Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Terry Macalmon- Live Worship

How can Jesus be both God and man at the same time?"

The hypostatic union is the term used to describe how God the Son, Jesus Christ, took on a human nature, yet remained fully God at the same time. Jesus always had been God (John 8:58,10:30), but at the incarnation Jesus became a human being (John 1:14). The addition of the human nature to the divine nature is Jesus, the God-man. This is the hypostatic union, Jesus Christ, one Person, fully God and fully man.

Jesus' two natures, human and divine, are inseparable. Jesus will forever be the God-man, fully God and fully human, two distinct natures in one Person. Jesus' humanity and divinity are not mixed, but are united without loss of separate identity. Jesus sometimes operated with the limitations of humanity (John 4:6,19:28) and other times in the power of His deity (John 11:43;Matthew 14:18-21). In both, Jesus' actions were from His one Person. Jesus had two natures, but only one personality.

The doctrine of the hypostatic union is an attempt to explain how Jesus could be both God and man at the same time. It is ultimately, though, a doctrine we are incapable of fully understanding. It is impossible for us to fully understand how God works. We, as human beings with finite minds, should not expect to totally comprehend an infinite God. Jesus is God’s Son in that He was conceived by the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35). But that does not mean Jesus did not exist before He was conceived. Jesus has always existed (John 8:58,10:30). When Jesus was conceived, He became a human being in addition to being God (John 1:1,14).

Jesus is both God and man. Jesus has always been God, but He did not become a human being until He was conceived in Mary. Jesus became a human being in order to identify with us in our struggles (Hebrews 2:17) and, more importantly, so that He could die on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins (Philippians 2:5-11). In summary, the hypostatic union teaches that Jesus is both fully human and fully divine, that there is no mixture or dilution of either nature, and that He is one united Person, forever

Prophecies of Jesus

Over 360 prophecies foretold Jesus/Yeshua 

Download in .PDF file here

Jesus paid our debt

The question we should be asking is, "What then must we do to secure our eternal salvation?"  Everything else fades in the light of such a profound question.  The way to find this out is to ask ourselves if we have obeyed the Ten Commandments.  Most would answer the question, "Well, I've broken one or two, but nothing too serious, like murder, etc," but let's go through them one by one and see how you do.
"You shall have no other gods before Me."  Is God first in your life?  Do you love God above all else? Do you love anything else more in your life than God?  Do you love your wife, your husband, your TV soap operas, or even your children more than God?  If you answered yes to any of these, you are loving the gift more than the Giver, and you are guilty of breaking the First Commandment.  Will you be found innocent or guilty on the Day of Judgment of breaking this Commandment?  The sentence of transgression of the First Commandment is death!
The Second Commandment is, "You shall not make for yourself any graven image."  This means we should not make any god to suit ourselves either with our hands or our minds.  Did you perhaps make a "god" for yourself that didn't mind if you told a "white" lie or a fib here or there?  Is this god the same holy God that has been revealed to us in Holy Scripture?  If you have done this you cannot enter God's Kingdom..
The Third Commandment is. "You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain."  Have you ever done this?  Have you included it beside a 4-letter word?  If you have done this even once you are guilty of breaking the Third Commandment and you cannot enter God's Kingdom..  The sentence of transgression of the Third Commandment is death!

Jesus is God

 Shema Yisrael Adonai Eloheinu Adonai Echad."
"Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord"Deuteronomy 6: 4
But, our one God is Spirit and Light, with 3 naturesJesus is God also, a part of the same spirit and the same light of the Father.
The Son is subservient to the Father nature as being Greater than the Son. When Jesus was fully man (and fully God), He was "positionally" inferior to the Father.  The Son is also the Logos, and the Word of God, who made everything seen & unseen by His Word.
The Father is acquiescent to the Son nature for our Salvation (our only mediator).
The Holy Spirit permeates all to bring us knowledge of God.
 For more on this, and Jesus' statement:
"I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater [meizon] than I"

Read here

Reference to the Trinity
16 Come ye near unto me, hear ye this; I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; from the time that it was, there am I: and now the Lord GOD, and his Spirit, hath sent me. 17 Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel;  Isaiah 48:16-17
The New Testament doctrine of the Trinity is evident in such a verse as John 15:26, where the Lord Jesus said:  "But when the Comforter is come whom I will send unto you from the Father, He shall testify of me."

The baptismal formula shows 3:

"baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 28:19).
1st. Note how Jesus always cast out demons, cured the sick, and did miracles in His own name.  Also, on several occasions Jesus deliberately said; "I AM".  This would never have been taken lightly by any Jew of Jesus' time.
Think!  Take for example Jesus’ words in John 10:30, “I and the Father are one.” When first encountered, this might not seem to be a claim to be God. However, when we look at the Jews’ reaction to His statement, “For a good work we stone thee not; replied the Jews, but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.” (John 10:33). Now we see an actual claim.  The Jews understood Jesus’ statement to be a claim to be God. In the following verses, Jesus never corrects the Jews by saying, “I did not claim to be God.” That indicates Jesus was truly saying He was God by declaring, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30).
John 8:58 is another example. Jesus declared, "I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am" Again, in response, the Jews take up stones in an attempt to stone Jesus (John 8:59). Why would the Jews want to stone Jesus if He hadn’t said something they believed to be blasphemous, namely, a claim to be God? John repeatedly tells us of the Lord's connection to "I Am".  See John: 4:26, 8:24, 8:28, 8:58,and 13:19.  The Apostle Paul tells us that Jesus " the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist." (Colossians 1:15-17)

John 1:1 says that “the Word was God.” John 1:14 says that “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us” This clearly indicates that Jesus is God in the flesh. Acts 20:28 tells us, "...Be shepherds of the church of God, which He bought with His own blood." Who bought the church with His own blood? Jesus Christ. Acts 20:28 declares that God purchased the church with His own blood. Therefore, Jesus is God!
To try and grasp the Trinity, first understand that God the Father the Son and Holy Spirit are Spirit, light, awesomeness, power, justice and love -- and He in no way conforms to a human's understanding.  Jesus told us God is Spirit.  Shine two beams of light on the same spot, and you have the light of one, separate, yet also the same as the others.  An example of Jesus' light and the Father's light as the same is at this true Near Death Experience here
Next, try to grasp Jesus' nature as being both totally human and totally God. To help you with this consider these paradoxes by early church father Gregory of Nazianzus (329-390 A.D.). Gregory used these to argue against Arianism.

"He was baptized as a man -- but He remitted sins as God...He was tempted as man, but he conquered as God...He hungered -- but He fed thousands...He was wearied, but He is the rest of them that are weary and heavy-laden. He was heavy with sleep, but He walked lightly over the sea...He pays tribute, but it is out of a fish; yea He is the king of those who demanded it...He prays, but he hears prayer. He weeps, but He causes tears to cease. He asks where Lazarus was laid, for He was man; but He raises Lazarus, for He was God. He is sold, and very cheap, for it is only for thirty pieces of silver; but He redeems the world, and that at a great price, for the price was His blood. As a sheep he is led to the slaughter, but He is the shepherd of Israel, and now of the whole world also...He is bruised and wounded, but He heals every disease and every infirmity. He is lifted up and nailed to the tree, but by the tree of life He restores us. He dies, but he gives life, and by His death He destroys death."

Monday, February 11, 2013

Benny Hinn - Prayer & Fasting (2 Part Set) Audio

What are the different names of God and what do they mean?

Each of the many names of God describes a different aspect of His many-faceted character. Here are some of the better-known names of God in the Bible:
EL, ELOAH: God "mighty, strong, prominent" (Genesis 7:1; Isaiah 9:6) – etymologically, El appears to mean “power,” as in “I have the power to harm you” (Genesis 31:29). El is associated with other qualities, such as integrity (Numbers 23:19), jealousy (Deuteronomy 5:9), and compassion (Nehemiah 9:31), but the root idea of might remains.
ELOHIM: God “Creator, Mighty and Strong” (Genesis 17:7; Jeremiah 31:33) – the plural form of Eloah, which accommodates the doctrine of the Trinity. From the Bible’s first sentence, the superlative nature of God’s power is evident as God (Elohim) speaks the world into existence (Genesis 1:1).
EL SHADDAI: “God Almighty,” “The Mighty One of Jacob” (Genesis 49:24; Psalm 132:2,5) – speaks to God’s ultimate power over all.
ADONAI: “Lord” (Genesis 15:2; Judges 6:15) – used in place of YHWH, which was thought by the Jews to be too sacred to be uttered by sinful men. In the Old Testament, YHWH is more often used in God’s dealings with His people, while Adonai is used more when He deals with the Gentiles.
YHWH / YAHWEH / JEHOVAH: “LORD” (Deuteronomy 6:4; Daniel 9:14) – strictly speaking, the only proper name for God. Translated in English Bibles “LORD” (all capitals) to distinguish it from Adonai, “Lord.” The revelation of the name is first given to Moses “I Am who I Am” (Exodus 3:14). This name specifies an immediacy, a presence. Yahweh is present, accessible, near to those who call on Him for deliverance (Psalm 107:13), forgiveness (Psalm 25:11) and guidance (Psalm 31:3).
YAHWEH-JIREH: "The Lord Will Provide" (Genesis 22:14) – the name memorialized by Abraham when God provided the ram to be sacrificed in place of Isaac.
YAHWEH-RAPHA: "The Lord Who Heals" (Exodus 15:26) – “I am Jehovah who heals you” both in body and soul. In body, by preserving from and curing diseases, and in soul, by pardoning iniquities.
YAHWEH-NISSI: "The Lord Our Banner" (Exodus 17:15), where banner is understood to be a rallying place. This name commemorates the desert victory over the Amalekites in Exodus 17.
YAHWEH-M'KADDESH: "The Lord Who Sanctifies, Makes Holy" (Leviticus 20:8; Ezekiel 37:28) – God makes it clear that He alone, not the law, can cleanse His people and make them holy.
YAHWEH-SHALOM: "The Lord Our Peace" (Judges 6:24) – the name given by Gideon to the altar he built after the Angel of the Lord assured him he would not die as he thought he would after seeing Him.

What is the meaning of BC and AD (B.C. and A.D.)?

It is commonly thought that B.C. stands for "before Christ" and A.D. stands for "after death." This is only half correct. How could the year 1 B.C. have been "before Christ" and A.D. 1 been "after death"? B.C. does stand for "before Christ." A.D. actually stands for the Latin phrase anno domini which means "in the year of our Lord." The B.C. / A.D. dating system is not taught in the Bible. It actually was not fully implemented and accepted until several centuries after Jesus' death.

It is interesting to note that the purpose of the B.C. / A.D. dating system was to make the birth of Jesus Christ the dividing point of world history. However, when the B.C. / A.D. system was being calculated, they actually made a mistake in pinpointing the year of Jesus' birth. Scholars later discovered that Jesus was actually born around 4-6 B.C., not A.D. 1. That is not the crucial issue. The birth, life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Christ are the "turning points" in world history. It is fitting, therefore, that Jesus Christ is the separation of "old" and "new." B.C. was "before Christ," and since His birth, we have been living "in the year of our Lord." Philippians 2:10-11, "That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

What does the Bible say about sex before marriage?

There is no Hebrew or Greek word used in the Bible that precisely refers to sex before marriage. The Bible undeniably condemns adultery and sexual immorality, but is sex before marriage considered sexually immoral? According to 1 Corinthians 7:2, “yes” is the clear answer: “But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband.” In this verse, Paul states that marriage is the “cure” for sexual immorality. First Corinthians 7:2 is essentially saying that, because people cannot control themselves and so many are having immoral sex outside of marriage, people should get married. Then they can fulfill their passions in a moral way.

Since 1 Corinthians 7:2 clearly includes sex before marriage in the definition of sexual immorality, all of the Bible verses that condemn sexual immorality as being sinful also condemn sex before marriage as sinful. Sex before marriage is included in the biblical definition of sexual immorality. There are numerous Scriptures that declare sex before marriage to be a sin (Acts 15:20; 1 Corinthians 5:1; 6:13, 18; 10:8; 2 Corinthians 12:21; Galatians 5:19; Ephesians 5:3; Colossians 3:5; 1 Thessalonians 4:3; Jude 7). The Bible promotes complete abstinence before marriage. Sex between a husband and his wife is the only form of sexual relations of which God approves (Hebrews 13:4).

How is eternity in hell a fair punishment for sin?

This is an issue that bothers many people who have an incomplete understanding of three things: the nature of God, the nature of man, and the nature of sin. As fallen, sinful human beings, the nature of God is a difficult concept for us to grasp. We tend to see God as a kind, merciful Being whose love for us overrides and overshadows all His other attributes. Of course God is loving, kind, and merciful, but He is first and foremost a holy and righteous God. So holy is He that He cannot tolerate sin. He is a God whose anger burns against the wicked and disobedient (Isaiah 5:25; Hosea 8:5; Zechariah 10:3). He is not only a loving God—He is love itself! But the Bible also tells us that He hates all manner of sin (Proverbs 6:16-19). And while He is merciful, there are limits to His mercy. “Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon” (Isaiah 55:6-7).

Humanity is corrupted by sin, and that sin is always directly against God. When David sinned by committing adultery with Bathsheba and having Uriah murdered, he responded with an interesting prayer: “Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight…” (Psalm 51:4). Since David had sinned against Bathsheba and Uriah, how could he claim to have only sinned against God? David understood that all sin is ultimately against God. God is an eternal and infinite Being (Psalm 90:2). As a result, all sin requires an eternal punishment. God’s holy, perfect, and infinite character has been offended by our sin. Although to our finite minds our sin is limited in time, to God—who is outside of time—the sin He hates goes on and on. Our sin is eternally before Him and must be eternally punished in order to satisfy His holy justice.

Where is hell? What is the location of hell?

Various theories on the location of hell have been put forward. A traditional view is that hell is in the center of the earth. Others propose that hell is located in outer space in a black hole. In the Old Testament, the word translated “hell” is Sheol; in the New Testament, it’s Hades (meaning “unseen”) and Gehenna (“the Valley of Hinnom”). Sheol is also translated as “pit” and “grave.” Both Sheol and Hades refer to a temporary abode of the dead before judgment (Psalm 9:17; Revelation 1:18). Gehenna refers to an eternal state of punishment for the wicked dead (Mark 9:43).

The idea that hell is below us, perhaps in the center of the earth, comes from passages such as Luke 10:15: “And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted to heaven, shalt be thrust down to hell” (KJV). Also, in 1 Samuel 28:13-15, the medium of Endor sees the spirit of Samuel “coming up out of the ground.” We should note, however, that neither of these passages is concerned with the geographic location of hell. Capernaum’s being thrust “down” is probably a reference to their being condemned rather than a physical direction. And the medium’s vision of Samuel was just that: a vision.

In the King James Version, Ephesians 4:9 says that before Jesus ascended into heaven, “he also descended . . . into the lower parts of the earth.” Some Christians take “the lower parts of the earth” as a reference to hell, where they say Jesus spent the time between His death and resurrection. However, the New International Version gives a better translation: “he also descended to the lower, earthly regions.” This verse simply says that Jesus came to earth. It’s a reference to His incarnation, not to His location after death.

Can I become a disciple of Christ?

You certainly can become a disciple of Christ. Discipleship is not just aimed at pastors and ministers; it is the charge of Jesus to believers - to every believer. If you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, you are eminently qualified to become a disciple. It is a high calling; in fact it is often referred to as the Great Commission. It is a commission of love given to us by God.

When you think of becoming a disciple, what comes into your mind? Do you think of following Jesus, helping others, or something else? The truth is that we should all be evangelistic towards making people followers of Jesus. Discipleship is a command that is not practiced as much as it needs to be. One report revealed that only 15% of the churches in the USA are growing, and 14% of those are only growing by transfer growth, which means the members move from one church to another. Sadly, only 1% of churches in the USA are actually growing. So YES you would be welcomed as a disciple of Jesus, but realize that it is hard work! Luke 9:23 says, "Then he [Jesus] said to them all: 'If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.'"

To be a disciple of Christ means that you must study His Word, and live the Word. As a disciple of the Lord, you will be asked to spread His Word regardless of the sacrifices and the personal difficulties you will have to endure.

Jesus is God – What does the Bible say about Jesus’ deity?

Does the Bible, which is the earliest and most historically reliable source, actually say Jesus is God? What does it tell us about Jesus and His identity?

Let’s take a brief look at a few of the many passages that clearly and consistently answer that question, straight from the pages of Scripture. We’ll begin by going back an additional 700 years before the life of Christ, to the Old Testament book of Isaiah.

Jesus is God – Prophecies

  • Divine Messiah predicted in the Old Testament
    Isaiah 7:14: “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.”1

    “Immanuel” literally means: “God with us.” See also Matthew 1:23; Jesus was “God with us.”
  • This Messiah would be born a human son, but have a higher nature
    Isaiah 9:6: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

    This was a radical statement coming from a monotheistic Jewish prophet -- especially calling a human being “Mighty God”; but one that God fulfilled centuries later in Christ.
  • A couple hundred years later, but still more than half a millennium before Jesus walked the earth, more was predicted about the Messiah’s divine nature
    Daniel 7:13-14: “There before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven . . . He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.”

    “Son of Man” was the primary title Jesus used for Himself -- and this passage shows that this was a clear and strong claim of deity. And in Mark, the earliest of the four Gospels, He also included the unmistakable phrase, “coming on the clouds of heaven” and applied it to Himself (Mark 14:62). His listeners got the point, refused to believe it, and added it to their reasons to try to kill Him.
Jesus is God – His Earthly Ministry

Bible Verses About Fasting and Prayer

Matthew 6:16-18 - Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.   (Read More...)

Acts 14:23 - And when they had ordained them elders in every church, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they believed.

Acts 13:2 - As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.

Acts 13:3 - And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid [their] hands on them, they sent [them] away.

Esther 4:16 - Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which [is] not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.

Nehemiah 1:4 - And it came to pass, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned [certain] days, and fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven,

1 Corinthians 7:5 - Defraud ye not one the other, except [it be] with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.

Luke 2:37 - And she [was] a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served [God] with fastings and prayers night and day.

Matthew 17:20-22 - And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.   (Read More...)

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Is Baptism Necessary for Salvation?

One of the most nagging questions in Christianity is whether or not baptism is necessary for salvation. The answer is a simple, "No, water baptism is not necessary for salvation."  But you might ask, "If the answer is no, then why are there verses that say things like '...baptism that now saves you...' (1 Pet. 3:21) and '...Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins...' (Acts 2:38)?"  These are good questions and they deserve a good answer, so we will look at these verses later.  But for now, the reason baptism is not necessary for salvation is because we are justified by faith (Rom. 5:1Eph. 2:8), not by faith and a ceremony (Rom. 4:1-11).  You see, a religious ceremony is a set of activities or forms peformed by someone.  In the Biblecircumcision was a ceremony where one person performed a religious rite on another person.  Likewise, baptism is also a ceremony where one person performs a religious rite on another person.  But, we are saved by faith alone and anything else we do, including ceremonies, will not help.
If we are saved by faith, then we are saved by faith when we believe, not when we get baptized, otherwise we are not saved by faith.  Furthermore, if baptism is necessary for salvation then anyone who receives Christ on his deathbed in a hospital and who also believes Jesus is God in the flesh, who died and rose from the dead for his sins,  etc., would go to hell if he doesn't get baptized before he died.  This would mean that we were not justified by faith because if we were, then the person would be saved.  Also, if baptism is necessary for salvation, then all babies who die go to hell since they weren't baptized.  Remember, when someone says that baptism is necessary, there can be no exceptions -- otherwise it isn't necessary.
Now, in order to more thoroughly look at this issue, I need to lay a foundation of proper theology, and then I'll address some of those verses that are commonly used to support the idea that baptism is necessary for salvation.

Do you have to be baptized to be filled with the Holy Spirit?

No, you do not have to be baptized to be filled with the Holy Spirit. To prove this all we have to do is look at the Scriptures where the phrase "filled with the Spirit" is used.

  • Luke 1:15, “For he will be great in the sight of the Lord; and he will drink no wine or liquor, and he will befilled with the Holy Spirit while yet in his mother’s womb."
  • Luke 1:41, "When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit."
  • Luke 1:67, "And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying..."
  • Acts 2:4, "And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.  
  • Acts 4:8, "Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers and elders of the people,"
  • Acts 4:31, "And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak the word of God with boldness."
  • Acts 9:17, "So Ananias departed and entered the house, and after laying his hands on him said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road by which you were coming, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”  
  • Acts 13:9, "But Saul, who was also known as Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, fixed his gaze on him,"
  • Acts 13:52, "And the disciples were continually filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit."
  • Eph 5:18, "And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit,"
So, we can see that Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit while he was in his mother's womb. Of course, he had not been baptized at that point. In Luke 1:41 we see that Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she had not been baptized either. The same is true with Zacharias in Luke 1:67. In Acts 2:4 people were filled with the Holy Spirit and were not baptized until later on (2:38). 
One of the evidences of being filled with the Holy Spirit is speaking in tongues -- though speaking in tongues is not a necessary result of being filled with the Holy Spirit. When we look at another set of verses in Acts, we see something very interesting.

Is it okay to have sinners who are non-Christians as friends?

Yes, it's okay to have non-Christians as friends.  However, we don't want our friendships with unbelievers to hinder our relationship with God.  If we have friends who encourage sinful behavior, then we need to be careful.  We need to be sure we don't compromise our faith.  It might mean not being friends with them anymore, or simply talking to them about what you can and cannot do.  Of course, in this case you'd have to be polite and loving.  Also, we should want to have non-Christian friends so that we can tell them the gospel so they might be saved.

Our model should follow biblical revelation.  Let's take a look at what Jesus did.  How was he towards unbelievers?
  • Matt. 11:19, "The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Behold, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax-gatherers and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds.”
  • Luke 5:29-32, "And Levi gave a big reception for Him in his house; and there was a great crowd of tax-gatherers and other people who were reclining at the table with them. 30 And the Pharisees and their scribes began grumbling at His disciples, saying, 'Why do you eat and drink with the tax-gatherers and sinners?' 31 And Jesus answered and said to them, 'It is not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick. 32 I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.'”
  • John 2:1-2, "And on the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there; 2 and Jesus also was invited, and His disciples, to the wedding."
As you can see in Matt. 11:19, Jesus was accused of being a "gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax gatherers and sinners."  The simple fact is that Jesus was apparently keeping the company of unbelievers.  This doesn't mean that Jesus was sinning or that he was being gluttonous or getting drunk.  The point is that he was in their company enough that he was accused of being like them.

Why Are Muslims Leaving Islam?

Who Killed Muham-mad SAW?

Through the centuries, thousands of people have claimed to be prophets. Only one, however, rested his claims on the fact that his aorta hadn't been cut. Ironically, as this man lay dying, he confessed that he could feel his aorta being severed. (Click here for a much shorter version of the argument.)

For those who want to keep track of the Muslim sources related to this issue, here they are. (Note: I didn't use all of these in the video. Note also: I typed these in by hand, so let me know if you spot any typos.)


Qur’an 69:44-46—And if he (Muhammad) had forged a false saying concerning Us We surely should have seized him by his right hand (or with power and might), and then certainly should have cut off his life artery (Aorta). (Hilali-Khan)

Qur’an 69:44-46—And if he had invented false sayings concerning Us, We assuredly had taken him by the right hand and then severed his life-artery. (Pickthall)

Qur’an 69:44-46—Had he invented lies concerning Us, We would have seized him by the right hand and severed his heart’s vein. (Dawood)

Qur’an 69:44-46—And if he had fabricated against Us some of the sayings, We would certainly have seized him by the right hand, then We would certainly have cut off his aorta.(Shakir)


Tafsir Ibn Abbas on Qur’an 69:44-46—(And if he had invented) and had Muhammad invented (false sayings concerning Us) lies against Us and attributed to Us that which We did not say, (We assuredly had taken him) We assuredly had taken revenge against him (by the right hand) by means of truth and proofs; it is also said this means: We assuredly had vehemently taken him. (And then severed his life artery) the life artery of Muhammad (pbuh).

Tafsir Jalalayn on Qur’an 69:44-46—And had he, namely, the Prophet (s), fabricated any lies against Us, by communicating from Us that which We have not said, We would have assuredly seized him, We would have exacted vengeance [against him], as punishment, by the Right Hand, by [Our] strength and power; then We would have assuredly severed his life-artery, the aorta of the heart, a vein that connects with it, and which if severed results in that person’s death.

Tafsir Ibn Kathir on Qur’an 69:46—(And then We certainly would have cut off Al-Watin from him,) Ibn ‘Abbas said, “It (Al-Watin) refers to the artery of the heart, and it is the vein that is attached to the heart.” This has also been said by ‘Ikrimah, Sa’id bin Jubayr, Al-Hakim, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Muslim Al-Batin and Abu Sakhr Humayd bin Ziyad.

Jesus Owns Muham-mad PBUH

According to the Qur'an, Christians must judge by the Gospel (Qur'an 5:47). But the Gospel says that Jesus owns everything (Matthew 11:27; John 16:15). Since Jesus owns everything, he also owns Muham-mad. If Muslims don't want us to conclude that Jesus owns Muham-mad, they have to tell us not to judge by the Gospel. But why would Muslims contradict Allah?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Spirit, Soul, and Body

The Christian doctrine of immortality cannot be understood apart from the right conception of the tripartite nature of men. Many think that man is a physical being only. There is a great danger of any man thinking thus of himself. In his desire to satisfy the needs of the body there is the tendency on man’s part to lose sight of the fact that he is immortal. There have been persons who have lived all of their lives either in ignorance or willful neglect of a life after death, but upon their death-bed they suddenly realized that they were more than physical beings.

There is an idea also that prevails largely today that man consists of only two component parts: namely, body and spirit. In the thinking of the writer this view appears to be one that might create confusion in the minds of any Christians. While soul and spirit are so closely related that it is sometimes difficult to distinguish accurately between them, there seems to be only one logical conclusion: namely, that “soul” and “spirit” are not the same. The Bible does make a distinction.

Man is a triune being because he is created in the image of God. “God said, Let us make man in Our image” (Genesis 1:26). We know that God is a Trinity. The Holy Trinity is clearly set forth in the Apostle Paul’s benediction that closed his Second Corinthian Epistle: “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen” (2 Corinthians 13:14). Our Lord Himself said, in what we call “The Great Commission”: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 28:19). Created in the image of God, man is likewise a trinity. He has a spiritual nature that is separate and distinct from the body in which it dwells.
The two following passages from the Bible clearly establish the fact that man is a triune being composed of spirit, soul, and body:

I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow (body), and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).

In spite of the erroneous teaching of “Jehovah’s Witnesses” and of other false sects that “no man has a soul,” the Bible states emphatically that man was created a trinity of spirit, soul, and body even as the eternal God is Himself a trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. The trinity of man is an essential part of the image relationship between him and God. Life is not ultimately physical and the body is not the whole man. And we might add that neither the body in itself, nor the soul in itself, nor the spirit in itself makes up the whole man, but he is “spirit and soul and body.” This must be seriously considered and definitely agreed to before we can comprehend with any accuracy the subject of life after death. In this opening chapter we shall confine our material to the spirit and the soul inasmuch as the body will be considered in succeeding chapters on the resurrection.

The Spirit

Psychics are Satanic!

 "There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.  For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.  Thou shalt be perfect with the LORD thy God." -Deuteronomy 18:10-13

       Do you know what witchcraft is?  Witchcraft is seeking help or guidance from any spiritual source other than God.  There are only two sources of spiritual power: God or Satan.  Ultimately there is only ONE source of power because the only power Satan has is that which God has given him (Luke 4:6).  If it's not the power of God's Holy Spirit, then you are dealing with the devil.  It's as simple as that folks.  Anytime you here someone using words like "spirits" or "spiritual" without mentioning Jesus Christ or the Bible, run as fast as you can.  The devil is a spirit, just as God is a Spirit.  Our battles in this life (according to the Bible) are ultimately against the devil (Ephesians 6:12).  The devil works inside people's hearts to lead them to do horrible things.  The devil can't make anyone do anything, but he inspires them with evil to the point where they do his will without hesitation. 

All forms of horoscopes, Tarot cards, psychics, palm readings, fortune telling, crystal balls, Ouija boards, astrology, worshipping or contacting the dead, and sorcery are of the devil.  "Sorcery" is an interesting word in the Bible.  It is derived from the same Hebrew word that our word "pharmacy" today comes from.  Hence, sorcery is the use of drugs as a medium to contact the demonic world.  If you've ever spoken with someone who was a serious drug addict, they can tell you of the demonic experiences they had while high on drugs.  I have talked with such people who claim that they saw demons and unbelievable nightmares.  Drugs will mess you up quickly.

I have written this article to solemnly WARN anyone who may be reading this to...PLEASE stay as far away as you can from the evil things I've just shared with you.

Listen my friend, these things which may seem harmless to you have completely destroyed some people's lives.  People have invested their life savings into certain financial investments based upon what some astrologer said.  I'm not kidding!  I actually heard this nut on TV advising people how to invest their money based upon the alignment of the planets and constellations.  I was listening to a talk show on the radio last week and some crazy nut called in.  The caller insisted that George Bush was going to be arrested next week based on his astrological analysis.  I love what the radio host said, "I think your planets are out of alignment Sir."  Where do these nuts come from?  I mean, it's ok to expose a conspiracy and blow every bodies mind if you have some information to back it up...but the alignment of the stars?  Please!  Our opinions should be based upon tangible evidence...not hocus pocus, candles, horoscopes, cards, stars, whims or superstitions.

You'd be shocked if you knew how many people base their entire lives upon what some nut writes in the daily horoscope column of the newspaper.  It's Satanic folks!  Even if it seems to be accurate is still evil and Satanic.  It is never right to do wrong in order to get a chance to do right!  It's wrong for local police authorities to consult with psychics in an attempt to locate missing persons.  But you say, "wouldn't you want to try every means possible to find a loved one if they were missing?"  Not if I have to consult with the devil.  I believe that God answers prayer.

I've got to share this with you.  I recently read about a Oregon man who's pet-sitter lost his dog.  This guy went nuts looking for his dog.  He lost his business, tapped into his retirement savings, consulted with four psychics and a witch, spent $8,000 on newspaper ads, hired a dog tracker, and drove thousands of miles looking for his dog.  I have this unbelievable newspaper article in front of me.  Here's the story...
Can you imagine?  Luckily for him he finally found his old buddy.  That must be some dog!  I don't know of many men who would do that for his own wife.  I'm serious.  It's crazy. 

Monday, February 4, 2013

Jesus Saves

Jesus saves from what and from who?

Jesus is the most important figure in all of human history.  He is God in flesh (John 1:1,14Col. 2:9), physically risen from the dead, Lord (Luke 24:34John 2:19-21) and Savior (Acts 5:30-32).  He came to die for sinners (Rom. 5:8) to deliver people from the righteous wrath of God upon us.

Are you a sinner?

I ask you, are you a sinner?  Have you ever lied, stolen, lusted, coveted, or been angry with someone unjustly?  If you've lied, then you're a liar.  If you've stolen, then you are a thief.  You've broken the Law of God.  God has said "You shall not steal; You shall not lie; You shall have no other gods before Me; You shall not murder, etc.," (Exodus 20:1-17).  He has given the standard of righteousness and if you have broken any of God's commandments then you have fallen short of that standard and are under the inevitable judgment of God (1 John 3:4Isaiah 59:2Rom. 6:23).  When you die, you will face Him and on the Day of Judgment he will deliver the proper judgment to all people.  He must because he is righteous and holy.
If you do not like this teaching, then throw away your Bible and turn away from Christ, for this is the message of God's word -- that Jesus came to die for sinners and to save them from the wrath to come.
Jesus is the One you need.  You need him alone.  Your works won't help you (Rom. 3:10-12Isaiah 64:6), nor will your sincerity.  You can never be good enough and you have nothing to offer God except your sinfulness.  It is only by the love and grace of God found in Jesus and His sacrifice that you can be delivered from the righteous wrath of God upon all who have broken His law.  Jesus saves you from God.  Jesus saves you from God's righteous judgment.
The Bible says that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23).  That means that your sins have caused a separation between you and God (Isaiah 59:2) and the result is death (Rom. 6:23) and wrath (Eph. 2:3).  The only way to be saved from the wrath of God, is to be saved from it by faith in Christ (Eph. 2:8-9;Rom. 5:1).  You must trust in what Jesus did on the cross to forgive you of your sins and not trust anything else, not even your own sincerity or works.  It is Jesus and only Jesus who can turn away the righteous judgment of God upon the sinner.

Gospel - the means of deliverance from God's Law

The gospel is historical event where Jesus died for sinners on the cross, was buried, and rose from the dead (1 Cor. 15:1-4).  His death was a sacrifice that turns away the wrath of God (1 John 2:2).  This is the only way to be saved from God's righteous judgment upon those who have sinned by breaking his Law.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Shall We Know Each Other There?

INTRODUCTION 1. Our studies in "Life After Death" so far have endeavored to show that: a. Such a study is profitable b. Death should be thought of as a positive thing for Christians c. The nature of man is two-fold: soul and body d. The departed spirits of believers go to be with Christ at death e. The souls of the redeemed are in a conscious state during this "intermediate" state 2. The question we will focus on in this lesson pertains to the idea of recognition after death: a. I.e., shall we know each other after death? b. For one may agree with all that has been said so far, yet believe that we shall NOT know one another... 1) Either in the "intermediate" state 2) Or in the "final" state 3. But what does the Bible reveal about this question? [We begin by observing...] I. SCRIPTURES WHICH SUGGEST RECOGNITION AFTER DEATH A. ISAIAH 14:3-4, 9-11,16 1. This passage refers to the king of Babylon 2. Who is recognize by those in Hades upon his death B. EZEKIEL 32:17-32 1. This passage speaks of Pharaoh and his army 2. Who is recognized by others in Hades - 21 3. Who in turn recognizes those of Assyria, Elam, Edom, etc. - 22-31 C. LUKE 16:19-31 1. This is the familiar story of Lazarus and the rich man 2. In which the rich man recognizes both Lazarus and Abraham - 23-24 D. 1 THESSALONIANS 2:19-20; 2 CORINTHIANS 4:14 1. Both of these passages reveal Paul's expectation of being with His converts at Christ's coming 2. Recognizing them would be a source of great joy for Paul E. MATTHEW 8:11-12 1. Reference is made to Abraham, Isaac, & Jacob in the kingdom of heaven 2. The recognition of which would increase the joys of those present (and the dismay of those "cast out into outer darkness") [To these examples we could add Samuel (who after his death was recognized by Saul - 1Sa 28:3-19), plus Moses and Elijah (recognized on the Mount of Transfiguration - Mt 17:1-5). All clearly indicating that we will indeed know one another after death! But what are some objections commonly made about this view? And how might one answer them?] II. SOME OBJECTIONS CONSIDERED A. OBJECTION #1 1. STATED... a. Some of these passages speak of conditions after the resurrection b. At that time we will have bodies by which recognition may be possible c. But that does not prove that "disembodied" souls in heaven now recognize each other 2. ANSWERED... a. Most of these passages are definitely speaking of the "intermediate" state 1) Those referring to the King of Babylon, Pharaoh and his army 2) The rich man and Lazarus 3) Samuel, Elijah, and Moses b. Angels have no "bodies", yet recognize one another - e.g., Dan 10:13 B. OBJECTION #2

Are The Souls Of The Redeemed Conscious?

INTRODUCTION 1. In the previous study, I suggested that the spirits of believers go to be with the Lord during the "intermediate state" between death and the resurrection a. Implied was the idea that the souls of the redeemed are conscious during this interim b. But are they? 2. In this lesson, we shall consider the doctrine of "soul-sleeping", and make some observations concerning it I. THE DOCTRINE OF "SOUL SLEEPING" A. THE THEORY... 1. That the souls of the departed continue to exist, but are in an unconscious state until the resurrection 2. This is not to be confused with the doctrine held by JW's, who believe there is no consciousness until the resurrection because until then there is no existence at all B. THE ARGUMENTS... 1. The Scriptures often represent death as a "sleep" a. Mt 27:52 - ...bodies of the saints who had "fallen asleep" b. Jn 11:11-14 - Jesus says of dead Lazarus, "our friend sleeps" c. Ac 7:60 - As Stephen is stoned to death, it is said "he fell asleep" d. 1Co 15:6,18 - Those who were dead are spoken of as "fallen asleep" e. 1Th 4:13-15 - Brethren who were dead "sleep in Jesus" 2. Other passages come very near to saying that the dead have no consciousness a. Ps 30:9 - The psalmist asks, "...when I go down to the pit? Will the dust praise you?" b. Ps 115:17 - The psalmist declares, "The dead do not praise the Lord, nor any who go down into silence." c. Ec 9:5,10 - Solomon, in his search for meaning, observes: 1) "...the dead know nothing..." 2) "there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going." d. Isa 38:18-19 - King Hezekiah says concerning God that "Sheol cannot thank You, Death cannot praise You, those who go down to the pit cannot hope for Your truth." [Such is the theory and the arguments presented by those who believe in "soul sleeping." At face value, the doctrine appears very convincing. But let's take a closer look at it...] II. EXAMINING THE DOCTRINE OF "SOUL SLEEPING" A. ARGUMENT #1: DEATH IS CALLED "SLEEP"...

Where Do The Spirits Of Believers Go At Death?

INTRODUCTION 1. Having determined from the Scriptures that man possesses a soul or spirit which continues after death, the question now before us is this: "Where do the spirits of believers go at death?" 2. In this lesson, I will be examining two different views: a. One that I will call the "traditional" view, which is held by many Christians b. Another that I will propose as the "scriptural" view, which I believe is more in harmony with what is revealed in the New Testament -- PLEASE NOTE: The use of the terms "traditional" and "scriptural" is rather arbitrary, used only to distinguish between the two views [Beginning, then, with...] I. THE "TRADITIONAL" VIEW EXPLAINED A. STATED BRIEFLY, THIS VIEW TEACHES THE FOLLOWING... 1. When we die... a. Our body return to the dust b. Our spirits go to HADES, the realm of the "unseen" 2. This realm of departed spirits (i.e., Hades) is divided into three parts... a. PARADISE, the place of rest for the righteous b. TARTARUS, the place of torment for the wicked c. And a GULF, separating the two 3. During this interim period between death and the resurrection, the righteous... a. Are separated from God and Christ b. For God and Christ are "in heaven", and Paradise is in Hades, not heaven 4. Such is the state of the "disembodied spirits" until the Resurrection a. At which time the spirits of both the wicked and the righteous will be united with their resurrected bodies b. At this time will occur the Judgment, after which... 1) The RIGHTEOUS will spend eternity with God 2) The WICKED will spend eternity in "HELL" (Grk., gehenna) B. THE SCRIPTURAL JUSTIFICATION FOR THIS VIEW...

Saturday, February 2, 2013

What does it mean that Jesus is the Son of God?

Jesus is not God’s Son in the sense of a human father and a son. God did not get married and have a son. God did not mate with Mary and, together with her, produce a son. Jesus is God’s Son in the sense that He is God made manifest in human form (John 1:114). Jesus is God's Son in that He was conceived in Mary by the Holy Spirit. Luke 1:35 declares, “The angel answered, 'The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God.’”

During His trial before the Jewish leaders, the High Priest demanded of Jesus, “I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God” (Matthew 26:63). “’Yes, it is as you say,’ Jesus replied. ‘But I say to all of you: In the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven’” (Matthew 26:64). The Jewish leaders responded by accusing Jesus of blasphemy (Matthew 26:65-66). Later, before Pontius Pilate, “The Jews insisted, ‘We have a law, and according to that law He must die, because He claimed to be the Son of God’” (John 19:7). Why would His claiming to be the Son of God be considered blasphemy and be worthy of a death sentence? The Jewish leaders understood exactly what Jesus meant by the phrase “Son of God.” To be the Son of God is to be of the same nature as God. The Son of God is “of God.” The claim to be of the same nature as God—to in fact be God—was blasphemy to the Jewish leaders; therefore, they demanded Jesus’ death, in keeping with Leviticus 24:15Hebrews 1:3 expresses this very clearly, “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being.”

Another example can be found in John 17:12 where Judas is described as the “son of perdition.” John 6:71 tells us that Judas was the son of Simon. What does John 17:12 mean by describing Judas as the “son of perdition”? The word perdition means “destruction, ruin, waste.” Judas was not the literal son of “ruin, destruction, and waste,” but those things were the identity of Judas' life. Judas was a manifestation of perdition. In this same way, Jesus is the Son of God. The Son of God is God. Jesus is God made manifest (John 1:114).


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