RSS

Tag Archives: foundation of faith

Too Far for the Sake of Relevance

I’m continuing to look at First Corinthians, chapter 15.  Paul is talking about the concept of resurrection.  He started by reminding them of his Gospel message.  This is, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he then appeared to many credible witnesses.

Whether, then, it was I or they, this is what we preach, and this is what you believed.
1 Corinthians 15:11

This is the foundation of faith that the Corinthian church was established upon.  Unfortunately, they were now trying to become more acceptable to the society around them.  Belief in someone rising from the dead was a little far out.

Greek society prided themselves on their intellect and knowledge.  It’s a lot like where I live, in the Boston area, where there’s a college or university everywhere you look.

Because they wanted to be “relevant”, they downplayed the resurrection.  Sometimes even telling people they could become a Christian without believing in it.  They were probably well-meaning and though that once they came in the door, someday they’d “see the light.”

What does Paul think about this?

But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?  If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised.  And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.
1 Corinthians 15:12-14

Paul is very clear.  There’s no salvation without the resurrection.  If God isn’t powerful enough to raise the dead, then what was the purpose of the cross?  What Christ did on the cross is meaningless without the resurrection.

More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead.  But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised.  For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either.  And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.
1 Corinthians 15:15-17

Changing the truth of God’s Word in order to make it more palatable to society only removes the very heart of the message.  It’s no longer the Gospel.

Many in our generation need to understand this truth.  The Scripture says what it says.  It will offend some people.  We can’t change that.

This being said, we can change the way we handle it.  We can be more loving and less judgmental.  When Jesus ministered, He found a way to show God’s love without compromising truth.

We need to take stock of our message.  Does it line up with Scripture?  Once you leave the clear path of truth, the doctrines of faith begin to fall like dominoes.

Paul shows these Christians the end result of a belief in no resurrection.

Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost.  If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men.
1 Corinthians 15:18-19

The bottom line is to never compromise the truth of the Word to win people to Christ.  You can change the method, but not the message.

Question: What was the message that you believed when you were saved?

© 2019 Nick Zaccardi

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 28, 2019 in Faith, Revival, The Church, The Gospel

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Lives Laid Down for the Scripture #Revivals past

MountchurchI’ve been posting about the first great move of God after the Dark Ages.  The Lord was using His people to restore the Bible as the foundation for faith and practice in the church.

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.
Romans 15:4

It’s obvious from the lives of these people, that they were able to endure beyond the normal experience.  It was their reliance on the Scripture that brought them to this level.

Who were these dedicated believers?

There were the Cathari in France.  They believed that tradition, alone, is not a basis for faith.  So they started printing and circulating Scripture.  Pope Innocent III actually called for a crusade against them.  Not only did he wipe them out, but the entire local population as well.

Another name to remember was Peter Waldo.  Around this time he started preaching the Word of God and circulating Scripture.  His followers were called the Waldensians.  They fared a little better.  When the order was given to kill them all, they were able to flee.  This community of Christians escaped to the mountain caves of Northern Italy, where they still exist today.

One of the more famous names of this move was John Wycliffe, from England.  Again, his goal was to preach the Word and get the Scripture into the hands of God’s people.  His followers were called the Lollards.  Unfortunately, they had to give up their lives for the faith.  They were martyred by Kings Henry the IV and V.

In many cases, the problem with our humanity is that we don’t want to know that we’re wrong.  The fact is that I need Scripture to correct me and then show me how to get back on solid ground again.  Many don’t want to admit their need for change.  Especially when there’s political power involved.  That was a big reason that they crucified the Lord.

The list goes on and on of those who started preaching a new way of following Christ – using the Scripture as the standard of their lives.  It includes such men as St. Jerome, John Huss, John Calvin, and Martin Luther.  Many people don’t know that Luther was actually working on a German translation for the common people to read.  Most of these saints of God were persecuted and killed.

Their commitment is summed up pretty well in a line from the dedication page of the KJV Bible: “So that if, on the one side, we shall be traduced by…persons at home or abroad, who therefore will malign us, because we are poor instruments to make God’s holy Truth to be yet more and more known unto the people, whom they desire still to keep in ignorance and darkness;”

I am eternally grateful for their sacrifice so that I could have a foundation for my faith.  And, so that you could know the truth of God for yourself.

Question: What’s the best way to show our gratefulness to God for our unlimited access to the Scripture?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
1 Comment

Posted by on July 10, 2013 in Revival, The Church

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Evolution vs. Creation…Is it Really that Important?

OrbitTalk about a controversial subject.  Why should we even bother discussing it?  The debate over Creationism only gets people mad, and makes them think that Christians are backward thinking hicks.  Is our view on this issue important to our walk with God?  I want to take a few posts to weigh in on the subject.  I think you’ll be surprised by some of the truths involved.

By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.
Hebrews 11:3

A little while ago I did a series of posts on the subject of True Faith.  I came to the conclusion that faith is a walk of discovery and response.  That is, discovering God’s truth and how we respond to it.

What do we discover in this verse?  Actually, we see the foundation of our walk with God.  So often we discount the importance of this truth.  We get wishy-washy because it’s so controversial in our society.  In our desire to sound modern and relevant, we end up denying the very core of who we are as believers.

The hot topic in question is intelligent design vs. evolution.  We seem to think it’s only a peripheral debate.

If that’s the case, then why does the enemy think it’s so important to attack?  Why is it such a main area of discussion when atheists try to show how “foolish” Christianity is?

The reason is crystal clear.  Faith understands that there’s a Creator.  That concept is foundational to our walk with the Lord.  If there’s no Creator, then there’s no purpose to life.  We would also have no responsibility for our actions.  There would be no such thing as sin and no need for forgiveness.  In that case, there would be no final judgment.  Following that logic, there would be no need for a Savior, the cross, or the resurrection.

Everything we believe rests upon the truth that there is a Creator-God, and that we were created by Him and for Him.  That’s why the subject is so important to those who oppose Christianity.  The Creation account is the bedrock upon which everything else we believe is built.

If my faith in God as Creator is shaky, then anything else I believe will be subject to doubt.  I must get the foundation solid in order to stand secure in my faith.

This is such an important subject.  Let me suggest that you subscribe for these posts to come to you via e-mail so that you don’t miss any.

Question: How important do you feel it is to believe in Creation?

 
1 Comment

Posted by on December 17, 2012 in Creation, Faith

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,