[House Church Talk] Re: house church talk Digest, Vol 3, Issue 27

Ted B. Harris tedmail at eoni.com
Mon Jan 26 11:50:37 EST 2004


Brother Bruce, Thank you for your comments on baptism by water.  I attend a
small non-denominational church.  For the past twelve years on two Sunday
evenings a month, the congregation splits and meets in home groups.  We have
about five different groups divided geographically.  I think that they are
great.  I would attend a house church regularly if one was available.  I
live up on the side of a mountain in Eastern Oregon, and it would be to
difficult for me to start one at my home as the access is not easy.  I have
about three feet of snow on the ground right now.
----- Original Message ----- 
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To: <house church talk at housechurch.org>
Sent: Monday, January 26, 2004 9:00 AM
Subject: house church talk Digest, Vol 3, Issue 27


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> Today's Topics:
>
>    1. Re: The Cross (Greg Bledsoe)
>    2. Baptising with water (Ted B. Harris)
>    3. RE: Baptising with water (Bruce Woodford)
>    4. Baptising with water Baptized with Christ (Ross J Purdy)
>
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Message: 1
> Date: Sun, 25 Jan 2004 17:30:24 -0500
> From: Greg Bledsoe <gbledsoe at knology.net>
> Subject: Re: [house church talk] The Cross
> To: House Church Talk <house church talk at housechurch.org>
> Message-ID: <1075069824.22548.5.camel at localhost>
> Content-Type: text/plain
>
> Thank you for this wonderful and encouraging note, Brother.
>
> Recently I discovered why my life has been a living hell for the last
> seven years.  My wife has been diagnosed with Borderline Personality
> Disorder.  Nothing in my life has been more crushing than the daily
> struggle with the coping strategies of her mental illness.
>
> May the Lord Work in it.
>
> Greg Bledsoe
>
> On Sat, 2004-01-24 at 00:52, bro.oliverpeng wrote:
> >
> > Hi, I just registered for the house church talk, but I am not sure how to
> > post my comment.  So, here's my first try.  Sorry about the messy
> > attempt.  I am trying to reply to Bruce's post on "The Cross."
> >
> >
> > A.B. Simpson was so right to point out the wonderful "treasures
> > of the hail" (job 38:22-23) as a "haven of rest and inspiration
> > of unspeakable power".  The Lord's way is always the way of the
> > cross.  His hail is but an agent teaching us to triumph in
> > adversity in the mercy and love of Christ.  Job declared in the
> > end, "when He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold."  So
> > echoed Isaiah, "Grain for bread is crushed."  Shall we pass off
> > God's way as archaic?  Shall we circumvent the cross?
> > Scripturally, genuine spiritual awakening is always preceded by
> > repentance.  A broken spirit and contrite heart He has
> > desired.  Take the prodigal son.  Take the prostitute who had
> > seven demonic spirits cast out of her.
> >
> > Perhaps one of the biggest problems facing many students of the
> > Word is their inability to understand the two-foldness of the
> > Word.  Many precious truths in the bible are impregnated with and
> > operating under the principle of two-foldness.  Failure to
> > understand the two-foldness of the truth has pitted the
> > Calvinists and the Armenians in centuries-old squabbles.
> >
> > For instance, John said "He who has the Son has life." And Paul
> > said else-where "it is the Spirit that gives life."  On surface,
> > this seems to be an oxymoron; if we have the Son we have life
> > already, then why would the Spirit give the life that we already
> > have?  Herein lies the two-foldness: ESSENTIALLY, we who have the
> > Son have life--done deal, no need to struggle for more life.
> > But, economically, there is a great need to have more and more
> > life imparted into us.  Take the golden lampstand
> > essentially, it is made out of gold.  Gold becomes its essence.
> > But ECONOMICALLY, it was beaten into the shape and form of a
> > lampstand.
> >
> > Essentially, it is gold, economically, it's a lampstand.  Essence
> > without economy does not make it very functional, though valuable
> > it is.  All Christians have divine life as essence, but not all
> > Christians can function and express that life adequately.  Our
> > desperate need is to grow and mature and attain the "measure of
> > the stature of the fullness of Christ."  It is in this process of
> > growing and maturing, our life in the spirit starts to spread
> > out, enlarge and invade into our soul life.  This is where the
> > Lord's dealing takes place and learning and submission to it
> > yields its fruit of the Spirit.
> >
> > It is the same with the cross of Christ.  Essentially, the cross
> > represents the finished work of Christ.  Done deal.  No need to
> > struggle and strive.  We are dead in Him.  We are alive in Him.
> > We are complete in Him.  Hallelujah!  What a good news.
> > Economically though, we need to let the finished work of Christ
> > on the cross subjectively deal with our hidden pride (show me one
> > who isnt plagued by it), our lying tongue, our carnality,
> > youthful lust, greed...you name it.  The problem with most
> > Christians is that their understanding of the Word is only a
> > single-edged sword--long on essence but short on economy.
> >
> > Just a casual glance in the Word, and we easily get the sense of
> > enlargement.  God called out a single person and made him into a
> > family; God took the family and made it into 12 tribes, then the
> > 12 tribes into a nation.  And God's thought for this nation was
> > for it to "become great."  He wanted the nation to spread out and
> > enlarge from sea to sea.  The N.T. follows the same principle.
> > He started with a single lowly Man from Nazareth and enlarged Him
> > into a corporate man, the Church; and eventually, He will
> > enlarge the corporate man into a kingdom.  And the "increase of
> > His kingdom" is said to be "without end."  May I also submit that
> > the increase and the enlargement that the bible speaks about is
> > not merely a physical or numerical increase.  It is the increase
> > and enlargement of Christ.  Oh, that Christ may fill up, sum up
> > and head up all and in all!
> >
> > Paul's writings are full of charges to "run the race," "earnestly
> > pursue," "press on," "gain Christ," etc....  The Hebrew writer
> > three times charged us to "go forward" and "do not shrink
> > back."  "If you shrink back," says the Lord, "My soul is not
> > pleased with you."  We must ask, if we already have gotten
> > all we'll ever need, then why do we need to run the race, pursue,
> > press on, gain Christ, come forward and not shrink back?  The
> > answer is simple: we have received all the fullness of Christ in
> > our spirit essentially.  But we must have our capacity (in our
> > soul) enlarged to gain more Christ economically.
> >
> > The ten virgins may give us some insight.  All ten virgins have
> > all the oil (Holy Spirit) they would ever need in their lamps--
> > the human spirit, for "the spirit of man is the lamp of the Lord"
> > (Prov.)  This was given to them.  They did not earn it.
> > Likewise, we did not earn the Holy Spirit; we received the Holy
> > Spirit when we were saved by grace.
> >
> > But the five wise virgins have extra oil in their VESSELS (soul
> > life that has been dealt with).  The five foolish ones are told
> > to "BUY" the extra oil (for their vessels)!  This is the "gaining
> > Christ" that Paul talks about in Phil. 3; it starts to take place
> > when our soul life is being dealt with through the subjective
> > cross.  The increased measure of Christ in us always comes with a
> > price, for the cross is always involved in it.  By the way, the
> > price of oil is cheap now compared to later when our Bridegroom
> > returns.  Those who frown on the teaching of the cross, take
> > heed.  Buy now, or they may not be able to afford it.
> > Simple "economics."  No pun intended.
> >
> > Many Christians have no use for the Lord's dealings.  When
> > suffering comes, they ask the Lord to remove it.  When afflicted
> > with sickness, they ask for healing.  When strapped financially,
> > they ask for prosperity.  When pressed, they ask for escape....
> > Not that they, or we, should not seek relief from adversities,
> > but their single-minded treatment of all adversities as coming
> > from the devil and therefore must be rebuked and stomped leaves
> > no room for the Holy Spirit to bring about inward change through
> > His chastening.  They are quick to pray for outward changes, but
> > no sustaining, transforming and deep inward change takes place.
> > Small wonder that the soul power is rampant in the Charismatic
> > circle.  The power of the Holy Spirit is greatest only when the
> > power of the soul is dealt with and broken!
> >
> > The president of my State university recently made a
> > comment, attaching a pair of wings to a caterpillar does not
> > make it a butterfly; it is still a caterpillar.  Butterfly comes
> > by transformation only.  There is no instant spirituality.  True
> > spirituality must come through much dealings of the cross.
> >
> > I have observed as a youngster how silkworms weaved cocoons
> > around themselves.  When the process of transformation was
> > complete, the moth would chew a hole in the cocoon and begin a
> > long and tedious breakout.  Unwilling to see the horrendous
> > struggle, Id take a pair of scissors to cut the hole to help the
> > struggling moth.  Alas, it always ended in tragedy!  The moth
> > came out deformed and weak.  It was the horrendous struggle that
> > made the moth strong and pumped its blood through its wings and
> > legs.  My help had robbed the poor little creature of its glory
> > and doomed it to sickness and early death!
> >
> > Some dear brothers frown on any sharing on the cross, dealings,
> > and brokenness; but dealings will come regardless whether they
> > frown on them or not.  Jesus said, "in the world you WILL have
> > tribulations, in Me you may have peace."  These dealings are
> > divinely appointed and permitted to mature and perfect us.  He
> > chastens those whom He loves, and He scourges every son whom He
> > receives.
> >
> > It's true that at regeneration we received a perfect and complete
> > divine life, and we will not need one ounce more of it.  Paul
> > said in Col. that "all the fullness of the Godhead dwells in Him
> > bodily.", and John said "and of His fullness we have all
> > received, and grace upon grace."  Since we have all received of
> > His fullness, and since we have been made complete in Him, it
> > stands to reason that we have no need for anything more, least of
> > all dealings and the cross.  The only problem is, these brothers
> > who insist on this view fail to realize the need to grow and
> > mature.  Just because a baby has all the organs, limbs and
> > faculties and life does not assure the baby the full mastery of
> > all his organs, limbs and faculties.  He has to grow.  And growth
> > is full of perils, stumbling, mistakes and defeat.  The Lord uses
> > each peril, stumbling, mistake and defeat to train His children
> > for reigning and glory in maturity.  Those who reject dealings
> > also neglect growth and maturity, to say nothing of
> > reigning and glory.
> >
> > The church is the counterpart of Christ--a living body who is
> > constituted in character with Christ and conformed to the image
> > of Christ.  Just how is the lowly and humble character of the
> > Lamb constituted into us?  More often than not, it is HAMMERED
> > into us much the same way the golden lampstand in the Holy Place
> > is hammered from one lump of gold.  Whether we are yielding to or
> > balking at the hammering of the Holy Spirit determines whether we
> > are the lampstand, the church.  The sweet fragrance of Christ can
> > only come from broken alabaster bottles.
> >
> > People who are familiar with T. Austin-Sparks' teaching on the
> > cross have commented: "Another focus was the subjective
> > experience of the cross of Christ, going beyond forgiveness to
> > deliverance from the power of sin and self as described in Romans
> > chapter six, and leading on to a walk with others in newness of
> > life in a corporate or church fellowship....  It was his emphasis
> > on the subjective work of the cross in human lives that
> > distinguished TAS' early messages from other 'deeper life'
> > ministries of that period.  It supplied people with a positive
> > meaning for and inward peace about their sufferings and the
> > sometimes painful divine disciplines that they encountered in
> > this life."  Another one of his fellow-workers commented: "He
> > preached a gospel of full salvation by simple faith in
> > Christ's sacrifice, but he further stressed that the one who
> > knows the cleansing by the blood of Jesus should also allow the
> > same cross to work in the depth of the soul in order to be
> > released from self and thus find a less carnal and more spiritual
> > walk with God.  TAS himself had gone through a crisis of self-
> > undoing by his acceptance of the cross' verdict on his old
> > nature, and had found it to be the introduction into an
> > altogether new enjoyment of Christ's life, an 'open heaven' as he
> > would often say."  ("Theodore Austin-Sparks-Reflection on His
> > Life and Work" by Angus M. Gunn)
> >
> >
> > Carnal-minded Christians view the cross as a curse that brings
> > sufferings, poverty and deprivation therefore must be shunned.
> > Other Christians view it as great deliverance that saved us from
> > death into life, but refuse to acknowledge its subjective power
> > to daily release us from self and to produce the character and
> > fragrance of Christ in us economically.   True spirituality
> > includes both the essential aspect and the economical aspect.
> > One cannot stand without the other.  May the Holy Spirit help
> > deepen our perception and enlarge our heart for a truly blessed
> > walk with the Lord, and may He temper our temperament to produce
> > both the essential and the economical unto the testimony of
> > Jesus.
> >
> > Blessings to all,
> >
> > Oliver
> >
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Sent via the EV1 webmail system at mail.ev1.net
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >     --- Info and subscription management at
http://housechurch.org/talk ---
> >
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 2
> Date: Sun, 25 Jan 2004 19:50:39 -0800
> From: "Ted B. Harris" <tedmail at eoni.com>
> Subject: [house church talk] Baptising with water
> To: <house church talk at housechurch.org>
> Message-ID: <000a01c3e3bf$945fa260$0100a8c0 at ted>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
>
> Brother Bruce, I am a little puzzled by your comment:
> That Christians meet in homes is certainly never commanded, but neither is
> water as the medium for baptism of believers! But there are more
scriptural
> examples of the former than the latter!
> I will have to agree that nowhere in the new testiment have I read "Thou
must use water for baptising believers", however there are several instances
where water was the medium used, and I have noted no other medium being used
such as wine or olive oil.  Although the Greek word baptizo means to dip,
plunge, submerge or immerse, it does not specify water.  However in my
limited studies, all instances of baptism that I have noted in the New
Testiment involved a body of water large enough to submerge a human body.
> Mat thew 3:
> 13. Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of
him.
> 14  But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and
comest thou to me?
> 15  And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer [it to be so] now: for thus
it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
> 16  And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water:
and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God
descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
> Acts 10
> 47  Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which
have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?
> Mark 1
> 8  I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with
the Holy Ghost.
> John:1
> 26  John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth
one among you, whom ye know not;
> John 1:
> 33  And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the
same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and
remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
> Acts 8:
> 36  And as they went on [their] way, they came unto a certain water: and
the eunuch said, See, [here is] water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?
> 37  And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest.
And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
> 38  And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both
into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
> I appears that the frequent use of the word water, and no reference (to my
knowledge) to the use of any other fluid medium for baptism, leaves little
doubt in my mind that the Lord intended for us to use water. I humbly yeild
to your greater knowledge of the scriptures.  Please enlighten me a little
more for the basis of your statement so that I might have a better
understanding.
> Ted From scottdowlen at cox.net Sun Jan 25 23:37:57 2004
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> From: "Scott Dowlen" <scottdowlen at cox.net>
> To: "'House Church Talk'" <house church talk at housechurch.org>
> Subject: RE: [house church talk] Re: Pattern or simply an adaptation?
> Date: Sun, 25 Jan 2004 22:44:54 -0600
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>
> Mark 12:28-34 KJV  And one of the scribes came, and having heard them
> reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked
> him, Which is the first commandment of all?  (29)  And Jesus answered him,
> The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is
> one Lord:  (30)  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart,
> and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength:
> this is the first commandment.  (31)  And the second is like, namely this,
> Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment
> greater than these.  (32)  And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master,
thou
> hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he:
> (33)  And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding,
> and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his
neighbour
> as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.  (34)
> And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art
> not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any
> question.
>
> ------------------
> The passage above shows that our Lord saw [love of / relationship with]
God
> and love of our fellow man as the ultimate point of our life here.  The
> scribe recognized that even the old covenant with its many 'laws' was not
> about the letter of law, but the spirit of love that undergirded the whole
> thing.
>
> I don't understand the need to use 'biblical' terms.  Which
> language/translation is required? Greek? Hebrew? KJV?  Too me, the world
> isn't waiting for people to speak King James English to them - the world
> wants someone to love them. Love them enough to point out sin; love them
> enough to warn them of coming judgment; love them enough to invite them
into
> the kingdom of light.  If we know what the words _mean_ and can express
them
> in ways that people see and understand -- then we are messengers of God.
If
> all we do is quote scripture in some obscure language or dialect, cannot
> even the heathen do that if they so choose? It is living out what we
> believe - in Spirit power and in Truth - that will change the world.
>
> We are called to live out our convictions, and I don't think we are ever
> required _by scripture_ to express our ideas limited to the terminology
and
> usage found in the scriptures. If so, then all translations are sinful,
and
> all expression of faith that isn't specifically itemized become null and
> void.  Given that love (relationship) is the central issue, doesn't it
make
> more sense that anything that flows out of love, whether itemized in
> scripture or not, is therefore 'of God' and if it is given with joy and
> thanksgiving to God, then it has truly honored the one who sent us.
>
> I'd say that if Jesus said Love was the key issue then we are more like
God
> when loving than when propagating nit-picky 'doctrine'.  Doctrine has its
> place, and laws and rules. Those things train us up into what is pure and
> true. They teach us what is true about God and about love. They help to
show
> the contrast between Godly love and life and the worldly perversions of
> those things. But once trained, the milk is no longer fulfilling. Only the
> real relationship fills the aching hunger inside.
>
>
> BTW, in reference to baptism, "John baptized with water, but Jesus came to
> baptize with the Spirit and Fire!".  Keep the olive oil, Dan, I think I'll
> take Jesus' baptism!!
>
>
> Love you Dan, Bruce, Glenn, et. al.!!
>
> Scott
>
>
>
>
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: house church talk-bounces at housechurch.org
> > [mailto:house church talk-bounces at housechurch.org]On Behalf Of Flash
> > Sent: Saturday, 24 January, 2004 4:03 PM
> > To: house church talk at housechurch.org
> > Subject: [house church talk] Re: Pattern or simply an adaptation?
> >
> >
> > Bruce - I cannot disagree with anything that you say here, and also
> > appreciate what Glenn has driven us to examine - thanks to
> > both of you.
> >
> > I have a question regarding the word relationship.  This is
> > not even a word
> > found in the Bible.  How can it be central focus?  Can we use
> > the Bible
> > terminology to speak of what we know as relationship?
> > Suggestions please.
> > I use the word relationship easily as you do, but am bothered
> > that it is not
> > in the Bible.  So, what are the words used in the Bible that connote
> > relationship?  And, is it more precise to use these words
> > than modern words
> > such as relationship?
> >
> > Also, I would point to the reality that it is not only NT
> > times that speak
> > to what we refer as relationship.  Look at anyone in the OT
> > to also see real
> > relationship.  Isaiah 53, psalms, David, Moses, Abraham - all
> > very keen on
> > what we term relationship.  What is the real term which the
> > Bible would
> > direct us to use.  Otherwise, I'm gonna start baptising in
> > olive oil...
> >
> > >From a Luddite,
> > Dan ChicagoArea
> >
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 3
> Date: Mon, 26 Jan 2004 00:13:12 -0500
> From: "Bruce Woodford" <bwood4d at hotmail.com>
> Subject: RE: [house church talk] Baptising with water
> To: house church talk at housechurch.org
> Message-ID: <BAY10-F710ZdkYRUYRA00021644 at hotmail.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed
>
> Hi Ted,
> You wrote:"Brother Bruce, I am a little puzzled by your comment:That
> Christians meet in homes is certainly never commanded, but neither is
water
> as the medium for baptism of believers! But there are more scriptural
> examples of the former than the latter!
> I will have to agree that nowhere in the new testament have I read "Thou
> must use water for baptising believers", however there are several
instances
> where water was the medium used, and I have noted no other medium being
used
> such as wine or olive oil.  Although the Greek word baptizo means to dip,
> plunge, submerge or immerse, it does not specify water.  However in my
> limited studies, all instances of baptism that I have noted in the New
> Testament involved a body of water large enough to submerge a human body."
>
> You then cited: Mat thew 3:13-16; Acts 10:47; Mark 1:8; John:1:26,33; and
> Acts 8:36-38
>
> Then you concluded:"It appears that the frequent use of the word water,
and
> no reference (to my knowledge) to the use of any other fluid medium for
> baptism, leaves little doubt in my mind that the Lord intended for us to
use
> water. I humbly yeild to your greater knowledge of the scriptures.  Please
> enlighten me a little more for the basis of your statement so that I might
> have a better understanding."
>
> O.K. but I think you have already explained pretty well where I was coming
> from!
>
> Just as the medium of baptism is not mentioned in every case of baptism in
> scripture, the meeting place of Christians is not mentioned in every
> reference to church gatherings.
>
> Just as water is often mentioned as the medium of baptisms performed by
men,
> houses are often mentioned as the meeting place of churches when believers
> gather together.
>
> You have also noted that for baptisms performed by men, no other medium
but
> water is ever recorded in scripture.
>
> But there are other venues for church gatherings mentioned in scripture:
the
> temple court in Jerusalem, a school in Ephesus.  The reason why these
larger
> venues were used is because there are two distinct kinds of church
meetings
> in scripture:
> (1)The most common kind of church meeting is the small group meeting
> together for personal, face-to-face interaction and mutual ministry one to
> another. This is the kind of gatherings that met in homes.
> (2)The other kind of church meeting which was common in the first century
> but is almost non-existent today because of denominationalism and
> sectarianism, is the large city-wide "whole church together in one place"
> kind of gathering.
>
> Both kinds are seen in Acts 2:46, but other examples of whole church
> gatherings in one place are found in Acts 6:1-7; Acts 15; Romans 16:23 and
I
> Cor.14:23-40 (the regulations for whole church gatherings in one place)
>
> Just as you have rightly concluded that there is little doubt that God
> intends people to be baptized in water, you can also conclude on the same
> basis that there is little doubt that God intends for churches (the small
> church gatherings in which believers  break bread, fellowship with one
> another, pray for one another, bear one another's burdens, provoke one
> another unto love and good works, exhort one another and edify one another
> etc) to gather in peoples' homes.
>
> I hope this helps.
>
> Your brother in Christ,
> Bruce
>
> _________________________________________________________________
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>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 4
> Date: Mon, 26 Jan 2004 10:28:25 -0600
> From: Ross J Purdy <rossjpurdy at netwurx.net>
> Subject: [house church talk] Baptising with water Baptized with Christ
> To: "House Church Talk" <house church talk at housechurch.org>
> Message-ID: <003301c3e429$6db3d540$cf8d8ad8 at ROSS>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
>
> The thread subject says "Baptising with water" but seems to be more about
> "meetings" instead. Anyway, the gist of the Baptism part implies that
> Baptism was done only with water. I have a book listing twelve different
> baptisms in Scripture of which most but not all involved water, and in
> Noah's case, he was baptized in the flood but never got wet! In the New
> Testament we have John the Baptist baptizing with water for the remission
of
> sins, as well as, both his and Christ's disciples baptizing. Then we have
> the coming of the Comforter/HS with which saints were baptized and we
could
> say that Christ was the baptizer. Then there is the baptism of fire along
> with the HS at pentecost. Then we learn from Paul of the HS baptizing the
> new believer and thereby sealing the saint into Christ. This last baptism
is
> not experienced by us and is fully accomplished by God. The HS is the
> baptizer and identification with Christ is the medium. This is the "one
> baptism" of Eph 4 and it is my conviction that it is the only valid
baptism
> for this present dispensation/administration of God.
>
> In Christ,
> Ross Purdy
>
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Bruce Woodford" <bwood4d at hotmail.com>
> To: <house church talk at housechurch.org>
> Sent: Sunday, January 25, 2004 11:13 PM
> Subject: RE: [house church talk] Baptising with water
>
>
> > Hi Ted,
> > You wrote:"Brother Bruce, I am a little puzzled by your comment:That
> > Christians meet in homes is certainly never commanded, but neither is
> water
> > as the medium for baptism of believers! But there are more scriptural
> > examples of the former than the latter!
> > I will have to agree that nowhere in the new testament have I read "Thou
> > must use water for baptising believers", however there are several
> instances
> > where water was the medium used, and I have noted no other medium being
> used
> > such as wine or olive oil.  Although the Greek word baptizo means to
dip,
> > plunge, submerge or immerse, it does not specify water.  However in my
> > limited studies, all instances of baptism that I have noted in the New
> > Testament involved a body of water large enough to submerge a human
body."
> >
> > You then cited: Mat thew 3:13-16; Acts 10:47; Mark 1:8; John:1:26,33; and
> > Acts 8:36-38
> >
> > Then you concluded:"It appears that the frequent use of the word water,
> and
> > no reference (to my knowledge) to the use of any other fluid medium for
> > baptism, leaves little doubt in my mind that the Lord intended for us to
> use
> > water. I humbly yeild to your greater knowledge of the scriptures.
Please
> > enlighten me a little more for the basis of your statement so that I
might
> > have a better understanding."
> >
> > O.K. but I think you have already explained pretty well where I was
coming
> > from!
> >
> > Just as the medium of baptism is not mentioned in every case of baptism
in
> > scripture, the meeting place of Christians is not mentioned in every
> > reference to church gatherings.
> >
> > Just as water is often mentioned as the medium of baptisms performed by
> men,
> > houses are often mentioned as the meeting place of churches when
believers
> > gather together.
> >
> > You have also noted that for baptisms performed by men, no other medium
> but
> > water is ever recorded in scripture.
> >
> > But there are other venues for church gatherings mentioned in scripture:
> the
> > temple court in Jerusalem, a school in Ephesus.  The reason why these
> larger
> > venues were used is because there are two distinct kinds of church
> meetings
> > in scripture:
> > (1)The most common kind of church meeting is the small group meeting
> > together for personal, face-to-face interaction and mutual ministry one
to
> > another. This is the kind of gatherings that met in homes.
> > (2)The other kind of church meeting which was common in the first
century
> > but is almost non-existent today because of denominationalism and
> > sectarianism, is the large city-wide "whole church together in one
place"
> > kind of gathering.
> >
> > Both kinds are seen in Acts 2:46, but other examples of whole church
> > gatherings in one place are found in Acts 6:1-7; Acts 15; Romans 16:23
and
> I
> > Cor.14:23-40 (the regulations for whole church gatherings in one place)
> >
> > Just as you have rightly concluded that there is little doubt that God
> > intends people to be baptized in water, you can also conclude on the
same
> > basis that there is little doubt that God intends for churches (the
small
> > church gatherings in which believers  break bread, fellowship with one
> > another, pray for one another, bear one another's burdens, provoke one
> > another unto love and good works, exhort one another and edify one
another
> > etc) to gather in peoples' homes.
> >
> > I hope this helps.
> >
> > Your brother in Christ,
> > Bruce
> >
> > _________________________________________________________________
> > The new MSN 8: advanced junk mail protection and 2 months FREE*
> >
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> >
> >
> >
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> http://housechurch.org/talk ---
>
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>
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> End of house church talk Digest, Vol 3, Issue 27
> **************************************



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