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Posts Tagged ‘Jesus’

Q. 33. Why is Christ called the “only begotten Son” of God, since we are also the children of God?

A. Because Christ alone is the eternal and natural Son of God; [a] but we are children adopted of God, by grace, for his sake. [b]

 

Q. 34. Wherefore callest thou him “our Lord”?

A. Because he hath redeemed us, both soul and body, from all our sins, not with silver or gold, but with his precious blood, and has delivered us from all the power of the devil; and thus has made us his own property. [a]  View article…

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Does God Exist Debate

Christopher Hitchens and Frank Turek debate the question, “Does God Exist?”Turek vs. Hitchens Debate: Does God Exist? from Andrew Ketchum on Vimeo.   View article…

Free Book

The Genealogy Of Christ

A New Book by David Padfield

When most people read the Bible, they skip the over sections that deal with the genealogies of Bible characters. However, the Bible places great emphasis upon the ancestry and genealogy of Jesus Christ (Rom. 1:3-4; Heb. 7:14). The genealogy of Christ is often neglected, and yet it was (and is) of vital importance to those concerned about salvation.

The Jews kept extensive genealogies, available in the public records, to establish a person’s heritage, inheritance, legitimacy, and rights. When Flavius Josephus, the great Jewish historian, wrote his autobiography, he began by giving his pedigree, and says, “Thus have I set down the genealogy of my family as I have found in the public records” (The Life of Flavius Josephus, p. 1).

This new booklet examines the genealogy of Jesus Christ, as present in the New Testament. The study shows how the genealogy of Christ proves the following points:

1.       God fulfilled His promise to Abraham.

2.       Christ’s right to be King on David’s throne.

3.       Christ’s throne is not on this earth.

4.       The importance of women and Gentiles.

5.       The end of the Levitical priesthood.

This booklet is only available on our Web site. You can download your free copy by clicking on the link below. Take Me To The Downloads Page

Audio

Why Won’t They Listen? Reaching A Lost Culture

Ken Ham

Length: 63 min. (16kbps)

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11606143116.mp3 (7 MB) (Right click to Save)

 

Podcast

A Different Perspective

A Different Perspective is a daily 10 minute program that takes a look at the issues of life – real, here and now, relevant, punchy, insightful.

 

We all know that priorities are important. Priorities dictate how we live our lives. What we do. How we spend our time and money and energies. Question is – what are our priorities? What is number one?Join Berni Dymet as he takes a look at life – from A Different Perspective.

CLICK HERE

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What Does Believing In Jesus Really Mean? II

 

The Person of Christ

Christianity flowed through promises that God made to His covenant with Israel.  I think we gloss over that in 21st century from our Gentile perspective and maybe even consider it irrelevant today.   Going back to the day of Pentacost, I believe Peter sets the stage.  Speaking to a Jewish audience, Peter describes for them this Jesus in Acts 2:22-36. For a Jew this was significant because the Jewish hope for restoration and fulfillment of covenantal promises was found in the messiah.  The messiah would not be just another king nor one of God’s prophets.  The messiah would be God’s anointed king, succeeding from the line of David embodying the spirit of YHWH.  The Jews were basically looking for God Himself to come through divine representation.

 

But Peter had understood this prior to that day.   When Jesus asked him, who do you say that I am?  You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.  He was saying, “you are the messiah, the one whom God has sent to fulfill these promises”.   Peter recognized Him as deity.  Also, consider Stephen’s rather lengthy recitation in Acts 7.  Christ was explained. John makes it a point in His gospel to get to this right away.  In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God…and the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.  God among us, emptying Himself to become a sacrifice, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

 

In Acts 10, Peter recognizes that the covenantal promises of God were not just meant for Israel but for all peoples who would believe in Jesus, which he makes clear in vs. 36 “the word which He sent to the sons of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ.  Thus, by appropriating faith in who Jesus was, Gentiles could now be the recipients of covenantal promises.  So getting back to the Paul, Silas and the jailer, I have to imagine that this explanation was part of the redemption package explained to him, that he was once far off from these promises could not access them through Jesus Christ (Ephesians 11-13) and it starts with recognizing who He is.

 

I think its fascinating that so much doctrine developed through the work of councils due to heresies concerning the person of Christ.  The councils of Nicea, Constantinople and Chalcedon were critical answering the question of who is Christ.  He did not become God at birth nor was he never man, as some supposed, but fully God and fully man. Some thought other details were too nitpicky.  What does it matter regarding the substinence of Christ, whether He was 2 people in one, whether He was a whole new 3rd person or had one will instead of two?  This seems so trivial.  And doesn’t that resound today?  Why cause division with details or make much ado about too much.  But I think that Irenaeus, Athanasius, Flavin and Leo understood that we can’t put trust in someone who is not.  If we get Christ wrong regarding who He is, then the whole thing falls apart.

 

Would one need to immediately understand all of this to profess faith in Christ?  Absolutely not.  But if one professes Christ, and in turn is indwelt with the Holy Spirit who bears witness to Christ, would that person then refuse to acknowledge Christ on His terms?  How then can we profess faith in Christ and not believe in who He is?    So placing faith in Christ would necessitate understanding His person, that He is the Christ, Son of God who descended from heaven, born of a virgin,  becoming man, yet sinless to restore humanity to right relationship with God.

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What Does Believing In Jesus Really Mean? I

Acts 16:31, after Paul and Silas are miraculously released from prison, the jailer obviously impressed with fantastic occurrences that freed them asks the simple question “what must I do to be saved?”  To which they gave an equally simple answer, “believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved”.  Simple.  And isn’t that in line with modern day prescriptions?  No need to break down the 10 theological points or the 4 spiritual laws or taking them down the Romans road.  For it is a simple belief in Jesus that will unite you to God and that’s all that’s needed.  Or is it?

I think we live in a day where it is easy to confess Christianity, to say that I believe in Jesus.   When asked “are you a Christian”?  Response…yes, I believe in Jesus.  One may even go so far as to claim the sinner’s prayer as their rite of passage into Christianity.  I believe in Jesus because he died on the cross for my sins and I’ve asked Him into my heart.  Well, then it’s a done deal.

But I think a further examination of what believing in Jesus entails and also what transpires in the Acts account of the jailer.  For it is interesting that, despite the simple prescription that Paul provides, vs. 32 indicates that they spoke the word of the Lord to him.  My Expositor’s Bible commentary indicates that speaking the word of the Lord to him was to explain the good news of redemption in Christ for them in terms they can understand.  It sounds like there was more to believing in Jesus than just saying, yes I believe in Him.  The had to break it down for him and unpack  what believing in Jesus meant.

I think this is significant.  It seems to me, and I could be wrong, that in an effort to accommodate seekers of Christianity and not make salvation invitations too burdensome, that we’ve lost this very important explanation process.   They just need to know that Jesus died for their sins.  Why bore them with details.  What is even worse are the “altar calls” that I have heard that doesn’t even include this basic point.  Your life is not going right?  You know something is missing?  You want to get right with God?  Come to the altar.  Now I am not saying that every situation is going to warrant a long diatribe, but if an offer of salvation goes forth, isn’t it fair for people to know what we are asking them to believe?  Are even professing Christians aware of the basis of their belief?  Does the simple message of  Jesus dying for sins really get the point across, especially to an unchurched, badly-churched or other world-view person? Will it really get to what is being asked of people to put their trust in?

And trust is a key factor in belief.  Now I am a lowly 2nd semester greek student, but I find it interesting that the root  is the same for both the verb “believe” and the noun “faith” (if would learn to type in unicode I could actually put the greek word here).   The BDAG Greek-English lexicon provides these explanations for the verb, believe as the following:

  • to consider something to be true and worthy of one’s trust
  • to entrust oneself to an entity in complete confidence

So believing in something means that there must also be trust.  I think many people are aware of the events concerning Christianity, especially those who have been grounded in church.  But giving something a intellectual assent is not the same as believing.  I can look at a chair and believe that it is a chair and that it is designed to hold me up when I sit down it.  But the use of the chair will not be activated if I don’t have faith in the chair that it will in fact do what it is designed to do.  It will not be valid for me unless I place my trust in it.  So belief in Jesus Christ must entail an element of trust.

But what are we trusting in?  Christianity has gone through 2,000 years of historical development through which many deviations from the central message has occurred.  What do you imagine they explained to this jailer of what believing in Jesus meant?  I believe the accounts in Acts clearly outline principles that incorporate this element of trust into what believing in Jesus really means.  And when reconciled with the whole counsel of Scripture  identifies key elements that incorporates a faith in Jesus Christ.

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