References to: Paul Kroll
Augustine (354-430) has been called the most significant Christian theologian “since New Testament times.”1 He was born Augustinus Aurelius in the North African town of Tagaste, in today’s Algeria. His pagan father, Patricius, was a Roman official and his mother, Monica, was a devout Christian. They sent their son to a prestigious school in Carthage at age 17, where he studied rhetoric. The teenage Augustine took a young woman as a concubine, whom he kept for 15 years. She bore a son, Adeodatus, “given by God.”
The 27 books of the New Testament are the Scriptures of the church. They are understood to be written by the apostles or their close associates, such as Luke and Mark. Along with the Old Testament they comprise the official canon1 of the church.
“Eleven o’clock Sunday morning is the most segregated hour, and Sunday school is still the most segregated school of the week,” is an oft-quoted statement from Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-1968). King was referring to the fact that during his lifetime most African-Americans worshiped in congregations and churches mainly or entirely composed of black people.
These African-American churches’ roots go back to the North and South of the Revolutionary War period of the 1760s and 1770s. Like whites, blacks also began to come to Christ during the religious revivalism of the period.
Is the Bible the truth of God or merely composed of human ideas?
In January 1989, John Shelby Spong, the Episcopal bishop of Newark, New Jersey, raised some disturbing questions about the Bible’s truthfulness. He disputed it during a televised debate with fundamentalist minister Jerry Falwell. Millions of Americans were watching the network news show as they ate breakfast.
On October 6, 1536, Englishman William Tyndale (c.1494-1536) was strangled by the civil executioner in Belgium and his dead body was burned at the stake. His crime? Tyndale had translated the New Testament and major portions of the Old Testament from the original languages into English so that all English-speaking Christians could read the Scriptures in their own tongue.
The intermediate state is the condition of the dead until the resurrection of the body. Christians hold various viewpoints on the nature of the intermediate state based on their interpretation of relevant biblical passages. Some passages suggest a conscious intermediate state, and others an unconscious state. Both views should be respected. (Isaiah 14:9-10; Ezekiel 32:21; Luke 16:19-31; 23:43; 2 Corinthians 5:1-8; Philippians 1:21-24; Revelation 6:9-11; Psalms 6:5; 88:10-12; 115:17; Ecclesiastes 3:19-21; 9:5, 10; Isaiah 38:18; John 11:11-14; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14)
Christians throughout the history of the church have been fascinated about the identity of the “antichrist,” mentioned in the New Testament. The list of possible candidates to fit his description includes many past and present religious and political leaders.
The idea of a thousand-year reign of Christ – a millennium – is found in only two verses in the Bible — Revelation 20:4, 6. The length of the martyrs’ or saints’ reign is here said to be a thousand years. This number has produced the term “millennium,” which is derived from the Latin mille (thousand) and annus (year).
For centuries Christians have speculated about the meaning of the "mark of the beast" and the number 666, both of which are discussed in Revelation chapter 13. We are told that a symbolic beast with two horns, and who spoke like a dragon, "forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead" (13:16). What is this strange "mark"?