Sunday, September 02, 2007

Utterly disgraceful.....

Have these people no shame?! It's bad enough that these Word-faith heretics blaspheme Christ with their teachings and their life, now as they go through their multi-million dollar divorces, the stupid 'sheep' or probably goats will allow them to continue on their 'pastoral' roles in the 'church'! Utterly disgraceful and despicable! Divorcees are NOT allowed to be office bearers/ pastors etc, regardless of the reason of their divorce, for they bring reproach to the Church. And that is my stand and the biblical position. In 1 Tim. 3, a overseer/bishop/elder must be above reproach (v. 2) and manage his household well (v. 5). Ditto for deacons too (v. 12). Whoever does so is in rebellion against God, and does bring the wrath of God against him (worse still her)! And that is final!!

[HT: Christian Research Net]

8 comments:

Mark said...

I am not familiar with the people referred to in the link so my comment is not directed to them. However, I am interested in this statement you made.

"Divorcees are NOT allowed to be office bearers/ pastors etc, regardless of the reason of their divorce, for they bring reproach to the Church. And that is my stand and the biblical position."

What exactly is the support for this position? The 'above reproach' in 1 Tim 3? There is nothing at all in that verse to indicate divorce specifically is what Paul had in mind. If we apply the verse in the way you seem to be doing, any public sin at all would permanently barr a man from the ministry.

Also, the idea that divorce is the 'unforgivable sin' as far as entrance to the ministry is concerned may be popular in conservative christian circles, but it does seem to me to fly in the face of the idea of the value of repentence. If Christ has washed away a christian's sin in his blood, and the christian has practically repented and forsaken the sin, why should it follow him around like a criminal record?

Now, if God has it should be that way, so be it. But where has God marked out divorce as such a 'special sin' of this sort? So far all the logic I have seen regarding this will require, to be consistent, the application of the principle to all large public sins, not just divorce.

ddd said...

Hello Mark,

I think first of all that you must notice that I say that such people are not allowed to be office bearers; I never mentioned they can't be serving God in other capacities.

Secondly, you are correct to say that logically my position entails that any large public sin would bar a person permanently from being an office bearer, and I concur. Although there is no 'unforgiveable sin' that a true Christian can commit, there are still eartly consequences of sin, and this is one of them. Office bearers serve before God as role models to the members of the Church, and therefore they must not have anything on their account which can be used to bring the Church and the name of Christ into disrepute, which any large public sin would do. (Especially if it is committed when the person is a Christian and/or is serving as an office bearer). Note that since the issue is the reputation of Christ, this does not preclude people who committed serious crimes before they are saved, but divorcees are always not allowed since their very status as 'Divorcee' brings disrepute to the name of Christ and the covenental institution of marriage, regardless of whether the person being considered or considering is the innocent party in the divorce.

Mark said...

Hi Daniel,

Thanks for your response.

I appreciate the consistency of your position, as well as your zeal for the purity of the church leadership.

I fully agree that while we may be forgiven by God, there are still earthly consequences to sin that we have to live with.

However, I must still ask, where exactly does the bible say that someone who committs any large public sin can never be an elder?

You mentioned 1 Tim 3 and 'beyond reproach' but does that really mean their entire life must have been beyond reproach? Or does it refer to their current state of life? Peter and David committed serious sins but did not give up their leadership positions. Paul committed great sins against the church but still took on a position of high authority after conversion. Of course, these stories are not necessarily prescriptive for us today, but since I see no explicit command that large public sins barr men from church office even after repented of and repuidiated, I am not sure why you (and many other christians) take the position you do.

ddd said...

Hello Mark,

| However, I must still ask, where
| exactly does the bible say that
| someone who committs any large
| public sin can never be an
| elder?

Such is an application of 1 Tim. 3:2, not something found 'exactly' in it. The question to be asked is very simple: Does the fact that a person who has committed a crime/ serious sin somehow taints the person's witness as the foremost representative of Christ and His Church? For example, if a person was convicted of rape while bearing the name of Christ (as a Christian), would you think that the person can ever be in a position to represent Christ and the Church as an office bearer, as the 'chief of ambassadors', wihtout bringing reproach to the name of Christ? (I am not talking now about people who commits serious sins/ crimes while they are non-Christians.)

With regards to your question as to whether the phrase 'beyond reproach' refers to their entire life or their current state of life, it refers to the current state of life. However, as we have agreed on, sins have earthly consequences, and one of the earthly consequences of certain sins is that they render the people involved unfit for office.

With regards to people in the Bible, David was a king not a prophet or priest (the OT equivalent of office bearers) so his example is not admissible. (His example only applies to Christians in general in other ministries). As for Peter, his sin was not one of the disqualifying sins, as it was foreordained that 'they will strike the shepherd and the sheep will scatter' (a unique occasion, I may add). Furthermore, Jesus Himself personally reinstated Peter as seen in Jn. 21:15-17. Finally, with regards to Paul, his serious sins were committed while not a Christian, and they do not include divorce.

orthopodeo said...

Although I live in Georgia now, I am from the Tampa Bay area and cannot even begin to tell the eternal damage of Without Walls International. Already, the divorce is not seen biblically as disqualifying these two from "ministry" (I dare call what they do true ministry), but just taking them in different directions. Apparently (with such a view), God denies His Word, and calls a husband and wife in different directions. Praise God for brothers like you that affirm biblical truth!

ddd said...

Thanks Orthopodeo.

Mark said...

Daniel,

Thanks again for the reply, and sorry for the late response. I guess my question is essentially this:

Here is a statement you made:

"...and one of the earthly consequences of certain sins is that they render the people involved unfit for office."

What is the biblical backing for this? Where does the bible identify these 'certain sins' and where does it say they forever exclude a man from office even after repentence?

ddd said...

Hello Mark,

that statment is a conclusion derived from a few premises. For example, for the case of divorces:

1) The sin of divorce has earthly consequences for both parties

2) Earthly consequences of divorce resonate up to and even beyond the grave, of which one of them is reproach...

3) A divorcee, by virtue of his/her status, carries the reproach of divorce, even if the sin is not their fault or they have repented of it (Unless they revoke the divorce)

=> Therefore 4) a divorcee cannot fulfil the qualification of being without reproach circa 1 Tim. 3:2.

===> 5) Divorce is a earthly sin which renders the person involved unfit for being an office-bearer.


Just fyi, the reason why divorce has such a strong reproach is because:

1) Marriage is a sacred covenant between one man and one woman till death do them part (Gen. 2:24; cf Eph. 5:31)

2) The biblical concept of a covenant is a very serious affair conveyed in a manner that states that the person who broke the covenant deserves to be chopped into two (cf Gen. 15)

3) Divorce breaks the marriage covenant and thus is a very serious offence. Although the innocent party does not bear the guilt of divorce, he/she is involved in it and thus must bear the reproach.


As for other sins, reason along the same lines as above. If it can be shown that such a sin brings reproach regardless of whether the person repented or not (i.e. as part of the earthly consequences), then commiting such sins render such people unfit for office. Their sins are of course forgiven, but that's not the point.