Month: February 2011

The Destiny of the Unevangelized and the Nature of Hell

The Destiny of the Unevangelized The question of what happens to those who have not heard of Jesus has serious theological and practical implications on nearly every aspect to our Christian life. The exclusive view states that it is impossible to attain salvation apart from hearing the Word since faith comes from hearing and hearing from the Word of God (Romans 10:17). The restrictivist view states that those who have heard the gospel are those who have made a conscious decision to accept it, but those who have never heard the gospel are judged on the basis of what they know or should have known. I will begin this essay theologically by discussing how general and specific revelation from Scripture clearly teaches that those who have not heard the message of Jesus will not be saved. The knowledge of God’s existence, character, and moral law, which come through creation to all humanity, is often called general revelation (because it comes to all people generally). General revelation comes through observing nature, through seeing God’s directing influence in history, and through an inner sense of God’s existence and his laws that he has placed inside ever person. General revelation is distinct from special revelation which refers to God’s word addressed to specific people, such as apostles, and the words of God spoken in the personal address, such as at Mount Sinai...

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Reflections at 30

Today, for my 30th birthday, I decided to do something a little different. I decided to write on a few things I’m thankful for at 30. Five Things I’m thankful for The first thing I’m thankful at thirty for is for the grace of God. I’m thankful that Jesus saved me from my sin and adopted me as His child. I’m thankful for at thirty is how God used mistakes in my life to refine my character and make me the man I am today. The second thing I’m thankful for at thirty is my beautiful wife, Sarah. Outside of Jesus saving me, my wife is the best gift I’ve ever received from God. She is my best friend, my best advisor and closest confident. I love her more everyday and with every passing moment. My wife has been a voice of reason in many situations and circumstances. She has also been my greatest cheerleader and encouragement to me in serving within Servantsofgrace. She not only supports Servantsofgrace Ministries, but she has supported my work as a student- giving of her time to help me improve my writing (she’s extremely intelligent about English grammar). For this and for a hundred things, sweetheart, I want to thank God, and for His work in you for being such an awesome godly wife. I love you. The third thing I’m thankful for...

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The Power and Love of God

Synthesis and Outline of Psalm 62. Summary: God’s people sing Psalm 62 to foster confidence in the care of God, especially as they are faced with people who use power and wealth to oppress them. The temptation in such a case is either to despair or else to seek security in power and wealth rather than in God. The simplest way to follow the thought in the psalm is to observe how the addresses shift: from a description of “my soul” and God (vv.1-2), to speaking directly to and about the attackers (vv.3-4), then back to “my soul” and God (vv.5-7), on to exhorting the whole of the worshiping congregation (vv.8-10) and finally back to a description of God’s trustworthiness (vv.11-12). Outline: I.   My Soul Waits for God’s alone (Psalm 62:1-2). The Psalmist opens Psalm 62 by stressing how “my soul” relies on God in silence. A)    The Psalmist emphasizes that God is the only reliable hope (Psalm 62:1). B)    The description the Psalmist gives of a trusting soul is there to set an example for the people of God that every believer should aspire to the quiet faith he describes (Psalm 62:1-2). II. To the Attackers: We Know What You Want (Psalm 62:3-4). A)    The Psalmist speaks against those who attack a man using lies and injustice (Psalm 62:3) B)    The purpose of singing Psalm 62 is to...

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Boasting, Pride and Humility Part 2

Introduction In part one of our look on boasting (http://servantsofgrace.org/2011/02/23/boasting-pride-and-humility-part-1/) we learned the importance of humility and the dangers of pride. Today we are going to continue our study on boasting by looking at Galatians 6:4, 13-14, 2nd Thessalonians 1:4, James 1:9; 3:13, 4:16 and conclude by applying what we have learned about this topic. Galatians 6:4, 13-14 Galatians 6:4 falls within the broader context of Galatians 5:13-6:10 a section in Galatians in which Paul is instructing the Galatians on life in the Holy Spirit and love. Freedom from the law Paul teaches does not lead to libertinism, for believers by the power of the Spirit live a new life characterized by love. Test means to approve something after testing it. Believers first must be sure their lives are right with God before giving spiritual help to others (Matthew 7:3-5). If a believer rejoices or boasts, it should be only boasting in the Lord for what God has done in him (2 Cor. 10:12-18), not for what he supposedly has accomplished compared to other believers (1 Cor. 1:30-31).   Galatians 6:13-14 falls within the context of Galatians 6:11-18 a section in which Paul gives his final warning to the Galatians. Paul summarizes the main themes of the letter and challenges the reader to stay true to the gospel. To require circumcision according to Paul is to deny the cross...

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Boasting, Pride and Humility Part 1

Introduction Bost (halal, means “to praise”; kauchaomai, “to vaunt onself,” is used in a good and bad sense in the Bible. To praise God: “In God we have made our boast all day long” (Psalm 44:8); to praise oneself, to vaunt (Psalm 10:3). Paul describes what it means to boast in a good way in 2nd Corinthians 7:14, “Forwhatever boasts I made to him about you, I was not put to shame. But just as everything we said to youwas true, so also our boasting before Titus has proved true.” Paul also explains why boasting in the sense of self-righteousness is bad in Romans 2:17,23 and Ephesians 2:9. 2nd Corinthians 10:8, 13, 15, and 17 give the fullest picture of boasting in the New Testament. In today’s post we will look at 2nd Corinthians 10:8, 13, 10:15, 17, 11:30, 12:5-6, 12:9 and conclude by applying what we have learned. Tomorrow we will look at 12:9, Galatians 6:4, 13, 14, 2nd Thessalonians 1:4, James 1:9, 3:14, 4:16, and conclude by applying what we have learned. 2nd Corinthians 10:8, 13, 10:15, & 17 2nd Corinthians 10 falls within the context of 2nd Corinthians 10:1-13:10 which is Paul’s appeal to the rebellious minority in Corinth. This is the third major section of the letter, and Paul directly appeals to those who are still rejecting his gospel and apostolic authority. For in his...

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