The reader is told that a leader is chosen who is "fully of the Spirit and wisdom" and "full of faith" (Acts 6:3,5). The first book of Acts shows the disciples looking at external qualities for a good leader and are thus unable to come to a decision; they end up asking God to make the decision for them. It is only after the disciples are filled with the Holy Spirit that they are able to find others who are "full of the Spirit." This shows that before being filled with the Holy Spirit, one is not able to see who else is filled with it. One doesn't know God or things of God until they have the Spirit in them.
The Greatest Works of the Holy Spirit in Acts
There are five distinct circumstances in the book of Acts in which there is a great outpouring of the Holy…… [Read More]
These is no other evidence in the Gospels or in other areas of the epistles out side of Corinthians. Certainly, Acts is the foundation stone for all of the talk of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Without Acts, there would be no other firm evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit (ibid.).
Obviously, the speaking in tongues is still valid today because it is still happening. As it says in
1 Corinthians 13:8-10, "Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away." Very simply, when Jesus returns and the Messianic Age begins, then things will be "perfect." Before that, things will not be…… [Read More]
" (Gen. 1:2.)
The Spirit of God or the Holy Spirit is seen as the original creative force that creates all life. However, the reference to the Spirit in Gnesis also refers to its distance and potential separation from mankind. In times of sin and wickedness God warns that "...my Spirit will not always strive with man." (Gen. 6:3) the passage also implies that the"... Spirit's very presence and ministry could be withdrawn from the human race in some sense."
At this point the apparent distinction between and Spirit and Holy Sprit should be reiterated. As one commentator notes; " Although the Old Testament uses the epithet "Spirit of God," it does not speak of the Holy Spirit per se.
The appellative Spirit of God became popular in late Old Testament narratives to replace the name of God by its attributes. The epithet did not infer the idea that the…… [Read More]
Baptisim in the Holy Spirit
James Dunn and the Baptism of the Holy Spirit
James Dunn's book: The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is a traditional exegesis of the religious phenomenon which has been relegated in modern times to the Pentecostal Christian churches. The baptism in the Holy Spirit was prophesied in the Old Testament (OT) writings. The experience was demonstrated in special circumstances among OT leaders, but the prophet Joel promised that in the latter days, this experience would be available and present across the entire church. Joel promised that:
And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: 29 and also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my Spirit. (Joel 2.28-29 ASV)…… [Read More]
egeneration is a rebirth. "The birth of a child of God is a spiritual resurrection, the passage of one into new life who was formerly dead in trespasses and sins. A child of wrath becomes a child of the Father who is in heaven. The theological term for this is new birth is regeneration."
Just as in the actual birth process, the birth is just the beginning. A newborn human being is absolutely unable to care for himself and lacks knowledge and insight into life as a human. Likewise, a newly born Christian lacks the same type of knowledge, and it is that knowledge that people most commonly refer to as faith.
Therefore, to understand the relationship between regeneration and faith, it is important to keep in mind that "rebirth is a metaphor of the initial step in salvation."
egeneration is only the beginning part of salvation; it precedes faith.…… [Read More]
Supplement the ideas provided here with some of your own. Plan ways to identify the doctrine for the children and help them understand it and apply it in their lives.Ask yourself, "What will the children do to learn, and how can I help them feel the Spirit?"
"The Family: A Proclamation to the World" came from God to help my family.
Identify the doctrine: Show the children pictures of the Ten Commandments and the scriptures. Ask, "Where did these come from?" Explain that they came from God through His prophets to help us know what to do. Show the children a copy of "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" and explain that it came from God through His latter-day prophets to help our families.
Encourage understanding (singing songs): Explain that not all families are the same, but each family is important; God wants all families to be happy…… [Read More]
Holy Spirit in Social Preaching
David M. Doran, a theologian with the Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary, emphasizes that Biblical preaching is vitally important to the fulfillment of the mission of Christianity. The Scriptures explain to readers that the way to honor God is through what Doran calls "Christ-centered preaching" -- and Paul explains, "e proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ" (Col 1:28).
Doran makes it clear that God intended his disciples to be given the power to actually go out and do the preaching that was necessary. God gave the Apostle Paul the "ministry of the Spirit" (2 Cor 3:8, 12), which Paul of course needed to carry out the work that he was appointed to do. On page 105, Doran explains that Paul was "so zealous of having this power in him" that…… [Read More]
Living in the Power of the Holy Spirit
The Promise of God the Father
Chapter one of Charles Stanley's book begins with a definition of exactly what is the Holy Spirit. Stanley states that it is the "Promise of our heavenly Father to each one of us." (Stanley, 11) The Holy Spirit, as God's promise, is for each and every human being, not just hose who are priests, and holders of other religious positions. Luke 24 is used as an example of this concept that the Holy Spirit is for all people. (Mays, 1988) Stanley next examines the question of what is the power of the Holy Spirit? He asserts that it is the "divine authority and energy that God releases into the life of every one of his children in order that we may live a Godly and fruitful life." (Stanley, 13) It is like a spiritual cloak.
The…… [Read More]
street what the Holy Spirit represents one would probably get a consistent answer regardless of the number of people asked, or the spiritual beliefs of those asked. Christianity is based on several foundational premises, with one of the strongest being the Holy Spirit. Regardless of one's religious background or beliefs most people in the U.S. have a basic understanding of the tenet of the Holy Spirit in the Christian faith. The Holy Spirit is commonly understood as the host of the trinity, "The Father, The Son and The Holy host." When one receives the Holy Spirit into their heart and sole it is believed that the Lord has entered that person's heart and soul and is guiding them in their daily lives.
Christians often speak of the Holy Spirit moving them, or the fact that they felt the Holy Spirit enter their hearts. It is these and other common sayings…… [Read More]
" (John 15:26-27) John explicitly tells those who have come to walk in this way of knowing to pursue this knowledge in others.
In his set of three epistles, which are held up with the apostle's other writings as central doctrines to the humanistic elements of Christianity, John delivers a summation of the relationship between man's regard of God and his treatment of his fellow which points to the morality underscoring his spiritual vision. In each letter, the author showers his addressees with evaluations on this topic. In each, he explicates the Christian missive that 'walking in truth,' or knowing God, should be observable in one's love for his fellow man, noting that the Johannine conception of Christian ethical behavior interprets the sharing of faith as the greatest good. This may be considered to differ from the synoptic perspective in that it pays less heed to the essential and practical…… [Read More]
To preach is to be called by God, to serve in the glorious undertaking of disseminating scriptural truths. Unlike any ordinary endeavor, preaching requires spiritual strength and conviction. Most importantly, preaching depends on the Grace of god, received as the Holy Spirit, as well as by and for the Holy Spirit. To take preaching lightly would be to commit the sin of pride, in assuming that the undertaking is about charisma or even just about spiritual counseling. As admirable as charisma is, and as noble as counseling, preaching is something different altogether. In the 40th anniversary edition of his classic book Preaching and Preachers, Martyn Lloyd-Jones explicates the nature of preaching with dutiful attention to scriptural authority. Ultimately, Lloyd-Jones shows how preachers can transform their sermons from mere motivational speeches into the transformative means by which listeners can achieve union with God. Lloyd-Jones presents the purpose of preaching as…… [Read More]
The safe group of participants who joined with me in the commitments of the course included four others, all of whom were interested in exploring the realm of pneumatology as a group rather than as a unique individualized experience. Thus, from the outside there was a shared sense of expanding the bandwidth of what counts as a story of the Holy Spirit. First, we discussed what the Holy Spirit is—which was important for us to connect on because by defining what we are experiencing we can erase any misconceptions and give clarity to what might otherwise be opaque. As Leonard points out, the Holy Spirit is not a junior member of the Holy Trinity and is not shy about coming to others. We wanted to discuss what we believed the Holy Spirit to be before beginning so that we could ensure that we were united on the same page.…… [Read More]
Development of the Christian Doctrine of Holy Trinity
The word trinity traces its origin from the Latin trinitas which literally translates to ‘triad’. In Latin trinus means threefold. This therefore implies that God is one but in that oneness exists three coeternal consubstantial persons- the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Trinitarian doctrine can be inferred from the New Testament teaching about God. Many falsely believe that Trinity Doctrine was formulated at the Council of Nicaea in 325 C.E. (Tuggy, 2016). This is not true because at the Council of Nicaea it was pronounced that Christ was the same substance as God. This became the foundation for Trinitarian Theology. It should be remembered that at the Council of Nicaea there was no mention of the Holy Spirit as the third person of the triad. This essay seeks to illuminate how the christian doctrine of Holy Trinity has developed over…… [Read More]
Understanding Israel and Palestine
“A denial of life is a rejection of the God of life” (Keum 4). This gets to the heart of what I felt as I experienced Palestine for myself. Seeing the West Bank in person allowed me to witness a whole new level of marginalization and oppression that I had never seen before—even though I had been to South Africa and India. Here the marginalization was so deliberate, so offensive, so hypocritical and unchristian that I was shocked to find Christians here in Bethlehem who still found joy in life and calmly expressed their faith in God. To see the Israelis treating the people on the West Bank with such contempt, illegally building settlements, bulldozing their acreage and fruit trees and homes, erecting barriers of humiliation, treating these people like animals and criminals—it was to understand exactly the affirmation of the WCC publication that…… [Read More]
Susanna Wesley appealed to the idea of vocation in defending her practice of holding Sunday evening gatherings. Samuel Wesley spoke of the "inner witness" during his final witness. Describe a Wesleyan understanding of the Holy Spirit in conversation with one of these influences.
John Wesley's view of the Holy Spirit was a being that enabled the believer to love others as he loved himself and to enable the believer to participate in a universal spirit of divine love and grace (Wesley, 1980, p. 109). The Holy Spirit is a vehicle of grace that brings human beings to God by virtue of working upon their inner spirit. The fact that the Trinity has a component which is so mysterious underlines the notion that believers have a personal relationship with God that is manifest through faith alone. The Holy Spirit, like faith itself, is inwardly rather than outwardly visible. But it is…… [Read More]
The Holy Trinity is composed out of three divine individuals that work together in creating one essence. Many people think about this theory as being a paradox, but it is important to understand that one should not necessarily think about logics when considering religion. Science is not powerful enough to explain every unknown idea and religion thus intervenes at times and provides initiatives that are controversial (to say the least). Trying to understand the Holy Trinity by using conventional values is likely to make an individual even more confused about the concept.
Another divisive topic regarding the Trinity regards the idea that Christianity is a monotheistic religious ideology and yet promotes the idea that there are three distinct bodies governing over the world. hat people fail to understand is that the Church is not confused as a result of encountering mysterious ideas. It actually concentrates on trying to find a…… [Read More]
God's taking sides can be pushed to saying that the rich cannot be saved, or that God does not love everyone.
The Holy Spirit and iberation Theology
As Boff and Boff ( 1987) state: "Every true theology springs from a spirituality -- that is, from a true meeting with God in history. iberation theology was born when faith confronted the injustice done to the poor."
In this sense the Spirit is essentially perceived in terms of the interconnection between humanity and God. Put less blatantly, the Holy Spirit is the conduit of the absolute or divine to the domain of human existential experience. This view of the Spirit resonates with the focus on experiential suffering in the world. In other words, the Holy Spirit is not abstract but is rather perceived as a spiritual source of intervention in the world, which coincides with the focus of liberation theology.
The issue…… [Read More]
The popularization of the idea, though was somewhat linguistic in that when speaking of God and the Holy Spirit, different words were used that could mean "person," "nature," "essence," or "substance," -- words that were part of a longer, and far older tradition, but not adopted by the new Church .
Later, to echo this interpretation, the French Dominican Yves Conger, wrote that the Spirit of God was equal to the Spirit of Wisdom -- intelligent, holy, unique, manifold, subtle
However, we must realize, too, that there was a long and rich tradition within the Ancient Near East. Whether one subscribes to the idea that essential mythos was something common arising out of civilization and being passed forward, or that each individual religion of the Ancient World was divinely inspired by its own set of beings, the concept of the Trinity is neither new, nor linked inexorably to the New…… [Read More]
Pneumatologists and theologians have long sought to define the role of the Holy Spirit within the Christian faith. These scholars' understanding of the Spirit differs greatly, not only in terms of the role of the Holy Spirit, but also in terms of whether those roles are central to the Christian church (yrie, 1997). Even the base concept of the perception of the Spirit differs among scholars and religious leaders.
This paper discusses the various notions of the role of the Holy Spirit in the Christian Church, as expressed by modern theologians and pneumatologists. Additionally, this paper will discuss the differing views of whether those roles are central to the Church, or if they are to be applied on a more diverse level. Finally, this paper will discuss ways in which the Spirit is celebrated and displayed in the lives of those who believe.
To understand the role of the Holy…… [Read More]
Doctrine of the Holy Trinity
The Doctrine of the Trinity and Anti-Trinitarian Theologies:
Servetus, Milton, Newton
The Doctrine of the Trinity
The Arian Heresy
Anti-Trinitarianism Part I: Michael Servetus
Anti-Trinitarianism Part II: John Milton
Sir Isaac Newton
The Arian heresy -- or rejection of the Christian doctrine of the Holy Trinity -- is actually relatively uncommon among contemporary Christian denominations; to pick one particular national example, Post-Reformation England would tolerate a broad array of theological stances -- from the dour Calvinism of the early Puritans to the sunnier Arminianism of the esleyan Methodists -- but more or less drew the line at anti-Trinitarianism. Yet it is remarkable that some of England's greatest intellectuals -- including the epic poet John Milton and the father of modern physics Sir Isaac Newton -- would secretly author theological works reviving the old heresy of Arius in order to disprove the Christian doctrine of the…… [Read More]
Basil's Argumentation on the Holy Trinity
Basil's argumentation defending the divinity of the Holy Spirit addresses the unity of the Godhead and the eternal associations of the Holy Spirit to the Father and the Son within the Holy Trinity (Basil 60). Not only does this augment his defense of the Holy Spirit, it completes St. Basils' trinitarian theology thereby laying the foundations of Orthodox Christian Trinitarian theology.
The Holy Trinity
The unity of the Godhead is reflected in the works of the Holy Trinity. hether regarding creation or human redemption, the works of the Holy Trinity are always one, revealing the communion of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. A good example of this unity of action is in the creation of the angels. These pure, spiritual and transcendent powers are called holy because they receive their holiness from the Holy Spirit. In considering the angels, or any…… [Read More]
Pneumatology: Spiritual Gifts
Pneumatology is often defined as the study of the spirit, or the spiritual relationship between humanity and God. It is often one of the most difficult and ephemeral concepts for believers to understand, especially the concept of spiritual gifts. Spiritual gifts are defined as gifts specifically given to the Christian to enable him or her to perform a holy service. [footnoteRef:1] Spiritual gifts are special gifts bestowed for an unusual service and figure prominently in the life and writings of Paul, who was given the spiritual gift of ministry. Paul was dramatically called to the ministry on the road to Damascus and experienced a profound conversion to Christianity that changed his life and also the history of Christianity. Paul became an apostle to the gentiles, educating the entire world about what the sacrifice of Christ meant for humanity. It is said that there are five gifts of…… [Read More]
Fruit of the Spirit by Trask and Goodall
This book examines how one can foster elements like true fulfillment in one's life, health in one's relationships and triumph over things like anxiety and conflict by simply allowing God's spirit to develop in one's heart by growing his fruit. The fruit described is of course just a metaphor and is one which invited an examination of the joy, peace, patience, kindness and other elements of the spirit which can help one examine what happens when one lives each day intimately connected with God. The writers of this book push one to foster an intimate relationship with Jesus so that loftier qualities like joy, peace, patience, kindness and other elements will be able to flourish and thrive within one. There needs to be a more passionate and revelatory examination at what happens to one's mental and emotional health when such a change…… [Read More]
One of the most fundamental beliefs of the entire system of Christianity is the belief in the Holy Trinity, something which is known as the union of three people: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. This belief has caused much controversy and disagreement among the various churches of Christianity, particularly because the concept does not appear in the Bible, but was a development of some of the earlier church councils. One way of explaining the Holy Trinity is to compare it to water and the various forms that water can take -- be it ice, steam or liquid: many religious scholars have used this analogy as a means of explaining the various forms and energy that God can take and still exist in harmony.
The development of the Holy Trinity was a notion that evolved slowly over time and one can trace its…… [Read More]
Despite the general strength of this book there are some weaknesses. Since the focus of this book is personal evangelism, he lacks the cohesive discussion of how organized evangelism should occur and how it fits within the holistic paradigm. By only talking about the personal evangelizing efforts, we do not have enough insight into what Metzger believes we should act as a body. By ignoring this aspect of evangelism, Metzger fails to give the significance of having a solid congregation of believers to support the newly converted and lend their strengths to the development of the Whole Person.
There are many other books that deal with the theme of evangelism. One such book is John Blanchard entitled "Is Anybody Out There?" This book differs from "Tell the Truth" in that it is less a directional book rather than a book that seeks to answer questions related to the scripture. This…… [Read More]
The other importance of Temple worship and sacrifice is that it enables a person to practice self-discipline and restraint. When people offer sacrifices and worship at the Temple, they learn to connect with God which in turn helps them to be disciplined. By and large, Temple worship and sacrifice is the means through which people exercise godly virtues and morals. Therefore, Temple worship and sacrifice affects the way people interact with each other within the society.
Considering the fact that the Temple is a place where people pray for relief from their pains and sufferings, Temple worship and sacrifice enables them to have peace of mind. Worship and sacrifice strengthens a person's ways while relieving them from the burden of guilt. When one commits a wrong deed, they get an opportunity to ask for forgiveness through Temple worship and sacrifice. As a result of forgiveness, these people experience…… [Read More]
Personal Theodicy Apologetics
The problem of evil is something everyone has to face sooner or later. As Schlesinger points out, philosophers want to understand “why there is any suffering in the world at all.”[footnoteRef:2] The problem with a philosophical approach to suffering is that it does not reveal the whole story or the whole picture of why suffering (evil) exists. Religion, on the other hand, does provide that whole story—and depending on the religion, the story will be a little different. Christianity teaches that evil is a result of sin—that it is not something that came of its own into the world or that God created but rather something that His creatures chose of their own free will. The choice to pursue evil (defined as an absence of the good) altered God’s world—or at least man’s perception of it. Prior to man’s fall, he lived in happiness in the Garden…… [Read More]
It is this selfsame Holy Spirit that will serve to convict within the unbeliever and to work within that individual until that person comes to the point of opening the inner door for the Christ and then urging the same individual forth into fulfilling the 'Great Commission' of spreading Christ to the world. In the fulfillment of this commitment inclusive of "baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit" the three faces of God's person are revealed and authenticated. Just as when Jesus entered the waters to be baptized and entered into communion with God the Father and God the Son was baptized of the God the Holy Spirit in the Gospel of John is clearly characterized in the evidence provided by John of the words Jesus spoke.
This one book of the ible explains clearly to believers and followers of Christ that the…… [Read More]
For four long months God appeared to be just presenting himself. He found that he was motivated; he was not sermonizing for Christ; he was sermonizing for hope. He discovered the whole thing in his heart that should not be there. For four months a struggle went on inside him, and he was a dejected man. But after four months the delight came. It came over him as he was on foot in the streets of New York. (Dwilight Lyman Moody: 1837-1899: (www.higherpraise.com)
Several times he had thought of it since he has been here. Eventually, he went back to God again, and he was no more dejected. He virtually prayed in his delight, 'O stay Thy hand!' He said he felt this earthen vessel would collapse. God occupied him with complete Spirit. If he had not been a different man since, he did not know himself. He believed that…… [Read More]
Overall we are the vessels by which God does his work in this world, and this is ultimately the most important thing that we can do, therefore to interfere in his overall plan by asserting that our physical demands and ambitions are greater than God's grand plan is representative of false worship.
The goal of the author is obvious to write about how we have veered away from Christ through our pursuit of daily ambitions and to remind us that as faithful worshippers we have to understand and respect the message of God to the fullest. Furthermore, he wants us to understand that the Power of the Holy Spirit is eminent in all of us and that we can use this as a conduit to advance ourselves in both our spiritual and physical selves.
I think that overall the primary strength of this book is the conviction in which Lovett…… [Read More]
Therefore, we may conclude that the speaker has some cognitive function from the structure of the speech, even if it is based on a very basic set of language rules (Samarin 1972 120).
Three major linguistic traits emerged from other research into the subjec. Regardless of the geographic area, educational level, or age of the individual, glossolalia consists of:
Verbal behavior that has a certain number of consanants and vowels.
There seem to be a limited number of syllables that are reorganized into larger units.
These units are then rearranged using variations in pitch, volume, speed and intensity (e.g. A "word" group spoken with different inflections).
The "words" put together seem haphazard but emerge as word and sentence like because of the use of realistic timbre, rhythm, and melody (Samarin 1972).
Other research confims that glossolalia shows an oddly definitive syballant commonality with the particular spoken language of the speaker.…… [Read More]
Rather, in Orthodox Gnosiology, the words within the Scriptures become the essential facilitator for an individual and personal journey of their interpretation. It becomes a very personal process to interpret the Scriptures, and thus there is more emphasis placed on the power of our nous, or our intellect. As such, Lossky states that Orthodox Gnosiology is "anchored in the experience of all to the degree of each one's spiritual faculties" (Lossky in the Image and Likeness of God 64). e come to these conclusions, rather than having a person of Papal or religious authority guides us there without room for our own personal interpretations. Here, Lossky writes that it is our "analysis [that] leads us finally towards the Truth and the Spirit, the ord and the Holy Spirit" (Lossky in the Image and Likeness of God 153). It is important in Orthodox Gnosiology to unite tradition and Scripture in order…… [Read More]
Montanism / Theology
Like many early heresies, Montanism has not left behind much in the way of written testimony: only one Montanist writer, Tertullian, has works that survive, and it is primarily in his work that the statements of the Montanist movement (Montanus, Prisca and Maximilia) survive in quotation. Gonzales notes that, among many differing interpretations of Montanism, one view sees them as something like "an early Pentecostal group." [footnoteRef:0] It is clear from accounts of Montanism that it included the emphasis on the Holy Spirit, including manifestations of glossolalia, that are seen in contemporary Pentecostals. ut overall, Montanus seems to have combined several contradictory impulses into his schismatic movement. The first hinged upon greater involvement of women in ministry: the heresy of Montanus is seldom mentioned without reference to "those demented women Prisca and Maximilia," as Saint Jerome calls them in his letter to Marcella refuting the Montanist heresy.[footnoteRef:1]…… [Read More]
Apostles chronicles the events that transpired after Jesus' death and resurrection. It describes the creation of the ministry of the apostles to spread the word of Jesus to the gentiles as well as the Jews and introduces the 'character' of the Apostle Paul in the history of Christianity.
and 2 Thessalonians
Paul, raised Jewish and a former persecutor of Christians, sets out the mission of his ministry to the gentiles and defines the word of God to the new Christian community.
Paul is concerned about the reversion to pagan ways in Corinth and the immorality of its residents. He sets forth the doctrine of Christian love, as opposed to physical love.
Paul describes Jesus as a vehicle of salvation in this letter to the mixed community of Jews and gentiles of Rome. Jesus' sacrifice has enabled the redemption of sinful humanity, as distinct from Mosaic Law in the…… [Read More]
" It caused missionaries to deal with peoples of other cultures and even Christian traditions -- including the Orthodox -- as inferior. God's mission was understood to have depended upon human efforts, and this is why we came to hold unrealistic universalistic assumptions. Christians became so optimistic that they believed to be able to correct all the ills of the world." (Vassiliadis, 2010)
Missiology has been undergoing changes in recent years and after much serious consideration Christians in the ecumenical era "are not only questioning all the above assumptions of the Enlightenment; they have also started developing a more profound theology of mission. One can count the following significant transitions:
(a) From the missio christianorum to the missio ecclesiae;
(b) the recognition later that subject of mission is not even the Church, either as an institution or through its members, but God, thus moving further from the missio ecclesiae to…… [Read More]
" Therefore, the Second Coming and the Rapture are coincidental events, both of which have to do with Christ returning to Earth. The Rapture specifically refers to what happens to human beings. Once Christ returns, the "thousand-year reign" on Earth begins. According to the FFM website, "Jesus Christ will one day return to bring believers home to Heaven and will reign with them over the Earth for 1,000 years." The thousand-year reign has scriptural origin, and is also called the Millennial Reign of Jesus. A "new heaven and earth," ostensibly a holier and happier one, will result from the Second Coming.
Speaking in tongues is a phenomenon that occasionally accompanies the baptism rite. Many Protestant and evangelical groups encourage speaking in tongues as proof of one's salvation during baptism (Robinson 2005). More formally known as "glossolalia," speaking in tongues is considered to be a supernatural manifestation of the glory of…… [Read More]
History of the Pentecostal Movement
The Pentecostal Movement, also known as Classical Pentecostalism, is a Christian-based faith that emphasizes a direct personal experience with God through Baptism, Prayer, and evangelism. There is not one version of Pentecostalism, but all are based on the name derived from the Jewish Feasts of Weeks, commemorating the descent of the Holy Spirit onto the followers of Christ, described in Acts II: "When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place… all of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them" (Acts 2).
Pentecostalism is an evangelical sect, which focuses on the belief that the scriptures are 100% true, accurate and vital in contemporary life. Pentecostals accept Christ as a personal lord and savior and also that baptism with the Holy Spirit is separate from conversion. It is…… [Read More]
" (omans 12.6 and 1 Cor. 12) This includes the gift of spiritual direction. Therefore, it can be garnered that the Holy Spirit provides the contemporary Church "with forms other than those used by the ancient elder to achieve this same purpose." (2000) Allen writes that it would be erroneous to claim that the Holy Spirit "could not again, in any age, raise up the pater penumatikos (the spiritual father) for the continuing ministry of the Church." (2000) in fact, since the Holy Spirit abides in the Church, then according to Allen, it "follows that there will be an ever-renewing form of pneumatophoroi, or 'bearers' or 'carriers' of that Spirit.
II. The Central Task of Spiritual Direction
Allen writes that the central task of spiritual direction in terms of its goal and historical goals is the leading of individuals "deeper and deeper into the struggle for the Christian life, that…… [Read More]
Can you provide any testimony of having received illumination?
One of the areas of discord in modern Christian discussion is God's view of homosexuals and homosexuality. Many Christians believe that God has labeled homosexuality a sin and considers that sin to be so grievous that it would warrant damnation. Other Christians believe that God, specifically through Jesus, had a message of love and that such condemnation of homosexuals would go against his message. I spent considerable time thinking about this issue, and was specifically pondering the issue while reading the Bible one day. I found myself drawn to certain passages that day, and, reading them, I felt as if I received a message that day, which was that Christianity was never intended to be a theocracy. It did not resolve my uncertainty about the seemingly conflicting messages about how one should treat homosexuals, but it did make me certain that…… [Read More]
A great deal of this is accomplished by serving others and thinking of others first, before oneself. Exerting responsible self-control by engaging in personal habits conducive to bodily health refers to an act that is partly commonsense and partly the act of treating one's body like a temple of the Holy Spirit. By being made in God's image, one truly needs to honor that belief and treat one's body as the sacred thing it is. Exhibiting mental and emotional maturity means treating oneself and others with respect and sensitivity and establishing clear boundaries in social and personal interactions. Exhibiting integrity in all of one's relationships refers not only to treating people with respect, but also being honest in word and deed.
Engaging in fidelity in marriage and celibacy in singleness are two rock bottom foundations for following the doctrines of the church and honoring oneself and one's relationship. Social responsibility…… [Read More]
Luther's concept of the "liberated Christian" allows for both an almost existential responsibility and an odd passivity on the other hand. Humans are responsible for creating faith within themselves, but having once accomplished the achievement of faith, they can simply allow themselves to exist in the cocoon of divine love. Christ has done the work for others through his life and death. (Countering this is the idea of Luther's that all Christians serve as a communal priesthood, although it is not entirely clear to what extent he means this to be literal and to what extent he may be allowing for the metaphorical.) This tension between the active and the passive (or perhaps "accepting" might be a better translation of Luther's ideas than "passive") brings us back to the seeming contradiction posed in Luther's opening statements. It allows us to see another level of complexity in Luther's understanding of the…… [Read More]
"Barth specifically rejected both human spiritual experience and self-consciousness as a guide to God, and regarded both Christian and non-Christian religion as failed attempts to abide at the point of tangency. The job of Christian community is a negative job only - to seek to be a "void" in which the Gospel reveals itself"
Revelation and Scripture
The Bible formed the core of Barth's theological understanding. The Bible was the record of God's disclosure of His truth on earth through Jesus, and the revelation of the Bible was eternal, and stood apart from all temporal concerns. "Barth acknowledges the existence of a whole host of non-Christian teachings and assertions. He does not deny that many of these have very important things to say. Nonetheless, he concludes that "we must say of these revelations that they are lacking in a final, simply binding authority." However, he did feel that churches and…… [Read More]
..no longer worthy to be called your son," the father rejected that statement, and instead ordered "the best robe" be brought, placed a ring on the son's finger and "sandals on his feet." The father then ordered a "fattened calf" be butchered, for a "feast" honoring his wayward son's return.
This son of mine," the father told his younger son, "was dead and is alive again..."
Meanwhile, the oldest son "became angry" and bitterly protested against his father's celebration in honor of the youngest son: "You never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends," he said, adding, "...when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!"
And this is where the kindness enters into the story. The father shows that he has the compassion to truly forgive his prodigal son, which is…… [Read More]
At the same time, Jesus offered human beings hope for salvation. It was not just through his miracles and his teachings that Jesus proved he was the true son of God. Through his death and resurrection, Jesus illustrated that mankind is in dire need of divine assistance in overcoming evil. I look to Jesus as both role model and as symbol of hope, especially in times of darkness and despair. Jesus is all that is good in humanity: unconditional love, compassion, and kindness.
I have found that if I look to Jesus and take Him into my heart, I can overcome temptation and ill will and experience a taste of salvation. Salvation involves as much grace as it does hard work. Salvation always entails faith and unwavering belief. I believe that some suffering is essential for all human beings and that if we are willing to endure our suffering and…… [Read More]
Finally, learning how to rely on and depend on others can help people rely on and depend on God. The exercise teaches the value of trust and shows that we can depend on other people as well as God.
7. Body Outline: Drawing an outline of the body is a helpful exercise for people who have eating disorders. It can help people recognize that their body image does not match the reality of their physical form. In some cases, drawing the body can bring up strong emotions. For this exercise, drawing the body outline enables participants to explore self-image: the lies we tell ourselves and the negative self-talk we bombard ourselves with throughout our life. We can see how some of these lies were perpetuated by parents, by peers, by the media, and by society. By exploring these lies, we can hopefully begin to see the truth: to see our…… [Read More]
' At that moment, I came to realize that I have to set a good example for him by being strong and facing up to my circumstances. Remembering the special times that my mother and I shared as a little girl in our worship, I started going to church again and prayed to Him for help and guidance. Even today, I remember very clearly how I cried out to Him for help and asked Him what I should do in order to be saved. This was a turning point in my life because I felt so empty and lost but I knew in my heart that things were going to be okay.
One day not too long after this turning point in my life, I met a man who completely blew me away. At the time, I was with my friends visiting Las Vegas (I was not drinking anymore). We…… [Read More]
book of Matthew is theology. The book, written by an unknown evangelist, is dedicated to the truth of Jesus Christ as the son of the living God. It is without a doubt that the author believed the truth of the conception of Jesus Christ. Therefore, Matthew 1:16, 18-25 is clear about this conception. However, there are numerous views negating this belief. Brown, claims that it is unrealistic to believe in the virgin birth because it is not mentioned anywhere in the New Testament other than in Matthew and Luke. This, according to him, is an indication that it was a late invention or one proposed by the early church, because such a remarkable and relevant issue could have been mentioned by other New Testament writters. In addition, Campenhausen performed a survey of the theology of the virgin birth of Jesus Christ in the early church. He observes that the virgin…… [Read More]
A Practical Pastoral Counseling Model
Where Will Counseling Take Place?
oundaries for Safety and Security
God's Riches at Christ's Expense
A Practical Pastoral Counseling Model
This is an overview of the counseling position that I will take when working with clients/parishioners. I realize that this cannot encompass every eventuality that may occur during a counseling session, but it should be comprehensive enough to account for most of the possibilities that present themselves. I acknowledge that this is also the treatise of someone who is going to be practicing as a pastor first and a counselor second, therefore the relationship of a shepherd to his assigned sheep is the most important consideration in all of this. Also, the counseling relationship that a pastor enjoys with a parishioner is not as extensive as that between a patient…… [Read More]
Samuel Escobar is a well-known theologian within the Latin American community and viewed as one of the main participants in the International Congress on World Evangelism at Lausanne, Switzerland in 1974 over the years. He is also the president of the United Bible societies and of the International Fellowship of Evangelic Students and contributed immensely to the subject of global mission both in theory and practically. The contemporary Christian missions are compelled to comply with the global trends and the forces of globalization in order to remain relevant as opposed to the trends that were predominant in the third millennium of the Christian era. Escobar makes significant contribution and consequently influence on the aspect of contemporary global mission by exploring the new realities and forces of a globalized world as well as critically assessing the context of a vastly dynamic mission which hold to the earlier pedagogical teachings…… [Read More]
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. This invocation, accompanying the sign of the cross, marks the beginning and end of every Roman Catholic prayer. It has become synonymous with Catholicism -- a celebration of the crucifix as representative of the lessed Trinity. While, every good Catholic takes this Triumvirate for granted, it is left to theological scholars like Jurgen Moltmann to dissect and analyze the salient features of the Trinity. Is the Trinity a Pneumatological or Christological entity? Is it a combination of the two? Where is God in the scheme of Moltmann's thesis? The theoditic question challenged the omnipotence, omnipresence and omniscience of God in his relationship with man. Is this question revisited in relation to Jesus Christ as the carrier of the Holy Spirit during his life on earth? Moltmann presents a clear interpretation of the relationship between Christ and the Holy Spirit…… [Read More]
An Analysis of the Priesthood "in persona Christi" and "in nominee ecclesiae"
The questions that surround the functions of the priesthood and the diaconate today appear to be part and parcel of the greater uncertainty that surrounds ancient Church customs. This paper will attempt to analyze the meanings of the phrases "in persona Christi" and "in nomine ecclesiae" as they have reflected the functions of the ministers of the Church both in the past and in today. The conclusion of this research is that while the traditional Church maintained a clear definition (and reverent propriety regarding the mystery of the priestly aspect), today's Church is less sure of the role and function of the minister in relation to Church hierarchy and Church laity.
In Persona Christi
Historical Background: the Vestments
Pius XII's (1947) encyclical Mediator Dei describes for us the aspect of the priest in relation to Jesus…… [Read More]
Christian Church acknowledges its missionary function as truly the core of Christianity, the heart of the Church. Through Christ's teachings, mission is the foreground of His legacy to the Church, the instrument for redemption. The guiding principles at the basis of the Church's mission exist as transparently related by the ible which in itself transcends all worldly knowledge and phenomena. God, as the Holy Trinity, reveals Himself through the biblical record in order to communicate with man candidly and openly, sends His only son into the world in order to claim Him back to the offspring of wholeness, and puts forth a missionary pattern for His followers: "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another." (John 13:34, 15:17 King James ible) "And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the…… [Read More]
Gnostics believed that they belonged to the "true church" of an elect few who were worthy; the orthodox Christians would not be saved because they were blind to the truth.
Part E -- Content - if we then combine the historical outline of the "reason" for John's writings with the overall message, we can conclude that there are at least five major paradigms present that are important in a contextual analysis of John.
John 5:13 - I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. This seems to point that John saw a clear difference between those who believed in Jesus as the Son of God, but were unsure about eternal life. However, if we look back at other parts of his Gospel, we do find repetition of this theme. In John 1:5-7,…… [Read More]
Calvin also taught that another way God begins to deal with a person to make him/her restless is knowledge.
Under the influence of the Spirit of God, a person is borne upward; traveling upward toward the knowledge of God. Conscience, as far as human understanding reaches, is a source which constitutes the unconditional starting point for the beginning of knowledge of God; for the revelation of Jesus Christ.
For Calvin, "revelation is not immediately revelation of Jesus Christ. But revelation of the harsh judgment of God, although this is certainly finally oriented to Christ."
Basically, Calvin did not have any revelation problem as the center of his theology. He began with the reality that a person is alienated from God, but that God seeks the individual out and entices him/her to a way in which community with God may be discovered again. Calvin argued sin has damaged human reason; that…… [Read More]
religion entered the 18th Century and with it a revival. The growth of the revival was overwhelming.More people attended church than in previous centuries. Churches from all denominations popped up throughout established colonies and cities within the United States. Religious growth also spread throughout England, Wales and Scotland. This was a time referred to as "The Great Awakening" where people like Jarena Lee got her start preaching.
Evangelism, the epicenter of the movement, preached the Old and New Testament summoned forth parishioners. Churches were erected, both grand and small by the rich and poor, however at this time, it did not matter which class system was inside; everyone was finding comfort in church attendance and the hearing of the word. The largest Protestant groups consisted of Presbyterians, aptists and Methodists. Those denominations (Anglicans, Quakers, and Congregationalists) established earlier were unable to keep up with this growing Protestant revolution.
In 1787…… [Read More]
This is the same in our lives, because if we remain steadfast in out faith, our suffering can only serve to further God's work in our lives. Paul's example also highlights our responsibilities to each other, because through our own example we can help other Christians that might be facing the same kind of difficulty as us.
In the next few passages, Paul goes on to discuss something that has undoubtedly crossed the mind of any Christian facing extreme difficult, which is the idea that it might just be better to be done with the world and live eternally in heaven. Paul says that "for to me, living is Christ and dying is gain," to the point that "I am hard pressed between the two: my desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better, but to remain in the flesh is more necessary for you"…… [Read More]
The Jews, of course, were as antagonistic to hearing Stephen preach the life of Christ as they were to Christ Himself -- ho is the way of salvation, and hom they have rejected. Stephen's speech is fiery and full of love and fury -- love for Christ, fury for the Jews who rejected Him: "You stiff-necked people! Your hearts and ears are still uncircumcised." (Here Stephen as much as says, "You are not real Jews. Real Jews would have recognized their Redeemer.) "You are just like your ancestors: You always resist the Holy Spirit!" The reaction of the Jews is to stone Stephen to death. Stephen accepts his martyrdom and dies as Christ died, with a prayer for his persecutors -- and out of that prayer comes (through the mercy of God) the conversion of St. Paul.
In conclusion, "we may say that perseverance as a Christian is the only…… [Read More]
The interpretation of "spiritual truths" can largely influence how a disseminator selects a particular message, and can also be a particular lesson taught to disciples -- to aid them in their own ability to interpret spiritual understanding. This intrinsic sense of what is necessary to be communicated to an audience (Mitchell, 2010) should also be taught to an audience itself, so that it can understand and become closer to the spirit of God -- which is one of the main goals of virtually any disciple-maker's message.
y utilizing the aforementioned sources to impart this particular message -- to help further the understanding of the voice and spirit of God for disciples, so that they may heed and live a life in accordance to it -- it then becomes necessary to utilize the proper form to communicate this message. Of the four most widely used forms of communicating a message (the…… [Read More]
260). This cosmological discussion is one reason Origen is said to have "created, indeed embodied, the first model of a scientific theology;" his approach to the notion of metempsychosis, like nearly all of his theological work, is rooted in a steadfast determination to distinguish "between the dogmata of the church tradition and the problemata which were to be discussed" according to reason, logic, and a prototype of the scientific method (Kung 1994, pp. 48-49). As will be seen, Origen's focus on not-yet-determined points of Christianity would ultimately contribute to his condemnation as a heretic, because could be considered genuine, innocent investigation in the third century would rapidly become dangerous propaganda to the Church's ruling powers.
Origen's description of an ultimate, total reunification should not be taken to mean that he is arguing that the actions one takes within the temporal world is meaningless, since everything will ultimately be united once…… [Read More]
(God and Money)
The spiritual and materialistic facets of Church life are not only linked but in reality are fully united. All the conferences like All American Council, diocesan workshops, church publications, and guidance in our parishes makes us aware that we are required to share God's gift of time, talent and material resources. All the facets of life initiate to belong to God and we have the liability of utilizing them as judiciously as possible. Good stewardship is essential to fulfill the objective of Church that flows from all the facets of Church. It is required to understand the casual temptations in dealing with parish financial matters and handling the funds and records of the Church. Irrespective of the fact that proper records are kept, often it leads to confusion due to lack of improper and incomplete routine book keeping. (Parish Finances)
In order to maintain the financial propriety…… [Read More]