Archives For Theology

In Acts 2:38 Peter told a crowd of people, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” The question we will consider today is this: Was Peter telling the people to be baptized in order to be forgiven or was he telling them to be baptized because they were already forgiven?

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Are We Saved by Faith Alone?

Wes  —  October 4, 2017

As this is a very well-known and oft-used phrase, let’s pretend someone asked me, “Wes, do you believe a person is saved by faith alone?” I actually would not answer with either a “yes” or a “no” answer. Here is how I would answer the question of whether or not we are saved by faith alone.

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Does the Bible Condone Slavery?

Wes  —  September 6, 2017

When it comes to slavery and the Bible, it can be quite an uncomfortable conversation. Does the Bible condemn slavery? Does it approve of slavery? Were Christian slave-owners in the United States justified in owning slaves? Let’s discuss that topic briefly.

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I would be surprised if there was anyone who had thought seriously about the claims of the gospel and not had some doubts. If we are honest about what the Bible asks us to accept, there will be times when we say, “Could all this really be true?” I’ve experienced times like that and I’ve known plenty of mature Christians – leaders in the church – who’ve gone through seasons of doubt and come out stronger on the other side. Here are four things you can do when you have doubts:

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In every culture, there are biblical principles and practices that are culturally acceptable; things to which even non-believers say, “Yes, that’s a great idea. Everyone should live like that.” And there are other principles and practices non-believers find reprehensible, saying, “I’ll never accept that.” Here are a few thoughts about the biblical doctrines non-believers find acceptable and the doctrines they find reprehensible.

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Occasionally I will hear people criticize others in a Bible study for saying things like, “I think this passage means…” I’ve even been criticized for saying, “I think…” in sermons. The critics say, “It doesn’t matter what you think, it only matters what the passage says.” But the words, “I think…” actually play a very important role in discussions about the Bible. So here are some reasons to keep saying, “I think…” when studying the Bible.

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There are many people with an unhealthy view of God. Some people believe God is an angry tyrant with unreasonable expectations for mankind, ready to strike people dead at any moment. They believe His primary characteristics are wrath and fury. While it is sad people feel this way, it is equally heartbreaking that others believe the God of the Bible has no rules or expectations for mankind and will punish no one. We must have a balanced and biblical understanding of God’s character.

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If we are going to restore New Testament Christianity, then I believe we need to restore a biblical emphasis on the Return of our King. As Christians, the Return of Jesus is our hope. It is what we should be longing for (2 Timothy 4:8). But many of us don’t long for His appearing, because we don’t understand the pivotal role the Return plays in the Christian story. Here are a few things we can expect when Jesus comes back.

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People tell me all the time, their main goal in life is to go to heaven when they die. In fact, I’m quite certain I’ve said the exact same thing before. I’ve always thought that was the very best goal a person could have, but I’ve changed my mind. The more I think about that phrase, and especially the context in which it is usually stated, the more I think it often reveals a misunderstanding deep in our hearts. Here are a few thoughts on having heaven as a our main goal in life.

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We often say things like, “We’re all sinners.” Or, “I’m a sinner, the same as anyone else.” There is certainly some truth to those statements. We are certainly all guilty of sin and we all still struggle with sin. However, the Bible doesn’t really use the word “sinner” to refer to faithful Christians. Let’s talk about why Christians aren’t called sinners and why it may be detrimental to your life to think of yourself as a sinner.

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