15
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5answers
6k views

“Let this cup pass from me” - What is the cup?

Matthew 26:39 (KJV) And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou ...
15
votes
3answers
334 views

Can Elders of a church be young?

I am referring to 'Elders' in the sense of 1 Timothy 5:17 (NIV) : 17 The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and ...
15
votes
6answers
2k views

If the Bible has been changed over the years, can we still trust it?

I read that there are passages that exist today that are not in some of the oldest scrolls. Since these passages were added along the way—maybe to help explain something—can we trust that ...
15
votes
3answers
523 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 ...
15
votes
4answers
2k views

If the Holy Spirit is God, and God can not be in the presence of sin, then how can the Holy Spirit dwell in me a sinner?

If we believe in the Trinity, in essense that the Holy Spirit is God, and we believe that God can not be in the presence of sin, then how can the Holy Spirit dwell within me a sinner?
15
votes
4answers
295 views

Should Christians proselytize other Christians?

I've seen many instances of Christians trying to convert believers from other denominations into their own. However, the teaching I've heard of this has always been against the practice. My personal ...
15
votes
3answers
461 views

Identity of Christ's Bride

I've always believed (like Christians around me) that Christ's Bride is the church. However, I recently met two guys that claimed that the Bride is actually the new Jerusalem that comes down from ...
15
votes
1answer
160 views

Where do primary sources for the Bible reside?

Bible translations are made from sources. Where are these sources? In a university, museum, government agency or what?
15
votes
5answers
2k views

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

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 ...
15
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the significance of the inverted pentagram symbols on the LDS Temple in Salt Lake City?

The Temple in Salt Lake has several inverted pentagrams as decorations. (To see a few, just google "lds temple salt lake inverted pentagrams" and click on images. Or click here) According to ...
15
votes
2answers
277 views

What process was used to translate the KJV?

Who were the translators that created the venerate KJV translation and what guidelines did they use? What "kind" of translation was intended and how is it generally categorized today? Note that there ...
15
votes
2answers
1k views

What's the Mormon view of Freemasonry?

I've got the idea from somewhere that Mormons aren't allowed to be freemasons. Is this true? If so, what is the reasoning? I think I've heard allegations of similarity between Freemasonry and some ...
15
votes
6answers
604 views

Under what conditions can a “good” or “charitable” act actually be sin?

In spite of a prevalent cultural attitude towards sin that excuses misbehavior if a person had "good intentions", most Christian traditions do not seem to include the persons feelings in the matter ...
15
votes
2answers
467 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 ...
15
votes
4answers
3k views

Is there a theological differences between the Greek Orthodox church and the Coptic (Egyptian) Orthodox church?

Is there a theological difference between the Greek Orthodox church and the Coptic (Egyptian) Orthodox church?
15
votes
4answers
683 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, ...
15
votes
1answer
307 views

What is a guardian angel?

I have always heard of guardian angels and have probably even prayed to them, but never really knew anything about them. What is the purpose of guardian angels and where does the belief in them come ...
15
votes
6answers
1k views

What does it mean to “be saved”

It seems common in Christian communities (and in questions on this site) for people to say they have been saved. What does someone mean by this when they say it? How would I know that I have been ...
15
votes
4answers
3k 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 ...
15
votes
4answers
241 views

What qualifies as work on Sunday?

I have a lecturer who wanted me to attend a seminar. However, the seminar is on Sunday. I don't study on Sundays so I declined this offer. My lecturer is, however, a Jew and he understands the ...
15
votes
1answer
2k views

What were Martin Luther's main disagreements with the Catholic Church?

What were Martin Luther's main disagreements with the Catholic Church? Were these beliefs of Luther's and his disagreements with the Catholic Church the origin of the Lutheran Church?
15
votes
5answers
944 views

Should women give sermons?

"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 ...
15
votes
2answers
650 views

What exactly do we know about Heaven?

Most of us probably have a lot of vague ideas about Heaven, the place where the faithful are said to spend their afterlife. But when I really start to think about it, I can't back most of my ideas ...
15
votes
2answers
3k views

Did the pool of Bethesda have healing powers?

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: ...
15
votes
2answers
368 views

When did Arabic enter into usage as a liturgical language among Orthodox Christians?

Today, many Orthodox churches in the Middle East use Arabic as the language of the Divine Liturgy, often mingled with Greek. When did this practice begin? I assume that at the time of the Muslim ...
15
votes
2answers
259 views

At what point did humans evolve enough to be considered special to God?

Disclaimer - Even though my personal views are well-established, I'd like to point out that I am not out to make a point with this question, and I am absolutely not out to establish whether any ...
15
votes
7answers
3k views

“God desires all men to be saved” from a Calvinist perspective?

If I understand correctly, Calvinists believe that God selects certain people for salvation based solely on His will... that is, the selection has nothing to do with the people themselves. My ...
15
votes
2answers
822 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 ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

What are the major differences between Eastern and Western Orthodox Christianities?

I've looked around but can't really find a proper answer. Would anyone mind clarifying this for me? I'm a Western Orthodox Christian, and I attended the baptism of my young cousin on Sunday, and this ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

What translation of Augustine's Confessions is the easiest to read in English?

Not all translations are created equal, and often the public domain ones freely available online are some of the worst. Augustine fans out there - whose translation of Confessions or City of God is ...
15
votes
4answers
8k views

What is the significance of the Tree of Life in the Garden of Eden?

If Adam and Eve were created perfect and without death (immortal), then what is the significance and purpose of the Tree of Life in the middle of the Garden of Eden?
15
votes
1answer
309 views

In Theistic Evolution, when did the alleged evolutionary animal/ape/man become accountable for his sins?

One answer to this previous question asks, One of the problems I have with theistic evolution is: when did this alleged evolutinary animal/ape/man become accountable for his sins? [sic] It would ...
15
votes
1answer
164 views

Is the marital act of consumating marriage part of Sacred Tradition in the Catholic Church?

How far back does the idea of consummating a marriage go? Is it tied to the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony? Is it like going to confession, but not fully receiving the sacrament of reconciliation ...
15
votes
4answers
8k views

Where did Goliath come from?

The popular story of David and Goliath describes Goliath as very tall ("six cubits and a span"--apparently roughly 9 feet 9 inches, or 297cm). Most children are just told he was a "giant" in Sunday ...
15
votes
1answer
212 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 ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

How did the cross come to be a symbol for Christianity?

I understand WHY the cross became a symbol for Christianity, but HOW did it become a symbol? How did it start and how did it evolve into the symbol (or symbols since there are many variants) we all ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

Should a Protestant read the apocryphal books of the Bible?

The Protestant Bible has 66 books. Should we read apocryphal books (e.g. 1&2 Maccabees and Gospel of Thomas)?
14
votes
4answers
2k views

How far is too far when it comes to drinking alcohol? [closed]

Why does the Bible praise the effects of alcohol? How are we supposed to know when those effects have gone too far? I am mostly confused about this verse: Give strong drink unto him that is ready ...
14
votes
5answers
1k views

God created male and female… What about those who do not fit in the box?

Often times I hear the argument that marriage is between a man and a woman, God made them male and female, (adam and eve not adam and steve ..etc). My question is for those who do not fit into the ...
14
votes
3answers
4k views

Are inter-faith marriages prohibited by the Bible?

Setting aside marriages of couples from two different Christian faiths, does the Bible address whether a Christian may marry a non-Christian? I believe that the Old Testament prohibits Jews from ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

Are silent prayers heard?

Growing up in the church, silent prayers are pretty much part of how I pray. However, challenging assumptions, I'm curious to know how biblical this is. Every prayer I read about in the Bible is ...
14
votes
6answers
2k 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 ...
14
votes
5answers
1k 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 ...
14
votes
9answers
3k views

Why does God not show Himself beyond reasonable doubt? [closed]

In this answer I commented that Christians believe that "God does not show himself as this would take away free will", to which I was answered "The only reason he would not show himself it's that it ...
14
votes
6answers
1k views

What is the basis that many mainstream Christian groups justify labeling groups like the Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses as Non Christians?

If there is no clear definition stemming from the Bible of what makes one a Christian, how does mainstream Christianity justify labeling groups like the Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses as Non ...
14
votes
7answers
252 views

Why the resurrection?

My understanding is that Christians believe that Jesus died, was resurrected, and ascended to heaven alive. What is believed to have been the purpose of this? Specifically, once dead, why not just ...
14
votes
3answers
434 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, ...
14
votes
5answers
2k views

Praying for someone's salvation. Is there a point?

According to I Timothy 2:4 (NIV), God "...wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth". But since we have free will, God cannot make us choose to accept the salvation that is ...
14
votes
8answers
3k views

What does Matthew 5:27-30 (“Cast off your eye/hand/etc”) mean?

For reference, here's the text of Matthew 5:27-30: “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already ...
14
votes
7answers
876 views

How do Christians reconcile God's omnipotence with his omniscience?

If God is truly omniscient as in "all knowing", then God knows everything including the future. But doesn't this then remove his choice to do something other than the choices he takes in the future ...

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