Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Blessing from God's Word (John 17:23)

"I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me." (John 17:23)

How much does God love Christians? John the Beloved takes us into the prayer closet of our Lord Jesus Christ. What an amazing chapter we have in chapter 17 of the Gospel according to John. This chapter is called the High Priestly prayer of Christ. If anything else, this is indeed the "Lord's Prayer." What we have here is a glimpse of true communion in prayer between the eternal Son of God, and God the Father. In this sacred time of divine communication we catch the answer to our question: How much does God love His people? with full assurance we can say as much as He loves His only begotten Son. Dear Christian, God loves you.

Friday, October 17, 2008

A Blessing from God's Word (Ephesians 2:8)

"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:" (Eph. 2:8)

The basis of our Salvation is God's grace, i.e. His loving kindness and tender mercies or His good favor. The gift of God is Salvation itself. Like a diamond with many facets, so our Salvation has many facets (regeneration, adoption, reconciliation, etc.) and it is precious. The instrument whereby we receive Salvation is faith. Faith is trusting in the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ the eternal Son of God. Faith believes God's Word and causes us to turn from our own ways and sin to lay hold on the person and work of Christ. Faith rests totally on the finished work of Christ, his death, burial and resurrection. Faith appropriates to us the saving power of the glorious Gospel.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sola Scriptura (Only Scripture)

The term "Sola Scriptura" (or Scripture alone) emerged from the Protestant Reformation as one of the five "solas." Although the terminology is derived from the Reformation the concept of Sola Scriptura is as old as the Old Testament itself. Religious bodies that represented Christ's body since the apostolic churches have never once failed to uphold the principles of Sola Scriptura. In fact Baptists consider this to be the First Distinctive. Here is a summary list of what it means to believe in "Sola Scriptura."

1. In a positive sense - The Bible is the final rule of authority for faith and practice.
2. In a negative sense - No doctrine contrary to the Scriptures are to be received.
3. This does not mean that we advocate private interpretation.
4. Sola Scriptura negates the formation of new doctrines.
5. The Bible is clear in the most important matters like Salvation and Sanctification.
6. Because the Bible is given by inspiration they are sufficient, infallible, and inerrant, and preserved.
7. The authority of the Scriptures are derived from God not from a council or church.
8. The Scriptures recognizes other sources of authority and truth, however they cannot be elevated to the status of the Scriptures themselves.
9. A functional canon of oral tradition is acknowledged as necessary prior to the enscripturation and close of the canon.

Blue Ridge Get Away (part 2)

This is the video of the Thursday Night "Jam" at the historic Jones House in downtown Boone. Normally there would be more musicians playing but some of them went out of town to some music conference somewhere. I thought the three guys did a good job playing all different kinds of tunes. We sat at the porch of the Jones House across from them and enjoyed the wonderful evening. The video is dark because it was around 9:00pm when they started to play. I just wanted to get a clip for memory's sake.