Clear Answers to Controversial Questions

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Dr. Brown tackles some of the more controversial biblical, theological, and apologetics questions that come his way, giving clear and direct answers based on the Word. Your questions are welcomed! Listen live here 2-4 pm EST, and call into the show at  (866) 348 7884  with your questions and comments.

 

Hour 1:

Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: We can so easily get distracted by peripheral and secondary questions!  May I encourage you as I often do, major on the majors!

 

Hour 2:

Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: Oh let us approach God with reverence and awe!  His is a loving father and a consuming fire!

 

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Other Resources:

Dr. Brown Interviews Prof. Douglas Groothius on Christian Apologetics

Dr. Brown Interviews Dr. William Lane Craig and Takes Your Apologetics Questions

Dr. Brown and Pastor Gino Geraci Discuss Myths and Facts About Bible Translations and Bible Interpretation

28 Comments
  1. Hi Dr. Brown.

    Since this is a thread about controversial questions, I’d like to ask whether you’ve taken a look at Dr. Michael Heiser’s work. As you probably know, his academic background is similar to yours and he has some rather interesting ideas about the Torah. (Though not heretical ones, I should say!)

    I notice that a number of other commenters here have asked you about him and have expressed interest in hearing you discuss his work. (It seems in fact that a few years back you asked one commenter to contact Dr. Heiser to explore the possibility of an interview. …Which he appears to have done — what happened?)

    Is there any chance that you might look at his work on the show (or even better, interview him)? I’m sure it would make interesting listening!

  2. I LOVED Dr. Brown’s answer to the tattoo guy.

    Redeeming the “MOE” tattoo could be a daily reminder of his new life in Christ – from money to mercy.

    His talk of “evangelistic tattoos” reminded me of an incident last summer when I took my family to an outdoor jazz concert.

    While everyone one well-behaved, there was one clutch of people drinking and openly smoking marijuana.

    One of the smokers had a prominent Jesus tattoo!

    It made me wonder what non-Christians thought about that. Did they assume the tattoo represented a failed commitment? (my assumption). Or did they just think that some Christians are dope smokers? Or what?

  3. @min 30 Caller – Lust of Eyes
    1. The caller asks about lusting with the eyes. I’ve experienced victory over that (more importantly indulging in thoughts) through faith ALONE – i.e.:
    “I am holy”, in and of itself, is a shield of faith that destroys the power of satan.
    It is the heart ALONE that needs salvation from sin – sin threatens to lead THE HEART away from God – and the heart is saved through faith in it.
    You cannot fight a shadow – light (faith in the Word) penetrates, and obliterates, satan’s power which is a fiery dart attempting to set on fire the heart with the darkness of hell.

    2. I disagree w/Jonathan Welton.

  4. Great show. One of the best I have heard.. and I listen to older ones constantly while at work

    The topic about women in ministry was very interesting. Because, I have noticed women as prophets & other things that you mentioned in teh Bible. I always thought maybe it was a “cultural” issue and wrestled with it. Your answer helped me clear my thoughts regarding it.

    Much appreciated

    (the Lust question helped also… a lot of us battle this on a regular basis)

  5. Paul, I’m not sure what happened with the interview with Dr. Heiser — perhaps we missed his email on our side? — but yes, I’d be delighted to discuss his views on the air. I’ll see if my producer can contact him.

  6. I don’t know anything about Dr. Michael Heiser, except that he works at logos and this video:
    http://youtu.be/TPptn354w14

    Where he appears to be trying to disprove ברא in Genesis meaning creation ex nihilo by looking to the poetic literature of the Psalms to get its definition, but we know that we don’t look at poetry to get primary definitions, as definitions are often used loosely in poetry. חכמי־ישראל teach that ברא means creation ex nihilo. I wish someone would ask him on the record, if he believes ברא means in Genesis does not mean creation ex nihilo.

  7. David Roberts,

    I looked at his website yesterday and clicked on his blog links. Only quickly. It seems that he would be against a young earth creationist viewpoint. I am not sure though. He did mention Ken Ham’s museum in an article called “Wacky Bible Interpretation” concerning the word “seraph.” I do not have time right now to investigate further.

    You can check this out if you are interested:

    http://michaelsheiser.com/PaleoBabble/

    Shalom

  8. >> Lust is very easy to overcome by faith.

    Very easy

    I think a lot of the elect would disagree with you! — from David all the way up to Ted Haggard.

    In my observation, lust, envy, greed, gluttony, divisiveness and lying are among the most tenacious sins.

    I think it is because they are so primal and impulsive — (with the exception of lust) these sins can go all the way back to childhood.

  9. Greg Allen,
    @King David – he wasn’t a partaker of the New Covenant
    @Haggard – Just because people are ignorant of something does not prove that that something does not work.

    I do not live in sin; if you live in sins like lust, envy, greed, gluttony, lying, you are not saved or you were saved but you’re on your way to hell anyways because you’re living for the flesh [Ro 8:13] “…if you live for the flesh, you will die.”; “…the works of the flesh are these: sexual immorality, impurity…” [Gal 5:19].

  10. Greg & Dan1el,

    I dis-agree too. On the context that, each of us has struggles with different things. I, myself may struggle with one sin that you do not… but it works vice versa too.

    “I do not live in sin; if you live in sins like lust, envy, greed, gluttony, lying, you are not saved or you were saved but you’re on your way to hell anyways because you’re living for the flesh”

    I would just say becareful with this type of judgement (you are not saved part)… you sound similiar to Job. Do you not have sin u struggle with. If so, wouldnt this condemn you also? i can not rank which sins are most difficult, but I do know that as flesh.. we all struggle with something. And through the Lord, we should try to repenant and try to overcome them.

    Just my 2 cents

  11. Daniel,

    You said that lust was “very easy” to overcome by faith. David was clearly a man of faith.

    I’m just saying that a lot of “New Covenant” Christians struggle with lust and don’t find it “very easy” to overcome.

    I don’t think it would be underestimating it to say that literally millions of Christian men struggle with this sin.

    If you remember Promise Keepers — overcoming lust was a major focus of that movement. There are also tons of Christians books on the subject.

    If it was “very easy,” they could have focused on something else!

    But, I accept that controlling lust may have been “very easy” for you. Like Ty says, everybody has their own struggles.

  12. Ty,

    I have in churches and church-based ministries nearly my whole adult life.

    That’s where I get my perspective on which sins are most commonly “back slidden” into. I confess that I get this from meeting hundreds or thousands of church members — not the bible.

    But it does roughly parallel some of the “sin lists’ in the bible.

    Take the sin of gluttony — clearly it’s a huge problem in virtually every church I’ve been in. We even kind of celebrate it!

    Or divisiveness. It’s such a blatant sin in our churches that people don’t even try to hide it.

    Again, just my opinion but — I think the common thread on these hard-to-overcome sins, is that they are very “fleshly” primal urges that go back to childhood.

  13. Greg Allen,

    And homosexuality is lust that has manifested in action, and thus a double sin. On another thread you recommended, if I am not mistaken, that the church (or actually, we) should accept homosexuality as not bding a sin. Correct?

    Shalom

  14. Greg Allen,
    That people don’t do something that is easy either proves they don’t know about it (which is what I was trying to help Ty with), don’t want it or are lazy.

    @David didn’t have what we have [Hb 11:40].

    You don’t need to receive anything I say;
    Won’t stop me from enjoying it day by day.

    Promise Keepers means nothing to me.

  15. Greg Allen,
    Put it this way: what God showed me (and it is basic) I’ve never heard anyone else teach (except for Paul).
    I do not respect any church or organization just because they exist. Most of them are ignorant, and are leading their followers to hell. Neither Churches or Organizations are anything, and have no bearing upon the decisions I make in my life or the things I believe.

    An organization is of a man;
    they may all be deceived,
    even if they hold hands.
    PK or whomever they be
    Are nothing to me.

  16. (that doesn’t mean of a certainty that no one else teaches it, but that I’ve not heard anyone teach it – and I’ve been to many churches, heard many sermons, etc.,)

  17. Dan1el,

    How many years have you gone to church? How long have you been a believer? How long have you been living victorious over lust?

    Shalom

  18. Bo,
    As soon as I believed, I submitted to Christ out of love, and immediately had victory over lust.

    It was only when I went to a church that I took wrong turns, trusting a pastor in stead of God and ended up going to hell. I don’t care who believes me, but it is what happened. I will not go into details.

    Some years after being shattered into billions of pieces by that traumatic experience, I ran out of the strength I once had and I began to fall into that sin, and would fall into it every month or two even though I didn’t want to and would force myself not to (even if I didn’t have the spiritual power anymore).

    I finally discovered the victory one day – and understood the proper meaning of the Scripture – though I forgot to use it with consistency for a year or two afterward. Now, I use it whenever the devil creeps up on me, and I keep myself, and he can by no means harm me.

    That being said, I have my own difficulties/problems (mostly with understanding “salvation” – now, I focus mainly on attempting to understand the Gospel, itself, because therein is the power of God unto “salvation”), but God is showing me the Truth.
    I often feel condemned for not preaching on the corner of the street (because that was the last obedience I was doing before I went to hell in 2003), but there are too many fine points to discuss on that. That is my “problem” – sin of omission – and I am scouring the Scripture and asking God to help me understand how to have victory over fear and doubt.

    I tried to explain a little more of my story further, here, but I saw that there were too many fine points that even I, myself, do not fully comprehend – that it would probably be better to not share them.

    As far as lust, however, that is nothing. That might be, in part, because I am a virgin (except for being molested as a child).

  19. Bo,
    Before, I just trusted Christ to tell me what to do – even then, He warned me not to get too involved with the Bible because it distracted me from Him.
    But I didn’t listen, to my own harm.
    I didn’t want to listen to something He told me, so I made an excuse that I had to read the Bible to figure out what God wanted me to do (to buy time); I’ve paid terribly for doing that.

    The way I see it, now, is that I am trapped by my knowledge of Scripture and I need to understand it to get out of it (as a trap -or else I am unwarrantedly convicted by one thing or another thing it says).
    It’s kind of like when Israel asked for a King – God put up with it, even if it wasn’t God’s perfect will, and even incorporated it into His plan. Even also incorporated the standing temple (in stead of the moving tabernacle) which David purposed to build even though it wasn’t God’s plan.

  20. Dan1el,

    Are you saying that you were ruined (went to hell) by reading the Bible? That you were better off being a believer that didn’t know the word than after you knew it? I am not sure I understand.

    Shalom

  21. Bo,
    No, that the POINT of the words in the Bible is “GO TO JESUS”; once you’re with Jesus, “DO WHAT JESUS SAYS”; if I don’t do what He says, reading the Bible is worthless – you’re negating the entire point by not obeying Jesus.

    No, I think it is far better to be a Jew who was raised in the knowledge of the TNK and to have that “water” “turned into” “wine” than otherwise; however, in the estate someone is found, they are already acceptable to know and serve/be used of God.
    The Bible is nice because they are words the Spirit spoke to those writers at one time, but now the Spirit is speaking directly to me.
    God can teach me out of nature (“look at the ravens, who do not sow or reap; look at the lilies that do not toil or spin”) – really, any situation, but the Law is a revelation of Jesus Christ so it is superior to know it; however, knowing Christ is the end-goal and if I study without Christ I am defeating the purpose.
    I see it as “as you were found, know and obey Christ”.

  22. Bo,
    It wasn’t the knowledge of the Bible that messed me up. David couldn’t wear the armor when he fought Goliath; later on, a time came when he wore the armor. I’m not saying the Bible should not be read, but that at that point it was not for me to read (without barring any future possibility of reading).

  23. I think lust is a very powerful desire today. Take a look around. After many trials and failures (Thank God for grace), I almost gave up but I think I have an answer to this powerful desire. I am a man and I am attracted to the opposite sex. The answer was in the form of a question. How should we love a woman? I’m assuming that everyone has their own ways of showing true love. True love should think of the other person and it is not selfish. Lust loves to be selfish. Although a woman wants to be thought of as a beautiful person, understandably, I think that we should be aware of ourselves being selfish. Beauty was made by a beautiful God, and beauty is attractive. However, when we think of our relationships with others, I think that we should be very careful out of love. A truly loving husband will be faithful to his wife and I believe that in being faithful, his wife will know the sincerity of his love. A loving husband will have the heart to forgive because being forgiving was the way the heart learned to love in the first place. Have you ever thought that the person you loved was the most perfect person in the world? I think that part of the reason for this is because you were willing to let go of all of the imperfections that you see. True love should have a desire to serve. So when I experience the desire known as lust, I tell myself that if I can’t love her, I should look away. Look at it again but think of yourself being selfish, not forgiving, and as a person who desires to be served and not a person who has a desire to serve. I think that we can all see that being loving will create a better relationship. A loving relationship. These are my own personal thoughts of love in its truest form.

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