Well this is embarrassing.
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Our complaints about God's grace always sound the same: "It was good to see him in church with his son this morning. But, I can’t believe pastor let them come up to communion. And did you see? I mean, pastor's just got to know he blew half the family's savings on booze and drugs. You know what else?
I finally got around to watching The Last Jedi. I was caught up in the stirring story of the faltering band of rebels, on the verge of extinction, fighting valiantly for the good against overwhelming odds. My heart soared with the dramatic music when the warriors went into battle…
BY PAUL DUNK
As I write this from the window of a coffee shop, the traffic is driving by on the right side of the road … because I’m Canadian. If you’re reading this in Pakistan, Kenya, Fiji or one of 75 other possible countries and territories, then the traffic outside your coffee shop is driving by on the left … which for you, is right.
More Gentiles believe and we are introduced to the circumcision party. Peter recounts his vision and while we find their theology isn't perfect, they understand repentance. Believers begin being called Christians. Herod makes a political move and kills James and throws Peter in prison and the church starts praying. Daniel and Erick talk about all this and more. Have a listen!
Chad and Daniel wrap up their discussion about the Old Testament feast days. What is the feast of trumpets? Why is everyone told to do nothing? How does the day of atonement work? There is a lot of talk about worship, church and living water in this episode. Have a listen!
I do not mean to give the impression that the Law should be despised. Neither does Paul intend to leave that impression. The Law ought to be honored. But when it is a matter of justification before God, Paul had to speak disparagingly of the Law, because the Law has nothing to do with justification.
Healing continues to follow the Apostles. Peter stays with a tanner while a gentile receives a message from an angel to send for the Apostle. Peter has a profound vision involving unclean animals being called clean. Peter leaves and preaches the gospel. The word works and baptism comes up again. Daniel and Erick talk about all this and more. Have a listen!
BY RJ GRUNEWALD
The Law gets a bad rap. There is certainly a negative component to the Law. The work of the Law is very different than the work of the Gospel. If the Gospel’s work is to revive, the Law’s work is to kill. If the Gospel’s work is to cover over sin, the Law’s work is to expose sin.
BY GERHARD FORDE
The law does not end sin, does not make new beings, it only makes matters worse. Where the old continuity is maintained, sin does not end. No matter how much religious pressure is applied, sin only grows. But, Paul has the audacity to say where sin abounded, grace abounded all the more.
BY CHAD BIRD
Let's face it, Christianity is not for everyone. If you've made such huge strides in holiness that you deem grace a crutch for those still handicapped by sin, if you detect the faint applause of angels clapping their wings at your obedience, if you've led such an exemplary life that you've landed a spot on heaven's honor roll, then you’ll feel like you’re slumming in Christianity.
A few minutes from where I live there is a flat trail that leads for miles through a thick forest. I like to take my dog Winston there for walks, often over my lunch break, the sprightly excursion a nice respite from the office, meetings and other tasks that usually make up my day.
Chad and Daniel discuss how sanctification and holiness have always been a gift from God. Can you drive God out and lose accesses to the gift of sanctification? They then begin a conversation about Israel's calendar and Holy days. The Sabbath, The Passover, Feast of Firstfruits and Feast of Weeks are all discussed. Have a listen!
The author, Flannery O'Connor, said, "All I can say about my love of God is, Lord help me in my lack of it." O'Connor's characters often betray their true nature from behind a mask of good-hearted religiousity. This usually happens when the delusion they've projected onto the world is upset by personal crisis
Daniel and Erick discuss the conversion of "threat breathing" Saul. A light and voice from heaven call Saul but a preacher and baptism finish the work. God destroys every theology of glory by showing Saul everything he will suffer, and it's a lot. Saul immediately starts preaching and people are amazed. Persecution ramps up and the other Apostles are unsure about Saul. All this and more is covered. Have a listen!
BY MARTIN LUTHER
When man, conscious of his failure to keep God’s command, is constantly urged by the Law to make payment of his debt and confronted with nothing but the terrible wrath of God and eternal condemnation, he cannot but sink into despair over his sins.
BY KYLE G JONES
Though written in three languages (Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek) by around 40 different people, over the course of 2,000 years, all of Scripture speaks with the same accent. The accent of Scripture emphasized that Christ is for you. Yes, you. He’s not for the perfect people of our imaginations.
I’ve found that most people struggle to agree with God that we are fully forgiven, redeemed and justified by pure grace alone, for the sake of Jesus Christ alone. I know it’s difficult for me. That is why we need this gospel preached to us over and over. But wait. What about good works and loving my neighbor?
Chad and Daniel spend a lot of time talking about death, how the people of Israel viewed it and what changed once Jesus arrived. Priests have very strict rules about who they can marry and what makes them unclean. But the true and great High Priest does things very differently. Have a listen!
Saul is "ravaging" the church but the gospel is spreading. A magician is converted and baptized but then tries to buy the power of God. The Holy Spirit is mysteriously absent in Samaria until the Apostles arrive and Philip encounters a eunuch from Ethiopia reading Isaiah. There are some tough parts in this chapter but Daniel & Erick discuss it all. Have a listen!
Chad and Daniel spend some time talking about what the Bible says about tattoos. Does Daniel need to repent immediately? Is there any crossover between laws for Jewish and non-Jewish Christians? Why was the Holy Land Holy? Why did the land vomit out its former inhabitants? It's an interesting episode. Have a listen!
BY BRAD GRAY
At times, evangelical Christianity can be a paradox. For as much as Protestants have spurned Roman Catholicism, they’re much more Catholic than they’d ever like to admit. By which, I mean, we operate with a stricter conditionality that we’d probably ever feel comfortable confessing.
This is a live episode of 30 Minutes in the New Testament recorded at Mabel Murphys in Fergus Falls Minnesota. Daniel and Erick take a break from Acts to talk about one of the most famous parables of Jesus. But don't let that stop you from listening, the Good Samaritan might just be about more than you think. Have a listen!
I have found that if I want to get people talking (especially guys), all I have to do is ask them about their father. Instantly, you will either hear stories of heroism or abandon; stories of pain or great joy; stories of great pride or great shame. But one thing’s for sure: You’ll hear stories…