Just found out about the pyGame Bible Dave. Fun, challenging and very creative. You’re a pilot whose plane has crashed in the jungle. Now, you have to search through mountains, jungles and caves looking for your precious cargo that got scattered – 200 bibles. Good luck!
Tonight I taught my small group class… this was part one of a two part lesson entitled, “Practical Tools for Sharing the Gospel.” Among the controversial parts were, “Memorizing Scripture” where I challenged anyone in the class to quote a chapter of scripture… (Becky quoted Psalm 23 flawlessly from memory, two others implied they could quote a chapter as well) What makes this controversial is few people like it when they’re told that they’re not doing something that they should be doing, and I wholeheartedly believe that scripture memorization is a commandment from God. The second controversial part was that I challenged the notion that “Asking Jesus into your heart” was scriptural (I don’t believe it is). I feel that the bible clearly states that a person needs to “believe (pisteuo)” in Jesus to be saved. (cf. Acts 16:30-31, John 3:16, John 3:36, John 5:24, John 11:25-26)
I continued the class by sharing a list of memory verses and the first two of five points that can be used to explain the gospel to an unbeliever. The five points have been adapted from the Evangelisim Explosion curriculum. My favorite part of the EE curric is that it explains things in a very precise order designed to answer common objections before they’re raised. It also offers some clear and easy to remember illustrations for explaining important biblical concepts. For example, the seriousness of sin is explained that if you sinned only three times per day, over the course of a lifetime that would be over 70,000 times. What would happen if you walked into a courtroom with 70,000 offenses? The judge would take it very seriously.”
The language of the Bible. Paul spoke Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic. Possibly other languages too, but these three we can be certain of. When he traveled around on his missionary journeys, he invariably came to visit people who did not speak one of those three languages. In these cases, one of two things happened – either God enabled the people to understand him (aka speaking in tongues – and by the way, this is the true meaning of tongues, not spouting gibberish as you roll around on the floor) or He provided an interpreter.
Now, I’m going to make a point, so we’ll use the interpreter example. The goal of the interpreter is not to teach people a new language so that they can communicate with the intended speaker flawlessly. Instead, the interpreter takes the message of one person, and rephrases it into the language that is understood by the people who need to hear it.
Now, few people read the Bible in it’s original language; most people choose to read a translated version. This process involves scholars who are competent, or more likely, experts in both the original language and the language of the people they are translating it for.
I’ve not told you anything controversial or unexpected so far; this all should make perfect sense. What doesn’t make perfect sense to me is why some people insist that the original King James version of the Bible is superior to modern translations. The fact is, the English language has shifted since the 1600′s and many of the words used in that version are not understood by people today. Do you know the meaning of the words, “reprobate” and “concupiscence?” What is the difference between “thee” and “though?”
If a Bible translation is not understood by the people reading it, then it’s not a suitable translation.
Now, I will not say that the KJV is with out value. I like the fact that the KJV and NKJV both use a form of English that is both compact and rich with detail. For example, if you and the people you are communicating with know the meaning of the word “reprobate” then when you use it in a sentence you convey a detailed and concise meaning in only one word. I additionally like the fact that it’s 300 year head start on other translations yields a rich repository of study materials available to accompany it.
However, these benefits show that the KJV is suitable (however there are other suitable Bibles available as well) as a study aid for scholars, however is not well suited as the primary Bible in your typical English speaking household.
Just my $0.02 worth (although inflation has driven up to $0.055 recently).
I was wrong… I thought this would be about calvinism, but instead it’s about Isaiah 32:1a,3 (NLT). Actually, it may be related to calvinism… The verse is, “Look, a righteous king is coming!… Then, everyone who can see will be looking for God, and those who can hear will listen to his voice.” This is another one of those verses that seems to be both for and against predestination. Look carefully at the wording: For predestination – “everyone who can see.” For free will – “will be looking.”
I think this is another passage from God’s Word that shows both views are correct. We cannot see God unless we have been elected, but we must still search for him. I guess I will finish out this post as my view on Calvinism, and more specifically, the ULI of the TULIP.
Regarding U, It’s not hard to find passages that show that some people have been chosen by God and some have their hearts hardened by God. However, it’s also easy to find verses that show we must believe in Jesus or trust in the Lord.
Regarding the L, it is easy to find passages that show Grace has been extended to all. That anyone would preach otherwise is foolish.
My biggest disagreement is with the I. I know too many people and actually, too many churches who have the philosophy that if God calls someone they will definitely be saved and there is no need to go out and spread the Good News. This is theology from Satan. To say to people, “Hey, if God has elected people, there’s no way on earth that they will go to Hell,” is both anti-Biblical and yet the obvious mental conclusion a person must come to after thinking that philosophy through.
So about the remaining two points, I’ll clarify my agreement – P: When you believe in Jesus, you become a new creation and the Lord sends his counselor, the Holy Spirit to dwell in you – not in part of you, but to completely fill you. You cannot un-create yourself and no one, not even your sinful nature, can snatch you out of God’s hand. T: Total Depravity – we all have a sinful nature and the only way to not break the Law (note capital L) is for there to be no Law. This may be slightly different than what some Calvinist teach, that being the T signifies that we have no capacity for good and will automatically sink as low as we can go.
Yes, I have Bible references supporting every statement. Have question or comment? Let me know by clicking the “comments” link below.
I searched and searched, but no matter how hard I looked, I couldn’t find time. So finally, I broke down and made time. It will only take you a minute… go read Psalm 19.
It’s all [NOT] good: It’s worse to murder than to lie, right? Wrong. Romans 1:18-32 clearly says that murder, homosexuality, lieing/deceit, gossip, envy/jealously and God-hating are all on the same level, and all who do these things deserve death.
I’ve never murdered, and I’m not homosexual, but I’ve done other things on that list. Since these things are so repulsive to God, how can I get on good terms with Him? Is it possible? Yes! There is a way to get straight with God. Follow that link for a very short explanation of what the Bible says.
My CAT just RUINED Proverbs 30! She licked it to death. Now the page is rinkly. Argh.
“Throw out the mocker, and fighting, quarrels, and insults will disappear” Proverbs 22:10.
Several of today’s proverbs struck a chord with me; here are a few more that elicited comments/thoughts:
“Just as the rich rule the poor, so the borrower is servant to the lender” vs 7. Yes, slavery does exist today, it just has a different name, “Revolving Credit.”
“A youngster’s heart is filled with follishness, but discipline will drive it away” vs 15, and related: “Teach your children to choose the right pasth, and when they are older, they will remain upon it” vs 6.
Who is Eliakim son of Hilkiah? According to Isaiah 22:19-21, it sounds like this is a person who would be the immediate successor to Shebna, who had displeased God. However verses 22-25 seem to cross reference Revelation 3:7-13 which describes the missionary church, Philidelphia, where Jesus says he will open doors and no one will be able to shut them. Is Eliakim Jesus or is Jesus in the line of Hilkiah? Why would the wording of Revelation 3:7 match the wording of Isaiah 22:22 except for us to draw a connection between the two.
Confession vs. Repentence – To many, the terms are used interchangably, but there is actually a remarkable difference between the meanings of these two words. Confession is admitting you’ve done something wrong, repentence is turning away from wrong doing (aka U-Turn).
A person will often confess their sins to God when they repent, but confession without repentence is not that big of a deal. For example, an irritating phrase that has been around for a while, “Oh, my fault.” Basically, “Oops, I did something that hurt you; it was my fault, but I’m not sorry and I may do it again.” We are supposed to confess our sins to each other so that we can be accountable and receive support. The goal here is to stop sinning and start doing what is right. God is more interested in our walk than our intentions. If we merely confess our sins and do not make a change in our life, it’s like saying to God, “oh, my fault!”