Categories
christ church salvation scripture study

Things Are Actually Better

During a seemingly bad situation, it’s hard to see the better. Seeing the better in the situation or in those around us is hard. I’m not talking about wishful thinking or silver linings. Like, when sick, thinking, “oh, I’ll get better in four days” or “at least I’m not dead!”.

Even During Tough Times, Things Are Actually Better

“Better” is a comparison word. It only works when it’s put up against something else. That’s important.

The writer to the Hebrews wrote to believers who were going through a rough patch. To fix their situation, some thought they needed to jump ship.  Some stopped coming together (Hebrews 10:25). Some probably feared to suffer (Hebrews 12:4). All of them needed encouragement (Hebrews 13:22) to stand firm (Hebrews 12:12). They needed this letter where the author pits the choices against each other to show the better.

Not a better imaginable situation. Not a silver lining. Rather a re-aligning of their thinking.

Categories
hermeneutics human salvation scripture study

What Is Faith (According to The Bible)?

What is faith? I’ve seen answers that range from another religion (for example “one of many faiths”) down through some sort of fairy-tale opinion that stands opposed to science.

In the Bible, we’ll see all sorts of usage on “faith” and “belief”—sometimes even referring to when someone adheres to the doctrines that make up Christianity. One of the best usages of faith is the one that is tied to the concept of justification.

Faith is just an archaic word for trust. What I love about seeing faith, or trust, tied to justification in texts like Romans 4 (see more of the Romans study), that it explains the nature of the concept even while using, basically, case-law. No more fuzzy lessons grounded in someone’s personal trust issues, but rather taking the structure of Hebrews 11:1 where it says “faith is the substance of things hoped for; the evidence of things not seen” and garnishing it with doctrinal meat.

Categories
salvation

Yes, Christians Really Are Motivated By Christ’s Resurrection

A friend of mine, Jewish by birth, told me he was off to visit family during Passover. Unsure if I knew the history of the holiday, he told me how the Jews were slaves of Pharaoh and was rescued by God via a bunch of miracles. Then he added, “it’s all lies, anyway. Holidays are just an excuse for families to see each other.”

It got me thinking about how people seriously misdiagnose the motivations of true Christianity.

An excuse for family get-togethers? A way for people to be good to each other? Just another religion on a spectrum of beliefs?

Categories
salvation the father trinity

Reading List On Molinism

About two or so years ago, I had created a worldcat list with reading material relating to Molinism. Some of the material counters it; some of it might touch on it accidentally as it were. I’ve been working through the list but with some recent additions, I think it’s at a point where I can share the contents for your own benefit. I’ve put them in publishing order but I personally started with the translation of Molina’s Concordia. Bold, as on other lists, means I’ve read it and crossed it off the list. Feel free to make suggestions. Also make sure to follow the reading list on worldcat since any updates are most likely to happen there than here.

Categories
christ salvation

How To Prepare For Change

Remember the beginning of T2? A dark road running into the distance; Sarah Connor’s voiceover speaking about the inevitable an impending future? The movie ends the same way but this time she’s talking about the openness of the future since things have changed. Instead of depression she’s speaking in hope.

Good thing Sarah Connor didn’t survive until Judgment Day. Sure things changed, but not by much. The machines still took over. Connor still wound up being a military leader. Her fears were realized, even if she wasn’t there to see it happen.

But she had hope because of change.