Sunday, April 29, 2012

Confessing 'Jesus is Lord'

"If you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." Romans 10:9

What does it mean to confess that Jesus is Lord?

Surely in declaring Jesus as your Lord you are submitting your life into His hands. You are saying that you will do anything that Jesus asks. You are asking Jesus to rule, to reign over EVERY aspect of your life. It means that you have decided to follow Jesus in ALL of his ways .  Such a confession means that you repent of (turn away from) all the stuff that you have been doing that God's Word declares you shouldn't do. It means that you have chosen to be 'Holy' - set apart from all worldy acts and values and desires.

When we confess 'Jesus is Lord' we are acknowledgeing our wrong doing before Him and asking Him by the power of the Holy Spirit to change us. Some of that change takes a life time (that is sanctification) but the desire to change is instant and therefore some changes are instant.

Quite often when I speak to people who are near to confessing that Jesus is Lord, there is one thing stopping them.  It is the one thing that they are holding on to and desperate not to let go. Hearts have been convicted in the sense they know that one thing is wrong, they know or at least believe that the Bible says it is wrong, but they can't yet trust God to give it up.  If this is you - at least you are counting the cost. Failure to count the cost will not end up in new birth but still birth.

If this is you, I urge you to submit to Jesus as Lord. He can not be your saviour until he is first your Lord.  Whatever Jesus is asking you to forsake is for your own good and he will exchange the stuff that is not of God for blessings.

"Choose Life ... for the Lord is your life." Deuteronomy 30: 19, 20
"I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family. But a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." John8: 34 - 36

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Archaeology and the Bible v Archaeology and the Book of Mormon

Archeaological discoveries are often able to go some way to confirm or contradict truth claims. There has been some fascinating discoveries over the years that at least point to the historicity of Jesus and inform our thinking on the accuracy of the Gospels. The picture here is that of an inscription to Pontious Pilate. The inscription not only confirms the historicity of Pilate, it clarifies the
title that he bore as governor. It is now on display in the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

If a piece of ancient writing is historically accurate you would of course expect that archaeology would support what has been written.

By means of contrast, it is worth thinking about the claims of the Book of Mormon. There has never been any archaeology discoveries that confirm:

  • Book of Mormon cities, places, nation or name
  • Book of Mormon people
  • Book of Mormon artifacts
  • Book of Mormon inscriptions

There is no evidence whatsoever to support the Mormon claim that Jesus made a physical appearance to walk the streets of America.

John McCray a Professor of New Testament and Archaeology states that 'Archaeology has not produced anything that is unequivocally a contradiction to the Bible. On the contrary, ... there have been many opinions of skeptical scholoars that have become codified into 'fact' over the years but that archaeology has shown to be wrong.' (The Case for Christ: Strobel)