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Do I Need the Church to Understand the Bible?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
July 23, 2021 6:30 am

Do I Need the Church to Understand the Bible?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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July 23, 2021 6:30 am

Episode 756 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

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CoreChristianity.com

 

Questions in this Episode

1. Are Christians required to keep Old Testament dietary laws?

2. What does the Bible say about Karma?

3. I understand that scripture is to be understood as the sole source of divine revelation; the only inspired, infallible, final, and authoritative norm of faith and practice. However, I have heard a theologian say that while this is true, scripture is to be interpreted in and by the church. Doesn’t this give the church more authority than scripture alone?

4. Follow up question: if Christians are not required to keep Old Testament dietary laws, are Jews who believe in Jesus required to?

5. Does the Bible say anything about Marxism?

6. What does it mean to be under the law?

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HOW DO CHRISTIANS RELATE TO THE LAW?

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Do I need the church to help me understand the Bible or can I do it alone. That is one of the questions will be answering on today's edition of core Christianity wider and happy Friday. I'm Bill Meyer along with Pastor Israel Sanchez and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life. You can call us right now with your question at this number 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673, as always, you can post your question on one of our social media accounts, Facebook, Instagram, or twitter, you can watch us right now live on YouTube and messages that way course you can always email us your question at questions at core, Christianity.com first up today let's go to Ginger in Gallatin, Tennessee Ginger what your question for Pastor Israel.

My question, I stand in the Old Testament and the new Warren I get totally confused when people continuously a lot of churches believe that we should not eat pork.

But God said in the New Testament, knocking on nine unclean and made a God bless you to honor and love this program. They thank you for that encouragement Ginger yeah I think a lot of people are confused about the application of God's law today so those dietary laws in the Old Testament.

In particular, a part of the ceremonial law. The law that the Hebrews observed it was helping to make them distinct from the pagan nations around them, but of course, under the new covenant. Those laws have been set aside. We don't follow the ceremonial law anymore and one of the passages you reference. There was acts chapter 10 where Peter has a vision given to him from God. Were this this tent. This great big sheet if you will, comes down from heaven with all of these unclean animals on lizards and birds and in that kind of thing appears as I'm really confused by this because he hears the voice of God, and God said to him, rise, Peter kill and eat, and Peter's responses I've never eaten anything unclean. Lord, I'm not gonna do that and he he hears this voice to more times a God speaks to him three times just to confirm it. And then as a results after this he goes and preaches the gospel to a Gentile named Cornelius was welcomed into the church is baptized and so it's a sign of lease or a dividing wall being broken down under the new covenant, and yet still people tried to resurrect those ceremonial laws if you will.

The problem that the church in Galatia had us one of the reasons why the book of Galatians was written. You also have Paul's words in Colossians chapter 2 that again make make this absolutely clear for us. Under the new covenant is okay to eat pork. Colossians chapter 2 verse 16 therefore let no one pass judgment on you and questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath. These are a shadow of the things to come, but the substance belongs to Christ.

And so you know I tried to Ginger and concerned about this sort of misapplication misunderstanding of God's lot so important for us to stick to the Scriptures and and when we do I think it's very clear that under the new covenant bacon is okay and aren't glad for that. I certainly am so thanks for your call. No drill. The larger issue here is often is not just foods. It's so a lot of Old Testament laws that some churches are trying to you know get their congregants to follow and and saying basically that these Old Testament ceramic ceremonial laws still apply today. Why is that happening so much in our country right now yeah well I think it just we we definitely see a lot of biblical illiteracy out there and I think that's part of the problem. That's one of the reasons why this broadcast exists only asked me the other day you don't answering questions everyday about the fate what what do you think are some of the biggest problems key problems in the church today questions that Christians have and I said you know, one of the things it comes up over and over again is just is just this bill. The application of God's law to the life of the Christian how do we understand those Old Testament ceremonial laws that the civil laws even what what sense do those kinds of things apply today and because there's a lot of confusion about that we we we can get God's law wrong we can we can misunderstand and again that was a problem that that the church in Galatia had and so we we should expect to see that kind of problem even today this is core Christianity with Pastor Israel Sanchez would love to hear from you. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life number is 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673 let's go to Debbie in Lincoln Nebraska. Debbie welcomed the program what your question for Pastor Israel. Thank you very much for taking my call. I called it before and you guys are wonderful. The lesson sale. My question is, I've heard people both ways.

Talk about karma, they say they don't believe in karma. Some people a lot of people believe in karma what what you say about it and what if the Bible is there anything in the Bible about, karma. Thank you for for that question. Well if if the ideas this is sort of general principle that you know you get what you put in on the Bible does talk about that in particular in the wisdom literature in places like the book of Proverbs, you know you do sort of get over and over again. This sense of if you do if you do the right thing no good things will happen. There is there's a there's a practical result and so I think that there is biblical wisdom that that we can bring into play. I wouldn't call that necessarily karma I know that there is also some other things that are associated with karma in terms of religious belief. You also have the words of the apostle Paul in Galatians chapter 6 verse seven he says don't be deceived, God is not mocked, for whatever one sows that will he also reap.

For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And I again I would necessarily call that my just call this biblical principle of you reap what you sow and then we think about the gospel insensitive to the gospel is totally opposite to this sort of idea of karma because in the gospel Debbie God gives us what we didn't turn but we didn't deserve it. I think about what the apostle Paul says in Romans chapter 4 verse five to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly's faith is counted as righteousness. Just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works. Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin. The karma is actually not really that great news it's you know if you if you do good, you'll get good that kind of a thing obey the law and you'll be fine. But that's not the gospel. The gospel is, we failed we've sinned, and God solely on the basis of what Christ is done and because of his great mercy extends his forgiveness to us freely so that we might love and follow him.

That's not karma that's the gospel and so appreciate your question and always good to hear from you.

Debbie is in the great to celebrate God's unmerited favor his mercy and grace would be destroyed without it. Bill the home apart from the grace of God, so that would praise God for that.

This is core Christianity with Pastor Israel Sanchez. If you're a parents or grandparents you may have some concerns about your kids staying in the church and following Christ as they get older.

While we have a free resource on that topic that would like to offer you today yeah I mean as a parent I know. First and foremost that we rely on the grace of God in the work of the Holy Spirit in our own lives and in the lives of our children but God does call us to be proactive in teaching the faith. If you will to our children. It's important that we take this seriously and we have a resource over core, Christianity.com called five ways to help your kids keep the faith.

It's free for you when you sign up for a weekly newsletter really want to partner with you in this because we know it so important. So head over to core Christianity.com/offers to download five ways to help your kids keep the faith.

That's core Christianity.com/offers for that free download. You can also call us for that, or any of our resources at 833-843-2673. That's 833. The core one of the ways you can ask us a question is by emailing us. Our email addresses questions at core, Christianity.com here's an email we received from one of our listeners named Angie she says I understand that Scripture is to be understood as the sole source of divine revelation. The only inspired infallible, final, and authoritative norm of faith and practice. However, I have heard theologians say that while this is true Scripture is to be interpreted in and by the church doesn't get doesn't this give the church more authority than Scripture alone. Angie, thank you so much for that email. This is a very important question, one that often comes up in conversations between Roman Catholics and Protestant Christians that the question of authority and the question of the relationship between the Bible and the church and I does the church give the Bible its authority as it worries it over the Bible in terms of you know it it's my particular churches interpretation that you need to adhere to this of this is a really important question. The first thing I'll say is were never supposed to do as Christians so to live this life where it's just me and my Bible alone in the closet. I think too many Christians live that way that they don't see the necessity of the church for growing in grace and growing in our understanding of the Scriptures were sort of reading the Bible in isolation on our own. Having our own personal you know experience with Jesus and the fact of the matter is you know we we ought to have a personal relationship with Jesus but not a private relationship with Jesus in the sense that that it separated from her severed from the church because you can get into all sorts of trouble in that way. The scriptures are complex and we do need to read them in the context of the community of faith so that we might grow into a deeper understanding of who Jesus is and what the apostles taught. I think of this wonderful scene she was reading this recently. My own personal devotions in acts chapter 8, where Philip has an encounter with this Ethiopian eunuch who is who is reading the book of Isaiah, and he's trying to understand the book of Isaiah. Philip ran over to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked him do you understand what you are reading, and he said how can I unless someone guides me and he invited Philip to come up and sit with him in the past descriptor that he was reading was in the and then unity of this quote quotation from Isaiah focus on the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ.

But again, right there.

The importance of growing together in being brought into a deeper understanding of the Scriptures through the church and so that's the first thing else that we need to be studying the Scriptures in the context of the local church under the ministry of the word where there's a pastor who's been called and and is qualified to teach the Scriptures because he's been trained in the Scriptures that does not mean that the church has authority over the Scriptures.

The Scriptures are as you say Angie of the primary and final authority that the job of the churches we sometimes cite ministerial were submitted to the word of God together were all under the word of God and ministering that word the authorities in the word, not in the church, not in an individual pastor non-someone like the Pope first and foremost it's in the word, and that's the primary main authority and so very important that we understand those distinctions that we tweet. We value the church for what it is. The place we continue to grow in the faith that we recognize that the church doesn't have an authority above the word it's submitted to the word. Thank you for your question federal as fallen human beings. Is it also possible that we can misinterpret Scripture get along. Yes, Bill, we definitely can and I think that's why it's important to have the sort of safeguard of the church to have others around us and I I've seen this happen again and again over and over and and and it's especially prevalent in those contexts where you have one individual was reading the Bible on their own sort of in the closet.

Apart from the community of faith, the history of the church if you will. That's what we really get into trouble and that's why we stress over and over again on this on this broadcast look. It's it's great to be in the word study the Scriptures with all your heart, don't you in isolation on your own. We need each other so I meant this is core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez. Let's go to Bill calling in from Southern Illinois Bill what your question for pastor.

Israel, my question is simply been doing some reading and listening to different people talk about what happens when we die andspecifically to our soul or spirit and be interesting.

Yeah, the souls of believers are at their deaths announcing believers here there there made perfect in holiness and they immediately pass on into glory. Their bodies are left in the ground waiting for the resurrection of the dead, with the sole of of the believer when we die again what were made perfect in holiness. You see this in places like the book of Hebrews in Hebrews chapter 12, the author, the Hebrews has a vision of the people of God worshiping around the throne of God. The saints who had been perfected in holiness that's out that's out there. There referred to. You also see visions like this in the book of Revelation. So there. Sometimes there will get will get the question Bill about this idea of soul sleep. You know when when I die as a Christian does that mean I'm just gonna be like you taking this really long nap until the resurrection of the dead are knocking to be conscious know that's not the Bible teaches in places like second Corinthians 5 in Philippians chapter 1, even Jesus's words to the thief on the cross seems very clear that when we die as Christians were immediately in the presence of the Lord to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord, and there is great joy there sin is done away and we get to enjoy God's presence. So thank you for that question Bill good one.

This is core Christianity and let's go to Dennis who's in Beatrice Nebraska, Dennis, what was your question for pastor Israel were mentioned earlier about restrictions church that some churches and arbitrator. Your insight on that question.

I have, is there a difference between the weighted Jewish believers are called to active the way to jump back with regard to some of dishes.

Ceremonial issues are different things like circumcision, like the Passover meal tested their perpetual statute throughout your generations on the side from your builders know there's some forever so is there a difference between the weighted Jewish believers are called to respond and the way Gentile believers are called to respond. Dennis appreciate your your question, following up on when we got a little earlier and in the broadcast. I think I would refer again to that text that I went to in the book of Colossians in Colossians chapter 2 because even even there the apostle Paul brings up the idea of festivals and been what festivals we have had in mind. Will those festivals that were celebrated by the Hebrew people under the old covenant again. He says let no one pass judgment on you questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or Sabbath why these are a shadow of the things to come. That is, even the Passover meal as was observed under the old covenant was a shadow I'd type of something far greater. That would be coming who is our Passover now under the new covenant. Well, the Lord Jesus is in fact the apostle Paul makes it very clear in first Corinthians chapter 5 verse seven. Cleanse out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened.

For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven the leaven of malice and evil but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. So now we have the reality it's not the type that the shadow of the doubt before going back if you will.

Now we have the reality of the unleavened bread of what sincerity and truth in the way in which the church under the new covenant participant participates in the reality. In particular, this holy meal if you will, is by the Lord's supper and of course the apostle Paul's get to talk about that a little bit later in first Corinthians 10 and 11. It's I would say that there is no distinction is not as if the Jewish people today under the new covenant are still called to observe some of those things and Gentiles don't have to. I would say note now were all under the reality of what Christ is done and we get to enjoy that reality and fellowship with each other. That doesn't wheat we can't and should continue to learn from those types and shadows as we study the Old Testament because they said so much light on the redemptive work of our Lord Jesus Christ were not bound to those things anymore.

Thank you for your question. Thanks so much for that federal great clarification.

This is core Christianity by the way we mention this if you are a parent or grandparent. We have a wonderful resource that will be a big help to you as you raise your kids in the faith, it's available right now and it's absolutely free. It's called five ways to help your kids keep the faith. You can find that by going to core Christianity.com/offers to download it again.

That's core Christianity.com/offers Steve and Lawrence, Kansas Steve what your question for pastor. Israel-based debris there, they might want to turn on your radio. But what was your question wasn't thank you for taking my call.

For the Scripture addresses what we're calling socialism and Marxism. Well, is it the change to the thank you for that for that question to me. Of course that the Bible predates a lot of that stuff and yet there are everywhere we look at Israel under the old covenant and the loss. Again, God gave to them as as a civil body if you will look at the church under the new covenant think that there are general principles that we can that we can bring out in and think about in terms of justice in terms of what it looks like to love our neighbors, then an end.

The reality is there are things in the Bible that critique all sorts of different political systems and viewpoints out there. I don't know that there's one that's perfect. Apart from the sort of biblical vision that that were given end so I think it's important for us to read the Scriptures and to look at the times that were in and what it is that people are suggesting or pushing and and to say okay will be. Here are principles that seem in line with Scripture and then here principles that don't seem as though there in line with Scripture that that takes a real, I think close and careful reading of the word of God and then thinking through how to apply it today, but it's sort of you know anachronistic that to think about how or to suggest that the and of the Bible is speaking to our specifically our specific political situation today. Their applications and and think that we can take from from the Old Testament and New Testament in terms of of thinking about our situation today but but the Bible doesn't doesn't mean no particularly say anything about me, know maybe what what were referring to. Today wholesale so we have to be real careful as as were reading the Scriptures. Thank you for your question. This is core Christian is core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez. We have a YouTube question come in from one of our listeners named JR by the way our program is live on YouTube every day at 11:30 AM Pacific time, which translates in 1230 Mountain 130 Central or 230 Eastern time. You can watch Pastor Israel on YouTube and send semesters that way. Here's what JR says. He says in Galatians 516 and 18 it says not to fulfill the lust of the flesh. Verse 18 also mentions but if ye be led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. What does it mean to be under the law as it is a great question. I think another parallel passage that we can go to that would help in defining sort of what it means to be under the law is in the book of Romans. In Romans chapter 7 where it talks about basically being dead to the law now through our Lord Jesus Christ and what he's done for us to be under the law is to be under the laws the sort of works. Covenant called to obey the line and of course Paul in Galatians a little bit earlier. He makes it Apsley clear if were under the law were going to be cursed. That's one of the reasons why he's warning the Galatians they're trying to go back under the law under some of those old covenant ceremonial rules things like circumcision so interesting that we've been talking about this quite a bit on today's on today's broadcast and and Paul in Galatians earlier, he says, look if you do that if you go back under the law, you get circumcised you know that that kind think you are obligated as a religious ritual you're obligated to keep the whole law, and so he says, and in Galatians chapter 3 verse 10 for all who rely on works of the law are under a curse, for it is written, cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the law and do them. Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law of the righteous shall live by faith. The law is not of faith.

Rather, the one who does them shall live by them to be under the laws to go back under that old covenant system for your justification bosses. If you do that you're in big trouble if you're relying on your obedience on the works of law, whether those are veto ceremonial rituals or or even just your own righteous deeds. If you're relying on that to justify you before God's court. You'll be cursed because brothers and sisters each and every one of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Even our best works are tainted. You do something good, something to please the Lord, if you will, and obedience to him and then immediately think, I wonder if anyone was watching. I wonder if this is so true. Even our good deeds are our state.

They still fall short of the does that make him bad messages means we can't be justified on the basis of our good deeds. We need something else we need the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ is just what Paul brings out in places like Galatians and in the book of Romans and so the question is friends.

What are you trusting in are you trusting in your works to please God to justify you before his throne, or are you trusting in his son, the perfect one, Jesus Christ the righteous. If you trusting in Jesus, you can rest knowing that you're forgiven and accepted. Thanks for listening to core Christianity request your copy of today's special offer. Visit us at core, Christianity.com and click on offers and the menu bar or call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 833 when you contact us. Please let us know how you been encouraged by this program and be sure to join us next time. As we explore the truth of God's word together


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