Apostolic Friends Forum
Tab Menu 1
Go Back   Apostolic Friends Forum > The Fellowship Hall > Fellowship Hall
Facebook

Notices

Fellowship Hall The place to go for Fellowship & Fun!


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 03-31-2014, 08:38 AM
Scott Hutchinson's Avatar
Scott Hutchinson Scott Hutchinson is offline
Resident PeaceMaker


 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Jackson,AL.
Posts: 16,548
Anybody Read This ?

I'm thinking about buying this book,I was wondering if anybody has ever read it ?
http://frankviola.org/untold/
__________________
People who are always looking for fault,can find it easily all they have to do,is look into their mirror.
There they can find plenty of fault.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 03-31-2014, 11:38 AM
bishoph's Avatar
bishoph bishoph is offline
Registered Member


 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 952
Re: Anybody Read This ?

Haven't read it....but it does look intriguing.....I may just buy it myself...thanks
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 04-03-2014, 12:05 AM
n david n david is offline
Registered Member


 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 17,506
Re: Anybody Read This ?

The book does sound interesting; however, I'm wary of anything Viola writes. He promotes Contemplative prayer and christian mysticism.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 04-03-2014, 08:35 AM
Aquila Aquila is offline
Banned


 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 31,124
Re: Anybody Read This ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by n david View Post
The book does sound interesting; however, I'm wary of anything Viola writes. He promotes Contemplative prayer and christian mysticism.
I have a few questions.
Please define contemplative prayer.

Please define "Christian mysticism".
I've read quite a bit on these subjects and I'm interested in knowing if we're talking about the same thing.

Thanks,

Chris
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 04-03-2014, 06:21 PM
n david n david is offline
Registered Member


 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 17,506
Re: Anybody Read This ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquila View Post
I have a few questions.

Please define contemplative prayer.

Please define "Christian mysticism".

I've read quite a bit on these subjects and I'm interested in knowing if we're talking about the same thing.

Thanks,

Chris
Contemplative prayer. aka Centering Prayer. aka Lectio Divina. aka Be Still. I used Christian mysticism because it's commonly used in reference with Contemplative Prayer and the like. It's traced back to Buddhism, Zen and Hinduism.

I've been reading more and more about it. Unfortunately, I'm finding out this junk is being promoted by some of my favorite Evangelical authors and speakers.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 04-04-2014, 01:12 PM
Aquila Aquila is offline
Banned


 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 31,124
Re: Anybody Read This ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by n david View Post
Contemplative prayer. aka Centering Prayer. aka Lectio Divina. aka Be Still. I used Christian mysticism because it's commonly used in reference with Contemplative Prayer and the like. It's traced back to Buddhism, Zen and Hinduism.

I've been reading more and more about it. Unfortunately, I'm finding out this junk is being promoted by some of my favorite Evangelical authors and speakers.
I’m not convinced that Contemplative Prayer, yadda, yadda, yadda, is altogether “unbiblical”. Yes, I’ve read some books on the subject of more meditative forms of prayer (what I believe is biblically called “meditation”) and they have incorporated strange ideas from other traditions. However, spiritual meditation, stillness, and listening for God to speak or to enter into the deeper dimensions of His presence are perfectly biblical. And being Pentecostal, we of all people should know this. In fact, “tongues”, is known as “ecstatic utterance”. Historically tongues often accompanied what traditional churches called “spiritual ecstasy”, a trance like state wherein visions and spiritual giftings such as prophesy, healing, tongues, dreams, etc. are found. Pentecostals almost experience this daily (if deeply engaged in a Spirit filled prayer life). Notice something that Paul wrote:
I Corinthians 14:13-15
Wherefore let him that speaketh in an [unknown] tongue
pray that he may interpret. For if I pray in an
[unknown] tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding
is unfruitful. What is it then? I will pray with the
spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will
sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding
also.
Paul draws a distinction between praying “with the spirit” (the inner man) and praying “with the understanding” (the mind). Notice that when praying with the spirit, a man’s mind (or understanding) is silent (unfruitful).

My first experience like this was during an altar call about 7 years ago. The power of God filled the sanctuary to the point wherein people were laying all over the floor speaking in tongues, crying, praising, moaning, repenting and weeping in supplications. I remember coming off the platform only to lose my ability to stand. I “fell out” on the floor next to the altar and there I lay for nearly an hour speaking in tongues and weeping. All I remember during that period of time was the awe inspiring awareness that God was indeed… present. My spirit had never felt more at peace, safer, calmer, and my mind was so quiet it seemed the time passed in what seemed like mere moments. It was so powerful; I needed help out to my car. There wasn’t a booming voice, a prophesy, or a message… there was only the power of His “presence”. And His mere presence calmed every fear and opened my soul to receive whatever was God’s will regarding my life and my future. It was a most blessed state.

Since then I have sought to enter into that realm of prayer many times. I find it easier to enter into that state by focusing upon God, a work of Jesus, or an attribute of God and/or Jesus (they are one). Sometimes I’ll still my heart and focus on a biblical truth or a verse of Scripture. Soon, I’m lost in the Spirit and I come out refreshed and assured of God’s reality in a way that transcends my human intellect. Sometimes I pray in tongues. Sometimes I hear the tongues in my head. Sometimes I’ve interpreted the tongues. Sometimes I sense nothing but my being and God’s presence. The silence speaks more than mere words can describe. And when realities concerning having the Holy Ghost residing in me began to pour forth… I realized the reality behind being “one spirit with the Lord” (I Corinthians 6:17).

There have been studies in those who speak in tongues. If you search YouTube for “Speaking in Tongues” and “Neuroscience” you’ll find a news segment dedicated to the research. Those studying brainwaves of those who spoke in tongues (or in the Spirit) found that the areas of the brain that control speech are active… but not those areas that control cognitive reasoning. In other words… it’s not the individual praying in the Spirit who is praying, something else is praying through them. Although the researcher is hesitant to affirm that this validates speaking in tongues, the researcher testifies that those who speak in tongues are truly experiencing a truly unique form of speech wherein the brain isn’t communicating thought. We know that as Paul wrote, the spirit is praying although the mind is not bearing fruitful thought.

Another interesting texts that has helped me transcend mere “mental prayer” is found in the book of Acts:
Acts 10:9-11
On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and
drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to
pray about the sixth hour: And he became very
hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready,
he fell into a TRANCE, And saw heaven opened, and a
certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great
sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth:
Acts 11:1-5
And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea
heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.
And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that
were of the circumcision contended with him,
Saying, Thou wentest in to men uncircumcised, and didst
eat with them. But Peter rehearsed [the matter] from
the beginning, and expounded [it] by order unto them,
saying, I was in the city of Joppa praying: and in a
TRANCE I saw a vision, A certain vessel descend, as it had
been a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners;
and it came even to me:
Then we see the testimony of Paul:
Acts 22:10-18
And the Lord said unto me, Arise, and go
into Damascus; and there it shall be told thee of all things
which are appointed for thee to do. And when I
could not see for the glory of that light, being led by the
hand of them that were with me, I came into Damascus.
And one Ananias, a devout man according to the
law, having a good report of all the Jews which dwelt
[there, ] Came unto me, and stood, and said unto
me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And the same hour I
looked up upon him. And he said, The God of our
fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know his will,
and see that Just One, and shouldest hear the voice of his
mouth. For thou shalt be his witness unto all men
of what thou hast seen and heard. And now why
tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy
sins, calling on the name of the Lord. And it came
to pass, that, when I was come again to Jerusalem, even
while I prayed in the temple, I was in a TRANCE; And
saw him saying unto me, Make haste, and get thee quickly
out of Jerusalem: for they will not receive thy testimony
concerning me.
Yes, it's possible, to enter a "trance-like" state of prayer. In this meditative state of spirit called a "trance" we can hear directly from Heaven. We can receive direction, visions, dreams, and prophetic glimpses of God's plan. We can find ourselves transported to the very throne room of Heaven (John the Revelator) and see angelic realities. This is something that has been abandoned in our more "enlightened" culture. Sadly, the culture isn't more "enlightened"... the culture is more spiritually dead to the things of Spirit.

Christians today are so cantankerous. Anything that appears “supernatural” or overtly spiritual is often heavily criticized by the “traditional” Christians. And trust me, men make lots of money in their books and sermons and various “topical series” combating the “non-traditional”. Being a Oneness believer, I’m not afraid of being accused of heresy. And being a “tongue talker” I’m not afraid of deeply spiritual states and experiences, even when men want to criticize.

Yet, as with most things… one has to experience it for themselves to truly know what the issue truly is. You might remember my thread about my “talk with God”. That was one instance wherein I was praying so deeply and focusing in on why we are divided and what makes us holy. And yes, what I wrote in that post was the response that I felt pouring into me from across the shores of the realm of the Spirit. It truly revolutionized my entire Christian walk. My experiences regarding God’s presence, God’s indwelling Spirit (in me), etc. have also redefined what it means to be a born again Christian for me. Meditating on Christ’s words concerning Himself being the True Vine and we being the branches has forever changed the way I view the Christian life. Especially when I felt the Spirit whisper into my soul, “Notice, my son, the vine and the branches are a single organism. The branches are living extensions of the vine. Be ye therefore, an extension of ME.”

Historically this desire for “oneness” with God is the foundational quest of what is often called “Christian mysticism”. And interestingly enough those “mystics” down through Christian history often experienced “spiritual ecstasy”, visions, angelic visitations, tongues, healing, and powerful prophetic dreams. These individuals were often deeply entrenched in the traditional churches of their day. However, their experiences would have branded them Charismatic/Pentecostals today. There is an ancient Christian proverb that is normally attributed to St. Athanasius (although, it is most likely older than Athanasius):
"God became man so that man might become God."
This doesn’t mean that we become “gods”. It simply means that we partake in the divine nature of God Himself, and as a result, we are conformed into the very image and likeness of Christ. To the point wherein we feel His very heart beating in our breasts, hear His voice in our mouths, and our very shadows have nail scarred hands. In this we become, branches of the True Vine. Living extensions of Jesus Himself.

This “holiness” is otherworldly. It is deeply spiritual and personal. And it transcends any man made “standards” one could invent or compile from Scripture. It demands taking part in perfection, the perfection of God Himself. It means putting on His righteousness and holiness, not our own. And this state can only be approached and accepted in the realm of absolute, unadulterated… grace.

It is a path of transformation. The path that conforms one into the very image and likeness of Jesus Himself. The end being… Eternal Glorification in Christ Jesus.

So… that’s my experience and the path that has been set before me. I do caution to examine any form of contemplative prayer before engaging in it. I admit, there are a lot of quacks out there. However, this doesn’t mean that all forms of contemplative prayer (meditation) are wrong or unbiblical. Again, I liken it unto what the Bible calls “meditation”. Both supplication and meditation are forms of prayer. However, in supplication we speak to God… in meditation… God speaks to us.

Last edited by Aquila; 04-04-2014 at 01:35 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 04-04-2014, 01:20 PM
n david n david is offline
Registered Member


 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 17,506
I'll dissect your post in detail later. Much of what I read is not what Richard Foster Thomas Merton and the others are talking about. They link it themselves to Buddhism, Zen and Hinduism, then try to wrap it in a Bible verse that says "Be still and know," and in doing so pervert and twist the Scripture.

I don't have time, but I couldn't disagree more with the quote you posted. I'll come back when I have access to a pc and not typing on my phone.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 04-04-2014, 01:38 PM
Aquila Aquila is offline
Banned


 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 31,124
Re: Anybody Read This ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by n david View Post
I'll dissect your post in detail later. Much of what I read is not what Richard Foster Thomas Merton and the others are talking about. They link it themselves to Buddhism, Zen and Hinduism, then try to wrap it in a Bible verse that says "Be still and know," and in doing so pervert and twist the Scripture.
I've not really focused on their writings. Many of my experiences and understandings are more closely related to Pauline theosis.

Quote:
I don't have time, but I couldn't disagree more with the quote you posted. I'll come back when I have access to a pc and not typing on my phone.
Sure thing Bro. No rush.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 04-04-2014, 01:43 PM
Aquila Aquila is offline
Banned


 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 31,124
Re: Anybody Read This ?

Here are some additional quotes on some of these concepts (just to establish some historicity and context):
“The command ‘Be ye perfect’ is not idealistic gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said that we were ‘gods’ and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him—for we can prevent Him, if we choose—He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, dazzling, radiant, immortal creatures, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to Him perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) His own boundless power and delight and goodness. The process will be long and in parts very painful; but that is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what he said.” ~ C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, p. 174

"It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship. . ."—C. S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory

"You are not a human being having a spiritual experience—you are a spiritual being having a human experience."—Wayne Dyer

"God became man, so that man might become God." —Early Christian Proverb

"God said to this hairless monkey, 'get on with it, become a god.'"—C. S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

"The center of the soul is God." —St. John of the Cross, The Living Flame of Love

"He has called men gods that are deified of His Grace, not born of His Substance." —St. Augustine

"The Word became flesh and the Son of God became the Son of Man: so that man, by entering into communion with the Word and thus receiving divine sonship, might become a son of God" —St. Irenaeus, Adv Haer III 19,1

"Souls wherein the Spirit dwells, illuminated by the Spirit, themselves become spiritual, and send forth their grace to others. Hence comes . . . abiding in God, the being made like to God, and, highest of all, the being made God." —St. Basil the Great, On the Spirit.

"Christ has no hands but yours." —St. Teresa of Ávila

"(God) said that we were "gods" and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him-for we can prevent Him if we choose—He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) His own boundless power and delight and goodness. The process will be long and in parts very painful; but that is what we are in for." —C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity 174-5

"Let us become the image of the one whole God, bearing nothing earthly in ourselves, so that we may consort with God and become gods, receiving from God our existence as gods..." —St. Maximus the Confessor

"Let us applaud and give thanks that we have become not only Christians but Christ himself. Do you understand, my brothers, the grace that God our head has given us? Be filled with wonder and joy—we have become veritable Christs!" —St. Augustine of Hippo

"The Only-begotten Son of God, wanting us to be partakers of his divinity, assumed our human nature so that, having become man, he might make men gods." —St. Thomas Aquinas

"Souls wherein the Spirit dwells, illuminated by the Spirit, themselves become spiritual, and send forth their grace to others. Hence comes . . . abiding in God, the being made like to God, and, highest of all, the being made God." —St. Basil the Great, On the Spirit.

"Morality is indispensable: but the Divine Life, which gives itself to us and which calls us to be gods, intends for us something in which morality will be swallowed up. We are to be remade. . . . we shall find underneath it all a thing we have never yet imagined: a real man, an ageless god, a son of God, strong, radiant, wise, beautiful, and drenched in joy." —C. S. Lewis, The Grand Miracle, p. 85.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 04-04-2014, 01:57 PM
Aquila Aquila is offline
Banned


 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 31,124
Re: Anybody Read This ?

And here are some Scriptures for consideration and meditation:

John 15:1-12
I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.
2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.
10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.
11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

Romans 12:2
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Romans 8:29
For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

1 Corinthians 6:17
English Standard Version (ESV)
17 But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him.

John 14:20 (ESV)
In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.

John 17:11
And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.

John 17:22
The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one,

2 Corinthians 5:21
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

2 Peter 1:3-4
3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature,

Ephesians 3:19
And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

And what has proven to be one of the most blessed of all texts on this reality (at least for me):
Galatians 2:20 (ESV)
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Last edited by Aquila; 04-04-2014 at 02:20 PM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Did you read.......... Margies3 Fellowship Hall 14 02-01-2010 06:35 PM
Has Anyone Else Ever Read This? Jermyn Davidson Fellowship Hall 4 12-12-2009 05:54 PM
Everybody needs to read this: Sister Alvear Fellowship Hall 1 12-30-2008 09:51 PM
please read this Sister Alvear Fellowship Hall 2 12-28-2008 08:51 AM
Did you read? TK Burk Fellowship Hall 9 08-23-2007 09:04 AM

 
User Infomation
Your Avatar

Latest Threads
- by Ron
- by Ron

Help Support AFF!

Advertisement




All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:53 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.