April 16th, 2013
Forgetting Your Forgiveness—2 Pt. 1.3-11
God’s Power in Our Lives
V3—God has made available everything we need spiritually through Him
If 2 Peter was written to fight Gnosticism, then spiritual necessity is not esoteric
Believers are called to live in harmony with God’s moral character
“Excellence” (arête– virtue) used to sum up all desirable character qualities
V4—“Partakers” (koinonos– sharer) we never become part of God but this can found mostly in Peter’s sermon at Pentecost (Acts 2.14-41) through the Holy Spirit)
“Divine nature” a term Peter could use to relate to Hellenists about understanding the idea of conforming to the image of Christ
“Having escaped…” at conversion we are delivered from the corruption of the world
Where does the world’s corruption come from?
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June 25th, 2012
Just because you’ve read the Bible do you think that you know God? You could probably predict what Hebrew word was used for a specific word based on the context… but you’ve never felt the passion behind David’s imprecatory prayers and the prayers of suffering. You can parse every Greek word Paul uses in the book of Romans… but you’ve never felt the riddance and self-betrayal like he felt in chapter seven.
You can tell me how to encourage someone or what to do when counseling a depressed friend… but you can’t put yourself in his mind and ask yourself what it’s like to be him. You equate by analogy. You can tell me how much you love your neighbor… but you condition it. You can tell me how much God loves you… but you can’t understand the death of God and his spiritual and physical anguish as he passed from death to new life with you in mind.
You can quote Scripture, Ephesians 6 and the psalms, describing spiritual warfare and what to do… but you’ve never resisted sin to the point of blood. You can quote theological works that systematically define God and who he is… but you’ve never experienced what it’s like to align planets and create stars, to watch you spit on his creation and cross, the gifts he gave for you for the very reason of your anticipated existence.
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June 6th, 2012
The following is a guest post by Nicole Davis. Nicole is a senior at Liberty University where she is pursuing a history degree. Her interests include political science and the conservative movement. She is a committed Christian, hoping to use the experiences God has given her to disciple others and build up the effectiveness of the church.
One of the surface problems people seem to have with Christianity is the inconsistent behavior of Christians. The widespread hypocrisy among them is, I admit, unfortunately repulsive. People who are supposed to be mini-Christs are often found to be hurting their reputation rather than making it an inducement for proselytes. Indeed, people are not perfect, but serious Christians realize the need to be as Christ-like as possible. After all, what are disciples without their striving to exemplify their teacher?
I have concluded that one of the great errors of practice among Christians is that they misapply their focus in comparing themselves to lesser standards like their own pasts or the people around them. Yet with all this work, true contentment within the Christian life or attainment of that lofty goal is unsatisfying and impossible. Overcoming your faults or not making the same mistakes as others is somewhat admirable, but implementing the heart of Christ is much more to be desired. Jesus pronounced that “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also”(Luke 12.34). If Christ were the treasure that Christians seek, they would be far better on their way to Christ-likeness than if they continue to seek self-betterment or one-upping their peers.
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April 17th, 2012
There are three primary categories for virtue the Christian/theist will affirm. The first are the transcendental virtues: truth, beauty, and goodness. The second set is the theological virtues: faith, hope, and love/charity. Then there are the four cardinal virtues: prudence, courage, patience, and justice. It’s my belief that every Christian must practice epistemic humility. What is that? Well, epistemic humility, in the sense I’ll be using it, refers to an application of the four cardinal virtues in the area of epistemology (knowledge). Each of these virtues have a respective vice. For instance, the virtue of moderation would appear as a vice in addiction.
The virtue of epistemic prudence is know when and how to appropriate your knowledge to others. Have you ever noticed that person in class or in church that seems to be the ‘know-it-all,’ whether they actually are or not? Of course, it’s worse when they’re simply ignorant of what they’re talking about, but not only is this person annoying but there may be several issues rooted in the flaunting of knowledge. There’s nothing wrong with sharing you’re knowledge but, like I said, it’s how and when you share it.
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