Category: Understanding the Bible and Christianity

WHY THERE IS AN ERROR IN MARK 1:2 IN YOUR BIBLE: Another Example of the Evangelical Betrayal of the Bible

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction You begin to read the Gospel According to Mark in your New International Version (NIV) Bible, and you see the following: 1 The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah,[a] the Son of God,[b] 2 as it is written in Isaiah the prophet: “I will send …

SALVIFIC BELIEFS: Salvation by Grace Alone through Faith Alone

© 2018, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction [N.B. READ THE FOOTNOTES, FOLKS. THEY ARE IMPORTANT!] The two most important questions everyone must answer, most important because their eternal destiny depends on them, are both found in the Bible.  One is in Matthew 16:15/Mark 8:29/Luke 9:20, where Jesus asks, “Who do you say that …

“THAT’S JUST YOUR INTERPRETATION!”: A Response to Dr. Thomas Howe on Understanding the Bible

© 2018, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction [N.B. READ THE FOOTNOTES, FOLKS. THEY ARE IMPORTANT!] Recently, Dr. Thomas Howe posted “A Response to Ken Ham” on the SES website,[1] in which article he took Ham to task for claiming that Christians who maintain that the Earth is some 4.6 billion years old (“old-earth”) …

WHAT ABOUT THE COMMA JOHANNEUM (1 JOHN 5:7b-8a)?

© 2017, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. In the King James Version and NKJV (as below), 1 John 5:6-8 reads as follows: This is He who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth. …

FATAL PROBLEMS WITH REASONED ECLECTICISM TEXTUAL CRITICISM: Follow-up Comments on the Tors/Costa New Testament Text Debate (Part 2)

© 2017, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Part 2 of 2 Introduction On the evening of Saturday, April 22, 2017, I debated Dr. Tony Costa on the topic of “the methodology of the reconstruction of the Greek New Testament.”[1]  I was contending for the Majority Reading/Byzantine text Approach, while Dr. Costa argued for Reasoned …

TEXTUAL CRITICISM AND THE END OF BIBLICAL INERRANCY: Follow-up Comments on the Tors/Costa New Testament Text Debate (Part 1)

© 2017, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Part 1 of 2 Introduction On the evening of Saturday, April 22, 2017, I debated Dr. Tony Costa on the topic of “the methodology of the reconstruction of the Greek New Testament.”[1]  I was contending for the Majority Reading/Byzantine Text Approach, while Dr. Costa argued for Reasoned …

“WHAT SHALL I DO TO INHERIT ETERNAL LIFE?”: A Closer Look at the Parable of the Good Samaritan

© 2017, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?” So he answered and said, “‘You shall love the Lord your …

DID JESUS DENY HIS OWN DEITY IN MARK 10:18? The Significance of Jesus’ Answers to the Rich Young Ruler

© 2017, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.” (Matthew 19:17a) So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.” (Mark 10:18) So Jesus said …

CAN WE BECOME GODS? An Examination of John 10:34

© 2016, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction Then the Jews took up stones again to stone Him. Jesus answered them, “Many good works I have shown you from My Father. For which of those works do you stone Me?” The Jews answered Him, saying, “For a good work we do not stone You, …

WHO IS FALLIBLE? Proper Exegesis and the Origins of the Earth

© 2016, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction I must be quite the quixotic fellow.  I was actually cheered when I came across an article online that was about creationism and was entitled, “You can trust God, but men are fallible.”[1]  It is too rarely acknowledged or accepted that what the word of the …

DOES GENESIS 2:4-5 CONTRADICT SIX-DAY YOUNG-EARTH CREATIONISM? A Response to Meredith Kline

© 2016, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction The first two chapters of the Bible, Genesis 1 and 2, describe the original creation by God of the world and the life in it, including Man.  Prima facie, these chapters are not difficult to understand.  Genesis 1 gives a description of the entire process, beginning …

THE MUSTARD SEED REVISITED: A Look at a Critical Review

© 2016, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction Then He said, “To what shall we liken the kingdom of God? Or with what parable shall we picture it? It is like a mustard seed which, when it is sown on the ground, is smaller than all the seeds on earth; but when it is …

DID JESUS ERR ABOUT THE SIZE OF MUSTARD SEEDS? A Case Study in How to Do Serious Evangelical Apologetics

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. The Problem Then He said, “To what shall we liken the kingdom of God? Or with what parable shall we picture it? It is like a mustard seed which, when it is sown on the ground, is smaller than all the seeds on earth; but when it …

OLIVER AND HARDY AND HAHN: Debunking Greg Hahn’s Attempt to Salvage His Attack on Complementarianism

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction Years ago I saw an interesting episode of the television game show “Jeopardy.”  In this game, answers to questions in different categories are posted according to dollar value, and three contestants vie to be first to “ring in” and give the correct answer (i.e. the correct …

WHICH EMPEROR HAS NO CLOTHES? A Response to Greg Hahn’s Attack on Complementarianism

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction … Male and female He created them. (Genesis 1:27b) In the beginning, God could have created one generic type of human being, but instead He chose to make males and females.  Males and females are different in form, in appearance, and in psychology.  They are not …

AN ANALYSIS OF 1 JOHN 3:22

© 2015, by Sonya Tors. All Rights Reserved. Will God give us whatever we ask for?  According to 1 John 3:22, as translated in the NKJV, KJV, NIV, and ESV, the answer seems to be yes, as long as we are obedient to God. 1 John 3:21-22 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, …

THE “SONS OF GOD” AND THE “DAUGHTERS OF MEN”: A Case Study in the Importance of Careful Exegesis

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they …

IS IT UNJUST OF GOD TO SEND PEOPLE TO HELL?

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Is it unjust of God to send people to hell simply because they don’t follow Him?  This charge is frequently made by atheists and other skeptics, but it is unsustainable. The first thing that people need to understand is that God made us and so we belong …

IS A 4.6-BILLION YEAR-OLD EARTH COMPATIBLE WITH BIBLICAL INERRANCY? A Response to Norman Geisler

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. NOTE: This article is a companion to our article “THE THREE-HEADED MONSTER AND THE EVANGELICAL BETRAYAL OF THE BIBLE: Exposing the Major Weapons Levied Against the Trustworthiness of the Bible,” in which we look at, inter alia, Dr. Norman Geisler’s argument that seeing the resurrection of the …

A PRIMER ON NEW TESTAMENT TEXTUAL CRITICISM (IN MANAGEABLE, BITE-SIZED CHUNKS)

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Understand each bite before moving on to the next one! The First Bite A) The New Testament (NT) was written in Koine Greek in the 1st-century AD, but the printing press was not invented (in the West) until the mid-15th century AD. This means that for about …

NOT COUSINS: The Genetic Dissimilarity between Chimps and Men

© 2015, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. An advertisement from the Jane Goodall Institute of Canada appeared in today’s Globe and Mail (January 1, 2015, p. A9), entitled “Cousin, we need to talk.”  It featured the face of a chimpanzee and the text began, We share almost 99% of our DNA.  We still have …

CAN CHRISTIANS DO YOGA? Do Not Be Bamboozled!

© 2014, by Diane Hong. All Rights Reserved. Yoga has certainly gone mainstream.  It has been a craze for decades.  We see yoga studios pop up everywhere; fitness centres offer “hot yoga” as part of their classes; doctors recommend that you do yoga to relax; and I even heard of “Christian yoga classes” offer in …

A GLIMPSE OF HEAVEN? An Assessment of “Heaven is for Real: A Little Boy’s Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back”

© 2014, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. Introduction Heaven is for Real,[1] Pastor Todd Burpo’s story of his son Colton’s alleged “trip to heaven and back” has certainly caught the public imagination.  As of this writing, the book sits in top spot on The New York Times’ Print/Paperback Nonfiction Best Sellers list, a list on …

JESUS OR THE BIBLE: Which is the “Word of God”?

© 2014, by John Tors.  All Rights Reserved. Introduction If one asks an Evangelical Christian whether Jesus is “the Word of God,” the answer is usually an unqualified “yes.”  If one then asks whether the Bible is “the Word of God,” the answer is also an unqualified “yes.”  While many are satisfied with these answers, …

THE RESURRECTION OF OUR LORD JESUS AND THE TESTIMONY OF GOD IN OUR DAYS

© 2014, by Derek Casey. All Rights Reserved. Verification of Contemporary Facts and Proof for the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus “… because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained.  He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him …

“THEY TOOK THE WORDS RIGHT OUT OF MY MOUTH”: Does John 3:16-17 Record the Words of Jesus or of John the Evangelist?

© 2013, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. One sometimes has to wonder if the raison d’être of Bible scholars is to “spen[d] their time in nothing else but either to tell or to hear some new thing” (Acts 17:21).  How else can we account for the bizarre idea championed by some of them that …

THE HARBINGER AND “THE ISAIAH 9:10 EFFECT”: An Examination of the Claims of Jonathan Cahn

© 2013, by John Tors. All Rights Reserved. The Background A sensational book has taken the evangelical community by storm.  First published in January, 2012, it reached The New York Times bestseller list in its second week of release[1], and has remained there ever since.  Within the first year it had sold a million copies, …

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