Daily Archives: March 16, 2014

The (five) Great Commission(s)

Map_Great_CommissionDid you know that there are five texts in the New Testament that contain different facets of the “Great Commission” – and without each of them, there may be something lacking in our understanding of what Jesus wants to do through His church? I have personally come to see all five texts together as the composite “Great Commission.”

Here are those five texts, followed by a few observations and conclusions.

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James White vs Shabir Ally Debate: Sin and Salvation

The Domain for Truth

shabir

This is a debate on the topic of Sin and Salvation in the Qur’an vs the Bible between Christian apologist James White and Muslim apologist Shabir Ally.  It took place at the Erasmia Hall Mosque in South Africa back in October 7th, 2013.  It has just went online a few days ago thanks to Alpha and Omega Ministries!

The moderator of the debate mentioned in the beginning of the video that this might of have been the first time a debate occurred in a Mosque in South Africa.  There is also a mention of a book that’s being worked on presently with James White and Shabir Ally.  I can’t wait to get this book when it comes out!

Enjoy!

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Help! My Partner is not a Believer

Scripture: The Christian wife brings holiness to her marriage, and the Christian husband brings holiness to his marriage.” 1 Corinthians 7:14
Perhaps you, or someone you know, is married to a non-Believer. The Bible has advice for God’s people about this. The Bible teaches, “Don’t become partners with those who reject God” (2 Corinthians 6:14). But if you’re already in this situation, be encouraged! The Bible says the godly life of a Christian can testify to unbelieving spouses, who “will be won over [to God] by observing your pure and reverent lives” (1 Peter 3:1-2).

Click here to read more!

Just for You

What does a Biblical family look like? Click to learn more about understanding family and marraige from God’s Word in the Articles for Growth series

Personal Help

Do you ever wonder about helping your spouse or mate find God’s truth in Jesus Christ? We have trained followers of Jesus who can help you figure it out! Click here to share your story with us. You will hear from someone shortly.

Prayer Points

Will you pray this week:
• To thank God for blessing us with loving relationships and marriage
• To thank God that spouses can share His love with unbelieving partners
• That God will guide Christians who are in relationships with non-Believers
• That Christian partners can live godly lives that encourage their spouses to follow Jesus
• That God will build you into the person He wants you to be

GodLife Family

Where can you go online to get daily encouragement and inspiration, and to discuss godly marriage? Visit the GodLife Facebook Page where we can gather daily to share our stories, to express ourselves, and to pray for one another!

The False Teachers: Ellen G. White

A few weeks ago I set out on a new series of articles through which I intend to scan the history of the church—from its earliest days all the way to the present time—to examine some of Christianity’s most notorious false teachers. Along the way we will visit such figures as Arius, Pelagius, Fosdick, and even a few you might find on television today. We continue this morning with a false teacher—the first woman in the series—who has around 18 million followers in the world today.

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Theology: TRINITARIANISM (Includes 10 Image Charts Illustrating The Trinity of God)

God the Father + God the son + God the Holy Spirit.

1+1+1=1

It is amazing what you can do with mathematics.

The trinity of God is His tri-personal existence as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Dr. Miller mentions, “The essence is simultaneously three persons and three persons are simultaneously one essence.” (Used by permission. Miller, Dr. David; Theology Class Notes; Western Baptist College; Salem, OR)

The Athanasian Creed states: “We worship one God in trinity and trinity in unity, neither confounding the persons nor dividing the substance.” (Quoted in Bancroft’s Elemental Theology. Taken from the book, Elemental Theology by Emery H. Bancroft. Copyright 1977 by Baptist Bible College. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. p 65)

Bancroft mentions, “The trinity is therefore three eternally interconstituted, interrelated, interexistent, and therefore inseparable persons within one being and of one substance or essence.” (Taken from the book, Elemental Theology by Emery H. Bancroft. Copyright 1977 by Baptist Bible College. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. p 65)

Trinitarianism Involves: 1. His unity as god and the distinction of persons in the Godhead.

Can we illustrate the Trinity? We can come close; it is impossible, due to the fact that we cannot really fully understand the Trinity. Nor is there anything like the trinity which can be our illustration.

Let us look at some illustrations of the Trinity.

1. St. Patrick used the Shamrock to explain the Trinity to the Irish. There are three petals that are unique and distinct while the three are one plant.

2. Some have suggested an equilateral triangle. This type of triangle has three equal angles and sides. If you take one angle away then you do not have a triangle.

3. Others suggest three matches held together and burning. One flame, however there are three distinct parts to the flame.

4. An egg. There are three distinct parts. Put in a blender and you have one mix. (Probably the essence of the three is different.)

5. A rope with three strands, yet one rope.

6. A tree. Branch, leaves and root.

7. The sun. Light, heat and motion.

8. Water. Solid, liquid and steam.

9. Butterfly. Egg, larva and butterfly.

10. Plant. Seed, flower and stem.

11. The color television is of interest. It produces on a black and white program a distinctly black and white picture however if you look closely you will see that the screen is made up of blue, green and red dots or lines. Your eyes perceive black and white. If you take any of the three colors away you no longer have a black and white picture to watch. All three colors are showing the same picture however there are three distinct colors.

12. Dr. Miller suggests a picture made up of a circle with lines going diagonally, vertically and horizontally.

This gives the three differences while making up one whole.

The problem with these illustrations is that they all fail in some way or another.

FALSE VIEWS OF THE TRINITY

Unitarianism: The unitarians trace their roots to Arius or Arianism. They feel that the Father created the Son.

Sebellianism: The Father was the God of the Old Testament, The Son was the God of the New Testament and The Holy Spirit is the God of this time. There is only one God but He has manifested himself in three different ways in three different times.

Tritheism: This holds to three separate Gods.

Swedenborgianism: There are three elements to God. Just as there are body, soul and spirit in man, there are Father, Son and Holy Spirit in God.

WHO IS GOD?

A. He is the Father: John 6:27, “for him hath God the Father sealed.”; Romans 1:7; Galatians 1:1,3. He is not only the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, but He is the Father of all living, and in a special sense the Father of the believer.

B. He is the Son: Matthew 1:22-23 tells of the announcement of the incarnation of God as the son of Mary. (Luke:35 mentions the incarnation as well.) He is declared to be the Son of God in John 5:25. John 20:28 shows that Thomas knew that Christ was God.

C. He is the Spirit: Acts 5:3,4 tells of Ananias and Sapphira lying to the Holy Spirit. They would not have died if this had not been God. Attributes of deity are used of the Spirit as well (Hebrews 9:14; 1 Corinthians 2:10).

GOD IS ONE.

God is a unity even though there are three persons within that unity. This is seen in both the Old and New Testaments. Deuteronomy 4:35, I Ki. 8:60, Isaiah 45:5, Mark 12:29-32, I Co. 8:4-6.

GOD IS THREE.

The term Trinity is not used in Scripture, however, the trinity is hinted at in the Old Testament.

1. Many times God is a plural noun Genesis 1:1,26; 3:22; 11:6,7; 20:13; 48:15; Isaiah 6:8.

2. Genesis 11:7 is concerned with the tower of Babel and the Lord is going to go down to see. The verb “come” is plural and this requires a plural speaker. The speaker is speaking to two or more. “Come let us go down….”

3. Lord is distinguished from Lord. Genesis 19:24, “Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven;” Hosea 1:7, “But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord, their God….”. (This is God speaking of Christ.)

4. The Lord has a Son. This is a little used text, yet is of great importance. Psalm 2:7, “I will declare the decree The Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.”

5. Genesis 1:1,2, mentions that God created and that the Spirit moved upon the waters.

6. Genesis 6:3, “And the Lord said, My Spirit shall not always strive with man….”

While the trinity is hinted at in the Old Testament the Trinity is taught in the New Testament.

1. In the baptismal scene we see the Trinity clearly Matthew 3:16,17. Christ is being baptized, The Father is speaking, and the Holy Spirit is descending.

2. John depicts the trinity quite clearly John 14:16,17. In this text we see Christ asking the Father to send the Spirit.

3. Matthew 28:19 mentions all three in the baptismal formula for the church age.

4. Peter clearly mentioned the trinity, 1 Peter 1:2.

“Elect according to the foreknowledge of God, the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.”

5. Paul also mentions the trinity in one of his prayers, 2 Corinthians 13:14.

“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.”

We can see the Trinity in the creation, if we draw a number of passages together. When we view creation, WHO DONE IT?

1. The Spirit: Genesis 1:2

2. The Word: John 1:1-14; Hebrews 11:3

3. God Through Christ: Ephesians 3:9

4. The Son: Colossians 1:15-19

5. God By Christ: Hebrews 1:2 (Christ upholds all things. Hebrews 1:3)

6. The Father And The Son: Proverbs 30:4

7. The Father For His Pleasure: Revelation 4:11

WITHIN THE GODHEAD THERE IS A SUBORDINATION

Some theologians get upset when you speak of subordination, or differences in duties within the Godhead, yet the Scripture clearly teaches this aspect of God. A few points and references on this subject will suffice.

1. God Sent Christ: John 6:29; John 88:29,42

2. Christ Was Fulfilling God’s Plan: John 10:18

3. God Is The Head Of Christ: 1 Corinthians 11:3

4. God Is Christ’s Father: John 20:17

APPLICATION

1. Each person of the Godhead has a different ministry to us, thus fulfilling all our needs.

     a. The Holy Spirit teaches, convicts, illumines and helps us in our prayers.

     b. Christ takes our burdens and saves us. He also presents us to God righteous

     c. The Father controls our lives — guides our lives. He is our Father and someone that is approachable on a very intimate basis.

If the above is true then we have no reason to look outside of the Trinity and the Scriptures for fulfillment in any area of our lives.

2. When we study the word, we must not overemphasize any one of the God head to the exclusion of the others. The exclusion will cause an unbalanced view, if not a cultic view of God.

He is God, He is plural in persons, He is all that we have in the way of deity, and He is all that we need in salvation. He is all that is needed by man, creation, or the spirit world. He has brought all into existence and He continues to uphold that creation. He may present Himself in different duties or places of ministry, yet He is fully God in all three of these persons.

SERVE HIM AS HE OUGHT TO BE SERVED.[1]


[1] Stanley L. Derickson Ph.D. B.A. (n.d.). DERICKSON’S NOTES ON THEOLOGY: A STUDY BOOK IN THEOLOGY.

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