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Did God Predestine Judas’s Betrayal?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
February 1, 2023 4:59 pm

Did God Predestine Judas’s Betrayal?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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February 1, 2023 4:59 pm

Episode 1154 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

Show Notes

CoreChristianity.com

 

Questions in this Episode

 

1. Who is allowed to baptism people and administer communion?

2. Why can’t all Christians administer the sacraments?

3. Is Revelation 22 referring to the book of Revelation or the entire Bible?

4. Did God predestined Judas’s betrayal of Jesus?

5. What role does each person of the trinity play in salvation?

6. Is it wrong to baptize a newborn at home?

7. How are shut-ins able to participate in communion?

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Did God predestine Judas's betrayal? 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, and 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 at 833-THE-CORE. You can also post your question on one of our social media sites. And of course, you can always email us at questions at COREChristianity.com. First up today, we do have an email question from one of our listeners. This is from Eric and Adriel.

He says this. It's an excellent question, Eric, one that I've had to wrestle through and answer for people in my own church. First, you bring up the sacraments. And for those who are curious, when we talk about sacrament, we're talking about those ordinances that Jesus Christ instituted that exhibit the promise of the gospel. Sacraments are holy ordinances instituted by Christ. Wherein, through sensible signs, Christ and the benefits of the new covenant of salvation are represented, sealed, and applied to believers.

And so it's really important that we understand that immediately instituted by our Lord Jesus Christ to represent and to show forth his salvation and the promises of the gospel. And so the question is, who should administer the sacraments? Baptism and the Lord's Supper. I talk to a lot of people who just sort of assume that, well, anybody can do that. If I am on my own, having a special time with Jesus on a Tuesday, and I feel like I really want to take communion, I can just administer the Lord's Supper to myself.

Grab a little bit of bread and grape juice or wine or something like that. Or if I'm hanging out with a friend and this friend comes to faith, I can say, hey, why don't I baptize you? Well, ordinarily, the only one who should be administering the sacraments are those ministers who are called by God to preach the word. And the reason for this, quite simply, is that the sacraments are visible word in the same way that you wouldn't just have anyone stand up in the pulpit to preach the gospel, right? This is what James says in James chapter three. Don't let many of you become teachers, that is, those authoritative representatives, elders, preachers in the church.

Don't let many of you become teachers knowing that we're going to receive a stricter judgment, James said. Well, the Lord's Supper and baptism are the visible word given to the church to guard and to protect and to communicate. And especially because these are the sacraments of the church, it isn't just for anyone, per se, to administer these sacraments. One of the things that makes this clear is if anyone could just administer the Lord's Supper to themselves, things like excommunication would be impossible in the church.

There would just be no order. And so I would say that a minister called by the Lord to proclaim the word ordained in the context of the local church, according to 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1, that's who should be administering the sacraments. And I know we'll probably get a lot of questions about this because there is some confusion about this, but just think of it again. If the sacraments are visible word to us and we're called to steward those mysteries within the church to guard the word, not just to let anybody in that office, in particular the preacher and teacher, then we need to make sure that we're handling these things well. I think of what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 4, this is how one should regard us as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. By the way, that word sacrament comes from the Greek word for mystery. These are the great mysteries of the church through which Christ communicates to us by the grace of the Holy Spirit the goodness of the gospel. Thanks for reaching out to us, Eric, and hopefully that's helpful for you as you have conversations with people in your church as well.

Just a follow-up question for you, Adriel. The research is showing that ever since COVID, a significant amount of Americans are now attending church online, some for health reasons, some just because that's what they prefer. And what is your response to churches that offer communion and they say, now you can go ahead and take it at home? Trying to get me into trouble here, Bill, huh?

No, I'm just joking. Personally, the Lord's Supper communion is the sacrament of the church that exhibits in one sense our unity. Think about what the Apostle Paul says in 1 Corinthians 10, 11, and 12. They're specifically thinking about the Lord's Supper, the importance of examining ourselves a little bit later there in partaking of the bread and the wine. But he also says in chapter 10, the bread that we break, this one loaf, is a sign of the unity that we have as the body of Christ together as the church. And I think one of the dangers that you see in this is people really making it about them.

It's very individualistic. And so I disagree with the practice of virtual communion or whatever we want to call it. I understand we live in strange times and that this is one of the ways that a lot of people were trying to sort of continue to have, quote, unquote, church even during lockdowns and whatnot. But I would say when it comes to the Lord's Supper, it's something that we should do in the context of the gathered assembly together as the body of Christ, not on our own as individuals, even through something like a virtual church. All right. Thanks for that. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez.

If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, we would love to hear from you. Our phone lines will be open for the next 20 minutes or so. Here's the number. It's 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. Let's go to Russell calling in from Seattle. Russell, what's your question for Adriel? Hi.

Yeah. Hey, Russell. Thank you, guys. I love the show. Thank you, Bill.

Thanks, Adriel and your whole team. I just have a question about Revelation chapter 22, where the Apostle John writes a warning about this being the end of the book and not to add anything to it. I guess my question is specifically, how do we know that he means this is the end of the New Testament or scripture in general and not just the end of the book of Revelation?

That's a great question, Russell. It really gets into the question of whether or not the canon of scripture is closed. That is, should we expect new revelation from God that's on par with the scriptures of the Old and New Testaments? Should we look for another testament of Jesus Christ? There are some people who say that we should. Obviously, you think of Islam. You think of Mormonism, for example, as well.

This question about whether or not the canon is closed is really, really important. John, in Revelation chapter 22, verse 18, says, I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book, if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book. If anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book. What a warning.

What a sobering warning. Don't add to or take away from my word. The question is, is this just referring to the book of Revelation or is this a picture of or suggesting that the entire canon is now closed? I actually believe that it's the latter, that this is signifying for us that the canon of scripture is closed. We want to remember that Revelation comes to us in the context of covenants, Old and New Covenant.

Here you have the consummation of history. That is the very end of history being described in the book of Revelation, the finality of Revelation. At the very end, the last book of the Bible, you have this warning not to add to or take away from God's Revelation. But there's another reason why I think we recognize and rightly understand that the canon of scripture is closed. That is that we're not looking for any new revelation of Jesus Christ and it's this.

There is a close relationship. They go hand in hand between redemption and revelation. Revelation is the record. When I say revelation, I don't just mean the book of Revelation. I mean all of the revelation that we have, the special revelation that we have in scripture. Revelation is the record of redemptive history. As redemptive history was being accomplished, as God was calling Israel, delivering his people out of slavery, working through the patriarchs, calling the prophets, and so on and so forth, leading to the birth of the Messiah and his redemptive work in his life, death, burial, and resurrection, revelation went hand in hand with the record of that redemption. Well, redemption has been accomplished. There is no new redemption that we're looking for. Hebrews chapter 1 says that God has spoke definitively now in his son Jesus. And so because redemption has been accomplished once for all by Jesus Christ, we're not looking for any new revelation. To say that there's new revelation would be to insinuate that redemption has not yet been fully and finally accomplished. And that's a bad thing, for lack of a better way of putting it, a very bad thing.

And so, yeah, we can be confident that the canon is closed, specifically because we're confident that Christ's work was sufficient, that God has accomplished redemption once for all, and we have his redemptive revelation here in front of us when we open the scriptures. Thank you for your question, Russell. Well said. Thanks for that, Adriel. This is CORE Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We want to invite you to join a very special group of people.

We call them our inner CORE. These are folks that listen to our program on a regular basis, and they actually believe so strongly in what we do in this ministry that they've made the decision to support us on a regular basis. Yes, and I hope that you join them. If you're blessed by what we do and encouraged by our work, consider joining the inner CORE. It's a monthly donation of $25 or more. Those resources go toward helping us continue to get the word out, producing free material that we give away oftentimes, you know, many of the booklets that you oftentimes will hear about, and then just keeping the lights on here so we can continue to broadcast throughout the airwaves. It's really wonderful to get to do this, and we enjoy it so much.

I know Bill enjoys it. I love getting to do this to answer your questions about the faith every day, and so help us by joining the inner CORE, and as a thank you, we'll send you a copy of the book CORE Christianity by Dr. Michael Horton. You know, we've talked about this book before, and this is a book that will help you if you're new to the Christian faith to really understand the core tenets of Christianity or to have a discussion maybe with a friend or relative, somebody you work with, somebody in your extended family that doesn't really understand what the gospel's all about. You could sit down and go through this book together.

It's a wonderful book. We'd love to have you join the inner CORE. You can find out more by going to corechristianity.com forward slash inner CORE. Again, that's corechristianity.com forward slash inner CORE, and if you join that great group of people, we would be so, so thankful. Well, we do receive voicemails here at CORE Christianity, and you can call us 24 hours a day and leave us your voicemail. Here's the number, 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. Here's a voicemail from one of our listeners named Susanna. Pastor Sanchez, I have a question. Judas fulfilled prophecy when he betrayed Christ. If he was selected by God to be the betrayer, doesn't that negate his free will?

He wouldn't have had a choice. Thanks for your answer. I listen to your show every day, but not always at a time where I can call in live. Happy New Year to you all. Many blessings. Many blessings to you as well, Susanna.

Happy New Year, and grateful that you're blessed by the program. So what the Church has confessed throughout history, what Christians have believed, is that God is not the author of evil, and that while he knows all things, and all things happen according to his decree, he still is not coercing or forcing individuals to sin so that they're no longer responsible agents before God. So the answer to your question quite simply is no. God did not force Judas to betray Jesus. God is not the author of sin there. God is not responsible for Judas's wicked behavior in the sense that he made Judas do it. This is Judas acting as a sinner in line with his very nature. And the reality is God used that, certainly, just like God used the sinful actions of Herod, of the Romans, of the religious leaders who betrayed Jesus and called for his crucifixion. Somehow the Spirit of God was at work in all of that. One passage, actually, that really is remarkable when you think about it, in the book of Acts, listen to how the disciples pray, thinking about this very thing related to this question. For truly, in this city, there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place.

That's Acts 4, verses 27 and 28. Somehow all of this happened according to God's predetermined plan, and yet God was not the author of evil. He's allowing them to do these things. He's permitting this for ultimately a greater purpose, namely the redemption of mankind, but he is not responsible for their sinful actions in a way that makes him the immediate cause of them, if you will.

So it's important for us to distinguish between those things so that we recognize that God's sovereignty doesn't make him guilty of evil. Thank you, Susanna, for that question. May the Lord bless you.

Interesting question. Thanks so much, Susanna. Appreciate you listening to CORE Christianity. Let's go back to the phones. John is on the line from St. Louis. John, what's your question for Adriel? How are you doing?

Good show, as usual. I want to know your question. When Jesus said that he will turn the kingdom over to the Father so God will be all in all, does that mean the Son is subjected to God? And what role does each part of the Trinity plays in that final kingdom, handing to God the Father? And one more thing. When it says that God turned him to believe their lies, is that due to the fact that it's just a rebellion against God's order and they just refuse to believe in God, or is that the final judgment on them for refusing Jesus Christ?

Thanks. Hey, John, a couple of questions there. First, with regard to the persons of the Holy Trinity, we believe that God is one, one in essence, three distinct persons.

These persons are differentiated by what we sometimes call their personal properties. The Father God is unbegotten. The Son is eternally begotten of the Father. The Spirit proceeds eternally from the Father and the Son.

And so there's a real distinction here. Now, the question about subordination, is there a sort of subordinate order in the Trinity? Well, first, typically when Christians historically have talked about the Son being subordinate to the Father, that was always in relation to his coming to earth, humbling himself, the Word taking flesh for us and for our redemption. Because when we're talking about the persons of the Holy Trinity as they are, they're equal in power and in glory, but the Son subjects himself, humbles himself. This is why you can say things like the Father is greater than I, not in the sense that he's greater in terms of his essence, in terms of membership in the Trinity, but greater in the sense that the Son humbled himself and assumed humanity, taking the form of a servant, as Paul talked about in Philippians 2.

And so it's really important to make that distinction there, otherwise we get into trouble because there are some ancient heretics that talked about Christ being eternally subordinate to the Father in the sense that he was less than, not truly God. These are the Arians, for example, in the ancient church, and so we gotta be careful with our language here, and then with regard to the second question that you had, when God hands people over, I'm assuming that you're talking about the strong delusion that the apostle Paul spoke of when he wrote to the Thessalonians, those who rejected the gospel, God giving them a strong delusion. It's just this picture of God giving people over to their own choice, to their own sinful choices. You see this in Romans 1 as well, even as they didn't want to glorify God, God gave them over to the lusts of their passions. And so really a scary thing when you think about it, but these individuals who chose their own sinful ways and God permitted that he let them have what they chose. Thanks for your question.

And a serious judgment on those individuals as well from Scripture, so thanks for that clarification, Adriel. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. 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 anytime at 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. You can also send us an email with your question. Our email address is questions-at-core-christianity.com. Next up, let's go to Dariush calling from Oklahoma. Dariush, what's your question for Adriel?

Hi. First of all, I want to bless you guys for the work you do. My question is, as a father, when I baptized my children, am I okay to do that? Is that accepted by the Lord? Dariush, God bless you and thank you for your encouragement. I can tell that you want to raise your children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

I think that's a wonderful thing. You're wanting to bring them into the church, to extend to them the very promises of the gospel that are exhibited in baptism. And your question is, is that something that I should do as their father? We're baptized into the body of Christ, the visible church. And so it's something that should happen in the context of the church community by the pastor, I would say, of the church that you're a member at. It's not just a private ceremony that you do within your family. It's something that incorporates your family, and in particular your children, into the broader family, the visible church of the people of God. And so baptism, as I said earlier, ordinarily should be done in the context of the church community and by a pastor. We're baptized into this body of Christ, if you will.

And so that's how it should be done ordinarily, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, according to the words of institution that Jesus gave to us in Matthew chapter 28. And so I appreciate your question, and there's my answer for you. God bless. Thanks, Darius. I appreciate you listening to Core Christianity. Let's go to Mike calling in from Missouri.

Mike, what's your question? Hey, I was listening to his answer on the communion and where y'all said it was supposed to be done at the church. So I work for a living community center where the seniors cannot get out and go to church.

They're all pretty much homebound. So when Jesus in First Corinthians said to take this in remembrance of me. So you're saying that they don't need to worry about that communion is not needed to be worried about because they cannot get to church. And that's kind of my question, whether or not they're, by your answer, they're not not supposed to do it at home. So it's not recognized by Jesus.

Yeah. Mike, thanks for that question. And God bless you as you serve that community. What I would hope is that there would be an opportunity for some kind of a service there. I know that there are ministries and pastors who will go to senior living homes, to facilities like the one that you serve in or work at, to provide a church service, the preaching of the word and even the sacraments of grace.

Now, there's some challenge, obviously, I'm sure, associated with that. But what I'm not saying is, well, that just doesn't matter for them. You know, if you can't get to church, well, then you're just out of luck. No, I'm just trying to say, here's how Jesus instituted. And actually, when it comes to doing this in remembrance of the Lord, I think a lot of people get this wrong. I wrote an article over at corechristianity.com called How We've Misunderstood Do This in Remembrance of Me.

I recommend that you check that out. Because actually, when we think about the language of remembrance in the context of God's covenant signs, what's happening there in scripture in the Old Testament and in the New Testament is that there's this objective sign that God has given to his people to show forth and that he's showing forth, conveying, communicating the promises of his gospel very clearly. And God is the one who is seeing the sign, remembering and blessing his people. You think about in the Old Testament, for example, when God told Noah, when I see the rainbow, my covenant sign, I am going to remember my promises to you, not to flood the earth. It's this beautiful picture. And so oftentimes, we totally miss this.

So many people totally miss this. But in the context of covenant signs in the scriptures, first and foremost, it's God who is seeing and remembering his goodwill, his graciousness toward his people. Now, in a secondary way, we also are remembering, thinking about what Christ has done for us. And we can do that piece, remembering the gospel and what Jesus has done at all times. We should truly meditating on the cross and what Christ has done for us.

But in terms of this sacrament of grace that was given to the church to signify our unity that we have as the body of Christ, ordinarily, as I already said, it should be done in the context of the Christian community, of the church, and together there with a minister. And I pray that the Lord blesses you as you seek to care for and encourage the people that you serve there in that community. I appreciate your question. And thank you for listening to Core Christianity.

May all of you guys have a wonderful day. God bless. Thanks for listening to Core Christianity to request your copy of today's special offer. Visit us at CoreChristianity.com and click on offers in the menu bar or call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 833 the core. 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.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-01 18:12:04 / 2023-02-01 18:21:31 / 9

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