Do you hear what I'm saying?
Wednesday, July 09, 2008
Do you hear what I'm saying?
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Monday, June 09, 2008
Let me ask you the reader these two questions:
a. What does it mean to escape the pollution in the world?
b. What does through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ mean?
Friday, June 06, 2008
1. Since He was God He was able to forgive the sins of whomever He wished. That is His prerogative.
2. Jesus knew that this man was one of the elect for whom He was going to die anyway, and therefore gave him an advance on His forgiveness.
3. He did it just to spite the Pharisees and show them that forgiveness does not come by keeping the law or being self-righteous.
4. He wanted to reveal His oneness with the Father by doing miracles of power that could only be attributed to God.
Thursday, June 05, 2008
“Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt.
But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.' So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt.
When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. Then his master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart.”
This parable gives the contrast between two servants and the debts they owed. The first one owed an enormous debt to the king while the second owed a minuscule amount in comparison to his fellow servant.
A few questions for consideration:
Does anyone dispute that both of these servants depicted here signify believers in Christ?
What does it mean to be delivered to the torturers?
Did the first servant "losing" his master's forgiveness imply a loss of salvation? How could he possibly remedy his grevious situation?
Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Sunday, June 01, 2008
We shall also live with Him.
If we endure,
We shall also reign with Him.
If we deny Him,
He will also deny us.
If we are faithless,
He remains faithful;
He cannot deny Himself."
2 Timothy 2:11-13
Saturday, May 31, 2008
2 Peter 2:1
Yet as I was reading this verse a certain portion caught my attention:
..."even denying the Lord who bought them"...
Friday, May 30, 2008
If one laughs at this list does this ultimately mean he is not a true Calvinist?
On the flipside, the kind gentlemen at Triablogue have put together a dictionary to better understand Arminianism, albeit with much tongue involved.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Third game (1-0) for the other team. But wow it was almost fun watching them play. Anyways it's amazing how much fun you can have chasing a round ball across the field for an hour.
If you haven't commented on my last post please be kind enough to leave a suggestion for future topics.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
It was our sin and guilt that bruised and wounded Him
It was our sin that brought Him down
When we like sheep had gone astray our Shepherd came
And on His shoulders bore our shame
According to the doctrine of Limited Atonement, Christ died only for the elect and only their sins were paid for on the cross. If that is the case would it not make sense that those who will go to hell are not guilty of Christ's death since their sins were not laid upon His shoulders? They cannot be held liable for His death since it was only the sins of the elect He bore? Does that make sense?
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. “No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, 'Know the Lord,' for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”
Thus says the Lord,
Who gives the sun for a light by day,
The ordinances of the moon
and the stars for a light by night,
Who disturbs the sea,
And its waves roar
(The Lord of hosts is His name):
If those ordinances depart from before Me, says the Lord, Then the seed of Israel shall also cease from being a nation before Me forever.”
If heaven above can be measured,
and the foundation of the
earth searched out beneath,
I will also cast off all the seed
for all that they have done,
says the Lord.
These verses were given to Israel by the prophet Jeremiah shortly before the Chaldean's overthrew Jerusalem, capturing king Zedekiah and his sons, and utterly pillaging the city.
Scripture makes it abundantly clear that God has not forsaken His people Israel forever, but through all their judgment and scattering, they would still one day be brought back to their land.
Many Christian theologians over the past centuries have tried to teach a doctrine whereby God was finished with Israel forever and had instead replaced them with the Church. In doing so they have tried to make the prophecies towards Israel fit with the Kingdom of heaven and the Church age of today. No doubt this has been responsible for much of Christendom's anti-semitic attitude. Jews have been labeled Christ killers, and slurred with other horrific epithets.
God is saving for Himself a remnant of national Israel who will one day be fully restored to Him and thereby fulfill the prophecies of Jeremiah and others who have spoken of Israel's future to come. How then should we as Christians respond to the Jewish race? I believe they are in as much need of a Saviour today as we the gentiles are and therefore we must be willing to pray for them and preach the gospel of Christ to them. In the kingdom of heaven there is only one category of constituent; those who have been redeemed by the blood of Christ and are walking in the robes of Christ's righteousness.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
First of all let me emphasize clearly that when we use the word Church we are primarily referring to the spiritual union of God with His called out ones, who have been washed and cleansed by the blood of Jesus, and are now indwelt by the Spirit of Christ. All persons that have been born again by the living and abiding word of God are members of the body of Christ which is His bride. The basis for this membership is a spiritual union with Christ. That being said, there is obviously a physical and earthly aspect to the Church. When God's people gather together to worship, pray, and fellowship, we define this as the Church getting together. We do not “go to church”, “meet at a church”, or “join a church”. Rather we meet with the Church and as the Church. Our corporate gatherings are the gatherings of the Church.
What The Church Is Not
Contrary to much of our popular terminology today, the Church is not a building. Neither is it a denomination, nor an institutionalized collection of localities or assemblies. Christ has one body, and members worldwide belong to that one body, His Church. In this aspect the word catholic (universal) is accurate. The expression of Christ's body is that of the local Church, or local assembly of God's people.
Now the question I want to ask you is this. How does the Church today determine who has authority to define doctrine, practice, and teaching? Is there a basis for hierarchal authority in the Church outside of a locality? What are the limits of the elders authority?
The answer seems fairly clear from scripture. Elders (pastors and teachers) have the charge over their local assembly and beyond that do not carry much authority. As an apostle Paul wrote to many churches with authority, but few in the Church today would admit to any apostolic ministry or office still in existence.
So how do we decide what a Church will belief, teach, and practice. From what I have seen many Christians choose to follow their favorite theologians over the elders and pastors of their local church. Do these theologians really have any grounds for the authority they presume? Of course many of them have been pastors and teachers in their respective churches and from those ministries have brought forth many writings that edify, encourage, and exhort the larger body of Christ. Still, do these theologians at large have the right to dictate doctrine for us today?
"Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you". Heb 13:17
From this verse we see the importance of understanding who it is we must submit to. Who is it that has the rule over us in the Church? I submit to you that there is no authority in the Church above the local rule of the elders, and this only in accordance with the truth of God's Word and the Spirit of God.
Monday, March 10, 2008
Anyways here are some of the similarities I see between Protestants and Catholics.
- Both groups rely heavily on extra Biblical authority and interpretation.
- Both groups have persecuted opposers.
- Both groups have created un-Biblical levels of hierarchy and authority.
- Both groups have made heads of state the leaders of their institutions.
- Both groups deny the sufficiency of Christ's sacrifice for sins on the cross.
Ok, those are just a few. What are your thoughts? Now don't be shy, but please remember to be civil.
But truth be told, America's efforts at creating a brave new world in other countries has left its own nation in social shambles. If one is honest, they will have to admit that rather that making progress against the evils of society, the church has consistently lost ground and influence for more than four decades now.
Rather than acknowledging this fact, churches and para-church organizations have doubled their efforts to appear hip, cool, and ultra relevant. They have made environmentalism, climate change, gay rights, and many other social issues the mandate of their ministry. No where is this more evident than in the mainline liberal denominations. All these endeavors are done in the name of love and for the unity and peace of civilization. But at what cost?
The sacrifice of truth is a huge price to pay in order to remain influential. This is precisely what has happened in much of today's Christianity. The humanistic notions of "tolerance", "diversity", and "relativism" have replaced the Biblical truths of inerrancy, justice, and divine authority. And rather than getting the change they have envisioned, we are seeing the opposite; eroding family values, lack of respect for authority, massive public immorality, decreased protection of the innocent by immoral laws, decreased fear of God and judgment, and many other similar things.
What is the remedy? Is it theology? Is it more education? Is it greater governmental regulations and control?
The answers lies between the dusty covers of the Bible most Americans own. The truth of God's word is as relevant and effective in today's culture as the day it was penned under the inspiration of a divine and omniscient God. The gospel is the answer to our questions and problems today!
Nothing more and nothing less. To the degree we preach the truth and hold high the banner of Christ, to that degree we will see actual change; both temporal and eternal.
What are you compromising today for the sake of “unity” and “peace”? Is there something you need to repent of and come back to the Word of God as your sole authority and guide?
Saturday, March 08, 2008
The more I read in the blogosphere the more I am convinced that we as God's people are neglecting a profoundly simple practice. Let me explain.
I have come to realize that all of us are guided in our lives by something called presuppositions. We understand things to be a certain way and therefore act accordingly. What is more striking however is that many of our presuppositions have little to do with the Word of God directly and are more often than not filtered through either the writings or teachings of a pastor, theologian, or doctrinal statement.
It seems we are not placing ample weight on the pure word of God alone. Why do I say that?
Well first of all, many times our responses to a theological question contain philosophical tones that do not align with Biblical texts. We like to juxtapose Biblical clichés with our notions and the lines become blurred.
I have found that many have not arrived at their conclusions solely based on scriptural study but have been "guided" to their answers from the influence of mentors and peers. This is probably most unavoidable as Bobby Grow likes to reiterate.
That being the case, are we willing to re-evaluate our positions when confronted with substantial Biblical proof that we may be incomplete in our answer? Are we open to correction? Do we have a teachable spirit?
I appreciate Daniel's posts over at Doulogos because he is a man that demonstrates this principle often and most humbly. Further, he is faithful to give detailed explanations of his views with excellent scriptural support allowing me to see how he arrived at his conclusions. While I have not always agreed with him 100%, his method of analysis allows me to understand why he believes what he does and causes me to better evaluate my own positions.
How much time do you spend in God's word seeking not only answers to your questions, but more importantly the person of Christ. I will confess that I fall short in this area.
Thursday, March 06, 2008
What topics should I engage in future posts?
If you would like to see a picture of the feller drop me a comment and I will send you an email.
Friday, February 15, 2008
However, what is really interesting is that this same Hebrew word is used in Genesis 1:2.
Friday, February 08, 2008
The danger of a purely democratic system is that it ultimately reduces to mob rule; 50 +1 % = majority.
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Thursday, January 24, 2008
So I am going to give you what I think are some of the most common methods currently in use. These would be ways in which the laymen and theologian (serious Biblical scholar) arrive at an answer to the Bible's most challenging subjects.
1. Pastor Said So it Must be True
Their motto would be, "Pastor said it so that settles it". This is probably the most common reason given by those who are the laziest of Bible readers. Rather than give any effort to become a Berean they simply take whatever the pastors says as gospel truth. Of course this is also one reason there is so much church shopping today.
2. The Historical Approach
Another way to arrive at answers to Biblical questions is to take the theologians from history and lump them into groups. The largest group must be right so therefore their conclusions are adopted. Another name for this approach is called the traditional view.
3. My Favorite Expositor View
This approach is similar to #1 except that the pastor of preference is usually found on television or the radio. There can be a number of favorites and they usually teach similar things. You will find an advocate of this view constantly referring to their hero by saying, "This is what so and so believes and teaches", or "I believe what ______ believes".
4. God Spoke to Me
This is probably the most dangerous method of Biblical interpretation because it relies on an emotional feeling rather than scriptural fact. This excuse has been used to rationalize everything from murder and divorce to church splits and cultist heresy. Adherents to this view typically place extreme emphasis upon the spoken and written teaching of a man or woman while using the Bible to justify their behavior.
5. Square Peg in Round Hole
This view sees the reader attempt to make the Bible agree with his or her presuppositions and established beliefs. Often they will go to great lengths to stretch the meaning of certain passages or read into a text a totally different interpretation. This is probably the most common method of Biblical interpretation and many unknowingly are guilty. We could also label this as the Blind Spot Doctrine or as some like to say, legalism.
6. Intellectual Rationalism
Man is a clever creature and it seems the more learning we accumulate the less we esteem the inspired word of God. Proverbs tells us that knowledge can puff up, and pride prohibits us from looking at the Bible in a humble and honest way. This view attempts to make scripture fit with science and rationalism rather than the reverse. Wisdom is using knowledge in its God intended role to properly interpret and apply scripture. God's Word will always agree with true empirical science. This view also attempts to reduce God to a formula. They like to say if A + B = C, then D must be____. This attempt at making logic trump faith reduces doctrine and theology to an intellectual pursuit and is primarily the reason so many seminaries have gone liberal.
7. I Studied the Bible and This is What I Saw
This last method is where we should all start. Simply reading and praying are crucial to our receiving of revelation from God. God is light and as we abide in His presence He grants us insights into His character and person.
There are obviously problems that can arise from using this method only. Even the apostle Paul after 14 years of personal study wanted to make sure his doctrine and beliefs were correct. He went to Jerusalem to seek out the fellowship of the top apostles but found that they added nothing to what He had already received. Furthermore he had to rebuke them on occasion for their return to law keeping.
I have seen many sincere readers begin their search in God's word but end up adopting method #3 - the favorite expositor. There is a lot of pressure to fit into a group and be affirmed by man. This often leads to us compromising our convictions for the sake of acceptance. Those who are extreme in their use of method #3 ultimately become parrots. They can speak wonderful truths and doctrines but do not have the reality of actually experiencing it for themselves. Their knowledge is second hand and this becomes evident in the dryness of their words and actions.
There is nothing wrong with confirming what we believe by checking with wise teachers, pastors, theologians, etc. In fact we should be doing that to make sure we are not holding some strange heretical view. However, be careful that you do not quench the Spirit by putting man's teaching above God's inspired and operative Word. Become like the Bereans who examine the scriptures daily to see if these things be so.
Alright, your turn. Do you have another method of interpretation that I missed? Do you agree? Disagree? How do you study the Bible and arrive at answers to the tough questions?
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Anyways please stop by and leave him a welcoming comment.
Friday, January 11, 2008
Wednesday, January 09, 2008
So far, militant Secularists seem to be having even more success than militant Muslims, at least in the West; however, both are re-shaping our world—for the worse.
BC’s legislative blunder didn’t really take effect until two decades later, when a Provincial Supreme Court judge decreed that—according to the statute written in 1986—moral preferences of parents cannot be considered by the local school board when choosing textbooks for students, if those preferences were influenced by the parents’ faith.
It didn’t matter which religion—Sikh, Christian, Muslim, Jewish—all were beyond the pale... except, of course, Secularism—that was mandated by law!
These three factors define Secularism as a religion:
• Secularism has a world-view: it is Naturalism, which declares that there is nothing beyond what can be seen and measured. According to Secularism and Naturalism (like Buddhism) there is no God; or if there is, He/she/it is irrelevant to humanity—we have “outgrown” any consideration of the spiritual dimension of life, they say.
• Secularism has a Scripture: Darwin’s On the Origin of Species by Natural Selection; or the survival of the most-favoured races. This has recently been supplemented by a spate of demonstrably un-scientific books written by radical anti-God “scientists” and science writers, like Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins and Richard Lewontin.
• Secularism has a priesthood: university professors train public-school teachers in a philosophy rooted in Naturalism, and teach them to be “change agents” in the classroom, working to overturn custom and tradition.
And now, Secularism has its own temples: the publicly-funded schools where our children are systematically indoctrinated in the dogmas of Canada’s new ‘official religion’. How ironic that so many “believing Christians”—MPs, MPPs, MNAs and MLAs, mis-educated in the tax-funded ‘public’ education system so that they don’t understand the difference between ‘non-sectarian’ and ‘secular’—now have a primary role in dedicating and supporting these temples!
You can find more information about the CHP on their website.