Posts Tagged by Romans

How Many Guards at the Tomb? A series of essays and ebook.

My post “How many guards at Jesus’ tomb?” has drawn thousands of visitors. The bulk of these come during the Easter season. I suspect that there are a lot of churches putting on Passion plays and they’re looking for some guidance on this topic. This year I have written essays that corroborate various claims made within that post. Hopefully, in time for the Easter 2013 season.

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Guards at the Tomb: The Discipline of the Roman Soldier

The Jews were not inclined to be sympathetic to the Romans. The idea of dead Roman soldiers must have been, in the main, a very pleasant one to turn about in one’s mind. However, what if balanced against this highly desirable prospect was a very undesirable prospect, that Jesus’ followers would begin announcing to all that Jesus had risen from the dead?

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Should Christian Non-profits Consider Giving up their Tax Exempt 501(c)3 Status?

It is true that this is very rare, but that is only because many churches try to abide by the law on this point. The Government helps by keeping the financial carrot close by; the stick is rarely necessary.

The main question we need to ask is whether or not, and to what degree, should the Christian Church ever adjust its message for anything, let alone the Government.

But surely it will be pointed out that Jesus said “render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.” Yes, there is no question that God has appointed the government to handle certain duties (Romans 13) and there is no warrant anywhere for the Church to take those on. Indeed, we Christians are to submit to these authorities. It does not follow, however, that the Church can ever subvert its mission and message, even if the authorities say you must. Moreover, Matthew 22 (the passage alluded to above) explicitly states that people of faith ought to pay taxes if Caesar so requires it.

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Prelude to an Argument for Christianity: The Jewish People

It took a few years after my personal battle with atheism for me to realize the importance of Jesus’ Jewishness in understanding Christianity- and defending it. The character of the Jewish people at that time is well documented by both the Old Testament and extra-biblical sources. Some things about Christianity, or perhaps more precisely, the New Testament, make no sense apart from the Jewish context that it arose in. The brief video presentation below is not an argument for Christianity but rather foundation laying for such an argument. Everyone loves a puzzle! Puzzle me this- how has the Jewish nation managed to remain intact over thousands of years in the face of immense hostility to the point where they were able to emerge in numbers enough to re-claim their ancient stomping grounds? When you’re done with that, how did a people whose devotion to “Hear Oh Israel, The Lord your God is ONE” managed to become the womb for a new world view where God became a man?

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Easter is no Legend, the Resurrection is no mere myth: Myth Made Fact is a Different Story

It is that time of year again, when skeptics begin leveling their claims that Christianity is just a re-packaged bit of borrowed paganism and [insert your conspiracy theory here]. For the sake of this post, let’s merely concede that there are similarities to ancient myths and train our minds on the critical distinction: none of them are set against a historical backdrop as fleshed out as Christianity.

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The Growth of the Early Church: A Testimony Believed. Martyrs for what they saw not what they believed.

The Growth of the Early Church: A Testimony Believed. This essay was written in response to challenges to demonstrate that the early Christians died because of their testimony, and their unwillingness to reject their testimony. In other words, they believed that they had actually seen certain events, and chose to die rather than deny what […]

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Do not do tomorrow what you know is good to do today.

And by ‘good’ I mean in the theological, moral sense. Over the last five years or so, the sntjohnny household has endured various sorts of troubles that were truly unpleasant.  To keep it in context, I should add that at least very little was ‘tragic.’  That has not been lost on me.  One of the […]

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