Common Sense Christian

The Thinking Christian’s Site

News

Disowning Conservative Politics, Evangelical Pastor Rattles Flock

Hat tip: Susan

Advertisements

August 24, 2007 Posted by | News You Can Use | 4 Comments

News

Try this at your own risk.  EXTREMELY ADDICTIVE!

www.pandora.com

Hat Tip:  Dan

August 21, 2007 Posted by | News You Can Use | Leave a comment

News

Smoking just one cannabis joint raises danger of mental illness by 40%

July 27, 2007 Posted by | News You Can Use | 8 Comments

News You Can Use

RACE.  THE BIBLE AND SCIENCE

Part 1.  Intro

Part 2.  Scientific Basis of Race

Part 3.  Race in the Bible

Part 4.  Conclusions 

Intro 

According to the Bible, all humans on earth today are descended from Noah and his wife, his three sons and their wives, and before that from Adam and Eve (Genesis 1-11). But today we have many different groups, often called ‘races,’ with what seem to be greatly differing features. The most obvious of these is skin color. Many see this as a reason to doubt the Bible’s record of history. They believe that the various groups could have arisen only by evolving separately over tens of thousands of years. However, as we shall see, this does not follow from the biological evidence. The Bible tells us how the population that descended from Noah’s family had one language and by living in one place were disobeying God’s command to ‘fill the earth’ (Genesis 9:1, 11:4). God confused their language, causing a break-up of the population into smaller groups which scattered over the earth (Genesis 11:8-9). Modern genetics show how, following such a break-up of a population, variations in skin color, for example, can develop in only a few generations. There is good evidence that the various people groups we have today have not been separated for huge periods of time. 

The Bible teaches us that God has ‘made of one blood all nations of men’ (Acts 17:26). Scripture distinguishes people by tribal or national groupings, not by skin color or physical appearance. Clearly, though, there are groups of people who have certain features (e.g., skin color) in common, which distinguish them from other groups.
Continue reading

August 31, 2006 Posted by | News You Can Use | Leave a comment

News You Can Use

Theories of Inspiration

Introduction

While all agree that the Bible is inspired in some way since the Reformation there have arisen numerous theories as to the exact nature of biblical inspiration. These range from the nearly secular assessment that the Bible is inspired in the sense that Shakespeare or Milton is inspired to the view that the Scriptures were verbally dictated by God.

MORE:

Continue reading

August 2, 2006 Posted by | News You Can Use | 2 Comments

News You Can Use

Reading Your Bible With Understanding 

Using these tools while reading your Bible will eliminate a lot of confusion.

 


The Agreement Principle 

The Agreement Principle, (hereinafter referred to as the AP), is a scientific principle or tool measuring validity.  It establishes a baseline, and then anything thereafter is compared to the baseline in terms of agreement

Example: A scientist studying dice may establish that all dies weigh 1.5 grams.  This will remain TRUE until proven UNTRUE.  If there is a die that is discovered that truly contradicts the original assertion, then there is no agreement.

 Application: The AP and its application to the Bible is that it DOES NOT contradict itself and all parts agree with each other and with the whole.  At this point, scientifically, it is up to someone with a contentious viewpoint to prove otherwise.


The Context Principle 

The Context Principle, (hereinafter referred to as the CP), is a scientific rule of language.  It establishes that everything said must be interpreted within its context.  A verse must be interpretted withing its chapter context which must be interpreted within its book context which must be interpretted within the whole Bible’s context. Only given the proper context can we come to a true meaning of what the phrase truly means.  The CP has been criticized by lay people who struggle with scientific concepts.  They often fail to see that a statement made in one context can mean something else in another.  In order to properly interpret the Bible, you need to know all the details SURROUNDING the passage that you are reading.  Otherwise you may come up with the wrong meaning.

Example: Take the words, “That’s funny” for instance.  The two words can have at least two meanings:

 

That’s hilarious             

That’s strange

Application:  Hebrews 10:25 “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some [is];” is often taken out of context to coerce Christians to come to church every time the door opens.  This sentance fragment is related to the previous verses (which are largely left unquoted), and do not even mention church service, worship service or any other kind of service.   For a good write up on this subject check this out!


The Ethnic Division Principle

The Ethnic Division Principle, (hereinafter referred to as the EDP), is a scientific principle indigenous to the Bible.  It establishes that there are different peoples in the Bible that are addressed, and the message for one does not necessarily apply to everyone.  This principle can apply to individuals as well.

Example:  Not all verses or commandments are for Christians.  Can you guess who was commanded to do the following?

Deut 25:11-12 When men strive together one with another, and the wife of the one draweth near for to deliver her husband out of the hand of him that smiteth him, and putteth forth her hand, and taketh him by the secrets: Then thou shalt cut off her hand, thine eye shall not pity [her].

Application: It is important to distinguish who is being instructed or spoken to.  In the Bible there are Jews, Gentiles, Christians and others—know who is being addressed.

July 6, 2006 Posted by | News You Can Use | 2 Comments

News You Can Use

Snapshot of Salvation according to Major Religions

Catholic

  • One strives for salvation through worship and prayer to God the Father, in Jesus Christ, through the working of the Holy Spirit; good works, and seven sacraments, including one (infant) baptism and Communion. One's salvation must be restored after commission of a mortal sin by repeating the sacraments of Repentance/Confession and Communion. Confession of "venial" (less serious) sins to a priest is recommended but generally not required for salvation.

Anglican/Episcopalian, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, Unitarian, United Church of Christ.

  • Various beliefs: Some believe all will go to heaven as God is loving and forgiving. Others believe salvation lies in doing good works and no harm to others, regardless of faith. Some believe baptism is important. Some believe the concept of salvation after death is symbolic, or nonexistent.

Some Pentecostal, Some Lutheran, Some Christian Fellowship Churches

  • Salvation is granted through grace; however, the law and works is often considered a part of salvation or needed to maintain it. It will often be said that someone without works is “probably not saved”. This is prevalent in many evangelical circles also. Pentacostals believe that speaking in tongues is a gift from God as evidence of having been saved, and some regard it as the only evidence of having been saved. Some use exorcism to remove indwelling evil spirits. When performed, baptism is regarded as a practice for adult believers, rather than infants/children, as it is not considered a sacrament for salvation, but an act of commitment to the fellowship. However, some churches do regard certain sacraments as very important components on the path to salvation (e.g. Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church) including infant baptism, regarding baptism as a miracle from God that creates faith in the heart.

Some Southern Baptist, Some Fundamentalist, Some Evangelical

  • Salvation is granted by the grace of God alone, through faith in Jesus Christ alone as Lord and Savior — not through "works" such as moral behavior, good deeds, and generally not through sacraments. Some believe that once saved, or born again, always saved. When performed, baptism is regarded by many Conservative Protestants as a practice for adult believers, rather than infants/children, as it is not considered a sacrament for salvation, but an act of commitment to the fellowship. Some Baptists regard baptism as a washing away of sin, which may be repeated. Among most, confession/repentance is considered personal, between the individual and God.

Eastern Orthodox — Includes the Church of Greece, the Church of Cyprus, and the Russian Orthodox Church

  • Salvation: All are already potentially saved (through Christ's death and resurrection), are still being saved (through faith), and will be saved in the future (with the second coming of Christ). Demands faith in and prayers to God the Father, Christ, and the Holy Spirit; good works. Required sacraments include baptism at infancy, and the Holy Eucharist with confession and repentance. Adherence to moral laws is essential.

Jehovah's Witness ("Watchtower Bible and Tract Society")

  • Salvation: You must show faith in God and in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Adhere to the practices, requirements, commandments, laws, and sacraments of the faith. "Witnessing" and active sharing of their faith with others is fundamental. Avoid behaviors that God dislikes, including celebration of birthdays and holidays originating from false religions.

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons)

  • Salvation: Show faith in and obedience to God and Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Adhere to the practices, requirements, commandments, laws, and sacraments of the faith as exemplified by Jesus Christ. Good works are integral to the faith through monthly fasts and fast offerings to the needy, to show your obedience and love for God. Baptism at age 8 is necessary, the age of accountability, and be confirmed as a member of the church. Confess all sins to God, and major transgressions to a presiding officer as well. Receive the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost; receive the temple endowment; be married for time and eternity.

Christian Science ("Church of Christ, Scientist")

  • Salvation: Salvation lies in bringing oneself into harmony with one's true nature as God's reflection, through good works, patience, meekness, love, watchfulness, prayerful gratitude, devout obedience in following Christ's example. There are two basic commandments: that one turn only to God, perfect Mind, for guidance — the Mind that was also in Christ; and that one "love thy neighbor as thyself." Healing and immortality are realized with the guidance of Christian Science Practitioners — by becoming conscious that the only true reality is God, which is Love, and that one's true and only nature is in God's likeness. As one realizes the error of belief in the reality of suffering and evil, these images of thought impressed upon the mortal mind can be altered, thus banishing sickness, death, and sin — testimony to the power of faith in God, of Mind over matter.

June 19, 2006 Posted by | News You Can Use | 12 Comments

News You Can Use

Christianity offensive?

Parents be warned.  This movie is rated PG because its talk of Jesus may be unsuitable for young children

Narrow focus draws 'PG' rating for Baptist-backed film

June 7, 2006 Posted by | Daily Devotional, News You Can Use | Leave a comment

News You Can Use

Batwoman returns as a lesbian.

Comments?

May 31, 2006 Posted by | News You Can Use | Leave a comment

News You Can Use

Remember years ago when Christians were persecuted?


Christian Persecution Information

April 29, 2006 Posted by | News You Can Use | Leave a comment