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Tag Archives: Law

The Wrong Way to Preach the Gospel

Legalism - 1

from Google Images

Jesus told the church at Pergamos to repent (Revelation 2:16). That is, repent of believing and perhaps acting on the belief that they needed to join pagans in worship in order to gain them for Christ. Such a practice would end their persecution, but it would take away their witness. How could they testify of what it means to have Jesus as Lord, if they acted as though the pagan gods were lords as well? Mere doctrine saves no one. Jesus, not a better argument, saves people from their sins. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 4, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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The Nicolaitans at Ephesus

Nicolaitans

from Google Images

In Revelation 2:6 Jesus told the church of Ephesus that one of their admirable characteristics was that they hated the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which Jesus also hated, but who were the Nicolaitans and what sort of works did they do that were so evil? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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Leaving Their First Love

First Love

from Google Images

The church at Ephesus had tested those who had pretended to be apostles and found them to be impostors, but one has to wonder how such people could ever have gotten to a position within the church, where it became important to understand their motives. Paul spoke of people who had followed up on his ministry in Galatia in order to undo the work he had done there for the sake of the Gospel. He said they were “false brethren brought in unawares, who came in secretly to spy out our liberty, which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage” (Galatians 2:4). He later described such folks as false apostles, deceitful workers who sought to be seen as ministers of righteousness (2Corinthians 11:13, 15). Their purpose was to divide the flock into parties or sects through flattering words and an appearance of the love for the truth (cf. Romans 16:17-18). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 3, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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The Apocalypse and the Transfiguration

transfiguration

from Google Images

What could the Book of Revelation possibly have in common with Jesus’ Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8; Mark 9:2-8; Luke 9:28-36)? This is a question I had before I heard a preacher[1] speak of it, but I have to tell you, it makes a lot of sense. What the Transfiguration does for the Apocalypse is to place it in a context that demands that the book was written prior to the Jews’ war with Rome cir. 66-70 AD. The context of the Apocalypse is the Day of the Lord, or the Coming of Jesus.[2] The context of the Transfiguration is the Day of the Lord, or the Lord’s parousia (G3952), according to Peter (2Peter 1:16-18)! Interestingly, I’ve never put Revelation 1:1 together with Matthew 17:1-8 and 2Peter 1:16-18, but you can see how they all fit together. They all speak of the Second Coming and, therefore, the Day of the Lord. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 15, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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Two Witnesses for Jesus

Pilate and Herod

from Google Images

Josephus mentions an interesting event that occurred about a year prior to Jesus’ crucifixion. Pilate had built an aqueduct into Jerusalem using Temple funds for its financing. When many Jews objected to his use of Temple funds to pay for the project, he had some of his military men disguise themselves and mingle with the crowd of Jewish demonstrators. When Pilate gave the signal, his men began killing Jews in the crowd. They were supposed to kill only the most vocal demonstrators, but they killed indiscriminately, and with such vigor that they slew the lambs, too, which some of the Jews carried, intending to have them slain for the Passover celebration. Thus, the blood of the men was mingled with that of the animals (cf. Luke 13:1), a very distasteful matter among the Jews. Many of these Jews were Galileans, and, when this event was told to Herod Antipas, he also viewed the ordeal with contempt, putting Pilate and him at odds with one another. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on July 24, 2018 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Did the Old Covenant End at the Cross?

End of the Old Covenant

from Google Images

Some brethren understand the scriptures to say that the Old Covenant ended at the cross. After all, Colossians 2:14 does tell us “He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.” That seems final enough, and even in another letter Paul added, “by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances…” (Ephesians 2:15). Yet, if this is so, and the Apostles preached it, wouldn’t they have been excommunicated from Jewish society, and, if they preached against the Temple sacrifices and against Temple worship, why would the Jewish authorities permit them to do it in the Temple (Acts 2:46; 5:42)? If they preached against the Temple, why would they have been found in the Temple worshiping (Acts 3:1; 22:17)? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 25, 2018 in 70 AD Eschatology

 

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Zacchaeus’ Testimony

Zacchaeus - 4

from Google Images

There is little doubt that the they in the text at Luke 19:7 refers to the Pharisees and possibly scribes who might also have been curious enough to watch what Jesus did, as he passed through Jericho. Certainly, both groups were critical of Jesus in the past (Luke 5:30; 6:7; cf. 11:53), and there is no reason to believe Jesus’ critics were the common people (John 7:26). The Greek word used for murmured (G1234) is used only in Luke and then only at 15:2 and 19:7, and at Luke 15:2 it points to the scribes and Pharisees. However, this same Greek word is used in the Septuagint for those who murmured against Moses and Aaron (Exodus 15:24; 16:2, 7-8; 17:3; Numbers 14:2). It is also used of those who brought back a bad report of the Promised Land (Numbers 14:36), so the murmuring on these occasions was done by the leaders of Israel. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 25, 2018 in Gospel of Luke

 

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