Is Phil Vischer’s “What’s In The Bible? Volume 1” actually in the Bible?

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This is a review of the first installment of the 13-part series from VeggieTales creator Phil Vischer which sets out to teach kids about the Bible. I purchased many of the “What’s In The Bible” (WITB) DVD’s based upon a recommendation from someone at our church and because someone from a men’s small group that I was involved with allowed me to preview two DVDs from the series. Having watched some of the Veggie Tales video’s and being generally pleased with their content, I decided that I would buy THE WITB series for the spiritual edification of my children. However, before doing so, I quickly found out that there were issues with some of the content that is included in the series’ first video. Although, I did eventually purchase 10 of the 13 videos in the series, I could not in good conscience purchase the first video after what I discovered. This post is only a review of content from the first video in the series: Buck Denver Asks: What’s in the Bible? Volume 1- In the Beginning

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Melchizedek abides a priest continually and Jesus has a priesthood that is said to be unchangeable.

In the series “10 reasons why Melchizedek was actually the pre-incarnate Word of God” the following article is reason # 6.

Melchizedek abides a priest continually and Jesus has a priesthood that is said to be unchangeable.

Before us lies a great paradox that should have caused the Melchizedek-disparaging commentators to cease with their naturalistic interpretations of the text. Hebrews 7:24 makes it known through what is attributed to Christ that Melchizedek’s priesthood could neither be transmitted to another nor interrupted by death. Thus if Melchizedek is still a high priest (as Hebrews 7:3 very clearly states) then Jesus cannot at the same time also be a high priest since there can only be one perpetual high priest at a time. Yet, Hebrews 6:20 states that Jesus is a high priest forever as well. The only rational conclusion that this verse leaves us with is that Melchizedek is really the pre-incarnate Word of God that is spoken of in John 1:1.

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Melchizedek is made like unto the Son of God

In the series “10 reasons why Melchizedek was actually the pre-incarnate Word of God” the following article is reason # 5.

Melchizedek is made like unto the Son of God

The mere fact that scripture says Christ and Melchizedek are mutually similar should clue us into the possibility that they might be the same person. Hebrews 7:3 says that Melchizedek was made like unto the Son of God while Hebrews 7:15-17 says that the Son of God is a priest after the order and similitude of Melchizedek. Still, some may be inclined to argue that because there is a comparison made between Melchizedek and the Son of God it must imply a distinction between the two such that they cannot be the same person. However, this thinking is flawed for Paul in Philippians 2:6 compares Jesus to God (i.e. “[Jesus] didn’t think it robbery to be equal with God”) yet no one would argue that Paul therefore sees a distinction between Jesus and God. Another comparison is made in Revelation 3:21 between Christ’s throne and the throne of God the Father; yet Revelation 22:3 informs us that these thrones are the same one throne. Therefore, a mere comparison does not necessarily imply distinction. Melchizedek was made like unto the Son of God in the sense that He and Christ are both manifestations of the Word of God.

Dr. Henry Morris also tells us that:

No mere earthly king was ever “made like unto the Son of God,” nor was there ever one who “abideth a priest continually (same word as “forever”). It is difficult to see how these descriptions could be properly applied to anyone but the Lord Jesus Christ, who came to encourage Abraham in this unique pre-incarnate experience, assuming a human form “like unto” that which He would assume forever when He became the incarnate Son of God. For the first time He founded and implemented forever the priestly order of Melchizedek. The fact that he was “made like unto the Son of God” accords with one of Christ’s pre-incarnate appearances; at His human birth, he became the incarnate Son of God forever. Melchizedek was also said to be a man (Heb_7:4), but the same is true in the case of other theophanies, one of which was likewise manifested to Abram and Lot (Gen_18:2, Gen_18:22; Gen_19:1-24).[Defender’s Study Bible – ]
See notes on Gen 14:18, Heb 7:3, The DEFENDER’S Study Bible, Henry M. Morris, Ph.D., LL.D., Litt.D.

Thayer’s Greek Lexicon tell us that the Greek work aphomoioo which is rendered in the KJV as “made like unto” also means “to express [one’s] self in.” Therefore Melchizedek expresses himself in the Son of God. But then again so does “the Word” for John 1:14 and John 1:34 tell us that the second person in the Trinity (1 John 5:7) Who is called “the Word” (or the Logos) is also made like unto the Son of God. Since both Melchizedek and the eternal Word of God are made like unto the Son of God, it then follows by logic’s property of transitivity that Melchizedek was the pre-incarnate Word of God.

Melchizedek has no beginning of days, nor end of life (this means He is immortal)

In the series “10 reasons why Melchizedek was actually the pre-incarnate Word of God” the following article is reason # 4.

Melchizedek has no beginning of days, nor end of life (this means He is immortal).

One thing that becomes increasingly clear when reading the many bible commentaries on Melchizedek is that a whole bunch of “theologians” do not really believe that the bible was written by the Holy Spirit. For example, regarding Hebrews 7:1-3, the ISBE (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia) asks the following question:

Where did the author get the material for this description of Melchizedek?

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10 reasons why Melchizedek was actually the pre-incarnate Word of God

Speculations concerning the identity of Melchizedek are plentiful and not without controversy. Most commentaries or study bibles that I have read say that he was merely an obscure king of a Canaanite city called Salem, who upheld the true religion. According to these writers, Salem was allegedly also known as the city of Jerusalem in the days of Abraham; thus Melchizedek is said to have been ruling there while administering his priestly functions for occupants who were undoubtedly pagan [0]. Continue reading

Textual Criticism: When mere men become arbiters of truth

Last year (2012) fall, at the behest of a friend of mine, I attended a men’s bible study called Solomon’s Porch at Immanuel Bible Church. The person leading the study, Andrew Potter, I recall as a very smart and knowledgeable person. Andy was going through a study on the book of Romans. I remember him asking the class how we could be certain that Paul in fact was the author of Romans especially since Tertius in Romans 16:22 writes: “I Tertius, who wrote this epistle, salute you in the Lord.” My friend raised his hand and answered the question by saying that God in the bible has promised to preserve His Word therefore we have confidence that Paul in fact wrote the letter. Andy brushed this reply aside with a “yes, but …” so it was obvious that he was looking for a better answer than what had just been offered. Continue reading

Jonah and the whale is pretty much all allegorical. Really?

Friend:
I was listening to Bill O’reilly at Foxnews who was telling his guest that the Bible, especially Jonah and the whale is pretty much all allegorical. What say you?

James:
I did not see the segment when it aired live but from what I can tell, from watching the dialogue (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcAZm4_LLnA) it appears that Bill’s entire argument is based upon applying the verification principle. The idea that nothing can be true or even false unless it can be verified or falsified by sensory experience. What is unverifiable is neither true nor false but meaningless (hence the need in Bill’s case to allegorize it). Unfortunately, if we were to apply O’reilly’s hermeneutic (particular way of interpreting scripture) consistently we will end up being forced to abandon the most foundational aspects of the bible since creation from nothing (ex nihilo) has never been observed nor has a virgin giving birth (in humans), nor has science any examples of a man rising from the dead. Yet Bill considers himself a Catholic and a Christian. The irony in relying on the verification principle is that the principle itself fails on it own terms, the verification principle (i.e. the idea that nothing can be true or even false unless it can be verified or falsified by sensory experience) itself cannot be verified and hence is meaningless. We can thus neatly dispose of this form of thinking since self-refuting ideas are necessarily false based upon the law of non-contradiction. Furthermore, Jesus Himself used the authenticity of Jonah’s event to buttress His claim that He would be dead for three days, He said: Continue reading