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 […]
“God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man. . . . That is the great secret. . . . We have imagined and supposed that God was God from all eternity. I will refute that idea. . . . [H]e was once a man like us.” ~Joseph Smith “Before the […]
Is the earthquake that impacted Washington, DC a sign of the end? You might be surprised that it’s not the first earthquake to shake our nation’s capital, but it will undoubtedly lead prophetic speculators to conclude that we are nearing the end of all things. Dr. Gary DeMar discusses all this and more here on Vantage Point.
Many Christian teachers, authors and preachers have been saying that the Rapture could occur at any moment. Most recently, Harold Camping has said that the Rapture will be on May 21, 2011 and many of his followers are traveling around warning others, some have even quit their jobs. The group American Atheists is planning Rapture […]
Pragmatism, or “going along to get along,” can reveal itself in many different ways. Three areas where pragmatism commonly rears its ugly head in the modern Church are: theistic evolution (name your flavor), church-growth, and liberal theology. While something of a catch-all, liberal theology can be defined as any movement or set of beliefs that […]
In John 13:5-20, we read of the famous account of Jesus washing the feet of His disciples. This passage is most often used and preached as an example of true servanthood, of being willing to make yourself nothing in order to serve God and other people. It is pointed out that Jesus told His disciples that He was providing an example for them (and us) to follow (13:15). While this is undoubtedly true, is this all that is being taught by Jesus in this well-known portion of Scripture? Or is there more to it than simply being an object lesson in humility? I believe there is more to this foot-washing scene than first meets the eye, much more in fact. While humbling oneself is certainly a lesson that can and should be taken away from this passage, I think there is a deeper point which is far more significant, yet largely overlooked.
Why is the topic “Does God Exist?” important? Because it has both temporal and eternal significance. Christopher Hitchens, author of God is Not Great, says that religious faith “will never die out, or at least not until we get over our fear of death, and of the dark, and of the unknown, and of each other.” Being afraid of the dark and other people hardly have eternal consequences. The unknown can harbor things that should make us fearful, especially if the unknown means judgment based on what we do in this life. Hitchens has no empirical
About halfway through his new book, Dual Citizens, Jason Stellman makes the following observation: "Perhaps you’ve been haunted by the inexplicable feeling that your very environment, the only environment you have ever known (namely, time) is foreign.
One of the enduring Latin phrases of the Protestant Reformation is the impressive sounding ecclesia semper reformans, semper reformanda. In plain English, this means "the church is always reformed and always reforming." This simple principle is one that is most often forgotten in modern discussions about theology, where a surefire way to end a disagreement is to pull out something written by Luther, Calvin, or even Spurgeon and show that they said much the same thing. Although the Reformers themselves were quite emphatic that they were not the final word (hence the "always reforming"), contemporary Christianity seems to be convinced that dead theologians should be the authoritative standard of interpretation.
Bible studies thrive in every neighborhood across the United States. Washington, D.C., abounds with prayer breakfasts. A big deal is made of where presents attend church. The Bible remains the nation’s top seller. Although a number of prominent religious hucksters have left the airwaves, television and radio remain filled with religious programming. There are reports […]
American Vision gets its fair share of feedback from readers like you. A concern that is often raised by letter and email writers goes something like this: “Why is your ministry so negative? Shouldn’t we be trying to unite Christians and work together instead of bickering over theological differences that don’t really matter? Let’s just preach the gospel and worry about the other stuff in heaven…” Although each one words it a bit differently, this is the essence of it. In other words, “Can’t we all just get along?”
The short answer is no, we can’t. Not yet anyway. The main problem with a question like this is that underneath the question is a statement. A statement that basically says that the Bible is only about saving people from hell. Christianity then, becomes nothing more than a one-way ticket through the narrow gate (Matt. 7:13-14). Few there be that find it, but it won’t be for a lack of witnessing and leaving tracts with the tip for the waiter. While we appreciate the zeal attached to such a view, it is completely short-sighted and bears no resemblance to the gospel of the New Testament.
The "Back Page" of the April 2009 edition of Christianity Today contains an article by Chuck Colson called "Doctrine Bears Repeating." In the article, Colson argues that the church needs to get back to teaching doctrine. Citing several examples of rampant biblical illiteracy among church-goers as evidence, Colson makes his point unavoidably clear with his final words:
There is an interesting passage in Washington Irving’s The Legend of Sleepy Hollow that has stuck in my mind ever since I first read it. If you have never read this short story, you should. It takes about an hour to read and it is a masterwork of flowing prose; the words seem to almost fall off the page. Aspiring writers should certainly read this story for an example of powerful writing, but I would also recommend that non-writers read it to get a sense of how much popular literature has degraded since Irving wrote his story in 1820.
In 1988, John MacArthur wrote The Gospel According to Jesus, a controversial book in certain circles because he relied heavily on the views of Calvinistic writers to deal with the lordship salvation controversy. My respect for MacArthur grew because he was not afraid to take on those in his own dispensational camp who were teaching "defective theology" about discipleship. The book got rave reviews in Reformed circles even though MacArthur remains "a traditional premillennial dispensationalist.
One of my school friends ended up studying oceanography. He specialised and specialised until, in his own words, he knew everything about nothing.
As we discovered last week, the concept of infinity is one that has far-reaching implications not just for mathematics, but for philosophy and theology as well.
American Vision is often asked why we deal with the controversial subject of Bible prophecy. After all, shouldn’t we just focus on America’s Christian history or even the Gospel? Great question.
The perception that there has always been a war between religion and science is of recent vintage. The myth finds its most formal statement in the nineteenth-century works of John William Draper’s History of the Conflict between Religion and Science (1874) and Andrew Dickson White’s History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom (1896).