Posts

Showing posts from June, 2019

TRADITIONAL CHRISTIAN LITURGIES

Image

THE THREE DIFFERENT ENDS OF MARK 16

Image

SYNOPTIC GOSPELS

Image

ABOUT THE LORD’s SUPPER AND SUNDAY WORSHIP

Image
In many modern churches, the Sunday weekly celebration of the Holy Supper has been relegated to once per month or every two months; and that is without counting with the practice of some sects like the Watchtower Society, of celebrating the Holy Supper once a year during Easter, or the Salvation Army, that has discarded the celebration of sacraments all together.
The argument behind this distant celebration of the Sacrament, is usually attributed to the fact that Lord Jesus did not stipulate a specific frequency, and that “ordinances”, are only symbolic ceremonies that are not really necessary, except to remind us of certain truths of the Gospel. Under this logic, a monthly celebration of the Lord’s Supper should be enough as a memorial, according to these religious groups.
THE OBLIGATION
The celebration of the Holy Supper was instituted by Lord Jesus as memorial of his atoning sacrifice on the Cross (Matthew 26:27-28; 1Corinthians 11:26) to perpetuity (Luke 22:19; 1Corinthians 11:25-2…

ABOUT PASTORAL CARE TO THE DYING UNDER EUTHANASIA LAWS

Image
Laws allowing professional assistance for terminally ill patients to end their own lives, have been approved by the government of the State of Victoria, in Australia, and has the potential to extend to the legislation of other states at some point. But now another problem has risen that affects the Christian Church as an institution in a more direct way. Civil powers expect Christian ministers from all denominations to pastorally assists on a regular manner, all those who are choosing to end their own lives and provide them with Christian burial.
The issue is a very delicate one. People choosing to end their lives are individuals under a high level of stress and pain, who apart from enduring extreme physical suffering, face also with anguish, the expectation of a long, tortuous agony before inevitably dying. These people who under normal circumstances would condemn euthanasia, even though at some point make the decision to end their own lives voluntarily, also long to have spiritual r…

PROHIBITION TO INGEST BLOOD THROUGH THE AGES

Image

HELL WHAT IT IS, WHERE IT IS AND WHO GOES THERE

Image
The term “Hell” does no appear in the Bible. The expressions used in both, the Old and New Testaments in regards to the place of the death, are Sheol (שְׁאוֹל) in Hebrew (Psalm 16:10), its Greek equivalent Hades or Ades (ᾌδης)(Luke 16:23), or in an indirect way, Tartarus (Tάρταρος)(2Peter 2:4), and its equivalent Gehinnom (גֵיהִנוֹם) in Hebrew orGeenna (Γέεννα)(Matthew 5:29) in Greek.
However the concept behind our modern Christian idea of Hell or Infernus in Latin, a place of punishment for the wicked after earthly life, it is present in the New Testament.
Apart from the literal meaning of Sheol and Hades, as “Grave”, or “Place of the Dead”, in the common language of Jewish and Christians and other Semite and Hellenic cultures, Lord Jesus gave Hades a different meaning from the dark and silent grave it was supposed to be.
AN INTERIM PLACE OF PUNISHMENT
Lord Jesus referred to Hades as to a place a soul goes after death, where people are confronted with their sins and suffer punishment …

IF GOD DOES NOT TEMPT ANYONE WHY DO WE PRAY “LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION “ - MATTHEW 6:13 – LUKE 11:4

Image
St James declares plainly that God does not tempt humans, inducing them to do evil instead of good:
“When tempted, no one should say, "God is tempting me." For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone;” (James 1:13)
However when we read the Lord’s Prayer as it is in the Gospel of Matthew and the simplified version in the Gospel of Luke, both versions are translated as:
“And lead us not into temptation” (Matthew 6:13; Luke 11:4)
HOW WE EXPLAIN THIS
1 – The word used in Matthew and Luke for ‘lead’ us is εἰσενέγκῃς from the verb εἰσφέρω, which really indicates an action of directing someone or something into a place or situation. Not just a permissive attitude but an active one. Some have tried to explain the apparent discrepancy by saying that to translate ‘lead us’ is not correct, but it is, following a literal translation of the verse.
2 – The word used for ‘Temptation’ on the other hand, it is πειρασμόν, from the noun πειρασμός, which implies also testing or probat…

THE MEANING OF PENTECOST

Image
The day the Holy Spirit descended over the 120 people gathered in the upper room mentioned in Acts (Acts 1:12-15; 2:1-4); the new born Christian Church started to speak in a manner that was understood by people of different nations and languages, people who spoke totally different languages, from Rome to Mesopotamia, passing through North Africa and the Mediterranean islands.
Professors of Scripture debate whether those infused with the Spirit of God spoke in other languages, or actually they spoke in Aramaic, their mother tongue, but were understood by everyone else in their own language; the fact is, that either way, that day the Church preached the Gospel of Salvation to the whole World in their own language and terms.
In that Pentecost day, not only a new dispensation was inaugurated, where for first time the Holy Spirit of the Lord was going to reside within the spirits and bodies of the regenerated believer in fulfilment of Joel’s prophecy (Joel 2:28), but the ethnical and natio…

WHY IS THE QUOTE IN MATTHEW 27:9-10 NOT FOUND IN JEREMIAH?

Image
In the Gospel of Matthew, it is said that when Judas Iscariot threw the 30 pieces of silver into the Temple, this fulfilled a prophecy mentioned by prophet Jeremiah:
“Then was fulfilled what had been spoken by the prophet Jeremiah, saying, “And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him on whom a price had been set by some of the sons of Israel, and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.” (Matthew 27:9-10)
The problem with this verse is that this quote is not found anywhere in prophet Jeremiah’s writings in the Old Testament, and it looks similar to the verses 12 and 13 of the 11th chapter of Zechariah’s book, with certain inaccuracies.  (See Zechariah 11:12-13).
DIFFERENT THEORIES To solve this issue, scholars have put forward different theories.
1 – COPYIST MISTAKE
Some argue that the abbreviated form to write Jeremiah and Zechariah are very similar, with only the initial letter varying in the name, written in Greek, Ιριου (Jeremiah- J’iah) and Ζριου (…

SYNTHESIS OF THE FRAGMENTS OF PAPIAS’S EXPOSITION OF THE ORACLES OF THE LORD

Image
AUTHOR: Attributed toPapias, assumed Bishop of Hierapolis, Hellenic Turkey. No direct access to the original documents, except through third party writers, like Irenaeus of Lyons and Eusebius of Caesarea. Papias is said to have been disciple of John Apostle, and contemporary of Polycarp and Ignatius of Antioch. These are fragments remaining from the original documents allegedly written by Papias and mentioned by third party writers. DATE: Traditionally, between 95 – 140 CE RECIPIENT:  General
MAIN POINTS 1 – The author, assumed to be Papias, declares that his motivation to write these teachings of the Lord and their explanations as he himself learned them from the Elders who spoke directly with the Apostles or their direct disciples, is due to the many different versions in circulation during his time – 1, 6 2 – Early reference to Aristion and John the Presbyter, also assumed to have been disciples of John Apostle by extra sources. Papias counts them as trustworthy witnesses – 1, 6 3 – Inno…

SYNTHESIS OF THE DIDACHE

Image
AUTHOR: Unknown, but said to be based on the Apostle’s direct teachings. DATE: Traditionally, between 50 and 120 CE. RECIPIENT: General
MAIN POINTS
1 – Free will to choose good or evil – 1:1 2 – Love towards God and our neighbours summarises righteousness – 1:3-5 3 – Bless and pray for our enemies – 1:7-8 4 – Reject Lust – 1:9 5 – Return good for bad, and be generous with material possessions -1:10-17; 4;7-11 6 – Sinful to accept material offerings if we are not in need – 1:18-20 7 – Someone guilty of receiving without need, will be judged and be imprisoned until he has paid back in full and then be freed – Possible early belief in Purgatorial interim state – 1:20-21 8 – Think who you give material things to before you do, don’t make someone sin by giving him when he does not need it – 1:23 9 – Different sins condemned: Murder, adultery, corrupting the young, fornication, robbery, magic, sorcery, abortion, infanticide, craving of other’s possessions, perjury, calumny,speaking evil, hold onto rese…

SYNTHESIS OF THE LETTER OF POLYCARP TO THE PHILIPPIANS

Image
AUTHOR: Polycarp, assumed Bishop of Smyrna – Hellenic Turkey
DATE: Traditionally between 110 and 140 CE.
RECIPIENT: Christian Church of Philippi – Greece.
MAIN POINTS
1 – Early evidence of Episcopal system at Smyrna – Prologue.
2 – Salvation by Grace alone, through Christ – 1:3
3 – Jesus’s Second Coming – 2:1
4 – Resurrection for those who believe in God and Live a righteous life – 2:2
5 – Paul’s letter to the Philippians mentioned – 3:2
6 – Wives to live in purity and moral conduct – 4:2
7 – Widows to live soberly and in prayer – 4:3
8 – God will not be mocked, we must live according to His will – 5:1; 9:1-2
9 – Order of Deacons at Philippi – 5:2
10 – Young men to live in purity, homosexuality condemned – 5:3
11 – Presbyterian system in Philippi (No Bishop) – 5:3; 6:1; 11:1
12 – General Last Judgement before Christ – 6:2
13 – Diverse Gnostic heresies condemned – 7:1
14 – Call to preserve the Faith already received, with Prayer and fasting – 7:2
15 – Jesus, being sinless, paid for our sins on our behal…