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How Do I Know if My Faith is Genuine?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
April 21, 2022 6:30 am

How Do I Know if My Faith is Genuine?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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April 21, 2022 6:30 am

Episode 950 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

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CoreChristianity.com

Questions in this Episode

1. If Jesus is God, why doesn’t he know the time of his return?

2. How do you know if you really want Jesus and it’s not just your emotions? I am dealing with thoughts saying, “I don’t want to follow Jesus or repent.” Is that my heart or my flesh? Is it me being a sinner and being lost? I don’t see any fruit in my life and feel unstable in my Christian walk. I believe I have a lot of head knowledge but am not sure what to do.

3. Does John 1:1 say that Jesus is God or A god?

4. How do I know if God is answering my prayers?

5. Why does the prophet Ezekiel refer to god as the “Son of Man”?

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Resources

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Core Question – Who Are the Prophets?

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Ottawa know if my faith is genuine. That's just one of the questions will be answering on today's edition of core Christianity hi, I'm Bill Meyer along with Pastor Israel Sanchez.

This is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. We would love to hear from you. Our phone lines will be open for the next 25 minutes or so, here's the number to call its 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673 course you can always post your question on one of our social media sites you can watch a drill right now live in the studio on our YouTube channel and you can send us a message. That way, and of course you can always email us your question at questions at core, Christianity.com burst up today. Here's a voicemail received from one of our callers earlier this week question about the second coming of Christ is is one of the father knows no don't know when he's coming back but is why did he not know when he would return. Thanks.

Yet, thank you for that question and it actually that diversity bring up is one that has been used by those throughout the history the church wanted to deny the divinity of Jesus Christ who taught that Jesus was not God reject the doctrine the Trinity today. People like the Jehovah's Witnesses, for example, in the ancient church there was a group of people known as the Aryans followers an individual named Arius his teaching was that there was a time when the word Jesus was not that he was a created being.

They would say was the first created being, but that he was still a good creature not not in the category of creator and in one of the text that they would go to was Matthew chapter 24 verse 36 where Jesus said but concerning that day and hour no one knows he's talking about the coming of the Lord. No one knows not even the angels of heaven, nor the son but the father only now at first I just want to make up a brief comment about that text. Jesus basically saying don't speculate about the. The wind of my coming and how may people have done that there been books written about you. Here's why Jesus is gonna come in 1988. Or here's why Jesus is going to come after next March or whatever. But Jesus is I don't do that. I made is not even the son Barry in the context of of this discourse that he's giving it so how do we make sense of this, and especially how to make sense of this. If, as we teach. Jesus is God, the Lord well what most people through the history of the church of done and I'm done I'm done with them on this is that if they've gone to the doctrine of the incarnation right that the divine person, one divine person who assumes humanity to himself so that he has two natures now divine in humans with the idea of Jesus in his coming to earth in his humiliation in his office as the Christ is saying that I not even the son knows and there there. Some commentators even said you know it. In his resurrection and ascension. At that point he didn't know, but this is not something that would, I think call into question the doctrine of Christ divinity the doctrine of the Trinity.

The fact that Jesus is the second person of the Godhead that we have to read this and understand it in the light of his coming to earth his humiliation's assumption of humanity, and in so far as the that that he really did those things, he can say what he says here in this passage, and so trusted that clears it up for you and appreciate this this question. God bless this core Christianity with Pastor Israel Sanchez.

We'd love to hear from you if you got a question about the Bible, the Christian life doctrine or theology or maybe about your day-to-day Christian walk and how you live out your faith in today's world. Here's the number to call its 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673. By the way we want to offer you a great resource today to wonderful book that will help you focus on what Jesus has done for us, yet they were offering. The book captivated beholding the mystery of Jesus's death and resurrection by the BDI and yet we lay in our culture we are taught in forms to be like Martha and Martha in the Gospels we busy ourselves with doing lots of spiritual things. We worry about the cultures impact on the church. Everything is screaming for attention. As we scroll through social media. In his book captivated Pastor to Beatty helps us to stop and ask how would our friendship with Jesus and our familiarity with his ways. Be deepened.

If we look long at his nail scarred hands and his pierced brow, if we really asked and contemplated with Paul O death, where is your sting with Easter behind is now there is no better time to stop ourselves from being swept up in the commotion of pain and panic of of the world and reframe our lives around the hope that we have because of the resurrection. So join us in doing this by getting this book captivated for donation of any amount at core, Christianity.com would like to get this book in your hands or really help you celebrate Easter all year long and you can find that by going to core Christianity.com/offers again core Christianity.com/offers. Let's go to voicemail. We received from one of our listeners. This is from Michelle in Ohio. How do you know what he really liked and it's not because you're going through the emotion because you have brought up in church, and what you do if you had that thought about God like I'm doing my thought hey I don't want I don't want.

Parent I don't want to follow hair that really my heart oriented by Satan or my/L how can I examine whether it me and or and law or get caring with the world. I don't see any further in my life. I feel unstable and mild Carlock is a and I believe I have a lot of knowledge and I don't know what to do. I shall thank you for your question, especially with the first part of that question how I know that I really want Jesus.

I'm not just deceiving myself. I just want you to know that you're not alone in asking that question. Many people have asked that question. Genuine believers wrestling through and I really belong to the Lord is my just deceiving my subzero head knowledge and and just that cry of God.

Sometimes II feel like I don't even want to look actually want. I want the opposite. Sounds to me in some ways like like the tension that the apostle Paul writes about in Romans chapter 7 we talks about that. The battle that I believe the believer faces as you we would long to do you want to do the right things but you still find yourself doing things that that that ultimately are not good for you still sending out who will deliver me from this body of death pulses.

Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ. Jesus is our hope. The fact of the matter is sister. You are never, we are never going to want Jesus as much as we should.

Everything that we do the side of having every good work that we do every good desire and longing that we have is still imperfect and tainted by sin. And so, don't focus on you know that the the degree of your desire and a certain critical around in a circle you thinking of me to do. I really do I really want Jesus enough the fact the matter is, none of us do and in what we do with that I think is we just are honest about it.

We confess that you can go to God Michelle and say God forgive me because I die, don't even desire you I II don't want you, I believe life like I want I want sin and that there are other things that I'm I'm drawn away toward better not good and true and beautiful and not honoring to you. Just be honest with the Lord about that, but that's of the, we all have to do and so you can come to God like the man in Mark chapter 9 who says God I believe but help my unbelief, help my unbelief. God and and so I would say you are taking all of those things even your your your quote unquote feelings and saying, Lord, help me III want to long for you. I want to love you more than I than I do and sometimes I look and I feel like I don't love you at all at and what you fix your eyes on an is is not your love for God, but meditate upon with the Scriptures say pertaining to God's love for you as a sinner right. Romans chapter 5 God demonstrated his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. He's the one who loved us and washed us away to wash their sins away by his blood that's that's where you need to focus not so much on how much you want and desire Jesus, but how much God in his mercy loved us and pursued us and pursued you and sending Jesus into the world for the forgiveness of our sins. That's where you need to focus and frankly I think it's as we fix our eyes on God's mercy toward us that that love that that we hope for that. We long for to be producing us is is actually produced innocent is the John says in first John we love because he first loved us and so Michelle set your eyes, your hope on the love of God for you in Jesus Christ not on your feelings and desires. Set your set your eyes on Christ crucified for the forgiveness of our sins and rest in that meditate in and on that reality.

And that's what I would encourage everyone is as they struggle with these. With these questions and thoughts are sick man go to the gospel.

Fix your eyes on what God has said and promised in his word. Thanks for calling I met Michelle the book were offering today would be great for you because it really does focus on just the things that that Israel was talking about what Jesus has done for you is called captivated and you can find that by going to core Christianity.com/offers.

Let's get back to the phones we have Fred on the line from McAllen Texas Fred, thanks for, and what your question for atrial about John one John regarding the Lord not being God. But being a God yeah Fred I'm dear Jan, I'm assuming, so this is something that I often hear Jehovah's Witnesses say in John chapter 1 verse one. Now that the Bible that I'm using says in the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the word was God. If you look at the New World translation of the Bible which is the translation that Jehovah's Witnesses use they insert a word there. The word was a God. They say this it's it's changing the text in some ways I'm assuming referring to that translate that translation that you use red ready to be getting more than the work with God and the Word was God was a small G again looking for a person you yeah what would I say that's that's it's a bad translation in the sad reality is the New World translation as a whole. When this is not just that text that they missed translate but as a whole. There so many passages in the New Testament they miss transit. For example, in Colossians chapter 1 where it says by him. That is by Jesus. All things were created, they insert a word thereto. That's not even in the Greek text, they say by him all and then in brackets up with the word. Other things were created as if to suggest that Jesus himself is a created being. And the problem with that translation is, it doesn't even make sense on its own. How many gods do they believe energy is Jehovah's Witnesses believe and were not talking about a God or a lesser God or a lesser divine being. Jesus is God or not. Limit is only one God, right, and so the doctrine of the Trinity it with what's what's beautiful about.

I think that helps to make sense of everything that we see in the Bible about how God has revealed himself to us in here. It's very clear that the word, the eternal son. The father is God. He was always there from the very beginning that is not a creature but that is in the category of creator and that that eternal word of the father who was with God and was God. Verse 14 became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory as of glory as of the only son from the father full of grace and truth. And so that the I would just say to you from what recommendation get a new Bible try the ESV, the new King James the NIV don't use the New World translation of the Bible because it's a poor translation of the Scriptures and really it's a biased translation. They don't want people to see the clear teachings of the Scriptures when when Scripture has these texts were laid open sky obvious that Jesus is God.

They missed translate that they twist those passages and often times with with no basis in the Greek text at all and I think that's that's what's happening here in John chapter 1 verse one with the New World translation but also in other places. I mentioned already in Colossians chapter 1, so I say get a new Bible and embrace what Christians and embraced for for 2000 years, which is the clear testimony of Scripture, and that is that Jesus is the eternal word of the father, God of God, as we say in the creed that he himself is God's with Todd and that that the Old Testament and New Testament alike, and that John 11 is just one of many places where we see that clearly taught me ask you as a follow-up question Israel if a Jehovah's Witness comes to your door. Is it beneficial for you to bring out an accurate translation of the Bible and show them how their New World translation is a distortion is a great question, Bill yeah I mean II do think we want to open the Scriptures together. If you just need to know this because a lot of times it might show up with this translation of the Bible. People don't know and so that the reading from a translation that that really has problems associate. I think it's good for Christians to know this for people to know this, and to be able to tip to bring this up is as well. Most of the Jehovah's Witnesses that I know have never studied Greek or Hebrew. Sometimes I'll have a you know like an interlinear Bible with them and just kinda show that off in the room but the reality is that the that they don't actually know then them is true of love that I think most most people is nothing nothing wrong with that but one were looking at translations of the Bible. I want to make sure that were using a translation it's faithful to the original text and knowing that the New World translation is not. I think this is important and then being able to open up the Scriptures and go places that are very clearly teach what what what we believe that Christ is God is important and goodness again why it's important for us to know what it is that we believe good advice.

This is core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez. Our phone lines are open.

If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life. Here's the number it's 1-833-843-2673. That's 833. The core let's go to Allison in Nashville, Tennessee Allison what your question for atrial. My question is having urging. Maybe I can think of to possibly relocate and financial situation and the job is not exactly what I love and I a new Christian and I've spoken to my sister is a Christian and she is always saying you know talk to God about it and and and me out of habit I just start looking around making my comments making plans to leave without. It's not a habit for me to stop and say, God, what you think and and so I started praying about it but I guess I I'm waiting for an answer sooner than later so I did ask you what I look like when you speak to God are Christian for many years and asking for guidance in your life well one just praise God love the love that you're walking with the Lord and wanting to honor him with with the decisions that you make. And so what it was. It look like we do something like this week where maybe you have a sense of why I don't feel like I can be here any longer. Maybe no housing is too much or for whatever reason you think certain things are coming up while you pray.

I think one and and just say God guide me, help me first and foremost to be shaped by what your word says in terms of how I should live in the things that I should pursue NSM shaped by the by those realities. You know what what it is that you call me to God. How it is that you call me to live to do in that manner. The other, there's freedom there right if if you have a sense of you know I feel like goddess is calling me elsewhere for whatever reason I just can't afford here anymore. That's okay. That having the of freedom as a believer to make those decisions and then the if you're expecting God to kinda you know all of a sudden just speak to you audibly or give you a sign in the clouds.

That kind of thing ordinarily unpacked and I know we'd all like that, but that's not typically what happens. Usually I think Allison the way that the Lord answers our prayers is just in his providence. You opening a door or are giving us clarity may be a sense of pieces were praying about a particular issue, and in all the summary.

Let's open this this great opportunity opened up here and lo and behold there's a wonderful church in this new area that I wanted that I want to go to and I can be a part of and continue to grow in my faith. Let me just say that as you think about this especially is a newer Christian right. Having a solid local church. We are growing in your faith is so important especially. I think at this stage in your walk with the Lord right now been is your is your first starting took to grow in the things of of the word and in the things of the Lord. And so I would say if you have a really good church that you're part of right now that's been encouraging and helping you to grow. That's huge.

That is you.I think that in and of itself is a good reason to stay in an area, but that doesn't mean you can.

Maybe it's not a wise decision for you to stay in there other reasons you should go somewhere else. I would just say were ever you go.

Make sure that you're going somewhere where you're going to be able to continue to grow in your faith and you can have other believers around you that are going encourage you in your walk with the Lord what I would hate to see is you you know you have that now you're going somewhere else and you go somewhere else and that is gone. This is not that not there anymore.

Maybe it's a cheaper place to live and you can have a the a bigger home or whatever but you we want. Also think about the spiritual component.

And so, just a follow-up in and ask you, do you have a good church community. Right now where you're at.

I do okay well then maybe you know if you if you have an idea of where it is that potential. You did want to go. Maybe they can help you find something nearby there that's gonna continue to encourage you, but I would just say right. Praying for wisdom, sort of just sometimes I like to make a list you know it.

What are the pros and cons but as you're making that pros and cons list in your thinking about finances and schools and whatever whatever else you have on that list that the church piece there to effect with that pretty high on the list in terms of you know what needs to be there.

A component of wherever it is that you're going. And then in a look at that and pray through it and get get you know wisdom from from the people around you. Other believers in your life and just ask God to give you clarity and like I said Oracle oftentimes it will happen is you know what a door will open a door will close my opportunity might present itself in. And there's freedom there in Christ to make that decision for you. So long as it's, it's, you know to be good be good for you and I ultimately can it contribute more to your to your spiritual well-being as well and so appreciate your your question. Why don't we just pray right now for for Allison that God would would give her wisdom in in this decision, gracious father, thank you for my sister thank you Lord that you brought her to yourself through your son Jesus, thank you for the forgiveness of sins that we have in Christ. And Lord, that you don't just call us to yourself and and and save us, Lord, but that you call us to walk with you and your truth in your word and that continually Lord your spirit is at work in our lives, helping us to grow in the Christian life and I pray that you would be with Allison Lord and that you would be helping her in this season by giving her wisdom by giving her clarity that you would speak Lord providentially to her guiding her to wherever it is that you you want her to be Lord, whether that's that staying where she's at or going somewhere else. Lord, but it in whatever she does.

Lord I pray that the decision she makes would ultimately result in her continuing to grow in a deeper love for you and a closer walk with your son Jesus in whose name we pray. Amen and amen and Allison as a new believer, we would love to send you a complimentary copy of the book core Christianity is the book that actually got this radio show started by our founder Dr. Michael Horton so if you just give us your address will send that off to you at no charge. So thank you so much for your call. We have time for one more quick call on the line Monica from Texas Monica, what's your question for Pastor Israel. And when he starts his processes.

He says he now the Lord said that Mike called him the Son of Man. I thought the Son of Man was one of the names for Jesus, what's that correlation are the reasoning behind that yeah they might think that question is actually you know the title. It appears in the profits on various occasions in Ezekiel. For example, throughout the.

The book of Ezekiel is referred to Son of Man in Daniel chapter 7. Daniel has a vision of this son of man whose whose given a kingdom essentially and in Jesus. He assumes this title me when when he's being questioned by the religious leaders it you can see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven and this Son of Man figure and in Daniel, for example. Actually, the emphasis there is no divine power or authority he's worship TVs praised by the nations and info in Ezekiel.

I think in in in the New Testament as well. I think there's a sense of the humanity permits that's being emphasized of this prophetic figure, but there's also the reality and we get this from Daniel chapter 7 of the Son of Man, being this divine figure ultimately fulfilled in Christ. And that's I think how we should understand. 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 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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