Confession of Faith???

What is the Westminster Confession of Faith? Well when you believe something about the Bible such as: Who is Jesus? You have an opinion about it and confess to yourself that opinion based on all you know the Bible teaches about Him. Confessions like the Westminster Confession of Faith is a biblical opinion that is written down. It was written down in order to show this is what we believe the entire Bible teaches on numerous topics. Writing things down help unite believers as one body as we gather for worship and Christian education.

Babies are Real

It is wrong to intentionally kill innocent human beings.  An overwhelming majority of people in the world agree with that premise.  However, when it comes to the life of the pre-born many change their mind.  They comfort themselves and overcome their conscience by dehumanizing the baby.  They say it is not a real human being yet. Hitlers army dehumanized Jews to overcome their conscience and murder millions of human beings.  Lets re-sensitize ourselves from the Word of God in Psalm 139. “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret…”

Now that… is truth worth believing!

Epic of Gilgamesh and Biblical themes

The Epic of Gilgamesh contains a flood story which is common among the writings of various people groups.  One theme “The Epic of Gilgamesh” has in common with the Holy Bible is the sacrifice after the great flood.  The Epic of Gilgamesh mentions that the gods had grown weary of humanity and decided to destroy them due to the noise they create. Gods are thought to be dangerous to the well being of mankind. The writing describes a deity named Ea who warns a particular man by the name of Utnapishtim.  He builds a boat to house his family and animals.  After the flood the boat comes to rest on a mountain where he releases three birds to find dry land.  Utnapishtim made a sacrifice to the gods to satisfy their hunger.

     Due to mentioning the commonality with the Holy Bible it would be proper to show how. The Biblical account mentions the God who destroys mankind due to their being very sinful.  God warned a man by the name of Noah to build a large ship to house himself and seven others in his family.  Noah builds the boat while warning those around him of what is about to happen.  After the rain stopped his ship came to rest on a mountain where he releases a dove to find dry land.  Noah also makes a sacrifice but it is for the purpose of atoning for sin not to satisfy the hunger of God. 

     There also seems to be a theme about everlasting life.  The story talks about Utanapishtiim transforming from a human being into a god, “But now let Utanapishtim and his wife become like us, the gods!”[1]  The textbook The Flood mentions, “In time past Utnapishtim was a mortal man” in reference to this change.[2] This idea entails having eternal life, “Look there! The man, the youth who wanted (eternal) life!”[3] Other writings such as the Holy Bible mention the existence of the idea of “eternal life”.

It should be expected that there would be ancient flood accounts if a worldwide flood actually happened.  One can also conclude even though the account of Moses came at a later time, it does not mean his account is not completely accurate.  The same can be said about the notion of eternal life.  Apparently, the potential of eternal life was something ancient people were aware of.


[1] (Unknown n.d.)

[2] (Truelove, et al. 2007)

[3] (Unknown n.d.)

Dalley, S. “archive.org.” The Flood. 1991. http://web.archive.org/web/19990221091328/http://puffin.creighton.edu/theo/simkins/tx/Flood.html (accessed June 3, 2014).

Hammurabi. “The Code of Hammurabi.” Hammurabi’s Code of Laws. Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1910.

Truelove, Sarah, James Woelfel, Stephen Auerbach, and Rachel Buller. Patterns In Western Civilization. Boston: Pearson Custom Publishing, 2007.

Unknown. “the epic of gilgamesh.” ancienttexts.org. n.d. http://www.ancienttexts.org/library/mesopotamian/gilgamesh/tab11.htm (accessed June 3, 2014).

Luthers “sola fide” and “sola scripture”

Sola scriptura and sola fide are Latin words that mean by Scripture alone and faith alone. Sola scriptura was the principle Martin Luther held too in his argument against the corruption of the Catholic Church.  They were willing to hold other writings and even the words of the Pope as equal to the Bible.  Luther not only wanted the people to have Bibles for themselves but to recognize everything is subordinate to it.  This means the Pope is subordinate to the Scriptures.  Luther believed, “a simple layman armed with Scripture is greater than the mightiest pope without it”.

Luther also said, “The true rule is this: God’s Word shall establish articles of faith, and no one else, not even an angel can do so.”  God gives the gift of faith and is the first cause of a person’s regeneration.  The Church does not determine or grant salvation. Luther recognized the Catholic Church was minimizing “faith” by suggesting a person could do good deeds or pay money to the Church for the forgiveness of sins.  Luther believed the Bible when it says in Ephesians 2:8-10, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”

Luther and the Reformation

Luther wrote out 95 reasons why the Catholic Church was corrupt and needed reformed.  He nailed the 95 Theses to the door of the Whittenburg Church.  This was the common way of debating other scholars. 

          Luther brought up three important “Walls of the Romanists”.  First, “if pressed by the temporal power, they have affirmed and maintained that the temporal power has no jurisdiction over them…that the spiritual power is above the temporal.”  Luther believed the Church did not have divine right to excuse itself from judgment of impiety by members of the church who are not ordained. 

Second, “if it were proposed to admonish them with the Scriptures, they objected that no one may interpret the Scripture but the Pope.”  Luther believed a person is enlightened to the truth of Scripture by the work of the Holy Spirit applying everything it contains. Luther did not see a problem with the general public having a Bible in their own vulgar languages. 

Third, “if they are threatened with a council, they pretend that no one may call a council but the Pope”. Luther did not agree with the Pope in that he should have sole power to call a council.  A council was usually called to deal with doctrinal questions.  The Pope believed people should just agree with all his positions without debate because he is somehow the special mediator between God and man. 

Seems Luther and this writer disagree with the Pope. Jesus is the only Mediator between God and man.

Reasons for the Protestant Reformation

Luther was not the first person to rebel against the Catholic Church due to their corruption.  However, he became a driving force behind the attempt to reform them.  The movement ended up becoming known as the Protestant Reformation. In the 1500’s people were suffering from things like the Black Plague and the Church was suffering from division due to corruption.  Part of the corruption was due to their not relying on Scripture to form doctrine.  St. Augustine had the same complaint hundreds of years earlier and Luther agreed. 

Even though the people suffered the Church soaked them for money in order to become rich.  The Church’s practice of “indulgences” did not sit well with people who had access to their own Bibles.  To maintain power and authority over the people the Pope made sure he was the only one who could call a council.  He even made himself the “divine authority”.  People obtaining their own Bibles were finally able to see for themselves what was in it and now knew the Catholic Church was corrupt. 

Creeds and Confessions

Larry Norman, a Christian singer in the 70’s said he didn’t care to talk about theology.  He just wanted to talk about Jesus.  That may sound spiritual but whose Jesus was he referring too?  The Mormon Jesus, the Jehovah’s Witness or Muslim Jesus? When you say Jesus is God you are talking theology. If you say Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead you’re making a creedal statement. Creeds and Confessions are not infallible like the Bible but are useful tools to summarize the theology of the Bible and make definite statements about what the Bible says on a subject. 

My church utilizes The Westminster Confession of Faith and Creeds such as the Apostles Creed as summary statements to help prevent erroneous interpretations of Scripture within our church.   

Now that… is truth worth believing!

Original Sin

G.K. Chesterton said, “I find it amazing that moderns reject the notion of the doctrine of original sin when it’s the only Christian doctrine that can be empirically verified.”

Sin can be divided into categories of original and actual sin.  Original sin refers to the fact all people after the fall of Adam are born in a sinful condition.  Mankind inherited Adams guilt and corruption from after his fall into sin.  Sadly we have a natural disposition to sin.  Actual sin refers to the literal acts of sin we commit that proceed from original sin.

The person who is unpardoned by God from their sin will face His wrath against sin. God has acted to restore sinful people by providing the Savior Jesus Christ.  Our duty is to repent of our sin and submit ourselves to Jesus Christ as Lord.

Spiritual Maturity

IS YOUR MATURITY IN THE CHRISTIAN FAITH AS DEVELOPED AS A BABY OR AN ADULT?

It is the duty of every Christian to be able to defend their faith with Scripture. If you claim to follow Jesus as LORD you should feel the need to learn the elementary things of God so you can fulfill the Great Commission. Utilize the gifts God gave you and develop your weaknesses for the benefit of His Kingdom!

Feeling Guilty Is Not Enough

All people recognize that they have done bad things and at times feel guilty for what they have done. Feeling guilty for the things we have done is not enough to be at peace with God who gave us a conscience regarding right and wrong. God gave us this conscience because we are responsible for our thoughts and deeds regarding the law God has written upon our hearts.

God regenerates His people and provides them a new will to be at peace with Him instead of in the chains of rebellion.  The bible says in Eph. 2:8, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God”.

Salvation is wholly the work of God yet all people are responsible to submit to Him because God has clearly revealed Himself both generally and specifically.  Listen to the call of the Gospel to repent and place all faith for salvation in Jesus Christ alone. You are called to ask God for wisdom in the truth of Scripture, ask God for forgiveness of sin, and turn away from it.  Don’t trust your feelings, trust in Jesus Christ alone!