Sunday, December 23, 2012

Let Us Not Forsaking the Assembling of Ourselves Together

Now she that is a widow indeed, and desolate, trusteth in God, and continueth in supplications and prayers night and day.
1 Timothy 5:5



One of the nicest Follower traditions was the annual Widow's Dinner. There were a number of older ladies who did not remarry after the death of their beloved. There were also a handful of older women who had been abandoned by husbands who rejected the church and left; women who stayed in the flock and remained faithful to the Follower beliefs, and celibate throughout several years. Some women were so strong that they were able to work and raise their children without a husband.



What about widowers? you may be wondering. The truth is, I don't remember any widowers. Men tended to remarry within a year or two after the deaths of their wives, young and old. Maybe my memory is failing me and there were some older widowed men. I also do not remember any men whose wives had left them and the church remaining single because in our interpretation of the Bible, men could be freed from a wife (free to remarry) if a woman left church or was unfaithful to him.



For the most part, women could not be freed to remarry except through widowhood. I knew of only two exceptions to this. One woman had been given permission by Walter White to remarry after she discovered that her husband had gone and married another woman (committing polygamy). The other woman left her husband after a few years of marriage and claimed that they had never consummated their marriage (she claimed he was a eunuch). It was controversial to many, but the woman did find a Follower man willing to marry her.



Back to the Widow's Dinner: every December the unmarried women – young and old gathered together for the Widow's Dinner. The teenaged girls (on up through twenty-somethings who were not married) prepared a nice multi-course dinner. Tables and chairs were set out in the old church building where the dances were then held. Decorations were put up and poinsettias were purchased as Christmas gifts for each of the widows.



The older faithful divorcees were included and treated as widows. They certainly deserved it for sticking it out in a couples' world and raising their children on their own. It was a time of fellowship with older women and honoring the ladies who had lost their husbands.



Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
Hebrews 10:25

23 comments:

  1. There was at least one man who decided it wasn't right for him to re-marry after his wife left.

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  2. The bible verse you posted has also been used extensively to persuade people the necessity of coming to church even though there is no preacher, no bibles, no baptism, no foot washing. It would be said that no matter what happens you must not forsake gathering together. It would also be said that because those things are not present the end of time is near so as the bible verse says you should gather together more often.

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    1. Does anyone else find it weird that there isn't any bible studies? I know it's weird that they don't have the other things that you mentioned, but just think about it, 1500 or so people, and not one group study of this book they claim to believe, I asked someone once, why they don't at least put in a tape before you sing a couple songs that way you at least have some scripture in the church, that person told me that I could read my bible at home and that it wasn't nescessary, in other words don't bring that bible into this church, I know I'll get slandered for saying this, called a liar, but I don't care, because the spirit that controls that place couldn't possibly allow for small group studies, think about how unreasonable that is! I think if you look in the sanctuary of the church a place that can hold at least 2,000 people, you will find 2 bibles, (me and my friends looked before) that spirit could not allow for a bible study because to many would start figuring things out! You men who go out there and are "sick" of it have to be men and stand up! Start a study no matter what someone thinks or says about you, who do you fear more? Man or God? Choose ye who you will serve Baal or the Lord God!

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    2. Oh shut up Nick.... oops I mean Brian. Hey Brian why do you sound retarded when part of the time when you post. Saying totally off the wall stuff and using texting lingo like lol. And then other times you sound completely different. Either Nick writes for you part of the time or you need medication. In your case I would be okay with medical treatment.... lol

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    3. See what I mean? Slander, just like when Paul (fools for Christ) attacked your church, someone didn't like that but had nothing to slander him with so they tried to pick apart his name, and this is another example of how far removed the word of God is from that building! If they had just taken a Strong's concordance and looked up the word fool they could have found it, if they had been growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2nd Peter 3:18) with a bus study, they might have known that, instead of looking stupid!

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    4. *Bible study

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    5. By slandering a person that would try to get you to see the inconsistency of your church with what the word says your not doing your fellow church members any favors with your hatred, that only makes you guys look ignorant!

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    6. Bible studies will not help because many just see the new testament as a list of new rules to replace the old rules from the old testament and miss the gospel message.

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    7. Who's Nick? Why is there so much contempt for him? That comment was from a guy named Brian.

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    8. Anonymous it's called reverse discrimination, it's ok for them to talk badly about members that have left but when we speak out against them they call us liars and say things like stop blaming us for your problems.

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    9. That's just sick. There seems to be a few People on here that simply want to work out what they went through. It's hard for an outsider to understand the contempt and instant anger. The lashing out at someone who was their brother just because they speak at all. It's as though they are still trying to control them through fear.

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  3. Amen Brian! I remember the widow Christmas dinners and I have many pictures of that. I think it was a good thing, for the widows, but never understood the women that came who weren't technically widows...that their husbands didn't die but left church.

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  4. In order for any study to succeed, the subject matter needs to be interesting to that person. It needs to be craved for or hungered for. If a person is comfortable in ones life why would he stick his neck out to attend a bible study. If one attended he would loose his family, friends, social possition. There is simply to much to loose by attending a bible study. It is much easier to attend a social club where one can talk current affairs, hunting, sports what ever you would like to insert here. Because we can have varied opinions here and it is not going to get heated. For instance we can quote family guy, the office, what ever current morning radio talk show. Because it is easier to talk about these subjects, there will not be any conflict in our discussion. One can say it is just more comfortable. It will not separate you from another group of people, like if I talk about the show sienfield and you don't care about Seinfeld than we will not go away upset. But if we start studying the word of God, than there is going to be some discussion. Some one might get heated. The reason a bible study will never work in the followers of Christ in Oregon city is no one is interested, everyone is comfortable in living the life that is going on around them. It would cut into my time I have allocated for other activitys, and if I start one with other people than it will separate me from others here. There is simply put to much to loose by starting or attending a bible study. Way to much to loose.

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    1. Man that must really suck for someone who goes out there and would really like a study, I know because I've been in that situation! Having no one in a large group of Christian church members who would be willing to study the word of God, to have no religious freedom, to literally be a coward and a prisoner to that place, my hope is that someone will read our comments and see just how rediculous the situation is out there... Merry Christmas everyone! The birth of the Savior who came to save you from your enemies!

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    2. If anyone would like to reach me my new email address is brianmoore2488@yahoo.com

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  5. What good is going to come from reading the bible? When they read they do it with an agenda. Not to find the peace that the word should bring. They only read to find a way to divide themselves off from the world, and their own brothers. They read with the intent to see where they are right, and their brother is wrong. It doesn't matter how much wrong your brother is doing, it will never make you any more correct in your own assumptions.

    There should be a measure of grace applied toward your brethren, don't you think? Jesus gives it to us, shouldn't we live by his example? The truth matters, and it hurts more than anything to a believer. But some truths have to be said for the edification of the brother that you love. But there needs to be a balance of the two that hasn't been used at the FOC, or on this forum, for a long time. The bottom line for me is that if I can't share the truth with my brother gracefully, then I'll wait to share it with him until I'm confident that I can. I wish that I was more graceful so that I could be more truthful.

    I think everyone has a lot to get off of their chests, and when one of those conversations pop up we have a tendency to explode and let it all out at once. A bible study group would let that happen at a slower pace, in theory. Taking on each piece of scripture a little at a time might allow for more peaceful conversation. There have been people who have tried in the past to do this. It seems to have failed. Not because it was a bad idea, but because it was undermined by ones who looked at the participants as holier than thou. Which was never the intention, but the perception was too strong to continue.

    An primary argument that I've understood to be the immediate downfall of a bible study group is who leads it? The assumption is that without a minister, it will be headed by someone with an agenda of their own. It's a lousy assumption, but in some circles it might be true.

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    1. For the first several years after I left church, I was scared to read the Bible. Every time I opened it, I felt condemned.

      I have been in many Bible studies and have even hosted many. Some were led by pastors or elders. A few were led by preachers on DVDs. Almost all had bible study guides to go along with them.

      One church I went to had "friendship dinners" where an older couple would host six younger folks (20s to 40s) for a dinner and discussion. Just to get to know more people. I loved that tradition.

      I have been in several Bible study groups for women only. These were led by the wives of pastors or by older women in the church.

      You can have a bible study with no leader. Just read a passage and go around the circle and discuss/ask questions. Just involve everyone.

      Our church starts new Bible studies every six weeks so we have the chance to fellowship and pray with a lot of different people.

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    2. Do you have to have a leader? Or couldn't you just gather together to stimulate each other's minds and encourage on another? A couple weeks have it at one person's house, and then the next, etc. or use the church for such an event, I know that people would have a problem with a study at the church, haha! But that is really none of anyone's business now is it? The point I'm trying to make is this kind of an activity should be encouraged in a church, but why isn't it? Experiment a little, find a way that suits you for the event, get creative, just think, if whatever controls that place will not allow for a study of the word of God, then is that spirit of God or not? And should a person associate with it if it's not of God?

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  6. Brian how can you talk about "reverse discrimination"? All you do is discriminate on this blog. You pigeon hole a huge group of people over the comments of very few. You are a hypocrite and probably mildly retarded. ..lol

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    1. I have never once mentioned any of you by name, I have only stated how fouled your belief system is and the church it's self as a whole, you people have no problem naming someone who doesn't really ever comment on here! It just proves that if a person has a different outlook how they are treated, they will either shun you or get rid of you or both. We know who the real hate group is!

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  7. The piece of scripture from Hebrews 10:25 must be one of the most used and watered-down verses of the bible. It is nice to see that when quoted by Suzi in this post the second part of it was included. The reason we assemble is to "exhort one another" and if this is not our purpose then we are not constituted a divinely approved church. The rammifications of this precept are that if you belong to a "church" that does not allow all members qualified by the Spirit to exhort, which is to warn and teach, then you do not belong to The Church and attendance is moot. Some modern "churches" are taught only by accredited pastors or a ministerial group who assume the sole position of teaching their congregation. This is unscriptural and wrong! This is not assembling in the divine purpose. Further if there is no preaching or if other restraints are placed upon the gifts of the Spirit, which we all hold, then no matter how large the group, it is no church! Jesus said, "where two or three are gathered IN MY NAME" that he would be there. We are not gathered in his name when we are contrary to his will.

    Darren

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    1. Ministerial callings or offices is biblical. Does the COTFB not have ministers?

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    2. Darren I couldn't agree more.

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