November 4th, 2013
Eusebius of Caesarea (AD 260-340) grew up in Palestine. There is nothing known about his parents, or how and when he became a Christian. He is also known as “Eusebius of Pamphilus.” Pamphilus had studied under Pierius, who had been a disciple of Origen. When Pamphilus moved to Caesarea, Eusebius came under his influence. Together they cataloged Origen’s library and wrote the multi-volume Defense of Origen. Their collaboration came to an end following Pamphilus’s arrest (307) and execution (309) during the reign of Maximinus Daia.
Eusebius’s Church History consists of ten volumes, the last three of which deal with the church in his day. It appears that the “History” originally ended with Book VII prior to the outbreak of the Diocletian persecution in 303, with later books being added in successive editions (the last coming in 323).
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July 17th, 2013
Jorge Gil Calderon has taken up the task of voluntarily translating some of my blog posts into Spanish. I’m very grateful for him and his time in doing so. I consider this a huge support and extension of my ministry.
For example, one of his recent translations was “Conceptualización de las dos naturalezas de Jesús” (“Conceptualizing the Two Natures of Jesus”). Please see his website, Warriors of the Light Ministry – Ministerio Guerrero de la Luz.
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June 30th, 2013
Reduplicated predication is means of understanding the relationship between the natures of Jesus Christ. When Scripture attributes human qualities to Jesus they must be predicated to his human nature. Likewise, when Scripture attributes divine qualities to Jesus they must be predicated to his divine nature.
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May 21st, 2013
The Matthean account of Jesus pronouncing judgment on the cities of Choarzin, Bethsaida, and Capernaum may be found in Matthew 11.20-24. This passage of Scripture contains a historical context of six particular cities that were condemned for their depravity. The following contains a grammatico-historical examination of the text, which is an example of the doctrine of revelatory judgment applied, a verse often used to support the soteriological problem of evil, and is a problem passage for the doctrine of transworld damnation. The purpose of Jesus’ pronouncement of judgment on these cities was to convey the depravity of man.
Before any critical examination of the text can be made a conclusion on the genre must be established. The book of Matthew is a Gospel, which is a genre in and of itself. Many studies performed in modern scholarship of the Gospel literature link the Gospels with Hellenistic biography. Hellenistic biographers did not feel compelled to include all periods of an individual’s life or to narrate in chronological order. The selected events were carefully ordered to promote a particular ideology. In slight contrast to Hellenistic biographies, Robert Guelich proposes formal and particular genera for the Gospels:
Formally, a gospel is a narrative account concerning the public life and teaching of a significant person that is composed of discreet [sic] traditional units placed in the context of Scriptures… Materially, the genre consists of the message that God was at work in Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection effecting His promises found in the Scriptures.
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May 19th, 2013
From the time that Constantine’s (AD 227-337) father died (306) until Constantine challenged Maxentius at Milvian bridge (312), he was consolidating his position of power in Gaul and Britain. Even at this early date he showed the same military and political acumen that he would later exhibit as emperor: He strengthened his defenses against the barbarians along the Rhine, winning the gratitude of his French subjects. He did not impose onerous taxes on the people, and entertained the bloodthirsty among them with frequent shows in the circuses He was deft in diplomacy and military strategy. Above all, he was a patient man, not playing his hand until the time was right.
At the Battle of Milan (312) Constantine prepared for his invasion of Italy by making sure that Licinius could not take advantage of it by seizing Maxentius’s territories to the East. To that end, he offered Licinius his half-sister Constance in marriage, and waited until Licinius was militarily engaged with Maximinus Daia before launching his own campaign. He committed only ¼ of his troops to the battle – the rest remaining in Gaul to ward off barbarian advances. Upon winning the battle and gaining control of the western half of the empire, Constantine moved to consolidate his power, entering into an alliance with Licinius in 313 (the “Edict of Milan”).
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