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Tag Archives: Gospel

Remembering

Memory

from Google Images

In a very real sense, memory changes us. An emotionally painful memory tends to act as a hedge to keep us from behaving in such a manner that gave rise to that event in the past. Religious and family traditions, or collective memory, cause us to behave in a certain socially acceptable manner, especially while in the company of family and friends who hold to those traditions. And, we probably don’t wander far from those traditions even when we share the company of strangers. Memories of the past that helped make us what we are today jump into focus when they are triggered by something we experience in the present. Visiting old friends we hadn’t seen in years, for example, will trigger memories of people and events we hadn’t thought about in a long time. It isn’t as though we had forgotten our friends or the things we experienced together, but seeing them once again brings many memories of our relationships into focus. Peter points to something like this in his second epistle. He writes that he intends to be an impetus to keep his readers thinking of Jesus and their walk with him. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 10, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Entering the Kingdom of God

Kingdom of God

from Google Images

Peter claims in 2Peter 1:11 that the believer who cultivates the characteristics he mentioned in 2Peter 1:5-7 will be granted an abundant entry into the Kingdom of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. However, when he speaks of the Kingdom, is Peter referring to salvation or something else? It seems Peter is referring to something else, because his epistle is addressed to believers who have already obtained the same kind of faith the apostles had (2Peter 1:1). It is in this same faith to which believers are to add these things in their new life in Christ. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 8, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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Working Out One’s Salvation

gospel

from Google Images

In 2Peter 1:8-9 Peter points to the work of God on the one hand and the work of the believer on the other (cf. 1Peter 2:4-8). If the Gospel (the accurate knowledge, G1922 – epigenosis) of our Lord, Jesus, is believed and active in us, these things will abound and we won’t be idle in God’s hands or unfruitful in what we do for him (cf. Philippians 2:12). The word idle (G692) is used by Jesus in the Parable of the Householder (Matthew 20). In verses 3 and 6 the householder found laborers who stood idle (G692) in the marketplace, so he hired them and sent them into his vineyard. Peter’s point is that, if the believer applies himself to working out the things mentioned in 2Peter 1:5-7, he won’t be idle, because he will be laboring to produce the fruit of the Gospel, and he won’t be barren in producing fruit out of the accurate knowledge, (G1922 – epigenosis) of Christ, our Savior. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 6, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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Sending Out the Twelve

authority-2

from Google Images

Jesus sent out the Apostles on their own to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom to folks in the region of Galilee (Luke 9:2). Sending them out two-by-two (Mark 6:7) was necessary for the Twelve to learn to do these things by themselves, because Jesus wouldn’t always be there to do the preaching. They had to learn to do what Jesus did. Therefore, Jesus gave them authority over demons and diseases and power to work miracles etc. as signs to show that the word they preached was true (Luke 9:1). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 16, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Incorrect Behavior During Persecution

persecution-1

from Google Images

Living in our modern era, we sometimes feel the need to lash out at people who treat us or others unjustly. After all, it is our right to do so, within the law of the land. We may bring people to court and cause them pay for their indiscretions. Isn’t this the way to stop evil behavior? Force could be reasonably used for a righteous goal, and should be in life threatening situations. However, in other circumstances Christ tells us we shouldn’t resist evil (Matthew 5:39). Rather we should turn the other cheek, which points to an insult, not physical violence. Peter wrote about this very matter in 1Peter 4:15, but this verse needs to be interpreted in the context of the persecution going on in the first century AD. This verse is not speaking of normal law-breaking. Rather, Peter is telling his readers in Asia Minor not to retaliate when they are persecuted. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 25, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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The Devil

devil

from Google Images

The name devil (diabolos – G1228) is defined as slanderer. The Scriptures also refer to the devil as the accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10). Jesus tells us that Judas Iscariot was a devil (John 6:70-71), implying that he was a false accuser or a slanderer. Jesus could have meant this to show Judas slandered his enemies, but Jesus may also be implying Judas was slandering Jesus in some manner. Perhaps when Judas was sent out to preach the Gospel (cf. Luke 9:1-2), he may have preached a messiah more to his liking (cf. John 12:34), than what Jesus told him to say. In any case, Jesus revealed in Luke 8:12 that it is the devil who removes the word of God (the ‘seed’ in the parable) from the hearts of men. This attaches a kind of omnipresence to a being other than God, unless it can be shown Jesus doesn’t mean to say an actual spirit being takes the word of God out of the hearts of men. Our modern theology seems to make the Devil, called Satan, into a kind of god who possesses God-like powers, but this is impossible. Only the Lord is God, and no one is able to oppose him.[1] Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 12, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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If One Suffers for Righteousness

pay-it-forward-1

from Google Images

When I was a youth I was told that Jesus said his followers would be persecuted (cf. Luke 21:12; John 15:20). When we are baptized, the ceremony reminds us that with the Spirit of God comes also the trials of fire (Luke 3:16). We are not promised a bed of roses by coming to Christ, but we are promised his continual presence with us (Hebrew 13:5; cf. Matthew 28:20b). Usually, just knowing the Lord is with us during difficult times is all that is necessary for us to be content, but, even if I found myself perplexed and in fear, when the trial was over I was often astonished, as I looked back and saw the nearness of Christ and his protection through it all. This is not to say that I (or we) live a life of trouble and persecution. Judging from my own history, we do not. Life is usually wonderful, filled with joy and peace, but trouble does come, and Peter spoke to us in his epistle concerning how those times should be lived out. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 28, 2016 in Epistles of Peter

 

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