salvation

Satan, you can take our church buildings!

The tabernacle was instituted by God as the place where he would dwell in the midst of the people of Israel. It was the forerunner of the temple; it was a tent that went before the children of Israel as they made their way to the promised land. Within the tabernacle was the most holy place, where God came to meet man. Just as God came to meet man in the tabernacle, he came to meet man in the person of Jesus.

Are other religions good?

Christians, by definition, believe Christ to be God- made-man, God-in-the-flesh. His claims cannot be amended, watered down, relativised, negotiated away or nuanced into acceptability. But this exclusivism is not an exclusivism of Christian culture, of Christian ethics or of Christians as the only candidates for heaven.

Is baptism essential for salvation?

Baptismal regeneration is not a biblical concept. Water baptism is the symbol of what has already occurred in the heart of one who has trusted Christ as Saviour (Galatians 3:27; Colossians 2:12). Baptism is an important step of obedience that every Christian should take, but it is not a requirement for salvation. To make it such is to question the sufficiency of Christ’s death and resurrection.

Jesus called himself the “Son of God”

Jesus kept pointing people to himself, saying, “Come to me” (Mt 11:28). Buddha said, “Look not to me; look to my dharma (doctrine).” Buddha also said, “Be ye lamps unto yourselves.” Jesus said, “I am the light of the world” (Jn 8:12). Lao Tzu taught the way (tao); Jesus said, “I am the way” (Jn 14:6). Buddha, Confucius, Muhammad and other religious founders fulfilled no prophecies, performed no miracles and did not rise from the dead. Jesus did. Christians ought to realise how difficult, how scandalous, how objectionable, how apparently unbelievable and absurd this doctrine is bound to appear to others. We can’t apologise for truth.

Christ is the Expectation of God’s Standard for Service

For the “day of the LORD” to come, for God’s kingdom to come, the covenant must be fulfilled from both sides. The actions and roles of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Aaron, Joshua, David, and the rest are not to be set alongside the person and work of Jesus Christ as less effective performances of the same kind of service.

Spiritual Debts Written-Off…

The burnt offering uses a personal picture: of man the guilty sinner who deserves to die for his sin and of the animal dying in his place. God accepts the animal as a ransom for man. The sin offering uses a medical model: sin makes the world so dirty that God can no longer dwell there. The blood of the animal disinfects the sanctuary in order that God may continue to be present with his people. The reparation offering presents a commercial picture of sin. Sin is a debt which man incurs against God. The debt is paid through the offered animal.

Holier than the Popes

For Paul every Christian is a walking shrine, a temple for the Holy Spirit in which God is to be glorified (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Like the Old Testament tabernacle the Christian enjoys the permanent presence of the Spirit, but just as the old shrine enjoyed a special manifestation of God’s glory from time to time, so the Christian should be filled with the Spirit and display God’s glory to the world (cf. Acts 6:15: 7:55- 56; 2 CorInthians. 3; Ephesians 5:18).

“…made of one blood all nations of men”

As by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one [’by one man,’ v.15] shall many be made righteous.” The same nature that transgressed must work out the remedy. This truth is reiterated in 1 Corinthians 15:21: “For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.” Our ruin could not be restored, nor deliverance from our guilt be effected, except by one in our own nature.

The Obedience to the Will of God

To serve God we are not called to choose self-denial or sacrifice, rather are we called to fulfill God’s purpose. The basic principle is not to choose the cross but to obey God’s will. Should the principle on which we work and serve include rebellion, then Satan will obtain and enjoy glory even through our sacrifices. Saul might offer sheep and oxen, yet God never accepted them as sacrifices to Himself because there was a Satanic principle involved.

All Christians are called to Self-denial

Since we do not belong to ourselves, we should cease to live for ourselves, but should rather deny ourselves. We are not our own: in so far as we can, let us therefore forget ourselves and all that is ours. Since we belong to God, we should live and die for God alone, and order all parts of our lives by his will alone. Thus, we are God’s: let us therefore live for him and die for him.

Union with Christ

Believers have even now been incorporated into the consummation of their union with Christ in the eschaton: “future glory . . . will be nothing other than the continued unfolding of the riches of our union with Christ.”

Can Non-Christians Be Saved?

A love of believers in other religions and an appreciation for whatever true and good things there may be in these other religions should not blind us to their errors and defects. If Christ is the only Savior and all the other religions of the world deny this, then logically and necessarily all the other religions are dead wrong about this crucial point. It does not fol- low from this that non-Christians must be condemned, but that they must be told the truth, out of love for them and for the truth