Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Faith and Understanding

Every once in a while, some jasper drag this swayback out of the corral: "Faith is believing in something you know isn't true". Great. Now give it a sugar cube and put it back. Such an insult has nothing to do with Christian faith, and also shows ignorance of the real meaning of the word.


Christians must live by faith.
Credit: Freeimages / V Fouche
Everyone has faith in something to one degree or another, but the important thing is where our faith is placed. Christians know (or should know) that it is impossible to please God without faith (Heb. 11:6). Some folks think that faith is blind, or believing for its own sake, but that's not the case. Our faith is supported by evidence, and God's Word is self-attesting as well as supported by evidence. With God's help, we can persevere in an unbelieving culture.
The ‘hall of faith’ in Hebrews 11 is one of the passages that Christians are most familiar with. It is inspiring to look at the recounting of the biblical heroes, and spurs us on to greater faith. But the first example of faith that the author recounts is one practised by all believers.
Hebrews 11:3 tells us:

    “By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.”

There is a lot of content packed in one small verse which is worth looking at in more detail.
To read the rest, click on "By faith … we understand!"



Thursday, October 11, 2018

They Exchanged the Truth for the Lie

Christians are to stand on the Word of God, which is inerrant in the original autographs (2 Peter 1:20-21), and is authoritative. We can learn not only about salvation (Rom. 3:23, Rom. 6:23, John 1:12-13, Eph. 2:8-9) and how to live the Christian life (2 Tim. 3:16), but why many people choose to reject God and ride the Owlhoot Trail.


Atheists and other people do not want the truth of God. They know he exists, but suppress the truth and exchange it for the lie.
Credit: Pixabay / Pete Linforth
Atheists often demand, "Prove to me God exists!", and enthusiastic but uninformed Christians attempt to give all kinds of proofs. If they had spent enough time in the Bible, these Christians would have seen that there is no place where someone tries to prove God's existence. Further, they know that God is real, but suppress the truth!

Have you noticed that there is more hostility in the world toward our Creator and his Word, and there is more persecution of Christians? Atheists and liberal "Christians" hate Genesis with a passion. Jesus, Peter, Paul, and others in the Bible quoted extensively from it to lay the foundations for most doctrines. Things are getting worse in the world — just like God said. In Romans 1:18-28, Paul showed how this suppression of truth leads to idolatry. No, that doesn't mean people carve out a physical idol to worship; idolatry is putting something ahead of God. We can see this when humans try to justify evolution and deny God's creative work. Even Christians can be idolaters. Such activity affects people in three primary areas of life.
In Romans 1 Paul lays out one of the clearest expositions of the gospel’s implications. In verse 16 he writes, "I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also to the Greek." Paul then moves on to talk about the righteousness of God that comes through the gospel (Romans 1:17). However, he recognizes that if he is going to talk about the good news, he first needs to talk about the bad news; we cannot really appreciate the good news until we understand how bad the bad news really is. This understanding is why he moves from righteousness revealed to wrath revealed (Romans 1:18). For Paul, God’s wrath is a present1 reality. It is the experience of the outworking of his handing people over to their sinful behavior (Romans 1:24, 26, 28). God’s wrath is therefore justified because of the ungodly and unrighteous acts people commit.
To read the rest, click on "The Apostle Paul’s Use of Genesis 1–3 in Romans 1".
  

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Albert Mohler's Reformation Lecture Series

People may have thought that we had the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, considered to have "officially" begun on October 31, 1517 when Martin Luther posted his Ninety-five Theses on the "social media" of his time. Read an article, listen to a message, have a German beer and ride off into the sunset. Not so. As we saw in several posts last year, the Reformation had its beginnings long before that date, and continued afterward.


Luther at the Diet of Worms, Anton Werner1877
Dr. Albert Mohler had been presenting a series on the Five Solas which I was looking forward to posting in time for the big anniversary observance. Delays happened, so I decided to save them for y'all in time for the 501st anniversary. Before obtaining those, I recommend reading his article, "Here We Stand".

They lectures are in MP3 format, so you can download and listen to them at your convenience. Free of charge, naturally. Each link will take you to the page where you can commence to downloading each one.
I trust that these will prove edifying and interesting.



Thursday, September 27, 2018

Was the Genesis Flood Tranquil?

There are people who propose that the Genesis Flood was a local event, or even tranquil. People who say this are attempting to accommodate secular geology (evolution and millions of years) while still trying to maintain a religious appearance. Also, I reckon the are unfamiliar with floods in the first place; even draining a basin gives them a small-scale glimpse of water power.

Bible believers know that the Genesis Flood was neither local nor tranquil, but some people still try to promote the foolish tranquil flood angle.
Water Drain image credit: FreeDigitalPhotos.net / Teerapun
The global Flood was anything but tranquil, and Scripture makes it clear in numerous places that it was global. After all, it was a judgement of God. The Ark was also a type of Christ, and that also indicates the extent of the Flood. I've put forward the question, "In 2 Peter 3:2-4, Peter talks about the Genesis Flood. Then he talks about the coming Judgement by fire. Will that be a local event?" Not hardly!
Have you ever thought about what Noah would have been able to see when he came off the Ark? Did he walk down the Mountains of Ararat and locate his old home? Was he able to walk down familiar streets, visit a cherished piece of coastline, or survey his favourite piece of architecture? Of course I am being facetious in my suggestions, as there is not even the slightest possibility that this was the case! The Bible is quite clear about the epic scale and total coverage involved in the global Flood (e.g. Genesis 7:19–20).
To finish reading, click on "What would Noah have observed coming off the Ark?"


Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Despair in an Atheistic Worldview

I know of someone who attempted suicide, became a cripple, and now blames God for his condition and other problems. He also hates biblical creationists. The Christians worldview is the foundation for most of Western civilization. Because of that, he has his wheelchair and gets his needs met. Most importantly, the God he rejects has offered him salvation and eternal life.


Atheism and evolution can offer nothing to deal with death and suffering.
Credit: RGBStock / Sanja Gjenero
Now think of the large-scale tragedies in life. There are wars, hurricanes, earthquakes, diseases, and more. In an atheistic worldview, there is no reason to grieve or even provide assistance for others, since death is just another aspect of the human experience. Evolutionists believe that death is a means to developing current lifeforms. The old, infirm, sick, depressed, and others have a duty to die and get out of the way for the fit to move forward. The religion of Secular Humanism is atheism dressed up and looking respectable like, but it is deceitful and inhuman; people will get no meaning or comfort from them.

The biblical worldview — beginning from the first verse — is the only one that comports with reality. God's Word helps us understand human experience, including death and suffering, and helps us to have compassion for others. Don't disunderstand me, old son. Christians do not know everything, and we certainly do not understand everything. God reveals many things to us, and we trust him by faith.
Evolution requires death. At its core, Darwin’s postulate appeals to the power of death to remove those less able to survive so that the “more fit” can take their place. Natural selection, in this Darwinian sense, toils mindlessly on, removing individuals, populations, and even entire species. Whether something—or someone—lives or suffers, Darwinism offers only the cold machinations of time and death. Anything more would require existential purpose, after all, and that cannot be allowed.
To read the rest, click on "Tragedy in a Godless Universe".


Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Evidence for the Resurrection without the Bible?

It is a fair question to ask if there is evidence for Jesus, especially his Resurrection, from non-biblical sources. Is there corroborating evidence from various historical accounts? Maybe some forensic evidence? However, such questions can often an attempt to demand evidence but the inquirer is not interested in biblical information.


People who insist on evidence for the Resurrection without the eyewitness testimonies in the Bible show an anti-Bible bias.
US Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Shane A. Cuomo
(Usage does not imply endorsement of site contents by the US Department of Defense)
Some folks don't seem to ponder on some things, and forget that almost instantaneous satellite news didn't exist back then. We're talking about an event that happened over 2,000 years ago. Another is that Jerusalem was a jerkwater town in the Roman empire. Other information may have existed, but it's turned to dust by now. More than those details, however, is that the Bible is historically reliable. We get names, dates, details, eyewitness accounts, and more. People don't seem to have felt a need to bring in more information. Dr. Jason Lisle points out that giving other manuscripts the superior position degrades the Bible.

There may be charges from skeptics, saying, "The Bible is biased!" So? They say that like it's a bad thing. Does that automatically make it untrue because people want to give accounts of what they saw, experienced, and investigated? There would be very little knowledge in the world, because people who write and give speeches usually are biased! "I want to convince you of something, but I'm remaining unbiased". Ain't happening, Zeke. Insisting that we "leave the Bible out of it" is an anti-Bible bias.
J.T. from Singapore writes:
I was wondering if you guys could write an article about the historical evidence of Jesus’ resurrection itself, but not using the Bible as the primary source of evidence (which after going through some of the articles on your website, the eyewitness accounts of the disciples and the credibility of that accounts seem to make up the main bulk of the argument for resurrection).

If indeed Jesus’ resurrection happened, and he was seen by a few hundred people, surely there must have been other written accounts (e.g. scrolls, parchment, etc, and not including the Bible) in which these eyewitness accounts are documented. It would be really great if you could direct me to these historical evidences (if any).

This question has been one of the topics that my friends and I were discussing, and so far we could not find any other sources that correlate with the Bible on Jesus’ resurrection.

Thank you, and hope to hear from you soon!
CMI’s Shaun Doyle responds:
To read Shaun's response, click on "Proving Jesus’ resurrection without the Bible?" Also, Dr. Lisle has a series in progress. You may like to see "Origin of the Bible: Part 3 – Accurate and Divine", and search the site for the other "Origin of the Bible" articles.



Wednesday, September 5, 2018

The Gospel is Incomplete without Creation

When discussing Creation, atheists and other anti-creationists will ridicule it since they do not approve of viewpoints that do not include Darwin. It's who they are and what they do. It is indeed unfortunate that many professing Christians will file Genesis under "nice story" or "allegory" (and even say that God used the Big Bang for creation — which shows their ignorance of both Genesis and evolution.) In reality, Genesis is essential to a proper understanding of the gospel.


Genesis is very important for a proper understanding of the gospel.
Credit: Unsplash / Aaron Burden
No, we are not saying that believing in creation is essential to salvation, but it is a gospel issue. If you read the Bible carefully, you will see that creation is proclaimed all the way through to the end (see Rev. 14:6, 3:14, for example). What we believe controls what we think, and therefore, what we do. Christians need to have a high view of Scripture, which is God-breathed (2 Tim. 3:16 NIV). Rejecting creation leaves the gospel incomplete.
Many believers think creation is an irrelevant issue, but the opposite is true. There are few things more important to our faith, because if you believe the Genesis account is not true, then nothing in Scripture is dependable. Once you embrace the idea that the early chapters of Genesis are not historically accurate, then everything in the Bible is subject to personal preference. If God’s Word is not a God-inspired record of God’s words, then it’s nothing more than man’s words—and, therefore, just as viable as a Hollywood movie script, a New York Times bestseller, or a gossip piece on the evening news.
To read the article in its entirety, click on "The Gospel Starts with Creation".