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The Surprising Power of False Doctrine

Lies we believe - 3

from Google Images

Jesus had been seeking to prepare his disciples for the shock of his death that would occur in the near future. The problem was that the death of the Messiah had no place in the disciples’ understanding, nor in the understanding of anyone who looked for his coming in the first century AD (cf. John 12:32-34). Each time the Apostles showed any sign that they were listening to the voice of God within them (cf. Matthew 16:17), Jesus revealed that he would be taken from them, tortured, killed and rise the third day. Such was the case in Matthew 20:17-19 (cf. Luke 18:28-30 and 31-33). Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 11, 2018 in Gospel of Luke

 

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The Kingdom of God Versus the World

Spirit of Error - 1

from Google Images

The Apostles wondered (Luke 9:43b) at what Jesus had done and asked him why they couldn’t heal the boy (Mark 9:28; Matthew 17:32). At that time Jesus told the disciples that they needed to keep in mind that he would be turned over to his enemies and would be killed (Luke 9:44), but they simply were unable to understand what he was saying, because what Jesus meant was hid from them (Luke 9:45). The problem is that the rabbis taught that the Messiah would come and successfully free the Jews from those who enslaved them (the Romans in the context of the first century AD). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 6, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Folks Tend to Believe False Teachers

False Teachers - 1

from Google Images

In the second chapter of his second epistle Peter began to tell of the prophesied false teachers. Like the false prophets of the Old Testament, they took their place in the assembly of God claiming to represent him, but, instead, they preached the dreams and desires of men. The prophets of old prophesied peace when they should have sounded out an alarm. They claimed to speak for the Lord, but they spoke out of the imagination of their own hearts (Jeremiah 23:15-16). Had they stood in the council of the Lord, pondering his word, they would have been equipped to turn God’s people from evil (Jeremiah 23:21-22). Rather, they invented stories, claiming disaster wouldn’t come (Jeremiah 23:25-27) and the people hardened their hearts and continued in their evil ways. Similarly, Peter warned of teachers of his own day who sought to turn the hearts and minds of believers away from the Lord, changing Scripture into something God never intended to say. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 17, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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The Sleeping Spirit!

Spiritual Sleep

from Google Images

William Barclay[1] brings out an interesting point concerning the sleep of the Apostles at Luke 9:32, which corresponds to spiritual sleep of men, including believers. Another way of referring to this sleep would be the hardness of our hearts to receive spiritual truth. The disciples didn’t see Jesus’ glory, until they were fully awake. Likewise, we miss so much of what God would like us to see, because our spirits are lulled to sleep, showing we simply don’t have a heart for the truth God desires that we learn. While it is God’s will for us to know him, and nothing can prevent God from doing his will (Daniel 4:35), God has also willed to work in and through mankind. That is, he has willed to work in and through our limitations, which include the limitations we place upon him, due to our hard hearts (cf. Matthew 13:58; Mark 6:4-6). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 16, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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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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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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Did Paul Say Lying Serves God?

Lies

from Google Images

Many atheists claim that Paul both declared he lied to advance the Gospel and maintained that the word of God should be supported, even if it is found to be false. For example, Paul concludes in Romans 3:4 that God must be true, even if all man are found to be liars. Is this just another way of saying: even if God lies we must consider his lie to be true?[1] Must we contradict truth in order to support the word of God? Many claim that is exactly what Christians must believe, and if true, why should anyone believe us? Why should anyone even consider the logic I used to support God’s word in this series about God’s morality?[2] Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 10, 2016 in apologetics

 

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