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I've been thinking about hell. The fire department burned down an abandoned house on our property last week. It was fun to watch. They used it for training; they lit a fire in one corner and a group of volunteers marched into the darkness of the smoke with the hose and masks and heavy oxygen tanks. Then they started another fire in another corner, and another group of volunteers put out that fire. It gave me a good sense of appreciation for what firemen do. This went on for 7 hours. While the fire was fun to watch, it was the coals that blasted the heat. The longer it burned, the further I had to retreat. I've never experienced that amount of heat, and that made me think of hell.
Life has a way of making God small in our eyes. We go through painful times, or get busy and focused on the details of life, or we become overly-impressed with ourselves and think we are in fact the center of the universe. There are many things that can make God seem small, and at the same can often seem to make our problems big. Genesis 1 helps us to lift up our eyes, see the enormity of God, and trust him in the difficult times of life.
Forgiveness is the grace to start over. We are sinners and the consequences of our sinning spread like blood in the water. Inevitably we experience its painful effects in our relationships. Whenever we hurt someone else we try to rationalize our actions and make excuses for what happened. When others hurt us we want revenge and if we give in to that desire for revenge a vicious cycle of violence develops.
Summary: Below is an excerpt from Dr. Michael J. Kruger's class on the Self-Authenticating Model and the canon. In this class, he addresses the question, “How do we authenticate the canon in such a way that we don’t undermine its authority?” Dr. Kruger takes you through the Community Determined Model and the Historically Determined Model and the fundamental problems in each of those models. He then presents the Self-Authenticating Model and discusses why this model is the only one to authenticate the canon because it uses the canon to do so and not outside sources which would undermine its authority.
Summary: The word "original" in the phrase original sin is ambiguous. Original sin has to do with how the bias toward sinfulness is passed on to, or originates in, each individual person subsequent to Adam or after Adam and his sin. It does not have anything to do with where sin came from in the first place. What we know from Scripture is that God created a good world in which all there was good, so the question is "how do you end up with evil from what is entirely universally good?"