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New Horizons

January, 2002: Is the Bible Enough?

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Is the Bible Enough?

Our Lord Jesus Christ tells of two men, a rich man who rejects God and a beggar whose trust is in the Lord (Luke 16:19-31). Both of them die, and the beggar goes to heaven, while the rich man goes to hell. One reason he tells this story is so that we may know something of what comes after death. Many will enjoy the pleasures of heaven, but others will suffer the horrors of hell.

This rich man who is suffering the torments of hell makes two requests of Abraham. First, he asks to be relieved of his torment, which is unbearable. But Abraham tells him that that is impossible, saying in effect, "All your lifetime you received your good things; you were reminded of the certainty of death and judgment; you were warned to flee from the wrath to come; you had been told of the mercy and long-suffering of the grace of God; you were told to seek that mercy and find peace through the gospel." But after death it is too late. Read more

Hearing Voices

Have you noticed that no matter how many times charismatic televangelists make outlandish false "prophecies," they keep right on claiming the Lord has spoken directly to them, and people keep right on following them?

Failed Prophecies

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The More Sure Word

The Westminster Confession of Faith begins:

Although the light of nature, and the works of creation and providence do so far manifest the goodness, wisdom, and power of God, as to leave men unexcusable; yet are they not sufficient to give that knowledge of God, and of his will, which is necessary unto salvation. Therefore it pleased the Lord, at sundry times, and in divers manners, to reveal himself, and to declare that his will unto his church; and afterwards, for the better preserving and propagating of the truth, and for the more sure establishment and comfort of the church against the corruption of the flesh, and the malice of Satan and of the world, to commit the same wholly unto writing: which maketh the holy Scripture to be most necessary; those former ways of God's revealing his will unto his people being now ceased [emphasis added].
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What about Prophecy and Tongues Today?

The Westminster Confession of Faith, insisting that Scripture is sufficient in our day, holds that "those former ways of God's revealing his will unto his people" have "now ceased" (1.1). We who adhere to that doctrine are thus often called "cessationists." That label carries a lot of baggage. By itself, it's negative. In current debates about the gifts of the Holy Spirit, it suggests what one is against. At the outset, then, we need to correct certain misconceptions about "cessationism."

We do not assert that God's Spirit is no longer actively working in dynamic and dramatic ways. We earnestly believe that he is. What, for instance, can be more powerful and impressive—even miraculous!—than the 180-degree reversal that occurs when the Spirit transforms those dead in their sins into those alive for good works? This involves nothing less than a work of resurrection, of (re-)creation (Eph. 2:1-10). This is awesome indeed! Read more

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