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A SIMPLE QUESTION ASKED…….What did early Christian meetings look like..?

Posted by tawodi on March 22, 2012

As most of you know I spend time on the Military. com site. While there I and others are asked many questions about religion and the duties of Clergy in general. I took this opportunity to answer one and thought to bring it here for you to ponder and consider…. those very early days before we had sects and divisions, there was only one WAY to follow. that of Jesus the Massiach.

[QUOTE] Early Christian meetings were primarily centered around a shared meal. [UNQUOTE] CPL BUCKLEY.

That was one thing that would stand out. It was called a love feast in those times, something that still exists as Lay ministers and others can do this instead of consecrating the elements of the Eucharist, which they cannot. If the host is blessed by someone in the Apostolic line of succession, (something rather hazy today) then the laity can hold Communion services, which of course is considered a Sacrament.

Baptism is also a Sacrament and there are only two such in most protestant churches, unlike the Catholic Church which considers many rituals Sacraments….such as marriage for instance. In protestant churches the oath, between the woman and the man, is the Sacrament, not the ceremony.

Of course that is not true in some of them!

After the feast, they would discuss Scripture and since they had only what is now known as the Old Testament that was the Holy book under discussion. Most of these discussion centered around prophesy, as one can understand.

As Peter, Silas, Paul, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, (Saul of Tarsus) Ananias, Phillip, Mathias, and Matthew, travelled a bit and some of course on missionary journeys of many miles and great lengths of time, they exchanged ideas, letters and word of mouth communications with one congregation or another. They became known as “Followers of The Way” The symbol, as most know, was the fish…as per Jesus telling the first disciples, “Follow Me and I will make you fishers of men”

The Chrysanthamum and the Rose were also early symbols of Christianity as well. It was somewhere around 60 to 75 A.D. that the Cross started to be used as the Christian symbol of the sect. The Chrysanthemum was used on funerary things like Ossuaries and tomb markings, to symbolize the return of life with resurrection.

Three of these are still used today. The Cross of course the fish and the Rose. When some thing is to be kept secret for instance, a rose is placed in a tall vase on the table and then the conversation takes place. After the conversation the rose is burned and the vase is destroyed marking the end of the secret session. From this comes the phrase, “Under the Rose”, to imply the utmost secrecy of the subject at hand. Also the red of the Rose is used to designate the red color and sacrifice of the Sacred heart, as well as it being said that apparitions of Mary, are always accompanied by the scent of roses.

And so, the Followers of the way progressed to ever more formally conducted meetings of prayer, sermonizing, (teaching or “preaching” which means the same thing) and ritual. Which at first consisted of telling the sayings that the disciples and others who remembered Jesus as having said…. and then, finally, about 40 A.D. they began to be written down.

Before you jump my “stuff”. Let me explain that fragments from this period are still in hand with-in the Vatican library/museum, but are virtually useless for any purpose. They DO have over nine hundred fragments from those times but the earliest useful tracts, that exist today, are from about one fifty to two hundred A.D. as most already know.

About eighty years ago it was thought that one of the first copies of “Revelations” of St. John of Patmos had been found, but carbon dating left it in doubt as samples of enough size failed to be obtained, and so it goes.

So, as you can see…. those early meetings were much like today’s house gatherings of worshippers to feast, discuss, worship and share in the experience, of forming a relationship of a personal nature with God, and Jesus The Christ…to enrich their lives in understanding and fellowship.

Be well friends….Rev. Bruce……………………..Tawodi


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Posted by tawodi on August 26, 2007

This question was asked of me and others on a different forum  by a minister who is considering taking training to be a military Chaplain. When he found out that the place he is going to take his training at is very liberal in it’s approach to the issue of homosexuals in ministry. I Answered as follows.  Many have seen this answer and have taken comfort from it, as well as some who have disagreed with it,  but,  those who disagreed stated that they saw it as one of the most considered replies that they had seen concerning this issue. That may be true,all I can say is  these are my feelings.  Where my family and I worship our Church has stood by the precept that homosexuals cannot engage in the practice of their prediliction, if they are in the clergy. If they become active in a relationship, or do not remain celibate, they must leave their ministry.

The pressure of the liberal elements of the hierarchy is tremendous and you can rest assured, that this stand will eventually fail.

Same sex marriages being legal in Massachusetts now almost gaurantees this will probably be overturned during the next world conference session in 2008.
It was incredibly close in 2004.

The proscriptions against sexual iniquity in scripture were to preclude the abuse of the helpless or the weak in relations of potential power based sexual encounters, as well as the simple degradation of human beings as objects, to be used to slake your thirst then once they had fullfilled their purpose to be discarded much like a used kleenex. A crappy way to treat any human being but unfortunately all too common.

The sexual slavery practiced by the Romans that St. Paul preaches against in the Roman letter to the congregation in Rome, is the stand out case in point if you are speaking of homosexual behaviour.

A personal stance in todays world supposedly must consider the “newly revealed research of the present” which you will note, I place in quotation marks.

As clergy the consideration is two fold,  personal,  and then the position of servant leadership that a minister must fulfill. Also to be considered,  is the role of the minister in authority,  as one in the line of apostolic succession and the discipline, which must in conscience be maintained, for the integrity of the church.

Now,  we must consider what it is we are being asked to do. In my opinion it is to be,  simply put,  Christians.  It is not for us to condone this behaviour,  due to scriptural proscription,  but we must not condemn out of hand those who are so inclined. We as human beings are all with fault, we all are broken in some way. Homosexuals are simply broken in a different way than I am, or you are.

This position has been reached after years of deep unrest and thought on my part and should in no way be considered to be an official position of anybodies church, but the result of soul searching and consideration of the human condition.

I support the position of the church at present, but will not, if the ministry is allowed to be degraded further due to scriptural caveats and directives being disobeyed.

As for those NOT in ministry, my feelings are best stated as follows,  what ever problems God has with homosexuals is between He and they, not they and I.

They are,  and will continue to be,  welcome in my church to worship,  as long as their deportment is commensurate with decorous behaviour.  Which, by the way,  I would demand of heterosexual couples also.  We must consider also,  who directed them to worship,  perhaps God?
No living human being has the answer to that one, least of all me.

I hope this will help you, Be well sister and best wishes to your husband and may he be found worthy. Rev. Bruce Holzrichter………Tawodi 

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