17
votes
3answers
5k views

Where do the names of books of Bible come from?

Where does the name of each book come from? (I am not a Christian and this should be treated like a novice question.)
17
votes
4answers
948 views

What significance, if any, does the doctrine of the eternal virginity of Mary have?

I understand that the Catholic Church (and perhaps the Orthodox church as well) teaches that Mary is "the eternal virgin" Mary. If this were an important doctrine, it seems there would be fairly ...
17
votes
8answers
33k views

If God set the maximum age to 120, then how could Jacob be 130 years old?

At the time of Noah, God said: Genesis 6:3 NIV Then the LORD said, “My Spirit will not contend with humans forever, for they are mortal; their days will be a hundred and twenty years.” ...
17
votes
3answers
904 views

Protestant arguments for perpetual virginity of Mary

It's common knowledge that Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodoxy have the doctrine of the perpetual virginity of Mary. Protestants generally don't have that belief. Less known is that Zwingli and ...
17
votes
3answers
1k views

How should Reformed Christians deal with homosexual marriage of individuals prior to their conversion to Christianity?

I've been pondering this for several weeks and I believe that the reformed church (really, the church in general) is woefully unprepared to answer the following question: How should the church deal ...
17
votes
6answers
659 views

How is offering X Hail Marys not considered vain repetition?

So if the Hail Mary is a prayer and saying the prayer multiple times is encouraged in Catholicism, what established reason does the Catholic church give to justify it not being a vain repetition. ...
17
votes
2answers
1k views

Did Luther Really Use Bar Tunes for his Hymns?

The title sums it up: I often hear it said during the debates on liturgy and music styles that are appropriate for worship that even Luther used common bar tunes (equivalent to days pop songs) for his ...
17
votes
1answer
12k views

Why did the KKK “light” aka burn crosses?

So, the KKK claimed itself to be a "Christian" organization, originally based on a lot of anti-Catholic and obviously anti-Black sentiment. Famously, one of their intimidation techniques was to burn ...
17
votes
3answers
928 views

Does “Mere Christianity” represent the core of Christian belief?

I just finished reading C. S. Lewis in A Time of War by Justin Phillips. It seems Lewis went to great lengths to ensure that everything he said in his BBC talks that became Mere Christianity was ...
17
votes
4answers
6k views

Why does communion frequency vary in different denominations?

Different churches celebrate the Eucharist (Communion, Lord's Supper, ...) with different frequency. At one extreme, Catholic and high Anglican churches tend to celebrate it at least daily. Many ...
17
votes
4answers
5k views

Biblical basis for the separation of church and state

I know there are a lot of non-biblical arguments for the separation of church and state. Some Christians also support it on biblical grounds, but I've never looked into the matter myself. Which ...
17
votes
1answer
495 views

What sects believe Jesus is buried in Japan?

The town of Shingo in Japan claims to be the burial site of Jesus of Nazareth: someone took his place on the cross, and he made his way to Japan, where he died. (Wikipedia.) Do, or did, any ...
17
votes
5answers
480 views

What is the Biblical evidence that there are ONLY three persons in the “Trinity”?

A followup to the various answers provided to this question: The specific concept of 'trinity' isn't specifically spelled out in the Bible. Instead, we have deduced from various scripture verses ...
17
votes
2answers
577 views

What scholarship exists behind the WikiSource translation of the Bible?

In response to a question about Onan, @RonMaimon chose the WikiSource translation. Not being familiar with it, I tried to examine it's pedigree, but could not find one. I'd like to know a little about ...
17
votes
6answers
3k views

Is an action morally good because God commands it, or does God command it because it is good? [closed]

The christian morality derives from God, and God is benevolent so whatever he commands is morally good. Does that mean that anything God does or commands is morally right? Or does God only act and ...
17
votes
2answers
863 views

What is the origin of the Catholic apocrypha?

In the Catholic tradition, several "apocryphal" books are used in addition to the same Old Testament canon used by Protestants. What is the origin of these books and how do they differ from from the ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the biblical basis for the Immaculate Conception?

According to Catholic Doctrine, the Immaculate Conception refers to the teaching that Mary's own conception (not that of Jesus) was without the stain of original sin. What is the biblical basis for ...
17
votes
6answers
5k views

a Christian response to dying in dignity or assisted suicide?

There is a raging debate in the province of Quebec on the question "Does someone have the right to kill another because the first one is suffering?" There are more and more cases in the news that look ...
17
votes
3answers
6k views

Are there any statistics that show how many scientists are Christians or otherwise believe in a personal God? [closed]

I was reading The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins and he mentions a study regarding the percentages of believers in the National Academy of Sciences and Royal Society. I was wondering if these figures ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

Did Jephthah sacrifice his daughter?

In Judges 11, Jephthah vows to give whatever comes out of the door of his house as a burnt offering. Judges 11:30-40 (ESV) [emphases mine] 30 And Jephthah made a vow to the LORD and said, ...
17
votes
8answers
5k views

What evidence exists for post-Biblical miracles? [closed]

I think any Christian will agree that real-life miracles happened at the time of the Old and New Testament. I've also heard that modern day miracles are more common in developing countries than they ...
17
votes
6answers
7k views

What does Jesus mean with “this generation” and “all these things” in Mark 13:30

In Mark 13, Jesus tells about the last days and the tribulation. In this context, he says in verse 30 (KJV): Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be ...
17
votes
6answers
7k views

Did the pool of Bethesda have healing powers? [closed]

Recently while reading John 5 with my wife's family, we had a discussion about whether the pool of Bethesda really had healing powers. Some said the story is written as if the pool really could heal: ...
17
votes
2answers
6k views

What is the Biblical basis for withholding communion from believers who are unbaptized?

My home church has a policy of asking non-believers not to participate in communion, but never asks if a believer has yet been baptized. I have visited or attended several other churches where ...
17
votes
4answers
743 views

How do Catholics support transubstantiation?

As I understand it, the doctrine of transubstantiation maintains that bread and wine *literally** become the body and blood of Christ... yet it is impossible to detect this. That is, they do not ...
17
votes
3answers
10k views

Is there any account of a religious marriage ceremony in the scripture?

I was studying the Puritans recently, and discovered something interesting about William Bradford. According to Wikipedia, he married his wife in a civil ceremony, because "the Separatists could find ...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

Should women give sermons? [closed]

"Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let ...
17
votes
4answers
28k views

What is the origin of praying hands folded?

I was taught in Sunday school to pray hands folded. On the other hand, there's no biblical mention of the practice (as far as I know). It actually doesn't seem to matter which position we pray in. ...
17
votes
4answers
9k views

What does it mean that Jesus was the “second Adam”?

I often hear Jesus referred to as the "second Adam" or sometimes as the "last Adam". What meaning does this title carry? Does it mean that things didn't work out so well for Adam and so God had to try ...
17
votes
6answers
10k views

Why was taking census a bad thing?

In Chronicles, David took a census on the people of Israel. However, God became angry at this, and he proceeded to destory about 70,000 people in result. 1 Chronicles 21:1-16: 1Satan rose up ...
17
votes
5answers
1k views

Why did Mormons stop practicing polygamy?

I know that early in the formation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, polygamy was common. It's my understanding that it was an everlasting command from God to Joseph Smith. ...
17
votes
1answer
452 views

What is the Biblical basis for Irresistible Grace?

Calvin, among his other points, includes the point that when we are saved, we are irresistibly drawn to God and that there is nothing we can do to prevent this or cause this. What is the Biblical ...
17
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the origin of the moral-civil-ceremonial distinction of the Old Testament law?

This distinction is often called tripartite division of the law. I ran across this series of blog posts: http://maelandcindy.blogspot.com/2008/06/is-mosaic-law-tripartite.html ...
17
votes
1answer
418 views

What of Augustine's ecclesiology was rejected in the Reformation?

BB Warfield is famous for saying that the Reformation was a triumph of Augustine's soteriology over his ecclesiology. For those who believe that Augustine's ecclesiology was rejected in the ...
17
votes
2answers
302 views

What is the Biblical basis for Limited Atonement

Calvin, among his other points, includes the point that Atonement is Limited; ie that Christ's death was sufficient for all but only effective for the elect. What is the Biblical basis of this ...
17
votes
1answer
592 views

Why, according to the Catholic Church, did the Reformation happen?

Has the Catholic church ever put forth a theological theory or statement as to why the Reformation happened? Please note.... I'm not asking about how the Reformation happened. History is what it ...
16
votes
8answers
46k views

Does the act of sex constitute marriage in God's eyes? [closed]

I came across this verse today (bold added): 1 Corinthians 6:15-17 (NASB) 15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take away the members of Christ and make them ...
16
votes
11answers
5k views

Why can't Catholicism just drop its Marian devotion?

Catholicism puts great emphasis on the importance on the Mary, the Mother of God. It honors her and insists upon her perpetual sinlessness and perpetual virginity. And in my observation, it seems as ...
16
votes
5answers
2k views

What is the Biblical evidence against the perpetual virginity of Mary?

I understand that the Roman Catholic Church teaches that Mary is the eternal virgin in that she never had sexual relations with Joseph (or any other man)--either before or after the miraculous ...
16
votes
7answers
543 views

If we're not specifically instructed to do something, can we? [closed]

My question is spawned from the Church of Christ doctrine. I go to a Church of Christ university and our chapel is fully a Capella. However I've been raised baptist and music was always a part of ...
16
votes
6answers
2k views

Blood transfusions and Christianity?

Inspired by this question, if we choose to allow a doctor to heal us, how far is too far? In Lev 17:13-14: 13 “‘Any Israelite or any foreigner residing among you who hunts any animal or bird ...
16
votes
16answers
4k views

Why is faith so much more important than being a good person?

I recently had a debate with one of my friends in which he asked "Why would a good and just God not make salvation dependent on ethics, but rather on gullibility, as the Christian God has?" and I ...
16
votes
5answers
3k views

At what point did Judaism and Christianity diverge?

At what point did Judaism and Christianity diverge? Christianity and Judaism share the Old Testament (The Hebrew Bible), so it should be safe to assume they are the same people at least during the Old ...
16
votes
10answers
1k views

Has God created anything since he rested on the 7th day? [closed]

Genesis 2 indicates that on the 7th day after creation God rested. Genesis 2:1-3 NIV 1 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array. 2 By the seventh day God ...
16
votes
4answers
479 views

Where does the Bible stand on vegetarianism? [closed]

The subject of vegetarianism (or dietary recommendations in general) appears to me to be a bit ambivalent in the Bible. For example, Genesis 1:29 , Romans 14:21 and Isaiah 65:21-25 appear to endorse ...
16
votes
5answers
3k views

A Christian view of Mohammad [closed]

I would like to present a summary of the Muslim point of view about Christ and in return I ask for the same: Who was Muhammad according to Christians? It's not about who is right or wrong. I just want ...
16
votes
6answers
3k views

Do not allow a sorceress/witch to live?

I saw a witch a while back being mistreated, which deeply troubled me. I am strong proponent for Luke 6:31. I am familiar with Exodus 22:18 which usually translates to something like: Do not allow a ...
16
votes
6answers
1k views

What are the theological implications/problems with theistic evolution?

Theistic evolution holds that God used evolution to create mankind. It seems to follow then that this view must also hold the creation account in Genesis to be unhistorical. So, Adam and Eve may ...
16
votes
3answers
691 views

Is it possible to be both a humanist and a Christian? [closed]

The following definition of a humanist was given by Andrew Copson As a humanist I try: • To be rational, looking to science in an attempt to understand the universe • To be ethical, ...
16
votes
5answers
23k views

Why the difference in depiction of the cross between Catholics and Protestants?

As I understand it, Roman Catholic crosses have Jesus hanging on them, but Protestant crosses do not. I understood that Protestant crosses do not because they want to focus on the Resurrection, not ...

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