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Tag Archives: word of God

Gay Marriages – Defining the Terms

Gay Marriage

from Google Images

The subject of homosexuality and / or gay marriages has become one of the most hotly debated issues of our time. However, as I claimed in an early study, this subject is not a social one, or a political one. By its very nature, it is a theological matter. Therefore, we need to ask: should the Church accept gay relationships as Christian, if the couples are committed to a monogamous relationship? What does the Bible say, and can we know, if the Law that condemned homosexuality has been done away? Some of our church denominations have come out publicly, not only to embrace gay marriages, but to actually ordain gay ministers to serve as pastors or assistant pastors for Christians in those denominations. So, are gay marriages Christian? To answer this question, I believe we must first define what we mean by the term Christian. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on July 5, 2020 in Controversial

 

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His Eyes Were as a Flame of Fire

eyes a flame of fire - 1

from Google Images

John tells us that he sees a rider on a white horse coming out of heaven (Revelation 19:11-12), which in the context of the Apocalypse simply means the Rider came out of the Most Holy Place of the Temple. In other words, the Rider came out of the place where God dwells, and from where he rules. As John observes this Rider, he says the Horseman’s eyes were as a flame of fire, which is also how John described Jesus earlier in the Apocalypse (Revelation 1:14; 2:18). So, the Rider seems to be Jesus, and this becomes clearer and incontrovertible, as we read on (Revelation 19:13-16). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 9, 2020 in Book of Revelation

 

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Fire-Breathing Witnesses!

Two witnesses - fire

from Google Images

The men who would like to hurt the two witnesses would find fire coming out of the witnesses’ mouths to devour them, and every enemy who would seek harm the Lord’s witnesses would be killed in this fashion (Revelation 11:5). Of course this is apocalyptic language and not to be taken literally. There never was a fire breathing dragon, nor was there ever a man who was able to devour men, literally, through fire coming out of his mouth. The language is a metaphor for how the ministry of the witnesses would be protected by the Lord. For example, it was prophesied of Jesus that “he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked” (Isaiah 11:4). Obviously, Jesus didn’t literally slay anyone during his public ministry 2000 years ago. Read the rest of this entry »

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

 

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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 Church in Pergamos

Pen Mightier than the Sword

from Google Images

Pergamos was an ancient city in Mysia, some sixty miles northeast of Smyrna and the northern most city on the ancient Roman mail route in the Province of Asia. Pergamos is the Latin pronunciation of the Greek Pergamum. The original city was situated atop of a prominent mountain along the Caicus river, which emptied into the Aegean Sea about twenty miles west of the city. Later the city was built at the foot of the mountain, and the city’s temples to various gods stood atop the mount. Its name, Pergamos (G4010) is taken from pergos (G4444), meaning: tower or a fortified structure, so the mountain (viz. tower) formed a citadel, giving the impression that the city’s gods were able to withstand any attack of an enemy. Unlike Smyrna and Ephesus, which were renowned for their trade on the Aegean Sea, Pergamos was known for its culture and refinement, boasting of its large library whose only rival was that of Alexandria in Egypt, and its many temples to the honor of its numerous gods, including Asclepius, the serpent god of medicine and health. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 26, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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The Glorified Christ as Judge

Judge

from Google Images

It is assumed in the Bible that folks are right-handed. Anyone whose dominant hand is his left is noted in Scripture (Judges 3:15; 20:16). In Revelation 1:16 John gives us a picture of the Lord’s power in protecting the leaders of his church. In his right hand, Jesus holds seven stars, which are the angels of the seven churches (Revelation 1:20; 2:1, 3:1). However, the word angel (G32) doesn’t necessarily mean a heavenly being. Rather it is often used of human messengers. It was used of John the Baptist (Matthew 11:10; Mark 1:2; Luke 7:27). It was used also of men John had sent to Jesus (Luke 7:24), and it is used of men Jesus had sent out to secure accommodations for his party, while they went on the way to Jerusalem (Luke 9:52). So, the seven stars that Jesus holds in his right hand probably point to the human leadership of the seven churches (cf. Malachi 2:7; Daniel 12:3), and John’s mention of Jesus’ right hand points to his power to protect them (cf. John 10:28). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 14, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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Last Days—Vindication of the Righteous

Sword and Plowshare - 2

from Google Images

In the past twenty some studies on Matthew 16, I’ve shown that Jesus predicted he would come to the first century AD Jews and judge that nation, which he did cir. 70 AD in the person of Titus, the Roman general, whose armies conquered Jerusalem, and destroyed the Jews’ Temple. It was at that time that the Old Covenant came to an abrupt end. Even if the Jews wanted to keep their relationship with God intact, they couldn’t. They had no Temple, no altars and had no use for priests. The Old Covenant was all about sacrifice and ceremony, all of which pointed to Jesus, but in 70 AD, that came to an end, and the Jews were without a covenant with God. The New Covenant was officially established, and it was the only covenant extant that God had with mankind. Thereafter, God had ceased to deal with the nations through the Jews and was now officially dealing with them only through his Church, spiritual Israel. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 12, 2018 in 70 AD Eschatology

 

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Believing the Lie Rather than the Truth

Believing Error

from Google Images

In Matthew 17:22 and for a second time Jesus repeated his teaching or revelation that he would suffer and die at the hands of men but would rise again on the third day. Just as in Matthew 16:16-17, Jesus second revelation of his suffering, death and resurrection follows an incident that offers evidence of the Apostles’ spiritual understanding. In Matthew 17:10-13 the Apostles (three of them) displayed some spiritual growth, showing they were listening to the voice of God in their hearts. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 8, 2018 in Gospel of Luke

 

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The Parable of the Mustard Seed

mustard seed and birds

from Google Images (mustard)

It is commonly thought by Bible scholars, although not by all, that the Parable of the Mustard Seed (Luke 13:18) is about the spreading out of the Gospel, no doubt, because Jesus mentions the plant as a metaphor for the Kingdom of God. The problem with this understanding is context. Jesus uttered the parable in the presence of both his enemies and those who are normally impressed with what he says and does (Luke 13:14-17). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 1, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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The Believer’s Warfare

armor-of-god

from Google Images

Although we are not to resist evil by returning blow for blow (Matthew 5:39), we are told to resist the evil committed against us by taking to us the armor of God (Ephesians 6:13) which is our protection in the day of evil (persecution). The armor consists of having our loins (procreative power – i.e. evangelism) girded with the truth, and the breastplate (which guards the heart) with righteousness or good deeds (Ephesians 6:14). The armor also includes protecting the feet (our walk or behavior) with the Gospel of peace (Ephesians 5:15)—not returning evil with evil, but enduring affliction (2Timothy 4:5) and insults (Matthew 5:39); and, finally, having the shield of faith (Ephesians 6:16), trusting in God will shield us from the fiery darts of those who slander or falsely accuse us. In this manner, Peter tells us in 1Peter 5:9 to resist our adversary, the slanderer, who walks about seeking whom he might trip up in order to compel him to abandon Christ and return to our previous lifestyle. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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Jairus’ Heart

jairus-1

from Google Images

One may understand from the reading of the Parable of the Sower, that the people who have a heart for Jesus (their hearts = “the good ground” – Luke 8:8, 15) are people who are also strong in their faith. However, this doesn’t seem to be the case when one considers the meaning in the light of what occurs later in chapter eight of Luke. Who would consider a recently healed demoniac as someone having strong faith? Moreover, consider the woman with an issue of blood for twelve years. It seems her understanding bordered on the occult rather than the Scriptures, and once she was healed, Jesus had to cause her to come forward and admit what had happened to her. Only when she did this was she able to receive a better understanding of what had occurred to her. These are not incidents of great faith, but weak faith. Nevertheless, they do represents the hearts that Jesus calls good ground in the Parable of the Sower (Luke 8:8, 15). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 12, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Judgment and Identifying with Others

coming-of-christ

from Google Images

The phrase, the end is at hand, or one similar to it has become one of the most used phrases in the mouths of the cynics to show the Bible is merely a book composed by men. If this could be preached throughout the 2000 year history of Christianity, how could anyone take the return of Christ seriously? How could anyone take Scripture seriously, when those named as its composers were so wrong about the return of Christ in the first century AD? Certainly, it is claimed by the cynic, the New Testament shows Peter and Paul not only expected Christ to return in their expected lifetimes, but these men, unquestionably the leaders of the Jesus movement in the first century AD, predicted it. And, the accusation is: “They were wrong—pure and simple!” Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 16, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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The Fruitfulness of God’s Word

fertile-soil-2

from Google Images

In Luke 8:16 Jesus changes from a planting theme to the subject of light. Jesus used this theme previously in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:15). Luke shows that Jesus repeated such themes when they served his purpose in teaching his disciples. Here, Jesus tells us that light cannot be hid, and light in this context is the word of God (Luke 8:16; cf. Psalm 119:105; cf. 2Peter 1:12-21). While one might conclude that the light that cannot be hid is the believer (cf. Matthew 5:14), the context in Luke seems to indicate it is the word of God (cf. Luke 8:11). Up to this point Jesus had been speaking of the fruitfulness (or lack thereof) of the word of God in a man’s heart. I believe he continues to do so, as he changes the symbol to light. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 15, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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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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It’s a Matter of the Heart

fertile-soil-3

from Google Images

After delivering the Parable of the Sower, Jesus revealed privately to his disciples that the seed is the word of God (Luke 8:11), which is sown in a man’s heart (Luke 8:12, 15). The hearts of some men are described in Luke 8:5-8 in varying degrees of receptiveness to the word of God, which is what makes the hearts of men useful to the Kingdom of God. In Luke’s first example, he tells us that some men’s hearts are just too hard for spiritual life (Luke 8:5, 12). The hearts of these men are trodden down, as though their hearts had no value (Matthew 7:6; cf. Hebrews 10:29) The birds eat the seed deposited there, so the word of God is never permitted to take root so that these men might consider the will of God. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 10, 2017 in Gospel of Luke

 

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