- By R. Stanley
- Published 09/9/2008
Brother R. Stanley, an Indian post-graduate in Soil Mechanics and
Foundation Engineering, born in 1947 and born again in 1962 is in fulltime Christian service since 1975. He has been honoured with a Doctorate in Divinity by the Hindustan Bible Institute, Chennai in 2000. Notes, outlines and sermons born out of the personal Bible meditations of R. Stanley can be read at www.StanleyOnBible.com Materials from this website, launched on 31 August 2002, can be copied for private circulation, but not for publication.The books authored by Brother Stanley in English and translated to a number of Indian languages, and tapes, are available from the Blessing Youth Mission (BYM), www.BlessingYouthMission.org an inter-Church revival and missionary-evangelistic organisation in India.
Stanley's Analytical Statements about Christian Life and Ministry
"Unless" and "until" are the two keywords of the Kingdom of God.
"Unless" you are born of the Spirit, you cannot enter the Kingdom.
"Until" you are baptized with the Spirit, you cannot expand the Kingdom.
All believers in Christ are theologians.
But all theologians are not necessarily believers.
Theology is simply the knowledge of God-
but, knowing God begins with a personal faith in Christ.
It is wrong to specify any particular believer as "gifted."
All believers are "gifted."
There's no believer who is not gifted within the Body of Christ.
By dividing the people of God as clergy and laymen,
we have made the latter a majority of lame men.
The Holy Spirit is either too poor or stingy if He has only nine gifts to give us.
Let's not dare to limit God to any list.
If we collect all the unread Bibles from Christians,
we will not need to print new Bibles for several years!
We talk so much about the pattern of the New Testament church and ministry.
Good-But, where is the power?
I'd prefer a bullock cart to a Benz car that has no engine.
Beware of a Christless Pentecost as much as of a Pentecostless Christianity.
We have Bible-minus churches as well as Bible-plus churches.
The former subtract the positive and explicit teaching of the Scriptures towards their traditions.
To Christian life the latter add laws and regulations which the Bible does not plainly teach.
We must stand for Bible plus-or- minus nothing, both in our doctrine and deed.
The pastor who builds his congregation without the help
of apostles, prophets, evangelists and teachers is like the mason
who tries to construct a building without carpenters, blacksmiths, plumbers, and electricians.
Hardly does any minister have all the gifts.
Even Moses and Solomon needed men like Bezaleel and Hiram for their building work.
It is not enough to claim the power of Acts 1 :8;
we should also carry out the programme outlined therein.
The Church has developed bed sores.
One who is sent is not superior to the One who sent him (Jn 13:16).
The spirituality of the sending churches is as important as that of the missionaries they send.
Those not dead to casteism and regionalism have no right to talk about cross-cultural evangelism.
If the work becomes more important than the worker
in the philosophy of a missionary organisation,
it will no more be a mission but a machine.
If you present the prospects of missionary work, you will enroll workers.
But if you present the problems, you will only enroll supporters.
It is hypocrisy to shake hands when hearts are separated (2 Ki 10:15,16).
The greatest miracle of Pentecost was not tongues or prophecies or healings,
but thousands of believers enjoying their material goods in common.
This is the most difficult thing to practice. Try and see!
If we cannot put our heads together,
let's at least join our tails like Samson's foxes and together burn down the enemy-altars.
Leadership training programmes are numerous these days.
The tragedy however is that many trainers are not leaders themselves!
They have simply learnt the principles of leadership from books
or they happen to be holding executive positions.
Little wonder we have more managers than leaders in our churches and missions.
Leadership means sacrifice. Good leadership means a greater sacrifice (Jn 10:11).
I admire two men - John the Baptist and John (Wesley) the Methodist!
Prophets are trained by God and trimmed by the Spirit.
They can neither be tutored by men nor tamed by systems.
We have lots of discussions but little direction. The horizontal is useless without the vertical.
Elijah said, It's enough. Jesus said, It's finished. It's never enough until it's finished.
If you don't open the door of your heart when Jesus knocks at it,
how do you expect Him to open the door of Heaven when you knock at it in an hour of need?
Rebirth makes us allergic to what we were addicted to
and it makes us addicted to what we were allergic to.
That is the meaning of all things becoming new.
TB affects the lungs; TV affects the heart.
The Bible nowhere teaches that speaking in tongues is the only evidence of receiving the Spirit.
On the other hand, it emphatically states that subduing the tongue is the ultimate evidence of true spirituality. We need gifts as well as fruits but we are known by our fruits.