“Kahu” Russ


(Russell Stewart) #1

Say hello… Aloha fellow believers.

Where are you from? I am from the Kingdom of Hawai’i (aka the de facto State of Hawai’i) :innocent:

What led you to join Connect? Seems like the Lord brought it to mind so I figured I should listen.

How do you hope to contribute? Hopefully I can bring out the simplicity which is in Christ to help “make wise the simple” by the Word of God.


(Nancy J Berg) #2

Welcome Kahu! I’ve never been to your lovely state. Someday-- Lord willing-- I’m sure willing!! :smiley:. And it sounds like you have both wisdom to share and a deep desire to go deeper into it. You will enjoy interacting within this online community. Bless you!


(Brittany Bowman) #3

Welcome to Connect, Kahu. I love this thought.

Hopefully I can bring out the simplicity which is in Christ to help “make wise the simple” by the Word of God.

You have come to the right place, where we all seek to shine His light in our own and others’ lives. :smiley:


(Billie Corbett) #4

Hello Kahu,

My spouse and I are Western Canadians, and we love the Island of Kauai. (If God allows, we budget to spend time there during our winter.) Thankfully, this year God in His mercy has seen fit to grant sufficient health for us to visit…as we are visiting Kauai, at the moment! :two_hearts: I love, love, love this place! The beauty and the people. It’s such a laid back culture…non materialistic…appreciative of God’s creation…creative, artistic, community minded. There is a strong presence of bible believing Christians on the Island as well…which we soooo enjoy. I have heard conversations about the Lord going on in grocery stores! That doesn’t occur very often in Canada anymore!
Last year we visited the Big Island. Same vibe…LOVELY! We returned home shortly before the volcano wiped out the most lovely spots on the east side of the Island. Its a bizarre thing to look at our photos and know that these areas are no more.
Blessings…
Looking forward to your contribution to Connect.


(Russell Stewart) #5

Hi Billie,
I used to know some people with the last name Corbett from Surry BC back from the 70s and 80s and owned some land with them in the Kolowna, Black Mountain area before it got developed. I should have held on to that land! They were part of the Glad Tidings Church there in Vancouver. Still have friends there and in other parts of Canada. If you’re still on Kauai on Sunday there’s a great church called Grace Bible Church in the Lawai area. Pastor’s name is Aaron Chidester. Look me up if you folks ever get to God’s island of Oahu! Our Church name is The Ark Christian Church (like ark of the covenant).


(Billie Corbett) #6

Cool! I don’t think we would be the Corbett’s you knew…
But, yes…too bad you didn’t hang on to property in the Kelowna area. It is pretty pricey up there now!
We are pretty settled at Crossroads Church here on the Island. Have friends who attend there. (I am actually taking worship hula classes…which I absolutely love!!!) The church has a new pastor who is pretty sound in teaching the Word! Very gospel centric…which is extremely important to my spouse and I. The previous senior pastor has stage 4 cancer. He told us last Sunday that it is spreading. He is ready to meet the Lord face to face, but, I feel sad for his wife and young adult sons. Such a hard thing to face. (My spouse has had two serious bouts with two different types of cancer. Such a hard journey. I am so thankful, my spouse has pulled through … though he definitely has a shorter expiry date than he had.)

Would love to learn more about the island you call home. We haven’t been there. Are you native to Hawaii?


(Russell Stewart) #7

So sorry to hear about your Pastor’s battle. I’ll be sure to pray for him. How old is he? We’ve seen pretty much every kind of cancer healed at our church over the years. Not quite 100% yet but getting there. It’s definitely not a blessing from God but a result of Adam’s sin and the attack of the devil. My mother was healed from incurable cancer 2 years ago at 100 years of age. She was unable to do any kind of chemo treatments so we had to trust the work of the cross. The doctors (non-Believers) thought I was quite a bit “out there” when I told them that Jesus could heal her if they could not. 5 weeks later, they had no choice but to admit they had no idea how she was cancer free. I got to tell them “I told you so!” Felt good! Got to witness to them a little bit as well. While she was in rehab the doctor there said they had no way to close up the open wound that was left after the cancer was gone. They said her skin was too fragile and the crater was too wide to sew shut. I told them Jesus would take care of it. Just put honey on the wound and cover it with a bandage. They did that and within a few days it was healed with no scar! Freaked them out! HA! They had given her 6 months at most to live and put her on hospice. She’s stronger now at 102! She also had a stroke while in rehab and the doctors told us she only had a few days to live because she was unable to eat or drink. After we laid hands on her and prayed, within 3 days she was eating and drinking and all paralysis was gone in 2 weeks. She was the talk of the facility and the medical staff who finally admitted it must be God. Cool huh? I have many, many miracle stories because we have a miraculous Holy Spirit empowering us to heal in Jesus’ Name.

Don’t count your Pastor out yet. Jesus still honors the prayer of faith to administer healing. James 5:14-15 still works today if followed exactly in faith. The afflicted person (not someone else) should call for the elders and the elders should follow the instructions of these verses exactly in faith and the Lord shall raise him up. That’s what it says. I believe it, and I’ve experienced it working in many, many people. No hocus pocus, no special incantations or “holy oil” etc. Just do the Word mixed with faith=healing.

As for Oahu, it’s a wonderful Island of much diversity. Our Royal Palace, the awesome Bishop museum, the mission houses, etc. are all here. Much more access to culture here. More variety and options of shopping and activities too.

The property we had was 11 acres which are now resort properties overlooking Lake Okanagen I think it is. We were too young and inexperienced to know better. Even so, we made about $100,000 on the sale and that was in the early eighties or late seventies. It’s worth millions now though. :sleepy: our friends’ names are Todd and Lorraine. Might have moved to the Chillawack area.

Talking too much.

Strong in faith, giving glory to God!

Russ

The Ark Christian Church

“A WORD AND SPIRIT CHURCH”

Kaneohe, Hawaii

www.thearkcc.com


(Billie Corbett) #8

God is good! His mercy endures forever!
Pastor Bob Hallman has been and continues to be frevently prayed for. (He was doing pretty well for a while…)
He has lived far longer than was anticipated…and God willing he will continue to…While he remains…he sees his situation as an opportunity to exalt the Lord and to preach Christ.
When my spouse was so sick… We did call for the elders…he was anointed with oil and prayed over. All glory to God…those prayers have been answered…but, it did involve major surgery, as well.

Is Oahu a Hawaiian Island with a strong Christain community? What is God doing among His people there?


(Russell Stewart) #9

All of Hawaii’s Churches need revival. Some are pressing in to God and many others are going the route of attracting attendees through entertainment value at the expense of substance. Holiness is very seldom preached but there is a growing spiritual dissatisfaction brewing and driving Real believers to seek out the truth and substance of life in Christ.

The planned dumbing down of America through the government school system has affected and permeated the church for generations resulting in a gospel of social services and entitlements. There is a famine of the Word but it is beginning to cause a desperation driven by hunger. I believe this is good as it is driving a new move of seeking Truth above symbolism and personal responsibility over spiritual handouts. People are beginning to “study to show themselves approved unto God, workmen that don’t need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth”. Rather than having the pastor or some teacher digest the Word for them and feed them milk, more and more are eating the scriptures for themselves and preparing their own spiritual meals. It’s still in its infancy, but I believe that it’s growing.

Honolulu has some of the largest Churches with tens of thousands but also some of the weakest with those numbers. Word and Spirit Churches are more unpopular since they preach holiness unto the Lord and require standards and life change. Don’t want to get political but it’s important to understand that the meaning of the world “the world” in the NT includes “the current political and natural moral systems” and we are commanded to be separate from those. Churches that preach this are mostly unpopular at this time. Hope that answers your question somewhat.

I understand, through scripture, that there are some prayers the the Lord won’t answer. Prayers to ask Him to do something that is contrary to His Word and laws, prayers that ask Him to do something He’s already done, and prayers asking Him to do something He has told US to do. Sometimes healing is one of those things. He told US to cleanse the leper, heal the sick, and raise the dead in Mark 16, yet so many times we try to throw it back on Him to do what He commanded us to do, we have not because we “ask amiss” because we don’t really believe we can do those things by His power IN us.

However, I see the Church maturing into its responsibility to DO the work of the ministry (Eph. 4)

Exciting times!!!

K

The Ark Christian Church

“A WORD AND SPIRIT CHURCH”

Kaneohe, Hawaii

www.thearkcc.com


(Billie Corbett) #10

Thank you, Kanu

I appreciate your candid response to my enquiry.
It interests me to hear the experience of other believers who are steadfast in the faith.
These realities you expressed…must sadden you. My experiences sadden me.
I often think about the scripture from Psalms 11:3
“When the foundations are being removed, what can the righteous do?”
The church has lost it way and the foundations are being removed…(sadly, in countries where the gospel once flourished). In fact, I would venture to say, in some countries, the foundations are removed.

There are judgements in the scripture…and I know God is just.
Our nation and many other nations deceive themselves by saying “Peace, Peace …when there is no peace.”

I believe our country is already under the judgement of God based on Romans 1:28. “Even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not proper.”

In the old testament…God accused Israel of disobedience. Of defiling themselves. He condemned them for … exploiting and oppressing the poor, for not giving the land it’s Sabboth rest, for corrupting justice, for shedding innocent blood, (many nations in the world have had legalized abortion for 50 years), for neglecting and abusing the fatherless, for forsaking the widow, for idolatry, for prostitution, for occult practises…the list goes on. Our nation has been marinating for quite a long time in these acts of unbelief and rebellion.

Yet, having said all these things, I see God working powerfully by His grace … (all glory to Him alone).
Good things are happening which are hidden from those who forsake His ways. “The wilderness and the land will be glad; the desert will rejoice and blossom like a rose.” Isaiah 35:1
Isaiah 41:18 “I will make rivers flow on barren heights, and springs within the valleys.I will turn the desert into pools of water, and the parched ground into springs.”

Jesus promised, He would “never to leave us or forsake us”…
I trust His Word.

Given what you have expressed…
How can believers in other parts of the world prayfor you and the church in Oahu?


(Russell Stewart) #11

Hi Billie,
I’m so sorry if I gave the impression that I believe the Church to be in decline and in danger of a negative judgement from our Lord. Though I see the evidence of apostasy in many local expressions of THE” Church, I am in no way discouraged or saddened. Nor do I believe that the judgement of wrath is coming to the true church or to the United States. I also don’t believe that the challenges faced by our great nation are being sent by God as judgement and punishment. On the contrary, the Word says that it’s the GOODNESS of God that brings us to repentance not the judgement of God. If anything, I see the faithful believers as the “Salt” that is preserving this great nation from the attacks of enemies inside and outside. We have a bad little devil but a BIG and GOOD God! The scripture in Rom. 1, describing those who refuse to acknowledge God and are given over to a mind void of judgement are speaking of those who totally reject truth and are therefore “unsave-able” by their own choices. I don’t see it as describing lukewarm or ignorant Believers who simply need to repent. I believe that the true Church is, and has always been, strong and vibrant and cleansed and protected by Him who died to cleanse us. So sorry if I seemed at all negative toward the Holy people of our Lord. He is cleaning His Church of every spot, wrinkle, or any such thing that she may be pure and perfect and holy. I would never speak against or try to sling verbal mud at that Church. Please forgive my poor choice of words or context. Your final conclusions are right on the money! Jesus WILL (and does) have His perfect Church regardless of what seems to be obvious otherwise. KR


(Billie Corbett) #12

Hi Kanu,

Yes, I totally agree with much you have said. “Christ will build His church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” He is preparing his eternal bride to be with Him through all eternity…and she shall be without spot or wrinkle… Hallelujah!

I know…many believers would argue with me about God’s judgement of the nations that turn from Him; but, the whole of Scripture gives a differing vantage point. “He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.”
This applies to both His mercy and His righteous judgements.

So, though I hate to be in disagreement, with you, I see things differently regarding America, Canada (and Europe for that matter). These nations have had the truth of God’s word and the message of the gospel…and they have thrown it behind their backs, so to speak…God will not be mocked! ( “ Be not deceived, God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he reap”. Galations 6: 7) (“If the righeous scarely be saved, how shall the ungodly and sinner appear.” 1 Peter 4:18)
Yes, indeed, it is the kindness, the goodness of God that leads people to repentance…[ I believe God’s judgements are also mercy…because judgment brings consequences to bear on people … with the intention that they would reflect…and repent.] But, there must be repentance.

All of the things God has consistently condemned through out all of Holy writ…are now loved and practiced by modern man within the nations which have historically experienced God’s blessing…(because of the Word of God and the Gospel being loved and honoured.)

Yes, indeed. Amen! “The” church …needs to be salt and light! God has ordained believers to be a cleansing, purifying element … (within our respective countries and societies.) I totally agree with you there!

Switching gears somewhat…
This brings up an area that troubles me in my experience as a believer…
The churches where I live, have this notion… that if they do things for God ( ministry / outreach) from within the church…God will bring unsaved people into the church (to be saved). Attendants are encouraged to bring unbelieving people to church…so, they will be saved.

Over many years, of church going, this has come to really bother me. The “go you out into all the world and preach the gospel” has somehow become…”get the world to come to church, so they will hear the gospel.”
It’s my observation, (because of this reversal of the great commission), that Christians become insulated and isolated within their own church group and genuinely cannot relate (at all) to the real issues going on in people’s lives outside of the church.

Somehow getting people to come to a “program or church ministry” has become like a magic wand…which miraculously saves people and prevent Christians from being “worldly”.

As you can likely tell, I am at odds with this ideology and practice.
No where do you see Jesus, just hanging out in the synagogues…doing church ministry…He was out in the streets, in the highways and the by ways compelling sinners to repent and turn to God. He was healing the sick, etc. He was accused of being a sinner because he was with the publicans and sinners.
How have we as believers gone from seeing attending church as an expression of worship of our God and Saviour…to seeing the church as the Saviour? As the means of evangelizing? I know that is not what is consciously intended…but, that is the net result.


(Russell Stewart) #13

Hi Billie,

First of all, a small correction, “Kahu” means honored attendant, a keeper or protector of something, an administrator (like a Pastor). “Kanu” means to bury (as with a dead body). HA!! That one letter makes a big difference!

Thanks for the engaging conversation. I appreciate being able to discuss the ways of God in a safe and uplifting forum like this. The ability to share perspectives is so important in this day of doctrinal challenges.

I do see things differently from the perspective of the Word when it comes to “the Church” and “judgement” than the “mainstream” opinions that are more prevalent today. I’m sure I’m possibly not 100% accurate in my current understanding though, which is why I continue to discuss things with others.

I was raised and taught that “The Bride of Christ” always referred to the “Church”. This was mainly backed by the scriptures in Ephesians which speak of how Christ’s treatment of the Church is used to demonstrate how a husband should treat his wife. It doesn’t really say there that the Church is Jesus’ wife. In fact, the Heavenly Jerusalem, or The City of God, in Revelation is also spoken of as coming down from Heaven as a Bride adorned for her husband. The Church is also spoken of as an Army, a nation, the Commonwealth of Heaven and several other descriptions.

The one that is specifically descriptive of the Church’s relationship to Christ is that we are His Body and He is the Head. Ephesians 4:13 describes the mature Body of Christ as “a perfect Man”, not a perfect woman, which make more sense to me as Jesus is a man. The concept of Christ having a male head and female body is challenging for many believers. The idea that a male believer is part of a female “bride of Christ” is also very challenging and actually turns many men off because it’s not a proper spiritual order. In fact, homosexual “churches” use these concepts to “scripturally” promote their lifestyle as being sanctioned by God, along with the scriptures that in Heaven there is neither male nor female. This is where “rightly dividing the Word of Truth” is so important. I don’t think it’s proper practice to derive doctrine from Biblical analogies. Otherwise the Church may end up looking like a female body with a man’s head wearing army boots and carrying a sword and shield while wearing a wedding gown. Kinda strange.

I believe the Word and Spirit are still revealing who and what the Church actually is and we need to stay open to that revelation when it comes rather than take a hardline stance right now. Hey, I’m willing to be wrong right now on this in order not to miss out on the truth later.

As for judgement on our Nation, I believe that the truth that God is the same today as He has always been is accurate. The challenge is to see this accuracy in light of the entire scope of Biblical history and eternity. Judgement can be both positive or negative. As a consequence produced by righteousness, judgement comes in the form of blessing. As a consequence of sin, judgement comes in the form of a curse.

Under the Law, there was nothing to redeem a person or a nation from the curse of sin and death, hence, under the Law, there was nothing to prevent the wrath of God from bringing destruction. However, under grace, through the shed blood and sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross, the wrath of God (not the consequences of sinful actions) is held back until THE Day of Judgement when the unrighteous will be eternally judged and sentenced.

This is demonstrated several times in the OT to show the Nation of Israel the grace that was to come by the sacrifice of Jesus.

  • Deliverance of the Jews from death in Egypt, even though they were living sinfully and in rebellion.

  • Grace on Sodom and Gomorrah offered if even just 10 righteous were found there. (The U.S.A is nowhere near the sin level of Sodom and Gomorrah and there are WAY more righteous than 10)

These and other demonstrations of Grace were given Under the Law to show what was to replace the Law through the Cross. We, as believers, are not given the wisdom to judge the World because it’s not our place to do so. 1Cor. 5:12-13 (ESV) “For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? God judges those outside.”

We are to judge ourselves and the things done by people inside the Church. Even in that however, we are to judge “things” not people or their hearts. We should judge our own hearts though. (1 Corinthians 2:15

But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.)

Unbelievers are judged by God alone as only He can see the heart. So I see it as, if God is still telling us to pray for the unsaved of our Nation, to repent and turn from our (Believers) wicked ways, seek His face, and He WILL HEAL our land, that means He is still withholding the judgement of wrath because of His mercy. If so, then we should not go against that by having faith for destruction rather than faith for redemption.

As for bringing people to church to “get them saved”, Paul says that he was willing “by any means” that some might be saved. I think we can get lazy and out of balance in anything. And yes, in many local churches there is an off balanced dependence on the minister being the main one who leads people to be born again. There is also an imbalance and laziness when people depend only on teaching from ministers rather than by personal studying to be fed the Word. This is not an opportunity to find fault as much as should be an opportunity to regain the proper balance of all things. Much of Paul’s Epistles to the Churches were given to correct these kinds of imbalances in order to mature the Churches. We should do the same I think. Paul condemned and corrected the imbalances but not the Church. Until we are all perfect and mature there will always be a need to correct and adjust ourselves, and encourage others to do likewise. I’m my brother’s keeper, but not my brother’s boss, I can’t change him. So if people bring people to Church so that they get saved, and then they do get saved, isn’t that good? It’s also good when someone is mature enough to bring others to Salvation on their own. Hey, whatever works!

Finally, I believe it’s of utmost importance to our “spiritual sanity” and health to always view the Church from God’s perspective of perfection in process. The Church is bought with a price and its value is determined by the price that was paid. God is not worried that the Church will fail. He doesn’t see it as bad. We should operate and see the Church (which includes us probably) through the eyes of Grace rather than through the eyes of what is done right or wrong. My church was perfect until I got saved! God’s not frustrated with the Church, He’s nurturing us.

Good chat!

The Ark Christian Church

“A WORD AND SPIRIT CHURCH”

Kaneohe, Hawaii

www.thearkcc.com


(Billie Corbett) #14

Continuing the discussion from “Kahu” Russ:

My apologies, Kahu, with your name! Thank you for correcting me. I appreciate that. As well as the explaination for the differences a letter can make! Soooo true! Good lesson in that!

I love your response in the whole. Very sound understanding of the church. I think this is where we have possibly misunderstood one another. I believe as you do regarding the invisible body of Christ.
Though, I do believe God is always (thoughout all ages) warning churches…as shown in Revelations …to be faithful to Him.

Yes, I liked how you framed God’s judgement of the world.
God is gracious, “not willing that any should perish”. He is “patient and long suffering”. I agree, our calling to pray for the salvation of the lost, for those in authority ruling nations, for the turning of countries from wickedness to righteous. “Righteousness exalts a nation, but, sin is a reproach to any people.” Prov. 14:34 (The NIV translates reproach as condemns.)
My problem with the modern church (at least where I live) is it doesn’t appear to see signs of God’s judgment. Or maybe it doesn’t really care? Why is it that most churches I know, are not down on their knees (metaphorically speaking, as I can’t do that anymore) praying earnestly for God to give repentence to the lost and the nations? All historical great revivals were God’s gracious response to the earnest frevent prayers of His holy people.
Where I live, churches are enamoured with their ideas, programs and works for God…
I look at the example set in the book of Acts…where God demonstrated Himself on the part of both the believing church and the lost, in response to His people demonstrating faith in His power to work, to save…through petition, supplication in prayer.
Do you think the believers have the right to just dream up ideas that they think will work…to try to reach the lost?
I don’t have problems with believers following God’s explicit commands to help the poor, feed the hungry, comfort the sick…etc…These don’t need God’s revealing what he wants done…He has already stated this in His word.
It is more about church “programming”. Just that word really bothers me. It is softened and made more biblical by using the term “ministry”…
Again, refer to the book of Acts…What you see is a clear dependence on the leading of the Holy Spirit to direct, to lead, to demonstrate Himself in power in and through His people. What I observe as well, (it is pretty clear to all)…God alone is glorified and magnified in and through the church (His redeemed people) and that is a witness…a testimony to the watching world.

I am in a place and stage in my life as a believer, where I feel strongly led to resist these man made “church programs”. Where I live, I see the Church has replaced God…in many people’s minds.
People put their trust in the church…They honestly believe the church knows all regarding what God wants them to do…and as a result, they give their all to the church…thinking they are giving it to God.
I see people exhausting themselves, neglecting their unsaved family, friends and neighbours…who are right there in front of them, to give all their time and energy to the church, or to a church program to bring people to the church…where they hope they will be saved.
The “church” uses up every available ounce of time and energy a person has…There is always something going on in the local church which requires the time and energy of it’s people to make it happen. Many of those people have full time jobs, children, parents, aunts and uncles who need their time and attention. There is a whole community where they live, which if their church commitments hadn’t entrapped them, they might be able to get involved with and volunteer. (This would lead naturally to developing relationships with their neighbour and opportunities to share the gospel in a personal and organic way.)

And what is really painful to observe, is once people are spent, they become disillusioned and angry at having been “used”. (And they have been “used”!) (Only there is massive denial on the part of churches to acknowledge this.)

There are many people who have left the formal church…because of this and many other unrepented of issues. (Like not having the freedom to question or examin things…like what I have just talked about.) Leadership in many churches has become so hierarchical that it puts people in the position of being “rebellious” to question leadership and it’s decisions.

So, here I go…opening a new can of worms to discuss.
This has been bothering me for a long time. There is a considersble amount of pain around my observations and my experience.

One final thing to clarify,
I am a participant within a church family, because I believe in Christ and the gospel. I attend church to worship and acknowlege God for He is and what He has done and I willingly contribute to these aspects of corporate church fellowship.

If I am pressured to participate in church programs, (if the church hasn’t sought the face of God, first…and not after the fact, for His blessing), I graciously decline involvement. I believe God wants me to use my (spare) time to love/care for extended (unsaved) family, or to support worthwhile events within the community where I live.

I am interested to hear your thoughts and feed back.


(Russell Stewart) #15

Hi Billie,

Sorry I haven’t yet responded to this last post from you. I have been extremely busy with responsibilities here and haven’t had a block of time to respond adequately. I will though. Have a blessed weekend with your husband, family and congregation in the presence of the Holy Ghost.

The Ark Christian Church

“A WORD AND SPIRIT CHURCH”

Kaneohe, Hawaii

www.thearkcc.com