One of the most divisive doctrines churches in the Stone/Campbell movement have come up with is the notion that the treasury—the money donated by church members—is somehow a sacred fund, or the “Lord’s Treasury.” This belief naturally creates an explosive cache of ammunition with which to shell “the enemy” over every difference of opinion on how to use those funds. Stanton is not the only group to fall into this error; it’s also common in mainline and conservative factions of the churches of Christ.
Here are a few disputes that have created schisms among believers:
- Can a church build kitchens and fellowship halls with the “Lord’s money?”
- Can churches support Christian colleges with the “Lord’s money,” individually, or not at all?
- Can members hold bake sales and other fund raisers to supplement the “Lord’s Treasury?”
- Is it OK to take up a second collection of any sort for any purpose (like Sunday afternoon)?
But the idea that the “treasury” (never once does the New Testament call it that, by the way) is a sacred fund is foreign to the scriptures. In fact, you may be shocked to learn that that nowhere does the New Testament teach us that we’re even to give our money to the Lord in order for it to be redistributed according to all the rules various factions have laid out.
How many times have we all heard the phrase “We’re now going to give back to the Lord a portion of what he’s blessed us with?” Giving every week for all time is foreign to scripture, and was never said to be the Lord’s money. Really, all of our money is the Lord’s:
Psalm 24:1 – The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein…
Some will say the church can donate to any cause they want, as long as it’s run through Biblical channels of authority (meaning elders—whoops, Stanton doesn’t have any). Others say even that wouldn’t allow supporting Bible colleges, orphanages, or other types of ministries with this “Lord’s money.”
The fact is, there is zero evidence that the New Testament church was ever intended to maintain a standing treasury, much less own property, build buildings, or regularly collect and disburse funds. I am not necessarily opposed to these practices, but let’s just be honest—they are innovations. They are foreign to New Testament scripture, at the very least.
Part of the problem may be the misunderstanding that “the collection” referred to by Paul is the money, rather than the act of collecting it. It is a subtle difference, but one that has huge implications when we understand it properly.
1 Corinthians 16:1-2 – Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: 2 On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come. (NKJV)
Note that he did not say “Now concerning the treasury of the saints…,” which seems to take for granted that there will always be one. Instead, he’s saying “Now concerning the gathering of funds for the saints….”
This is grammatically and contextually correct, and it makes it clear that Paul is simply giving instructions for dealing with a particular need. This silly misunderstanding has caused us to be too quick to seize these verses as a legal precedent for a standing “treasury” for the church.
But if these verses command a standing treasury, then what do we do with verse 3?
1 Corinthians 16:3 – And when I come, whomever you approve by your letters I will send to bear your gift to Jerusalem.
We’ll be waiting a long time for Paul to show up in our congregations to bring our liberality to Jerusalem. Of course, that’s absurd, but my point is this: Where do we get the idea that Galatian and Corinthian churches we’re meant to keep donating to a standing fund after Paul picked up the benevolence for the Jerusalem brethren? Certainly not from the New Testament. That’s our own interpretation added to what the scriptures actually say.
Now it’s true that the apostles, in the days following Pentecost in Acts 2, created a common fund in Jerusalem:
Acts 4:32-37 – Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. 33 And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. 34 There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold 35 and laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. 36 Thus Joseph, who was also called by the apostles Barnabas (which means son of encouragement), a Levite, a native of Cyprus, 37 sold a field that belonged to him and brought the money and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
But I would point out that there is no indication that the common fund was anything more than a means to accomplish the desired end of supplying the needs of saints who suddenly converted to a new faith on Pentecost while hundreds of miles away from their own homes. Needs were great, and the saints pitched in to help each other out. That’s all there is to it.
When our country was formed, many were adamantly opposed to the creation of a standing army. They felt that it was just asking for trouble to place too much power in the hands of a military force that would not be needed very often. What does it do when there is no war? They had just shaken off one tyrannical ruler who used his army against his own people, and they did not want another one.
The same fears are applicable to the creation of a standing “church treasury.” By having a common purse, the question naturally follows “How can we fund it?” and “How are we going to spend it?” Enter diverse opinions and doctrinal disputes, and voila, we have all of the fruitless debates we see today in some factions of Christendom.
Instead, we just need to realize that the church treasury is simply a fund created by and for a congregation to use in a way that they believe advances the cause of Christ. We may be as conservative or as “liberal” as we like in our own congregation, but we have no right to create our own laws and regulations governing the use of another congregation’s money. We can offer our opinions. We can suggest the wisdom of one approach over another. But it is their money, entrusted to them by the Lord, donated for the purpose of funding their own congregation’s work as they understand to be the wisest use.
In fact, when we properly understand the Christian faith and the liberty we have in Jesus Christ, we will understand that we are not confined by some convoluted legal framework of “command, example, and necessary inference.” No, Jesus’ love doesn’t confine us, it liberates us to serve God and our fellow man creatively. We should be looking for new, different, and more effective ways to use the resources God gives us to serve God and serve people, not looking for ways to restrict ourselves and others.
You know what I found upsetting sometimes was the subjectivity in which the collection was used. While everyone gave, as in everything else, the teachers really had the say so about where the money went. When brethren wanted to give to the brethren in Mexico, we were told to give it out of our pockets though there was over 50k in the bank. Also, the teacher who was the contact with Mexico pretty much said things like They are used to living like that OR We can't give because then they just come to church for the money. Just ridiculous!… Read more »
What happened in the December meeting you mentioned? Did people from the Mexico church fly back and give an update?
Thank You Kevin for this article! When I finally studied out "the collection", I came to the same understandings! I had to realize that "the collection" did not mean what we were doing every week, instead it was the gathering up of money for Jerusalem at that time! In classes we were constantly being taught that 1CO. 16 1-2 was a command, for us, from God. Yet it is not-it was from Paul, for the churches in Corinth and Galatia only. And once he came to pick it up and take it to Jerusalem, did they continue the practice? We… Read more »
Been there, done that. I was 12 when we sold mos of our stuff to fund moving to Arizona which I still look at as the most defining moment in my life, in both good and bad ways. On the one hand, I wouldn't be who I am today, and I like me, on the other hand, I probably would have liked the other guy as well. I try and not think about it, I have carved a beat spot in life, but…who knows?
Hey Frank! Glad to hear from you! I, too, remember when you all moved to Phoenix, it was a sad day for me. Lost my children! Hope all is well with you, and that you are able to pull out the good memories of your Mom and smile! Love you lots!
Kevin the December meeting was in Nuevo Laredo bcs the brethren from Mexico couldn't cross. I think they're gonna try to do it annually now. It was up to whoever wanted to come, though of course rules started to get in place by main teacher JS for those not in the SA congregation such as purpose and knowing the language. The brethren there were able to make connections and hear of their sufferings personally. Even there people gave out of their own pockets. The hotel conference room was paid by the collection but everything else like room, food was paid… Read more »
In any of the congregation, has anybody heard of or has it been taught that there needs to be prerequisites met before the church can decide to help?
Oh you know Lynn…the prerequisite is always to counsel first, and sometimes it's up to outside counsel. So much for being autonomous.
What seemed to be happening more and more in Portland was where there was a need take up a private donation rather than going to the treasury. Example supplies for building clean up or gasoline for a member. Of course when the the paid preachers/evangelists had needs the treasury was used. Portland has a healthy treasury I never understood why it was just not used for all circumstances. Of course I had opportunity to object. But you know what comes next.
Yes we know what happens next! I learned that so many people were typically in agreement on one thing, such as giving from the collection, but the leaders were not of the same mind. That's why they don't vote or do a show of hands. I can think of a few times when others told me they were thinking the same thing or thanked me for bringing something up or questioning a decision. I'm not saying I was always right but so many people there are afraid of speaking up esp once a preacher has made his point of view… Read more »
Seeking, we all know that there will be no elders in Merie's Group so long as the ones in power are still in power. They will not let go of the authority they have, yet if there are elders that's exactly what they would have to do! And, they would have to (gasp) do as the elders say! And, they would have to submit to being reproved by the elder from time to time too!!
So, NO. It's not going to happen so long as they are alive.
I can't imagine not voting for something the church was presenting g to the congregation. However I have always been involved with only two churches and they both have elders. I can think of a time when we voted against something the pastor suggested and really wanted. It was a building expansion project and the congregation did not think we were large enough to support it. Of course, there were a few that wanted it but it was voted down. In years past a small congregation gave a lot to grow the church even to the point of getting a… Read more »
Jo, I'm in the same situation as you. They really are unapproachable. They are taught how to be this way also
I was told not too long ago that the whole church decided not to have Facebook because it was inappropriate. I laughed and told that person "NO the whole church did not decide". That particular person even told me Paula doesn't use her Facebook anymore and had asked me when was the last time you saw her use it. And at that time I told that person just less than a month ago LOL so obviously the whole church didn't decide on Facebook. I'm sure just 4 of them did, so the four of them are considered the whole church.… Read more »
They don't want you to stay connected and learn from an outsider like me that there is a life without the cult. I have seen it in person after person after they get the strength to leave the cult. The only issue they have are the family members still inside and some have issues they have to resolve but they can and many have found joy and love again. Real love!
Insane, dead or in prison is how former members are portrayed to the those that stay. The leaders have to give a discouragement speech whenever a member stops coming to stop others from leaving as well. The discouragement speech is full of doom and gloom of ex members lives, which is really just a bunch of baloney. If they do not have contact with former members how can they know what happens to them in their lives after the stop coming? It is just lies and exaggeration. My life got much better after leaving the dark church, the child abuse… Read more »
Actually when I was IN the church I felt insane, dead and was in a prison already! My life is excellent now and I'm quite happy. It's amazing how they think they know all about the members that leave! Their minds are so closed. They get to where they know nothing of the real world, let alone knowing a members life/mind years after they have left.
Anon 7:43 and 10:19 spot on with your points. Nothing positive could ever be said about someone who leaves this oppressive cult. Discouraging speeches is exactly what takes place. The gossip of negativity concerning those that leave no matter how they were in the cult is normal conversation amongst members. It's just who they are elevating themselves above all others outside of there cult.
The diatribe used against former members, people who you have developed a relationship with, have developed a love for is disgusting. Listening to the slander about those who stop coming made me stop and ask "does the church have anything good to say?" and no they don't. when you can only see the bad in every situation, and only see the bad in others you have a "negative filter" upon your mind. Both good and bad things happen to people in life both blessings and curses. The SCOC portrays only one side of life, the negative side, they are a… Read more »
There are actually ex members who have left the cult because they recognized the evil of the cult and were smart enough to get out. Myself just the horrible example of the hypocrite preacher in Portland was a clur to know something is wrong with this place.
Oops should've been clue not clur above. Just a thought as Merie's cult teaches you either love or hate really no middle ground with them. Does that mean they hate everyone outside of there cult. If so would that not classify them as a hate group? Hmm.
All these questions have such simple answers. Doesn't anyone in the Portland church even ask 'him' WHY all this crazy stuff? People on this blog do not make stuff up and to stay in the church if you are reading this makes you pretty much a mindless person. I can't even explain what I'm trying to say nicely here as it's all too crazy for me. I remember the Portland preacher coming up to me and telling me "boy he's really happy and smiling now" .. I asked him who he was even talking about.. His answer was "the devil"..… Read more »
Anon 3:19. How long have you been out of the cult? I would love to meet and talk to you.
The SCOC teaches they are the one true church but that is not what they really teach. What they teach is: they have the one true Christian. Most religious groups are based upon the leader being God or having been touched by God. By example the believe Merie was the one true Christian. This claim not only excludes all other religions but it also makes everyone else inferior to her. The evangelist in Spring Valley is today "the one true Christian" reflected in his repetitive lessons "I am the good fruit and everyone else is the bad fruit." The deception… Read more »
Should say: How many have left thinking they are not loved by God because they were not loved by the "one true Christian?"
Jo, do you have an email address? I'm not going to say who I am on here yet on this blog.. My story is a bit different so it's easy to give away who I am.. Not because I'm scared.. I'm just working on stuff yet 🙂
Anon 6:57 great points. The Spring Valley guy should not be acknowledged as an evangelist for starters. Nothing more than one of two paid preachers in the cult. He is far from a leader as a leader would not be fearful to answer real questions nor be fearful to the point of threatening members from reading this blog. Come on GP quit being a coward. His fruit is rotten a very deceived man who is not a Christian. No member of this cult could be a Christian. If I'm not mistaken is this not the man who said do not… Read more »
Mr. Kevin, i think you should monitor better your blog. You are suppose to be a honorable man. You saud to "avoid all personal attacks, names and initials." Be a man of your words
Anon 11:56 oops if you are referring to my comment. You think I crossed a line? Lines have first been crossed by this cult. They have attacked me. Slander has been committed against me. They continue to lie against me. My marriage is affected because of the unrighteousness of this cult. Calling this cult out for what they are is not an attack it's the truth.
AnonymousSeptember 7, 2017 at 7:01 PM
I never felt a lack of love from God for what they were doing. I felt a huge lack of love from them. I could fill a book over the things that they do to people in their lack of love.
Anon on September 7 at 9:30 PM: Do I know you? If so, I would love to reconnect with you! Kevin has my email address, I give him permission to give it to you! So glad you found your way out!
Debby.. I don't think I know you. I was in the Portland church for a very short time around 8 years ago or so, but before this, for many years, I dealt with the church in a certain way..
anon @3:55…then regoice & be excceedingly glad as i think the scripture says. Keven laid the ground rules…step up and abide them…"Note: Please avoid all personal attacks, names and initials. If you see something that you think crosses the line, please contact me." you sounds like a smart enuogh man but with a chip on shoulder. move on.com and begin a congregation to expose the guys. Preach the word, be ready all the time Paul told timothy. How about you. I'm gone with these guys many years ago. I read for the entertainment and the intellectual dishonesty. Intellectual honesty went… Read more »
When a person is resisting change in life the behaviors exhibited can be rage, revenge, apathy, despair, and addiction. Addiction can take several forms from alcoholism, to drug abuse, to gluttony, and others. The SCOC had an evangelist once who was withdrawn from and he left and became an alcoholic hiding out in motel rooms and getting drunk. This former evangelist was resisting change and what was the change required of him? He had to take a lower seat to a better man. In Phoenix we had a man whose addiction was food. This man weighed in at over 375… Read more »
Sounds like physco babble as Dr. Laura says or you have been to a 12 step program . I do not hear much about God in these comments and mostly negative talk. Hardly anything about love and joy. Lots about fear and all because of these few men who seem to think they have power and are God. They sound like the congregations give them this power because they so desperately want to follow them and why? Because only the y are going to Heaven? This is not a church it is a cult
Anon 7:18 and you my friend sounds like someone still in the church sticking up for these evil preachers/evangelists and do not want the truth be known from any of the members who have left this church? (Forgive me this is not a church but a cult). Continuing to post and get feelings out will help those afraid to post and eventually they will even if trying to put it all behind you. Encourage one another!
There is two sides to every story. One side is from the abused and the other is from the abusers. The abused tell what happened and the abuser claims it is a personal attack, both sides are true in their own eyes. The SCOC has "blog police" who read and then write counter posts defending their behavior or attacking those who point out their abusive behaviors. The SCOC is so insecure that instead of studying their Bibles and preaching love peace and joy to their followers they are on this blog acting as the enforcers of Kevin's minimal rules. I… Read more »
That makes sense. Thanks!
That is why I say the people in the church are mindless to a point and most of them uneducated when it comes to alot of stuff, only really interacting within the church. If I had been born into this church I don't think I'd have many smarts. I don't mean this in a cruel way, but it's certainly the way I think.
12 step programs, Dr. Laura, and Dr. Phil will not help one overcome hatred. I love you Johhny Shaw! You need to learn to forgive your abuser not hate him!
Forgiving an abuser may be fine and dandy but the abuser also needs to be stopped
Their mindlessness comes from a lack of study. It is interesting how that "study" is constantly pounded into us, yet, that is this church's downfall. When we have the knowledge from our studies we can see the difference between right and wrong. In Tacoma, the preacher from the south has said in open class that he knows that there are people who are not studying, yet the teachers rest on the popular vote of the congregation, who apparently are not studying, to cast vote on what they believe to be right or wrong. This causes great injustices served by the… Read more »
Anon 6:50 absolutely. The SV paid preacher is nothing but a bully. Bullies need to be stopped as well.
Forgiving an abuser will help stop the cycle of abuse. Because I am a bigger person than my abuser I am able to forgive him/her and treat others with respect and not follow the example of abuse done to me. There are many different types of abuse: physical, emotional, verbal, financial, and neglect to name a few. We had one member here in Phoenix without food, he ate 30 day old greens and got stomach cramps and we found him doubled over on the sidewalk outside a grocery store at 43 ave and Thomas road. At the same time we… Read more »
So do the congregations know now that he had support from his family with his bragging about 25 hours a week? I have seen alot of the Christians ask the WORDLY people for money when they want nothing to do with them.
Craig, if you are "having problems in your marriage" it will only get worse. Leave your wife Now. Do not stay and suffer the disappearance of the woman you loved like I did.This cult has taken over your wife's mind like they did to my wife over 25 yrs ago. Believe me she will not return to the woman she was before the cult's influence. My children essentially lost their mother to these sick and evil cult leaders. Tell me Craig does your wife's support of the Cult come from money she earns or from your earnings. The money is… Read more »
Anon @ 9:34 I did expose his deceitful behavior before but not before the damage was done. Several men tried his self employment 25 hours a week example and the wives and children of the self employed men suffered greatly, not having enough money for food ,rent, medical insurance and the like. With the lies about his income one has to wonder what else was a lie that he claimed as true? Worship of the evangelist kept him out of trouble for when you provide financial support to the evangelist he does not look to closely at your congregation.
KF I'm right along side of you in the situation of the church taking my other half. A husband and wife should never treat each other the way they do and not be able to talk about the church. The church trys to control the member totally. I know because it was done to me on both ends of the stick. They go a little too far on their so called 'murmuring' to where it's Physcotic
I read on here the members are not allowed outside counseling. They know everything so why would their members need counseling from anyone but them? Haha. I Wonder if everyone WORDLY was in this church how there would be a doctor if not allowed as a profession. Oh they would come up with some crazy new thing I'm sure. If one of the big wigs were sick they'd change those rules then..HA. They are users of the world that they don't like. Makes alot of sense. Lol
Concerned outsider: a dark church is one in which they do not follow Jesus Christ as leader but rather their own desires. Without the teachings of Jesus it is just another group of the blind leading the blind. In my time with the group the primary concern was not teaching members what Christ said and the example he gave for us to follow but rather it was keeping the leader happy, because when the evangelist in Spring valley got angry people got kicked out of the group (and condemned to hell) The teaching of Christ are largely ignored, the example… Read more »
Anon 7:34 PM When I was seeing a lot of doctors I was told by the spine center to see a psychologist over the depression that can come with chronic pain. (I found I was avoiding people to deal with it.) I talked to the wife of the southern Evan and she told me to go ahead and go. (It really helped with my getting disability.) When the congregation found out, I was blasted from the pulpit. I was so ashamed. I brought up this murmuring to the Evan and he just ignored it. Last I knew hew is still… Read more »
LYNN I also got good advice from that evan's wife. But ultimately she still said my options were up to me, and not in a "you'll be sorry if u don't do what I say" way. It was during a visit. It's too bad the system that's set up overrules good people. They are good people but also trapped in that system. East Coast definitely has it less strict than West Coast, that's for sure, though it really is just the lesser of two evils.
Seeking great points and I agree with you concerning the people many good people, Hopefully they will be able to escape the oppression and corruption.
Anon 9:34 so true. How disingenuous it is as well. Especially when they claim they take care of there own. Untrue only when all other sources have been exhausted. This was another doctrine of there's I never bought into,
Anon 7:18 no chip on my shoulder just speaking the truth and hoping to expose this cult as much as possible. My understanding was initials were okay. I'm open to correction if Kevin thinks Ive crossed any lines. I'm certainly not an attacker. I'm just countering there attack on me. I don't start fights but I sure do finish them. Pride okay I fight to win. More pride I know need to work on it. The arrogant ways of Merie's cult built some pride up withen me you could say. More than ever. If you want to be entertained hopefully… Read more »
I have been saying for a long time that I would love to debate any of these leaders.
You know to much about them Lynn. As do I. That is why I could never in good conscience become a member with them. You have seen bad examples. The preacher in Portland is the worst example. Complete fraud of what is suppose to be a Christian. What an embarrassment.
AnonymousSeptember 9, 2017 at 7:50 PM
I'm loven this! I was so done with these guys long ago. You got examples of Preeman getting angry and kiking people out. I'll add it to my list. Hey cusick, just saying what Kevin is saying. It'splain as day in yellow. slow down bud.
By example set by the tow truck preacher the evangelist in Spring valley was to be worshipped like a god. While brethren went without food, and single mothers were running out of gas on the way home from bible class, while we paid out of our own pockets to start the church in Prescott and the attempt to start a church in Mesa, while trying to get any help for the poor was like pulling teeth the tow truck preacher was more than generous with the Lord's treasury toward anything the evangelist wanted. The Lord's treasury was not short on… Read more »
The members 'allow' themselves to be treated like this. That is why I say Mindless members. I'd laugh in someone's face over all this and certainly speak my mind if I saw members needing food etc while I was in the church. I do remember the evangalist in spring valley when he was in Portland saying how he had not gotten a raise in many years and even felt guilty for buying a candy bar. Shouldn't be buying a un needed candy bar when others are hungry then. I'd feell bad too HA..Wow on how scared the members become. I'll… Read more »
Anon 4:45 you are correct. Does the paid preachers in SV and Greenville have to exhaust all resources before going to the treasury for needs other than their normal support? That practice you think keep those who do have needs from asking for help? The tow truck preacher was wrong. Was he the only decision maker which would be wrong too.
In all fairness the evangelist in Spring valley is underpaid for the amount of work he does do. He deserves a raise and at the same time the poor need help and the leaders in Phoenix were hoarding money. Be generous with the money and not selfish, what good is it to have 50,000 (and at times much more) and people in need? The tow truck preacher was the dominating leader while in Phoenix and he was great at discouragement (if nothing else) He admitted that the church could buy a member an automobile if the need was there but… Read more »
AnonymousSeptember 10, 2017 at 4:45 PM Ok but where are the examples of himself getting angry at the porr christians and kikking em out ??
Anon 8:19 I'm not the one you are waiting on the answer from but unscriptial withdraws is something he's done many times to the 'poor Christians' lol so proof the old guy is wrong and needs to listen to people and study before he kicks people out with unscriptial withdrawals
I was missing a lot of work seeing doctors and spending days off. There were a few times that I needed financial help. Whenever I would go to the church for it I would get interrogated about it. Then other people would walk up doing the same thing. I quit even asking. During this time I would go sell at the swap meet to make money to help, but a lot of times is would make me such a physical mess that there were times I couldn't make it to worship. I got chastised for that too. Since my condition… Read more »
Very sad as the church is s the people not the leaders and what happened tor the "love bombing"? Many people who go to any kind of church feel neglected at times. If the neglected feel unloved or left out and not getting nurtured it is time to get out and find another church. On the other hand some people want a lot and are very needy. We had a couple that was anew to our church and I belong to a different denomination and were expecting a baby. We we t overboard helping this couple with a baby shower… Read more »
nonymousSeptember 10, 2017 at 10:15 PM
Anon 8:19 I'm not the one you are waiting on the answer from but unscriptial withdraws is something he's done many times to the 'poor Christians' lol so proof the old guy is wrong and needs to listen to people and study before he kicks people out with unscriptial withdrawals
But where/who/when did the ol guy get angry and kikk em out? If you have the info, let's hear it, I would like to add these to my list. If you don't have it, then say that's what I heard, but i dunno for sure
With the female glutton in Des Moines Iowa and her husband they were both told by the evangelist that they were going to hell and then would never meet again, straight out rejection and condemnation to hell.
Anon 6:50 what paid preacher was that who said it? Judge and jury right there. Wow, gave them no place for repentance. Interesting.
Yes it was the evangelist who angrily denounced her and rejected and condemned her and her husband. 1 Peter 4:17 is the scripture used "For the time is come that judgement begin at the house of God" and this means that the leader on earth is the judge over the church and all its members and the leader decides who stays and goes to Heaven and who goes and is condemned to Hell, yes the leader is the a king on earth and also judge, jury and executioner all in one. This is why the teachers(enforcers of his judgments) walk… Read more »
Anon 9:06 wow a lot to think on very interesting. No question the SV paid preacher is the what if of your last sentence as all cult leaders are. He knows who I am been to my house had some conversations with him. Use to respect him before I found out the truth about Merie's cult and they remade me a member somehow and withdrew from me. I'd say this man is being exposed for what he really is. A snake. What they did to Mr. Ezell completely wrong just because he disagreed with something. Sounds so familiar and a… Read more »
I have to wonder if 1 peter 4:17 is not being taken out of context. Peter seems to be talking about himself, looking at his personal history of proclaiming to be faithful until death the turning around and denying Christ, being called Satan by Christ, having to be publicly corrected by the Apostle Paul would Peter pass the good christian/evil christian test himself? If we would judge ourselves we would not have to be judged (1 Corinthians 11:31) seems to be the message, maybe Kevin can comment as to the correct understanding. Does 1 Peter 4:17 mean we as Christians… Read more »
It was in the above application. We are all just brethren and none of us has been given the power or responsibility of judging anyone. That lies with God and judgement day.
Our judging is only limited to the correction of sin, not to condemnation.
Anon 8:30, if they are saying that judgment in 1 Peter 4:17 is the judgment of teachers, then yes, they are pulling that grossly out of context. There was a literal, physical judgment coming to the Jews and Christians in 70 AD at the hands of the Romans in the form of extreme persecution. Jerusalem and the temple would be wiped out, the generation of Jews that delivered up Jesus to be crucified would be wiped out, but "he who remained faithful to the end" through all of it would be saved. I think this rapidly approaching persecution is what… Read more »
The wife of the Mercedes mechanic here in Phoenix use to look at you angrily and say "IT IS TIME FOR JUDGEMENT TO BEGIN AT THE HOUSE OF GOD" implying that she had judged you unworthy of membership in her church. While Your here Kevin let me ask you about Matthew 12:41-42 where Jesus says the men of nineveh and the queen of the south shall rise up and judge this generation, is Jesus implying that those outside Israel who became obedient went to heaven, and will act as judges of God's people the Jews? Could you say then that… Read more »
Anon 7:17, regarding Matthew 12:41-42. Absolutely, those outside of Israel could be saved if they followed whatever laws of God were delivered to them. The Law of Moses was only delivered to Israel, not the rest of the world. Would you condemn your kids for not obeying you when you deliberately didn't tell most of them what to obey? How unjust is that? The salvation of Israel only is one of those ridiculous ideas that paints God as a grossly unjust, authoritarian dictator. Outside of the SCOC, it is commonly understood that gentiles continued to be under some form of… Read more »
When I was baptized into the church I was an optimist character and believed I was joining a community of those who shared the same beliefs as me. I was happy go lucky, impulsive, inconsistent, and undependable. I was generous to a fault giving to others as I wanted to be given to. As an optimist when I was faced with a challenge I would run away to avoid conflict rather than increasing my effort to meet the challenge. I believed that "everything would work out all right" and this led to me avoiding responsibility for events in life and… Read more »
Excellent. Yes, there are many personality types, and the pessimist vs. optimist differences can cause conflicts. Both can be used in the kingdom for good, when both are tempered with moderation. I am the sometimes irrationally optimistic one in my marriage, and my wife is the what we joke about as the "realist." Both of us have a necessary role in shaping each other and informing the other in the areas that are intuitive for us, and we each have to try to see where the other might have a better angle on each situation. 1 Corinthians 12:12-27 – There… Read more »
Religion can be a coping mechanism in hard times. Religion can be either a positive coping mechanism or a negative coping mechanism. When terrible things happen to a positive person they will say to themselves "bad things happen to everyone, this is just my turn and God will help me through this". When terrible things happen to a negative person they will say to themselves "God is punishing me" or "God has abandoned me." The SCOC taught me negative religious coping, that is, every time something bad happened it was a curse from God and as a result I did… Read more »
Anon 9:43 I'm just getting warmed up bud.
Looks like someone is Concerned about the Concerned Outsider. This is adding mystery to the blog. Evidently the word is out. Cult members are acting wildly. Out of the control of their cult captors. They are endangering themselves to the cult by daring to enter this blog and express themselves unfiltered by their leaders. I commend you brave souls who continue to reason your way to a free-mind. I think the tide of their fear is turning back on them now. As their lines of support dry up, they will become the desperate ones , who will be passed by… Read more »
I think it is wonderful we are hearing from some new bloggers with their feedback and opinions. And for the record I hope the leaders and facilitators I hope they especially are reading the blogs. I will not call them by their phony titles. Wondering what their sermon was about this week. Any prayers for Florida? Any mention of 911. Prays for our country?
Concerned outsider 12:21 unless it affects them the answer concerning prayer is no, no and no. They will pray for the leaders of the country to make good decisions for the sake of them. You see the theme hear. It's all about them.
Or they can pray for someone to be safe on their way there to get baptized… They did that for me.. How sweet haha
Anon 3:11 for sure nothing but sweethearts. You were about ready to become a Weissalite. Hmm or something else.
Craig, good one.. Lol
They may be what they are, but I pray for them every day to come to the correct understandings.
Anon 6:34 sarcasm concerning the SV paid preacher needing a raise because he is underpaid? Lol lol lol. The man deserves nothing. Zilch. Needs to be fired. I have good reasons why.
I don't agree with anon that the SV Evangelist should be paid. He didn't visit our congregation in a decade. The one time he went was just to force a withdrawal of the teachers. Who's gonna go against the withdrawal when he makes all that effort to finally visit? He can provide or ask his family like we all had to. And may I add… there is WAY too much testosterone on this thread! You men need to cool off a bit. I've lost my daughters, who are still technically teens, to this cult. We're not going to convince anyone… Read more »
Testosterone is not the correct adjective; aggression is. Women ca be just as aggressive if not more than men. The wife of the Mercedes mechanic, in Phoenix was very aggressive. She showed her anger at children by sharing in class how when she was in the lutheran church (or methodist?) the children were well behaved not like the children in the SCOC. I started questioning in my mind since when does the one true church cite false religion for an example to follow? Do the Lutherans keep the entire sunday like the SCOC does? Expecting children to be perfect for… Read more »
It sounds as if a lot of people leave the church/cult considering how small the total membership is throughout the states. Are these people who are new mainly or people that are kicked out and/or withdrawn? With so many people leaving or not staying didn't that make any of you wonder? With all the gossip and tattle telling didn't that seem odd to you especially in church. I know the children were told not to tattle tale. Are they told not to talk about church? I never heard much about church with my grands unless I asked but they did… Read more »
Jo, it really is quite comical.. And no they don't even want you to like the worldly people or be around them (unless u need money from them.. Ha) really so you're not to really talk about anything.. I mean they can't stop you.. But they try to control every aspect of your life.. Some people still do what they want.. I know people in the church that are doing things that are against the church.. They are good at manipulating the church and the church has no clue even though they even on the things they do.. As they… Read more »
I haven't had time to monitor comments for awhile now. Just a few things before I have to get back to work: 1) I don't understand why some people stay and continue to not follow the doctrines of the church, unless it is purely for family reasons. If it's the One True Church, they should obey it. If they don't feel the need to obey it, aren't they acknowledging that it's not the One True Church? 2) I honestly don't know the best policy on using initials. I don't like it, and I frankly don't like the tone of many… Read more »
One is in the church still for family. Another couple for family also, but they believe it's the one true church so they disregard all their man made rules thinking they'll still go to heaven without listening to the so called rulers of the church on alot of things/rules. That's the way they explained it to me anyways.
I understand. The human mind has a unique ability to believe two contradictory things at once.
Nice to hear from you Kevin. I for one have missed you.
Seeking, was it only you and you husband who left your congregation or did another couple leave too? Are you finding some good fellowship with people in your current congregation? I hope so.
Thank you, Jo.
My husband and I left. Another couple a few weeks later but they returned. I was so sad as I consider them friends. But both were raised in the SCOC so I can imagine it's tough. One thing I am learning is that in the SCOC I would have had to remain a very immature Christian. I would be told what to do, where to go, and how to raise my kids based not on the bible but on the leader's consciences. Now in the COC I attend, not much of that is specifically taught because they really stick to… Read more »
And we are finding great fellowship though it's different. They only get together monthly and we've befriended several and some Sunday ever we go eat out. This Sunday we hosted our first gathering in our home and it was great!
* some Sunday evenings
I'm just gonna out myself. I am M. Long, formerly Prieto. From SA. Avoiding full name due to Google searches. 🙂
Welcome M Long I hope to read edifying posts from your experiences.