Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/category/russ-bush/ L. Russ Bush III presents the truth of God’s word, Christianity, and Apologetics. Thu, 17 Dec 2015 03:59:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.3 The Truth of God's Word, Christianity, and Apologetics. L. Russ Bush III clean L. Russ Bush III joshbush@aggienetwork.com joshbush@aggienetwork.com (L. Russ Bush III) 2013 Joshua R. Bush The Truth of the Bible, Christianity, and Apologetics. Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/wp_lrbush/wp-content/uploads/powerpress/LRBush3_PodArt_small300-829.jpg http://lrbush.com/category/russ-bush/ TV-G Charlottesville, Virginia Weekly Support the Podcast Basic Theology: The Trinity Part 2 – DTS032 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/basic-theology-trinity-part-2/ http://lrbush.com/basic-theology-trinity-part-2/#respond Fri, 14 Mar 2014 20:36:42 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=367 God is a personal God with personal distinctions.  The biblical writers have no problem describing Him and interacting with Him in this way.  We are the ones who have problems with the idea. In Genesis 18 describes a meeting between Yaweh and Abraham.  Three men appeared near the great trees …

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150God is a personal God with personal distinctions.  The biblical writers have no problem describing Him and interacting with Him in this way.  We are the ones who have problems with the idea.

In Genesis 18 describes a meeting between Yaweh and Abraham.  Three men appeared near the great trees of Mamre, and Abraham recognizes the Lord.  The text shows that it is Yaweh speaking, Yaweh who stays with Abraham as he pleads for Sodom, Yaweh who goes down to Sodom, and Yaweh who rains down burning sulfur from heaven in Genesis 19:24.  The man in front of Abraham is addressed as God, speaks as God, and yet it is also God who goes down to the city and it is God who rains down fire from heaven.

Obviously a distinction in persons is being made without extra comment from the biblical author, yet only one God is named.  So the personal distinctions of God are not a New Testament novelty.  We have many other examples.  In Genesis 31:11-13, the angel calls Himself God.  Exodus 3:2-4 describes the angel of the Lord appearing to Abraham in the burning bush while the Lord speaks.  In Joshua 5:13-15, the commander of the army of Yaweh stands before Joshua, and in Joshua 6:2 that commander’s words are Yaweh’s words.  In Zechariah 4:6, the angel of Yaweh again speaks as Yaweh Himself.

Personal distinctions in the Godhead have been a part of Old Testament theology all along.  The Jews gave up that theology when Christians used it to defend their faith, and when the Jews rejected that gospel, they were blinded.  Early Christians have no problem with the unity of God or the personal distinctions of the Old Testament.  Deuteronomy 6:4-5 is clear that there is only one God.  Isaiah 45:5-6, Isaiah 45:14, and Isaiah 46:9 are clear that there is only one God.  In the New Testament this is reflected again.  1 Corinthians 8:4-6, Ephesians 4:3-6, and James 2:19 all affirm the Old Testament teaching of the oneness of God while recognizing personal distinctions.

Ultimately, the problem people have with the Trinity is not God’s oneness or God’s complexity, but the incarnation — God in the flesh.  Jews accuse Christians of being polytheistic when Christians argue that Jesus, the man from Nazareth, is part of the Trinity.  Jesus is the stumbling block.  Yet Jesus did claim to be God in John 10:30-33, and the Jews recognized this claim and tried to stone Him.

The Jews expected the Messiah and expected Him to be God.  They did not expect Him to also be a man.  Jeremiah 23:5-6 foretells the coming of the Messiah and that Messiah has the name of Yaweh.  Isaiah 9:6-7 names the Savior as Mighty God and Everlasting Father.  But what the Jews could not accept, and do not accept, is that our Messiah was also a mere man.  Not a man who died and stayed dead, but an everlasting ruler.

Jude 4-5, Titus 2:13-14, 2 Peter 1:1 all reveal Jesus as the Savior who is God.  Romans 9:5 says that Jesus is God over all and forever praised.  Luke 1:76 quotes the prophesy of Malachi 3:1 to show that John the Baptist would prepare the way for God, yet John recognized Jesus as the One for whom he was preparing the way in John 1:26-34.  The New Testament clearly teaches that Jesus is God and that the Holy Spirit is God.

How do we distinguish between the persons of the Trinity?  We do not have three gods.  All persons of the Trinity have the same nature, purpose, and goals.  They are all divine, eternal, and infinite.  They are not divided in any essential way.  However, they are in a subject-object relationship with each other.   Jesus prayed to the Father.  He even prayed, “not my will, but yours be done.”

We come to know the Father through Jesus.  We are justified by the Father due to our relationship with Jesus which is accomplished by the persuading work of the Holy Spirit.  Christianity is inseparable from the Trinity.

God is a complex being and has always been considered unique.  God is one God with 3 unique centers of personality that do not do the same work, but all work together with harmony for one purpose.

There is only one triune God.  Our problem is not that we don’t understand this, but that we’ve been told that any idea we come up with is wrong and it can’t be like that.  We can understand what Peter, Paul, and James wrote and they wrote about the Trinity.  That doesn’t mean that we can understand all there is to know about God, or even about His nature in the Trinity, but we can understand that there is one God and there are three unique personalities that make up that one God.

Do we just study this out of curiosity, or is there some importance to it all?  There is great importance to knowing that God is one God.  If God had two or three wills or purposes, we would not have an orderly universe that we can understand.  Because there is one God, there are absolutes.  Because there is one God, there is one moral standard.  There are not two opinions “up there” about what is right and wrong.

There is one God with one mind, one goal, one purpose, and one unchangeable nature.  He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  Yet, if God is unchangeable, then He must be triune.  How could the God that we know have existed before creation?

If God existed with no object with which to relate, then He would change with creation and take on a relational nature.  But God was already a God of relationships.  If God had never before communicated, then at creation he would have to change and become a God who communicates.  Was there anything for God to love before creation?  God was always a loving God because love is expressed between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  From all eternity, God has been a communicating and loving being.

The atonement itself is inconceivable without the Trinity.  John 3:16 teaches that God so loved the world that He sent His son.  The Son was sent, and He offered His life to Someone and ascended to Someone.  The Father commands us to believe in His Son, and we know He lives in us because of the Spirit He gave us.  That is the doctrine of the Trinity.

This is part 2 of the sixth topic in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush in 1979 so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1 – part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1 – part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1 – part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1 – part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

The post Basic Theology: The Trinity Part 2 – DTS032 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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http://lrbush.com/basic-theology-trinity-part-2/feed/ 0 The atonement is inconceivable without the Trinity. God so loved the world that He sent His Son. The Son offered His life and ascended to Someone. The Father commands us to believe in His Son. We know He lives in us because of the Spirit He gave us. God is a personal God with personal distinctions.  The biblical writers have no problem describing Him and interacting with Him in this way.  We are the ones who have problems with the idea.
In Genesis 18 describes a meeting between Yaweh and Abraham.  Three men appeared near the great trees of Mamre, and Abraham recognizes the Lord.  The text shows that it is Yaweh speaking, Yaweh who stays with Abraham as he pleads for Sodom, Yaweh who goes down to Sodom, and Yaweh who rains down burning sulfur from heaven in Genesis 19:24.  The man in front of Abraham is addressed as God, speaks as God, and yet it is also God who goes down to the city and it is God who rains down fire from heaven.
Obviously a distinction in persons is being made without extra comment from the biblical author, yet only one God is named.  So the personal distinctions of God are not a New Testament novelty.  We have many other examples.  In Genesis 31:11-13, the angel calls Himself God.  Exodus 3:2-4 describes the angel of the Lord appearing to Abraham in the burning bush while the Lord speaks.  In Joshua 5:13-15, the commander of the army of Yaweh stands before Joshua, and in Joshua 6:2 that commander’s words are Yaweh’s words.  In Zechariah 4:6, the angel of Yaweh again speaks as Yaweh Himself.
Personal distinctions in the Godhead have been a part of Old Testament theology all along.  The Jews gave up that theology when Christians used it to defend their faith, and when the Jews rejected that gospel, they were blinded.  Early Christians have no problem with the unity of God or the personal distinctions of the Old Testament.  Deuteronomy 6:4-5 is clear that there is only one God.  Isaiah 45:5-6, Isaiah 45:14, and Isaiah 46:9 are clear that there is only one God.  In the New Testament this is reflected again.  1 Corinthians 8:4-6, Ephesians 4:3-6, and James 2:19 all affirm the Old Testament teaching of the oneness of God while recognizing personal distinctions.
Ultimately, the problem people have with the Trinity is not God’s oneness or God’s complexity, but the incarnation — God in the flesh.  Jews accuse Christians of being polytheistic when Christians argue that Jesus, the man from Nazareth, is part of the Trinity.  Jesus is the stumbling block.  Yet Jesus did claim to be God in http://lrbush.com/?p=357 How can there be three personalities and only one God?  The doctrine of the trinity is a part of what it means to be orthodox Christian in your beliefs. The doctrine of the Trinity is the doctrine that gets people in the most trouble throughout church history.  For hundreds of …

The post Basic Theology: The Trinity Part 1 – DTS031 appeared first on LRBush.com.

]]> LRBush3_PodArt_small150How can there be three personalities and only one God?  The doctrine of the trinity is a part of what it means to be orthodox Christian in your beliefs.

The doctrine of the Trinity is the doctrine that gets people in the most trouble throughout church history.  For hundreds of years, people have stumbled over the relationship between Jesus and God the Father.  The debates between Arius and Athanasius over the nature of the Trinity brought together the first ever council of bishops, the Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325.  Arius taught that Jesus was derived from God, but not God Himself, while Athanasius defended the traditional view that Jesus and God the Father are of one essence.  The council decided in favor of the traditional view, but the arguments within the church continued for several decades.  It was finally settled in A.D. 381 at the Council of Constantinople, where the Arian heresy was put to rest.

Two hundred years later, around the time of the Third Synod of Toledo in 589, the Nicene Creed affirming the divinity of Jesus, which had also been expanded at the Council of Constantinople, was changed regarding the place of the Holy Spirit.  The phrase, “and the son,” was added so that it now read that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, instead of just from the Father.  This change contributed to the break in 1054 between the western church, which became the Roman Catholic Church, and the eastern church, which became the Greek Orthodox Church.  The disagreements over the nature of the Trinity contributed to a schism within the church that persists even today.

Modern Christian cults fall at this same point.  One of the most characteristic marks of Christian cults is that they deny Jesus is the eternal Son of God.  But orthodoxy is not a new interpretation.  It is the historic and true teaching of scripture on key, essential issues.  Orthodoxy says that Jesus is God in the flesh and that the Holy Spirit is also God Himself.  This is the nature of the Trinity.

The doctrine of the Trinity is unique to Christianity.  Christianity is not unitarian and it is not polytheistic.  How do we reconcile these two things?  Does the Christian faith demand a belief that cannot be understood?  No.  It can be understood, and we do understand it.

We often think we don’t understand the Trinity because we’ve been told we don’t understand it.  But how much do we have to know before we can say we understand it?  Do we need exhaustive and total knowledge of all details?  Do we need exhaustive and total knowledge of how electricity is wired into our homes to understand that electricity is in our homes?

Of course not, and it is the same principle in play with the doctrine of the Trinity.  We may not know every detail or understand everything there is to know about the Trinity, but we do know something.  As we come to understand scripture, we come to understand the Trinity.  If we can understand what Peter, Paul, and James wrote, then we can understand what they say about the Trinity.

If you don’t understand the Trinity, then you don’t understand Christianity.  The Trinity is the essence of Christianity.  It is not the greatest burden of our theology, but what makes it true and understandable.  Look not to all the controversies surrounding the Trinity, but instead look to what the Bible says about the Trinity.

First, Who is God?  God is the source of all things.  He spoke all things into existence.  In the beginning, the Word was with God and the Word was God, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters (Genesis 1 and John 1).

Adam knew God directly in the Garden of Eden.  After his sin, God no longer came to walk with Adam, so Adam no longer knows him directly.  But Adam’s son, Cain, still knows God as a personal being who speaks and sees all things, even if they are hidden.  Noah knows God as a personal being who speaks and tells him what to do.  After the flood, Abraham comes to know God as a personal being who speaks and promises.

God is a personal God, but He does have personal distinctions and the biblical writers have no problem with this.  The Angel of The Lord visibly comes to Hagar and He sees, speaks, and promises as God Himself.  The Lord visibly comes to Abraham and speaks with Abraham in his tent.  The Lord appears in the form of a man and discusses with Abraham what would happen to Sodom and Gomorrah.

These distinctions in God’s person are related to us throughout the Old Testament, and the authors did not have a problem with this facet of God’s nature.

This discussion will continue in Part 2 of the doctrine of the Trinity.  This is part 1 of the sixth topic in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush in 1979 so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1 – part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1 – part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1 – part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

The post Basic Theology: The Trinity Part 1 – DTS031 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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http://lrbush.com/basic-theology-trinity-part-1/feed/ 0 If you don't understand the Trinity, then you don't understand Christianity. The Trinity is the essence of Christianity. It is not the greatest burden of our theology, but what makes it true and understandable. How can there be three personalities and only one God?  The doctrine of the trinity is a part of what it means to be orthodox Christian in your beliefs.
The doctrine of the Trinity is the doctrine that gets people in the most trouble throughout church history.  For hundreds of years, people have stumbled over the relationship between Jesus and God the Father.  The debates between Arius and Athanasius over the nature of the Trinity brought together the first ever council of bishops, the Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325.  Arius taught that Jesus was derived from God, but not God Himself, while Athanasius defended the traditional view that Jesus and God the Father are of one essence.  The council decided in favor of the traditional view, but the arguments within the church continued for several decades.  It was finally settled in A.D. 381 at the Council of Constantinople, where the Arian heresy was put to rest.
Two hundred years later, around the time of the Third Synod of Toledo in 589, the Nicene Creed affirming the divinity of Jesus, which had also been expanded at the Council of Constantinople, was changed regarding the place of the Holy Spirit.  The phrase, “and the son,” was added so that it now read that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, instead of just from the Father.  This change contributed to the break in 1054 between the western church, which became the Roman Catholic Church, and the eastern church, which became the Greek Orthodox Church.  The disagreements over the nature of the Trinity contributed to a schism within the church that persists even today.
Modern Christian cults fall at this same point.  One of the most characteristic marks of Christian cults is that they deny Jesus is the eternal Son of God.  But orthodoxy is not a new interpretation.  It is the historic and true teaching of scripture on key, essential issues.  Orthodoxy says that Jesus is God in the flesh and that the Holy Spirit is also God Himself.  This is the nature of the Trinity.
The doctrine of the Trinity is unique to Christianity.  Christianity is not unitarian and it is not polytheistic.  How do we reconcile these two things?  Does the Christian faith demand a belief that cannot be understood?  No.  It can be understood, and we do understand it.
We often think we don’t understand the Trinity because we’ve been told we don’t understand it.  But how much do we have to know before we can say we understand it?  Do we need exhaustive and total knowledge of all details?  Do we need exhaustive and total knowledge of how electricity is wired into our homes to understand that electricity is in our homes?
Of course not, and it is the same principle in play with the doctrine of the Trinity.  We may not know every detail or understand everything there is to know about the Trinity, but we do know something.  As we come to understand scripture, we come to understand the Trinity.  If we can understand what Peter, Paul, and James wrote, then we can understand what they say about the Trinity.
If you don’t understand the Trinity, then you don’t understand Christianity.  The Trinity is the essence of Christianity.  It is not the greatest burden of our theology, but what makes it true and understandable.  Look not to all the controversies surrounding the Trinity, but instead look to what the Bible says about the Trinity.
First, Who is God?  God is the source of all things.]]>
L. Russ Bush III clean 32:22
Basic Theology: The Holy Spirit and His Gifts Part 2 – DTS030 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/holy-spirit-and-his-gifts-part-2/ http://lrbush.com/holy-spirit-and-his-gifts-part-2/#respond Sun, 16 Feb 2014 20:00:26 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=352 As discussed in Part 1, God is a unity, but not a simple unity.  He is a complex being.  The Holy Spirit is not a separate God, but a member of a unified trinity who has a unique personality and intellect while still being unified with God. In the Old …

The post Basic Theology: The Holy Spirit and His Gifts Part 2 – DTS030 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150As discussed in Part 1, God is a unity, but not a simple unity.  He is a complex being.  The Holy Spirit is not a separate God, but a member of a unified trinity who has a unique personality and intellect while still being unified with God.

In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit lived with the people of God and indwelling only a chosen few.  In the New Testament, after Pentecost in Acts 2, the Holy Spirit lives in all believers.  He is the seal of our redemption.

The Holy Spirit accomplished the work of creating the incarnation.  In Luke 1:35, the angel told Mary that the Holy Spirit would come upon her, and so her child would be the Son of God.  In Matthew 1:20, the angel told Joseph that Mary’s child was conceived by the Holy Spirit.

Jesus’ entire life was intimately related to the Holy Spirit.  Matthew 12:28 says that He was empowered by the Holy Spirit to cast out demons.  After His time of fasting in the wilderness, Luke 4:15 says that Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee.  In Luke 4:17-22, Jesus reads from Isaiah to demonstrate that He had been anointed by the Holy Spirit to preach good news.  In Acts 10:37-38, Peter is preaching in the home of Cornelius and reminds them of Jesus’ ministry, and how He was anointed by the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit is also intimately related to our salvation.  Jesus teaches Nicodemus in John 3 that each person must be born of water and spirit to see the kingdom of God, and it is Spirit that gives birth to spirit.  The Holy Spirit accomplishes our salvation, working in us to produce our new birth.  Paul teaches in Titus 3:4-6 that we are saved by the washing and renewal of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit cleanses us and washes us.  He is poured out on us by Jesus Christ.

The Holy Spirit Himself is a gift to believers.  Jesus taught this in John 7:37-39 as he spoke of rivers of living water for those that come to him.  In Acts 11:15-17, Peter tells the church in Jerusalem of what occurred at the home of Cornelius.  He tells of being reminded of Jesus teaching that they would be baptized by the Holy Spirit and testified that the Holy Spirit had come onto the Gentiles just as it had on the Apostles at Pentecost.  Because of their salvation, the Holy Spirit indwells all believers.  Paul also teaches in Romans 5:5 that the Holy Spirit has been given to us.

The Holy Spirit gives gifts to the church, not just individuals.  Ephesians 4:11-12 reveals that God gave the church apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, and teachers to help equip the body of Christ.  Billy Graham is an example of a man who is a gift to the church.  He is a gifted evangelist whose life and work has been given to the church.

The Holy Spirit gives the gift of miracles and healing.  1 Corinthians 12:28 says that gifts of miracles and healing have been given to the church.  They are not universal gifts that can be done at will, but special gifts.  Paul is relieved that a man is able to recover from a sickness in Philippians 2:27, and Paul is giving advice on taking wine to help Timothy feel better in 1 Timothy 5:23.  Why would Paul say these things instead of just healing these people at will?  Because even the Apostle Paul could not heal a person at will.  In 2 Corinthians 12:7-9, Paul shares with us his pleading with God that a physical impairment would be taken away, but God did not heal it.  It was not healed because God’s power was made perfect in Paul’s weakness.  There is a time and place for miracles and healing, but they are not universal gifts.  Nor is it a necessary part of God’s will that you will be healed.  Sometimes we must demonstrate that God’s grace is sufficient, and allow His power to be expressed through our weakness.

The Holy Spirit gives the gift of tongues, or languages.  1 Corinthians 12:10 lists “various kinds of tongues” and “interpretation of tongues” as gifts of the Holy Spirit that are given for the common good.  Where do we see the evidence of this gift in scripture?  In the prophets of the Old Testament?  Did David, Isaiah, or Ezekiel have this gift?  No.  Did Jesus display this gift?  There is not a single recorded instance of Jesus speaking in tongues.  So this gift cannot be misunderstood as the proof that the Holy Spirit indwells a person.  But we do see this gift in Acts during and after Pentecost.

The first instance of this gift in scripture is Acts 2.  In this passage, tongues were not unknown utterances, but were languages being spoken by the Apostles that were understood by all who were present.  Those in the crowd heard the gospel in their own language and they marveled at the Galileans who were able to speak those languages.  A similar event is repeated in the house of Cornelius, in Acts 10:44-47, where Peter says that the Holy Spirit had come on the Gentiles just as it had come on the Apostles at Pentecost.  When Peter relays this event to the church in Jerusalem in Acts 11:15 he says again that the Holy Spirit had come on the Gentiles just as it had come at Pentecost.  Peter is saying that these are not unknown noises, but known, human languages, just as it was with the Apostles.  If the discussion Paul has in 1 Corinthians 14 refers to anything other than human languages, it would be the only recorded instance in scripture and would not become normative for all churches.

The Holy Spirit gives individual gifts.  Ephesians 4:11 and Romans 12:6-8 both speak of individuals being given special gifts that are not shared among all believers.  Some are evangelists, some are teachers, others give with generosity, others perform acts of mercy.  These verses don’t release us from responsibility to try and emulate these traits, but some are clearly more gifted in these areas than others.

All believers are baptized by the Holy Spirit once for all at conversion.  Paul teaches in 1 Corinthians 12:13  that all are baptized by one Spirit into one body.  All are baptized by the Spirit, even though not all have the same special gifts.  Being filled by the Spirit means being controlled by the Spirit.  Ephesians 5:18-21 describes a continuous behavior, not a singular event.

The Holy Spirit can teach us and guide us.  He can pray for us.  He testifies with us.  And when we are saved, we are marked with the seal of the Holy Spirit to the praise of His glory.

This is part 2 of the fifth topic in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush in 1979 so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1 – part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1 – part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1 – part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

The post Basic Theology: The Holy Spirit and His Gifts Part 2 – DTS030 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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http://lrbush.com/holy-spirit-and-his-gifts-part-2/feed/ 0 The Holy Spirit was intimately related to the life of Jesus and is intimately related to salvation. He gives gifts both to individuals and to the church. He is given to all believers and indwells in all believers. As discussed in Part 1, God is a unity, but not a simple unity.  He is a complex being.  The Holy Spirit is not a separate God, but a member of a unified trinity who has a unique personality and intellect while still being unified with God.
In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit lived with the people of God and indwelling only a chosen few.  In the New Testament, after Pentecost in Acts 2, the Holy Spirit lives in all believers.  He is the seal of our redemption.
The Holy Spirit accomplished the work of creating the incarnation.  In Luke 1:35, the angel told Mary that the Holy Spirit would come upon her, and so her child would be the Son of God.  In Matthew 1:20, the angel told Joseph that Mary’s child was conceived by the Holy Spirit.
Jesus’ entire life was intimately related to the Holy Spirit.  Matthew 12:28 says that He was empowered by the Holy Spirit to cast out demons.  After His time of fasting in the wilderness, Luke 4:15 says that Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee.  In Luke 4:17-22, Jesus reads from Isaiah to demonstrate that He had been anointed by the Holy Spirit to preach good news.  In Acts 10:37-38, Peter is preaching in the home of Cornelius and reminds them of Jesus’ ministry, and how He was anointed by the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is also intimately related to our salvation.  Jesus teaches Nicodemus in John 3 that each person must be born of water and spirit to see the kingdom of God, and it is Spirit that gives birth to spirit.  The Holy Spirit accomplishes our salvation, working in us to produce our new birth.  Paul teaches in Titus 3:4-6 that we are saved by the washing and renewal of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit cleanses us and washes us.  He is poured out on us by Jesus Christ.
The Holy Spirit Himself is a gift to believers.  Jesus taught this in John 7:37-39 as he spoke of rivers of living water for those that come to him.  In Acts 11:15-17, Peter tells the church in Jerusalem of what occurred at the home of Cornelius.  He tells of being reminded of Jesus teaching that they would be baptized by the Holy Spirit and testified that the Holy Spirit had come onto the Gentiles just as it had on the Apostles at Pentecost.  Because of their salvation, the Holy Spirit indwells all believers.  Paul also teaches in Romans 5:5 that ...]]>
L. Russ Bush III clean 31:44
Basic Theology: The Holy Spirit and His Gifts Part 1 – DTS029 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/holy-spirit-and-his-gifts-part-1/ http://lrbush.com/holy-spirit-and-his-gifts-part-1/#respond Fri, 31 Jan 2014 23:33:37 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=342 God exists as a unity.  There is only one God.  As Ephesians 4:4-6 says, there is one Spirit and there is one faith in one Lord who is our one God.  The Bible never teaches that there is more than one God. But God is not a simple unity like …

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150God exists as a unity.  There is only one God.  As Ephesians 4:4-6 says, there is one Spirit and there is one faith in one Lord who is our one God.  The Bible never teaches that there is more than one God.

But God is not a simple unity like one rock or one grain of sand.  He is a complex being, and He is presented that way.  He is revealed as having three centers of unique personality, but in essence is one God.  John 1:1-3 gives a description of this unity of Jesus and the Father.  The Word was with God and, at the same time, the Word was God.  When we speak of the essential nature of the Word, He is God.  The Word was also with God.  The Word can leave that relationship to become man: to become Jesus.  Jesus is God’s Word that became flesh.  Yet the Word is still God.  This is a mystery that we don’t understand to its fullest extent, but scripture is clear that there is one God.

So the Holy Spirit is not a separate God, not a third God, but He is a unique personality.  The Holy Spirit is not an “it,” but a Somebody.  He is not an impersonal force or just an expression of power, but a person of the Trinity.

The Holy Spirit has intellect.  In 1 Corinthians 2:9-16, we see that God reveals things through the Holy Spirit.  The Spirit searches all things, even the thoughts of God.  He knows God’s thoughts.  If the Holy Spirit knows something, He must have intellect.

The Holy Spirit has emotions and sensibility.  The Holy spirit can be grieved and He can love.  Ephesians 4:30 warns us not to grieve the Holy Spirit.  In Romans 15:30, Paul appeals to us by Jesus and the love of the Holy Spirit separately.

The Holy Spirit has a will.  He can choose to give as He wills.  In 1 Corinthians 12:11 the Holy Spirit apportions His gifts as He determines.  He is able to make a determination and choose.

The Holy Spirit is able to teach, remind and bear witness.  In John 14:25-26, Jesus tells His disciples that when the Holy Spirit comes, He will teach them all things and remind them of what Jesus taught while He was with them.  In John 15:26, Jesus teaches that the Holy Spirit will bear a true witness about Him.  He will teach, explain, and testify about the truth of Jesus Christ and God’s Word.

The Holy Spirit calls people, directs them, and gives them a special purpose.  In Acts 13:2-4, the Holy Spirit calls Barnabas and Paul, and He gives them a special work to perform.  When people are called to the mission field or service, it is done by the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit directed Philip in Acts 8:26-40 to go and stand by the chariot of an Ethiopian so that Philip would be in the right place at the right time, then took Philip off to another place of ministry.

The Holy Spirit can be obeyed or resisted, and He can be blasphemed.  In Acts 10, the Holy Spirit speaks to Peter, tells him what to do, and Peter obeys.  In Acts 7:51-53, Stephen tells the priests that they are stubborn and have resisted the Holy Spirit.  Jesus teaches in Matthew 12:22-32 that blaspheming the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.

The Holy Spirit is divine.  He is God’s Spirit.  Paul teaches in 1 Corinthians 6:11 that we are washed, sanctified, and justified by the Holy Spirit.  In John 14:16-17, Jesus says that God will send another helper.  The Greek language is able to distinguish between another of the same kind and another of a different kind.  Jesus says here that God will be sending another of the same kind as Himself.

The Holy Spirit is attributed actions that are claimed for God only.  In 2 Timothy 3:16, we are taught that scripture is breathed out by God, and in 2 Peter 1:21, Peter says that the scriptures have their origin in the Holy Spirit.  So the Holy Spirit is described as performing work that attributed to God.

The Holy Spirit is identified as Jehovah God, Yaweh.  In Acts 28:25-27, Paul says it is the Holy Spirit who spoke through Isaiah, and when we look at the verses quoted from Isaiah 6, it is clearly God, identified as Yaweh (signified in English with Lord in all capital letters), who is speaking.  Paul talks about the Holy Spirit, where Isaiah records God Himself speaking.  Therefore, when the Holy Spirit speaks, that is God speaking.

The Holy Spirit is on equal terms with the Father and the Son.  In 2 Corinthians 13, Paul says that it is Jesus who is in them and all three parts of the Trinity are mentioned in verse 14.  The Holy Spirit was active in creation along with Jesus.  Genesis 1:2 reveals that the Spirit of God was moving on the face of the waters.  Isaiah says in Isaiah 40:12-14 that no one teaches or leads the Spirit of God to understanding.

The Holy Spirit is responsible for giving us the Bible.  We have already looked at 2 Peter 1:21 that says that the authors of scripture were carried along by the Holy Spirit.  2 Samuel 23:2, Ezekiel 2:2, Micah 3:8, Matthew 22:43, Acts 1:16, and Acts 4:25 all reference the Holy Spirit as the one who is speaking when God’s words are quoted or given.

The Holy Spirit in the Old Testament indwelled only certain people, not every believer.  Numbers 27:18, Daniel 4:8, Judges 14:6, and 1 Samuel 16:13 all speak of the Holy Spirit being on specific people in a special way that sets them apart from other parts of the community of believers.  God’s Spirit indwelled selectively, living with the believers not in them.

But this is the big change after the Pentecost following the resurrection and ascension of Jesus.  In John 14:17, Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would be with us and in us.  After Pentecost, described in Acts 2, the Holy Spirit began to indwell and live in all believers.

This is part 1 of the fifth lesson in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush in 1979 so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1 – part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1 – part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

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http://lrbush.com/holy-spirit-and-his-gifts-part-1/feed/ 0 The Holy Spirit is not a separate God, not a third God, but He is a unique personality. The Holy Spirit is not an "it," but a Somebody. He is not an impersonal force or just an expression of power, but a person of the Trinity. God exists as a unity.  There is only one God.  As Ephesians 4:4-6 says, there is one Spirit and there is one faith in one Lord who is our one God.  The Bible never teaches that there is more than one God.
But God is not a simple unity like one rock or one grain of sand.  He is a complex being, and He is presented that way.  He is revealed as having three centers of unique personality, but in essence is one God.  John 1:1-3 gives a description of this unity of Jesus and the Father.  The Word was with God and, at the same time, the Word was God.  When we speak of the essential nature of the Word, He is God.  The Word was also with God.  The Word can leave that relationship to become man: to become Jesus.  Jesus is God’s Word that became flesh.  Yet the Word is still God.  This is a mystery that we don’t understand to its fullest extent, but scripture is clear that there is one God.
So the Holy Spirit is not a separate God, not a third God, but He is a unique personality.  The Holy Spirit is not an “it,” but a Somebody.  He is not an impersonal force or just an expression of power, but a person of the Trinity.
The Holy Spirit has intellect.  In 1 Corinthians 2:9-16, we see that God reveals things through the Holy Spirit.  The Spirit searches all things, even the thoughts of God.  He knows God’s thoughts.  If the Holy Spirit knows something, He must have intellect.
The Holy Spirit has emotions and sensibility.  The Holy spirit can be grieved and He can love.  Ephesians 4:30 warns us not to grieve the Holy Spirit.  In Romans 15:30, Paul appeals to us by Jesus and the love of the Holy Spirit separately.
The Holy Spirit has a will.  He can choose to give as He wills.  In 1 Corinthians 12:11 the Holy Spirit apportions His gifts as He determines.  He is able to make a determination and choose.
The Holy Spirit is able to teach, remind and bear witness.  In John 14:25-26, Jesus tells His disciples that when the Holy Spirit comes, He will teach them all things and remind them of what Jesus taught while He was with them.  In John 15:26, Jesus teaches that the Holy Spirit will bear a true witness about Him.  He will teach, explain, and testify about the truth of Jesus Christ and God’s Word.
The Holy Spirit calls people, directs them, and gives them a special purpose.  In Acts 13:2-4, the Holy Spirit calls Barnabas and Paul, and He gives them a special work to perform.  When people are called to the mission field or service, it is done by the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit directed Philip in Acts 8:26...]]>
L. Russ Bush III clean 31:45
Basic Theology: Redemption Part 2 – Election and Atonement – DTS028 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/redemption-part-2-election-atonement/ http://lrbush.com/redemption-part-2-election-atonement/#respond Fri, 24 Jan 2014 08:00:01 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=337 Part 1 of this focus on Redemption looked at sections of scripture where God has revealed that he chooses those who come to Him.  This choice is not arbitrary or capricious, but it is done in love and with wisdom purpose. Jesus teaches about the doctrine of election throughout the …

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]]> LRBush3_PodArt_small150Part 1 of this focus on Redemption looked at sections of scripture where God has revealed that he chooses those who come to Him.  This choice is not arbitrary or capricious, but it is done in love and with wisdom purpose.

Jesus teaches about the doctrine of election throughout the Gospels, as well.  The parable of the wedding feast in Matthew 11:1-14 ends with Jesus saying, “Many are called, but few are chosen.”  In Matthew 24, Jesus refers to believers as “the elect” in verses 22, 24, and 31.  Romans 8:33, 1 Peter 1:1, and 2 Timothy 2:10 also refer to believers as the “elect.”

God chooses by His own reasons and by His own character, which necessarily means that it is done in love.  This is not always obvious to us.  But scripture also teaches that God has hidden many of his reasons for acting from mankind.  Matthew 11:25-30 and Luke 10:21-22 reveal that God has hidden some things that relate to salvation from those who consider themselves wise, and Jesus praises Him for doing so.  Then in the same line of thought speaks of choosing to whom the Son will reveal the Father.

Election is specifically taught in both Paul’s and Peter’s New Testament letters.  Romans 11 talks at length about God’s remnant that was chosen by grace and how that choice is irrevocable.  Even the Jews who are now enemies of the gospel will one day be saved.  They are chosen and God’s promises will be honored.  1 Thessalonians 1:4-5 reveals that Paul knew those he was writing to were chosen because He had witnessed their conviction by the Holy Spirit.  Their salvation was accomplished by God, not by Paul’s fancy preaching.  Peter writes in 2 Peter 1 that our obedient response to God gives us assurance of our election.

We should be grateful for our opportunity to serve God because we can only come to Him if He calls us.  Not everyone gets the opportunity to serve others on behalf of our creator God, and so we should treat our election as a privilege, not a burden.  In John 6:41-48 Jesus emphasizes that no one can come to Him unless the Father first grants it and again in John 6:63-65.  This should not give us doubt about our salvation, but give us assurance of its permanence.  In verse 37 of the same chapter Jesus tells us that all who are given to Him do come and that Jesus will never cast them out.

Many do not like the idea of this doctrine because they say it makes salvation a mechanical coercion in which we have no say.  We are forced to convert and so it is not a true act of faith.  However, God can persuade us without forcing us.  God knows all about us.  His method of bringing us to salvation is one of calling and persuasion, not forcing us to do something, as seen in passages such as Acts 17:1-4 and 2 Corinthians 5:11.

Does the doctrine of election mean that God is purposefully leaving people out?  Doesn’t that make it unfair?  First, even if God did leave people out, should we then reject the grace that has been given to us?  But Scripture actually teaches that everyone who is willing and wants to come to God is chosen.  John 3:16 and John 6:37 both say that whoever comes to Jesus will never be cast away.  No one who wants to be saved is every turned away.

Some don’t like the expression of this doctrine because they say it rules out the need for evangelism.  But God’s choosing involves our necessary involvement.  We have already seen that God uses persuasion, not mechanical coercion.  We are commanded to go out.  God uses our evangelism as part of His persuasion and calling.  Who in scripture is more evangelistic that John and Paul?  Yet, their books contain most of the teaching about this very doctrine of election.

We have only three choices: God will save everyone, which means that sin is not important; God will save no one, which means that sin is most important; or that God will only save some, which means that sin is important, but God’s love is most important.  This last option is what the Bible teaches.

Therefore God’s salvation is sure and permanent.  If salvation depends on His love and His grace, our failures cannot make us lose that salvation.

Part 2 – Doctrine of the Atonement
The second part of the theology surrounding our redemption is the atonement made for us by Jesus Christ as the forgiveness of our sins.

The first aspect of this atonement is that Jesus perfectly kept the Old Testament law.  Galatians 4:4-5 says that Jesus was born under the law so that He could save those under the law.  In Matthew 5:17-20, Jesus says that He did not come to abolish the law and that it would not fade away until all of it was fulfilled.  In John chapter 8, verses 29 and 46, Jesus proclaims that He always does what God asks of Him, and none of those listening could bring any charge against Him.  1 Peter 2:21-23 states plainly that Jesus committed no sin and never deceived anyone.

The second aspect of this atonement is that Jesus substituted His perfect life for our imperfect life.  In 1 Peter 2:24, the apostle Peter tells us that Jesus bore our sins in our place.  2 Corinthians 5:21 says that though He knew no sin, He was made to be sin for us.  Hebrews 7:26-28 says that Jesus was perfect and without sin, but he offered Himself up for us.

The third aspect of this atonement is that Jesus’ sacrifice made full atonement for all of our sins by His death and resurrection.  Romans 5:10 reveals that we have been reconciled to God through Jesus’ death and given life through His life.  1 Peter 3:18 reassures us by telling us that Jesus Christ died once for all sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, bringing us to God so there is no need for another sacrifice.  We see this again in Romans 6:10Hebrews 7:27, and throughout Hebrews 9 and 10.

Because of the doctrine of election, some say that this atonement must be limited.  It was only enough to save a certain number of sins: Jesus’ finite suffering and finite volume of blood only covered a finite amount of sin.  But the atonement is not quantitative, equating volume of blood to numbers of sins.  Scripture teaches that the atonement was a general atonement that was made for all people.  1 John 2:1-2 says that the atonement is not just for us so that we can come to the Father, but that it was made for the whole world.  Jesus has made the sacrifice for all and it is available to all.  It is possible for any man to be saved, but not all are persuaded to trust in the gospel messages.  Many are called, but few are chosen.  John 3:16-19 says that mankind’s sin is already atoned for and all we need to do is believe to take part in that atonement.  Light is in the world, but mankind loves darkness.  Christ made it possible for all people to be saved, but many will reject His salvation because they love darkness.

The cross is how Jesus made atonement for us.  Hebrews 9 teaches that God commanded a blood sacrifice for sin and Jesus died bleeding for us.  God’s requirements for our salvation were met in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  His character was not compromised, His righteousness was vindicated, and His love was bestowed on us.

Paul ends his discussion of election and atonement in Romans 11:33-36 by saying, ” Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God!  How unsearchable are His judgments and how inscrutable His ways!  For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been His counselor?  Or who has given a gift to Him that He might be repaid?  For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things.  To Him be glory forever.  Amen.”

This is part 2 of the fourth lesson in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush in 1979 so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1 – part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1 – part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

The post Basic Theology: Redemption Part 2 – Election and Atonement – DTS028 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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http://lrbush.com/redemption-part-2-election-atonement/feed/ 0 We have three choices: God will save everyone and sin is not important; God will save no one and sin is most important; or that God will only save some and sin is important, but God's love is most important. The last option is what the Bible teaches. Part 1 of this focus on Redemption looked at sections of scripture where God has revealed that he chooses those who come to Him.  This choice is not arbitrary or capricious, but it is done in love and with wisdom purpose.
Jesus teaches about the doctrine of election throughout the Gospels, as well.  The parable of the wedding feast in Matthew 11:1-14 ends with Jesus saying, “Many are called, but few are chosen.”  In Matthew 24, Jesus refers to believers as “the elect” in verses 22, 24, and 31.  Romans 8:33, 1 Peter 1:1, and 2 Timothy 2:10 also refer to believers as the “elect.”
God chooses by His own reasons and by His own character, which necessarily means that it is done in love.  This is not always obvious to us.  But scripture also teaches that God has hidden many of his reasons for acting from mankind.  Matthew 11:25-30 and Luke 10:21-22 reveal that God has hidden some things that relate to salvation from those who consider themselves wise, and Jesus praises Him for doing so.  Then in the same line of thought speaks of choosing to whom the Son will reveal the Father.
Election is specifically taught in both Paul’s and Peter’s New Testament letters.  Romans 11 talks at length about God’s remnant that was chosen by grace and how that choice is irrevocable.  Even the Jews who are now enemies of the gospel will one day be saved.  They are chosen and God’s promises will be honored.  1 Thessalonians 1:4-5 reveals that Paul knew those he was writing to were chosen because He had witnessed their conviction by the Holy Spirit.  Their salvation was accomplished by God, not by Paul’s fancy preaching.  Peter writes in 2 Peter 1 that our obedient response to God gives us assurance of our election.
We should be grateful for our opportunity to serve God because we can only come to Him if He calls us.  Not everyone gets the opportunity to serve others on behalf of our creator God, and so we should treat our election as a privilege, not a burden.  In John 6:41-48 Jesus emphasizes that no one can come to Him unless the Father first grants it and again in John 6:63-65.  This should not give us doubt about our salvation, but give us assurance of its permanence.  In verse 37 of the same chapter Jesus tells us that all who are given to Him do come and that Jesus will never cast them out.

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L. Russ Bush III clean 31:57 Basic Theology: Redemption Part 1 – Election – DTS027 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/redemption-part-1-election/ http://lrbush.com/redemption-part-1-election/#respond Fri, 17 Jan 2014 08:00:06 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=334 The doctrine of redemption has two parts: the doctrine of election and the doctrine of the atonement.  This first part will deal with what the Bible teaches about the doctrine of election. Love is the characteristic motive for God’s actions.  It was because God so loved the world that He …

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150The doctrine of redemption has two parts: the doctrine of election and the doctrine of the atonement.  This first part will deal with what the Bible teaches about the doctrine of election.

Love is the characteristic motive for God’s actions.  It was because God so loved the world that He sent his only Son.  In 1 John 4:9-12, John tells us that it was because God loved us that he sent Jesus to provide our atonement, not because we loved Him.  The Apostle Paul writes something similar in Romans 5:6-11.  God acted and demonstrated His love for us by sending Jesus Christ while we were still His enemies.

Therefore, God’s motive in election is love.  He chooses us because He loves us.  This motive is characteristic of God as He is understood in all three manifestations of the Trinity.  1 John 3:1 says that the Father has shown us His love in making us His children.  Galatians 2:20 says that it was Jesus who showed His love for us in giving Himself up for us.  Romans 5:5 teaches that God’s love is poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit.

God chose and predestined us in love to be adopted as His children.  In Ephesians 1:4-5, the phrase “in love” is sometimes translated as belonging with the earlier sentence in verse 4 and sometimes as introducing the words in verse 5, but either way, whether the verses teach we were chosen in love or predestined in love, we can know that God acted for our redemption in this manner out of His love.

Election is God’s sovereign choice in eternity past to bring some lost men to salvation.  His choosing is not arbitrary, but is based in His love.  It seems arbitrary to us because it is not based on human merit.  It is not just good people, wealthy people, educated people, or any other reason we can understand.  But God’s choice is based on His wisdom, His righteousness, and His love.  Romans 8:28-37 reveals that we are called according to His purpose, not according to capriciousness or random draw.  In love He did these things, therefore nothing can separate us from Him and no one can bring any charge against us.  Election is clearly taught in scripture, but it is not arbitrary.

Many examples of Old Testament illustration of God’s sovereign choosing can be found.  In Genesis 6 we see that God’s heart was grieved over the sin of mankind and He was ready to destroy everyone and everything, but Noah found favor with God.  Verse 9 says that Noah was blameless among the people, but scripture teaches that our righteousness is like filthy rags before God.  Yet God fines Noah righteous in his generation and shows him grace and mercy.

In Genesis 22:17-18, God chooses Abraham and Abraham’s descendants to receive His promises.  Abraham’s descendants have not lived to do anything to merit God’s favor, but they are already given His promise.  God’s blessings are given as a certainty.

God decides who will come to Him.  He doesn’t wait around for people to become holy enough to start paying them attention.  But God’s choice is always based on His own character.  It is not arbitrary.  Noah is said to be a righteous man.  Abraham is said to be an obedient and faithful man.  God’s choice is not irrational or unreasonable.  But it is God’s choice, not the man’s choice.  God grants promises that go beyond Noah and beyond Abraham, but they are granted in keeping with His character and His love.

Jeremiah is another example.  In Jeremiah 1:5, God tells Jeremiah that even before he was formed in the womb, God knew him and had appointed him as a prophet.  This is election being taught in the Old Testament.

There are many New Testament examples as well.  Luke 1:13-17 tells of an angel speaking to Zechariah about his yet to be conceived son John, who we call John the Baptist.  God speaks with certainty about John and what he will do and how people will respond to him.  God already knows John, just as He knew Jeremiah, and calls John to service before he is even conceived.  Luke also writes in Acts 13:48 that it was all those who were appointed to eternal life that believed the gospel message about Jesus.

Before going to Gethsemane, on the night of the Last Supper, Jesus taught his disciples in John 15:16 that they did not choose Him, but He chose them, and they were chosen to bear fruit for Him.  Jesus’ choosing was not arbitrary and it was not apart from His set purpose.

In Galatians 1:13-17, the Apostle Paul says that he began his life as an active enemy of God, yet still he teaches that God chose him before he was born and showed him grace.  He was chosen to be God’s messenger to Gentile nations.  God’s choice of Paul was not arbitrary, but was a choice with purpose.

Paul teaches again in Ephesians 1:3-14 that God chose us before the foundation of the world and we are predestined according to God’s plan.  2 Thessalonians 2:13 again teaches that God chose us to be saved and sanctified through the Holy Spirit.

If God has worked out everything in history and has set for us a certain future, has he not also worked out our salvation?  Could God do one without the other?

This is part 1 of the fourth lesson in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush in 1979 so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1 – part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

The post Basic Theology: Redemption Part 1 – Election – DTS027 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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http://lrbush.com/redemption-part-1-election/feed/ 0 Love is the characteristic motive for God's actions. It was because God so loved the world that He sent his only Son. God demonstrated His love while we were still His enemies. So God's motive in election is love. He chooses us because He loves us. The doctrine of redemption has two parts: the doctrine of election and the doctrine of the atonement.  This first part will deal with what the Bible teaches about the doctrine of election.
Love is the characteristic motive for God’s actions.  It was because God so loved the world that He sent his only Son.  In 1 John 4:9-12, John tells us that it was because God loved us that he sent Jesus to provide our atonement, not because we loved Him.  The Apostle Paul writes something similar in Romans 5:6-11.  God acted and demonstrated His love for us by sending Jesus Christ while we were still His enemies.
Therefore, God’s motive in election is love.  He chooses us because He loves us.  This motive is characteristic of God as He is understood in all three manifestations of the Trinity.  1 John 3:1 says that the Father has shown us His love in making us His children.  Galatians 2:20 says that it was Jesus who showed His love for us in giving Himself up for us.  Romans 5:5 teaches that God’s love is poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit.
God chose and predestined us in love to be adopted as His children.  In Ephesians 1:4-5, the phrase “in love” is sometimes translated as belonging with the earlier sentence in verse 4 and sometimes as introducing the words in verse 5, but either way, whether the verses teach we were chosen in love or predestined in love, we can know that God acted for our redemption in this manner out of His love.
Election is God’s sovereign choice in eternity past to bring some lost men to salvation.  His choosing is not arbitrary, but is based in His love.  It seems arbitrary to us because it is not based on human merit.  It is not just good people, wealthy people, educated people, or any other reason we can understand.  But God’s choice is based on His wisdom, His righteousness, and His love.  Romans 8:28-37 reveals that we are called according to His purpose, not according to capriciousness or random draw.  In love He did these things, therefore nothing can separate us from Him and no one can bring any charge against us.  Election is clearly taught in scripture, but it is not arbitrary.
Many examples of Old Testament illustration of God’s sovereign choosing can be found.  In Genesis 6 we see that God’s heart was grieved over the sin of mankind and He was ready to destroy everyone and everything, but Noah found favor with God.  Verse 9 says that Noah was blameless among the people, but scripture teaches that our righteousness is like filthy rags before God.  Yet God fines Noah righteous in his generation and shows him grace and mercy.
In Genesis 22:17-18,]]>
L. Russ Bush III clean 31:53
Basic Theology: God The Redeemer Part 2 – DTS026 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/god-the-redeemer-part-2/ http://lrbush.com/god-the-redeemer-part-2/#respond Sat, 11 Jan 2014 01:02:56 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=320 The Bible is God’s written word that affirms that He is creator and that He acts with a purpose.  God made mankind in His image.  What was His purpose in creating us?  Redemption.  His purpose was to make us holy and righteous.  Even though man sinned, God accomplished His purpose …

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150The Bible is God’s written word that affirms that He is creator and that He acts with a purpose.  God made mankind in His image.  What was His purpose in creating us?  Redemption.  His purpose was to make us holy and righteous.  Even though man sinned, God accomplished His purpose through Jesus Christ.

Salvation is the theme of the Bible.  The New Testament builds the doctrine of salvation and redemption on God’s creation of all mankind from one man and one woman.  All come from Adam, and all are saved through Christ.  Acts 17:26-27 tell us that all of mankind are one people and that all are worth saving.

Sin is the supreme choice of self over God.  Every human with a moral conscience will and does sin. 1 Kings 8:46-52 reminds us that people have always sinned and will always need salvation.  Psalms 143 is one of David’s reminders that no one is righteous and it is from God that we seek salvation.  Ecclesiastes 7:20, Romans 3, and 1 John 1:8-10 are other places in scripture that God teaches this fact.

God has accomplished salvation for us in Jesus Christ.  He has redeemed us.  He has done it for us.  We do not, and cannot, do it on our own.  The famous verse John 3:16 tells us that God has done the work for us.  We only have to trust and believe. He has paid the penalty and offered His life on our behalf.  In John 12:44-50, Jesus tells us that he came to save the world.  When he came the first time, He did not come to judge and determine who would be condemned.  This will be what happens when He comes again.  Jesus first came to save, and it is only by His name that we are saved (Acts 4:11-12).

Salvation is not a work that we do, but is something that God has accomplished for us.  Ephesians 2:8-9 teach that salvation is a gift of God’s grace that is given through faith.  Even faith is a gift and not conjured up any time we want it.  Our willingness to believe is a gift so that the redemption we receive through the blood of Christ is given out of the riches of His grace.  God provided His own sacrifice and His own resurrection.

Jesus went to each of His disciples and called them.  They did not come to Jesus on their own.  Jesus taught this himself.  Jesus confronted them, and all they did was respond.  In John 6:63-65, Jesus teaches that no one can come to him unless the Father first calls them.

Our salvation is not our holding onto God, but instead is God holding onto us.  Because no one is greater than God, John 10:28-30 assures us that no one is able to take us away from God.  If you accept God’s gift then no one and no thing can separate you from Him.  He chooses us, so our salvation doesn’t rely on anyone but Him.

God has promised us salvation through His gift of grace, and if God has promised it, it will happen.  The gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.  God does not call you and change His mind.  Philippians 1:6 tells us that God will complete the good work He starts in us.  2 Thessalonians 3:3 and 2 Timothy 1:12 both emphasize God’s faithfulness to those who believe in Him.  God is able to carry out His promises to us.  It is not on our shoulders to accomplish our salvation.  The perseverance of the saints is not our effort holding onto God, but God’s effort holding us until the end.

We are told that we are to persevere through struggles and to do good works and not stop these things.  But this is not to build a case for our salvation.  It is for our sanctification and relationship with God.  The gift of salvation is God’s gift that is promised.  Revelation 3:10 may have varying interpretations, but all are consistent in teaching that God will protect us and keep us.  All those whom God calls and truly respond by accepting the gift of grace are kept by God’s power.  Jesus will not lose those who come to him.

Who is this Jesus?  He is God the Redeemer.  He is God Himself in the flesh.  He is God who became man without losing any of His deity.  This is where all people stumble.  They do not believe in the infallibility and deity of Jesus.

What do you think of Jesus?  Was He just a good man?  Then the Gospels are unbelievable.  Is He God?  Then what should surprise us about stories of a virgin birth and miracles?

Jesus is the word of God become flesh.  The baby born in Bethlehem was God becoming a man.  He humbled Himself and took the form of a servant.  He does not lose deity, but gains incarnation.  God made man and experienced life as a man.  He came not as a ruling king, but as a servant and taught that the greatest among men would be a servant.  He was obedient unto death, even death on a cross.  This God did not put in His time and then retire peacefully, but gave Himself up to crucifixion.  Therefore He is exalted above all others.  Jesus is Lord.

Philippians 2:5-11
Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

This is part 2 of the third lesson in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush in 1979 so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1 – part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

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http://lrbush.com/god-the-redeemer-part-2/feed/ 0 Our salvation is not our holding onto God, but instead is God holding onto us. Because no one is greater than God, no one is able to take us away from God. If you accept God's gift then no one and no thing can separate you from Him. The Bible is God’s written word that affirms that He is creator and that He acts with a purpose.  God made mankind in His image.  What was His purpose in creating us?  Redemption.  His purpose was to make us holy and righteous.  Even though man sinned, God accomplished His purpose through Jesus Christ.
Salvation is the theme of the Bible.  The New Testament builds the doctrine of salvation and redemption on God’s creation of all mankind from one man and one woman.  All come from Adam, and all are saved through Christ.  Acts 17:26-27 tell us that all of mankind are one people and that all are worth saving.
Sin is the supreme choice of self over God.  Every human with a moral conscience will and does sin. 1 Kings 8:46-52 reminds us that people have always sinned and will always need salvation.  Psalms 143 is one of David’s reminders that no one is righteous and it is from God that we seek salvation.  Ecclesiastes 7:20, Romans 3, and 1 John 1:8-10 are other places in scripture that God teaches this fact.
God has accomplished salvation for us in Jesus Christ.  He has redeemed us.  He has done it for us.  We do not, and cannot, do it on our own.  The famous verse John 3:16 tells us that God has done the work for us.  We only have to trust and believe. He has paid the penalty and offered His life on our behalf.  In John 12:44-50, Jesus tells us that he came to save the world.  When he came the first time, He did not come to judge and determine who would be condemned.  This will be what happens when He comes again.  Jesus first came to save, and it is only by His name that we are saved (Acts 4:11-12).
Salvation is not a work that we do, but is something that God has accomplished for us.  Ephesians 2:8-9 teach that salvation is a gift of God’s grace that is given through faith.  Even faith is a gift and not conjured up any time we want it.  Our willingness to believe is a gift so that the redemption we receive through the blood of Christ is given out of the riches of His grace.  God provided His own sacrifice and His own resurrection.
Jesus went to each of His disciples and called them.  They did not come to Jesus on their own.  Jesus taught this himself.  Jesus confronted them, and all they did was respond.  In John 6:63-65, Jesus teaches that no one can come to him unless the Father first calls them.
Our salvation is not our holding onto God, but instead is God holding onto us.  Because no one is greater than God,]]>
L. Russ Bush III clean 31:42
Basic Theology: God The Redeemer Part 1 – DTS025 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/god-the-redeemer-part-1/ http://lrbush.com/god-the-redeemer-part-1/#respond Fri, 03 Jan 2014 08:00:09 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=310 Scripture is a revelation, to us from God, of God’s truth and God’s character.  He told us how to live and how to make moral decisions.  This doctrine of scripture underlies all other doctrines.  If we believe scripture, we have a foundation on which to build a theology that is …

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150Scripture is a revelation, to us from God, of God’s truth and God’s character.  He told us how to live and how to make moral decisions.  This doctrine of scripture underlies all other doctrines.  If we believe scripture, we have a foundation on which to build a theology that is true to God Himself.

The first thing we read in the Bible is that God is creator.  God is the creator and the universe is upheld by His power.  God is the source of reality.  Everything that is real is due to God’s creative power, whether it is a throne, a dominion, or energy itself.  If that is not true, then the Bible is false from the beginning.

The Bible is God’s truthful, infallible, and inerrant word.  Inerrant means that it does not teach incorrectly.  If we understand it correctly, then we will have truth–God’s word to us.  It will not be false or misleading.  The Holy Spirit is responsible for what the Bible teaches.  It is a divine revelation.

The first thing it teaches is that God is creator.  Science observes what is here, but does not observe origins, and it cannot do so without rational extrapolations from what we observe now.  The only way to know how something is created is for God to tell us He did it.  Otherwise, we could not know and would assume that things are now as they have always been.  True science grew out of a Christian context: the world can be understood because it was created by a rational, orderly, and purposeful God, and it is worth studying.  Purpose and meaning are essential ideas in the biblical presentation of God.

Next, the Bible teaches that mankind is God’s creation, made with moral abilities.  Mankind is the crown of creation, made in His image and given dominion over all living things.  We are also taught that God always acts with a purpose.  Colossians 1:25-20 and Revelation 4:9-11 both tell us that all things were created by and for God.

If these things are true, then it is true that God has always been concerned with salvation and redemption.  Ephesians 1:3-14 says that He chose us before the foundation of the world and planned for our redemption through Jesus from the very beginning.  In Ephesians 3:7-12, Paul tells us that it was God’s eternal purpose for the gospel of Jesus Christ to be made known through the church.  From the moment of our creation, God was planning for our salvation.

The whole purpose, meaning, and theme of the Bible is salvation.  God’s word to us, the Bible, says that He created with a purpose in mind, and that purpose included the forgiveness of our sins through the blood of Christ.  God wants to save us, and He is able to do it through Jesus.

The decent of all mankind from a single pair, Adam and Eve, is part of that plan.  God tells us the origin of mankind in Genesis 1:27-28 and Genesis 2:18-23.  Adam was created out of the ground and given life by God, then Eve was created out of Adam.  These were not monkeys that decided to set up housekeeping, or random anthropoids that God decided to name.  God made this pair in a special act of creation.  Both Adam and Eve came from the same act of creation.

This is important because the origin of mankind is the foundation of the doctrine of sin and the doctrine of salvation.  Romans 5:12-21 and 1 Corinthians 15:20-22 reveal that all mankind was affected by the sin of Adam.  This is the case because all of mankind came from Adam and Eve.  This is just as important for the doctrine of salvation.  Just as the sin of one man can affect all of us, the sacrifice of the one perfect man can affect all of us.  Sin and death came from one man, so life also comes from one man.

All of mankind is one race.  We have different tribes and nations, but we are all one people.  We are all made in His image and all worth saving.

This is part 1 of the third lesson in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

The post Basic Theology: God The Redeemer Part 1 – DTS025 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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http://lrbush.com/god-the-redeemer-part-1/feed/ 0 The whole purpose and meaning of the Bible is salvation. The Bible says that God created with a purpose, and that purpose included the forgiveness of sins through the blood of Christ. God wants to save us, and He is able to do it through Jesus. Scripture is a revelation, to us from God, of God’s truth and God’s character.  He told us how to live and how to make moral decisions.  This doctrine of scripture underlies all other doctrines.  If we believe scripture, we have a foundation on which to build a theology that is true to God Himself.
The first thing we read in the Bible is that God is creator.  God is the creator and the universe is upheld by His power.  God is the source of reality.  Everything that is real is due to God’s creative power, whether it is a throne, a dominion, or energy itself.  If that is not true, then the Bible is false from the beginning.
The Bible is God’s truthful, infallible, and inerrant word.  Inerrant means that it does not teach incorrectly.  If we understand it correctly, then we will have truth–God’s word to us.  It will not be false or misleading.  The Holy Spirit is responsible for what the Bible teaches.  It is a divine revelation.
The first thing it teaches is that God is creator.  Science observes what is here, but does not observe origins, and it cannot do so without rational extrapolations from what we observe now.  The only way to know how something is created is for God to tell us He did it.  Otherwise, we could not know and would assume that things are now as they have always been.  True science grew out of a Christian context: the world can be understood because it was created by a rational, orderly, and purposeful God, and it is worth studying.  Purpose and meaning are essential ideas in the biblical presentation of God.
Next, the Bible teaches that mankind is God’s creation, made with moral abilities.  Mankind is the crown of creation, made in His image and given dominion over all living things.  We are also taught that God always acts with a purpose.  Colossians 1:25-20 and Revelation 4:9-11 both tell us that all things were created by and for God.
If these things are true, then it is true that God has always been concerned with salvation and redemption.  Ephesians 1:3-14 says that He chose us before the foundation of the world and planned for our redemption through Jesus from the very beginning.  In Ephesians 3:7-12, Paul tells us that it was God’s eternal purpose for the gospel of Jesus Christ to be made known through the church.  From the moment of our creation, God was planning for our salvation.
The whole purpose, meaning, and theme of the Bible is salvation.  God’s word to us, the Bible, says that He created with a purpose in mind, and that purpose included the forgiveness of our sins through the blood of Christ.  God wants to save us, and He is able to do it through Jesus.
The decent of all mankind from a single pair, Adam and Eve, is part of that plan.  God tells us the origin of mankind in Genesis 1:27-28 and Genesis 2:18-23.  Adam was created out of the ground and given life by God, then Eve was created out of Adam.  These were not monkeys that decided to set up housekeeping, or random anthropoids that God decided to name.  God made this pair in a special act of creation.]]>
L. Russ Bush III clean 31:50
Basic Theology: God The Creator Part 2 – DTS024 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/god-the-creator-part-2/ http://lrbush.com/god-the-creator-part-2/#respond Fri, 27 Dec 2013 08:00:55 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=305 Romans 1:20 tells us that ever since the creation of the world, God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly perceived in the things that were made. So what is God like? First, God is able to do all that He wills to do. …

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150Romans 1:20 tells us that ever since the creation of the world, God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly perceived in the things that were made.

So what is God like?

First, God is able to do all that He wills to do.  Nothing is too hard for God, and He upholds all things by the word of His power.  Both the Old and New Testaments speak of God’s almighty power and that all things are possible for Him.  Genesis 17 and 18, Isaiah 44, Matthew 19:23-26, Ephesians 1-3, Hebrews 1.

God is able to do all He wills to do because He is all powerful, but His character determines how that power is used.  God’s power is used according to His character, self-control, and self-restraint.  We do not force God’s hand.  He doesn’t do everything we ask Him to do or everything He can do.  He does what He chooses based on His non-contradictory nature.  Numbers 23, Psalm 115, Proverbs 16:32, Hebrews 6:13-20.

God’s power is controlled by His character.  God established a created order that is in keeping with His character.  God does not and will not change the past.  God does change the present and He forgives.  If we want to see God’s power in our lives, we need to pray for what is in His character, not for things that are contradictory.

God is not only all powerful, but He is all knowing.  God knows all things.  His knowledge is full and complete.  God knows all of our ifs, ands, and buts.  God knows all about us, inside and out.  God does not merely fact gather.  He knows because this is His creation, and He knows the best way to accomplish His purpose.  Psalm 147, Isaiah 46, Matthew 10:26-32, Matthew 16:5-9, Acts 2:22-25, Acts 15:6-11, Romans 11:33-35.

Also, God is all present.  God is in a place, but is not limited to a place.  There is no place we can go where God is not.  We cannot run from Him, nor escape Him.  Genesis 28:10-17, Psalm 139, Jeremiah 23:23-24, Acts 17:22-31.

Jesus would tell the woman at the well that the place is not the most important thing for connecting with God, but that we connect with Him in spirit and truth.  We can always pray and expect God to hear us because God is always present.

This is part 2 of the second lesson in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1 – part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

The post Basic Theology: God The Creator Part 2 – DTS024 appeared first on LRBush.com.

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http://lrbush.com/god-the-creator-part-2/feed/ 0 Romans 1:20 tells us that since the creation of the world, God's invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly perceived in the things that were made. What is God like? God is all powerful, all knowing, and all present. Romans 1:20 tells us that ever since the creation of the world, God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly perceived in the things that were made.
So what is God like?
First, God is able to do all that He wills to do.  Nothing is too hard for God, and He upholds all things by the word of His power.  Both the Old and New Testaments speak of God’s almighty power and that all things are possible for Him.  Genesis 17 and 18, Isaiah 44, Matthew 19:23-26, Ephesians 1-3, Hebrews 1.
God is able to do all He wills to do because He is all powerful, but His character determines how that power is used.  God’s power is used according to His character, self-control, and self-restraint.  We do not force God’s hand.  He doesn’t do everything we ask Him to do or everything He can do.  He does what He chooses based on His non-contradictory nature.  Numbers 23, Psalm 115, Proverbs 16:32, Hebrews 6:13-20.
God’s power is controlled by His character.  God established a created order that is in keeping with His character.  God does not and will not change the past.  God does change the present and He forgives.  If we want to see God’s power in our lives, we need to pray for what is in His character, not for things that are contradictory.
God is not only all powerful, but He is all knowing.  God knows all things.  His knowledge is full and complete.  God knows all of our ifs, ands, and buts.  God knows all about us, inside and out.  God does not merely fact gather.  He knows because this is His creation, and He knows the best way to accomplish His purpose.  Psalm 147, Isaiah 46, Matthew 10:26-32, Matthew 16:5-9, Acts 2:22-25, Acts 15:6-11, Romans 11:33-35.
Also, God is all present.  God is in a place,]]>
L. Russ Bush III clean 32:04
Basic Theology: God the Creator Part 1 – DTS023 - Delivered To The Saints: Truth, Christianity, Apologetics http://lrbush.com/god-the-creator-part1/ http://lrbush.com/god-the-creator-part1/#respond Fri, 20 Dec 2013 08:00:53 +0000 http://lrbush.com/?p=297 The Bible begins with God creating the heavens and the earth – the entire universe.  God existed before the creation of the universe, but beyond that fact, the Bible does not address anything before God’s act of creation.  It does not offer any formal proof for God’s existence.  What scripture …

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LRBush3_PodArt_small150The Bible begins with God creating the heavens and the earth – the entire universe.  God existed before the creation of the universe, but beyond that fact, the Bible does not address anything before God’s act of creation.  It does not offer any formal proof for God’s existence.  What scripture does give is a reason to believe in God’s existence.  The fact that we exist and this world exists is given as evidence that God exists.

This type of evidence for God, the existence of human beings and the world, is organized in several ways.  Two of these are the cosmological argument and the teleological argument.

The cosmological argument can be summarized as one of cause and effect.  Anything that happens is caused by something else.  You can’t have an infinite line of cause and effect because, practically, that would mean nothing would actually ever get started.  But even the mainstream scientific theories that explain observations of the universe suggest there must have been a finite beginning to everything.

The Bible says that beginning was not a random accident, but the purposeful action of a rational God.  Outside of religious thought, the world wants to accept a beginning by random chance while simultaneously seeking meaning and purpose to life.  Scripture affirms, first of all things, that the universe has a meaningful and purposeful beginning.  Not only a purposeful beginning, but a meaningful destiny.  The world did not begin by accident and it will not end by accident, either.

The doctrine of God as Creator is behind the basic theme of all scripture: This world is here by God’s deliberate intention, He sent Jesus into this world to die for our sins according to His own purpose and foreknowledge, and this world will come to a conclusion that God will bring about.

Cosmological arguments do have some weaknesses, but the Bible gives this argument as a reason to believe.  Perhaps it cannot be given with complete philosophical precision, but neither can it be disproved.  The existence of alternative ideas is not the same thing as disproving an idea.

The teleological argument can be summarized as one of purpose and design in the world.  Teleological arguments are based on recognizable order, purpose, and pattern in the midst of a decaying world.  The universe is not random.  It has regular and predictable behavior, and it is finely tuned to support the life found on Earth.

Teleological arguments have objections that point out elements in the world that do seem random and the problem of evil.  However, scripture provides explanations for what we observe without losing purpose and meaning in life.  What was originally created was called very good.  Then sin came to the world through Adam, and both human beings and creation itself were forced to suffer under a curse.  What was created good now has elements of decay and chaos and destruction.

These rational proofs do not prove God’s existence, but they are evidences that support what the Bible teaches.  What is observed in the universe and in human behavior is explained in scripture.  Is it proof?  Maybe not, but it is not foolish to believe and neither is it irrational.  There are reasons to believe that are found in the nature of creation.

God is the Creator, and in being so gives us evidence of His existence.

This is part 1 of the second lesson in a twelve part series on Basic Theology.  Each part is broken into two half-hour sections.  These recordings are part of a series called Theologoumenon.  They were recorded by Dr. Bush so that people in the churches, not just in seminary classrooms, could have easy access to lessons in basic theology.
1. The Word of God (part 1 – part 2)
2. God the Creator (part 1part 2)
3. God the Redeemer (part 1part 2)
4. Redemption (part 1part 2)
5. The Holy Spirit and His Gifts (part 1part 2)
6. The Trinity (part 1part 2)
7. The Doctrine of Sin Part 1 (part 1 – part 2)
8. The Doctrine of Sin Part 2 (part 1 – part 2)
9. Salvation (part 1 – part 2)
10. Doctrine of the Church (part 1 – part 2)
11. Last Things (part 1 – part 2)
12. How to Recognize Heresy (part 1 – part 2)

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http://lrbush.com/god-the-creator-part1/feed/ 0 The Bible begins with God creating the entire universe, but it does not offer any formal proof for God's existence. What scripture does give is a reason to believe in God's existence. The fact that we exist and this world exists is reason to believe. The Bible begins with God creating the heavens and the earth – the entire universe.  God existed before the creation of the universe, but beyond that fact, the Bible does not address anything before God’s act of creation.  It does not offer any formal proof for God’s existence.  What scripture does give is a reason to believe in God’s existence.  The fact that we exist and this world exists is given as evidence that God exists.
This type of evidence for God, the existence of human beings and the world, is organized in several ways.  Two of these are the cosmological argument and the teleological argument.
The cosmological argument can be summarized as one of cause and effect.  Anything that happens is caused by something else.  You can’t have an infinite line of cause and effect because, practically, that would mean nothing would actually ever get started.  But even the mainstream scientific theories that explain observations of the universe suggest there must have been a finite beginning to everything.
The Bible says that beginning was not a random accident, but the purposeful action of a rational God.  Outside of religious thought, the world wants to accept a beginning by random chance while simultaneously seeking meaning and purpose to life.  Scripture affirms, first of all things, that the universe has a meaningful and purposeful beginning.  Not only a purposeful beginning, but a meaningful destiny.  The world did not begin by accident and it will not end by accident, either.
The doctrine of God as Creator is behind the basic theme of all scripture: This world is here by God’s deliberate intention, He sent Jesus into this world to die for our sins according to His own purpose and foreknowledge, and this world will come to a conclusion that God will bring about.
Cosmological arguments do have some weaknesses, but the Bible gives this argument as a reason to believe.  Perhaps it cannot be given with complete philosophical precision, but neither can it be disproved.  The existence of alternative ideas is not the same thing as disproving an idea.
The teleological argument can be summarized as one of purpose and design in the world.  Teleological arguments are based on recognizable order, purpose, and pattern in the midst of a decaying world.  The universe is not random.  It has regular and predictable behavior, and it is finely tuned to support the life found on Earth.
Teleological arguments have objections that point out elements in the world that do seem random and the problem of evil.  However, scripture provides explanations for what we observe without losing purpose and meaning in life.  What was originally created was called very good.  Then sin came to the world through Adam, and both human beings and creation itself were forced to suffer under a curse.  What was created good now has elements of decay and chaos and destruction.
These rational proofs do not prove God’s existence, but they are evidences that support what the Bible teaches.  What is observed in the universe and in human behavior is explained in scripture.  Is it proof?  Maybe not, but it is not foolish to believe and neither is it irrational.  There are reasons to believe that are found in the nature of creation.
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L. Russ Bush III clean 31:44