Daily Archives: August 12, 2014

This is a time for Christians to show solidarity with Israel as she faces an onslaught of terrorism. It’s also a time to show compassion towards Palestinians who are being crushed by Hamas. A few thoughts to consider.

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

(HolyBibleWashington, D.C.) — On July 31st, I first published this column. The response has been very encouraging, but I believe many more Christians need to hear this message, so I’m publishing it again. Please share it with others, and encourage each other to love Israelis and Palestinians, not just one side or the other. Thanks, and may the Lord bless you as you love both in the name of Jesus.

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As the war in Gaza continues, here’s an important questions for Christians: Is the Church doing enough to love the people who are suffering in the epicenter, in obedience to the Scriptures?

Now more than ever, is it vital for Christian leaders and lay people to speak out in solidarity with Israel — and even go visit Israel soon — as Jews and Arabs defend themselves against Radical Islam. Day after day, Israel is facing not only an onslaught of terrorism but an evil…

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The Church and Millenials: An Observation

Zwinglius Redivivus

The primary problem with millenials is that they believe even God exists only to make them happy (along with everyone and everything else).  As a consequence, millenials aren’t looking for a church where they can serve God and others, they are looking for one where they are pandered to.  Tragically, rather than teaching millenials what the church is, many are willing to gut theology to draw a crowd of self-indulgents.  Self-indulgents, who, as soon as a new fad catches their fancy, will abandon the church like it’s an old craft beer.

Apparently many pastors are afraid to tell millenials the truth: God doesn’t need you, you need God.

[The preceding was provoked by a millenial who tweeted ‘if my pastor were funny like … i would be back in church…’][Because everyone knows sermons are supposed to be a stand up routine…]

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Will the Real Christians Please Stand Up?

Truth in Grace

This is different than probably anything I have ever written. I have wanted my writings to be a means of encouragement to those who are struggling or who need a pick-me-up. I do believe, however, that God laid this on my heart so I hope you will bear with me for this very solemn post. I am sure most of you have heard about what is happening over in Iraq; however, if you can’t handle the details, feel free to skip to the second paragraph.

I have read a couple short articles on the atrocity that has been happening in Iraq the past few days. I didn’t read more than that because, honestly, I can’t handle it. My heart is breaking for those people, however, as I pray for their strength and comfort. Many watched their children beheaded or cut in two. They had to flee their homes which have…

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Answers KJV Onlyists are Afraid You will Provide [3]

hipandthigh

thehaterI have been providing responses to the KJV onlyist challenge:

See parts one and two.

Moving along to final questions,

22). Do you know – for a fact – what the requirements of the American Bible society are, for a person to participate as a translator – in a Modern Version?

Okay, what exactly are the requirements? I would be curious if our KJVO advocate here really knows for himself.  I went to the American Bible Society website and hunted all over the place to find an “official” list of requirements to be a translator, but apparently they are either hidden in the darkest corners in the underground vaults of their building in New York City, or they have found out that a league of KJV onlyists are out to expose their New Age agenda…

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Questions about God: What Does It Mean that God Is Light?

 

Light is a common metaphor in the Bible. Proverbs 4:18 symbolizes righteousness as the “morning sun.” Philippians 2:15 likens God’s children who are “blameless and pure” to shining stars in the sky. Jesus used light as a picture of good works: “Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds” (Matthew 5:16). Psalm 76:4 says of God, “You are radiant with light.”

If light is a metaphor for righteousness and goodness, then darkness signifies evil and sin. We are told in 1 John 1:5 that “if we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.” Verse 5 says, “God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” Note that we are not told that God is a light but that He is light. Light is part of His essence, as is love (1 John 4:8). The message is that God is completely, unreservedly, absolutely holy, with no admixture of sin, no taint of iniquity, and no hint of injustice.

If we do not know light, we do not know God. Those who know God, who walk with Him, are of the light and walk in the light. They are made partakers of God’s divine nature, “having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires” (2 Peter 1:4).

Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12). To “walk” means to make progress. Therefore, we can infer from this Scripture that Christians are meant to grow in holiness and to mature in faith as they follow Jesus (see 2 Peter 3:18).

It is God’s plan that believers become more like Christ every day. “You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness” (1 Thessalonians 5:5). He is the Creator of physical light, as well as the Giver of spiritual light, by which we can see the truth. Light exposes that which is hidden in darkness; it shows things as they really are. To walk in the light means to know God, understand the truth, and live in righteousness.

Christ followers must confess any darkness within themselves—their sins and transgressions—and allow God to shine His light through them.

Christians cannot sit idly by and watch others continue in darkness, knowing that those in the darkness of sin are destined for eternal separation from God. The Light of the World desires to banish the darkness and bestow His wisdom everywhere (Isaiah 9:2; Habakkuk 2:14; John 1:9). In taking the light of the gospel to the world, we must by necessity reveal things about people that they would rather leave hidden. Light is uncomfortable to those accustomed to the dark (John 3:20).

Jesus, the sinless Son of God, is the “true light” (John 1:9). As adopted sons of God, we are to reflect His light into a world darkened by sin. Our goal in witnessing to the unsaved is “to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God” (Acts 26:18).[1]

 

[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Questions about the Church: What Should Be the Mission of the Church?

 

The church is a creation of God (Acts 20:28; 1 Corinthians 3:9, 17; 15:9), founded and owned by Jesus Christ—“I will build My church” (Matthew 16:18)—and directed and energized by the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 10:17; 12:5–27; Romans 12:4–5). Therefore, it is the church’s joy to look to God to explain His design for the church and His mission for it. God’s mission for the church proves to have several parts. First we’ll list them, then summarize them:

  1. The mission of the church is to make disciples. Just before Jesus returned to heaven, He commissioned His disciples this way: “Going into all the world, make disciples of all nations by baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you” (literal translation of Matthew 28:19–20a). A disciple is a follower, someone who attaches himself to his leader. Therefore, we reason, Jesus sent the church on its mission to acquaint people in every place with Himself. As the church makes disciples, people can admire, worship, trust, follow, and obey Jesus as their Savior and Lord. The church’s members, having become enamored of Jesus Christ, assemble around Him as Master, Leader, Savior, and Friend. Our joyful mission is to put Him on display to every nation.
  2. The mission of the church is to glorify Christ. Paul wrote, “In Christ we were also chosen … in order that we … might be for the praise of His glory” (Ephesians 1:11–12). Part of God’s purpose for the church is to exalt Jesus Christ by the way that the church lives and by what it does. Christ designed His church to represent His supernatural, life-saving work to the world. In His church, Christ shows to the world what a freed and forgiven people can be—people who are satisfied with God as the result of Christ’s joyful, triumphant self-sacrifice. He has planned the church’s values to be His values. He expects its lifestyle to reflect His character (2 Corinthians 6:14–7:1; Ephesians 5:23–32; Colossians 1:13, 18; 1 Timothy 3:15). As the moon reflects the sun, so the church is to reflect the glory of God to a dark world.
  3. The mission of the church is to build up the saints. The church is to encourage and comfort its individual members (1 Thessalonians 5:11; 2 Corinthians 13:11). “There should be no division in the body, but … its parts should have equal concern for each other” (2 Corinthians 12:2–5). Jesus is the chief cornerstone, and the church is likened to a building “joined together and [rising] to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in Him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by His Spirit” (Ephesians 2:19–22; see also 4:4–25). Jesus Christ designed His Church to showcase God’s family on earth, so that the pagan world can see how God builds His family around Jesus Christ and how that family cares for one another (see Mark 3:35 and John 13:35).[1]

 

[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Questions about Salvation: What Is the Gospel of Jesus Christ?

 

The word gospel means “good news,” so the gospel of Christ is the good news of His coming to provide forgiveness of sins for all who will believe (Colossians 1:14; Romans 10:9). Since the beginning of time when the first man sinned, mankind has been under the condemnation of God (Romans 5:12). Because everyone breaks God’s perfect law by committing sin (Romans 3:23), everyone is guilty (Romans 5:18). The punishment for the crime of sin is physical death (Romans 6:23) and then an eternity spent in a place of eternal punishment (Revelation 20:15; Matthew 25:46). This eternal separation from God is also called the “second death” (Revelation 20:14–15).

The fact that all are guilty of sin and condemned to spend eternity in a place of torment is very bad news. But God, because of His love for the world, has made a way for man to be forgiven for their sins (John 3:16). He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to take the sins of man on Himself through death on a cross (1 Peter 2:24). In placing our sin on Christ, God ensured that all who will believe in the name of Jesus will be forgiven (Acts 10:43).

This is the gospel of Jesus Christ, the good news that God provided the way for man to be freed from the penalty of sin (John 14:6: Romans 6:23). But not all people will be saved from hell; only those who place their faith in Jesus will go to heaven when they die (Acts 4:12).

The gospel of Jesus Christ is the best news anyone will ever hear, and what a person does with this news will determine where he or she spends eternity. God is calling you to choose life. Call on the name of the Lord and be saved (Romans 10:13)![1]

 

[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Unless one is born again, he is not able to see the Kingdom of God

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

3 ἀπεκρίθη Ἰησοῦς καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ· ἀμὴν ἀμὴν λέγω σοι, ἐὰν μή τις γεννηθῇ ἄνωθεν, οὐ δύναται ἰδεῖν τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ θεοῦ. (John 3:3 NA28)

 

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Amen, amen I say to you, unless one is born again, he is not able to see the Kingdom of God.”  (John 3:3 translated from the NA28 Greek text)

The more I deal with those who are adamantly against the fact that God’s Word is absolute truth as they claim the correct way to understand the gospel is as if it is some sort of smorgasbord or rotating buffet in which the sound doctrines taught to us from the Bible are simply one of untold numbers of various ways to God, the more amazed I become at the abject spiritual blindness exhibited by them. These same people want an understanding of the Bible that is loose…

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