Friday, September 23, 2016

On the theory of predestination, again...

by Diane M. Hoffmann


A lot of people believe this theory of predestination (otherwise referred to also as election, the sovereingty of God in who will be saved or not, etc.), which was established centuries ago and kept alive through various denominations up to today.

Many denominations have disagreed with this theory over the history of the church, including the founder of the Methodist church, John Wesley who came on the scene during the 1700’s.

I was conducting Bible studies in my home a couple of years ago and among the people who came, there was one man who actually believed this theory to the point of giving up on His own salvation. He was most concerned and disturbed over it.

He actually believed that there was no point for him to go one way or another in response to the gospel message because he said that it didn’t matter -- if God had predestined him, then he had nothing to do for salvation either way.

But this is a lie of the devil… that is not true, what he has to do is accept, repent and receive the free gift of salvation that is already implemented from the foundation of the world for every man, woman and child in the world.

As we have seen in a previous article on this blog about this issue of predestination, there are several scriptures that are used by some people to either back up or refute the theory.

However I recently was reading the book of Romans, again, and came across another passage of scripture that confirms the argument against this issue. Hence this article on the subject again.

Romans 8:29-32:

“For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

“Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

“What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

“He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us ALL, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?”

Now we have to go back to the scripture that says:

“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that ANY should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance.” (11 Peter 3:9)

With this, we know that God does not want one to perish, but ALL to come to repentance.

What was the ministry of John the Baptist who preceded Jesus’s appearance? He was a voice in the wilderness crying out to ALL, “Repent and be baptised”.

Now the Gospel came first to the Jews, then to the Gentiles. The Jews were the ones who were chosen by God through Abraham and his descendants… and the Gentiles were the rest of the non-Jews people.

As far as God goes, the whole world is made up of 2 camps: one saved and one unsaved.

Now, the predestination before the foundation of the world is this:

Before the world was created God foreknew everything and everyone.  He created the world then He created the human race by first creating Adam and Eve.

Through His foreknowledge, He already knew that Adam and Eve would fail – the Fall.

But He created them anyway, so the whole world subsequent to Adam and Eve, individually.

Through His foreknowledge and wisdom, He created a way to redeem Adam and Eve and the rest of the human race: through the plan of Redemption (Salvation).

That’s where the predestination comes in…

God saw ALL the world to come and made them ALL predestined for Redemption – the plan, the means (Christ) and the human race.  We are all predestined for Redemption.

Can you imagine if God had not specified that? ALL would not know that they were predestined for Salvation.

As each and every one accepts, repents and receives the free gift of salvation through the preaching and hearing of the Gospel, he/she is redeemed. Once saved, all are then conformed to the image of His Son.

In the Garden 

God put Adam and Eve in the garden and gave them everything they needed to live. They were then saved, i.e.: connected spiritually with God. God walked with them and talked with them in the Garden.

It is said that in the world there are some 28,000 species of trees… even if we take that down by 50%, we’re left with 14,000… and even if we take that down by another 50%, we have 7,000 trees that would have been in the Garden.

And God said to Adam and Eve, “of all the trees you may eat, EXCEPT the one of the knowledge of good and evil”… so you know the story, you know what happened – they fell into temptation and ATE of the one tree that they were not allowed. They disobeyed God and therefore died spiritually, representing the whole of the human race who would have done the same in their place.

As a result they were expelled out of the Garden into a fallen world – out of the saved camp into the unsaved camp.  And so was mankind thereafter.

The blood of an animal had to be shed to redeem them. They had to bring blood sacrifice in order to keep them covered before God UNTIL the ultimate Lamb of God would complete the full redemption.

When Jesus came by way of God’s incarnation from His spirit world to the human world, the gospel of Redemption was preached and explained.

As people responded to the message of Redemption and repented, those in the unsaved camp were brought into the saved camp. And so it has been since Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross and continues to be until now, and will continue until He comes back in His second coming.

In His foreknowledge, God also knew who would come to Him, accepting, repenting and receiving His redemptive plan and therefore knew who would be conformed to the image of his Son…

So there is no such thing as God saving some people and others not, as my friend was so erroneously led to  believe and now condemns himself to a most miserable life.

We can be assured of the availability of God’s Redemption and Grace but we must repent and receive it individually as presented in the Word of God.

Hebrews 10:22-23, "Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.  Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;” Hebrews 10:22-23, (KJV).

That is the Blessed Assurance that is promised in the goodness and faithfulness of our Great, Faithful, Graceful and Merciful God, the Creator of the universe. /dmh

Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Do Christians Have to Keep the Jewish Feasts and Follow the Jewish Calendar?

by Diane M. Hoffmann

There's an increase of conversations going on about Christians having to keep the Jewish calendar, sabbaths and feasts. What's going on? Is Christ's work on the cross not sufficient?

It’s good to understand the Jewish calendar and to know that today’s Christian year 2016 is the Hebrew year 5776, (5777 as of October 3, 2016) because that shows how close we are to the pre-millennialism that places the second coming before the prophesied Golden Age. 

Some might ask here, so are we still 224 years before the second coming of Christ? (Difference between 6000 and 5776). 

No, because the Jewish year is 360 days whereas the current calendar is 365.  If you divide 6000 by 365, you get 16.43836, and 5776 by 360, you get 16.0444 – it is spot on with a 0.393912 discrepancy of whatever historical time variances. 

Christ’s return is close folks! 

In the meantime, the feasts and ordinances of the Old Testament are no longer part of the waiting for the first coming where God sent His son to die on the cross to effect the brand new covenant…

It's good to understand the feasts. But we are saved by grace through faith only. Any works added is to degrade the sublime sacrifice of Christ on the cross. Remember, Christ is God who came in the flesh the first time as a servant. When He comes the 2nd time it will be as the Conqueror, the Lord of Lords and King of kings.)

"But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ." (11 Corinthians 11:3)

"But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second. For finding fault with them, he saith, 'Behold the days come, saith the Lord when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.'(Jeremiah 31:31)...For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord: I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts..." (Hebrews 8:6-8)(Hebrews 8:10). /dmh


Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX



Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...

 







Thursday, July 28, 2016

Does A Misplaced Comma In Scripture Change Where You Will Go When You Die?

by Diane M. Hoffmann

(Scriptures quoted from the King James Version)

On a recent radio interview about my book “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today”, the host brought up an issue not often thought up by Christians.

That issue is about the statement of our Lord in Luke 23:43, where he told one of the two thieves, crucified along with Him that day, who believed on Jesus and repented:  “Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.”

The complaint on this by some people is that the comma should be after the word ‘today’ rather than before it, making it to mean that he would be in paradise only at another time, not immediately.

This of course can only appear as such to those who believe in “soul sleep” and some as well who do not believe in paradise as an immediate and literal place where the dead in Christ go to.

A quick search reveals that most Christian Bibles show the comma in that place (before the word ‘today’) in Scripture, all the way back to the King James of 1611 Bible, and also the Matthew Bible of 1535, as well as all subsequent versions (except for specific ones that moved it purposefully to support their interpretation and belief.)

Those who believe in either the soul sleep, or that there is no hell, believe that we do not live after we die the physical death. However, we are not only just physical but we are immortal as well. We are body, soul and spirit. A soul is immortal and lives forever.

Others believe that when we die we do not live immediately after but sleep until such time as we will be brought back to life at a later time to be with God (in Heaven) IF we are worthy of it.

However, we are worthy of the next life with God only because of one thing: our BELIEF in the ultimate sacrifice of Christ on the cross which makes us righteous before God, and the understanding that Christ is God Himself who came in the flesh to redeem us -- each one of us, one individual at a time.

Those who believe there is no hell need to see that Jesus talked about hell more than anyone else in the Bible – who are we going to believe: Jesus or others?

The Bible is clear that we live (spiritually, in a new immortal body) the moment we die physically.  

Mark 12:27, "He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err."

Matthew 22:31-32, "But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.”

There are many different words in the Greek and Hebrew for sleep, die, live, etc. and all are specific to the context of the passage of scripture. Sometimes sleep means ‘to rest’, other times sleep (different words in the original language) means deceased. To die means to expire, to finish life… The word used for Saul when he died (1 Chronicles 10:6) is “mooth” which is the word used for all other individuals referred to as passing away in physical death”.

“Slept” as in “and David, (Solomon, Roboham, etc., etc.) slept with his fathers” uses the same word in the Hebrew “shaw-kab”, where as when it refers to sleeping as in resting it is “yaw-shane”, except for one or two occasions when these are interchanged, but the context of the passage makes the meaning clear.

Paradise:

As for paradise, it is used only 3 times in the Bible, and it means, a park, an Eden, a place of future happiness.

Luke 23:43, “And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.” Jesus was there also until His resurrection. He also visited hell during that time (1 Peter 3:19) but this is for another article.

2 Corinthians 12:14 “How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter”. (And the whole rest of the passage speaks of living).

Rev. 2:7 – the tree of life which is in the midst of the paradise of God…

Rev.6:9: 

And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:

10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?

Doesn’t sound like they’re sleeping to me.

Rev. 20:4-6: 

And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 

Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection (i.e., of the righteous, in Christ): on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.

This takes us to another issue of the first and second resurrections which, again, needs a whole other article – for another time.

Let us look at another passage of Scripture that speaks of the immediate life after death:

Luke 16:19-31

19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:
28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead. \dmh

Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/



Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...

 

Monday, May 30, 2016

More Proof That Life Begins at Conception


By Diane M. Hoffmann

Wow! I’ve got to write about this right now.

There’s been some thinking by many that one can abort a fetus up to a certain point in the development of the embryo, based on the belief that a baby is not a baby up until a certain amount of days or weeks. Even some call that threshold a point at which the soul enters the fetus.

By the way, they call it a fetus to make their beliefs and talks more palatable, but they don’t realize that the word fetus means infant or baby.

In the book “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today” I wrote that life begins at conception – and that’s based on science.  The discussion entails the fact that a human embryo is exactly that: a human being. It is not a plant or an animal, at any point of the development, but a human being made in the image of God. And that it is, from the very beginning point when the husband’s semen enters the wife’s egg – at that very moment, life begins.

Now, wow, new scientific reports came out to show that point even some more.

Scientists had thought that embryos could only keep developing if they were safely in the womb and receiving instructions from the mother's body. For decades scientists have been able to study human embryos in their labs, but they were never able to keep them alive outside a woman's womb for more than a week. This made it impossible for researchers to make long-term studies about human development in the embryonic stage.

But now new research and discoveries have made it possible to keep human embryos alive in the laboratory about a week longer than ever before. Scientists call this a step that will yield important insights in this area of their studies about the development of embryos.

But to those who already knew that life begins at conception, this new discovery is further proof of it. How?  In the words of Ali Brinvalou, an embryologist at Rockefeller University in New York, "All the information necessary and sufficient to have the embryo move forward is already contained within those handful of cells...that was a very big surprise to us and to the field." (Underline is mine).

Why was it a surprise to them? That's because the seventh day of development is the time when the human embryo becomes embedded within the body of the mother -- when it becomes implanted in the womb”, says the Zernicka-Goetz group who did the research.

It was known to the scientists that the seventh day of development is the time when the human embryo becomes embedded within the body of the mother -- when it becomes implanted in the womb. So, it was believed that because they could not keep an embryo alive for more than seven days, the “handful of cells” were not sufficient on their own to contain life.  So this new discovery that the embryo is able to continue living passed that seven-day period, only shows further the scientific reality of life beginning at conception.

The more science discovers, the more it makes the Word of God look scientific.  However, at the same time, for those who believe that experimenting on human embryos is morally wrong, these experimentations are of real concerns. We should enjoy what God created not dismantle it.


Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/



Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.












Saturday, May 28, 2016

Is Theology Relevant in the Church Today?



by Diane M. Hoffmann

Theology is absolutely relevant to the Christian church today. What is theology? According to various dictionaries and statements, theology is the study of the nature of God and religious belief, religious beliefs and theory when systematically developed, it is the systematic and rational study of concepts of God and biblical truths, etc…

So, whether we know it or not, in the church, we are doing theology!  Yet many in the church speak as if theology is anathema (something accursed or loathed). No kidding. I know, I’ve had my share of receiving negative comments on the basis that I have a degree in theology.

In the church, we are to exhort and encourage one another, but when we have someone in our midst who has spent many years of hard studies to achieve a degree in bible studies or theology, the church is quick to give condescending references and innuendos that this is not necessary to serve God and give our Christian testimony.  Some even scoff at it and say, “I have no use for that”. Even any type of formal education is put down. I give true stories that I personally experienced in my book “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today” about this.

Theos in the word theology means “God”. So, right there how can any Christian say they have no use for theology? By this, they often only give themselves away for being ignorant of the Word of God. These people have been influenced by the lack of encouragement from the church or they have listened to criticisms from secular philosophers who are, of course, threatened by counterpart theological explanations. Here too, I cover this area a great deal in the book.

I always say that theology is like philosophy but with God in it.  Philosophers look for life and truth, but they keep God out of their search and study.  But life and truth comes from God (Yahweh) who is the Creator and the sustainer of the universe!

Deuteronomy 4:35 says that Yahweh is God; there is no other besides Him.

Exodus 3:14, “And God said unto Moses, I Am that I Am: and he said, Thus shall you say unto the children of Israel, I Am has sent me unto you.”

We need to encourage Christians in the church to, 

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth,   But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. (2 Timothy 2:15-16) (King James Version).

That’s theology and it is most relevant in the church today. /dmh

Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/


Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Divorce and Remarriage -- Why is the Church Silent on this Issue?



By Diane M. Hoffmann

In today’s society, marriage has often become so meaningless that more and more people don’t even see the need to marry at all. Others say, “We’ll marry but if it doesn’t work out, we’ll get a divorce”.  I recently heard a news report on the radio say, “the children of the Millenials won’t believe in marriage.”

We don’t realize that the breakdown of marriage is the breakdown of society’s very own foundation. A house divided will not stand—individually and nationally. Yet the church does not preach much on the issues of divorce and remarriage; I do feel the dilemma of the church because they would lose many of their congregation members if they did -- why? because there are just as many folks in the church who are divorced and remarried as there are in the world. It is a very tough issue.

Many people feel that the church shuns divorce people, but that is not the case. I have never yet come across a church that felt that way.

An article in Christian Post, February 2012 on “Dating Culture, Sex before Marriage” said that Christians follow the secular trends instead of the Bible. It reports an interview with a twenty-two-year-old woman who became sexually involved, even though she knew it was wrong, saying that while she grew up, the church “rarely emphasized one’s relationship with God or reading the Bible.”

Speaking with a friend not long ago, she said to me: “Don’t you think that the blood of Jesus Christ is powerful enough to cover divorce?” My answer to that question is “Don’t you think that the blood of Jesus Christ is powerful enough to cover murder or abortion or stealing?” It is, but we still have to preach against murder and abortion and stealing—and all other Christian issues of moral absolutes for those who have not been faced with them yet. And the issue is not just “divorce,” it is “divorce and re-marriage” as we see explained in my book “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today”.

A report from Pew Research—Social and Demographic Trends said that back in 1960, in the United States, 72 percent of all adults in the country were married. In contrast, in 2008, this number had shrunk to 52 percent. And in 1960, 68 percent of all twenty-something were married. In 2008, only 26 percent were. Now, the younger generation is more inclined to view cohabitation without a marriage license. The numbers are similar in Canada and most other Western countries.

The impact of these dramatic changes on children is that, in 1960 only 5 percent of the births were to unmarried women and in 2008 that number had risen to 41 percent. And according to the report, the share of children raised by a single parent rose from 9 percent in 1960 to 25 percent in 2008. Now the figures are even higher. Today, over 50 percent of marriages end up in divorce. When unmarried adults were asked if they agree that there is “only one true love” for every person, fewer than 28 percent said they did.

Although some of this is “bad news”, there is Good News for anyone who may be struggling with this difficult issue, and I go into that in great length in my book "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today", as well as how to improve our marriage and how to understand our differences as men and women made in the image of God, complementing each other.  /dmh

Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/


Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.

Where are the men in the church?


By Diane M. Hoffmann

In a church service some time ago, the pastor invited all the volunteers who were involved in Sunday School teaching to stand up in order to recognize them before the congregation and thank them for their service and dedication. 

As the folks responded to the call and made their way to the front, it became clear in view that all of them were women. It always hits hard in the core of the church when we see how so few men get involved in church. Yet, looking around, often there are many men sitting in the pews.

In another church, where a similar call was made to honor the volunteer workers involved in Sunday School, twenty people came forward of which only two were men (10 percent). 

You might say, yes but this is Sunday School; that’s not for men. Actually, men have more impact on children in their lives than women. Women bring a fundamental nurture and love, but men bring the other side of life’s equation—the inner strength and logic (logic as opposed to emotion). 

Men’s deeper and firmer voice alone commands strength in establishing authority to an audience of all ages. A friend of mine qualified in these issues said that the male has been given the deeper voice that inherently carries authority. 

How important is the men’s presence in a Church? A study from Hartford Seminary found that the presence of involved men was statistically correlated with church growth, health, and harmony. And a lack of male participation is strongly associated with congregational decline. 

A Barna’s research study shows that the typical American congregation draws an adult crowd that’s 61 percent female and 39 percent male. On any given Sunday, almost 25 percent of married, church-going women will worship without their husbands. Midweek activities often draw 70 to 80 percent female participants.

On the male side, only two out of six attend church on a given Sunday. Yet the majority of American men believe in God and call themselves Christians. The average man accepts the reality of Jesus Christ but fails to see any value in going to church—particularly when weak pastors don’t deal with the hard issues. Why is this? 

Church for Men Ministry feels that many churches do not make church relevant to men. It is said that fewer than 10 percent of US churches are able to establish or maintain a vibrant men’s ministry. In Canada, the numbers are relative. Some studies say that if a church has a shortage of men and do nothing about it, that church will be dead in thirty years.

But why are many men not interested in church? 

That’s because too many churches are operated in such a manner as to appeal to women, rather than from both a men and women right- and left-brain edge that appeals to both gender. You don’t want a church that is all masculine but also not all feminine. For example, in a lot of churches, because women look after the d├ęcor, or the programs’ communication materials, logos, and so forth, it ends up too feminine and not appealing to men.

From the Church for Men website, it is said that men like to feel a more masculine environment. They like a manly pastor—not macho or power-hungry—but one who is a strong leader but humble. Men see the church through the pastor, just like in business where a bank is as good as the banker, or a restaurant as good as the restauranteur.

A man sees a church being as good as the church leader. If a man finds the pastor worthy of following, he will find the church worthy of attending and participating. Many believe there is a profound respect commanded by the deep base voiced pastor whether he be singing, reading Scriptures or delivering a sermon, as opposed to a woman’s high pitched voice. In some churches, there are more women who sing and read scriptures, etc.

In “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today”, I go into a lot of  narrative about what churches are often lacking to attract and keep men in the church. For example, men appreciate excellence. They are a lot more critical of anything that is mediocre. Men appreciate logic, a no-nonsense approach to leadership and efficient and effective use of time. Men are competitive by nature and the church often does not offer organization concepts to fulfill this innate yearning. /dmh

Blessings,

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Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/


Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.

The Law is Made for the Lawless and the Disobedient



By Diane M. Hoffmann

Some people use 1 Timothy 2:11–15 to say or to support that women have no place in the church as ministers, pastors, preachers, or leaders.

Right away we can see, by this, that there is something wrong with this teaching against women in ministry: would God tell 50 percent of the population to keep silence in the matter of preaching the Gospel? In Acts 1:8 and Luke 24:49, Jesus is speaking to both men and women (see also Acts 1:14).

This passage of Scripture in 1 Timothy 2:11–15 says:

Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

First, before we examine this scripture, why does Paul have to say in 1 Timothy 2:8, “I want therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting”?
That is because some men were not doing so.

In verse 9 of 1 Timothy 2, why does Paul have to say that “women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with modestly and sobriety; not with braided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but (which becomes women professing godliness) with good works”?
That is because some women were not doing so.

In the same way, in verses 11–12 why does Paul have to say “let the women learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.”? Because, some women were not learning in silence with all subjection but were trying to teach or correct their men, usurping their authority in the church, thereby disrupting the services.

Scripture is not speaking to all women but to those who are lawless and disobedient.

The issue of Paul’s message to Timothy is order in worship—not preaching against women in ministry! So if women are doing the right things, there is no issue.

Earlier, in chapter 1, verse 9, in that same letter, it says, “the law is not made for a righteous man but for the lawless and the disobedient” (that includes man, woman, boy and girl). Scriptures must be read within the whole context—not just one scripture at a time, isolated from the whole theme.

Paul goes on to explain his statement by saying that the reason is because Adam was formed first, and the woman was deceived and not the man. There is no problem with this. Man was given the responsibility first. However, that does not mean that woman cannot minister in church also, in the proper order.

I go in great length to show what the Word of God really says on this issue of women in ministry, in my book “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today”. /dmh

Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.

Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/


Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.

Help Meet, not Help Mate

By Diane M. Hoffmann

Again, just the other day, I heard another preacher refer to his wife as his “help mate”. And again, I yelled at the radio and said, “There is no such word in the Bible!”

When people use that expression, you know it is from a church-going person because the term is picked up from the scripture in the Bible, “and the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him.” (Genesis 2:18).

The problem with this is that these people “think” that the Word of God says that wives are “help mates”. As I say in my book “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today”, the word “help meet” does not say anything close to that at all.

First, this term is used in God bringing the animals to the man…

“And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him.” (Genesis 2:18).

Then God formed the animals out of the ground, brought them to Adam and gave him the task of naming them. But, then the Scripture says: “But for Adam there was not found a help meet for him.” (Genesis 2:20)

Now how can these verses of Scripture be confused with the woman being a help mate in marriage? Animals are not help mates.

Then in the next verses we read about the woman that God formed from the rib of the man. No more mention of “help meet”.  Then God brings the woman to Adam. Totally astonished , he says, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

And in the next verse we first hear of the institution of marriage. “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”

So what does the words “help meet” mean?  I show many scriptures in the book “24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today” to answer this question.

I find it amazing that no preacher has ever (that I know of) explained this to the church. And we keep on hearing that the woman is a “help mate” or a “helper”, to the man (husband) in marriage. /dmh

Blessings,

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.
Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/


Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.



Friday, May 13, 2016

The Jewish Feasts or the Feasts of the Lord, and should Christians keep them or not and why...

by Diane M. Hoffmann

In following some current blogs going around on this subject of the Jewish Feasts or the Feasts of the Lord in the Old Testament, some questions came up to me that I have answered and re-print for you in this post, particularly from a Jewish thought point of view:

Yes, they are the feasts of the Lord as they are usually referred by Jewish people. It is about the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob who is the God of the chosen people of Israel. Today, the "Jewish Feasts" as often referred to by Christians, is a manner of referring to the feasts that the Jews keep, as opposed to the Christians/Gentiles. And yes, it is absolutely right for Christians to understand the meanings of the feasts as being a foreshadow of the Christ (Messiah) to come… but it is not necessary for Christians to keep them.

All the feasts of the Old Testament were there to keep the Jewish people close to God throughout history… because people are very forgetful… and so all the feasts were integrated in the everyday life of the Jews, pointing to the coming redemptive Messiah (Christ–God in the flesh), who would come, first, as the suffering servant (Isaiah 53), giving His life to end the old testament,

“For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance, For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.” (Hebrews 9:13-16). All scriptures are quoted from the Old King James bible.

That’s what He meant at the last Passover supper, lifting up the bread and the cup He said: “This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me… likewise, this cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.” (Luke 22:19-20).

He was talking about His death — not the Old Testament Passover, but His own Passover as the Lamb Himself. The next day, just before dying, He said “It is finished”. That meant He, the Lamb of God (God in the flesh) was the ultimate sacrifice that took away all the sins of the world.

This ended the shadows of the Old Testament that pointed to His plan of Salvation or Redemption. He was the bread in the Old Testament feasts… and the temporary blood of the animals. Now that the ultimate, prophesied, sacrificial Lamb had come, the old has passed into the New. (Jeremiah 31). There is so much more, the book of Romans explains all about the Jew and the Law before and after the cross. The New Testament is all Jewish: the writers, and the Savior. The apostles were all Jewish, bringing the gospel to the Jew first, and then to the gentiles. (Romans 1:16).

The Old Testament is still relevant today in that we need to know the history of God and His chosen people, the principles behind the laws and the message of the prophecies to come. But it is no longer needed for righteousness because Jesus Christ (God in the flesh) is our righteousness. The Old Testament was there to show sin, it was the schoolmaster that showed that man (Jew or Gentile, male or female) cannot live righteously before a Holy God, for “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 4:23).

So for any one who is in Christ (has accepted and received His ultimate sacrifice on the cross), the feasts are no longer necessary. But, of course, Jews who are not yet saved continue to keep the Old Testament feasts — even Messianic Jews do it to keep the tradition.

The problem with Christians starting to keep the feasts is that this contradicts the biblical fact that salvation comes by grace and not by works. There are many that now have evolved into killing their own lambs in their own home. This is not of God. I have more on this on my blog at http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”(Ephesians 2:8-9)

Jesus Christ is the God of the Old Testament come down to earth in the flesh. His name means the “Anointed Savior”. He was Jewish, born in Israel…

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not…He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” (John 1-5;10-14) All Jewish writings.

Blessings/dmh

.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.
Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/


Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.




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Saturday, April 30, 2016

More on the matter of Christians keeping the Jewish Feasts


by Dr. Diane M. Hoffmann


I t is quite disturbing to see and hear of the interest of this movement picking up increasingly in our country as well as others.

An article in Breaking Israel News entitled “Christians Are Celebrating Passover. But Should They? By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz April 28, 2016, brings some good points in the explanation of what is happening with this issue:

“The unique phenomenon of Christians participating in Passover seders is beginning to catch on, as many non-Jews delve into the Jewish roots of their faith – but it is taking on new forms that are unexpected and may cross some delicate red lines."

It then tells the story of a woman in the United States who held a seder for about 20 people in her home. The article says that her husband then slaughtered a lamb – as a memorial mind you, not a sacrifice!

What is disturbing is that this is not happening just over in another country… it is even going on close to home. The movement is growing. What began as an innocent new experience some years ago for Christians to “connect with their Jewish roots”, picked up momentum to the point where now, it is not enough to re-enact the food symbolism of the Old Testament, or the shadow of the Christian Christ to come, but little by little and very subtly (the devil’s way of operating), now the ritual is graduating to the slaughtering of animals (lambs) in the individuals’ homes. 

Is this not a sign, in part, of the development of a cult? There is a story about Louis Riel from Canadian history that a lot of people do not know, told in the May/June issue of "Faith Today". 

I go into great details through a thorough search of scriptures from both the Old and the New Testaments to show whether or not Christians are required to keep the Jewish Feasts in this  time.

It actual became too long an article to put it up on this post, so I have available for you as a FREE e-book which you can get at the following link:

http://www.hofron.com/OnChristianKeepingJewishFeasts.html

Just go there now which is one of my other web sites that I use for downloading e-books.
See you there!


.-------------------------------------------------------------------

Diane M. Hoffmann, B.Th., M.Th., Ph.D./Th.
Author of "24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
Just released by Xulon Press, a div. of Salem Media.
To watch the Video Trailer:
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=YLZYLGNX

web site: http://24hotpotatoes.blogspot.ca/


Order a copy of
"24 Hot Potatoes in the Church Today"
for yourself or as a gift for a friend,
at:
Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, Xulonpress.com,
Your Local Book Store,
(in Campbell River: North Island Inkjet-Christian Corner).
or
from this site direct through PayPal...
See See this page...
 

.