Take Care of Our Own Ship, Not Another Feller’s

Take Care of Our Own Ship, Not Another Feller's

“Teacher,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.”- Mark 9:38

“He not be one of us,” says ya. “He not be part of our crew, our crowd, and tha flock of followers we run with.”

Thar be a great deal of strife among tha crews of Skipper and his Sun. Ter be sure, them in tha fleet spout stuff about peace and unity, but it be our nature ter attack and fight. That jest be tha way of tha flesh.

Only tha Sun says, “No one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me, for whoever is not against us is for us. Truly I tell you, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to the Messiah will certainly not lose their reward.”

A feller might not see tha lay of things same as ya, but if he truly belong ter Skipper and tha Sun, then he or she be our mate.

Now ter be sure, it not always clear tha stripes of them who claims ter be one of us. There be a time long ago when all in Skipper’s crew be of one mind, one heart, and pulled oars one way. They all be filled with tha Holy Ghost of Truth in tha same way and with tha same accord. But how short a space be this blessing. How soon be tha solidarity of tha crew. Not long after tha Sun floated back ter his home in heaven, differences of opinion sprang up among tha crew. From tha quartermaster down ter gunners and crew, each had a different take on matters. Ter this very day our differences cause some ter abandon ship, find another vessel, and sail under another flag of thar liking.

Skipper’s fleet be expansive and thar be any number of vessels. Now some may charge that not all be ship-shape, not all sailed by crew who be properly trained and fit fer tha long voyage. But if a vessel and crew fly under tha flag of Skipper they be his ter correct and rebuke, not ours.

Tha Sun says:

“If you love me, keep my commands.” (John 14:15) and. . .

“Tend to my lambs.” (John 21:16)

“This is love for God: to keep his commands.” (1 John 5:3) and . .

“I was hungry and you gave Me food. I was thirsty and you gave Me drink. I was a stranger and you took Me in. I was naked and you clothed Me. I was sick and you visited Me. I was in prison and you came to Me. Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.” (Matthew 25:36-40)

“Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.” (Luke 11:28) and . .

“If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” (1 John 3:17-18)

“Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.” (John 14:23) and . .

“If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven.” (Matthew 19:21)

“I always do what pleases my Father.” (John 8:29) and . .

“Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.” (Mark 10:43-44)

Some make it thar task ter stick ter Skipper’s Code of Conduct no matter what. Others make it thar task ter take care of thar neighbor no matter what. But in ever case it be our duty ter sail tha course tha Sun plots fer us and not be meddling ter much in another feller’s route. If we have tha Sun in us and still stray, Skipper ‘ill bring us around and back on tack, of that ya kin be sure.

Slavery and Methodism Today

Slavery and Methodism Today

An excerpt from “Slavery and the founders of Methodism

In 1774, John Wesley published his “Thoughts Upon Slavery.” The founder of the Methodist movement insisted that the concept of enslaving other people was based on “false foundations.” He described the horrific evils of the slave trade. He denied that it was acceptable for anyone to be excused from judgment on the grounds that one was not personally a slave owner. For Wesley, merely tolerating the existence of a system of enslavement was an accommodation with evil.

In 1780, the American Methodists required preachers to deliver sermons against the evils of slavery. Church leaders declared that the enslavement of other persons is “contrary to the laws of God.”

In 1785, the first Book of Discipline published by the Methodists included a piece of church legislation that any church member who buys or sells slaves is “immediately to be expelled” from membership, “unless they buy them on purpose to free them.”

In 1800, the General Conference issued a “Pastoral Letter on Slavery.” It said “the whole spirit of the New Testament militates in the strongest manner against the practice of slavery.”

That pastoral letter directed annual conferences to appeal to the legislatures in their respective states for the emancipation of slaves. And it called for “the universal extirpation of this crying sin.” So the documented history of Methodism makes clear that the founders of the church considered slavery to be “evil.”

Forty-four years after the General Conference enacted church laws to demand that Methodists free their slaves or leave the church and to insist that Methodists take public antislavery steps, the denomination decided to divide. Rather than require a slave-owning bishop to emancipate the people whom he considered his property, Methodists split into two denominations. Rather than politically mobilize to end the system of slavery in each state, Methodists split along the boundaries of states that affirmed enslavement.

This is the legacy of Methodism in the United States with regards to human slavery.

But what of slavery of a man or woman’s soul?

The irony of the pending UMC split is that a great many are focused on making atonement for the sin of slavery by others, while they themselves are promoting a form of slavery that leads to a never-ending darkness.

As the above article makes clear, John Wesley,”Denied that it was acceptable for anyone to be excused from judgment on the grounds that one was not personally a slave owner.” In our day, we might say, “Yes, she or he is a slave to sin, but what is that to me?” Worse, we call slavery, freedom.

If we do not believe sin leads to slavery and death, then we should love our neighbor as ourself and affirm our neighbor’s behavior.  Each of us must give an account to Christ for every word and act. The costs of our beliefs, whatever they may be, is great. 

Methodists split into two denominations. Rather than politically mobilize to end the system of slavery in each state, Methodists split along the boundaries of states that affirmed enslavement.

Methodists are on the verge of another split, this one along the boundaries of those who affirm the good and perfect law of our Lord (Psalm 19:7) and those who deny the liberating and transforming power of Christ.

To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”

Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:31-36)

Do we believe the perfect royal law of our Lord as found in Scripture (James 2:8) is of man or God? Slavery to sin and the author of Scripture marks the line of demarcation for the UMC split. 

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Write down these words, for in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel.” Moses was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant — the Ten Commandments. (Exodus 34:27-28)

If we do not believe sin is slavery then we deny Christ, for it is because of sin that he came and died.

The legacy of Methodism today will last, not merely for a few centuries, but eternity. May God have mercy on us if we fail to feed the sheep of Christ with the words of his–and our–Father.

Do Not Simply Listen Ter Tha Reading and Teaching of Skipper’s Words, but Do What It Says

Do Not Simply Listen Ter Tha Reading and Teaching of Skipper’s Words, but Do What It Says

Whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it will be blessed in what they do.- James 1:25 (James 1:19-25)

Skipper’s questions and commands always reveal tha true make of a feller, of that ya kin be sure.

Be quick ter listen.

Be slow ter speak.

Be washed clean of all moral filth.

Be scrubbed of all evil that be so prevalent.

Be anxious ter humbly accept tha word Skip planted in ya. Ne’er ferget that Skipper’s words kin save ya.

Do not simply listen ter tha reading and teaching of Skipper’s words, but DO WHAT IT SAYS. Else, ya ‘ill deceive yer self.

Tha feller who looks at Skip’s words as with a spyglass, dialing in tha focus so he kin see clearly tha make of things, that feller ‘ill see in ter Skipper’s perfect law that gives freedom from sin. It be like reading tha waters and knowing shoal from coral heads, sea grass from mud. That be tha sort of intensity a feller should use when reading Skipper’s words.

Read, teach, preach, and learn ter live Skipper’s perfect law. If ya do this and don’ ferget what ya ‘ave read and heard, ya will be blessed in what ya do. Ne’re ferget: “The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul.” (Psalm 19:7)

In Tha Same Way Tha Sun Warms Ya With His Mercy, Warm Others With Mercy

In Tha Same Way Tha Sun Warms Ya With His Mercy, Warm Others With Mercy

Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. – Jude 21 (Jude 20-25)

Dear mates, build yerself up in yer most holy faith and pray in tha Holy Spirit of Truth at all times. Keep yerself in Skipper’s love. If ya committed a grievous offense, turn towards tha Sun, confess what ya done, ask fer his fergivness and wait fer tha mercy of tha Sun ter wrap itself around ya like a heavy wool coat.

In tha same way tha Sun warms ya with his mercy, warm others with mercy—especially them with doubt. If they doubt tha Sun ever was: show mercy. If they doubt Skipper be real: show mercy. If they doubt Skipper’s Code of Conduct be his commands fer how ter carry yerself as one in his crew: show mercy.

By showing mercy towards them who doubt, ya may snatch a feller or two from that eternal fire than never ends. Thank on it this way: mercy be a long, sturdy rope ya kin toss ter a body that be floundering in tha sea. Tha more mercy ropes ya kin toss, tha better odds a feller might have ter grab a holt and be saved.

But when ya tossing them ropes of mercy ter them floundering about, do so with fear so as not ter slip and fall overboard yerself. Many a crew member has jumped in ter tha sea ter save a mate only ter get swept away by currents of sin.

Skipper be able ter keep ya from falling, only it be on ya ter be alert and watch yer stance and steps.

To tha only Skipper thar be and ter tha Sun, tha only Savior thar ever ‘ill be, a hearty salute. As crew and mates we give all respect, honor, and praise, ‘cause Skip and his Sun be full of all glory majesty, authority, and power. 

In Tha Last Days Thar ‘ill Be Scoffers and Mockers

Such false teachers pervert tha grace of Skipper.

In Tha Last Days and Always Thar ‘ill Be Scoffers and Mockers

“In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” – Jude 18 (Jude 11-19)

In tha last days, them last times, thar ‘ill be scoffers. Fellers filled with lust ‘ill follow thar own ungodly, selfish desires. Simon Peter warned ‘bout such mockers when he wrote: “In the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires.” So it not just be tha earthly brother of tha Sun, Jude, who says such things, but them who walked and talked and learned from tha Sun while he be on earth.

Such false teachers pervert tha grace of Skipper.

Fellers like these be selfish and follow tha way of Cain and look out fer thar own self, giving no thought ter how thar egregious  behavior corrupts others.

They be lovers of money and follow tha way and teachings of Balaam, tempting others ter commit sexual sin. Tha Sun said as much when he wrote to some leaders of a church and warned: “I hold this against you. You hold to the teachings of Balaam and entice others to commit sexual immorality and eat food sacrificed to idols.” (Revelation of Christ 2:14)

Moses himself warned ‘bout such reprobates: “These women were the ones who followed Balaam’s advice and were the means of turning the Israelites away from the Lord. ” (Numbers 31:16)

Them be harsh words, but Skipper takes a tough stand on sexual sin.

Fellers like these be blemishes when tha crew gathers fer instruction, fellership, and fer singings songs and praising Skipper. They feed themselves first and last. Like a rabid dog, they foam at the mouth. Thar words be muddy muck and tha blackest darkness be reserved fer such rascals.

Fellers like these be ungodly good-fer-nothing scoundrels, who commit ungodly acts in ungodly ways and use harsh words against them who stand with Skipper and his words of instruction. Fellers like these be ungodly sinners who speak vile words against Skipper.

Fellers like these be grumblers, finding fault with ever thing and ever one who sticks ter Skippers Code of Conduct. Instead of following tha Sun, as they claim they be doing, they set a course fer their own evil desires. They boast ‘bout themselves.

Fellers like these flatter others fer thar own advantage, but they do not stick ter Skipper’s Code of Conduct and they don’ ‘ave Skipper’s Holy Spirit of Truth in ’em, ya may lay ter that.

Give a wide berth ter such rogues in tha same way ya might when rounding a headland, else ya may wreck yer faith on thar reefs of treachery.

Tha Sun Always Rises From Tha Blackness

Tha Sun Always Rises From Tha Blackness

“You have a little faith. Why did you doubt?” – Matthew 14:31

Ya ‘ave a little faith. A little faith be enough. Stand yer watch and see how tha Sun arrives from darkness. How he rises over yer head. How he warms a body ‘till we seek shade. How his brilliance blinds us as his stars dance on tha water before us.

Ya ‘ave a little faith. Now that tha Sun be gone and ya stand all alone on tha deck in pitch, black darkness will ya ferget tha Sun? Say ter yerself he ne’re was? That what ya seen and felt be but a dream?

Ya ‘ave a little faith. Now ya ‘ave doubts. With only tha rush of tha waves beating against tha hull and the howl of tha wind singing through tha rigging, yer tripping back ter yer old haunts. And why? ‘Cause ya find comfert in a thing ya kin see rather than a fading memory? How is it that yer faith in tha Sun kin pass so quickly? Ya won’ proof tha Sun be real? Touch yer cheek. That wee bit of sting ya feel be whar his fingers brushed yer skin. But if ya go and hide and refuse ter come out, that too ‘ill pass. And soon, even tha vision of his brilliance ‘ill be gone. It be like he was ne’er here. Stand yer watch. Don’t doubt. Trust in tha Sun.

Ya ‘ave a little faith. Faith and fears. Faith and fatigue. Faith and not nary a friend with ya who believes yer tale of tha Sun and his warmth. This be tha problem of sailing this world alone. This be why tha Sun warns ya ter sail in pairs and double pairs. Tha company of others ‘ill keep yer spirits up when yer faith in what ya know—or thought ya knew—falters.

Ya ‘ave a little faith. All about is blackness. This be tha end of ever man without tha Sun. Blackness so deep, so intense, so wide and cold that a feller kin scream and cry ‘till his voice be but a whisper and still no cry voice back. Blackness—that be tha thing ya feared most. Now it be here. Now it be all around.

Ya ‘ave a little faith. But wait! What be that in tha blackness? A spec of blood? Aye! ’Tis a thin line of blood splitting tha blackness. No. . . now it be gone. All is dark. An illusion. Ya be going mad. Mad and talking ter yerself.

Wait! There tha blood line be again. Yes, thar be no doubting it now. A seam in tha great expanse of blackness. And more rich, dark blood oozing through. Blood in blackness, that kin only be. . .

Ya ‘ave a little faith. Here comes tha Sun. Ya kin see him clear, now. He be swallowing tha blackness with his brilliance. His blood be his glory. Ya be warm, now. Ya have hope, now. Ya have faith, now.

Ya ‘ave a little faith. Why did ya doubt?

Ne’er ferget: tha Sun always rises from tha blackness.

Of His Own Volition and Out of Love fer Us, Skipper Left His Throne and Came Ter Earth to Appear in the Flesh as a Man

Of His Own Volition and Out of Love for Us, Skipper Left His Throne and Came Ter Earth to Appear in the Flesh as a Man

God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. – 1 Timothy 3:16

Of his own volition and out of love fer us, Skipper left his throne and came ter earth ter be in tha flesh as a man. Fer tha time he walked about, he ne’er broke not one of his commands or ordinances. He gained fer himself all purity, all holiness, all righteousness. Even though he be tempted and tested ter tha point of death, he remained upright tha whole time.

Then, when tha time be right, Skipper surrendered himself ter be executed on account of it be our souls who ‘ill die fer tha bad stuff we done. Only now Skip ‘as died in our place so we don’ ‘ave ter. Such ah thing han’t ever been done before er since. In his living and dying Skip gained fer himself all righteousness thar be.

Now when we get inter a fix on account of tha bad stuff we do, Skip says, “Come up a little short of tha mark, did ya. How bad did ya miss it? That much, huh? No worries, mate. I ‘ill cover tha balance and get ya back on course.”

Ter all who turn ter Skipper fer help, he says, “I know’d ya kin not all tha time stay tha course. That be why I come down ter live in tha flesh. All ya ever has ter do, mate, is come ter me an’ ask and I ‘ill cover ya with my Holy cloak of uprightness.

Thar be no limits ter how many times we can ask Skip ter spot us tha difference.

Only thing is, if we ne’er think on how much it cost him ter gain all purity, all holiness, all righteousness fer himself—how tha one who made tha heavens and earth come down off his throne on our account so as ter wipe out our debts—could be we don’ really know Skip or love him.

Mainly that be love fer self and love fer self be how all this mess commenced in tha first place.

Come about. Seek Skip and his uprightness. Tha one who made all there is and ever will be wants ter make ya upright like he be. Will ya let him?