Good Reasons for Believing in Jesus


“The perceptual/mental/conscience-basis for believing in biblical Christianity can be arrived at by a few simple observations and a few self-evident truths. 1) You see life, consciousness, and beauty; you consider the structure of DNA and the design of the cell, and you experience awe and wonder at the unfathomable interconnected complexity of the human brain; you see the incredible diversity of animal, fish, bird, vegetation, and insect life; and you see the seemingly endless stars and galaxies in the night sky. And you ~know~ there is an all-powerful God who designed and created these things out of nothing. You know that He is all-powerful because of the things you can see that exist. God doesn’t need to appear in front of you for you to have powerful irrefutable evidence for His existence. 2) You know that God is holy and good because you have a strong inborn sense of what is right and good–and what is wrong and evil. Where did you get that sense? 3) Furthermore, you recognize, according to Scripture, that the creation has been cursed by God because of man’s sin, with: death, pain, disease, aging, corruption, decay, rust, thorns, and imperfections of all kinds. 4) You know you have done things that were not holy and good: sins and evil. (1 through 4 are observable facts.) 5) You fear, from the holy God: judgment, punishment, death and Hell for your sins, for your evil thoughts and deeds, and for your wrongdoing. 6) You hear the Gospel of Christ and you know that the man Jesus Christ, God incarnate, died on the cross for the forgiveness of your sins, and that He rose again on the third day, conquering sin, death, and Hell. You sense Jesus’ unique love, goodness and truth. You know from Scripture that you are, through faith in Christ, forgiven by God, saved, indwelled by the Holy Spirit, and destined for Heaven. (7) You know these six things by grace, faith, observation, conscience, thinking, and the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit.”

–Curtis Smale

Lordship False Gospel in the NIV


A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.
John 13:34 NKJV

Jesus is speaking these words. In the NKJV, above, this is a direct command from Jesus. Love others as Jesus has loved us. Immediately, we think, how are we going to be able to love others as Jesus loves us? Impossible. Well, right. Impossible, unless we are relying in God’s Spirit and His power, like a branch relies on the tree trunk (vine).

In the NIV, the verse is rendered, adding the word, “must.” As in, “so you -must- love one another.”

Must, or what? “Must,” or we aren’t saved? “Must,” or Jesus will no longer love us? “Must,” or there is some other threat?

That “must” is not in the original Greek, but was added in the bad translation of this verse.

The NIV is a very beautiful English rendering of the Bible, but it is verses like this that make using it very problematic, because it gives the wrong idea, or suggests the wrong idea.

A command was given by Jesus: love one another as I have loved you.

The concept of “must” is not in that verse, stated or implied, but was added presumably because of the Lordship salvation ideas of the translators.

Salvation is a free gift received by believing in Jesus as Savior (Ephesians 2:8,9). Lordship salvation false doctrine adds the wrong idea that obeying Jesus in acts of discipleship is part of what saves us. This is a false idea.

Adding anything to faith in Jesus for salvation is condemned in the strongest possible terms (two damnation curses) by the apostle Paul in Galatians chapter one verses eight and nine.

–Curtis Smale

“The Difference Between Belief, Opinion, Fact, and Truth”


So, what is the difference between “belief,” “opinion,” “fact,” and “truth”?

First, let’s look at some dictionary definitions.

Belief: 
a feeling of being sure that someone or something exists or that something is true; a feeling that something is good, right, or valuable;  a feeling of trust in the worth or ability of someone; a state or habit of mind in which trust or confidence is placed in some person or thing; something believed; especially :  a tenet or body of tenets held by a group

Believe: 
to accept or regard something as true

Opinion:
 a belief, judgment, or way of thinking about something : what someone thinks about a particular thing;
belief stronger than impression and less strong than positive knowledge

Fact: 
something that truly exists or happens : something that has actual existence; a true piece of information; something that has actual existence; an actual occurrence; a piece of information presented as having objective reality

Truth:
the truth : the real facts about something : the things that are true; the quality or state of being true;
a statement or idea that is true or accepted as true
b :  sincerity in action, character, and utterance
(1) :  the state of being the case :  fact (2) :  the body of real things, events, and facts :  actuality (3) often capitalized :  a transcendent fundamental or spiritual reality
b :  a judgment, proposition, or idea that is true or accepted as true 

Most secular people today, and also many Christians, think that beliefs and opinions are identical. They also often think that facts and truth are the same thing. But there are very important distinctions between these four things.

A belief is something that is held to be true. It is distinct from an opinion in that it is often, especially in religious connotations, a tenet that regards the universal truth about objective reality. 

An opinion is a personal evaluation of someone or something that assigns a value or critique of that thing, such as a movie review.

A fact is a statement, usually about physical reality, such as a “scientific fact.” It is also often an accurate statement of events that have occurred.

“Truth” is the way things actually are, whether we like it or not. For example, either there is a God or there is not. One is true and the other is false. It cannot be both true and false that God exists. To assert that this is the case is to destroy rationality.

Two Notes: 
I disagree with the two areas of modern bias in the dictionary quotes above. A belief is not a “feeling.” (This is an attempt of modern unbelievers to make all beliefs a matter of emotion. They are not.

An older version of the ~same~ dictionary defines” belief” as, “an assent of the mind to the truth of a declaration, proposition, or alleged fact, on the ground of evidence, distinct from personal knowledge. I’d say that hits the target.

Secondly, under, “Truth,” I don’t know what a “real fact” would be in contrast to a “fact.” There seems to be a subtle scepticism as to what a “fact” is, included in this phrase.

–Curtis Smale