Papers

Six Big Problems With The New Apostolic Reformation

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The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) can be characterized as a postmillennial restorationist movement which seeks to restore the so-called lost office of apostle and prophet with the goal of establishing the kingdom of God upon the earth.  Six broad values and beliefs of the movement are evaluated in the following order: postmillennialism, restorationism, manufactured continuationism, reconstructionism, experientialism and pragmatism.  It is argued that postmillennialism is a weak biblical position and that NAR’s brand (“dominionism”) wrongly places the responsibility of the kingdom on Christians rather than God.  It is argued under restorationism that the office of apostle was never lost to begin with.  With manufactured continuationism, there is a forcing and a faking of spiritual gifts resulting in charismania.  With reconstructionism, Christians are precariously pressured to directly engage in warfare against the forces of darkness to restore dominion lost from the Fall.  With experientialism, experience is placed above the Word of God.  And finally, with pragmatism, attempts are made to justify NAR by its rapid growth, but this is shown to be a weak argument.  All six beliefs and practices are unbiblical and should be avoided along with the movement itself.

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Michael Polanyi - Part III: Away from Objectivity Towards Personal, Biblical Truth

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Michael Polanyi – Part III: Away from Objectivity and Towards Personal, Biblical Truth

The challenge to objectivity in casual and academic discourse is quite common by Christians and non-Christians.  This invitation is a hermeneutical device to correct fanciful, or even robust, disagreements.  But, the philosopher Thomas Nagel, calls this directive “a view from nowhere.”  That is, it is a viewpoint that is not only impossible to achieve, but one that cannot fulfill its intended purpose.  Michael Polanyi has soundly demonstrated that modern science is not objective and that the claim of objectivity is destructive to the pursuit of science, as well as social and academic freedom.  Instead, the pursuit of knowledge and truth is centered in the person and his or her calling.  This paper, then, is a beginning view at what apologetics and theology might achieve from such “personal knowledge” that is Biblically grounded.  Jesus statement, “I am the way, the truth, and the life,” is one text among others that indicates this direction. A few theologians who have moved in this direction will be explored, along with other suggestions for future study.  The accusation of subjectivity is avoided by the objective nature of biblical inerrancy, sound theology, and principles of reason. 


        
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Review of Why Are There Differences in the Gospels?

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Book review of

Michael R. Licona, Why Are There Differences in the Gospels? What We Can Learn From Ancient

Biography, New York: Oxford University Press, 2017. 308 pp. $35.00. (Cloth) ISBN 9780190264260.

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An Old Tyme Baal Revival?

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Believer's Baptism: A Biblical and Theological Defense

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 Abstract Title: Believer’s Baptism: A Biblical and Theological Defense  Abstract: Believer’s Baptism: A Biblical and Theological Defense For the past two millennia, Believer's Baptism has been a crucial aspect of the New Testament church. This divine ordinance represents one of the central tenets of Baptist identity. Jesus Christ commanded His followers to be baptized, so it is incumbent upon Christians to fully understand and adhere to the biblical model set forth in the Word of God. Over the years, the subject of baptism has been fraught with controversy, resulting in sharp disagreements between individuals, churches, and denominations. This paper will examine various ideologies and will seek to define the meaning, method, and mode of baptism that is most closely aligned with Scripture. It will also serve as a defense for Southern Baptist beliefs on baptism as set forth in The Baptist Faith and Message. For the purpose of this research, an exegetical study of Mark 16:16, John 3:5, Acts 2:38 and 22:16, Romans 6:3-4, and 1 Peter 3:21 will be carefully examined. These select verses, coupled with apostolic teachings found within the New Testament, will provide a theological basis for Believer's Baptism. ISCA Membership: Student Conference: 2017 Daniel Howard, Ph.D. student at The Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary 

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Defending the Faith in the Political Environment

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The political environment can be (and often is) a difficult environment in which the believer can provide a Christian apologetic. As the church is the “pillar and support of truth,” it is incumbent upon believers to engage the political sphere. Scripture reveals that God ordains all powers, yet, of course, there are rare times when Christians cannot submit to the state. The purpose of this paper is to portray a biblical apologetic toward governing authorities by considering what Scripture reveals with regard to the church’s behavior toward government officials and how to minister to them. Consideration will be given to those uncommon instances when Christians must practice civil disobedience. The paper will also address the historical development of a Christian doctrine asserting the relationship between the church and state (by considering the notion of “two swords,” and various historical examples). The paper will conclude with the specifics for engaging the political environment with a biblical apologetic.  

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A Reconsideration of the Importance of CSBI and CSBH in Apologetics, Evangelism, and Perseverance in the Orthodox Faith

Subtitle: 
Responding to Contemporary Challenges to the ICBI Statements by Evangelical Apologists and Biblical Scholars
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This is a 59-page paper that begins by reconsidering the question of whether or not and to which degree an uncompromising stance on full biblical inerrancy (as opposed to limited or partial inerrancy) may be important for those involved in pre-evangelism and evangelism. It proceeds to consider the concern raised by some that inerrancy may be a catalyst for apostasy from the faith. Other challenges posed to full-inerrantists by limited-inerrantists that are examined. How helpful are the illustrations of concentric circles for showing which docrines are more important than others?  Is the reliance on "outdated" Scottish Realism philosophy by paleo-inerrantists a good reason for the neo-inerrantists to dismiss their conclusions?  Is there really no overlap between interpretation and inerrancy?  There is a particular focus given to the challenges raised by genre (apocalyptic) studies. The problem of "Jewish zombies" in Matthew 27:51-53 is used as a case study.  

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Forensics and Faithfulness

Subtitle: 
Defense in the Context of the New Testament
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Over time apologetics has become quite an elaborate affair. The term is now shorthand for almost any intellectual engagement with non-belief. A Scripture passage cited frequently as a justification for apologetics is 1 Peter 3:15. What would Peter have had in mind when he urged Christians to make a defense? Since ἀπολογίᾳ is a legal term, it is instructive to look at this Scripture passage in light of the larger witness motif in the New Testament. I conclude that defense in the New Testament, including the defense Peter had in mind, is incomplete by itself; it is in the service of bearing witness for Christ. Thus, there is no question of whether apologetics and evangelism go together; they are a package deal. I will draw primarily from A. A. Trites’ study, The Concept of Witness in the New Testament, and will conclude with a consideration of how this might color apologetics today.

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God's Moral Justification in Creating the Actual World

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The idea of the best possible world was made famous by Leibniz. Much has been made of whether or not this is the best possible world, and if not, if God can be held morally responsible for this. In order to assess properly this idea, one must understand what makes one world morally preferable to another. This is called the Axiom of Moral Preferability (AMP). This paper contends there is no best possible world, and even if there were to be one, God would not be constrained to create it. So long as God does not cause evil and the AMP is fulfilled, God has created a good world and is morally justified in doing so.

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Intro to the Dead Sea Scrolls

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