About The BLADE

PeterThe person behind the BLADE is none other than me, Peter J. Rasor II. I graduated in 2010 from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS) with a PhD in Philosophy. I also hold the ThM degree in Systematic Theology from SBTS, and an MMin and MDiv in Theology from Cincinnati Christian University.

My goal in my blog is to write on issues that interest me and what I take to be of valid concern to the Church in the areas of theology and philosophy. My utmost concern is to defend and proclaim the truth of Christianity.

I hope you enjoy the blog and feel free to make comments or ask questions. I will reply as quickly as possible.

2 Responses to About The BLADE

  1. Clyde Reed says:

    Thanks for your update on the NACC and status of the RM. Sorry to see the changes you cataloged: haven’t been to one since the last Anaheim event.

    There’s another elephant crowding his way into the living room: Pentecostalism. The long-established congregation to which we belong has been “steeplejacked” by a fast-growing such group. The actual “slippage” of our congregation began to occur some twenty years ago when we hired the first paid music minister (after sixty years of volunteer music leadership). He was from a respected RM bible college, but he wanted to bring us “up to date” with the “new music”. But the new music source was, you guessed it, from pentecostal publishers. He ignored the elders, who didn’t want to throw out the hymnals, and who weren’t thrilled with the theatrical productions and nearly every week skits. Then came Rick Warren’s “Purpose Driven Church”, which the pastor furnished to all the elders and took us through it over about six months. Shortly after that, I took my mandatory one year sabbatical from the eldership, and was never asked back. When a new pastor search commenced a couple years later, I volunteered to serve on it, but was told by one of the young elders that because I hadn’t completed to purpose driven classes, I couldn’t be on the committee; the purpose driven classes were not required by the bylaws.

    We coasted along, and two pastors later the youngest pastor ever went along with the above, renamed deacons to “ministry leaders”, and for the first time appointed women to those positions. Meantime some new members who had come from non-restoration backgrounds were elected as elders. When the above-mentioned pastor was called to a new pastorate, the elders made what I considered a perfunctory search, and contacted a pentecostal pastor who had filled in for the departing pastor on several occasions.

    And he was willing to come–as long as he could merge his congregation with our RM congregation, promising that “nothing will change”. Multiple meetings were held to discuss the offer (which included a bylaws change), and at the meeting which my wife and I attended I stated my opposition, saying that if the eldership wanted him, he had to agree to come without any merger or bylaws changes. I further said if his congregants wanted to come later, they should transfer in accordance with our rules. I lost[ so did the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Anaheim Angels that year–not the first time I’ve been on the losing side]. Sadly, I missed an opportunity to state that this looked like a takeover.

    But things have changed, a little here and a little there. The old-timers mostly attend an 8:00 AM service which uses the hymn books and sings mostly the old songs. The communion table has been removed from directly in front of the baptistry (on the platform) down to the floor below the platform. The platform is now occupied with two drum sets, an electric piano and five or more microphones. Unchanged is the pulpit–it hasn’t moved.

    But as soon as the first service closes, the communion table is moved to the rear of the auditorium, just to the side of the auditorium entry doors; the new leadership had it equipped with castors. And the hymn books go hide somewhere for the next 167 hours. Then the fun begins; a “worship team” uses every microphone, the drums and electric piano take off, and whenever I attend either the second or third service I honestly remove the batteries from my hearing aids. It makes me think the non-instrumental brethren had a good idea after all.

    Fast forward to earlier this year: the congregation was asked to vote on the second bylaws change since the merger, which among other things stripped most of the elders’ authority and vested it with the pastor and his staff. I opposed that in another pre-vote meeting, remarking that the merger was really a takeover. The chairman of the elders, who was facilitating the meeting denied that it was a takeover. The pastor, in that public meeting, told me that if I was unhappy I should consider finding another congregation where I would be content. After the meeting, the pastor confronted me pointing out how the congregation had grown under his leadership, and asking what was wrong with that.

    Within two weeks of that encounter, I was looking on the website of the denomination from which he came, and found that our merged congregation is one of their congregations. Apparently someone forgot to tell the chairman of the elders about that. Furthermore, in his response during the meeting he offered to meet with me. I have phoned him twice, but he has never called me back.

    So where can we go? The RM churches here in the South Bay of Los Angeles County are fading fast; there are two Disciples congregations nearby who are “hanging in there”. I’m not ready to be a Baptist (why am I such a legalist?), and other “Bible Believing” congregations are even further afield than the Disciples or the Baptists. Only one of the Christian Church mission is still supported–the bulk of the missionary budget is used to start the new denomination’s churches.

    So that’s how it is here in Like We Be Gone.

  2. Joel Stevao says:

    Dr. Rasor,
    Thank you for your articles on ‘Is Apologetics Really Needed? Answering Objections to Apologetics”.
    The article came right when I needed some answers.
    God Bless

    Joel Stevao
    Biola Apologetics Student

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