Terminology Tuesday: Penance (Heresy)

Just another work-based heresy by the Roman Catholic Church:

*In the Catholic tradition, the sacrament of reconciliation by which the penitent person is reconciled to God and the church through forgiveness of sin. Often such reconciliation comes after the penitent sinner performs some prescribed act as an indication of repentance.

A holy relationship with God only is made possible through faith in the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, not by our works! Read Ephesians 2: 8 (NASB)

For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;

Also Romans 4: 4-6 9NASB)

 Now to the one who works, his wage is not credited as a favor, but as what is due. 5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness, 6 just as David also speaks of the blessing on the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:

Please pray for the Roman Catholic to see the true gospel of Jesus Christ.

*Stanley J. Grenz, David Guretzki &, Cherith Fee Nordling, Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999), p. 90

God Bless

Brian Mason

I am sorry

beaconapologetics:

This puts things into perspective…. Please follow her blog. Caroline is writing a book, I can’t wait for it to be done!
God Bless

Originally posted on Beautiful Life with Cancer:

I am sorry that I have not been more helpful. I should have a long list of the handicapped (physically, socially, mentally, financially, etc.) that are my close friends. I am sorry that I have not been more giving. I personally own entirely too much. I am sorry that I have not been more thoughtful. I am constantly thinking about number one. I am sorry that I have not been more truthful. It hurts to think of all the people I have come in contact with that I have not shared with them the truth of the Bible. I am sorry that I have not been more patient. I too easily turn to gossip. I am sorry that people have not looked at me and fallen on their knees because of the love of God shining through me. I am sorry. I am forever sorry.

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Did Jesus’ Disciples Steal His Body From The Tomb?

It is a common assertion by non-believers that the disciples of Jesus stole His body from the tomb. It sounds possible until you research the lives of the disciples. There are several aspects of the followers of Christ, the believers in Jesus and His Word.

First you must remember that on the night of the Jesus’ arrest they didn’t fathom that He was going to die! They didn’t know He was going to be raised from the dead.

Read John 13: 36-37 (NASB)
36 Simon Peter *said to Him, “Lord, where are You going?” Jesus answered, “Where I go, you cannot follow Me now; but you will follow later.” 37 Peter *said to Him, “Lord, why can I not follow You right now? I will lay down my life for You.” 

They were at a loss and surprised not knowing what to think when they saw the empty tomb, not knowing that Jesus was risen.

Read John 20: 8-9 (NASB)
8 So the other disciple who had first come to the tomb then also entered, and he saw and believed. 9 For as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead. 

Also these men were extremely honest individuals that were afraid of the Jewish authorities as attested by them hiding away.

Read John 20: 19
19 So when it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, …

It simply does not make sense that these men could have stolen from a tomb that was strongly guarded. To the end of their lives they did not say it was a hoax, in fact they went to their deaths martyred and tortured. You would think that they would have confessed to avoid such a fate.

If the body was stolen, where was is taken? How would the “thieves” get around the heavily guarded entrance to the tomb? If the Roman Army located His body, don’t you think that it would be paraded around the city proclaiming a false Messiah?

The answer is that Jesus the Son of Man was raised from the dead after three days. There were eyewitnesses to His risen body.

Read John 20: 19-23 (NASB)
19 So when it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and *said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20 And when He had said this, He showed them both His hands and His side. The disciples then rejoiced when they saw the Lord.21 So Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them and *said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained.”

Fall to your knees! Jesus Christ is King!

God Bless

Brian Mason

Terminology Tuesday: Covenant, Covenant Theology

*Covenant refers to the act of God in freely establishing a mutually binding relationship with humankind. Through the covenant God bestows blessings on humans in conditional and unconditional terms. Conditionally, God blesses humans as they obey the terms of the covenant. God made covenants with Noah, Abraham, Moses and David. But above all, God has fulfilled these covenants and has inaugurated the New Covenant in Christ, which is for all people who trust in Him (Heb 9: 15, 27-28). Covenant theology is the system of theology that centers on God as a covenant-making God and sees in the history of creation two great covenants: the covenant of works and the covenant of grace. Covenant theology asserts that prior the the Fall God made a covenant of works with Adam as the representative of all humankind. In response to Adam’s disobedience God established a new covenant through the second Adam, Jesus Christ. Those who place their faith in Christ come under the benefits of this new covenant of grace.

God Bless

Brian Mason

*Stanley J. Grenz, David Guretzki &, Cherith Fee Nordling, Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999), p. 132

Terminology Tuesday: Typology

Differing from a symbol or an allegory, a typology is a representation of an actual, historical reference. According to Christian exegesis, biblical typology deals with the parallels between actual, historical (usually OT) figures or events in salvation history and their later, analogous fulfillment. Often NT events and figures are typologically understood and interpreted according to an OT pattern (e.g., creation and the new creation, Adam and Christ, the exodus and NT concepts of salvation). On this basis typology became one of the four prevalent ways (together with the literal, the analogical and the spiritual) of interpreting Scripture in the Middle Ages.

God Bless

Brian Mason

*Stanley J. Grenz, David Guretzki &, Cherith Fee Nordling, Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999), p. 117

A Reply To Unbelievers on the Resurrection:

How do you have witnesses to the resurrection? The disciples didn’t even see Him rise from the dead. They saw Him after He had risen as it was evidenced by the wounds in His hands and His side when He appeared to them. The disciples were the ones who had spent years with Him and watching Him do miracles and watching Him heal the sick and teaching great wisdom and love and needed to see Him. After Jesus was crucified their faith in Him was destroyed. Jesus needed appear to them in order to establish the truth of who He said He was, God in flesh (John 8:24).

Non believers simply will not believe, thus (non-believers). However there is a writing from Josephus about Jesus. This is from his writing in AD 66 and is an extra-biblical source:

“Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man; for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was [the] Christ. And when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men among st us, had condemned him to the cross, (9) those that loved him at the first did not forsake him; for he appeared to them alive again the third day; (10) as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him. And the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.”

Although some questions arose about it favoring Jesus too much asserting it could be unauthenticate but I add that that assertion has never been proven. However the real issue of the resurrection deals with the evidence. Evidence that consists of the testimony of many people who professed that they had seen the risen Jesus.As well the same people who testified to the resurrection of Christ also gave up their economic and social security and their lives were put on the line in order to proclaim that Jesus had risen. They were persecuted and murdered.

God Bless

Brian Mason

Evidence For The Resurrection Pt 2.

In continuance of a defense for the Resurrection I recommend a real good publication on the subject. It is a book written by Gary Habermas and summarizes 1400 plus scholarly writings on the subject of Jesus’ resurrection dating between 1975 and 2003. In Habermas’ book *“The Risen Jesus and Future Hope” it appears that from “Bible Thumping” conservatives to “super-liberals” have agreed on these historical facts:

1. Jesus died by Roman Crucifixion

2. Jesus was buried, most likely in a private tomb

3. Soon afterward the disciples were discouraged, bereaved, and despondent, having lost hope

4. Jesus’ tomb was found empty very soon after his interment

5. The disciples had experiences that they believed were real actual appearances of the risen Jesus

6. Due to these experiences, the disciples’ lives were thoroughly transformed. They were even willing to die for their belief

7. The proclamation of the Resurrection took place very early, from the beginning of church history

8. The disciples’ public testimony and preaching of the Resurrection took place in the city of Jerusalem, where Jesus had been crucified and buried shortly before.

9. The gospel message centered on the death and resurrection of Jesus

10. Sunday was the primary day for gathering and worshiping

11. James, the brother of Jesus and a skeptic before this time, was converted when he also saw the risen Jesus

12. Just a few years later, Saul of Tarsus (Paul) became a Christian believer, due to an experience that he also believed was an appearance of the risen Jesus


Take in consideration the above while recalling:

1. The New Testament is not a fabrication of fertile minds

2. The New Testament was written within two generations of the actual events

3. The New Testament names many historical people confirmed in other written sources

4. The actual eyewitnesses suffered persecution and death for what they claimed they experienced

5. The sufferings of the eyewitnesses could have been avoided if they denounced their claims

“Thousands and tens of thousands have gone through the evidence which attests the resurrection of Christ, piece by piece, as carefully as ever a judge summed up on the most important case. I have myself done it many times over, not to persuade others, but to satisfy myself. I have been used for many years to study the history of other times, and to examine and weigh the evidence of those who have written about them, and I know of no fact in the history of mankind which is proved by better and fitter evidence and every kind.”
– Thomas Arnold
British Educator and Historian

And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also
vain … And if Christ be not raised, your faith [is] vain; ye are yet in your
sins. (1 Cor. 15:14, 17)

All rejoice! The Lord has RISEN!

To be continued…

God Bless
Brian Mason

*Gary R. Habermas, The Risen Jesus and Future Hope (Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2003)

Evidence For The Resurrection: Pt 1

When I get angry comments from unbelievers it actually spurs me on! It indicates to me areas that need obvious addressing and light shed into the darkness. Although the fool says there is no God, it is still shows me the areas of evangelism that is necessary for the modern Christian.

Recently I was sent a comment from a seemingly militant atheist; He or she commented that only Paul wrote about the witnesses to the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ. It was an interesting take on the scripture and it led me to write this series of articles.

I suppose the writer of that comment was suggesting that the apostle Paul was a liar. Well let’s look into the scripture and come to a conclusion.

Read 1 Corinthians 15: 3-8 (NASB)

Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain.
3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,5 and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; 7 then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles; 8 and last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also. 9 For I am the least of the apostles, and not fit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.

Were the words of the apostle Paul written here lies or at best an embellishment? No. You see, Paul cites 14 eyewitnesses by name. Cephas (Peter), James and the 12 apostles and Paul himself. With Paul actually naming the eyewitnesses to the Corinthians! If the Corinthians doubted the words written by Paul, the Corinthian readers would certainly called him out on it! I also would suggest that Paul writing that there was also some 500 other witnesses (who knows maybe more?) someone would have exposed the lie.

Let’s suppose Paul was fabricating his testimony,do you think he would have gone to the measures of actually naming the eyewitnesses? He would have lost any credibility with the Corinthians. Then why would he write such a hoax? Simply it does not make sense!

Please pray for the unbelievers to see and believe the truth!

Psalm 25:10 (NASB)
All the paths of the LORD are loving kindness and truth
To those who keep His covenant and His testimonies.

God Bless
Brian Mason

A Quick Message To Trolls…

I have recently received several different trolling comments from atheists and a Roman Catholic. Look, I am only one person and do not have a staff answering a myriad of carpet-bombing questions. These comments have been labeled as “spam” and will not be dealt with. I am more than willing to engage in questions or statements on a reasonable basis. If I was not intending to address questions of discussion, I would disable the ability to comment on this blog. Thank you for your consideration.

God Bless
Brian Mason

Why Was Jesus Baptized? Was It Because He Sinned?

Some confusion lies in the reason of why Jesus was baptized? Some say that Jesus sinned and needed baptism as a form of repentance. This is completely incorrect as Jesus the God-man never sinned.

Read 1 John 3:4-5 (NASB)
4 Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. 5 You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin.

Jesus explains why He needed baptism in the book of Matthew:

Read Matthew 3: 13-15 (NASB)
13 Then Jesus arrived from Galilee at the Jordan coming to John, to be baptized by him. 14 But John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I have need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?” 15 But Jesus answering said to him, “Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he permitted Him. 

When Jesus used the pronoun “us” it was for all believers. Jesus also required baptism to enter legally into the Melchizedek Priesthood. He needed to by the High Priest and present Himself as a sacrifice for all sins. Baptism was only one of the requirements for the Priesthood. First He needed to be washed with water, then anointed with oil.

Read Hebrews 5: 8-10 (NASB)
8  Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. 
9  And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation, 
10  being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.

God Bless

Brian Mason