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Son of God in Roman World

In this series of articles we have been trying to take a look at the message of the New Testament from the eyes of the people alive in the first century. We have been asking the question: what would the apostles message sounded like to the average Jew and Roman. In the last article we noticed that the gospel of peace would have an additional message beyond what the 21st century mind would recognize. While the gospel of peace was…

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Some Things Said… (Mar 05)

Getting Out God designed Christianity to be a 4WD spiritual vehicle with mudders, a truck that brings life to the outback. It is not a sensitive Miata that must be preserved from going off road and into the bush. Quit treating the truth claims of the scripture, the power of the Holy Spirit and the compassion of the Creator like they are some fragile little Faberge' eggs that must be coddled, kept in the sanctuary and never exposed to the…

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What Really Will Be Left Behind?

As part of Paul's letter to Titus and in his admonitions concerning "things that become sound doctrine" he gave advice and instruction on how all Christians are to act and as to the character they are to exhibit both public and private. In chapter two is this statement: "in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be…

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The Gospel of Peace

The Gospel in the Roman World To us, the gospel has always been a reference to the scriptures, the New Testament, or the arrival of the Messiah. We use the word "gospel" to refer to many aspects of the Gods message. However, in the first century the word "gospel" did not refer the New Testament to the Roman listener. The word "gospel" was already in use in the world and referred to something completely different. The Romans used the word…

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Read and Reason

We're past Christmas now with a new year well upon us and with Easter looming just off in the distance; and the Christian faith is united as never before, as all the faithful have been gathered together in honor of our Lord and King. Well, not really. If there were extraterrestrials (which of course there are not) and they landed here (which they really wouldn't want to do anyway), they might conclude that Christianity is made up of a very…

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How To Interpret The Bible

Can the Bible be understood the same by everyone? Such a thought causes great doubt when we see the number of religions and denominations that exist that claim to be based from the Bible. Unfortunately, too many impasses concerning the scriptures are given the response, "Well, that is your interpretation." Rather than try to understand the scriptures together, we give a cop out that this is my interpretation or that is your interpretation. Can we understand the Bible the same…

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The Bible and The DaVinci Code

It is interesting to see how people are attempting to put forth their ideas recently. Rather than be required to have any factual evidence, people have begun to write fiction novels, but declare the material to be based on facts. Then, if there is a historical discrepancy or untruth, no one can argue with the material because it has been presented as fiction. The Left Behind series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins have certainly enjoyed such success with their…

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Some Things Said… (Feb 05) (2)

Abuse Victim Tells Her Story at National Press Club Speaking at a recent press conference at the National Press Club in Washington , DC , a member of an underground house church in China told about her experiences of torture, abuse, and arbitrary imprisonment by Chinese police. According to a news release from the China Aid Association, Ms. Liu Xianzhi, 34, a member of the South China Church , escaped from China last month after serving her sentence in a…

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What is a Church? (5)

I had not intended an exhaustive study when I started this, but to this point that is what has resulted. The plan from this point - as the series is moving into passages where the general topic is the church and its particulars, the readings will become more extended; and as such I will likely forego printing the longer readings in the body, relying instead upon your interest to pursue them on your own. But I will stay with the…

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Proving the Bible to be God’s Word (2)

Some think the Bible must be used to prove its claims of inspiration. Critics argue that Christians claim the Bible is inspired and then prove it by quoting the Bible. But the Bible can be proved to inspired of God without quoting passages that claim its inspiration. Instead of assuming the Bible to be the word of God, we can begin by demonstrating that the scriptures are reliable and trustworthy historical documents. In a previous article, I pointed out that…

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