Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Paul's Portrait of Justification

Justification, as presented by the apostle Paul, was perhaps best stated in Romans 3:23-24, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus” (NIV). Here, as the apostle describes, the justified is, simply put, one who is declared righteous or just. The believer is made righteous, or justified, by the Lord and cleared of all charges (punishment) related to their sins. This verb, used fourteen times by the apostle through this particular letter to the Romans, is described as the act of the Lord declaring, with authority as in a judicial sense, the repentant heart justified or cleared of all sin.

We, as faithful believers, continue to be justified by God’s grace as we permit our faith to work in love and as we walk in the light of God. This is done in by two means: trust and obedience. We must first trust in the Lord and His holy Word in our lives, and we must second obediently respond to the grace offered to us, in faith.

How does this justification come to us, then?

Monday, July 30, 2012

Practicing Freedom in Christ

Paul urges all brothers and sisters to “carry each other’s burdens” (Gal. 6:2), or troubles. As a Body of believers, we should help our members when one is weak. We can experience this through fellowshipping with one another and developing knowledge of one another; developing a knowledge of our gifts, strengths and weaknesses. The point of Paul’s remarks here is that while we are individual parts comprising one larger entity (the Church), no one person can be totally independent. Paul is remarking on their ignorance that they can accomplish salvation or righteousness by themselves.

As members of the adopted Body, they must learn to work together – carrying their own load as purposed, but helping one another for the growth of the Church.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Another Milestone!

Since May 2009 I have been diligently plugging away at the completion of my undergraduate degree in Biblical Studies via Indiana Wesleyan. I just completed my final analysis paper: a thirteen page reflection on Philemon and the virtues of Christian living it offers. The shortest book in the Bible proved - to me - to be the greatest challenge thus far. However, I have just seven more electives before I cross the finish line. Until then I plan to devote more time here and hopefully build our base. Help spread the Word (get it?!?) and share Holy Hoosier with your friends! Let's get our readership up and reach more people!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Galatians: Paul's Position

Paul’s theological position on the relationship of believers to the law is of key importance in his epistle to the Galatian believers. It was through revelatory experience that Paul, a once esteemed Pharisee and persecutor of the Church (1:15, 16), received the Gospel through Jesus Christ (1:12c) as is evidenced in the opening four verses of this epistle. Paul’s encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Ac. 9) and inferred revelation from Him in the three years leading to his ministry were perhaps an intense time of study and spiritual growth in his life.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Poll of Americans: Better a Mormon than a Muslim in White House

If there's one thing we are sure to see in this year's upcoming race for the White House it is that religion will come into play at some point. Is Mitt Romney's faith sufficient for Christians? A recent poll published by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press and the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life states 12% of those polled (out of 2,973 adults) are uncomfortable with the President's religion -- half the level of discomfort as Romney. But what gets me in this article -- a statistic that is worth noting -- is that only 6% say Obama's religion is irrelevant. That doesn't mean only 6% think his religion is of little importance, that could infer the other 94% think is religion is extremely relevant.