The Tragedy of Dumbing Down Christianity – RELEVANT Magazine


     We have replaced rich, robust theology in the Church with emotional music and constant reminders that “God is love and loves you and He’s your personal Savior and loves your soul …” These words are great at bringing outsiders through the doors (because they’re true by and large) but poor at growing believers into mature witnesses with a rich understanding of the deep things of God.

Read more at:  The Tragedy of Dumbing Down Christianity – RELEVANT Magazine

Hebrew Manuscripts : Nash Papyrus

Nash Papyrus (MS Or.233)The Nash Papyrus is a second-century BCE fragment containing the text of the Ten Commandments followed by the Šemaʿ. Prior to the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls it was the oldest known manuscript containing a text from the Hebrew Bible. The manuscript was originally identified as a lectionary used in liturgical contexts, due to the juxtaposition of the Decalogue (probably reflecting a mixed tradition, a composite of Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5) with the Šemaʿ prayer (Deuteronomy 6:4-5), and it has been suggested that it is, in fact, from a phylactery (tefillin, used in daily prayer). Purchased from an Egyptian dealer in antiquities in 1902 by Dr. Walter Llewellyn Nash and presented to the Library in 1903, the fragment was said to have come from the Fayyum.This item is included in the Library’s 600th anniversary exhibition Lines of Thought: Discoveries that changed the world which runs until 30 September

Source: Hebrew Manuscripts: Nash Papyrus

My Name is Wanda…but not Sykes

A photo of The Thinker by Rodin located at the Musée Rodin in Paris
There is a meme going around, where you say your name, but then you deny being a famous person with the same first name as yours.
Example: I am Michael… but not Jackson.
While the game may seem silly to some, it makes an important theological point.
Society today recognizes many different beings named Jesus. But they are not all the same Jesus.  Just as if you got the opportunity to spend even an hour with Wanda Sykes, it would be clear that she is not the Wanda that wrote this blog.   While it is true that we have some things in common, she is funny, many think that I am too. She is a breast cancer survivor, I am too. We soon run out of similarities.  For example, I am married to a man, she is married to a woman, She is a liberal, I am a conservative.  This is true for many of the ones called Jesus as well. Some say that Jesus is the spirit brother of Lucifer, some say that he is superior to Lucifer. Some claim that Jesus is gay, others say that he is straight, one Jesus supposedly married a woman, others say that he was celibate his entire life. They can’t all be talking about the same Jesus!

Just as I could not give you permission to enter Wanda Sykes home, these Jesuses that are not in the Bible can’t welcome you into the real Jesus home in Heaven. The best way to make sure that you have the right Jesus is to study his biography, the Bible.  Not just a snippet here, and a snippet there or you will be in danger of making the same mistake that you would be at risk of if you knew that both Wanda Sykes and I are breast cancer survivors.

Who is Jesus . . . Really?: A Dialogue on God, Man, and Grace (The Coffee House Chronicles)

A perenctage of your purchase will go to improve Smart Christian.

Truthbomb Apologetics: 84 Confirmed Facts in the Last 16 Chapters of the Book of Acts

Scholar and historian Colin Hemer has identified 84 facts in the last 16 chapters of the Book of Acts that have been confirmed by historical and/or archaeological research.They are as follows :
1. the natural crossing between correctly named ports [Acts 13:4-5]
2. the proper port [Perga] along the direct destination of a ship crossing from Cyprus [13:13]
3. the proper location of Lycaonia [14:6]
4. the unusual but correct declension of the name Lystra [14:6]
5. the correct language spoken in Lystra-Lycaonian [14:11]

Read more at: Truthbomb Apologetics: 84 Confirmed Facts in the Last 16 Chapters of the Book of Acts

You’re Going to Have to Educate Yourself | Intellectual Takeout

Let’s face it: we all have holes in our education.In part, this is because we can only fit so much into the years of our formal education.But the holes in our education are also due to the fact that we no longer have a standard canon of sources that we are expected to study in school.In the past, this canon served a unifying function among those in the Western world: it gave us a common lens through which to view the world, common terms for discourse, and a means to understand a common past.

Read more at: You’re Going to Have to Educate Yourself | Intellectual Takeout

Skeptics commercialize the “myth” of Jesus « The Chimes | Biola University

Many who believe Jesus was a myth have no qualms about profiting off him, as retailer Mulberry’s replaced the baby Jesus in the manger with a $1,500 purse this Christmas shopping season. The use of “Jesus Mythology” in advertisements and Christmas sales treats the real person of Jesus Christ with irreverence, and it is something Christians need to correct.HOW HISTORY IS DETERMINEDIt is now common during Christmastime to doubt the claims of Christianity by perpetuating stories that Jesus was a mythical figure brought on by legend. The problem today is that many do not know how history is determined. What makes history real? The primary way historians determine if past events really occurred is through examination of ancient documentation.

Read more at: Skeptics commercialize the “myth” of Jesus « The Chimes | Biola University

Why the “Mythical Jesus” Claim Has No Traction with Scholars

Larry Hurtado's Blog

The overwhelming body of scholars, in New Testament, Christian Origins, Ancient History, Ancient Judaism, Roman-era Religion, Archaeology/History of Roman Judea, and a good many related fields as well, hold that there was a first-century Jewish man known as Jesus of Nazareth, that he engaged in an itinerant preaching/prophetic activity in Galilee, that he drew to himself a band of close followers, and that he was executed by the Roman governor of Judea, Pontius Pilate.

These same scholars typically recognize also that very quickly after Jesus’ execution there arose among Jesus’ followers the strong conviction that God (the Jewish deity) had raised Jesus from death (based on claims that some of them had seen the risen Jesus).  These followers also claimed that God had exalted Jesus to heavenly glory as the validated Messiah, the unique “Son of God,” and “Lord” to whom all creation was now to give obeisance.[i]  Whatever…

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