Is there hope for those who die from a drug overdose? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of CORE Christianity. Hi, I'm Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. You can also post your question on one of our social media sites, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, and you can email us anytime with your question.
Here's our email address. It's questions at core christianity dot com. First up today, let's go to Tara calling in from Kansas City, Missouri. Tara, what's your question for Pastor Adriel? Thank you, Pastor Adriel. I would like to know what the Bible says regarding organ donation. After we're done, whether we die or whether burial or cremation is preferred or acceptable.
Thank you for that question, Sister. The Bible does not, with regard to something like organ donation, you know, you don't have like a specific Bible verse about that, and also with regard to whether or not cremation is acceptable. You know, the way I typically approach this is saying, this is a matter of Christianity.
This is a matter of religion, liberty, freedom. The Bible does have a high view of the body. You know, sometimes people, Christians, can have this sort of spirit body dichotomy.
You know, it's all about the spiritual life. We're going to die and go to heaven, and our bodies, they don't really matter. But the Bible teaches that the body does matter, that it's a part of who we are, you know, the human person, that one day God is going to raise our bodies, but he's not going to raise our bodies on the basis of the fact that we were cremated or buried with a proper burial, quote unquote. The resurrection and the hope of the resurrection comes from our belief in Jesus Christ. We're united to him by the grace of the Holy Spirit. The same power that raised Jesus from the dead is going to raise up our bodies. We're going to be raised glorified. And so the hope that we have there is not based on how we were buried.
It's based on what we believe in, who we're trusting in now. If an individual decides to be cremated after they die or to be buried, you know, both of those are permissible or okay options for believers in Jesus Christ, and this is a matter of Christian liberty, of Christian freedom. And then with regard to organ donation, I also think that that's a personal choice. I think it's a good thing, a positive thing, a loving thing, perhaps even we could say, you know, in terms of the need, because there is such a need. And oftentimes, you know, donating organs can lead to life for another person, which I think is a good thing. And so that's something to consider. But it's not, again, there's one specific Bible verse that's going to tell you you can do that or you can't do that. You have freedom as you think about these things, resting in your trust in Jesus Christ.
Thank you for giving us a call. And Tara, we also have a free core resource on this topic. It's a core question. Can a Christian be cremated? And you can find that with some great information by going to core Christianity dot com forward slash free downloads. You can pick that up if you have a question about that or anyone you know is wondering about cremation.
So make sure you take advantage of that. This is core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. There is a special group of people we'd like to say thank you to today. We call them our inner core.
Yes. If you are a part of the inner core, thank you very much for your support. The inner core is a group that supports us with a monthly donation of $25 or more. And if you join the inner core, we're happy to send you a copy of the book, Core Christianity, written by Professor Michael Horton, Dr. Michael Horton. We're oftentimes talking about the core doctrines of the Christian faith on this broadcast. We want to unite people around those doctrines, the gospel, who God is, who Jesus is, what Christ has done for us. And we believe firmly that it's those doctrines that help us in our everyday Christian life and our walk with the Lord. And we need to be solid in those doctrines. And so I want to send you a copy of this book for joining the inner core.
And again, thank you to all of our inner core supporters. You can learn more about that by going to corechristianity.com forward slash inner core. And as Adriel said, we'll send you a copy of the book Core Christianity by our founder, Dr. Michael Horton. What a wonderful book that is for you or anyone you know who's maybe questioning what Christianity is really all about. So check it out corechristianity.com forward slash inner core.
Well, we do receive voicemails here at Core Christianity, and here's one that came in from one of our listeners named Robin. I raised my two kids in the church and at 29, one of my children, after rededicating her life to Christ, went around and made amends with the things that she had done wrong. And then my daughter died of an overdose, and I wanted it to be known, awareness about the use of heroin and fentanyl. I want to know, with an addiction, overcoming somebody in that battle that one tries to conquer and try to receive and live and rededicate herself to Christ. Can one still be in heaven?
That's my question. Thank you. Dear Robin, I'm so sorry to hear about your daughter and just that tragedy, the battle with addiction and how serious that is. We are saved by faith in Jesus Christ, and every person who believes in Jesus, who's truly received Christ for salvation continues to struggle with sin. And some, I think, and we've talked about this on the broadcast before, with serious addiction, does that struggle mean that they're not Christians?
No. The Christian life is a battle, is a fight, and there are consequences to sin, but I don't believe that the Lord ever just abandons us in that battle, if you will, or cuts us off. In a situation like this, if your daughter believed in Christ, even if she was in this battle, Jesus is the one who held her and who holds her still. And we have, you have, the hope of the resurrection, the hope of eternal life, not just for yourself, but for all those who are in Christ. I mean, it's what Paul tells the Thessalonians, when a brother or sister in Christ or a family member dies in the Lord, we have sorrow, but not a sorrow that those who have no hope have, because we do have hope through Jesus, through his resurrection, not in our sinless obedience, not in how victoriously we live the Christian life, but in the victor himself, Jesus Christ, who holds on to his people even while they limp along in the Christian life. And so, while I cannot look into the heart of another person and say, oh, I don't have special insight to know who is saved and who isn't, I do know the promise of God's word, and that's that all those who put their trust in Jesus Christ, who call on the name of the Lord, will be saved. And I think that that includes even those who battle with addiction and even who have tragic ends like your daughter, know, sister, that the love of Christ, the grace of Christ, the gospel of Christ is big enough for her if she believed in Jesus. And so, thank you, Robin, for calling us, and may the Lord be with you and comfort you and grant you his peace and his presence. You're listening to Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. If you would like to call us 24 hours a day, we have a voicemail system, and you can leave your message even if you don't listen to the live program. Some of the stations that we're on air this show by tape delay, so later in the day. But feel free to call us anytime, 833-THE-CORE.
That's 1-833-843-2673. Let's go to Dimitri in Springfield, Missouri. Dimitri, what's your question for Pastor Adriel? My question is regarding, you hear this, I've heard that I'm 83 and I never thought about looking this up, but other than telling Moses this, when the Bible, everybody teaches that the Bible, that Job is the oldest verb, excuse me, the oldest book in the Bible, and where is that found in scripture? I'm not trying to stump you, but I can't find that, Pastor.
Hey, Dimitri, thank you for your question. Yeah, oftentimes when people talk about the book of Job, it's part of the wisdom literature in the Old Testament, so this is one of the oldest books. We really don't know how old the book of Job is, but there are some things in the language of the book of Job and just the story that seemed to indicate that it is old. It's one of the older books of the Old Testament. But there's not something in scripture that actually states that. There's some mystery surrounding the book of Job. We don't really know who the author was specifically.
It doesn't have information as far as that's concerned. We rest in the fact that this is a book that was inspired by God. I think of what Peter says in 2 Peter 2, knowing this first of all, verse 20, that no prophecy of scripture comes from someone's own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but they spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. And so God inspired his word, the Old Testament, the book of Job, by the grace of the Holy Spirit.
This was brought about. And there's so much there. One thing I'll just say about the book of Job, because there are a lot of people that are kind of confused about this book, is that I already mentioned it's a part of the wisdom literature. And when you look at the wisdom literature, you have the book of Job, you have the Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes. You kind of have this tension within the wisdom literature that you see in the book of Job, where in the book of Proverbs, oftentimes if you do this, this is going to happen, this sort of cause and effect relationship. But then you read books like the book of Ecclesiastes or the book of Job, where Job is presented to us as a righteous man, and yet these terrible things happen to him in life. It just shows us that wisdom is complex in the Bible, and that life is complex, that we look at situations, tragedies, even in our own lives or what you see in the book of Job, and we require, we need the grace of God's Spirit to grant us wisdom to understand and discern how to respond to each particular situation.
Of course, that's what Job's friends had difficulty with as they sought to minister to him. And so, yeah, old book of the Bible, one that I think is so good and helpful for us to read and to understand with questions related to suffering and also just God's sovereignty and God's providence in the life of His people. And so, Dimitri, God bless you. Keep on pursuing the Lord and growing in the grace of Christ.
Love to hear you. Colleen, 83 years old and studying the Scriptures. Be with you and bless you. Dimitri, thanks so much for listening to CORE Christianity. Pastor Adriel would love to get your email questions as well. You can email us anytime at questions at corechristianity.com. We try to go through our emails each day.
We also receive voicemails, and here's one from a listener named Brian. My question is, what is specifically seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness? Is that for an unsafe person to be seeking His righteousness since Jesus Christ is our righteousness, once He comes into our heart and saves us? Or is there more to it than that? How exactly do we go about seeking first His kingdom and His righteousness?
Thank you very much. Great question. A very practical question that comes in the context of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew chapter 6. Specifically, an exhortation that Jesus gives with regard to anxiety.
He says in verse 25, I just want to read this passage, friends, and just listen to the words of our Lord Jesus here because I think they're so important for us today. Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air. They neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.
Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to His span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, What shall we eat or what shall we drink or what shall we wear? For the Gentiles seek after these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. And I think we can all say amen to that.
Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. But I wanted to read that whole passage because it's that context in which you have this statement where Jesus says, Seek first the kingdom of God. And that's contrasted with what? With seeking after the things of this world, if you will.
You know, being anxious about what you're going to wear, what you're going to eat, you know, how big of a house you live in, that kind of a thing. He says, Look, don't let anxiety, the cares of this world, crowd out the pursuit of God, His kingdom, His righteousness. And so I think seeing that contrast there helps us to define what it means, what Jesus meant when He said to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. It looks like, first and foremost, not being consumed with anxiety about the affairs of our life in terms of pursuing first and foremost the job and making a lot of money and having earthly possessions.
Those are good things. And God knows that we need things to live and to survive. And God will take care of you, Jesus says, but here's what you need to focus on.
Here's what you need to prioritize. It's your relationship with God. It's His kingdom, His righteousness, His goodness, His gospel.
That has to be the focus. I think of the parable of the soils that Jesus gives in the gospels. He talks about the gospel, the seed of the word going out and being planted in various soils. And there was that one soil, if you remember, where the cares of this world, the desires for riches, crowded out the seed of God's word so that it became unfruitful.
And I think that's a problem that we're seeing all around us today, is people prioritizing that, the sort of cares of this world, if you will, over their spiritual life, over their relationship with God. And if you're doing that in your life, I just want to say listen to the words of Jesus here. Seek first my kingdom.
Seek me first. Do you know Christ? Do you have a relationship with Him? Does His righteousness belong to you by faith? That's the priority. That's what we all need to focus on, knowing that God provides for the other things, and that's precisely what Jesus says there in Matthew chapter 6. And so God bless you, brothers.
You seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. You're listening to Core Christianity. Just a reminder that we would love to have you join our inner core, that special group of people who believe so strongly in this program that they support us on a monthly basis.
You can learn more about that by going to corechristianity.com forward slash inner core. Let's go to Stephanie, who's calling in from Nebraska. Stephanie, what's your question for Pastor Adriel?
Good afternoon. Just a wanting opinion or thoughts on the vaccine and or vaccine system being the mark of the beast or the start of? This is something that many, many people are concerned about, Stephanie. Yours is not the first question we've received here on the broadcast about, you know, is the mark of the beast, the COVID-19 vaccine, are people accidentally taking the mark of the beast?
Well, the answer to that is quite simple. The answer to that is no, the vaccine is not the mark of the beast. Of course, that comes from the book of Revelation chapter 13. And there, the mark of the beast is association with identification with the evil one, with idolatry, with this sinful system that rejects the gospel.
It's embracing that. It's being marked by that, if you will. In contrast, the people of God, God's elect, are marked on their foreheads with His name.
It's quite interesting. In chapter 14 of the book of Revelation, verse 1, John says, I looked and behold, on Mount Zion stood the Lamb, with Him 144,000 who had His name and His Father's name written on their foreheads. And so there's this great contrast here. You have those who are marked by the beast on their forehead, identifying with this apostate system, with this false religion, with this idolatry and sensuality. And then you have those who are marked by the Lord, who have His name on them, who belong to Jesus Christ. And so if you're a Christian, if you belong to Jesus, you trust in Him, then I want to say to you, Stephanie, that you've been marked by the name of Jesus, baptized presumably, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, having received by faith the forgiveness of your sins, been sealed with the Holy Spirit. You can't accidentally take the mark of the beast. It's not a COVID-19 vaccine or some other procedure like that. No, it's the rejection of the Gospel, the embracing of this false system of worship described there in Revelation chapter 13.
So if you're anxious about this for yourself because you've perhaps gotten the vaccine and you're just not sure now, I just want to say you don't need to worry about that. You can rest in the fact that you are marked by the Lord Himself and that you belong to Him through faith in Jesus Christ. God bless.
Amen. Stephanie, thanks for your call. Thanks for listening to CORE Christianity. Well, we do receive emails here, and if you have a question for Pastor Adriel, feel free to shoot us an email at questionsatcorechristianity.com.
Here's one from Marilyn. She says, I have trouble talking to people of the world who act like they are completely oblivious to God's presence or His real teachings. How can I learn more about approaching them with the truth, or what chapters can I study? Well, everyone has a sense of God. Theologians who have talked about this is this sense of God that everyone, regardless of what they say, experiences. It's deep in our bones. It's the feeling that you get when you look up at the stars at night and you're just overwhelmed with this reality of the fact that you're tiny, that we're this tiny speck in the universe.
There's something far greater than us out there. It's what Paul talks about in Romans chapter 1. It's what the psalmist talks about in Psalm 19, this idea that the heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows His handiwork day unto day, utter speech.
Night to night reveals knowledge. In Romans chapter 1, Paul makes it absolutely clear that God's invisible attributes, His glory, His power, are clearly perceived in the things that have been created. And so the thing is, people might pretend like they're oblivious, but deep down inside we all have this sense of God.
The issue is not that we pretend, it's that we suppress the truth and unrighteousness. That's what Paul says in Romans chapter 1, that we take this sort of general knowledge, this sense of God that we have, and we suppress that. We turn away from it. Instead of worshiping God the Creator, we choose to worship creation, the work of our own hands, or really for many people today, just ourselves. We worship ourselves. Our God is our belly, as Paul said of some of the false teachers in Philippians chapter 3.
So I think, one, that's a starting point. You can say, look, everyone has this general sense of God. We suppress that sense of God. And so what do we need? We need the proclamation of the gospel. And that's where I think you point people to God's special revelation, what he has revealed in his word, in his law, in scripture, in the gospel.
And so that's, I think, where the conversation always needs to go. Too often I think we can get caught up talking about sort of peripheral things and never get to the gospel. That's not evangelism. You might call that pre-evangelism or something like that, but evangelism is the message of the gospel going out, the proclamation of the gospel, sharing the gospel message that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came to earth to live the perfect life that we could never live because we break God's law every day in thought, word, and in deed, and then in our place to suffer and die on a cross, to bear the judgment, the curse that we deserve, so that we might have a vital relationship with God, so that we might experience his presence and his blessing in our lives.
That's what you want to talk about. And the reality is many people don't understand that. They don't understand the gospel.
They think Christianity is just about keeping rules and doing certain things, to be more spiritual, to be religious. It's about what God has done. It's about the work of Jesus Christ for our salvation. So I would say focus on that in your discussions.
Get to the gospel and help people to see how it's good news, not just for you, but for them and for the whole world as well. God bless. Copyright © 2017 Mooji Media Ltd. All Rights Reserved. No part of this recording may be reproduced
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