Showing posts from April, 2021

What is the work of creation?

The work of creation is, God’s making all things of nothing, by the word of his power, in the space of six days, and all very good. [1] Genesis 1:1 (NASB) In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. God created everything in the universe; there was nothing, and God created everything. Hebrews 11:3 (NASB) By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible. It is by the Word that God created everything that now exist. He did not create from matter but created the matter. He did not create in time but created time. Genesis 1:31 (NASB) God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. We should look at creation through God’s eyes; for what God created in six days is very good. [1]  The Shorter Catechism, 9.

How doth God execute his decrees?

God executeth his decrees in the works of creation and providence. [1] Revelation 4:11 (NASB) Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created. God created the heavens and the earth and the sea and all that is in them; therefore, he is worthy of all glory and honor and praise. Nothing exist that God did not will, for he created all things that exist from nothing.  Daniel 4:35 (NASB) All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, But He does according to His will in the host of heaven And among the inhabitants of earth; And no one can ward off His hand Or say to Him, “What have You done?” This was the confession of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon. Once brought low by God, God returned him to reason; understood and proclaimed that God does what he wants, however he wants to do it, and there is nothing that a mere man can to do to thwart the providence of God. [1]  Th

What are the decrees of God?

The decrees of God are, his eternal purpose, according to the counsel of his will, whereby, for his own glory, he hath foreordained whatsoever comes to pass. [1] Ephesians 1:11-12 (NASB) In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will, to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory. All of history is moving towards a climactic subjection to God. [2]  It might not appear that God is in control, but God is firmly in control of history.  We do not serve a God who created the universe and stepped away, or a God who is incapable of bringing about his purpose. Everything, and I mean everything that occurs is in some sense predestined by God. Why does a good and sovereign God allow tragedies and evil? I do not know, but I am confident that evil will eventually be defeated, for God’s purpose and will is for good. [3]  It is a mystery how God’s sovereignt

How many persons are there in the Godhead?

There are three persons in the Godhead: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one God, the same in substance, equal in power and glory. Matthew 28:19 (NASB) Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Do you believe that God is one Divine being existing eternally in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, all of whom are equally God in essence?  Belief in the Trinity is an essential to the christian faith. All Christians from Acts to the present day have believed that God is Father, Son, and Spirit. Throughout christian history, the Godhead has been invoked during baptismal ceremonies.  In believers baptism, Christians publicly identify themselves with the Triune Godhead. [1]  During the baptismal ceremony, the baptizer invokes the Godhead saying, “I baptize you my brother, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” [1]  Believer's Bible Commentary, Matthew

Are there more Gods than one?

There is but one only, the living and true God. Deuteronomy 6:4 (NASB) “Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! This verse is called the Shema because the verse begins, “Hear, O Israel!;” Shema is the Hebrew word for hear. What was Israel to hear but that the LORD (i.e. יְהוָֹה Yehovah or יַהְוֶה Yahveh ) is their God? They should also hear that the LORD (i.e. יְהוָֹה Yehovah or יַהְוֶה Yahveh ) is one. Saying that the Lord alone is Israel’s God is a statement of exclusivity, for Israel was to bow down to no other so called gods. In the book of Deuteronomy, verse 6:4 follows another Shema, the Ten Commandments which where given by the mouth of God on Mt. Sinai in the desert and all of Israel heard the word of the LORD and they were afraid.  In Deuteronomy, Moses is recounting all of these things to the sons of Israel. He reminds that the LORD said, “I am the LORD your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of slavery.” (Dt 5:6) All of Israel was to hear that th

What is God?

God is Spirit, infinite, eternal, and unchangeable, in his being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness, and truth. [1] Exodus 34:6-7 (NASB) Then the LORD passed by in front of him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations.” Exodus 34:6-7 is one of my favorite passages in all of Scripture, which includes the story that proceeds and follows. When Israel proclaimed the proper name of their God (Yhvh i.e. יְהוָֹה Yehovah or יַהְוֶה Yahveh ) they were invoking the nature of God, given to Moses on Mount Sinai.  John 1:17-18 (NASB) For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ. No one has seen God at any time; the onl

What do the Scriptures principally teach?

The Scriptures principally teach what man is to believe concerning God, and what duty God requires of man. [1] 2 Timothy 1:13 (NASB) Retain the standard of sound words which you have heard from me, in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus. I learned a five step method for interpreting Scripture: [2] 1.      Grasp the text in their town. 2.      Measure the width of the river to cross. 3.      Cross the principlizing bridge. 4.      Consult the biblical map. 5.      Grasp the text in our town The point of this is to come to the universal principle taught in the text that is applicable in the lives of everyone, then personally apply the principle in our own lives. There are also a few criteria to observer: [3] §    The principle should be reflected in the text. §    The principle should be timeless and not tied to a specific situation. §    The principle should not be culturally bound.  §    The principle should correspond to the teaching of the rest of Scripture. §    The princip

What rule hath God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?

The word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him. [1] Ephesians 2:20 (NASB) having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus Himself being the corner stone, 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NASB) All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. The latin, “Sola Scriptura,” was the rallying cry of the Reformation. It would be Scripture alone by which Protestant churches would be organized, and the rule by which the followers of Jesus Christ would live out their lives. The Old Testament is the writings of the prophets and the New Testament is the writings of the apostles; Jesus Christ is the corner stone of both the Old Testament and the New Testament because he is the Word of God become flesh. (Jn. 1:1, 14) The Scriptures were held h

What is the chief end of man?

A man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever. [1] 1 Corinthians 10:31 (NASB)  Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. Why was man created? In my study, there is a painting of my father. This is a creation of my daughter’s, in the likeness of her grandfather, in one of the places on the earth that he enjoyed. Did she create this work of art for the glory of the painting? Did the painting create itself? When someone looks at a painting, you can marvel at it’s beauty, but ultimately, you most marvel at the artist who created the work of art. It is God who created the heavens, and the earth, and the sea, and all that they contain. We can enjoy the things, and persons, and work that we do, but it is God who gets all the glory, because it is God who created all. Psalms 73:25-26 (NASB) Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my por

The Shema

Deuteronomy 6:4 (NASB) “Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! Moses said to the children of Israel, that they shall love the Lord their God with all of their heart, and with of their soul, and with all of your might; (Dt 6:5) the New Testament adds, “and with your mind.” (Lk 10:27) Moses goes on to teach the Israelites that all the words that he is charging them with today, shall be on their hearts, and they shall teach them to their children. They shall talk of them when they sit in the home, when they are walking, when they lie down, and when the rise up. (Dt. 6:6-7) What is your greatest regret in life?  In the Baptist tradition, believers in the church present their children before the congregation, (baby dedication) vowing to raise them in the way of the Lord; other denominations baptize their children. Whether presenting or baptizing, all agree, that children are very important in the life blood of the church. My greatest regret in life is that I did not catechize

April 7th in the Year of Our Lord 2021

Today I am scheduled to work in the CVICU. This job has been very very difficult lately and the patients seem to be sicker than they were in the past. People have always been sick, sickness came with the fall but it seems to be more abundant now then in times past. Perhaps it is a bad patch that we are going through at the moment. I do not always know what the Lord is doing and the reason for everything under the sun. I named this blog the Nurse Theologian because I am a Registered Nurse and I spend my time off from my job in theological studies. Theological studies include the Bible, church history, systematic theology and practical theology; I believe nursing to be a practical theology.  My time studying is a reprieve from the bedside of the sick. This job has been so very stressful as of late, I am not sure that I can even continue in it, it is more than I am able to bear, and it is not about me but about the other; human suffering and death abound, “death spread to all men because

The Suffering Servant

The translation that I read, (NASB) gives Isaiah 53 the title: The Suffering Servant. Biblical interpretation is a very interesting thing and can be thwarted by our desires and presuppositions. For example: The 21st century Jewish Rabbi would tell you that the suffering servant in Isaiah 53 is Israel. The christian dispensationalist interprets the passage to be about Israel but in a different way; it is the confession of Israel on a future date, when Israel comes to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. However, the unlearned person who has heard the story of Jesus but does not have a theological grid by which to interpret the Scripture would simply say, the passage is about Jesus. The simplest interpretation is often the correct interpretation, that is, if you are seeing Christ in all of Scripture because the Scriptures are written about Jesus Christ. John 6:35 (NASB) “I am the bread of life!” John 8:12 (NASB) “I am the Light of the world!” John 10:7 (NASB) “I am the door of t

A God Who Hears

Dear Neighbor, My reading this morning came form Isaiah 45-48; for Israel, there is comfort in Cyrus, there is comfort in the fall of Babylon’s idols, there is comfort in the fall of Babylon and there is comfort in Israel’s return from captivity. Where do we find comfort except in the historical bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ and his promise to return to raise us up to eternal life in the new heaven and the new earth.  I confess that my wife and I are struggling. We are going through a very difficult time and often feel like we are going through this difficult time alone. We are struggling because our children have departed from us and scorn us. Our God is not an idol of wood are metal set upon a shelf but a living God whose throne is in heaven. Jesus Christ is God incarnate, he died and rose again, he ascend, he sat down at the righthand of the Father and he lives to make intercession for us. He made this promise to his disciples, Matthew 18:19-20 (NASB), “Again I say to you, tha

Events and American Evangelicalsim

My conversion to the Lord Jesus Christ was a slow process. I did not come to the Lord quickly, making a decision for the Lord but American Evangelicalism is based on quick decisions. The alter call, the Roman road (Rom 3:23, 5:8, 6:23, 10:9) and the sinners prayer all came about in order to elicit a quick decision in the mind of an awakened sinner. I had an experience with this type of evangelism in 1994. I was awakened to the fact that I was a sinner fallen short of the glory of God; that I was deserving of death and hell but was led in the sinners prayer without any knowledge of the Lord. I soon departed the church and would not return until the year 2003 when I was drawn to read the Scriptures. I would read the Scriptures for over six years before a question was put to me regarding life and my answer was to follow Jesus Christ. For this reason I believe that conversion is a process by which a person is regenerated from within by the holy Spirit of God and from without by the means o

The Blessing

Abraham•Isaac•Jacob•David•Jesus, this is the line through which all of the nations on the earth shall be blessed. John the Baptist said, John 3:35-36 (NASB) “The Father loves the Son and has given all things into His hand. He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” It is through faith in Jesus Christ that all are saved! Psalms 118:24 (NASB), says, “This is the day which the LORD has made; Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” I do not know what will come today. I did not know that I would be where I am today but my trust is in the Lord who created heaven and earth. I know that I am scheduled to work in the CVICU today but I do not yet know whom I will be caring for or their present condition. We are all like grass, lovely when we are blooming but all wither and fade; however, the word of the Lord remains forever (Is 40:6-8) and he has promised eternal life for all who repent and believe in the Son.

Maundy Thurday

Isaiah 33:22 (NASB) For the LORD is our judge, The LORD is our lawgiver, The LORD is our king; He will save us— Yesterday evening,  Sylvania Church  held our annual Maundy Thursday Service. Maundy comes from the Latin mandatum, which means “to command.” On Thursday evening, before his arrest, trial and death by crucifixion, Jesus commanded that his disciples love one anther. (Jn 13:34, 15:12, 17) On this night he also instituted the Lord’s supper. (1 Cor 11:24, 25)  The service is traditionally a salaam service, as we reflect on the final words of Jesus and his death for our sins.  The service began with a Hymn, “When I survey the Wondrous Cross,” and was followed by a Scripture reading, (Luke 22:14-23, 22:39-23:31) given by our pastor, Phillip Dancy. After which was a spoken confession, with parts spoken by the leader and parts spoken by the people. This is a very difficult confession because in it, the pastor puts himself in the place of Pilot and the congregation in the place of the

A Costly Cornerstone

Isaiah 28:16 (NASB) Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed. This prophecy given through Isaiah is one of the most quoted by the New Testament writers: Matt 21:42; Mark 12:10; Luke 20:17; Acts 4:11; Eph 2:20; Rom 9:33; 10:11; 1 Pet 2:6. There is no doubt that Matthew, Mark, Luke, Peter and Paul who penned these New Testament text were saying that Jesus is the stone that the Lord God placed in Zion, that whoever believes in him should not perish. My personal favorite text in all of Scripture is Romans 3:21-31. The NASB translators titled this section, “Justification by Faith.” Leading up to this passage, Paul shows that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; both Jew and Gentile have sinned. The Gentile has sinned without law and the Jew has sinned with law. However, God in his mercy has laid in Zion a costly cornerstone for the