Are Pokémons Demons? A Christian Spiritual Warfare Understanding of Pokémon

Pokémon is huge fad that is reemerging with the insanely popular Pokémon Go mobile app/game.  No doubt, the technology and gaming is AMAZING.  In writing this, I am not discounting the many practical positive things that are coming out of this gaming revolution... but I am also not engaging the many practical safety concerns that are emerging.  


Here is a helpful video describing how the game works if you are unfamiliar with it.


My focus is on the spiritual concerns of Pokémon...which many Western/American Christians are not aware of...


This post is not meant to create debate or argument.  The spirit of this post is not paranoid, arrogant, self-righteous (I've played the old school version), or condescending.  The hope of this post is to inform Christians of some of the backgrounds to games, movies, TV shows, etc. like Pokémon so that they think more biblically about the decisions they make.


Ultimately I understand that Pokémon is just designed as a game or form of entertainment.  But it is not merely neutral territory, there is a demonic connection.  Here is a more detailed description that you may find helpful.


So here are some of my personal, basic Christian concerns with Pokémon:


Pokémon derives from and promotes an animistic worldview. 

  • A worldview is the lens through which you look at and interpret the world.  
  • Animism (spiritism/tribalism) is foreign to many Westerners/Americans but dominates the majority worldview.
  • Animism i“the belief that personal spiritual beings and impersonal spiritual forces have power over human affairs, and consequently, that human beings must discover what beings and forces are influencing them in order to determine future action and, frequently, to manipulate their power” (Gailyn Van Rheenen, Communicating Christ in Animistic Contexts, 20).
  • If you study more about animism/tribalism/spiritism you will see the connections more and more clearly with the game of Pokémon.

    • Animism focuses on BEINGS (gods, ancestors, ghosts, angels, nature spirits, spirit guides) and FORCES (magic, astrology, witchcraft, the evil eye, etc.) that influence the seen world.
    • Animism believes the seen world is clearly and definitively related to the unseen world, so animists are often constantly in fear of the powers behind events.
    • Power is the essence of animism, especially power to bring about evil.
    • Discovering, determining, and warding off the powers is critical in the animistic worldview.
Pokémon advocates for practices identical to those used by sorcerers, necromancers, mediums, psychics,  spirit/ghost hunters, and shamans.  These practices are clearly prohibited across the Bible, in both the Old and New Testaments, and across church history. These practices are interwoven into the game as the main feature, focus, and goal.
1. Controlling and capturing Pokémon to do your will.
2. Summoning and attracting Pokémon using incense items and lure modules.
3. Actively searching for Pokémon with time, energy, resources, and money (pokécoins).
4. Seeking and using factions and battles between Pokémon.
5. Using potions or revives to heal and restore Pokémons to life.
6. Types and Categories of Pokémon(fire, electric, ghost, poison, psychic) with correlating supernatural powers.
  • Just try substituting the concept of "demon" or "spirit" or "ghost" in the place of Pokémon in the above descriptions and you will see the obvious connections with animism.
"BUT THIS IS ONLY A GAME!" you may be thinking or shouting at your screen... "Don't be a killjoy!"... "These are just cartoons!"...

Well here are my thoughts.


1. Spiritual Warfare is real.  
Pokémon depicts a false, but widely believed and popularized version of the spirit world.  Playing and investing in such games just deepens and broadens the worldview of animism, and also makes it seem like a more fictional or fun world to some.  It is important to have an understanding of the spirit world, but we should seek and teach a spiritual worldview that is consistent with the biblical reality.  There is a real unseen battle going on between the followers of God (Christians and angels) and the followers of Satan (demons/fallen-angels and non-Christians) (Ephesians 6:10-20).

"Study Satan’s tricks, and acquaint yourself with his tactics." William Gurnall


“For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” (Galatians 5:1 ESV)

2. Satan disguises himself and is very clever in his approaches.  Approaches such as games, movies, and TV shows eventually cause us to subconsciously or subconsciously either misunderstand the true nature of the demonic.  Sometimes entertainment media causes us to be overly-dismissive or overly-interested toward the demonic.  Targeting kids and teens is a pretty smart approach for the enemy as well.


“And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his Servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.” (2 Corinthians 11:14-15 ESV) "so that we would not be outwitted by Satan; for we are not ignorant of his designs." (2 Corinthians 2:11 ESV)

3. Church History and secular history both took the demonic seriously.  The demonic is directly connected to Greek and Roman god worship in early church history.  The supernatural world has real monsters and they are called demons.  Demons are not cute, friendly, or helpful.  The goal and work of demons is to destroy and oppose God, His work, and His people.  If people truly understood the spiritual battle going on around us, they would not take it so casually.


“Brothers, do not be children in your thinking. Be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature.” (1 Corinthians 14:20 ESV)


Here are just a few examples from early church history:

  • Justin Martyr (AD 110-165) in The First Apology explains   “since of old these evil demons, effecting apparitions of themselves, both defiled women and corrupted boys, and showed such fearful sights to men, that those who did not use their reason in judging of the actions that were done, were struck with terror; and being carried away by fear, and not knowing that these were demons, they called them gods, and gave to each the name which each of the demons chose for himself.”  This description and others how some of the false religions, specifically in the temples of Greek gods, are but demonic imitations of biblical worship.  Martyr also points biblically in The Dialogue with Trypho to the Magi in Egypt and the false prophets in Elijah’s days but then connects such false worship to Greek gods such as Bacchus son of Jupiter, Semele, Hercules, Jove of Alcmene, and Æsculapius.
  • Irenæus (AD 120-202) “Thus, then, the mystic priests belonging to this sect both lead profligate lives and practise magical arts, each one to the extent of his ability. They use exorcisms and incantations. Love-potions, too, and charms, as well as those beings who are called ‘Paredri’ (familiars) and ‘Oniropompi’ (dream-senders), and whatever other curious arts can be had recourse to, are eagerly pressed into their service. They also have an image of Simon fashioned after the likeness of Jupiter, and another of Helena in the shape of Minerva; and these they worship. In fine, they have a name derived from Simon, the author of these most impious.” (Irenæus, Irenæus Against Heresies (ANF 1:348))
  • Minucius Felix (c.AD 210) “…. Saturn himself, and Serapis, and Jupiter, and whatever demons you worship, overcome by pain, speak out what they are; and assuredly they do not lie to their own discredit, especially when any of you are standing by. Since they themselves are the witnesses that they are demons"
  • Origen (AD 185-254) “Hence we are determined to avoid the worship of demons even as we would avoid death; and we hold that the worship, which is supposed among the Greeks to be rendered to gods at the altars, and images, and temples, is in reality offered to demons” (Origen, Contra Celsus (ANF 4:640))
"What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun." (Ecclesiastes 1:9 ESV)

4. Our supernatural battle is only won through the power and sacrifice of Christ.  Our own abilities, talents, time, and experience will not help us defeat the demonic.



“Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery.” (Hebrews 2:14-15 ESV)

"For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ" (2 Corinthians 10:3-5 ESV)

"Enemy-occupied territory - that is what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign in sabotage." C.S. Lewis


5.  We will answer to God in how we use the time, energy, and resources He has entrusted us with. Pokémon Go requires a lot of time and energy.  Wouldn't this time and energy be better invested in chasing after Jesus through the Bible, prayer, evangelism, missions, and church instead of chasing Pokémons?


"So then each of us will give an account of himself to God." (Romans 14:12 ESV)


"Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is." (Ephesians 5:15-17 ESV)


6.  Christians should ultimately ask themselves... does this game of Pokémon glorify God or Satan? Does this please God or provoke Him to jealousy?


"What do I imply then? That food offered to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything? [20] No, I imply that what pagans sacrifice they offer to demons and not to God. I do not want you to be participants with demons. [21] You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. [22] Shall we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than he? [23] “All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up." (1 Corinthians 10:19-23 ESV)



"Your perspective should be very different from the unregenerate." William Gurnall

If you have never read Spirit of the Rainforest: A Yanomamo Shaman's Story by Mark Ritchie or watched The Enemy God, it is extremely helpful to see and understand the animistic worldview. Here is a short interview with Bautista, a former witchdoctor who became a Christian.


This same man, 
Bautista, a former Yanomamo shaman was asked specifically about Pokémon by looking at their pictures. Read his response here: "Is Pokemon Safe for Christian Kids" THIS IS A VERY HELPFUL BLOG POST...I'd encourage you to read this before you make a final decision on what you think about Pokémon.


“Tell the people from your churches, that if there are things that make them feel uncomfortable, it is probably not good. God’s Spirit will speak to them about what is right and wrong.” Bautista

NOTE: Since writing this, I had two church members who were just on a mission trip to Oaxaca, Mexico.  They explained to me (having not read this post or the above links to Bautista) an event that happened on their trip... another American in their group was playing Pokémon Go when a former Mexican witchdoctor noticed a picture of Pikachu on the American's phone.  The former witchdoctor, having never seen it or heard of Pokémon before,  asserted that the image of Pikachu he saw was a demon he had seen and experienced before and questioned this Christian individual as to why they were playing such a game.



Again the purpose of this post is not to berate, put down, or insult.  Unfortunately I have played many  of these sorts of games myself in the past and watched some of these genres of entertainment.  The purpose of this post is to encourage Christians, and especially Christian parents, to think biblically about the content that is before their eyes and ears and in their hands.


"Are Pokémons demons?" may be the question that brought you to this post.  I think the better question that a Christian should be asking is, "Does Pokémon honor God?" and unfortunately, I think the clear answer is "No."



"So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." (1 Corinthians 10:31 ESV)


Here are three of my favorite resources that I hope you'll take the time to check out!



What Does the Bible Say About Baptism?

WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT BAPTISM?

1. FORESHADOWED in the Flood & Old Testament 
(1 Peter 3:20-21) because they formerly did not obey, when God's patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is,eight persons, were brought safely through water. 21 Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ
2. John’s ministry of baptism POINTS TO JESUS 
(Mt 3:11) I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
3. Jesus was baptized because it was GOD’S PLAN 
(Mt 3:15) But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented.
4. In Jesus’ baptism we SEE THE TRINITY 
(Mt 3:16-17) And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; 17 and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”
5. Jesus LED HIS DISCIPLES 
to baptize others (John 3:22) After this Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside, and he remained there with them and was baptizing.
6. Baptism was the FIRST STEP of being a disciple 
(John 4:1) Now when Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John
7. Jesus COMMANDS us to baptize believers 
(Mt 28:19) Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit
8. Baptism was always connected with REPENTANCE AND BELIEF 
(Acts 2:37-41) v.38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
9. Baptism was always IMMEDIATE 
(Acts 2:37-41) v.41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.
10. Baptism was always by IMMERSION 
“baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because water was plentiful there” (John 3:23)
11. Baptism is always by a biblical, Christian church leader, with a BIBLICAL understanding of baptism 
(Mark 1:1-11) “baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.”
12. Jesus said baptism is a PICTURE of faith 
(Acts 1:5) for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
13. For UNITY, not division 
(1 Corinthians 1:10-17) For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
14. BAPTISM ALWAYS FOLLOWS SALVATION 
Peter commands the Gentiles (non-Jews) to be baptized when they had already received the Holy Spirit (Acts 10:47-48)“Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to remain for some days.

The Ethiopian eunuch was EAGER when he saw water, asking, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” (Acts 8:38)

Checkout TrustworthyWord.com online, on Facebook, on Instagram, or on Twitter for some great daily truths, encouragement, and resources from the Bible!

What Does the Bible Say About Christian Identity?


WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT CHRISTIAN IDENTITY?

The Gift: New Identity
The greatest gift of Christianity is not merely a future existence in Heaven, but is the present and eternal reality of a relationship and unity with Christ (John 15:1-11, 1 Corinthians 6:17).  As Christians we must realize that we are not products of our past or present decisions, failures, or successes.  Our identity, value, & worth are rooted in our new name and identity in Christ.  We focus on knowing God first and foremost and simultaneously discover our amazing nature as God’s forever adopted children.
In Christ, I am…
  • Truly Alive.  Alive Forever. (Romans 6:23, John 11:25-26, Romans 6:8, Philippians 1:21)
  • Washed.  Cleaned.  Declared Innocent. Atoned. Not Condemned. (Isaiah 6:7, 1 Corinthians 6:11, Romans 8:1-2)
  • Victorious. (Romans 8:37)
  • Loved. (Romans 8:31, Jeremiah 31:3, John 3:16)
  • Secure. (Romans 8:38-39, Ephesians 2:4-7)
  • Known. (John 10:14, Jeremiah 1:5)
  • Heard. (1 John 5:14-15)
  • New Creation. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
  • Empowered Representatives. (2 Corinthians 5:20, Acts 1:8)
  • Justified and Made Righteous. (Romans 5:17-19, 2 Corinthians 5:21)
  • Filled with God’s Holy Spirit. (John 7:38-39)
  • Never Alone. (Matthew 28:20)
  • Blessed. (Ephesians 1:3)
  • Chosen and Adopted. (Ephesians 1:4-5)
  • Forgiven. (Ephesians 1:7, Colossians 1:13-14, Colossians 2:13-14)
  • Friend. (John 15:15)
  • Part of the Body of Christ. (Romans 12:4-5, 2 Corinthians 5:20)
  • United with God. (1 Corinthians 6:17, Colossians 3:3-4)
  • The Temple of God and of Priceless Worth. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
  • Inconceivably Rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9)
  • Children and Heirs of God. (Romans 8:16-17, Galatians 4:6-7, 2 Cor 6:18)
  • Saints. (Ephesians 5:3, Philippians 4:21, 1 Peter 2:9-10)
  • Salt of the Earth. (Matthew 5:13)
  • Light of the World. (Matthew 5:14-16)
  • Purposed. (Ephesians 2:10, 2 Corinthians 5:18-19)
  • Strengthened. (2 Corinthians 12:10, 1 John 4:4, Philippians 4:13)
  • Aroma of Christ. (2 Corinthians 2:14-17)
  • Called to Not Fear or Worry. (John 14:1, Isaiah 41:10, Joshua 1:8-9, Philippians 4:6-7, Hebrews 13:6)
  • Comforted and Comforters. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
  • Citizens of Heaven. (Philippians 3:20-21, Hebrews 13:14)
  • Crucified, Buried, Risen, and Free with Christ. (Romans 6:4-8)
In Christ, I am…
Truly Alive.  Alive Forever.
  • For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23 ESV)
  • Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26 ESV)
  • Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. (Romans 6:8 ESV)
  • For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. (Philippians 1:21 ESV)
Washed.  Cleaned.  Declared Innocent. Atoned. Not Condemned.
  • And he touched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.” (Isaiah 6:7 ESV)
  • And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:11 ESV)
  • There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.  For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:1-2 ESV)
Victorious.
  • No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. (Romans 8:37)
Loved.
  • What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31)
  • I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you. (Jeremiah 31:3 ESV)
  • “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16 ESV)
Secure.
  • For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, [39] nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39 ESV)
  • But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, [5] even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—[6] and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, [7] so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (Ephesians 2:4-7 ESV)
Known.
  • “I know my own and my own know me.” (John 10:14 ESV)
  • “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.” (Jeremiah 1:5 ESV)
Heard.
  • And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. [15] And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. (1 John 5:14-15 ESV)
New Creation.
  • Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV)
Empowered Representatives.
  • Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. (2 Corinthians 5:20 ESV)
  • “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)
Justified and Made Righteous.
  • For if, because of one man's trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ. [18] Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. [19] For as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience the many will be made righteous. (Romans 5:17-19 ESV)
  • For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV)
Filled with God’s Holy Spirit.
  • “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” [39] Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive, for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified. (John 7:38-39 ESV)
Never Alone.
  • “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20 ESV)
Blessed.
  • Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, (Ephesians 1:3 ESV)
Chosen and Adopted.
  • even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love [5] he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, (Ephesians 1:4-5 ESV)
Forgiven.
  • In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, (Ephesians 1:7 ESV)
  • He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, [14] in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (Colossians 1:13-14)
  • And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, [14] by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.  (Colossians 2:13-14 ESV)
Friend.
  • No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. (John 15:15 ESV)
Part of the Body of Christ.
  • For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, [5] so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.  (Romans 12:4-5 ESV)
  • Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. (2 Corinthians 5:20 ESV)
United with God.
  • But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. (1 Corinthians 6:17 ESV)
  • For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. [4] When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (Colossians 3:3-4 ESV)
The Temple of God and of Priceless Worth.
  • Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, [20] for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 ESV)
Inconceivably Rich.
  • For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9 ESV)
Children and Heirs of God.
  • The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, [17] and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. (Romans 8:16-17 ESV)
  • And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” [7] So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God. (Galatians 4:6-7 ESV)
  • “I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:18 ESV)
Saints.
  • But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. (Ephesians 5:3 ESV)
  • Greet every saint in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me greet you. Philippians 4:21)
  • But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. [10] Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. (1 Peter 2:9-10 ESV)
Salt of the Earth.
  • “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet.” (Matthew 5:13 ESV)
Light of the World.
  • “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. [15] Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. [16] In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:14-16 ESV)
Purposed.
  • For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10 ESV)
  • All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; [19] that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19 ESV)
Strengthened.
  • For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:10 ESV)
  • Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. (1 John 4:4 ESV)
  • I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13 ESV)Aroma of Christ.
  • But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. [15] For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, [16] to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life. Who is sufficient for these things? [17] For we are not, like so many, peddlers of God's word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ. (2 Corinthians 2:14-17 ESV)
Called to Not Fear or Worry.
  • “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.” (John 14:1 ESV)
  • fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:10 ESV)
  • “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. [9] Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:8-9 ESV)
  • do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. [7] And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7 ESV)
  • So we can confidently say,    “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?” (Hebrews 13:6 ESV)
Comforted and Comforters.
  • Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, [4] who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4 ESV)
Citizens of Heaven.
  • But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, [21] who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. (Philippians 3:20-21 ESV)
  • For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. (Hebrews 13:14)
Crucified, Buried, Risen, and Free with Christ.
  • We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. [5] For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. [6] We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. [7] For one who has died has been set free from sin. [8] Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. (Romans 6:4-8 ESV)

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How Can I Be Sure I'm A Christian?

HOW CAN I BE SURE I'M A CHRISTIAN?

Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?— unless indeed you fail to meet the test! (2 Corinthians 13:5, ESV)
1. Did a work start in you?  if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)
  • And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. (Philippians 1:6)
2. Have you experienced God’s Spirit in you?  In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:13-14)
3. Is there fruit of God’s Spirit growing in you? (Read the book of 1 John)
1. Do you enjoy having fellowship w/Christ & Christians? (1 John 1:3)
2. Would people say you walk in the light or darkness? (1 John 1:6-7)
3. Do you admit and confess your sin? (1 John 1:8)
4. Are you obedient to God's Word? (1 John 2:3-5)
5. Does your life indicate you love God or the world? (1 John 2:15)
6. Is your life characterized by "doing what is right"? (1 John 2:29)
7. Do you seek to maintain a pure life? (1 John 3:3)
8. Do you see a decreasing pattern of sin in your life? (1 John 3:5-6)  [i.e. not continuing in sin as a way of life, not a total absence of sin.]
9. Do you demonstrate love for other Christians? (1 John 3:14)
10. Do you "walk the walk," vs just "talking the talk"? (1Jn 3:18-19)
11. Do you maintain a clear conscience? (1 John 3:21)
12. Do you experience victory in your Christian walk? (1 John 5:4)
4. Do you endure in the faith? They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us. (1 John 2:19)

Works of the Flesh vs. Fruits of the Spirit: What best describes you?
The “works of the flesh” are evidence for unbelief and an eternity in Hell.
The “fruit of the Spirit” evidences God’s saving work and eternity with Christ. (Galatians 5:16-24)

[19] Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, [20] idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, [21] envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 
OR
[22] But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, [23] gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. [24] And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
Parable of the Sower: What category of “soil” best describes your response to the good news about Jesus?
(Matthew 13:19-23 ESV)
  1. [19] When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path.
  2. [20] As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, [21] yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away. 
  3. [22] As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 
Only the fourth ("good") soil below describes a genuine Christian.
4. [23] As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.


Do You See These Three Characteristics in Your Life?
The Book of 1 John Helps Us to See Characteristics of Truly Converted and Saved Souls.
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. (1 John 5:13)
1. Obedience to God's Commands?
  • If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. (1 John 1:6 ) 
  • Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked. (1 John 2:4-6) 
  • If one turns away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer is an abomination. (Proverbs 28:9) 
  • No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. (1 John 3:6)
  • By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother. (1 John 3:10)
  • For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome.  (1 John 5:3)
2. Forgiveness?
  • Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. (1 John 2:9) 
  • For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. (Matt 6:14-15) 
3. Love?
  • If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (1 John 2:15) 
  • No one who denies the Son has the Father. (1 John 2:23) 
  • But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. (1 Timothy 5:8)
  • Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. (1 John 4:8) 


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Evidence for Jesus: Was Jesus' Life, Death and Deity Real?


EVIDENCE FOR JESUS: WAS JESUS' LIFE, DEATH & DEITY REAL?

INTERNAL EVIDENCE (inside the Bible) 
Attests to Jesus’ Deity, Existence & Death
Scriptural Consistency, Prophetic Claims, Eyewitness Accounts, Internal Consistency, Corroborating & Circumstantial Evidence Archaeological Congruence & Evidence, Scientific Evidence, Jesus' Claims of Deity, Disciples Claims of Deity Jesus Predicts His Death & Resurrection – Mk 8:31-33, 9:30-32; Mt 20:17-19
Prophecies and Fulfillment of Christ
  1. Offspring of a Woman – Genesis 3:15, Luke 2:7, Revelation 12:5
  2. Offspring of Abraham – Genesis 18:18, Acts 3:25, Matthew 1:1, Luke 3:34
  3. Offspring of Isaac – Genesis 17:19, Matthew 1:2, Luke 3:34
  4. Offspring of Jacob – Numbers 24:17, Genesis 28:14, Luke 3:34, Matthew 1:2
  5. Descended from the Tribe of Judah – Genesis 49:10, Luke 3:33, Matthew 1:2-3
  6. Heir to the Throne of David – Isaiah 9:7, 11:1-5, 2 Samuel 7:13, Jeremiah 23:5, Matt1:1,6, Luke 1:32-33
  7. Born in Bethlehem – Micah 5:2, Matthew 2:1, Luke 2:4-7
  8. Time of Birth – Daniel 9:25, Luke 2:1-2, 2:3-7
  9. Born of a Virgin – Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 1:18, Luke 1:26-35
  10. Slaughter of Infants – Jeremiah 31:15, Matthew 2:16-18
  11. Escape into Egypt – Hosea 11:1, Matthew 2:14-15
  12. A PROPHET, LIKE MOSES – Deuteronomy 18:15, John 1:45, 16:15, Acts 3:19-26
  13. Ministry in Galilee – Isaiah 9:1-2, Matthew 4:12-16
  14. Priest Like Melchizedek – Psalm 110:4, Zechariah 6:12-13, Hebrews 6:20, 5:5-6, 7:15-17
  15. Rejected by Jews – Isaiah 53:3, Psalm 2:2, John 1:11, 5:43, Luke 4:29, 17:25
  16. Characteristics – Isaiah 11:2, Psalm 45:7, Luke 2:52, 4:18
  17. Triumphal Entry – Zechariah 9:9, Isaiah 62:11, John 12:13-14, Matthew 21:1-11
  18. Betrayed by a Friend – Psalm 41:9, Mark 14:10
  19. Sold for 30 Pieces of Silver, Potter’s Field – Zechariah 11:12-13, Matthew 26:15, 27:6-7
  20. Judas’ Position Replaced – Psalm 109:7, Acts 1:18-20
  21. False Witnesses’ Accused Him – Psalm 27:12, Matthew 26:60-61
  22. Silent When Accused – Isaiah 53:5, Matthew 26:62-63
  23. Struck and Spit Upon – Isaiah 50:6, Mark 14:65
  24. Hated Without Cause – Psalm 69:4, John 15:23
  25. Suffered Vicariously – Isaiah 53:4, Matthew 8:16-17
  26. Hands and Feet Pierced – Psalm 22:16, John 20:27
  27. Crucified With Sinners – Isaiah 53:12, Matthew 27:38
  28. Mocked and Insulted – Psalm 22:6-8, Matthew 27:39-40
  29. Given Gall and Vinegar – Psalm 69:21, John 19:29
  30. Hears Prophetic Words Used As Mockery – Psalm 22:8, Matthew 27:43
  31. Prays for His Enemies – Psalm 109:4, Luke 23:34
  32. Side Pierced – Zechariah 12:10, John 19:34
  33. Soldiers Cast Lots for His Clothes – Psalm 22:18, Matthew 15:24
  34. Not a Bone to Be Broken – Psalm 34:20, John 19:33
  35. Buried With the Rich – Isaiah 53:9, Matthew 27:57-60
  36. Resurrection – Psalm 16:10, Matthew 28:9
  37. Ascension into Heaven – Psalm 68:18, Luke 24:50
Do you know the odds of Jesus fulfilling just 8 prophecies? It is 1 in 10 to the 17th power (1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000).
Do you know the odds of Jesus fulfilling just 48 prophecies? It is 1 in 10 to the 157th power, (or 1 in 10,00,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, 000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000). 
Consider the odds for all 300+ prophecies (www.accordingtothescriptures.org/prophecy/353prophecies.html )
“I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God. 
That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. 
You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.” 
- C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
The Bible was written over a span of 1500 years by forty different human authors in three different languages (Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek), on hundreds of subjects. And yet there is one consistent, non-contradictory theme that runs through it all: God’s redemption of humankind.”
Hank Hanegraaff in “Bible Reliability”
http://www.equip.org/articles/bible-reliability-m-a-p-s-to-guide-you-through-bible-reliability/
Is Jesus Really God’s Son?
Whoever speaks the truth gives honest evidence, but a false witness utters deceit. (Proverbs 12:17 ESV) 
If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. (1 Corinthians 15:19 ESV) 
but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, (1 Peter 3:15 ESV) 
  1. Baptism – Mark 1:9-11
  2. I AM Statements – Mark 14:62, John 4:26, 8:58, 18:6, Exodus 3:14, Isaiah 4:45
  3. Immanuel – Matthew 1:23
  4. See God – Matthew 5:8
  5. Seen Me, Seen Father – John 14:7
  6. Image of the Invisible God – John 1, Col 1:15-16
  7. Father and I Are One – John 10:30
  8. Alpha and Omega, Beginning and the End – Revelation 1:8, 22:20
  9. Making Self Equal with God – John 5:18
  10. Shares God’s Glory – John 17:5-6
  11. He Is the New Temple – John 2:18-19
  12. He Is the Law Giver – Matthew 5-7
  13. Great High Priest – Hebrews 4:14
Was Jesus More Than Just a Good Man?
  1. Virgin Birth – Matthew 1:18, Luke 1:26-35
  2. Fulfillment of Prophecies – Ps 22, Isaiah 53:1-12
  3. Angels Worship Him – Hebrews 1:6
  4. Reception of Worship – John 9:38, 20:28
  5. Transfiguration – Matthew 17:1-13
  6. Claim of Disciples – John 20:28-29 – Thomas
  7. Without Sin – Hebrews 4:15
  8. Forgives Sin – John 9:2-6
  9. Raising Others from the Dead – John 11:1-46
  10. Resurrection and Ascension – Mt 28:1-15, Acts 1:4-11, Luke 23 & 24
EXTERNAL EVIDENCE (outside the Bible) 
Attests to Jesus’ Deity, Existence & Death
Manuscript & Bibliographical Evidence, Eyewitness Accounts, Corroborating & Circumstantial Evidence, Archaeological  Evidence, & Scientific Evidence
Below quotes from: Paul Maier in Did Jesus Really Exist? & Joseph and Josephus www.4truth.net ,also: The Case for the Real Jesus by: Lee Strobel

“there is more evidence that Jesus of Nazareth certainly lived than for most famous figures of the ancient past” Paul L. Maier, The Russell H. Seibert Professor of Ancient History, Western Michigan University

The Manuscript & Bibliographical Evidence: Ancient Works vs. Bible
NOTE: This does not even show the Old Testament manuscript evidence (Dead Sea Scrolls, Septuagint, Massoretic, etc) or the thousands of other New Testament manuscripts available in other languages and ancient time periods (24,000+ total NT manuscripts, 5795 Greek mss, 8,000-10,000 Latin mss, 8,000 Ethiopic, Slavic & Armenian).
www.equip.org/articles/the-bibliographical-test-updated/#christian-books-2
www.leaderu.com/orgs/probe/docs/bib-docu.html
“We have more than 14,000 manuscripts and fragments of the Old Testament of three main types: (a) approximately 10,000 from the Cairo Geniza (storeroom) find of 1897, dating back as far as about AD. 800; (b) about 190 from the Dead Sea Scrolls find of 1947-1955, the oldest dating back to 250-200 B.C.; and (c) at least 4,314 assorted other copies. The short time between the original Old Testament manuscripts (completed around 400 B.C.) and the first extensive copies (about 250 B.C.) — coupled with the more than 14,000 copies that have been discovered — ensures the trustworthiness of the Old Testament text. The earliest quoted verses (Num. 6:24-26) date from 800-700 B.C.” 
www.equip.org/articles/bible-reliability-m-a-p-s-to-guide-you-through-bible-reliability
 "The interval, then, between the dates of original composition and the earliest extant evidence becomes so small as to be in fact negligible, and the last foundation for any doubt that the Scriptures have come down to us substantially as they were written has now been removed. Both the authenticity and the general integrity of the books of the New Testament may be regarded as finally established." -Sir Frederic G. Kenyon, The Bible and Archaeology
former director and principal librarian of the British Museum
CHRISTIAN HISTORICAL EVIDENCE
Early Church Fathers (ccel.org) all of the early church pastors and leaders establish consistency of the message and personal testimony and witness of the apostles and disciples of Christ
Justin Martyr (early Christian convert): “Born of pagan parents around A.D. 100 in Nablus (between Judea and Galilee), Justin tried and abandoned various philosophical schools until he found in Christianity the one true teaching. As a native of the Holy Land, Justin mentions sites associated with Jesus, such as the Bethlehem grotto in which he was born, and even such details as Jesus working as an apprentice carpenter in the shop of his foster father Joseph, where they specialized in producing such agricultural implements as yokes for oxen and plows.” (Paul Maier in http://www.4truth.net/fourtruthpbjesus.aspx?pageid=8589952895)
JEWISH HISTORICAL EVIDENCE
Sacred Jewish Writings spell Jesus’ name accurately in Amaraic (the spoken language of the day, “Yeshua Hannotzri”—Joshua (Jesus) of Nazareth), writing of his arrest warrant in the Mishna (earliest collection of writings in the Talmud) “He shall be stoned because he has practiced sorcery and lured Israel to apostasy. Anyone who can say anything in his favor, let him come forward and plead on his behalf. Anyone who knows where he is, let him declare it to the Great Sanhedrin in Jerusalem.”
The Babylonian Talmud (Sanhedrin 43a) “confirms Jesus' crucifixion on the eve of Passover and the accusations against Christ of practicing sorcery and encouraging Jewish apostasy.”
Jewish History: Flavius Josephus a famous Jewish historian mentions "Jesus who is called the Christ" twice in his Jewish Antiquities. In the second of these, he tells of the death of Jesus' half-brother James the Just of Jerusalem (20:200). In the longest first-century non-biblical reference to Christ, 
Josephus writes:  “At this time there was a wise man called Jesus, and his conduct was good, and he was known to be virtuous. Many people among the Jews and the other nations became his disciples. Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die. But 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. Accordingly, he was perhaps the Messiah, concerning whom the prophets have reported wonders. And the tribe of the Christians, so named after him, has not disappeared to this day.” (18:63)
SECULAR HISTORICAL EVIDENCE
Cornelius Tacitus, “one of the most reliable source historians of first-century Rome, wrote in his Annals a year-by-year account of events in the Roman Empire under the early Caesars. Among the highlights that he reports for the year A.D. 64 was the great fire of Rome. People blamed the emperor Nero for this conflagration since it happened ‘on his watch,’ but in order to save himself, Nero switched the blame to ‘the Christians,’ which is the first time they appear in secular history. Careful historian that he was, Tacitus then explains who ‘the Christians’ were: ‘Christus, the founder of the name, had undergone the death penalty in the reign of Tiberius, by sentence of the procurator Pontius Pilatus’ (15:44). He then goes on to report the horrors that were inflicted on the Christians in what became their first Roman persecution.”
“Tacitus, it should be emphasized, was not some Christian historian who was trying to prove that Jesus Christ really lived, but a pagan who despised Christians as a ‘disease,’ a term he uses later in the passage. Had Jesus never even existed, he would have been the first to expose that pathetic phantom on whom such cultists placed their trust. Were no other references to Jesus available, this passage alone would have been sufficient to establish his historicity. Skeptics realize this, and so have tried every imaginable means to discredit this passage—but to no avail. Manuscript analysis and computer studies have never found any reason to call this sentence into question, nor its context.”
Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus also recorded events of the first century in his famous Lives of the Twelve Caesars. He, too, regarded the Christians as a sect "professing a new and mischievous religious belief" (Nero 16) and doubtless cited "Chrestus" (Claudius 25). 
Pliny the Younger “was the Roman governor of Bithynia—today, the northwestern corner of Turkey—and about the year 110 he wrote the emperor Trajan (98-117 A.D.), asking what to do about the Christians, a ‘wretched cult’ whom he mentions eight times in his letter. Christ himself is cited three times, the most famous instance referring to Christians ‘...who met on a fixed day to chant verses alternately among themselves in honor of Christ, as if to a god...’ (Letter No. 96). Trajan's response, interestingly enough, suggests that Christians not be hunted out. (Ibid., No. 97). But again, if Christ were only a mythical character, these hostile sources would have been the first to emblazon that fact in derision.”
Below references are from: www.gotquestions.org/did-Jesus-exist.html
Julius Africanus “quotes the historian Thallus in a discussion of the darkness which followed the crucifixion of Christ (Extant Writings, 18).”
Lucian of Samosata “was a second-century Greek writer who admits that Jesus was worshiped by Christians, introduced new teachings, and was crucified for them. He said that Jesus' teachings included the brotherhood of believers, the importance of conversion, and the importance of denying other gods. Christians lived according to Jesus’ laws, believed themselves to be immortal, and were characterized by contempt for death, voluntary self-devotion, and renunciation of material goods.”
Mara Bar-Serapion “confirms that Jesus was thought to be a wise and virtuous man, was considered by many to be the king of Israel, was put to death by the Jews, and lived on in the teachings of His followers.”
“Then we have all the Gnostic writings (The Gospel of Truth, The Apocryphon of John, The Gospel of Thomas, The Treatise on Resurrection, etc.) that all mention Jesus. … In fact, we can almost reconstruct the gospel just from early non-Christian sources: Jesus was called the Christ (Josephus), did “magic,” led Israel into new teachings, and was hanged on Passover for them (Babylonian Talmud) in Judea (Tacitus), but claimed to be God and would return (Eliezar), which his followers believed, worshiping Him as God (Pliny the Younger).” 
ARCHAEOLOGICAL EVIDENCE
bibleplaces.com – photographs & descriptions of archaeological sites that evidence and corroborate the Bible
blog.bibleplaces.com – ongoing discoveries and archaeological updates
“TOP TEN BIBLICAL ARCHAEOLGY DISCOVERIES”
from the Biblical Archeology Society by James Brashler, Jane Cahill West, Ze’ev Meshel, John Monson, Hershel Shanks, Suzanne F. Singer, Lawrence E. Stager, James F. Strange
(Available from http://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/free-ebooks/ )
  1. The Nag Hammadi Library - Codices Shed New Light on Early Christian History
  2. The New ‘Ain Dara Temple: Closest Solomonic Parallel
  3. The Tel Dan (“David”) Stela
  4. Mona Lisa of the Galilee
  5. “Yahweh and His Asherah” The Kuntillet ‘Ajrud Ostraca
  6. St. Peter’s House: Has the House Where Jesus Stayed in Capernaum Been Found?
  7. The Siloam Pool: Where Jesus Cured the Blind Man
  8. Ashkelon’s Arched Gate: When Canaanites and Philistines Ruled Ashkelon
  9. Jerusalem’s Stepped-Stone Structure: Jerusalem in David and Solomon’s Time
  10. Jerusalem’s Babylonian Siege Tower: Remains of the Babylonian Siege
More Amazing Archaeological Discoveries
A Common Flood Story, The Code of Hammurabi, The Nuzi Tablets, The Existence of Hittites, The Merneptah Stele, Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically, Shishak’s Invasion of Judah, The Moabite Stone, Obelisk of Shalmaneser III, Burial Plaque of King Uzziah,  Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription, The Sennacherib Prism, The Cylinder of Cyrus the Great 
(Available from: http://www.equip.org/articles/biblical-archaeology-factual-evidence-to-support-the-historicity-of-the-bible/ )
RESOURCES FOR FUTURE STUDY
What does God say through the Bible?
www.gotquestions.org –  almost 400,000 answers to life, spiritual, and Bible questions.
Is Christianity True?
  • I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist – by Norman Geisler and Frank Turek, shows how there is more evidence for Christianity than evolution/naturalism
  • The Case for Christ – by Lee Strobel – simply explains much of the evidence for Christianity
  • Scientific Facts in the Bible: 100 Reasons to Believe the Bible is Supernatural in Origin by Ray Comfort
  • The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict by Josh McDowell
Creation vs. Evolution
  • www.evolutionvsgod.com – A 38-minute video, with over 1.7 million views, of interviews with atheist professors and scholars concerning their beliefs in evolution.
  • answersingenesis.org - Provides answers to questions about the Bible regarding issues such as creation, evolution, science, and the age of the earth
  • www.reasons.org - explains scientific discoveries and shows how they continue to evidence the truthfulness of Scripture
  • Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion & Naturalism by Alvin Plantiga
Archaeological Evidence
bibleplaces.com – blog.bibleplaces.com -   www.biblicalarchaeology.org/free-ebooks
Comparison of Christianity with other World Religions
www.4truth.net – A reasoned approach to Christianity
Additional Resources
  • Life's Ultimate Questions: An Introduction to Philosophy by Ronald H. Nash
  • Reasonable Faith: Christian Truth and Apologetics by William Lane Craig
  • Who Made God? And Answers to Over 100 Other Tough Questions of Faith by  Ravi Zacharias and Norman Geisler
  • Reasons for Faith: Making a Case for the Christian Faith Norman L. Geisler and Chad V. Meister


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