But when we offer such excuses we forget that God has a habit of using the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He enjoys using ordinary people—like tax collectors and fisherman—to change the world.
When it comes to modern religious discourse, there is no greater sin than to claim your religion is the only one that is true. You can believe just about anything and receive a shrug of the shoulders from an unbelieving world, but say that you believe in one way to heaven and accusations of narrow-mindedness and intolerance are inevitable.
We should be immensely grateful that God has preserved this book for us. Despite its detractors, the book of James provides essential theological balance for the key doctrinal debates in the church today.
For Christians struggling to understand the development of the New Testament canon, one of the most confusing (and perhaps concerning) facts is that early Christian writers often cited from and used non-canonical writings.
Unfortunately, many young pastors head into ministry with the perception that if they just give themselves to their congregations, then they will succeed in ministry. But they soon realize that they are not enough to satisfy the church.
This series is designed to introduce lay Christians to the basic facts of how the New Testament canon developed. One of the key data points in any discussion of canon is something called the Muratorian fragment.
As I think about my son’s future, and even about life in the modern day, I have to ask the simple question: What effect does “social media” technology have on the way we view church? What effect does it have on the way we conceive of life in the body of Christ?
One of the most stunning scenes in the Gospel of John is when Jesus debates the Jewish leadership at the end of chapter eight and declares, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am” (8:58).
If Christians thought the world would end in their own lifetime, then, it is argued, they would not have been interested in composing new scriptural books. Thus, the idea of a canon must be a later ecclesiastical development.