Back in summer of 2014, I first met Pastor Andrew Rappaport. My friend and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Black Belt, Pastor Frank Mullis reached out to one of his friends and mentors from Jackson, New Jersey (StrivingForEternity.org) and asked Andrew to visit me.
I was spiritually lost and extremely physically and emotionally sick. I sat with Andrew at a local diner for nearly 4 hours, deep down inside, I was broken and full of new age nonsense and a massively corrupted concept of the Gospel.
He gracefully answered every question with patience, respectfully corrected me with scripture in loving kindness and presented the gospel of Jesus Christ. When I sputtered off my confused and depraved concept of God, he patiently showed me specifically where I wrong in my ways, how I had created a false god and showed me His way and who God truly is.
Soon thereafter, I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior and Andrew recommended I find a local church to attend for fellowship, gave me a John MacArthur study bible and we’ve stayed in touch ever since. Striving For Eternity tours America teaching in churches and major conferences throughout the nation including “New Jersey Fire”, “Ohio Fire”, as well as many other in-church training conferences.
Since then, he’s invited my family in I to his home, to conferences nationwide and even to train Jiu Jitsu with him at Dante Rivera’s Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy in Jackson, New Jersey. Dante and I have been friends for nearly 20 years and he is a UFC and Ultimate Fighter television show participant.
I didn’t realize he was a well-known respected theologian who teaches worldwide and has written tons of books and thorough bible-based courses to help equip the saints. He showed me the true “agape” love of Christ and displayed the fruit of the Spirit before I truly ever knew what it was.
He has also helped guide several writing projects and Christian outreach ministry projects, books including “Meditate With Me”: The Pathway Home, and several random audiobooks, music projects and radio programs.
I’ve been blessed to have such a great friend who loves God so much, he dedicated his whole life and teaches other to become disciple and how to truly glorify God and guiding many to Christ along the way. I’m greatly appreciative to Andrew, Frank, my family and brothers and sisters who supported me along the way from The Chapel.
Andrew also offers nearly the first two years of seminary school knowledge with the world absolutely for free. He is equipping the saints, reaching the lost and evangelizing the religiously confused everywhere he goes. I feel very blessed to call him my friend and we could ALL learn a lot from the legacy of videos he’s presented at: http://StrivingForEternity.org
Christians use lots of quotes. Pastors use them in their sermons constantly. Writers illustrate their points with them. Nothing wrong with that. They are quite helpful and encouraging in making a point. Except when the quote has no basis in fact. We as evangelicals who claim we are committed to truth are certainly good at spreading falsehood, even if unintentionally. We can do better. One very clever and popular quote we often knock around among ourselves is . . .
“Preach the Gospel at all times. Use words if necessary.”
– St. Francis of Assisi
(Note: He never actually said this)
It is always attributed to St. Francis of Assisi, founder of the Franciscan Order and is intended to say that proclaiming the Gospel by example is more virtuous than actually proclaiming with voice. It is a quote that has often annoyed me because it seems to create a useless contrast between speech and action. Besides, the spirit behind it can be a little arrogant, hinting that those who “practice the Gospel” are more faithful to the faith than those who preach it. But here’s the fact: Our good Francis never said such a thing. None of his disciples, early or later biographers have these words coming from his mouth. It doesn’t show up in any of his writings. Not even close really. The closest comes from his Rule of 1221, Chapter XII (12) on how the Franciscans should practice their preaching which states, “No brother should preach contrary to the form and regulations of the Holy Church nor unless he has been permitted by his minister…All the Friars …should preach by their deeds.”
Essentially, it’s saying, “make sure your deeds match your words”. While there’s a nice and good sentiment in the statement—be sure you live out the grace and truth of the Gospel—the notion as it is typically presented is neither practical, nor faithful to the Gospel of Christ. It does not even align with St. Francis’ own practice. His first biographer, Thomas of Celeno, writing just three years after Francis’ death, quotes him instructing his co-workers in the Gospel thusly, “The preacher must first draw from secret prayers what he will later pour out in holy sermons; he must first grow hot within before he speaks words that are in themselves cold.”
Mark Galli, senior editor at Christianity Today, wrote a book on Francis as well as a clarifying brief article on the myth of this quote. He explains that Francis was quite a preacher, actually more along the lines of Jonathan Edwards than most of those who misquote him would like to think. Galli quotes Thomas’ biography, “His words were neither hollow nor ridiculous, but filled with the power of the Holy Spirit, penetrating the marrow of the heart, so that listeners were turned to great amazement.”
Our man clearly spent a great deal of time using his words when he preached, “sometimes preaching in up to five villages a day, often outdoors. In the country, Francis often spoke from a bale of straw or a granary doorway. In town, he would climb on a box or up steps in a public building. He preached to . . . any who gathered to hear the strange but fiery little preacher from Assisi.” He was sometimes so animated and passionate in his delivery that “his feet moved as if he were dancing.”
Pastor, Theologian, and Author Andrew Rappaport of StrivingForEternity.org added, “In his later life, Francis detached from society becoming hermit-like totally secluded from ALL creatures, not preaching the gospel with words or actions, far apart from from the lost, the suffering, the depressed, oppressed, the sick and people like us, the sinners. This is in total in opposition of what Jesus commanded us into do Matthew Chapter 28, Verses 16-20.”
Writer, Duane Liftin adds, “It’s simply impossible to preach the Gospel without words. The Gospel is inherently verbal, and preaching the Gospel is inherently verbal behavior.” And the “deed” proclamation of the Gospel is not biblical either.
Paul asks the Church at Rome (Romans 10:14), “How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher?” So next time you hear one of your brothers or sisters in Christ use this quote to encourage or challenge you in your labors for our faith, gently guide them from the land of misinformation and make believe into Biblical truth with LOVING KINDNESS standing on the Word of God always righteously and confidently.
Finally, beware of false teachers or wolves in sheep’s clothing who quote words of fallen men more than the incorruptible Word of God. We must remember His word never changes, His Word is enough, His grace is sufficient and our deeds will never outweigh unrepented sin or earn our way into heaven. THANK GOD, we are SAVED BY GRACE ALONE through FAITH ALONE in CHRIST JESUS.
Don’t know Jesus as your Personal Lord and Savior? Please spend 10 minutes to find peace with God:
5 out of 5 doctors agree that 10 of 10 people will die. Did you know your soul is immortal? Where will YOU spend eternity? Heaven or hell? Please listen, pray and share. Once you understand that WE are ALL sinners who fall short of the glory of God, we must turn to the Lord Jesus Christ for forgiveness by repenting of OUR sins and trust in Him alone. Profess Jesus as your savior.
We are very excited to have worked with world renown hip hop music producer, Tony Wray of Writehand Productions to produce “That’s My King” for our #GreatCommission Christian Outreach, spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ to all nations and to all creatures (Matthew 28:19).
“That’s My King” Hip Hop Soul Remix of “Seven Way King” Sermon by Pastor Dr. S.M. Lockridge – Single and Ringtone Produced by Tony Wray of Writehand Productions and Brian Cimins
JESUS, That’s my King!! Please share this video if you believe Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior. We are commanded to proclaim and glorify Him to ALL. Remember, we are ALL sinners in desperate need of a Savior.
If you do not know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior…please know that we ALL fall short of the glory of God, we are all sinners in the eyes of a just and sovereign God and in desperate need of a savior. Without Him, we are on the path to eternal destruction, literally a lake of fire. We must repent for our sins (turn away) and trust in Jesus Christ alone. 2,000 years ago, Jesus came down from heaven to die for our sins, to pay the eternal price of sin (death) to give us eternal life. 150,000 people die each day, only God knows when you will leave this earth. Don’t wait until tomorrow, it could be eternity without life. Please accept Jesus Christ today, repent and trust in Him alone and follow Him.
Dr. Charles Livingstone Allen was born June 24, 1913 and died August 30, 2005. He wrote more than 40 books ministering to the depressed, anxious, forgotten, abandoned and truly lost souls to guide them to Jesus Christ. He was born in Newborn, Ga., son of Rev. J.R. Allen and Lula Franklin Allen, and grew up in a succession of Methodist parsonages with six brothers and sisters.
Dr. Allen was a graduate of Young Harris College, Wofford College, and The Candler School of Theology of Emory University. He was a member or Phi Beta Kappa, and was awarded honorary degrees from six colleges and universities. While living in Georgia, he served churches in Sylvan Hills, Blue Ridge, Acworth, Douglasville, Thompson, and Atlanta. During his twelve year ministry at Grace Methodist Church in Atlanta, it became the largest Methodist church in the Southeast. He also wrote a daily column for the Atlanta Constitution.
In 1960, Dr. Allen moved to Texas to serve First Methodist Church, in downtown Houston. He served there for 23 years, and during that time it became the largest Methodist Church in America. His service was televised every Sunday morning, and he was a featured columnist with the Houston Chronicle.
Dr. Allen preached all over the United States, and on all five continents of the world. He was the author of over forty books, including God’s Psychiatry, which has sold nearly two million copies worldwide.
He served on many boards and agencies of the church including the Methodist Hospital. In his years at First Methodist, Dr. Allen conducted over thirty tours to the Holy Land. Dr. Allen was preceded in death by his wife, Leila Haynes Allen and his son, John Franklin Allen.
He is survived by his son, Charles Allen Jr. and his wife Lorraine Lee Allen of Bluffton, South Carolina, his daughter-in-law, Ann Woolsey Allen of Schulenberg, Texas, and his daughter, Mary Jane Allen Miller and her husband, Charles Miller of Houston. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and six great grandchildren. Those who heard him preach were blessed with a simple, honest message of love and encouragement. He brought a host of souls to the Lord, and is in fellowship with them today. He is buried in Forest Park Westheimer Cemetery.
His books helped guide many lost souls to Jesus Christ during his ministry and nearly twenty million books sold worldwide. In 2017, together with Revell Publisher and Brian Cimins, Founder of Grapplers Quest and Fight Expo, Author of “Hope Man”, “Meditate with Me”, and “God’s Prescription to Cure Depression partnered together to produce the first ever audiobook of Dr. Charles Allen’s masterpiece, #1 best sell, Gods Psychiatry
Grappling With Theology Episode 15 with Matt Serra Jiu Jitsu Black Belt, Pastor Frank Mullis with Striving For Eternity Founder and Theologian, Pastor Andrew Rappaport Interview Grapplers Quest Founder, Brian Ciimins.
On this week’s episode, Frank Mullis and his guest co-host, Andrew Rappaport from Strivingforeternity.org discuss discipleship, training and being rebuked for watching the UFC. They also discuss the biblethumpingwingnut.com network and its outreach to the world. The special guest this week is Brian Cimins. He joins them to discuss his spiritual journey through his days as the president and founder of Grapplers Quest.
Finally, Questions From The Dojo, include: How to deal with an arrogant training partner, Where to get the best Sushi in NYC, OCD and Grappling and How to get your wife on the mat.
“I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me” – Philippians 4:13
For nearly the past 18 months now, I have been visiting patients through the “Faith Community Health Partnership” as a chaplain apprentice training program, which has been one of the greatest experiences and ministry opportunities of my life.
Many of the amazingly brave, men and women who’ve I’ve met have mentioned trying the “12 Steps Recovery Program” of AA, which I had never heard of before.
While reading nearly all of Dr. Charles L. Allen’s books, I came across a discontinued book which happens to mention that he was friends and advisor to one of the pastors who inspired Dr. Bob and Billy to start Alcoholics Anonymous. I was astounded and immediately compelled to record our first FREE audiobook, “12 Ways to Solve Your Problem”, while we are in the process of producing “God’s Psychiatry”for worldwide release on iTunes, Audible, Amazon and digital bookstores worldwide. Stay tuned for release – HERE…in the meantime, please enjoy this classic FREE and kindly share to help others in need.
“12 Ways to Solve Your Problem” by Dr. Charles Livingstone Allen
Description: So you think you have a problem? We ALL do. There are many different problems as there are people in this world. But, there are only twelve ways to help you solve your problem and they’re all outlined in this book. Admit you need help, look at yourself, confess your wrongdoing, Ask God for Help, think of those you’ve harmed, make amends and several other effective strategies to facing life’s greatest challenges through our faith in Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
“I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me” – Philippians 4:13
COMING SOON: “God’s Psychiatry” by Dr. Charles L. Allen and Brian Cimins Audiobook Coming Soon on iTunes, Audible, Amazon and Digital Bookstores worldwide.
Nearly 2,000,000+ physical copies of “God’s Psychiatry: Healing for Your Troubled Heart” written by Dr. Charles L. Allen were sold since published in 1953, but it was NEVER made into an audiobook…until now!
With faith in Jesus Christ, you can work miraculous changes in your life!
Discover how ancient teachings of the Bible offer timeless wisdom for a happier and healthier life today!
God’s Psychiatry shows you how to:
Acquire confidence, courage, and a new look at life
Banish fear and worry
Root out hate and suspicion
Bring out the best in yourself
Generate appreciation from your friends and coworkers
FREE AUDIOBOOK: 12 Ways to Solve Your Problem by Dr. Charles L. Allen
About the Author
Dr. Charles L. Allen (1913-2005) was the much-loved author of many books, including the bestselling God’s Psychiatry.
Charles Allen was a prominent United Methodist minister who served as pastor of Grace Methodist Church in Atlanta from 1948 to 1960 and as pastor of First United Methodist Church in Houston, Texas, from 1960 to 1983. His columns in the Atlanta Journal and Constitution and the Houston Chronicle, his radio and television ministry, and his numerous books brought him national recognition.
Dr. Charles Livingstone Allen was born in Newborn in 1913, the sixth of eight children, to Lulu Franklin and John Robert Allen. Brought up in a devout Methodist home, he followed his father into the ministry and was educated at Young Harris College (1930-32), Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina (1932-34), and Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta (1933-37). Admitted on a trial basis to the North Georgia Conference in 1933, he was ordained a deacon in 1935 and an elder in 1937. From 1933 to 1948 he served appointments in Douglasville and Thomson, among others. Leila Jane Haynes of Clermont became his wife in 1934. They had three children: Charles, Franklin, and Mary Jane.
The hallmark of Allen’s ministry was “pastoral preaching” in a lucid and transparent style. In 1947 he founded Pulpit Preaching, a homiletical journal. It merged with Pulpit Digest in 1972 to form The New Pulpit Digest (renamed Pulpit Digest in 1978). Allen remained a contributor until 1989. His items, which began in Georgia’s Wesleyan Christian Advocate in 1947, were a prelude to the column he wrote for the Atlanta Journal, beginning in 1949, and for the Atlanta Constitution, beginning in 1952.
Dr. Allen wrote Roads to Radiant Living (1951), his first book, was followed by God’s Psychiatry (1953), which became a best-seller (nearly 2 million copies sold worldwide). The Touch of the Master’s Hand (1956), All Things Are Possible through Prayer (1958), The Miracle of Love (1972), and Meet the Methodists (1986) are other examples of his writings. By 1995 Allen had written or edited more than fifty books, which have sold well over 8 million copies.
Dr. Allen passed away in Houston on August 30, 2005, but his legacy of teachings will live on and guide many suffering souls to Jesus Christ for the healing they seek for many decades to come.
About the Narrator and Audiobook Team Leader:
Brian John Cimins (born September 23, 1976 in Wayne, New Jersey) was the founder of America’s original grappling competition, Grapplers Quest and wrote and produced “More Was Never Enough” and the musical audiobook and bible based meditation program called “God’s Prescription to Cure Depression” (http://BibleBasedMeditation) as an audiobook companion to Dr. Allen’s “God’s Psychiatry” in 2016 with a “Morgan Freeman” impersonation voice-over collection which has been downloaded and listened to more than 100,000,000 on YouTube and song remixes.
In a wonderful testimony with all the glory going to God, Cimins acquired the audiobook rights to “God’s Psychiatry” and is currently producing the full 160-page book as an 1st time released audiobook for release later this summer on Audible, iTunes and Amazon Audiobooks. Stay tuned for links and sample existing works here.
“Parents Forget”, an adaptation of FATHER FORGETS by W. Livingston Larned from How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
Please subscribe for more free videos like “Parents Forget”, an adaptation of FATHER FORGETS by W. Livingston Larned from How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie condensed on https://briancimins.wordpress.com (from Readers Digest)
Listen, son: I am saying this as you lie asleep, one little paw crumpled under your cheek and the blond curls stickily wet on your damp forehead. I have stolen into your room alone. Just a few minutes ago, as I sat reading my paper in the library, a stifling wave of remorse swept over me. Guiltily I came to your bedside.
There are the things I was thinking, son: I had been cross to you. I scolded you as you were dressing for school because you gave your face merely a dab with a towel. I took you to task for not cleaning your shoes. I called out angrily when you threw some of your things on the floor.
At breakfast I found fault, too. You spilled things. You gulped down your food. You put your elbows on the table. You spread butter too thick on your bread. And as you started off to play and I made for my train, you turned and waved a hand and called, “Goodbye, Daddy!” and I frowned, and said in reply, “Hold your shoulders back!”
Then it began all over again in the late afternoon. As I came up the road I spied you, down on your knees, playing marbles. There were holes in your stockings. I humiliated you before your boyfriends by marching you ahead of me to the house. Stockings were expensive-and if you had to buy them you would be more careful! Imagine that, son, from a father!
Do you remember, later, when I was reading in the library, how you came in timidly, with a sort of hurt look in your eyes? When I glanced up over my paper, impatient at the interruption, you hesitated at the door. “What is it you want?” I snapped.
You said nothing, but ran across in one tempestuous plunge, and threw your arms around my neck and kissed me, and your small arms tightened with an affection that God had set blooming in your heart and which even neglect could not wither. And then you were gone, pattering up the stairs.
Well, son, it was shortly afterwards that my paper slipped from my hands and a terrible sickening fear came over me. What has habit been doing to me? The habit of finding fault, of reprimanding-this was my reward to you for being a boy. It was not that I did not love you; it was that I expected too much of youth. I was measuring you by the yardstick of my own years.
And there was so much that was good and fine and true in your character. The little heart of you was as big as the dawn itself over the wide hills. This was shown by your spontaneous impulse to rush in and kiss me good night. Nothing else matters tonight, son. I have come to your bedside in the darkness, and I have knelt there, ashamed!
It is feeble atonement; I know you would not understand these things if I told them to you during your waking hours. But tomorrow I will be a real daddy! I will chum with you, and suffer when you suffer, and laugh when you laugh. I will bite my tongue when impatient words come. I will keep saying as if it were a ritual: “He is nothing but a boy-a little boy!”
I am afraid I have visualized you as a man. Yet as I see you now, son, crumpled and weary in your cot, I see that you are still a baby. Yesterday you were in your mother’s arms, your head on her shoulder. I have asked too much, too much, yet given too little of myself. Promise me, as I teach you to have the manners of a man, that you will remind me how to have the loving spirit of a child.
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