A Beginning

Jones Deerstand picJuly, 2013, marked my 60th year in Christ and what a journey it has been! The mountaintops and the valleys of my life have run concurrently alongside vast changes both culturally and in our community of faith. Perceptions that seemed so straightforward in my younger years have been tempered by time and experience. The study of scripture and the realities of life have provided continual avenues of learning.

JJonesDeerstandfinalEarly in my Christian life I determined two ‘non-negotiables’ would govern my choices: (1) the Bible is the word of God; (2) Jesus Christ is Lord. In an effort to remain true to that foundation, I have occasionally found myself challenging my own paradigms and have been forced to answer the question, “ What really drives my life—the fear of being ‘wrong’ or the pursuit of truth?” Having to admit that I have been mistaken in a number of areas has not been easy yet I feel I am a wiser and more humble man as a result. I realized long ago the fallacy of getting it all ‘right’. I was never intended to. Most importantly a God who is gracious in my life is gracious in my theology. The purpose of this blog is to explore some of the things that I have struggled with both in life and through scripture.

For the past 16 years Lynn and I have been involved in a ministry that has taken us into the trenches of 43 states, 4 foreign countries, and over 450 churches. About 13 years ago I began an intensive study of the marriage and divorce issue—the end result to be published in 2014. As part of that study I became intrigued with the significant influence the Roman Catholic Church has had on our fellowship. For that reason the influence of Catholicism on the churches of Christ since the first century will be the subject of the next several blog entries. Some of the topics I plan to explore are: the influence of Catholicism on marriage, divorce, the Lord’s supper, church buildings, priesthood, church membership, salvation, and baptism. I invite you to accept, reject or modify my thoughts, but I invite you to prayerfully journey with me.

Comments

  1. Thanks for starting this Jerry. Looking forward to it.

  2. Scott & Janice Damron says:

    Excited to share this journey with you!

  3. Jerry, I appreciate you and Lynn so much — for your love for Jesus Christ and your desire to be His servants. Blessings.

  4. Laura McCormick says:

    S F Timmerman did a lecture in the 1950’s on Catholicism. Very educational. He was a missionary in primarily Catholic countries for over 40 years. It is in book form. A little yellow book. I purchased a used one several years ago and gave it to Pat Peters after reading it.

  5. Stephanie Hopper says:

    Lynn thanks for the FB mention… Jerry I am really interested in this series. Love you both much!
    Stephanie
    PS. Mom sold her house and is moving into a new villa today, but she is keeping her old phone number.
    Can’t believe it has been almost 2 years since dad died.

  6. Looking forward to prayerfully journeying with you. Love’s prayers for you and Lynn, your family, and your ministry.

  7. Jerry – I will.follow your journey. Our paths have not crossed – but Lynn has been a “best friend and spiritual counselor” for many years. I learned to meditate thru the St Ignatius Retreat in Daily Living (conducted by a Benedictine sister) and the importance of Christ in my life, as a result of the three-day “Walk to Emmaus”. Will follow your blog and look forward to reading your book

  8. I’m always blessed by your teaching. Thank you for being a friend and mentor.

  9. Gayle Crowe says:

    Got you bookmarked.

  10. Booker Murphy says:

    Hi Jerry, I’am want to see what you have to say about baptism!

  11. Rex Dillinger says:

    Jerry, I feel I have been on a very similar journey of my own and look forward to seeing the similarities and differences that your path has taken compared to mine.

  12. Deborah C Humphreys says:

    This open discussion is long overdue. It will be interesting to see if the conversation shifts to why the next generation of believers don’t buy into “traditions” long held by most Christians.

  13. I have always appreciated your openness to learning & devotion to Jesus. Very thoughtful blog that I will l
    follow with interest.

  14. David Driver says:

    Jerry, can’t wait to start reading your comments

  15. Eve Dillinger says:

    I am excited to follow your journey also! I was raised in the Catholic Church and converted about 18 years ago. My upbringing has caused me to have many questions and struggles. I am anxious to read about your thoughts and findings through this media and in your upcoming publication! God’s blessings to you, Jerry, and to Lynn!

  16. Wayne Baker says:

    Your thoughts have always been challenging and often inspired me to further growth in the Kingdom. I’m grateful for your thoughtful study and look forward to this blog journey.

  17. Patrick Peters says:

    Jerry, I am looking forward to your blogs. I have noticed, in addition to our influences from Catholicism, that much of our concept of God has come, not form a pure study of scripture, but from Augustine and Calvin. Our brotherhood is rich with biblical knowledge, but our spiritual journey is an ever continuing challenge. The admission of outside influences on our conclusions is not a weakness, but yet another step in finding truth.

  18. Ann McDonald says:

    I’m always interesting in learning more about Christendom.

  19. David Nestor says:

    Jerry, as usual, you provide more material to “stretch our souls” and challenge us to walk closer with Jesus. Thank you. Looking forward to being blessed with this new material.

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