Ask Your Preacher
How would one disprove the Muslim faith?
The Muslim faith is built upon the Q'uran, just like the Christian faith is built upon the Bible. You can prove that the Bible is a supernaturally-written book inspired by God because it is full of things that only God could write – read "Who Wrote The Bible?" for a detailed list of things that make the Bible unique.
If the Q'uran was really a prophetic book, it would have to pass the same test. We would start any discussion with a Muslim about their faith by having them show the evidence for the Q'uran's divine inspiration. Believe us when we say that they will find it impossible to do.
What would you tell a high school-age school student about Ouija boards and why it is wrong to use one? The student is not a christian. I am one of his teachers.
Teaching The Truth
Dear Teaching The Truth,
The Bible says that we should always be ready to give an answer for the hope that is within us (1 Pet 3:15). If this student asks you what you think of Ouija boards, all you have to do is say that you don’t use them because your faith is in the Bible, not superstition. The Bible has evidence that proves it is trustworthy; the Ouija board doesn’t. Our goal is always to direct people to the Bible. It isn’t about proving the Ouija board is wrong (although it is!); it is about showing people that the Bible is right. If someone learns to embrace God’s Word, they will naturally begin to repel that which is wrong. After all, there is only room for one master (Matt 6:24).
One of my friends is being lead to believe that there were people before Adam and Eve. Is there truth to this?
Family Tree Tracer
Dear Family Tree Tracer,
No, there isn’t any truth to that. Sit down with your friend and read through the first chapters of the book of Genesis. Those chapters explain what happened in the beginning of the world (Gen 1:1). Adam and Eve were the first two created humans. Eve is the mother of all the living (Gen 3:20). You can confidently show your friend what the Bible says about the first two humans. After doing this, have your friend ask the other people they have been talking with to give them book, chapter, and verse for their position.
A coworker and I had a discussion on tithing. He is a member of the Church of God (not the biblical one). Well, he was saying 1 Cor. 16:2 is referring to the support a congregation gives to mission work; he says that Paul was doing mission work going town to town. Now, I told him I would have to get back to him on that. To me, it kind of seems like that MIGHT have been the case. I understand that the Old Law died with Jesus. What is good Scripture to show that we do or do not tithe? How much do we give if a certain amount is not commanded?
Signing The Check
Dear Signing The Check,
The New Testament and Old Testament teachings on giving are similar… but not the same. The Old Testament was very specific that giving should be a minimum of ten percent (Deut 14:22). The word ‘tithe’ means ‘one-tenth’. However, we don’t obey Old Testament laws because we are no longer under that law (Gal 3:23-25). If your coworker wants to teach that you must tithe, he needs to provide you with a New Testament verse for that teaching. It is his responsibility to provide a command or example for specific giving amounts, not your responsibility to disprove it.
In the New Testament, we see a more generic teaching on giving. Though ten percent is a good rule of thumb (after all, the Old Testament is given to us as an example – 1 Cor 10:11), christians are simply told to “give as they have prospered” (1 Cor 16:1-2) and to be cheerful givers (2 Cor 9:7), but God never specifically says how much christians should give. That is an issue of wisdom and is left for each individual heart to work out for itself (Php 2:12). The specific rule of giving one-tenth of our income no longer applies; instead, we are told to examine our hearts and give thankfully. 1 Cor 16:2 does deal with collecting money for the needy saints in Jerusalem, but it is also the only New Testament pattern we have for when and how the church should collect money, so the principles would apply.
Can you explain what's going on in Numbers 31:25-41, especially regarding what happens to both the animals and people captured after being divided and given to Eleazar the priest as a tribute for God or as a heave offering of Jehovah?
In Numbers 31, Moses was to lead the Israelites in battle against the Midianites (Num 31:1-2). After the battle, the army had to decide what to do with the plunder from the land (Num 31:12). God told them to split the plunder 50/50 between the soldiers who fought and the rest of the nation (Num 31:26-27). The soldiers were told to take 1/500th of their share of the plunder and give it to the priest (Num 31:28-29). Of the half that went to the rest of the nation, 1/50th was to be given to the Levites (Num 31:30-31). The verses you mentioned simply address a practical matter of dividing the spoils of war.