Review: Jesus Among Secular Gods

Good review of a book that I have read and still use…

Haden Clark

I am the youth minister at a local church in North Texas, and twice a year I walk some of our students through a discipleship course. This time I presented them with a number of Bible studies to choose from, and they landed on Jesus Among Secular Gods, a study written by Ravi Zacharias and Vince Vitale and published by LifeWay (2017). It is a companion to their book of the same name which was published by FaithWords in early 2018.

I thoroughly enjoyed teaching through the study, learning many things myself, and thought I would write a brief review here. The version I am reviewing is the student edition, but there is an edition for adults that I assume is very similar, especially the teaching content.

Jesus Among Secular Gods is a six-week study following this outline:

  • Week 1: Be Prepared
  • Week 2: Atheism and Scientism
  • Week 3:…

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Does the New Testament Condone Slavery?

This is a very good article on Slavery in the Bible. Many skeptics point out that the Bible condones slavery. It clearly does not. Read on…

Haden Clark

Earlier this week Haden’s post answered critics who claim that God is immoral because He condoned slavery in the Old Testament. Clearly this is not the case, for Old Testament slavery was completely different from the nineteenth century enslavement of African-Americans by American plantation owners. As a companion piece, I will now examine slavery in the New Testament, drawing many of the same conclusions.

Mentions of Slavery in the New Testament

Slavery is a topic that arises multiple times in the New Testament. Three mentions of it are found in the household codes of Ephesians (6:5-9), Colossians (3:22-4:1), and 1 Peter (2:18-25). The main Greek word used to denote slaves in the New Testament is doulos, occurring 126 times. The related term oiketes is also used four times. Interestingly, the way English translations of the Bible translate these words differs greatly. The HCSB, my translation of preference, translates doulos

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Never Ignore a Stranded Motorcyclist

Bagger Life

Over Memorial Day Weekend my wife and I traveled throughout Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri taking in various sites, sounds, and smells on an almost twelve hundred mile adventure on our motorcycles. (Yes, my 5’5″ tall wife rides a 2013 Victory XCT) Of all the things we experienced and all the folks we met I will always remember a motorcyclist named Ron from Alaska. I met him alongside the highway outside of St. Louis where his Harley was broke down with nail in the tire. When we stopped to see if we could offer assistance we were greeted with a big smile, ‘You are the only bikers to stop. And, I’ve been here a while.” I responded “Yeah. It sucks to be stranded on the side of the road and watch bikers wave as they pass by.”

When I began riding there was a code. Part of which stated “NEVER…

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Why Are There So Many Bible Translations?

This is a really good and concise review of Bible translations. Well worth the read.

Haden Clark

Who ever thought that buying a Bible would be an overwhelming experience? You just go to the store and grab one, right? Well…no. You go to the store and you have to choose between this translation and that translation, between this study Bible and that study Bible. It’s more difficult than it should be.

So if you are looking for a new Bible, which translation should you choose? I thought that if I shared with you about the translation process and the differing methods used, it would help you make a more informed decision.

Some Translation Difficulties

As you know, the sixty-six books of the Bible were not written in English. The original authors, inspired by the Holy Spirit, wrote in three languages: Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic. With the exception of a few words, the entire New Testament was written in Greek. Most of the Old Testament was written in…

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Did Jesus Rise From the Dead?

Following up from Good Friday – Happy Resurrection Day! He is risen, He is risen, indeed!

Haden Clark

For the past several weeks leading up to Easter, we have been examining possible natural theories of the Resurrection. We have found them all wanting. If we are going to believe in the Resurrection and present it as true, we will need more than negative arguments against other theories. Is there any positive evidence for the Resurrection? Today, on Easter Sunday, we will make a positive case for the Resurrection.

Jesus Died by Crucifixion.

That Jesus died by crucifixion is one of the strongest attested facts surrounding the event. The historical data is overwhelming. All four Gospels record the events of his crucifixion, and I will quote three early historical sources here:

“When Pilate, upon hearing him [Jesus] accused by men of the highest standing among us, had condemned him to be crucified” (Josephus, Jewish Historian).

“Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated…

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LUIS FONSI’S CUSTOM 2018 POLARIS SLINGSHOT SL

Very cool! If I ever hang up my Indian…..

APPARATUS

Luis Fonsi, singer/songwriter best known for his 2017 hit song “Despacito” and long-time friend Alex Vega owner of The Auto Firm collaborated on a custom 2018 Polaris Slingshot SL.

Luis called me and said that he had been thinking about getting a toy, something that I can drive on the weekends and just relax,” said Vega. “Right away my first thought was get a Slingshot, you’re in Miami!”

Vega and Fonsi, two artists in their own medium, designed a custom Slingshot the streets of Miami have never seen before. “It’s such a sexy, fun hybrid,” said Fonsi. “It’s the perfect car for Miami!”

Have a look below at how this custom Polaris Slingshot  SL came together.

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What Happened During Passion Week?

Happy Resurrection Day!

Haden Clark

The week leading up to Easter is often referred to as the Passion Week. This week began with Jesus’s entrance into Jerusalem on a Sunday (Palm Sunday) and ended with His death and burial. This, of course, led to His resurrection—Easter—which we are getting ready to celebrate in just a few days.

When you read the four gospels in the New Testament, you get the picture that the Passion Week was an incredibly busy week for Jesus and His disciples. I would like to take a few minutes to walk you day-by-day through this week, maybe the most famous week in history. You will see that most of these events can be found in all four gospels.

Sunday

As mentioned above, this week began on Palm Sunday with Jesus’s entry into the city of Jerusalem. You can read about this in Mt. 21:1-11; Mk. 11:1-11; Lk. 19:28-40; Jn. 12:12-19. Some…

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Everything in the Bible is True… BUT

Excellent overview of what the Bible is and isn't. We do not worship God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Bible - We worship the true Trinity God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

The Promise of Faith and the Destruction of Legalism – Romans 4

Why did Paul use Abraham in his explanation of God’s promise coming through faith?   Paul, a Pharisee and one of most learned Jews of his day, had a profound affinity for Abraham.  Being the father the Jewish nation and culture, the name of Abraham carried significant weight when used as an example or a …

A Few Prophetic Thoughts Since Billy Graham Passed

Interesting thoughts on Billy Graham.

APreachasKid

By the time you read this, it will have been 9 days since the passing of Reverend Dr. Billy Graham. People will have attended his funeral and perhaps, some of the shock will have settled as the world comes to grip with the reality that he is no longer living among us. I have been pondering what prophetic insight I could glean from his passing, especially in light of so many others who have both previously have prophesied about him. While I don’t claim to be as anointed as those who have a more public presence, I no less believe that God has shared with me some things to take note of. 

Image Credit: Patheos

As I reflected on who Billy Graham was to the nation and the type of ministry he led, I began to get a sense that God is awakening His Church to a new time…

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I Hate the Prosperity Gospel

I am in agreement with Flacco his article. What is interesting is that Benny Hinn, one of the main purveyors of this heresy, seems to be moving away from it:

https://www.charismanews.com/us/69756-did-benny-hinn-just-renounce-the-prosperity-gospel

Most of those in the Renewal / Charismatic movement utterly reject the prosperity gospel. Young people see though the heresy as anti-Biblical and anti-Gospel.

Looking to God

Hate is a strong word. I rarely use it. When I do use it, I make it clear that I do not use it in jest, or without reason. When I say I hate something, I mean I abhor it, I detest it, and I wish it were not in existence.

Therefore, saying that I hate the prosperity gospel, I still feel I am putting it mildly. Frankly, I wish it would disappear never to deceive another Christian again.

What is the prosperity gospel?

Without giving you a long, drawn-out definition, I will make it simple: the prosperity gospel convinces Christians that God wants them to be wealthy, that he does not want his children to suffer, and that he wants them to enjoy every moment of this life, because he promised he would bless those who have faith enough to believe he would do just that.

In effect, the…

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Is The New Testament Reliable?

Here is a good, quick overview of the reliability of the New Testament.

Haden Clark

Critics of Christianity often claim that the Bible is full of errors and contradictions, historically inaccurate, and has been riddled with changes over the many years of translation. However, approaching the New Testament like one would approach any document from antiquity reveals something drastically different.

Dating

Dating the New Testament letters can be difficult and often leads to a difference of opinion among scholars. However, the majority of scholars – even the non-believing – agree that the four Gospels and Acts were written within a few decades (at max a century) of the time of the events recorded. This means the English translation of the New Testament you own is based on a very early recording of the events it tells. So goes the criticism of Christians adding to the New Testament over the centuries.

Number of Greek Manuscripts

We do not have the autographs, or original copies of the…

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SLINGSHOT UNVEILS NEW LIMITED EDITION GRAND TOURING LE

APPARATUS

Today, Slingshot pulled the covers back on its most premium offering to date with the unveiling of the Grand Touring LE. Fully loaded and accessorized straight from the factory, the limited edition is the ultimate in comfort, style and technology. The Grand Touring LE features the most ergonomically-friendly Slingshade roof, which offers better rider comfort and sun protection.

Other features include Quilted Comfort Seats and industry-leading Ride Command infotainment system with turn-by-turn navigation.

Notable Quotes: “The Grand Touring LE is the perfect offering whether looking to escape town for the weekend or turn heads while cruising Main Street.” – Rachael Elia, Slingshot Marketing Manager

Pricing and Availability: The Grand Touring LE starts at around $30,000 USD and will be available at Polaris Slingshot dealers throughout the U.S. and Canada starting in early March.

Learn more here.

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Herod, Peter and God’s Will

TLP

Acts 12:1-19

Luke shifts scenes, this time we see Herod and his nefarious doings. He arrested some of the believers in Jerusalem to persecute them, and in the process James was murdered. With this act, Herod noticed his approval rating soaring amongst influential Jews, so he decided to kill Peter too; he was arrested and thrown into prison until Passover was over with, then he would face a show trial on trumped up charges and be killed, to the delight of the crowds.

It would seem that old Herod hadn’t cleared his devilish little plan with God, who had other ideas…

Luke goes to great pains to establish that Peter was very well guarded in the prison, since Herod was taking no chances, but in spite of that, Peter would escape. While Peter was sleeping soundly, chained up between two guards, an angel woke him up, told him to get…

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On Being a Disciple Thoughts on Mark 1 & 2

Jesus used the words “follow me” when calling the apostles. What was it about this calling that was different from other callings? Mark describes Jesus calling five of the twelve apostles in the passages 1:16-20 and 2:13-14.  For Andrew, Simon, James, John, and Matthew, the call resulted in an immediate following (1:16-20).  The calling of …