Category Archives: Around the web

Wisdom of “old stuff” – Heidelberg Catechism question #1

Heidelberger Katechismus 1563.jpg
By http://heidelblog.files.wordpress.com/2009/01/catechismus1563.jpg, Public Domain, Link

Having grown up “low church” I didn’t encounter creeds, confessions, and catechisms until much later in life. I’ve seen the Heidelberg catechism question number 1 show up in some worship services in the last handful of years as part of the responsive reading within the liturgy.

In our 21st century minds, it is easy to think all the “new” stuff is the best stuff and to dismiss the “old.”

Take a look at the reflections below from the 16th Century. If truth is capital T truth then it should stand the test of time.

What do you think?

Q. What is your only comfort in life and in death?
A. That I am not my own(1), but belong – body and soul, in life and in death(2) – to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ(3). He has fully paid for all my sins with his precious blood(4), and has set me free from the tyranny of the devil(5). He also watches over me in such a way(6) that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my Father in heaven(7); in fact, all things must work together for my salvation(8). Because I belong to him, Christ, by his Holy Spirit, assures me of eternal life(9) and makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready from now on to live for him(10).

1 1 Cor. 6:19-20
2 Rom. 14:7-9
3 1 Cor. 3:23; Titus 2:14
4 1 Pet. 1:18-19; 1 John 1:7-9; 2:2
5 John 8:34-36; Heb. 2:14-15; 1 John 3:1-11
6 John 6:39-40; 10:27-30; 2 Thess. 3:3; 1 Pet. 1:5
7 Matt. 10:29-31; Luke 21:16-18
8 Rom. 8:28
9 Rom. 8:15-16; 2 Cor. 1:21-22; 5:5; Eph. 1:13-14
10 Rom. 8:1-17

Bible Project: Heaven & Earth

Just recently heard about a team of animators working with theologians to share about the teachings of the Bible.

In the video below, they discuss what is heaven and what is earth.

What do you think?

The Bible Project has many more videos some to explain important ideas in the Bible and in others exploring specific portions of the Bible.

 

Tim Keller on Jeremiah 29:1-14

Always on the look out for material that explains the Bible and how it helps us live for God.  Recently came across this sermon from NY Redeemer Pastor Tim Keller. In the sermon below, he challenges us to consider how we can live for Christ in the city.

What evangelical protestants could think of Mary?

As Protestant Evangelicals, we view the emphasis in Catholicism on Mary as somewhat strange. However, might there be some lessons we could gain from a closer look at Mary?

Check out this podcast over at Christianity Today.

In the discussion, what comes across is how Mary is an incredible model of discipleship.

Check and out and see what you think?

Trying to Describe Christ: One Person

Talbot Seminary Biola University Professor Fred Sanders discusses that Christ is One Person with Two Natures.

HYPOSTATIC UNION.

What do you think?

It certainly isn’t easy to get our minds around it but this seems to be the best description of what the Scriptures tell us.

Trying to describe Christ: Two Natures

With the Christmas season upon us, ever consider how we attempt to “describe” Jesus? In the video below, Biola University Talbot Seminary Professor Fred Sanders gives a talk about the Two Natures of Christ.

What do you think of the boundaries of Chalcedon as a way of guiding our thinking of Christ?

Did Jesus Exist?

With Christmas just around the corner, there are usually feature articles in magazines or television shows that examines the historical aspects of Jesus. Some will be quite skeptical while others may give the Biblical version of events a fair hearing.

Linked here is an item from Bible Archeology Review that tackles that question in somewhat longer form than your typical items in a popular magazine.

Here are a few excepts to whet your appetite to look over the whole thing:

The sources normally discussed fall into three main categories: (1) classical (that is, Greco-Roman), (2) Jewish and (3) Christian. But when people ask whether it is possible to prove that Jesus of Nazareth actually existed, as John P. Meier pointed out decades ago, “The implication is that the Biblical evidence for Jesus is biased because it is encased in a theological text written by committed believers. What they really want to know is: Is there extra-Biblical evidence … for Jesus’ existence?” Therefore, this article will cover classical and Jewish writings almost exclusively.

[………]

Tacitus’s terse statement about “Christus” clearly corroborates the New Testament on certain historical details of Jesus’ death. Tacitus presents four pieces of accurate knowledge about Jesus: (1) Christus, used by Tacitus to refer to Jesus, was one distinctive way by which some referred to him, even though Tacitus mistakenly took it for a personal name rather than an epithet or title; (2) this Christus was associated with the beginning of the movement of Christians, whose name originated from his; (3) he was executed by the Roman governor of Judea; and (4) the time of his death was during Pontius Pilate’s governorship of Judea, during the reign of Tiberius. (Many New Testament scholars date Jesus’ death to c. 29 C.E.; Pilate governed Judea in 26–36 C.E., while Tiberius was emperor 14–37 C.E.)

[……..]

We can learn quite a bit about Jesus from Tacitus and Josephus, two famous historians who were not Christian. Almost all the following statements about Jesus, which are asserted in the New Testament, are corroborated or confirmed by the relevant passages in Tacitus and Josephus. These independent historical sources—one a non-Christian Roman and the other Jewish—confirm what we are told in the Gospels

[……..]

As far as we know, no ancient person ever seriously argued that Jesus did not exist.33 Referring to the first several centuries C.E., even a scholar as cautious and thorough as Robert Van Voorst freely observes, “… [N]o pagans and Jews who opposed Christianity denied Jesus’ historicity or even questioned it.”