Vol. 3 Number 3, March 1997
Editor Andy Neckar

Inside This Newsletter

1. The Unchurched Unsaved
2. NEWS WATCH
3. CN&V'S NOTES
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The Unchurched Unsaved
By Andy Neckar

Most people who don't attend church stay away not because of hostility toward organized religion but because they are simply too busy to attend, according to a report by the Southern Baptist Home Mission Board.

"People have a fixed amount of time and thus choose to spend their time in activities or interests other than church," HMB research analysts said. "Participating in church does not offer enough value compared to competing interests"

So the church is willing to offer the Unchurched, I call them unsaved, activities and interests that appeal to them. (see the Sept.'96 issue of CN&V's)

Folks, the churches have their thinking paralyzed. It seems that the priority of the church is to get people to attend church, and not get people saved. The church is working for the world. Get the people to come to church and we will have a better world. There are already to many people in the churches who are not members. They are members of the "physical" church, but they are not members of the "Head Of The Spiritual Church".

Those having no interest in the Head (Jesus Christ) are not part of the Body (saved). Again, the church is wanting the people to come to the church rather than the church going to the people. Christ did not command the sinner to "go ye therefore to the church, be entertained and learn morals". NO! He commanded the saved to "go ye therefore and teach all nations…" (Matt 28:19) Teach them what? Basketball? Or some other worldly activity? Lets see-"Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you…".(Matt 28:20)

How can the church resort to worldly music, entertainment, and sports, and expect God to bless their efforts? Do they not know that the love of the things of this world are enmity with God? How can these leaders say they have no love of these things when they use them in association, even in place of the Gospel of Christ, which alone is the power of God unto salvation. (Rom 1:16)

James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. (KJV)

I Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. (KJV)

I Jn 2:17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. (KJV)

These "church members" who were brought into the churches by the things of this world will pass away as the world and "it's things" pass away. And what about the "men of God", the leaders who "brought them in" and begged them and enticed them to make a "commitment" to Christ? They will get their just reward.

Getting people to make a "commitment" to Christ, or getting them to pray to "receive Christ" when they are not under conviction of sin and are not ready to repent only confuses the gospel. It fills the land with people who are almost inoculated to the gospel. When someone later tries to deal with these people about their need for Christ, they tell you they "have already done that." Done what? Well, they have "made that commitment", "made that altar call", "came up front", "prayed that prayer". They are already saved--they say. They were asked at one time if they wanted to go to heaven when they die. They were told that "God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life".

These people have never repented of their sins, because repentance was never preached to them, The repentance I speak of is a change of mind which results in a change of action.

Going to the majority of churches nowadays is not fellowship with believers. It is mingling with believers and non-believers alike. The minister himself, and in many cases, herself, may not be a believer.(Matt 15:8) How well this next verse fits the churches of today.

Matt 15:9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. (KJV)

Yes! The ministers add to the church daily such as heed the call of man. And the call of man is this;

[Quoted from a 12/3/96 Associated Baptist Press news release about the results of a study of the Unchurched. Reported by the Southern Baptist Home Mission Board]..

"Churches would do well to take seriously the concern for public and personal safety," they said. When the participants surveyed were asked "What are some of the greatest needs, issues and concerns of people living in your community?" the far-and-away dominant answer was "safety and crime."

"In order to make contact with people in their communities, [churches] could offer seminars on personal and home security, begin neighborhood watch programs, develop alliances with police and other community or governmental organizations and provide opportunities for people to meet their neighbors and discuss community issues," the researchers said. "Churches could emphasize spiritual security as well."

This statement tells us that we should cater to the needs and desires of the Unchurched unsaved, while transferring spiritual security to the back burner. We're told to change the methods and the message to attract the Unchurched unsaved. But the "church" is supposed to minister to each other, with the pastor or leaders as shepherds of the saved believers. The churches, rather than preaching sound doctrine, exhorting, reproving and rebuking are carried away in playing the numbers game. And they do this in God's Name.

IN GOD'S NAME
by Andy Neckar

We go to church for pleasure
We urge others do the same
We have to entertain ourselves
Regardless in Who's Name

We resort to worldly pleasures
So we can draw a throng
It's numbers we are after
Unmindful if it's wrong

It seems we cannot worship
Unless we make it fun
We work so hard to entertain
And leave His work undone

We gather in His Name for charm
And honor to our neighbor
Congeniality is our concern
And oh, how hard we labor

If the Word is ineffective
To fill the empty fews
We offer substitution
It's numbers we pursue

We have high attendance Sunday
And we set a numbers goal
We entice with entertainment
Is that the pastors role

Jesus never threw a party
And He did not entertain
He attracted through the Word of God
He never played the numbers game

But we've had a good time counting
Since the games begun
Now we're flaming with the devil
My, aren't we having fun.

The survey also discovered issues that are important for many church people -- abortion, the lottery, prayer in school, racism and politics -- are "not being mentioned as concerns" by Unchurched people.

The way many use the word "church people" seems to indicate that anyone going to any church is on the right path. But that is far from the truth. Now saved people are not of this world and will naturally have different concerns than the Unchurched unsaved. Getting the Unchurched into the church will not save them. The word church is not in our time. used as the word church was used in the New Testament. The church no longer is viewed as members of a Body with Christ as Head.

The "Church" is a local body of believers who come together to fellowship, keep each other in line, and to hear the Word. They are to place themselves under the authority of a well qualified Godly man who will teach them to observe all things whatsoever Christ has commanded.

And to get people into the "Church", we must "first" preach the gospel of Christ. (Gal 4:13)

If that doesn't work, what do we do next? Do we become as a basketball coach or whatever, to win them over?. What did Paul do? He stayed with the gospel of Christ. He didn't hire some Grecian athletic coaches to appeal to the masses. He didn't hire some therapists from some of the pagan goddess temples to give massages and initiate exercise activities to get them "involved". NO ! "He stayed with the gospel of Christ". And---he didn't "cooperate" in evangelistic missions with those who preached the law of circumcision. (Acts 15:1; 15:24; Gal 6:12-13) He didn't "hold hands" with the "High Priests" of the Pharisees. He warned of those preaching "another Jesus" or "another gospel" ( 2 Cor 11:4). He "cursed" those preaching another gospel. (Gal 1:8)

What about the true believers that are mixed with the Unchurched unsaved in these liberal churches? Can they not say?.Heb 4:2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. (KJV.

Yes, they should say this and separate from that church and find another-if they can.

We soon must find a new meaning for "Church" as we must for "Christian" as stated in my last newsletter. There is a big difference between the words "church" and "The Church" and "Christian" and "Believer"

Sound Churches can still be found, in most cases, and it is a gem of a find when you do find one. It should be highly treasured. Praise and glory should be uttered to God from the mouth of one who finds this gem. And I'll tell you what makes a "Sound Church". It is a pastor holding fast to "Sound Words" (2 Tim 1:13) A well qualified pastor (1 Timothy chapter 3) holding fast to Sound Words will have a Sound Church. Small maybe, (because of being Sound) but Sound nevertheless. That will be a fundamental church where the Bible is believed, preached, and practiced.

It will not be a church that is a member of an organized Convention, Association or Conference. Involvement in these always creates a situation in which the "Headquarters" program becomes more important than the work of the local church. Most of these "Headquarters" have stopped preaching all the counsel of God, (Acts 20:27) and determine what will be "compatible" to their member churches faith.

I urge you to study (a KJV Bible)to show yourself approved (2 Timothy 2:15), and earnestly contend for the faith in your area (Jude 1:3)

And God bless you
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NEWS WATCH

The UMC & Abortion.
At it's 1972 General Conference the United Methodist Church called for the legalization of abortion. The UMC was a founding member of the Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights (RCAR). In one year the Methodist Board of Church and Society contributed more than $400,000 to the abortion rights campaign and came out in support of the Roe v Wade Supreme Court decision which legalized abortion in the US. The following is quoted from Decisions of the UMC Judicial Council # 683 . "Does RCAR encourage women to have abortions? Of course not. RCAR members do believe, however, that if a woman becomes pregnant and decides that she simply cannot commit herself to care for a child at this time, she should have access to safe, affordable abortion services". (Emphasis mine) The 1992 General Conference defeated a petition which called for withdrawal of support of the RCAR. RCAR's membership includes the General Board of Church and Society of The UMC and the Women's Division of the General Board of Global Ministries of The UMC.
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The UMC & Ecumenicism.
The United Methodist Church is a member of the radical National & World Council of Churches, and is the largest financial supporter of the WCC. Efforts to absorb Methodist with other liberal denominations in the States have been in progress through the Consultation on Church Union (COCU) since 1961. This attempted union of Presbyterians, Episcopalians, Methodists, United Church of Christ, Disciples of Christ, and others have been making steady progress through the years.

UMC pastors participate in ecumenical clergy associations, joining hands at the local level with Roman Catholics, Unitarians, other modernists and non-Christians. It's 1990 "Ecumenical Celebration of Thanksgiving " featured such "faith communities" as the Franciscans, the Sikhs, the Japanese Community, Bahai, the Russian Jewish Emigres, Islam. Buddhist, the Native Americas and the Jewish & Christian faith traditions".

The UMC in 1972 formally approved a policy of doctrinal pluralism (more than one standard of belief ) founded upon the four-fold authority of Scripture, Tradition, Experience, and Reason. They have gone the way of Roman Catholicism. They no longer base their beliefs on Sola Scriptura.
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National church executives send letter to Senate opposing 'Parental Rights and Responsibilities' Act
In a letter reaching U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee members the first week of May '96, church executives from various denominations voiced opposition to the "Parental Rights and Responsibilities" Act. One of the basic reasons for their opposition is, quote,. "First, this bill places too much emphasis on parental rights, at the expense of children's rights and community rights. We do not agree that parental rights are absolute. Our religious traditions affirm that children, too, have rights. They are embodied, for example, in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child". Signers included various national or regional executives of the United Church of Christ's, United Methodist Church, Episcopal Church, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), National Council of Churches, Union of American Hebrew Congregations and Unitarian Universalist Association.
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Accordion music replacing God's Word?
Accordion music helps prisoners calm down and turn to God, according to Baptist minister and Salvation Army volunteer Ralph Bailey. He has been playing at the Middlesex County jail in New Brunswick, N.J. for 40 years. Amazing Grace is the favorite among inmates, because it deals with a lost soul who finds redemption, said Bailey, 78. The accordion "seems to reach their souls more quickly than words ever could," he said. (Religion News Today. 2/21/97)

[Is man's accordion now sharper than the Word of God? Paul says God's Word is quick and powerful. (Heb 4:12) Was the Spirit wrong when He inspired Paul to write this? Has the Gospel of Christ weakened so as to become ineffective without man's help and rational wisdom? God Forbid!

I say this though. The Messengers of Christ who are earnestly contending for the faith are going to have their hands full as the wide spread apostasy accelerates to full scale]
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The Voice in the Wilderness had this to say about the "infallible" Catholic Pope's declaration that the theory of evolution is compatible with the Christian Faith.

"Mr. Pope, what do you think Adam and Eve were before they became Adam and Eve? Do you think they came up from some insect or other creeping things or primates already in existence? You may think your ancestors came through the coconut grove if you wish to, but I KNOW mine came THROUGH THE GARDEN."
[The Voice in the Wilderness. Box 210098, Dallas, TX 75211. Subscription free.1/97]
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CN&V'S NOTES

Well, the job I took on of mailing out introductory letters offering a free information packet to the Independent Baptist Churches listed in the BBFI church directory is finished. I have received 95 responses, with the last mailing not yet tabulated. Now I will go to work adding many more articles and categories to the web site.

If you know of anyone who would like to receive the newsletter please sent in their names and addresses. There are many who do not have access to the Internet that may want the type of information contained in the newsletter. It is still free you know.

There is one newsletter that I am very partial to, and that is "The Berean Call". It was information contained in that newsletter by Dave Hunt that got me investigating my Roman Catholic faith back in the spring of 1991. Between that newsletter, my Bible, and my son Andrew Jr., I learned the truth. I was brought to repentance by the Holy Spirit and baptized in a Baptist church in Oct. of 1991. Praise God and His Son Jesus Christ. The Newsletter is monthly and it is free. Write to
The Berean Call
PO Box 7019
Bend, OR 97708

See you next month.

We Must Earnestly Contend For The Faith.