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Old 02-21-2008, 04:17 PM
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State of the Forum Address

State of the Forum Address

Good evening, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am not Administration. Nor am I an owner or moderator. I am a registered member. I joined this forum on Feb, 10, 2007 and, with this post, I will have posted 1080 times. This will be the 96th thread that I have started. Statistically, I average 2.87 posts per day.

The are a number of reasons people join internet forums. Those reasons vary widely depending on the type of forum one joins. This forum would be considered a religious forum. Specifically, it is an Apostolic Forum. That means, the ownership and the overwhelming majority of the members are members of the Apostolic Faith. They hold Acts 2:38 as the very foundation of their religious experience. Moving away from that foundation , however, we can begin to detect differences. Not divisions, but differing views. Is the Apostolic Friends Forum divided? Yes, but division is the very nature of public forums. People from all across America, from Canada, and from all points around the globe see the name of the forum, APOSTOLIC Friends Forum, and, because they desire fellowship and identity with like-minded brothers and sisters, they huddle together under the word APOSTOLIC like people under an umbrella trying to dodge a rain shower. It's while we wait for the rain to pass that we begin to talk. And, we discover that, though we share the same umbrella, there are differences in our beliefs. Sometimes, that talk develops into discussions, and rarely into debates. On even rarer occasions, conflicts develop and words are exchanged that cause anger and hurt feelings.

The thing to bear in mind is that, while there are differences among us, we are all huddled under one umbrella: APOSTOLIC. We all came here to seek refuge from the storms of life in general. The soaking rains of doubt, fear and unbelief are soaking a sinful world all around us, but here we are, safe and dry, protected, at least for a season, from the rigors of life. And, we are together. Just as Jesus intended when He prayed in the garden that we be one. How is it possible for such a diverse people to come together in unity and fellowship? Well, actually, it isn’t possible, at least not through human effort. A people long ago attempted to be one and build a tower to reach the heavens, and, because theirs was a human effort, the efforts were in vain. But God, in His infinite wisdom, provided the means for us to achieve that which is humanly impossible: the Holy Spirit. By the very Spirit of the Living God that dwells in our hearts, we have the means to become one in Christ. When you stop to think about it, there is no oneness outside of Christ. Denominations have been established to unite people, but they grow and fall, because, like the tower of Babel, denominations are human effort.

It was the Holy Ghost given at Pentecost that united the 120 there in Jerusalem. It was the Holy Spirit that added three thousand to the church then, and it is the Holy Ghost poured out down through the years that have added us to God’s Kingdom. We are a blessed people… we have what the world’s political machines cannot provide. We have unity. No, we may not always agree. Our doctrines may differ. Our belief system, developed, not by a manual or creed, but by a spiritual experience of being reborn into God’s Kingdom, may not always agree, but the Spirit within us does agree, bearing witness with our spirits that we are God’s children.

Of course, within our ranks, are labels. Personally, I despise the labels but have come to accept them as a necessary evil. We are known by our labels- our convictions are erroneously and wrongly judged by the labels pinned on us. Cons, Mods, and Libs. Our allegiance to the Lord Jesus is often questioned by these carnal labels, as if someone can see through the label and see the very intents of the heart. But, that isn’t possible. Only God sees the heart, and I suspect that when He looks at the heart of those who bear the name Christian, He sees His own reflection.

So what of these alleged “changes” in the Forum? I can recall just a few weeks ago when someone alluded to changes in the Forum. Some said the change was refreshing. Others said they like the changes. But now, more changes have come and some are concerned. Some see this as a beginning of the end for AFF. But, no, this forum, like all forums that go through change, will continue as is. It will grow. It will weather the storm. How? By those who huddle under the Apostolic umbrella. The truth is, the Forum can now say without reservation that it is “a place where Apostolics can communicate with freedom”. In reality, those words can be shouted because the recent changes open new doors of opportunity. There is, as someone recently posted, “a new breeze blowing” at the Apostolic Friends Forum. The rains beat around us, but, this Forum will weather this storm just as it has the storms of the past.

We regret losing these valued members. But, we support them in their decision by urging them to remain true to their convictions. We will miss their valued posts- but the Forum will live on. We will remain in One Accord, doing just what those words mean, “rushing forward, in unison”. The Forum will not rise like a Phoenix from the ashes, because it has never fallen. It stands today and for a long time to come as a shining example of what happens when God’s people come together in the Unity of the Spirit. God bless the Apostolic Friends Forum, and God bless the owners, moderators, and members of this great Forum!
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Old 02-21-2008, 04:22 PM
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StillStanding StillStanding is offline
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Re: State of the Forum Address

Wow! Awesome post!
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Old 02-21-2008, 04:24 PM
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Re: State of the Forum Address

Excellent post OneAccordian. The check is in the mail!
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Old 02-21-2008, 04:27 PM
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Hoovie Hoovie is offline
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Re: State of the Forum Address

I too am "rushing forward" to thank you for a great post, OneAccord!!
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Old 02-21-2008, 04:33 PM
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freeatlast freeatlast is offline
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Re: State of the Forum Address

woW,,,,,what a wordsmith you are one accord. nice job.
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Old 02-21-2008, 04:35 PM
MusicMaster MusicMaster is offline
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Re: State of the Forum Address

Sir, I give you a standing ovation for this post.

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Old 02-21-2008, 04:45 PM
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Re: State of the Forum Address

Amen and Amen!!
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Old 02-21-2008, 04:47 PM
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Re: State of the Forum Address

Wisdom prevails!!
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Old 02-21-2008, 05:16 PM
RandyWayne RandyWayne is offline
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Re: State of the Forum Address

I don't know if we all consider Acts 2:38 as a "foundation" to our religion. As an example, OUR church baptizes in Jesus name by immersion yet we don't consider ourself an "Acts 2:38 Church". In fact, we consider it a very MINOR part of the Christian life.

Does the human species center their entire existence around "cutting the umbilical cord" or the "crowning" of the head during birth? How much MORE important is college and marriage then some action that took mere seconds? The entire epistles are centered around the importance of love, selflessness, and forgiveness. Yet those are the FIRST things that are ignored in the endless quest and fight for HOLINESS STANDARDS, and the all important "Acts 2:38!!!" experience.
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Old 02-21-2008, 05:29 PM
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Re: State of the Forum Address

Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyWayne View Post
I don't know if we all consider Acts 2:38 as a "foundation" to our religion. As an example, OUR church baptizes in Jesus name by immersion yet we don't consider ourself an "Acts 2:38 Church". In fact, we consider it a very MINOR part of the Christian life.

Does the human species center their entire existence around "cutting the umbilical cord" or the "crowning" of the head during birth? How much MORE important is college and marriage then some action that took mere seconds? The entire epistles are centered around the importance of love, selflessness, and forgiveness. Yet those are the FIRST things that are ignored in the endless quest and fight for HOLINESS STANDARDS, and the all important "Acts 2:38!!!" experience.

I didn't know you went to my church!!!!
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