Posts Tagged ‘Jesus’

The Mountain of Faith

Sunday, July 20th, 2014 by Wolfgang Vondey

In Matthew 17:20, Jesus promises that “if you have faith as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, move from here to there, and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.” Who doesn’t wish to have that kind of faith? The problem is, nowhere in Scripture do we find anyone moving a mountain. There is no record in history, that anybody ever moved a mountain. Jesus is not speaking about moving literal mountains–Jesus is speaking about spiritual mountains.

We all have mountains in our lives that need to be moved. Watch the video below and follow Moses as a guide up the mountain to learn how to move the mountains in your life and what it takes to have faith as a mustard seed. Your mountain will probably still be there, after these 30 minutes, but I pray that the word of God will give you hope, courage, and determination to change your circumstances and to learn that the only way to move a mountain is up!

 

Not Jesus the Miracle Worker, But Paul and the Miraculous

Tuesday, September 24th, 2013 by Dale M. Coulter

Regent School of Divinity’s Graham Twelftree  has a new book coming out with Baker Academic, Paul and the Miraculous: A Historical Reconstruction.

Recently he was interviewed on the Baker Academic Blog about his new book and the difference between Paul and Jesus on miracles.

For Twelftree, “The main problem is how to explain the high profile of miracles in the Jesus traditions, while Paul, who claimed to be his apostle, appears to say little to nothing on the topic. Furthermore, our reading of Paul is complicated by Luke attributing considerable miracle-working to Paul. I also wanted to test what seems increasingly obvious: the miraculous was more important in early Christianity than is generally reflected in the scholarly literature.”

Read the rest of part I of the interview here.

And, part II here.

Dr. Twelftree is Charles L. Holman Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity and Director of Doctor of Philosophy Program.

Interruptions of the Spirit & the Future of Mission 2

Monday, April 15th, 2013 by Amos Yong

This past three days, I have been inspired at the Missio Alliance conference. My own role in the conference was fairly modest: a workshop on mission in a pluralistic world originally slated jointly with Dallas Willard, but given his ill health – pray for him! – with a Willard scholar, Gary Black Jr. from Azusa Pacific University, and a plenary session on mission with Jo Saxton.  Jo and I were invited to focus on the role of the Spirit, the gospel, and the future of mission.

The title of our plenary was inspired by Jo, who wanted to foreground how the mission of the gospel oftentimes irrupts in and through our lives, for those of us willing to embrace and live into such, through the unexpected and unanticipated work of the Holy Spirit. While Jo did the “pentecostal thing” of testifying to the Spirit’s intruding work in her life, I did the “theologian thing” by reflecting on the “interrupting Spirit” of Pentecost in Acts 2: a phenomenology of interruption (2:5-13), the unbounded scope of the Spirit’s interruption (2:17-18), the personal identity of the interrupting Spirit as the Spirit of Christ (2:22-24), the diachronic identity of the Spirit from David Israel to Jesus (2:25-31), the radical interruptions of crucifixion and resurrection (2:32-36), the eschatological interruptions across space and time (2:37-39), and the interruptions of our status quo (2:40-47). Those interested in the details of this will need to wait for my extended commentary on Acts 2 (with Vince Le) that will appear in the World Bible Commentary later this year edited by Michael McClymond.

What I found, however, was that my thoughts on the ways in which the Spirit disturbs our conventional ways of life was consistent with the major thrusts of the conference. David Fitch of Northern Seminary, one of the primary organizers of the conference, summarized it well in some ad hoc remarks by saying that Missio Alliance was about finding a missional way between those who take a my-way-or-highway approach on the right and those who adopt an accommodationist stance toward culture on the left. Hence this was not about attempting to find a via media for its own sake, but in order to preserve the missional task of the church in a post-Christendom world.

My own thoughts on the interrupting Spirit from Acts 2 resonate with this missional vision. The work of the Spirit in Acts unfolds the mission of God for our times, if nothing else. Yet it does so precisely by establishing a people of God, indeed a fellowship of the Spirit, that lives into the footsteps of Jesus, himself the paradigmatic exemplar (in the Gospel of Luke) of what it means to lead a Spirit-filled, Spirit-empowered, and Spirit-interrupted life. Jesus proclaimed and embodied the coming reign of God and those upon whom he pours out of his Spirit (Acts 2:33) are invited to participate in that proclamation and embodiment – which means simply living according to the apostolic instantiation of Jesus’ Jubilee message. Doing so will bring about the missional “results” of apostolic obedience: “day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved” (Acts 2:47, NRSV). Focus on the work of the Spirit as inspiring a missional people will cut through the most difficult theological, political, and real-life issues of our time since it has to do with living out the redemptive witness of God in a hurting world. Yet doing so also requires that we be open to the interrupting work of the Spirit? We are ready for such disruption and commotion?

Global Day of Worship

Thursday, October 20th, 2011 by Diane Chandler

On November 11, 2011 (11-11-11), followers of Jesus in all 24 time zones around the world will engage in a stream of continuous worship called the Global Day of Worship (GDW).  This movement is a call to the body of Christ to exalt the name of Jesus and give Him glory.  The goal is to invite Christian believers to worship the Lord Jesus between 7:00-8:00 p.m. on 11-11-11 in their respective time zones.  With 24 times zones, this would mean that in each time zone around the world Christian believers will be lifting up the name of Jesus in a global concert of worship.  What a vision!

The founder of the Global Day of Worship, Eunice Barruel (photo featured below), is a Regent University alumna, who also travels the globe to various orphanages, imparting a vision for worshipping the true and living God.  Several years ago, Eunice envisioned the Global Day of Worship as a worldwide expression of love and adoration of Jesus.  And now it is finally coming to fruition in a few weeks.  Recently, Eunice expressed to me that she is simply being obedient to the vision that the Lord has given her and sees herself as a humble servant of the Lord in releasing as many people as possible to contribute to this historic event.

The goal of the Global Day of Worship is simply to proclaim the Lordship of Jesus and secondarily to unite the body of Christ worldwide.  In order to transcend denomination, organization, language, culture, and geography, the hope is to declare God’s love, goodness, grace, favor, and blessing over the nations as one united body.  As 1 Cor 12:12 reminds us, “The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ.”  Whether gathering as individuals, families, small groups, or large groups, the goal is to create a “wave of worship” that spans the globe, uniting Christian believers regardless of worship expression.

Revelation 4: 10-11 provides the theme scripture for this historic event, describing the twenty-four elders falling down before Christ, who sits on the throne in heaven, and laying their crowns before Him, and declaring: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for You created all things, and by Your will they were created and have their being.”  Eunice affirms, “When the worship of heaven meets the worship of earth…spiritual climates of nations will shift, as we serve faithfully here and now in preparation for His return.”

The epicenter of this Global Day of Worship event is right here in Virginia Beach!  Regent University has the privilege of being an integral part of the coordination effort and is hosting a continuous 24-hour period of worship on 11-11-11 in the Main Theatre of the Regent University Communication and the Arts Building.  All are welcome!  The live worship feed from the Main Theatre to the GDW website will occur from 7:00-8:00 p.m.  However, you are encouraged to participate in and coordinate a worship event from 7:00-8:00 p.m. in your respective locale.

How to participate:

(1)   Ask those you know to set aside 7:00-8:00 p.m. on 11-11-11 to worship.

(2)   Consider hosting or organizing a worship event that could be live-streamed on the GDW website.

(3)   Contact GDW for more information:  info@globaldayofworship.com

(4)   Contact GDW to register your worship event.

(5)   Go to Facebook’s “Global Day of Worship” page.  Click “like.”

(6)   Follow the GDW on Twitter @globalworshiper.

Will you join me and scores of others around the globe in participating in this historic event on 11-11-11?  Will you tell your family and friends about it?

Exploring Hell – Part 4

Friday, August 13th, 2010 by Jason Wermuth

In the previous three posts we have been discussing hell from the Old Testament, the Second Temple Period and from the Gospels. In this final post I want to conclude with some thoughts on what the rest of the New Testament has to say about hell. As we saw in post 3, Jesus certainly taught that there will be a place of judgment for those who are sinners. That place is primarily referred to as Gehenna by Jesus, which was a valley known for death and agony. In the rest of the New Testament there is hardly any mention of hell. In the Pauline Epistles, hell is almost completely absent aside from a few allusions.

In James we have one mention of hell with reference to what will happen to those whose tongues run unbridled.

And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by hell (James 3:6).

As with Jesus’ use of the phrase in the gospels, James here uses the word Gehenna. It is not clear what he is envisioning when he says this, but it appears that James is using this term in a manner similar to the way Jesus used it. Namely as a phrase to denote a real punishment that will take place, in this case for those who use their tongues violently.

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Exploring Hell – Part 3

Friday, July 30th, 2010 by Jason Wermuth

In our last discussion, I wrote about hell in the Second Temple Period and how certain texts such as 1 Enoch and Jubilees portray eternal judgement. What we saw was that the place of judgment in Second Temple Jewish literature was primarily the place of judgment for the fallen angels and their offspring. Now we must enter the New Testament to find out what Jesus thought about eternal judgment. This week we will focus on Jesus’ use of the term Gehenna in the gospels:

A sampling of passages translated “hell” that use the term Gehenna:

But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. (Matt 5:22)

If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. (Matt 5:29)

If your right hand makes you stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to go into hell. (Matt 5:30)

Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matt 10:28)

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you travel around on sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves. (Matt 23:15)

If your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life lame, than, having your two feet, to be cast into hell. (Mk 9:45)

But I will warn you whom to fear: fear the One who, after He has killed, has authority to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear Him! (Lk 12:5)

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