Spirit & Truth | Overflow Church Grand Prairie, Tx | Notes
Overflow Church Grand Prairie, Tx
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Spirit & Truth: Resources

The Christ/ Evidence for Jesus.

 Is Jesus a copycat myth?
1. Osiris 2. Horus 3. Mitherous
  • Promises followers immortalities
  • Performed miracles.
  • Born a virgin
  • Rose from the dead
  • Born on December 25th

Evidence for Jesus.
1. Secular Historical Sources

Legitimate Historical secular sources:
  • Cornelius Tacitus: (55-120AD) The Greatest Historian of ancient Rome” lived through the reigns of over half a dozen Roman empires.
  • Lucian of Samosata: Greek Satirist of the latter half of the First Century. Despised and hated Christianity.
  • Josephus ben Mattathias(37/38-100AD) Jewish Historian.
  • More: Pliny the Younger, ThallusPhlegon
“No Serious scholar has ventured to postulate the non-historical Jesus.” -Otto Betz

“There is overwhelming evidence for the existence of Jesus Christ, both in secular and biblical history. Perhaps the greatest evidence that Jesus did exist is the fact that thousands of Christians in the first century AD, including the twelve apostles, were willing to give their lives as martyrs for Jesus Christ. People will die for what they believe to be true, but no one will die for what they know to be a lie.” -gotquestions.org

2. Culture  
Jesus matters in Culture: There is more influence from Jesus than any other character in human history. 

“Jesus has had such an unparalleled, thoroughgoing, and decisive impact on virtually every area of modern culture—literature, architecture, music, the arts, higher education, world literacy, even science—that he remains, irrevocably, the one man who cannot be erased from history, even if every ancient manuscript detailing his life disappeared from existence.” - Greg Koukl on J Warner Wallace's Work of Person of Intrest. https://coldcasechristianity.com

1. Literature(sacred and secular)- From virgin birth to resurrection. There is more written about Jesus than any other character in history. 

2. Music: Every historical era of music has been dominated by Christ-followers singing about Jesus. 

3. Visual arts: The gospel could be easily extracted by the multitudes of painted etched sculpted, or crafted about Jesus for the first 500 years of his life on earth.

4. Education: Many Major universities that lead in academia were established by Christ-followers.

5. Science: 
“Christianity gave rise to modern science: The Scientific Revolution (roughly 1300 to 1700) was initiated by Christian theological ideas…
One of those key ideas was the idea of intelligibility: that nature is intelligible. There's an order and design that can be understood and discerned by the scientist because nature is the product of a rational mind, namely the mind of God, and that that same mind or creator who made nature with that rational order built into it made us and our reason, so that we could perceive and understand the reason that he built into nature.” Stephen C Meyer

You can reject Jesus, but you cannot logically dismiss his impact on History and Culture. 

3. Other religions 
Jesus is either 
Merged or Modified
  • Hinduism- Jesus is a wise teacher
  • Buddhism Merge Jesus 
  • New age- Jesus is used in propagating ideas.
  • Islam- Jesus mentioned as a prophet

The Resurrection:
Two major views that oppose the Resurrection
1. Stolen by the Disciples
The disciples stole the body: 
  • Fact one: If the body had been stolen by his followers, all that would be needed to disprove the claim would be to produce the body. No body has ever been produced. 
  • Fact two: There were Roman guards at the site of the tomb. How, then, could any of Jesus' followers have stolen his body? 
  • Fact three: There was a giant stone covering the tomb, which would have taken several people to move. The guards could not have overlooked such an operation. 
  • Fact four: The early followers of Jesus were persecuted for their belief. They were offered two options: renounce their belief in the resurrection or die. It seems unlikely that, were the disciples to have stolen the body, they would have all been ready to die rather than confess their deeds.
>It is true that people die every day for beliefs that are not true. But these are lies that they fully believe to be true. How often do people die for what they know to be a lie? 

2. Swoon Theory: Jesus did not actually die
  • Jesus was almost killed, but perhaps druged so the authorities would think he was dead, or he was just sleeping.
  • He bled in a tomb with no food or water for 3 days
  • He still had the strength to remove the rock covering, which took several men to move. And Overpowered roman guards.

The resurrection is reasonable.

The most significant evidence is that there is a tomb, but it is empty.

“Jesus is not just resurrected; he is the resurrection.” 

The Claim of Christ:
John 14:6 (NIV) Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
  • Jesus is the savior; therefore, he can save me and be the savior of every man, woman, and child.

Luke 19:10 (NIV) For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Jesus is the only one who made a way.
1. He’s the only one that could. 
2. He’s the only one that would
3. He is the only one who did
Romans 5:6 (NIV) 6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
If there are many ways to God, then Jesus died in vain. 

“Jesus is either Liar, Lunatic or he is The Lord.” 
- CS Lewis

“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.” C.S. Lewis

We have to get Jesus right.

The greatest question ever asked:
Matthew 16:13–15(NIV) 13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” 14 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

Jesus’ unique claims about himself

Spirit & Truth: The Word (Is The Bible Reliable?)

1 Peter 3:15 (NIV) In your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.

1. Truth:
"The truth about truth is that it is true."
"The Christian faith is not true because we believe it. We believe it because it's true."
The demonstration of our worship involves truth.
John 4:23–24 (NLT) 23 But the time is coming—indeed it's here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. 24 For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth."

2. Myth: Love is all that matters.
"Love may open the door but knowing the truth is what sets people free." 

3. Mindsets and Ideas: 
2 Corinthians 10:4 (NLT) We use God's mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments.

  • Relativism: That all truth is relative. There is no absolute truth? 
  • Moral Relativism: Everyone should act in accordance with the individual's society.
  • Atheism: the belief that there is no God. 
  • Materialism: The only things that are real are material. 

Is there reasonable evidence for God?
#1. Cosmological Argument
Cosmology: Study of the origin of the universe.
What caused it?
The universe had a beginning & it is expanding.
If it's expanding, it had a beginning. 
"A Big Bang needs a big banger." Greg Koukl

The evolutionist cannot explain how or why: 

We have an answer.
The non-physical God created the physical world.
  • Axiom: Self evident truth. Parallel lines

Romans 1:20 (NIV) For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

Genesis 1:1–3 (NIV) 1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. 3 And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light.

Why do we believe in God? 
Because he is the best explanation for the way things are.

#2. Design/ Fine-Tuning argument 
Teleology-universe is fine-tuned to sustain life. 
It was created by a designer, with purpose in mind.

The fine tuning of the earth.
  • The design and positioning of the earth is in the exact position it needs to be from the sun to the sun to sustain life. 
  • The physics of gravity. 
  • Jupiter's orbit produces such gravitational pull that it keeps the earth from being demolished from metor's bigger than the earth.
  • The level of 21% of oxygen in our atmosphere is perfect.
  • The precision of that fact happened by accident is irrational and unreasonable.

Psalm 19:1–2 (NIV) 1 The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. 2 Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge.

Fine tuning of the body:
  • DNA: In every cell contains DNA that, if unwound, would be 6' of information on how to assemble protein. Unravel all of it, and it would wrap around our solar system twice.
  • It takes a couple just a couple of minutes to create a child. Then the woman's body will provide all that child needs for the childs life in the womb and a couple of years later.
  • The human eye(40 mil nerve endings, 137 Mil light sensitive cells)
"What shall we say of the eye?… that it could have been formed by natural selection…I confess that no language at first seems too strong to condemn the absurdity of such a notion." Charles Darwin 

If we are designed, we have purpose in mind.

Psalm 8:4–6(NIV) 4 what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? 5 You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honor. 6 You made them rulers over the works of your hands; you put everything under their feet.

"The God who is Spirit, immaterial, spoke his word and created material and breathed His Spirit into the crown of his creation, Human beings, those of whom were made in his likeness."

John 1:1–5 (NLT) 1 In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He existed in the beginning with God. 3 God created everything through him, and nothing was created except through him. 4 The Word gave life to everything that was created, and his life brought light to everyone. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.

James 1:18 (NLT) 18 He chose to give birth to us by giving us his true word. And we, out of all creation, became his prized possession.

Spirit & Truth: The Christ (Evidence for Jesus)

Common objections of the Bible:
1. The Bible has been disproven.
  • The New Testament has held up to stricter scrutiny than any other historical document. 
  •  "No archeological discovery has ever controverted(contradicted) a Biblical reference. Scores of archeological findings have been made which confirm in clear outline or in exact detail historical statements in the Bible." Dr. Nelson Glueck, Modern authority on Israeli archeology
2. The Bible is irrelevant and outdated.
"Many want to construct a palatable and pliable Jesus so that they can fashion him to whatever lifestyle, ideology, or agenda they like."

3. The Bible is pro-slavery and anti-women 
  • Described vs. prescribed
  • Jesus elevated and included women and promised freedom to captives.

4. Men wrote the Bible.

"God can draw a straight line with a crooked stick." -Unknown

"If God is involved with the Bible, it doesn't matter if men or monkeys wrote it, He can still guarantee the result He wants." -Greg Koukl

5. The Bible has changed.

Luke 1:1–4 (NIV)1 Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, 2 just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the Word. 3 With this in mind, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4 so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.

A. There are to many translations 

A specific translation is not THE Word of God, but it contains it.

Modern translations have only been translated from the early manuscripts.

Translation say
 the same thing in a different way!  

B. The Bible is not accurate.
  • Compared to other historical text the NT holds up to textural criticism more than any other historical document with overwhelming evidence.

“Textural Variants” .5%
  • "I went to the store to get some eggs that I needed."
  • "I needed eggs so I went to the store."

II. The 3 I's of scripture.
1. Inspired: God breathed out His message to men and moved them to record what He wanted.
2. Inherent: The originals were free of errors.
3. Infallibility: incapable of error or wrong.

If the scripture is reliable, it is authoritative as God's Word.
The Bible today is just as authoritative as it was in the first century AD.

2 Timothy 3:14–17 (NLT) 14 But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true, for you know you can trust those who taught you. 15 You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.

If God said it, it does matter what I think, feel, or justify. He is the higher authority.

Hebrews 4:12–13 (NLT) 12 For the Word of God is alive and powerful. (living and active) It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable.

God has spoken, so where is the Lie?

The written Word leads us to Word made Flesh.

John 5:36–40 (NLT) 36 I have a greater witness than John—my teachings and my miracles. The Father gave me these works to accomplish, and they prove that he sent me. 37 And the Father who sent me has testified about me himself. You have never heard his voice or seen him face to face, 38 and you do not have his message in your hearts, because you do not believe me—the one he sent to you. 39 "You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me! 40 Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.

John 6:63–64 (NIV) 63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life. 64 Yet there are some of you who do not believe."

Bible reading tips
  • Don't read the Bible saying God, what do you have for me? instead read it saying, "Who are you Lord?" 
  • Never read A verse.
  • It's a marathon, not a sprint- Read it slow.
  • Movement 21
Exegesis and Eisegesis:
Exegesis: "to lead out of." That means that the interpreter is led to his conclusions by following the text.
Eisegesis: "to lead into," which means the interpreter injects his own ideas into the text, making it mean whatever he wants.

Spirit & Truth: The Chaos (The problem of evil)

ACTS 16:16-34 NLT 
16 - One day as we were going down to the place of prayer, we met a slave girl who had a spirit that enabled her to tell the future. She earned a lot of money for her masters by telling fortunes. 17 She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, and they have come to tell you how to be saved.” 18 This went on day after day until Paul got so exasperated that he turned and said to the demon within her, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And instantly it left her.

When God acts, Satan reacts.

Matthew 10:1  
Jesus called his twelve disciples together and gave them authority to cast out evil spirits and to heal every kind of disease and illness.

Matthew 10:1 - 18 - Her masters’ hopes of wealth were now shattered, so they grabbed Paul and Silas and dragged them before the authorities at the marketplace. 20 “The whole city is in an uproar because of these Jews!” they shouted to the city officials. 21 “They are teaching customs that are illegal for us Romans to practice.”

1. Don't be surprised when the enemy attacks.

Any time there is a move of God, Satan will do whatever he can to kill it.

John 16:33 
 I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”

ACTS 16:22 - A mob quickly formed against Paul and Silas, and the city officials ordered them stripped and beaten with wooden rods. 23 They were severely beaten, and then they were thrown into prison. The jailer was ordered to make sure they didn’t escape. 24 So the jailer put them into the inner dungeon and clamped their feet in the stocks.

So what did they do?

ACTS 16:25 - Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening.

2. Keep your eyes on Jesus

Job 1:20  At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship 21 and said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” 22 In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.

God's objective for your life is not to make you happy, it is to make you Holy

ACTS 16:26 - Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off! 

God is a chain breaker!

When God's people pray and worship together, miracles can happen.

ACTS 16: 27 - The jailer woke up to see the prison doors wide open. He assumed the prisoners had escaped, so he drew his sword to kill himself. 28 But Paul shouted to him, “Stop! Don’t kill yourself! We are all here!” 29 The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 Then he brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household.”
Paul and Silas knew there was a purpose for the pain.

3. Your purpose is greater than your problem.

“This was a natural event, but with a supernatural purpose, timing, and effect.” Bob-Utley

ACTS 16:32  And they shared the word of the Lord with him and with all who lived in his household. 33 Even at that hour of the night, the jailer cared for them and washed their wounds. Then he and everyone in his household were immediately baptized. 34 He brought them into his house and set a meal before them, and he and his entire household rejoiced because they all believed in God.

Paul and Silas introduced the jailer and his family to the one who washed and cleansed their spiritual wounds and now he in return was washing their physical wounds.

Habakkuk 3:17-18 - Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, 18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!

Spirit & Truth: The Cosmos (Cosmology & Design)

Faith will be tested. 

“The test won't pass; you have to pass the test."

James 1:2–4 (NIV) 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
1. Testing grows us
2. Testing is a revealer
3. In testing, the Devil tempts us.
James 1:13(NIV) When tempted, no one should say, "God is tempting me." For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone.

The devils desire is to….
  • Disengage from your community and connection to Jesus
  • Disappoint your desires.
  • Discourage you and rob you of hope.
  • Distract from your purpose.
  • Disrupt the refining process.
  • Dismantle your identity.
4. Testing proves us
James 1:12–15 (NIV) 12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. 

"A faith that is tested is a faith that can be trusted." 

Passing the test: 
Genesis 22:1(NLT) Some time later, God tested Abraham's faith. "Abraham!" God called. "Abraham!" God called. "Yes," he replied. "Here I am." 2 "Take your son, your only son —yes, Isaac, whom you love so much—and go to the land of Moriah. Go and sacrifice him as a burnt offering on one of the mountains, which I will show you." 3 The next morning Abraham got up early. He saddled his donkey and took two of his servants with him, along with his son, Isaac. Then he chopped wood for a fire for a burnt offering and set out for the place God had told him about. 

1. Hope up
  • God's promise is always the greater reality!

1 Peter 1:3–4 (NLT)
 …It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, 4 and we have a priceless inheritance…

Genesis 22(NLT) 4 On the third day of their journey, Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance. 5 "Stay here with the donkey," Abraham told the servants. "The boy and I will travel a little farther. We will worship there, and then we will come right back." 6 So Abraham placed the wood for the burnt offering on Isaac's shoulders, while he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them walked on together, 7 Isaac turned to Abraham and said, "Father?" "Yes, my son?" Abraham replied. "We have the fire and the wood," the boy said, "but where is the sheep for the burnt offering?" 8 "God will provide a sheep for the burnt offering, my son," Abraham answered. And they both walked on together.

2. Speak Up
John 16:33 (NIV) In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
1 John 5:5 (NIV) Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
Romans 8:31 (NIV) What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
Romans 8:35 (NIV) Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
Romans 8:37 (NIV) We are more than conquerors through him who loved us.

Genesis 22(NLT) 9 When they arrived at the place where God had told him to go, Abraham built an altar and arranged the wood on it. Then he tied his son, Isaac, and laid him on the altar on top of the wood. 10 And Abraham picked up the knife to kill his son as a sacrifice. 11 At that moment the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven, "Abraham! Abraham!" "Yes," Abraham replied. "Here I am!" 12 "Don't lay a hand on the boy!" the angel said. "Do not hurt him in any way, for now I know that you truly fear God. You have not withheld from me even your son, your only son." 13 Then Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught by its horns in a thicket. So he took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering in place of his son. 14 Abraham named the place Yahweh-Yireh (which means "the Lord will provide").

3. Look up
Hebrews 10:23 (NIV) Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

Psalm 121:1–8 (NLT) 1 I look up to the mountains— does my help come from there? 2 My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth! 3 He will not let you stumble; the one who watches over you will not slumber. 4 Indeed, he who watches over Israel never slumbers or sleeps. 5 The Lord himself watches over you! The Lord stands beside you as your protective shade. 6 The sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon at night. 7 The Lord keeps you from all harm and watches over your life. 8 The Lord keeps watch over you as you come and go, both now and forever.