Dr. R. Scott Clark: Federal Vision


February 8, 2015

RScott_Clark

Dr. R. Scott Clark is a professor of Church History and Historical Theology at Westminster Seminary in Southern California. He’s also an associate minister at at Escondido United Reformed Church in Escondido, California. He has a blog at Heidelblog.net, where you can also find the Heidelcast, his podcast.

For this episode, Dr. Clark joins me to discuss Federal Vision, an errant teaching that is popular in some Reformed circles. We discuss what it is, as well as the dangers that it presents upon the church.

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Bob DeWaay: Salvation & Condemnation


January 1, 2015

In January 2009, we began a series on “The Essentials of the Christian Faith,” with Patrick Szalapski. That episode was an overview of seven essential doctrines of Christianity. Since then, we have taken every January (except 2012) to get specifically into each of the essentials. Bob DeWaay returns this month for his third look at these essential doctrines with us. This time around, we discuss Salvation and Condemnation.

This episode was originally recorded on New Year’s Day as a live Google Hangout “On Air” (the recording of that video is below).

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Justin Peters: Trips to Heaven


December 17, 2014

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And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgmentHebrews 9:27 (ESV)

Over the last few years, there have been several books, movies, and other accounts of people visiting both Heaven and Hell. The three most memorable being Colton Burpo, a (then) four-year-old boy who supposedly visited Heaven; Don Piper, supposedly killed instantly in a car accident, and visited Heaven for 90 minutes before being revived; and Bill Wiese, who claims to have been dead for 23 minutes, visiting Hell during that time.

Justin Peters, of Justin Peters Ministries, travels the US and overseas to give seminars on the Word-Faith movement, and other discernment topics, joins Echo Zoe Radio this month to discuss these stories, and compare them to Scripture and each other to demonstrate their falsehood.

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Dan Phillips: The World-Tilting Gospel


November 23, 2014

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“These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also, and Jason has received them, and they are all acting against the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus.”Acts 17:6b-7 ESV

Dan Phillips is pastor of Copperfield Bible Church in Houston, Texas. He has a Master of Divinity from Talbot Theological Seminary. He also writes for the collaborative blog Pyromaniacs, and his own blog, Biblical Christianity. He’s the author of two books, The World-Tilting Gospel, and God’s Wisdom in Proverbs.”

I’ve had in mind to ask Dan for an interview for Echo Zoe Radio for quite some time. His book The World-Tilting Gospel is a wonderful read, about the most dear subject to any Christian’s heart: the Gospel. For this episode, Dan and I discussed the book, and through it, the Gospel.

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Nick Coldagelli: The Love of God


October 26, 2014

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One of the most commonly held beliefs held by everyone, from evangelical Christians to unbelievers, is that God loves everyone. Christians often present the Gospel by saying that “Jesus loves you and died for your sins.” But is this what the Bible teaches? Who does God love? How does He manifest that love? How does the Bible describe the love of God?

For this month’s podcast episode, Nick Coldagelli returns to share with us his study of God’s love. He lays out what the Bible teaches about the love of God. He also addresses commonly held values held by most Christians that can’t be found in the Scriptures.

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Cameron Buettel: Hillsong


September 13, 2014

Hillsong_Church_New Cameron is a seminary student at the Master’s Seminary in the greater Los Angeles area. He also works at Grace to You, the media ministry of pastor John MacArthur. Cameron has a blog called “The Bottom Line“, and he also has a website at onceuponacross.com. It was on that blog that Cameron published years worth of correspondence and critique of Hillsong, which is a mega church movement and franchise based in Sydney, Australia. Cameron joins me to discuss Hillsong.

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Ryan Habbena: The Holy Land


August 23, 2014

Ryan Habbena in front of Cave 4 at Qumran.

Ryan Habbena in front of Cave 4 at Qumran.

In February of this year, I joined Ryan Habbena and the Mount Moriah Foundation on a tour of Israel. It was my hope during that tour to sit down with our guide for about 5 minutes at the end of each day to talk briefly about the sites we had visited that day, but logistically that just didn’t work out. Instead, Ryan joins me this month to talk about the things we saw in the Holy Land.

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Richard Bennett: Roman Catholicism


July 26, 2014

richard_bennett Richard Bennett originally comes from Ireland. He was trained by Jesuits in his early years, and received eight years of theological instruction and preparation for the priesthood with the Dominicans. He completed his education at the Angelicum University in Rome in 1964. He spent twenty-one years as a Catholic parish priest in Trinidad, West Indies. He had, therefore, the best of academic training in things Catholic, plus twenty-one years of being a parish priest applying Catholic teachings to everyday life. After a serious accident in 1972, in which he nearly lost his life, he began to study seriously the Bible. After nearly fourteen years of contrasting Catholicism to Biblical truth, he was convicted by the Gospel message. In 1985, he saw that justification is not being inwardly just as Rome taught, but being accepted in Christ. He was then saved by God’s grace alone and formally left the Roman Catholic Church and its priesthood. He has founded an evangelistic ministry to Catholics called “Berean Beacon.” He joins Echo Zoe Radio this month to share his testimony and to talk about Roman Catholicism.

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A Look at the Rapture, Part 4: Imminence


June 25, 2014

So far in the “A Look at the Rapture” series, we’ve introduced the subject, laid out the basic differences between the Pre-Tribulational rapture view and the Pre-Wrath rapture view, walked through Matthew 24, and we took a look at the differences between the 70th Week of Daniel, the Tribulation, and the Day of the Lord.

In this installment, it’s my intention to address the question of imminence.

“But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only. For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Matthew 24:36-39

This passage certainly leaves the impression that the Lord will return at a moment no one suspects to gather His elect. It is a key passage in the Pre-Tribulational view. No other single aspect of Pre-Tribulationalism has as firm of a grip on the people who hold to the Pre-Trib view as does the doctrine of imminence. The fallacy of equivocation, which we discussed in part 3, often comes up because it is necessary to the Pre-Tribulational understanding of imminence.

So just what is imminence? The Pre-Tribulational view of imminence is the teaching that Jesus could (and will) return to gather His church at any moment, with no advanced notice, and no signs necessary for it to happen. They essentially teach that, following Pentecost, there are no more prophecies that must be fulfilled before Christ can return to gather the Elect. The word “imminent” could mean that something is certain to happen, it’s only a matter of time. We speak of imminence in our daily lives in this manner often. For example, at the time of this writing, there have been tensions in Ukraine for a few months between the pro-western Ukrainians that live mainly in the western part of that country, and the pro-Russian Ukrainians that live mainly in the east. It seems that a civil war, or even a Russian invasion, are imminent. Pre-Tribulationists use this very meaning of imminent, be the certainty of Christ’s return is assured, not just assumed, as in the case of war in Ukraine.

Another way of looking at imminence is simply to say that something is certain to happen, and we know when it will happen. Independence Day, 2014 is imminent. We not only know it’s coming, we know it’s a week from Friday. The midterm elections are also imminent. They will happen on November 4th, 2014. Knowing the day does not make it any less imminent than the imminence of the next major California earthquake.

Along the lines of the second understanding of imminence, there is the case of knowing something will happen, and knowing generally when it will happen, but not knowing exactly when it will happen. In Minnesota, the first major freeze is generally in October or November. We don’t know exactly when it will happen, it could be mid-October to as late as the end of November, but we can be certain it will happen. If I don’t get the water in my irrigation system blown out before it happens, I can be certain I’ll be digging up busted pipe the following spring if I wish to water my lawn again. My dad, who blows out irrigation systems in the fall for extra cash, generally comes over sometime in the second week of October to do it for me.

It is this latter understanding of imminence that Pre-Wrathers look to in our understanding of the timing of the return of Christ. Having looked at Matthew 24, we’ve already dealt with this to some degree. Also, looking above to the quote of vs. 36-39, it would be the Pre-Wrath view that we do know the season of the Lord’s return to gather His elect (like we know the season of the first hard freeze in Minnesota), we just don’t know the day or hour.

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A Look at the Rapture: Part 3 – The Fallacy of Equivocation


June 21, 2014

So far in this series on the rapture, we’ve introduced the subject, explained the basic differences between the Pre-Tribulational and Pre-Wrath views of the rapture of the church, and looked at Matthew 24, a key passage in regard to the timing of events leading up to Jesus’ return for His church. In this installment, we’ll investigate the differences between three key time periods immediately preceding the return of Jesus Christ at the end of the age. It is my contention that proponents of the Pre-Tribulational view of rapture commit the fallacy of equivocation in regard to these three periods, arguing that they are all different terms referring to the same period of time.

The distinction between these time periods is very important to the discussion of rapture. If these time periods are, in fact, the same, then several passages of scripture require a Pre-Tribulational rapture. If they are not the same, but rather are ways of breaking down a larger period of time into smaller periods within that larger period, then the Pre-Wrath view does a much better job of harmonizing the passages of scripture that point to the return of Christ.

The three terms, or periods of time, that we are going to look at here are as follows: The 70th Week of Daniel, the Tribulation, and the Day of the Lord. Because the proponents of the Pre-Tribulational view see all of these periods as being the same, and the terms as synonymous, the following description of each is the view held by the Pre-Wrath view.

The 70th Week of Daniel

Perhaps the most common term used to refer to the final few years at the End of the Age is “The 70th Week of Daniel.” This term is derived from Daniel 9:24-27

Seventy weeks are decreed about your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, land to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal both vision and prophet, and to anoint a most holy place. Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in a troubled time. And after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and shall have nothing. And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. Its end shall come with a flood, and to the end there shall be war. Desolations are decreed. And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator.” emphasis mine

When Daniel prophesies of “weeks,” he is referring to seven-year periods, or weeks of years, not weeks of days. This is not controversial, Bible scholars of all persuasions agree on the usage of the terms here.

Of the 70 weeks (of years) described above, 69 have already come to pass. From the end of the Babylonian captivity, which Daniel was writing from, until the time that Jerusalem and the Temple would be rebuilt would be seven weeks, or 49 years. Immediately following, there would be 62 weeks until Messiah would come, minister, and “be cut off.” In other words, this 62 weeks terminates with the crucifixion of Christ. That leaves us with a total of 69 weeks that commenced with the decree of Cyrus the Persian to rebuild Jerusalem (Ezra 1) and terminated with the death of Jesus Christ.

Pre-Trib and Pre-Wrath agrees that this period of time is seven years in duration. There has been no serious disagreement over that of which I am aware. One week is seven years.
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