Acts 17:11 (New International Version, ©2010)
Here is the Assemblies of God's view on Creation. I am concerned that they are now apparently allowing for a theistic evolutionist position. I do not belong to the AG so my church is not connected with the group, but this is a step back from what a Christian position should be. God's Word is authoritative and true. If we allow the slightest crack in our foundation it will soon be destroyed. There is no place in the creation account for evolution at all, none. You either (when it comes to origins) decide to believe that the Mind of God and the Will of God and the Word of God is right or that mankind is smarter than God. Operational science can be done by scientists who believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster, but much of the scientific research being done today is foolishness because it is being done by people trying to disprove that there is a Creator God. How can Christians agree with this? Why should they? Darwinism is composed almost entirely of just-so stories, lies and outrageous suppositions that are statistically impossible and philosophically void of substance.
This post is intended primarily for Christians. Do you understand what it means to surrender the literal interpretation of Genesis to fallible man's current view of "truth?" Mankind keeps discovering new things and they keep changing what they think about how the world operates. Every science is a continually changing landscape of new discoveries that falsify old beliefs and send people on new investigations. Fine. As long as science doesn't impose naturalism on scientific research we should be in agreement with science. All sorts of great Christians like Newton were scientists of note.
Methodological Investigation is science. Methodological Naturalism is religion, the religion of atheists. We must not accept the intrusion into science of the atheistic mindset.
The following is from Pyromaniacs:
by Phil Johnson
ood works are a fruit of justification, not the means of it. But good works are inevitable as an expression of authentic faith. They are the vital signs of spiritual life. "For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead" (James 2:26).
To put it another way: having been justified by faith, we are saved unto a life of good works that flow naturally from saving faith. According to Ephesians 2:10, "We are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."
That's not talking about ceremonial, legalistic, or "religious" works—smells and bells, robes and rituals, outward symbolism and formal liturgy. But the "good works" that are the ineluctable fruit and vital expressions of true faith are spiritual qualities like holiness, humility, compassion, selfless expressions of love for one's neighbor, love for Christ, and a particular love for His people.
That is exactly what James 1:27 means: "Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world." James is not suggesting that doctrine doesn't matter. He is not depreciating objective truth. He is not downplaying the content of the gospel message. He is not saying the atoning work of Christ is merely an example for us to follow rather than a vicarious atonement offered to propitiate God. He is certainly not suggesting that if you do enough acts of kindness, it doesn't matter whether you believe in Christ or not.
He is saying that true faith in Christ will inevitably produce works of kindness and love—an overflow of Christ's righteousness. This is an essential, inevitable expression of authentic Christian faith.
Don't miss the vital point: The essence of "true religion" as described by the Word of God is not—and never has been—embodied in altars or animal sacrifices. Its most important expressions are not ceremonies and dietary laws or festivals and priestly institutions. But true religion and undefiled is about real life—everyday life—and a quality of life that reflects the mercy, love, and goodness of Christ in the way we serve and minister to one another.
Not that we have already attained a sufficient righteousness of our own—far from it. As a matter of fact, even our best works are imperfect and therefore worthless for any merit in the sight of God. This cannot be overstressed: our own works play no role whatsoever in justifying us. But every authentic believer has a new heart, new desires, a new love for God and spiritual gifts that enable us to be used by the Holy Spirit in spite of the remnants of sin in our flesh. And we press on toward Christlikeness, because Christ Jesus has made us His own (cf. Philippians 3:12).
In other words, if our faith is truly genuine, there should be some evidence of "faith working through love" (Galatians 5:6) somewhere in our lives.
Conversely, when someone verbally professes faith in Christ but his or her personal life and private thoughts are utterly devoid of good works, personal holiness, righteous desires, love for God, and love for the brethren—that person needs to hear and heed 2 Corinthians 13:5: "Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!"
In the words of YHWH Himself: "I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings" (Hosea 6:6).
Jesus Teaches Nicodemus1 Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2 He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.”
- John 3:3 The Greek for again also means from above; also in verse 7.
- John 3:6 Or but spirit
- John 3:7 The Greek is plural.
- John 3:8 The Greek for Spirit is the same as that for wind.
- John 3:13 Some manuscripts Man, who is in heaven
- John 3:14 The Greek for lifted up also means exalted.
- John 3:15 Some interpreters end the quotation with verse 21.
To be born again requires that you not only understand that Jesus is the answer, you must acknowledge that you are a sinner and receive the gift of salvation by asking Christ to forgive your sins and come to live in your heart as Lord. It is not the matter of the words you say but simply a decision of the heart. If you believe Jesus can take your sins and live within you and ask Him to come in then He will. From the outside you will not look one bit different. You will not lose any memories, you will not become a robot and the desire to sin will not disappear. If you have bad habits like a drug addiction, it won't just walk away, you will still have to deal with that. But what does happen is that, deep inside, the desire to do good and be like Jesus replaces a desire to live entirely for yourself. It pushes selfishness closer to the surface and so while you have all the components that make up what you have always been, underneath it all is the Spirit of the Living God.
2 Corinthians 5:16-18 (New King James Version)
So I have to say to you all, that to be a Christian is not merely a matter of worldview or philosophy. An intellectual assent to the concept of Christ is meaningless even if correct. You are not a Christian without the new birth within. Doesn't matter what you say, doesn't matter what you do. It is a new birth or it is meaningless.
This is also why Christians must defend the Bible as the authoritative and inspired and authentic Word of God. This is why we must accept that Genesis is correct. I could argue that only the Bible qualifies as a genuine book of history concerning the world before the Flood of Noah and only the Bible has accurate historical information about the history of the Jews and the genealogical history of mankind. I can argue that only the Bible was preserved carefully by a quality control process used by the scribes that was more sophisticated than any used by man (to our knowledge) until the 20th Century. But what is most important is that Adam and Eve as the first people, created by God and the first to sin are crucial to Christianity.
If Adam and Eve are symbolic rather than literal and if the Creation account in Genesis is a myth then Christianity is simply a philosophy with no power to change people and is no more important than Buddhism or Krisha Consciousness or the Power of Positive Thinking in the grand scheme of things. In fact, if Genesis is not literally true then there is no grand scheme of things. The Universe is an accident, there is no meaning to life, Jesus Christ was at best a deluded self-styled prophet and all the rules of physics and motion and thermodynamics and etc. could suddenly change tomorrow because they are not the result of a Grand Designer but rather simply randomly popped into existence and could just as easily pop out again.