Here’s an intriguing idea I stumbled upon today. It’s probably been argued a thousand times before, but I hadn’t thought of it before. The internal evidence provided in the account of Acts 2 actually proves that Luke’s account is authentic.
I’ve been studying the Epistle of 1 Clement recently (c. 96 A.D.) looking specifically at the number of New Testament passages he quotes. Clement lived in Rome prior to the deaths of Peter and Paul and claims to have known the Apostles. This is significant. If these New Testament books were “forgeries” — as the skeptics claim they were — then men such as Clement of Rome would have known that they were not authentic. Yet Clement quotes these books along side of the Old Testament scriptures in a matter-of-fact manner as though they had the same authority.
You may be familiar with the argument for the authenticity of the New Testament that cites the numerous quotes by the Church Fathers. It’s an argument that has a lot of merit, since Clement, Polycarp, Ignatius and other first century contemporaries of the Apostles could not have quoted from the New Testament books as authentic source documents unless these books had been in circulation since the time of the Apostles.
Here’s a tangential tack to that argument. Apparently, a fan of Jesus Seminar fellow John Dominic Crossan thinks I’ve misrepresented him in my rebuttal documentary, The Real Jesus. He says that the idea Crossan presents is that the resurrection story developed gradually. However, in my representation of his book, The Historical Jesus, I say he thinks it must have occurred in several days.
The video is either ill informed or disingenuous when it claims that Crossan makes the assertion that 1 or 2 of the disciples created the resurrection story a few days following Jesus’s death to gain credibility. In fact, Crossan hypothesizes that the development of the story to years and was not some crass political move, but a sincere attempt to give hope to a small, committed movement.
The longer the period of time in its concoction, the more unlikely the story was to have been believed so widely. If it really were just a story concocted to give hope to a small group of committed believers, then it must arisen within 10 days of Jesus ascension. According to Acts 2, Pentecost was the first time that the message of the resurrection was preached.
But Crossan probably thinks Pentecost didn’t really happen either. The idea is absurd, since the Acts of the Apostles reports that Jews from all over the world (Acts 2:5) were converted to Christ at Pentecost. Later these men returned to their home cities and founded churches among Jewish converts to Christ who also made converts. These fledgling churches were close-knit communities and the details of their founding could not have escaped common knowledge.
If the story of the mass conversion of thousands of new believers at Pentecost is not historically authentic, then first and second century Christians from churches all over the Roman world would have known the account of Acts 2 to be false the first time the book was received and read. They would have seen immediately if the account was historically authentic or not simply due to the fact that the events of Acts 2 could not be corroborated by the known existence of such “men from every nation under heaven” in their locale.
Thus Acts validates most of the New Testament simply because it is not just a story about what Jesus did in a far away land in isolation with his disciples. Acts chronicles so many accounts in so many places that if it were false, it would have been rejected due to the lack of eyewitnesses who would have still been alive when the next generation of Christians read it.
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With “preaching to the lost” being such a basic foundation of Christianity, why do many in the church seem to be apathetic on this issue of preaching in highways and byways of towns and cities?
Is it biblical to stand in the public places of the world and proclaim the gospel, regardless if people want to hear it or not?
Does the Bible really call church pastors, leaders and evangelists to proclaim the gospel in the public square as part of obedience to the Great Commission, or is public preaching something that is outdated and not applicable for our day and age?
These any many other questions are answered in this documentary.
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Exposes the Dangers of Abortion to Women!
These shocking eyewitness accounts expose the dangers of abortion not only to unborn children, but to the health and lives women as well. An antidote to the smokescreens of the liberal media, these short clips show what really happens in and around abortion clinics.
Although the content is emotionally gut-wrenching, these videos have been used in church seminars and small groups to educate Christians on the abortion issue and to lead people toward a pro-life position. Contains 2 hours and 40 minutes of materials that can be shown separately.
Watch these pro-life videos on-line.
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“Give me liberty or give me death!”
Patrick Henry’s famous declaration not only helped launch the War for Independence, it also perfectly summarized the mindset that gave birth to, and sustained, the unprecedented experiment in Christian liberty that was America.
The freedom our Founders envisioned was not freedom from suffering, want, or hard work. Nor was it freedom to indulge every appetite or whim without restraint—that would merely be servitude to a different master. No, the Founders’ passion was to live free before God, unfettered by the chains of autocracy, shackles that slowly but inexorably bind men when the governments they fashion fail to recognize and uphold freedom’s singular, foundational truth: that all men are created in the image of God, and are thereby co-equally endowed with the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
This presentation is a similar call, not to one but many. By reintroducing the principles of freedom that gave birth to America, it is our prayer that Jesus, the true and only ruler over the nations, will once again be our acknowledged Sovereign, that we may again know and exult in the great truth that “where the Spirit of the LORD is, there is liberty” (2 Cor. 3:17).
Welcome to the Second American Revolution!
This DVD features “Liberty: The Model of Christian Liberty” along with “Dawn’s Early Light: A Brief History of America’s Christian Foundations.” Bonus features include a humorous but instructive collection of campaign ads and Eric Holmberg’s controversial YouTube challenge concerning Mitt Romney’s campaign for president.
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Just what is Calvinism?
Does this teaching make man a deterministic robot and God the author of sin? What about free will? If the church accepts Calvinism, won’t evangelism be stifled, perhaps even extinguished? How can we balance God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility? What are the differences between historic Calvinism and hyper-Calvinism? Why did men like Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Spurgeon, Whitefield, Edwards and a host of renowned Protestant evangelists embrace the teaching of predestination and election and deny free will theology?
This is the first video documentary that answers these and other related questions. Hosted by Eric Holmberg, this fascinating three-part, four-hour presentation is detailed enough so as to not gloss over the controversy. At the same time, it is broken up into ten “Sunday-school-sized” sections to make the rich content manageable and accessible for the average viewer.
Running Time: 257 minutes
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“Here I stand … I can do no other!”
With these immortal words, an unknown German monk sparked a spiritual revolution that changed the world.
The dramatic classic film of Martin Luther’s life was released in theaters worldwide in the 1950s and was nominated for two Oscars. A magnificent depiction of Luther and the forces at work in the surrounding society that resulted in his historic reform efforts, this film traces Luther’s life from a guilt-burdened monk to his eventual break with the Roman Catholic Church.
Running time: 105 minutes
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Watch a clip from Martin Luther.
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