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To err is…:

“To err is human.” I’m sure you’ve heard this little quote before – maybe even employed it yourself. I submit to you that the quote is fallacious.

Let me substantiate my claims. =)

Genesis 1:27, 31 “So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them….And God saw everything that He had made, and behold it was very good.” God made humanity without sin, without error. Thus to err is not human, as that would imply that Adam and Eve were not human until they sinned. Also, we are told that humanity was made in God’s image. There is no error in God. Adam was created in God’s image, yet we were born with Adam’s image – a twisted image of the original. Furthermore, we are told that humanity, as part of God’s creation, was declared to be good. Thus, to err is not human.

John 1:14 “And The Word became flesh and dwelt among us…”

1 Tim. 2:5 “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,”

Hebrews 4:15 “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.”

Although these verse are by no means exhaustive, the express the biblical doctrine of the incarnation of The Son of God. Christ is fully God, and became fully human without ceasing to be God in any respect. The emphasis I would like to make in these verses though is that of His actually being human. Christ was fully human, yet without sin. Sin is not part of true humanity, it’s rather a negation of how God originally made humanity. If to err is human, and Christ did not err, then that would mean that Christ was not fully human.  Christ is the perfect example of humanity. Thus to err is not human.

I Corinthians 15:53 “For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality.” Paul goes to great lengths to prove that Christ physically rose from the dead and physically ascended into heaven. He contrasts physical body with spiritual in that the one we have now is sinful, and the body we will have then is not. Christ is literally flesh (bodily speaking) in heaven, but it’s a glorified flesh. Our skin and bones are not evil. And when Christ returns, they will be made new. We will not be any less human in heaven. Our bodies may have more capabilities, but our humanity will remain. There will be angels, but we will not be the angels. We will have bodies, but sin, and all it’s effects on our flesh, will be gone. We will not cease to be human, rather all creation will be made right once again. God created humanity, humanity fell, God is restoring humanity through the finished work of The God-Man Jesus Christ. It is redeemed humanity that will be praising The LAMB (Revelation 5:9). We will never cease to be human. Thus to err is not human.

In conclusion:

Sin is not naturally part of humanity. It came in later, as a result of Adam’s disobedience. (Romans 5) But Adam was human before he sinned, and Christ is human without sin, and we are human with sin, and we will be human without sin. Therefore. to Err is NOT human. To err is sinful.

May God turn our hearts to anticipate to time when this flesh, made corruptible by sin, will put on the incorruptible!

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Thomas: “I will never believe”

(this is copied from desiringgod.org. It was their newsletter for April 2009.) My heart lept for joy as I opened my mail and saw this article. I have been dealing with skeptics at work, and oh! how sweet it was to be reminded of the biblical account of how Christ makes believers out of skeptics!

Soli Deo Gloria!

Thomas: “I Will Never Believe”

April 2009

Believing what we cannot see is hard. All of us are skeptics to some degree, and some more than others. But there is often more going on inside a skeptic than meets the eye. And Jesus knows how to reach them. That’s one reason I love Thomas’ story.1

Jesus’ death had been difficult and confusing for everyone. Having been welcomed into Jerusalem like a king, he was dead before the week was over. And when the shepherd was struck, the sheep scattered. But they regathered in a secret hideout in Jerusalem.

On Sunday things took a weird twist. It began with Mary Magdalene insisting that she had seen Jesus alive in the morning. True, Jesus’ body disappearing was admittedly strange. But still, everyone knew Jesus had really died. No one could believe Mary’s claim, except maybe John.

Then later in the day Peter announced that he also had seen Jesus alive. This troubled Thomas. But he figured he could cut Peter some slack. After denying Jesus publicly, no one could blame Peter for wishing everything was okay. He just needed time.

But then Cleopas burst into the house Sunday night claiming that he had walked—walked!—with Jesus to Emmaus that afternoon. What Thomas found particularly hard to believe was that Cleopas and his friend hadn’t recognized Jesus the entire time until dinner when poof! he just disappeared.

Well, this excited everyone else, but Thomas only felt agitated. He desperately missed Jesus too, but he wasn’t going to let grief make him believe bizarre things. Jesus was dead.

Yet he didn’t feel like dousing everyone’s unreal hope with a wet blanket of reality. They weren’t ready to hear it anyway. Thomas decided he needed to clear his head with a walk. By himself.

So after whispering a discreet excuse to Nathaniel, he managed to slip outside without much notice. After being very careful not to betray the hideout, he started down an empty street.

The quiet was refreshing. But the walk wasn’t as helpful as he had hoped. The Jesus sightings were disturbing, especially because the witnesses were credible.

Then a rush of memories from the past three years flowed through Thomas’ mind. So many things he had seen would have been unbelievable if he hadn’t seen them. Most haunting now was Lazarus. And Jesus had seemed to know that he was going to die in Jerusalem.

Suddenly Thomas realized he was arguing with himself. His agitation really wasn’t over his friends’ failure to face the facts. The facts, in fact, were now ambiguous. He was agitated because part of him actually believed Jesus was alive. And this frustrated the skeptic in him who took pride in being a man of common sense. A resurrection just seemed too incredible to be true.

The more he thought, the less sure he became. No one knew where Jesus’ body was. Those who claimed to have seen him were people he trusted. It would make sense of certain prophesies. Could it be?

Show me the body! his skeptic side shouted. At least Lazarus could be seen and touched in Bethany by any doubter. So if Jesus really was alive, why this “hide and seek” game? Wouldn’t he just show himself to them all?

He’d believe Jesus was alive when he saw him alive.

When Thomas returned to the house, four of his friends pounced on him, “We have seen the Lord, Thomas! It’s all true! He was just with us! Where were you?”

Thomas instantly felt a surge of shock, unbelief, isolation, regret for having left, and self-pity over feeling left out.

Feeling angry he blurted out with more conviction than he felt, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.”

Most of his friends were dismayed. But Peter just watched him, smiling slightly.

The following eight days were long and lonely for Thomas. His friends were gracious. No one debated him. It was, in fact, their calm confidence in Jesus’ resurrection that aggravated Thomas’ growing conviction that he was wrong. Outside he tried to maintain a façade of resolute intellectual skepticism, but inside he was wrestling and melting and wanting more than anything to see Jesus too.

And then it happened. Thomas was staring at the floor, pondering again the possibility that his unbelief had disqualified him. Had Jesus rejected him? If so, he knew he deserved it. Then someone gasped. He looked up and his heart leaped into his throat! Jesus was standing across the room looking back at him. “Peace be with you.”

Thomas could hardly breathe. Jesus spoke to him, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.”

All objections and resistance in Thomas evaporated. And in tears of repentance, relief, and worship Thomas dropped on his knees before Jesus and exclaimed, “My Lord and my God.”

Be patient and gracious with the skeptics in your life. We shouldn’t assume their outward confidence accurately reflects their inward condition. Keep praying for them and share what seems helpful. Keep confidently and humbly following Jesus. And trust his timing. He knows best how and when to reveal himself to them.

Trusting the God of Thomas with you,

Jon Bloom
Executive Director

P.S. A message you might consider forwarding to a skeptic isChrist and Those in Him Will Never Die Again. In it John Piper offers some sound reasons why skeptics should consider the claims of the resurrection. As always, it’s free online. Our free online outreach is supported by folks like you who contribute to our work. More information can be found on our Support DGpage.

1 Thomas’ skepticism over Jesus’ resurrection is recorded in John 20:24-29, but the chronology of events are drawn from a combination of all the gospels’ accounts of the days following the crucifixion.

Servants of Christ Jesus – Philippians 1:1 (Holy Ground)

“Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, with the overseers and deacons:” Philippians 1:1

The Holy Ground of Service:
Not only does the place of servitude place all believers on equal ground,having been taken from being a God-hating slave of sin to a God-loving slave of Christ freed from sin, it puts us on holy ground. Mark 10:45 says, “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Christ came to serve!wash-feet Philippians 2:5-7 tells us that we are to have the mind of Christ, which is the mind of a servant. I know it may seem strange to some to think like this. We are use to offering God giifts of service and grattitude, but Scripture is clear that there is a way in which we don’t serve Christ, but He serves us! Lest we go too far in balking at the idea remember what Christ said to Peter when he refused to let Christ wash his feet as a servant. “Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.” (John 13:8) Praise The LORD, He came to serve!

Being a servant is part of being conformed into the image of Christ. The ground of service is holy ground, for it is in serving we become more like Him.

 



Merry Christmas:

by Daniel Pulliam

We wear our buttons and religious pins;

We’re in the fight to keep HIM in!

“Merry Christmas!” we’re sure to say,

We’ll have none of that “Happy Holidays”.

They say this is Santa’s season.

We say Jesus is the reason.

We claim to have the Holy Spirit.

They say they’re in the Christmas spirit.

We stand and chat with them in line

And speak of the joys of Christmas time:

The cooking, the calories, the parties, the toys;

And how it’s all for the girls and boys.

We stand and talk for hours on end,

The same conversation with strangers or friends.

When we’re through we part our ways.

They tell us “Happy Holidays!”

“Merry Christmas!” we say with pride

since we’re on the evangelical side.

We wear our buttons and religious pins;

We’re in the fight to keep HIM in!

“Merry Christmas!” we’re sure to say,

We’ll have none of that “Happy Holidays”.

They say this is Santa’s season.

We say Jesus is the reason.

We’re off to yet another store.

We have a lot, but need a little more.

Just two more days ’till Christmas cheer,

And we will not be out done this year!

“I know how much they spend on me,

Their gift will be valued equally!”

We patiently wait in line – it’s hard!

That stupid machine is rejecting her card.

The moment we make it through the door

The kids ask who the gifts are for.

We wear our buttons and religious pins;

We’re in the fight to keep HIM in!

“Merry Christmas!” we’re sure to say,

We’ll have none of that “Happy Holidays”.

They say this is Santa’s season.

We say Jesus is the reason.

It’s seven o’clock on Christmas morn.

All you hear is paper being torn.

Praises are given, but not to The LORD;

Rather Johnny thanks dad for his new skate board.

We say that Jesus is the reason

We celebrate this Christmas season.

We fought all month to keep HIM in;

Yet HE’s not in our kitchen, living room, or den.

There’s really no difference in the way

We celebrate – just what we say.

We wear our buttons and religious pins;

We’re in the fight to keep HIM in!

“Merry Christmas!” we’re sure to say,

We’ll have none of that “Happy Holidays”.

They say this is Santa’s season.

We say Jesus is the reason.

So why do we blaspheme and blame HIM for

The reason come New Years’ we’re all dirt poor;

And say it’s for HIM, and raise a big fuss,

Yet, in reality, it’s all about us?!

So take your Christmas decor and religious pins

And put them in storage right beside HIM.

And next time when Christmas time rolls around,

Go up in your attic and get your gods down!

————

Mark 7:6 –  “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me;”

I John 5:21 “Little children, keep yourselves from idols. “


The Image of the invisible God – Col. 1:15

Watch this!

I did and said, “Wow! Mark is right on.”