When non-believers believe in the Bible but don’t noel what they’re talking about

It’s amazing how non-believers can believe in the Bible (or at least like to quote it) when it’s advantageous to their cause but still not know what they’re talking about.

Take for example this story. A story that chides and corrects and criticizes Donald Trump for “not believing in the virgin birth” (due to a “tweet” in which he “erroneously” referred to Joseph as Jesus’ father) all the while it uses the names God and Jesus in a very flippant and unholy manner.

What exactly did the President say … or tweet rather? Continue reading

#birth-of-jesus, #christmas, #jesus, #twitter

Straight-line lineage

Most people are interested in their lineage. Even in this digital age companies exist to help people find their ancestral roots.

Despite the fact that he or she had nothing (and again for emphasis sake let me say – nothing!) to do with making themselves a part of their lineage, many individuals like to proudly and arrogantly boast about their fearsome forefathers, their existing matriarchal might or maybe even their connection to a few drops of “royal” blood. And yes, their skin-color, their national origin, their clan, their crest and even their religion comes along for the ride.

In Christ this fleshly foolishness stops (Galatians 4:30; 1 Timothy 1:4; Matthew 3:9-10).

If one’s lineage cannot be drawn in a straight-line from you to Jesus to Abraham to God, then your lineage, my lineage and our lineage is of no value.

Am I saying it’s wrong to know about or even celebrate our ancestral roots and the things (the good things) that were accomplished on our behalf? Absolutely not! I’m only saying when our branch comes to an end, the importance of our spiritual roots and fruit will far outweigh the physical. Because outside of Jesus the tree will surely die!

For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Galatians 3:26-29 NKJV)

#ancestors, #jesus, #lineage-of-jesus

You may go: Mark 7.29-30 VOTD

“Then he said to her, ‘Because you said this, you may go. The demon has left your daughter.’ She went home and found the child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.”

Mark 7.29-30

The same faith that caused the Syrophoenician woman to go to Jesus caused her to leave him when he said her daughter was well. She believed Jesus had healed her child.

What Jesus says, he will do. If he says it, we may and must trust him. When he says he will provide for our needs, we ought to be believe him. When he send us and promises us his empowering presence, we should go.

#Jesus #faith #VOTD

He even made his own mother

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning” John 1:1-2.

Most of us cannot but jot down a few appointments on a calendar and strive to meet them, but looking back on a day, we can see just how nearsighted we are. As we try to understand God’s plan to redeem sinful man, it’s easy to believe Jesus as just another figure in a line of greats: Adam, Noah, Moses, David …. But, Jesus is different.

He is from the beginning, being both God and with God, through whom all things were made. His Only Son’s part in His plan of salvation is integral, but what was the Second Person of the Godhead doing before “the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us”?

He was the instrument of Creation and spoken to by the Father in Genesis 1:26 as He and the Father are one (John 10:30). Some believe it is Jesus to show up in various theophanies (appearances of God) throughout Scripture … perhaps even Melchizedek himself, in whose order Jesus has become our High Priest forever. He even made His own mother who would give birth to Him.

Do you believe that as God, Jesus is the ‘I Am’?

Doug Kashorek

douglaskashorek.com

#Jesus #Word #devotional #dougkashorek

Listen: Luke 9.35 VOTD

“Then a voice came from the cloud, saying, ‘This is my Son, my Chosen One. Listen to him!'”

Luke 9.35

At Jesus’ physical transformation, showing his divine glory, Moses and Elijah are overshadowed. The Father points to Christ as the final revelation. The old law and prophecy are being fulfilled. The new has arrived.

How has the new covenant taken the place of the old? What elements have passed away? Where does the New Testament indicate that Jesus now occupies central place?

#Jesus #new-covenant #VOTD

How is Jesus like the door of the sheepfold?

One question in this week’s lesson (Preaching and Ministry, Jesus the Good Shepherd, Lesson 7, p. 83) in the Gospel Advocate Foundations book asked, “How is Jesus like the door of the sheepfold?”

The verses under question say, “Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:7-10 NKJV)

Looking at the verses under question a few answers stand-out:

  1. Jesus is the legal way. He fulfills the prophecy of the Law, psalms and prophets. People who reject Jesus become law-breakers who work against the will of the God and harm the sheep.
  2. Jesus is the passage way. Unless an individual enters through the door named Jesus, there will be no salvation, freedom or spiritual nourishment provided.
  3. Jesus is the rejected way. Abundant life offered, abundant life rejected was the choice of the false teachers (thieves and robbers). Jesus’ desire was the former.

In light of Ezekiel 34, Jesus’ lesson about the sheepfold, the door, the thieves and robbers, and the shepherd of the sheep was meant to grab attentions, interest and decisions. It did and it still does by causing people to see Jesus as the legal way, the passage way and the rejected way.

Therefore there was a division again among the Jews because of these sayings. And many of them said, “He has a demon and is mad. Why do you listen to Him?” Others said, “These are not the words of one who has a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”” (John 10:19-21 NKJV)

#christians-are-like-sheep, #gospel-advocate, #jesus

The edge: Matthew 14.36 VOTD

“They begged him if they could only touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.”

Matthew 14.36

Multitudes came to Jesus to heal their diseases. He made himself accessible to all who came.

Jesus is not limited to a physical presence today. Our access to his powerful presence is even easier now!

#Jesus #access #VOTD

Hardline religion

Many people enjoy a dislike of “religion.” Hence the popularity of the spiritual but not religious identity … which is often the slogan (of sorts) for the pro-Jesus, anti-church mentality.

Religion is equal to rules. Rules are equal to standards. Standards are equal to responsibilities. Responsibilities are equal to religion. Hence the exodus of many “churches” and their relationship to any perceived hint of hardline religion.

Somehow people have managed to convince themselves that a relationship with Jesus is not based on any sort of hard-line – because Jesus was anti-religion, right?

Granted, Jesus took extreme issue with the religious leaders of his earthly day (a religion, mind you, that ultimately revolved around and pointed to Jesus – Luke 24:22, Galatians 3:24), but Jesus’ issue wasn’t with religion in general – his problem was with the way they practiced their religion by blurring hard-lines created by God! (Matthew 15:1-9, Matthew 23, Mark 3:1-5, Luke 14:6, John 5:10-16) And such an issue was nothing new (Amos 8, Jeremiah 23).

So before you think being against hardline religion makes you pro-Jesus (or vice-versa), keep these teachings in mind: Continue reading

#balance, #error, #jesus, #religion

July 2017 Issue of Christian Worker (Philippians Chapter 2)

Here’s a link to the latest PDF issue of the Christian Worker.

Here are the topics you will find:

  • Fulfill Ye My Joy! (John W. Moore)
  • The Example of Jesus (Cody Westbrook)
  • The Example of Paul (Carl McCann)
  • The Example of Timothy (Ross Hafner)
  • The Example of Epaphroditus (Troy Spradlin)

Christian Worker is an edification effort of the Southwest church of Christ in Austin, Texas.

You can subscribe to the email version of the Christian Worker paper by clicking on the publications link on their website and then following the given instructions.

Copyright © 2017 Southwest church of Christ, All rights reserved.

#christian-worker, #epaphroditus, #jesus, #joy, #philippians-2, #the-apostle-paul, #timothy

World to come: Hebrews 2.5 VOTD

“For he did not put the world to come, about which we are speaking, under the control of angels.”

Hebreus 2.5

The Way of Christ is superior to the Mosaic system because his Kingdom, which has now come into the world, is not under angelic control, but under the Lord’s authority.

The Lord Jesus involves himself in our lives. We are grateful for his proximity.

#angels #Jesus #VOTD

A thought provoking question

I have a thought-provoking question.

I say thought-provoking because I believe it’s worth thinking about for several reasons – although I’m not necessarily looking for an answer.

I don’t know if the question can even be correctly answered on this side of life. That’s because there may not be a book, chapter and verse for it. And if there is, I must honestly say it’s not an obvious section of scripture to me. I have my ideas, but they’re only my ideas.

So what’s the question? Continue reading

#jesus, #religious-questions, #spiritual-questions

Easy teaching: Matthew 11.30 VOTD

“Yes, the teaching that I ask you to accept is easy. The load I give you to carry is light.”

Matthew 11.30 ERV

Jesus contrasted his Way with the heavy loads of legalism imposed by the Pharisees, Mt 12.1-8. While his teaching reaches even the motivations of the heart, it still is far easier than impossible task of earning salvation.

If it is so easy, why is the way so narrow? Mt 7.13-14.

#Way #Jesus #VOTD

Only one walks through the valley of the shadow of death with us

David is rightly known as an author who expressed his need for God in times of desperation. But to describe God as a crutch in David’s life wouldn’t be fair. God was not David’s crutch. God was David’s life.

In good times, the credit and adoration of David belonged to God. Whether taking on enemy giants or thinking about the little blessings of life, God was at the forefront of David’s life. Numerous psalms and scripture references show this to be true.

At home, David had Jesse by his side. In Saul’s house he had Jonathan. As a spiritual counselor he had Samuel. On the battlefield he had his three nephews, Joab, Abishai and Asahel. But when it came to walking through the valley of the shadow of death, there was only one individual who could keep him company (Psalm 23:4).

We may receive a lot of support from others throughout our life, but when it comes to the end of day there will only be one that seeks to offer help in life as well as comfort in death.

Are we walking with this shepherd today? (John 10:11, 27-28)

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”” (John 11:25-26 NKJV)

#david, #death, #jesus

The promised crown

Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.” (James 1:12)

Endure temptation, reveal your faith, continue in your love for the Lord and get a crown.

Is this a maybe? Is this a probably? No, it’s an open guarantee!

The crown of victory is a crown of promise. And in case you haven’t noticed, God has a tendency to keep his word. Keeping the faith is our answer.

Keeping ourself from temptation is wise. Overcoming temptation is vital. Temptation is a trial that requires strength, perseverance and a willingness to undergo something unpleasant to the soul. Concerning the unpleasantness, the body may contradict the desire of the soul, but that is what makes it a challenge. This is why the humanity – and priesthood – of Jesus is so encouraging (Hebrews 4:15-16). Wisdom looks for God’s help.

A victory crown for a victorious people from a Lord who gained our victory (1 Corinthians 15:57). That’s a promising thought … and so is the eternal crown that will be experienced in Heaven by overcoming the short-lived temptation on Earth.

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13 NKJV)

#crown-of-life, #jesus, #temptation

‘Above his head’ Matthew 27.37 VOTD

“Above his head they put the charge against him, which read: ‘This is Jesus, the king of the Jews.'”

Matthew 27.37

The crimes of crucified criminals were posted on their crosses. Jesus’ charge was intended as an insult to the Jews.

Jesus is King, Lord, and Savior, of Jews and Gentiles. The charge written above his cross was too modest.

#VOTD #crucifixion #Jesus