Shellfish, women’s rights, and slavery. What do these three thing have in common?
Well I recently had a discussion with an old friend from highschool who has gained a sudden interest towards spiritual living and towards “god”. Though not a Christian we had an interesting discussion about which way to approach God (Hinduism, Christianity, none of the above etc.) and he listed quickly 3 big problem he has with Biblical Christianity. They were shellfish (or dietary laws), the value of women, and the acceptance of slavery. I did not want to get in to a huge debate or waste his time if he was busy so I let them slide. But the more I got to thinking about it these three issues often come up with people who do not see Christianity as a wholesome or true way to God. And I wanted to cast some light on these little problems that are blown out of proportion and misunderstood.
While reading Romans 1 last night with my favorite wife, I was already amazed by the 5th verse! “That is basically the whole theology of the Bible” I said. And so I wanted to share this gem with you, one that may be quickly overlooked as so many introductions to the epistles are.
(Romans 1:1-5 NKJV)
Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated to the gospel of God which He promised before through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures…
Ever read this passage and was confused?
Jhn 8:56 – (Jesus speaking)Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.”
Jhn 8:57 – “You are not yet fifty years old,” the Jews said to him, “and you have seen Abraham!”
Jhn 8:58 – “I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!“
In the Gospel we find many accounts of individuals who suffered from disease, epilepsy (Mat 17:14-18), muteness (Mat 9:33), blindness (Mat 12:22), self cutting (Mrk 5:5), fever (Luk 1:33-36) yet these same individuals found their wellness after Jesus (or a disciple) had delivered them of a demonic spirit (Mat 8:16). This inescapable subject has brought forth many questions and even more interpretations of the same scriptures. Many common questions include:
- Are all modern illnesses demonic?
- Are only some of them demonic?
- If someone is sick or mentally ill do they simply need demonic deliverance to be healed?
- Are we super-spiritualizing medical issues with the idea of demons?
Ok… sorry about the title but after reading a recent secular “study” on individuals who left various sects of Christianity and thus found more enjoyment in their sex lives I feel the great need to write on something that is very near and dear to my heart (I am still a newlywed after all)- the powerful truth about sex and Christian sexuality.
Moses’ Shining Face
God tells Moses to carve out two more stone tablets (remember his last trip down the mountain led to him shattering the first set) because he once again going to meet with God on Mount Sinai. So Moses goes up the mountain again for 40 days without food or water. God spells out to Moses the requirements of a simple covenant in which God says if Israel will obey His voice they will be victorious over their enemies. After his meeting with God, Moses goes back down the mountain and his face shines supernaturally, perhaps because of his prolonged exposure to God’s glory. Apparently this was bothersome because he wore a veil to cover it up. Many have made connections between the shining of Moses’ face with Jesus’s transfigured body, angel’s luminous presence, and Adam & Eve’s state before sin. Some say that Adam and Eve shone with glorious light until they sinned which resulted in them loosing their glorified image and seeing themselves as “naked”. Perhaps our glorified or resurrected bodies will shine as Moses’s face did, we don’t know. But let’s just agree that when you meet with God, there are serious and visible changes!
In the beginning everything was good (Gen 1:31), everything was as God intended it to be – perfect. So what happened? Why is everything so bad and why do we encounter such difficulty finding God? The perfection that God created only lasted until Satan disrupted the harmony that God had established. Now we find ourselves in the middle of the telling of a cosmic drama where God is working towards the restoration of everything that was lost, eventually God will put things back in order like they use to be (Rev 21:3). However, God is not doing nothing about the problems that currently exists. He is only doing it on His schedule and not our own (Isaiah 55:8-9).
Currently we await the return of Christ which is yet another step in God’s great plan to restore us to Himself as well as to restore the original glory to all that He created (Act 1:11). To know what it will be like when God restores everything in the end we can look at Genesis and see glimpses of what man enjoyed before sin as well as what we will enjoy after Satan is put away (Rev 20:10).
1. Being completely in God’s image (Gen 1:26-27)
2. Dominion over the Earth (Gen 1:26, 28, 29, 2:19)
3. Peace and freedom (Gen 1:28, 29)
4. Union with each other (Gen 2:21-25)
5. Innocence (Gen 2:25)
6. Relationship with God (Gen 3:8-13)
7. Eternal life (Gen 3:22-24)