THE CHRISTIAN NONE PAGE
Satan believes it. The rise of anger, evil, and hate in the world is palpable. The extreme polarization of peoples into factions that cannot tolerate each other, delight in provoking one another, and cursing one another, loving the perpetual state of outrage, which only feeds more violence and chaos. Anyone, Christian or not, can sense it, feel it, see it in the daily news. An extraordinary lack of respect and civility and human decency has burst into the cultures of the world like a volcanic eruption. What we see in the daily news is a world turned upside down, where what's obviously wrong is called righteous, and right is condemned as hateful. The world of mankind has entered a weird new stage of unraveling, providing a peculiar catalyst to our hopeful expectations. If the Messiah delays his return too much longer, there won't be anything left to save.
As people are transformed into acting more like vicious animals than men of decency, we must not live in fear of the growing want of human decency, tolerance, and respect for human life. It is fulfillment of prophecy, and must occur. Scripture says;
The answer to those questions is, of course you can. You can leave. Leaving can be spiritually liberating. A liberating independence of faith, as you find the load suddenly becomes light and kindly. To be a follower of Yeshua, is to learn and develop a personal relationship with God, the Father. Study the words of the Torah and the words of the Messiah. It's just as simple as that. It was called in the apostolic times, "the Way." A way of life. But bear in mind, along with the freedom comes the personal responsibility for development and growth of one's own faith, along with that of one's family. The scriptures are your guide, the only guide you need, and remembering a true Christian must behave like a Christian, always. A fact that requires informed personal change and spiritual growth. Personal study and personal prayer and don't neglect the relationship of love and kindness towards your neighbors.
Cast all your anxieties on him, for he cares about you. Be sober, be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking some one to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experience of suffering is required of your brotherhood throughout the world. And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, establish, and strengthen you. - 1 Peter 5
However, there is another side to this trend, if one digs a little deeper into the polls. The Nones aren't all necessarily turning their backs on the Christian faith. Large numbers still identify as Christians. They're turning their backs on the traditional institutional religions.
The Christian nones remain a small but growing group. They are in fact the fastest 'growing' group within Christianity today. Some of these will fall away to atheism or secular humanism (New Age), but even of these, some may find their way back. These however, only constitute about 25% of the Christian nones. The rest leave seeking greater meaning and a higher spiritual truth to their faith. Something the churches don't offer.
Many will move from church to church, looking for the one that is the least objectionable, the best fit. This can continue until they settle, or give up and go home. These are seeking answers to the
question, "What denomination should we embrace?" "Which one is right?" They may question the theological underpinnings of the various denominations. Or maybe they're just looking for the pastor who delivers the best sermons. Some are simply confused over illogical theologies and the requisite convoluted elucidations to explain biblically incongruous teachings. Explanations that clash with the sensibilities of reasonable people. Is it possible for a Christian to live and practice their faith independently? Many questions to consider, but at the time of judgment we won't be asked what denomination we belonged to, but whether or not we belong to Christ. This, really, is the heart of the matter.
You may have heard in some sermon or another, the clear admonition that one cannot even be a Christian outside of a church. To willfully be apart from the fellowship, spiritual support, and pastoral guidance of the larger congregation leads to a revocation of the Messiah's salvation for you. Without the supervision and instruction of the pastors and priests, you can't be a Christian. They put the heavy load of guilt on the shoulders of freethinking "infidels." These admonitions rub up against the concept of "collective" salvation, where one cannot be saved outside the church body. One must be joined to the collective. A concept that has no real basis in scripture.
Christian religious leaders love to tell us we must attend church services so that we can worship God along with the other believers. Within the confines of the fellowship one can show love towards one another, encourage one another, serve one another, instruct one another, and be kind and compassionate towards one another.
How could Christians do such things in the absence of obligatory religious rituals and ceremonies? Outside of the church, where else could one go to learn the false teachings, doctrines, and traditions that so define the institutional Christian religions? The question becomes, can one experience the spirituality and the worship of God outside the walls of a church, and separated from the greater congregation? Can one show love and compassion to neighbors outside the church?
In these difficult end-times the need for insight and guidance is becoming increasingly important, but it isn't coming from the pulpits of the churches. Don't allow your faith to be cheated by the false and faithless teachings of the ecumenical churches or their lawless leadership. Remember that the primary theme of Messiah's ministry was, "The Kingdom of God Has Drawn Near." Repent, friends, and persevere in prayer. The Lord Messiah, Yeshua, Jesus the Christ, will be returning soon. The failing of the ecumenical church is simple. THE CHURCHES DON'T BELIEVE IT.
Don't get us wrong. We aren't condemning the churches or the clergy. We love them all. They perform some valuable and useful functions in the name of the Lord. They have spread the Word of God throughout the nations of the world. However, they have also killed far more Christians than any non-Christian entity, also in the name of the Lord. The vast majority are good-hearted people, teaching and doing what they have been taught is right. The problem we have is that we haven't any respect for their theologies, doctrines, or the ecclesiastical structures of their churches. It is not the intent of the ecumenical examiner to ridicule or cast shame on the churches of Christendom, but rather to expose the Christian brotherhood to a different frame of reference. We at the none network don't mind offending the mother church or her many daughters, we love them in spite of their errors, like family. There are, after all, none without error.
A few links concerning the phenomenon of the nones:
You shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams [the false prophets], for the Lord your God is testing you to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall walk after the Lord your God and fear Him, and keep His commandments and obey His voice, and you shall serve Him and hold fast to Him. But that prophet or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death, because he has spoken in order to turn you away from the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt and redeemed you from the house of bondage, to entice you from the way in which the Lord your God commanded you to walk. So you shall put away the evil from your midst. - Deuteronomy 13
The churches of ecumenical Christendom have focused their attention on so many popular messages throughout the history of the church. Their messages have focused on controversies ranging from Quartodeciman, to trinitarianism vs Arianism, to icons, to the human and divine natures of Christ, down to LGBT, homosexual marriage, and climate change. The one thing that seems always to escape their attention is the message of the Kingdom of God. "Repent, for the Kingdom of God has drawn near" was the theme and central message of Yeshua's teaching and formed the core of his Gospel (good news) ministry as He laid the groundwork for our redemption through His sacrifice.
In the Sermon on the Mount Yeshua said, "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well." In the Lord's prayer he said, "your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." In Mark 1 it is written," After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. “The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” When the people tried to persuade the Lord to stay a while longer, he replied, “I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, because for this purpose I have been sent.”
We could go on, of course, but the point is that the Kingdom of God was the basis of the Lord's Gospel message. It was his purpose, it is what motivated him, it was what he wanted his followers to continue preaching after his ascension. Where is this message in the mainstream Christian churches of today? It faded away so quickly in the post-apostolic church, that it couldn't have just been accidentally overlooked. Church teaching must have been sidetracked by deliberate design. The stench of the Devil's cooking filled the air inside the great cathedrals of Christendom.
It is the message, the doctrines, the practices, and the structure of the churches that have driven so many good Christian people away. A sense of falseness that can even ruin one's faith in God's word, damaging Divine Inspiration, which could be defined as the "unforgivable sin." Once outside the familiar, approved, setting of orthodox Christian worship, these lost sheep feel they've been forced by their conscience into lonely abandonment. These are the NONES we want to encourage and support - their instincts serve them well.
He said He would build His church and the gates of hell would not prevail against it. Did He mean an assembly or congregation? A philosophical idea? Buildings with ridiculously elevated ceilings and golden trim-work? Perhaps a building that housed religious images, graven or otherwise? Perhaps he was anticipating a church that consisted of a "movement" or "following" of Jews and Gentiles, that together would remain within Torah teachings in addition to Gospel teachings. Perhaps he meant it to be a predominately Gentile movement, organized, and separating itself from all things Jewish, including Torah teaching. That seems to be what the 'apostle' Paul was suggesting in Galatians. Perhaps he simply meant it to be a spiritual way of life based on the teachings of God and the Messiah. One would be forced to conclude that after 2,000 years, we still haven't got it right. We're sheep. Sheep aren't known for being very smart.
We should begin with an explanation of what is meant by the term, "Christian NONE." The term was coined by the PEW Research Center, which periodically conducts polls to measure the state of Christendom. When pollsters would ask a respondent what denomination they were affiliated with, more and more respondents were answering, "none." Gradually, a new polling category of Christian was born. These are people that still self-identify as Christians, but were leaving the institutionalized churches, in search of greater meaning in their faith. If that describes you, don't feel ashamed, embrace the liberation, you are not alone. It may well be that the growth of the NONES is a signal that we have come to a seminal moment in the history of the church. Perhaps the beginning of a new reformation. Perhaps the End of the Age.
What is a church anyway? Does not the word "church" appear throughout the New Testament? Jesus spoke of his church. The apostles made many references to the 'church'. We are admonished by the author of the epistle to the Hebrews, that we, "consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching." - Hebrews 10:24,25
Secondly, we should examine another question. What exactly did Yeshua mean when he referred to his "church" against which, the gates of Hades would not prevail? (Matthew 16:18). Sometimes things get a little mixed up in translation. Sometimes those mix ups are deliberately meant to confuse, and can seriously alter the meaning of the written/spoken word. Was Yeshua referring to the congregation of Israel? It would seem logical, given that He was Jewish, he ministered to the Jews, and never set foot outside of Israel. Prophetically, Israel has indeed stood fast, against all odds, against the gates of Hell for two thousand years. Standing fast has included standing against the often inhuman and ruthless persecutions of Christians, who have been so determined to declare Judaism cursed and cast off by God, in order to drape themselves in the mantel of substitutionism, or replacement theology. The Jewish people not only had to survive, they had to return to their homeland after being scattered throughout the nations. It's already happened. Prophecy fulfilled.
It was only sometime later that the gentiles hijacked the teachings of the Lord Yeshua, and tried to turn His words away from Israel, away from the Torah, creating the 'Christian' congregation as something separate and apart from the foundational roots of Yeshua's congregation. The false apostle Paul played a huge role in this hijacking, and in so doing made himself the father of the Christian religion, even overstepping Yeshua. Paul's thirteen epistles comprise half of the so-called New Testament, and from these letters came the ecclesiastical essentials that so define the Christian religion. But Paul is for another study.
The gospel accounts were all written in Greek, even though Yeshua is known to have spoke Aramaic. Aramaic, which is similar to Hebrew, was the Lingua Franca of Israel in the day of the Lord, spoken by the common people. Yet His words were recorded in Greek, and then re-recorded into Latin, then German, English, Spanish and so on. His words would get a little more confused with each translational treatment. The fact that the predisposition and bias of each individual translator and scribal copiers would also work their way into the manuscripts, is an inescapable reality. Still, the correct understandings of words can make a huge difference in the reader's perceptions of what the inspired guidance and instruction is trying to convey.
A case in point is the word so frequently translated as "church" in English language translations of scripture. This word, pronounced "kirche," in old English and German, is derived from the Greek kuriakos, and developed into the modern term, "church."
Kuriakos (of the lord, or the lord's) comes from the Greek root kyrios or kurios which means "lord," "sir," "master." Kyrios appears in the Greek Christian scriptures about 740 times, usually referring to Yeshua (see - War on God's Name). The same word occurs throughout the Hebrew scriptures (the Greek Septuagint version) as a substitute for the Tetragrammaton, or God's name. Though the word conveys respect, it does not convey any special sacred significance. Kyrios is also used in Greek literature as the husband to his wife or children, who live under his protection. Though it developed as the root of "church" Kuriakos appears in the Christian Greek scriptures (new testament) only two times. In First Corinthians 11:20 it refers to "the Lord's supper," and in Revelation 1:10, where it refers to "The Lord's day." In neither case does it translate as "church," though it has curiously, developed historically as the Greek root to the English word "church."
THE WAY - ECCLESIA - CALLED OUT ONES
In contrast, the Greek word ecclesia appears in the Christian Greek new testament some 115 times and more if you count the various grammatical forms. In every instance except three, the term is incorrectly translated as "church" in the English language King James Version. As for the three exceptions, they are all found in Acts - 19:32, 39, 41, where ecclesia is correctly translated as "assembly," even though the Greek word is exactly the same as all the other instances where it's translated as "church."
These mistranslations may seem a small matter, and have been ignored and glossed over by all the great scholars of Christendom, and carried on through the generations out of ignorance, laziness, or deliberate dishonesty. After all, the concept of "church" is more than a building intended for worship, presumably with a congregation inside. It also conveys the idea of a body of religious officials and clergy. Further, it conveys the idea of a wider ecumenical body of Christian worshippers (across all denominations), or in a lessor sense, a given denomination, or even a simple single congregation. This is extracted directly from the temples and shrines of the pagan religious systems. The places where they would do homage to their false deities, and where they would be gathered by the priests for the shearing of the sheep.
Almost nothing that takes place in the modern churches of Christendom, originates from Biblical teaching. Almost none of it conforms to the apostolic church of the first century. Yet, to point out this fact, invites criticism that one is a restorationist, or a Judaizer, in the way of the Ebionites. It will be pointed out how simply ignorant it is to hold the modern church up against the impractical blueprint of primitive Christianity of the first century apostolic tradition. After all, the Holy Spirit ( Breath of Holiness) has guided church leadership through the generations, and only the Anti-Christ himself would question the way things are.
The correct translation of the word ecclesia is simply, "called out ones." When Yeshua spoke of His church, he was speaking of those "called out," as a select group. The "elect." Called out from the world, even called out from Rabbinical Judaism. They were a community, bound by love of God and His teachings as revealed through the Torah and elaborated upon by Yeshua in the Gospel accounts.
The incorrect English language translation of ecclesia to "church," has critically skewed the proper understanding of the biblical concept of the ecclesia, and the true meaning of the word as Yahweh inspired it. Correcting the mistranslation would probably impede the influence of religionist theology built into the translation. However, the gatekeepers have no interest in doing that.
There is no scriptural reference to anything like a church building, a place designated for either Hebrews or Christians to gather for worship. Only the priests were allowed in the wilderness sanctuary or the Temple in Jerusalem. The synagogue system developed organically under rabbinical direction during the Babylonian exile after the Temple had been destroyed. Synagogues are a place to gather, to hear sermons, to sing, but have no scriptural standard. The teachings of God indicate that He has always wanted a personal relationship with His
For the first three hundred years, in the apostolic and early post-apostolic period, there were no "church" buildings. Gatherings were generally held in the homes of the faithful, often in secret. Sometimes along roadsides, as with the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts 8: 26-40). Christian teaching could go on anywhere, by anyone with an understanding of scripture. Justin Martyr, a student of Greek philosophy for instance, was walking along the seashore one day when he met an elderly Christian man who told him about the Hebrew prophets. It didn't take long before Justin had his confidence in the moral guidance of philosophers challenged, and shortly thereafter converted to Christianity. A simple sermon on the seashore.
It wasn't until Constantine and the Edict of Milan in 313 AD, which legalized Christianity within the empire, that Christian worshippers began tentatively to come out into the open. Then in the post Nicene period (325 AD), church buildings began to come into use as places to gather for worship, similar to the pagan ways. This brought about significant changes in the way the faithful would gather. Gatherings for worship suddenly began to reflect the ritualistic ceremony of imperial Roman regency. Carrying candles and incense before the priests as they processed ceremonially into the church while the congregation stood to sing. Ordinary clothes for the clergymen gave way to imitations of the fancy robes which were common to well dressed Roman officials, what we now call "vestments."
The way opened up for professional clergymen, who would ultimately hijack the church, presenting sermons or homilies in the manner of professional orators. They followed the successful examples set by professional Greco-Roman orators, hired experts, who were trained in the use of clever language, emotional appeals, gimmicks, and staging - employing elements of comportment, and physical appearances, to present inarguable instruction or to hammer home a salient point. More and more, professional clergymen were performing the designated acts of devotional service, or sacraments, while the people were sitting quietly and passively as observers. It cannot be overstated what a huge departure this was, from the manner of gatherings practiced by the early Christians. Who knew it was the path to apostasy?
"He Himself [Yeshua] gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ." Ephesians 4: 11,12
The word "pastor," is Latin for "shepherd." Paul isn't using the term here as if it were a title, or office. Rather it's use is illustrative, suggesting a shepherd as one who nurtures and cares for a flock. Numerous such references are made in the epistles of Paul. Yeshua also used the term, referring to bad "shepherds", and referring to Himself as the "Good Shepherd." It's a curios thing that the translators use 'pastor' in translating Paul's words, but not in translating the words of the Lord. Paul writes of apostles (justifying his own self appointment as such), prophets, evangelizers, shepherds, teachers, deacons, bishops, overseers, and elders. Some of these terms are cross-variations you may find depending on which English translation you use. The words "bishop," "overseer," and "elder," are essentially synonymous, and types of ecclesiastical titles that appear no where else in scripture outside the writings of Paul.
The point, however, is that for at least the first hundred years, the Christian community had no official leadership. Yeshua was their leader. Among the "free gifts" given to various individuals, there was no pyramidal structure or hierarchy, but rather a horizontal footing of brotherhood. It was Ignatius of Antioch (35-107 AD) a crony of the false apostle Paul, neither of whom had ever met Yeshua, but took it upon himself to spread the idea in some of his letters, that the bishop was to be elevated above all others and should expect complete obedience.
“Take care to do all things in harmony with God, with the bishop presiding in the place of God, and with the presbyters in the place of the council of the apostles, and with the deacons, who are most dear to me, entrusted with the business of Jesus Christ, who was with the Father from the beginning and is at last made manifest.” — Letter to the Magnesians 2, 6:1
“Wherever the bishop appears, there let the people be; as wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church. It is not lawful to baptize or give communion without the consent of the bishop. On the other hand, whatever has his approval is pleasing to God. Thus, whatever is done will be safe and valid.” — Letter to the Smyrnaeans 8, J.R. Willis translation.
It didn't take much longer before the title of "bishop" had become recognized as an established office. The bishop was positioned at the head of the congregation, and under him were the presbyters, and under them were the deacons. These would be chosen from among the elders of the congregation. Elders were simply men that were recognized by virtue of their seniority and contributions to the religious structure of the church.
The ordination ceremony is something that started out as the simple laying on of the hands, giving a blessing or endorsement to a new priestly functionary. However, in the early centuries of the post Nicaean church, it took on the trappings of ritualistic ceremony, copied directly from the Roman practice of appointing men to civil office. It came with special garments and solemn formality.
The reason this matters is because it ripped the community of believers in two. A fundamental element of Satan's 'divide and conquer' approach to crushing what the Messiah had planted. A class system was put in place where some achieve a special status before God and are thus permitted to perform a variety of ecclesiastical functions that the lower class, the laity, are unqualified to perform. The laity are thus reduced to the status of passive spectators, with wallets. While the new "clergy" class of professional priests, pastors, bishops, etc., were elevated to positions fashioned after pagan practices, that have no scriptural standing at all.
This change constituted an enormous disservice to the body of Messiah, distorting how the Lord's instructions are perceived. In fact, denying the Lord's instructions in favor of instructions from Paul and Ignatius. This was the development of the so-called "Nicolaitans" spoken of in Revelation (see - corrupting of the fledgling church).
Seminaries and divinity schools were unheard of in the early church. There was no need, because the concept of a professional class of churchmen had no basis in Christian teaching. Yet today, the typical Christian could not conceive of a proper baptism, or presentation of the
ceremonies of ordination
of the eucharist or even a marriage ceremony, by someone that had not been trained and ordained by a seminary or divinity college. Apparently it's the ordination, and the proper vestments, that transforms an otherwise ordinary man, into a man that can turn ordinary water into "holy water," as turning ordinary men into priests and pastors qualified to speak for the Lord.
But what the seminaries and Bible colleges do, unfortunately, is perpetuate and legitimize the unscriptural system of professional clergy, to which they are fully and eternally invested. The system feeds a sense of spiritual elitism that Yeshua hates, in the same way He hated the Rabbinical system of His day. The same way He hates the Nicolaitans (see Revelation 2).
The Greco-Roman influences that wove their way into the early church have caused so much distortion that Yeshua, looking to the future, asked a rhetorical question to the point; " Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes [returns], will He really find faith on the earth?" - Luke 18:8
"knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation." - 2 Peter 3:3,4
Paul, the great contradictor of Yeshua HaMashiach, Jesus the Christ, wrote in his letter to the Ephesians;
followers. Nowhere in scripture does it indicate that He sought to establish a system where some "go-betweens" would represent the people before Him, as intercessors. The Hebrews were afraid to hear God, and asked to have Moses intercede with God on their behalf. God allowed it, and has likewise allowed other concessions to intercessory systems, including the Messiah, but it was never what God wanted in the way of His relationship with His creation.
We don't condemn those who choose the traditional institutional form of religious services. One can learn the truth from nearly any Bible translation or receive guidance from any sermon from any pulpit. We only wish to present a different frame of reference, a different perspective on the matter, for those in need of such.
Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! - Isaiah 5:20
breaking free from the institutionalized churches - a study in Christian independence.
if you've grown weary of being part of an immense mule team, pulling the churches along under the lash of the professional clergy, metaphorically speaking of course, remember, the truth shall set you free
The churches of ecumenical Christendom are absolutely filled with the thieves and robbers Yeshua warned us about. The scandals and transgressions they perpetrate on the flocks in their care are the despicable works of those who pretend to represent Yeshua, but are condemning themselves instead, to a terrible judgement, and taking as many as possible with them.
"Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers." - John 10:1-5
If the priests and the pastors are not speaking with the voice of scripture, with the voice of the Lord, which is the voice of the Torah and Gospel, then flee from them. If the teachings they uphold as true, are in fact false, as determined by comparative scriptural study, then they are speaking with the voice of the stranger. Run. If they preach or help popularize obvious falsehoods of popular culture, hit the gas, sweetheart, peel out - and don't look back. This website is dedicated to the voice of the good shepherd. Yeshua. Through your own personal study of the scriptures you will learn Yeshua's voice.
This study will look at these questions and consider the state of Yeshua's church in our contemporary times. We can also consider what might be suitable alternative forms of Christian worship, such as restorationism, non-denominationalism, and faith outside the multitude of status quo institutions. This study is not meant so much as a condemnation of the institutional churches, as it is meant to provide dissatisfied people with an alternative frame of reference than that provided by the institutionalized organizations. A frame of reference where they may find a new perspective, a new optique, a new approach to their spiritual growth, and a new pathway to the development of their relationship with Yahweh the Father.
Remember the principle Yeshua stated in Revelation 2:2, ". . . and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts. And I will give to each one of you according to your works." That is to say, we will be judged individually, not collectively, according to our individual works. There is no doubt the institutional churches are filled with good people, people who will stand well before the Lord on that day, but they take an enormous risk by their denominational participation, of being influenced and led down a path which may include great doctrinal error. This is a time for discernment.
In fact, unless those days were cut short, no flesh would be saved; but on account of the chosen ones those days will be cut short. - Matthew 24:22
PEW has been documenting the steady decline of the Christian religion, across all denominations over the past few decades. Their polling indicates that Christians are falling away and abandoning the faith at ever increasing rates. Some see this as the great falling away prophesied to occur in the Last Days. There is no doubt that the polling includes a vast number of disaffected apostates, turning their backs on Christianity in favor of some other way. There is other polling that indicates that for every new Catholic brought into the church (world-wide), six leave. It isn't just the "lay" people either. The Catholic church has, for a long time, been highly distressed over the fact that so few men are choosing to enter the priesthood, and that so many priests are choosing to leave.
The declines have church leaders wringing their hands and huddling with one another in search of an avenue that might reverse these trends. Perhaps if they throw open the doors to homosexual priests (they largely already have). Extend a politically correct welcome to the LGBTQ community, and same sex marriages. Perhaps women in the priesthood, or allowing priests to marry. Maybe if they revamp the music or introduce new hymns. How can they make the services more inviting, more entertaining? Perhaps including a brewery and serving beer after service (don't laugh, it's already being done). The old order is losing ground, even as it engages in desperate attempts to retain relevance.
WHAT IS DRIVING THE EXODUS OF NONES
There are umpteen such magnificent, abandoned, monuments. Symbols of the great, and growing apostasy.
In fact, "NONES" have been around for a long time, under different names. The Plymouth Brethren, for example, was an English Christian movement from the early nineteenth century. They were adamantly opposed to denominationalism, and as a community, had no professional clergy or leadership. They would meet on Sundays to celebrate a simple communion service, which would be served by different individuals each week. This assembly included John Darby for a time, who wrote pamphlets explaining the beliefs and practices of the Brethren. He and some others also traveled extensively, preaching and establishing new assemblies of the Brethren around Britain, Europe, North America, and Australia.
relationship isn’t a game to God, and life isn’t something He takes lightly - it's everything to Him.
Look around. Everything has been turned over upside down, inside out, and backwards. Light is darkness, lies have become truths, evil itself has become righteousness, and righteousness evil. As Michael Ellner once said, "doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, universities, destroy knowledge, governments destroy freedom, mainstream media destroys information, and religion destroys spirituality." This is the world we have inherited, where there is nothing left to believe in.
Don't dispair. As a Christian None, there is hope. Satan has turned over everything that was once good in this world, but the Messianic Kingdom is coming, and will remove Satan. Yeshua will restore humankind to a world won back to a sound relationship with Yahweh, the Creator, a new heaven and a new earth, where righteouness dwells. The time is near.
HIJACKING THE LORD'S FLOCK
WHAT DID YESHUA MEAN WHEN HE REFERRED TO HIS 'CHURCH'