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Thursday, February 15, 2018

Another Twisted Scripture by Star Scott


Using the following verse from The Book of Acts, Star Scott is teaching that it is mandated to meet daily at Calvary Temple:

Acts 2:45 "With one accord they continued to meet daily in the temple courts..."

As quoted by Star Scott: "They met daily in the temple".

Conclusion by Star Scott:  We are to be here at Calvary Temple everyday, and if you are not, you are selfish, self indulgent, sinning willfully, with no sacrifice remaining for your sins. 

The verse in context: 

Acts 2: 44-46  All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they shared with anyone who was in need. With one accord they continued to meet daily in the temple courts and to break bread from house to house, sharing their meals with gladness and sincerity of heart...

From Star Scott -  January 17, 2018 Wed pm.

"We were talking in the deacons meeting, and I will actually make reference to some of these things, but we were talking about the lack of attendance on Friday night family night, and people were coming up with a number of reasons as to why this has been slacking off. And we might speak toward some of these things. As we look at all of them, however, being unacceptable, because the word of God mandates that we meet daily. ....one of the things people said to justify... well you know during basketball season away games come there's not that many people up there.....so why bother to go? Can we remind ourselves that where 2 or 3 are gathered together in His name He is there in His presence? .....and later Scott says"Jesus is worth coming up here to visit, amen? It's about Him, not the two or three."

Please note that Star Scott did not include Acts 2:44 or 2:46. He "cherry picked" the middle verse, vs 45:  "They... met daily in the temple." Does this verse support the requirement for the current day church to meet daily? Why did he omit the verses prior to and after "they ...met daily in the temple"?

Quoting just verse 45 should raise some questions. If scripture does in fact teach that we should be meeting daily in the "temple", then we should also consider verses 44 and 46. If we truly are required by scripture to "attend Calvary Temple daily", then the requirements of selling all we have, sharing with anyone who has need and meeting in our homes daily must also be established.

Considering the full context of this verse, and its application by Star Scott, the following questions should be asked:
  1. Should we sell everything and have all in common?
  2. Should we meet daily in the temple courts? 
  3. Who actually met daily in the temple courts?
  4. Is the temple (or the temple courts) of Jerusalem synonymous with "the local church"?
  5. What is the meaning of "church"? 
  6. Should we meet daily in homes and share our meals?
  7. Are we the "church" when we meet in our homes?
  8. Is Jesus in the "temple" (Calvary Temple building) or in the "church" (believers).
  9. What is the difference between historical accounts in scripture and instructions to the church?

1. Should we sell everything and have all in common?  The selling of property was not obligatory. The examples of Barnabas and Ananias demonstrate the voluntary nature of this method of benevolence. Peter told Ananias, “While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal?” (Acts 5:4). It is apparent that not all Christians sold their property, for the disciples were later meeting in the house of Mary, Mark’s mother, in Acts 12:12.  Though it is recorded that the early church in Jerusalem held things in common, it is not a mandate for us to do the same. 
2. Should we meet daily in the temple?  The only example of Christians meeting daily in the temple are of the new Jewish believers who continued their custom of going to the temple. (They still considered themselves Jews.) There they shared their new found faith. In the temple courts, and other public places, they preached to their fellow Jews, but they met in their homes to practice their new Christian faith. Continuing to go to the temple daily was their opportunity for evangelism. They later established Sunday as the day the church met corporately. They also met at other times and locations, depending on circumstances. Slowly, Christians did not see themselves as Jews anymore, but as a separate religion, so they stopped going regularly to synagogues.
3. Who actually met daily in the Temple?  Only the Jews living in Jerusalem. Those in the outlying areas of Jerusalem traveled to the Temple during Passover, Shavuot, and Sukkot. God said "Three times a year shall all your men appear before the Lord your God....".  
4. Is the temple of Jerusalem synonymous with the local church? The term "Temple" refers to the ancient Temple in Jerusalem. Traditionally, until about 200 years ago, the Jewish house of worship was not called a temple, but a synagogue. The Jewish believers outside of Jerusalem would have attended synagogues. (Synagogues are consecrated spaces used for the purpose of prayer, Tanakh reading, study and assembly; however, a synagogue is not necessary for worship. Halakha holds that communal Jewish worship can be carried out wherever ten Jews assemble. Later, Jesus would say "wherever 2 or 3 are gathered.....") Synagogues would compare somewhat with our current day churches. A Temple would correlate with a place where the Spirit of God resides, i.e. the born-again believer. The New Testament doesn't mention purpose built church buildings, and in the New Testament era the most common meeting place for Christians was in each others' homes.
5. What is the meaning of "church"?  The church is the body of Christ and He is the head of the church (Ephesians 1:21-23). The church is "ekklesia" or "called out assembly".  Historically, it is not a physical building. The earliest church building devoted to Christian use is at Dura Europos in eastern Roman Syria. It was apparently a normal house converted for worship some time between 233 and 256. It was used when the believers in that area had become too many for homes.
6. Should we meet daily in homes and share our meals? Scripture describes the early church as meeting from house to house and breaking bread together. This historical fact is not a command to us, but written to describe the activities of the early church. However, scripture clearly says we should "not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching." Hebrews 10:25. (see this for an explanation of Hebrews 10:25, about 1/2 down on the page. It does not mean what Scott uses it to mean.) Though no specific location is mentioned, "wherever two or three are gathered together, He is there." This would be in our homes, workplaces, local churches, outdoor areas, or any other place Christians may gather. We see the early church meeting in Aquila and Priscilla’s home in Ephesus (1Cor.16:19), in Philemon’s home (Phil.2), in Nympha’s home (Col.4:15) and in Lydia’s home (Acts 16:40). In fact, the early Christians worshipped without constructing special buildings for about 250 years.
7.  Are we the church when we meet in our homes? Yes. "For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them." Matthew 18:20. Star Scott uses this verse to justify only a few meeting at Calvary Temple on a Friday night, but does not support two or three gathering in homes.  "...we can’t have our cliques, our little special 6 people."
8. Is Jesus in the "temple" (Calvary Temple building) or in the "church" (believers)? (Scott says "Jesus is worth coming up here to visit, amen? It's about Him, not the two or three.") Scripture says "Or do you not realize about yourselves that Jesus Christ is in you?” (2 Corinthians 13:5). "in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit." (Ephesians 2:22). Again, "For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them." (Matthew 18:20). We do not need to go to a church building in order to "visit with Jesus." That statement is antithetical to the Word of God.
9. What is the difference between historical accounts in scripture and instructions to the church?  The Book of Acts is the history of the early church experiences. The Epistles, for example, contain detailed instruction for believers throughout all the church age. One is the permanent instruction and doctrine for the church. The other is a chronicle of the history of the early church experiences. To pull a verse from the Book of Acts, out of context, and use it to support a personal pet doctrine, is poor exegesis.

In addition to laying the groundwork for daily attendance, Scott wants you to know how selfish and self indulgent you are, disobedient, desiring your own ease and comfort, if you do not come to church daily:

"...one of the ways that we can do that, is to allow all of these selfish actions and the self indulgence and all of these things to be destroyed through our obedience to the word of God....I was glad when they said unto me... . Amen? Some of us frankly are just not glad anymore. it’s a drudgery, we are so busy doing our thing we are too tired to do God’s thing."

"We are so busy doing our thing we are too tired to do God’s thing".

Really? What "own things" are church members too tired from? If you are attending church nearly every day, where is all this extra time for "selfish" pursuits? Most men and many women work 5 days per week, both men and women have a home to care for. Many have children to care for. Is it selfish to have family dinner time? Is it selfish to spend the evening playing board games with your children? Maybe watching a movie and eating popcorn? Maybe spending an evening with friends? Spending time with your spouse? And not just once or twice a year when you have an anniversary or a birthday, but on a regular, frequent basis? Is it selfish to have prayer time at home on Tuesdays and Thursdays, praying for whomever God has placed on your hearts? Mothers, is it selfish to have your children in bed at 7:30 on a school night so they are well-rested? Is it self indulgent to teach our children to share the love of Jesus with the neighborhood children? (Parents, please read this)

Do not believe the lie that being at the church building with your family is the same as time with your family. Or the lie that caring and sowing into family, friends, (and even strangers) means spending your "free" time in a communal setting rather than in individual homes. And do not believe the lie that you don't have a choice.

Deut 11:19-20  "You shall teach them to your sons, talking of them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates."

Deut 4:9  Only take care, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things that your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. Make them known to your children and your children's children—

Proverbs 1:8-9  Hear, my son, your father's instruction, and forsake not your mother's teaching, for they are a graceful garland for your head and pendants for your neck.

 1 Corinthians 11:3  But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God.  Star Scott is not the head of your family.

Please note: These are written to fathers, mothers, and children. Not to pastors, deacons, babysitters, Sunday School teachers, gym monitors, etc.

CONCLUSIONS:
  • The Temple in Jerusalem and the local church in Sterling are not synonymous.
  • Though the believers in Jerusalem met at the Temple courts for the purpose of preaching the gospel publicly, they also met in their homes for Christian teaching, prayer and fellowship.
  • If we are going to read Acts 2:45 as an instruction to the church, meaning that the local church must meet daily in a dedicated building, then it follows that Calvary Temple must sell all they have and divide among all believers in need. It also follows that they should be meeting in their homes daily, sharing their meals. 
  • The early church kept the festivals and feasts, does it follow that we should do the same? If Scott's reasoning is biblically sound, then we would have to keep the feasts also.
  • Those members of our community and our local churches who are without spouses, families, and relatives should be ministered to through other individuals and families. The encouragement from the pulpit should be for all to ask God to lead them to those in need. Inviting a lonely single into a home, whether a member of CT or not, for fellowship, food, care, discipleship, etc is far more beneficial than attending another "family fun night". Consider James 1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction...
  • Wherever 2 or 3 are gathered together, Jesus is in the midst of the gathering. Wherever it may be.
  • Calvary Temple members:  You have forsaken your God-given responsibility and right to be head of your own families, to hear from God concerning the direction of your family, and to minister to whomever God leads you to. You have allowed a man to take the place of God. 
  • Calvary Temple members: You have neglected your marriages, your children, your natural families outside of CT, your neighbors, and all those who God has put in your path. 
Star Scott says: "We are not to forsake the assembling together of ourselves, as the manner of some is, and even MORE, be more conscious, more aware. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you are the exception to this. A lot of times people don’t even go on to the next verse: for if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for our sins. So right in the middle of all of this redemption, revelation that there is no other name under heaven there is no other process by which men can be saved. He goes on and we see in chapter 6 and other places…..we tread the blood of Jesus under our feet counting it an unholy thing." (it is ironic that he accused people of not reading the following verse, and yet we have seen him do the very same thing with Acts 2:45)
  • Calvary Temple members:  You should be troubled by the fact that your pastor is accusing you of being selfish, self-indulgent, treading the blood of Jesus under your feet, and having no sacrifice for your sins because you choose to be home with your families, friends, relatives, or neighbors. Or because you choose to be led by God for the oversight of your life, family and homes.
None of this is to say we should not be meeting with one another, and even more as we see the day approaching.  (However, this scripture did not mean to have more and more meetings - it meant to be faithful to the meeting of the church on the first day of the week and even more faithful to the meeting as we see the day approaching) Of course we should! But we should not be coerced through twisting of scripture, fear of men's (Star Scott's) faces, fear of losing our salvation because we are not at church every time the doors open, and fear that we are self-indulgent because we stay home to minister to our families or friends.  And we should never follow one man's dictates to the exclusion of the leading of the Holy Spirit.

Why is this an important topic for discussion? If everyone is content to attend church daily, why should anyone care? We know it is a good thing for believers to gather together. However, Star Scott has systematically stripped Calvary Temple members the ability and blessing of hearing from God for themselves and their families. He has placed himself as the one to hear from God, and like Moses, come down from the mountain and speak to the people. And the people are expected to consider it the word of the Lord and obey Scott's directives. But God has something different for the believer in Jesus Christ. He expects us to seek God daily for His provision, to know the word of God for ourselves, and to be led by His Holy Spirit. The role of the 5 fold ministry is to equip the saints, not lord it over them.  

Romans 8:14  For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
Galatians 5:18  But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.Galatians 5:25  If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.

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