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Monday, April 23, 2007

Christian Evidences

This item is available on the Apologetics Press website at: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/3317AP Content :: Bible BulletsNever Enoughby Kyle Butt, M.A.


“How can a person refuse to believe in God in the face of so much evidence that proves His existence?” In my travels and experiences teaching Christian evidences, this question often arises. Many who encounter for the first time the evidence for the existence of God, the inspiration of the Bible, and the deity of Christ, simply cannot understand how a person could deny such evidence and maintain an atheistic or agnostic position. Why doesn’t the force of such evidence compel all those who hear it to become believers in God and the Bible?

The simple answer to such a question is that some have decided not to believe the truth about God and the Bible, regardless of how much evidence is presented. The story of the resurrection of Lazarus provides a perfect biblical illustration of this attitude. In John 11, the Bible records the facts regarding one of Jesus’ more spectacular miracles. His friend Lazarus, a denizen of the city of Bethany, became sick and died. The dead man’s body was buried in a tomb and remained there for four days. Mary and Martha, Lazarus’ sisters, were deeply grieving over the loss of their brother. When Jesus arrived in the city, He asked to be taken to the tomb. He then instructed those at the tomb to remove the stone covering the entrance. Martha attempted to dissuade Jesus from this course of action by informing Him that her dead brother’s body had been in the tomb four days, and was decayed to the point that his body would stink. Yet, in an awesome show of God’s power over death, Jesus called Lazarus forth from the grave, bringing him back to life.

By bringing Lazarus back to life, Jesus provided evidence that proved His claims to deity. Such evidence should have been sufficient for any honest observer to conclude that Jesus was from God. In fact, the Jewish leaders admitted that Jesus worked many signs (John 11:47). Because of these signs, they were afraid that all the people would believe in Jesus if He continued His ministry. What, then, was their reaction to the signs that they recognized Jesus performed. In John 12:10-11, the Bible says: “But the chief priests took counsel that they might also put Lazarus to death, because on account of him many of the Jews went away and believed in Jesus.”

These villainous leaders were not in the least motivated to assess the evidence honestly and believe in Jesus. In fact, in order to keep others from doing so, they considered killing an innocent man—Lazarus—simply because his life provided convincing evidence of Jesus’ deity. They knew Jesus raised him from the dead, but refused to allow this forceful piece of evidence to alter their predetermined beliefs and actions. Such is still the case today. Those who refuse to accept the compelling evidence that proves God’s existence, the Bible’s inspiration, and the deity of Christ do so based on a predetermined irrationality and not an honest assessment of the facts. That is why the inspired apostle Paul noted that any who deny the existence of God will be “without excuse” on the Day of Judgment (Romans 1:20).

Copyright © 2007 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

God's Church or Man's church Which would you choose?

In the salvation of man's soul there are two necessary parts: God's part and man's part. God's part is the big part, "For by grace ye have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not of works, that no man should glory" (Eph. 2:8-9). The love which God felt for man led him to send Christ into the world to redeem man. The life and teaching of Jesus, the sacrifice on the cross, and the proclaiming of the gospel to men constitute God's part in salvation.
Though God's part is the big part, man's part is also necessary if man is to reach heaven. Man must comply with the conditions of pardon which the Lord has announced.
Man's part can be clearly set forth in the following steps:

(1) Hear the Gospel. "How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him whom they have not heard? and how shell they hear without a preacher?" (Romans 10:14).

(2) Believe. "And without faith it is impossible to be wellpleasing unto him; for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that seek after him" (Hebrews 11:6).

(3) Repent of past sins. "The times of ignorance therefore God overlooked; but now he commandeth men that they should all everywhere repent" (Acts 17:30).

(4) Confess Jesus as Lord. "Behold here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And Philip said, if thou believeth with all thy heart thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God" Acts 8:36-37).

(5) Be baptized for the remission of sins. "And Peter said unto them, Repent ye, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ unto the remission of your sins and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit" (Acts 2:38).

(6) Live a Christian life. Ye are an elect race, a royal priesthood a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light" (1 Peter 2:9).

Now that you are aware of a church in the twentieth century which is built according to the blue prints of Christ's original church, why not become a member of it? In becoming a member of it you will be called upon to do nothing which you cannot read in the New Testament. You will then live and worship just as the apostle-guided Christians of the first century did. Not only is this return to New Testament Christianity a wonderful basis upon which all believers in Christ can unite, it is absolutely solid ground, If we do just what our Lord commanded we know that our salvation is certain. Come with us as we go back to the Bible, back to Christ and his church!

Morality, Can it be Taught?

This item is available on the Apologetics Press website at: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/3301 - it was originally published in Reason & Revelation, issue 6[4]:13-RAP Content :: Reason & RevelationCan't Teach Morality in Schoolby Dave Miller, Ph.D.

You’ve undoubtedly heard the expression: “You can’t legislate morality!” Actually, such a claim is fairly recent in American culture and flies directly in the face of fact. After all, God has legislated human morality from the very beginning of time. The laws of every country do the same. If we cannot legislate morality, shall we annul all our laws against murder, theft, and perjury in court? The notion is typical of the mindless drivel spouted since the 1960s by those who reject traditional American values—values that arose from the Bible.

The same may be said concerning the relentless attempt to expel God and morality from the public schools. Liberal educators insist that morality must not be taught in the school system. The theory is that moral standards have no objective reality. They arise from within persons and exist only in reference to the subjective opinion and will of the individual. Hence, schools should not attempt to enforce upon students one particular value system. Such insidious, suicidal nonsense has transformed the American public school system into a recipe for national disaster.

Acceptance of such thinking is not only a recent phenomenon in American history, the notion was soundly repudiated by the Founders of American education. A mountain of evidence exists to verify this claim. As one example, consider the founding of the University of Pennsylvania, due in large part to the efforts of Benjamin Franklin (“University of...,” n.d.). Nine signers of the Declaration of Independence and 11 signers of the Constitution were associated with this institution. This longtime traditional member of the Ivy League is a private university founded in 1740 in Philadelphia as a charity school. It became an academy in 1753, with Benjamin Franklin as president of the first board of trustees, and is credited with opening the first school of medicine in the United States in 1765. Consider the motto of the school: Leges sine moribus vanae. Meaning? “Laws without morals are useless.” What better description of what is happening to the nation in general and public education in particular?


REFERENCES
“University of Pennsylvania” (no date), Answers.com, [On-line], URL: http://www.answers.com/topic/university-of-pennsylvania.
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