Hi Mike,
I am happy to see that you ar not "angry" over this and are wise enough
to see that this is an issue that is bigger than we are. This
website/fellowship is not a lark, (and it is extremely easy to fall into
this mentality, easier than one thinks). The basic issue is the casual
attitude towards sin and I cannot sit back and let it happen unless
those to whom I have been speaking have made it clear that they simply
don't want to hear it. But you have made it clear that you desire
further fellowship and I am eager to share what I see quite clearly with
you.
I am not convinced by the tenets of the world church because I see that
it gets nobody anywhere past the initial salvation message, their wisdom
is shallow and lacks God's power and is palatable at first because it
avoids the cross, (quite an obvious fact to me), and it is natural that
everyone would rather an easier way of it. But it is a difficult row we
are to hoe and there's just no getting around it. And just because
people are getting saved and adhering doesn't mean that the world church
is above any sort of collective sin. God will save someone through the
JW's if He wants to, so do we say that JW is of God? That is my point.
(I hope you said "no").
The world church loves to cash in on God's gifts and freedom and almost
everyone is blind to it. I am not. Is it ego to say that? No. Why is it
therefore so out of the question that I may see something that millions
of people, some quite sharper than I, don't? It is because I attempted
fellowship in churches and found that I didn't mix and never could bring
myself to swallow what everyone else was. I see these things because God
has shown me them and has juxtaposed the collective weakness, sin, and
sickness of the world church to it as a proof. The fact that these
church christians believe heartily in what they are doing does not
diminish their culpability and that they will still be shown their error
at judgment. God can't be put over a barrel, if He has said that He
doesn't accept something, then He just won't be swayed by anyone's
fervent piety to do so. If I were to have to give an opinion about what
will happen, I will say that there are those that have a real love for
God because they see that they were bought out of their sin by Jesus and
would have been without a chance to avoid eternal damnation, and they
will be accepted into God's kingdom. But their works and witness will
have been compromised by worldly influences and will be burned up. I see
it, (our hearts, souls, christian life), as quite fluid, like various
color paints being mixed but not blending together, swirling, as it
were. So just because God lets churches prosper, He does so by
concession to satisfy His purpose, so it is not a stamp therefore of His
unconditional approval.
Something became much clearer to me in the course of our discussions
and it is quite elusive, (maybe only to me), and may be at the core of
our not connecting. And I am truly regretful that I didn't see it before
and say it: Where I said was that we are the fruits of ST; rather I
should have said that we are the fruits of that body, the Forever
Family/Church of Bible Understanding. And that the gifts He gave us were
real and full of God's power and authority. Believe me, I have trouble
reconciling ST's behavior and saying that we had something very special.
Yet I recognized what I saw and saw what I saw. But the answer to that
dilemma is that God dealt with us on His own and blessed our devotion
and depth of purpose, ST really wasn't in the picture to a huge amount,
not in the day to day. A lot of the understanding we were given came
from each other and our experience gained while witnessing or reading
the Bible. That is to say, WE knew what we were doing for God and He saw
our devotion and rewarded us accordingly.
But regardless, we most certainly weren't into games and it makes me
sad to see you want to mock and throw what you had away, as if to
diminish the fact that the world is very much into games of the most
ruthless and desperate nature. Do you really think that what we saw
wasn't true? Or an exaggeration? Don't you see how we really had no
place in our hearts for the games and were hip and humble to our own
propensity to fall into them as well if we weren't vigilant? But it
seems to me that you and most everyone else don't want to hold these
things dear for fear of falling into the same error as ST. But it
doesn't have to be so! We in the trip boxes had that without the
bashing, I think that God wanted me to be "sentenced" to them in order
for me to see that fact. (He took such good care of me!) You also want
to believe that all are up front and honest. This is a fine attitude for
a talk show host but not for a believing Christian responsible for other
people's lives. We were saved out of sin and we in our flesh are still
encumbered by its grip to varying degrees. While it is not proper to
view one another with a jaundiced eye, a la COBU, it is not proper to
play the fool either. I form my view after I have had time to read and
digest what people write. The ear tastes words as the palate tastes
food. Just like Satan, ST put his own english on what would normally be
a correct thing to do, (which is key to what made opposing him such a
daunting prospect). But there is a time and manner for doing all of
these things.
The only value I see in going to a bible college is to get a thorough
exposure to and working knowledge of the Bible and to learn the ancient
languages. Other than that, I see it just enabling one to fight further
behind enemy lines and witness to people who are entrenched into the
world's philosophies. College degrees are not of God. They are outward
symbols of man's vanity and the pride of life. So if God is not
impressed, I'm not impressed. And if I see that man is impressed by
something, I will make doubly sure I don't esteem it. I think you have
fallen into this error of principle. The end never justifies the means
as a necessary succession. The unsaved only get saved through scripture
if they are already open to the Holy Spirit, (remember it is the Spirit
that is the first witness and the scripture bears witness to Him. If you
can't demonstrate God's power in your life you better not witness!)
Otherwise there is only heated semanticism. The obstinate will get saved
by demonstration of God's power and authority, most clearly through
Jesus' power to remove sin from our lives, behavior, and hearts. This is
where the world church falls flat; because compromise has weakened it to
the flesh, the world sees no difference between Christianity and any
other belief - there is no example. That particular power is the proof
that is clincher to those who are genuinely skeptical. Let's face it,
even Jesus could not, nor would not, change people's wills who were set
on sin.
I have no problem listing you names and my reasons for reading what
some say with a wary eye. Not all are indictments, I am just listing my
impressions about those on this list and what I look for:

Nancy Walijeski: I flew down and visited her and Pete in December. We
had a nice visit but it was a humanly nice trip. (I was still very weak
and held by sin). Nancy has since told me that she questions my personal
witness to a supernatural act of God that occurred in 78. (This event I
would rather you called me and I told to you directly). On another
occasion she also told me on an IM that she had a really good Bible
study about UFO's one Sunday.(!) My own appraisal of Nancy is that she
is backpedaling furiously to distance herself from her own participation
in the grinding of the poors' faces while she was one of the heavies in
the latter COBU and she has sought refuge in the world church because it
is the only place she can. She has a way of arguing with you and making
it look like she is not. She says she questions my walk with God and
whether what I witnessed was of God. (Please call me: 203-878-9689 after
9 tonight, you should hear what I want to tell you). To me, it is
indicative that she didn't use her name but her husband's instead when
she wrote to "confute" me, using the irrational statement; "Chris, you
were hardly there, how did you know what was going on?", or like that.
Absurd. Absurdity born of desperation.

Dave Paradis: I knew Dave in the fellowships and he was always an
outsider. He always had his own agenda. He was never free from the world
and always saw it as a haven. I see him as one of the cleverer worldly
christians and has made his own way quite effectively. You and many
others are quite impressed with his eloquence but I am not. He reminds
me of a Mormon. Real nice guy, but looking to be the christian man here,
as if Jesus died and rose so we can be prosperous and erudite. He also
really believes in what he is doing. At the right time I will tell him
what I see. He sees any kind of correction as bad and has an unrealistic
view of "Jesus' love".

Tom Pierron: I am in frequent correspondence with Tom. He desires
"peace" at any cost and I have told him so. He lacks courage in dealing
with sin and it will be his downfall if he is not careful or God doesn't
protect him. He is quite gunshy from his experience in COBU and refuses
to participate in anything remotely resembling confrontation. His
writing is indicative of someone beset by self doubt and indecision. I
am concerned for him, I pray that God protects him because he is the one
who sticks out the most in my mind as vulnerable to sin. He, I, Bill
Gall, Charlie Ramirez, and Mike Pappie worked in the world together back
in 76 and there is a personal connection between us.

Nancy Coogan: Nancy is a sister who believes in God's power and is not
ashamed of it nor of proclaiming it to everyone. She was the only one
that I can remember that submitted anything that resembled it on the
website. She was off by lightyears with that Lent thing but I have since
told her in a letter that it seems that she was less into it than many
who wrote later defending Lent. I was really shocked by that Lent thing
coming from her and told her that as well. But here again is an example
of the world church and its compromise with the flesh influencing
someone who I consider of God. It is an insidious and dangerous serpent.
If Nancy can be influenced, than who can't be?
 

Mike Montoya: You obviously believe in Jesus. But you are ignoring the
gifts that we were given to us by God because ST twisted them into
terror tactics, and you are not seeing their intrinsic value and
necessity. You are throwing the Good out with the Bad because you either
can't or won't take the time to distinguish. Your knee-jerk reaction is
reflected in your demonstrated bitterness towards ST and blind abhorrence
of anything that sounds anything like what he used to work us over with.
In its place, you've replaced it with the watered down and compromised
tenets of "churchianity", Bible colleges, and "christian lore". These
have no power, only making the follower of these weak principles
appealing to the world, regardless of their plausibility and the
erudition of their proponents. If the "weeds" were obvious than
preventing them from springing up and choking would be an easy chore.
Were that our walk was so simple! No, these weeds are not easy to spot
and prune if one lets one's guard down. If the lies from the enemy
weren't plausible, than what Christian in his right mind would start
believing them? And if the enemy can't get us to out and out backslide,
he will attempt to render us ineffective in any way he can through
plausible worldly wisdom.

Many others write things which I see as weak and it is a sign to me
that many are being deluded into thinking that everything were learned
was wrong and are now looking for spiritual direction from the world
church. They don't need to be identified because I'm not looking to bash
and beat. I am saying what I'm saying because I see others in danger.
Dave and Nancy W. have an agenda. The others are either misled or weak.
The world church does say helpful and true things but they are marked
by a lack of appreciation for the deeper knowledge of God and of the
manipulations of the flesh. They only go so far. And to say that
"Everything church christians say is wrong!" also completely misses the
mark. No, what they say is true but only helps up to a certain point.
Eventually that kind of help falls short when the mature manifestations
of sin rise up in us.
I am exhausted trying to tell you what I see. I really want you to call
me tonight because I would like to tell you about what I have seen and
why it is important for you to know about them. I would call you if I
could find your number, just so you know that I'm not being mysterious
or some kind of contrived nonsense. Please give it to me when we talk.
Chris