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.


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.


The Restitution of Jesus Christ with Servetus the Evangelical

August 26, 2009

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“Servetus the Evangelical” is the pseudonym for an evangelical scholar who recently published a book called The Restitution of Jesus Christ in which he describes who God and Jesus are from a biblical unitarian perspective including exegesis of several texts typically used to teach that Jesus is God (i.e. John 1.1; 20.28; etc.). Though he has been a Bible-believing evangelical all his adult life he began to question the doctrine of the Trinity when he couldn’t make sense of certain Scriptures within a trinitarian mindset. In particular Matthew 24.36 (also Mark 13.32) convinced him that Jesus was not omniscient since he confessed that he did not know when he would return. Texts like this began “Servetus” on a quest for truth which ended in his confession of the historic creed of the people of God that Yahweh alone is God (Deut. 6.4; Mark 12.29) and that Jesus is the human Messiah divinely begotten by God via the Holy Spirit.

“Servetus” has a website at which many articles are free for download including this tract which describes in a couple of pages what his research on God and Jesus has revealed. Furthermore, there is a contest on www.servetustheevangelical.com to guess his identity. Since 2008 he has revealed a clue each month. He will continue to do this until 2011 (the 500th birthday of Michael Servetus) when he will reveal his identity and publish a new book about his personal journey. Listen in to this conversation to hear the mysterious “Servetus the Evangelical” describe why he changed his views on these critical matters. (Thanks to JP Smajda–audio engineer extraordinaire–for his help in disguising Servetus’ voice).


Off the Air

August 11, 2009

A few weeks ago I received the following note from the Christian talk-radio station that was broadcasting Truth Matters each Sunday morning.

Dear Pastor Sean Finnegan;

This is to inform you that we will not be renewing our agreement with Living Hope International Ministries for the program entitled, “Truth Matters.” It has come to our attention that our “statement of faith” does not agree with your doctrinal beliefs.

This occurred shortly after Nathan Crowder’s show, “A Journey to Monotheism,” had aired. However, by then I had already recorded the next three shows and had even finished producing the episode with Patrick Navas. The Sunday that Patrick’s show was supposed to air Truth Matters was replaced with Truths that Transform by the deceased Dr. D. James Kennedy. Even so, I was able to convince the radio station to air Patrick’s show the next week because they had accidentally repeated a show earlier in the year due to a computer glitch (thus they technically owed us one more airing). As a result, the next Sunday Patrick’s show, “Is the Trinity Biblical?,” did air, though unfortunately it was the last show to broadcast.

Even though I knew that the radio station would eventually kick us off, and was frankly surprised that we lasted this long, it still stings to be censored. I do hope that in the future these shows may be aired on another Christian radio station, but even if not I believe they are a valuable contribution to the recovery of biblical Christianity which is occurring in our time. Do feel free to pass on these mp3s to your friends, pastors, and neighbors.

Subsequent shows will be released on this website but not aired on WHAZ.


Implications of Monotheism with Danny Dixon

July 12, 2009

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Danny André Dixon is a graduate of Abilene Christian University (1981: B.A. In Biblical Studies, New Testament emphasis; 1984: M.A. in Bible and Related Studies, stressing New Testament text). He has served churches as a Youth Minister in Nevada, Kansas, and California. He has also served as a Campus Evangelist with churches in discipleship ministries with students at Virginia Tech, UCLA, and USC in Los Angeles. In May of 2009 he graduated with a Master of Education in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona.

As a minister Danny was sent a copy of Anthony Buzzard’s The Doctrine of the Trinity: Christianity’s Self-Inflicted Wound and as a result began to question whether or not the doctrine of the Trinity was biblical. He was surprised when two of the elders at the church where he served adamantly discouraged him from even investigating this subject. Nevertheless, the other two elders supported him and Danny pressed on to unravel the mind-numbing nuanced distinctions endemic to the doctrine of the Trinity. After some time, he found the texts which support the ancient Jewish-Christian belief that God is strictly one individual to vastly outweigh the handful of trinitarian proof-texts he used to cling to and he found himself changing his position on the issue.

In our conversation, Danny describes what this process was like and also how shifting from complex “monotheism” to simple monotheism has aided him in following Jesus more closely. If this show interests you, feel free to visit Danny’s online discussion forum 4OneGod.net, watch the documentary The Human Jesus, or check out his free downloads from christianmonotheism.com.


Is the Trinity Biblical with Patrick Navas

July 5, 2009

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Patrick Navas has been a Bible student for the last fourteen years–ever since one of the Gideons handed him a free pocket New Testament and he was gripped by John 3.16. In his quest to understand Christianity he quickly learned that there were quite a few differences between various groups which all claimed to have the truth. This propelled Patrick into long years of study as he researched the biggest question of all–who is God?

The result of that work was his 2006 book titled Divine Truth or Human Tradition?: A Reconsideration of the Roman Catholic-Protestant Doctrine of the Trinity in Light of the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures. His book not only lays out the clear biblical teaching about God, but it also interacts with top trinitarian defenders such as Dr. James R. White, John MacArthur, Dr. Wayne Grudem, Robert Bowman Jr., Dr. Robert Morey, Dr. R. C. Sproul, and others. Patrick defends his position with cogency and humility as he enumerates the reasons why the Trinity is not a biblical doctrine.


A Journey to Monotheism with Nathan Crowder

June 21, 2009

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Nathan Crowder of Schenectady, NY, has bachelor degrees from the University of Florida in Political Science and Zion Bible Institute in Theology and Pastoral Ministry. Throughout his Christian life he has diligently searched to discover biblical truth. This quest began when he discovered that the Bible taught that the destination of the redeemed was the kingdom of God on earth in fulfillment of the promises made by God to Abraham and David. He was surprised to learn while at Bible College that they did not teach this simple truth but instead ascribed to the mythological view that at death righteous souls escape the body to go to heaven. This first discovery prompted more investigation and more skepticism in regard to other teachings commonly accepted in mainstream Christianity.

As time went on, Nathan came to see that the phrase “Son of God” in the Bible did not in any way imply deity, but rather this was a title for the Messiah. He learned that the Hebrew concept of Messiah was that a human being would be divinely empowered by God to rule the world on his behalf. As time went on he increasingly came to question the traditional doctrine of the Trinity and found himself reading books by biblical unitarians like Anthony Buzzard, which made more sense of the biblical data. Listen in to this show to hear Nathan’s journey of faith.

Also, if you would like to listen to or read his paper entitled Christ the Firstborn Head of the Universe, stop by www.christianmonotheism.com where it can be downloaded for free.