When do you know that a Christian is a fundamentalist? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of CORE Christianity. Well, 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. By the way, you can leave us a voicemail at that number 24 hours a day.
You can also email us your question at questions at core Christianity dot com. First up today, let's go to Matt, who's calling in from Memphis, Tennessee. Matt, what is your question for Pastor Adriel?
Yes, sir. Hey, Matt. Hi. How you doing, Pastor? Doing well. Thank you for calling in.
What's your question? Well, being a member of AA and having felt forgiven for things way back in the beginning and then becoming a Christian later and getting more knowledgeable about the cross and the forgiveness. You know, step five, you confess everything to a confidant or clergy. But step nine prevents you from when you go out to make restitution and apologies. You can't really be totally honest in certain cases.
But otherwise, you'd be hurting them at their expense for your to free yourself from that guilt. And I've seen the practicality of it over time. But it just feels like it just wasn't being rigorously honest, like they say to be. And like I say, it's protected people. But to go out and bring a dredge up stuff.
That'd be wrong. But it just feels on biblical. The only thing that I feel about the whole AA program, which which to me is on biblical step nine on on that second part, not hurting people. Does that make sense? So, you know, I'm not too familiar with with all of the steps in and what each of them, you know, tells you to do. But are you saying step nine is asking you to go to other people and share with them, but not share everything? And you feel like you're having to hold back? Is that what's going on?
Right. With step five, you really get everything. I mean, everything from your past with clergy or a spiritual advisor. But then when you go out to make amends to people, like maybe you got to pay some money back or apologize for some bad behavior.
Something like adultery or something like that, where it would just destroy a family if you brought up something that may have happened way back in the past. The step nine says make a man to people, such people, wherever possible. On biblical. Yeah. OK, I think I understand.
OK, well, so so here's what I would say. One confession is key and so important. And we're called as Christians to confess our sins. You see this in James five. You see this in First John chapter one. And and and so I mean, that that's a part of, I think, one receiving forgiveness. It's also part of the process of of healing. We confess our sins first and foremost to God.
I mean, obviously, it's I think also wise and good. To as you know, you've done with with a pastor. But then the question is, what's my obligation to the people that I've hurt?
Do I need to go to them as well? And and boy, bringing all of this stuff up. Say they're safe. They were talking about something else. You know, they were talking about an affair. Do I need to go and tell this person who I sinned against in this way?
We've gotten this question on the broadcast before. Hey, I cheated on you all these years ago or all those years ago, and I've never told you about it. And oftentimes, I think we'll avoid that because we say, well, you know, I've confessed it to God, and everything is is fine and good.
There, at least I think it is. I don't need to bring this up. And boy, if I did, it would really hurt this person. But I tell people in that situation, no, you need to be honest.
You do need to go to that person and ask for forgiveness for for having sinned against them. It's it's living essentially in a lie when you're when you're withholding. It's not it's not right. It's not honorable.
It's not respectful to in that situation, you know, to to the spouse. And so I say, look, when when you've done something to sin against someone seriously, if you're able to go to them and and bring peace and and and ultimately true peace comes through repentance and confession, then then you should. I mean, I think also with the examples of this in scripture, you think of Zacchaeus in Luke chapter 19. And boy, he had done a lot of things to hurt a lot of people. But Jesus said, you need to go and make amends.
You need to go and pay back what you took. And he says, I'm going to go above and beyond that. And so we do have examples of this in scripture. Now, when might it not be good to to bring up those things or to try to go to someone?
Are there examples of that? I do tend to think that there could be. So let me let me say, you know, in a situation where maybe we're talking about physical or sexual abuse and and a person has gone to prison for what they've done.
And and, you know, they've they've said, gosh, I'm so sorry, I've asked for forgiveness. But I wouldn't say that person should go and try to revisit those things. With the victim, I mean, I think that that would not be helpful or wise. So I think that there there there are situations where where we do need a little bit of extra wisdom. But I think generally speaking, as a rule, we do as believers want to a need to go to the people that we've sinned against and ask for forgiveness and do whatever we can to make things right. And so, Matt, may God bless you in your life as you seek to do that with with the people around you. May God give you wisdom and may God bring healing in your relationships.
Thanks for calling. It's a great question. And Adriel, I do have to mention that time you invited me over to your house, you had that really good ice cream in your freezer. And while I sorry, I had some of it.
Yeah. I wanted to get it out there. I just feel like I had to.
I wondered I've I've wondered all these years where what happened to that vanilla ice cream. And now I know you're forgiven. But you're not going to be invited back. So just kidding. Yeah.
OK. This is core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. And we'd love to hear from you if you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life. You can leave us a voicemail 24 hours a day at eight three three the core.
That's one eight three three eight four three twenty six seventy three. By the way, we want to invite you to join what we call our inner core. This is a group of people that believe so strongly in this program and this ministry that they support us on a monthly basis. And we can't tell you how thankful we are for you folks who are part of the inner core.
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All one word. And again, we'd love to get you on that list of wonderful people that support this program and send you a copy of Dr. Horton's book, Core Christianity. Let's go back to the phones. Joseph is on the line from New York. Joseph, what's your question for Adriel? Hi, my question is, if I'm truly saved or born again, am I going to have some personal encounter with God or know that I know the Lord? Because I listen to a lot of testimonies, pastors and preachers saying, if you know him, you'll know you know him.
I personally can't say that. And I've cried out to God for many years. I know what Romans 10 says, 10 verse nine and Ephesians two verse eight. And I believe those wholeheartedly. I just want to know, am I supposed to have some sort of spiritual encounter with Christ or some sort of lifting of a burden? Because I haven't had any of those.
Thank you. Hey, Joseph, man, my heart goes out to you because I know what it is to be full of anxiety and fear and wonder. Do I belong to Jesus? Do I really know him?
Do I really have a relationship with him? Have my sins really and truly been forgiven? And, you know, you hear stories. There are people who will say, when I got baptized or when I asked Christ to come into my life, it was like just, you know, butterflies and felt like I was levitating. And I could just I could feel the Holy Spirit, that kind of thing. And that's not to to knock people's experiences and even to deny that people can have these wonderful experiences. But the reality is that's not everyone's experience, Joseph. And so you don't have to feel like the odd man out because you haven't had a vision of Jesus or, you know, the clouds haven't parted.
Oftentimes, one of our problems when we're thinking about assurance is we're looking in. Have I had that experience? Do I have enough faith?
Am I doing enough? Do I really believe? Here's what I think God wants you to do, Joseph, is I think he wants you to look not in but out and up to Christ. It's the objectivity, the sureness of the gospel that Christ came into the world, died on a cross, rose again from the dead for our justification. That's set in stone. That's real. That's more real than anything else. And people can have all sorts of feelings and experiences. This is this is history.
This happened. Jesus really rose from the dead and in rising from the dead, he put away the sins of his people once for all. And this is what the book of Hebrews says. And so our job as believers is to cling to that reality. When you're struggling, when you're not sure, flee to the cross, flee to what Christ has done.
Don't don't look in. But look to Christ. And I'm grateful to hear that you're digging into the word and that you can read Romans 10 and other passages of scripture and say, I believe those with all my heart. Well, if you believe, know that you have eternal life. This is what John says in 1 John 5. I'm writing these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you might know that you have eternal life.
This is the truth. And so are there times in the Christian life in your life where you might, you know, have more feelings where where it's like, boy, you know, you're in church or you're reading the scriptures and you just have this strong sense of God's presence? Yeah, I mean, that comes.
But it also goes. And then there are there are many times where, you know, it's it's the discipline of continuing to seek the Lord, continuing to get up for church, continuing to pray and say, Lord, speak to me through your word, continuing to serve the Lord. That's what God calls us to. That's what God calls you to. And as you do that, as you as you look to Jesus, as you believe in him, rest assured that he holds on to you, Joseph. God bless and thanks.
Thank you for calling. I'm so glad that you answered that, Adriel, because I know that for many people, they struggle with that same issue. Like, I don't feel it.
I don't have the sense that other people talk about. And yet what's it all about? The finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross. And that's what we need to keep coming back to, regardless of our feelings or our circumstances, right?
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, and you know, as we meditate on what Christ has done for us, what God has done for us in Christ, you know, there are feelings that can come and then and will follow. And frankly, we're continually seeking the Lord and trying to grow in our understanding of his love for us of the gospel. But it's it's just man resting in the concrete reality of God's work, not our works, not our feelings, not how good we're doing today or how good we might be doing tomorrow. It's the objectivity of the gospel that gives us hope. Amen.
Amen. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We do receive voicemails here and you can leave one for us anytime at 833-THE-CORE-1833-843-2673. Here's a voicemail that came in from one of our listeners earlier this week. Yeah, my name is John and I'm listening to your program. And I got to be honest, some of the people that are calling seem a little whacked out.
Holy mackerel. I mean, we got to back up. I think when you get that crazy, the fundamentalism, people think Christianity or a bunch of zealots. And I don't think that's really the case. Anyhow, that's my opinion. I'd love to hear what your thoughts are. Thank you.
Yeah. Well, one, thanks for listening to the broadcast, John. I mean, one of the things I love about Core Christianity, what we're doing here is we have an audience that is so broad. I mean, it's so cool to be able to answer questions from Christians, from non-Christians, from Christians who have different backgrounds, different traditions, different convictions. The hope is to focus on the main thing, right? The main thing being the gospel.
And you hear us talk about it over and over and over again. We believe, I believe more than anything else that that's what we need to recover in our churches. And sometimes we'll get questions that might be related to the stuff sort of on the outskirts, not Core Christianity, if you will.
But I realized that people have these questions. And honestly, I want to be able to minister to everybody. I mean, anybody who calls in and to address the questions that they have and the fears that they have. And, you know, sometimes let me just say this. I recognize this as a pastor.
We can look at other people and the questions that they have and the fears that they have and just say, what are you thinking? Really? That's your question? You're afraid of that? That's your concern? And you know what? They'd probably look at us with our fears and concerns and say the same thing.
Really? That's what you're concerned about? That's what you're most afraid of? And so we want to be compassionate to each other and patient with one another in answering these questions and looking to the scriptures and seeking to come alongside of people who want to know the truth. And as I said, you know, not every question is getting to the vitals of the faith. Sometimes we get questions that, you know, we're not talking about the gospel anymore.
We're talking about something else. But we always want to take it back to the gospel. And I hope that you've been encouraged by that as you do listen in, John, and appreciate you continuing to support us.
John, thanks so much for your question, for listening to Core Christianity. Well, we do have a YouTube channel and you can watch Adriel live in the studio on YouTube every day at eleven thirty a.m. Pacific time. So just translate that into your local time zone. Eleven thirty a.m. Pacific is when we're on YouTube for a half hour.
And you can also send us a question through the YouTube channel as well. Andrea has one about Genesis. And Adriel, I know you've recently been preaching through the Book of Genesis. She says, Does Genesis three twenty two through twenty four reveal an inner dialogue among the persons of the Trinity? Yeah, so let me just read the text, Genesis three twenty two. Then the Lord God said, Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat and live forever. Therefore, the Lord God sent him out from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he was taken. He drove out the man and at the east of the Garden of Eden, he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life. And it's that plural there, us, that sometimes people will say, Well, is that the Trinity, that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit? You know, behold, man has become like one of us. You see this same language earlier in the Book of Genesis.
In Genesis chapter one, verse twenty six, God said, Let us make man in our image and after our likeness and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and so forth. So this has been taken a few different ways, the us here. There are some who say, Yeah, I think that this is a reference to the Holy Trinity.
It's the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. They're the us. They're the our there. Some have said, Well, this is the sort of plural of majesty. It's God speaking in the plural.
Now, I'm not in it really. I don't think that that's I don't think that's right, but that's just one of the ways that this has been interpreted. Others have seen the us here as what's called the divine council. That is God together with his heavenly council, the angelic hosts. And you do see, I think, examples of this in scripture in different places.
In fact, even in the text that you referenced there, Genesis three twenty two through twenty four, the cherubim are mentioned in the context in verse twenty four, where God put the cherubim there to guard the way to the tree of life. So I'm sympathetic to the us being the heavenly council, God's divine council. But there are places in scripture where I do think you have the persons of the Holy Trinity speaking, if you will, conversation. You see this in the Psalms in particular, I think of Psalm chapter two. Let me just read it says, Why do the nations rage in the people's plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against his anointed.
Let us burst their bonds apart and cast away their courts from us. He who sits in the heavens laughs, the Lord holds them in derision. He will speak to them in his wrath and terrify them in his fury, saying, As for me, I have set my king on Zion, my holy hill. I will tell of the decree. The Lord said to me, You are my sons.
You have two people talking. You have the Lord setting his his king on his holy hill, the anointed one. And then you have the son is speaking in verse seven. The Lord said to me, You are my son. Today I have begotten you. Ask of me and I will make the nations your heritage and the ends of the earth your possession.
You shall break them with a rod of iron and dash them dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel. So you do have examples in scripture in the Old Testament, certainly in the New Testament as well, but in the Old Testament, even of the persons of the Holy Trinity and their speech communicating speaking. But I don't think that that text in Genesis three is one of them. Thank you for your question. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez.
Let's go to a voicemail that came in from one of our listeners. This is from Frank. In Romans chapter three, verse twenty five, it says God had passed over the sins that were previously. And I wonder, you know, everybody sinned.
If you sin bad after God passed over your sins, is it held against you? I'd like to know. Thank you. Okay.
There's a couple questions there. So with regard to Romans chapter three in verse twenty five, this is in the context of Paul talking about the doctrine of justification and the righteousness that God gives. Verse twenty one, he says, now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law. In other words, this is a righteousness that comes to us not through law keeping, not through obedience to the law, although, he says, the law and the prophets bear witness to it. The Old Testament, the Old Covenant bore witness to this righteousness, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. For there is no distinction, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God and are justified, that is made right in the sight of God, they're justified by His grace as a gift. You don't earn your justification.
It's not through merit. It's through grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by His blood to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in His divine forbearance, He had passed over the former sins. Now the former sins being the sins that happened prior to the death of Jesus Christ. And one of the things that's being emphasized there is how sin can't be forgiven. There is no forgiveness apart from Christ, His work, His sacrifice. Anyone who's ever forgiven or who was ever forgiven in the history of humanity, talking about even prior to the death of Jesus Christ, is saved by the efficacy and power of the blood of Jesus Christ. The bulls and goats of the old covenant, those were types and shadows pointing forward to the final once for all efficacious outpouring of blood that Jesus made for us and for our forgiveness. When you contact us, please let us know how you've 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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