Sunday, March 15, 2009

Who Made You Right?

How about a word of caution from the apostle Paul that probably applies across the board to people in all sorts of churches — yes, even where the Bible is supreme.

Here is what he wrote under the moving of the Holy Spirit:
"Every charge must be substantiated by the mouth of two or three witnesses" (2 Corinthians 13:13).

Now, if that word were heeded in the church, there would be far greater peace.

There is nothing esoteric, confusing or difficult about this verse. There is no context to define it — except for the fact that the Corinthians were always at each other's throats about something or other.

It means what it says: don’t bring a charge against anyone without being able to substantiate it. The 2 or 3 witness clause refers back to the Old Testament rule for witnesses (Dt. 17:6; 19:15).

There are too many today, even those in authority, who seem to think it is legitimate (if they think about it at all) to talk negatively about others with impunity. Not so. It matters not your position nor title, it is a serious matter before the Lord. If there is something to be said about others, especially pastors, or about a member of the congregation, then do so formally (as this verse directs) or keep quiet! (I almost wrote “shut up”). File formal charges, or leave it alone. And, if formal charges are filed, the charges must be absolutely proven, or the accuser should be charged no matter their position or title.

The world is watching closely while the church mistreats one another. No wonder they want to have no part of it. Church members are talking about one another, or about the pastor, accusations are made, loose talk goes on, and slander is framed as prayer requests. Even denominational leadership can fall into the judgemental trap of imposing discipline based on talk or hearsay. How many times has a pastor been moved or not used at all based on rumors?

Perhaps a good rule would be to impose the same discipline on the accuser as would have been imposed on the accused if the accusation cannot be proven by two or three witnesses. Even a bishop is not right just because he is a bishop. If errors are made, they must be made on the side of grace.

Uncharitable talk is rife in the church — I mean genuine believers. Indeed, whenever you hear it, you ought not to become a trash can to receive it. Squelch it by reciting this verse!

BeBe Winans Arrested For Assault of Ex-Wife

Gospel music star BeBe Winans has been accused of assaulting his ex-wife and was held briefly at a county jail in Nashville on Friday before posting $1000 bond.

According to official documents, Winans, 46, and his ex-wife Debra Winans got into a "verbal altercation" on Feb. 13 over "custody issues dealing with their children." The two were married for 16 years before divorcing in 2003 and have a 13-year-old daughter and a 10-year-old son.

During the “verbal altercation” at Debra Winans’ Nashville home, BeBe Winans reportedly “became irate.”

“The defendant then pushed the victim to the ground,” court papers stated.

Though late in coming, Debra Winans said her decision to speak out was made with the hope that it would help other abuse victims who suffer through abuse rather than reaching out for help.

"Until you realize something's not changing, you pray all day long,” she told a local NBC affiliate.
“The power of God is real, but one thing He's not going to do is go against someone's will. We make choices," she added.

On Friday, an official statement released by BeBe Winans acknowledged that there was “a child custody right dispute” that arose out of his “desire to spend time with our children as court ordered.”

However, Winans said the allegations were “nothing less than heart wrenching” and “inconsistent with my character and the foundation upon which I was raised.”

He also said he would make no other comments for the time being having decided “to say nothing negative about my children’s mother.”

“I am prayerful that the matter is straightened out very soon for the sake of our children,” Winans stated.

A Grammy Award-winning gospel and R&B singer, Benjamin “BeBe” Winans is a member of the noted Winans family, which includes “Mom and Pop Winans,” brothers David, Ronald, Carvin, Marvin, Michael and Daniel, sisters Angie and Debbie Winans, and arguably the most popular, CeCe Winans.

A spokesman for BeBe Winans told NBC affiliate WSMV-TV that the singer is in Atlanta working as a judge on a BET program.

[from The Christian Post]

Bishop Tim Coalter at Greer, SC Today

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