Biblical Worldview post #30 – Christian Basics: The depravity of man (part 1)

Christian Basics: The depravity of man (all of us are sinners) – Part 1

Passage Reference Passage Text
Romans 3:10-12 (NLT) As the Scriptures say, “No one is good — not even one. No one has real understanding; no one is seeking God. All have turned away from God; all have gone wrong. No one does good, not even one.”
Romans 5:18a,19a (NLT) Yes, Adam’s one sin brought condemnation upon everyone… Because one person disobeyed God, many people became sinners.
Ecclesiastes 7:20 (NIV) There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins.

Thoughts on Job 38

The thought occurred to me while reading Job 38 that in this passage of the LORD speaking to Job, you could substitute any skeptic/atheist in place of the name Job.  For example:

Then the LORD answered [Richard Dawkins] out of the storm. He said:  “Who is this that darkens my counsel with words without knowledge? Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me. Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?”  Job 38:1-5

Biblical Worldview post #29 – Insulted for being a Christian

You are blessed by God when you are insulted for being a Christian – rejoice that you bear that name

1 Peter 4:12-16 (NIV) Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when His glory is revealed. If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler. However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name.

Thoughts on John 12:42-43

I was practicing my memory verses yesterday and came to John 12:42-43:

Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in him. But because of the Pharisees they would not confess their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved praise from men more than praise from God.

The thought occurred to me that this verse applies today in many areas of life. You could substitute other names in the place of leaders, Pharisees and synagogue. For example:

Yet at the same time many even among the university professors believed in him. But because of the Freedom From Religion Foundation they would not confess their faith for fear they would be put out of the Academy; for they loved praise from men more than praise from God.

Or:

Yet at the same time many even among the research scientists believed in him. But because of the editors of the peer reviewed science publications they would not confess their faith for fear their research wouldn’t be published; for they loved praise from men more than praise from God.

Or:

Yet at the same time many even among the business leaders believed in him. But because of the human resources religious tolerance policies they would not confess their faith for fear they would be fired from their jobs or sued; for they loved praise from men more than praise from God.

It is my personal prayer and my prayer for all my brothers and sisters in Christ that this would not be true of us. I pray that, like Paul, we could say:

I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. Rom 1:16

Biblical Worldview post #28 – Jesus warns us about storing up wealth for ourselves

Jesus warns us about storing up wealth for ourselves in the Parable of the Rich Fool

Luke 12:16-21 (NLT) And He gave an illustration: “A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. In fact, his barns were full to overflowing. So he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll have room enough to store everything. And I’ll sit back and say to myself, My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!’ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get it all?’ “Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.”

Biblical Worldview post #27 – Don’t Trust In Your Money

Warnings to wealthy people – don’t trust in your money. It could be gone at any moment!

Passage Reference Passage Text
1 Timothy 6:17-19 (NLT) Tell those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which will soon be gone. But their trust should be in the living God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and should give generously to those in need, always being ready to share with others whatever God has given them. By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may take hold of real life.
Amos 3:15 (NLT) “And I will destroy the beautiful homes of the wealthy — their winter mansions and their summer houses, too — all their palaces filled with ivory. I, the LORD, have spoken!”

Biblical Worldview post #26 – Joy to know Jesus

It is a joy to know Jesus Christ and everything else is garbage compared to it

Passage Reference Passage Text
Philippians 1:21 (NIV) For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.
Philippians 3:8-9 (NLT) Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I may have Christ and become one with Him. I no longer count on my own goodness or my ability to obey God’s law, but I trust Christ to save me. For God’s way of making us right with Himself depends on faith.
John 17:3 (NIV) Now this is eternal life: that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, Whom You have sent.

Biblical Worldview post #25 – Jesus Christ requires TOTAL commitment

Jesus Christ clearly states what He requires – TOTAL commitment to Him – we must love Him more than anyone or anything (or even our own lives)

Passage Reference Passage Text
Matthew 10:37-38 (NIV) “Anyone who loves his father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me; and anyone who does not take his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me.”
John 12:25-26 (NIV) The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves Me must follow Me; and where I am, My servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves Me.

Biblical Worldview post #24 – Being a hearer of the Word…

Being a hearer of the Word of God is not good enough – we must put these life giving Words into action in our own lives

Passage Reference Passage Text
James 1:22 (NIV) Do not merely listen to the Word [the Bible], and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.
James 2:14 (NLT) Dear brothers and sisters, what’s the use of saying you have faith if you don’t prove it by your actions? That kind of faith can’t save anyone.
Romans 2:13 (MSG) Merely hearing God’s law is a waste of your time if you don’t do what he commands. Doing, not hearing, is what makes the difference with God.

mid-week apologetics booster (12/25/2014)

Merry Christmas everyone!

Here are some links for you to look at when you get a free moment!

  1. 10 Ways We Can Remember to Be Christians this Christmas: http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/kevindeyoung/2014/12/23/10-ways-we-can-remember-to-be-christians-this-christmas/
  2. 10 Things You May Not Know About the Christmas Story: http://biblemesh.com/blog/10-things-you-may-not-know-about-the-christmas-story/
  3. Elite Scholars Don’t Have Elite Reasons For Being Non-believers (includes 37 minute video of many of these elite scholars talking about religion): http://shadowtolight.wordpress.com/2014/12/22/elite-scholars-dont-have-elite-reasons-for-being-non-believers-2/
  4. Marvelous molecular machines— Creation Magazine (28 minute video with some great animations showing how these molecular machines work): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-GNmaB-zFW4&feature=share
  5. Jesus and Hanukkah: John 10:22-23http://www.huffingtonpost.com/craig-s-keener/jesus-and-hanukkah-john-10-22-23_b_2233251.html
  6. To Witness Like Jesus, Use Logic and Reason: http://apologetics-notes.comereason.org/2014/12/to-witness-like-jesus-use-logic-and.html
  7. When Necessary Use Words. It Is Always Necessary: http://trainingandadmonition.wordpress.com/2014/12/14/when-necessary-use-words-it-is-always-necessary/
  8. ISIS reportedly selling Christian artifacts, turning churches into torture chambers: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2014/12/22/isis-reportedly-selling-christian-artifacts-turning-churches-into-torture-1596164509/
  9. Mall Evangelism: “I Want to Talk about God”: http://www.crossencounters.us/2014/12/mall-evangelism-i-want-to-talk-about-god.html
  10. “What does it mean to test the spirits?” http://www.gotquestions.org/test-the-spirits.html
  11. If our salvation is eternally secure, why does the Bible warn so strongly against apostasy? http://www.gotquestions.org/apostasy-salvation.html
  12. Why apologetics is critical for youth ministry: http://rebootchristianity.blogspot.com/2013/11/why-apologetics-is-critical-for-youth.html
  13. Dinosaurs:
    1. Dinosaur Questions and Answers: http://creation.com/dinosaur-questions-and-answers
    2. Answers in Genesis Dinosaur articles: https://answersingenesis.org/dinosaurs/
  14. Fearfully and Wonderfully Made (Dr. David Menton) – ~1 hour video – I would highly recommend watching this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9LKweRWpLk
  15. 10 Things I Wish Everyone Knew About the Gospel (A professor of New Testament lists 10 key points on the heart of the Christian message.): http://www.faithstreet.com/onfaith/2014/11/10/10-things-i-wish-everyone-knew-about-the-gospel/34925
  16. Ancient Egypt confirms: Genesis is history: http://creation.com/ancient-egypt-confirms-genesis
  17. Abiogenesis (getting life from non-life)? Fantastic claims highlight the scientific absurdity of this recycled philosophy of ‘spontaneous generation’: http://creation.com/abiogenesis

Hope you’re having a great day.  Blessings to you all!

The Valley of Vision (“A Neophyte’s Devotion”)

Glorious and Holy God, Provocations against thy divine majesty have filled my whole life.  My offences have been countless and aggravated.  Conscience has rebuked me, friends have admonished me, the examples of others have reproached me, thy rod has chastised me, thy kindnesses allured me.  Thou has seen and abhorred all my sins and couldst easily and justly have punished me, yet thou hast spared me, been gracious unto me, given me thy help, invited me to thy table.  Lord, I thankfully obey thy call, accept of thy goodness, acquiesce in thy gospel appointments.  I believe that Jesus thy Son has plenteous redemption; I apply to him for his benefits, give up my mind implicitly to his instructions, trust and glory in his sacrifice, revere and love his authority, pray that his grace may reign in my life.  I will not love a world that crucified him, neither cherish nor endure the sin that put him to grief, nor suffer him to be wounded by others.  At the cross that relieves my conscience let me learn lessons of self-denial, forgiveness and submission, feel motives to obedience, find resources for all needs of the divine life.  Then let me be what I profess, do as well as teach, live as well as hear religion.

-The Valley of Vision (“A Neophyte’s Devotion”)

Biblical Worldview post #23 – Followers of Jesus Obey Him

Those who love Jesus Christ — who are His followers — obey Him

Passage Reference Passage Text
John 14:23-24a (NLT) Jesus replied, “All those who love Me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and We will come to them and live with them. Anyone who doesn’t love Me will not do what I say.”
Luke 6:46 (NIV) Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?
John 8:31 (NIV) To the Jews who had believed Him, Jesus said, “If you hold to My teaching, you are really My disciples.”
1 John 2:3-4 (NLT) And how can we be sure that we belong to Him? By obeying His commandments. If someone says, “I belong to God,” but doesn’t obey God’s commandments, that person is a liar and does not live in the truth.

Biblical Worldview post #22 – The “Last Days” Will Be Difficult

Paul describes the attributes and behaviors of the people we need to stay away from, who will be increasingly common in the “last days”

2 Timothy 3:1-5 (NLT) You should also know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control; they will be cruel and have no interest in what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act as if they are religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. You must stay away from people like that.

Biblical Worldview post #21 – Jesus Christ Creator – Part 3

Jesus Christ is the Creator of the Universe – Part 3

Passage Reference Passage Text
John 1:1-3 (NIV) In the beginning was the Word [Jesus Christ], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made.
John 1:10-11 (NIV) He was in the world, and though the world was made through Him [Jesus Christ], the world did not recognize Him. He came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him.

Biblical Worldview post #20 – Jesus Christ Creator – Part 2

Jesus Christ is the Creator of the Universe – Part 2

Colossians 1:15-18 (NLT) Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before God made anything at all and is supreme over all creation. Christ is the one through whom God created everything in heaven and earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see — kings, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities. Everything has been created through Him and for Him. He existed before everything else began, and He holds all creation together. Christ is the head of the church, which is his body. He is the first of all who will rise from the dead, so He is first in everything.

Biblical Worldview post #19 – Jesus Christ Creator – Part 1

Jesus Christ is the Creator of the Universe – Part 1

Hebrews 1:2-3 (NLT) But now in these final days, He [God the Father] has spoken to us through His Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son He made the universe and everything in it. The Son reflects God’s own glory, and everything about Him represents God exactly. He sustains the universe by the mighty power of His command. After He died to cleanse us from the stain of sin, He sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God of heaven.

Biblical Worldview post #18 – Dangers of Backsliding

The one who knows the truth and right way to live and then backslides is worse off than the one who never knew it at all

2 Peter 2:20-22 (NLT) And when people escape from the wicked ways of the world by learning about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and then get tangled up with sin and become its slave again, they are worse off than before. It would be better if they had never known the right way to live than to know it and then reject the holy commandments that were given to them. They make these proverbs come true: “A dog returns to its vomit,” and “A washed pig returns to the mud.”

Biblical Worldview post #17 – Heaven

A description of what Heaven will be like with the God we serve – there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain!

Revelation 21:3-7 (NIV) And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be His people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then He said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be My son.”

Biblical Worldview post #16 – Men Are Without Excuse for Not Knowing There is a God

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God” – men are without excuse, because the universe makes God’s existence evident

Passage Reference Passage Text
Psalms 14:1a (NIV) The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.”
Romans 1:20 (NIV) For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–His eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.
Psalms 19:1-3 (NIV) The heavens [universe] declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard.

Biblical Worldview post #15 – The Importance of Love

Love each other deeply, because love covers over sins – anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love

Passage Reference Passage Text
1 Peter 4:8-10 (NIV) Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.
1 John 4:7-8 (NLT) Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is born of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God — for God is love.

Biblical Worldview post #14 – Wealth, Hard Work and Contentment

Biblical wisdom on wealth, hard work, love of money and contentment

Passage Reference Passage Text
Proverbs 13:11 (NLT) Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; wealth from hard work grows over time.
Proverbs 21:5 (NLT) Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty.
Ecclesiastes 5:10 (NLT) Those who love money will never have enough. How absurd to think that wealth brings true happiness!
Ecclesiastes 6:9 (NLT) Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don’t have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless; it is like chasing the wind.
Proverbs 11:4 (NLT) Riches won’t help on the day of judgment, but right living is a safeguard against death.

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

In our apologetics class yesterday, we watched this excellent video presentation by Dr. David Menton.  Here are Dr. Menton’s credentials:

This lifelong interest in science led to his study of biology and chemistry at Minnesota State University in Mankato, where he graduated with a BS degree in 1959. After a six month tour of active duty in the Army Reserves, Dr. Menton worked two years as a research laboratory technician at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota. He left Mayo to do graduate work at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, where he received a PhD in biology in 1966. His thesis research dealt with the effects of essential fatty acid deficiency on the structure and epidermal barrier function of skin.

Following graduation from Brown, Dr. Menton accepted a position in the department of anatomy at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. At Washington University, he did research and taught human gross anatomy and histology. He received awards both for his research and teaching, including twice being awarded Professor of the Year by the senior class.

During his tenure at Washington University, Dr. Menton served as the histology consultant for five editions of Stedman’s Medical Dictionary and was a guest lecturer in histology at Stanford University Medical School. He spent two summers studying an unusual wound healing mechanism in sea cucumbers (a marine invertebrate) at Woods Hole Marine Biology Laboratory on Cape Cod in Massachusetts. Dr. Menton retired in the year 2000 as an Associate Professor Emeritus after 34 years on the faculty.

This was an amazing 1 hour video that covers the many miracles involved in the conception and birth of a child.  It is something that happens many times every day around the world and I think we largely take this process for granted.  But it is a great example of intelligent design, specifically irreducible complexity…

Biblical Worldview post #13 – Jesus is the only way to be saved

The Bible clearly states that Jesus is THE ONLY WAY to be saved

Passage Reference Passage Text
John 14:6 (NIV) Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Acts 4:12 (NIV) Salvation is found in no one else [other than Jesus], for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.
Philippians 2:10-11 (NLT) At the name of Jesus every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
1 Timothy 2:5 (NIV) For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
John 3:36 (NIV) Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.
John 12:48 (NIV) There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day.
John 8:24 (NKJV) Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.

Biblical Worldview post #12 – Living For Yourself

God will pour out His anger and wrath on those who live for themselves

Romans 2:4-8 (NLT) Don’t you realize how kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Or don’t you care? Can’t you see how kind he has been in giving you time to turn from your sin? But no, you won’t listen. So you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself because of your stubbornness in refusing to turn from your sin. For there is going to come a day of judgment when God, the just judge of all the world, will judge all people according to what they have done. He will give eternal life to those who persist in doing what is good, seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers. But he will pour out his anger and wrath on those who live for themselves, who refuse to obey the truth and practice evil deeds.

Biblical Worldview post #11 – Warnings about money, possessions and greed

Jesus warns us about money, possessions and greed

Passage Reference Passage Text
Luke 12:15 (NIV) Then He said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”
Hebrews 13:5 (NIV) Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
Matthew 6:19-21,24 (NIV) “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also… No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.”

Biblical Worldview post #10 – Explanation of People Who Hear the Word of God and Their Responses

Parable of the Sower – Jesus’ explanation – 4 types of hearers of the Word of God (part 2 of 2)

Luke 8:11-15 (NLT) This is the meaning of the story: The seed is God’s message. The seed that fell on the hard path represents those who hear the message, but then the Devil comes and steals it away and prevents them from believing and being saved. The rocky soil represents those who hear the message with joy. But like young plants in such soil, their roots don’t go very deep. They believe for a while, but they wilt when the hot winds of testing blow. The thorny ground represents those who hear and accept the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. And so they never grow into maturity. But the good soil represents honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s message, cling to it, and steadily produce a huge harvest.

Biblical Worldview post #9 – People Who Hear the Word of God and Their Responses

Parable of the Sower – 4 types of hearers of the Word of God (part 1 of 2)

Luke 8:4-8 (NLT) One day Jesus told this story to a large crowd that had gathered from many towns to hear him: “A farmer went out to plant some seed. As he scattered it across his field, some seed fell on a footpath, where it was stepped on, and the birds came and ate it. Other seed fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. This seed began to grow, but soon it withered and died for lack of moisture. Other seed fell among thorns that shot up and choked out the tender blades. Still other seed fell on fertile soil. This seed grew and produced a crop one hundred times as much as had been planted.” When he had said this, he called out, “Anyone who is willing to hear should listen and understand!”

Biblical Worldview post #8 – Forgiveness

The Lord loves and forgives us, so we must love and forgive others

Colossians 3:12-15 (NLT) Since God chose you to be the holy people whom he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. You must make allowance for each other’s faults and forgive the person who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. And the most important piece of clothing you must wear is love. Love is what binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are all called to live in peace. And always be thankful.

Biblical Worldview post #7 – Government

Governments have been put in place by God and we are to obey them

Romans 13:1-5 (NLT) Obey the government, for God is the one who put it there. All governments have been placed in power by God. So those who refuse to obey the laws of the land are refusing to obey God, and punishment will follow. For the authorities do not frighten people who are doing right, but they frighten those who do wrong. So do what they say, and you will get along well. The authorities are sent by God to help you. But if you are doing something wrong, of course you should be afraid, for you will be punished. The authorities are established by God for that very purpose, to punish those who do wrong. So you must obey the government for two reasons: to keep from being punished and to keep a clear conscience.