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Covenantal Relationships

We have become involved with a church that enforces "Covenantal Relationships" in which we must 'submit our rebellious will' to anointed leaders. The members are very nice but my husband says this is legalistic and apostate, anyone heard of this?

Moderator - Frequently, that is a sign of a cult.

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 ---MaryC on 5/18/07
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Those of you who resist authority will have to answer for such rebellion against Gods anointed. Several scriptures have been offered, yet many here and in the apostate protestant church openly criticize the supremacy of those in authority. Todays church is speak of the Lord and then do what ever you want. To be a faithful servant one must submit to authority without question, the covenantal relationship clearly-divinely ordained between leadership and the flock.
---John on 7/15/07


We are only to submit our will to God and to his Word. Your husband hit the nail right on the head.
---Marcia on 7/14/07


Hmmm...kinda sounds like when the Jews had to submit themselves to Hitler. God does place leadership in our lives and we are to willingly submit (that is if they are submitting to God, observe the fruits), but if they demand us to submit to them and them alone, well that is CONTROL and I say run, run, run!! Pray that the Lord will send you a Godly mentor to help you grow and to guide you into a deeper walk with the Lord. :-)
---Holly4jc on 7/14/07


Oh yes...and let's not forget about what a serious thing it is to make a "covenant" with someone. This is something that God takes very, very seriously in His Word. Marriage is a covenant. Do not make covenants with just anyone, you need to be very careful who you are in covenant with, when you are in covenantal agreement with someone, you are as one, it's a legal contract and in the spirit realm, that can be very dangerous if you make a covenant with a demonic force.
---Holly4jc on 7/14/07


It's called sheperding. It's legalistic and yes, it is a cult. Run.
These type of churches do great damage to your heart/soul.
It's common now in home cell groups, it's not good.
---Jenny on 6/20/07




People dance around the issue of authority when the scripture is very clear. You are in rebellion when you do nt submit to authority that has been placed over you be it religious or secular.
---John on 6/20/07


'Covenental relationships' is recycled sheperding. I have heard only one or two defenders of it here. They are the 'submit to leaders without question,' types. From what I know of todays evangilicals they would have nothing to do with it, as their theology of 'everyone their own church' which flys in the face of sheperding's absolute authoritarianism. My 'born again' neighbors call it 'legalism.'

As a teen raised around this we called it the 'Stepford Wives church.'
---MikeM on 6/14/07


This is not something I see as scriptural and would not attend such a church. It does sound cultish to me and I would find a good, bible believing church.
---maryj9396 on 6/14/07


The only two that you must submit to is God and Jesus Christ.
---anonymous on 5/22/07


Your husband is right. Get as far away from this church as possible. The only covenant you need is between you and the Lord. And, your so-called rebellious will should be given over to the Lord and no person.
---Susie on 5/21/07




I am with the moderator, get out fast. Very fast. Danger.
---catherine on 5/21/07


Hi MaryC; I still think your husband's right--if I were in your shoes, I would run FAST and FAR from a "church" like that! Authority is one thing, but any church that DEMANDS your obedience is NOT GOOD! God bless, my dear.
---Mary on 5/20/07


The verses quoted by John I heard a lot as teen. I note 99% here reject the 'sheperding movement'

It is known for controlling and abusive behaviour, with emphasis placed upon absolute obedience to a 'shepherd.' disobeying a shepherd was tantamount to disobeying God. Every aspect of life was controlled by a 'sheperd.'It is also called 'legalism,' rendering a church a playground for haughty autocrats and demagogues.
---MikeM on 5/20/07


My neice, 20 has 'escaped' from such a church, where our family has attended for years. Shee is reading a book on it called "Damaged Disciples" by Ron and Vicki Burks.'

She was told NOT to go to college, marry someone in the church, let them manage her income, and to submit to those men without question. Living with with and I and attending Cal State has earned her a 'rebellion= and 'reprobate' status.
---MikeM on 5/20/07


As for me,38 I look back with detached humer and churckle at their antics.

They had a list of books NOT to read, books I never heard of, nor would have read. Armes with such a list I read everyone of them.

They had 'book burnings'-in a bag you had to bring 'things that did not serve the Lord' That meant rock music, comic books, or offending books. A testonomy had to be given as to their badness, then the offending material was tossed onto the fire. I brought marshmallows.
---MikeM on 5/20/07


Husband's absolutely right. The "conventional relationships" and we are bound by are the ones God has made with man. We are to submit our "rebelious wills" to God and his word not to self-anointed leaders!!!!!
---Mima on 5/20/07


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It is very clear the Bible says to submit to our leaders. And 1 Timothy 3:1-10 clearly shows who is qualified to "take care of the church of God" (verse 5). A man must be proven in his own marriage and with his own children, "first" (verse 10), before he can be trusted with caring for other people and their marriages. These qualifications in 1 Timothy 3:1-10 tell who qualifies just to be CONSIDERED for ordination!!! These are the MINIMUM...for us who obey Paul's authority.
---Bill_bila5659 on 5/20/07


The New Testament clearly shows us how we are to relate in covenant with each other, including how LEADERS are to personally relate > "nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock." (1 Peter 5:3)

And they are my "examples" of what also goes for ME > I therefore must NEVER lord myself over ANY other person...by means of charm or pressure or deceit. But win people's obedience by my example, like our obedient leaders do.
---Bill_bila5659 on 5/20/07


How we are to relate in covenant with God and one another > "submitting to one another in the fear of God." (Ephesians 5:21) Our leaders are "examples" of this m-u-t-u-a-l submitting; and I understand that "in the fear of God" means we are relating in prayerful submission, at every moment, to how God has us relating.

"And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body, and be thankful." (Colossians 3:15)
---Bill_bila5659 on 5/20/07


Jesus paid His own blood for how He desires that we relate in His New Covenant > "Do all things without complaining and disputing," (Philippians 2:14) > "without...disputing" > without ARGUING. So, our obedient pastors do not lord it over their wives by arguing!!! But they are "examples", at home, of how we ALL are to relate in love covenant with one another. THIS IS BASIC...how God's love has us relating (Romans 5:5).
---Bill_bila5659 on 5/20/07


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Paul our leader in authority commands us, "Test all things; hold fast what is good." (1 Thessalonians 5:21)

"And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment." (Philippians 1:9)

In God's love we have God's own "knowledge and all discernment" so we can test A-L-L things RELIABLY > God leads us according to what He knows about leadership influence, who to marry..."all things".
---Bill_bila5659 on 5/20/07


Submitting to leadership is a basic fundamental teaching. I made no assertion, just simple Scriptural statements you can find in the following verses. This does not mean that I agree with any kind of leadership that opposes God's teachings. You are in error if you think you have no covenants and no one to submit to. Please read the verses.
Rom.1:31
1Cor.16:15-16
Heb. 13:17
1 Pet. 2:13
1 Pet. 2:18
1 Pet. 5:5
---john on 5/19/07


There is some good I have learned from the evangicals/conservative protestants here. On theological grounds I sharply disagree. I sharply agree with the rejection of 'legalism.' They offer the individual 'free choice.' I see John stands alone in his assertions.

As for me the sanctity of the individual trumps all the shouted amens and glory Haliugahs.
---MikeM on 5/19/07


Your husband is very smart, I agree with him entirely.
---Cynthia_1 on 5/19/07


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Any Church that demands obedience to men isn't living up to the Law of Love taught by Jesus. The handwriting of ordinances was nailed to the cross with Christ,if a Church makes their own they are not living by the Word of God. The only covenate we are to enter into Spiritually is the one with God through Jesus. When the Holy Ghost quickens our spirit something isn't right we better obey, move out away from it. We put away rebellious wills under the blood when saved ,surrendering our wills to God.
---Darlene_1 on 5/19/07


I wonder how many of us would have submitted to Moses or took sides with Korah? Seems like most of us here don't want anyone over us. Do you know this is a sign of the end times apostate church? I'm sure you expect people to submit to your authority at work or at home so why not in the church?
---john on 5/18/07


Rickey ... If your pastors and ministers exercise control over their flock, you are really emulating and mimicking the Papacy and RCC that you condemn.
---alan_of_UK on 5/18/07


What does submitting the rebellious will involve? Did they say? Are the leaders the only anointed ones? I doubt that. I believe this is legalism and should be looked into carefully. I never heard of this. One thing for sure, I don't think I want any part of this.
---Robyn on 5/18/07


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That does have a creepy sound to it. I was saved from one of those shepherding type churches. Moderator is correct, you could be hurt. I'd run like crazy.
Submit your rebellious will to God.
---Wireless on 5/18/07


2) As these Leaders gain control of what members think,wear,what they are allowed to participate in,who their friends are,what they read,movies if allowed to watch them at all, they begin introducing ideas which are contrary to Christian beliefs. They are not only leagalistic at that point, they are no longer Christian but CULTs. The members in their isolation and brainwashing are not able to differentiate and are decieved.
---jody on 5/18/07


3) Many of these leaders are masters of the use motivational techniques. As the member submits they are publically rewarded and recieve recognician of man (members and persons in power)resulting in a good feeling and are told that this feeling which is actually pride is LOVE gained by submission. Motivational lectures are used. There are many techniques to which end is in members feeling a "high" or "euphoria" which is attributed to the religion itself and usually called LOVE.
---jody on 5/18/07


This legalistic mumbo-jumbo sounds a lot like what most of my family has been caught up in. They take total control of the individual, the individual becomes a cog, a drone, emotionally adicted to the church's leaders. The term 'covenental relationship' is a red flag, as is 'be Obedience' to 'us.' Even my evangical neighbors, fine people know of my relitives, they call it a 'controlling personality cult.' Run from it, let them find some else to submit to their 'authority.'
---MikeM on 5/18/07


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4) At the point of all of this Love and Joy occuring due to the submission of will and who knows what else in terms of beliefs, these members become motivated to share their religion with others. Interestingly, in some ways, their religion is attractive since if one visits, they are going to experience a pseudo Love and closeness with much hospitality that is not seen in the Christian Churches of today.
---jody on 5/18/07


5) In most of these cult churches or gatherings, when one walks in he/she can expect to see smiling faces, a warm welcome with hugs and people surrounding the newcomer, a unity unsurpassed in any Christian congregation,a feeling of joy and what seems like love among members and much entheasum about the religion. There seems to be no rivalry. If they kept their mouths shut about beliefs, you would assume that you had for the first time entered a church exhibiting the fruits of the Spirit!! Decepetion?
---jody on 5/18/07


1)Leaders are not anointed to deal with will of man specifically. They may rebuke and are even instructed to reject the rebellious but God deals with willful rebellion and Sin not overseers. The Bible explains clearly what leaders are anointed to do in the church for the equiping of the saints and nowhere does it say that there is a gift or position for dealing with SUBMISSION OF REBELLIOUS WILL. In cults, this type of control is used to keep members in check in every way and out of the world entirely.
---jody on 5/18/07


The bible says " submit to authority".
Pastors assign ministers to be ministers to folks because the Pastor doesn't have time to meet everyone's needs. Even Jesus had help. He couldn't be at several places at one time when He was here on earth.
---Rickey on 5/18/07


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