In This Week of Thankfulness…

Thanksgiving has come once again. With it comes a time to remember the many blessings we should be thankful to God for. 

In light of this season of thankfulness, here’s a message that was given by my own pastor on the subject.

http://www.faithbaptistorlando.com/resources/sermon/2018-11-18/a-psalm-for-thanksgiving

Have a Happy Thanksgiving to all who participate and even if you don’t, stop and give thanks to God for all that he gives you.

Biblical Theology

Biblical Theology is a discipline of exegetical theology, one of the 4 that are part of what is called the “Encyclopedia of Theology” – Exegetical, Historical, Systematic, and Practical Theologies (Hagenbach).


Etymonline.com

biblical

1734, “pertaining to the Bible,” from Bible + -ical. Related: Biblically. Earlier adjective was Biblic (1680s). Related: Biblicality.


Discussion/Explanation

Biblical theology is considered by some to be the capstone of exegetical theology. However, it is not exegetical theology itself.

The reason for calling it the capstone is because it presupposes everything else within exegetical theology. To be clear, this means it is keeping in mind the Hebrew and Greek behind our modern translation, historical context, textual criticism, translation approach, the history and canonicity of the Bible, and hermeneutics. Everything done within exegetical theology is taken into account when engaging in biblical theology studies.

Biblical theology is, therefore, the area of theology of the entire Bible. It looks at the Bible as a whole and does not subdivide based upon Old Testament and New Testament. As a result, it naturally traces the entire story of the Scriptures in which you can see God’s progressive revelation.

Now, I do want to point out that biblical theology is not practiced in every corner of Christianity today. There are many who would do everything else found within the exegetical branch and then ignore the capstone and/or use the term biblical theology in an entirely different way – usually to state whether or not a particular theology or theological approach is biblical. With this in mind, the use of the term “biblical theology” can often seem unclear.


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Philology

Dictionary.com

noun
  1. the study of literary texts and of written records, the establishment of their authenti-city and their original form, and the determination of their meaning.
  2. (especially in older use) linguistics, especially historical and comparative linguistics.
  3. Obsolete. the love of learning and literature.

Etymonline.com

late 14c., “love of learning,” from Latin philologia “love of learning, love of letters, love of study, literary culture,” from Greek philologia “love of discussion, learning, and literature; studiousness,” from philo “loving” (see philo-) + logos “word, speech” (see Logos).

Meaning “science of language” is first attested 1716 (philologue “linguist” is from 1590s; philologer “linguistic scholar” is from 1650s); this confusing secondary sense has not been popular in the U.S., where linguistics is preferred. Related: Philological.


Discussion/Explanation

I kinda would like to resurrect the original meaning of the term that has now become obsolete as is so clearly noted under the Dictionary.com entry. Even so…

The first definition under the Dictionary.com is what best fits for our purposes here. It is the area of study that is actively involved in authenticating ancient documents and this includes manuscripts of the Bible and particular books of the Bible. It is an area of study actively involved in all sorts of ancient/old documents, not just the Christian Bible.


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Torn & Seduction

A pastor friend of my father’s once stated upon his impending return to his own country in part of Africa that he actually couldn’t wait to get back. Why?

While it isn’t just an American problem, the seduction of idols is rampant in the United States today. Materialism, in particular, has created a wealth of items that people daily prostrate themselves before. The seduction is made all the more complete by the fact that most cannot even see that they’ve been seduced by the things around them.

While my Dad’s friend had to face persecutions in his country, he would rather take on that than the seduction of the idols that are so rampant today in the West.

Yes, many of these these things we tie ourselves to are fine in and of themselves. In fact, many such items bring much joy to our lives. As always, the failure is in us. We are all too easily seduced by the ease, the entertainment, and the pleasure to the point that we look to what is around us as our reason for living.

I work to pay for my games.

I live to play basketball.

If I didn’t have (insert item), I don’t know what I’d do with myself.

I myself am not immune to such error. Seduction is embedded into our culture to the point it impacts our very thinking. I have found myself even saying, “well there’s nothing really wrong with watching this or playing that” and that thought or the item referenced wasn’t wrong for me to think or say, but there’s a pattern.

There’s a pattern here in which I know I should be spending my time more wisely on eternal things. That I should be spending my time on other people. That I should be spending my time doing what I already know I should be doing before God – instead I return to what has seduced me away. “Like the dog to his vomit.”

To be clear, seduction isn’t about sex. It is anything that turns your attention away. It is enticing. It is tempting. So many today who would call themselves Christian do not even spend regular time seeking out God, the one they claim to be devoted to with the title Christian. Why? Because they’ve been lead away. They’ve been seduced and a seduction allowed to complete ultimately brings destruction though it may seem pleasant and even fulfilling in the interim.

What are you seduced by? Seriously consider it.

I may regularly write this blog but I must struggle against this same seductive element of my culture just as you should if you mean to be a Christian. Seriously consider and routinely re-evaluate how you spend your time.

Set priorities with God at the top and stick to them!

I am praying for you. Please pray for me too!


 

Mothers

Today’s Mother’s Day!

A time that we remember and appreciate the women in our lives that we call “mom”.

(I would include the biological as well as non-biological women who have filled the calling we call mom.)

Today’s post will be short as I have just this simple message:

Mother's Day

Show the mothers in your life that you care about them and what they do!


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Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all my readers and your families!

Enjoy this time spent with family and remember the greatest gift we could be given was given to us by God in the birth of His Son!

 

 

 

I’ll get back to regular posts next weekend.

Defining & Where to Next

This week I thought I’d take a short break from the series to give you a preview of what I’ve got planned coming up.

So far I’ve gone over Theology and then moved onto other “ologies” that are related to the study of God. Those have included Epistemology and Eschatology, each with their own posts after the first two weeks just being on Theology overall.

Going forward, there will be more “ologies” and the next one planned will be on Soteriology. But that’s not all. I will also be digging into key terms that people often have difficulty with or trip up on as they aren’t necessarily common terms in everyday English. Two examples will be Justification and then another post on Epistles. Those more versed in the faith will know what I’m talking about, otherwise (unless you work in law) you may not truly understand words like Justification. We’ll be getting to that.

Currently, I’m planning to end the series with posts on Biblical Theology, Systemic Theology, Covenant Theology, and Dispensational Theology. Each of these will receive at least one post each if not more.

If I count up my current topics left to hit, I have…1…2…3…………..  …16 more topics to hit. So, I have at least 16 more posts/weeks of material at the minimum. Now, some of these will likely be in 2 parts which could stretch this out but I may just post more than once in a week to keep from stretching things out too far. I currently have no plans to have a particular topic stretch more than one post; however, with the finale being in bigger areas like Covenantal & Dispensational Theology….yeah, those may take more.

So, at this time it is 16 more posts in the series after this post which means 16 more weeks or, just be all the more obvious, 4 months of posts. No need for us to rush. On that note, expect Soteriology next week!

Anti-Porn

The following are verses I would recommend to memorize and meditated upon to combat the sexual temptations of porn. It should always be our desire to glorify God in all that we do and this includes our sex lives.

Galatians 5:1

“For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slaver”

In Christ, we are set free from our old habits and master. Why then would we choose to resubmit ourselves to the “yoke” or slavery we were once under?

Romans 8:1

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”

Rejoice! You no longer stand condemned for the sins you were once trapped in. Christ has saved you and you are now empowered to live like it!

Galatians 2:20

“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”

I have been bought through the price paid by Christ on the cross. I am no longer my past self. What’s more, Christ now lives in me through his Holy Spirit. I have been given everything to follow His good and perfect will. This is NOT of myself, it is from God.

2 Corinthians 5:9

“Whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please Him.”

Our greatest joy and fulfillment can now be found in doing what pleases God.

Ephesians 5:3

“Sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints.”

Persevere! Christ is with you and grants the strength to do this. If feeling lost, turn to Christ and pray! Depend upon Him; we do not need our own strength to do this. Christ provides us the strength.

John 15:5

“I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”

Take heart! Only those in Christ can bear fruit. Be comforted by the fact that you can see your sin and can seek to do what pleases Him.

1 Thessalonians 4:3

“This is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality.”

We have been made holy in Him. As such, He wishes us to be holy and this includes viewing sex from God’s perspective. This does NOT mean a life of celibacy but instead a life that submits to what glorifies God which is where we find our greatest joy.

 

It is obvious when viewing our culture that we do not view sex highly enough. We commonly see it as mere procreation or something enjoyable and/or relationship cementing. While such views have truth in them they fall short from viewing sexual intimacy in the grander view we see between Christ and the Church. What’s more, we fail to see the greatest ecstasy that can be achieved that occurs when Christ comes to claim His bride in the end!

 

Note: these verses will also be making an appearance in the delayed video for the Anti-Porn series on Awaken.

 

Coming…

Monergistgratia continues. I realize posting has been a bit intermittent but this has been in part to various things going on in my life as well as work on new developments.

A new YouTube channel named Awaken is currently under development. Once it is live, you will see links and references to it on this blog. Awaken is a collaborative project that aims to include both English and Spanish content all focused on God and His word.

This post now announces the Awaken channel as we have content prepared now to post. A few things are left to finish but I expect the first content to be posting soon (likely before this month is out). The channel and its art layout were created some time ago so the stage is set.

We welcome your prayers as we initiate this new endeavor!