discrimination, conflict, hatred, riots, and alienation often exist between
people of different races or nationalities. What about the Black Lives Matter
movement? Is there a solution to racial strife
and bigotry? Can we be united in Christ?
People sometimes see the Bible as simply a group of miscellaneous stories and religious teachings. The intent of this study is to show that the Scriptures actually reveal a plan and purpose determined by God from eternity and developed throughout history.
Many people claim the Gnostic gospels teach true religious doctrine. Some even claim they belong in the Scriptures. They are often used to justify modern beliefs and practices. Has the Bible canon been properly identified and preserved?
in our society are challenged by perverted and confused concepts of the role of
fatherhood, including the problems of absent and negligent fathers. This causes
many troubled children and much confusion about the nature of God as our Father.
Please consider the Bible teaching.
affirms that God is the Almighty: all-powerful and omnipotent. Consider the
power God has as Creator and Ruler of the Universe, the only God who can perform
miracles, forgive sin, and give men eternal life.
2 Timothy 3:12 – All who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. Every Christian sooner or later will endure persecution. This has been true throughout history.
Persecution may come from civil rulers, employers, fellow-workers, teachers or professors, neighbors, friends, relatives, family members, people of false religious faiths, or even other members of the church.
In this study we
seek to consider the most important area of authority: religion.
may be defined as the right to rule or command, the power to give instructions
that others are expected to obey, the right to make and enforce law. So we are
discussing how we determine in religion what commands and instructions we are
expected to obey.
Things in life
are not always as advertised. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Have you ever
bought a product only to be really disappointed in it? Karen and I once bought
a used freezer. When we first examined it, it felt cold inside. But it was
sitting in a garage in the wintertime. The man said it worked; but when we got
it home, it did not work at all.
make a product sound so good you are supposed to think you can’t live without
it. But many of the products advertised are not good for you at all. Often the
reality is entirely different from what is advertised.
puts on a good front, but the reality is much different.
Several times I
have heard athletic coaches encourage their players by saying: "Play hard,
play smart, play together." Consider how this concept, with modification,
applies to the local church.
– The church was organized (verse 11) for the purpose of equipping members to
accomplish works of service so the body can be edified (built up – verse 16).
Like a good team, we must learn to work hard, work smart, and work together.
Churchill’s mother was extremely proud of her appearance and charm. For nearly
ten years she was considered the most desirable lady in England. She once said,
"I shall never get used to not being the most beautiful woman in the
lessons we should learn about pride.
A man saw a child
fall into a lake and jumped in and saved his life. Soon afterward a woman came
and asked if he was the man who pulled her son out of the lake. He modestly
said that he was. She responded, "Well, where is his cap?" – Winston
God has always
required His people to be distinctive, different, or separate from those
around. But being different has always been a struggle for Gods people. We want
to be like those around us, to imitate their practices and be accepted.
6:17,18 – Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch
what is unclean, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you
shall be My sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.
The question we
consider in this study is whether or not God’s people are maintaining our
distinctiveness, or are there patterns and trends that indicate we are losing
believe in Bible standards for the family, morality, and religious freedom
often face challenging decisions in elections. On the one hand, we ought to prefer
those who will encourage righteousness and discourage evil. Yet on the other
hand, the available candidates are often less than ideal.
wonder, if they vote for a candidate who holds some immoral view, are they
having fellowship with evil (Ephesians 5:11; Romans 1:32). Or some may think
that a candidate with a history of personal immorality cannot rule wisely
(Proverbs 29:2; Luke 16:10).
should be considered. But usually there is more than this to be considered.
7:10 – Godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be
regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.
In order to be
forgiven of sins, one must first repent. In order to repent, one must first
have godly sorrow. Some people do not repent because they are not really sorry.
But there is another kind of sorrow – the sorrow of the world –that does not
lead to repentance, but leads to death.
If godly sorrow
is necessary in order to repent and receive salvation, but there is another
kind of sorrow that leads to death, then surely we need to know the difference.
What is the
difference between godly sorrow and worldly sorrow? How do we recognize when we
or others have a proper sorrow for our sins?
Ephesians 4:16 –
The body works effectively when every part does its share. This causes growth
of the body, so it can edify itself in love.
is responsible to do his best to accomplish the work of the local church and
fulfill his individual responsibilities before God.
In nearly every
congregation, some members do most of the work while others do relatively
little. Sometimes we become comfortable with allowing other people to do the
work when we really should be helping.
From time to time
events in a congregation remind us that each Christian must consider whether
there are ways he/she can improve and accomplish more in the work of the
congregation. We should always be willing to examine ourselves, but some events
especially challenge us to consider our work.
The purpose of
this study is to consider the work of this congregation and urge each of us to
examine himself or herself to see if we can step up and do more.
An elderly couple
celebrated many years of marriage. The man said, "I’m pleased to say that
we’ve never had a fight." The wife responded, "Well, it helps to be
old and forgetful!"
There is no such
thing as a married couple that never has conflicts. But the same is true in
many other relationships, including in the home, the church, on the job, etc.
Unfortunately, most people lack the skill to discuss disagreements and resolve
them. As a result, many people become seriously alienated but never resolve the
cause of the problem.
The purpose of
this study is to learn what the Bible says about how to resolve conflict in our
relationships with others.
Every society has had evil people, but today
we have people who seek to murder as many of their fellow citizens as they can.
This did not exist in our society 50 to 60 years ago. So why do we have it
today? There may be many factors, but consider the connection to other changes
in our society in the last 50 to 60 years:
I once read the
following statement (paraphrased): "Jesus never left anyone the same. Of
everyone who ever met Him, He demanded change" (Christian Counselors
Manual, page 247). Think of all the people whom Jesus demanded to change: the
apostles, Nicodemus, the rich young ruler, the Samaritan woman, the woman taken
in adultery, the scribes and Pharisees, Saul of Tarsus. Some heeded His call
for change and some did not, but He required them all to change.
Change is a
fundamental concept of the gospel of Christ.
repeatedly emphasizes that those who are in Christ must be new and different.
5:17 - If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed
away; behold, all things have become new.
Romans 6:4 - We
were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised
from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in
newness of life.
The purpose of
this lesson is to consider the gospel teaching that requires us to be new and
An article about
"Snowflake Bentley" included the following:
(Willie) Bentley (1865-1931) was born on a farm in Jericho, Vermont, ... [an
area with] an average annual snowfall of over 120 inches."
"At age 15
he began drawing snowflakes while looking at them through his microscope – no
easy task, because most of them melted before he could complete a drawing. At
age 16 he learned about a camera that could be used with a microscope. His parents
saved the money--and when Willie was 17 they bought him the camera. It took him
over a year of failures before he finally achieved his goal – a photograph of a
snowflake, the first one ever taken." (Acts and Facts, 12/2011)
made thousands of such pictures for universities and science magazines.
"At age 66
Bentley published a large ... book of his photographs titled Snow Crystals ...
Less than two weeks after his book was published, he walked six miles home in a
snowstorm, caught pneumonia, and died two weeks later."
incredible irony, this man who devoted most of his life to the study of snow,
ultimately died from walking in a snowstorm!
Nearly all Bible
believers know that Jesus was crucified for us. But some seem to think this
means we do not have to be crucified. They want to receive the benefit of
Jesus' death, but don't seem to realize that we too must die.
The purpose of
this study is to learn what it means to be crucified with Christ and why it is
We remember ten
percent of what we read, twenty percent of what we hear, but thirty percent of what
But of what we
see and hear, we remember fifty percent. We remember seventy percent of what we
say, and ninety percent of what we say if we also do what we are talking about.
(I have forgotten the source of the chart, but have seen this kind of thing
after Bible class ends, would you be more likely to remember a comment or
question you made, or would you remember as well the same question or comment
if someone else made it?
The purpose of
this lesson is to consider the importance of personal participation and
involvement in Bible teaching.
Lord’s Supper properly requires us to recognize that much of the language used
is not meant to be taken literally. This happens often in certain kinds of
Bible teaching, especially in memorials such as the Lord’s Supper.
In order to help
us understand the nature of the language, let us consider the Old Testament
memorial feast which itself was a symbol of the Lord’s Supper.
Now when they had
gone through the island to Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false
prophet, a Jew whose name was Bar-Jesus, who was with the Proconsul, Sergius
Paulus, an intelligent man. This man called for Barnabas and Saul and sought to
hear the word of God. But Elymas the sorcerer (for so his name is translated)
withstood them, seeking to turn the proconsul away from the faith. Then Saul,
who also is called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him
and said, "O full of all deceit and all fraud, you son of the devil, you
enemy of all righteousness, will you not cease perverting the straight ways of
the Lord? And now, indeed, the hand of the Lord is upon you, and you shall be
blind, not seeing the sun for a time." And immediately a dark mist fell on
him, and he went around seeking someone to lead him by the hand. Then the
proconsul believed, when he saw what had been done, being astonished at the
teaching of the Lord. – Acts 13:6-12
Accuracy of the Account
following evidence that demonstrates the historical accuracy of this account:
Suppose a man in
the emergency room of a hospital is overheard to say: "You don’t sell
tires, change oil, or wash cars? What kind of hospital is this?" Or,
"What you mean you don’t have trapeze artists, or lion tamers? What kind
of hospital is this?"
Most of us would
immediately realize his mistake. Doctors and nurses are skilled and trained to
help people with health issues, but repairing automobiles and operating a circus
are not the purposes of a hospital. And any hospital that would involve itself
in those activities would be neglecting the real purpose for which they exist.
If you want someone to repair your car or entertain you, you must go elsewhere.
Few people would
make this kind of mistake regarding a hospital, but I once read an article that
illustrated that people frequently make this mistake regarding the church. For
example, consider the people who think:
The Bible uses
different terms to describe practices and institutions that God has ordained.
These different terms are intended to help us understand and appreciate God's
will regarding these activities. Specifically, we can gain a deeper
understanding of the Lord's Supper by considering the terms the Bible uses to
refer to it. Let us consider one such expression.
10:19-22 - What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered
to idols is anything? Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they
sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship
with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you
cannot partake of the Lord's table and of the table of demons. Or do we provoke
the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than He?
refers to the Lord's Supper as the "Lord's table." Consider lessons
we can learn.
I have a book by
Paul Johnson about the history of the American people. It describes the
development of the United States and discusses at length the role of religion
in our history. One point he emphasizes is the tension throughout our history
between the importance of religion and spirituality on the one hand and the
urge for possessions and materialism on the other hand.
At one point he
describes the occupations, material success, and living arrangements of
Americans in the 1700’s, including a description of their homes. Page 100
includes the following about what was to be the most magnificent home built
during the 1700’s:
early 18th-century house in America was Rosewell, erected by Mann Page ... in
1726 on the York river. Page had this superb house built using designs ...
published in London ... Page overspent, his grand house was unfinished when he
died in 1730, and his debts exceeded the value of all his property ... Rosewell
... was burned down in 1916."
Sometimes we fail
to see our need for items that would really benefit us if we had them. If we
obtain them, we may come to treasure what we earlier thought was unimportant.
On the other
hand, we sometimes lose our appreciation for an item after we obtain it. Even
if it performs as we had hoped, after a while "the new wears off." It
becomes commonplace, and we begin to take it for granted.
In this study we
will consider a gift that all of us need, though we may not realize our need.
Or we may possess this gift but fail to appreciate it. Either way, our study
should help us to appreciate this gift more fully. This gift is the forgiveness
characteristics are unique to God. No one but God - surely no created being -
can possess them. Our purpose is to consider whether or not Jesus possesses
these qualities. If He possesses the character which only Deity can possess,
then this confirms that He possesses Deity. To claim He possesses these
qualities when He is not Deity would be blasphemy.
Note that some
passages make general claims which necessarily imply that Jesus
possesses the qualities of Deity. He possesses all the fullness of Deity
(Colossians 2:9). He is the very image of the Father (Hebrews 1:3), and had the
form of God (Philippians 2:6). He also wears the unique names of God. It
follows that He must possess the characteristics of God.
Let us consider
these qualities individually to see whether or not the Bible affirms that Jesus
did possess them. Remember that, if Jesus ever possessed these qualities, then
He has always possessed them and always will possess them (Hebrews 13:8). Deity
cannot cease to be Deity and cannot lose the characteristics of Deity.
John Glenn, who
died December 8, 2016, was one of the original seven American astronauts. In
1962, he was the first American to orbit the earth. In 1998 at age 77 he was
the oldest person to go into space.
following excerpts from an article in the Orlando Sentinel, 11/7/1998, entitled
"Astronauts’ Faith Isn’t Lost In Space"
Hebrews 11:17 –
By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received
the promises offered up his only begotten son, of whom it was said, "In
Isaac your seed shall be called," concluding that God was able to raise
him up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative
Scriptures discuss the faith of Abraham and especially his faith in being
willing to sacrifice his son Isaac. Hebrews 11 says his faith was so great he
believed God could raise Isaac from the dead. Consider some lessons we can
Luke 23:39-43 -
Jesus was crucified between two criminals (thieves). As the three of them were
suspended, one thief ridiculed Jesus, but the other defended Him. Jesus
promised this one would be in Paradise that day.
This saying of
Jesus has become a center of controversy. Many believe Jesus saves people on
the basis of "faith alone," so baptism is not essential to receive
forgiveness of sins. When the subject is discussed, people commonly bring up
the thief as someone who was saved without baptism. They conclude that if Jesus
would save this man without baptism, He would also save us without baptism.
Let us consider
further. What does this case teach us about the terms of forgiveness under the
Note: This is the
conclusion of a series of studies about miracles, tongues, Holy Spirit baptism,
healings, and spiritual gifts. To see the whole series, go to our Bible
Instruction website at www.gospelway.com/instruct
showed that the purposes of spiritual gifts pertained to the work of revealing
and confirming God's will for man. And that work was completed during the
lifetime of the original apostles.
Our purpose now
will be to consider whether, when this work was completed, the gifts were to
continue or did God cause them to cease?
believe that miracles and direct revelation still occur today. Is this correct,
or have the gifts ceased?
wonder whether all people are universally accountable to obey the teachings of
the gospel, the New Testament, or is it only for members of the church? Are
people free from the laws of God simply because they have never chosen to
submit to those laws, or will God still hold them accountable in the Judgment
for the fact they did not obey the Bible?
Most Bible believers admit that God teaches
directly by means of direct commands and direct statements.We sometimes say: "Commands constitute
binding authority"; so, people are expected to obey, and those who do not
obey in error.
[Examples: Acts 10:48; Matthew 22:37-39; 1
Corinthians 11:23-25; 14:37; John 14:15,21-24; 15:14; 1 John 2:3,4; 5:3;
But besides direct, explicit statements,
the Bible also teaches by indirect methods.These methods include examples and
"necessary inferences" (or "logical conclusions"). Some
people say we are obligated to follow only commands. They deny that example and
necessary inference are valid, binding ways to determine God's will. They may
even say that using such methods constitutes a man-made creed or a human
tradition. (Some even have a name for this view. They call it a "new hermeneutic.")
The purpose of this study is to examine
whether or not "necessary inference" constitutes a Scriptural method
to learn God's will.
the meaning of life? Without doubt, this is one of the most challenging, and
yet one of the most fundamental, questions the mind can consider.
throughout history have pondered the purpose of life. Philosophers spin
theories. Poets write songs. Young people drop out of society to "find out
what it's all about." Older people may remain within the
"establishment," but they still wonder.
life is real. No one can deny that the world exists and people exist. You live,
eat, sleep, breathe, and move. But do you understand why you exist?
consider with me the challenging question of life. What is it really all about?
To answer this question, we will look at three specific questions.
people were aware of, or concerned about, the Humanist philosophy until
recently. As it has become more influential, it has become better known. Yet
still few people really understand it or realize the depth of its influence on
purposes of this study are to acquaint people with the major doctrines of
Humanism, to demonstrate the influence it is having in our society, and to
compare its teachings to those of the Bible.
youth, people almost never took the Occult, witchcraft, or astrology seriously.
People considered them a joke or at most an oddity. Today all aspects of the
occult are increasingly taken seriously. Evidence of this increasing popularity
the 1950's only 100-200 newspapers carried horoscope columns. Today, thousands
of full-time professional astrologers cast horoscopes, most newspapers carry
horoscopes, and millions of people read them with varying degrees of seriousness.
the 1970's the rock musical "Hair" popularized the hit song
announcing "the dawning of the Age of Aquarius," one of the signs of
popular New Age Movement promotes and justifies astrology along with many other
aspects of the Occult.
ads promote astrology, psychics, and the Occult generally. Movies and TV
programs discuss it, promote it, and present it as a serious phenomenon.
recent book fads, such as the Harry Potter books, deeply involve many aspects
of the Occult. A search of occult books on Amazon.com yields a list of nearly
800 titles in the children's section alone! The point is not that all of these
are harmful - many actually oppose the Occult. But the sheer number shows the
popularity of the subject.
fact is that many people, especially young people, are fascinated by all
aspects of the Occult. You and your friends, your children and their friends,
will all have contact with Occult influences, including astrology. You need to
know what the Bible says.
purpose of this study is to examine what the Bible says about astrology.
emotions play important roles in our lives. This is natural and may be quite
wholesome. But we all realize that sometimes emotions cloud people's thinking,
so they do things they should not. Emotions can be confusing, uncertain, even
purpose of this study is to consider the role emotions have in religion and to
consider some ways that emotions cloud people's thinking in religion.
countries and states have granted the privilege of marriage to people of the
same sex. Others are considering doing so.
has followed after years of progressive moral decline: no-fault divorce,
legalized abortion, trial marriages and the sexual revolution, and the gay
rights movement. Granting marital status to homosexuals is one of the greatest
downward leaps in this long progression.
purpose of this study is to consider what view decent moral people ought to
take, not just about homosexuality in general, but specifically about
homosexual marriage. What effects will result if homosexuals are granted the
right to marry?
about people who do not practice homosexuality? How can this affect us?
(Note: This study is part of a series of studies
relating to the premillennial view of the kingdom. Frequently this study will
refer to other of the studies in the series. To understand the whole picture,
and especially to see the other articles that we refer to from time to time,
please go to www.gospelway.com/instruct and see the section about Man and His Future.)
is dangerous for many reasons. My main objections are that it (perhaps unintentionally)
belittles the authority of Christ, the death of Christ, and the significance of
the church and the gospel, while at the same time exalting materialistic goals,
Jewish nationalism (respect of persons), and Mosaic practices. These problems affect
our present service to God. [For details about these points, see the link above
for our other articles on premillennialism.]
premillennialism also contradicts clear gospel teachings about the second
coming of Jesus. The purpose of this lesson is to examine these contradictions.
ago I heard a public discussion between a gospel preacher and a denominational
preacher in which the denominational preacher claimed he could write letters
like those in the New Testament. He was not claiming to be directly guided by
the Holy Spirit to write divine commandments. He meant that, because of his
spiritual maturity and wisdom, he could be "inspired" to write helpful
spiritual lessons like poets are "inspired" to write poetry.
illustrates the view that many people today take of Scripture.
people think the teachings presented by apostles or prophets, especially Paul,
are somehow less authoritative than what Jesus Himself personally spoke.
"philosophy major," when I quoted Acts 2:38, said that was just Peter
expressing his opinion.
feminist said I based all my beliefs on the teaching of "that old
reprobate, the apostle Paul."
Muslim leader (El Dareer) in debate claimed that Paul's teaching differed from
that of Jesus. Other people have claimed that Paul's teaching disagreed with
that of Peter.
defender of homosexuality said that "Jesus said nothing about gays" -
meaning that He personally said nothing, so we can disregard clear teachings in
the epistles regarding homosexuality.
Others have said that the apostles, especially Paul, did not show as good an
attitude as Jesus in teaching: they expressed less love and tolerance but were
more condemning of other people's views.
these reasons, some follow only the "Red Letters" as being necessary
people, what Jesus said may be worth considering, but other teaching in the New
Testament is optional. They feel free to reject the teaching of some apostle or
prophet, especially Paul, if they don't like it.
purpose of this study is to consider the teachings of the apostles and
prophets, especially Paul, and compare their authority to that of Jesus'
would prefer that their children simply obey them without chastisement. But in
practice this does not always happen. Often the child's will conflicts with
that of the parent. Then, if the child is to learn respect for authority and do
what we believe to be best for him, we must still get them to obey us. How can
we lead a child to obey when he would rather not?
answer is that parents must motivate the child to obey. Whatever reasons they
have for not obeying, we must give them stronger reasons to obey! This is done
by rewards and punishments. When the child obeys, we make him glad by giving
him a pleasant experience. When he disobeys, we make him sorry by giving an
unpleasant experience. He eventually learns it is to his advantage to obey.
Matthew 16:18 Jesus promised He would build His church. All serious Bible
students agree that He did build His church in the first century. At that time,
there was only one church belonging to Jesus and all saved people were in that
one church. You can read about that church on nearly every page of your New
purpose of this study is to consider what the church is.
the wars fought by the USA, a total of over 1.2 million soldiers have died.
This study is about the people who have died in a different war: the war on the
unborn. Since the United States Supreme Court ruled in 1973 that unborn babies
could legally be killed, between 1 and 1.5 million unborn babies have been
legally killed in this country every year. The yellow pages of any phone book
list several nearby clinics where women can "terminate a pregnancy."
human legislature and no human court has final authority over what is morally
right or wrong. Nazi law and Communist law allowed the killing of millions of
adults. Was that moral? God is the final authority in determining what is
morally right or wrong, regardless of what any man may say (Isa. 55:8,9; Luke
16:15; 1 Cor. 1:18-25). We must obey God rather than men (Acts 5:29).
purpose of this study is to consider exactly what the Bible teaches about
abortion. The Bible is the perfect standard of right and wrong (2 Tim. 3:16,17;
1 Cor. 14:37; John 12:48). Too much has been said about abortion without
adequately considering the Bible teaching.
receive eternal life according to the gospel of Christ, a person must be
forgiven of sins by Jesus' blood (Ephesians 1:7; Matthew 26:28; 1 Peter 2:24).
But many people are unsure about whether or not they have been forgiven. Others
may think that they have been forgiven, but would be surprised to learn that
Jesus does not agree.
7:21-23 -- Many people, who believe in the Lord, will expect Jesus to accept
them at the judgment. Instead He will reject them because they have not done
the will of the Father.
23:1; 26:9 -- Saul was a Jew who opposed Jesus in all good conscience, doing
what he sincerely believed he should do. Yet he was the chief of sinners (1
Timothy 1:12-15). Clearly he had been misled.
about you and me? Is it possible we have been misled like these people? Surely
this matter deserves your careful investigation.
Scriptures instruct us that, to determine what is true, we should compare
doctrines and practices to the Bible.
Timothy 3:16,17 - The Scriptures are inspired by God, instruct us in
righteousness, and provide us to every good work. [2 Tim. 2:15; 1 John 2:3-5]
4:1,6 - However, there are many false prophets, so we must put them to the
test. We do this by comparing their teachings to the teachings we know are from
God. [Cf. 1 Cor. 1:13]
1:8,9 - Any man, even an angel, must teach the same gospel taught by inspired
men. Any who teach different gospels are accursed. See 2 John 9-11.
17:11,12 - The Bereans were able to determine what was or was not true by
searching the Scriptures daily.
intends for us to determine the validity of any doctrine we hear by comparing
it to what we know to be His revelation. If it does not agree, then it cannot
be from God, and those who teach it are not pleasing to God.
teachers will encourage listeners to compare their teaching to Scripture. If
teachers belittle Scripture and object when people compare their teachings to
Scripture, you can know those teachers are not from God.
purpose of this study is to examine some particular teachings and compare them
to Scripture, as the above passages teach.
doctrines we will examine are those taught by the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter Day Saints (the Mormons). Mormons claim to agree that the Bible is from
God (Article of Faith #8). We do not accept their claim that their Mormon
"Scriptures" are from God, but we agree that the Bible is from God.
Since Mormons and we agree that the Bible is from God, then we can determine
the truth of Mormon teaching by comparing it to the Bible.
claims that the kingdom of Jesus Christ does not yet exist. The premillennial
view is that Jesus came to earth to establish His kingdom but could not because
the Jews rejected Him. So they say, when He comes again, the Messiah must
establish and rule 1000 years on the throne of David over an earthly, civil
kingdom. Does the kingdom now exist or will Jesus reign for a thousand years on
earth (the millennium) when He returns?
purpose of this study is to examine the teaching of modernism about miracles
and to consider how Christians should respond.
I. A Description of Modernism
A. A Definition of Modernism
as a religious philosophy, is believed to some extent by many (probably most)
denominational preachers who claim to be Christians. Its adherents may differ
widely in viewpoint, but we define its major concepts as follows:
is the belief that the Bible is not infallible but may contain errors or
inaccuracies. It generally begins by claiming the Bible contains inaccuracies
in history, geography, or science; then it expresses doubt about Bible accounts
of miracles and prophetic predictions; then it ends by denying or questioning
fundamental doctrines such as the Deity of Jesus, the sacrificial death of
Jesus, the nature of God, etc.
part of a ten-part series about marriage preparation and improvement. This
article should be studied in context of the whole series of articles. To start
at the beginning of the series, please go to our web site at
www.gospelway.com/instruct and see the section about the Family.)
marriage problems often are caused by irresponsible conduct, especially
regarding honesty, financial matters, and uncontrolled temper.
(The following is the conclusion of our Commentary on the Book of Job. To learn more about our commentaries and books, go to www.lighttomypath.net/sales.)
One wonders, as the story of the book of Job concludes, at
the fact that God never did explain to Job the real reason for his
suffering. We were told the reason in the very beginning of the book,
yet the record nowhere states that God ever told Job. Over and over Job and his
friends disputed the reason why Job was suffering. This one issue was the major
theme of the book till God spoke. Yet the book ends without Job or his friends
ever learning the answer! This used to really frustrate me. It almost appears
that God missed the point of the discussion – that He never even discussed the
real issue. But of course, we must never think God makes a mistake – that would
be similar to the error Job committed. So why did God not answer Job’s
of profane and obscene speech is an increasing problem.
received a newspaper column in which a woman discussed whether parents should
allow little children to use swear words. She cited a woman
"theologian" who said the Bible nowhere condemns swearing. She
concluded there is really nothing wrong with it, unless your children use such
language around people who would be offended.
people have long used profanity and obscenity privately when they are angry,
disgusted, or excited. Some use it for emphasis. Some enjoy suggestive or
off-color jokes. With others the practice is just a habit. Unfortunately, this
is even true of some professing Christians.
recently, such speech has become common, not just in private, but also in
public and in the mass media. Finding a TV show, movie, or novel that does not
use it is nearly impossible, even in so-called "family
entertainment." Social media have gone so far as to give such expressions
code abbreviations, so people can use profanity without having to type it out!
Some professing Christians carelessly copy and distribute on their pages
messages that include it.
only God deserves to wear certain unique names, possesses certain unique
characteristics, and do certain unique works, so there are certain unique forms
of worship and honor that belong only to God. Because God created and rules the
whole creation, it follows that all created things must honor and worship Him.
No man or other created being may rightly receive such worship. To give such
honor to men or created beings constitutes blasphemy or idolatry.
In this study we consider the Bible evidence about the worship and honor Jesus deserves to receive.
people think this proves that somehow government should never support or
encourage anything religious. More recently, this idea is being used to claim
that people's religious views should have no influence on the government.
easily document that this was never what the Founding Fathers meant when they
wrote the Constitution, but what does God think?
purpose of this lesson is to consider how religious belief is being
systematically excluded from daily life.
are the last of 14 arguments posited favoring Darwin's theory of evolution
followed by the scientific evidence against each one. The beginning of this
article can been found in the August issue at www.schwarzreport.org.
"The LORD’s works are great, studied by all who delight in them."--Psalm 111:2
week in Nice, France, I was privileged to participate, along with 30
scholars, mostly scientists and mathematicians, in a conference on the
question of whether the universe was designed, or at least fine-tuned,
to make life, especially intelligent life. . . . It appears the universe
is designed for biogenesis and human life" (Dennis Prager, The
Washington Times, June 24, 2013, p.30).
The following 13
arguments posited favoring Darwin’s theory of evolution are then
followed by the scientific evidence against each one. A finely tuned
universe that includes human life is totally contrary to Darwin’s theory
of chance, natural selection, and mutation. Dennis Prager is
correct--"The evidence for design is so compelling that the only way
around it is to suggest that our universe is only one of an infinite
number of universes." Only atheists who insist on "science and reason"
could accept such an unscientific and irrational view.
from the Founding Fathers about Religion
Lobby Ad - 7/4/2013)
Note: These quotations document the views of many founding fathers and others
showing their respect for religion and morality. We quote it mainly to show
that our country was established by men who generally believed that government should
respect and encourage morality, decency, religion, and Bible teaching. They
would be shocked to observe modern attempts to limit religious freedom or to
exclude God or Biblical morality from influencing our laws and officials. (This
is the text of an ad placed by Hobby Lobby in many newspapers across the
country on the weekend of July 4, 2013. It apparently appeared in various
forms. We have attempted to quote it as it appeared in our local paper.) – DP]
carefully: No teaching anywhere on this web site is intended or should ever be
construed to justify or to in any way incite or encourage personal vengeance or
physical violence against any person.
is as modern as today's newspaper and as old as ancient history. Many ancient
Greek leaders, including Socrates and Plato, were apparently homosexuals, as
were many Roman emperors. It has been especially common in certain societies.
What about our own society?
popular studies claim ten per cent of Americans are homosexual. However, this
figure was inflated. A brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court by 31
pro-homosexual activist groups in the case of Lawrence v. Texas states:
"2.8 percent of the male, and 1.4% of the female, population identify themselves
as gay, lesbian, or bisexual." (Culture Facts, April 4, 2003)
and animals are fundamentally the same in nature, then we would expect animals
to have the same rights as men. But if men are fundamentally different from
animals, then we should expect different rules to apply.
(This article is a sequel to our article on God's Plan for the Family. Please read that article before proceeding.)
a basic understanding of the marriage covenant, let us consider various
specific forms of sexual immorality. This will increase our
understanding and appreciation of that law and will show us how sexual
immorality relates to the marriage law.
Washington served eight years as the first President of the United States. He
was the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army, and chairman of the
Constitutional Convention that composed the Constitution. He is often called
the "Father of our country." Surely of all men he would have understood
the views of the founding fathers about the relationship between government and
the Bible and faith in God.
Continental Congress served as the chief legislative body for the original
American colonies throughout the Revolutionary War until the adoption of the
Constitution. This spanned essentially from 1774 into 1789. If any group of men
could be considered the "founding fathers" of our country, it would
be this group. Many of them participated in writing the Constitution. If any
men could ever have possessed a clear understanding of how the founding fathers
viewed the Bible and respect for God, it would have been these men.
the facts we here document about this Congress. When a person knows the truth
about the views of the founding fathers of this country, who can seriously
defend the view that they intended to write the Constitution in such a way as
to remove the teachings of the Bible and the praise of God from all
governmental and educational institutions?
Assume we knew or could have known basically what Nazism was like.
we have kept quiet and overlooked it because:
involved political and economic issues and we are concerned about religion?
controlled governments and Christians should not criticize rulers?
Speaking out might lead to persecution?
was mainly a problem in foreign nations, not here (we didn't know any Nazis)?
should we have spoken out to express opposition because:
was based on fundamental religious errors (evolution, racism, atheism)?
rejected Christianity and denied Jesus?
sought world domination by war and military conquest (subjugating millions by
used violence and force to eliminate unwanted citizens (millions in the
Timothy 4:2-4; Ephesians 5:11; Revelation 3:19 - God's word instructs us to
oppose the forces of evil. Surely we all agree that we ought to have reproved
and rebuked a belief based on religious error that forcibly subjugated millions
of people and murdered millions more.