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The Error of Scoffers

Ignorance

from Google Images

Many modern critics of the Bible have a vested interest in the idea that Jesus (if they even admit that he ever existed) is both dead and buried somewhere near Jerusalem. It wasn’t really that much different in the first century AD. The idea of anyone rising from the dead was completely foreign to what people might think about a hero or an enemy. Such a thing had no place in the worldview of Hellenistic society or any other ancient culture, despite what some folks like to say today. Peter claimed in 2Peter 3:5 that the scoffers of that day were willingly ignorant or forgetful. The reason being, they have a vested interest in the idea that Jesus must be dead and could not be the Messiah (cf. Mark 12:6-7). Dead men don’t live again, or so they wished it were true (2Peter 2:1-3; 3:5). What they desired to be so ruled their reasoning of what should be true, so their foolish hearts were darkened (2Peter 2:4; Romans 1:21). Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on April 12, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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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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Authorship of Second Peter Revisited

authentic-epistle-of-peter

from Google Images

In an earlier posting, I argued for the authenticity of both epistles of Peter together.[1] Before entering into an actual study of Peter’s second epistle, I would like to look again at its authorship in an effort to further confirm its legitimacy in the canon of Scripture. While some folks may consider this a biased approach to knowing its author, I have to wonder who is ever unbiased in anything he says or does in the search for truth. Does an atheists honestly consider the evidence before him, or does he study the evidence with a view of knowing how he might support his worldview? Similarly, does the Biblical critic really approach the study of the New Testament with a view of proving an unbiased truth about it, or does he approach his study with the purpose of further substantiating his personal convictions about the matter? If there is truly an unbiased person in this world. I would like to meet him. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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Was the Gospel Preached to the Dead?

no-debate

from Google Images

Several of Peter’s lusts of men (1Peter 4:2) which he enumerates in 1Peter 4:3 have to do with excessive indulgence in wine. Although there is room for a literal interpretation in his context, I wonder if his main thought was an over indulgence in certain behavior (Isaiah 29:9-15). The words of the prophet concern a people who have secretly conspired (Isaiah 29:15) to do evil. Thinking no one knew their motives, the Lord tripped them up, so that the wise and prudent among them were unable to insure success of their plans (Isaiah 29:14), because the people honored God with their lips, but not with their hearts (Isaiah 29:13). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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The Context of Suffering for Christ

endurance

from Google Images

The idea of suffering comes with a mixed bag of beliefs or practices that one has gotten and retained from being taught as a child and growing up in traditions coming from society. For example, if one has given himself over to be an athlete, he might have heard it said: “It isn’t working unless it hurts!” That is, if one is really interested in the prize, one must endure suffering along the way. This, of course, is also the goal of military discipline. So, suffering, although negative in tone, is often pursued in order to gain a desired positive goal. Jesus had a goal in mind, and he knew suffering was the only path to take in order to achieve that end. Therefore, he embraced the way of the cross, not because he enjoyed suffering, but because it was the only way of attaining the end for which he was born (John 18:37; cf. Luke 12:50; 22:15). The believer is called to follow Christ and, according to Peter, suffering has its place in the believer’s way of life. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2017 in Epistles of Peter

 

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The Chosen of God

chosen

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Although Jesus had been rejected by the Jewish leadership, Matthew made a point of showing that Jesus was chosen by God (Matthew 12:17-21), quoting Isaiah 42:1-4. Matthew pointed out by showing Jesus avoided division that he was God’s Elect or Chosen One. When Jesus realized the Pharisees were taking council to kill him (Matthew 12:14), he withdrew from their presence,  not merely to save his life, but to avoid a confrontation that would result in division. By this time Jesus had quite a following. In fact, a large group of people followed him, and he healed them (Matthew 12:15). Jesus didn’t avoid doing good, but he avoided doing good under the noses of his enemies, who thought his works opposed them and their worldview. Jesus avoided separating the Jews into factions, some wishing to make him king (cf. John 6:14-15) and others wanting to kill him. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on November 30, 2016 in Epistles of Peter

 

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Love Your Enemies!

love-1

from Google Images

The world’s standard of behavior is to treat others as they have treated you, which seems to be the worldview also taught by the rabbis in the 1st century AD (cf. Matthew 5:38, 43). Almost like a prophetic warning in 1965 America, Jackie DeShannon recorded What the World Needs Now Is Love[1] just as the Viet Nam War was escalating. What the world needed in the 1st century AD (Luke 6:35) and what the world needed in 1965 and what it has always needed is love, and Jesus gave us an example to follow (Romans 5:6-8), not that we need to die as he did, but that we need to have the same attitude Jesus had (cf. Philippians 2:5). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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