Salvation does not deal only with man’s past; it makes him a new man and gives him a new future. It is not merely negative escape; it is positive victory.
On occasion in chiastic passages, an author will repeat their primary focal point (which appears in the center of a chiasm) and will state the matter again at the end of the text for the sake of double emphasis.
Think of it as something like the ancient equivalent of putting something in bold print or like when a speaker says, “If you don’t remember anything else I said, remember this …”
Romans 10.9-10 is a well-known example of such.
“This is the way, dear friends, in which we found our salvation, namely Jesus Christ, the high priest of our offerings, the benefactor and helper of our weakness.
“Through him we look steadily into the heights of heaven; through him we see as in a mirror his faultless and transcendent face; through him the eyes of our hearts have been opened; through him our foolish and darkened mind springs up into the light; through him the Master has willed that we should taste immortal knowledge, for he, being the radiance of his majesty, is as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent.”
1 Clement 36.1-2 [penned about 90 A.D.], as rendered by Michael W. Holmes, The Apostolic Fathers: Greek Texts and English Translations, p. 93
Accountability, church attendance, church membership, discipleship, responsibility & spiritual formation: Why join a church? (This generation of Christians wants to know.) [required reading]
“It’s the difference in becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ and being an attender only. Attenders have no commitment to the team, but are looking for a comfortable place. They sit back and let others take the lead. But disciples are committed to this body of believers and determined to forward its vision. Attenders want a good seat, but disciples take a stand!”
Capital punishment, civilization, government, humanity & society: Are We Descending into Barbarity?
“We Americans like to think of ourselves as among the most developed and civilized countries in the world (if not at the top of the list!). But much of the rest of the world thinks otherwise. We don’t help our case when we continue to engage in acts that can only be called barbaric.”
Christ & salvation: Christ Confesses Us
“What is salvific is that Christ, witnessing our lives, recognizes and confesses us.”
Congregational singing: 15 Reasons Why We Should Still Be Using Hymnals
“… hymnals … are important symbols for worshiping congregations. Here are some of the reasons why.”
“God never intended your conscience as your guide. It has another purpose.”
Divorce: A Good Infographic About Divorce
“In 2012, 2.4 million people got divorced in the U.S. … So what’s happening and can anything be done to keep the love?”
* “Why do I pray? There must be a thousand reasons. Here are the first 20 of my answers …”
* “I know the traditional cliché that prayer is for our sake, not God’s. It changes us, not God, or God’s plans. Even C .S. Lewis said that! I have the greatest admiration for Lewis, but on this account I think he is dead wrong.
“Prayer does certainly change us, but that’s not why we’re told to engage in it. We’re commanded to engage in prayer because it is a God-ordained means of impacting him and changing the world. Jesus didn’t say if we have faith and pray our attitude toward mountains would change. He said the mountain would move! Prayer changes what happens in world.”
* “How’s your prayer life? On a scale of 1 to 10 from non-existent to stellar how would you rate it? I bet most charitably argue for a 6 to 8. Few might place them self in a 9 or 10. Rating myself honestly, I am a solid 3.”
Change, church, leadership & ministry: Your Three Options When Instituting Change
“Change is hard no matter where it happens, but it seems like it can be hardest in churches.”
Choices, decision-making, poverty & time: No Money, No Time
“When Mr. Shafir first began to study poverty, he came in with an overarching assumption: The poor made the same mistakes in judgment as everyone else, except theirs ended up being more costly. He soon learned he was wrong. ‘They were making mistakes that were different. They weren’t the typical decision errors. They were worse,’ he recalls. ‘When you don’t have enough, you focus on the little you have, and it leaves you with less attention.” And the “little you have,” he found, didn’t have to come from financial hardship.'”
Ecology, eschatology, future & hope: Jesus is Coming: Go Plant a Tree
“Yes, we need to be saved; Yes, we are saved by Christ; but Why? So we can bring glory to God as God’s Eikons ruling creation on God’s behalf.”
Intercession, prayer & public prayer: Praying for Others in Public
“Hope is at the core of prayer, and this means we need to be immersed in Scripture in order to see how God has acted so we can know how God will act. We need to name God’s faithfulness as the foundation for our intercession. We need to dare to be imperative before God the Father. The resurrection, the transfiguration and the incarnation form the core of our intercessions. We ask — we don’t hint or suggest or go all vague. Expect results, spell them out, express our hopes. Be the change or become the answer to the intercession. Pray for the church to become what God wants it to become.”
“In my lifetime, we have not fought in one single war that was a declared war, or met the Geneva conventions for a justifiable war. Not one.”