The Beckoning of God's Reality

Articles about "Jesus Christ"

bible

All the Names of Jesus of Nazareth

It may surprise some to find that Jesus is actually referred to in the Old Testament as well as the New Testament of the biblical writings. What follows is as complete a list as can be formed of all the names of Jesus of Nazareth used in the Bible. Taking all the names of Jesus used in the Bible into consideration, it would ironically be quite a stretch to consider him a mere good moral human teacher. The incarnation means that God took on human flesh as an innocent human being, lived the perfect life and dies for our sins to reconcile us with a God from whom we’ve been alienated by our own meanderings and our will. What follows is a comprehensive list of the names of Jesus used in the Bible. (more…)

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theology

Do Good People Go to Heaven?

Of those who believe in heaven, most people think they are deserving of it, but do good people go to heaven? Most people think of themselves as good people. They believe that they will find themselves in heaven one day because, compared to all the wicked people, like Hitler and Stalin, they have not murdered millions of people; that they try to do good, and not hurt anyone. But is this the barometer that God uses as a “ticket” to heaven? It may likely come as a surprise to many that it is not, at least not within Christian theology. In other words, if Christianity is true, then there is an entirely different way in which heaven becomes our “destination.” (more…)

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religion

What Do Jehovah’s Witnesses Believe?

Have you ever had Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWs) come to your front door trying to tell you about Jesus and Jehovah? Have you been agitated by the interruption of your valuable time? I empathize. Most people are annoyed enough to cut the conversation short and quickly get back to what they were doing. However, irrespective of the way Jehovah’s Witnesses may try to spread their message – some may still wonder – what is it that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe? What are they about?

Having spoken to a few Jehovah’s Witnesses and having delved into their belief system has been revealing. One would definitely need to ask more than a few questions to clarify what the exact beliefs of JWs are, how they differ from those of other belief systems and what makes them unique enough to be of the very few who would proselytize door to door. (more…)

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history philosophy

The Case for the Abraham Lincoln Myth

Why do people just believe in Abraham Lincoln when no one alive has ever seen the man? Not one person has seen him. No one has touched him or spoken to him. I realize that the claim is that he’s been dead for a while, but can we really trust that such a person really existed? Maybe he did, but maybe he didn’t. I suggest that for all intents and purposes, Lincoln never really existed and people have just believed in the Abraham Lincoln myth. Blind faith! That’s how people believe in this fictional character. Simply by having blind faith.

Well…maybe not. Let’s get real now. The reason why such a thing would even be proposed is that we’re now removed from the time and place of the person of Abraham Lincoln, and the time elapsed provides more leeway for people to fabricate their own reality powered by their own imaginations. (more…)

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bible

Christmas and the Prophecies about Jesus

One of the reasons that the Bible is thought by so many to be the inspired word of God is because it has writings which predict events far future from the dates of those writings. Through linguistics, archaeology and general historical analysis of various kinds, we can determine the approximate dates (sometimes very precise dates) of certain Old Testament (OT) writings, and we can clearly see the writings to have taken place long before the events they predict. To then be confronted by writings which predict things hundreds of years into the future is quite extraordinary. As they pertain to the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, the writings of the OT demonstrate the amazing quality and accuracy.

The OT writings, which were also canonized as the inspired word of God, contain many predictions of events to come. The main focus of these predictions rests on one central figure – the Messiah, the coming Savior. Judaism expected and continues to expect a future Messiah. However, those closest to Jesus, who became the earliest Christians, did at one point or another see the fulfillment of these prophecies in Jesus of Nazareth. The prophecies written centuries before were being fulfilled in their presence, and though they mostly recognized them in hindsight because of their otherwise inaccurate expectations of what the Messiah would accomplish, the fulfillment of the multitudes of OT prophecies were nonetheless quite staggering. So what were some of these predictions about the Messiah that they found compelling reasons to identify Jesus as that foretold Messiah? There are far more than we can look at. For this specific piece let’s look at some of the ones that pertain to his birth, the celebration that we’ve come to know as Christmas. (more…)

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society

Christmas and its Implications

On the occasion of Christmas and the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ (God incarnate), it is appropriate to consider the following insightful commentary from Harry Reasoner from  Christmas Eve of 1973,

“Christmas is such a unique idea that most non-Christians accept it, and I think sometimes envy it. If Christmas is the anniversary of the appearance of the Lord of the Universe in the form of a helpless baby, it’s quite a day. It’s a startling idea, and the theologians, who sometimes love logic more than they love God, find it uncomfortable. But if God did do it, He had a tremendous insight. (more…)

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history

Was Jesus Real?

Was Jesus real? Was he a person who lived or a fictional character around whom a religion was formed? It appears as though many atheists and skeptics of all kinds like to argue that Jesus was not real and did not exist. This presumption is generally made because the Bible conveys supernatural events, and therefore, those who hold that supernatural events cannot occur see it fitting to deny the existence of Jesus of Nazareth.

However, as professor of biblical criticism and exegesis F. F. Bruce states,

“Some writers may toy with the fancy of ‘Christ-myth,’ but they do not do so on the ground of historical evidence. The historicity of Christ is as axiomatic for an unbiased historian as the historicity of Julius Caesar. It is not historians who propagate the ‘Christ-myth’ theories.”1

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history

Top 8 Reasons to Trust the Resurrection of Jesus Christ

Roughly 2,000 years ago Jesus of Nazareth caused the greatest shift in thinking in human history. Amidst the clash of the Roman and Jewish mindsets emerged a figure that would change the course of human history and among other things establish the intrinsic worth of every person. Days after he was crucified by the Romans, his followers claimed the resurrection of Jesus; that this Jesus had appeared to them in the flesh. As miraculous as it may seem, the reasons for their attestations are consistent with many of the reasons why we can trust that Jesus of Nazareth had come back to life in the flesh. What follows are the most broadly accepted facts across the different viewpoints by scholars of various convictions giving us compelling reasons to believe in this most miraculous event in human history. (more…)

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