There Were False Apostles

Not all apostles of the first century were true.  See 2 Corinthians 11:13 and Revelation 2:2 for two separate references.

The New Testament documents were written by true apostles, those who cared more about the Lord Jesus than they did their own lives.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The First Generation of Apostles Was the Last

There are no apostles in our day.  There have been no apostles since the ones we read about in the New Testament documents.  They were unique.

They were witnesses to the resurrected Lord Jesus Messiah.  They were sent by Him (John 17:18) that we might believe their message about Him (John 17:20).

Jesus did not commission apostles to establish an institution; rather, he commissioned apostles to deliver a  message.  And that they did.  We have a record of it in the New Testament documents, though we should also remember that it was the Old Testament documents which they considered authoritative.

Those who use the apostles as reason to justify an institution (whether it be a Greek Orthodox Church, a Roman Catholic Church, a Protestant Church, or any other kind of church), are misunderstanding and misrepresenting the apostles’ message.  The apostles proclaimed a Lord – and that Lord reigns forever.  He’s a person.  We are not to have our hearts set on an institution.

We today are privileged to declare the Lord and His presence to each other, but we should never forget the once-in-an-eternity apostles who first proclaimed the message of our resurrected Lord.  Because of their sacrifices, we know of the Great Sacrifice.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Jesus Appeared to Those Apostles Whom He Sent

Apostles were commissioned by an appearance of the resurrected Jesus.  This is true of the twelve, of James, of Paul, and of them all.  See 1 Corinthians 15:5-8, especially verse 7.  That is, He appeared to all the apostles.  This is what distinguished them from others.  This was special.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Jesus Sent the Apostles

The apostles were sent by Jesus to bring His message to the world – beginning with the Jews in Jerusalem.

The word “apostle” means in the original Greek “messenger,” “one sent on a mission.”  In fact, in the New Testament the word is sometimes translated as “messenger” or “sent.”

Apostles were chosen from among Jesus’ disciples (Luke 6:13).  Therefore, all apostles were disciples, but not all disciples were apostles.  In fact, relatively few disciples were apostles.

Most people know about the twelve initial apostles that Jesus chose.  Judas Isacariot betrayed Him, and was replaced by Matthias so that the number remained twelve.

Jesus, however, named additional apostles – most notably one Saul of Tarsus, whom we know through his letters in the New Testament as Paul.  He also named His earthly brothers James and Jude as apostles.  And there were others.

What all apostles have in common is that they were commissioned by Christ to spread His message.  Because of the persecution against Christ and His followers, this commission was in part a death sentence.  Thus there was no sense in His choosing anyone faint of heart or lacking in devotion.  Testifying to Christ was a death-defying act in that generation.  We can extol the courage of those who loved Him enough to proclaim His message to the death.  And that is one of the reasons why we can believe them.  (See Why the Bible Can Be Trusted.)

When we read the New Testament, we are reading from the words of those commissioned by Christ to tell His story.  We should listen.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Christology Versus Theology

Theology is the study of God.  Christology is the study of Christ.  Therefore, we do not need theology, we only need Christology.  For according to Hebrews 1:1-2, Christ is the heir of all things.  If He’s heir of “all things” that leaves nothing that He is not heir of.  As Jesus Himself said, the idea is that we would honor the Son as we had honored the Father (John 5:23).  And He also said in Matthew 11:27, “All things have been handed over to me by My Father.”  There are those “all things” again.

Therefore, Christology is the “heir of all things” that come from theology.  If you want to honor God, honor Christ.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

A Trinity-Consciousness Obscures a Christ-Consciousness

We saw yesterday that we need a Christ-consciousness in order to pursue a life free from sin.  A trinity conscious will not help because it is utterly confusing.

We need to see Christ crucified for our sakes and raised from the dead to appreciate the wonder of God’s love.  The trinity has two too many moving parts for us to concentrate on it.  The trinity idea won’t let you focus exclusively on Christ, which is what we are called to do (see, for example, 2 Corinthians 11:2-3).

Focus on Christ.  He died that you might serve Him as Lord in newness of life.  Do not clutter your mind with odd conceptions of God.  See Him as He appeared to us – as Jesus of Nazareth, humble and meek – yet Lord of all in His resurrection from the dead.

See also:

There Is No Trinity; There Is Christ

Posts to Date on the Trinity Versus Christ

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Christ Had a God-Consciousness but We Need a Christ-Consciousness

Jesus of Nazareth had a God-consciousness.  That is, he kept God in his awareness at all times.

This approach, however, will not work for us.  If it could work, then Christ would not have had to die for us.  God would simply have commanded us to keep an awareness of God and there would have been no need for a crucifixion.

We needed a sacrifice, a propitiation, someone to stand in the gap for us.  That’s someone that we can keep a consciousness of.  Because Christ died for us we can keep a constant consciousness of Him.  The image of Him dying on the cross gives us the strength to do right in a world of temptation to seek our own pleasures.

It is Jesus who saves His people from their sins (Matthew 1:21).  It is He who knew no sin who became sin for us that we might become the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21).  He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29).

And that’s why we should keep a Christ-consciousness where he kept a God-consciousness.  A God-consciousness just doesn’t carry the grace that a Christ-consciousness carries.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Scriptures Were Written About Messiah

The Scriptures were written not only to Messiah and for Him, they were also written about Him.  That’s where we get to benefit.  Because the Scriptures are about Messiah we can read them and learn about Him who rules and fills the world in which we live.

For this reason, when reading the Bible we should pay attention to the words “as to a lamp shining in a dark place until the day dawns and the morning star arises in our hearts” (2 Peter 1:19-21).  That dawning day is the increasing cognition of Jesus Christ Himself, the sun of righteousness (Malachi 4:2).  If we walk according to Him, then our path will be increasingly brightened by that increasing light (Proverbs 4:18).

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Scriptures Were Written For Messiah

Not only were the Hebrew Scriptures written to messiah, they were written for him.  That is, they were written so as to instruct and guide him regarding his mission and life with God.

Think of how many wrong purposes to which the Scriptures were put in Jesus’ time.  Only Jesus put them to their proper use because apparently only he knew what that proper use was.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Scriptures Were Written to Messiah

The Scriptures were written so that the descendant of David to be called messiah could grow up reading them and be shaped by them.  No other Jew would be able to appropriate their value like he would be able to do.

Think of Jesus of Nazareth, growing up, being shaped by the Scriptures that we call the Old Testament.  Look what happened when he took them seriously.  What would happen if we took them as seriously?

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Messianic Versus Christological

When we hear that something is “messianic” we think of something Jewish.   When we hear something is “christological” we don’t necessarily think of something Jewish – yet we should.

“Messianic” seems to carry connotations of the Old Testament and to look forward from there.  “Christological” seems to look backwards from today into the New Testament.

However, that which is messianic and that which is christological should be the same thing since messiah is simply the Greek word for the Hebrew term messiah.

If “messiah” seems to have a Jewish feel and “christological” seems to have a Gentile feel, we can know that we are thinking inappropriately about the biblical text.  The “Messiah” is the “Christ.”  There can be no separation.  Moreover, we should never try to remove either testament from its Jewish roots.  The biblical revelation of Jesus Christ is Jewish from beginning to end (John 4:22).

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Living the Life of Abraham

The apostle Paul encourages us to walk in the steps of Abraham, our father in faith.  This would mean walking before God blameless.  It would not mean going to church.  This Abraham did not do.  He would not worship the many gods around him.  He worshiped the one true God…and Him only.

Abraham walked before an omnipresent God.  He didn’t restrict his consciousness of God to certain times and places.  The only thing we have that Abraham didn’t is the awareness of the depths of God’s righteousness through Jesus Christ.  Abraham hoped to understand the full righteousness of God.  We have seen that fullness in Jesus Christ.  Therefore, we walk by faith in God just as Abraham did – we just have greater clarity of vision about the nature of that God.

Are you living the life of Abraham?  Or are you living the life of idolaters?

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

How All the Promises of God are “Yes and Amen” in Christ

2 Corinthians 1:20 famously says that in Christ all the promises of God are “Yes.”  Think about that.

The Scripture records various promises that God made to various people.  However, the greatest flow of promises extended to Abraham and his descendants so let’s focus there.

God made notable promises to Abraham.  Later He made additional notable promises to Abraham’s descendant David.  Therefore, descendants of David inherited all the promises to David plus all the promises to Abraham.  On the other hand, descendants of Abraham who were not descendants of David inherited fewer promises by comparison.  Jesus was a descendant of David and thus inherited the maximum number of promises.  Therefore, we who are descended from Christ inherit the maximum number of promises – that is, all of them.

Christ died for all that all might receive all the promises (2 Corinthians 5:14).  Through Christ you have access to all the promises of God.  Hebrews 4:1 exhorts us to not come short of receiving them.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Son Alone Is the One Through Whom God Speaks to Us

Hebrew 1:1-2 says that while God spoke in the past through prophets, God now speaks to us in His Son.  All revelation previously given through the Old Testament therefore now speaks to us of Jesus.  This can be seen in the experience of the disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-9).  There, they saw Moses and Elijah speaking with Jesus, but then Moses and Elijah were gone and only Jesus remained.  And thus it is: the Law and the Prophets have been subsumed into the revelation of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

For this reason Luke 16:16 says that the Law and the Prophets were preached until John the Baptist but since then the kingdom of God is preached.  Peter confirmed this in his second letter (1:17-21) when he alluded to the Mount of Transfiguration and went on to say that his readers should pay attention to the words of the prophets “as a lamp shining in a dark place until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts.”  That is, we are to pay attention to the Scriptures of the prophets until they blossom and speak to us of the mystery they’ve contained: that mystery revealed is Jesus Christ Himself.

For example, Moses is not described in the Scriptures primarily that we might learn about Moses but that we might learn about Christ – for he is a type of Christ.  Similarly, David is not written about in the Scriptures that we might know about David so much as we might know about the Son of David, Jesus our Lord.

Paul also confirmed this view of the Scriptures in Romans 16:25-27 when he wrote of the mystery of the Scriptures of the prophets that was being revealed in Jesus Christ.

It’s not that the Scriptures had no meaning as originally written.  On the contrary, they had great meaning.  Most of that meaning was to guide ancient Israel until the time of Messiah.  The revelation of Christ supersedes all that came before.  Its meaning is even more important.  Far more important.

Jesus Himself asked in John 5:39 why we search the Scriptures and do not find Him.

He who searches the Law and Prophets and finds anything other that a revelation of Jesus Christ has missed the greatest value that the Scriptures have to offer.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Isaiah 2:11

Isaiah 2:11 and Isaiah 2:17 end the same way:  “The Lord alone will be exalted in that day.”  What day is that?  The day of the Lord.

The day of the Lord has come (Jesus Christ Has Already Come Again).  Therefore, we are living in the day of the Lord.

If we are living in the day of the Lord then the Lord alone ought to be exalted.

If the Lord alone is to be exalted, why are we exalting pastors and other spiritual leaders?

And, by the way, who is the Lord?  Jesus Christ.  Then why is a ‘trinity” being exalted by some?

Let us exalt the Lord…and no one else.

See:  The Lord Is My Pastor

See also:

There Is No Trinity; There Is Christ

Posts to Date on the Trinity Versus Christ

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Rabbis and the Bishops

The rabbis and the bishops – they are essentially the same.

The rabbis watch over the synagogues while the bishops watch over the churches.  But a synagogue is a church, and a church is a synagogue.  Both terms can either refer to a gathering of people to worship God or a building for the same purpose.  Therefore, a rabbi is a bishop and a bishop is a rabbi.

There is no biblical plan for a synagogue as there is for Noah’s ark or Moses tabernacle.  And what is true of the synagogue in this regard is true of the church as well – that is, no plan for building or maintaining one.

The rabbis say the messiah hasn’t come and the bishops say he hasn’t come again.

The rabbis and the bishops have more in common than either group realizes.

Would that all the rabbis and bishops would seek the kingdom of God.  If they did, they’d proclaim the Messiah of Israel and let their people go to Him.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The New Testament Is Comprised of “Internal” Documents

Skeptics today will complain that the New Testament documents don’t do a good enough job making the case for Jesus Christ and His resurrection.  In doing so, such skeptics often set a standard for proof that is entirely inappropriate.  This would include expecting the documents to speak to us as if they were written for a time capsule to be opened and read two thousand years after the fact.

The 27 ancient writings that we call the New Testament were written by believers to believers.  Therefore, they don’t go out of their way to make the case for Christ because it had already been made to, and accepted by, those for whom the documents were written.

The New Testament can tell us a great deal about  Christ, especially given how it elucidates the Old Testament documents.  However, it cannot very well do this if we first demand that the documents be written as if to unbelieving skeptics.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Authority of God Versus the Authority of People

The Scriptures are the word of God.  Thus they carry the authority of God.

Church interpretation is not the word of God, and therefore its pronouncements don’t carry the authority of God.  With as many different church denominations as there are, how could they all be speaking for God?

Let the word of God be authoritative in your life.  Please Him, not any of the rest of us.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

“Thus saith the Lord” Versus “Thus Saith Us”

The Scriptures were written in a spirit of “Thus saith the Lord.”  Holy men moved by the Spirit of God communicated to others on His behalf.  See 2 Peter 1:21.

Church councils (from the early ones like Nicene to the more recent ones like Vatican II) pronounce their decrees in the name of the church and not in the name of God.  Church hierarchies don’t have the nerve to speak in the name of the Lord.  They know better.  They rely on the safety of numbers for their authority.  Theirs truly is the “voice of the people” ( Vox Populi) and not “the voice of God” (Vox Dei).  Such spiritual leaders depend on “the consent of the governed” for the authority they have.  One word of God would fell them.

Churches want to be the mediator between you and the word of God.  Whether it is the word of God in the Scriptures, or the word of God in your heart, do not let churches or their leaders take this place of mediation.  You need to do what God says; not what people say.

This, of course, is not to disregard human authority altogether.  Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s.  But when it comes to God, no one should have your heart but Him.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Great Divide…Between the Biblical Age and the Institutional Church Age

The Bible is a Jewish book – from beginning to end, Old Testament through New Testament.

If we’re going to understand the New Testament, we have to look backwards into the Old Testament.  This is because the New Testament is a Jewish proclamation that builds on the Jewish proclamation we call the Old Testament (or the Hebrew Bible).

The institutional church which rose up after the New Testament age brings a different ethos to biblical study – and often it is not helpful.  The institutional church and its councils come from a background of Gentile thinking.  This mindset often misses the Jewish (i.e. Hebraistic) modes of thought that produced the Scriptures.

Therefore, this “Great Divide” is the Jewish mindset that produced the Scriptures versus the Gentile mindset that has sought to understand them.  Perhaps a more important aspect of this divide is that the Scriptures were written with a “Thus saith the Lord” approach while the institutional church interprets with “Thus saith such-and-such church council.”  There’s a world of difference and that’s why it’s worth calling it a “Great Divide.”

Don’t try to read the Bible through the lens of the Nicene Council or the Protestant Reformation or Vatican II.  Rather read the Scriptures as historically Jewish documents.  Understand them in that way, and you will begin to understand them rightly.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

When He Came to Be Glorified in His Saints on That Day

In 2 Thessalonians 1:10, Paul writes to the disciples in Thessalonica telling them that the day of Christ’s coming will be one when He is glorified in their hearts.  That is, Christ will be exalted in His saints – those who are holy.  (The word “saint” means “holy one.”)  He had said in the immediately preceding verses that those who did not know God, those who did not obey the gospel, would be found away from the presence of the Lord.  Thus, what made the difference between sheep and goats (see Matthew 25:31-46) was holiness.  This, of course, is consistent with the promise (prophecy, exhortation) made in Hebrews 12:14 that only peaceable and righteous souls would see the Lord on that day.

Why then do people continue to insist that the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ would be a “visible” event to all?

Jesus Christ Has Already Come Again

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Galatians 6:8

Why do people believe in a bodily return of Jesus Christ to the earth?  It is because they are fleshly minded.

Paul writes that we shall reap eternal life from the spirit, not from the flesh.

When Christ returned, those who were spiritual knew it in their spirits.  Those who were fleshly missed it altogether.  See Jeremiah 17:5-8.

Jesus Christ Has Already Come Again

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

What Is God Saying to Us?

God is saying to us, “Jesus Christ!”  Everything God says to us while we are on this earth can be summed up in that expression: “Jesus Christ.”  That expression says so much more than we have allowed it to say.  Every prayer should begin and end with our perception that Jesus Christ is the answer to our prayer.  In Jesus Christ, God communicates to us who He is, who we are, and what we are to do.  We need to let the name of Jesus Christ speak to us the fullness of all that God has to say to us.

Do not be distracted by all that is going on around you and in you.  Jesus Christ is the answer.

See also: Psalm 119:28, which elaborates on this theme.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The New Testament Is Every Bit as Jewish as the Old Testament

Question: Which testament was written by Jews about a Jewish God and a Jewish Messiah?

A. The Old Testament

B.  The New Testament

C. Both

(Answer:  C)

As you’ll see when you look it up, Jesus said in John 4:22, “Salvation is from the ______.”

Books of the Bible should never be ripped from their context.  We should never attempt to understand the New Testament books part from the Old Testament books that give them context.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

The Dying Breath of Ancient Israel

The New Testament is every bit as Jewish as the Old Testament.

In the New Testament we have the account of the last days of Ancient Israel.  With its dying breath, she said, “Pay attention to the son I am bearing – the Son of God!”

She died giving birth, as had Rachel so many years before.

Let us pay attention forever to the Messiah to whom ancient Israel gave birth.

“He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life.”  (1 John 5:12)

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Hebrews 13:7

Hebrews 13:7 says that we should imitate the faith of those who brought the word of God to us.  Why then when we look to the Scriptures do we try to imitate what they did instead of their faith?

Paul did not take up the sword as David had done.  Peter did not build a temple as Solomon had done.  Each new generation must imitate the faith of its fathers, but not necessarily the actions of its fathers.

Why should we be trying to build a church like the one we see in the Bible?  We might just as well try to build a tabernacle for animal sacrifice like the one we see in the Bible.

Chapter 11 of Hebrews lists off all sorts of things that great biblical figures did by faith.  Read it and see that there is hardly any action we are to repeat (March around Jericho, anyone?).  Rather, it is faith that is the common denominator, and it is that faith we are to imitate.

The first-century church was preparing for the kingdom of God.  That kingdom has come.  Let us seek it…and see what they seeking leads us to do.

See also:  Seeking the Kingdom of God Instead of Church

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Church Is a “Yoke Which Neither We Nor Our Fathers Have Been Able to Bear”

Peter said that the Law of Moses was a yoke which Jews had not been able to bear (Acts 15:10).  Thus he embraced the yoke of Christ instead (Matthew 11:28-30).

It is not as though we want to live without a yoke.  That would amount to lawlessness.  He who wears no yoke wears no restraint.  By contrast, we want to constantly wear the yoke of Christ because it is easy and His load is light.

See also:

Yoked to Christ or to the Church?

The Contrast Between Law and Grace

The Yoke of Jesus Versus the Yoke of Church

The Yoke of Grace Versus the Yoke of Law

The Church Is in Rebellion Against Jesus

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Going to Church Makes You a Churchian, not a Christian

Going to church qualifies you as a churchian or churchgoer – not as a Christian.  To be called a Christian (as believers were in the book of Acts), you’d need to act like Christ.

Does anyone think you’re like Christ?

More important, do you think you’re like Christ?

Most important, does He think you’re like Him?

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.

Who Can Replicate First-Century Church Experience?

Periodically, members of the institutional church will try to be like the first-century church.  Thus we have the Pentecostal churches, Charismatic churches, house churches, and so on.  In spite of all claims to the contrary, no church succeeds in imitating that first one.  Whatever resemblances exist are either superficial or fleeting.

That first-century church gave its life for the Lord.  They sold their property and gave up the proceeds that others might eat.  They routinely experienced outpourings of the Holy Spirit and miracles.  If anyone was sick, they were encouraged to seek prayer so that they would be healed…and there’s no evidence that they were disappointed in that regard as so many are in our day.

We should not be trying to imitate the first-century church – or any church, for that matter.  We should be trying to imitate the Lord.  This is what those who were part of the first-century church did.  And this is what they told us to do.  See, for example, 1 Peter 2:21, 1 Corinthians 11:1, or 1 John 2:6..

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.