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# 01289 :  Are "Indian" churches in foreign countries unscriptural?
Are churches in foreign countries outside India that cater specifically to Indians an unscriptural practice? Is the biblical concept of local churches being discarded to keep people of the same race, culture, and language together? Isn't this why churches do not grow effectively?
Post by : bgeorge  View Profile    since : 5 Jun 2007


Reply by : joekur1   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 3:06:52 PM Close
I have to agree with bgeorge. I live in the US and the church I go to is predominantly "brown". I find that the people in my church are very reluctant to spread the gospel to those who aren't Indian, esspecially the older people. Many do not want to associate with other races and don't let their children either. So there are many people, even in the neighborhood that my church is in who don't know the Lord and no one cares because they aren't Indian.

Yes, we do have our outreach programs sometimes where we give tracks in our neighborhood but even if someone did get saved, I could never bring them into my church because there is a tendancy for our people to ignore other races.

In Galatians 3:28, Paul writes, "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." However, I think that us Indians are guilty of not considering the other races that live among us worthy to have fellowship with us.

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Reply by : bgeorge   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 3:24:34 PM Close
Joekur1, I've also seen that scenario many times in my lifetime.

I think people would argue with the both of us that it is important to to have "Indian" churches because people only feel comfortable with fellowshipping and worshipping with their own people, in their own language, "how they did it back home", etc. I believe that this sort of argument will come from the older generation or the people immigrated to their respective foreign country at an older age.

However, the problem I see is that, although they have good intentions, the older generation alienates their own children in associating with the other races around them. So the children have a hard time sharing their testimonies to their own friends because their aren't comfortable to do so.

Also, when an Indian or any other race-exclusive church forms in an area, what I see happen is that people from that race come from everywhere to be apart of that church because they are the similar race. Then what happens is that there a believers worshipping in a place that is not their own local neighborhood. So the outside community, their neighbors, see them as outsiders. So outreach ministries are not effective and the idea of the "local" church is thrown out.

From this distorted view of the local church also comes other problems such as: Language issues(Malayalam vs other language), Traditions creep into church life, Disjoint between older and younger believers, Ineffective or no outreach, No church growth through evangelism, and many others.


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Reply by : brethren   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 3:33:05 PM Close
Your statement "if someone did get saved," - All of you youngsters are having this mega plan for those who are going to get saved.... the fact remain, you dont have any one get saved yet.
There are hundreds of churches in the USA, you can send the future "if someone did get saved" get crowd. Stop blaming your local assemblies, some of your parents came to this country and establish assemblies and raised you, while working 2 or 3 jobs.. yes there are problems in the assemblies, but with their limited knowledge, they did the best they can. Now what are you doing, whyning, and complaing, becasue you are worried about "if someone did get saved" - Why dont you start a minitry among the Indians... instead of worrying aobut the other races, all other races have their own fellowship, chinese, spanish, korean, african.. i see the complaint from Indians.. about the language..
My Last question - Why didnt you study Malayalm?
Its your mother tounge, at the end of the day, you are still an INDIAN, if u dont think..just look at the mirror...

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 3:48:25 PM Close
Dear 'brethren',

Wow... just take it easy! Let them (yougsters) express themselves! Let us (I am over fifty) take a step back. There is great deal of truth in what is being said.

Let's not vent our frustrations and anger upon the youngsters; after all most of them are more genuine Christians than us (our generation).

I know many of them personally. I wish I had the spiritual outlook and maturity I had when I was at their age. I am speaking in a general sense, of course there would be exceptions.

Regards,

Tom J

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Reply by : brethren   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 4:25:52 PM Close
Dear Tom:
Youngsters are expressing themselfs for a while, all I hear is the "big Projects". I know for sure, no one is holding them back. You attend an english assembly, so you may not be able to see this from my angle.

I know many of the youngsters, and i seen and appreciate them, (seen a bunch last wknd).. but all the complaints you hear are aginst the poor malayalam assemblies, I think its time, people like you should analyze the situation, instead of giving them a blank check.. I know most of the elders and leadership is wiling to work and help this youngsters, but they want it all my way or highway... and most of this guys have the freedom to go out and do evangelize the way they want...but their concern is, what will I do, if i bring an outsider to my poor malayalm assembly.. oh i am too embarrassed to have them meet my uncles...
so my message to all of you is.. stop blaming the local assemblies, go out and do something, just like yoru parentes who had the guts to establish assemblies in a forein land, rather than join the pews of assemblies...

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Reply by : greatlybeloved   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 5:39:09 PM Close
Dear 'brethren',

I understand what you're saying. But is it justified to limit the ministry just to one sect (if it is true)?

When we come to this country, we try to adjust as much as we can, at work and in neighborhood. We don't look for 'indian' companies to work for. Why do we need 'indian' church?

I mean, when the people of this country allowed us to come here to earn, shouldn't we have responsibility to serve this society at least spiritually (spreading the gospel to all)!?

I may be wrong. I'm a new comer to this country, I don't know all the facts.


Brother Tom,

Can you also shed some light as to why are these 'Indian only assemblies' are started? I hope the language is the only reason. Please don't get me wrong, I'm not blaming the formation of these assemblies but just wanted to know the reason.

Regards,

John.

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Reply by : brethren   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 6:45:53 PM Close
Dear John - Its Not limiting to one sect: Its hard for older people to go work among the Puerto Ricon or Italian people. So most of the older malayalee brethren concentrate on helping our homeland India. All Malayalam assemblies in NAmerican has one way or another helped the evangelistic work in India, I agree, we shouldnt be satisfied with just those. I dont think any one is forcing anyone to join the Indian church, we join out of the mutual things we enjoy. I dont have the satistics, but I belive ONLY the half of the Original indian malyalee brethren attend Malayalam Assemblies.
And what about the rest of the Non Malayalam assemblies, i dont see anything spectacular coming out of them..
Changes take time, and i belive all the Malayalam assemblies are working towards that, lets not just blatently blame the malayalam assemblies for all wrong doings in our midst.

Mat

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Reply by : greatlybeloved   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 7:12:54 PM Close
Dear Bro Mat,

Thanks for the clarification. No, I'm not blaming at all. In fact I attended an assembly near Detroit for a month or so. 97% of the members are Indians (or Indian origin). But I have to say, it was a wonderful assembly, blended with older and young folks. Just before I left the assembly (as I got a Job elsewhere) they were planning on evangelizing (to everyone). I enjoyed being there.

Most of them are Malayalee brothers although the service was in English. My point is, I wouldn't blame Indian assemblies at all. I was just asking the reason behind the formation of these assemblies (which you have answered).

Regards,

John.

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Reply by : Varghese   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 11:08:08 PM Close
I wholeheartedly understand & sympathize with what “bgeorge” has stated.

Being exclusive for any reason, race, language etc may not serve for the good of all in the long run. There is nothing unscriptural in itself as such gathering remains within the comfort zone. There is nothing wrong in keeping one’s identity with regard to culture, language etc. But such desires limits an individual or a church’s need for evangelization & prevents us from welcoming folks from the neighborhood. It is truly a concern and I believe that “bgeorge” & “joekur1” spoke out of burden.

On the other hand, hasty responses like that of person using the pen name “brethren” is a disservice. Such harsh, hammering-down of young people when they open their mouth seems to be one of the failures of the older generation, sadly to say. Then we turn & wonder why the young people are not encouraged to take active roles in our assemblies!

(Continued in next …..)

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Reply by : Varghese   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2007 11:08:58 PM Close
(Continued from previous ...)

We must open our eyes & see as to how many people are getting saved & getting added to the church. We must be thankful that some young people do feel the burden & need for the lost! It is time that we open our eyes & see the need for assemblies to grow other than thru marriages & births. This has nothing to do with “projects”, “blaming & whining” etc. Nothing to do with the so-called “guts”. Nothing to do with “blank check”. Just common sense & a good heart to understand these young voices! What has “learning Malayalam” has to do with this concern? If someone goes to a foreign land and expects the coming generation to be like the Indians in Kerala, I would ask such folks to remain in Kerala. Yes, culture is good but maintaining one’s cultural identity at the expense of ignoring the call to be ambassadors in the place where we are, is grossly shameful!

Let us learn to understand & listen to our young people. Sure, we can learn a thing or two from them if we can leave our egos at the door! The future belongs to them and we must make it our goal to equip them for the Lord instead of hammering them to a pulp at the slightest movement while keeping them as onlookers in the backbench!

God Bless!

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Reply by : nelnob1   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 1:14:43 AM Close
<<Are churches in foreign countries outside India that cater specifically to Indians an unscriptural practice? Is the biblical concept of local churches being discarded to keep people of the same race, culture, and language together? Isn't this why churches do not grow effectively? >>

Well this particular thread seems to be a US assemblies thread, dear brethren in Christ, first of all let us be aware we are not the direct products of the particular Assembly where we are gathering, we were born again at different occassions obviously those elderly brethren sure to be in India , practising the brethren systems in India and for better living conditions migrated to different parts of the world. Now those who were brethren believers in India should look into that wherever they go they practice the same system based on the scriptures, the assemblies which some brethren have mentioned brown or white , the american nationality believers have thier own culture and thier own way, so we cant impose our systems upon them. Why the Assemblies are not growing, In our nation of India out of 120 crore people only 2.5% are christians and out of that 2.5% a mere less than .5% are born again christians, so what do you expect a nation of more than 95% christians what more growth do we need,yes to add quantity to the assembly , there is to be an identity of our gathering and a scriptural support for that identity when someone asked, the simplicity, generosity, the love of our gatherings should spread around like a sweet smelling aroma.

Yours in Christ
Samuel.V.J

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Reply by : brethren   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 9:43:32 AM Close
Varghese - I am Not hammering down young peopele, I expressed my opinion based on what I see. How many young people are concerend about their own assembly? All I hear on this forum is how Old People are a stumbling block to next generation. I have seen in the past 20 years, many of these young guns, who left the assemblies to other churches, have Not done a whole lot, its not easy as they think.. then again there are many people, who do not attend malayalam assemblies, sitting on the fence and encouraging those youth who attending the malayalam assembly to start coups. Those guys have nothing to loose, they go to english assemblies, where they are the Brown "White" folks...

So my advise to the youth is, work with your assemblies, work with your elders and authority - and if they are not responding your needs, you need to find an assembly that will do so.

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 10:00:34 AM Close
Dear 'brethren,'

Before we blame others, let us look at ourselves. When we use terms such as "young guns," this is about our children, how are they going to react? We are not to alienate our children. When we use such terms, are we drawing them nearer to us or away from the Lord?

Why are they leaving the assembly of your choice? May be because they were not shown the real reason to gather in the name of the Lord. Whose fault is that? Not theirs. In my life, I am in an assembly. It is not because my father was in one of them. It is because my Lord wants me to be there.

If we demand that our children should be in an assembly of our choice, then we should have shown "why" they should do that. This showing should have been when they wer growing as a child of God. Please do not blame them. First, we should examine ourselves. That may help, in the future.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : Varghese   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 10:08:10 AM Close
Dear “brethren”

Thank you for your reply! I understand your frustrations. I am not here trying to advocate & support all what the younger generation do. I leave it to the local assemblies to nurture them, disciple them and guide them in the right path. True, there are some who leave our assemblies everywhere, even in India. We must take time to evaluate as to why. The reasons are either personal reasons or spiritual reasons. If it is spiritual dissatisfaction, we must lend a listening ear to such concerns. A lot can be done if we are willing to listen & act with grace. Your initial response was bit too harsh though! I am glad that you clarified your stance.

I agree with your final analysis that assemblies must respond to the needs of the younger generation. They are our future and we must strive to equip them for God’s glory and for the expansion of His Kingdom!

I take this thread to examine as to how I can be of encouragement & blessing to others!

God Bless!

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Reply by : brethren   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 11:16:28 AM Close
Dear Brothers..

I agree with both of you, I also do take responsibility and blame for my part in not being a good role model to next generation, but with our limited knowledge, i think many of us try to do our best to cater to young generation, after all they are our future.

But you have to understand the older generation also, i dont think we are Not standing in their way as much other think. We Can not switch a malayalam assembly to an English Chapel overnight, you have to work on it, who better than an youngster to come with a plan. For those who goes to English assemblies, when you join, you adapt to their style, and most of them adapted to you as individuals, not overnight, but in Time. The Young people have to do the same, instead of saying, my uncles and parents are not going to the Italian community and converting them to "brethren" and ignore them or avoid them, IF they come to our assembly...

May Be Mr. Koshy can give us a glimpse on how they do it in the Non- Malayalam assembly? How does the process work there?

Thanks


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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 12:59:54 PM Close
<Are churches in foreign countries outside India that cater specifically to Indians an unscriptural practice? Is the biblical concept of local churches being discarded to keep people of the same race, culture, and language together? Isn't this why churches do not grow effectively?>

Churches in foreign countries that cater to Indians are definitely not unscriptural. Brethren churches such as we have in the USA are comprised of people who initially came to this country to work and live a better life, than what was available back in India. None of them came here for evangelical purposes or for converting the locals here or spreading the gospel to the locals. They only came to study or work, earn money, live better lifestyles.

As such, they choose to gather with others who came here with the same intentions. Thats why we have local brethren churches with predominately Indian folks. Now if someone has a calling to work as an evangelist in the USA, of course, they must find where and with whom the Lord wants them to work and assimilate with them to accomplish the work of the gospel.

"Race" is something that God created. If you stay focussed on your "race" in terms of spiritual fellowship, there is nothing wrong with that. It is a direct consequence of something God has allowed. In fact I find Indians attending English churches, somewhat weird. Most of the time they do it to avoid the politics of the local malayalam churches, however this reason is not very scripturally sound. If God has called you to minister to a different race, then, yes, you should not limit you contact to your own race.

It all boils down to why you are in the foreign country in the first place.

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Reply by : george.p.alexander   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 1:20:55 PM Close
Dear Moses2006

>>In fact I find Indians attending English churches, somewhat weird.

Isn't this a personal choice? Why is it weird? I attend an english assembly.`Some people in Kerala find this wierd and initially were advicing me against this when I was about to join.

I wonder why.

Regards,

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 1:30:57 PM Close
Dear 'moses2006',

You wrote - "Race" is something that God created. If you stay focussed on your "race" in terms of spiritual fellowship, there is nothing wrong with that. It is a direct consequence of something God has allowed. In fact I find Indians attending English churches, somewhat weird. Most of the time they do it to avoid the politics of the local malayalam churches, however this reason is not very scripturally sound. If God has called you to minister to a different race, then, yes, you should not limit you contact to your own race."

In light of the NT, particularly Eph 2:11-22, do you think you are right about your assertions?

Regards,

Tom J


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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 1:35:24 PM Close
Dear Moses2006,

You wrote, "Most of the time they do it to avoid the politics of the local malayalam churches, however this reason is not very scripturally sound."--- Avoiding politics in an assembly and groupism is clearly written in 1 Corinthians as something that should be practiced. The Lord's Supper should not be according to sectarianism or groupism, which you mentioned as "politics." Why do we have to eat our own supper at the Lord's Table? (Please answer this question from the Word of God.)

It is spiritually sound to be with the children of God, without considering the skin color or race, to meet at the Lord's Table to eat the Lord's supper to remember His death till He come (1 Corinthians 11). All are saved by the same blood of the Lamb of God that died only once on the only one cross. They are all members of the one body, the assembly, that is connected with the only Head, the glorified Christ in heaven.

When you make such statements, others could also make other statements agsinst meeting in 'only Indians' are allowed meetings. Please refrain.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 1:37:40 PM Close
Dear 'brethren,'

I wish to honor your request. Please wait, I will write from my personal expereince.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 3:00:22 PM Close
Bro. Koshy,

"It is spiritually sound to be with the children of God, without considering the skin color or race, to meet at the Lord's Table.."

I agree 100%. But when you CAN HAVE fellowship with a group of believers, who are children of the same Lord, who also look like you and share your culture, however you choose to avoid them like the plague and have fellowship with others who do not share your cultural background, it is definitely "not the ideal choice". It is a compromised setting at best. There is no way you can convince me otherwise. When it comes to the children of people who attend outside churches, these kids are always confused as to their identity and thus unable to be of good to either group. They recognize and are often helpless reconciling the difference in cultures, between what they see at home and what they see among the people of their church.

But I agree this is a personal choice issue and everyone needs to decide for himself as where he or she can best serve the Lord. Those who choose to worship with other cultures are definitely not doing something wrong. It's not always the best choice, thats all.

"Why do we have to eat our own supper at the Lord's Table?" --I do not understand your question or how it is relevant to the issue at hand??

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Reply by : joekur1   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2007 3:21:29 PM Close
I'm amazed at the attitude of many that worshipping/fellowshipping with people who look like you and speak your language is the best way to go.

Consider if Apostle Thomas, who came to people who he probably couldn't communicate with (us great Indians), thought that way! Then the Christian community would be olive-skinned Jews who live in Saudi Arabia.

Thank God for his love towards us Gentiles who he gave an opportunity to be called his children, eventhough we aren't from his chosen nation Israel.

Its funny how many of us see our race as best and keeping that identity is crucial to our existence in foreign countries.

We even forget our Lord Jesus' prayer in his last days recorded in John 17:20-23, where He prays for the unity of all who believe in him. Yet we have created barriers, racially, denominationally, and politically so that His children are forever divided.

But we like being comfortable, we strive to live a good life, and worship with who we want to worship with. We give great excuses and mangle the true scriptural patterns of worship and local churchs to fit our comfortable mold. That is why Christians, no matter what color are looked down upon everywhere....we are divided and we really don't care about the Lord's work but just our own happiness.

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Reply by : rpaulmer   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 5:50:34 AM Close
My dear fellow brethren !

So at the end, it is only culture, food, habits, identity, heritage (5 generation of Kerala brethren) language, dress sense, youngsters, old people, type of profession, rich, poor etc. are the things which hold a church / denomination / assembly toghter. These are our identity And we are fighting no one should leave them !!! Hold on to these ???? What a shame !

What about Paul who considered some things like these as junk ! (Phil 31-11) And Jesus telling his disciples in Luke 14:26 your love for him should be so great.

How easily we forget our identity and our position in Christ and seek it in culture etc.

Young or old if we are not in the Lord it is easy to fall in traps of systems both Old and New.

If you are wondering why you and others around you are in US and some us in other parts of the world read in Acts 17

24 The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands.
25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else.
26 From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live.
27God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.

Please note that vs 27 God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.

He set time places etc….only one purpose ……oooooooh some how they will reach out for him…..

I wish we are like Him

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Reply by : sunilajoseph@aol.com   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 6:55:08 AM Close
I will say, those malayalee assemblies are our home. We don't want to leave our home. We don't want to go out. We stay in.
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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 7:56:26 AM Close
I find on this thread more of personal opinions based on their own experiences and preferences. It is hard to leave home assemblies for those, who can not adapt in to other societies and prevalance in them, of self-inflicted inferiority complex. As for me I am well adapted in English Church, where my testimony was read out loudly among 'whites', who even offered me some important position, which of course, I refused to accept, because I personally do not want to be thrown out from that position at a later stage, when I would probably feel dejected. Even at work place, I am sincere, and dependable, and, therefore, am adapted in their society well. However, we can not eliminate totally, their inner feeeling that they are 'blonde' and superior, and smarter than us. Reaching out Gospel to them is not difficult. I do that. However, acceptance of the gospel by them is indeed tough. Our receptionist asks me, 'how was your week-end?' I say, 'it was great, short and sweet'. When I ask her she says, 'I spent lot of time with my boy friend' When I ask her, how long did you have your boy friend? She says, 'I have him for 12 years!' I ask her, why don't you marry him? She says, he dates quite a great deal with others! What Gospel I can preach to her or similar ones?
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Reply by : sunilajoseph@aol.com   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:01:40 AM Close
Are "Indian" churches in foreign countries unscriptural?

Answer is NO.

Why should you go to another church if you have yourown church? or Why should you leave home (church) if you have a happy family there and live in somebodyelses house?

Why don't you welcome other family members to your home (church) instead of going to theirs?

Yes, There is problem in Church. Mostly not spiritual problem, but physical problem. (culture, way of dressing, money etc). Why should an outsider know about it? We can solve our problem in our church.

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:14:16 AM Close
Dear 'sunilajoseph@aol.com,'

In the word of God, there is no "home church" or "mother church" as Pentecostal pastors teach and write. All are fiction of the imagination of the human mind that is fertilized by the ideas of the wicked one.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:15:21 AM Close
Dear ‘brethren,’ Part-1

This is a very brief recount of my experience.

When I came to USA, there was not that many people from the assemblies in Kerala in the Philadelphia area. There were some from other parts of India. I considered then and now, that it is my duty to attend an existing assembly at a given locality. I have no mandate or right to divide the local body of Christ, when it exists. It was the Lord who raised it there and it is the Lord who walks among such candlesticks, the assemblies. I have to show the oneness of the body of Christ at a given locality by joining them in remembering the Lord’s death on the first day of the week (Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 11:17-34 and the portions from the Gospels on the Lord’s Supper). This is to be done to show the unity of the body of Christ on this earth as united to its glorified Head in heaven (1 Corinthians 10:16-17).

When we come together to eat the Lord’s Supper at the Lord’s Table (this is not our table or our supper) we should not be looking at our skin color or the nation of origin. At the Lord’s Table, or even at the Lord’s presence, there is only one race – the Assembly consisting of God’s children. In 1 Corinthians 10:32 we read that before God there are only three races and they are the Jews, the Greeks, and the Assembly of God. If we consider our origin as Indians is superior to that of our origin as children of God by the Holy Spirit in Christ, then there is some justification to uphold our nationality as Indians to meet separately from others in USA or in any other country. At the same time, we work to make money as one with the worst sinners as well as those believers we don’t want to break bread with on the first day of the week. I cannot see the logical justification to this.

(To be cont. Part-2)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:16:43 AM Close
Dear ‘brethren,’ Part-2

Let me try to be short. I am going back to my life in USA. I was with a group of saints in the suburb of Philadelphia for a number of years. As I recall with happy memories, there were many who accepted me as one of them and that was without any reservation. Unfortunately, there were two brothers who had difficulty to accept me fully as a brother, because of my color. I just ignored them. I ignored them, in the sense, that I always talked to them but I never paid any attention to their personal desires. One of them even used to talk to me every 3 months that I should go back to India.

About the one who did not talk to me about going back to India: One year he went to Bermuda for vacation? While in Bermuda, he had a heart attack. He was taken to a hospital. When he opened his eyes, he was in a shock. He was in a ward along with four other black people. He protested and demanded that he should be given a private room away from the colored people. The doctors told him that if he doesn’t want to be in that ward, he is free to go. After his recovery, he came back to Philadelphia. He was a changed man. On the first day I met him; I went to him and asked him about his ordeal in Bermuda and told him that we, as a family, prayed for his recovery. All I know is that he put his arms around me and said a lot of things. At last he told me that I should take the initiative of arranging a seminar on Bible & Science and he will do all he could to make it happen. Well, we had a seminar on that subject within two months. [About this man’s experience in Bermuda was told to me by two others – one from UK and other from USA – when we were having dinner together with our families. They were laughing and I along with my family was amused.]

(To be cont. Part-3)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:17:47 AM Close
Dear ‘brethren,’ Part-3

About the one who wanted me to go back to India: The last time he told me that I should go back to India, I asked his permission to ask a question? When he agreed, I asked, “Did you pray to God about telling me this? My decisions were taken only after considerable prayers.” He just walked away. Later, he mentioned in a Bible reading that a young brother replied this way when he was giving some directions. After a couple of years I went to another state. After a few years I went back to that assembly on the first day of the week. They have Bible Study to precede the Breaking of Bread meeting. In the adult class he was the leader of the study. I kept quiet. He recognized that I was not speaking. He turned to me and said, “George, I always appreciated your ministry, especially from Genesis 1. Please help us. You are a bother in Christ.” Now you know how God works!!!

[In this connection, let me also tell about my experience with a missionary who spent a good part of his life in India. He was retired from his missionary work. One day he came to visit our assembly and we were invited for dinner in a home. When the man of the house was helping his wife, I was alone with the missionary. He placed his hand on my thigh and leaned towards me and said, “I want you to go back to India.” I told him that when my Lord says so I will do that and I didn’t ask his opinion on it. He was not that pleased. He was a missionary to India!]

See how God works! I was not among them to establish myself. I was there to remember the Lord’s death as He wants me to do. I was willing to minister without complaining. I did that and am glad about it. Now they are asking me to move back to that area, even that brother who wanted e to go back to India. I told them that is not possible, at this time.

(To be cont. Part-4)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:20:00 AM Close
Dear ‘brethren,’ Part-4

I also told a few at the meeting that we presently go to that the reason we decided to be with them is not because of them but because of the Lord’s Table. Yes that is what happened. When we were looking for a place to with the saints, we went to this assembly on the third week. As soon as we walked into the main hall, all I saw was the Table. My wife whispered, “This is the assembly we want to be, you will not go looking for another.” It was the Lord’s Table with the Lord’s Supper being ready for us to eat to remember our Lord’s death was what we saw. It was delightful.

Dear brother, it all depends on what we want. If we consider our national origin is superior to the Lord’s Table and the Lord’s Supper, then we will give importance to that. If we think that we cannot communicate properly in English, we may prefer to have a familiar language. We forget that the communication is between us and the Lord whose table is before us and he is present there. There could be others of many colors with us. There is no scripture that allows us to divide the local body Christ based upon our desires or logic.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:21:43 AM Close
Dear Moses2006, Part-A

After agreeing with me 100%, you disagreed with me with a “But.” How can you do that? There is a contradiction in your writing. Once a person agrees with another 100%, there is no room for any disagreement with a “But.” If any does, then there is no 100% agreement or agreeing. There is a meaning for “100%.”

You wrote, ---<< But when you CAN HAVE fellowship with a group of believers, who are children of the same Lord, who also look like you and share your culture, however you choose to avoid them like the plague and have fellowship with others who do not share your cultural background, it is definitely "not the ideal choice". It is a compromised setting at best. There is no way you can convince me otherwise.>>--- These sentences shows that you don’t know me. Well I did not choose to avoid any. They did. Let me explain from one of my experience. The first conference of the Malayalee Brethren in USA was at Greenwood Hills, PA. When I received the brochure, I saw a picture of my Lord Jesus Christ on the front. I called the person over the phone, who was arranging the conference, and talked to him about it, especially pointing to Romans 1:21-27. His reply was, “If you don’t like what I did, you don’t have to come.” Let me ask, who avoided whom? To publish a picture of my Lord against the command not to do so in the Word of God, I was told that I don’t have to attend their meeting. Tell me, who avoided whom? May be, banish is the better word.

Dear Moses2006, when I am at the Lord’s Table to eat the Lord’s Supper, I see others like me, saved by the grace of God by the only begotten Son by shedding His blood only once on the only cross, at that Table. I don’t look at me. I don’t remember how the others differ from me. I look to the Lord, who is present at the Table. I am called to come at His table and I am there. I surely see the color of others, but I don’t see mine... (Cont.)

(To be cont. Part-B)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:23:51 AM Close
Dear Moses2006, Part-B

... Of course, others see my color, but I don’t. That is the secret. Don’t tell any one. Keep it as our secret.

You also wrote about an “ideal choice.” I request you to explain this from the Word of God. I need to understand what this “ideal choice” is? (I am looking forward to hear from you on this.)

I am at my Lord’s Table to eat the Lord’s Supper and it is to remember the Lord’s death till He come or I am called to be with Him. It is not about any culture. I know what I wanted to be when I was walking the streets of Thiruvandapuram as a young man and I know what I became, while I was on one of those walks I am grateful not to my cultural background, but to my Father who loved me to gave His only begotten Son as a ransom. Not only that He gave His son, He also told me that He wants to make me one of His sons through the Son, while the one I wanted to follow has nothing to offer. I am grateful.

In this connection, I remember a parable that my Lord told. I read it in the Gospel written by Luke. Two men, a Pharisee and a Tax Collector, went up together to pray in the temple. When they were inside the temple, they separated. They went together from outside, but separated when they were inside the temple. They separated at a place where they should no be separated. The Pharisee looked at the Tax Collector and then to himself and made a very impressive prayer about how he is superior in his culture of separation (the word Pharisee means ‘separated’) and how inferior the other man is. The Pharisee even reminded God he is doing things that are not required in the law given by Him. The law required to fast only once a year. He reminded God that he does it 52, may be 51, times a year. Now, let us look at the other man. He did not look at any one. He confessed his lowliness and asked God’s help. Who went home justified, if I may ask? Please don’t make ‘cultural background’ more essential than your relationship with the Lord... (Cont.)

(To be cont. Part-C)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:25:03 AM Close
Dear Moses2006, Part-C

... This is the problem that we are facing today and are discussing on this thread.

About ‘cultural background’: Is the south Travancore-Cochi culture the same as the Malabar culture? Is Tamilnadu culture same as Kerala culture? Is Punjabi culture same as the Kerala culture? …. If one wants to meet to satisfy his/her ‘cultural background,’ how that culture should be refined. Should one refine it to the level of “family culture?” I am not even sure about that.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : george.p.alexander   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:44:09 AM Close
Dear trds,

You said that...

>>However, we can not eliminate totally, their inner feeeling that they are 'blonde' and superior, and smarter than us

How can we be so sure that they have such thoughts when they are born-again believers just like us. Do we harbour similar thoughts (superior, smarter etc) about believers from other places like, say, Africa, or from slum areas or villages from other states in our country which may be culturally different?

I hope not and as mature christians, I don't think we do either. As born-again believers, these are not factors for us when considering fellow believers. It may be in our old nature to think of others in such terms but never as born-again believers. So why should we assume that they harbour such thoughts about us?

It may be because we may have an inherant inferiority complex that makes us think that way. i.e, we may be too conscious about such things with respect to ourselves.

A well known evanglist (non-malayalee) who works in tribal areas in the north eastern part of India once commented privately that whereever malayalies believers go and when they are in sizable numbers, they usally tend to create they're own groups making others uncomfortable. This is just an observation which I feel is unfortunately true in certain cases. If possible, we should atleast try to not give such an impression to our fellow brethren.

Regards,

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Reply by : trds   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 9:49:52 AM Close
Dear George P. Alexander,

Quote:
<<How can we be so sure that they have such thoughts when they are born-again believers just like us. >>

One of my bosses is a great believer and yet, she says openly, that, she is 'blonde', smarter than any one here, even among the blondes. True, she is smarter, she is efficient. How can we prevent such an attitude even among believers? Supposing that you are asked to be in "Jumrithalayya" in India, how would you feel? Even believers might feel tough to adjust to such situations. Otherwise, why do not preachers from India go to such places and work among them? Rather they seek to go places where they get all the comforts.

Secondly, It is again a question of traditional thinking by older generations and a desire for a newer approach by younger generations, and also the problem of extending invitation and willingness to accept invitation. When we do our part of inviting them, they may not accept it, because they can not understand our language. If whites can speak Indian languages, and there is willingness among them to sit with us in our churches, there should be no problem for them to be in our homes. If we consider India as a whole, as a home, Americans have done quite a great deal of good to Indians. We can not go and knock on the door of an American and preach Gospel, just as any Indian can do in India. As for me I am great music lover. I find it very hard to adjust with older generations, who are reluctant to listen or play good music.


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Reply by : joe.c.thomas   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 1:39:16 PM Close
What about Indian Churches in the GULF?
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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 3:10:53 PM Close
Bro Koshy,

I did agree with your statement as quoted. There nothing scripturally wrong with gathering and worshiping with brothers of a different culture. I appeal you to consider if such a setting is an ideal one. Please see some of the following verses:

Rom 12:16 - Be of the same mind one toward another....
1 Cor 1:10 - Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing...
1 Cor 7:20 - Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called.

Can you say that you find it easy to keep the above principles (especially the last one) by associating with believers, who are different from you culturally? If one of your fellow believers goes through a divorce that does not follow the Lord's commandment on it and you know that, how will you break bread with such a person? How can you say that you have the same mind as a fellow believer whose daughters start dating at age 14?

I read your story on the first brethren conference brochure, having a picture of Jesus on it, with some surprise and amusement. So if I heard you right, for one picture, you walked away from your fellow Indian believers?!! If one brother said a nasty statement, you should have forgiven him and not walk away. Yet, all the things done in english churches are not a concern? I am not condoning the Jesus picture, but I feel that this is a "strain at the gnat, but swallow the camel" attitude.

Another thing: If a few Indian believers start an Indian gathering in a city where there is an existing American gathering, that is not splitting the local church. Where is the scripture to state that it is splitting? Birds of same feather will group together, that is common sense. Now if you find yourself in city by yourself and there is no else from your background, then yes by all means attend whatever language church you find where the Lord is worshiped and the Bible is taught.

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Reply by : brethren   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 6:21:50 PM Close
Thank you br. Kosy for your post.

Did I miss something on "I read your story on the first brethren conference brochure,..."

Where was that posted...

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Reply by : sunilajoseph@aol.com   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2007 8:15:34 PM Close
George P. Koshy,
Thank you for the leadership. At least you came to the front to say something.
Sunila.
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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 9:33:07 AM Close
Dear ‘moses2006,’ Part-1

Your accusation indicates that you don’t read what I wrote as I wrote, or you don’t understand what you read. In my previous posting to you, I never said that I left. I might have indicated that the organizer of the conference banished me by asking me not to come, if I don’t agree with what he did. He was not ‘any one,’ he was the ‘organizer.’ The organizer of that conference in his official authority and capacity banished me.

Romans 1:21-26 tell all Christians that we are not to have any kind of visual representation of God. You may want; I am not sure, to disobey these verses as the organizer of the first conference did. Knowing what I wanted to become and what I became, I not only disagree with making human or other representation of my Lord, because He is God. I do show from the scripture why this representation should not be done. When they don’t have any justification of making idols to represent my Lord, they usually ask me to leave. I was banished. I didn’t leave.

You wrote, ---<< Please see some of the following verses:

Rom 12:16 - Be of the same mind one toward another....
1 Cor 1:10 - Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing...
1 Cor 7:20 - Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called.”>>---

Romans 12:16 doesn’t justify what your intent is. It is about those who are with different gifts. One should not think that his gift is superior to another one. Please read the whole chapter, at least. It is about gifts and not having the same mind or respect to each other, as individuals.

(To be cont. Part-2)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 9:33:54 AM Close
Dear ‘moses2006,’ Part-2

1 Corinthians 1:10 talks about the folly of divisions, and it is you who want to create divisions by establishing assemblies by language. You prefer to have a Paul’s group (English speaking), another of Peter’s group (Malayalam speaking), another of Appolos’ group (Greek speaking), and so on. If this division was because of doctrine, there could have been scriptural justification. To understand this, you should have continued to read at least up to verse 12. Selective and partial reading of verses will not do. Your writings to justify the starting of another assembly, when there is one already, are clearly in opposition to the experience and teaching of the Day of Pentecost. (Note: This is applicable to Sunila also.)

1 Corinthians 7:20 is about abiding in the calling. Where do we read that we have a calling to establish assemblies strictly on the basis of languages? Why don’t you read 1 Corinthians 1:19 before you read verse 20? There it teaches that there should not be even a differentiation between those who are circumcised and uncircumcised. Now you are a proponent of dividing by languages, if circumcision could not be brought as an issue of division among the local body of Christ.

When I was banished from attending the conference, the issue was not language. The issue was making my Lord’s representation as a sinful man according to the imagination of an artist. It was and is an idol.

I stated my position from the scriptures. Why don’t you start doing the same? If you are trying to establish an assembly for the glory of God, then it should be according to His word and not yours.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 9:36:57 AM Close
Dear 'brethren,'

Your question to me as, "Did I miss something on 'I read your story on the first brethren conference brochure,...'" may be related to what I wrote to 'moses2006' on 7 Jun 2007. His accussation indicates that he doesn't read what I wrote as I wrote, or he doesn't understand what he reads. What I wrote was that I was banished from the conference by the organizer. I did not leave.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 9:55:10 AM Close
Dear ‘moses2006,’

I thought of replying you rhetorical question separately. Let me quote your paragraph, --<< Can you say that you find it easy to keep the above principles (especially the last one) by associating with believers, who are different from you culturally? If one of your fellow believers goes through a divorce that does not follow the Lord's commandment on it and you know that, how will you break bread with such a person? How can you say that you have the same mind as a fellow believer whose daughters start dating at age 14?>>---

The first sentence is already covered in my previous two postings.

About the question of divorce: How is this connected with separation by language? Are you trying to confound this discussion? It is not a good idea. If you want to know about it, please read threads that are related to that subject on this Forum.

Your question on dating: How is that related to starting a Malayalam assembly when there is another in English? You are trying to confound this discussion with various unrelated subject. If you think that is the only way you could justify your objective, then go ahead and continue. I will discuss about starting a Malayalam Assembly in a place there is already an English one. You should also consider why those who started such an Assembly are worried about their children and the next generation.

Please confine this discussion on the subject matter of this thread.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 10:44:13 AM Close
Dear joe.c.thomas,

I was hoping some other person may answer your question. If you are in the Middle-east and the situation is entirely different in that part of this world. I am not too familiar with that also. Please do according to the Word of God, guided by the Holy Spirit.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 1:02:24 PM Close
Bro Koshy,

I was not trying to be judgmental, even though I may have come across like that, to you. I was just raising some concerns, which are my reasons for sticking with a Malayalam church and not attending an American gathering, even though the latter would have been more convenient.

<About the question of divorce: How is this connected with separation by language?>
Looks like you are confounding the discussion and I have seen you pull this ploy with others before. I know you understood my question very well. I am not trying to separate churches by language. All I said was, whenever possible on a practical basis, one should gather and have fellowship with ones own kind (unless the Lord specifically directs you to avoid you own people and worship with foreigners). This discussion is not about divorce. I was posing to you how you can worship and break bread with divorced people in your American church?

<Your question on dating: How is that related to starting a Malayalam assembly when there is another in English?> This discussion or question is not about dating. Again, my intention was to question how you, being a malayalee, can have the same mind as your fellow American believer, whose daughters will start dating at 14? Will you, Dr. Koshy, permit your kids to date at 14? If not, then how come you are in fellowship with people who do not mind doing that?

I know Malayalam assemblies have their own problems, an important one being the English language issue. Do such concerns give us the moral right to ditch our people and worship with foreigners? I do not think so.

<1 Corinthians 1:10 talks about the folly of divisions, and it is you who want to create divisions by establishing assemblies by language. > Can you quote one statement I made where I asserted that assemblies SHOULD be by language? Can you quote one statement where I advocated DIVISIONS by language?

Instead of writing tons of rhetorical words that amount to nothing, please consider making your posts brief and to the point.

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 2:54:49 PM Close
Dear 'moses2006,' Part-1

You wrote, “Instead of writing tons of rhetorical words that amount to nothing, please consider making your posts brief and to the point.” --- Asking trick questions is an act of rhetoric. I did not ask any question based on an imaginary scenario. You did that.

You wrote on 6 Jun 2007, “…however you choose to avoid them like the plague and have fellowship with others who do not share your cultural background, …” After reading my reply you wrote on 7 Jun 2007, “Can you say that you find it easy to keep the above principles (especially the last one) by associating with believers, who are different from you culturally?” You also wrote, “So if I heard you right, for one picture, you walked away from your fellow Indian believers?!!” --- I ask you to substantiate these three accusations that you made against me. We will start from there.

When you accuse me using the three above quotes and reading the posting of 6 and 7 Jun 2007, one will understand that you were writing in favor of separation of the assemblies by language. You might not have used the word “division,” but you accused me as stated on the previous paragraph. The Word of God teaches that the believers should come together in “one place” (1 Corinthians 11:17-34) as an expression of the one body (1 Corinthians 10:17). I did not use upper caps when I wrote about ‘separation,’ or ‘division.’ I used it as in a usual conversation between two people. If I emphasized, then you have a good reason to ask me the question, as you did.

On 7 Jun 2007 you wrote, “Birds of same feather will group together, that is common sense.” --- Birds of the same feather also cast out another bird of the same feather because he wanted to print a picture of my Lord on the front of a brochure. I asked him only to follow the scripture and referenced to Romans 1:21-24. To you a picture of God is compared to a ‘gnat’ and the skin color is a ‘camel.’... (cont.)

(To be cont. Part-2)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 2:56:49 PM Close
Dear 'moses2006,' Part-2

... This is what you wrote on 7 Jun 2007, “I am not condoning the Jesus picture, but I feel that this is a ‘strain at the gnat, but swallow the camel’ attitude.” Idol worship is not a doctrinal ‘gnat.’ It is abomination to God. Worse than a camel’s size. In 1 Corinthians 10:14 we are asked to flee from idolatry. To you it is only a “gnat.”

You asked about moral rights. Do you have a moral right to say about me that which are not true, even after I pointed that out to you?

You also used questions on an imaginary person breaking bread after getting divorce from the spouse. Why are you using an imaginary problem? This imagination was not made clear on the earlier posting. Without knowing even about the saints with whom I break bread regularly, you asked a question as if we practice such. This is a method of rhetoric used by the world to catch others in their trap. Even in the courts such rhetorical questions are not allowed. I did not use any question of imagination to catch you unaware. You did. [It is like the news media asking Dan Quayle about drug use of his child. By answering that question, he fell into their trap. This is the method of rhetoric.]

If you read the title of this thread and the general argument for or against; then you will realize this thread deals with Malayalee Assembly and English Assembly. This thread is not against divorce or dating of a 14 year old. You did try to confound.

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : Varghese   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 3:29:57 PM Close
If I may, I like to state a few words just to get this discussion back on track.

From what I inferred from ‘moses2006’ is that he was simply stating two issues that he is concerned with. (1) “How one would feel comfortable worshipping in an American English Assembly where divorces have happened.” The probability of having a divorced member in an English Assembly is more than in a Malayalam assembly. (2) “How one would feel comfortable worshipping in an American Assembly where 14-yr olds date.” I do not think that ‘moses2006’ was questioning on the state of affairs in Bro. Koshy’s assembly.

I have seen the first scenario in a few English assemblies. Not the second one though, maybe at a later age. Such issues vary from assemblies to assemblies. There are some American English assemblies far better than some Indian Assemblies and vice-versa. Hence, such blanket assumptions may not be helpful.

It all boils down to each one’s preference and what he/she desires to see in the assembly. We must leave it to the individual/family to prayerfully decide. Such decisions must never be looked down upon by other believers.

(None of us know what really transpired in response to the Lord’s picture on the conference flier except Bro. Koshy & the concerned conference official. I would do/see things differently due to my desire to be part of the conference; to be blessed & be a blessing. What I have learned is that a lot of things can be solved & changed based on how we approach any situation with grace & humility. I am surprised by Bro. Koshy’s decision to abstain from the conference. I wonder if Bro. Koshy ever attended any of the subsequent IBF conferences)

God Bless!

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 8 Jun 2007 3:40:41 PM Close
Bro Koshy,

<I ask you to substantiate these three accusations that you made against me.>

I am not accusing you of anything. The first one was a general remark based what I have seen among malayalees who regularly attend english gatherings. They avoid all malayalee brethren meetings. "Like the plague" was a expression. You may not be like that, if not then, please do not take offense. If you are like that, then I can understand you taking offense, so then please consider more fellowship with malayalees in future, as the Lord directs you.
The second was a 'question'. Not an accusation! (You can tell difference can you not?). You never cared to answer this question.
The third was an 'observation' based on the true incident you wrote. Again not an accusation!

You only have one accuser, and that is the devil. All others are 'fellow believers', including me.

<When you accuse me using the three above quotes and reading the posting of 6 and 7 Jun 2007, one will understand....> The only 'one' in that 'one' is you, brother. Nobody else can read my post and feel that I have taught or advocated division of the church of God based on language.

<The Word of God teaches that the believers should come together in “one place” (1 Corinthians 11:17-34)..> In light of this revelation, what steps have you done to be reconciled with your local malayalam church? On a related vein, have you ever been to a Spanish or Chinese church and exhorted them to unite based on this verse?

I used emphasis on those words so your eyes will notice what your mind formulated in your accusation towards me. Looks like it worked.

Regarding the Jesus picture, of course, I would never do that, if I were the conference coordinator. But just for that SILLY reason, I would not walk away from a brethren conference either!! Have you considered what you could have got spiritually by attending that conference compared to the mental anguish you underwent by not attending and staying away?

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 13 Jun 2007 9:14:23 AM Close
Dear Moses2006, Part-1

On 8 Jun 2007 your wrote, ---<<I am not accusing you of anything. The first one was a general remark based what I have seen among malayalees who regularly attend english gatherings. They avoid all malayalee brethren meetings. "Like the plague" was a expression. You may not be like that, if not then, please do not take offense. If you are like that, then I can understand you taking offense, so then please consider more fellowship with malayalees in future, as the Lord directs you.”>>---

If you are not accusing me, even after I wrote more than once, why do you write as if I avoid Malayalee meetings? Your characterization was, “like a plague.” Could you substantiate this? If you see this regularly among those who attend English gathering, did you talk to them about it? It is strange that you make such statements, without identifying yourself fully. You should have talked to those who did this personally first before placing it on this Forum, if this was not an accusation against me. When you make such statements to a person whom you have not met in your life, how truthful are you? I ask this question because I know a number of people who attend Malayalee meetings as well as those who attend English meetings. This is the first time; a person makes an expression of the kind you made. You should talk to those directly and not to me. You made that statement about a person who wanted to be with the Christians who already existed at a place.

In this connection, let me place another fact for you to consider. At a given place in USA there is a group of Christians gathering in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. One family from India comes to that place. Should he wait for more to come to remember the Lord in His death or should he join the already existing Christian gathering? Suppose that he joins the existing gathering of the Christians. Later another family from India comes... (Cont.)

(To be cont. Part-2)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 13 Jun 2007 9:16:00 AM Close
Dear Moses2006, Part-2

...Should the first family separate from the Christians and join with the new family and start another group to remember the Lord’s death till He come? Remember, these two families together may have more than three persons to gather together. If not, do you think that the two families should remember the Lord’s death till He come with the other Christians? Tell me, at what threshold of the population of Indian believers, they should remove from the fellowship they enjoyed for years to start an Indian gathering to remember the Lord’s death till he come? If they do, what are the criteria for starting this new gathering? Is it doctrinal or language? Please answer from the scriptures.

Another fact: There is an Indian family having good fellowship with a local American Christian gathering in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Another family comes to that area. The first family invites them to go to the existing Christian gathering to remember the Lord’s death till He come. The second family avoids with excuses. The invitation continues week after week and the excuses multiplies. After more than two years the second family moves to another city. There he gathers Christians from another Indian gathering that was there gathering in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Now he establishes himself as the originator of an Indian Brethren Assembly. It is the same person who refused to remember the Lord Jesus Christ with Christians for more than two years. This man did split another Indian Christian gathering so he could have preeminence. What was the scriptural justification for this splitting of Christians? According to you the language should have preeminence. I would like to know the scriptural justification for this new gathering of the Indian Christians. I also would like to know what justification could be given from the excuse of language as the criteria to have Christian gathering.

(To be cont. Part-3)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 13 Jun 2007 9:17:18 AM Close
Dear Moses2006, Part-3

These two are not scenarios. They are facts. I will not identify them. As a matter of fact, I attended the wedding of the daughter of the second person.

About considering more fellowship with Malayalees in the future: As you are writing without any scriptural support? I have not seen scriptural support in your writings. I can not consider what you are asking me to consider. When you quoted three passages in an earlier posting, they were partial and/or out of context. You confounded gift with language. Your accusation, you claim it is not, that what you assert are from your observation need to be questioned, because that is not what I usually observe. Last two days we were with a couple who left a Malayalee meeting and are presently attending an English meeting. They related certain matters that compelled them to make this decision. (I will not make it known on this Forum.) They still meet with the Malayallees, as time permits. They do not avoid them “like a plague.”

You also wrote, “The second was a 'question'. Not an accusation! (You can tell difference can you not?). You never cared to answer this question.” --- I am wondering about what you term as “the second question.” Could you state it again, rather than referring to it?

If it was about a divorced man or a woman, then I don’t know any such in the assembly I go to. If it is about dating of a 14 year old, I don’t know about that either. Why should I imagine what is not there? Such unwanted imagination will cause the blood pressure to go up without any reason. That is not good. By posing those questions, you are trying to establish something without any factual reasoning. If you have come across such, then you have to deal with it. I don’t. When I come across with such incidents, then I have to deal with them, not before.

(to be cont. Part-4)

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Reply by : George P. Koshy   View Profile   Since : 13 Jun 2007 9:18:08 AM Close
Dear Moses2006, Part-4

You also wrote, “You only have one accuser, and that is the devil. All others are 'fellow believers', including me.” --- I have only one accuser before God and his name is Satan. I may have more than one accuser before men. You became one, when you repeatedly wrote that I left Malayalees, while I didn’t. Now I have one before God and at least one before men. Remember, it was the organizer who banished (this is my term) me.

You also wrote, ___<<<The Word of God teaches that the believers should come together in “one place” (1 Corinthians 11:17-34)..> In light of this revelation, what steps have you done to be reconciled with your local malayalam church? On a related vein, have you ever been to a Spanish or Chinese church and exhorted them to unite based on this verse?
I used emphasis on those words so your eyes will notice what your mind formulated in your accusation towards me. Looks like it worked.>>---

Moses2006, I have fellowship with the saints. When Your Malayalam local church was forming, if there existed another local church, then you divided the body of Christ at the locality based on language. I have no right to be a part of it. I did show you the scripture of “meeting in one place.” Where is your scripture to justify in meeting in more than one place in a locality?

Shalom Malekim!!!

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Reply by : imphal67   View Profile   Since : 31 Oct 2007 10:41:23 PM Close
I don't believe that indian churches in foreign countries are unscriptural. I've had the opportunity to be part of an indian church in USA for the past 30 years. It is true that we as a community are very much ethnocentric. one of the primary strengths of our church is that we get new immigrants from India constantly. If the US government decided to stop immigration of all indian nationals into the United states, then down the road, indian churches would slowly start dying out. As there will be more and more inter-racial marriages with the coming generations,this can also be used as an opportunity to bring the gospel to others. One sad tragedy about the saint thomas christians of kerala is that our forefathers were able the nurture the christian faith in the malabar region for thousands of years,yet it never occured to our people to spread the gospel to the rest of India. I believe that by placing Indian churches in foreign countries, God is giving us Syrian Christians a 'second chance' at spreading the gospel. we dare not miss the opportunity this time.
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Reply by : witness2007   View Profile   Since : 1 Nov 2007 2:14:42 PM Close
PRIESTHOOD OF BELIEVERS -

Brethren assemblies teach that all believers are priests. No distinction between clergy and laypersons. Men are encouraged to teach and edify the assembly audibly. Malayalam assemblies exist (like Chinese assemblies, Spanish assemblies etc.) because FIRST GENERATION Malayalees are not able to speak or understand English or teach in English in an effective manner. It is for the first generation Malayalees.

If second generation Malayaless don't desire to be part of it, they are welcome to leave.

But the Malayalam assemblies serve the purpose of (1) allowing men and women to exercise priesthood, (2) reaching out to other first generation malayalees with the gospel and (3) financially supporting evangelists in India.

PRIESTHOOD OF BELIEVERS!!

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