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Discussion in 'Suggestion Box' started by C. Matthew McMahon, Oct 23, 2005.
What do you think?
With us soon to enter a Presbyterian church...I'm going to have lots to talk about. I'm still learning.
With all due respect Colleen, should it be done here? I'm trying to understand the whole thing and want to do what Christ would want us to do. As I mentioned to matt earlier, the question is, is the board becoming so devisive because we have exhausted things to talk about that would be encouraging?
I wrote this earlier today:
Have we reached the end? Seriously, is there anything left to be said here? Are we doing more damage than this thing is worth? Mass exoduses, banning, crushed and beaten brethren as a result of trying to prove you are correct. People are possibly destroyed over some of the things that have been done in the name of this board. I wonder if it is worth it. Granted, it has been a blessing, however it has as well brought grief to some.
A friend told me that everyone needs to get a thicker skin. I don't know if I agree with that anymore. We need to be sensitive to each others feelings. Where has the tenderness, kindness and love gone? I can cry. Seriously.
A resounding "no"! This board allows me the privelege to interact with reformed minds. I am still searching in the Reformed area. While my pastor and I are both Calvinists, our church would not be classified as Reformed. For me, this board has been invaluable.
[Edited on 10-23-2005 by BaptistInCrisis]
In my humble opinion, the negative experiences on this board are symptomatic of greater problems with certain individuals. To close down the board because of a few people would be tragic. There is no debate that the PB is NOT the church. Could we go on with our lives without the PB. Certainly. Are there those who should leave? Undoubtedly. But there is much good on this board. Not all of us attend Reformed churches. It is not that easy to say, "well go find one." I find myself becoming more and more Reformed as time passes. The PB has been invaluable to me. At the risk of being redundant from my previous post, the PB allows me to pick the brains of Reformed brethren.
Maybe the right question to ask is, "How can we 'reform' the PB?" I would rather see that happen then to close it down.
You know, I can't get on most of the time anymore because I have to be out of town alot otherwise I would have. I have been hearing alot about what has been going on from Colleen and I can understand all of your feelings right now. Whether it is a church, a board like this, the work place, different ministries that are out there, or what ever, go through these times of difficulty. You guys cannot just give up on this and neither can any brother of sister out there. I challenge each and every one of you to stick it out in love. We are family. There isn't a whole lot out there to promote the reformed faith in any arena. This board has helped me and the wife tremendously and we love you all. I have found that sometimes God moves some on and brings new people in that really do need to talk these things out. This board has always had a turn over. Look at the list of people that are registered but do not post anymore, not because they were mad but circumstances probably didn't permit it like in my case. I really do think that because of the situation with long term ppl leaving it has magnified the situation. This to will pass. It does hurt but we need this board. We all need to remember that we are here and that this board is here by God's providence and we all need to remember that we are all directly connected to one another in Christ and that we need to remember not to let the devil have his way in a situation but to realize that we all need each other in this time of pain and to grow together to become a stronger board, a stronger pillar of truth on the internet. This is a world wide ministry and one of a kind at that! We are a world wide family on this board! Please, do not make a rash decision. Either way you go with a decision will have a big impact on this board. May God be with you and strengthen you as He already is.
I understand your feelings, Scott. I agree with Bill though that this board has been instumental in helping me bridge over to the Reformed faith and work out things that I struggled with coming from a partially-messianic Baptist background. You have also been there to warn me of things that I had never heard of before and challenged me to research.
Maybe there are a few things that we need to reform on the PB. Perhaps the administrators and moderators should talk and figure some of these things out. Maybe mention ahead of membership which things are not acceptable. Work on how we are going to handle disagreements and make it clear that attitudes aren't acceptable.
If you do feel the need to shut down the board to just prayer...then please keep the threads up for read only. Mayhaps we could also leave open the general discussions. I've noticed the lull in the board lately (other than one or two really active topics). I agree with my husband, that this board will go through it's ebbs and flows and turnovers. I believe that is just the way of most things. This has been the most active AND beneficially sound christian board I've ever run across.
Keeping ya'll in prayer on this decision.
That's how I feel.
I can't believe this is even up for discussion.
Keep it as is. I think some need to chill out. Heard a great sermon today on The Unity of the Church which if not exactly applicable may be edifying for many here to listen to. I won't have webpages fixed before tomorrow as I wasn't given the order of worship in a file this week with the pastor being out of town, so this direct link is it for now.
Rev. Todd Ruddell, Assistant Pastor FPCR
The Unity of the Church (EPH 4:1-12)
Oh no....Keep it, please keep it.
Yes, there have been some rough times and threads as of late. But some of the most wonderful people reside here. It is in no way a substitute for our church or church fellowship, and there IS still a lot to talk about.
Okay, there have been many doctrines beaten into the ground...baptism being one of them... probably submission too (guilty on that one) ..along with a host of others....but considering that mankind (on this side of eternity) will always have more to learn from the Bible ...He will have more questions, more thoughts as He studiously and prayerfully tries to understand...therefore, there should be new things to discuss. This is a great forum for it. And, certainly prayer needs are always changing.
Please don't close it. There's nothing like this out there. This is a special board with special people.
I believe your friend is correct. A hallmark of all the wishy washy Arminian feel good purpose driven churches I was a part of over the years had one thing in common, they never wanted to offend anyone. If someone attending didn't like something that was done or said there were meetings called to see what could be done about that.
Even if someone misapplied what was said, or misinterpreted it we still had to do something about it to make the person feel better. It was rather silly. I say if someone is so offended here that they can't get over it, let them leave. We are all smart enough and honest enough to spot a genuine trouble maker and I am certain and confident they would be dealt with.
Then it is those people who place too much stalk in this board. That is no ones fault but there own. We should not be made to feel guilty over someone placing actual life feelings and emotions into an internet message board. I am sorry if that doesn's sound loving enough but I have some personal experience in this area and these conversations are beginning to sund like they are being held by people I lose respect for, not by sound men of the faith who I have come to admire and respect.
Also: Colleen and I were brainstorming what might be helpful, and thought maybe if there was a closed section of the pb where specifically where you can store a copy of all the hot topics/dead horses and when newcomers ask, we can direct them to that area rather than rehashing old debates?
Generally, that is what all the mods and admins do. The person is redirected via a provided link.
I do not want to sound like I am asking for a position here guys, but if you ever want a mod who isn't afraid to "sic" someone let me know. I am not as knowledgable as many of you are, but if there is a poster who you deem a trouble maker and no one wants to be "mean" just let me know and I'll do it without hesitation.
I was thinking more of an archive. Then you can list the dead topic and put all like threads under it. ie, all EP threads go under EP. Then there is a whole Archive of EPs that is easier to search on ones own than being redirected.
Adam took the words right out of my mouth.
Personally, I don't think dissension and disagreement is necessarily the problem. As long as there are ideas there will be disagreement. However, it's our failure to consider what the other person is saying that leads to continued strife. Often the attitude "I'M RIGHT" is shouted without care or consideration for the other person's argument.
We whip out theological quotes, like pistols in a gunfight, ready to battle with anyone who dissents from our opinion. Yet, how often do we resort to scripture to affirm our stand?...yet SCRIPTURE is our foundation, but sometimes we appear to rely more on a Confession or some dead puritan's writing.) We walk around trying to show others in no uncertain terms their "blind spot" while whacking them in the forehead with our own log.
It seems to me that rules are created to get rid of divisiveness, and immediately half the members are in violation of those rules. Tensions increase, the roster is culled, more rules are created--and where there are many rules, there are many lawbreakers. (What we need is a savior.) In the Bible this played out to be Pharisees and rebels. In real life, it will reach the point where only one point-of-view is expressed. And while One point-of-view may make for a pleasant board, with a nice Sunday school type of atmosphere where the chosen teacher may teach the students as he sees fit...it doesn't make for a fair and balanced opinion.
Arguments do show both sides of the story, they cause people to think, people who are open may even change their minds, or they may become more firm in their beliefs. All of these are a good thing.
I think the owners should decide the direction they want to take the board in. They own the land. (in my opinion the way it's going it will soon affirm a single viewpoint anyway, not through argument but through eradication.) Matt and Scott need to make the decision. If it's a prayer board fine, if it's a board that primarily reflects reformed PCA doctrine--it should be planned as such and not happen by default. However, it they want it to be what it used be, then in my opinion everyone needs to lighten up and remember that "pride" comes before destruction (including Matt and Scott--sorry, but as long as I was expressing my opinion...), and half the rules need to relaxed.
So there are my thoughts, prayerfully added.
Thank you. You MUCH more clearly stated what I was trying to write!
Can I vote again? Keep it open. Tweek what you feel needs to be tweeked, but keep it open. You can hire Adam to be the PB Bouncer!
Some of the best minds on this board are men I disagree with in something or other. Generally, I just won't go back and forth with people I want to have fellowship with. I stay away (more or less) from Baptism threads, from Politics, t(T)heonomy, whatever. I state an opinion on something like EP, and try to move on.
We need to avoid causeless disputes, vain janglings (1 Tim. 1:4, 6), foolish and ignorant arguments (2 Tim. 2:23), unprofitable and useless contentions and strivings about the law (Titus 3:9). Getting involved in heated exchanges is a personal decision about what is worth going to the mat over. Even then we have to be gracious, a quality that is sometimes lacking. This is a maturity issue (as some have already pointed out) and a spiritual one, and much more so than an intellectual one, for one can be quite bright and not be either of the more important things. Many desire "to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say, nor the things they affirm" (1 Tim. 1:7). But even elders in the church can be sinful in these things, and moreso when they do not recognize their error and repent as publicly as their fault. Moderators should hold the reins both with discretion and as directed, according to the situation.
I would like to see the board stick around. I think it is still servicable. I would rather see it shut down because the owner/operators decided to quit (reasons specified or unspecified), and not because it had become an ugly and unruly place. I don't think we are at that point.
Seriously though, I am not worried about hurting someones feelings if it's the mission of this board being violated.
Ok, all of us in favor of it remaining open have spoken, most of us several times. Would it be too much to ask those who voted to close it or change it drastically to speak up for them selves?
I ask,please keep it open.
I love the fellowship and opportunities to be challenged and learn here on PB. Coming out of a combined 20 years of "charismania/dispyism" PB has really helped me sharpen my ever growing understanding and appreciation of the Reformed Faith. I've especially been helped in the areas of Ethics and Familial morality, mainly because many of you seem to have been blessed with solid backgrounds in this that reach deep into your childhoods and adolescent/young adult educational and social experiences.
I've also made some friends on this board that regularly EMAIL and some I may even meet this side of heaven. Finally, there's is a good chance that I'll enroll in Whitefield Seminary's distance program as a result of several interactions with folks on this board.
P.S. Out of all the folks that God has used to humble me on PB, I admire Rev. Buchanan's honesty and intelligence the most!
[Edited on 10-24-2005 by BrianBowman]
Now it's up to 5 people who want it shut down, but refuse to speak up. in my opinion that says it all right there about the so called "problems".
[Edited on 10-24-2005 by houseparent]
If someone wants the board closed, why do they stay??
Adam, now that is my personality style. Born and raised 10 miles west of Manhattan. New Yorker at heart.
In my beginnings of being reformed, which was approximately eight months ago, this board has helped me out tremendously. I have read what others have commented on various topics. Those topics spring boarded me to search the Scriptures and to see what the church fathers had to say as well. I have read and learned about topics that I have not heard of before, and I have learned about what books to buy on certain subjects discussed here on the board. This board has helped me not only with understanding what Calvin, Zwingli, Luther and others were fighting for, but I have learned that the fight still goes on. I believe this is the heart of every person here.
Yes, there may have been disagreements every now and again, but this is the consequence of our fallen state, which should constantly remind us that grace abounds. This board is not our church nor should we view it as such. But this board is part of our fellowship with many brethren across the great divide.