House Church Talk - Re: There can not be male and female6
samespecies at charter.net
Sat May 22 13:34:28 EDT 2004
> I wanted to address a couple of thoughts in this note, Same.
I appreciate your thoughts here Kevin. I would also appreciate it, if
before we move on; you would go back and answer my questions, in the post I
sent yesterday. I feel we would be doing the ones standing by, with the
task of discerning, a disservice, if my questions of you concerning
translation were not answered, before we move on. I understand that one of
the concerns is whether surrounding context and the rest of scripture will
support my translation.
> I'm not sure it's such a problem of translation and misunderstanding
> there as it is misunderstanding the context of what Paul is saying 1
> Tim 2.9-15 about women being silent in the church. It shouldn't
> actually matter in this context whether Paul is speaking that "women
> should be quiet and learn in silence" or whether he's saying that
> "wives should be quiet, etc. etc...."
Kevin, I know allot of brothers have some great sounding explanations for
what these scriptures must be "really" saying. I feel its much simpler then
all this rationalizing. I feel we have simply mistranslated the verses by
ignoring the surrounding context. That when correctly translated based on
surrounding context, the verses will make sense, and not conflict with any
other scripture. I feel that husbands and wives have an additional
relationship within the church life that Paul addressed additionally to
them. I also think that when we see the correct translation we will
understand it easily and see that it does not prevent women, wives also from
any functioning that God may choose for them.
>The principle of interpretation
> we have to follow here is does this contradict something else Paul has
> said elsewhere, and if so, how do we work out that contradiction
> because Scripture interprets Scripture, but it never contradicts itself
> so that the truth no longer holds any weight or meaning.
Kevin, I agree that God has not contradicted Himself. Since you gave me som
e of your thoughts here, I'd like to do the same, and try and make my point
again. This point I believe is much more important then the woman issue.
In your statement I see the wrong approach being taken. In this statement
however, true as a method of translation, I see the struggle of the human
mind. The struggle to resolve an admitted conflict in search of the truth.
I believe, even with our great explanations, which most of us, deep within
our spirits sense a conflict concerning these verses, and what they appear
to say as translated. So we set out in the mind to resolve this conflict,
we employ our wisdom and knowledge, again our own strength. I think the
first thing we really need to do, to receive the understanding of it all, is
first realize what truth is. We need to see that there is only One Truth,
Christ is The Truth, and contained in Him is all Truth. We need to stop our
struggle, rest in Him as our Sabbath Rest first. Then as our One Teacher,
as the Spirit of Wisdom, as the Spirit of Truth, we will be able to see, and
understand. Only in Him will the veil be taken away, only in Him is the
Light. But, first we need to stop our own struggling in the mind, and turn
our mind to the Spirit. Now, I know some of us are saying about now, who
does this guy think he is, to counsel me about spirituality. So understand
I am not saying I am more spiritual then anyone else, or that anyone else is
Spiritless. I am just trying to point out the human condition in us all.
We are rebellious and reject God, we all are this way to varying degrees,
and when we think we have attainted some improvement, that we have become
something, you can be sure we are about to find out how wrong we are. We
say to ourselves, I am saved, I got the Holy Spirit dwelling in me, I study
the Bible, and when we don't understand something, what do we do? Do we
turn to the Holy Spirit as our Teacher or do we move on without Him in the
power of our own minds to resolve the conflict and find the so called truth
of the matter. Then when we think we have come up with the so called truth
of the matter, what do we do? Do we then go out and set down a laws again,
for ourselves to follow? Forgetting again that what fulfills the law is the
Law of the Spirit, that the Spirit of Jesus Christ is the Truth, that we are
lead by the Spirit if we are to be son's of God. We are not to establish or
return to the Law or form a new Law for ourselves. Now, at this point allot
of us are going to object, their going to say hey what about God's
commandments, we have to obey God, and do God's will. So, I say again will
we go on like the Pharisees and the experts in the Law did? The scriptures
themselves show us this was the wrong way. The scriptures point us to the
right Way, to Christ as our Life. The scriptures say that the Spirit
fulfills the Law of God, that the Spirit is the Law of God, that God's will
is the Spirit, and that we receive God's will by the Spirit. The Laws of
God are written on our hearts. There's no law against the Spirit. We are
transformed by the Spirit, we walk in the Spirit, and this is the newness of
Life. The Spirit is the Law of God, the Will of God, the Truth, the Wisdom,
the Grace, etc., etc. It is to be all to us, as it is God and God is all to
us. But, hey that's not were we turn; we acknowledge the scriptures tell us
these things and point us to this one, but then we jump right back into our
own power and strength. We allow ourselves to start struggling again on our
own in what has become the Old Law all over again for us; we call it
scripture now days. We employ our own wisdom to understand it, and then we
make it a set of rules or laws again, to obey and/or perform. And we carry
it to various extremes, some even us it as a replacement for Christ Himself,
some even stop acknowledging what is say the way is to be. For example they
say there is no more prophecy, no more prophets, no more apostles, no more
revelation, etc. They deny these things because they have denied the only
One, the Spirit, by Whom these things can be received or are to be received.
It is only by the Spirit that the scriptures themselves tell us we can
receive a revelation, a word of knowledge, wisdom, etc., etc. Now, I am not
saying the scriptures, the Law, the Commandments of God are not from God. I
am not saying they are not holy or not to be fulfilled, obeyed, etc. But, I
am saying there is only One Way, the Spirit, that Voice in us. That Law on
our hearts. The other way will only result in something that looks good on
the outside, even seems good and moral to us, but inside it is all dead mans
bones. Because only in Him is Life. The dead mans bones are a result of
us, our works, our struggle. We have to remember again what the scriptures
say, that is to turn to the only Life, and that we were the dead in our
trespasses and sins. Let the dead burry the dead, this is talking about the
physically alive, who are spiritually dead, and so it says Awake sleeper
from the dead and Christ will shine on you. The Law was good, the
scriptures are good, but like the Law they are a child-conductor, to
preserve us, to bring us to see our unrighteousness, to point us to the Life
while we are children, but children must grow. So first and daily follow
Him, follow the Lord Spirit, it was not meant to be a one time acceptance,
but a daily following, a daily transforming as we daily behold Him, a daily
much more saved in His Life.
> The key here, as in 1 Cor. 14, is to what does Paul attribute his
> statements: is it merely a cultural argument (that is, was he saying
> this because in the Ephesian culture of Timothy's day, women were bold,
> arrogant and generally raising a ruckus for the sake of raising a
> ruckus; but that was his day and ours is so much different [is it
> really?]) or is it an argument based upon something else, such as an
> argument on the basis of what God established in the order of things
> during Creation?
I agree with you here that nothing has changed concerning us, but it is not
limited to woman. All are rebellious, all oppose God, and His authority,
all reject God, and none really seek God. It's found in both sexes. Now,
as to the argument on the basis of what God established in the order of
things during creation, yes it has to do with that too. However, it is not
limiting to women in general. By surrounding content, and the established
order of creation, it is a speaking by God to the husband and wife
relationship. And not all the words "woman" are to just be translated "wife
or wives" in these sections of scripture. Some are still properly
translated "woman" but, incorrectly separated in the verse formatting. And
again, there is some need for a child-conducting to be put in place for
these ones who were focused on the flesh and not the Spirit, again seen in
the surrounding context of these sections of scripture.
> I believe this is vital to any understanding we have today on the role
> of women and men in the church: what roles did God ascribe to them at
> Creation? Paul appeals to this in 1 Cor.; he appeals to it here in 1
> Tim 2. And, I believe this will ... indeed, MUST... determine how we
> are to understand/interpret (different from translate; do the
> translation first, just on the words themselves; then allow the
> contextual interpretation help us put them into order and in a manner
> that makes sense) passages that are difficult, such as this one.
I believe you are saying here, we must translate based on surrounding
context, the order of things in creation, and in accordance with other
scripture, I would agree to that.
> I can speak another time to the issue of Creation and the roles given
> to husband/wife, man/woman. I want to just close with one final thought
> about what you said in your above paragraph:
> I can't appeal to your experience of God speaking to you in a voice
> that is heard in your mind.
Yes you can Kevin, you know the scriptures so turn to God, and then use the
scriptures as God has told you one of their purposes is, that is to correct
and rebuke in Love, God is Love. The scriptures have told you to discern
the speaking of another, and to discern the spirits. How is it that you can
say "I can't"? You may receive an Iron Rod as Paul, as those that overcome.
It is of the Lord, only He can give it. Hopefully, you will find you need
not use it on me.
> I can't hear that voice; I can't "argue"
> (in the positive sense) with what you hear from God; just as you can't
> argue with what I would claim I'm hearing from God. It's a mute point;
> your word would be against my word and if the two were contradictory,
> then, as is most often the case in our day of relative truth, most
> people would say, "You believe what you want to believe and I'll
> believe what I want to believe."
Again, you can. Just remember it's not about relative truth, or this or
that kind of truth, there is only One Truth. It's a Person. We can all
have the same mind, the same mind is the Mind of Christ, and it is not our
own agreement on some kind of truth or understanding. How is it you keep
saying you can't hear that voice when He told you to hear His voice while it
is still called today? When He said One will be your Teacher, One will lead
you into all understanding, and One will recall all things to your
remembrance. How is it that when the scriptures clearly point you to the
Spirit, and tell you that all of it in Corinthians is received by the
Spirit, that you say you can not. This should scare us, cause us to what to
wake-up from our sleep, and turn to the Spirit. A little fear of God will
be the beginning, and later there will be no fear as perfection comes, but
right now we should be afraid, if we are not hearing from the Lord daily.
> I hope you can see that this type of debate/argument/discussion will
> get us nowhere. If we are to carry on discussions about passsages such
> as the one before us, then we simply must use what can be seen before
> us: namely, the printed text. Then, with that ground work granted, we
> must use basic rules of hermeneutics - interpretation - if we are to be
> able to make any headway or reach a God-honoring, Christ-centered,
> Spirit-driven, Bible-based, loving-you-in-Christ compromise.
I believe I can do this with you. I also believe that by following the
basic rules of hermeneutics - interpretation - scriptures - what is seem,
etc., that it will also point us to what is not seem, what is invisible, and
were our focus is to truly be.
> With that said, if I continue this dialog with you, I'll not be able to
> do so if appeal is made to voices you hear, impressions you receive.
> I'm not saying you don't have them. I'm not saying they are beneficial
> to you and your understanding. I'm simply saying, they are not
> verifiable by me or by anyone else, unless God were to speak with an
> audible voice to a large group of us Christians at the same time with
> the very same message that gets verified by all who are present.
Don't worry about it Kevin, I'll give it my best shot to play by the rules.
Just, know you can appeal, you can hear, He never has stopped speaking, He
never left us alone. Please do not deny that Christ has come in the flesh.
He's speaking to individuals and He's speaking to large groups, and the
enemy is also speaking a lie to us, the enemy is the one who wants us to
believe it's not happening anymore, or in this age, the enemy wants of
something's to change the times, to mislead us, to replace the Living God
with so many things. He comes as an angel of light, he brings us good and
moral things, things that look right, laws that look right, practices that
look right, and from the tree of right and wrong, all designed to keep us
feeding on the fruit of the tree of good and evil, so we don't hunger so
much for the Tree of Life, but we know that deep down we still are not
> So, I'll appeal to the text; I'll attempt to do so in a loving manner;
> and, I'll hope you would do me the courtesy and honor of the same.
I love you so much Kevin, so please don't think that anything I have said is
meant to hurt you or that I don't love you. Please, don't take offense or
read into anything I say as being negative toward you, or anyone else. And
what ever you understand or what ever I understand, with me, the bottom line
is that our unity, our oneness, is just in the One Who is our Unity, and the
Blessing is there when the brothers dwell in the Unity. So as we all grow,
all learn, all see a portion while others receive another aspect of the same
One, as we all have different functions, we will not have division in Him.
So praise the Lord, Christ is not divided, and we are in Him. So there is
to be no division among us, yes, differing parties and opinions so that we
all come to the Truth, but not the division from the enemy. And you are
right below, by His GrAcE, God As Enjoyment, as Life, as Power to us, and
not our own, He will have His Glory, His expression in the church.
> By His Grace and For His Glory
P.S. Kevin, you know how I was trying to explain to you that God will speak
to us, if we will turn to Him, and not replace His speaking with
substitutes. Well, in my last email I had prayed and ask God what I should
speak to you. I gut was telling me that the woman issue really was not that
important, instead I should try and explain that God wants to speak to you
in a real daily way, I gave you some examples of how it works sometimes.
Well, the next day when I turned on my computer I received these two emails
below. I hadn't told anyone of our conversation or anything, I had only
continued to pray to the Lord that night about what I was to speak to you
about, and I had asked Him to confirm that I was on the right track, in what
I was to say to you. Well, I believe God confirmed it to me again with
these two emails, they specifically address what I feel the Lord wanted to
speak through me to you. Something more important for now then the woman
issue, which we still will continue with now. You check them out for
John 5:39 You search the Scriptures...and it is these that
testify concerning Me [Jesus Christ].
Col 1:27 ...the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles,
which is Christ in you, the hope of glory,
God's economy [plan] is not a religion, but a wonderful,
unlimited, immeasurable, unsearchable, and all-inclusive
Person, Christ Jesus Himself. Christ is the embodiment of God
and the content of the church. This Christ is to be our life
and our person.
Many Christians pay more attention to the Bible than to
Christ. This indicates that even the Bible can be utilized to
distract people from Christ. Surely, we believe, respect, and
honor the Bible to the uttermost. But we recognize that the
Bible is the revelation of the living Person of Christ. If we
do not pay attention to the Christ revealed in the Bible,
then we ignore the main function of the Bible, which is to
reveal this very Christ to us. How we need to be recovered
fully to Christ Himself!
We need to be recovered not merely to the objective Christ in
the heavens, but to the subjective Christ in our spirit. This
subjective One is seeking to spread Himself into our heart.
Not only is Christ our Savior objectively, but He is our life
and our person subjectively. We need to devote our full
attention to such a subjective Christ. In Galatians 2:20 Paul
could say, "Not I, but Christ who lives in me." Here Paul did
not speak of the life of Christ, the work of Christ, or the
power of Christ; he spoke of Christ Himself living in him.
Hallelujah, the very Person of Christ is living in us!
THE FIVE ITEMS OF THE JUDICIAL REDEMPTION AND THE EIGHT ITEMS OF THE ORGANIC
SALVATION OF GOD'S COMPLETE SALVATION
God is the eternal life, and He desires to come into us to be our life. His
coming into us is purposeful. After He comes into us, the first thing He
does is to regenerate us. Do not think that God's intention is merely to
redeem you. Rather, God's intention is to regenerate you. Suppose you are
not a good person, and I want to change you so that you will be as good as I
am. However, regardless of how much I try to change you, you still cannot be
like me. What is needed is for me to enter into your being and cause you to
be born again with my genes. In this way you will have my life and nature
and can really become like me. This is precisely the way that God comes into
us to regenerate us with His life and nature that we may have His life and
nature. This is regeneration.
We all have believed in the Lord Jesus. We all have been saved and have had
our sins both forgiven and washed away. Not only so, we have also been
justified, reconciled to God, and separated, sanctified. Then, have we been
regenerated? We have believed in the Lord, our sins have been forgiven, our
sins have been washed away, we have been justified by God, we have been
reconciled to God, and we have been separated, sanctified, unto God. All
these items are sure. But do we know whether we have been regenerated? If we
are sure concerning the aforementioned items, it is simply not possible to
say that we have not been regenerated.
I believe we all know the five items of the judicial redemption of God's
salvation which include forgiveness of sins, washing away of sins,
justification by God, reconciliation to God, and positional sanctification.
But some may not know what regeneration is, nor do they know whether they
have received the eternal life. To be regenerated and thereby receive God as
our eternal life is the first item of the organic salvation of God's
complete salvation. In the organic salvation the first thing is for us to be
regenerated and receive God's eternal life. Following this, we have
shepherding, dispositional sanctification, renewing, transformation,
building up, conformation, and glorification.
To us, these eight points, beginning with regeneration, passing through
shepherding, dispositional sanctification, renewing, transformation,
building up, and conformation, and reaching all the way to glorification,
are not easy to understand. We are very knowledgeable concerning all the
five items on the judicial side. We know that we are sinful and that when we
repent, confess our sins before God, and believe in the Lord, we receive
forgiveness of sins and our sins are washed away, we are justified by God
that we may be reconciled to Him, and we are sanctified positionally. We
know all these things. Hence, some people may say, "These five things are
sufficient for us to go to heaven. God will never condemn us again. He has
forgiven us forever, so we can live in peace." Therefore, they preach the
gospel to others, saying, "Just be at peace and rejoice by trusting in
Jesus. Try to be a good person and try to help others, then one day you will
go to heaven." They feel that ! this is good enough and that there is no
need to talk about other things. This is the general condition of
Christianity today. But the Bible says that this is not sufficient. In
addition to the five items, the Bible covers another eight items:
regeneration, shepherding, dispositional sanctification, renewing,
transformation, building up, conformation, and glorification.
We should not despise the five items on the judicial side, and even more we
should not despise the eight items on the organic side. The former group of
five items is the base, like the foundation of a house. We need to build the
latter group of eight items on the foundation of the former group of five
items. I know that we brothers and sisters in the Lord are very clear
concerning the first five items. This shows that we have had adequately
clear fellowship concerning the five items as the foundation. Therefore, our
burden today is to fellowship concerning the latter eight items that we may
have a more thorough knowledge concerning the eight organic items.
REGENERATION AND SHEPHERDING-THE PROPAGATION AND NOURISHMENT OF THE DIVINE
In this message we want to see the matters of regeneration and shepherding
in the organic aspect of God's salvation. God's organic salvation begins
with regeneration and continues with shepherding. Regeneration is the
propagation of God's life by the imparting of God's life into the believers
that they may be regenerated and partake of God's life. Shepherding is the
nourishment of God's life that the regenerated believers may grow and have
their existence in the divine life, thus manifesting the function of the
divine life in them.
Regeneration Being the Center of God's Complete Salvation and the
Commencement of God's Salvation in Its Organic Aspect
It is neither easy to speak nor easy to understand the truth concerning
regeneration as an organic matter. When I first believed in the Lord, I,
too, did not know what regeneration was. When I went to ask the Chinese
pastors, most of them would say that regeneration means that all the things
in the past died like yesterday and all the things henceforth are born like
today. One day while I was attending a meeting of the Brethren Assembly, I
noticed they had a book entitled A True Explanation of Regeneration. When I
saw it I was very happy. I obtained the book and finished reading it
quickly. Eventually, I found out that the book did not give a clear
explanation of regeneration. Later, I read a book by Brother T.
Austin-Sparks, in which he said that regeneration is to have the life of God
in addition to our natural life. When I read it I was greatly enlightened
within. From that time on, I have become more and more enlightened. From my
depths I thoroughly realize that God has His heart's desire, His good
pleasure, that is, to obtain a group of people and to make them again with
His image, His image without, and His life and nature within.
To Regenerate and Re-create the Believers in Their Spirit through the Spirit
How does God achieve this? It is through His Spirit. After we repented and
believed in the Lord, our sins were forgiven and we were reconciled to God.
Then this God who loves us and who is the life-giving Spirit comes into us t
o regenerate our spirit. John 3 refers to Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. He
respectfully addressed the Lord Jesus as One who had come from God as a
teacher to Israel, and he therefore came to get some advice from Him.
However, the Lord Jesus said to him, "Unless one is born anew, he cannot see
the kingdom of God" (v. 3). Nicodemus did not understand the meaning of
regeneration. He thought that regeneration was for a man to enter a second
time into his mother's womb and be born. So he said to the Lord Jesus, "How
can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his
mother's womb and be born, can he?" (v. 4). However, the regeneration which
the Lord Jesus referred to was for one to be born of water (that is, death)
and the Spirit ! (that is, life) (v. 5). Then the Lord went on to say, "That
which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is
spirit" (v. 6). The first Spirit is the divine Spirit, referring to God. God
is Spirit. When we are born of Him, we are born of the Spirit and
eventually, we are spirit, the second spirit referred to in John 3:6. This
is to be regenerated.
Through God's Word of Life
First Peter 1:23 says, "Having been regenerated not of corruptible seed but
of incorruptible, through the living and abiding word of God." This shows us
that regeneration is through God's word of life. A great majority of the
regenerated ones were regenerated through the word of God. The word of God
as a gene enters into us and operates in us. In this way we were
For the Believers to Have the Spiritual Life of God
John 1:12-13 says, "But as many as received Him, to them He gave the
authority to become children of God, to those who believe into His name, who
were begotten not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of
man, but of God." This portion tells us that the way to be regenerated is to
receive the Lord Jesus by believing into Him. He is the Word from God (1:1),
and He is also the light from God (v. 9). When we receive Him, we have the
authority to become children of God. This authority is nothing other than
the life of God. God gives us His life as our authority that we may become
children of God. Hence, we are born not of blood, nor of the will of the
flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. This is regeneration, which is a
Therefore, we may say that regeneration is the center of God's complete
salvation and the commencement of God's salvation in its organic aspect. It
is God Himself as the Spirit coming into our spirit to make us alive. In
other words, we are regenerated, made alive, in our spirit by the Spirit of
God. This is regeneration.
This indeed is our experience. Before we believed in the Lord Jesus, we were
so confused about everything that we even did not know what being a man was
all about. However, after we were saved, we became clear in our spirit. This
is the Spirit of God coming into our spirit to enliven it and open our
understanding so that we begin to know what God is all about, what the
universe is all about, and what we ourselves are all about. Then we know
that this God who regenerated us dwells in our spirit.
When I saw that I, one who had been regenerated of God, had God dwelling in
me, I was so excited that I almost wanted to run to the street and shout,
"Friends, don't touch me. I can't be touched. I have God in me." Some may
say, "Isn't this person crazy?" Yes, we all should be crazy for having God
in us. By seeing that we have God in us, we can give up what we loved and
what we were not able to give up in the past. We have been made alive in our
spirit by the Spirit of God; He has put His genes in us that we may have His
life and nature.
Through regeneration the believers have the spiritual life of God in
addition to their natural life (John 3:15). The spiritual life of God is
divine and eternal (v. 36). Such a divine life is the basis and means of the
believers' spiritual life and living. Spiritually, all of our living is
based upon the divine life of God in us.
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