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Category: Bible Study (page 9 of 25)

Seeking a Great Name

There is a desire amongst humans to have a great name.  We want people to know who we are.  We want to be remembered when we are gone.  We like for people to think we were one of the best in our fields.  We desire that when our name is mentioned individuals connect it with prestige.

Social media has made this desire even keener.  We want to feel important, or want people to recognize us.  Facebook, twitter, and other outlets can fuel this desire for a name.

Seeking a name for ourselves is not something that only affects our culture.  Rather it crosses over all barriers of time, place, and ethnicity.  It is a universal issue.

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Fellowship with God

The Holy God wants to have close relationships with human beings. He wants to accept them, be close to them, and redeem them. This close relationship is called fellowship in the Bible.

All fellowship is based on the redemptive work of Christ. Were it not for the cross and the resurrection, we could not have a  relationship with God. Christ was made sin on our behalf, so that we might become righteous through him. A human being comes into God’s fellowship when he/she hears and obeys the gospel of Christ. John wrote, “What we  have seen and heard we proclaim to you, so that you may have fellowship with us.” As Peter shared the words of life so that Cornelius and his household might be saved, so we must share the message of the gospel so that others might have fellowship. When people hear, understand, decide to submit to  Christ, and obey Christ by being baptized into his death, such people enter into divine fellowship.

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What does the Bible say about Demons?

Demons are evil spirits which follow the will of their prince, Satan (Matthew 12:24; Ephesians 2:2). The Bible does not explain how they came to be, except to say that God is the creator of all things originally, both spiritual and physical, and that he created everything good in the beginning (Colossians 1:16; Genesis 1:31). According to the Old Testament, the idolatry which was so vehemently condemned by God in the Old Testament, involved the worship of demons (Deuteronomy 32:17; Psalm 106:37; 1 Corinthians 10:20-22). Demons are evil spiritual beings with an influence over many people.

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Christian Ministries

The ministries of the church are ordained by God to carry out divinely ordained functions in God’s purpose. Some of the ministries of the church are catholic and eternal. Others are local and limited to specific needs of the church in a given place. Consider the following ministries ordained by God.

First, there are the ministries of apostle and prophet. These ministries head the list of “gifts” that were given by Christ to the church “for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ,” (Eph. 4:11-12; 1 Corinthians 12:28). These ministries were catholic or universal in their scope, not limited to any particular location. The church universal is “built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets,” because God gave the revelation of his word to the apostles and prophets (Ephesians 3:3-5). Only a limited number of apostles were chosen by Jesus, and the gift of prophecy was also a time-limited gift (1 Cor. 13:8-10). The universal ministry of the apostles and prophets had to do with the revelation of God’s word and the establishment of the mission, worship, and doctrine of the church for all time. The teaching of these individuals is authoritative, carrying the authority of Christ himself (Matthew 16:19; 18:18; Acts 2:42; 1 Corinthians 14:37; 2 Thess. 2:15; 3:6,14; Galatians 1:8-9; 2 Peter 3:2,15-16; 1 John 4:6).

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A Misuse of Romans 10:17

“So belief cometh of hearing and hearing by the word of Christ,” (Romans 10:17 ASV). Among the many proof texts popular among us, Romans 10:17 is often used to demonstrate that doing something by faith means doing as one has been instructed to do in the word of God. While this principle is certainly true, the passage under consideration does not support this principle. One would be better served to support the aforementioned argument by a study of the eleventh chapter of Hebrews.

Romans 10:17 actually says something entirely different when allowed to speak from its own context. In Romans, Paul makes a case for the gospel as the only means of salvation (Romans 1:16-17). This is true, says Paul, because in the gospel is revealed the “righteousness of God” which comes to man by faith, not by works (Romans 1:17; 3:21-22; 4:4-5). Man without Christ, left to pursue righteousness by his own works, is left to a hopeless task. This is true because all people have sinned, whether Jew or Gentile, and violated the law to which they are responsible (Romans 2:12-16; 3:10,23). Because all have sinned, no person can be justified or “made righteous” by their own keeping of the law of God (Romans 3:20). Rather than trusting in our ability to keep God’s commandments perfectly, which even Paul could not do, we must put our trust in the cleansing blood of Jesus and the “righteousness of God,” (Romans 3:21-26; 7:14-25). In Romans 10, Paul laments the fact that many of his Jewish brethren have failed to find the salvation that is in Christ. This is true, says Paul, because “being ignorant of God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own righteousness, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God,” (Romans 10:3). Then he says, “For Christ is the end of law unto righteousness to everyone who believes,” (Romans 10:4). All who come to Jesus are freed from law as a system of justification. The result is righteousness for them, but not their own righteousness. It is the righteousness of God, given by God.

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