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Peter’s Final Words!

enduring-faith

from Google Images

Peter wrote a second epistle to the five Roman provinces (2Peter 3:1; cf. 1Peter 1:1), and it was to be his final words to them, for Peter claimed his death was near (2Peter 1:14). In this epistle Peter lashed out at the false teachers that had arisen within the churches of God (2Peter 2:1). He wrote as though this particular event was yet future “there shall be,” but he was merely reiterating an earlier prophecy (2Peter 3:2). This prophecy, of course, was true, because Peter claimed these imposters were already feasting with the children of God and were unafraid to do so (2Peter 2:12-13). Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on April 4, 2016 in Gospel

 

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Be Not Many Teachers

Mystery of Iniquity

from Google Images

In the third chapter of his epistle, James gets down to the nitty-gritty. The empire-wide trial that had come upon the churches of God had to do with false doctrine spread by false teachers. This was an organized conspiracy begun by Annas, the high priest of Jerusalem, the very same who had Jesus crucified. It was a secret plan whereby he had planted false brethren throughout the Christian assemblies in Asia, Galatia and Greece (cf. Acts 5 and the Ananias and Sapphira incident). Paul knew about the plan, but, of course, was not privy to the identity of the false brethren. He told the churches in Greece that the conspiracy was already at work (2Thessalonians 2:7), but Paul’s presence among the churches in the area was enough to keep secret evil plan from gaining a strong foothold among them. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2016 in Gospel, New Testament History, persecution

 

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Endurance is the Key to Victory!

Orbit of the Moon and phases seen from Earth.
Image via Wikipedia

Thus far in James’ epistle we have seen that he had pointed to a great trial that had come upon the churches in the Diaspora sometime after Paul’s imprisonment. Paul had warned the brethren when he was with them that the man of sin would be restrained, until he (Paul) was taken out of the way (2Thessalonians 2:7). The “mystery of iniquity” or the secret (plan) of wickedness was already working, but Paul was able to keep it at bay while he was free. Now, however, he was in prison, and no man had the clout Paul had with the churches in Greece and Asia. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 9, 2016 in Gospel

 

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James—the Fiery Epistle from Jerusalem

James 1 1-3

from Google Images

James addressed his letter to the twelve tribes scattered abroad. That is, his letter was sent to Israel, but gentile believers would be affected as well. Nevertheless, we need to keep in mind that the main consideration was believing Jews, because the persecution that came after Paul’s imprisonment was aimed at these believers. Knowing this, some of what James says is encoded to keep the enemies of the Gospel from understanding the true intent of this epistle. Moreover, it is probably true that James was executed by Ananias, the high priest and son of Annas in 63 AD, for writing this very epistle and not long after Paul left for Rome . Therefore, his letter had to have been written before this time, but probably closer to James’ death than nearer to Paul’s arrest. Read the rest of this entry »

 
 

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