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Controversial Doctrines Resolved by the Pauline Pattern

By Justin Johnson

Many times the doctrines that cause Christians the most confusion are easily resolved by Mid-Acts right division.

Tongues
This interreligious practice continues to cause no small disgrace in the congregations who do not recognize that the supernatural multilingual ability was a power needed for the remnant of Israel in Acts II who were going to minister into the worldwide kingdom reign of Christ. By the way, this same reasoning applies to snake handling and poisonous water drinking. They are all listed in the same series in Mark 16 referring to the bizarre events that will occur during the tribulation. Acts 2 does not describe the church today.

Baptism
Since there has been such a lack of agreement regarding this doctrine within Christianity many are now chalking it up as a meaningless tradition. It is time that we recognize that there are at least a dozen different baptisms in the Bible and yet Paul speaks of only one in operation for the Church today. Jesus was baptized twice and if had to pick one it would not be the one with water.

Prayer
Sometimes it seems that no doctrine has caused more harm and yet is most needed as Prayer. The solution is simply to rightly divide Jesus’ earthly ministry to his covenantal people from the ministry he gave to Paul for the church today. Being strangers of the covenants means that you cannot get whatever you ask. Neither does it mean that prayer is ineffective. Paul gives the proper instruction in 1 Thessalonians 5:17.

Faith and Works
It is past time that we stop judging whether men are good enough to be saved and rid ourselves of the confusion about what should be the simplest teachings in the Bible. Faith salvation in the cross work of Christ is only found in the wisdom of God revealed first to Paul. Anywhere else you see justification, it accompanies the law system of the Jewish covenants. Don’t believe me? Take out Paul’s books and see how you fare.

God’s Will
Books have been written about how to determine God’s will for your life. Most of them teach some sort of self-assessment, mysticism, or shear intuition. The motivation for spontaneous action is attributed to a ‘leading of the Holy Ghost’ and the consequences are blamed on God. When we realize that God is no longer setting up a holy nation or an earthly kingdom, we can begin to study what he actually says about his will today in Ephesians 1:3, 3:9, and 1 Timothy 2:4. Notice all have been revealed through the Apostle Paul.

Mid-Acts right division resolves these confusions while keeping the clear reading of every passage of scripture in its context. Learn more about Mid-Acts right division and get some answers to your questions.

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Published: March 28, 2009
Last Modified: June 7, 2016
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