Frequently, around Christmas time, we are treated to yet another (often just a repeat of previous “findings”) naturalistic explanation of the biblical “Star of Bethlehem.” Natural explanations of biblical phenomena can sometimes have their place, but they can also be diversions—for unbelievers and believers alike. A far better approach for believers is to know and […]
Comments from John Calvin appropriate for times of mass tragedy and casualty: *** We can see how God is afflicting the world today. Even people who are strangers to us are related to us, because we are all made in the image of God, and have a common nature which should be a mutual bond […]
The tyranny of the Welfare States we currently live under (throughout the world, but the West especially) is a direct outfall of “two-kingdoms” style theology. By setting up a false division between heavenly and secular matters, the Church has consistently mismanaged its wealth and abdicated its social responsibilities. Then, when the poor—even the poor within the Church—come into need, they are told, or it is assumed, that their needs shall be met by the civil order (which is presumably not Christian, or quasi-Christian at best). How’s it look for Christian charity when the Christians direct their own to the pagans for charity? And when the pagans got their funds through theft to begin with?
I long since stopped blogging on atheism, deeming it often a waste of time and occasionally counterproductive. Sometimes, however, the issue merits revisiting. After rereading some old classics, I find the following quotation worth sharing: When one gives up the Christian faith, one pulls the right to Christian morality out from under one’s feet. This […]
O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. O give thanks unto the God of gods: for his mercy endureth for ever. O give thanks to the Lord of lords: for his mercy endureth for ever (Psalm 136:1–3) This phrase appears in many of the psalms, but when […]
In a previous article, I mentioned that dispensationalist Thomas Ice and semi-dispensationalist Alan Kurschner will be debating the “rapture” question on September 25th in Plano, Texas. The debate thesis is: “The Church Will Face the Antichrist Before the Rapture.” Kurschner is taking the affirmative (prewrath, semi-dispensational position) and Ice is taking the denial (pretribulational, full dispensational position). […]
In a previous article (Joel Richardson Issues Challenge to Hank Hanegraaff Over “Replacement Theology”) I dealt with some of the exegetical issues related to the charge that if a Christian does not follow the end-time prophetic scenario of dispensational premillennialism and some of its sister views, then that person is labeled a “supercessionist” who believes […]
Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain (Ex. 20:4-6).
You’ve probably heard the question, “What’s in a name?” Remember that it comes from that famous dialogue between Romeo and Juliet? The maiden from the window above says,
The Bible (as well as the Constitution, Art 3, sec. 3) requires two witnesses to substantiate that an event has taken place (Deut. 17:6). The two-witness requirement is a safeguard for those accused of a crime. When an accusation is made and there is not a second witness, the single witness is investigated to see […]
In 2012, Dr. Karen L. King, a professor at Harvard Divinity School, discovered a papyrus that seemed to imply that Jesus was married. Here’s how the discovery was reported: A small fragment of faded papyrus contains a suggestion that Jesus may have been married. The fragment, with just eight lines of text on the front […]
In light of the recent press surrounding the film “Noah “, starring Russell Crowe, I would like to take a look at a verse about this Biblical patriarch that many Christians tend to shy away from (perhaps in a way that some readers may have flinched at the title of this article). It is kind of […]
Trepidation. That’s the proper word entering such a heavy subject. Not only heavy but potentially offensive to the structure of some people’s organized religion. The topic of salvation is not a small matter. It has been the center of many important controversies in the church. But this post won’t touch the definition of salvation in […]
I am currently going through the book of Romans with my children. Stop there a moment. Going through the book of Romans with children? That’s a pretty scary thought, isn’t it? There are enough complex arguments in the epistle to leave me with a headache, but trying to convey these headache-inducing thoughts to my 9,7,5,3 […]
Previously, I wrote that there is no ordinary possibility of salvation outside of the Church, because salvation is by grace, and grace is ordinarily given by the means of grace, which are given to the Church. The question arises, what do I mean by the means of grace? To answer this question, we […]
The Latin phrase, Extra ecclesiam nulla salus, means, “Outside the Church there is no salvation”. It refers to the Christian belief that the Church is essential to God’s plan of salvation. It sounds Roman Catholic. It is catholic (i.e. universal), but not Roman Catholic. In fact, this doctrine preceded, survived, and continued after the papal […]
Speaking at his Escondido seminary’s conference “Christ, Kingdom, and Culture,” on the topic “Christ and the State,” two kingdoms advocate Dr. David VanDrunen delineated between Christian freedoms and Christian obligations. He asked, “What sorts of things are Christian obligations in politics?” Clear Scriptures can cause us tough problems, he said: I think things can be […]
“[I]n his mortal condition man is God in embryo. . . . [A]ny individual now a mortal being may attain the rank and sanctity of godship.” ~LDS Elder James E. Talmage “And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die. . . . your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be […]
I was raised Roman Catholic. My religious upbringing included Catholic school through the fifth grade and service as an altar boy through my teen years. My first dose of a foreign language was Latin, a necessary prerequisite if you wanted to be an altar boy. There is much I appreciate about my Catholic training. I was taught the cardinal doctrines of the faith as expressed in the Apostles’ Creed. The ethical precepts I had been taught in Catholic school kept me from straying too far in my rebellious years. Guilt and fear of judgment are strong motivators when it comes to keeping young people in moral check. Of course many children raised in Protestant homes can make similar claims. So my experiences perhaps are not unique to Catholicism.