God is not the Problem


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How can a God who is both all-powerful and all-good allow evil to continue without eradicating it? The problem with evil is presented as a problem with God and therefor, a problem with our faith as Christians. The voices of the atheist community are the main leaders in this demonic agenda against the essence of God’s character, his goodness. But the issue is not a complicated one at all. God made us free!

         I am convinced that the same people complaining against the result of our freedom (evil) would be the same people complaining if God decides to make robots out of us. The Garden of Eden represents the perfect will of God for us. However, Adam and Eve introduced evil in this world by disobeying God. There is no other explanation! I am glad that in spite of Adam and Eve disobedience and, in spite of our current condition, God is not giving up on us.

         God is not the problem, we are!  In fact, God gave us the redemptive plan through Jesus Christ. In Christ God manifest his love and goodness towards us. This explanation, however, will never be sufficient to the lost; they need the miracle of salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9). To think that salvation will come through intellectual arguments is not biblical. Apologetics is not about professional debates; is about the simplicity of somebody asking us why we believe what we believe and us having enough understanding of our faith to give a solid, loving and humble answer. (First Peter 3:15)

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. First Peter 3:15-16 (NIV)

 

Just Because the Bible Tells Me So


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The minimization of the authority of God’s Word has been at the center of Satan’s strategy against God’s plan from the very beginning (Genesis 3:1-7). That same attack extends its wings into our time in different forms. Erickson states that there is evidence that when theologians, schools, or movements disregard the inerrancy of the Bible, it always causes the abandonment of cornerstone beliefs in our faith (Erickson 2013, 195-196). Therefore, the inerrancy of Scripture is not a small matter, but a foundational one.

         Feinberg’s defines inerrancy as “the view that when all the facts become known, they will demonstrate that the Bible in its original autographs and correctly interpreted is entirely true and never false in all it affirms, whether that relate to doctrine or ethics or to the social, physical, or life sciences” (Elwell 2001, 156). Arguments with the world concerning the inerrancy of the Bible should be discouraged; for the lost are blinded by the god of this world (First Corinthians 4:4). We have a bigger problem; these attacks are coming from within the walls of some of our own churches. Erickson states, “As part of postmodernism, there has been an objection to the idea of foundationalism, which is the view that all beliefs are justified by their relationship to certain basic beliefs” (Erickson 2013, 206). Erickson equates those beliefs to doctrines. Furthermore, he establishes that those doctrines must “…rest upon the authority of Scripture” (Erickson 2013, 206).

         Erickson defines and explains various conceptions of inerrancy (Erickson 2013, 191-193). I passionately embrace Full Inerrancy and loudly reject all other conceptions for the simple reason that it fully honors God’s Word. Furthermore, Full Inerrancy explains controversial scientific and historical issues. The Bible was not written and applicable only for those of the generation of the original writers, as Limited Inerrancy seems to suggest. Certain concepts had to be explained in ways the writer could understand, which is why some will argue as to its application for the modern age. In the book of Revelation, for example, there may be references to airplanes, but airplanes were not invented until nearly two thousand years later; so other ways of explanation needed to be used. This is not difficult to understand for those who know the voice of their Shepherd (John 10:27), but there will always be room in the Bible for those who want to discredit it.

         I rest in the fact that in God’s Word, I confirm truth: the truth that I can count on, the truth that will make me free (John 8:32), the truth that will carry me on and carry me trough the tough times and teach me to face the good times with humility. This is the truth of God’s Word and the truth that I should live for. Even if I find myself walking though the valley of the shadow of death (Psalm 23:4), I can stand without fear just because, the Bible tells me so.

Elwell, Walker A. Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Baker     Academic, 2001.

Erickson, Millard J. Christian Theology. 3rd ed. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2013.

The Doctrine of Mercy and the Great Promise


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We are not and will never justify sin and sinful lifestyles, but we cannot take anything away from the power of the blood of Christ. If we are honest with ourselves, we are all struggling with something… I know I am! It may be sexually related, it may be anger, it may be pride, greed, etc. but nobody is exempt from the desires of the flesh! That reality should humble each and every one of us.

         The reality is that we all stand in need of mercy; we can’t make it without mercy. I guess that’s why His mercies are knew every morning; we need them every day. Lamentations 3:22-23 tells us, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (NIV) Mercy flows out of God’s love for us. Because of His love we are not destroy.

         The flesh is disgusting! The desires of the flesh are disgusting and everything about the flesh is disgusting. That is, whether you are a born again believer or an atheist. The flesh’s desires are contrary to everything that God stands for (Galatians 5:17).

         Jesus gave us a powerful principle when he stated, “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:41 (NIV) There is a part of us, (the flesh), that wants nothing to do with God. There is another part of us, (the spirit), that is willing to cooperate with God; it is our inner most, it is the part of us with the ability to carry on our greatest responsibility as believers, to worship God according to John 4:23. And yet, there is a part of us that stand in need of restoration; it is where the work is taking place, in our souls; that is, the seat of our emotions, our mind sand our will. That is the complexity of us humans.

         In this world we have two kinds of people, the guilty and the not guilty. The guilty because without Christ we are all guilty; that is because we have all sin and fall short of God’s glory according to Romans 3:23. The non-guilty is tricky; because our innocence as believers is not based on our good works, but based strictly on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. It is what we are… THROUGH HIM.

         I am so glad that Jesus took away the guilt for our sins of the past, our sins of today and even our future sins. I am so glad that through Him we are righteous, holy and a finish work. But also, I am glad that through the Holy Ghost, He is changing us. But in that process of changing us, because it is a process, He is dealing with us through discipline, for God discipline those He love according to Hebrews 12:6 and, through mercy.

          We can’t fail my brothers and sisters! Today, we are a part of that great promise He made to the Children of Israel, as we are also, New Testament folks. That greater promise is that He is going to take the WORD, His precious Law, and place it in our hearts. He will finish the work no only through HIM, not only in a positional way, but also in US. That actual finish work, I believe, will take place in the New Jerusalem. So I end with these words from Jeremiah 31:33,

But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. (NKJV)