Victory in Jesus
Let's gather round the Word of God today and listen for the truth about Jesus Christ. We will investigate Romans 8:1-17, to see what insights are there given about victory in Jesus. This section is drawn from one of Paul's extended discussions, so we'll begin by surveying the material immediately preceding and following. We'll look at Romans 7:14-25 and also briefly consider 8:18-39 and then dive in at the beginning of chapter eight.Read more...
Hope for the Holidays
We've been busy. Morning and evening goes by, then another. As if a blink, two-thousand and fifteen is headed for the history books.
About this time each year some become dispirited and depressed. Hope ebbs. They feel isolated and failed and alone. People gather with loved ones for the holidays but others have experienced collapsed relationships. Their season is very solitary. Gloom enshrouds them. Some experience seasonal affective disorder from lack of sunlight. Daylight is short, the night is long, and a string of failures seems to choke them. It may be gloriously white outside, but theirs is a dark Christmas.Read more...
Ellen White's Christology Demystified
Our aim for this hour:
- Survey Adventist understanding of the nature of Christ from beginnings to the 1950s;
- Review best practices for interpreting Ellen White's writings;
- Review the Bible teaching on the nature of Christ;
- Consider Ellen White's main published statements on the nature of Christ; and,
- Investigate her chief "unpublished" writing: the Baker letter.
This approach should help us more clearly understand Ellen White's view on the nature of Christ. We're addressing her "Christology": what inspired writings tell us about Jesus and His Divinity and humanity in combination.Read more...
1957, Original Sin, and Questions on Doctrine
Let's take a theological and historical journey. We're headed for
- The 1950s,
- Adventist experimentation with original sin, and
- A review of what the Bible teaches concerning the same.
Consider this excerpt from the current Fundamental Beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Number seven, The Nature of Man:
When our first parents disobeyed God, they denied their dependence upon Him and fell from their high position under God. The image of God in them was marred and they became subject to death. Their descendants share this fallen nature and its consequences. They are born with weaknesses and tendencies to evil.
Preparing for the Harvest Introductory
[Segment #1: Dennis Priebe discusses the Mission of the Church.]
Segment #2: Larry Kirkpatrick presents a Synopsis of Last Generation Theology
A rodent on a rat wheel spins and spins in his cage. He doesn't go anywhere. But he rides over and over again.
God has assigned humans a higher mission than rats and His plan is not for us to spin a wheel. There is a purpose at the finish of the age. "In the beginning, God," and at the close, "Even so, come Lord Jesus." We are at the "Even so, come Lord Jesus" part.Read more...
Hello. Your World is About to be Destroyed
Christians bring good news. We preach the gospel. God has shown us a better way and we live it. We strive to keep growing spiritually, all while recognizing none of us have quite arrived.
Our lives are busy. Few of us may feel our experience offers any serious model of Christian order. But my guess is that while we see ourselves as quite inadequate, most of our lives are like islands of peace compared to those of unbelievers. We think we're just barely making things work, but imagine what it would be to live in the home of the unbeliever!
Still, as Christians we are experience a remarkable kind of peace. Being a Christian has advantages for living even though we don't become followers of Jesus for the loaves and fishes.
Through the Bible, God has come to His people to tell us about things we could not know any other way. The person in the world, knowing almost nothing of God, may feel the world will basically last forever. But what do we believe? God destroyed this world once with a flood of water and He is going to destroy it a final time with a flood of fire. We believe the Bible and so we believe this warning that the world is going to be destroyed.
Think of it. Part of our message is that destruction, an absolute and final destruction, is coming.
Is this good news? Someone could put it in kind of a bare-metal way, that the Christian message is, "Hello. Your world is going to be destroyed." First off, since most people know nothing about the Christian experience, nothing about what our loving Father God has told us is coming, such a message might be received as pretty bad news. But it may be that Heaven will open a way for you to share how what looks like bad news to them is actually good news.Read more...
America in Bible Prophecy, part 2
4. What does it mean for the second beast to exercise all the authority of the first?
The first beast blasphemed God and persecuted His people. The second beast does the same, and he does it in the presence of the first beast. That is, the first beast's deadly wound is healed; the first beast exists again. But the second beast is, in this time period, his agent. These two beasts are working in tandem. Both are given space to exercise the coercive intent that is at the core of what they are. That is why we spent some serious time in the previous presentation looking not so much at the future but the history of the second beast. We have had this vision very positive picture of America and what it stands for that was imprinted on us from kindergarten on up. But while America was remarkable in its beginnings and fitly represented as lamblike, if you were here last week you will understand that today things are very different. Today, already several different versions of America have come and gone. By my count, we are in America 8.0 right now. The trend is toward the dragon.
But when we left off we were just coming to one of the most interesting parts: the lamb/dragon beast causing fire to come down out of heaven. Let's work on that question right now.Read more...