BAPTISM BY FIRE (HOW DID THE FIRST DISCIPLES DIE?)
Tradition and perhaps word of mouth has described the way the first disciples died. I can't say with 100% certainty that below is correct. I just suspect it is.
Matthew - Suffered martyrdom in Ethiopia, killed by a sword wound.
Mark - Died in Alexandria, Egypt, after being dragged by horses through the streets until he was dead.
Luke - was hanged in Greece as a result of his tremendous preaching to the lost.
John - Faced martyrdom when he was boiled in huge basin of boiling oil during a wave of persecution in Rome. However, he was miraculously delivered from death. John was then sentenced to the mines on the prison island of Patmos. He wrote his prophetic Book of Revelation on Patmos. The apostle John was later freed and returned to serve as Bishop of Edessa in modern Turkey. He died as an old man, the only apostle to die peacefully.
Peter - was crucified upside down on an x-shaped cross. According to church tradition it was because he told his tormentors that he felt unworthy to die in the same way that JESUS CHRIST had died.
James - Just The leader of the church in Jerusalem, was thrown over a hundred feet down from the southeast pinnacle of the Temple when he refused to deny his faith in CHRIST. When they discovered that he survived the fall, his enemies beat James to death with a fuller's club. This was the same pinnacle where Satan had taken JESUS during the Temptation.
James the Great - son of Zebedee, was a fisherman by trade when JESUS called him to a life time of ministry. As a strong leader of the church, James was ultimately beheaded at Jerusalem . The Roman officer who guarded James watched amazed as James defended his faith at his trial. Later, the officer walked beside James to the place of execution. Overcome by conviction, he declared his new faith to the judge and knelt beside James to accept beheading as a Christian.
Bartholomew - also known as Nathaniel. Was a missionary to Asia. He witnessed for our LORD in present day Turkey. Bartholomew was martyred for his preaching in Armenia where he was flayed to death by a whip.
Andrew - was crucified on an x-shaped cross in Patras, Greece. After being whipped severely by seven soldiers they tied his body to the cross with cords to prolong his agony. His followers reported that, when he was led toward the cross, Andrew saluted it in these words: "I have long desired and expected this happy hour. The cross has been consecrated by the body of CHRIST hanging on it." He continued to preach to his tormentors for two days until he expired.
Thomas - Was stabbed with a spear in India during one of his missionary trips to establish the church in the sub-continent.
Jude - Was killed with arrows when he refused to deny his faith in CHRIST.
Matthias - The apostle chosen to replace the traitor Judas Iscariot was stoned and then beheaded.
Barnabas - One of the group of seventy disciples, wrote the Epistle of Barnabas. He preached throughout Italy and Cyprus. Barnabas was stoned to death at Salonica.
Paul - Was tortured and then beheaded by the evil Emperor Nero at Rome in A.D. 67. Paul endured a lengthy imprisonment which allowed him to write his many epistles to the churches he had formed through out the Roman Empire. These letters, which taught many of the foundational doctrines of Christianity, form a large portion of the New Testament.
Perhaps this is a reminder to us that our sufferings here are indeed minor compared to the intense persecution and cold cruelty faced by the apostles/disciples during their times for the sake of our Faith.
And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: But he that endureth to the end shall be saved. Matthew 10:22
HFBCDEG 119: Theology (2)
Question: What is the purpose of the Mosaic Law now that there is a New Covenant? Your answer should include the relevance of the 10 Commandments for today’s believer.
The purpose of the Mosaic Law is to:
Convict the whole world as Law breakers and to establish mankind’s guilt before a Holy God.
Bring us to Christ.
Demonstrate what the Holiness of God is like.
Remind us what we must do to maintain a sanctified character.
To convict the whole world as Law breakers and to establish mankind’s guilt before a Holy God.
Romans 3:19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and the world may become guilty before God.
Romans 10:1-4 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes
Many people think they are basically good, but when cross examined by the Mosaic Law it proves they are basically bad. There is no provision within the Mosaic Law to be declared righteous after any part of it has been broken. Anyone believing they can be declared righteous by the Law that has convicted them is under a strong delusion. When people appeal to the Mosaic Law (as the scripture says) they attempt to establish their own righteousness. Mankind can only be declared righteousness if found inside Christ. He is the only One to have kept the whole Law and if we are found in Him by faith, only then can it be said that we are righteous. That is why Christ is the end of the Law for everyone who believes. Is 64:6 describes our own righteousness as filthy rags. To say that righteousness comes by Christ and keeping the Law, declares the righteousness of Christ to be insufficient and that more than His righteousness is needed. The book of Galatians was specifically written to counter the incorrect doctrine.
What many cults seek to do is to lower the status of God and increase the status of man. Man cannot appeal to his own righteousness in any shape or form. Righteousness and salvation is all God towards man and has nothing to do with mankind earning his salvation through his own righteous acts of obedience to the Law.
The purpose of the Law is to bring us to Christ.
Gal 3:24 Therefore the law was our [a]tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
The tutor asks us to compare our life with the legal and moral requirements of the Law. We see clearly that we have broken it and our tutor asks the next question: ‘how can the unrighteous come before a Holy God?’ The students are silent and are without any defence until the tutor points to Christ as his only hope. Salvation is found inside Christ and outside the Laws that we have broken. If we are found in Him who kept the whole Law, then and only then can we be declared righteous. Righteousness cannot come by appealing to the Laws we have broken. Only by the merits of Christ’s death and resurrection applied to us under the New and Better Covenant can a person be declared righteous.
To demonstrate what the Holiness of God is like.
God has never broken a single one of His commandments. Jesus said in John 8:46 “…which of you convicts me of sin?” No one was able to convict Him. He was completely without sin and obedient to the Law. Only someone with a perfect character could keep the whole law and in this God stands alone. This proves the divinity of God residing in Christ bodily.
Reminds us to maintain a sanctified character.
God is Holy and only those with a similar holiness can have a full relationship with Him. “And I gave them My statutes and showed them My judgements, ‘which, if a man does, he shall live by them.” (Ez 20:11) After we have broken just one commandment, the only benefit of the Ten Commandments is to remind us about what God’s Holiness looks like. Keeping the commandments after we have sinned cannot make us Holy. A sanctified character means to be set apart for God and separated from things that displease Him. The Law acts as a reminder not to offend God’s holiness.
Romans 3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin. And Romans 3:23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
Every day each person probably breaks some element of the 10 Commandments. Some modern-day Pharisees may disagree. If we break the commandments every day, trying to say we are righteous by observing them lacks credibility.
Certain Elements of the Mosaic Law have become obsolete under the New and Better Covenant.
Mat 5:17 “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfil.”
This verse demonstrates that both the Law and the Prophets must have relevance for today’s believer as Jesus is saying that they weren’t destroyed. But the verse also demonstrates that there was more to come because Jesus came to fulfil a missing part. In law, a binding contract cannot be changed unless there are better provisions added to it with the consent of all parties agreeing to the contract. This is what happened under the New and Better Covenant with better promises added. The requirement of keeping the Law has not changed, but Christ has kept the Law for us and that is the better provision. Appealing to the Law can no longer benefit us after we have broken it. Fortunately, Christ has kept it for us and when our Heavenly Father looks at us, he sees not what we used to be but He sees Jesus. His righteousness has been imputed or stamped upon us with the seal of the Holy Spirit.
When we meet with the Father on resurrection morning and He says us ‘why should I let you live with Me in heaven?’ If you answer ‘Your Son is my Saviour and Lord and I appeal to the fact that I have personally kept your Law.’ The books of your life will then be opened to see if you have personally kept the whole Law, as you claim. Quickly the Father will point out to you that you are personally a Law breaker. You should have simply said ‘Your Son is my Saviour and Lord and in Him I have kept the whole Law,’ then the books of your life remain closed and God will say ‘join me my son.’
In what way did Christ fulfil the Law?
The best way to test what parts of the OT Law have been made obsolete is to look at how the cross has changed things. The cross hasn’t changed stealing in any way and so it remains unchanged under the New Covenant. One change is that we no longer sacrifice bulls and goats for the remission of our sins. Christ became the final pleasing and acceptable sacrifice to God for sin and this fulfilled the Law.
Heb 10:11-12 And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God…
If this part of the Mosaic code no longer applies, then a precedent exists for us to ask what other parts have become obsolete? Another change is that our peace with God is no longer found in the observance of a Sabbath day, but is now available every day. This is a better promise than our peace found in the Old Covenant Sabbaths.
“Therefore having been justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Rom 5:1)
Hebrews 8:13 In that He says, “A new covenant,” He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.
An obsolete car can still be driven. However, there are aspects of it which are of lesser quality that the newer model. The same can be said about the benefits of the New Covenant in Christ’s blood over the Old Covenant. There are better promises in the New Covenant reality in Christ over the Old Testament shadow that pointed towards Him.
Heb 8:6 But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises.
Romans 3:25-26 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
This bible verse is clear that justification (our declaration of innocence) comes by faith in Jesus without mentioning obedience to the Law. Faith isn’t defined by being obedient to the Laws that we have previously broken.
“But we know that the law is good if one uses it lawfully, 9 knowing this: that the law is not made for a righteous person…” (1 Tim 1:8)
The lawful use of the Old Covenant is to convict us of sin so that we will seek a better solution. It drives us to the Law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus which makes us righteous. In this way Christ becomes the end of the Law for everyone who believes.
… for the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus, has set me free from the Law of sin and death. (Rom 8:2) This scripture defines the meaning of Christ being the end of the Law. The Law proved that mankind could not establish his own righteousness because all have broken it. A better Law was needed for a relationship with a Holy God. The better promise under the New Covenant is the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus, which when applied to us makes us righteous. Once in Christ we have been freed from the Laws that convicted us. Only if we are found in Him can it be said that we have met the requirements of both the Old and New Covenants.
Jesus Christ is our strong tower, our lighthouse. The law may shout and rage against us but it never convicts us because Jesus is our righteousness. It cannot convict Him and inside Him it cannot convict us. Without Him as our advocate, we stand convicted by the Law. A storm rages against the lighthouse and waves crash into it in the same way that the Law crashes against a man. What some seek to do is to go outside the lighthouse to fetch the waves of the law for their righteousness. I pray that they awaken to their folly in time and quickly shut the lighthouse door, lest they be swept away as they seek to establish their own righteousness.
For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again, But the wicked shall fall by calamity. Psalm 24:16
KEY BIBLE VERSES BY TOPIC:
1 Peter 2:24
1 Pet 1:21-23
2 Cor 5:21
1 John 1:7
1 Cor 6:14
2 Tim 2:11-13
1 Cor 15:51-52
1 Thes 4:16-18
2 Tim 1:10
1 Cor 15:3-8
2 Tim 2:15
2 Tim 3:16
1 John 5:7
2 Cor 4:16
1 Cor 11:13-16
2 Cor 5:8
1 Cor 13:4-8
Baptism in the Holy Spirit
1 Sam 2:26
1 John 2:6
1 Peter 2:21
1 Thes 5:16-18
1 Sam 2:26
2 Pet 1:4
2 Chron 4:14-15
1. Something came from nothing
2. Life came from inorganic matter
3. Intelligence came from non-intelligence
4. Morality arises from non-morality
5. Language arises from no language
6. Order came from disorder
7. Variation came from sameness