81 episodes

Musician, ordained minister, composer, author, and teacher, Dr. Jonathan Michael Jones, discusses issues related to worship, theology, and culture.

Act of Worship Jonathan Michael Jones

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 4.0, 1 Rating

Musician, ordained minister, composer, author, and teacher, Dr. Jonathan Michael Jones, discusses issues related to worship, theology, and culture.

    The Scope of Romans 13

    The Scope of Romans 13

    Discussions of Romans 13 have arisen significantly considering the vast
    manifestations of executive orders that have been offered during the prevalence
    of COVID-19. I dare suggest that Romans 13, along with a few other passages and
    verses of Scripture, is one of the most misused scriptures in the entire
    biblical canon. Submission to authorities is vital to godliness; yet, the scope
    of Romans 13 is perhaps not what many understand.            In the time Paul wrote his letter to
    the Romans, government was corrupt and even persecuted Christians. Paul,
    however, instructs believers to submit or be subject to the governing
    authorities. The Greek word for “be subject” is hupotasso, which literally means to place or rank under. The term
    implies an intentional effort. It is similar to what Paul commands believers in
    Philippians 2: to have the same mind as Christ Jesus, namely a mind of humility
    considering others better (Phil 2:5). These instructions do not mean that one
    certainly is less than another person but that Christians are to act as if that
    is the case, as Jesus did in his earthly ministry; no greater example of
    humility may be found except that of Christ Jesus. To be subject to the
    authorities then is to consider the governing bodies God ordained to be higher
    in rank.

                Understanding that being subject to
    the authorities is an explicit instruction given to God’s people, Romans 13
    must be interpreted. Are Paul’s instructions part of a blanket command to
    blindly obey the governing authorities, or is the scope narrower? To answer
    this question, there are four primary elements to consider. I will examine
    these elements here and then determine the scope of Romans 13.

    • 22 min
    Government's Biblical Role

    Government's Biblical Role

                In my Libertarian views, often a
    discussion of the role of government arises in various conversations. I do not
    believe my view is vastly different from what the framers of the US
    Constitution desired. The topic itself holds the potential to be divisive; yet,
    clear obligations are set aside for government both constitutionally and
    biblically. The scope here is to focus on the biblical role of government;
    nevertheless, I will briefly discuss the constitutional role of government as

    • 18 min
    Did Jesus Confess His Deity?

    Did Jesus Confess His Deity?

                Few deny the existence of Jesus and
    even his resurrection, although many have made feeble attempts at doing so. A
    common denial, however, is the deity of Christ. Even among professing
    believers, there are those who would adamantly claim that Jesus is not God and
    that he made such a claim himself. I counter that not only is Jesus God but the
    prophets, the Apostles, and Christ himself suggest otherwise.

    • 13 min
    Challenges to Wholeness

    Challenges to Wholeness

                Wholeness is a topic of discussion
    that likely arises in many gospel-centered conversations and indeed one with
    which believers should toil. Thoughts on how one achieves wholeness are
    disparate, many, and manifold. A commonality in such thoughts, however, is the
    necessity in determining challenges to overcome in order to achieve wholeness.
    For the following, I will suggest and dissect two primary challenges to
    wholeness: 1) the challenge of satisfaction and 2) the challenge of letting go.
    Both challenges offer unique thoughts and ideas and bring with them diverse
    opinions on how to correct them. While my suggestions here are anecdotal, I
    believe that my experiences are not unique but common not only to those around
    me but humanity in general. These challenges to wholeness could certainly be
    key components to Christian contentment and service to God.

    • 22 min
    Pray for Everyone: A Christian Reason

    Pray for Everyone: A Christian Reason

                The content of the church’s prayers is a crucial issue in
    worship. As worship not only tells the story of a covenant God but also
    participates in and does that story[1]
    (which is vast and diverse in the church), so corporate prayer ought to reflect
    the diverse narrative that exists between God and his people. The Apostle Paul,
    writing as a mentor to young Timothy, spent time teaching how the church is to
    pray (1 Tim 2). Paul’s instructions to Timothy here center around the church’s
    prayers in unity. Paul often makes clear his concerns for unity in the church.
    In his letter to the Galatians, the Apostle suggests that all in the body of
    Christ are equal when he says, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is
    neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in
    Christ Jesus” (Gal 3:28). Unity among God’s people plays a significant role in
    Paul’s instructions to Timothy here regarding prayer. External factors are of
    no concern in the body of Christ, for all are equal. Paul makes clear that God
    “desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of truth. For
    there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men” (1 Tim 2:4-5).
    No one is excluded here. While the church is diverse, she is, nevertheless, a
    unified people through the mediator, Jesus Christ.

    • 17 min
    Biblical Church Offices

    Biblical Church Offices

                Upon Jesus’ ascension, a task was
    given to the church: to go and teach all nations, baptizing them. To accomplish
    such a task, Christ gave the church five distinct types of ministers: apostles,
    prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers (Eph 4:11). Such offices should
    not be confused with spiritual gifts, as listed in 1 Corinthians 12 or Romans
    12. All believers possess spiritual gifts; yet, only a few hold an office of
    the church. Holding an office is a privilege, not a right, and one which
    requires exceeding accountability and seriousness.

    Of the five offices of the church, there subsist a variety of opinions
    and interpretations. For example, are these offices reserved only for men? The
    answer to that question will vary greatly depending on the hermeneutic of the
    one answering (and some more informed perhaps than others). Rather than
    outlining my own reasons for holding my view, suffice it to say that I believe
    these offices are not reserved only for men; yet, I am certainly able to see
    the perspective of one who believes so.

    Another question asked by many believers is whether all five churches
    offices Paul lists continue to exist today, primarily the role of apostle and
    prophet. Some reference Paul’s letter to the Church at Corinth to argue that
    tongues and prophecy (often including apostleship) do not exist. “…but when the
    perfect comes, the partial will pass away” (1 Cor 13:10). Since Paul speaks of
    prophecy and tongues in this context, the assumption could be that such
    abilities existed only for an ordained interval of time and not any further. I
    believe that such a claim is a stretch and, yet, do not discount its

    While different in function, the goal of all five offices of the church
    is the same: namely the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry and
    building the body of Christ (Eph 4:12). For the following, I will operate under
    the view that all five offices subsist today. How then should Christians
    understand the roles of apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, and teacher? My
    aim is to examine each office and how it should appear in current contexts.

    • 17 min

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