Let me start this and state from the outset, that I do not have any issue with the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. This is not an anti-KJV post but rather one to balance some of the arguments the KJV-only proponents have used to ridicule and malign some of the modern translations such as the NASB, NIV, ESV etc.
Just so it is clear, my position is this: that the version of Bible you use (be it KJV, NASB, NIV etc) is a personal preference and it will not affect your ability to live a godly life, your walk with the Lord, or your ability to win souls to Christ. Most of the modern translations are extremely accurate to the original texts in their original languages of Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic.
The argument that the KJV is the only perfect version of God’s Word is incorrect and most of the arguments used to support that position are wrong, or disingenuous. As I write posts related to this issue, they can be easily found here.
What does it mean in Hebrews 10:26 when it says we no longer have a sacrifice for sins if we wilfully go on sinning?
The passage in the NASB states the following:
“For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins” (Heb 10:26)
It goes on to say that rather, we can have a terrifying expectation of judgement and the fury of fire (v27).
This verse is part of a wider passage that encompasses the verses 26-39. It is specifically talking to the Jews who despite hearing the truth of Christ and His offer of salvation turn their back and carry on in their sin and thus trample Christ’s blood under their feet. Essentially it deals with apostates who know more than enough to be saved and yet walk from God’s saving grace wilfully and deliberately.
On top of this, the Greek word used for “wilfully” is hekousios. This also has an element of a way-of-life. In other words, if your life deliberately and consistently displays a pattern of rejecting Christ’s message, then there is not a sacrifice for this sin. Hebrews 6 covers this as well.
This book really targets people who have been presented the Good News and who may have even believed that it made sense and responded in some manner but not a saving manner. These people are told that if they continual to pattern their life wilfully rejecting Christ – despite knowing and understanding what the gospel demands of them – they will find themselves in a position whereby there is no sacrifice available to them.
Read Galatians 2:3-5 (NKJV):
Yet not even Titus who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised. And this occurred because of false brethren secretly brought in (who came in by stealth to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage), to whom we did not yield submission even for an hour, that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.
In the prior 2 verses, we see that Paul’s purpose to go back to Jerusalem is to have his message confirmed for the sake of the Apostles, not himself – he was completely confident in his message for he had received it directly from Jesus Himself.
As has been noted many times, Paul’s message (and authority!) had been challenged by a group who were trying to convince (and it was working well) the Galatians that to actually be saved, they needed to be circumcised on top of their faith. Paul refutes this obviously and says such a teaching is another gospel and that anyone preaching such a gospel, whether it be him, and angel, or anyone else, should be accursed (Gal 1:8-9). Strong words but this was a matter of spiritual life and death. For if one believes that Christ’s work is insufficient and that there must be some work or works to complete it, cannot be a Christian. That is why Paul says they that preach such a damning lie, should be accursed. Only by confessing and trusting that Christ’s work is sufficient, can you be saved. Your trust needs to be handed to Him.
Posted in Catholic Church, Christ, Church, Faith, False Teaching, Galatians, Grace, Jesus, Justification, Legalism, Salvation, Works
Tagged Catholic Church, False Teaching, Gal 2:3-5, Galatians 2:3-5, Gospel, Yielding
Read Galatians 2:1-2 (NKJV):
Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and also took Titus with me. And I went up by revelation, and communicated to them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to those who were of reputation, lest by any means I might run, or had run, in vain.
Paul now returns to the main issue at hand – that of the Galatians being capitivated and lead astray by a false, legalistic gospel of man-centred works. As we have seen in other posts from earlier passages in Galatians (here), the church was being stricken by false teaching which suggested it was not just faith that saved but you also had to do things too. In this situation, the main issue seemed to be that they had started believing that they needed to be circumcised too.
One of the most famous historical figures associated with Christendom has to be Matthew Henry. Many know of him because of his famous commentary that he did on the whole Bible. It is an exquisite work. My family have benefited immensely from this marvellous work which spans 6 volumes. It has to be a must for any serious Christian family. In fact, George Whitefield, is was said, read through the whole work 4 times and the 4th time was done while on his knees. Charles Spurgeon said, “Every minister ought to read it entirely and carefully through once at least.”
However, for many Christians their knowledge of him stops there. They know of him as the author of the commentary but do not know anything of the man himself. To be honest, until recently I was in the very same boat. I knew nothing of him personally. When I started digging, I found some wonderful accounts of his life growing up, how he got saved, and how he went about his calling to serve the church through his writing and his pastoring – he was a pastor for much of his life. I also learned that he suffered a lot during his life which makes the work he produced and the service he rendered all the more remarkable and inspiring. He was a man who was extremely devoted to the Word and whose love for it influenced Christians for hundreds of years.
If the famous account of Genesis is read as it is written, then we come to the conclusion that the author of this book was trying to tell the reader that in 6 normal, 24-hour days God created all that we see and know – the universe, the solar system, the planet, the water and land, plants and trees, animals and people. There is no doubt that a plain reading of the first couple of chapters of Genesis tells us this.
But, is that actually what happened? Was the author really concerned about the scientific nuances that brought about life and all we see today? Or was he trying to paint an artistic, poetic allusion of a broader principle? What would that broader principle be? For many teachers in the church today, that broader principle is that ultimately God created everything but they allow for the possibility of Him doing this over millions or billions of years. Or they say that He used evolution to bring about the variety of what we see in the world now (theistic evolution).
Posted in Bible, Church, Creation, Creation vs Evolution, Genesis, Science
Tagged Billions of Years, Creation, Evolution, Genesis, Literal Genesis, Old Earth, Young Earth
The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit. – James 5:16b-18 (NASB)
The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. What does this mean? What is effective prayer as opposed to ineffective prayer? What is meant by a “righteous man”? We would all love to have our prayers heard by our Lord and we certainly want our prayers to accomplish much. James (the author of this book) has some great wisdom in this passage for us!
Read Matthew 8:5-13 (NKJV):
Now when Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him, pleading with Him, saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, dreadfully tormented.” And Jesus said to him, “I will come
and heal him.” The centurion answered and said, “Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this one,
‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
When Jesus heard it, He marvelled, and said to those who followed, “Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel! And I say to you that many will come from east and west, and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the sons of the kingdom will be cast out into outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Then Jesus said to the centurion,
“Go your way; and as you have believed, so let it be done for you.” And his servant was healed that
There are many things which can be drawn from this passage above. But I want to focus on verses 10-12. In here, there is an ominous warning against taking salvation for granted and the possible repercussions of such foolishness.
My mother is unsaved at this point. I have spoken to her many times about the Lord but she still resists. I would covet the prayers of the believers for her heart to be turned to and regenerated by the Lord.
Unfortunately she suffers from Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and that affliction (which worsens all the time) is a hindrance in her mind. I pray that God would use it to show her that life without forgiveness and hope is death.
Below is a letter I have written to her which I lay the gospel out to her as clearly as I can (I hope). Please pray that she receives this well and that she will seek the Lord and receive her salvation!
Posted in Atonement, Christ, Gospel, Grace, Jesus, Love, Other Issues, Salvation, Sin
Tagged Gospel, Letter to Mum, Prayers, Salvation