Are the weird things in the Bible associated with paranormal things today? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of Core Christianity. Well, hi, this is Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez.
We pray that you had a wonderful weekend. This is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. You can call us right now with your question. We have 25 minutes or so, so jump on the phone right now. Here's the number. It's 833-THE-CORE.
That's 1-833-843-2673. Now, of course, you can also post your question on one of our social media sites. In fact, if you go to YouTube right now, you can find our YouTube channel. Watch Adriel live in the studio right now.
See what cool thing he's wearing today, and you can send him your question through our YouTube channel. Plus, you can always email us at questionsatcorechristianity.com. First up today, let's go to a voicemail from one of our callers. This is Linda. Hi, Pastor Adriel.
My name is Linda, and I have a question for you. I'd like to know if there are various definitions for the word righteous in the Bible. I know that it's used many, many times, and I know that each and every one of us in the human race are in need of a savior. I was reading last night about the angels in heaven singing for joy and rejoicing over one sinner who comes to know the Lord versus 99 righteous persons who need not repent. I was a little bit confused about that. If you could explain the differences or the meaning of righteous for me, that would be great. Thank you.
I love your show. Well, thank you for that question, Linda. Excellent question. I want to maybe just tackle the broader question of are there different definitions of the word righteousness in the Bible.
The answer to that, I believe, is yes. Then honing in on Luke 15, which is the passage that you referenced to talk about what Jesus is speaking about there. The word righteousness in the New Testament is the Greek word dikaiosune. It really has to do with justice.
Oftentimes, it's used in the context of something being fair or just, judicial language. We also think of it in the context of the doctrine of justification. We're declared righteous, this upright standing, if you will, not on the basis of any inherent righteousness that we have. We're justified as sinners, as Paul says in Romans chapter 4, but God's declaration, his gift of righteousness that he gives us. It's also used at times in the New Testament with regard to a moral quality. You think of uprightness, righteous living, living in ways that honor the Lord. The context of a particular passage is going to help us determine how the word is being used in a given section of scripture.
It's important for us as to why context is so important. With regard to Luke chapter 15, I'm just going to read beginning in verse 1. It's only seven verses, but I think it helps us to understand what we mean or what Jesus meant there in this parable of the last sheep when he talked about the righteous. Luke chapter 15 verse 1, Now the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him, and the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, This man receives sinners and eats with them. That's a really important background to the parables that Jesus is about to give. He told them this parable, What man of you having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the one that is lost until he finds it?
And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost. Just so I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. Now in the context who are the quote unquote righteous persons who don't need any repentance, I think this is a dig at the tax collectors and sinners who are right there around Jesus, and they're grumbling. They're upset with Jesus. They're grumbling because of the company that Jesus keeps. This man receives sinners and eats with them. And so he's highlighting, look, Jesus is highlighting, look, there's more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than people who think they're righteous and they don't need repentance.
And so I think that's what he's getting at there. These aren't people who are actually truly righteous before the Lord. It's people who think that they are. They're self-righteous. They think, well, we're fine. The tax collectors, excuse me, the Pharisees and the scribes who believe that they have this right standing, God, thank you that I'm not like other people, and I'm good.
This is what they think when in reality they too need to repent and confess. And so I think that's what we're getting at there and what Jesus is getting at there in Luke chapter 15. And again, thank you for your call, Linda.
Thanks for that. Linda, appreciate you listening to Core Christianity. If you have a question for Adriel about the Bible or the Christian life, feel free to give us a call right now.
We were also open to questions about doctrine or theology or maybe something going on in your own Christian walk where you're trying to live it out in a culture that's somewhat hostile to your faith. Here's the phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE.
That's 1-833-843-2673. Let's go to Don who's calling in from Kansas. Don, what's your question for Adriel? Yeah, my question is, could we understand the Bible in a better way if we knew more about the culture and the history of where it was written? For example, Matthew 7, I think it's 38-39 where Christ says, he who is looking for living water coming to me. Well, you know, apparently that comes from the Feast of Tabernacles celebration and so on and so forth. Maybe you know more about that than I do, but it kind of looks like Christ is saying, you know, get the real thing instead of a tradition type thing.
Or maybe that doesn't make any sense. No, Don, it makes perfect sense and you're absolutely right that understanding the historical background, the context of the passage of scripture does illuminate it for us. And so I think it is important, you know, as we're studying the scriptures to dig deep. Now, of course, that doesn't mean that you always have to read the Bible with a commentary in hand that's going to give you that historical background. It's just good for us to get into a consistent habit of reading the scriptures and, you know, when we come across a passage or we have some questions, maybe then consulting a commentary. But certainly, the more we understand the original audience, the historical background, it's really going to bring the scriptures to life in a new way for us. Now, let me just add, the main thing that we need is the Holy Spirit. We sometimes talk about the illumination of Holy Scripture. That is, when we approach the Bible as readers of the Bible, we're coming to receive God's word. This is God speaking to us, but we need the help of the Holy Spirit to illuminate that word to us, to our hearts, so that we might receive it as we should, as the very word of God to us. And so I always encourage people, Don, whenever you're studying the Bible and if you're just reading the Bible, make sure that you're praying and you're saying, Lord, help me to understand. Fill me with your spirit.
Give me insight. And I think one of the ways that God sometimes does do that is through the means of good commentaries and whatnot, good and faithful Bible preaching. We need to make sure that we're in churches where the word of God is being opened and explained, and we're getting some of that background, that context, and then it's applied to us in our present day, our own lives. And so all of that is important, and I appreciate you just bringing this up, Don, to remind us of the importance of reading the Bible in its context.
Thanks. By the way, we have a great Bible study on this topic. It's called How to Read the Bible. You can find that by going to our website at corechristianity.com forward slash studies. Again, corechristianity.com forward slash studies. Look for How to Read the Bible. Hey, if you've got a question about the Christian life or doctrine, theology, maybe you have some doubts about the Christian faith, we're always open to people who maybe are searching.
Maybe you consider yourself to be an agnostic or an atheist, and you're not really sure about this whole Christianity thing and the claims of Jesus and what the Bible says. Hey, we're open to your questions as well. Here's the number 833-THE-CORE. That's 1-833-843-2673. We'll be taking calls for the next 15 minutes or so.
So now is the time to call. Well, we do receive a lot of questions about spiritual gifts on this program, speaking in tongues and things like that. And we've got an offer, a free resource we'd like to offer you today on that very topic. Yeah, the resource is called Six Things You Need to Know About Spiritual Gifts. And Bill, I'm glad that you mentioned, you know, we do get a lot of questions on the broadcast about the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Are they still around, the miraculous gifts, are they still around for today?
If not, why not? You know, how should we understand the idea of speaking in tongues and the baptism of the Holy Spirit? I mean, we see these things in the Bible, but it's so important for us to understand them.
Again, this seems to be a theme on the broadcast today in their proper context. And so we want to help you to do that with this free resource, Six Things You Need to Know About Spiritual Gifts, and you can download it at corechristianity.com. This will really help you, especially when you're discussing this issue with people who may have a different perspective on the spiritual gifts. We do get a lot of calls from people that say, you know, I have a friend or relative and they have a very different view of speaking in tongues or the baptism of the Spirit. We think this will really be helpful to you in those discussions. Again, it's called Six Things You Should Know About Spiritual Gifts. You can find that by going to corechristianity.com forward slash offers. Well, if you have a question for us, you can call 24 hours a day and leave us a voicemail at 1-833-843-2673.
That's 833-THE-CORE. We do our best to review our voicemails each day. And here's one from one of our listeners named Pacquiao. My question is, is there any correlation between the prophecy that Jesus said it would be as in the days of Noah and the disclosure of UFOs that the government has recently made? I just wanted to talk about the fallen angels. And I have a friend who's just constantly asking these types of questions and he keeps bringing up that prophecy where Jesus said it'll be as in the days of Noah. He believes that the fallen angels were in the days of Noah and that that's really the last piece of the puzzle we're waiting for in these times.
Thank you so much. Yes, I mean, boy, so many people concerned about the end times right now and questions like this. I appreciate that you've brought this up. UFOs, right? Is that what Jesus is getting at in Matthew chapter 24 where he says it's going to be like the days of Noah. Now, of course, it sounds like your friend takes an interpretation on the Nephilim there in the Old Testament prior to the flood, these creatures, if you will, and some people think they're fallen angels that are having relations with people and creating this sort of hybrid species, if you will. There are a few different interpretations, I think, that are valid interpretations that have been held by Christians throughout the history of the church. The focus there in that passage in Genesis is on the wickedness that had increased in the world. And so in one sense, I think, when Jesus said it's going to be like the days of Noah, that's one of the things that he's getting at. That context of his words in Matthew chapter 24 really is the fact that the judgment is going to come and people aren't going to be ready. They're going to be just sort of living their lives like normal, and then the judgment comes and it's going to catch them off guard.
So let me just read the text, and I think that'll help you understand it. Matthew 24, verse 36, But concerning that day and hour, Jesus said, No one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only. For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.
Now here's how he explains it. For as in those days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. So the focus isn't on the Nephilim, and the focus isn't even necessarily on the increase in wickedness, the focus is on the fact that Jesus is coming as a thief in the night, that there are many who are caught off guard, who aren't ready, who aren't prepared.
And that's precisely, again, what he's going to go on to say. Verse 43, But know this, if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore, you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. And so that's the focus there when Jesus brings up the days of Noah. It's, we need to be vigilant, we need to be watchful, we need to be ready for the coming of the Lord.
Thanks for your question, Pacquiao. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adrian Sanchez. You have a question for us, you can email us anytime at questionsatcorechristianity.com.
Here's one from one of our listeners named Chad. Interesting question, Adrian. He says, Is it wrong to be content with a comfortable life with a nice job and a family and a house? Is it bad to enjoy these things to the same degree as non-believers do when we should be looking ahead to our home in heaven with God?
Hmm, what a great question. And we ought to cultivate in our own lives contentment, I believe. But is it bad to enjoy worldly possessions, things that God gives to us?
I would say absolutely not. No, I think that's one of the ways that we give thanks to God. If you've been blessed by the Lord with something, instead of thinking, oh boy, I just can't really derive any joy from this, otherwise, you know, my heart might be carried away. No, no, no, I think we do rejoice in God's good gifts and we share them with others.
Now, here's what Paul told Timothy in 1 Timothy 6, verse 17. As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God who richly provides us with everything, get this, to enjoy. Wow, God is so generous, God is so good. God richly provides us with everything, why, to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.
And so you see the balance there. It's not putting your hope in riches, in worldly possessions, in your home and these things that God has blessed you with because you realize that they're not ultimate. It's not being haughty and arrogant, proud, look at what I've built, what I've done like Nebuchadnezzar in the Old Testament. It's receiving these good things as gifts from the Lord for you to enjoy and to delight in and to be sure that you're rich in good works, that you realize that the Lord has blessed you with these things so that you might also do good to the people around you, but you don't have to feel bad for enjoying those good gifts. I think that's a part of how we give thanks to the Lord.
Thank you for that question. What about carne asada? I mean, can you enjoy it too much? Bill, I know that this question comes up often, and I feel like when you ask this, it's almost like you're trying to expose me because you know that I have this problem where I just can't get enough of it. So I do confess my idol of carne asada, the good stuff, right?
I have to really be on guard and watchful. Anything, I mean, we're joking, right? But truly, any good gift that God gives to us, we can sinfully because our hearts are corrupt. We can take those good gifts and make them ultimate and abuse them and treat them as the meaning of life. Now, if you're doing that with carne asada, we're going to have to have a conversation, but we do do that with many good gifts, so we need to be vigilant and watchful, but that doesn't mean that we can't enjoy them, that we shouldn't enjoy them.
No, in fact, we should, and God has given them to us so that we might enjoy them, and that's precisely what Paul told Timothy in 1 Timothy 6. Good counsel. Thanks for that, Adriel. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We're still taking your calls for the next five minutes or so. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, doctrine, theology, you name it, we'd love to hear from you.
833-THE-CORE, that's 1-833-843-2673. Let's go to Edwin, who's calling in from Florida. Edwin, what's your question for Adriel? Pastor Adriel, great to be able to speak with you. I've got a question concerning the trauma message and how that applies to pastors that are teaching about biblical theology and doctrine, and I understand trauma is something we can go through, but there seems to be this shift in really focusing on people's past trauma and overemphasizing that compared to the gospel, and I just wanted to get your thoughts on if this is a distraction for the church, or is this actually something that the church should be addressing and what you think?
Man, I love this. Look, pastors are charged with preaching the Word, first and foremost. Now, we're preaching to a mixed audience, to a broad audience, and the people in our churches have had experiences, traumatic experiences, and so I think it's important for us to be sensitive to that, but the goal of preaching is not necessarily therapy. It's raising the dead through the proclamation of God's Word. I just was quoting from 1 Timothy 6. If you go to 2 Timothy in 2 Timothy 4, verse 1, the solemn charge that Paul gives to Timothy, I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead and by his appearing and by his kingdom, preach the Word.
Be ready in season and out of season, reprove, rebuke, and exhort with complete patience and teaching, for the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions. And so I think, first and foremost, we need to be devoted to the faithful proclamation of the Word of God from the pulpit, and as pastors who know the people in our churches, the things that they've wrestled with, that might inform and shape the way in which we apply the truth of God's Word to the people in our pew. Certainly, in the context of pastoral counseling, when you're sitting down with someone, sometimes it is helpful to know this history that does shape an individual's life and viewpoint and so on and so forth. But I think there are probably some ministries, Edwin, where it can become a distraction so that the focus is no longer on faithful Bible preaching, but on trying to unpack every individual's history and background, and it becomes very therapeutic, which is, again, not necessarily a bad thing, but the question is, what is our job? What is my job as a minister of the Gospel? And just to follow up, because different people have different experiences, are you seeing something specifically, Edwin, in the church that is causing you concern with regard to this? I don't want to dive into this because I don't have the time, Pastor Sanchez, but there is a ministry I was involved with. I'm sorry, we just got cut out there a little bit, and you were involved with the ministry? Go ahead.
Yes, sir. I was involved in a ministry here in Florida, and the ministry was focused on those that were or are in the process of recovery from addiction. And the pastor was very focused on just talking about trauma. And to be honest, there was never a clear presentation of the Gospel, and since then, I've come across several pastors, not any of the ones that I really follow that are teaching biblical sound doctrine, like yourself, Pastor John MacArthur, and others. And it's just, I don't know, there's yellow flags going up, and it's not blatant red flags, they're not preaching heresy, but it's just, I don't know, there's just something about it that it doesn't seem to be focused on the truth of the Gospel.
Yeah, thank you. And I do think as pastors, we need to know kind of our lane. And again, it's not to say that helping people deal with trauma and getting care and therapy is a bad thing. I think that those things are and can be really good things and really important things, especially for those who have experienced severe trauma. Our job, though, is to apply the truth of the Gospel to the life of the individual, to bring God's truth to bear, to declare the message of the forgiveness of sins, which relates to, I think, our emotional health, our mental health, all of those things as well. And so I would also be concerned if there was a pastor or a ministry and the focus was really not the Gospel at all, but just sort of dealing with this stuff more therapeutically, then I would say, well, maybe it's not that that's a bad thing, but is that your primary calling as a minister of the Gospel?
And that's where I think things can get sort of confusing. But I appreciate your calling in, and may God help us all to be faithful to His Word and to care for those who have experienced severe trauma. God bless.
Thanks for that. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. I have an email question here from Jenny Adriel, and she says, What will it be like to see someone who has hurt me in heaven?
Wow. I mean, you think of the challenges, even within the body of Christ, there's hurt, there's pain, we're a family of sinners, and of course we're called to reconcile and to work together and to seek peace this side of things, but often that doesn't happen to the extent that it should, and we're going to spend eternity with each other. And so what is that going to look like? Is there going to be a grudge?
No, I don't think so. In heaven there is perfect love, perfect love, and that's what we're going to have and give to one another. And so what's it going to be like? I think it's going to be amazing. I think it's going to be wonderful. I think that the grudges that we held or the issues that we had somehow, through the grace of God, are going to melt away completely, and we are going to be so fixated on God on the throne and on the Lamb, Jesus Christ, that everything is going to be eclipsed by that love and worship. God bless. .
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