Participants: Karen Thomas, Joseph Warren
Series Code: IAA
Program Code: IAA000032
00:29 Welcome to another edition of Issues and Answers.
00:32 It's a blessing to have you join us today for our program.
00:34 We're going to be doing a
00:36 program that's directed toward
00:39 the men in our lives or for men
00:41 who are actually watching the program. Our guest today is
00:44 Dr. Joseph Warren and I have a brochure here that tells about
00:47 his ministry which is Spring Hope Ministries.
00:51 Dr. Joseph Warren has served as associate professor of English
00:55 at Andrews University, a Christian university, since
01:00 1976. In addition to his full time academic duties he has
01:04 served his local church as Bible teacher, family life coordinator
01:08 youth leader, men's ministry leader and deacon. Currently
01:12 he is men's ministry coordinator for the Lake Region Conference
01:15 of Seventh-day Adventists. Dr. Warren is also an expert in
01:19 conflict resolution, marital reconciliation and creative
01:22 problem solving. He holds advanced degrees from the Ohio
01:26 State University and a minor in religion from Oakwood College
01:29 in Huntsville, Alabama. Welcome Dr. Warren to our program.
01:32 Thank you Karen. It's a pleasure to be here today.
01:35 So Dr. Warren, what will we be talking about today?
01:38 We would first invite the Holy
01:39 Spirit then we'll get into it.
01:40 Formally we say, Holy Spirit
01:42 with hands raised you are
01:44 welcome in this place. Let the
01:45 words we speak reflect your
01:46 character and the attributes of the Lord Jesus Christ toward all
01:50 men. Receive ye the Holy Spirit as Brothers is our title today.
01:53 Receive ye the Holy Spirit as Brothers. And we have a text.
01:57 Read for us please I Corinthians 9:18-23.
02:04 Share with the audience please. What is my reward then verily
02:09 that when I preach the gospel I may make the gospel of Christ
02:13 without charge that I abuse not my power in the gospel.
02:17 For though I be free from all men yet have I made myself
02:21 servant unto all that I might gain the more. And unto the Jews
02:26 I became as a Jew that I might gain the Jews to them that are
02:30 under the law as under the law that I might gain them that
02:34 are under the law. To them that are without law as without law
02:39 being not without law to God but under the law to Christ that
02:43 I might gain them that are without law. To the weak
02:46 became I as weak that I might gain the weak. I am made all
02:51 things to all men that I might by all means save some, and this
02:56 I do for the gospel's sake that I might be partaker thereof with
03:00 you. Amen. That text deals with a
03:03 very important principle of man as brother. As a male, as a man,
03:09 I have many, many roles and we're going to talk about some
03:12 of those today. One of my favorite quotes is from
03:14 Oswald Chambers and I'll share it with you: Worship and
03:17 intercession must go together. Intercession means that we rouse
03:22 ourselves up to get to the mind of Christ about the one for whom
03:28 we pray. Preaching has many a snare. Intercessory prayer has
03:33 none. I like that because I'm not a preacher, I'm just a
03:38 deacon. We have intercessory ministry in my Spring Hope
03:42 Ministries with my wife and other members of the community
03:45 there. As a matter of fact, it was a friend of my named Pastor
03:48 Samuel Thomas who started that ministry and it's still going.
03:52 And we pray for him and other people as well. The word brother
03:55 has to do with an Old Testament reciprocal relationship, the
03:59 exchange of items, concepts and ideas and the New Testament has
04:03 it to mean joint heirs of heavenly riches and it appears
04:09 319 times in the New Testament. So brotherhood is a very
04:13 important feature in the Christian witness. Now of course
04:17 the word brotherhood and sisterhood mean the same thing
04:21 in function and purpose. When the Holy Spirit moves on a
04:25 brother it has the same action on a sister, that is to obey
04:28 Christ. But one important thing I want to make in this program
04:33 as the man, as the male, I am the first to show brotherly love
04:36 and kindness. Whenever there is problem or conflict I'm the
04:41 Adam. I am to be first loving and kind and sweet and forgiving
04:44 and compassionate. That's my job first. Not that the sister
04:48 should not do it, but I should do it first. So when my wife and
04:52 I, Cynthia, are having a challenge I am the first one to
04:56 say let's pause. Let's stop. Let's ask for wisdom because
05:00 the way we are sounding there's no wisdom here. So I'm the first
05:04 one. The first role of a brother in Christ is what we
05:08 call intercessory prayer or prayer cover.
05:10 In 1 Samuel 12:23 it talks about God forbid that I should sin by
05:16 not praying for you. I never equated that with sinning.
05:20 Now where was that found again?
05:22 1 Samuel 12:23. Okay I have it. I'm catching up with you. Wow!
05:37 We can actually sin if we're not praying for someone.
05:40 Well that takes us back to the point that all prayer is a
05:44 function of the Holy Spirit. See. The language of heaven is
05:48 prayer. God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit speak
05:52 in prayer; that's the language of heaven. And that's why Satan
05:56 was put out of heaven. He did not want to speak in the same
06:00 language. Therefore, in the earth realm all prayer is moved
06:05 by God. You cannot pray unless he moves you. So when God asks
06:10 you to pray for someone, that means at that instant he wants
06:14 to do a miracle in their life and he needs your agreement,
06:19 where the two touch and agree. So when God asks you to pray for
06:23 someone, especially your enemies do good for them, be kind to
06:28 them, pray for them. We must understand that as a brother
06:32 God needs to do a miracle for my enemy and wants me to agree
06:37 with it like Christ did: Father hold this not to their charge.
06:41 So it is a sin not to engage in intercessory prayer for people,
06:45 especially those people you don't like, despise and can't
06:49 stand. That's how God operates. This morning I had breakfast in
06:54 West Frankfurt here and I asked the waitress quite frankly, Mary
06:59 is her name, Mary, I'm her brother now, never met her
07:03 before but I'm her brother. Mary what do you want God to do for
07:07 you, and don't ask for anything small. She thought about it and
07:10 I said, no Mary, make it large because God is in the big
07:15 business of doing great things. And she finally said, Joe, I
07:18 want to be out of debt. I said great, let's claim it in 30 days
07:22 I said, your prayer still is too small. Agree with me that when
07:26 you're out of debt you can bless other people. You must have more
07:31 that enough. God told Abraham I will make you a blessing to be
07:35 a blessing. So to get yourself out of debt means nothing to God
07:39 He has not yet been God. You must then be able to help
07:42 someone else with you undebtedness.
07:44 So I gave her $1 this morning.
07:46 I said, Mary, this dollar is not f or you. For any seed will meet
07:50 any need, it doesn't matter how large it is. Any seed meets any
07:55 need. Mary, do not spend this dollar. Give it away as a token
07:59 that God is going to meet your needs. And she smiled. Now what
08:04 have I done? I have covered her in prayer and I just met her
08:08 this morning. That's the role of receiving the Holy Spirit as
08:12 brother. Mary is my sister and I just met her this morning.
08:16 Let me ask you something. You know life in the city is very
08:22 busy. The city never ever sleeps day and night and for those who
08:26 are in the cities going and going and trying to get up early
08:31 to catch that long commute to work I think what I'm hearing
08:36 you say is that not only rushing out of the door for prayer and
08:41 neglecting prayer for ourselves is a neglect of ourselves but
08:44 perhaps also for someone else. Absolutely. How can a person
08:48 overcome that challenge of being so busy and rushing?
08:50 Well see we've moved away from a very narrow definition of
08:54 prayer here as brother. To sit down every morning for an hour
08:58 and pray is kind of like unrealistic, but there are so
09:03 many ways to pray based on technology. For example, that
09:07 long commute to work. Turn off the radio, put in the tape,
09:13 okay. On the bus ride to work put on the headphones. Prayer
09:19 is an attitude. Prayer is a spirit. It is Christ doing
09:24 things through you. I wish often times I could just sit down...
09:27 As a matter of fact, I came over here yesterday from Berrien
09:31 Springs, right? I prayed for about seven hours in the car.
09:35 I turned off the radio, I put on the right kind of music,
09:39 Father as I drive, under the speed limit, I want you to pray
09:43 through me with moanings and groanings that cannot be uttered
09:47 I came here refreshed because I was in his presence. In his
09:50 presence is fullness of joy, his right hand pleasures
09:53 forever more. So being able to actually stop and pray formally
09:57 is really kind of limiting. Jacob prayed out in the field on
10:02 his staff. Prayer can happen any time anywhere based on the
10:05 heart of the person praying. Dwight Nelson, my prayer partner
10:09 back in Berrien Springs, was over in New Guinea. He asked me
10:13 to pray for him. He's preaching
10:14 15 hours ahead of me or behind
10:16 me; I don't know when he's
10:18 preaching but these two hours
10:20 while I'm at this concert I opened my heart, Father, while
10:24 I'm here in an activity that was not of sin, it was a Godly
10:28 activity, would you pray through me for Dwight and 1000s of folks
10:33 are being saved. So now prayer is not that narrow. Furthermore,
10:37 let's remember Peter the world's shortest prayer, Lord Save Me.
10:42 I was here last night, I came in late and I got stuck in the mud,
10:48 ha, ha, and I said Lord save me. So prayer is much larger than
10:53 we think. The only thing that blocks prayer is an unconverted
10:57 heart or wickedness or spiritual disobedience; that's what blocks
11:02 prayer. An unconverted heart or
11:05 or spiritual wickedness or disobedience. It's deliberate,
11:09 I'm just going to go ahead and do this. That blocks the prayer.
11:12 So what can a person do who has done those things?
11:17 Repent. Quickly, every morning. I tell my wife I don't want to
11:21 talk to you until I talk to Jesus. This is in the bed.
11:25 Before I speak to her I want to speak to him. And the prayer is
11:30 very simple: Father, I offer myself to you now. Fill me with
11:35 your power and your words before I speak to my wife. Then I turn
11:39 over and speak to her and I say good morning. Having talked to
11:43 God first the way I say good morning comes across with power
11:47 and majesty and sweetness and grace and we start the day
11:51 right. That's how powerful prayer is. Also, by the way,
11:55 I've learned how to pray all night now. I know how to do
11:59 this. I did it again last night at 3ABN. I calm myself down,
12:03 I pick up the scriptures and I begin to meditate on who God is.
12:08 That's the last thing I remember I woke up 8 hours later. I wake
12:12 up singing sometimes. That means that all during the night my
12:16 spirit has been in prayer. God has been praying through me
12:20 for things I don't even know what. That's okay because I'm
12:24 his servant. So first as prayer cover, I'm a brother, I have
12:27 to pray for everybody everywhere all the time without reservation
12:30 as moved by the Spirit. Pray without ceasing. So I like to
12:35 have a life of prayer as a brother. Number two: Every
12:40 brother is to protect every sister, every female.
12:44 I'm reading a magazine here entitled New Man and it talks
12:48 about sexual purity. There are only two classes of women in the
12:54 world for me, only two, my wife and everybody else. That makes
13:00 it very simple, my wife and everybody else. Every woman
13:03 on the globe is my sister. She may be my grandma sister or my
13:10 peer sister or my daughter sister, but she's my sister.
13:14 And as brother, we get this over from 2 Samuel 13, we won't
13:18 turn there. This is Amnon and Tamar; a very sad story in the
13:22 Bible, where Absalom came and killed his brother for having
13:25 raped Tamar. But there's a very important principle there.
13:29 As a Godly man operating under the power of the Holy Spirit, I
13:34 see women in only two classifications: My wife Cynthia
13:38 is in this class. She is in that class by herself singularly
13:42 alone and there is a powerful anointing on that relationship.
13:47 And there is all the other women, my sisters, my aunts,
13:52 my grandparents, all the rest. There is no distinction.
13:56 I'd love all them, treat them as I would a biological sister and
14:02 that has been a major, major part of my life that gives me
14:05 great power. This morning, for example, talking to Mary at the
14:09 restaurant I spoke to her as I would to any other sister.
14:13 Race, sex, creed, color are irrelevant. She is my sister
14:16 and I'd do for her what a brother does for his sister.
14:19 That has been a powerful guiding principle. My wife is my sister
14:25 made sanctified through marriage That's a blessing. Well it's a
14:30 little more complicated than that, Karen. Prior to her
14:33 becoming my wife she was only my sister. I wish that when I
14:38 was in college as a young man this had been explained to me
14:44 like this. Now I have five sisters, one is dead now, but
14:49 I would not have done certain things with my girlfriends or
14:54 thought certain thoughts had I know clearly that God sees
14:58 her as my sister and I'm her brother. So now that I'm much
15:02 older and much wiser and I have a chance to speak like this,
15:06 until you are lawfully married heterosexually, I must add that
15:10 from my point of view, because of the brother/sister
15:14 relationship that God has between you, precisely.
15:18 Sister and brother which is wonderful and that carries us
15:22 back to heaven of course that we'll be as angels when we get
15:26 to heaven. So the whole thing of a male having sexual purity
15:31 through his entire life is critical to brotherhood.
15:35 I enjoy the power of sexual
15:37 purity in my life now. It works
15:40 in ways I can't imagine.
15:41 Here are two examples: The other
15:43 day a fellow came to my office.
15:45 He was a young man who was wrestling with sexual impurity.
15:48 I was able to minister to him and encourage him, to exhort
15:51 him, to maintain a brother/sister relationship. The
15:55 next thing The next day a young lady came who had been sexually
16:00 abused to my office and there I dealt with her as a brother
16:04 deals with his sister. I began to give her healing. I told her
16:08 something like this: You are the righteousness of the Lord Jesus
16:11 Christ. And she began to repeat it and to repeat it and to
16:15 repeat it and to repeat it. As a brother it is my responsibility
16:20 to bring healing to her where she's been hurt by other men.
16:24 So one part of brotherhood, one part of being a brother in the
16:28 Holy Spirit is just pure simple sexual purity. Number three
16:32 as being a brother in Christ is brother in times of adversity
16:37 That's of course the famous text Proverbs 17:17: A brother is
16:42 born for hard times. Men have very difficult trouble asking
16:47 other men for help. It's horrible. A male won't ask for
16:52 directions, you know. Yes that's very true. Men won't admit they
16:58 have medical problems. Now that one's also very true.
17:01 I wonder why is that. I mean it's baffling to us women but I
17:04 know you're going to explain it. Well men just don't want to
17:07 admit that they are incompetent. Think about prostate cancer.
17:12 In the black community, it's running rampant almost and the
17:17 reason is that we don't want to confess the fact that yes I have
17:20 this problem in this area. I am so glad that different kinds of
17:24 cancers now are no longer taboo. We can talk about them. But men
17:28 get themselves in situations of all sorts, types and
17:32 descriptions and they are helpless but they don't know
17:36 how to ask. A Godly brother comes along side and says look
17:41 I'm not going to tell you how to fix this, I'm not going to
17:44 put you down for getting into this mess, I've just come along
17:49 side to be with you. Now how do men heal, by the way? Men heal
17:54 by doing things. Women heal by talking. Men don't heal that
17:59 way. Men need to go out and snow mobile or ski or build
18:04 something, make something, create something, do something.
18:08 A lot of male groups I've been with have failed because the men
18:12 didn't do anything. They got together for breakfast. That's
18:16 not a man's function. Men need to go out and build something
18:19 and create something and make something and design something.
18:24 See? They need to call things into existence. Adam for example
18:29 naming all the animals. Adam trained the garden, the foliage
18:34 in the garden. Men who are in productive ministry have to
18:38 build something. I like what Danny Shelton said about this
18:42 ministry: Show me the sawdust. Let's do something and as men
18:47 work together and are productive not going by the bar and drown
18:53 their sorrows in tears and alcohol, but as men go create
18:57 things and make things and design things and formulate
19:00 things that's when men bond one to another and that's very,
19:04 very important. So a man who's in adversity, the one who is in
19:07 prison, for example, boy is in jail, young men in jail, they
19:11 haven't made anything, they haven't created anything.
19:14 Gangs are simply a bunch of boys running around with no
19:18 possessions. They have turfs. They don't own the property,
19:22 they don't own the land, they only intimidate. If Godly men
19:26 would go get those ungodly boys and help those boys to create
19:31 careers and homes and parks and bridges and buildings and all
19:35 sort of things that men do, you wouldn't have gangs. See?
19:39 So a man is to help in time of adversity. Number four role of
19:43 a brother is Romans 12:10. Read that to text for us.
19:46 Romans 12:10. Okay. Be kindly affectioned one to
19:50 another with brotherly love in honor preferring one another.
19:54 Yes I like that. As a brother I am the first one to love.
19:58 Here's my favorite phrase. Karen I love you and there is nothing
20:04 you can do about it. I like that. As a Godly man I am the
20:10 universal lover. I am the person first
20:14 appointed in the earth under
20:15 Christ to go love; to be kind, to be supportive, to be sweet,
20:20 to be compassionate, to be giving.
20:22 So that's a natural part of the man. It seems as if the devil
20:26 has corrupted it by creating Don Juans or gigolo or these other
20:30 type of notions of what love is. Lust. Lust, that's not love.
20:35 Love and lust are very close. Only the Holy Spirit makes the
20:39 difference. See? How do girls learn their sexuality? From
20:42 their fathers. How do boys learn their sexuality. From their
20:49 fathers. I thank God for the power I possess as a teacher
20:54 in brotherly universal love. All my students I love as my
21:00 children. I love my colleagues as my brothers and sisters.
21:04 You see? I'm the universal lover. My first job is to love
21:09 other people as Christ has loved me. That's first and foremost.
21:13 I'm the first one to do that. I tell folks getting married all
21:17 the time, make sure that he loves you. Please make sure
21:22 that he loves you. Adam loved Eve instantly. He said whoa man.
21:27 When he first saw Eve he said whoa look at this and his love
21:33 just poured out for her. It was
21:35 when Adam made the mistake of
21:37 mixing lust and love that he
21:39 sinned. When Eve brought him the
21:41 fruit he knew exactly what he was
21:43 doing. He chose to love Eve more
21:47 than love God which made that love become lust. As he looked
21:51 at Eve he made a decision. Christ came and did the exact
21:55 opposite. The woman caught in adultery, the woman that
22:00 perfumed his feet, Christ brought back that Godly powerful
22:04 love of a brother. Let brotherly love continue. What does that
22:09 mean? Let the love between men flow freely. Let them love the
22:14 women and the children, let the men love first. See? So when the
22:19 husband loves the wife, the wife has no choice if she's a normal,
22:23 healthy, biological red-blooded person she's going to love him
22:27 back. The Bible never says wives love your husbands. It says
22:30 husbands love your wives because the wife will give back
22:33 that which she receives from him. What makes happy families?
22:37 The husband loving the wife, touching her, holding her
22:40 appropriately in front of the children, lots of kisses, lots
22:44 of hugs, lots of nice gestures. That's the universal brotherly
22:48 love that I am called to do in Jesus Christ's name.
22:51 It sounds as if the brotherly
22:53 love is a natural characteristic
22:56 that God gives. So I'm just kind
22:58 of wondering, the unnatural characteristic that the devil
23:02 has corrupted where brotherly love ends up becoming beyond
23:06 the natural affection of men to men. So is it normal then for a
23:14 man to have positive feelings toward another man?
23:17 Well let's take David and Jonathan. Okay. That is a
23:20 healthy male relationship. It was not homosexual, period.
23:26 It was healthy. There are men who love me the same way who I
23:30 the same way. And I need those kind of male loves in my life.
23:36 Okay? A love between males that goes sexual is the presence of
23:41 Satan, period. God will not deposit, according to Romans 5:5
23:45 he will not deposit into me sexual love for another man.
23:50 If I get it it is not of God. Now, do I condemn the
23:55 homosexual? Absolutely not. Do I love him as my brother?
23:59 Yes I do. Do I pray against their sin? Yes I do. All right.
24:02 Are there people who I know who are homosexuals that I talk to
24:06 and work with every day? Yes there are. Do I treat them weird
24:10 or strange or standoffish? Absolutely not. But I love them
24:13 with a Godly and a pure love, not like the love they have.
24:17 I want them to be like me, not me like them. That's how that
24:22 works. The last role of a brother, of course, is adoption.
24:26 I like this one. My family is getting larger and larger by
24:31 adoption. This morning I adopted Mary, for example. I have
24:34 adopted certain pastors. I've adopted parts of 3ABN ministry.
24:39 I have simply taken on the spiritual obligation to pray for
24:44 and care for. Right now there's a woman at Andrews who I saw
24:48 to whom I said, what do you want for Christmas? I just asked
24:52 her the question. She said I want a car. Guess what? She's
24:56 had my car for the last six months. I adopted her and her
25:00 daughter and her grandchild. They are now all part of my
25:04 family. That's a blessing for them in
25:06 their lives. Well that's what a brother does.
25:08 That's care. It sounds like what I am hearing there's a love,
25:11 there's a care for other people.
25:12 Precisely. So being able to adopt people, fatherless
25:16 children. We know some of the same people who are single
25:20 parents. They have had enough wisdom to come under my
25:24 brotherly spiritual guidance. I pray for them, I help them, I
25:28 assist them. Now all this is couched in my sexual purity.
25:33 If I am not a sexually pure male then I frighten people off.
25:39 They can read that. But by being in Christ sexually pure there
25:44 must be eight or nine single parents who come to me
25:47 regularly for prayer and for wisdom and for guidance.
25:50 And that's what Jesus said, take care of the widows and the
25:53 fatherless. Precisely. My own mother-in-law;
25:56 we bought her a condo 10 or 12 years ago. I am the head of her
26:00 family and my brothers-in-law who are not saved I am also
26:04 their brother as well, even though they don't claim it right
26:08 now. So being a brother in Christ filled with the Holy
26:13 Spirit means my family is ever expanding and expanding and
26:17 expanding and expanding and expanding. And that's what it
26:22 means to be a brother filled with the Holy Spirit doing God's
26:27 work and I'm to do it first. The female does the same thing
26:32 I do but I do it first. I'm the first one to intercede and pray.
26:37 Then they follow along.
26:39 Well this has been just a blessing. Friends at home, I'd
26:43 like to give you information on how you can get in touch with
26:46 Dr. Warren to learn about how you can have him come to your
26:49 church group or your civic organization or just to
26:53 communicate with him via e-mail. The address is Dr. Joseph and
26:57 Cynthia Warren...
27:15 We're going to have prayer now Dr. Warren. Will you bless our
27:19 audience with prayer please.
27:20 Thank you. Father we come before your presence poor and needy
27:24 unable to change our ways without the presence of your
27:27 Holy Spirit. You have promised to give it in unending measures.
27:30 We ask for it and receive it now that all men may be like you.
27:34 In Jesus' name, Amen.
27:36 Amen. Thank you so much for coming to our program today.
27:39 Some of the topics that we've discussed have been challenging,
27:42 they have been thought provoking and I know that they will be a
27:46 continued blessing. For those of you at home, thank you again
27:49 for watching our program Issues and Answers.
27:51 We hope that there has been something in this program that
27:54 has touched your life personally and share it with a friend.
27:56 Until the next time we're together, May God Bless You.