Objections to Conditional Immortality Answered with David Burge

January 8, 2010

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David Burge is the pastor of the Takanini Church of Christ in Auckland, New Zealand. He also leads the Advent Christian Conference of New Zealand and the Conditional Immortality Association of New Zealand (www.afterlife.co.nz). He has researched, written, and spoken extensively on the topic of conditional immortality (the belief that dead people are asleep until the resurrection at the return of Christ).

Conditional immortality has already been discussed in these previous shows:

In this episode, rather than asking David to present a positive case for this doctrine, I pummeled him with difficult verses for him to explain. Amazingly, time after time, he was able to show where the misunderstanding was, and how to interpret each sensibly. Verses discussed include:

  1. Luke 16.19-31
  2. Luke 23.43
  3. 2 Corinthians 5.8
  4. Philippians 1.23
  5. Revelation 6.9-11
  6. Revelation 14.11
  7. Revelation 20.10

Also, as of right now David is fighting for his life against acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Please pray for him, his wife, and their eight children. Updates about him can be found here.

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Law and Sabbath with Anthony Buzzard

September 5, 2009

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Sir Anthony Buzzard was born in Surrey, England and educated at Oxford University and later at Bethany Theological Seminary in Chicago. He holds Master’s degrees in languages and theology. He came to the USA with his wife and daughters in 1981 and has taught Bible at Atlanta Bible College since then. He is the author of numerous books including The Law, the Sabbath, and New Covenant Christianity (other books and articles are available at restorationfellowship.org).

Do Christians need to keep the Law of Moses? Is it wrong to work on Saturday? Should the people of God avoid pork and shellfish? Questions like these may seem obvious to many of us but there are several groups of Christians who insist that unless one keeps the Law he or she will be condemned on the day of judgment. Amazingly, this same Judaizing tendency was rampant in the first century church as well. Listen in to the discussion to find out more about this as well as hear first-hand what it was like for Anthony when he came to these conclusions after observing Torah for fourteen years.


Monotheism Makes Sense with George Littler

July 30, 2009

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George Littler has been leading a home Bible fellowship for the past 30 years in Poughkeepsie, New York. As a child he attended the local Catholic church but never really connected with God so that by the age of 13 he quit going. Subsequent to this and throughout his troubled twenties he considered himself an anti-theist (someone who believed in God but was mad at him). Not until a Christian shared the faith with him in an apartment bathroom during a party did George finally come to the place of accepting Jesus as his Lord and Savior.

Listen in to this conversation to hear not only a riveting story of how God in his love pursued George throughout his early tumultuous years, but also how he was saved apart from believing in the Trinity or other complex doctrines which made little sense to a street-smart New Yorker. His engaging tone, sense of humor, and poignant ability to state the logical make for an insightful and memorable discussion.


Is the Trinity Necessary for Salvation with J. Dan Gill

June 14, 2009

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During over three decades of ministry, Tennessee pastor J. Dan Gill has observed a tendency within evangelicalism to preach the gospel without telling people about the doctrine of the Trinity. In fact, large crusades that Billy Graham preaches at do not inform people about these matters at all. Is this modern tendency good news or bad news? Some, in their zeal to uphold their church’s traditions have declared that those who do not believe in the doctrine of the Trinity or the dual natures of Christ are not Christians. Who is right?

In his authentic and endearing southern style, pastor Gill brings us to the Scriptures, especially the book of Acts, in order to decipher an answer based on the evangelism of the first Christians. In the end, Dan assures us that we are not stuck between loosing our mind or loosing our soul as the famous quip has it:

If you try to understand the Trinity, you lose your mind
If you don’t believe in it, you lose your soul


The Arian Controversy with Alex Hall

June 7, 2009

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Alex Hall of London tells the story of how the church vacillated between Arius and Athanasius during the fourth century. By focusing on the dueling councils during that period (a.d. 318-381) Alex paints a picture, which, although disturbing to those of us who would like to think that such matters as the deity of Christ were always clear, accurately describes how politics heavily influenced the development of theology during that time. A good deal of Alex’s work was influenced by When Jesus Became God by Richard Rubenstein. If this conversation has piqued your interest in this subject I highly recommend reading Rubenstein’s book as it fills out the details in a readable manner. Alex’s conclusion is that we should not trust either side since both used ungodly means to achieve their goal of winning the debate, rather, we should practice the Berean exercise of searching the Scriptures to see whether these things are so (Acts 17.11).


The Great Shift with Alex Hall

May 31, 2009

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Alex Hall of London, UK, describes with gusto and detail how the early Christian movement shifted away from the Hebrew mindset as it was persecuted in its native land and driven out into the Greco-Roman world. Alex basis his commentary on volume one of the German church historian Adolf Harnack’s tome called History of Dogma. (Accessible online at ccel.org)

Listen in as Alex discusses the major reasons why Christianity began to shift its thinking towards Greek philosophy and how important it is that we be informed about this great shift.


The Shema with Brian Kelly

May 24, 2009

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Brian Kelly has been studying the Bible for over three decades and leads a home fellowship in Syracuse, NY. On this show he talks about the importance of the core creed of the Bible: the Shema. The word “Shema” means “Hear” or “Listen up” and it is the shorthand way of referring to Deuteronomy 6.4-5.

 Deuteronomy 6.4-5 
4 “Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! 5 “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.

When a Jewish scribe asked Jesus what the foremost commandment was, Jesus immediately quoted this text. This tells us that the God Jesus worshiped is the same as the God of Moses and the Old Testament.

In this show, Brian leads us to consider the two parts to the Shema. (1) To recognize that Yahweh alone is our single God (2) to love this God with everything (holding nothing back). Download this file to learn more about biblical monotheism and how to avoid the pitfalls of ancient Israel’s idolatry.