grace, the more even the smallest little bit of law makes me feel very sick. I think we're deceiving ourselves if we think we can constantly eat meat with bones and just spit them will eventually miss a bone somewhere and start choking. Why not eat the good stuff without any poison? Do we think we'll be missing out by not having some of the rotten meat???

I must admit I can't relate to being the least bit hungry for that other stuff anymore, my appetites have definately changed, and with them my health has improved dramatically...

Dan Bowen said...

Well frankly I am with Pete. Give me a 100% pure grace church or ministry and I will take it and I will absorb myself totally in it. But that hasn't materialised in the earth yet and even Rob Rufus would claim that he hasn't managed it totally yet - and sometimes a bit of law still sneaks in.

There is a difference between "eating" or "absorbing" what we read and simply skimming and reading for interest. I absorb everything I can get from Rob or Joseph Prince or Bill Johnson. I skim the other stuff.

And I am not going to cut myself off from the entire Christian world simply because there is a mixture of law and grace. Jesus didn't! Yes He treated the Pharisees and the severe legalists with the contempt they deserved but everyone else He loved, He accepted, and He used every opportunity to speak to them.

My parents and my family are in SGM - I'm NOT going to cut them off and resist fellowship with them simply because they are in a legalistic church! How can that ever be gracious? Rather I've just come back thrilled from having a really good time with Mum and Dad because I had the opportunity to discuss grace with them and issues like "Should Christians confess sin".

I think we need to get our distinctions clear. If you do mean cutting yourself off from every hint of a mixture of law and grace, then good for you - feel free. I still love and long for the Body of Christ and am interested in what goes on and will read and will follow grace/law ministries because I may learn something! Not from the law part - but from their revelation of grace.

Yes I agree with Ursula that any hint of legalism and law muddies the water, but I say again - show me a pure 100% grace Christian, church or group of churches that are moving in New Testament Christianity with signs, wonders and miracles. I don't think any of us have cleared out the mix yet.

Peter Day said...

We are 100% righteous in Jesus 100% of the time! We are accepted, our Father is totally besotted with us. We can revel in His love, dance, bask, celebrate, shout, praise, adore. drink and get drunk from His fulness.

If we are established in the gift of righteousness then we need not fear the legalists. As long as we are continually building ourselves up in grace then we're not going to choke! And even if we do the Holy Spirit loves us enough to do some surgery on us because we're His, we're accepted and He knows that we know our Father is singing over us.

While I totally agree with Julie that the merest sniff of legalism makes me feel sick but it also does two other things: 1) I get more established in grace because it takes me back to the grace scriptures and I'm finding that I'm seeing more and more scriptures from a new covenant perspective. 2) I'm made aware of what is being taught out there. As pastor I want to know what doctrines are fleecing the flock so I can more strongly declare grace and seek to see people established in the gift of righteousness.

Also, I agree with Dan, I still learn things from other ministries. And I leave the rubbish out. Rob said recently something along the lines that he would receive from anyone who had a greater anointing, even if their theology was a bit wierd in places. We have an awesome Father who can help us filter out the bones and leave us with the good.

jul said...

Well, Dan, I think you may have misunderstood. I am not talking about cutting people out of my life because they are in legalism! Of course we love and fellowship with all our brothers and sisters. But I'm not going to spend lots of time listening to preaching or reading books that are clearly purposely mixing law and grace. Yes, no ministry is 100% pure, but there are many ministries God is raising up that are aiming to live only in the new covenant grace of Jesus and not under law. That's a big difference. And as I've stopped listening to those that clearly don't get the gospel, I am much more at peace and have love and joy instead of depression and confusion and condemnation. I don't think fellowshipping with people who don't get grace yet is so harmful as listening to preaching. Faith comes by hearing the word of God, and conversely I think unbelief can come powerfully by hearing lying words from hell.

In order for God to teach Paul the real gospel, he had to take him into the desert for 3 years, away from all influence of legalism, even from the other apostles. That is not to say the other apostles were evil or not saved, but they were not a good source for Paul to learn from because they still had a mixture. I may love certain preachers and ministries without drinking or eating what they offer in the case where they offer anything but the body and blood of Jesus.

But in any event, I don't feel sorry for abandoning following men famous, respected, or idolized where they have clearly abandoned the true gospel being ashamed of the foolishness of pure grace. I don't care if that makes me unrespectable either, I think I crossed that bridge a long time ago!

Dan Bowen said...

Maybe I did understand Julie and thank you for clarifying. You are of course perfectly free to spend your time as appropriately and as profitably as you see fit. If that means doing what you said, then so be it.

Just as I think it's for each individual to make most of the "means of grace" such as books, sermon, etc that will help them grow and become established in grace.

I noticed both you and Lydia expressed doubts about Fini and Joshua Mills at Grace and Glory - suggesting that maybe even G and G isn't 100% pure.

I'm not going to apologise for what I post on this blog. It's not a perfect representation of 100% grace - because I am not 100% grace. This blog is meant to reflect my journey from legalism to grace and I will mention books I read and quotes I notice whether I agree or disagree with them.

As I've said before to SGM readers who feel offended by what I write, and as Pete put it so well;

"But if you are being stifled by what you read, then don't follow, don't read".

Interestingly enough Pete and I discussed this very issue when we met yesterday in London. And we felt God DID speak about focusing our reading and our listening with grace.

You said;

"Yes, no ministry is 100% pure, but there are many ministries God is raising up that are aiming to live only in the new covenant grace of Jesus and not under law. That's a big difference. And as I've stopped listening to those that clearly don't get the gospel".

Again the problem comes in defining exactly what "too much law" is and what "new covenant" is because as we have agreed - who has accomplished an 100% pure grace message yet?

My conclusion is that it's upto each son and daughter of God as led by the Holy Spirit - and we shouldn't be putting each other under condemnation just because the other is perhaps reading or hearing ministry that the other individual may think "contains too much law".

As I said, let's not get legalistic about not being legalistic".

jul said...

Dan, I just want you to know that I have never been offended by anything you write. Offence is not even an issue, love is. If I think for a moment you may be veering toward law away from Jesus then I will get concerned, and I though it would be ok to express my concern to you considering the long relationship (albeit only on the web) we've had. I don't think it's legalistic to be passionate about grace, and by that argument I suppose Paul was legalistic about being legalistic as he wouldn't stand for leaders putting people under any law. How much law is too much? Any. Rob, and other grace preachers are not teaching us that we are still under law in any way. Other ministries clearly and unmistakably teach that we are still under law, or part of the law, this is clearly the leaven of the pharisees that Jesus told us to avoid. I'm not looking for perfection outside of Jesus, but there must be ways we can discern between legalism and grace, old covenant and new. Anyway, I'm not really comfortable continuing this coversation much more if you're feeling condemned at all, that was not my intention at all, and I certainly didn't want you to feel that I was upset or offended or that I wanted you to somehow apologize for anything you write. I'm sad that you feel I should be lumped in with SGM again though, but apparently I've got some things in my life to look at again if that's the case.

Dan Bowen said...

Well maybe there's been misunderstandings on both sides, and I agree maybe this conversation shouldn't carry on - or else in private in a context that isn't so easy to misunderstand and mis-read. I never intended to imply that I was "lumping you in with Sovereign Grace" - so I'm sorry if that's what it came across as.

As I said, I think it's a personal issue between us and the wonderful Holy Spirit - He will and can guide on where is best and most profitable to spend our time.

Let's call an end to it here and move on.

jul said...