Misunderstood Texts

INTRODUCTION

The bible in its original writings is undoubtedly the inspired Word of God. We believe in plenary/verbal inspiration ie that each Hebrew and Greek word has been chosen by the Holy Spirit of God. That being the case any translation we hold in our hands, no matter how good it may be, is just a translation and there will be scribal errors and personal interpretations presented in each and every one. It is therefore the duty of every believer to follow the exhortation both of our Lord Jesus and our beloved Apostle Paul. The Saviour told the Jews to, "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life; and they are they which testify of me" John 5.39. Then Paul writing to his son in the faith Timothy wrote these words "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth" 2 Timothy 3.15.

In this little booklet that is what we intend to do. We are leaving aside men's opinions and honestly seeking to find out and understand exactly what the Holy Ghost has inspired men of old to write down. We do realize however there are many subjects which are fundamental to the faith which are not open for debate in any shape or form. For example;


The pre existence of Christ; We believe that Bethlehem is not His beginning but ratherly the reflection in the waters of time of One who had existed from all eternity. There never was a time He did not exist and there will never be a time when He will cease to be.


The incarnation of Christ; We believe that "God was manifest in flesh". This is how Paul describes that unfathomnable mystery. Or as John says in his gospel "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us". The Son of God voluntarily clothed Himself in humanity, veiled the outward manifestation of His Deity and walked among men. He became what He had never been before but never ceased to be what He always was.


The sinlessness of Christ; We believe it is not that He didn't sin, but the fact that He could not sin which makes unique. He was "Holy harmless undefiled and separate from sinners", "He did no sin". "He knew no sin", "In him is no sin". Even on the cross He became the sinbearer but not a sinner.


The atoning death of Christ; We believe in an unlimited atonement. There is enough virtue and value in His precious blood to cleanse and remove the stain of sin from every sinner. His sacrifice has satisfied all the demands of the outraged throne of God and has fully met man's need. That substitutionary sacrifice is once for all needing never to be repeated, for when He cried "Tis finished" everything was fully done.


The resurrection and ascension of Christ; We believe He was truly dead but as the scriptures and He himself had foretold after 3 days He rose from among the dead. His resurrection is the most attested to fact in history, for literally hundreds saw Him alive after His shameful death. After appearing to His followers for 40 days He ascended from the Mount of Olives until those who witnessed it could see Him no longer, for a cloud received Him out of their sight. Up and up He ascended until He had reached the pinnacle of glory, and He sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high. The Father greeted Him with the words of Psalm 110.1 "Sit Thou at my right hand until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool".


The coming again of Christ; The 2 men dressed in white apparel had announced "This same Jesus which is taken from you into heaven shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go". Our Lord will return in resplendent glory. The place of His rejection will become the place of His coronation. He will take up all rule and authority, every knee will bow before Him and of His kingdom there will be no end. His feet shall stand again on Olivet and the Lord shall be King over all the earth. His reign will extend right on to the new heavens and the new earth where God will be all in all.


These are indisputable facts which must never be questioned or changed. However in the whole range of scripture there are issues over which believers have argued for centuries. Beliefs have been held which we find impossible to support from scripture without harming the veracity of God's Holy Word. Verses have been wrested from their context to prove some traditional belief or another. Some verses have been used to back up certain doctrines and it is in support of these "misunderstood texts" that this little booklet has been compiled. There is no claim here for infallibility but we desire to humbly allow the Word of God to speak fot itself without putting any slant on it whatsoever. The texts we have chosen to deal with are the ones most commonly used to teach certain ideas and it is our duty as believers to "search the scriptures to see if those things be so", Acts 17.11. We look to the Lord to guide the mind of the writer and the understanding of the reader.


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