Rev. Dr. D.ana L. Goodnough.
Fix Your Eyes On Jesus
The Church and God's Kingdom
There’s a well-worn adage that pastors work only one day a week. The corollary to this concept, in reference to sermons, is that they work too long on that day! These humorous quips raise the legitimate question, “What do pastors do?” While there is room for a variety of styles and personalities in the ways in which different pastors fulfill their pastoral calling, there are certain responsibilities of that calling that the New Testament clearly spells out. Based on the titles for pastors, the examples of pastoral ministry in the early church, and the New Testament commands to pastors, the pastor’s “job description” is recorded in the pages of Scripture.
The Imminent Return of Jesus Christ
A Tribute to the King James Version of the Bible on its 400th Birthday
Jesus Christ is coming again. The second coming of Christ is a basic doctrine of the Christian faith. However, the timing of Christ‟s return is a mystery. While Christians wonder when Jesus will come again, God has not revealed this part of His plan for the future, nor has He promised to satisfy our curiosity. However, God has clearly revealed that Jesus could return at any moment. The idea that Jesus‟ return could occur at any time is called the doctrine of “imminency.” Jesus‟ coming is imminent.
Marriage Regulations in the Bible
The Meaning of the Gospel
The New Testament Basis for Ordination
Justification - A Word Study
God is a forgiving God. He sent His Son, Jesus, to die for our sins and offer forgiveness. Therefore, it may seem surprising to discover that the Bible describes a sin that‟s unforgivable. Of course, not all sins are ultimately forgiven. Those who reject Jesus Christ continue in their sinful condition and will do so throughout eternity. Still, there is one sin that stretches beyond forgiveness. This “unpardonable sin” is described in several passages of the New Testament and presents an interpretive challenge to students of God‟s Word.
The term “justification” along with its related forms—just, justify, righteous, and righteousness—holds a significant place in Christian theology. Believers everywhere depend on God’s justifying work in their lives. For these reasons it’s essential for Christians to clearly understand the meaning of the word group that refers to justification.
The Unpardonable Sin
How does the church relate to the kingdom of God? A study of the relationship between kingdom and ecclesiological terminology reveals that the church continues to hold a prominent position of responsibility and blessing in the outworking of God’s kingdom plan. It forms one layer of the kingdom of God as described in the Bible.
Although a relatively recent system of theology,1 dispensationalism has become a helpful and influential approach to interpreting the Bible. Gerstner, no friend of dispensationalism, acknowledges, “Dispensationalism has produced a large body of literature, a great number of schools, and many Christian movements. Its adherents have constituted if not the backbone, at least much of the bony structure of American theological conservatism for the past hundred years.”2 What is dispensationalism and how can it help the Christian better understand and apply God’s Word?
The process by which the church identifies spiritual leaders is called ordination. Ordination is an essential function of the body of Christ, and has its basis in the teachings of the New Testament. While every believer is “ordained” to eternal life and the responsibilities of general Christian service, God has set apart some believers to carry out special functions in the church. The church has the responsibility and the privilege of identifying those who are called into the ministry and acknowledging that call through ordination.
Canonization of the New Testament
First published in 1611, the King James Version of the Bible has held a favored position in the hearts of many Christians through the centuries. Its rhythms and phrases still influence church rituals, Christian language, and worship songs. While modern translations have become more widely accepted and made the Bible easier to comprehend, the King James Version still speaks today.
While each of the Synoptic Gospels records Peter‘s great confession in which he declared that Jesus is the Messiah, only Matthew includes Jesus‘ response to Peter. In Matthew 16:18, Jesus said to Peter, ―You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church.‖ But who or what was the ―rock‖ to which Jesus referred?
“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy” is one of the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:8). But what is the Sabbath, and how are Christians to honor the Sabbath today? The principle of the Sabbath implies the need for physical and spiritual rest. Everyone benefits from a break in their work routines, and Christians benefit greatly from a time of spiritual rest and refreshment.
The gospel is good news. In fact, that’s what the word itself means, a good story or message.1 The Greek term translated “gospel” is evangelion, from which we get our words “evangel” and “evangelism.” The verb form, evangelizo, is the base for our word “evangelize.” The gospel is the core message of the Christian faith. But what is that message?
What Do Pastors Do?
The gospel in its simplest terms is the life-changing message of Jesus’ death and resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). Jesus died for our sins and rose to give us life. We enter into that life through faith in this simple message. Technically, the English term “gospel” comes from the Anglo Saxon word godspell which means “good story.” 1 This term reflects the New Testament Greek word euangelion, or “good news,” 2 from which we get our word “evangelism.” The gospel is good news. Since Christians have entered into life with God through faith in this good news it only makes sense to share this good news with others. Often it’s best to communicate the gospel message with illustrations from everyday life. In fact, the Bible itself uses several illustrations that Christians today can adapt in their own evangelistic efforts.3
Every society has found it necessary to regulate marriage. The Old Testament contains marriage regulations that God mandated for the ancient Israelites, many of which have carried down to modern society. In addition, the New Testament teaches the validity of certain marriage restrictions for Christians. As contemporary society wrestles with its Judeo-Christian marriage standards, it’s important for God’s people to revisit the biblical descriptions and restrictions regarding marriage.
A Journal Devoted to the Study of God's Word
Biblical Gospel Illustrations
Canonization refers to the process that took place when the early church identified those writings that bore the mark of divine inspiration. Our New Testament contains twenty-seven distinct books. How did these twenty-seven books come to be viewed as holy Scripture, and how were other early church writings excluded from the canon of Scripture?
Upon this Rock