Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Quest - from Oneness to Trinitarian - Part One

I had a request from my friend, Pastor Bob Beeman, it was this:You should say something about your quest - from oneness to Trinitarian, your personal experiences”

So onward and upward we go. A small tidbit of our journey!

It’s really only been just 10 months or so that all this began. My wife and I were pastoring a small Oneness Pentecostal church. We had just acquired a new building, and God began to do something, His stealthy, yet obvious move, was well evident. That "something", that "move" however was not necessarily an attractive thing from the outside, or in the immediate, but instead this glorious "something", would blossom in the near distant future.

I have found more than once as God journeys us to our needed destination, we at times, must walk through what appears to be “the valley of the shadow of death.” In reality however it is a portal to new life, or a new level of God consciousness! Whatever we label it, it’s an expanding of who we are in Christ, and equally important, who He is in us!

It was December of 2006, when we began to have turbulent times within the assembly we pastored, not so much between us and the congregation.. There were no terrible events transpiring! We were all getting along, but instead, just internal issues that were hard to categorize or define. Not to mention a leading and a pulling in my spirit from the Lord... that something was not quite right. God was moving! His grace was abounding! As I recall the whole experience, I stand amazed at the series of events that occurred simultaneously, seemingly with its own inertia, spinning completely out of my control!

(Psalms 37:23) The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.

My wife, Gina, had already told me she did not want to be called “Oneness” anymore, because of so many scriptural red flags. The church was for some reason suddenly ailing, and my very good friend, Pastor Jeff Baker, was calling me, trying to “make a connect” as he stated it, between Gina, myself and his “friend whose a former Oneness Pentecostal , Steve Evans”! With some amount of irritability I exclaimed "GOD, what are you doing?"

Honestly it was all just too much! Gina and I agreed to talk with “former Oneness Pentecostal Steve” who is now simply and affectingly known as: “Steve Evans, our dear friend”(What a great connection it has been!). We also spent many nights, my wife and I, pouring over the Bible, looking at scripture, crying out to God. God’s spirit had already done such a powerful work in us, and around us, that we were ready to hear, learn, and let God move. Our journey from Oneness Pentecostalism to Trinitarianism is evident, we made that journey, in an intellectual and theologically sound manner... However, there were emotional aspects to making that change.

Doctrines of legalism, grip an individual not just spiritually, but emotionally as well...

If ever a time God’s grace and mercy, and faith in His way, is needed, it’s during times of great trial, blessing and certainly during change. Gina and I were in the middle of all three of these! However, God was there, He was alive, and He was leading.

The most remarkable gift is hidden in these events. I could praise the Lord for showing us the doctrine of the Trinity, revealing it to us through His Spirit, and His Word. His anointing us to change, I could praise the Lord for the many new friends we have, that have become so very precious to us, so dear to our hearts, or for the church home we have. For all of these are His blessings at work. However if one thing be evident, true and confirmed, it is this:

(2 Thessalonians 3:3) But the Lord is faithful, who shall establish you, and keep you from evil.

(MSG) Don't be obsessed with getting more material things. Be relaxed with what you have. Since God assured us, "I'll never let you down, never walk off and leave you," Message Translation

(Matthew 28:20) Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.


Never letting us down

With us always

The most remarkable gift of God, through His cross, is His abiding presence! Thank you Lord, for walking with my family on this journey! Thank you for your faithfulness, for never letting us down, and lighting our path… even though you do it, only one step at a time… You Jesus are always there!