What does it mean that Jesus is the Son of David?

English: Icon of Jesus Christ
Seventeen verses in the New Testament describe Jesus as the “son of David.” But the question arises, how could Jesus be the son of David if David lived approximately 1000 years before Jesus? The answer is that Christ (the Messiah) was the fulfillment of the prophecy of the seed of David (2 Samuel 7:14-16). Jesus was the promised Messiah, which meant He was of the seed of David. Matthew 1 gives the genealogical proof that Jesus, in His humanity, was a direct descendant of Abraham and David through Joseph, Jesus’ legal father. The genealogy in Luke chapter 3 gives Jesus’ lineage through His mother, Mary. Jesus is a descendant of David, by adoption through Joseph, and by blood through Mary.

Jesus was addressed as “Lord, thou son of David” several times by people who, by faith, were seeking mercy or healing. The woman whose daughter was being tormented by a demon (Matthew 15:22), the two blind men by the wayside (Matthew 20:30), and blind Bartimaeus (Mark 10:47), all cried out to the son of David for help. The titles of honor they gave Him declared their faith in Him. Calling Him Lord expressed their sense of His deity, dominion, and power, and by calling Him “son of David,” they were professing Him to be the Messiah.

The Pharisees, too, understood what was meant when they heard the people calling Jesus “son of David.” But unlike those who cried out in faith, they were so blinded by their own pride and lack of understanding of the Scriptures that they couldn’t see what the blind beggars could see – that here was the Messiah they had supposedly been waiting for all their lives. They hated Jesus because He wouldn’t give them the honor they thought they deserved, so when they heard the people hailing Jesus as the Savior, they became enraged (Matthew 21:15) and plotted to destroy Him (Luke 19:47).

Jesus further confounded the scribes and Pharisees by asking them to explain the meaning of this very title. How could it be that the Messiah is the son of David when David himself refers to Him as “my Lord” (Mark 12:35-37)?.He was neither denying His credentials to be the Messiah nor the fact that the Messiah would be a “Son of David.” On the contrary, Jesus was trying to get His hearers to understand that the Messiah, though David’s Son, is greater than David, for King David called Him “my Lord.” It was self-evident to first-century Jews that the Messiah would be a descendant of David (Psalm 89:3-4; 132:11-12; Isaiah 9:6-7; Matthew 1:1-16; 12:23; 21:9,15; Luke 3:23-38). Jesus was not denying that fact. Rather, He wanted his hearers to reach the same conclusion that Peter previously reached after Jesus asked a similar question: “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” (Matthew 16:13, NASB). Peter confessed to Jesus: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matthew 16:16). How could the Messiah be a descendant of David as well as be the One to whom David 1,000 years earlier called “Lord”? Answer: He was deity Who put on flesh. This is the truth with which Jesus confronted the Pharisees, and “no one was able to answer Him a word” (Matthew 22:46)

Jesus thereby exposed the Jewish spiritual leaders’ ineptitude as teachers and their ignorance of what the Old Testament taught as to the true nature of the Messiah, further alienating them from Him.

So in conclusion,primarily though, when Christ was referred to as the Son of David, it was meant to refer to His Messianic title as the Old Testament prophesied concerning Him.

Sources :Extracts from apologeticspress.org,gotquestions.org

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Does the Bible teach that the earth is flat?

A bible from 1859.
Many a skeptic claims that the Bible depicts a flat earth. Scriptural references such as Revelation 7:1 are cited, which speaks of “four angels standing at the four corners of the earth.” However, this passage makes reference to the cardinal directions as seen on a compass – i.e. north, south, east and west. Terminology to a similar effect is used today when we speak of the sun rising and setting each day, even though we know that it is, in fact, the earth which orbits around the sun.

Another passage often referred to is Psalm 75:3, which speaks of God holding the pillars firm. However, the psalms are written in the poetry genre. Rather than referring to literal pillars, this is representative of God’s guaranteeing the earth’s stability. Even when the moral order of the world seems to have crumbled, God will not fully withdraw His sustaining power.

In contrast to the supposed “flat earth” verses, there are numerous Scriptures that seem to indicate a round earth. The earth is described in Job 26:7 as being suspended over empty space, implying a spherical figure. This notion is further entertained in Isaiah 40:21-22, which refers to “the circle of the earth.” This is further supported by Proverbs 8:27 (NKJV), which speaks of God drawing a circle on the face of the deep. From a “bird’s-eye view” of the ocean, the horizon is seen as a circle. Such an observation indicates that where light terminates, darkness begins, describing the reality of day and night on a spherical earth.

The round-earth idea is further supported by Jesus in Luke 17:31,34: “In that day, he who is on the housetop, and his goods are in the house, let him not come down to take them away. And likewise the one who is in the field, let him not turn back…I tell you, in that night there will be two people in one bed: the one will be taken and the other will be left.” This would seem to indicate the phenomenon of day on one side of the globe while darkness abides on the other.

So in conclusion,there is  little or no basis for the charge that the Bible teaches a flat earth. The Scriptures that seem to present a flat earth can all easily be explained when correctly interpreted and understood.

Sources:Extracts from gotquestions.org

Amazing Bible Facts

The Gutenberg Bible displayed by the United St...

Here are some amazing facts about the Bible

  • The Bible was written by around forty different people from different backgrounds, from kings, prophets, and writers to fishermen, shepherds, and prisoners
  • The Bible was written during a period of 1,600 years. That’s about forty generations
  • The first division into chapters was made in 1238 due to which The Bible contains   1189 chapters consisting of about 31,102 verses.
  • The longest book in the Bible is Psalms and the shortest is 3 John
  • The Bible is the most sold and most translated book in the world  and the most shoplifted.The Bible, or parts of it, is available in 2,508 different languages
  • The shortest verse in the Bible is John 11:35 while the longest verse is Esther 8:9
  • The Bible was printed in 1454 A.D. by Johannes Gutenberg (pictured above) who invented the “type  mold” for the printing press. It was the first book ever printed.
  • The entire New Testament as we know it today, was canonized before the year 375 A.D. The Old Testament had previously been canonized long before the advent of Christ.
  • The Bible was written in three languages: Hebrew, Aramaic, and Koine Greek
  • Almost all biblical scholars agree that the New Testament documents were all written before the close of the First Century.  If Jesus was crucified in 30 A.D., then that means that the entire New Testament was completed within 70 years.
  • There are presently 5,686 Greek manuscripts in existence today for the New Testament.If we were to compare the number of New Testament manuscripts to other ancient writings, the next highest is 643 copies of Homer(Iliad)
  • In addition to the Greek copies there are over 19,000 copies in the Syriac, Latin, Coptic, and Aramaic languages.  The total supporting New Testament manuscript base is over 24,000.
  • The Dead Sea Scrolls which were discovered in Qumran contain some of the oldest fragments and manuscripts of the Old Testament and are called the greatest manuscript discovery of modern times
  • The Bible today is the best-selling book ever and 50 bibles are sold every minute.

Does Luke 14:26 teach literal hate?

A bible from 1859.

Luke 14:26:If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.

Many Christians are often confused by this verse and wonder how Jesus can say to hate anyone rather than love.The subject here is the word for hate, which is the Greek miseo.One Skeptic is typical of critics when he writes:Most Christians feel obligated to soften the face meaning of the word ‘hate’ to something like ‘love less than me,’ even though the Greek word miseo means ‘hate.In line with this comment, Skeptics will stress the meaning of the word “hate” and insist that the word must be read literally, and that Jesus is truly preaching hate.

But in fact, the “softening” is correct to do — and is perfectly in line with the context of the ancient world, and the Jewish culture in particular.For a background on the use of extreme and hyperbolic language in the Bible, I direct the reader first to my foundational essay on this subject. Abraham Rihbany (The Syrian Christ, 98f) points to the use of “hate” in the Bible as an example of linguistic extreme in an Eastern culture. There is no word, he notes, for “like” in the Arabic tongue. “…[T]o us Orientals the only word which can express any cordial inclination of approval is ‘love’.” The word is used even of casual acquaintances. Extreme language is used to express even moderate relationships.

Luke 14:26 falls into a category of “extreme language,” the language of absoluteness used to express a preference, and may refer to disattachment, indifference, or nonattachment without any feelings of revulsion involved. To seal this matter completely, let’s look at some parallel materials which prove our point. The closest example comes from

Genesis 29:30-1:And he went in also unto Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served with him yet seven other years. And when the LORD saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb: but Rachel was barren.

Here, “hated” is clearly used synonymously with one who is loved less. Let it be added that if Jacob hated Leah in a literal way, it is hardly believable that he would consent to take her as his wife at all. (See also Judges 14:16 and Deut. 21:15-17.)

Now here is another example from Jesus,

Luke 16:13:No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.

Such extremes of feeling would be atypical, but the extremes are not meant to be taken literally; the point is that one master will get more dedicated labor than the other.Now let’s move into some secular works with the same sort of hyperbolic language. Fitzmeyer’s Lukan commentary offers this example from

Poimandes 4:6:If you do not hate your body first, O child, you will not be able to love yourself.

Would critics suppose that this teaches literal hatred of the physical body? It does not — it emphasizes the need to give preference to the whole self before the body alone. Literal hate of the body would have us cutting it with razors or hitting it with blunt objects — an extreme practiced in some Eastern faiths, but not among the Greeks.

So in conclusion Luke 14:26 is in no way is teaching literal hate but means that we cannot be Jesus’s disciple unless we love Him more than anyone else.

Sources:Extracts from tektonics.org

If Jesus was God, why did He say “No one is good but God alone”?

English: Icon of Jesus Christ

It is often claimed by Muslims and other Skeptics that in Mark 10:17-22 Jesus denies His divinity by rejecting the notion that He is good. It reads as follows:

“As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. ‘Good teacher,’ he asked, ‘what must I do to inherit eternal life?’ ‘Why do you call me good?’ Jesus answered. ‘No one is good – except God alone. You know the commandments: Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honor your father and mother.’ ‘Teacher,’ he declared, ‘all these I have kept since I was a boy.’ Jesus looked at him and loved him. ‘One thing you lack,’ he said. ‘Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.’ At this, the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.”

From this passage the idea is sometimes taken that Jesus is denying his own goodness, and therefore, throwing out any chance of being recognized as part of the Godhead.Is Jesus here rebuking the man for calling Him good and thereby denying His deity? No. Rather, He is using a penetrating question to push the man to think through the implications of his own words, to understand the concept of Jesus’ goodness and, most especially, the man’s lack of goodness. The young ruler “went away sad” (Mark 10:22) because he realized that although he had devoted himself to keeping the commandments, he had failed to keep the greatest of the commandments—love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength (Matthew 22:37-38). The man’s riches were of more worth to him than God, and thus he was not “good” in the eyes of God.

Jesus is essentially saying to the ruler, “Do you know what you are implying? You say I am good; but only God is good; therefore, you realize that you are identifying me with God?” [Brooks, commentary on Mark, 162] In Jewish thought, God was pre-eminently good, so that the ruler was indeed offering Jesus a compliment usually reserved for God. Since it is quite unlikely that the ruler truly believed that Jesus was identifiable as God the Son, this looks more like an effort by Jesus to make the man think about what he is saying before he blurts it out or engages in indiscriminate flattery.

Thus it is appropriate that Jesus parry the compliment in a way that does not specifically deny his membership in the Godhead.In short, there isn’t anything here that has Jesus denying goodness, or membership in the Godhead — just teaching an overenthusiast and/or challenger a lesson. Such an interpretation is substantiated by passages such as John 10:11 wherein Jesus declares Himself to be “the good shepherd.” Similarly in John 8:46, Jesus asks, “Can any of you prove me guilty of sin?” Of course the answer is “no.” Jesus was “without sin” (Hebrews 4:15), holy and undefiled (Hebrews 7:26), the only One who “knew no sin” (2 Corinthians 5:21).

The logic can thus be summarized as follows:

1: Jesus claims only God is good.

2: Jesus claims to be good.

3: Therefore, Jesus claims to be God.

So in conclusion Jesus’ question to the man is not to deny His deity, but rather to draw the man to recognize Christ’s divine identity.

 Sources :Extracts from tektonics.org,gotquestions.org

Jesus According To Sources Outside The Bible

Icon of Jesus Christ

There was no such person in the history of the world as Jesus Christ. There was no historical, living, breathing, sentient human being by that name. Ever. [The Bible] is a fictional, nonhistorical narrative.

– Jon Murray, President American Atheists

So what do non-biblical Sources say about Jesus’ existence and what does history actually record?

It is interesting to note that contrary to atheists and non believers claim that there is no proof that Jesus existed in history there are many such sources from which we learn about the historical Jesus.There is tremendous amount of evidence from hostile sources.Hostile sources are sources who are definitely not in favour of belief in Christ.

The important value of these sources is simply the acknowledgment of Christ’s existence.While it is true that we cannot establish Jesus’ divinity through these sources they provide a great source to prove Jesus’ existence to skeptics.

Flavius Josephus

Josephus was a Jewish historian born in about AD 38.He fought the Romans in the First Roman-Jewish War of 66–73 as a Jewish military leader in Galilee.In AD 93, Josephus finished his work Antiquities of the Jews in which at least three passages specifically confirm certain Scriptures.It states:

But to some of the Jews the destruction of Herod’s army seemed to be divine vengeance, and certainly a just vengeance, for his treatment of John, surnamed the Baptist. For Herod had put him to death, though he was a good man and had exhorted the Jews to lead righteous lives, to practice justice towards their fellows and piety towards God, and so doing to join in baptism.  …convened the judges of the Sanhedrin and brought before them a man named James, the brother of Jesus who was called the Christ, and certain others. He accused them of having transgressed the law and delivered them up to be stoned.  At this time there was a wise man who was called Jesus. And his conduct was good, and [he] was known to be virtuous. And many people from among the Jews and the other nations became his disciples. Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die. And those who had become his disciples did not abandon his discipleship. They reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion and that he was alive;…

Pliny Secundus

Better known as Pliny the Younger,Pliny Secundus was a lawyer,author and magistrate of Ancient Rome.Pliny is known for his hundreds of surviving letters, which are an invaluable historical source for the time period.One of these is a particular letter written circa AD 112 to the Roman emperor Trajan.Though this does not reference Christ directly it does talk about early Christians.It states that:

In the meantime, the method I have observed towards those who have been denounced to me as Christians is this: I interrogated them whether they were in fact Christians; if they confessed it, I repeated the question twice, adding the threat of capital punishment; if they still persevered, I ordered them to be executed. …They affirmed, however, that the whole of their guilt, or their error, was that they were in the habit of meeting on a certain fixed day before it was light, when they sang in alternate verses a hymn to Christ, as to a god, and bound themselves by a solemn oath, not to perform any wicked deed, never to commit any fraud, theft or adultery, never to falsify their word, nor deny a trust when they should be called upon to make it good; after which it was their custom to separate, and then reassemble to partake of food – but food of an ordinary and innocent kind. 

 Lucian

Lucian  was a  satirist who wrote in the Greek Language He is noted for his witty and scoffing nature. Lucian also wrote a satire called The Passing of Peregrinus, in which the lead character, Peregrinus Proteus, takes advantage of the generosity and gullibility of Christians. This is one of the earliest surviving pagan perceptions of Christianity.It states:

The Christians, you know, worship a man to this day – the distinguished personage who introduced their novel rites, and was crucified on that account… You see, these misguided creatures start with the general conviction that they are immortal for all time, which explains the contempt of death and voluntary self-devotion which are so common among them; and then it was impressed upon them by their original lawgiver that they are all brothers, from the moment that they are converted, and deny the gods of Greece, and worship the crucified sage, and live after his laws.

Cornelius Tacitus

Tacitus was a was a senator and historian of the Roman Empire.In his Annals in book 15, chapter 44, written c. 116 AD, there is a passage which refers to Christ, to Pontius Pilate, and to a mass execution of the Christians after a six-day fire that burned much of Rome in  64 AD by Nero.

Consequently, to get rid of the report, Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a class hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilate, and a most mischievous superstition thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome…

Gaius Suetonius Tranquillas

Tranquillas was a historian and chief secretary to Emperor Hadrian.In his work Life of Claudius he states:

Because the Jews at Rome caused continuous disturbances at the instigation of Chrestus, he expelled them from the city

The Talmud

The Talmud is essentially the collection of Jewish oral traditions that were put into writing with additional commentary between the years of AD 70 and 200.The Babylonian Talmud, states:

On the eve of Passover they hanged Yeshu. And an announcer went out, in front of him, for forty days (saying): ‘He is going to be stoned because he practiced sorcery and enticed and led Israel astray. Anyone who knows anything in his favor, let him come and plead in his behalf.’ But, not having found anything in his favor, they hanged him on the eve of the Passover.

Summary

In summary we can put together the following profile of Jesus and his influence as well as existence which confirms many Scriptures in the Bible.

  • Jesus was a wise man and was called the Christ or Messiah. (Josephus)
  • Jesus gained disciples from other nations. (Josephus)
  • Christ’s disciples, “reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion and that he was alive.” (Josephus)
  • His disciples took to the habit of meeting on a fixed day of the week and took their name “Christians” from him. (Pliny)
  • They gave worship to Christ “as to a god”. (Pliny)
  • Christians started living after Christ’s laws. (Lucian)
  • Christians believed themselves to be all brothers from the moment of their conversion. (Lucian)
  • Under Herod, and during the reign of Tiberius, Pontius Pilate condemned Christ to die. (Tacitus)
  • Christ was crucified on the eve of Passover. (the Talmud)
  • Christians were tortured and even executed for their refusal to deny their belief in the resurrection and deity of Jesus Christ. (Josephus, Pliny,Lucian,Tacitus)