NEW TESTAMENT – Paul and Peter insisted that Christian salves be obedient to their masters (Eph 6:5-8; Col. 3:22-25; 1 Tim 6:1-2; 1 Pet 2:18-21) and not seek freedom just because of conversion (1 Cor 7:20-22). Masters were urged to be kind (Eph 6:9; Col 4:1). Slave trading was condemned (1 Tim 1:10). Paul claimed that in Christ human status was unimportant (Gal 3:28). But neither Jesus nor the apostles condemned slavery. Slavery was so much a part of their society that to call for abolition would have resulted in violence and bloodshed. Rather, Jesus and the apostles set forth principles of human dignity and equality that eventually led to abolition.Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (SLAVE/SERVANT PART3)
Though the Bible records the fate of only Judas Iscariot and James, early church leaders said most of the others died as martyrs-killed for preaching about Jesus.
SIMON PETER. “Crucified at Rome with his head downward,” wrote Origen, a church leader in the AD 200s. This seems to fulfill what Jesus told Peter would happen: “When you are old, you will stretch out your hands . . . ‘Jesus said this to let him know by what kind of death he would glorify God” (John 21:18-19).
ANDREW, PETER’S BROTHER. Crucified on an X-shaped cross, according to the Acts of Andrew, a book written in the AD 200s.Continue reading HOW DID THE DISCIPLES DIE?
Refraining from eating food. The Bible describes three main forms of fasting. The normal fast involves the total abstinence of foods. Luke 4:2 reveals that Jesus “ate nothing”; afterward “He was hungry.” Jesus abstained from food but not from water.
In Acts 9:9 we read of an absolute fast where for three days Paul “did not eat or drink” (HCSB). The abstinence form both food and water seems to have lasted no more than three days (Ezra 10:6; Esther 4:16). Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (FASTING)
The fact that God has gifted each member of the church does not mean that the church is to be without leadership. To the contrary, the NT speaks of God’s calling out leaders for His church for the building up of the body (Eph 4:11-16). The officers of a NT church are pastors (called “overseers” or “bishops” or “elders”) and deacons (1 Tim 3:1-13). These men are gifted by God and called out from the congregation to serve the church. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (THE GOVERNMENT OF THE CHURCH)
The apostle Peter (also called Simon and Cephas) was one of Jesus’ earliest disciples, and along with his brother Andrew, was a fisherman. He first met Jesus alone the Jordan River where John was baptizing (John 1:40-42) and traveled with Him through Galilee for a