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What We Believe

Additional statement of beliefs


No mater what I write here, I'll offend someone. - I'll be too liberal for the conservatives. I'll be too conservative and restrictive for the moderates. - I think I'm a tolerant ultraconservative.

I believe the Bible is without error, but in translating between languages, a word and thought can be said in several ways. I asked the French teacher at school to translate "sweetheart" and she said there wasn't an exact word but rather several words with close meanings. Hmmm.
I think the earth was created by God in six literal earth-days about 6,000 years ago. If you believe different, neither of us were there and we
might interesting discussion over scientific evidences. - I think Jonah was swallowed by a real "fish," but if you don't and think the purpose is the principle in the story about running from God and obeying God, well, I also think that point is more important that arguing about the fish. - I will tolerate and discuss a broad number of things. A number of things are non-negotiable: Jesus is God, the Trinity, virgin born, perfect, sacrificial death for my and your sin, He rose from the grave, is coming again, and is the ONLY way to Heaven.
We are more interested in proclaiming the Gospel and encouraging people to live a lifestyle pleasing to God than to get tangled in an argument about whether we should dunk or sprinkle or which translation to read. - Many Kids are on a road to Hell, they are making choices that are literally ruining their lives and their health and they aren't interested in or need an argument about which translation is the only true one, or an argument about whether Jonah was swallowed by a real fish or just how deep the water has to be to be a "real" baptism. In the words of a friend years ago who would work with kids at the jail, when they side-tracked into all sorts of discussions, his reply was, "That can be an interesting discussion, but is it a point of salvation?" I got into a discussion in the line in Wendy's one day and this person insisted that you had to be baptized, immersed,dunked, to be saved. My initial reply was that the thief on the cross next to Jesus wasn't baptized and John 3:16 doesn't say "and be baptized.'' His next reply was that once Jesus died, the rules changed. If you believe and are saved by your belief and faith and God's grace, then you will want to follow His teachings and expectations. You will probably want to get involved in a church. You will want to make a public statement of identification with Jesus ... and one of those is baptism. The baptising isn't what saves you.


I got into a discussion once over the KJV being the "only true preserved" Bible. They cited Acts 8:37 that was left out of the NIV and that we are not to add or subtract from the Bible. So I started doing some research (I'm that kind). I discovered that the verse "left out of the NIV" actually "is not found in the oldest Greek texts. It was added to [the KJV] ... and reflects the ... practice of baptizing men immediately upon confession of faith in Jesus," a practice of the church in and before the 1600s and the translators wanted to make the point clear. (That is according to the Wycliffe Bible Commentary, a pretty reputable group who's mission is translating the Bible into languages and then printing it.) Neither way changes the Gospel in my reading. To me, it isn't a point worth making a division over. - Now when someone wants to make a point that God is opposed to marriage, or Jesus isn't deity, or He wasn't raised from the dead, then I think we have a point that needs serious discussion because we VERY DEFINITELY have a SERIOUS difference of theology.


I like a simple faith. Jesus said there were really only two foundational commandments: Love God with all your heart and mind and soul. And love your neighbor. All the law and rules for Godly living hang on these two pillars. (see Matthew 22:36-40 and Mark 12:28-31) - John 3:16 says: "whosoever believes in him (Jesus) shall be saved." It doesn't say, "believes in him and ___, and ___, and ___ and then you shall be saved" or "might be saved."


It's not about rules and a religion; it's about a relationship with God through Jesus.


There are basic tenants of Christianity: Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit in Mary, a virgin. He lived a sin-less life; was crucified; died a sacrificial death to pay for our sins; was raised from the dead on the third day; ascended into Heaven and lives today as part of the triune God, as He was before the foundations of the Earth and universe He created. He said He was THE way, THE truth, and the only way to the Father, not ONE OF the ways. So, yes, Christianity is an "exclusive, intolerant" mindset.


Personally, I was raised a Baptist, so I think that baptism is by immersion. But, as my friend would say, "That's not a point of salvation. And we can discuss those points. But let's focus on a commitment to Jesus as Savior first." Let's not major on minors. I believe that baptism FOLLOWS an acceptance of Jesus as Savior ("believer''s baptism"). THAT is the more important point and focus. The depth or quantity of water is secondary, and as I said above, the "thief on the next cross" wasn't baptized at all and Jesus told him that he would be with Him in Paradise that day. - So I think we need to "major on the majors" and NOT "major on the minors."

Becoming a Christian: A-B-C

A - Admit that you''re a sinner. You just can''t meet God''s standard. The Bible says, "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God." Romans 3:23 (also see 1 John 1:8).

B - Believe that Jesus was the Son of God and died in your place, took the punishment for you.  The Bible says, "For God so loved the world (that includes you) that he gave His only begotten son (that''s Jesus) that whosoever (that''s you again) believes in Him should not perish (that''s saved from eternal death, Hell) but have eternal life (given eternal life with God, that''s "salvation" or to "be saved")." John 3:16

C - Confess your sin to God. - The Bible says, "If we confess (own up to) our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleans us..." 1John 1:9.

Want Jesus in your life? Pray this prayer: "Lord Jesus, I confess to You my sin and need to be saved. I turn away from my old sin and place my trust and faith in You as the only way to be saved." Now contact your pastor, or contact us at 1-336-674-7564 or, and say, "I just asked Jesus to be my Lord."


Who is this and why did I start writing the C&WC?


Hmmm. Tell you about myself, huh. - I was born at a very young age ... I'll fast-forward and only hit a few spots. - I Grew up on the east side of Detroit, Michigan and we moved to a suburb in ''56. When I was 14 years old, I remember having a white-knuckle grip on the rail in front of the pew at an evangelist meeting at Grosse Pointe Baptist Church and deciding finally that I needed to let go of the rail and walk to the front of the church, and in Baptist tradition style, take a public stand saying I believe Jesus died for ME and I accept His sacrifice for ME, and accept Him as my Savior and the only way to Heaven. There was nothing spectacular like giving up drinking or drugs or whatever.


I've written a story called "Prince Charming and Thirsty Camels" about how Marie and my meeting follows the story of Rebecca and Isaac in Genesis 24.


Marie and I and kids moved from Michigan to North Carolina in 1985. We prayed about making a change of career for about a year. Then while on a "vacation-exploration" trip I was offered a job and we bought a house in Greensboro, North Carolina. We returned home and sold our business, quit my teaching job, and prepared to move to the South. I say, "In my mid-life crisis I changed everything except the wife, kids, and dog."


Through the years I have served as a deacon in the church for several terms, both in Michigan and in North Carolina. Taught Sunday School, chaporoned youth trips, lots of stuff. In 2002, in connection with this growing ministry, Southeast Baptist Church in Greensboro "Licensed me to preach."


When my own two boys were in college, I started writing a very crude "news letter" as an excuse to put something in their mailbox. I would usually add just a sentence or two written on their copy, from Dad to son. When they had graduated, I stopped doing that.


Summer of 1998 - I was a chaperone with the youth group for a week at M-Fuge, a ministry based summer program created by the Southern Baptist Convention. During the week. I had this teenage girl as part of the crew in my van all week. One day she comes up front and says, "I have to give a talk to my youth group tonight about dating and I can't think of anything to say. Can you give me an idea?"  Now this girl talked constantly. I think I heard her say once, "I can't think of anything to say, so I'll just keep talking until I think of something." Anyway, I said, "How about 'Every date is a potential mate'."  "Oh. That's good. I need to write that down." "How about 'The person you're going out with, do they have character or are they a character?'" "Ooo. That's good, too. Thanks for the ideas." - On the way home, God moved EVERYONE into the other vans and I was alone in my van, headed up I-95 approaching Jacksonville, FL. I tuned in a Christian talk show on the radio. The guest said one line that struck me: "Is there a line kids shouldn't cross? And is anybody telling them?" I decided that was intended for me to hear. I decided that I would start writing to kids again, and this time about serious issues.


When I got home I collected every Sunday School roster and old soccer team roster I could find. I figured the target needed to be college students. We mailed out 79 copies of those first issues with reply cards if they were interested in continuing to get the "letter." Almost half, 37, replied. That's where this started. Included in the first issues were the articles "Every date is a potential mate" and "Do they have character or are they a character?" We have since rewritten and reprinted those articles. We thought "If this is what God wants me to do, He'll bless this, and... this could grow to ... gee ... maybe a hundred students."


A few high school students started requesting to get the C&WC. We decided that since we talk about sex, dating, date-rape, and other issues ... someone said to me, "Rich you're not their parent. Maybe some don't want you to talk to their kids about that stuff. You had better ask the parents for permission before you send it to younger kids." So we added the "If you're under 18..." line on the subscription request form.


It was in 2002 that our mailing list had grown to around 250. I felt God saying, 'Rich, you've shown that kids want this. You've been spreading it around and have been adding one here, two there. You're a math-man. Instead of adding, let me show you multiplication. Give the C&WC away. It's not yours, it's My project. Try these numbers: if 200 churches had 50 kids on a mailing list either initially or eventually - and remember you started with 37 and it is now at 250 - 200 times 50 is 10,000. That's 100 times the 100 you thought you'd probably never reach."


And so now in the Spring of 2005, the C&WC goes to 370 individuals, another hundred go into packets for businesses that put 3 to 5 copies out for their clients, a couple churches that only need a very small quantity, and a couple churches that get a super clean copy for duplication. Plus 30 more churches that get the emailed Acrobat file to print and make their own copies.


How far does this go? From East to West, right now it streaches 16 time zones. - 2 churches/pastors and a young person in Australia; a young person working in the Peace Corps in South Africa, a church youth leader in Berlin Germany, from California to New Hampshire from Key West to Michigan, a young person raising support to return to Mozambique to work with a clinic for children, another on her way to Romania for a year to work with children and women there. With international mail being both expensive and unreliable, we email to the distant readers.


We have been doing an e-devotional with a small group. You can try us if you like by emailing and asking for a "2 week trial."

Growing ... Partner with us


We have said we want to place articles in purchased space in student newspapers. This past year we bought space in a high school paper and had one student mention reading the piece and no one responded to the reference to the C&WC. That didn't seem to work. There was little indication that anyone saw it or read it. We'd like to try a few college papers to reach a few students for the C&WC letters.  A program of articles in college papers would cost $50-75 for each insertion for $750-1,000 for the school year for each college paper. - - - Hmmm. Now that we have this website, maybe a smaller space that advertises an article here, direct them to the website to read it. That will still cost about $500 per campus.


The long-range vision? Maybe God will make this a full-time ministry. That would be quite a budget, about $70,000 a year. That's still less than 1/3 of what the SBC told me it takes to keep a f-t missionary on the field.


As the C&WM has grown, and the number of people touched has grown, the expenses have grown, ... and the number of people who send financial support has grown to match. This is God's project, not mine, because it is multiple times bigger than I thought it would ever reach. I am just thrilled that He chose to use ME to do this. You can be part of the Crimson & White Ministry, too. Blackabee says, 'Find where God is working and join Him.' I think God is working and using Crimson & White Ministries.


How can you partner with us in ministering to and encouraging students?

We need prayer partners,

we need connections with students,

     (Show them a copy or recommend us sending two sample issues to someone you know),

we need people who want to do something for the students in their church,

     (See the Tool for your group page) - Can you push the green button on the copier?

we need information on who to contact at student newspapers,

we need money to pay the printing, paper, and postage bills, (about $300 per issue)

we need money to pay for sending sample packets and information to churches,

we need money to buy books and CDs to send to students, ($900 last year)
we need money to pay for CampusLife magazine that we buy for students, ($150 a year)

we need money to maintain the computer and occasional upgrades, (about $300 last year)

we need money to pay for internet services, connection, website, etc., ($1,000 a year)
it cost $750 just for the fee to set up our display at the Promise Keepers conference
we plan on needing money to pay for space in campus newspapers. ($500-$1000/yr/campus)
Let us know how YOU would like to partner with us in reaching and encouraging commitment to Jesus and the Christian life.

Crimson & White Ministires
4401 Wild Oak Lane
Greensboro, NC 27406
(336) 674-7564

All content ?Crimson & White Ministries 2006


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