Manual Genuine Christianity

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Will we now participate in public, expressing a Christian perspective on cultural differences in Canadian society? Christian communities operating within a Wesleyan orientation will participate in public conversation about cultural difference. Wesley and the Methodists were contributors to many conversations in the public sphere throughout the 18th century and beyond.

Wesley was educated, well-read and articulate to speak or write on many of the current affairs of his day, which he did. Weems indicates: Wesley sought to hold different, and often competing, claims together with integrity. He did so because he felt a kinship with many different people and perspectives. He saw much value in traditions not his own. Consequently he desired to preserve and incorporate those values. His commitment to third alternatives helped to provide a vehicle for inclusion.

Are we able to articulate a biblical-theological perspective on culture and difference? Can we express this through a Wesleyan paradigm? Are we able to express this at the table of public discourse in our communities? Walk with the immigrant Why leave this practice to the end? On the other hand, perhaps it is this practice which helps shape all of our responses above.

Christian communities operating within a Wesleyan orientation will walk with the immigrants living amongst them, practically demonstrating love and empathy. Wesley takes us back to love: This same love is productive of all right actions. It leads him into an earnest and steady discharge of all social offices, of whatever is due to relations of every kind: to his friends, to his country and to any particular community whereof he is a member. It prevents his unwillingly hurting or grieving any man.

It guides him 39 Lovett H Weems, Jr. It constrains him to do all possible good, of every possible kind to all men… 41 We love in practical ways, in the spirit of 1 John , because we were first loved by God. Love awakens the conscience to unlimited responsibility for others, regardless of their religious, moral or social character. Not a set of propositions, but the way a group of people live together with Jesus as the head. We are called to love God, and our neighbour. Opening ourselves, becoming vulnerable before God, also makes us receptive to others in the same space, no matter language, culture, gender, nationality, or skin tone.

There is more work to be done to discern the connections between a Wesleyan worldview and ministry engagement in multicultural communities. Intentional application of the five practices listed here would produce interactions worth paying attention to. Also of benefit would be research and reflection on existing examples of Wesleyan-oriented congregations, to discern if Wesleyan theology and practices are having a role in influencing their engagement with cultural diversity.

Wesleyan Essentials in a Multicultural Society. Nashville: Abingdon Press, Flemming, Dean. Heitzenrater, Richard. Jordan, Stuart. R P Heitzenrater. Nashville: Kingswood Books, Maddox, Randy. Nashville: Abingdon, Outler, Albert. John Wesley. New York: Oxford University Press, Snyder, Howard. Dan Sheffield. Indianapolis: FMWM, rev ed. Stone, Bryan P. Leadership in the Wesleyan Spirit.

Wesley, John. Zahniser, Mathias. Indianapolis: FMWM, rev. Neither does he love those only that love him, or that are endeared to him by intimacy of acquaintance… It soars above all these scanty bounds, embracing neighbours and strangers, friends and enemies; yea, not only the good and gentle but also the froward, the evil and unthankful.


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Authentic contextualization is far more than an academic exercise or a topic for scholarly debate. Inclusive ministry of local churches the churches need to recognize their potential as parables of inclusive community; as places of meeting beyond barriers of age, gender, race, culture, or class… We are good at laying on splendid international meals and at exploring the visual expressions of cultural life. Contribute to public conversation about difference One of the dynamics of Wesleyanism is its ability to adapt to new cultural, social, and intellectual climates in a way that some of the absolutist and systematically oriented traditions do not.

Walk with the immigrant This same love is productive of all right actions. It guides him into a uniform practice of justice and mercy, equally extensive with the principle whence it flows. Nashville: Kingswood Books, , p. Related Papers. By Dion Forster. Theology and Mission in Wesleyan Perspective. By Howard A Snyder.

Dissertation Prospectus. By Greg Van Buskirk. By James Bhagwan. Download pdf. Most men have had the experience of being in a room when a strikingly beautiful woman enters. Before she came in, she applied a touch here and there of White Diamonds, and as she passes through the room, she leaves behind a lingering fragrance. Consciously or unconsciously, all the males in the room are affected by that fragrance. Weeks or months later, they may catch a wisp of that fragrance again—and immediately, the image of that beautiful woman flashes into their minds.

The fragrance has made her unforgettable. That is the picture Paul gives here. Authentic Christianity leaves an unforgettable impression on those who encounter it. Christians are responsible for the enduring impact they make. As Paul suggests, the impact may be in one of two directions. Christians either increase opposition to Christ death to death or they lead toward faith and life life to life. If your life is one that reflects radical, authentic Christianity, people become either bitter or better through contact with you.

But one thing cannot happen: people will never remain the same. Those who are determined to die are pushed on toward death by coming into contact with authentic Christianity. Those who are seeking to live are helped on into life. Jesus certainly had this quality about Him. No one ever came into contact with Him and went away the same. Many commentators on this passage conclude that Paul had in mind here a typical Roman triumph.

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When a Roman general returned to the capital after a successful campaign, he was granted a triumph by the senate. A great procession passed through the streets of Rome displaying the captives taken in the course of the conquest. Some people went before the chariot of the conqueror, bearing garlands of flowers and pots of fragrant incense. They were the prisoners who were destined to live and return to their captured country to govern it under Roman rule. Other prisoners followed behind the chariot dragging chains and heavy manacles. These were doomed to execution, for the Romans felt they could not trust them.

As the procession went on through the cheering crowds, the incense pots and fragrant flowers were to the first group a fragrance from life to life, while the same aroma was to the second group a fragrance of death to death. This is the effect of the gospel as it touches the world through the life of an authentic Christian.

Authentic Christianity leaves a lingering fragrance to God of Jesus Christ, no matter what—but to human beings, it is either a fragrance of death to death or of life to life. But what about phony Christianity? On the contrary, in Christ we speak before God with sincerity, like men sent from God. It has great application to pastors and others in the ministry, but its primary reference is to common, ordinary Christians who have learned the secret of authentic Christianity.

Christians can be described in two ways, negatively and positively. Negatively, they are not peddlers. The word means a huckster, a street salesman. The idea here is that of a street hawker who has certain wares that he considers attractive and that he peddles on the corner as people are passing by.

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He makes his living by peddling his wares. Much Christian preaching and witnessing can be described that way. It is a legitimate subject for study and practice, but when singled out and harped on continually—especially when a pitch for large, sacrificial offerings is linked to it—healing can quickly lead to hucksterism.

Prophecy can serve the same purpose. I am troubled by anyone who is known only as a prophetic teacher, for that person has picked out something that is attractive and even sensational from the Word. If that is all he ever teaches, he is not declaring the whole counsel of God. He is a peddler, making a living by hawking certain wares from the Scriptures.


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  5. Paul says authentic Christianity does not hawk its truth like a peddler selling goods in the street. Our integrity as authentic Christians is characterized by four qualities, according to this passage. We must mean what we say. The very least we should expect from ourselves as Christians is that we thoroughly believe and practice what we say. This speaks of our purpose as authentic Christians. We are not to be idle dreamers with no definite objective in view.

    Like military officers, we have been commissioned. We have been given a definite task and specific assignments that constitute our purpose in life and in ministry. We are purposeful people with an end in view, an object to attain, a goal to accomplish. And we do not merely preach or witness as though that were a goal in itself.

    John's Letters: Discovering Genuine Christianity | Christian Bible Studies

    This indicates an attitude of transparency, of openness to investigation. To walk in the sight of other people permits us to hide our sins and contradictions behind a facade. This does not mean we can live sinlessly, but rather that there must be no cover-up or evasion of the facts of our sin when it occurs. It means there are no areas of denial. All is evaluated and tested by the purity and knowledge and wisdom of God—and what is sinful, we confess and we repent of before God. A man who walks in the sight of God is more interested in his inner reality than his outer reputation.

    He can be completely trusted. You can even believe his golf score and the size of the trout he caught. If you can teach your young people to live in the sight of God, you will even be able to trust them in the ba ckseat of a car.

    "Genuine Christianity" - Pastor Greg Powe

    They have power to act and make covenants on behalf of others. Aut hentic Christians are not powerless servants. We speak words and deliver messages that heaven honors. All of these qualities add up to unimpeachable integrity. People of sincerity, purpose, transparency, and authority are utterly trustworthy. You can ring a gold coin on their conscience. Their word is their bond, and they can be counted on to come through.

    They are responsible and faithful individuals. That is the fourth great mark of real Christianity. At this point in the Scripture text, we come to a chapter division. This is unfortunate, because it divides two chapters that belong together. Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you?

    Paul is aware that he is beginning to sound arrogant. He knows there are some in Corinth who will immediately take these words in that way. Indeed, it is obvious from his words that some had even suggested in previous correspondence that the next time he came to Corinth he bring letters of recommendation from some of the Twelve in Jerusalem!

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    They were thinking of Paul as though he were a man entirely like themselves. So because they saw him as continually praising himself, no one would believe him without confirmation from more objective sources. Why, you yourselves are all the recommendation I need! Look what has happened to you. Are you any different since you came to Christ through my word? Your own hearts will bear witness to yourselves and before the world that the message you heard from us and which has changed your lives is from God. But now they had been washed, sanctified, and justified by the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.

    The Corinthians had written to Paul about their newfound joy and the hope and meaning that had been brought into their lives. They described to him their deliverance from shame and guilt, their freedom from fear and hostility, from darkness and death. You yourselves are walking letters from God, known and read by all men, written by the Spirit of God in your hearts. Paul did not need letters of recommendation when this kind of change was evident in the lives of his hearers.

    I once heard of a man who had been an alcoholic for years and then was converted. Such a marked change occurs only under the impulse of a powerful relationship that substitutes the love of Christ for the love of drink. These are the five unmistakable signs of genuine Christianity: unquenchable optimism, unvarying success, unforgettable impact, unimpeachable integrity, and undeniable reality. They are always present whenever the real thing is being manifested. Mere religion tries to imitate these marks, bu t is never quite able to pull it off.

    By comparison with these marks, phony Christianity is always exposed as a shabby, shoddy imitation that quickly folds when the real pressure is on. The remarkable thing is not that men seek to imitate these genuine graces, for we all have been hypocrites of one kind or another since our birth. The truly remarkable thing is that becoming a Christian does not of itself guarantee that these Christian graces will be manifest in us.

    It is not being a Christian that produces these, but living as a Christian. There is a knowledge we must have and a choice we must make before these virtues will be consistently present. The secret awaits us in the next section. Remember Me. Email required. Get monthly emails with the latest Discovery Series reading plan. Username or email.

    How to Distinguish Genuine Christianity from False Teaching

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    Authentic Christianity

    Facebook Twitter Email. Living an Authentic Christian Life Introduction 1. The Real Thing 2. The Christianity of Jesus and Paul 3. Five Unmistakable Marks of Authentic Christianity 4. The Secret 5. A Basket Case. You must be signed in to journal. Living an Authentic Christian Life No comments yet. Leave a Reply Cancel reply You must be logged in to post a comment. Screen Mode. Text Size. Mark 3: Unforgettable Impact The third unmistakable mark follows immediately. Mark 5: Undeniable Reality Paul is aware that he is beginning to sound arrogant. Previous Continue. Share this with a friend Facebook Twitter Email Print.

    God at the Center. Living an Authentic Christian Life.