The Kingdom of God
Christ will come again! Christians eagerly anticipate the Lord’s Second Coming (John 14:1-3; 1 Corinthians 16:22; 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6). However, this does not mean that we accept the tenants of Premillennialism. Many religious denominations advocate this doctrine: Southern Baptists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Assemblies of God, and other Pentecostal bodies, etc. Promoters among the denominations include William Miller, Charles Taze Russell, Cyrus Scofield, Billy Graham, and most recently, Tim LaHaye. Proponents among brethren were R. H. Boll & his followers.
There are as many variations of premillennialism as there are proclaimers of this theory. However, there are several common themes that remain constant. Postmillennialism is “the theological doctrine that the second coming of Christ will occur after the millennium” (Webster). Premillennialism is “the view that Christ’s return will usher in a future millennium of Messianic rule mentioned in Revelation” (Webster). In contrast, amillennialism affirms a symbolic understanding of the 1,000 year reign of Christ, which began on the day of Pentecost and will continue until Jesus returns.
Continue reading » Premillennialism
In recent years, many discount the teaching of Matthew 19:9 on marriage, divorce and remarriage by saying, “Jesus’ words do not apply to alien sinners, but only to citizens of the heavenly kingdom.” Cultural accomodationists tell us that lost mankind is not accountable to the gospel, but rather answers to some vague and undefined “universal moral law.” How does one answer such heresy? First, it must be acknowledged that the Bible affirms the concept of a universal moral law (Rom. 2:12-16). However, the question is this: Where did such a code originate? Is it innate, inborn, instinctive and intuitive? Or, is this so-called universal moral law based upon man’s memory – however dim – of divine revelation? Continue reading » Marriage, Divorce & Remarriage: A Universal Moral Law?
In the New Testament, the word “peace” is found at the beginning or end of every epistle except for James and 1st John. The breadth of its meaning is apparent when it is linked with “grace” (Romans 1:7), “life” (Romans 8:6), and “righteousness” (Romans 14:17). What are the different shades of meaning of this wonderful word?
Romans 1:7, “…to all who are beloved of God in Rome, called as saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Romans 8:6, “…For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace.”
Romans 14:17, “…for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.”
The Biblical word “peace” signifies far more than merely the absence of war. It carries the idea of completeness and wholeness. It conveys a sense of inner-satisfaction and fulfillment. It communicates the idea of contentment and serenity. In its fullest sense, it expresses our hope of reconciliation and redemption. Continue reading » Fruit of the Spirit: Peace
In this lesson, let us consider “lasciviousness” (KJV) and “sensuality” (NASU), identified by Paul as a soul-condemning work of the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21). The particular Greek word that Paul uses in this context is aselgeia.
According to Thayer, the Greek word aselgeia as “unbridled lust, excess, licentiousness, lasciviousness, wantonness, outrageousness, shamelessness, insolence&ldots; wanton (acts or) manners, as filthy words, indecent bodily movements, unchaste handling of males and females, etc.” (1)
Kittel says that aselgeia [licentiousness] is defined as “‘License,’ mostly physical, figuratively spiritual. ‘Debauchery’ or ‘licentiousness’ is the sense in 2 Peter 2:7 (Sodom and Gomorrah) and Ephesians 4:19 (the pagan world). Sexual excess is probably meant in Galatians 5:19 and certainly so in Romans 13:13; 2 Corinthians 12:21; 2 Peter 2:2, 18).” (2)
Vine says that aselgeia denotes “excess, licentiousness, absence of restraint, indecency, wantonness.” (3) Continue reading » Works of the Flesh: Lewdness (Lasciviousness)
Friday, August 4, 2000 Watchman Readers,On Wednesday, July 12, 2000, I mailed the following letter to brother Ferrell Jenkins. Thus far, I have received no answer. In his public response to the Open Letter, brother Jenkins said that the signatories of the same who have written privately to him should not expect any sort of personal reply. “Brethren, you know that we don’t have time to engage each of you in a personal correspondence,” he said. “Don’t expect it.”
Beyond his public response to the Open Letter, entitled, “The Creation Controversy and Florida College,” available for viewing at BIBLEWORLD.COM, it appears that no further dialog will be forthcoming. On a variety of levels, this response was extremely disappointing. Instead of addressing the genuine concerns of many faithful brethren regarding current compromises on the days of creation, brother Jenkins’ reaction was both combative and evasive. It raises more questions than answers. Continue reading » A Public Letter to Ferrell Jenkins (Mayberry)
What Happens When We Mythologize Part of Genesis?
I attended a Lord I Believe Seminar back in the spring of 1996, and came away with decidedly mixed feelings. Much of the program was highly commendable. Brother Hill Roberts did a superb job of using statistical probability to show that it was impossible for life to have originated by chance. Yet, there were several aspects of the presentation that trouble me. In particular, I am concerned about Hill’s approach to the book of Genesis, especially as it relates to the issue of time and the age of the earth. Continue reading » Consequences of New Hermeneutics
IntroductionAs stated elsewhere in this special issue of Watchman, Hill Roberts believes that God conceived of the plan of creation in six literal days, but then took billions of years implementing that plan. In other words, God spent six days thinking and 4.5 billion years acting. This view is reflected in Hill’s general treatment of the geologic column. When I attended a Lord I Believe Seminar in the spring of 1996 in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, it was obvious that Hill accepted the standard geologic column and tried to adapt the Biblical account of creation to it. He believes that the geologic column is a record of God’s progressive creation of life.This approach was not limited to the adult class. Our 4th grade son came home with a “Challenge Page” handout that asked students to correlate the fossil record with the Genesis account of creation. One side of the page shows the standard geologic column that can be found in nearly every evolutionary textbook. The other side of the page contained blank lines. The header says, “Can you match the fossil record with the Genesis Record?” Again, this clearly implies that the geologic column is a record of the progressive creation of life. Continue reading » Interpretation of the Geologic Column
Are There Biblical Parameters?
IntroductionThose who would attempt to harmonize the Bible and the theory of modern evolution must fit 15 billion years into the book of Genesis. They also must stretch the Genesis genealogies to accommodate an old earth demanded by evolutionists. Proponents of this viewpoint would argue that the Mid-eastern concept of time is vastly different from our western mindset. In fact, when attending a Lord I Believe Seminar back in 1996, I remember Rod Summers forcefully arguing this very point.
Yet, it is false to say the Jews had no rational concept of time. People in Biblical times were at least as intelligent as modern man, and therefore, had the ability to comprehend time in a meaningful way. From the beginning, man has been governed by time: God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years” (Gen 1:14). Therefore, as we reflect upon the issue of the age of the earth, let us examine various Scriptures that clearly indicate that the Jews could tell time. Continue reading » Age of the Earth