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|OT| Community Christianity [OT] The Word became flesh and dwelt among us

Game Analyst

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New resources:

Video: Falkirk Faith Summit 2020

"It’s time to fight for the Christian faith and change the direction of our country by engaging in the cultural battlefield. Join Governor Mike Huckabee, Eric Metaxas, Charlie Kirk, Jenna Ellis, Jack Brewer, Gia Chacon, Virgil Walker, and more courageous pastors and Christian leaders who champion the Gospel of Jesus Christ as we unapologetically pursue a robust political and cultural engagement." (9/10/20)



Video: How to Navigate Culture
We find ourselves in a time of moral confusion defined by things like social justice and Critical Theory. In the confusion it could seem like the Christian voice has been lost. Join Jon Noyes and RZIM Senior Vice President Abdu Murray as they discuss not only how we got here, but how we can get our voice back as we put a new emphasis on truth.

Video: What the Bible Really Teaches about Demons
Can demons read your mind? What powers do they really have? The truth about demons is far stranger, and more fascinating, than many have been lead to believe. In this video, I interview scholar Michael Heiser, author of DEMONS: WHAT THE BIBLE REALLY SAYS ABOUT THE POWERS OF DARKNESS. We take live questions too.

David French and the Train that Already Left the Station
There is a real debate to be had between Christians about how much authority the civil magistrates have when they sincerely believe we are in a state of emergency. Now even under those conditions I want them subject to pre-published standards, and not to be issuing diktats on the basis of the latest hot rumor. But be that as it may, there is at least a debate to be had when the authorities actually believe there is a crisis. But we all agree, do we not, that authorities who are clamping down on the populace, when they themselves believe there is no crisis, is nothing other than an abuse of authority. And when authority is abused in this way, over an extended period of time, it does something to the social compact.
 

Game Analyst

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New resources:

Video: Coronavirus conspiracies & rebel churches – Mark Sayers, AJ Roberts, Ruth Jackson & Lucy Brierley (9/11/20)
"Six months on from Justin’s first lockdown show looking at Coronavirus he’s joined again by virologist AJ Roberts from California, Australian church and culture guru Mark Sayers, his wife Rev Lucy Brierley and new Unbelievable? team member Ruth Jackson. They discuss the politics of Coronavirus, conspiracy theories, rebel churches and what the future of the world and the church looks like."

Video: Baroness Caroline Cox: The Threat to the West's Cultural and Political Heritage
"From the Socrates in the City archives: Baroness Caroline Cox sits in the British House of Lords as a crossbencher and is a frequent contributor to Lords debates on Sudan, South Sudan, Syria, Nigeria, and Burma. At this 2011 event in Manhattan, Baroness Cox discusses threats to the West's cultural and political heritage in the U.K. and abroad."

Video: David Wood Returns To Discuss The Divinity of Jesus With People Of The Muslim Faith. (9/10/20)
"David Wood returns to the program to talk about the important topic of discussing the divinity of Jesus with people of the Muslim faith, using his own experience from his time in prison and college."

Video: Judges 3-4:5 - Skip Heitzig (9/10/20)
"As the children of Israel abandoned God's laws and promises, the Lord allowed His people to fall into the hands of their enemies. The people cried out to God and He appointed judges to lead them out of their trials—but their devastating cycle of sin only continued. In this message, we learn a vital lesson in faith and discover how God often uses the least likely people to carry out His purposes."

Video: The Inescapable Corruption of Sin (9/6/20)

Video: Did Eyewitnesses See Jesus? An Interview with Richard Bauckham (9/11/20)
"Are the Gospel accounts based on eyewitness testimony? How reliable are their testimonies? In this interview, I talk with leading New Testament scholar Richard Bauckham about his book Jesus and the Eyewitnesses, which is one of my favorite books on this topic."
What Are We Arguing About? (9/10/20)
"My overarching point is this: we need to be clearer as Christians about where our disagreements lie. That is to say, we often talk as if we are disagreeing about significant elements of the Christian faith—whether that has to do with God’s sovereignty or worship or justice or racism or abortion—when actually we are disagreeing about a host of issues surrounding those issues. By drilling down to our actual disagreements, we may not find a new consensus or a mythical third way, but perhaps we will be able to talk to each other with more charity and humility. Let’s look at three of the most contentious issues dividing churches (or about to divide churches) at the moment."
September 11, 2001: Was God Present or Absent?
"Many arguments are offered for why God “hides” in a world that seeks to see Him. The answer is ultimately found in the divine purposes of God. It is not that God has absconded or is absent; it is that there is a divine purpose behind His visibility or invisibility. If one can rightly read the clues, the mystery is opened up in profound ways. Just as evil can be understood only in the light of the ultimate purpose, so also must God’s presence or seeming absence be judged on the basis of His purpose." (Ravi Zacharias)
 
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Tesseract

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corruption and avarice almost always gets in the way of good christian leadership

this is why i favor men like charles stanley, he preaches without asking what more his congregation can do for him or the church

few and far are these types left in the world
 
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#Phonepunk#

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when i was young i blamed all the world's ill's on organized religion. to me it was a unique evil. however, after gaining in wisdom, reading much of world literature, religious texts, historical documentation, etc. i see that the problems of humanity have ALWAYS been with us.* that these problems appear in all hierarchies, that they are sort of a natural result of concentrated power, of political extremism, of indulging in personal sin, of core, fundamental human failings. we are all sinful beings, we constantly fail to live up to the Christly example demonstrated in God's earthly incarnation. but this has always been a core part of Christianity, realization of our shortcomings, the hope of overcoming those through Christlike mindfulness. i often see heathens accuse Christians of failing to hold people to their own standards, excusing un-Christ-like behavior in public figures. yet Christ teaches to "Judge Not" for there is only one True Judge. at the risk of falslely portraying Christ as some kind of pacifist hippy I feel the forgiveful nature is one that i feel must be prioritized. thus to condemn people for their (possibly slanderous and even untrue) sins and do so in a public and outward fashion seems a very unholy way to go about things.

*the more i think about Genesis the more it feels like an argument for Free Will. ive made peace with the somewhat seemingly contradictory idea that God is all-knowing and yet allows humans free will, but i feel like this story is given such prominence in order to convey that Truth. Adam and Eve as eternal beings, without sin (?), and without the pains of birth and death, who chose to leave the static eternal life in Paradise and were cast into worldly sin, where we still reside. they lived idyllic lives in the Garden, free as children - free of the burden of responsibility for one's actions. then given a simple rule, they chose to break it, proving Free Will exists, demonstrating Basic Morality, and how consequences befall amoral behavior. after the fall - the realization of self responsibility - worldly toil was necessary, and so satisfying worldly needs took priority, placing us squarely in the realm of sin. despite our enlightened human souls we had acted like hungry animals and thus were cast out to compete with the animals for food and shelter. God has set things up, showed us the proper way to live, and when we don't do what is proper, there are consequences. following the esoteric mystery of the Creation we are introduced to a core cast of characters and archetypes symbolizing all of Creation and Good and Evil. Genesis is like World 1-1 of Super Mario Bros., training mankind on basic fundamentals of gameplay. the game being life as one of God's creations. it is a cosmological and archetypal origin story for the human race that fully supports Free Will within a hard moralistic framework.
 
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mcz117chief

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at the risk of falsely portraying Christ as some kind of pacifist hippy I feel the forgiveful nature is one that i feel must be prioritized. thus to condemn people for their (possibly slanderous and even untrue) sins and do so in a public and outward fashion seems a very unholy way to go about things.
Depends. Christ usually forgives those who seek redemption or have realized their errors, not to those who reject him. There are some exceptions, like when he is being crucified, but generally speaking, one has to seek God to be saved.
 

#Phonepunk#

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forgiveness seems to be a necessary part of God's judgement, without which the world would probably not exist. mercy to balance wrath. feel like a lot of public judgement going on these days is all wrath and no mercy.
 
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Cycom

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when i was young i blamed all the world's ill's on organized religion. to me it was a unique evil. however, after gaining in wisdom, reading much of world literature, religious texts, historical documentation, etc. i see that the problems of humanity have ALWAYS been with us.* that these problems appear in all hierarchies, that they are sort of a natural result of concentrated power, of political extremism, of indulging in personal sin, of core, fundamental human failings. we are all sinful beings, we constantly fail to live up to the Christly example demonstrated in God's earthly incarnation. but this has always been a core part of Christianity, realization of our shortcomings, the hope of overcoming those through Christlike mindfulness. i often see heathens accuse Christians of failing to hold people to their own standards, excusing un-Christ-like behavior in public figures. yet Christ teaches to "Judge Not" for there is only one True Judge. at the risk of falslely portraying Christ as some kind of pacifist hippy I feel the forgiveful nature is one that i feel must be prioritized. thus to condemn people for their (possibly slanderous and even untrue) sins and do so in a public and outward fashion seems a very unholy way to go about things.

*the more i think about Genesis the more it feels like an argument for Free Will. ive made peace with the somewhat seemingly contradictory idea that God is all-knowing and yet allows humans free will, but i feel like this story is given such prominence in order to convey that Truth. Adam and Eve as eternal beings, without sin (?), and without the pains of birth and death, who chose to leave the static eternal life in Paradise and were cast into worldly sin, where we still reside. they lived idyllic lives in the Garden, free as children - free of the burden of responsibility for one's actions. then given a simple rule, they chose to break it, proving Free Will exists, demonstrating Basic Morality, and how consequences befall amoral behavior. after the fall - the realization of self responsibility - worldly toil was necessary, and so satisfying worldly needs took priority, placing us squarely in the realm of sin. despite our enlightened human souls we had acted like hungry animals and thus were cast out to compete with the animals for food and shelter. God has set things up, showed us the proper way to live, and when we don't do what is proper, there are consequences. following the esoteric mystery of the Creation we are introduced to a core cast of characters and archetypes symbolizing all of Creation and Good and Evil. Genesis is like World 1-1 of Super Mario Bros., training mankind on basic fundamentals of gameplay. the game being life as one of God's creations. it is a cosmological and archetypal origin story for the human race that fully supports Free Will within a hard moralistic framework.
It is a constant struggle for me. I see evil people doing evil things and my first thoughts are retribution.

Yet we are commanded to forgive and love our neighbors. We must be wise. Yes, we pray for evil people to repent and give themselves to our Lord but at the same time evil must be labeled evil, called out, confronted, and destroyed.

I am able to forgive an evil person if they are truly repentant, but until that happens, I will continue to call a spade a spade. I am a sinner like all the rest, and I don’t want this to turn political. Let’s continue to be strong, vigilant, and to pray for our enemies, for we have many.
 

mcz117chief

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It is a constant struggle for me. I see evil people doing evil things and my first thoughts are retribution.

Yet we are commanded to forgive and love our neighbors. We must be wise. Yes, we pray for evil people to repent and give themselves to our Lord but at the same time evil must be labeled evil, called out, confronted, and destroyed.

I am able to forgive an evil person if they are truly repentant, but until that happens, I will continue to call a spade a spade. I am a sinner like all the rest, and I don’t want this to turn political. Let’s continue to be strong, vigilant, and to pray for our enemies, for we have many.
We have to to escape the viscous circle of "eye for an eye". If we were to focus solely on retribution the world would be in a never ending spiral of destruction. Christ's message is trying to break the circle by telling us that WE have to take the beating from time to time to heal the world.
 

Cycom

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We have to to escape the viscous circle of "eye for an eye". If we were to focus solely on retribution the world would be in a never ending spiral of destruction. Christ's message is trying to break the circle by telling us that WE have to take the beating from time to time to heal the world.
We turn the cheek and take beating from time to time, but not all the time. Hard to live a Christian life and evangelize if we can’t defend ourselves and our faith.

I do agree that an eye for an eye mentality is completely wrong and that seeking retribution will only lead us on a downward spiral. We must be careful, for the abyss can easily swallow the unwary.

Beyond this, I do fall prey to calling people here all kinds of disparaging names when I should be showing more grace. I often ponder my responses and am often disappointed in my choice of words.

God bless us all.
 
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New Resources

Video: More Christian Than We Might Think || Slavoj Zizek, Douglas Murray, Tom Holland & Christian Atheism (9/12/20)
Glen Scrivener and Paul Feesey discuss Christian Atheism and three different approaches to living in a secular West which has undeniably Christian foundations.

Slavoj Ziek and Jordan Peterson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsWnd...
Slavoj Zizek, Christian Atheism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UOM3...
Douglas Murray on Modern Wisdom: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1DLrR...
Douglas Murray at the Cambridge Union: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CKK9w...
Douglas Murray on The Mark Steyn Show: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iAKf...
Tom Holland and Tom Wright clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AIJ9g...
Tom Holland and Tom Wright Full Interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlf_U...
Tom Holland and AC Grayling clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kGNE5...
Tom Holland and AC Grayling full debate: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7eSyz...
Ricky Gervais on Children in Need: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DgIR...

Video: William Lane Craig Reacts to the Progressive Christian View of the Atonement (9/4/20)
William Lane Craig joins me to respond to progressive Christians like Brian Zhand, Richard Rohr, William Paul Young, Steve Chalke, and Rob Bell about the atonement.

Article: Blameless Before God? Philippians 3:6 in Context (Alan J. Thompson, lecturer in New Testament at Sydney Missionary and Bible College)

Paul’s statement in Philippians 3:6 that he was blameless ‘with respect to righteousness in the law’ before his conversion has been the focus of much discussion in debates over ‘covenantal nomism’ and ‘works righteousness’ in the writings of Paul and first-century Judaism. This article will examine in particular the problems that this verse raises with respect to: (1) the basis of Paul’s confidence before God, and (2) universal human sinfulness and inability to keep the law. It will be argued here that Paul’s (misplaced) pre-Christian basis of confidence before God included his obedience to the law. A summary of the views of two representatives of those who object to the argument will be presented before presenting the main support for this argument.
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Today's resources:

Video: Was the Reformation a Net Positive or Net Negative for Christianity, and What's the Deal With Mary?
Dr. Jeremy Holmes (a Catholic) and I (a Protestant) are talking about some specific points that Catholics and Protestants often see very differently.

Video: A Leader After God’s Own Heart: Leadership Lessons from the Life of David - Sarah Breuel
From all men and women in history, what makes David unique in God’s eyes to be given such a description as a man after God's own heart? In this workshop, we will look at the inner life and leadership of David, asking what we can learn from God’s anointed king.

Life's Most Important Question
In chapter 1 He is called the Son of the Most High, the King, the Son of God. In chapter 2 He's called the Savior, Christ, God. In chapter 4 He's called the Holy One of God, the Son of God, Christ. It goes all the way through, you get to the end of chapter 22, He's Christ, Son of Man, Son of God. In chapter 23 He's Christ, chosen One, King of the Jews, and there's more in between. His titles were made clear, they were made public all the time, whether it was angels, or saints or priests or apostles or Satan or demons or just the people, whoever it was, or Himself, it was clear who He claimed to be.
Gen Z’s looking for religion. You’d be surprised where they find it
The latest research from Pew points in that direction with 8 out of 10 teenagers reporting that they believe “in God or a universal spirit” and 77% saying that they feel a “strong sense of gratitude” more than once a month
William Lane Craig lectures on the moral argument at Georgia Tech.
The objective worthlessness of human beings on a naturalistic world view is underscored by two implications of that world view: materialism and determinism. Naturalists are typically materialists or physicalists, who regard man as a purely animal organism. But if man has no immaterial aspect to his being (call it soul or mind or what have you), then he is not qualitatively different from other animal species. For him to regard human morality as objective is to fall into the trap of specie-ism.
Cuties: The Natural Progression of “Love Is Love”
Is this article a review of the film Cuties? No, it is simply to ask the question, how did we get here? Many thought the culmination of the “love is love” movement occurred in 2015, how are we now stumbling into pedophilia? This insidious movement was started without the grounding of objective morality decades ago in academia, and as with many of these movements, those on the outside failed to diagnose or engage with it properly.
Essay: Redemption by scholar J. Ligon Duncan
Redemption means to secure the release or recovery of persons or things by the payment of a price. It is a covenantal legal term closely associated with ransom, atonement, substitution, and deliverance, thus salvation. Theologically, redemption refers ultimately to the saving work of Christ, who came to accomplish our redemption by giving his life in substitution for our own as the ransom price.
 

Helscream

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when i was young i blamed all the world's ill's on organized religion. to me it was a unique evil. however, after gaining in wisdom, reading much of world literature, religious texts, historical documentation, etc. i see that the problems of humanity have ALWAYS been with us.* that these problems appear in all hierarchies, that they are sort of a natural result of concentrated power, of political extremism, of indulging in personal sin, of core,
The sin nature is indeed a big contributor the problems of our world. However "Religion" plays a equally large part in mankind's predicament. I would define "Religion" as a system that chose a path away/separate from the Creator. Satan as well as the rest of the entities that rebelled against God and His natural order are responsible for the existence of all other systems that drive humankind to choose a path separate from the Creator. (Genesis 10 - The Table of Nations / Deuteronomy 32:8 )

fundamental human failings. we are all sinful beings, we constantly fail to live up to the Christly example demonstrated in God's earthly incarnation. but this has always been a core part of Christianity, realization of our shortcomings, the hope of overcoming those through Christlike mindfulness. i often see heathens accuse Christians of failing to hold people to their own standards, excusing un-Christ-like behavior in public figures.
What defines the Christian is a "set apart" lifestyle. We are to be set apart and seperate ourselves from the carnal world. That is a all encompassing application to everything we are and do. Sadly many people who identify as Christian do not apply the instructions on how to live their lives according the what the Bible teaches us.

yet Christ teaches to "Judge Not" for there is only one True Judge. at the risk of falslely portraying Christ as some kind of pacifist hippy I feel the forgiveful nature is one that i feel must be prioritized. thus to condemn people for their (possibly slanderous and even untrue) sins and do so in a public and outward fashion seems a very unholy way to go about things.
"Judge not lest ye be Judged" is thrown around alot, but how many people actually read the full passage of Matthew 7? Jesus is speaking of hypocrites and the wickedness of men judging others by their own merit. However in John 7 we are told to "Judge Righteous Judgement". While Jesus is the perfect example and the Arbiter of Justice who has the final authority on rendering judgement to a individual. As a Christian we are not only permitted, but expected to call out sin and wickedness where ever it may dwell. We are to be a light unto the world and expose evil with the light of Jesus Christ. We take what we have in the Bible and use that as our standard and not our own merits. Just as the Prophets of the Old Testament were intended to call out the sins of Israel to turn back to YHVH. So are we to call out these sins of men, not to condemn them, but to beckon them back to God that they may repent and return to their Creator.

*the more i think about Genesis the more it feels like an argument for Free Will. ive made peace with the somewhat seemingly contradictory idea that God is all-knowing and yet allows humans free will, but i feel like this story is given such prominence in order to convey that Truth. Adam and Eve as eternal beings, without sin (?), and without the pains of birth and death, who chose to leave the static eternal life in Paradise and were cast into worldly sin, where we still reside. they lived idyllic lives in the Garden, free as children - free of the burden of responsibility for one's actions. then given a simple rule, they chose to break it, proving Free Will exists, demonstrating Basic Morality, and how consequences befall amoral behavior. after the fall - the realization of self responsibility - worldly toil was necessary, and so satisfying worldly needs took priority, placing us squarely in the realm of sin. despite our enlightened human souls we had acted like hungry animals and thus were cast out to compete with the animals for food and shelter.
God being all-knowing is true. But foreknowledge does not mean predestination. Is it possible for mankind to make a choice that God Himself would not be pleased with? Yes. However for mankind to be Imagers of God, we must exhibit abilities that define God. One of those abilities being Free Will. Adam and Eve were lied to by the Serpent in the Garden of Eden. To distill beginning of Genesis down into some simplistic existentialism metaphor undermines the scripture that tells us about what happened in the Garden of Eden, What it means of Jesus as the Second Adam, and the character of the God of the Bible.

forgiveness seems to be a necessary part of God's judgement, without which the world would probably not exist. mercy to balance wrath. feel like a lot of public judgement going on these days is all wrath and no mercy.
The Bible tells us specifically that those who seek out God earnestly, repent of their sins, and ask for forgiveness that God is righteous and just to forgive our transgressions. Everyone likes to talk about John 3:16, but look at what is said immediately afterwards.

John 3:
19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.

Men condemn and damn themselves. There is no forgiveness to those who do not follow the specific plan of salvation God has offered. God offers grace and mercy to those who are not worthy. Yet there is a threshold that once reached God must judge a individual, community, nation, even the entire world once that threshold is reached.

It is a constant struggle for me. I see evil people doing evil things and my first thoughts are retribution.

Yet we are commanded to forgive and love our neighbors. We must be wise. Yes, we pray for evil people to repent and give themselves to our Lord but at the same time evil must be labeled evil, called out, confronted, and destroyed.

I am able to forgive an evil person if they are truly repentant, but until that happens, I will continue to call a spade a spade. I am a sinner like all the rest, and I don’t want this to turn political. Let’s continue to be strong, vigilant, and to pray for our enemies, for we have many.
Jonah was commanded to warn Nineveh of God's impending judgement. Jonah was stubborn and resisted God's instruction. However once Jonah spoke to the people of Nineveh, they repented and God stilled His Hand. However the wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah was so severe God informed Abraham of the impending judgement. Even though Abraham shows us the extreme mercy of God, yet there were not even a mere 5 righteous people among Sodom and Gomorrah. And so those people were rescued and those two cities were utterly destroyed.

The severity of sin reflects the severity of punishment. We forgive what we can, but sometimes a person must suffer the consequences of their actions.

We have to to escape the viscous circle of "eye for an eye". If we were to focus solely on retribution the world would be in a never ending spiral of destruction. Christ's message is trying to break the circle by telling us that WE have to take the beating from time to time to heal the world.
There is no need of retribution in a society where men and women live out a righteous life. If men and women adhered to the instructions in the Bible we would not need to seek vengeance on those who wrong us. However this is not the case.

When godless institutions like the Chinese Communist Party completely smash to splinters what Christian churches are left in China, or when Muslim Fulani Herdsmen in Nigeria decided to trap Christians inside a Church and burn them alive. My yearning the return of my Master will grow even stronger. I will eagerly await the day of their judgement.

The Books of Hebrews tells is that "For our God is a consuming fire". So when you read this next passage it all makes sense.

Zechariah 14:12 And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, and their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.

A merciless fate await those who persecute the people of God.
 
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New Resources:

Audio: Was Jesus Just a Good Man?
Was Jesus just a good man, or truly divine? A recent poll indicates that 30 percent of evangelicals see Jesus as a good and wise moral teacher, but not as God Himself. But, what’s the difference, and why does it matter? In today’s episode of Ask Away, Jo and Vince consider what Jesus taught about himself, what it means to believe that he is God, and how the answer to this question affects how we live today.
Video: Who Let Cuties Happen? We Did
Cuties / Mignonnes is the new French film by director Maïmouna Doucouré recently released on Netflix. It spotlights the outrageous sexualisation of young girls both in traditional Islam and on secular, social media platforms. Unfortunately it makes the point by outrageously sexualising young girls. Listen in as Paul Feesey and Glen Scrivener go beyond the hype to discuss the intentions of the director, the car crash of the film, the source of this controversy and the solution to the oppressive male gaze.

Video: Atheist Greydon Square - A Debate with Cliffe and Stuart


Video: A Nation Under God?


Audio: The Church of BLM
In this “freestyle” episode, Darrell and Virgil (“Omaha”) discuss some of the fundamental doctrines that guide the organization Black Lives Matter and how those beliefs are more resemblant of a “church” with its own religion than a political entity seeking social justice.
The conservatives who want to undo the Enlightenment
The early modern proto-liberals who helped to inspire the Enlightenment had several aims, but a key one was the promulgation of an account of human origins that could serve as an alternative to the biblical narrative. The Bible describes the original human beings as created by God and placed in paradise. With their first sin — disobeying the command to refrain from eating fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil — Adam and Eve are cast out of Eden to make their way in the world. But they are not abandoned by God, who continues to take a keen interest in his creation.
The Starting Principle of Discipleship
How do you get into the kingdom of heaven? What’s the key that unlocks the door? It's the gospel, isn't it? “So, you're going to be My gospel preachers, and whatever you shall bind on Earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on Earth shall have been in loosed in heaven.” Binding and loosing was an old rabbinical concept. The rabbi would say to a person who didn't repent, “You're bound in sin.” He would say to a person who did repent, “You're loosed from sin because God forgives those who repent.”
 

mcz117chief

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A recent poll indicates that 30 percent of evangelicals see Jesus as a good and wise moral teacher, but not as God Himself.
That's a big "OOF" from me, man. It is, however, a good indication of the fact that churches teach almost nothing. Just pointless sermons and theatrics. When even 30% of "religious" people consider the primary tenet of their OWN religion false then the church should seriously reconsider what kind of people they are making into ministers.
Apart from churches I obviously blame parents that consider spiritual development tertiary or worse. The constant drive for scholarly and financial excellence has completely neutered the spiritual development of most people. Then you also got the "modern dilemmas" of race, wealth inequality etc. and an attempt to solve them as a singular life goal for many young people (the SJWs) who haven't established any proper relationship with God either through their parents or their own nature. Now even among "religious" families things like family prayer before meal, going to church every Saturday/Sunday, reading Bible together etc. are no longer common.
People have gotten incredibly complacent, thinking your pocketbook and immediate pleasures can save all the world's problems, including yours. Just throw goods at people, that'll REALLY help them. "Oh, they are sad? No problem, throw a new iPhone at them, or a new pair of Jordans. We did it Patrick, we saved the city!" but I digress. I am not trying to say that luxury goods are bad, but the balance between earthly and heavenly possessions is brutally skewed towards the former. Like Thomas Aquinas said: "Two cities have been formed by two loves: the earthly by the love of self; the heavenly by the love of God."
 

Ornlu

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I'm skeptical as to that poll; I couldn't find the numbers behind their polling. No hard numbers as to how many were polled, what churches were polled, whether it was done at churches, etc. I could only find percentages.

If it's just something mailed out I wouldn't read a whole lot into it beyond "people commonly don't know what they are talking about".
 

Game Analyst

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I'm skeptical as to that poll; I couldn't find the numbers behind their polling.
Here you go: The State of Theology (study link)

What do Americans think about Jesus Christ, the Bible, truth, and ethics? Ligonier Ministries’ State of Theology survey provides insights. Every two years, we take the theological temperature of the United States to help Christians better understand today’s culture and equip the church with better insights for discipleship. Read some of our key findings from 2020 below and explore the data for yourself. This survey was completed in early March as concern related to COVID-19 began to rise.
 
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appaws

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Well I would assume if catechesis is just as bad among protestants as it is among Catholics....And it is terrible, awful, dreadful among Catholics… Even people who practice and attend services and consider themselves believers don’t really believe in the tenets of their faith.

and I would also argue strongly that definitionally speaking, someone who doesn’t believe that Christ is the son of God is not a Christian at all. Just like those who pick and choose among the doctrines of the church things that they like and don’t like, they are not Catholic. The people mentioned in this poll might be “former Christians” or “lapsed Christians” or “cultural Christians” But they are not actual Christians.

And please don’t come back at me with any “no true Scotsman” bullshit. Christianity is a set of beliefs and an assent to certain ideas, it is not something inborn. Even in the Catholic Church where we baptize babies, if you reach the age of adulthood and you don’t believe anymore, you shouldn’t walk around calling yourself Catholic. (Like Joe Biden) Sacraments provide grace and reinforce your faith, but if the faith is not there to begin with they don’t do you any good.
 

EHuntingon

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I think you're correct. Christianity has turned into a lifestyle brand for a lot of Americans. It's about positive affirmations and feeling good. The doctrine has taken a back seat. I mean, one would think Christ's divinity would be a prerequisite belief to be a Christian, but Christianity has been so diluted in the modern era that it's now, apparently, optional.
 
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#Phonepunk#

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good blog post there on the concept of evil

appaws appaws
I think you're correct. Christianity has turned into a lifestyle brand for a lot of Americans. It's about positive affirmations and feeling good. The doctrine has taken a back seat. I mean, one would think Christ's divinity would be a prerequisite belief to be a Christian, but Christianity has been so diluted in the modern era that it's now, apparently, optional.
being a Christian, and especially one who holds fast to their values, is seen as evil by most of pop culture, who openly mock and belittle the religious. it makes sense given that we live in an anti-Christian society, that those attitudes would spill over.
 
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Cycom

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I think you're correct. Christianity has turned into a lifestyle brand for a lot of Americans. It's about positive affirmations and feeling good. The doctrine has taken a back seat. I mean, one would think Christ's divinity would be a prerequisite belief to be a Christian, but Christianity has been so diluted in the modern era that it's now, apparently, optional.
Modern Christianity:

 

Ornlu

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I found this link before; I don't see any raw numbers, just percentages. I also can't find their methodology. If I'm missing them please let me know. If it's just people who self-identify as 'evangelical' on an online survey, which may have a small number of respondents, then it's probably not a good metric for the Church in general.

No criticism, I just would genuinely like to know.
 

kevm3

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It's been very interesting watching rapture dream videos on youtube. Seems like the time is soon. Also, a leading Israeli rabbi has announced that he has been holding meetings with 'the messiah'.

Matthew 24:26
Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.


this seems more akin to the antichrist than anything, because Matthew 24:26 tells us not to believe such a thing. Jesus's second coming will be in the clouds with glory
 
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Game Analyst

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I found this link before; I don't see any raw numbers, just percentages. I also can't find their methodology. If I'm missing them please let me know. If it's just people who self-identify as 'evangelical' on an online survey, which may have a small number of respondents, then it's probably not a good metric for the Church in general.

No criticism, I just would genuinely like to know.
Hi, Ornlu. That is all that I could find. I do not know if what you are asking for exists.
 

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Video: What is the Strongest Case for Pro-Life? Interview with Stephanie Gray Connors

How can people best defend the unborn? What are helpful responses to the strongest pro-choice arguments? In this video, I interview Stephanie Gray Connors, who is one of the most articulate pro-life speakers today

Video: Judges 4-5 - Skip Heitzig

The book of Judges is one of the most tragic books in the Bible, but in it there is still a glimmer of hope. As the nation of Israel continued in its sin cycle, God raised up a woman and prophetess named Deborah to deliver her people from the king of Canaan. In this message, we learn about Deborah's courage and wisdom in her time as judge as we discover how the Lord works good even in failure.

Video: THE NEW RELIGION OF ANTI-RACISM - A Conversation with John McWhorter

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with John McWhorter about race, racism, and “anti-racism” in America.
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In this ‘classic replay’ Justin shares the 2009 radio debate in which New York pastor Tim Keller defended his best-selling book ‘The Reason For God’ opposite UK atheist Norman Bacrac.

Video: President Trump & John MacArthur - #CriticalRaceTheory, Church Gatherings, & Civil Magistrate

Today on The Sword and The Trowel, Tom Ascol and Jared Longshore discuss the East coast vs. the West coast - President Donald Trump's recent order to ban #CriticalRaceTheory from all federal agencies and L.A. County's recent ban on John MacArthur and Grace Community Church from gathering. Are these good, bad or indifferent things...how should we be thinking about them?

Video: How Relevant Is the Gospel for the Chinese?

In this webinar, our speaker, I'Ching Thomas will look at how we can articulate the gospel in terms that are attractive and significant to our Cultural Chinese friends. We will look at how we can present the gospel in a way that seamlessly corresponds with Confucius’ ideals for humanity but with a realistic solution. We will also see how a Cultural Chinese can be a follower of Christ without having to shed his ethnic identity— one can be a Chinese and a Christian with honor.

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Tesseract

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dark day, i'll have to find a new pastor ...

might try andy (his son), or continue reading on my own and hope for the best
 
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showernota

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I've been looking into theories regarding the role of Islam in the Biblical end times. There are some interesting ideas, I don't want to go too in-depth here because it could seem disrespectful, but I encourage everyone to take a look at the Islamic eschatology. It almost seems to be a mirror of the book of Revelation. Seeing these statistics cements my belief the majority of self-described Christians would just ship the moment another religion became more 'real,' or if the Rapture does occur, and the majority are left behind (imagine the massive disinformation campaign to explain it). In this vein, I firmly believe the horrible situation the Uyghur Muslims are going through in China will play a major role, if we are in fact nearing the time of Tribulation.
 
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“Divided We Fall” is about how to avoid secession. And if you’re familiar with French’s writing as senior editor of “The Dispatch,” you’ll recognize his appeal to pluralism as our way forward. French joins Collin Hansen on Gospelbound to discuss how Christians can coexist peacefully beside neighbors with quite different notions of a life well-lived. And how we can introduce them to Jesus.

Video: The Holy Spirit in the World - John 16:5-11

We are not alone in the universe! That’s the premise of most sci-fi documentaries, but I’m not referring to alien life from another galaxy, rather to the living God Himself. In particular, I am referring to the Holy Spirit. He has a particular role when it comes to working in this world, and that is to awaken people to their great need for Christ. In our series 20/20: Seeing Truth Clearly, we will turn in the next few weeks to the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. What is His role in the life of the unbeliever and the life of the believer?

Video: What's with all the deconstruction stories? With Sean McDowell

It seems like every time we turn around there is another high-profile Christian who announces they've lost their faith. Why does this seem to be happening now? Sean McDowell joins me to talk about his conversations with deconstructed Christians, the nature and pressure of being a public Christian, and what role that might play in all the deconstruction stories we are seeing.

Video: Catholicism, Beauty, and Exorcism w/ Bishop Robert Barron

In this video, Bishop Robert Barron is interviewed by Cameron Bertuzzi (a Protestant apologist) about Catholicism, the argument from beauty, Aquinas, Exorcism, and many other topics.

Video: The Law and The Gospel | 2019 Founders Conference

Is the law of God binding on believers? Are Christians freed from the Ten Commandments? What is the relationship between Moses and Christ? Since the time of the Protestant Reformation, Evangelicals have emphasized the importance of a right understanding of the relationship between the law and the gospel. This emphasis is still needed today. Tragically, the law of God has been neglected by many, and some churches even promote a gospel of lawlessness. While antinomianism is proclaimed by some, others preach the law with no mention of the grace of God, falling into legalism

Video: Shining the Light in a Dark Culture: A Conversation with John MacArthur


Video: A Conversation on Faithful Christian Ministry: September 22, 2020

Recently, our president and CEO, Chris Larson, hosted a panel discussion with three Ligonier Teaching Fellows: Drs. Sinclair Ferguson, Steven Lawson, and Derek Thomas. Watch this dialogue about our need as Christians to bear witness to the gospel with clarity and conviction in an age when confusion abounds.

Study Suggests Unconscious Learning Underlies Belief in God

“This is not a study about whether God exists, this is a study about why and how brains come to believe in gods. Our hypothesis is that people whose brains are good at subconsciously discerning patterns in their environment may ascribe those patterns to the hand of a higher power,” he adds. “A really interesting observation was what happened between childhood and adulthood,” explains Green. The data suggest that if children are unconsciously picking up on patterns in the environment, their belief is more likely to increase as they grow up, even if they are in a nonreligious household. Likewise, if they are not unconsciously picking up on patterns around them, their belief is more likely to decrease as they grow up, even in a religious household.
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BigBooper

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Anyone here gone from an Evangelical church to a Protestant High Church?

I was raised in a Pentecostal church, which I never felt very connected to until I eventually quit going about 19 years ago, but I've been looking around lately for some conservative church to join like High Church Anglican or Missouri Synod Lutheran. I'm sure it will be odd at first, because I have never been in a traditional church service like that. I'm not sure where I land on the doctrinal difference yet, but those two seem most Biblical to me from what I know so far.
 
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mcz117chief

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I just realized today with how ridiculously bad I was losing my mind during the chaos of trying to preorder an XBox Series X how strong my videogame addiction is. I was nearly like a rabid crack fiend.

I've got some soul searching to do..
I'm sorry, Lord. :lollipop_pensive:
It is just a box with some circuitry, no reason to lose your mind over something so trivial. Always look at the big picture and what is really important in your life. If you start to notice you are behaving erratically then just calm down and find your center again. You could also try to start a new hobby, like bird photography. It is very rewarding and relaxing.
 
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DunDunDunpachi

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Anyone here gone from an Evangelical church to a Protestant High Church?

I was raised in a Pentecostal church, which I never felt very connected to until I eventually quit going about 19 years ago, but I've been looking around lately for some conservative church to join like High Church Anglican or Missouri Synod Lutheran. I'm sure it will be odd at first, because I have never been in a traditional church service like that. I'm not sure where I land on the doctrinal difference yet, but those two seem most Biblical to me from what I know so far.
*raises hand*

Raised non-denominational. Married a lutheran and got confirmed in the lutheran church a few years later. Prior to becoming a lutheran I'd visited some greek/russian Orthodox churches. The liturgical aspects make a lot more sense if you're already familiar with the teachings. The outward expressions of passion in evangelical churches is almost entirely absent which might feel weird.

I'll be blunt: I don't believe we attend a church for the church to give something to us. I think God leads us to a body of believers to be a part of that body and to accomplish something. I could talk up and down about denominational differences, but at the end of the day it's a building with some imperfect christians trying to follow Christ's example.

So if you really feel drawn to such a church, pray and ask God to "make a wide path beneath you, so that your feet do not slip" and then attend a few services.
 

Ornlu

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Anyone here gone from an Evangelical church to a Protestant High Church?

I was raised in a Pentecostal church, which I never felt very connected to until I eventually quit going about 19 years ago, but I've been looking around lately for some conservative church to join like High Church Anglican or Missouri Synod Lutheran. I'm sure it will be odd at first, because I have never been in a traditional church service like that. I'm not sure where I land on the doctrinal difference yet, but those two seem most Biblical to me from what I know so far.
If you knock over the kneelers for your whole pew during a quiet lull in the sermon, be ready for the death-glare and storm of silent shame that's coming your way! :messenger_grinning_sweat:
 
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BigBooper

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*raises hand*

Raised non-denominational. Married a lutheran and got confirmed in the lutheran church a few years later. Prior to becoming a lutheran I'd visited some greek/russian Orthodox churches. The liturgical aspects make a lot more sense if you're already familiar with the teachings. The outward expressions of passion in evangelical churches is almost entirely absent which might feel weird.

I'll be blunt: I don't believe we attend a church for the church to give something to us. I think God leads us to a body of believers to be a part of that body and to accomplish something. I could talk up and down about denominational differences, but at the end of the day it's a building with some imperfect christians trying to follow Christ's example.

So if you really feel drawn to such a church, pray and ask God to "make a wide path beneath you, so that your feet do not slip" and then attend a few services.
Thank you. I'm not interested in calling anyone or any Church out, but I've been looking into Eastern Orthodox too and I have some doubts about the priority placed on church leaders and the Patriarchs, much like Roman Catholics.

You are correct, and I'm not expecting perfection. Some doctrinal and especially traditional beliefs will be different, but I'm not comfortable being part of a church and potentially evangelizing other people into a church that teaches untruth. That was the primary reason I left my church so many years ago. I felt guilty about welcoming people into a body I had major disagreements with. I will admit, the idea of a building full of imperfect Christians was harder for me to accept back then too, but it wasn't the key problem. There is something about the unity of a church body of believers though that I am missing and feeling drawn to.
 
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DunDunDunpachi

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Thank you. I'm not interested in calling anyone or any Church out, but I've been looking into Eastern Orthodox too and I have some doubts about the priority placed on church leaders and the Patriarchs, much like Roman Catholics.

You are correct, and I'm not expecting perfection. Some doctrinal and especially traditional beliefs will be different, but I'm not comfortable being part of a church and potentially evangelizing other people into a church that teaches untruth. That was the primary reason I left my church so many years ago. I felt guilty about welcoming people into a body I had major disagreements with. I will admit, the idea of a building full of imperfect Christians was harder for me to accept back then too, but it wasn't the key problem. There is something about the unity of a church body of believers though that I am missing and feeling drawn to.
The emphasis on patriarchs is to obey the scriptural responsibility of "guarding that treasure which was entrusted to you" (admonition to Timothy). Church leadership / authority wasn't the issue, not in the catholic/orthodox schizm and not in the protestant schizm. It was abuse of authority and disagreements over earthly kingdom hierarchy. While I can reason/argue this from an intellectual standpoint, I do not believe it has anything to do with one's salvation. The splintered church is a reflection of our sinful selves. The Kingdom of God is within you. Where two or more are gathered, there I Am also. God tends to build in pairs and work His way up. Genuine church life is bottom-up, not top-down.

I recommend reading Dietrich Bonnhoeffer, a liturgical Lutheran who was very invested in the ecumenical (unification of denominations) movement, until he was killed by the SS at the end of WW2. "Life Together" and "The Cost of Discipleship" are still two of the best critiques of the modern church culture.

You have the right mindset. You should feel uncomfortable evangelizing into a church that teaches untruth. That doesn't mean avoiding church entirely but it means that if you are in a church, you are faithful to God by helping others stay faithful to the truth of the Bible. Iron sharpens iron. God doesn't want a high headcount in a chapel. He wants individuals who cannot accept the routine of church life.
 
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Video: Jim Caviezel on Christian Persecution in the Middle East and Being a Christian in Hollywood
Actor Jim Caviezel joins The Ben Shapiro Show to discuss his experience playing Jesus Christ in 'Passion of the Christ' and his latest film 'Infidel,' which shines a light on Christian persecution in the Middle East.

Video: “Hope through suffering” with Joni Eareckson Tada
Joni Eareckson Tada speaking on the subject “Hope through suffering” at the EQUIP 2020 online conference.

Video: Is the Christian God a Genocidal Bully? Interview with Charlie Trimm (OT Scholar)
How can God command genocide in the OT? Doesn't that make him a bully, and not worthy of worship? In this video, i interview one of the leading OT scholars about this vital question. We explore different options available to Bible-believing Christians in approaching this difficult challenge.

Video: Arrested for not social distancing
Sean and Rachel Bohnet were among the three arrested at the Psalm Sing service for singing while not wearing a mask or social distancing. This is the longer video showing the moments leading up to their arrest.

Was the Divinity of Jesus a Late Invention of the Council of Nicea?
One of the most common objections to Christianity is that the divinity of Jesus was “created” by later Christians long after the first century. No one in primitive Christianity believed Jesus was divine, we are told. He was just a man and it was later believers, at the council of Nicea, that declared him to be a God.
For the Sake of His Name (Ezekiel 20:9)
So let me read the first part of that verse again, and just answer this question. As you hear it, why is God doing what he’s doing among his people? Why is God disciplining them, judging them? And why is God, even in the midst of his discipline and judgment, promising to restore them? Why is he doing it? Ezekiel 20:9, “But I acted for the sake of my name.” The same language in Ezekiel 20:14, “I acted for the sake of my name, that it should not be profaned in the sight of the nations in whose sight I had brought them out.”
 

Goro Majima

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Anyone here gone from an Evangelical church to a Protestant High Church?

I was raised in a Pentecostal church, which I never felt very connected to until I eventually quit going about 19 years ago, but I've been looking around lately for some conservative church to join like High Church Anglican or Missouri Synod Lutheran. I'm sure it will be odd at first, because I have never been in a traditional church service like that. I'm not sure where I land on the doctrinal difference yet, but those two seem most Biblical to me from what I know so far.
Not sure if this is what you're looking for but I went from a non-denominational charismatic church (honestly resembled Pentecostal 100%) to kinda meandering around to eventually coming back to a more Calvinist "Bible Church" type.

I read this book along the way:



It was pretty eye opening for me and incredibly relieving. I would always feel severely uncomfortable with all the theoretical superpowers that the charismatics would claim to have.

I also greatly appreciated in my new church how the Bible is taught in the historical-grammatical context and how the preaching would often be "expository" instead of picking the local relevant topic of the day and cobbling together a sermon.

On the back end of things, I do think some Bible churches are maybe a bit too fire and brimstone at times and members can often get bogged down in Biblical legalese and lose sight of the grace of God. We live in a fallen world after all and life can get pretty messy.
 
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Video: Did God punish Jesus on the cross? William Lane Craig vs Greg Boyd on Penal Substitution Atonement (9/25/20)

Did God punish Jesus in our place on the cross? William Lane Craig’s new book ‘Atonement and the Death of Christ’ is a major new defence of Penal Substitutionary Atonement. He discusses the doctrine of atonement with Greg Boyd who has been a critic of PSA and an advocate of the Christus Victor view of the cross.

Video: Dr. Craig Answers Audience Questions (9/25/20)

Dr. Craig answers questions from the audience on the Kalam, Heaven, Free Will, B-Theory, and more.

Video: The Hallmarks of God’s True Church (9/24/20)


Video: TMU - Chapel - Chancellor's Week - Friday, 25 September 2020


Revolution 2020

Aristotle, in Book 5 of the Politics, describes how revolutions kill regimes (such as America’s) that balance the contrasting interests of ordinary people with those of the wealthy, of officials, and of other prominent persons. As the balance between any complex regime’s components shifts over time, the system may seamlessly transform into unmixed democracy, oligarchy, or some kind of monarchy. The revolution may be barely perceptible—providing that those who impose themselves, whether from above or below, do so without adding insult to injury. But, if the party that takes power thereby destroys the friendship that had bound the several parts, even trifling incidents can spiral into all-consuming violence. Thucydides’ account of the revolution that destroyed Corcyra during the Peloponnesian War is prototypical. The French revolution, the Spanish civil war, and countless others echo it. Today, the oligarchic transformation of America’s republic is turning violent. Aristotle, however, points out that oligarchies born of violent revolution tend to succumb to the very violence that births them, quickly degenerating into some kind of tyranny or one-man rule. Restoration of anything like the original constitutional regime is most unlikely.
What Is The Christian Posture For The Upcoming Election?

In The Coddling of the American Mind, Jonathan Haidt and Greg Lukianoff identify a corrosive mindset that’s informing our growing tribalism—namely, the belief that life is a battle between good people and evil people. Here, we don’t want to be naive. History repeatedly teaches us that few things are as dangerous as an unassailable conviction of one’s moral superiority. Such a mindset can be a recipe for chaos since it removes all constraints on general principle. If we’re dealing with people we believe to be misguided or misinformed, we can continue to aim at persuasion. If we’re dealing with “evil” people, we can enter into an “ends justify the means” frame of mind.
How the Book of Job Answers the Questions Raised by the Coronavirus

The book forces us, like Job, to move on from the anxiety-ridden question, “Will I be protected from suffering?” to the faith-building question, “How should I respond to God in the midst of suffering?” Once again, though, it refuses to offer the expected feel-good answer. We like the stoic martyr of faith we encounter in the first couple chapters, who declares, “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised” (Job 1:21). This is all we tend to hear from Job. But Job has more to say. He curses the day of his birth, lashes out at his friends, complains (as might we) about his isolation from friends and family, even appears to accuse God of injustice (e.g., Job 10:3), enmity (Job 13:24), and vicious attacks (e.g., Job 16:12-14). Something is not right in the world, he insists, and God must do something about it.
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Video: What does it mean to be you? | Nathan Betts
"What I found is that if we do just look within ourselves for meaning, the end result is fatigue and an anxious heart. It doesn't actually work. We need something, we need someone greater. We are not God."

Video: Jack Hibbs & Amir Tsarfati: A Global Perspective Of The Church’s Re-opening
Pastor Jack sits down with Amir Tsarfati of Behold Israel and discusses the tensions that exist over the re-opening of the church, the concerns of COVID, and adhering to local law while maintaining obedience to God.

Video: Douglas Murray | We're Moving From One Belief System To Another | Facing The God-Shaped Hole
RESET is a series of conversations exploring the meaning crisis. With the help of cultural analysts and biblical scholars we're going back to the beginning — to Genesis, the West's great origins story — to see whether the ancient text can speak today. In these interviews, Glen Scrivener asks questions about conflict, suffering, death, sex, equality, science, and what it means to be human.

Video: Rico Tice | How to Honestly Share the Gospel
Rico Tice delivered a message in a breakout session at The Gospel Coalition’s 2019 National Conference titled “Honest Evangelism: How to Talk About Jesus Even When It’s Tough.” The workshop explored the issues that make talking about Jesus difficult, such as doing the hard work of pursuing the lost and overcoming the fact that Christians are simply weird in the eyes of those around us. Tice also addressed four common responses Christians share in Britain to tougher settings for sharing the gospel that likely correspond with other Western settings, as well. And he encourages the church to develop soft hearts and tough skin around the simple idea that people without Christ spend eternity separated from God in a very real Hell.

Video: Redeeming a Culture of Contempt, with Arthur Brooks
On Friday, September 25 we had the privilege of hosting best-selling author, thought leader, and Harvard Business and Kennedy School professor Arthur Brooks who spoke on "Redeeming a Culture of Contempt." In his book, 'Love Your Enemies' Brooks blends cutting-edge behavioral research and ancient wisdom to offer a better way to bridge divides and mend relationships. Brooks helped us think about practical ways we can choose to love those we disagree with—to will their good and be agents of redemption and reconciliation amidst a divisive time.

Video: Interview by Amir Tsarfati: Jesus: Man or God?
The deity of Jesus Christ is something that has been under fire throughout the centuries. In fact, to the New Testament authors, it was one of the determining factors as to whether or not someone was holding to the truth. Does Jesus exemplify the same divine characteristics of the God we read about in the Old Testament? Is believing in the deity of Jesus necessary for one's personal salvation? Join Amir and his special guest, Dr. Seth Postell, as they get to the bottom of the question; Jesus - Man or God?

The Good News About The News
The news media often reports on politics. Your preferred candidate, or mine, may not win the next election, but it is always only ever regarding a junior position—that of Mayor, MP, Premier, or Prime Minister. We can receive this news—and all news—with disappointment but not despair, because the most senior position is already secure. Jesus Christ is King of the universe. He is loving. He is patient. He is kind. He does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. He always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. He never fails, and he is in charge. This is indeed good news.
Why Christians Should Start with Their Bibles When Studying Philosophy
Plato and Aristotle based their philosophical views in Greek theologies about the nature of God and gods, receiving instruction from spirits and oracles at times. To think that philosophy doesn’t involve theological assumptions is quaint, even if the assumption is that there is no god or that humanity is divine. Everyone who runs into a fresh atheist knows that there is an obsession with some version of the problem of evil: how a good God could allow such evils in the world.
 
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Well I would assume if catechesis is just as bad among protestants as it is among Catholics....And it is terrible, awful, dreadful among Catholics… Even people who practice and attend services and consider themselves believers don’t really believe in the tenets of their faith.
The faith that we are called to have is not a religion or a set of laws. It is in God the father and him sending his son as a sacrifice to mend the bridge between God and man. Anything else is just oaths, traditions and ceremony.

and I would also argue strongly that definitionally speaking, someone who doesn’t believe that Christ is the son of God is not a Christian at all. Just like those who pick and choose among the doctrines of the church things that they like and don’t like, they are not Catholic. The people mentioned in this poll might be “former Christians” or “lapsed Christians” or “cultural Christians” But they are not actual Christians.
People who deny Jesus as the Christ will too be denied by him. The fruit of their lives are not good if they cannot accept the sacrifice. They give lip service but they do not have ears to hear or eyes to see.

And please don’t come back at me with any “no true Scotsman” bullshit. Christianity is a set of beliefs and an assent to certain ideas, it is not something inborn. Even in the Catholic Church where we baptize babies, if you reach the age of adulthood and you don’t believe anymore, you shouldn’t walk around calling yourself Catholic. (Like Joe Biden) Sacraments provide grace and reinforce your faith, but if the faith is not there to begin with they don’t do you any good.
Indeed “Christianity” is an illusion set forth by people who like labels. Gentiles through Christ are not called to be Christians but are Jews grafted on to the promised people of Abraham.

Therefore, it doesn’t matter what the faithful call themselves as long as they keep the words of Christ and do them.
 
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Cycom

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The faith that we are called to have is not a religion or a set of laws. It is in God the father and him sending his son as a sacrifice to mend the bridge between God and man. Anything else is just oaths, traditions and ceremony.



People who deny Jesus as the Christ will too be denied by him. The fruit of their lives are not good if they cannot accept the sacrifice. They give lip service but they do not have ears to hear or eyes to see.


Indeed “Christianity” is an illusion set forth by people who like labels. Gentiles through Christ are not called to be Christians but are Jews grafted on to the promised people of Abraham.

Therefore, it doesn’t matter what the faithful call themselves as long as they keep the words of Christ and do them.
If religion is “just oaths, traditions and ceremony,” how do you know you know you’re a Christian?
 
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If religion is “just oaths, traditions and ceremony,” how do you know you know you’re a Christian?
Jesus lived His life in submission and obedience to Scripture. Therefore, a Christian will desire to imitate Christ by living his or her life as He lived His.

"This is how we are sure that we have come to know Him: by keeping His commands. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” yet doesn't keep His commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly in him the love of God is perfected. This is how we know we are in Him: The one who says he remains in Him should walk just as He walked." (1 John 2:3-6)
Here is a detailed study on 1 John 2:3-6: 1 John 2:3-6 - Why Don't We See Christians Living as Jesus Lived?

"It is not enough to know Christ by description; we must know him within the intimacy of a relationship. It is perfectly possible to know about Christ without having encountered him as a living and life-changing reality. We can easily assent to the truth of the gospel, yet find something else more attractive and meaningful. Our mind may assent to the truth of Christ, but our hearts find their consolation elsewhere." (Theologian Alister McGrath)
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Cycom

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Jesus lived His life in submission and obedience to Scripture. Therefore, a Christian will desire to imitate Christ by living his or her life as He lived His.

"This is how we are sure that we have come to know Him: by keeping His commands. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” yet doesn't keep His commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly in him the love of God is perfected. This is how we know we are in Him: The one who says he remains in Him should walk just as He walked." (1 John 2:3-6)
Yes. The scripture put together by men, that we have today due to oaths, traditions, and ceremony.
 
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Bolivar687

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The faith that we are called to have is not a religion or a set of laws. It is in God the father and him sending his son as a sacrifice to mend the bridge between God and man. Anything else is just oaths, traditions and ceremony.
I don't want to start infighting, but we most certainly are a religion (Matthew 16:18). Jesus gave us a set of laws at the sermon on the mount and at the end, he warned his followers about what would happen if they merely listen to his words instead of observing him (Matthew 5-7). He consecrated a priesthood which he sent out to preach, perform exorcisms and anoint the sick (Luke 10). He gave them the authority to forgive sins (John 20:23) and commanded them to celebrate an offering of bread and wine in memorial of his sacrifice on the cross (Luke 22:19). St. Paul warned the early Christians what would happen if they receive this offering unworthily or without recognizing that is in fact the body and blood of Christ. (1 Corinithians 11:27-29). And to one disciple was given the teaching authority to bind and to loose (Matthew 16:19) and to lead Christ's flock (John 21:17).

We are a group and a family and the Lord prayed for us to be in one in the same supernatural way in which he and the Father are one (John 17:20-21).
 
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If religion is “just oaths, traditions and ceremony,” how do you know you know you’re a Christian?
Your relationship with the God. Your receiving the comforter of Holy Spirit and you seeking his kingdom not the kingdom of man. Also, Jesus said true religion is taking care of the widows and orphans. Do for them as Christ would have. The hard things.
 
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I don't want to start infighting, but we most certainly are a religion (Matthew 16:18). Jesus gave us a set of laws at the sermon on the mount and at the end, he warned his followers about what would happen if they merely listen to his words instead of observing him (Matthew 5-7). He consecrated a priesthood which he sent out to preach, perform exorcisms and anoint the sick (Luke 10). He gave them the authority to forgive sins (John 20:23) and commanded them to celebrate an offering of bread and wine in memorial of his sacrifice on the cross (Luke 22:19). St. Paul warned the early Christians what would happen if they receive this offering unworthily or without recognizing that is in fact the body and blood of Christ. (1 Corinithians 11:27-29). And to one disciple was given the teaching authority to bind and to loose (Matthew 16:19) and to lead Christ's flock (John 21:17).

We are a group and a family and the Lord prayed for us to be in one in the same supernatural way in which he and the Father are one (John 17:20-21).
That isn’t religion. That is the kingdom of God.
 

Cycom

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Your relationship with the God. Your receiving the comforter of Holy Spirit and you seeking his kingdom not the kingdom of man. Also, Jesus said true religion is taking care of the widows and orphans. Do for them as Christ would have. The hard things.
I could have sworn that 2000 years of tradition (part of the kingdom of man) have helped to shape me as a Christian.
 

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Yes. The scripture put together by men, that we have today due to oaths, traditions, and ceremony.
This is a separate issue. If a person cannot trust the eye-witness testimony written by Jesus' followers then everything ends up being subjective and relative.

“Doctrine thus defines who we are to obey. It draws a firm line of demarcation between a false Church, which answers to the pressures of the age, and a true Church, which is obedient and responsible to God as he has revealed himself in Christ. "True knowledge of God is born out of obedience" (John Calvin). Inattention to doctrine robs the Church of her reason for existence and opens the way to enslavement and oppression by the world. The German Christians, through well-intentioned but muddled attitudes toward the world, allowed that world to conquer them. A Church that takes doctrine seriously is a Church that is obedient to and responsible for what God has entrusted to it. Doctrine gives substance and weight to what the Christian Church has to offer to the world. A Church that despises or neglects doctrine comes perilously close to losing its reason for existence and may simply lapse into a comfortable conformity with the world - or whatever part of the world it happens to feel most at home with. Its agenda is set by the world; its presuppositions are influenced by the world; its outlook mirrors that of the world. There are few more pathetic sights than a Church wandering aimlessly from one meaningful issue to another in a desperate search for relevance in the eyes of the world.” (Alister E. McGrath, Doctrine & Ethics)
So, why do you not trust the claims made by the New Testament authors?
 
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Yes. The scripture put together by men, that we have today due to oaths, traditions, and ceremony.
Men who were inspired directly by The Holy Spirit. John the Baptist has The Holy Spirit in the womb. Jesus said we’d be even greater than him. If you liken the power of God to move others and prepare the way to oaths, traditions and ceremony then I suggest reading the Gospels again. I am not saying we cannot find good in our traditions and law, but if we put them above mercy and Gods sacrifice then we’ve lost the plot.