Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Dual Nature of Christ
Part Two

Now we come to the doctrine of Jesus’ deity. John 1: 1-5 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.” KJV

In these verses lies the foundation of our doctrine of Jesus’ deity, outside of the proclamation Jesus makes himself concerning his deity. John 10:30 “ I and [my] Father are one.” Then, in John 1:14 John nails down the doctrine by writing’ “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” KJV
The key here is in the definition of the word, “Word”. In the Greek it is “Logos”.

Note: A Greek philosopher named Heraclitus first used the term Logos around 600 B.C. to designate the divine reason or plan which coordinates a changing universe. BLB.

“In John, [Logos] denotes the essential Word of God, Jesus Christ, the personal wisdom and power in union with God, his minister in creation and government of the universe, the cause of all the world's life both physical and ethical, which for the procurement of man's salvation put on human nature in the person of Jesus the Messiah, the second person in the Godhead, and shone forth conspicuously from His words and deeds.” BLB

The word used in the Hebrew New Testament is, “Torah”. so for the Jew this would certainly take on a very special meaning. “The term "Torah" (Hebrew: תורה, "teaching" or "instruction," sometimes translated as "Law,") most commonly refers to the text of the Five Books of Moses or Pentateuch. It may also refer to the entirety of Judaism's founding legal and ethical religious texts. {wikipedia}

This certainly falls in line with the mission of Jesus in that he was the human manifestation of Gods teaching, instruction, and Law, “ and could only be accomplished by deity.
Jesus declared he had come to “fulfill the Law”. And he did!

The introduction of Jesus by John the Baptist gives a very Jewish picture as to the personage of the man who now approached the river Jordan, where John is baptizing. John’s words are clear as to whom he believes now stands before him.“ Behold, the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world.” John 1:29. This is an obvious reference to the “Passover Lamb” or “Paschal Lamb”. The difference here is that THIS Lamb was chosen by God, because Jesus is the WORD of God the second person of the trinity, and was not chosen by fallible, biased man, as the only truly perfect standard for which HIS sacrifice could and would be the last required for eternal; not temporal, forgiveness of the sins of mankind.

To deny the humanity of Jesus is just as heretical as denying Jesus’ deity. The fact that the use of the word “made” flesh; not became flesh very clearly declares Jesus’ humanity, and the fact that the ‘WORD” express' the very essence of who God is, and clearly speaks to Jesus’ deity.

Friday, September 19, 2008

The Dual Nature of Christ
Part One

The historical fact of a man who’s name was Jesus; who with his small band of followers traveled the length and breadth of Israel ministering to people and preaching peace and faith and brotherly love. Even Josephus’ writings as well as other notable writers of the day declare his human existence.

We will examine the human nature of Jesus in this first part of our essay. Even those outside the faith agree to the historicity of the man from Galilee. The New Testament speaks specifically to the fact of Jesus’ human nature, yet there are those who claim to be Christians who deny Jesus’ humanity; that somehow his deity is minimized. The argument being that if he were 100% human he would carry the sin of Adam, and therefore he would not be the perfect sacrifice of God.

“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” Romans 5:12

For example, in the Philadelphia Confession of Faith that is use by many Presbyterian churches, there is a statement that because of inherited sin, "we are utterly indisposed, disabled, and made opposite of all good, and wholly inclined to do evil . . . This corruption of nature, during this life, doth remain in those that are regenerated; and, although Christ pardoned and mortified, yet both itself and the first motions thereof are truly and properly sin."
You may not think of it immediately, but there is a problem with the idea of sin being inherited. If sin is inherited, then how can the Bible claim that Jesus, being born in this world, was without sin (Hebrews 4:15).

To answer the question posed in the above quote is found in Gods word. Simply put Jesus had no earthly father as taught in the gospels, but Mary was fully human. Therefore Jesus had both the nature of man, which was flawed, through Mary and deity, which is perfect, through God.
“But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” Matthew 1:20

Through out the New Testament we see on over view of the life and times of Jesus. That he started life on this earth as a baby. “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.: John 1:14 . The mortality rate among babies in that day was very high, so we see early in his life God’s hedge of protection around him, but I’ll bet he still suffered an occasional colic attach, sniffles and most common maladies as we see even today. The Bible tells us very little about Jesus’ early ‘ toddler’ years. But again, I see him as being a normal child of that day. I’ve read where in one of the apocrypha writings where Jesus as a child molded birds from mud and brought them to life for entertainment. How ludicrous is that notion. Even as a child God would not allow his son to be so frivolous in the childish use of his special gifts.

We are introduced to Jesus as a young lad in Jerusalem seeming lost by Mary and Joseph, when he was found to be teaching in the synagogue with authority and knowledge beyond his years. Upon finding him Jesus exhibits a hint of the mission and message of human life on this earth when he responds to their query as to his whereabouts obviously worried as any human parent would be, “And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? Luke 2:49

Jesus began his ministry as a young adult, about 30 years of age, “And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli,” Luke 3:23 So he had lived a life as a faithful and devoted disciple of Jewish traditions and laws. It could be said of him that he was a Biblical Scholar like no other, and why not, as he being the author should have first hand knowledge could speak and teach with true authority. His followers acknowledged this by calling him “ Rabbi” Teacher. We would use the modern vernacular of describing him of having obtained “LIFE EXPERIENCES” , which fall in line with what Paul had written to the Hebrews, “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as [we are, yet] without sin.” Hebrews 4:15.

Jesus, because of his humanity, not in spite of his humanity, knew all too well the frailties of our flesh. He passed the test and resisted Satan and maintained that perfect sinless human nature, and now sits at the right hand of God where he is our mediator, “For [there is] one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;” 1 Timothy 2:5 Notice the word “MAN” not spirit, not savior, not the second person of the God head , though he is all of those, but the human man Christ Jesus.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Gentiles and Messianism

The messianic movement has been active in the Jewish community ever since Jesus commanded his Jewish followers to go into the world and spread the gospel. So it is not

new, however it has seemingly gained in popularity in recent years on many levels. With

the advent of active Jewish Evangelism groups like , Jews for Jesus, who actively seek support thru mainstream Christian churches and through their efforts have raised awareness to the messianic movement.

The Jew who is contemplating accepting Jesus, they prefer the Hebrew name of Yeshua when talking about Jesus, as their promised messiah are faced with making a choice of giving up their heritage, traditions and ultimately their identity to become a “CHRISTIAN”. Family and friends are alienated and often times the family of the convert hold mock funerals as they, the convert, is now dead to them. What a traumatic experience for anyone to go through for their faith.

We can sympathize with the Jewish convert who chooses what appears to be a valid alternative to joining a mainstream Christian church , and that is to fellowship and worship with Jews of like mind at a Messianic Jewish Temple or Synagogue. There they can find the trappings; traditions of worship they are familiar with. The exception is that they now are, “COMPLETED or FULLFILLED” Jews in accepting Yeshua as their messiah and not Christians. I am reminded of Paul’ exhortation to the Romans, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” Rom. 1:16

I also find that there is an air of elitism within their ranks. Here in lies the great attraction, I believe, for the Gentiles who are seeking a higher plain in their worship. Dr. Stokes in his essay on Gentiles in the Messianic Movement, defines five types of Gentiles who are attracted to Messianism. The first group he describes as “Jew wanna-be’s”. They are convinced that God has called them to be Jewish, and often deny their Gentile roots. Another group has come to the revelation that the Torah is equally binding on Gentiles as well as Jews, say Dr. Stokes.

Yet I see another form of spiritual elitism. They mix Law and Grace, Works and Faith. All one need do is read Paul’s letter to the Galatians and the Romans, to see the error of many of their theological and doctrinal practices. I’ll close with what Paul wrote to the Romans: “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither [is that] circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: Rom 2:28
But he [is] a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision [is that] of the heart, in the spirit, [and] not in the letter; whose praise [is] not of men, but of God. Rom 2:29”.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Briefly explain how and when you became a Christian:
As long as I can remember, my mother and father taught us the Christian way. We always prayed before we ate, before we went to sleep, and we always thanked God for all his blessings. We felt that we were blessed and had God to thank.

Did the question get answered?

Briefly explain how and when you became a Christian:
I grew up in a Christian home with amazing parents. My family was very involved in our church and they made sure I had a strong upbringing that was centered on God. I became a Christian at a very young age, around 6 years old. My knowledge about God grew as I did and my walk with God eventually became much stronger as I got older.

Did the question get answered?

Briefly explain how and when you became a Christian:
I believe it was in 2001 at 18 years old, when I finally decided I needed to be baptized as a Christian.

I was surrounded by the Christian lifestyle since I was a teenager, not so much from my family, but both by my dance teacher (yes, I took dance too) and by my BMX team manager. This meant that while I was at home and traveling to races, I could see how true Christians lived their lives, and they influenced me so much. It was good though, because I made up my mind about accepting Jesus on my own (although it took 6 years). It was something I came to realize I didn't want to wait on anymore.

I still remember the moment when I knew I wanted to live my life for Jesus as much as I could; it was during a plane flight. I am really scared of flying, even though I have to fly many times a month. I have certain CDs that I listen to, to help calm me down when there is turbulence. I was listening to a Keith Green song called "YOU!" There is a line in the song that says, "Don't wait too long to decide." Now, I had been listening to that song for years, and knew exactly what that line was referring to, and that particular flight did it for me. I told myself that I was getting baptized when I arrived home, which I did.

Did the question get answered?

Testimonies from

Testimonies are always interesting, because they are unique to the individual, but there should be a common thread to every ones conversion experience. The other interesting fact here is some admit to not being active or faithful to church.

The question was simple, but some answers miss the mark.

None of them mention personal SIN, or forgiveness or repentance from their SIN. I’m not trying to judge the validity of their testimony; I’m simply asking a question. If I were the interviewer I would have dug a little deeper. How does your testimony read?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Are Christians still being eaten by lions?

1Pe 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

When hunting favored prey such as wildebeest or zebra, lions usually stalk to within 30 meters before rushing at them. In most cases the lions will wait until the quarry has turned away or has its head down. Once it detects danger, the victim bolts but it may be too late. On rare occasions, (and invariably in daylight) lion may ambush prey, with one member of the pride lying in wait as its partner forces the quarry to run in its direction. The sheer abundance of prey can also determine hunting strategies. When great herds of migratory wildebeest are milling about, lions can simply rush into them and pull down one or more of the confused animals. When the same herds gather to cross the Grumeti or Mara rivers, lions simply wait at favored crossing points and pick off the startled wildebeest.

It is also widely known that lions will prey on the young, the invalid, the older and weaker prey. It is little wonder why Peter uses this very visual analogy as to how a Christian should walk in this world of lions.

First of all, Peter tells us to be “SOBER”. Literally to be serious and calm, not taking our responsibilities lightly or frivolously in our Christian walk.

Second; we are to be “VIGILANT”. Aware of our surroundings, environment, and influences, Once we turn our heads and become comfortable with our situation we put ourselves in the position to become a victim.

Peter tells us WHY we need to be : SOBER and VIGILANT. Because our adversary,(enemy) known as the devil, is on the prowl. He is looking for the weak, the invalid the immature Christian to devour, literally to consume their testimony and service life. There fore as part of our defense we are to stay strong in our faith. Aware of the fact that we are in the world but not OF the world. We also have a protector in Jesus Christ our Shepard, and the Holy Spirit our Comforter to walk hand in hand with us through this world. Also, notice there is strength in numbers. “Forsake not the assembly of yourselves together,:

The devil knows our favorite hang outs and is waiting in ambush. Put the Holy Spirit out on point to ensure safe travel. Don’t become the next to have your Christian testimony devoured.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

America’s Judeo-Christian Heritage Gone, but not Forgotten?

If one would listen to the media pundits it would seem America’s claim to being a country founded on Judeo-Christian values is all but passé. In part it seems that would be a correct assessment.

We have become a country who has gone from : “IN GOD WE TRUST”, to


to freedom “FROM WORSHIP OF GOD”, and it happened with in a short span of only 232 years.

The new mantra, which is generally quoted completely out of context, is: SEPERATION OF CHURCH AND STATE. What a complete and utter fallacy. There will never truly be a complete separation of THE Church from THE State until THE CHURCH is raptured out of this world. Then, and only then will there be a true separation of the two.

Nearly half of the signers of the Declaration of Independence where trained in theology. “There was certainly no separation of church from our Founding statesmen. Half the Declaration’s signers had some sort of divinity school training, and while John Adams was the most overtly pious, even the supposed non-believers among the Founders, such as Benjamin Franklin, found the need to turn to God in times of trouble. During the Constitutional Convention's most contentious moments, it was Franklin who not only offered a prayer but who added:

Our prayers, Sir, were heard, and they were graciously answered. All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a Superintending providence in our favor. To that kind providence we owe this happy opportunity of consulting in peace on the means of establishing our future national felicity. And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? or do we imagine that we no longer need His assistance” . Larry Schwei kart:

However, it is difficult to claim today we are still a God fearing country when we have laws that do not protect the lives of fetus’, and infanticide called abortion claims the innocent lives of nearly 1.3 million per year. The

government is now replacing God determining who lives and dies. God gave us the TRUE family planning in His word, but His word is considered non –politically correct, and antiquated. The government will give us the new and improved version of the FAMILY, VALUES, and MORALS.

But, here in lies the great rub. The CHURCH is a live. The Holy Spirit still convicts of sin; there is a voice for righteousness. There are those who continue to hold the banner of God high for all to see. The Church will continue to be a burr under the saddle of secular humanist. We used to be known as the MORAL MAJORITY, but are we?

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Todd Bentley and the Lakeland Revival

By: Al Carlisle

Mat 16:4 A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas. And he left them, and departed.

Commentary by David Gusik

d. A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign: This reminds that signs alone convert no one. We can place far too much confidence in signs as events bring people to faith in Jesus.

i. The problem isn’t that the signs are themselves weak, but that a wicked and adulterous generation seeks after them.

e. No sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah: However, Jesus promised a sign that would have power to bring people to faith - His own resurrection.

1Jo 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try (test) the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

1Cr 2:2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. Emphasis is mine

Rom 16:18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.

I live and minister not far from Lakeland and read with great interest in the Tampa Tribune the story of the events happening in Lakeland and this evangelist Todd Bentley.

Wow, I thought as I read , if God is in this then I want to be a part of Gods outpouring. But, as is my habit, and before I spend my money for a tank of gas, I researched Todd Bentley and his ministry. What I found was a ministry That is more about Todd Bentley then about our Lord Jesus. See 1 Cor. 2:2

Let us look first at the response of someone who came to Lakeland from New Mexico for the purpose of, “to get some and bring it back to Albuquerque.” Todd likes to use this catch phrase to encourage folks to come down and receive “ the anointing”, “healing”, etc. Something is, at least to me, inherently wrong by calling the work of the Holy Spirit as some and it. This person was representing an organization called “XTREME ENCOUNTERS”

We are a group of God-chasers who are determined to encounter Him. We are
chasing Jesus with all that we are. We have all been hurt in some way by the church,
but the current state of the church is no reflection on who Jesus Christ is. He is
GOOD! And He LOVES US!! We want to see others who have been hurt by church
and church leadership healed and to help them fall in love with the Lord all over again.

As I read this description of their group there came to my mind a group I saw on tv called Storm Chasers. I’m sure you’ve seen them on tv too. How they travel far wide chasing storms to get an up close and personal encounter with tornadoes. As intelligent people are racing to find shelter and put as much distance between them and the storm, these people are racing to get as close as they can and they pay for the privilege. And they do this because? For the thrill, the rush,
Do you see the analogy?

Evidently some people feel the only way they can have an encounter with God that is meaningful is only found in services where they can get a THRILL and feel the RUSH. The same reason people ride roller coasters. And Todd Bentley has tapped into this emotional resource and people are paying for the privilege. Like the one who went to Lakeland chasing God to share in the experience, the thrill, the rush. Something evidently missing in many churches.

Here is how they described the worship: Worship was awesome. Roy Fields is an amazing worship leader. He is also FUN! He knows how to help people enter into the presence of God.”

I never needed help to enter into the presence of God. As His child I have immediate access to my heavenly father and the Holy Spirit prepares my heart and mind for worship. Love these Spiritual Cheerleaders who work the crowd. What did the folks do at Pentecost without a Roy Fields?

What about preaching the word, as Paul commanded young Timothy to do? Lets hear from this eye witness: “Did Todd preach? No, not really. Not in the sense of a sermon with loads and loads of scripture. The thing is that probably 75% of the crowd were ministers of one form or other. We really don’t need more Word poured into us. What we need is empowerment to DO. We need the release of faith and boldness to DO THE WORKS OF JESUS. We know the Word, but we are not seeing the biblical promise of “As I was sent, so send I you” in our lives.”

The Bible teaches that the power of God is in the WORD of God. “it is the power of God unto salvation.” Not signs and wonders.

I would encourage you to go to the link and read more first hand account of this “revival”. You decide by the leadership of the Holy Spirit if God is in this. For me I’ll save the price of gas and use it for the work of the ministry in my own church.