Second Advent

When Genesis Comes Again

In my training in the original Biblical languages, I was clearly instructed to remember that words have greater meaning than the sum of their constituent parts.

While that rule stands true, there is still one particular New Testament word that is built of fascinating components. It is a word that has a significant presence in our theological vocabulary, even though it is actually found only two times in the Scriptures. It is the word regeneration.

We’re probably all familiar with its most prominent use in Tit. 3:5, from which we draw its theological meaning with regard to God’s working in salvation. But have you considered its other usage, by Christ Himself, in Matt. 19:28?

The occasion for Jesus’ statement was one of Peter’s infamously misdirected inquiries, when he asked: “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?” (Matt. 19:27).

Christ’s initial response in v. 28 was most intriguing:

So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

This is the only other occurrence of the word regeneration in the Bible. And what are its component parts? It literally refers to the time when the world will experience Genesis again.

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LifeWay research: Pastors don't link world events to speeding up return of Christ

"Around 1 in 8 Protestant pastors (12 percent) believe Christians can speed up the second coming of Jesus by supporting geopolitical changes mentioned in the Bible, with 5 percent strongly agreeing. Four in 5 pastors (80 percent) don't believe their support will have an impact on the timetable of Christ's return" - BPNews

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Three Theological Words that Sound Alike

A lot of people talk about getting a “stint” in an artery, but they really mean a “stent.”  I created a saying to keep things clear: “I went for a stint in the hospital to get a stent. It was quite a stunt.”

Like everyone else, I get my words confused. This can easily happen when discussing theology.  An internet friend pointed out that, in some of my comments on a discussion forum, I had used the word “immanent” instead of the correct word in that context, “imminent.”

I thanked him, and, upon pondering his comments, remembered yet another similar word, “eminent.” 

“Time to write an article,” I thought to myself.

So this article is about three words that sound alike, have different meanings, but all communicate important ideas in our theology.

Immanent

First in our study of sound-alike theological words is the word, “immanent.”  This word is not well defined in a dictionary, so I turn to Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology, p. 267.

Grudem writes:

The technical term used to speak of God’s involvement in creation is the word immanent, meaning “remaining in” creation. The God of the Bible is no abstract deity removed from, and uninterested in his creation.

This stands in contrast to beliefs embraced by some of America’s founding fathers who were Deists. Deists believe God created everything and then left, leaving us to fend for ourselves without His intervention or supervision.

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The Coming of Christ

(About this series)

CHAPTER V - THE COMING OF CHRIST

BY PROFESSOR CHARLES R. ERDMAN, D. D., PRINCETON THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY, PRINCETON, NEW JERSEY

The return of Christ is a fundamental doctrine of the Christian faith. It is embodied in hymns of hope; it forms the chmax of the creeds; it is the subHme motive for evangehstic and missionary activity; and daily it is voiced in the inspired prayer: “Even so: Come, Lord Jesus.”

It is peculiarly a Scriptural doctrine. It is not, on the one hand, a dream of ignorant fanatics, nor, on the other, a creation of speculative theologians; but it is a truth divinely revealed, and recorded in the Bible with marked clearness, emphasis and prominence.

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