Theology Corner

Addressing commonly asked questions about Christianity from the perspective of a non-theologian

Theology Corner

1.)  CAN GOD'S WILL BE THWARTED?

2.)  DID GOD ELECT ONLY A FEW FOR SALVATION WHILE CONDEMNING THE GREATER PART OF MANKIND TO HELL?

3.)  FAITH OR SALVATION: WHICH COMES FIRST?

4.)  DID GOD THE FATHER BEGET JESUS CHRIST?

5.)  WHAT ARE THE TWO NATURES OF CHRIST?

6.)  WHAT IS ANTINOMIANISM?

7.)  WHAT IS SABELLIANISM?

8.)  WHAT IS PELAGIANISM?

9.)  DOES LOVE REALLY WIN?

10.)  IS YOUR WILL REALLY YOUR WILL?

11.)  CAN TWO THEOLOGIES BE TESTED FOR COMPATIBILITY?

12.)  WHAT IS THE FRAUD OF FIDEISM?

13.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES THEOLOGY?

14.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH CHRISTIAN SCIENCE THEOLOGY?

15.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH MORMON THEOLOGY?

16.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH UNITARIAN UNIVERSALISTS THEOLOGY?

17.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH SCIENTOLOGY THEOLOGY?

18.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH UNIFICATION CHURCH THEOLOGY?

19.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH THE WAY INTERNATIONAL THEOLOGY?

20.)  IS CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH THE WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD THEOLOGY?

21.)  IS REPENTANCE REALLY NECESSARY?

22.)  WHAT ARE SOME MUSINGS OF A METHODIST THEOLOGIAN ON LIMITED ATONEMENT?

23.)  WHAT ARE SOME QUESTIONS FOR THOSE WHO TEACH A LIMITED ATONEMENT PROVIDED ONLY FOR THE ELECT OF GOD?

24.)  WHAT WERE CALVIN'S ACTUAL WORDS?

25.)  WHAT IS GNOSTICISM?

26.)  WHAT IS THE UNPARDONABLE SIN?

27.)  IS CLASSICAL CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY COMPATIBLE WITH PROGRESSIVE CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY?

1.)  IS CHRISTIANITY COMPATIBLE WITH POSITIVE TOLERANCE?

2.)  CAN WE HAVE A FORM OF GODLINESS, BUT DENY THE POWER THEREOF?

3.)  WHAT IS THE GREAT WAR?

4.)  SHOULD PRESIDENT TRUMP HAVE BEEN IMPEACHED FOR IMMORALITY?

5.)  WHO SAID MOSES WAS HUMBLE?

6.)  COULD CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE BENEFIT FROM WOKE REVISION?

7.)  DID EINSTEIN BELIEVE ALL CHRISTIANS WERE CALVINISTS?

8.)  WHY IS MARXISM A MAGNET?

9.)  WHAT IS TRUE SCIENCE?

10.)  CAN YOU LOSE YOUR SALVATION?

11.)  WHAT ARE THE SYNOPTIC GOSPELS?

12.)  WHAT HAPPENED BETWEEN OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS?

13.)  WAS PAUL ENTIRELY SANCTIFIED?

14.)  ARE YOU LIVING IN A WORLD AT WAR?

15.)  WHAT IS THE DIRECT METHOD FOR PROVING A CONDITIONAL PROPOSITION IS TRUE?

16.)  WHAT IS THE CONTRAPOSITIVE METHOD FOR PROVING A CONDITIONAL PROPOSITION IS TRUE?

17.)  WHAT IS THE CONTRADICTION METHOD FOR PROVING A CONDITIONAL PROPOSITION IS TRUE?

18.)  WHAT MIGHT A METHODIST THEOLOGIAN SAY ABOUT PURGATORY?

19.)  WHICH BIBLE PASSAGES ELUCIDATE CORE ASPECTS OF CHRISTIANITY?

20.)  DO SELECTED NIV VERSES ELUCIDATE CORE ASPECTS OF CHRISTIANITY?

21.)  DO SELECTED AKJV VERSES ELUCIDATE CORE ASPECTS OF CHRISTIANITY?

22.)  DO SELECTED YLT VERSES ELUCIDATE CORE ASPECTS OF CHRISTIANITY?

23.)  DO SELECTED 'VOICE' VERSES ELUCIDATE CORE ASPECTS OF CHRISTIANITY?

24.)  COULD THE CONCEPT OF 'SALVATION ONLY FOR THE ELECT' HAVE BEEN ROOTED IN THE MIND OF AUGUSTINE BEFORE HE EMBRACED CHRISTIANITY?

25.)  DID AUGUSTINE RECEIVE PUSHBACK FOR HIS TEACHING OF 'SALVATION ONLY FOR THE ELECT' DURING HIS LIFETIME?

CAN YOU FIND GOD IN OUR WORLD AND BEYOND?

One of the core beliefs of Christianity is:

 

The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all persons: (a) the requirements of the law are written by God on every heart, (b) Jesus Christ knocks at the door of every heart, (c) the Holy Spirit calls and convicts each person and (d) God's eternal power and divine nature are evident in the world around us. Nevertheless, many resist the grace of God. (I)

  • The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all persons (Titus 2:11):
  • (a) the requirements of the law are written by God on every heart (Rom. 2:15),
  • (b) Jesus Christ knocks at the door of every heart (Rev. 3:20),
  • (c) the Holy Spirit calls and convicts each person (John 16:8) and
  • (d) God's eternal power and divine nature are evident in the world around us (Rom 1:20).
  • Nevertheless, many resist the grace of God (Mat 25:46; 2 Thes 1:8-9).

The grace of God that comes before salvation is called prevenient grace.  Prior to salvation, God initiates, advances and perfects everything that can be called good in man.  God leads the sinner from one step to another in proportion as He finds response in the heart and disposition to obedience.  Some men allow God to quicken, assist and nudge their free will to facilitate confession of sin, remorse, repentance, faith and obedience so they may receive the great gift of salvation (1 Pet 1:9).  Other men choose to resist and reject the grace of God (2 Thes 1:8-9).

 

The fifth bullet item states: God's eternal power and divine nature are evident in the world around us (Rom 1:20).

Many years ago I attended a business luncheon with three men in a middle-eastern hotel.  After conducting our business, we began to discuss religion.  One man, an attorney, said he had been taught that the Hebrew Scriptures were just a collection of mythological stories with little basis in fact.  Consequently, he had no particular religious inclinations.  A second man, the manager of a small airport, said he was a Pentecostal Christian and believed in the on-going revelations of the Holy Spirit.  The third man, an epidemiologist for a major oil company, said he wasn’t sure about Christianity but he knew for certain that life was designed and was not the product of random chance.  He came to that conclusion after examining two of the bio-chemicals of life: hemoglobin and chlorophyll.  Hemoglobin is a respiratory pigment in human blood; chlorophyll is a photosynthetic pigment in plants.  Both are complex, porphyrin ring structures with only one essential difference: hemoglobin has a single iron ion at the center while chlorophyll has a single magnesium ion at the center.  My epidemiologist friend believed the enormous similarity between these two nearly identical molecules, serving very different purposes, could not be a mere coincidence. 

The evidence of intelligent design is more massive than my friend imagined.  In the fall of 1973 at the commemoration of the 500th birthday of Nicolaus Copernicus in Torun, Poland, Brandon Carter presented evidence that not one of the fundamental properties of the universe could be changed significantly without eliminating the possibility of life (the Anthropic Principle); he showed that man may not be at the physical center of the universe but he is at the philosophical center.  A coincidence is a remarkable concurrence of events or circumstances without apparent causal connection.  Given sufficient evidence, however, the bridge between “remarkable concurrence of events” and “causal connection” must be crossed.

God could have created the universe without leaving evidence of intelligent design.  Instead, He placed evidence where you might find it in the hope that, someday, the words from your lips might be:

 

You asked me how I gave my heart to Christ,

I do not know;

There came a yearning for Him in my soul,

So long ago;

 

I found earth’s flowers would fade and die,

I wept for something to satisfy;

And then, and then, somehow I seemed to dare,

To lift my broken heart in prayer;

 

I do not know, I can’t say how,

I only know my Savior now.