Tuesday, November 28, 2017

1 Corinthians 10:9 And The Deity Of Christ

"tc Χριστόν (Criston, “Christ”) is attested in the majority of mss, including many important witnesses of the Alexandrian (Ì46 1739 1881) and Western (D F G) texttypes, and other mss and versions (Ψ latt sy co). On the other hand, some of the important Alexandrian witnesses have κύριον (kurion, “Lord”; א B C P 33 104 1175 al). A few mss (A 81 pc) have θεόν (qeon, “God”). The nomina sacra for these readings are quite similar (cMn, kMn, and qMn respectively), so one might be able to account for the different readings by way of confusion. On closer examination, the variants appear to be intentional changes. Alexandrian scribes replaced the highly specific term “Christ” with the less specific terms “Lord” and “God” because in the context it seems to be anachronistic to speak of the exodus generation putting Christ to the test. If the original had been “Lord,” it seems unlikely that a scribe would have willingly created a difficulty by substituting the more specific “Christ.” Moreover, even if not motivated by a tendency to overcorrect, a scribe might be likely to assimilate the word “Christ” to “Lord” in conformity with Deut 6:16 or other passages. The evidence from the early church regarding the reading of this verse is rather compelling in favor of “Christ.” Marcion, a second-century, anti-Jewish heretic, would naturally have opposed any reference to Christ in historical involvement with Israel, because he thought of the Creator God of the OT as inherently evil. In spite of this strong prejudice, though, {Marcion} read a text with “Christ.” Other early church writers attest to the presence of the word “Christ,” including {Clement of Alexandria} and Origen. What is more, the synod of Antioch in a.d. 268 used the reading “Christ” as evidence of the preexistence of Christ when it condemned Paul of Samosata. (See G. Zuntz, The Text of the Epistles, 126-27; TCGNT 494; C. D. Osburn, “The Text of 1 Corinthians 10:9,” New Testament Textual Criticism: Its Significance for Exegesis, 201-11; contra A. Robertson and A. Plummer, First Corinthians [ICC], 205-6.) Since “Christ” is the more difficult reading on all accounts, it is almost certainly original. In addition, “Christ” is consistent with Paul’s style in this passage (cf. 10:4, a text in which {Marcion} also reads “Christ”). This text is also christologically significant, since the reading “Christ” makes an explicit claim to the preexistence of Christ. (The textual critic faces a similar dilemma in Jude 5. In a similar exodus context, some of the more important Alexandrian mss [A B 33 81 pc] and the Vulgate read “Jesus” in place of “Lord.” Two of those mss [A 81] are the same mss that have “Christ” instead of “God” in 1 Cor 10:9. See the tc notes on Jude 5 for more information.) In sum, “Christ” has all the earmarks of authenticity here and should be considered the original reading."

Commentary from the New English Translation on 1 Corinthians 10:9

Thursday, November 23, 2017

The Power And Simplicity Of Gospel Preaching

“If we were left to ourselves with the task of taking the gospel to the world, we would immediately begin planning innovative strategies and plotting elaborate schemes. We would organize conventions, develop programs, and create foundations…But Jesus is so different from us. With the task of taking the gospel to the world, he wandered through the streets and byways…All he wanted was a few men who would think as he did, love as he did, see as he did, teach as he did, and serve as he did. All he needed was to revolutionize the hearts of a few, and they would impact the world.”

David Platt, Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream, 87-88

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Socialism Equals Communism

"There is no difference between communism and socialism, except in the means of achieving the same ultimate end: communism proposes to enslave men by force, socialism by vote. It is merely the difference between murder and suicide."

Ayn Rand

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

1 Corinthians 10:3-4 And The Deity Of Christ

        “All ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they drank from a spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was the Christ.” (1 Corinthians 10:3-4)

        In context, the Apostle Paul briefly brought into recollection events from the Exodus time frame. He alluded to the Jews who were freed from the authoritarian grasp of the Egyptian pharaoh and made to temporarily wander in the wilderness under the divine providence of God. 

        The manna (“spiritual food”) and water which sprang forth from a rock smote by the rod of Moses (“spiritual drink”) were all supplied because of His supernatural intervention. The quoted rabbinic tradition gives us literary imagery of a flowing rock that lingered in the presence of the Israelites with the intention of enforcing the point that God continually guides our experiences. 

        The rock reference is a typology of our Lord Jesus Christ, namely of His bold character and propitiatory sacrifice for the salvation of those who believe on Him. He is life to us. All things consist because of Him. He is the same Spiritual Rock and Lord who governed the nation of Israel (Deuteronomy 32:3-4; 39; 1 Samuel 2:2; 2 Samuel 22:32), and overthrew the people who put Him to the test (Deuteronomy 6:16; 1 Corinthians 10:9). 

        Jesus Christ is co-eternal with the Father. He is God in the flesh. He possesses the fullness of His eternal glory. See also John 1:1-3. Moreover, some commentators think that the expressions “spiritual food” and “spiritual drink” are meant to mirror the elements (bread and wine) employed during the Lord’s Supper.

Monday, November 13, 2017

The Word Of His Grace

       "Keep watch over yourselves and over the whole flock of which the holy Spirit has appointed you overseers, in which you tend the church of God that he acquired with his own blood." (Acts 20:28)

       Prior to the Apostle Paul's departure from Miletus to Jerusalem, he summoned a farewell conference of elders from the city of Ephesus. This meeting consisted of the apostle discussing how he had made known to them the gospel, the upcoming persecution that he must face as a result of his steadfast commitment to the will of God, gave an exhortation to the overseers to guard the faith against destructive heresies which could even arise from within, and concluded with an inspired saying of the Lord Jesus Christ in condemnation of selfishness. Paul was for the last time reinforcing the necessity of self-dedication by attesting himself as an example of supporting the cause of Christ. He was consigning the task of preaching the gospel to the members of that community. 

        We also learn from the text of Acts 20:28 the means by which God has enabled our redemption. God has saved those who have trusted on Him by the shed blood of His only begotten Son Jesus Christ. That was the cost for our debt of sin. He paid a debt that we could never pay. We should be forever grateful for His lovingkindness. Jesus Christ was crucified, buried, and resurrected for our transgressions. That is the essence of the gospel. We can now rightly recognized as the children of God. Those who are justified are also sanctified. Beyond all question, the gospel is, "that gracious word of his that can build you up and give you the inheritance among all who are consecrated" (Acts 20:32).

Friday, November 10, 2017

For God So Loved The World

“The Greek construction puts some emphasis on the actuality of the gift: it is not ‘God loved enough to give,’ but ‘God loved so that he gave.’ His love is not a vague, sentimental feeling, but a love that costs. God gave what was most dear to him.”

Morris, pp. 203-4, cited by Dr. Thomas Constable

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Secular Biologists Declare: ‘There Is No Sex Spectrum,’ Science and Medical Worlds Must ‘Stand Up for Reality of Biological Sex’

"Two secular biologists have penned an op-ed combating the notion that biological sex may be more than just male and female, and contending that gender identity ideology has “no basis in reality” but is rather harmful to society. They urged those in the science and medical fields to “stand up for the empirical reality of biological sex.”

“If male and female are merely arbitrary groupings, it follows that everyone, regardless of genetics or anatomy should be free to choose to identify as male or female, or to reject sex entirely in favor of a new bespoke ‘gender identity,'” wrote Colin Wright and Emma Hilton. “To characterize this line of reasoning as having no basis in reality would be an egregious understatement. It is false at every conceivable scale of resolution.”

Wright is an evolutionary biologist at Penn State University and Hilton is a developmental biologist at the University of Manchester.

They outlined that in both human and animal life, biological sex corresponds with reproductive anatomy and the subsequent use of sex cells — whether egg or sperm — to reproduce.

“No third type of sex cell exists in humans, and therefore there is no sex spectrum or additional sexes beyond male and female,” Wright and Hilton wrote. “Sex is binary.”

While intersex individuals, those who were born with ambiguous reproductive organs, do exist and are very much a rarity, they are “neither a third sex nor proof that sex is a spectrum or a social construct.”

The biologists opined that rejecting biological sex for subjective “gender identity” is detrimental to society as it abrogates the work of those who have sought, for example, protections for women — if being a woman is simply up to an individual’s feelings.

“Women have fought hard for sex-based legal protections. Female-only spaces are necessary due to the pervasive threat of male violence and sexual assault. Separate sporting categories are also necessary to ensure that women and girls don’t have to face competitors who have acquired the irreversible performance-enhancing effects conferred by male puberty,” they wrote.

https://christiannews.net/2020/02/20/secular-biologists-declare-there-is-no-sex-spectrum-science-and-medical-worlds-must-stand-up-for-reality-of-biological-sex/

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

No Mans Knows Enough

"I have come to the conviction that no man knows enough to attack the veracity of the Old Testament. Every time when anyone has been able to get together enough documentary 'proofs' to undertake an investigation, the biblical facts in the original text have victoriously met the test."

Professor Robert Dick Wilson

Counter Arguments to Same Sex "Marriage"

Let’s consider some counter-arguments [to same-sex “marriage”]:

1. Homosexuals can’t fulfill the most basic purpose of marriage – procreation and childrearing. There are heterosexual couples that don’t want children and those that can’t have children. But same-sex couples, by their very nature, are incapable of having children. The couples who are doing society’s vital work – mothers and fathers joined by faith and tradition, raising the next generation in love – deserve the status reserved for them alone from time immemorial.

2. Children need a father and a mother – A woman who was raised from birth by two lesbians said that, even as an adult, “I have still felt an empty space in my life, the lack of a father, and no matter the love I have had from both of my ‘mothers’ … There is a balance that comes from a mother and a father that can create the most lasting and stable family. I would not keep the blessings a father can give from any child.”

3. With gay marriage in the United States, adoption agencies are being forced to place children with homosexual couples. In Massachusetts, the first state to legalize same-sex marriage, Catholic Charities stopped offering adoption services for that reason.

4. There is no comparison between this and natural marriage. Most homosexual liaisons are of short duration. Even those that are called “committed relationships” are rarely monogamous. According to the National Center for Health Research, in 2001, even in the age of no-fault divorce, 66% of first marriages in the U.S. lasted longer than 10 years; 50% lasted longer than 20 years. Another study described the average homosexual relationship as “transactional” – lasting less than 6 months.

5. In a study of gay men by the Journal of Sex Research, the average number of lifetime partners was 755, with some reporting more than 1,000. How can the term “marriage” be applied to what amounts to a revolving bedroom door?

6. Legalizing homosexual marriage inevitably leads to public school indoctrination and religious persecution. In the United States, photographers, florists and bakers have been fined huge sums (and, in some cases, ordered to undergo what amounts to therapy) for refusing to participate in same-sex ceremonies. Ultimately, sexual radicals would force churches to perform these ceremonies or lose their tax-exempt status.

7. On Father’s Day, the U.S. Department of Education had a fatherhood conference that included the heads of Family Research Council and Focus on the Family, two well-respected organizations doing vital work. “Outrageous” said LGBT groups. Because FRC and Focus oppose gay marriage, they are “hateful.” Thus the movement works tirelessly to stigmatize and marginalize conservative Christians.

8. In the Canadian province of Alberta, a local school board ordered a Christian school to stop reading or studying “any scripture that could be offensive to any individual.” Presumably, this includes those that condemn homosexuality, adultery, idolatry and witchcraft.

9. The sexual revolution is an insatiable beast. Nothing is ever enough. First there were anti-discrimination laws, then hate-crimes legislation, then marriage-deconstruction. Now, it’s on to what’s called “transgenderism” – which has absolutely no scientific basis. It demands that men who “feel” like women be treated like women – including using the bathrooms and showers/changing rooms of those who actually are women and girls – regardless of considerations of safety and modesty. If we don’t hold the line on marriage, who knows what will come next.

10. Same-sex marriage must be seen not in isolation, but as part of a continuum. In the United States, we went from no-fault divorce, to abortion on demand and sex education which amounts to indoctrination, to public schools distributing condoms to minors without parental knowledge or consent. Along with Bible-believers, the left has targeted the family as the chief obstacle to achieving its utopian agenda. It understands that anything which weakens the family strengthens its cause.

11. Almost 100 years ago, Georg Lukacs, a Hungarian intellectual considered one of the fathers of Cultural Marxism, wrote that traditional culture must be destroyed for the workers’ paradise to emerge. Lukacs observed: “I saw the revolutionary destruction of society as the one and only solution to the cultural contradictions of the epoch…Such a worldwide overturning of values cannot take place without the annihilation of the old values and the creation of new ones by the revolutionaries.” By the “old values,” he meant faith and family.

Without marriage, we will enter a brave new world of atomistic individualism – one where individuals live by and for themselves and social arrangements are transitory and utilitarian. Procreation will be increasingly rare.

We need to return to our roots – especially the Bible.

The United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights (adopted in 1948, when most UN members were democracies) calls the family based on marriage, “the natural and fundamental group unit of society and (as such) entitled to protection by society and the state.”

To say the family is “the… fundamental group unit of society,” means it’s the foundation. Demolish the foundation, and the entire structure collapses. Survivors will buried in the rubble.

Don Feder, Marriage is the Foundation of Social Order

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Overview Evaluation Of “Jesus Mythers”

“During the past twenty years or so, a number of books and articles have appeared in the Internet arguing that Jesus is a myth who never existed. Viewing the biographical information of their authors reveals that only a handful have any academic credentials. Unfortunately, most people reading the literature written by “mythers” (as they are commonly referred to) are not accustomed to critical thinking by comparing sources…Yet they are unaware that neither Doherty nor Murdock ever went beyond earning a bachelor’s degree while Meier and Wright earned doctorates in relevant fields and teach New Testament studies at prestigious universities…they often make egregious errors and silly proposals that sound credible only to the naive. Mythers are often guilty of twisting data, propagating false claims, appealing to sources who are also not scholars, requiring an unreasonable burden of proof before acknowledging the existence of Jesus while being unaware that the scenarios they have proposed in order to address the data border on unbridled fantasy…It is noteworthy that one could count on one hand all the scholars in the fields of history and biblical studies who have been persuaded by the arguments of mythers. It is not because the majority of historians and biblical scholars are Christians…It is also noteworthy that even some atheist and agnostic scholars have blasted mythers for their poor arguments and treatment of the data. Scholars simply refuse to give them much attention and regard them to be as absurd as holocaust deniers.”

A New Kind of Apologist, pg. 179-180

Our Actions Have Lasting Consequences

“Still, there will be a connection with the long past-a reference to forgotten events and personages, and to manners, feelings, and opinions, almost or wholly obsolete-which, if adequately translated to the reader, would serve to illustrate how much of old materials goes up to make the freshest novelty of human life. Hence, to, might be drawn a weighty lesson from the little regarded truth, that the act of the passing generation is the germ which may and must bear good or evil fruit in a far-distant time; that, with the seed of the merely temporary crop, which morals term expediency, they inevitably sow the acorns of a more enduring growth, which may darkly overshadow their posterity.”

Nathaniel Hawthorne, The House of the Seven Gables, p. 2

The Uniqueness Of Biblical Sexuality

“In fact, Paul’s teachings on sexual purity and marriage were adopted as liberating in the pornographic, sexually exploitive Greco-Roman culture of the time-exploitive especially of slaves and women, whose value to pagan males lay chiefly in their ability to produce children and provide sexual pleasure. Christianity, as articulated by Paul, worked a cultural revolution, restraining and channeling male eros, elevating the status of both women and of the human body, and infusing marriage-and marital sexuality-with love.”

Rod Dreher, Sex After Christianity, Paul Among the People: The Apostle Reinterpreted and Reimagined in His Own Time

The “Born Gay” Argument Remains Unproven

“There is no consensus among scientists about the exact reasons that an individual develops a heterosexual, bisexual, gay or lesbian orientation. Although much research has examined the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social, and cultural influences on sexual orientation, no findings have emerged that permit scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular factor or factors.”

Cited in A New Kind of Apologist, American Psychological Association, “Sexual Orientation and Homosexuality: Answers to Your Questions for a Better Understanding,” (Washington, DC: APA, 2008)

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Why Neuroscience Cannot Explain Consciousness

I like the word experience, because your experience is the only real thing about your existence. That is to say, that all you can absolutely know for certain is the information you get from your senses — your direct experience. Everything else is a model in your mind. Saying that your sensation of touch arises out of contact between your physical body and something ‘out there’ in the world is an assumption.

What makes you think that ‘out there’ is objective and permanent, or that it even exists? Because you can see it? Because you can feel it? Because you can hear it? Because other people agree with you? But we know even from science itself that what you see in your visual field (and from every other sense) is just an approximation, or interpretation that’s created in the back of your skull — and does it really shock you that people with similar brains interpret “reality” in similar ways? It seems to me that it only feels real because it’s so self-consistent.

But that’s where things get tricky, because where does the idea of your brain rendering and interpreting reality come from? It comes from a scientific model with the assumption of your brain being ‘out there’ — it’s formulated in the very same box that it’s trying to explain.

Or put another way, how do you know that you’ve got a brain that renders reality and gives you a mental approximation? You know only because that’s what you’ve concluded with your senses — the very things that the same model is telling you are selective and are limited.

So then what’s real? What is the fundamental, empirical base of existence? It seems to me that the idea that consciousness arises from neurons is groundless — consciousness can’t be secondary because it’s the thing that you’re using to experience and describe things in the first place. And so it seems to me that if your sensory subjective experience is all that you can know for sure, then any field of objective study that assumes an external world will always fall short of explaining it.

https://mystudentvoices.com/why-neuroscience-cant-explain-consciousness-f25e987b627c