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Thread: Feeding the homeless/ church ministries

  1. #41

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    I don't even know what 'social gospel' is without looking it up...I just know that we are to help those who are truly in need, in the name Jesus. I do know that, in general, churches have failed to help their own members. We are to help support those (in a Biblical manner, and obviously that means not simply handing over money) who are widowed, and those whose spouses have abandoned them? Where are the churches who do this? It is some of these same people who could very easily end up in homeless shelters.
    “My Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” (John 6:40)


    BTW, my son is now in the 8th grade!

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Acts5:41 View Post
    OH, I'd agree with you Ted - helping someone share the Gospel is vital.

    I wouldn't get very far without sponsors! I sponsor a few little programs myself. A couple dollars in the right ministry can have amazing fruit.

    I'm a little rabid, and I admit it, because I see a lot of people saying "Well, I'm a nice person everyday. That will draw people to Jesus" or people like Shane Clairborne, who drives me NUTS (I actually threw his book away) who say "Well, if I do good works, and they know I am a Christian, they will be saved."

    HOW???
    I agree with you, and don't mean to suggest that not publicly confessing your faith is OK. I am also disappointed that a lot of Churches, especially protestant ones, have completely spaced the "great commission." A lot of those folks also believe in "many paths."

    My point was that there are different ways of Evangelizing, and being fruitful, but I agree that it is difficult to be fruitful unless, at some point, the Gospel of Jesus Christ is shared explicitly.

    And btw, I really think you do an amazing thing with you Bible give away, you've been an inspiration to me in that over the years.

    -Ted

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mommytoa3rdgradeboy View Post
    I don't even know what 'social gospel' is without looking it up...I just know that we are to help those who are truly in need, in the name Jesus. I do know that, in general, churches have failed to help their own members. We are to help support those (in a Biblical manner, and obviously that means not simply handing over money) who are widowed, and those whose spouses have abandoned them? Where are the churches who do this? It is some of these same people who could very easily end up in homeless shelters.
    Again, I agree with you
    Jesus, please come back TODAY!!!!

  4. #44
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    I don't want to derail the thread; but I feel the need to speak up about one of the main points OWL and others are trying to get across. There was a news special about a Hindu man who is doing great charitable works in India for the untouchable class. (Please, if you know who I'm talking about, don't post it here, it's been discussed in depth elsewhere on the 'board.) There is no doubt that this man was fulfilling a very serious physical need; he bathed people, and fed them, etc... He was Hindu.

    I wrote about his story on my blog, and then proceeded to explain, that without Christ, all of this man's works were less than nothing. Without Christ and the gospel, this man's work might actually be detrimental. If we feed, clothe, and bathe the physical body without providing the ultimate answer for the whole of a human being, we gain nothing. If we lead people away from Christ, we damage them eternally. A Christian who is helping the physical person, without sharing the gospel at any point, is doing the same thing the Hindu man is. Anyone from any religion can charitably help the poor physically; however, it takes a Christian to share the Truth and point to Jesus.

    It's great that physical needs are being seen to, but we should not let the spirit suffer. It isn't hard to provide for the three aspects of humans; mental, physical, and spiritual. If we don't see to all 3, it is ultimately meaningless.

    Thanks to sweeetlilgurlie on Narniaweb for the sig

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kliska View Post
    I don't want to derail the thread; but I feel the need to speak up about one of the main points OWL and others are trying to get across. There was a news special about a Hindu man who is doing great charitable works in India for the untouchable class. (Please, if you know who I'm talking about, don't post it here, it's been discussed in depth elsewhere on the 'board.) There is no doubt that this man was fulfilling a very serious physical need; he bathed people, and fed them, etc... He was Hindu.

    I wrote about his story on my blog, and then proceeded to explain, that without Christ, all of this man's works were less than nothing. Without Christ and the gospel, this man's work might actually be detrimental. If we feed, clothe, and bathe the physical body without providing the ultimate answer for the whole of a human being, we gain nothing. If we lead people away from Christ, we damage them eternally. A Christian who is helping the physical person, without sharing the gospel at any point, is doing the same thing the Hindu man is. Anyone from any religion can charitably help the poor physically; however, it takes a Christian to share the Truth and point to Jesus.

    It's great that physical needs are being seen to, but we should not let the spirit suffer. It isn't hard to provide for the three aspects of humans; mental, physical, and spiritual. If we don't see to all 3, it is ultimately meaningless.
    Between you and OWL, this topic is explained plainly and clearly. Thank you.

  6. #46
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    I'm glad to see I'm not the only one disturbed by the Social Gospel thing.

    It isn't hard to let someone know you are praying for them. Even the most rabid haters will take prayer when they're having hard times.

    As you do (whatever God has called you), you can share how God has worked in your life and how He's changed you. That may lead to an opportunity for further witnessing, or not, but you can and should always pray for everyone you encounter on a daily basis. God has slammed me with that one, any "ministry" I do is useless unless I'm praying for them daily.

    Thank you, Ted. Whatever good you see in me is Him, working. I'm just willing to be used.

    Speaking of being used, you can always start the way I did: leaving Bibles in a hospital waiting room (Trauma ICU), when everyone had gone to lunch. I was so afraid I'd get caught.

    Seriously, if you can get Bibles into a hospital waiting room, particularly ones for people in ICU, that's a huge ministry there. That may be the one moment in some people's lives, when they are willing to seek Him.

    I remember sitting there, crying and holding my Bible, and wishing so desperately someone would give me a hug. Watching all the other sad and hurting people who DIDN'T have a Bible, or any hope that God was looking out for them and their loved one. Watching people, desperately reading the Bibles and taking them home, when their loved ones got better.

    " I have had an increasing burden to engage in some down and dirty, street evangelism." March 6, 2010

    Isaiah 6:8 I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “ Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?”

    Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”

    Matthew 22:9 NIV
    'So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’


    I'm praying for you daily!
    I get my Bibles here

  7. #47
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    The causes of homelessness are many. If only we could be Peter every now and then, combining testimony with the solution:

    "Gold and silver have I none, but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth:

    -rise up and walk."

    -be loosed from all addictions."

    -find steady employment."

    -be emotionally healed."

    -be freed from any abuser."

    -learn God's plan for your life."

  8. #48
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    Default Update and "Backpacks for Kids"

    Thanks so much for all the responses and discussion! I knew you guys would steer us in the right direction.

    We attended our church's Monday night service this week bc we are visiting other churches on Sunday mornings. Well, every once in a while our pastor will do a sermon on how the church is growing, how the ministries are doing, where the need is, etc. And Monday night just happened to be one of those sermons.

    We have a program called "Backpacks for Kids" for children who eat breakfast and lunch at school through the week, but are suspected of not having enough to eat on the weekends. The church members bring in food like pop tarts, beanie weanies, juice boxes, etc; the items are packed into back packs and then delivered to local schools. The children who receive the backpacks are selected by the teachers and school councelors and their names are kept private from our church but the kids do know that the backpacks come from our church.

    Currently, the church is handing out 500 backpacks but our pastor wants to increase it to 2000. To do this, he was explaining that they would need more money, and more volunteers. In fact, he said that now, it would have a new name, "Feeding our Kids" and it will now be separate from the church. The reason for this is so anyone could contribute to this fund without worrying where the money was actually going...they would absolutely know it was only going to the backpacks program. He encouraged us all to go to Facebook and look for the "Feeding our Kids" page and "like" it so we could get the word out to as many people as possible. He said it will all cost around $700,000.

    My husband and I were wondering if there were any Bibles or gospel tracts being placed in the backpacks? We hadn't heard any mention of it, but it's possible we could have just missed it. So after church, my husband found one of the associate pastors and asked him about it.

    He was told that the church was not allowed to put any Bibles or other information inside the backpacks because it was all going through the public schools. (Separation of church and state I suppose). So my husband asked him, "How are these kids going to know about the gospel if they don't have a Bible?" The pastor responded with, "Well, what is the gospel if not to show Christ's love? We believe that if you show Christ's love to these kids, that will attract them and their parents to Him." To which, my husband replied, "How? There are plenty of government programs like food stamps and welfare. Those don't attract people to Christ."

    After that, the pastor just told my husband that if he thought he had a better way to minister to those kids to email him but that their conversation was over. He stormed off, red in the face and looking very angry.

    I'm telling you, I was absolutely stunned and heartbroken. $700,000 they will spend on this program and not one Bible? I know some people will say, "Well, how do you know they would even read it?" but I can tell you that I was a child living in an abusive home. I had a little Bible that someone had given me and I carried it in my backpack all the time. I would try to read it but since it was a KJV I didn't understand it very well but it reminded me that God was with me and that He loved me. It gave me hope. I imagine that some of these kids are living with parents that are alcohol or drug addicted, maybe there is even abuse there. I think a relationship with Jesus would be worth so much more to those kids and their families than just a backpack of food.

    Anyway, I just thought it was strange that this all happened right after our small group discussion about this very thing and wanted to share with you guys. My husband and I are thinking about speaking to the pastor about us donating 2000 Bibles and tracts to be placed into the backpacks, to see if there is some way that it could be done even though it is going through the public schools.

  9. #49
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    Me thinks you and your husband are being very wise in your questioning.
    $700,000 for 2000 filled backpacks, $350.00 per
    And no mention of Jesus, no bibles, tracts or invitatations to come hear the Word preached?
    1 CORINTHIANS 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

    ROMANS 1:16-17 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
    For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

  10. #50

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    The elementary school (a PUBLIC school) my son went to had an after-school, once a month program called the "Good News Club". I know schools across the country have this club. It is a wonderful organization and many children have been saved while attending this program. This is one way you can get your church involved w/ the school system to get the Gospel spread!

    I like the backpack ministry, there is a church near my home church that does such a thing. They have whomever donate school supplies and backpacks. Congregation members fill the backbacks. There is then an announcement through town that there will be a backpack give away at the _____ Church. Perhaps your church could give the backpacks away directly from the church, or even do a separate minstry, independent of the school. That amount does seem high for the backpacks!!! Maybe they include ready to eat snacks? If your church takes over/has its own program, then you can put in all the tracks or whatever you want in the backbacks.
    “My Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” (John 6:40)


    BTW, my son is now in the 8th grade!

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by angelka71
    Currently, the church is handing out 500 backpacks but our pastor wants to increase it to 2000. To do this, he was explaining that they would need more money, and more volunteers. In fact, he said that now, it would have a new name, "Feeding our Kids" and it will now be separate from the church.
    I would have a couple issues with that:

    1) This is going to sound really mean, but I have some issues with all these school food programs which tell parents they don't need to feed their kids. Having kids entails responsibilities, feeding them should be high up on the list, and I don't think it is good for society to increasingly take the most basic parenting responsibilities and assign them to the state...

    2) The previous discussion aside, I would hope we'd agree that at a minimum a charitable gift given by a Church, should be identified as coming from a Church. Church resources are finite, I would have a problem with them being diverted to this great an extent to a mission that apparently does nothing to spread the Gospel, or promote the Church.

    "How? There are plenty of government programs like food stamps and welfare. Those don't attract people to Christ."
    That's an interesting comment... what food stamps and welfare do is make people attracted to the Gov...

    -Ted

  12. #52
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    hmmm...

    May I add one item to my "Peter Pronouncements" (above) for ministers who need healing?


    "In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth:

    -be freed from the social gospel, and the devil who assures you that you can witness Christ's love without naming Him."

  13. #53
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    Well, let me poke a stick in the proverbial hornet's nest here.

    Luke 12:8-9

    Also I say to you, whoever confesses Me before men, him the Son of Man also will confess before the angels of God. But he who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God.
    Confession means testimony and witness. If we are indifferent towards Him, for whatever reason, I tremble for those standing before Him on that day. And before anyone takes the "they are bound by the law to remain silent" or some such argument I would reply 700k could purchase a distribution center and an open door to do whatever they wanted to do. Is God so limited this is there only option, in the hopes that some kid will get a backpack and find his/her way to Jesus, without knowing anything but a backpack with a juice box in it?

    1 Corinthians 9 (whole chapter) is a great example of not allowing things to hinder the Gospel, Paul allowed no argument brought by anyone to stand in the way of him doing so. My how far we have fallen.

    Romans 10:9-15

    That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

    How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent?
    A Gospelless "gospel" is such a disgrace.
    There is One King, and He is not this guy.

  14. #54
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    Allow me to grab the stick and stir it.


    Potential future interchange:


    Q. "But, Lord, have we not fed the homeless in your name?"

    A. "Actually, I can't recall your even mentioning my name."

  15. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raphael View Post
    Allow me to grab the stick and stir it.


    Potential future interchange:


    Q. "But, Lord, have we not fed the homeless in your name?"

    A. "Actually, I can't recall your even mentioning my name."


    I mentioned 1 Corinthians 9 and Paul was addressing the issue of impediments that would keep him from ministering The Gospel in full. Here is a quote worth showing, in light of the current discussion.

    Verse 16

    For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for necessity is laid upon me; yes, woe is me if I do not preach the gospel!
    There is One King, and He is not this guy.

  16. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by Raphael View Post
    Potential future interchange:


    Q. "But, Lord, have we not fed the homeless in your name?"

    A. "Actually, I can't recall your even mentioning my name."
    Boy if that interchange doesn't ring a bell for the hearer, I don't know what will.
    Don't panic! Just be Rapture Ready.

    Joel 3:2

    I will gather all nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat. There I will put them on trial for what they did to my inheritance, my people Israel, because they scattered my people among the nations and divided up my land.

  17. #57
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    Amen to that.

    " I have had an increasing burden to engage in some down and dirty, street evangelism." March 6, 2010

    Isaiah 6:8 I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “ Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?”

    Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”

    Matthew 22:9 NIV
    'So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’


    I'm praying for you daily!
    I get my Bibles here

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