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James McGrath & the Bible

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/religionprof/2018/07/the-bible-is-not-alone.html

We continue to look at scholars and their point of view with the blog article linked above. The title of the post is:

The Bible is not Alone

In that post, Dr. James McGrath has made some very dangerous statements. through the years we have already shown him to be a false teacher. One that ha sno respect for the Bible as God’s word and doubts that the Bible actually contains God’s word. He continues to prove us correct.

I was referring to the conundrum for those who speak of the Bible as their ultimate authority,

For those who are not sure what the word conundrum means, we post the definition below:

a problem that is difficult to deal with (https://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/english/conundrum)

Having the Bible as a person’s ultimate authority is not a problem nor is it difficult to deal with. people need guidance on  how to live their lives and the Bible does not encourage contributing to the criminal statistics. It is only a difficult problem for those who reject the Bible as God’s word. The Bible does address all aspects of society and there is no other book that can do that with any authority. Only God’s word has it and those who reject the Bible as an ultimate authority do so on the basis that they do not want to humble themselves and accept God’s word as his word. They want to live life their way, not God’s.

That got us on to the idea of sola scriptura, and so I emphasized that the Bible isn’t alone, either

Actually, despite his point of view, the Bible is alone. It is the only book authored by a divine being; it is the all-time best seller, not just among holy books but all books, it provides superior standards to live by which are copied by basically every false religion out there in the modern and also the ancient world. Also, the Bible has divine help available to help all who do not understand its content. No other book has this aid.

This is true in many senses. One is the fact that the Bible is connected to the church that assembled its contents.

The church did not assemble the Bible’s content. That content was already ready circulating in individual formats long before the Council of Nicaea. The Hebrews already had the OT put together, which means that the church had nothing to do with the contents of the first testament. Then it was the Holy Spirit who brought the contents to the biblical writers.

The contents were not the wild imaginations of goat herders, elites, scribes etc., looking to control a group of people. All the early church did was take the holy, inspired words of God and put them together in one volume. They did not alter the texts, there was no conspiracy, there was no war between orthodoxy and ancient liberalism. The church was used by God to make sure that false teaching did not enter the volume.

That is the key. God made sure we knew what was right and what was wrong when he had the early church assemble the pre-existing biblical content.

Another is the fact that the Bible has no meaning without a reader, and readers do not merely obtain meaning transmitted precisely to them from the Bible’s pages, but bring with them baggage and lenses that affect what they understand

This is just painting the situation with a very broad brush. While some people bring baggage to their reading of the Bible, not everyone does. Preachers are not to do so and Jesus said that we do not use baggage and lenses when we read the Bible. We are to follow the HS to the truth. Dr. McGrath is mistaken when he says that the Bible has no meaning without a reader. It always has meaning even if no one reads its pages. It always contains the truth even if no one dusts it off and turns a few pages to see what is inside.

The meaning is there waiting to be read. He is also wrong when he says that people do not get the clear meaning of the biblical content merely by reading it. Of course they do. Why would God have written it in the first place if the reader could not understand the basics of its content? Why make the good news a difficult mystery to solve, when God declares that he desires that all men be saved? He would be undermining his own desires if he did that.

While some parts of the Bible are hard to understand, they are not impossible to grasp with a little correct biblical teaching done by true, honest bible teachers.

the Bible makes reference to texts and information outside its pages.

Dr. McGrath makes more errors with this statement as he uses the following as his support points:

Jude quoting 1 Enoch. Jannes and Jambres. The Book of Jashar.

He completely misunderstands the use of those incidents. Jannes and Jambres were Egyptian magicians used by the Pharaoh to try to thwart Moses and Aaron. They were not used by the Bible as a reference, or anything else. You can do a little read up on them at the following links:

https://www.biblestudytools.com/encyclopedias/isbe/jannes-and-jambres.html

https://www.christiancourier.com/articles/1006-how-did-paul-learn-about-jannes-and-jambres

Jude did not quote 1 Enoch. Yes, the same words may be found in 1 Enoch as is found in Jude, but Jude did not quote from that book It is said that 1 Enoch was written about 160 BC but that us debateable and we would have to find out when the earliest extant manuscript is dated to double-check but if you read this link, you will find that the book wasn’t rediscovered until the 17th century AD.

A copy was found in the Dead Sea Scrolls, but that copy may not date till the first century AD. There is plenty of time to change the content of 1 Enoch to read like Jude. But that is a minor point. Here is what Jude wrote

14 It was also about these men that Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with [p]many thousands of His holy ones, 15 to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.” 16 These are grumblers, finding fault, following after their own lusts; [q]they speak arrogantly, flattering people for the sake of gaining an advantage.

Notice he is talking about the real Enoch and what he said when he was still alive. Jude was not quoting some book. There is also no evidence that Jude actually quoted from 1 Enoch. Having the same words and the same quotes does not mean he quoted or copied. We could g round and round on this topic but it is false to assume that Jude quoted as the HS would have led him to the actual words of the real Enoch.

Finally, the book of Jasser. When you read the passages containing the title of that work, it reads like any other book mentioned in the Kings, Chronicles and other OT books. The biblical author is not quoting or referencing those books but is clearly stating that if you want more details go read those books. The Bible is not going to be providing more details on those situations already recorded in its pages.

The acts of the different kings are the same. If you want the details on the 10, 20 or 30 years of reign of each king, God is saying go to a history book and read them. His word has more important topics to deal with.

I could add to this (even though it didn’t come up in the Sunday school discussion on that occasion) the fact that the Bible is not intelligible to modern readers without outside individuals and resources.

This is just not so. God does not need the help of blind, deceived, fallible, mortal man to illuminate what he is saying. Those words of Dr. McGrath are saying that human works are superior to the Bible and know more than the Bible does. Then while we are to study to show ourselves approved unto God, we do our study with the help and guidance of the HS. Not just any book will do. We still have to be careful about true and false teaching.

Also, just because a book is written by someone claiming to be a Christian does not make their insight automatically correct. Not every book on the Bible written by a Christian is good and not all are bad. Discernment is part of the learning process.

Languages change over time, impacting the intelligibility of translations. Those who read the Bible in the original languages nowadays are never native speakers of ancient Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek. And so the Bible is not self-explanatory even on the linguistic level, to say nothing of text critical issues and cultural differences.

Does not matter. This is just an excuse to ignore what the Bible teaches when it says things people like Dr. McGrath do not like. True believers have the HS guiding them to the truth but only if they are willing to follow the HS to the truth.

The Bible is never alone. Scriptura non sola. And that is just as well, because in a manner comparable to what is in the graph above, the Bible’s perspicuity has declined with time

For those who do not know what the word perspicuity means, here is the definition:

clearness or lucidity, ( http://www.dictionary.com/browse/perspicuity)

Again, Dr.McGrath makes a grave error as he ignores the passage that tells us that God and Jesus remain the same. Their views do not change. That fact helps keep the Bible clear and lucid in perpetuity. The Bible’s clarity and lucidity have not declined with time or due to the fact that no one is a native speaker of the ancient biblical languages.

It isn’t the Bible’s fault that people do not understand it very clearly. The reason people do not understand the Bible is that they do not believe God or his word. The spirit of truth does not work with unbelievers. Thus they will not get to the truth but end up writing distorted, misleading posts like the one we linked to in the beginning of this post.

The Bible is very clear and its message has not changed from the day God had different men pen his words for everyone to read.

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How NOT to Read the Bible

 

Let’s get the link out-of-the-way first,

https://www.christianpost.com/news/david-and-bathsheba-is-a-metoo-story-woman-not-a-seductress-seminary-professor-says-225991/

A seminary professor has argued that the biblical account of King David and Bathsheba should be treated as a “Me Too story,” not as a consensual affair as it is sometimes portrayed.

Besides the fact that it took four paragrapsh to say who this seminary professor was, we were not surprised to find out it was a woman and someone who should know better. Dallas Theological Seminary had or has a better reputation than to pander to an audience that is far too sensitive for its own good.

Sandra Glahn, associate professor in Media Arts and Worship at Dallas Theological Seminary who teaches a gender studies course, explained that “Bathsheba is a Me Too story.”

No it is not. This is one of the dangers that comes when trying to read the Bible. This professor is reading into an ancient account a modern narrative that she has no clue was actually part of the original story. Or if it even if that thinking existed in King David’s day. She is distorting the account with her own ideas and not using it to find the message God wants us to learn.

Reading into biblical passages has always been wrong yet due to the use of interpretation, reading into the bible has gotten a foothold and has become a popular activity. Using interpretation is also wrong, as people are placing their own ideas on God’s word. Thus they are not hearing what God has to say but hearing their own words and acting accordingly

It’s often treated as an affair, where you have two consensual adults. And even it’s sometimes treated like she is going to the palace and setting out to seduce David,” said Glahn.

What we do not like about her interpretation of the account is that she is assuming that Bathsheba had no ambitions of her own, is not guilty of any wrongdoing and is just the innocent victim We do not know for sure her thoughts or motivations. We cannot rule out the possibility that Bathsheba did want the King to see her. Even if she was innocent, there is a lesson for women in the account– make sure you truly have privacy before bathing and do not be immodest in public.

And yes, the last bit is referencing this modern fashion fad to wear little in public and can be directed at both men and women.

David sent for her, he sent men for her. She is washing. That doesn’t even mean she’s bathing. She could have just been washing her hands. We are reading into that. And so what happens, instead of us seeing the argument of the book, which is David has gone from this shepherd boy, whom God has raised up, and now he’s abusing power. We should all take that as a lesson and a warning. But instead, we’re blaming the person who brought down the power.”

The person reading into the passage is obviously that professor. Really? She goes to the roof to wash her hands? While a possibility it is a very big stretch to paint the woman as an innocent victim. Then she is reading into David’s actions when he sent the men. There is no hint that Bathsheba was forced to go. David could not go himself as that would let everyone know what he was doing. He had to send men to keep the meeting discreet.

UHM… no one is blaming Bathsheba and there are several lessons to be gleaned from David’s failure as a man and Bathsheba’s inability to be faithful to her husband. They say it takes two to tangle, Totalitarianism was not part of David’s regime so Bathsheba probably had the power to reject the invitation and say that she was married.

We need to stop blaming the man when women do bad things. They make their own choices and are responsible for them. Bathsheba also knew the Mosaic law and knew she was doing something wrong. Let’s not point the finger at one person as both David and Bathsheba were punished by God for their affair. Now That professor is also mistaken about Bathsheba’s bringing down power.

She brought nothing down. King Davd remained king and did not lose his throne over this affair and murder. David was not ejected from his position without any evidence presented or based on hearsay. He was not punished without any evidence. He remained King until he died, which was long enough for he and Bathsheba to have another son, who grew up before replacing David on the throne.

a “Me Too story,”

No, this is not a metoo story. Bathsheba did not act like the modern women have done today. In fact, she was complicit in the affair, (not part of the murder, though), and went on to be David’s wife. After that she had his heir. It is a far cry from the women that participate in the modern metoo movement.  Bathsheba also did not complain to the authorities decades later. She did not use her word only to make accusations and refused to provide evidence.

There is nothing of the modern metoo movement in this account. Also, David’s advisors, authorities etc., did not gang up on David to ‘protect Bathsheba’s honor’. David was also not punished unjustly or unfairly. He was not punished to appease a woman. God saw what was done and he brought the evidence and the just punishment. Notice that God did not remove David from his position or break a promise to him over David’s actions

Now we know more about power differentials in these sort of sexual relationships, and we know that if you have a lot of power, and you’re with a powerless person, even if it’s consensual, it’s not the same thing,” continued Glahn.

First off, it is wrong to apply such thinking to people who died a long time ago. There is no evidence to support that conclusion or allow it to be applied to ancient behavior. Her words are wrongly read into the thinking of long dead people. Consensual affairs are not different and it is wrong to assume that Bathsheba had no power to say no and reject David’s advances. Power does not stop freedom of choice. People stop their own implementation of free choice.

Darrell Bock, senior research professor of New Testament at DTS and host of The Table, agreed, adding that “David is very, very responsible for what it is that he’s done, not only what he did with Bathsheba, but what he did with her husband.”

David is responsible for his decisions and actions BUT Bathsheba is also responsbile for hers. She is not innocent in this account and trying to paint her as an innocent, powerless victim is not reading the Bible correctly. There is no evidence that she was not wilfully tempting David, that she had no ambition and on it goes. Changing the Bible narratives to fit modern thinking is wrong and those professors are not following the spirit of truth to the truth. They are trying to make the Bible conform to the ideology of the lost,blind and deceived.

You read the Bible correctly by following the spirit of truth to the truth. Not to an interpretation or alternative definition of the actions of people we know little about. We cannot see their hearts or mind thus it is very wrong to say that lessons not taught by God are part of the biblical stories.The whole metoo movement is not of God thus it is wrong to import that ideology into the bible and biblical behavior.

 

 

5 Reasons to Overturn Abortion

We like the article

https://theologyarchaeology.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post-new.php

It is well written and we do not disagree with the points. We just want to add our point of view to some of the words contained in that work.

Abortion is the Holy Grail to the American left. It dominates all over considerations

Yes it is and does. Why we are not exactly certain. Maybe it is the idea that men and women can have power over life and death. Maybe it is seen as a solution to a problem that does not have in some people’s eyes any acceptable alternative. Or some people see it as a way out of a sticky situation.  Or it is a modern example of men loving darkness rather than light. There are a number of reasons why people place abortion as a high priority to end a life.

One thing that continues to be ignored in this issue as it has been blinded by the mantra- a woman has the right to do what she wants with her own body. This mantra flies in the face of biblical teaching, that once a woman and a man have sex together, their bodies are no longer their own.  It also ignores the fact that the harm being done is not directed at the woman’s body. It is fully directed at the unborn child’s body. A body neither the mother and father own.

Another lie was the number of women who supposedly died in America because of illegal abortions. Abortionist Bernard Nathanson told the media that each year about 10,000 women died from illegal abortions.

We have written on abortion off and on for a couple of decades now. We have never come across any statistic, real or otherwise, that records the actual number of women’s deaths at the hands of an illegal abortionists. That is because such records are rarely kept and many women travel outside of the country to have their abortions.

Christians have to be wary as the unbeliever does not subscribe to any real moral code and will lie to get their way. Believers need to be discerning and know when a lie is a lie and not be blindly believing when told facts without any supportive evidence. Doctors lie, politicians lie, respected leaders lie so be careful.

The main lie was that an abortion was needed for Roe (whom we later learned was Norma McCorvey) because she was supposedly gang-raped

It is a misconception that the baby produced at the hands of nefarious acts are going to be evil in some way. That is a lie. What we do not like in some pro-life arguments is the idea that abortion is okay when they are created through incest, rape or some other illegal or highly unlikable act. The baby, as God said and we paraphrase, is not guilty and should not be punished for the sins of their parents.

Abortion in these cases needs to be ablished and the baby treated better.

Many women who have had abortions have been shocked to find that they feel guilty about them, despite the culture’s overall approval

This is the one reason we have a little trouble with. Abortion should not be made illegal just because a women feels guilty. It should be made illegal as it protects the unborn from malicious acts for doing nothing wrong. It should be made illegal because it is wrong to kill and violates God’s commandments. Sorry women but your guilt is not enough here. Plus, the author of that article omits any guilt some men may feel at the loss of their unborn child, whether they were willing participants or unwilling victims.

Abortion is not a women’s only issue. Men force women to have abortions, men see their child destroyed by angry women and on it goes. Abortion does not affect just one gender.

Abortion kills millions of unborn babies.

So do criminal acts, wars, invasions, and even accidents. Lets not get over dramatic when calling for the overturning of a nasty law. Killing is wrong no matter when it is done.

God opposes abortion

This should have been the first reason. Not the last. But what that author ignores or forgets is that God did not restrict the term innocent to just unborn babies. Any innocent blood that is shed  God hates. Doesn’t matter if it belongs to an old white male, a young lady, a teenager or whomever. Innocent blood is innocent blood. Each innocent life should be protected not just the politically expedient.

All of us reading these words should be grateful that we escaped the abortionist’s knife.

This is where he ruins his article.

 

 

It May Not Be Failure

We were reminded that we had one more article to work on and post before we left. It is found at the following link:

https://www.christianpost.com/voice/revoice-conference-reveals-churchs-failure-to-address-lgbt-issues.html

We are not going to go in-depth and talk about every point in the article as it is well written. We only want to address some of the main points. The first is the title

Revoice Conference Reveals Church’s Failure to Address LGBT Issues

First off, we think it is a little unfair to say that the church has failed to address LGBTQ issues.  In the past we have been hard on churches but we also think that it is difficult for every local church to focus on every issue. That is a bit unrealistic and an expectation that cannot be met. Some churches focus on feeding the poor, others meeting personal needs and so on. There are not enough members to go around to every issue and there are not enough resources to cover them all.

Second, the Bible is very clear about how to handle unrepentant sin and a lot of the time it is the LGBTQ community that has rejected those teachings and demand that the church accept them as equals in God’s kingdom. The church cannot disobey God. Unrepentant sinners can be put out of the church without the church failing to address the LGBTQ issues. They have in God’s way and the LGBTQ may not like it.

Third, a church does not fail if they do not have anyone to train willing members or pastoral staff in how to handle LGBTQ members who are seeking to repent of their sins honestly and correctly. It does no one any good to place untrained people in positions of responsibility as serious as this.

Fourth, the church does not fail if God does not redeem the LGBTQ member. Redemption is up to God not the church and there could be many reasons why the LGBTQ is left in their sins.

Robert’s church leaders didn’t condone Robert’s behavior and urged him to resist his same-sex desires. A few times, Robert repented of his homosexual behavior and vowed to stop. But after three years of struggle, Robert gave in. He began living openly as a gay man and left his church. His parents left too, and began attending a gay-affirming, mainline church.

When Jesus said, love God with all your hearts ,souls and minds, he did not exclude family members or those family members who opt to live a sinful lifestyle. It is a hard choice to make but God has to be above your own loved ones. Parents and family members are not to let their sinful relatives or friends lead them away from the truth or God.

Now LGBTQ people may say that the church failed here but even the hated conversion therapy is not 100% successful. Also, it may be that the elders did not know how to handle the situation and gave bad advice. In this day and age, church leaders should be asking how to handle these issues. Even if it is just to get the struggling members to someone who can help them.

Also, most people are not aware that homosexuality and transgender is a spiritual battle not a sexual or identification one. Spiritual warfare needs to be accepted and prepared for, not dismissed like some modern believers do. God wants warriors not playground enthusiasts.

Yet as Revoice shows, embracing gay identity is becoming increasingly popular among Christians.

This we have noticed as well. Why people are supporting it is beyond us as none of the LGBTQ preferences offer anything from God or anything constructive to the world. That lifestyle does show people living selfishly, and sometimes very spoiledly. They are not humble enough to give up all their sins to love God but demand love from him.

The Four Main Views on LGBTQ Issues

We actually do not care for these 4 views and think the cloud the issue. We would say that there is a possibility for redemption, and that some people are given over to their sinful lusts and may not be able to be redeemed from that action.We believe Jesus can make all members of the LGBTQ a new creature, but not all are eligible for that redemption and some refuse to accept it.

We like the KISS principle- Keep it simple, stupid. And to keep it simple we stick to the truth and reject those theories that do not bring the truth in love to the issue. In this section and the one immediately above, the church has not failed. The church has neither the power nor the authority to change God’s or LGBTQ’s  decisions on these two matters.

But Revoice organizers go even further. They actually suggest that LGBT identity can be a virtue. As presenter Grant Hartley states, “Christians have often discarded the virtues of queer culture along with the vices .

There are absolutely no virtues found in the LGBTQ position. It is sin from evil and it is a tragedy waiting to get its foot in the door of the church. They have nothing to offer the church and only brings Gods anger on the church for calling evil good, etc.

If the church is going to effectively address LGBTQ issues, it must offer hope of sexual redemption. But many conservative Christian leaders are afraid to do so.

Yes and no. Church leaders may be afraid but that is because they may not know enough, they have not learned more from God or know how to approach him on  this issue.  There are a lot of factors why church leaders and members do not respond as some people would like them to. We need to be fair understanding and cautious about addressing supposed failures in the church.

Not everyone is going to be on the same page in this issue. We leave gay therapy up to the Christian experts and rarely talk about it. It is not our focus here. We can encourage church leaders to become more educated but we would want them to address a variety of topics not just the LGBTQ issue. But they also may not have the time to do it, churches and thier leaders have other problems to focus on. Then, God leads his people. He may not want a specific church or church leader involved in such issues. The church does not fail because God has not led them to address those issues. God may have led them to focus on other vital problems

One cannot point the finger at a church unless they truly know the church and its leaders have dropped the ball.

If we truly love people like Robert, and truly believe the gospel, we must move from simply renouncing error to proclaiming the hope of transformation.

All we can say is ‘stand in line’ there are a myriad of church members, each with their own pet project wanting the church to do something. The question is, why are people passing the buck to the church? if God has placed something on your heart, make sure it is of God and start learning how to correctly handle the issue. We would like to say to people like that author, as pastors, fine, go get correctly biblically educated. Learn how to handle the problem and then come back and roll up your sleeves and get started dealing with the issue.

There is no biblical or church law that restricts members from becoming properly educated, be spirit led and getting involved in issues to the glory of God. There is also no biblical or church law that states that the pastor, the elders, the deacons and their wives do all the work in the church. Just make sure you learn  the lessons God will bring correctly.

God uses all his followers.not just the church leaders. He wants all of his followers properly educated and able to find the truth. He also wants his  followers to follow his lead, instructions, commands and so on correctly. The choice is up to you.

 

Hit & Miss

The first anniversary of a friend’s or relative’s death is a big thing in this country. We have two to attend over the next week and a bit. That means we may not be here regularly.  We will try to post when we can.

Thank you for reading our blog and hopefully you will continue to do so

 
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Posted by on July 13, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

Peter Enns & Genesis

You can read his full article at the following link. We are only going to address those statements that are interesting and need to be addressed.

https://peteenns.com/blog-post-ask-4-questions-christianity-evolution/

I recently sat down with myself to ask myself some questions that keep coming up
every
single
time

I post anything on evolution.

It is these questions and some of his comments that we will look at here. Strange that he never comes to a different answer than that science trumps God.

#1. why do you think evolution is true?

I believe that evolution is one of the things that science has gotten right, along with many other things we take for granted every day, because this is the resounding conclusion of the scientific community, including Christians trained in the sciences.

We will have to ask a couple of questions that have not been answered by anyone. First, where in the Bible do both God and Jesus say to take science over their words?  They don’t but that doesn’t seem to stop some people from doing it anyways.

Second, who is the scientific community and what authority do they have that they can say God is wrong? Of course, most people siding with science try to make the Bible a human-authored book. This way, in their minds, they are not attacking God but subjective human thinking. Unfortunately for them The Bible is not a human authored work.

We disagree. Science has not got evolution correct. In fact, they change their minds so much about that theory that the theory is useless to anyone. The fact that evolution has never existed seems to escape the mind of Mr. Enns. Another fact that seems to escape Mr. Enns is that the scientific community is made up of unbelievers, the very people Jesus described as lost, blind and deceived. So how can they get our origins right when they do not have the truth or the SPirit of truth helping them

Without actually being trained in the sciences, it would be rather stupid and arrogant of me to feel I have something to say that would sweep all that away.

It is not arrogance to sweep away the lies produced by the scientific community with the truth of God.

#2.But what about the Bible? Doesn’t Genesis have something to say about all this?

Simply put, no—not in the sense that Genesis is a competing “data set” to scientific models of cosmic and human origins.

Uhm, Mr. Enns, the correct answer is — yes. Genesis has a lot to say about our origins. Especially since our origins was not done in a scientific manner. It is science that has no say about our origins. Creation was a one-time supernatural act that was conducted by a supernatural being with all supernatural power. Science cannot comprehend that fact. What science describes is an unverifiable and unprovable alternative created by people who do not believe God and want nothing to do with him or have him part of their scientific work. How can they know more than God?

The stories in Genesis were written somewhere between 2500 and 3000 years ago, and clearly reflect cultural categories older still.

This is absolutely not true. The quoted idea comes from those scholars who do not believe the Bible or that anything prior to Omri actually took place. Usually these scholars are called Minimalists. They throw out most of the OT because they claim that there is no evidence. When shown evidence, they will close their eyes and state that the events did not happen or try to undermine the evidence in some way.

The Bible was not written as Mr. Enns claims. Most of the OT was written prior to the 5th to 7th centuries BC. Then the OT is not an adaption of other civilizations cultural works or beliefs. That would eliminate God, his supernatural status and power. It would also end salvation as we know it and have billions of people running around looking for God and his divine instructions.

Mr. Enns has no idea what his thoughts do or what problems they cause for himself and everyone.

I don’t expect Genesis or any other Bronze or Iron Age text to answer the kinds of questions we can answer today through calculus, optical and radio telescopes, genomics, biological and cultural anthropology.

Briefly, Mr. Enns does not realize it but those research fields, etc., do not answer any of our questions like Genesis does. They usually bring more questions.

#3. But aren’t you forgetting that the Bible is the very word of God? Why are you assuming that science trumps the Bible?

I’m neither forgetting nor assuming anything, nor am I unconsciously enslaved to some deeply held anti-God presupposition.

Rather, I have come to conclusions about these matters.

They are erroneous conclusions which he refuses to change when shown to be in error. We have tried before. Mr. Enns needs to answer the question, how does he think that fallible humans who use only partial evidence can come to the truth over the God who was there, did the did and has all the evidence?

The Bible speaks the “language” of ancient people grappling with things in ancient ways, and therefore what the Bible records about creation or the dawn of humanity needs to be understood against the cultural backdrop of the biblical writers, not the past 200 years of scientific investigation.

No the Bible is a divine revelation to man, who penned God’s words which contain the truth about our origins. There is no grappling being done in those pages of scripture and there is no ancient cultural spin put on God’s words. Science is not a light illuminating the truth to a dark world. Scripture is.

#4. But doesn’t Jesus trump all of this? I mean, he refers to Adam and seems to take Genesis quite literally. Don’t you think you need to obey Jesus rather than science?

The Bible says if you do not believe Moses how will you believe the words of Jesus (paraphrase John 5: 45ff). Obviously, Mr. Enns does not believe Moses and he does not believe the words of Jesus. He is not the person to go to find any answer.

As irreverent as that may seem, it is an implication of the incarnation. Jesus wasn’t an omniscient being giving the final word on the size of mustard seeds, mental illness, or cosmic and biological evolution. He was a 1st century Jew and he therefore thought like one.

So to him Jesus was just an ordinary man who can be trumped by science. Yet does Mr. Enns hold to John 3:16? If so, how can that be if he does not believe Jesus’ words about creation, Adam and Eve and other OT events? Does he pick and choose which words of Jesus he will accept and which ones he will deny? How was Jesus qualified to be our savior if he was not whom he said he was and did not have the final word on everything?

How can we go to Jesus with our problems if he was like Mr. Enns said? Obviously, Mr. Enns demotes both God and Jesus to sub standard deities or humans while promoting science over them. That is heresy, blasphemous and more negatives.

#5. So, to sum up, and since you asked, to reject evolution on Christian grounds would be to claim some superhuman insight into scientific matters that can only be described as idiosyncratic bordering on delusional, to misunderstand the nature of Scripture they are trying to protect, and to sport a heretical Christology that doesn’t take seriously Jesus’s full humanity.

First, the only one being heretical is Mr. Enns as he makes Jesus after his own image and does not grasp the full reality of who Jesus was. Second, Both God and Jesus said to believe them not science so we reject evolution on Christian grounds because it is not the truth. It is a man-made alternative to trick people into destroying themselves.

Third, those of us who know the truth know that the only delusional are those who opt for evolution over God’s word. We know that science is blind, deceived, lost and looking for answers in the wrong places by going down the wrong paths. Science is in need of a savior, it is not the savior.

 

Our Comments on a Few Topics 4

There are a few news stories that deserve our attention but we cannot do them all justice. We will make a few comments about each one

#1. A well-written articlehttps://www.christianpost.com/voice/biblical-christianity-vs-progressive-ideology-threat-western-christianity.html

The dangers are great from the progressive ideology, but very often the issue seems to take care of itself. Progressive churches collapse in on themselves, and people stop attending, because people are looking for the truth, not a truth, not a relative opinion, or a viewpoint or a universalist one of many ways to the summit, but people are looking for solid truth, a rock to stand on, and progressivism offers a wishy-washy “love above all else” which jettisons truth, ethics, and revelation for the sake of not offending anyone.

We enjoyed it and it covered the topic probably better than we could. We have written on Progressive Christianity before, including addressing Benjamin Corey’s posts. Sin is given a free pass in that ideology and one should be wary of those who promote that thinking.

#2. There are several of these storieshttps://www.christianpost.com/news/new-complaint-against-megachurch-pastor-dean-curry-alleges-multiple-instances-of-sexual-misconduct-225896/

A former board member of the multi-campus Life Center Assembly of God church in Tacoma, Washington, has filed a formal complaint with federal and state agencies alleging that Dean Curry, who was recently dismissed as the church’s pastor, previously engaged in multiple instances of sexual misconduct involving church members and employees.

We are going to address them all right here. When you start playing with God’s commands and instructions, then you are opening yourself up to attacks from evil. The more you alter what God has said, the more vulnerable a believer becomes. It doesn’t matter if you are a pastor church leader or just a pew warmer the further you get from God the easier it is for evil to destroy your spiritual life.

We are sad that the newspaper is filled with several of these stories. They give the church and God a black eye. Even though people will fail, the unbelieving world does jump on these situations and use them to their fullest unbelieving potential. We can only recommend that you start or continue to pray for your pastors and church leaders.

#3. The Bible is the only authorityhttps://www.christianpost.com/news/andy-stanley-why-he-quit-saying-the-bible-says-while-still-loving-the-bible-225628/

North Point Community Church Senior Pastor Andy Stanley recently explained to popular radio host and Messianic Jewish author Michael Brown why he’s quit using the term “the Bible says.”

In an episode of Brown’s podcast “Line of Fire” that aired Monday afternoon, Stanley explained why, although he considers the Good Book inerrant, the term “the Bible says” doesn’t work with those he’s trying to evangelize.

We disagree. Billy Graham once said that every time he used the phrase the Bible says or something similar, he felt power in his words. Saying the Bible says means you are not preaching or evangelizing out of your own knowledge or understanding and recognizing that God and the Bible are the authority for this world. The Bible has the answers for everyone in the world today.

No matter what people say, it does work for everyone needing to be evangelized or to meet life’s situations. Using the Bible gives God the opportunity to win souls, as he said his word does not return to him void. The phrase will work when done correclty, the unchurched world needs to hear what the Bible does say.

#4. Faith healing problemshttps://www.christianpost.com/news/christian-couple-who-treated-sick-twin-daughter-with-prayer-get-nearly-7-years-for-her-death-225903/

A young Oregon Christian couple who relied on faith alone to heal their sick newborn twin daughter were sentenced to nearly seven years in prison for the baby’s death in 2017 after pleading guilty to criminally negligent homicide, the Clackamas County District Attorney’s Office announced Monday.

As a condition of their guilty plea, Sarah Mitchell, 25, and her husband, Travis Mitchell, 22, who were members of the controversial Followers of Christ Church in Oregon City, had to sign a statement saying: “We should have sought adequate medical care for our children and everyone in the church should always seek adequate medical care for our children.”

Faith healing is misunderstood by both the churched and unchurched world. We have written long posts on the topic (search faith healing). Do not expect the unbelieving world to accept something they do not understand. Do not expect them to react the way God would want. When children are involved God and his ways go out the window. Emotions rule not rational and logical thinking. Faith healing is also not what you expect it to be. You can pray, go to a faith healer or you can use faith and go to the hospital.

Also, not all people who use faith healing are actually Christian and their efforts will not work.

#5. Archaeology does it againhttps://www.christianpost.com/news/archaeologists-discover-entrance-gate-to-biblical-city-of-zer-where-jesus-fed-thousands-in-miracle-225846/

Archaeologists have reportedly uncovered the ancient entrance gate to the biblical city of Zer in Israel, also known as Bethsaida, which is mentioned in the New Testament as the city where Jesus fed the 5,000 with five loaves and two fish in one His most well-known miracles.

“There are not many gates in this country from this period. Bethsaida was the name of the city during the Second Temple period, but during the First Temple period it was the city of Zer,” said Dr. Rami Arav, director of the Bethsaida Project, according to The Jerusalem Post

It is a good article, we won’t complain

#6. Oh the weird things scientists conclude– .https://www.christianpost.com/news/new-discovery-reveals-bright-pink-is-the-worlds-oldest-color-scientists-say-225880/

Scientists have discovered the world’s oldest color — bright pink.

The road to the revelation of the world’s oldest color began when a company drilled deep into the Earth in search of oil. While probing beneath the surface of the Sahara Desert in search of oil, the company hit some black, oily rocks.

The company then sent those rocks to the Australian National University, The Guardian reported.

Ph.D. student Nur Gueneli then decided to crush those rocks into a fine powder, and upon doing so, she obtained bright pink pigments.

Conclusions like this make us wonder about the sanity and mental health of a majority of scientists. We run into this type of thinking a lot and it makes no sense, considering that no other rocks from the same era from different locations in the world were tested. But then maybe we are expecting too much from the lost, blind and deceived world.

An associate professor at the university, Jochen Brocks, claimed that the bright pink pigments even date back to a time when animals were not roaming the Earth

This, like the declaration that bright pink is the world’s oldest color, is impossible to prove or even verify. It is just dumb to make those type of announcements.

#7. Some good and bad newshttps://www.christianpost.com/news/50-boko-haram-islamic-radicals-killed-1000-hostages-mainly-women-and-children-rescued-in-nigeria-223803/

the good– The Nigerian Army revealed that close to 1,000 hostages, mainly women and children, have been freed following a massive week-long battle against Islamic radical group Boko Haram in northeastern Nigeria.

the bad– Despite the significant success in Borno over the past week, a United Nations envoy has warned that Boko Haram is still years away from being eliminated

We are glad women and children have been rescued. We are sad, knowing that no matter what we do sin will abound till God ends time on this earth. If it isn’t Boko Haram then it will be another group from another country. Keep praying for those persecuted and for the souls of the persecutors

#8. These are weak reasonshttps://www.christianpost.com/voice/3-reasons-why-science-has-not-done-away-with-belief-in-god.html

The belief that science has an answer for everything seems universal. Often alongside it is the notion that God is therefore redundant and that believing in him is reminiscent of believing in Santa Claus or the tooth fairy.

First off, those supposed Christian scientists who say that God lied and did not create as he said are not the reason why science hasn’t done away with a belief in God. The main reason why it hasn’t is because science is not dealing in the truth and is incapable of proving God and the Bible wrong.  Actually we felt all those reasons were very bad and should not be considered real reasons.

#9. We do not believe themhttps://www.christianpost.com/news/bill-hybels-entered-into-sin-willow-creek-elders-now-admit-apologizing-for-not-believing-women-225596/

Elders of Willow Creek Community Church in Illinois have now admitted that founder and former senior pastor Bill Hybels “entered into sin,” adding that they should have believed the women who made sexual misconduct accusations against him earlier this year.

“We apologize and ask for forgiveness that the tone of our initial response was not one of humility and deep concern for all the women involved. It takes courage for a woman to step forward and share her story,” the elders of the evangelical megachurch wrote in a statement published on Saturday.

“We are grieved that we let Bill’s statement stand for as long as we did that the women were lying and colluding. We now believe Bill entered into areas of sin related to the allegations that have been brought forth.”

It sounds more like damage control than the truth. Also, since that church practiced unscriptural things, it is kind of like the pot calling the kettle black. Getting to the truth is not easy but one rule of thumb is that the accusers are not always telling the truth and the accused is not always guilty or lying. That board also seems to be ignoring the issue of temptation and other spiritual influences that may lead both the accused and the accusers to say and do things they should not.

We cannot trust that board to produce the truth. Nor can we trust Scot McKnight’s words in a follow up article:

https://www.christianpost.com/news/willow-creeks-bill-hybels-had-too-much-power-scot-mcknight-on-scandal-225890/

Responding to Willow Creek Community Church’s recent apologies for the way the leadership handled sexual misconduct allegations against founder Bill Hybels, New Testament scholar Scot McKnight argued that the victims had no choice but to go public and expose misconduct.

McKnight, who attended the South Barrington, Illinois, megachurch for 10 years, argued on his Jesus Creed blog that autonomy may be largely to blame for how the church’s leadership failed the women.

“What the power brokers think of first is protecting the institution, which is (sad to say) protection of the power at the top,” he wrote.

We are not saying the Mr. Hybels is innocent and we are not saying that the accusers are lying. We are saying is that too much smells here and we do not like what we read about the whole situation.

With autonomy, McKnight argued that there is usually “too much authority in the inner circle at the top and voicelessness for too many.

It is a difficult issue, one which we will not go into very deeply, but Mr. McKnight needs to remember that the church is not a church for the people, by the people, of the people. The church is owned and operated by God and he sets up his ministers with a certain amount of authority with oversight instructions.

But we will be careful with our words as we do not know all  the  details.

#10. She is righthttps://www.christianpost.com/news/tomi-lahren-warns-conservatives-will-lose-alienate-many-if-they-fight-roe-v-wade-225840/

Lahren, speaking out in light of conservative hopes that Trump will nominate a Supreme Court justice in favor of overturning the 1973 ruling on Roe v. Wade that legalized abortion to replace the retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy, said that such a fight would be a “big mistake.”

“Yes, the new high court vacancy is a huge opportunity for conservative values and principles, I get it. And I understand the passion behind the pro-life movement,” Lahren said in her “Final Thoughts” segment on Friday on Fox News Insider.

“But to use conservatives’ new-found power and pull to challenge a decision that — according to a new Quinnipiac poll — most Americans support, would be a mistake,” she added.

She is right as we said in the title. It is easy to overturn a law and let someone else handle the problem. Our question is, what programs do the supporters of overthrowing Roe v. Wade have put in place and are ready to go, fully funded, to handle the problems that come if they are successful in making abortion illegal?

There is more to this issue than just changing a law. Men and women are not just going to throw themselves and repent of their sinful ways because the church has won its battle. There are real problems that have to be dealt with that the church cannot walk away from. Is the church prepare to handle those problems? Salvation is not done through preaching a gospel message alone. It takes involvement, rolling up one’s sleeve, and getting bruised and it takes prayer and more.

Sadly, many Christians and churches just want to take the easy way out and send the problem back to God. God is waiting for his people to stop doing that and obey his commands and get involved in unbelievers lives correctly. God has chosen his people to to do the work with his help. When God sent his people through the desert to Sinai, he may have led them, but the people of Israel still had to march through the desert, experience the good and the bad times and learn how to keep their eyes on God.

The same with the issue of abortion. Overturning the law is just the beginning not the end of Christian work in this issue.

 
 
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