Showing posts from June, 2019

Too Hard!

by Donald Norbie     When Jeroboam led the ten tribes in rebellion against Rehoboam, he decided to set up his own religion in the north. He said to the people, “It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem” , 1 Kgs. 12. 28. God had commanded His people to go up to Jerusalem several times a year to worship. But Jeroboam was concerned that this practice would weaken his hold on the people. He would make a religion more convenient for them with local shrines.     A friend was recently visiting some families who used to be in fellowship in a New Testament assembly. He suggested that they start meeting together, break bread and form an assembly. Their response? “It is too hard!” For some time they have been going to large denominational churches and had found it very comfortable and easy. They could be absent, go fishing or hiking, and hardly be missed. The preacher was hired to preach and to lead the worship; that was his job. It left the men free from the need to be prepared to parti

DO YOU NEED A MINISTER? (Or "full time worker"?)

by Donald Norbie       Today when one thinks of a church he immediately pictures a minister or a priest as the leader. People will ask, "Who is your minister?" or "...pastor?" And many are attracted to a church by the personality of the minister. If a church has problems the minister is blamed and a replacement is scouted.      A minister is a clergyman. The term clergy today, according to Webster, means "men ordained for religious service, as ministers, priests, rabbis, etc." A minister is "authorized to carry out the spiritual functions of a church, usually Protestant, conduct worship, administer sacraments, preach, etc.      For most people church and clergy go together like husband and wife. You cannot have the one without the other. Who will conduct the services, baptize and administer the Lord's Supper if there is no minister?      The question arises: Has this always been true?      At various times in church history some brave souls