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Bath or Baptism?

What is the difference between taking a bath or receiving baptism? Faith. Baptism without belief is a bath. Baptism without repentance is just getting wet. Baptism without confession is just soaking ourselves for no reason. The difference between a bath and baptism is faith. Someone may dunk you in water, but if you are not putting your trust in Jesus to take away your sins, then nothing but a bath has occurred. Infants must not be baptized because they are…

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Trample The Holy City For 42 Months (Revelation 11:2), ESV Study Bible, and NLT Study Bible

Revelation 11:1-2 reads: 1 I was given a reed like a measuring rod and was told, “Go and measure the temple of God and the altar, with its worshipers. 2 But exclude the outer court; do not measure it, because it has been given to the Gentiles. They will trample on the holy city for 42 months. (TNIV) ESV Study Bible: 11:1-2 John was given a measuring rod and instructed to measure the temple of God. Many dispensationalists understand this…

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Hallowed Be Your Name (Matthew 6:9)

I am really surprised to see the number of updated and modern translation that kept the phrase, "hallowed be your name" in the Lord's prayer (Matthew 6:9). The ESV keeps it, which is unfortunate, but not surprising since the ESV seems to maintain the traditional readings of the KJV/ASV/RSV stream. There have been some writings lately about the superiority of the TNIV when it comes to archaic renderings. However, even the TNIV keeps the archaic reading of "hallowed be your…

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The Death of Christ Does Not Require Substitution

I have been reading that some people have a hard time understanding why Jesus' death was necessary at all if penal substitution is not the correct doctrine for justification. I would ask for people to read the scriptures again and think about the definitions to the words "redemption" and "ransom." The apostle Paul argues that we are slaves to sin and children of wrath. "Redeem" is the concept of buying back. Redeeming a coupon means the company that produced the…

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Should Archaic Language Be Used In Modern Translations?

I was motivated to write this after reading Mark Strauss' utter contempt and blasting of the ESV. At one point he condemns the ESV for using archaic language. On the whole, I agree that I would like to see archaic terms removed. However, I do not think that all archaic terms can be removed. Matthew 1:18 is one such instance. Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothedto Joseph, before…

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Just A Few Things I Am Thankful For…

In no particular order, I am thankful for these books that continually sit on my office desk because I use them every day: HCSB Minister's Bible ESV Study Bible NLT Study Bible ESV Personal Size Reference Bible ESV Single Column Reference Bible NRSV Standard Bible TNIV Reference Bible NLT Slimline Large Print Reference Bible HCSB Hand Size Giant Print Reference Bible Finally, though not technically "sitting" on my desk, I am thankful for Accordance Bible software so that I can…

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Who Keeps Buying the KJV?

Every month, the CBA posts the sales of Bible translations in terms of dollars spent and units sold. Every month the KJV remains toward the top. In November, the KJV was #2 in terms of dollar sales and #4 in terms of units sold. I am mystified at how this keeps happening. Doesn't everyone own a KJV by now? Are these numbers coming from people replacing their KJVs with new KJVs? For example, it is not surprising to see the…

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Dear Daddy or Our Father? (Matthew 6:9)

I am going to begin a new sermon series on the prayers of Jesus and so I am researching and studying what is commonly called The Model Prayer today. I am amazed that Jesus taught his disciples to call God, "Father." We do not have to call him the high holy one. We do not have to address God in flowery language. We can just call him "Father." What a special relationship we have. It is odd that Jesus taught…

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Substitutionary Atonement?

About ten years ago I had come to conclusion that the scriptures do not teach that Jesus died as my substitute or in my place. The scriptures describe the death of Jesus as done for me and done on my behalf, but not in my place. Further, Jesus' death is illustrated as a ransom and redemption, not substitution. I wrote a series on the suffering servant in Isaiah earlier this year, showing that one does not see substitution in this…

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Washing of Regeneration (Titus 3:5), ESV Study Bible, & NLT Study Bible

He saved us – not by works of righteousness that we had done, but according to His mercy, through the washing of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit. (Titus 3:5; HCSB) I have mentioned in previous posts how the study Bibles and commentaries feel compelled to backpedal from plain teachings about baptism. I am studying Titus 3 for a lesson that I will give in a couple of weeks. In my studies I was disappointed to see how the…

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