Lesson Number Week Lesson Title
Lesson One God and Man
Lesson Two Divine Revelation
Lesson Three Sin and the Saviour
Lesson Four Man's Nature, Duty, and Destiny
Lesson Five True and False Religion
Lesson Six Judaism
Lesson Seven Islam
Lesson Eight Hindu
Lesson Nine Buddhist
Lesson Ten Confucian
Lesson Eleven Shinto
Lesson Twelve Humanism
Lesson Thirteen Why Christianity Survives

World Religions

Lesson One:

Class Title: GOD and MAN:

Memory Verse: "Those who seek God can find Him" --- (Acts 17:27)

    1. Psalm 19 --- shows that God's Existence can be known from material Creation and from Special Divine Revelation.
      1. Vrs 1-6 --- The invisible reality of God and His power can be learned from the existence and operation of the universe.
      2. Vrs 7-14 --- Both God's existence and His Will or purpose for man can be learned from His Revealed Word or Law.
      3. His power, wisdom, and love can be seen both in His creation and in His revealed Word. Both bear His unmistakable autograph!

    2. The Universe itself points to God as its Creator.
      1. The universe either created itself or it was created by God --- cf. (Genesis 1:1; Psalm 100:3; Romans 1:20; Hebrews 3:4; 11:3).
      2. The universe either sustains itself or it is sustained by God --- cf. (Jeremiah 6:24; Acts 14:15-17; 2 Peter 3:5-7).
      3. The nature of the true and living God was explained by Paul to the idolaters of Athens --- cf. Acts 17:22-31 to note the following:
        1. What God did and does. ---cf. 22-28, 30-31
        2. What God does not and is not. --- cf. 29

    3. The Bible points to God as its Author.
      1. The Bible claims Divine Inspiration. God is the Author behind the human writers --- cf. (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
      2. The Bible bears the unmistakable marks of Divine inspiration:
        1. The unity of its message.
        2. Its prophecies, shadows, and types perfectly fulfilled.
        3. The person and message of Christ --- unique and unequalled in all human history.
        4. The preservation of the Bible in Spite of the ravages of time and organized efforts to destroy it.
        5. Its perfections --- freedom from error, contradiction, and defect.

    1. The nature of God is Distict and Personal.
      1. God as Creator and Sustainer of the Universe is to be distinguished as separate from all the creation --- cf. (Genesis 1:1; Acts 17:24,29; Romans 1:20,23). "God" is not another name for the created universe in whole or in part. His existence and dwelling place are independent from the creation --- cf. (1 Kings 8:27; Psalm 102:19; Eccl. 5:2).
      2. There is One God, Divinity, or Deity in the sense that there is One Divine nature --- contrary to polytheism or many kinds of gods --- cf. (Deut. 5:6-8; 6:4; Acts 17:29; Romans 1:20).
        1. This One Godhead or Deity includes three Divine persons --- The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit --- cf. (John 1:1; Acts 5:3-4,9; Matthew 28:19; I John 5:6-8).
        2. While distinct in personality, these three are wholly united in their Divine nature and purpose --- just as the husband and wife are one in marriage and Christians are one in the Lord --- cf. (Genesis 2:24; John 17:21).
      3. Deity in His nature or character is:
        1. Eternal --- cf. (Psalm 90:1-2).
        2. Immutable, unchanging, constant --- cf. (Psalm 102:24-28).
        3. Omnipresent, universal presence --- cf. (Proverbs 15:3).
        4. Omniscient, infinite wisdom --- cf. (Psalm 147:5).
        5. Omnipotent, all power --- cf. (Genesis 1:1; Matthew 28:18).
        6. Holy --- cf. (Isaiah 6:3).
        7. Perfect in love and Hate --- cf. (1 John 4:8; Hebrews 10:29).
        8. Such qualities reflect the personal nature of the Godhead. Personhood or personality is necessary to see, know, create, love, hate, etc.
      4. God is invisible but real. He is a spirit without a body of flesh and blood, though a human body was prepared for Jesus when He came into the world --- cf. (John 4:24; 1 Timothy 1:17; Luke 24:39; John 1:14).

    2. The nature of man is distinct and Personal.
      1. Man is made in God's image but also fashioned of dust. This two-fold nature involves a union of body and Spirit --- cf. (Genesis 1:26-28; 2:7; James 2:26).
        1. As to the body of dust, mankind is fashioned as flesh and blood, male and female. This part of man is mortal cf. {Eccl. 3:18-21; Job 34:15}. The body is an instrument through which the spirit acts and expresses itself.
        2. Just as we bear the image of our human fathers in the flesh, we bear the image of our Heavenly Father in the spirit --- cf. (Hebrews 12:9).
      2. Because man is in God's image as to the spirit, he:
        1. Is immortal in spirit. --- cf. Eccl. 12:7; Job 34:14
        2. Has personality --- can see, know, choose, act, love, hate, etc.
        3. Is separate and distinct from the rest of Creation, and is above all other forms of created life in the universe --- cf. Genesis 1:26 "Our Image".
        4. Can exercise dominion and rule over other forms of life --- cf. Genesis 1:26.
        5. Has conscious existence in or out of the body ---- cf. Luke 16:19-31.
      3. Man is separate and distinct from God. "Man" is not another name for God either in whole or in part. There is no "divine spark" or other form of Deity in man. Man is subject to God just as animals are subject to man ---cf. Eccl. 12:13-14.
        1. Man has a commission from God to study, understand, and utilize the world around him. Man is not to regard the natural world as "God" or to be subject to it and passive in it.
        2. Man cannot find God's will or power by searching within himself --- cf. Isa. 29:13-16; 55:8-9.
        3. False religion often confuse the identities of God, man, and the natural world ---cf. Rom. 1:24-25.

    1. God Wills, Commands, and Seeks for men to serve Him --- cf. (John 4:23-24).

    2. He has so ordered the universe and human history as to make Himself readily accessible to man. This leaves man "without excuse" for claiming that God is beyond all acess and for creating false gods of all kinds out of his own imagination --- cf. (Acts 17:26-27; Romans 1:20).

    3. God Makes Himself accessible to men through Divine Revelation --- through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Men may come to God by hearing, believing, and obeying His Divine Son --- cf. (John 14:6; 6:43-45; 12:32).

    4. The key to finding God is Seeking Him --- truly seeking Him --- seeking Him above all other hopes, goals, and aspirations --- cf. (Acts 17:27).


Questions on Lesson One : God and Man

1. God's glory is manifested by the created universe, especially by the movement or circuit of what heavenly body (Psa. 19:1-6)?

2. List the terms in Psa. 19:17-14 referring to Divine Revelation as it manifests God's Will and purpose for man.

3. What are the two options for explaining how the universe came into existence and how it is sustained?

4. According to Jeremiah 5:24 and Acts 14:15-17, what does God give in order to sustain the universe and our lives?

5. From Acts 17:22-31 contrast the following things about God:

WHAT GOD DID and DOES .................... WHAT GOD DOES NOT and is NOT

a. a.

b. b.

c. c.

d. d.

6. What passage affirms the inspiration of Scripture? And what are some marks of its inspiration:




7. How do these passages show that God is separate and independent from the Created Universe?

a. Acts 17:24,29

b. 1 Kings 8:27

c. Eccl. 5:2

8. How do Deuteronomy 5:6-8 and 6:4 condemn polytheism?

9. What are the three Divine Persons in the One Deity - (Matthew 28:19)?

10. Name the plurality of persons said to be one in these passages:

a. Deut. 6:4; Matt. 28:19

b. Gen. 2:24

c. John 17:21

11. How is the age of God computed or expressed in Psa. 90:1-2?

12. What illustration is used in Psa. 102:24-28 to explain that God is constant even though the earth will pass away?

13. What do we learn about God's character in these passages?

a. Proverbs 15:3

b. Psalm 147:5

c. Matthew 28:18

14. Some people claim they doubt the reality of God because of what characteristic in His nature (mentioned in John 4:24; 1 Timothy 1:17)?

15. What in Genesis 2:7 points to man's mortal nature?

16. What in Genesis 1:26-28 and Hebrews 12:9 points to man's higher nature?

17. What are some characteristics of man that reflect God's image?




18. False religions often confuse the identities of ___________________, ___________________, and the ___________________ ___________________.

19. Why are people without excuse when they claim they cannot find the truth of God?

20. What is the Key to man's finding God?

Lesson Two:

Class Title: Divine Revelation:

Memory Verse: "God has Spoken" --- (Hebrews 1:1-3)

    1. Man Cannot Know God's Will and Purpose except by Divine Revelation.
      1. God has permitted human history itself to demonstrate that man cannot know God by his own wisdom --- cf. (Jeremiah 10:23; Proverbs 14:12; 1 Corinthians 1:21).
      2. 1 Corinthians 2:9-13 argues that it was necessary for God to reveal "the things" of His own mind and wisdom because they could not be discovered by man's natural powers.
        1. Vrs. 9 --- Notice the natural powers of man for learning and knowing.
        2. Vrs. 9,11 --- Notice what man could not know by using those powers.
        3. Vrs. 10-13 --- Notice who knew the things of God and How they were made known to the apostles.

    2. The Bible claims to be a record of what God has done and said.
      1. The Bible begins and ends by recording the works and words of God --- cf. (Genesis 1:1-3; Revelation 22:20-21).
        1. Notice what God has made by His power and what He said in Genesis One.
        2. Notice what God has made by His power and what He said in Revelation 22.
      2. Expressions such as "God said," "The Lord spake," etc. appear about 700 times in the Pentateuch alone. Count the times in Genesis One.

    3. The Bible claims to be a God-Inspired account. God is the Author behind the human writers.
      1. The word of the Old Testament prophets was really the Word of God Himself --- cf. (2 Samuel 23:1-3; Jeremiah 1:9).
      2. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 teaches the following points:
        1. Both Testaments are inspired --- Old 3;15 and New (4:5).
        2. Verbal Inspiration --- the words first spoken and then written were from God.
        3. The origin of Inspiration.
        4. Whose authority stands behind the Scriptures.
        5. Scripture is all-sufficient.
        6. The Bible reflects the character of God --- holy, pure, truthful, infallible, inerrant.
      3. Inspiration includes rather than precludes each writer's individuality. God took into account and utilized each writer's personal vocabulary, emotion, background, etc. rather than forcing them all into one mode or style of expression. For instance, Luke's medical training is reflected in the books that he wrote.

    1. God has Spoken through Jesus Christ and by means of the Holy Spirit.
      1. Hebrews 1:1-3 shows that God's final and full revelation was given through His own Son.
      2. The ministry and revelation of Jesus Christ was completed by the Work of the Holy Spirit --- cf. (John 14:26; 16:13).
      3. The Bible is the inspired, complete revelation of God's will and purpose.

    1. Unity --- In spite of 40 diverse human writers over a period of 1,500 years, the story line of all Scripture is united in the person of Jesus Christ. That required the guiding hand of God --- cf. (Luke 24:44; John 1:45; 5:39; 20:30-31; 2 Timothy 3:15-16).
    2. Prophecy --- The Bible contains numerous prophecies concerning individuals, cities, nations, and events --- cf. (Genesis 12:1-3; Isaiah 44:6-8, 24-28; Daniel 2). Some 300 prophecies point to Christ ---cf. (Isaiah 53; Micah 5:2). Shadows and types in the Old Testament come to reality in the New --- cf. (Colossians 2:16-17). All was fulfilled to the detail by the power of God.
    3. Christ --- Jesus Christ in person and message is unique to all human history. His life provides the unity of the Bible and the fulfillment of prophecies, shadows, and types. The perfection of His life and teaching has challenged the world even until now. He claimed to be the presence of God in the flesh. He confirmed His claim and teaching with undeniable miracles, especially by rising from the dead. Human imagination and ingenuity cannot produce such a story. The Bible and its Christ came from God ---cf. John 1:14; 7:31; 45-46; 14:6; Romans 1;3-4; Hebrews 4:15).
    4. Preservation --- The Bible claims the protection of God and has not passed away in spite of the unsurpassed hatred of its enemies and their efforts to destroy it --- cf. (1 Peter 1:24-25).
    5. Perfection --- The Bible is free from the errors and defects of the purely human authorship. There are no errors in fact of teaching, no contradictions, and no attempts to cover up or hide the sins of its human writers. God is the Author behind the human writers --- cf. (Psalm 19:7-9).

    1. The Bible invites investigation of its claims to be a book of truth.
      1. The Bible itself teaches the spirit of investigation and examination. Faith must be based on sufficient and reliable evidence rather than on a "blind leap" or subjective feeling --- cf. (Isaiah 1:18; John 1:46; 1 John 4:1).
      2. The Bible is rooted and grounded in history. It can be tested for accuracy by the study of historical evidence, geography, science and archaeology.
        1. The Bible is a record of real historical characters, clans, cities, countries, and customs --- cf. (Luke 2:1-5).
        2. It is not a book of myths, fables, allegories, speculations, philosophies, mystical experiences, charms, incantations, or cryptic codes --- cf. (2 Peter 1:16).
    2. The Bible is written so as to be accessible to the common man and adaptable to men of all cultures who seek the truth of God --- cf. (Mark 12:37; John 7:17; Ephesians 3:3-5; Acts 17:26-27).
      1. No special rules or hidden keys are necessary to understand the Bible. Ordinary, every-day rules of communication suffice.
      2. Scripture reflects the richness of human language as a vehicle of ideas by utilizing a wide range of verbal tools --- figures of speech, parables, and both prose and poetry.

        1. With historical evidence and in understandable language, the Bible brings us to Jesus Christ as the source of all Divine Truth. His word is final, absolute, universal truth. There is no other truth. All other claims fail in His presence --- cf. (John 6:63, 66-69; 12:48; 14:6).

        1. The Word of the truth of the Gospel meets the needs of man perfectly. This is because the Creator of man is also the Author of Scripture --- cf. (Matthew 11:28-30; 2 Timothy 3:16-17).

Questions on Lesson Two : Divine Revelation

1. History shows that man by his own __________ knew not ____________. This is because man's natural powers for learning (represented by _______________, _______________, and ________________) cannot discover what? See 1 Corinthians 1:21; 2:9-13.

2. Who knew the things of God and how were they made known to the apostles?

3. List the verses in Genesis 1 that refer to God's Spoken Word and the verses in Revelation 22 that refer to God's written word.

a. Genesis 1:

b. Revelation 22:

4. Prove from the context of 2 Timothy 3:16-17 that Paul referred to both the Old and New Testaments as inspired of God.

5. In the inspiration of Scripture, God utilized each separate author including what personal characteristic? For instance, what is unique about Luke's style?

6. God spoke ....

a. By or through whom in past times?

b. By or through whom in these last days?

7. The person of the Godhead through whom Jesus completed all revelation is designated by what 3 expressions in John 14:26 and 16:13?

8. During what period of ____________ years, ______________ different writers composed the __________ books of the Bible, and yet they all unite in telling the story of ________________ _______________.

a. Of whom did Moses and the prophets write (John 1:45)?

b. Jesus said "they .... testify of me;" "they" who or what (5:39)?

c. Why was the book of John written cf. (John 20:30-31)?

9. Fulfilled prophecies prove the Bible is inspired of God.

in the following match the prophecies with the corresponding passages:

______ a. Genesis 12:1-3 (1) Nebuchadnezzar's Kingdom will fall.

______ b. Isa. 44:6-8 (2) Cyrus of Persia will allow Jerusalem to be rebuilt.

______ c. Isa. 44:24-28 (3) Christ will come through Abram's seed.

______ d. Dan. 2 (4) Jesus would suffer for our sins.

______ e. Isa. 53 (5) God will set up His own Kingdom.

______ f. Mic 5:2 (6) Jesus will be born in Bethlehem.

(7) Christ will die, then prolong His days.

(8) The Jews were God's witnesses (so many prophecies were fulfilled in their history).

10. The uniqueness of Jesus is seen in that Deity became ________________, performed many _____________, and spoke with such authority that even his enemies said, ____________________. cf. John 1:14; 7:31, 45-46.

11. Jesus made a unique claim in both positive and negative terms in John 14:6.

a. What is the positive statement:

b. What is the Negative statement:

12. What does Hebrews 4:15 teach about the uniqueness of Jesus?

13. What promise is made in 1Peter 1:24-25 that still stands in spite of the ravages of time and the attacks of enemies?

14. What are some characteristics of Scripture in Psalm 19:7-9 which reflect the character of God as the Author behind the human writers?

15. Give a statement from Scripture which teaches the spirit of investigation and examination.

16. What things mentioned in Luke 2:1-5 point to genuine history?

17. What proof does Peter give that his record was not a collection of guesses, rumors, and fables (2 Peter 1:16)?

18. Give a passage and explain how it shows that God offers the truth so that all men can understand it?

19. What did Peter say in John 6, expressing his faith that Jesus alone gives us the Words of Truth?

20. How is it possible for the ancient words of the Gospel to perfectly meet the needs of modern man?

Lesson Three:

Class Title: SIN & The SAVIOR

Memory Verse: "God So Loved The World" --- (John 3:16)

    1. Sin is Disobedience to God's Word and Transgression of His Law -- cf. (1 John 3:4).
      1. Man chooses to obey God or to Sin when he is tempted through the following avenues:
        1. 1 John 2:16 Genesis 3:6
        2. Lust of the Flesh Good for Food
        3. Lust of the Eye Pleasant to Eyes
        4. Pride of Life Make one Wise
      2. Sin does not come from God, from nature, from the flesh, from inheritance, from fate, or from necessity in any form. It comes from Satan and by our own choice --- cf. (James 1:13-15).

    2. Sin plagued Adam and Eve by separating them from the Garden of Eden, the Tree of Life, and the Fellowship of God --- cf. (Genesis 2:17; 3:6-8, 22-24). Disease and death fell upon all mankind as a reminder of the destructive power of sin and of God's anger against sin --- cf. (Genesis 3:19).

    3. Sin multiplied and Compounded until God sent a fearful Flood to destroy all but eight people --- cf. (Genesis 6:5-8).

    4. The Old Testament is Replete with examples of How sin plagued mankind:
      1. Man's arrogance resulted in the tower of Babel --- God restrained their evil by confounding their language --- cf. (Genesis 11:1-9).
      2. Sin perverted the gifts of sex in Sodom and Gomorrah so that the people were insane and violent with lust --- God made an example of them by raining brimstone and fire upon them --- cf. (Genesis 18 - 19).
      3. Sin led people to slaughter and sacrifice innocent children --- cf. (Exodus 1:22; Leviticus 18:21).
      4. The Ten Commandments reflect the rampant sin which plagued the Ancient World --- cf. (Exodus 20:1-17).
      5. The Book of Joshua is the history of the cycles of religious and moral apostasy which occurred shortly after Israel possessed her land --- cf. (Judges 2:10-19).
      6. David's adultery shows what a terrible toll sin can take in a person's life --- and in the lives of innocent bystanders --- cf. (2 Samuel 11 - 12; Psalm 32:3-4; Psalm 51:3).
      7. The nation of Israel was destroyed by Assyria in 721 B.C. and Judah by Babylon in 586 B.C., because of sin and the rejection of God's pleas for repentance --- cf. (2 Chronicles 36:15-16).

    5. The New Testament Points to Sin as Man's Greatest problem.
      1. All men have sinned and fallen short --- cf. (Romans 3:23).
        1. Romans 1:18-32 outlines the common sins of the Gentile World --- false religion, immorality, and wickedness of every kind.
        2. Romans 2:1-4, 21-24 shows that the Jews professed to serve God and to Condemn sin, but they themselves were guilty of Sin.

    6. The Greatest Plague and Curse of Sin is that it Separates Man from God.
      1. God seeks to bless man through His Word but sin is destructive to the welfare of man --- morally, spiritually, and even physically --- cf. (Deut. 6:24; 10:12-13; Proverbs 13:15). Sin is the root cause of all suffering, sorrow, disease, and death.
      2. The greatest blessing of God is His fellowship, nearness, and communion with Him. Sin separates man from His Maker. The results is fear, terror, and dread of facing God.
        1. God will not accept our worship and service while we live in Sin --- cf. (Isaiah 1:10-15; 59:1-4).
        2. If we die in that condition, we will be separated from God forever --- tormented and punished eternally --- cf. (Matthew 25:41,46).
      3. Man's greatest need is forgiveness of sin so that he can live in fellowship with God and learn to conquer sin by the grace and power of God. Those who live near to God in his life will know even closer communion with Him in heaven forever --- cf. (Romans 7:24; Matthew 25:34,46).

    1. After Man sinned, God promised a Savior through His Prophets. The promise of pardon, forgiveness, or redemption from Sin was pictured in the following ways:
      1. A death-blow to Satan --- cf. (Genesis 3:15).
      2. A blessing for men of all nations --- cf. (Genesis 12:3).
      3. A special servant of GOD to die as a vicarious offering for sin for man's justification --- cf. (Isaiah 53).
      4. A new covenant providing perfect, finally, full forgiveness of sin --- cf. (Jeremiah 31:31-34).
      5. A cleansing from sin which results in a new heart ready and willing to serve God --- cf. (Ezekiel 36:25-27).
      6. A kingdom of God providing reconciliation for sinners --- cf. (Daniel 2:44; 7:14; 9:24).
      7. A fountain for Cleansing from sin --- cf. (Zech. 13:1).
    2. Types and Shadows pointed to God's Provision of Salvation through the Messiah. The promise was pictured in the following ways:
      1. The sacrificial lamb who died for man's sin --- cf. (Genesis 4:4; 22:13; Leviticus 1:10).
      2. The Tabernacle --- temple as God's dwelling place --- cf. (Exodus 25:8).
      3. The priesthood offering sacrifices for sins of men --- cf. (Genesis 14:18; Leviticus 1:1-5).
      4. The merciful and just rule of God's chosen king --- cf. (1 Samuel 16:11-13; Isaiah 55:3).
    1. Man cannot by his Own Wisdom, Works, Wishes, or Merit save himself from His sins.
      1. All men have sinned and the final wages of sin is death in the form of eternal separation from God --- cf. (Romans 3:23; 6:23).
      2. Man cannot find his own way out of the predicament of sin nor heal himself from the plague of sin by any means whatever --- cf. (1 Corinthians 1:21; Ephesians 2:8-9).
    2. John 3;16 shows that man's only hope for forgiveness from Sin is the gracious Provision of God's Love in Christ Jesus.
      1. Jesus fulfilled all the prophecies which promised a Savior --- defeat of Satan --- cf. (Colossians 1:13-14), bless all men --- cf. (Mark 16:15), die for man's justification --- cf. (Matthew 20:28), a new covenant to pardon sin --- cf. (Hebrews 8:7-13), a new birth for sinners --- cf. (John 3:3-5), a kingdom of peace --- cf. (Romans 14:17), and a fountain for cleansing from sin --- cf. (Matthew 26:28).
      2. Jesus fulfilled all the shadows and types which pointed to a Savior --- the lamb --- cf. (John 1:29), the temple --- cf. (Ephesians 2:21-22), the priesthood --- cf. (Hebrews 4:14-16), and the King --- cf. (John 18:33-37).
    3. Salvation is Offered through Preaching the Gospel of Christ --- cf. (Romans 1:16; 1 Corinthians 1:18-24).
    4. The Provision of Salvation is UNCONDITIONAL but man's acceptance of it is conditional. Man must decide whether to seek and accept or to ignore and reject God's offer of Salvation.
      1. We must open our hearts to hear the Gospel --- cf. (Mark 16:16; Romans 10:17).
      2. We must believe and trust the Gospel with all the heart --- cf. (John 3:16).
      3. We must repent of our sins in godly sorrow --- cf. (Acts 2:38).
      4. We must confess with our mouth that Jesus is the Son of God --- cf. (Romans 10:8-10).
      5. We must accept remission of our sins by being baptized/immersed in water --- cf. (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 22:16).
    5. Only in Christ can man find his God, Conquer Sin, and have Eternal Life in Heaven with God --- cf. (Acts 17:27; John 14:6; Colossians 3:1-4). There is no other provision, offer, or hope for man's salvation.

Questions on Lesson Three : Sin and the Savior

1. What is sin?

2. What three avenues of sin have all men faced from the beginning of time? 1John 2:16 & Gen. 3:6

a. a.

b. b.

c. c.

3. When or how is man tempted and led down the path to sin, (cf James 1:13-15)?

4. God warned of the fearful effects of sin in Genesis 2:19. Give passages which show the following effects of sin:

a. Separation from the Garden of Eden.

b. Separation from the tree of Life.

c. Separation from fellowship with God.

d. Physical disease and death.

5. What was the condition of the world in Genesis 6:5-8?

6. Give three examples from the Old Testament which you find especially impressive in showing how sin plagued mankind:




7. Read the following passages outlining the sins of the Gentiles and Jews, and briefly comment on whether you see the same sins today.

a. Romans 1:18-32.

b. Romans 2:1-4, 21-24.

8. If we live and die in sin, how does if affect our relationship with God:

a. In this Life?

b. In the next life?

9. What is man's greatest need and why is it so important?

10. How would the plan of salvation promised by God affect each of the following?

a. Satan

b. Men of all nations

c. God's special servant

11. The promise of salvation would require what "new" things?

a. Jeremiah 31:31-34

b. Ezekiel 36:25-27

12. How was the salvation promised by the prophets expressed in these passages?

a. Daniel 2:44

b. Zechariah 13:1

13. Give two pictures of salvation in the form of types and shadows.



14. Explain the sinner's problem or predicament (cf. Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9).

15. In fulfillment of the promises, what was the effect of God's plan of salvation on each of the following?

a. Satan

b. Men of all nations

c. God's special servant

16. In fulfillment of God's promises, what "new" things did Christ bring?

a. Hebrews 8:7-13

b. John 3:3-5

17. How is the salvation brought by Christ expressed in these passages?

a. Romans 14:17

b. Matthew 26:28

18. Review your answers to number 12 and explain the fulfillment with passages:



19. How do men come to know about God's plan for our salvation?

20. What terms or conditions must men meet in order to accept and receive God's offer of salvation?

Lesson Four:


Memory Verse: "Righteousness, Temperance, and Judgment to Come" --- (Acts 24:25)

    1. The Creation points to the Existence of God without revealing His Will and Purpose--- cf. (Hebrews 3:4; Romans 1:20). God Himself is invisible and His Will unfathomable to man --- cf. (1 Timothy 1:17; 1 Corinthians 2:9).
    2. The Only way Man can know the Will of the Invisible, Inscrutable God is for God to reveal it. That is exactly why God inspired men to write the Bible --- cf. (1 Corinthians 2:9-13; 2 Timothy 3:16-17).
    3. Since The Spirit of man is made in God's Image, Its nature is Invisible and Inscrutable ---- cf. (Genesis 1:27).
      1. Just as man can see the working of God's power in the natural universe without understanding God's Will, we are conscious of the working of the inner man which reasons and chooses without understanding why it works as it does or what it truly ought to do --- cf. (Jeremiah 10:23; Proverbs 14:12).
      2. Humanity was made by God to be wholly dependent upon God for a proper understanding of Man's nature, duty, and destiny. In order to serve and please God, we must hear the revelation of His Word so as to "walk by faith, not by sight" --- cf. (2 Corinthians 5:7).

    1. The Bible reveals the Nature of Man.
      1. He is composed of a fleshly body made of dust and of an immortal spirit made in the image of God --- cf. (James 2:26; Genesis 1:27; 2:7).
      2. Man has legitimate physical needs which are met by the bounty of nature as a gift from God --- cf. (Acts 14:15-17).
      3. Man's spiritual nature makes him capable of communication and companionship with other human beings and even with God, in a far more intimate and meaningful sense than is possible for the animal world --- cf. (Genesis 2:24; 1 John 1:3). Sin interrupts this communion and fellowship --- cf. (Genesis 3:8).
      4. Man is rational (ability to reason, understand, and speak) and also emotional (feelings, affections, etc.). Moral choices and other decisions by man reflect both his rational and emotional capacities.

    2. The Bible Reveals the DUTY of Man.
      1. Every duty of man is suited to his nature, yields to him a blessing, and ultimately glorifies God --- cf. (Leviticus 10:3; Psalm 50:23).
      2. From the beginning of Time, man's duty has been threefold:
        1. To keep, cultivate, and utilize the creation --- cf. (Genesis 1:26; 2:15-16).
        2. To reproduce the human race and to love his fellowman --- cf. (Genesis 1:28; 2:24).
        3. Above all, to love, obey, and worship God --- cf. (Genesis 2:17; 4:4; 5:22).
      3. The Bible repeatedly emphasizes man's most fundamental duty in such passages as:
        1. Ecclesiastes 12:13 --- "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man's all." (NKJV)
        2. See also: Isaiah 1:17; Hosea 12:6; Amos 5:15; Micah 6:8; Matthew 22:36-40; and John 4:24.
      4. When our hearts are properly focused on the basic duty of Loving God and our fellowman, we will have no problem understanding and applying the rest of God's Word because it all revolves around that fundamental principle --- cf. (Matthew 22:40).
      5. Since man's duty perfectly matches his nature by God's design, there is no excuse for sin. The problem is that we do not always choose to let the love of God and of our fellowman rule our hearts and lives. "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God" --- (Romans 3:23).

    3. The Bible reveals the Destiny of Man.
      1. God made man with an immortal spirit and therefore capable of fellowship with His Maker both in the time of Earth life and the timelessness of eternity. Death was not essential in order for man to walk with God in eternity --- cf. (Genesis 5:24; 2 Kings 2:11).
      2. God warned man of the fearful effect of sin --- "thou shalt surely die." --- cf. (Genesis 2:17).
        1. When man sinned, the sentence of death as separation from the fellowship of God fell upon man --- cf. (Genesis 3:8). In view of man's immortal spirit, that separation must continue in eternity if man leaves this world in a sinful and lost condition.
        2. After Adam was separated from the Tree of Life, disease and death fell upon all mankind --- cf. (Genesis 3:8). Death constantly reminds man of sin's destructive power and of God's anger against sin. Death is the separation of body and spirit, when the spirit continues its conscious life in Sheol or Hades --- where it receives a foretaste of man's final destiny --- cf. (Luke 16:19-31). The spirit cannot return to earth in any form --- cf. (Eccl. 9:5-6).
      3. God has appointed a day of Final Judgment --- cf. (Eccl. 12:14; 2 Corinthians 5:10).
        1. Before Judgment begins, the spirits of the dead will rejoin their resurrected bodies --- cf. (John 5:28-29). These new bodies are adapted to man's final destiny rather than to earth life --- cf. (Matthew 22:30).
        2. Man's final destiny is determined by the deeds done in the body during earth life. There is no second chance nor payment for sin that can change the destiny set during man's life on earth. That final destiny will be announced at the Judgment Bar of God and acknowledged as just by all.
      4. The final destiny of the resurrected righteous will be the dwelling place of God --- heaven. They will receive eternal life --- communion and fellowship with God, worship and service to God for ever and ever --- cf. (Matthew 25:35,46; 1 Peter 1:3-5; Revelation 21:3-4, 22-24).
      5. The final destiny of the resurrected wicked will be everlasting fire --- eternal punishment with Satan and all who serve him. This conscious torment for ever and ever is associated with utter darkness, wailing, and gnashing of teeth. Sin is an infinite crime against God and merits eternal punishment --- cf. (Matthew 8:12; 13:42; 25:41,46).
      6. Since God ordained man's destiny according to man's nature and duty, there can be no protest against the righteous judgment of God --- cf. (Romans 2:5).

    1. The Gospel takes into account Man's nature, Duty, and Destiny.
      1. It deals with man as to body and spirit --- cf. (Matthew 5:3-9,28; 15:18-20; Acts 15:9; Romans 12:1-2).
      2. It appeals to the rational and emotional in man --- cf. (Luke 24:44-48; Acts 1:3; Romans 2;4; 2 Corinthians 5:14-15).
      3. In Acts 24:24-25 Paul preaches Christ and reasoned concerning:
        1. Righteousness --- Man is separated from God by sin but reconciled, redeemed, and made righteous in Christ.
        2. Temperance --- Man can serve, obey, and worship God if he wants to badly enough. He must bring all his desires under the control of Christ.
        3. Judgment to Come --- Man will answer to God. The conduct of our lives in the temporal world sets and seals our destiny in eternity.
    2. "Christ is All" --- cf. (Colossians 3:11). He can meet all the true spiritual needs of every man --- the need for forgiveness of sin, the need for communion and fellowship with God, the need to worship and serve God in this life, and the need for eternal life with God in Heaven!
    3. False religions and doctrines pervert not only God's Will but also man's nature, duty, and destiny. False teaching defrauds man of his true birthright from God. Error never meets the real needs of man.

Questions on Lesson Four: Man's Nature, Duty, & Destiny

1. What common sense illustration points to the necessity of God as the Creator of all things -- (Hebrews 3:4)?

2. Why was it necessary for God to inspire men to write the Bible rather than leaving man to search on his own for God's will?

3. Man's invisible, inscrutable spirit is patterned after what --- (Genesis 1:27)?

4. Using the passage below, explain in your own words why it is foolish for man to try to understand himself and his duty without the Bible.

a. Jeremiah 10:23

b. Proverbs 14:12

5. Explain man's two-fold nature:

a. From dust:

b. In God's Image:

c. What part of the male and female are identical and in God's image?

d. Can the spirit live without the body?

e. Can the Body live without the spirit?

6. How do these passages show that man's spirit is capable of communication and companionship?

a. Genesis 2:24

b. 1 John 1:3

7. How did Nadab and Abihu fail to glorify God in Leviticus 10:1-3?

8. Man's tree-fold duty from the beginning has been:




9. How is man' whole duty, purpose, and meaning in life summed up in Ecclesiastes 12:13?

10. We should have special love and tenderness for people in what circumstances of life --- (Isa. 1:17)?

11. To be merciful and fair to our fellowman is to show respect for whom --- (Hos. 12:6)?

12. What must we hate, what must we love, and what 3 things does the Lord require of us --- (Amos 5:15; Mic. 6:8)?

a. Hate:

b. Love:




13. What three things are tied tightly together in God's plan for man --- (Matthew 22:37-40)?

a. vrs. 37

b. vrs 39

c. vrs 40

14. What kind of worship does God seek and expect from men --- (John 4:24)?

15. When we choose to sin, what is not ruling our hearts and lives at that point?

16. Prove from the Bible that death was not essential for man to walk with God in eternity.

17. In what words did God first warn man that sin would break his fellowship with God?

18. Using Luke 16:19-31, explain where the body and the spirit go at death.

a. Body:

b. Spirit:

19. Before the Final Judgment, what will occur --- (John 5:28-29)?

20. Give some Bible terms to describe the destiny of the resurrected righteous.

21. Give some Bible terms to describe the destiny of the resurrected wicked.

22. What is said in Romans 12;1-2 pertaining to the body, and what is said pertaining to the spirit?

a. Body:

b. Spirit:

23. Select a passage and explain how it appeals to man's mind and to his emotions.

24. How do you see the Gospel appeal to the mind and the emotions in Acts 24:25?

25. What does it mean to say that "Christ is all" --- (Col. 3:11)?

Lesson Five:

Class Title: True and False Religion:

Memory Verse: "Ye Ignorantly Worship" --- (Acts 17:23)

    1. Christ brought from God the Revelation which is true, final, and Universal.
      1. Christ brought both in His person and His teaching the truth of God. There is no error or mistake in it --- (John 1:1; 14:6; 16:13).
      2. Christ represents a revelation of truth which is so full and complete as to be final. No additional revelation is needed or possible --- cf. (Hebrews 1:1-3; "once" or "once for all," Jude 3).
      3. The gospel of Christ is universal in scope. It is the true and final revelation for "all nations," "all the world," and "every creature" --- (Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:15).

    2. The Gospel is Based on Firm and Accessible Evidence. It is the only religion based wholly on historical reality and truth.
      1. The gospel is based on "many infallible proofs" : fulfilled prophecy, miracles, the resurrection of Jesus, and eye-witness testimony --- (Acts 1:3; 2;23; 2 Peter 1:16).
      2. No other religion has the evidence of the gospels. God designed the gospel to challenge, confront, and conquer all other religions.

    3. Christ Identifies Every other Form and Practice of Religion as False.
      1. Christ warned of "false prophets," wielded the "sword" of truth to destroy error, and called worship based on human traditions "vain" --- cf. (Matthew 7:15; 10;34; 15:8-9).
      2. Jesus confronted the woman at the well with the importance of distinguishing true and false religions --- cf. (John 4:19-26).
        1. "Ye worship ye know not what." --- Her Samaritan religion was false, ignorant, and vain worship. It originated in compromises between the Jewish and several heathen religions --- cf. ( 2 Kings 17:24-41, see vrs 33, 41).
        2. "Salvation is of the Jews." --- Jesus means that the Jewish religion in its purity is true, pointing the way to salvation.
        3. "The hour cometh ... I ... am He." --- The fuller revelation brought by Christ fulfills and supersedes the Jewish religion, and precludes the Samaritan altogether. Truth and error mattered to Christ!
      3. Paul preached to the Athenians the true and living God --- the One "ye ignorantly worship" --- cf. (Acts 17:23).

    1. Because the Gospel is the only Religion Based wholly on Valid Evidence, it has the Power to Confront and Conquer Every False Religion.
      1. Christians can preach with great boldness and defend the gospel without fear that the message will fail under pressure. It has the power to save "every creature" with an honest heart --- (Mark 16;15-16). It can equip us to give "an answer" and "a reason" to "every man" who questions the truth of the gospel --- cf. (Phil. 1;17; 1 Peter 3:15). The conversion of Saul shows that the Gospel can conquer its worst enemies, "bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ" --- (2 Corinthians 10:3-5).
      2. Some religions attempt to defend themselves with a show of evidence, but they simply do not have valid evidence when tested and examined. "The signs" which confirmed the truth of God never confirmed another religion (i.e. the contest between Elijah and the prophets of Baal in 1 Kings 18:17-40; 2 Cor. 12:12; Revelation 2:2). We have the power of the confirmed word today when we properly quote the Bible --- no other religion has that power --- (cf. 1 John 4:6).
      3. Some religions know they have no objective evidence. They try to prove they need no proof and explain they need no explanation. They argue against the need for arguing and debate against debating.
        1. Their line of "proof" and "debate" is: Subjective experience without objective evidence is sufficient. One's own feeling is verification and validation enough. We have faith in faith without the need of evidence. Just believing in something without rigorous examination of the grounds of that faith satisfies man's religious needs. Religion needs no defense if it "works" or seems to supply a man's "felt needs."
        2. Such religion cannot stand the light of investigation and truth brought by the gospel of Christ. They fear and avoid open debate.

    2. The Gospel Approaches False Religion Not to Compromise But to Confront and Conquer for Christ!
      1. The Cross of Christ --- the spectacle of a Savior - God convicted and Crucified as a common criminal --- was a scandal and a offense. The Apostles insisted on preaching such "foolishness" as God's Wisdom and power --- cf. (1 Corinthians 1:18). Men were required to believe it or perish --- with no room for compromise.
      2. The claims of the gospel presented a direct attack on every other form and practice of religion --- with the demand of un-conditional surrender to Christ. Christ challenged and condemned the Samaritan religion --- cf. (John 4:22), unbelieving Jews --- cf. (Mark 12:12), tradition as a religious standard --- cf. (Matthew 15:8-9), popular religious leaders of the day --- cf. (Matthew 22:29), and all pagan religions, philosophies, and systems --- cf. (1 Thess. 1:9; Col. 2:8).
      3. The Gospel did not yield or soften its message either to avoid criticism, infamy, and persecution or to gain popularity, crowds, and prestige --- cf. (Matthew 7:13-14; 10:34; 15:12-14). The uncompromising stance of the gospel led to charges of treason, sedition, and rebellion (titles like "Lord" given to Christ & denied to Caesar); idolatry (Christ was God); atheism (attacked idolatry); blaspheme Moses and the Law (it was fulfilled); immorality and cannibalism (primitive meetings and the Lord's Supper); and "hatred of the human race" or anti-social activity ( not sharing in the dancing, drinking, and parties of the pagan world).

    1. The New Testament Records the Early battles Wages by the Gospel of Christ Against False Religion in Every Form.
      1. Christ Confronts and Conquers Idolatry. Paul utilized every appropriate point of contact to bridge the gap between truth and error --- cf. (1 Corinthians 9:19-22), but made the difference between the two very clear. He did not accommodate, compromise, or dilute the Gospel to make it more palatable to men. Study Acts 17;22-31 with the following chart:
Religion Greeks Believed The Gospel Paul Preached
a. God Unknown a. God Known
b. God Dwells in Temples b. Lord of Heaven and earth Does Not Dwell in Temples
c. God Depends on Men c. Men Dependant on God; God is not dependant on Men
d. Greeks Superior By Nature d. God Created One Human Nature
e. Fate Rules Gods and Men e. God Rules over Destiny
f. Gods are not Accessible f. God is Near -- (Quotes Greek Poets)
g. Made Images of gods g. God is Unlike Images
h. Greeks Enlightened h. Greeks Ignorant, Need to Change
i. Eternal Cycles of History i. History Ends
j. Righteous Men Judge the Dead j. Jesus Christ will Judge the Dead
k. No Resurrection of Body k. Jesus Was Raised

1. Christ Confronts and Conquers Unbelieving Judaism.

      1. Peter preached that Jesus had been approved by God by Miracles, murdered by the Jews, and raised by God to be Lord and Christ. The only hope of these Jews was to repent and to be baptized "in the name of Jesus Christ".
        1. Every sermon to the Jews offered a clear choice but no compromise --- cf. (Acts 2:22-38).
      2. Christ Confronts and Conquers Sin and Error in the Church.
        1. The New testament opposes compromise of the Gospel in all forms, even within the church --- cf. (Galatians 1:6-9).

    1. True Gospel Preaching Follows the Same Pattern of Clearly Distinguishing Truth from Error Today.
      1. Men still see it as a scandal, an offense, and foolishness, but we must preach it as God's wisdom and power. Men must obey it or perish --- there is no room for compromise.
      2. We must preach clearly the contrast: See Chart below
The Wisdom of Men The Gospel of Christ
a. Saved in All the World Religions a. Only One Right religion --- (Eph. 4:4-6)
b. Universalism b. Only those who Obey Are Saved --- (Mk. 16:16)
c. All Truth Relative c. Absolute Standard of Truth --- (2 John 9)
d. Good Moral Persons Saved d. Must Accept Christ --- (John 8:24)
e. Join Church of Your Choice e. Only One True Church --- (Matthew 16:18)
f. Tolerate all Differences f. Expose and Oppose Error --- (Eph. 5:11)
g. Not "polite" to Call Names g. Test, Name, oppose False Teacher --- (Matthew 16:6)
h. Accentuate the Positive, Eliminate the Negative h. Specify and Condemn Sin --- (Acts 2:23)
i. Saved by Faith Only i. Baptism is Essential --- (Acts 2:38)
j. Change the Church With The Times j. Bible is the Pattern For the Church --- (1 Timothy 3:14-15)

    1. The Gospel Calls for Total Surrender to Christ in Matthew 28:18-20.
      1. The Gospel is full of God's love, truth and power. It cannot be refuted, but it can be rejected by hardening our hearts in sin.
      2. God leaves the choice to each one of us. Without the true gospel of Christ, our religion can be only false.

QUESTIONS ON LESSON FIVE: True and False Religion

1. Not only did Christ claim to be "the truth" in person, cf. John _____________, but also what did He promise to give His Apostles during their lifetime through the Spirit of Truth --- cf. (John 16:13)?

2. What claim is made for the Gospel of Christ by means of the expression "once" or "once for all" in Jude 3?

3. For whom is the Gospel designed according to Matthew 28:19 and Mark 16:15?

4. Examine Acts 1:3 and 2 Peter 1:16 to explain what the Gospel is and is not based upon.

5. How did Christ refer to the power of truth as it stands in opposition to sin and error --- cf. (Matthew 10:34)?

6. Read John 4;19-26 and write down what Jesus said in order to teach the following points:

a. The Samaritan religion was false, ignorant and vain:

b. The Jewish religion pointed to the way of Salvation:

c. Christ supersedes a;; previous religions:

7. Manifesting its supreme power in the face of every test, what can the Gospel do for each of the following?

a. Every Creature: --- cf. (Mk. 16:16)

b. Every Man --- cf. (1 Peter 3:15)

c. Every Thought --- cf. (2 Cor. 10:3-5)

8. Miraculous signs were performed during Bible times and recorded in the Bible --- cf. (1 Kings 18:17-40; 2 Cor. 12:12; Rev. 2:2).

a. What did the presence of these signs prove concerning what a man taught?

b. What did the absence of these signs prove concerning what a man taught?

9. All the Bible affirms and teaches was confirmed by the miraculous signs performed during the Bible days. The teachings and signs have been recorded for our use today.

a. If what we teach is in the Bible, what does this prove --- cf. (1 John 4:6)?

b. If what we teach is not in the Bible, what does this prove --- cf. (1 John 4:6)?

10. Religions which have no objective evidence of truth engage in a self-defeating exercise when they try to prove they need no ___________, explain they need no _____________, argue against the need for _____________, and ____________ against ____________.

11. What do some religions put in the place of the objective evidence of truth?

12. What is the real reason (not some excuse or abuse) other religions fear and avoid open debate?

13. The Gospel with its uncompromising stand for truth is viewed in what two opposite ways --- cf. (1 Cor. 1:18)?

14. Select a passage given in {Section II, Paragraph B, point 2} and explain how it demands unconditional surrender to Christ?

15. Who criticized Jesus in Matthew 15:12-14, and why?

16. Give two examples of charges made against the early Christians because of their uncompromising stand for truth.

17. Give two examples from the Gospel sermon in Acts 17:22-31 which shows the uncompromising nature of truth.

18. What uncompromising conclusion is presented in the Gospel sermon in Acts 2;22-38?

19. Explain how the wording of Galatians 1:6-9 does or does not permit the Gospel to be changed or compromised.

20. Give five examples of conflict between wisdom or man and the Gospel of Christ which are especially offensive and foolish to our world today.






Lesson Six:

Class Title: JUDAISM

Memory Verse: Only a Shadow of the Truth --- (Hebrews 10:1)

    1. God promised in Genesis 3;15 to provide Man a Savior from Sin, and ordained Animal Sacrifices to teach that Sin is Covered or forgiven Only by Atoning Blood - Genesis 4:4; Leviticus 17:11; Hebrews 9:22.
    2. God chose Abraham and His Seed as a Means of Bringing to ALL Men a Savior from Sin.
      1. In Genesis 12:1-3 about 1800 B.C, God promised to give Abraham "a land" and to make of him "a great nation" in order to bring into the world a "blessing for all families of the earth."
      2. The promise was repeated to the descendants of Abraham through whom the Savior would come: Isaac, Jacob and Judah --- cf. (Genesis 26:1-5; 28:1-4, 10-14; 49:10). God named Jacob "Israel" --- "PRince of God" --- to emphasize the certainty of this promise --- cf. (Genesis 32:28).
    3. To the Original Promise, God Added the Law of Moses to Warn His people of Sin and to Prepare Them to receive the Savior.
      1. About 1400 B.C. God raised up Moses to lead the Hebrews out of Egytian bondage to the promised land in order to fulfill the covenant made with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob --- cf. (Exodus 3;14-18; 6:2-8; Numbers 24:17).
      2. God gave to His people through Moses the Ten Commandments and other ordinances and statutes --- all designed to warn against sin and to emphasize man's need of salvation from sin --- cf. (Exodus 20:1-17).
      3. The tabernacle, and later the Temple, was appointed by God as a special place where He signified His presence and where Israel came to worship God and seek His forgiveness --- cf. (Exodus 40:34; 1 Kings 6:7; 8:10-11, 28-30).
      4. God ordained Aaron and his sons as the high priesthood, and all the rest of the tribe of Levi to serve as priests and ministers at the tabernacle --- cf. (Numbers 3;1-13). The book of Leviticus gives detailed instructions for offering the blood of animals as an atonement for sin --- cf. (Leviticus 17:11).
    4. God sent Prophets to further warn of Sin, to Call for repentance, to Pronounce Judgments from God, and to Point Toward the Promised Savior.
      1. After Israel came into Canaan about 1400 B.C., God first ruled them through Judges and then through Kings beginning about 1190 B.C. --- cf. (Saul, David, Solomon). In 937 B.C. the Kingdom divided into "Israel" or "Samaria" (ten northern tribes) and "Judah" (two southern tribes). Israel went into Assyrian captivity in 721 B.C. and Judah into Babylonian captivity during 606-586 B.C. The Jews began their restoration to the promised land in 536 B.C.
      2. God sent prophets such as Samuel, Elijah, Nathan, Hosea, Amos, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and others during the days of the Judges and Kings. The prophets Ezekiel and daniel went with the Jews into captivity, and Ezra and Nehemiah led them home from captivity. Malachi in the 400s B.C. was the last prophet.
      3. God out of love sent the prophets to plead for repentance and faithfulness. For the most part, the people "mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his prophets" --- cf. (Jeremiah 6:16; 2 Chronicles 36:16). Captivity was a last resort to purify and preserve a remnant, through whom the promised Savior would come.
    5. Both the promise to Abraham and the Law of Moses Were Forward Looking. God's covenant was one of prophecy and hope. The Law provided a system of shadows and types. Old Testament revelation never claimed finality but pointed to a new and better covenant under the Messiah. The Old Covenant Promised Its Own Fulfillment and Death With the Coming of The Following:
      1. A PERSONAL SAVIOR --- The preeminent need of "all families of the earth" was a perfect sacrifice to atone for sin. The Messiah would come as both human and divine, die for every sinner, and then rise to reign at God's right hand, so making final and perfect peace between man and God --- cf. (Genesis 12:3; Isa. 9:6; 53;1-12; Psa. 110:1).
      2. A NEW NATION - KINGDOM --- The Messiah would set up the new Kingdom of God, uniting men of all nations in the peace of God, beginning during the time of the Roman Empire --- cf. (Isa. 11:1-12; Daniel 2:44).
      3. A NEW TEMPLE AND PRIESTHOOD --- Ezekiel 40-48 pictures a new Israel centered in a new worship at a new Temple with a new Priesthood at a new Jerusalem --- cf. (40:39-47; 43:1-6; 44:23; 47:13; 48:35). "The glory of this latter house shall be greater than those of the former" --- cf. (Hag. 2:9).
      4. A NEW COVENANT AND REVELATION --- From the time of Moses, God promised a new Prophet of the statue of Moses --- cf. (Deut. 18:18-19). God would signify the arrival of a new covenant of salvation, by a great pouring out of His Spirit and new Revelation --- cf. (Joel 2:28-32). The "new Covenant" would be unlike the Law of Moses in many ways and would provide perfect and final forgiveness of sins --- cf. (Jer. 31:31-34).
      5. UNDER THE MESSIAH, the system of religion centered in Jerusalem at the temple would end forever. God's presence and glory would depart from it --- cf. (Daniel 9:24-27).
      6. THE OLD TESTAMENT closes with an appeal for Israel to be faithful to the "Law of Moses" in preparation for the arrival of the long-awaited messiah. He would be introduced by the prophet like unto Elijah --- cf. (Mal. 3:1; 4:1-6).

    1. JESUS of NAZARETH is the Seed of Abraham --- the Messiah or Christ --- who Came to Bless "all Families of the Earth" --- cf. (Matt. 1:1; John 8:56; Gal. 3:8,16).
    2. Jesus fulfilled Every promise and Prophecy of the Savior given in the Old Testament --- cf. (Matt. 5:17-18; Lk. 24:25-27, 44-48).
    3. Every Shadow in the Old Covenant Finds its Substance and Reality in Jesus Christ, and Every Type finds its Antitype --- cf. (Col. 2:16-17; Heb. 10:1).
    4. "Many infalliable Proofs" Confirm that Jesus is Indeed the Chriswt, the Son of God. All of His miracles, and especially His Resurrection, confirm the truth of His claims --- cf. (John 5:36; 10:25, 30-32; 20:26-31; Acts 1;3; 1 Cor. 15:1-8).
    5. Jesus Christ is the "End of the Law" and the "Amen" to "All the promises of God" --- cf. (Romans 10:4; 2 Cor. 1:20). The promises and the Law found their final fruition and termination in Jesus.

    1. "He came Unto His Own, and His Own Received Him Not" --- cf. (john 1:11). What caused so many Jews to reject their own Messiah?
      1. Many were blinded by their own stubborn love of sin. All through their history, they resisted God's Word in favor of their own carnal desires. Their hearts were hardened by covetousness, materialism, pride, self-sufficiency, envy, murmurring, lasciviousness, and the deceptive pleasures of sin --- cf. (Deut. 32:15; John 3:19-21; Matt. 15:19).
      2. They did not believe the teaching of the Old Testament --- cf. (John 5:39-47). Like their fathers, they professed to believe God's Word and to honor His prophets, but their deeds proved they did not --- cf. (Matt. 15:7-9; 23:29-35; Acts 7:51-53). Rabbinic teaching and the tradition held sway.
      3. Their concept of God's new Kingdom was carnal rather than spiritual --- cf. (John 6:15; 11:47-53; 18:36-37). They desperately wanted a Messiah who would overthrow Rome and Establish fleshly Israel as a world power.
      4. They did not believe the Messiah would be Divine as well as human, God as well as man, even though that was taught in Isaiah 7:14; 9:6; and Micah 5:2. Christ's claim to be God in the flesh was considered blashemy --- cf. (John 8:58-59; 10:30-33).
      5. The death of their Messiah, especially an execution by crucifixion at the hands of the hated Romans, was an offense to their pride, even though Psalm 22:16-18 and Isaiah 53:7-9 prophesied that event --- cf. (Lk. 24:19-21; 1 Cor. 1:23).
      6. Some who believed in Jesus Christ would not pay the price of obedience to Him --- cf. (John 12:42-43; Matt. 10:36).
    2. The Rabbinic or Modern Judaism which rejected Jesus Christ Developed in the Period of 500 B.C. - A.D. 500.
      1. Tradition replaced truth. Rabbinic Judaism was developed by the great teachers in the synagogues which grew up during the Babylonian Captivity and flourished thereafter. The traditions of the Pharisees, Sadducees, and the Scribes were designed to interpret and apply every detail of the "Torah" or the Law of Moses, and even to provide a buffer zone or "a hedge around the Law." these traditions included "Mishna" (oral laws supposedly handed down from Moses) and "Gemara" (Commentaries on the Mishna). These were all compiled in A.D. 500 to form the Talmud.
      2. Atonement for sin was lost. Adherence to Rabbinic Judaism blinded many Jews to Jesus Christ as their true Messiah. They lost sight of the true meaning of the Old testament and of man's desparate need for a personal Savior. After Jerusalem was destroyed in A.D. 70 and the Jews dispersed in A.D. 135, they have been without a Messiah, blood sacrifice in atonement for sin, the Temple, and the Levitical priesthood. God left them desolate --- cf. (Matthew 23;38).
      3. A Religion of human works was left. In spite of its sects and divisions, Rabbinic Judaism focuses on the Talmud and the synagogue service. The Sabbath and other holy days are kept. The concept of man's need for redemption from sin through the atoning sacrifice of Christ is replaced with a heavy emphasis on personal ethics and morality, legalism, and self-salvation. One who sins may simply pray for pardon and keep plodding on in details of life given in the Talmud. If there is any hope of a Messiah, he is a future national hero or the Jewish people themselves inhistory. Many Jews are secular minded, interested only in their ties to history or in the national spirit of the modern Sate of Israel --- (est. 1948).
      4. To better understand the development of Rabbinic Judaism, see chart 1 : History of true Judaism and Rabbinic Judaism. Rabbinic Judaism is an apostasy from the true Judaism of the Old testament --- cf. (Isa. 29:13; Jer. 6:16). They are two very different religions, in spite of some similarities.
      5. The futility and emptiness of Rabbinic Judaism stand in bold constrast to the shadow cast by true Judaism as it pointed to the fulfillment and reality of the gospel of Christ. This helps us to see how badly the modern Jew needs the gospel, as do all men!
        1. Study chart 2: Judaism: Shadow, Reality, and unbelief.



1. Synagogues Developed in Babylonia Captivity (586 BC - 536 BC)

2. Synagogues became Permanent and produced teachers of the Law Called "Men of the Great Synagogue" from (ca. 500 BC), "Fathers" (from ca. 250 BC), and "Rabbi" ("My Master or Teacher," from 1st. Century AD). Early Teachers include Simon the Just (ca. 300 BC), Hillel (ca. 70 BC), Gamaliel (1st. Century AD), and then Eliezar, Elazar, & others.

3. The teachers tried to "build a hedge Around the Law," Thus producing traditions called "Mishna" (oral Law or tradition repeated from Moses) & "Gemara" (Commentaries on the Mishna).

4. Jewish struggles with Greek Culture and Rule Crystallized the Sect of the Pharisees ( ca. 165 BC) and the Sadducees (ca. 143 BC). Pharisees resisted and Sadducees Accepted hellenization. Scribes copied the Law and Interpreted it. These groups add to the growth of traditions.

5. Jesus Condemned Rabbinic traditions and defended the True Law of God. Followers of Rabbinic Judaism could not answer his arguments or deny His miracles, but they rejected Him as the Messiah and had Him crucified.

6. Jerusalem was destroyed in AD 70 and the jews dispersed from Palestine in AD 135. Rabbinic traditions were preserved and further developed through the Synagogues. In AD 500 the "Mishna" and "Gemara" were written down to form the TALMUD. In spite of Sects and Divisions, the TALMUD and the Synagogue have been the essence of Rabbinic Judaism Ever since.



Shadow, Reality, And Unbelief


Gen. 12:3


Gal. 3:8,16






Lev. 17:11


John 1:29

Heb. 10:9-12

NATION: Descend from Abraham, Ruled by God

Gen. 12:1-3

All who OBEY the Gospel of Christ

Gal. 3:26-29

Common Interest in History, Tradition, Way of Life (without God --- Matt. 23:38)

(God's Presence)


1 Kings 6:7


1 Peter 2:5


Num. 3:1-13


1 Peter 2:5,9


Deut 18:15-22


2 Peter 3:2

Old Testament with many Traditions of Men.

Col. 2:16-17

Heb. 10:1


Col. 2:17


Matt. 23:38

Questions On Lesson Six: Judaism

1. Use Scripture to explain the purpose of Animal Sacrifices.

2. What is the greatest promise God gave the world through Abraham and his Descendants?

3. What reason did God give for delivering the Hebrews from Eqyptian bondage?

4. The Mosaic Law not only warned against sin but also provided the tabernacle (later the temple0 as a place to worship God and to seek His _____________. How did He signify that His glory entered this place?

5. Use Numbers 3:1-13 to explain the special work of Aaron's family and of the tribe of Levi.

6. Give dates for the following Events:

a. Original Promise to Abraham e. Israel taken by Assyria

b. Exodus and possession of Canaan f. Judah Taken by Babylon

c. Saul bagan to Reign g.. Restoration Began

d. Kingdom Divided h. Malachi Prophesied

7. Give God's plea to His sinful people and their response --- cf. (Jer. 6:16).

8. The Old Law pointed forward to the coming of a Messiah or a personal Savior. Use Isaiah 53 to explain why He was needed.

9. How would the kingdom of God prophesied in the Old testament be different from all the other nations --- cf. (Dan. 2:44)?

10. Ezekiel 40-48 pictures a new _______________ centered in a new ________________ at a new ______________ with a new ________________ at a new _________________.

a. What filled the new Temple in 43:1-6?

b. What new name was given to the new Jerusalem in 48:35?

11. Read God's promise in Jer. 31:31-34.

a. What would He make --- cf. (vrs. 31)?

b. It would not be the same as which one --- cf. (vrs 32)?

c. What would He do about iniquity and sin --- cf. (vrs 34)?

12. Daniel 9:24-27 prophesied that within a figurative period of 70 weeks, not only would the Messiah come and be put to death, but also what would be destroyed, brought to an end, or cease --- cf. (Vrs. 26-27)?

13. Jesus Christ is the final and perfgect fulfillment of:

a. "______________ ____________" made to Abraham and his seed --- cf. (Gal. 3:16);

b. all prophecies of the Savior written in " _________ ____________ ____________ _______________, and in ____________ ____________, and in _______________ ________________" --- cf. (Luke 24:44); the " _______________" of things to come ---cf. (Col. 2:16-17); and all " _________________ _______________ ________________ _______________" ---cf. (2 Cor. 1:20).

14. How did Jesus explain why men reject or receive Him in these passages?

a. John 3;19-21

b. John 5:39, 46-47

15. Explain what is offensive to unbelieving Jews about the following things:

a. Christ's Kingdom

b. Christ's Divine Nature

16. Why did some not confess Him --- cf. (John 12:42-43)?

17. To better understand the development of Rabbinic Judaism ( ________ B.C. - A.D. _______), give dates for the following:

a. Synagogue 1st. developed f. Gamaliel

b. Simon the Just g. Jerusalem's final fall

c. Pharisees Began h. Jew's final dispersion

d. Sadducees began i. Talmud written

e. Hillel j. Modern state of Israel began

18. Briefly explain these terms:

a. Torah e. Pharisees

b. Mishna f. Sadducees

c. Gemara g. Scribes

d. Talmud h. Rabbi

19. When God left the unbelieving Jews Desolate, what were they left without?

20. To this day, the various sects of Rabbinic Judaism focus on what two things?

21. When do Jews conduct worship?

22. How does Rabbinic Judaism deal with sin and redemption?

23. What is the concept of the Messiah in modern Judaism?

24. How do secular minded Jews find a common bond, interest, or identity?

25. Explain the tragedy of modern Judaism in terms of its "meaning" and in terms of two other categories of your own choice from the chart "Judaism": Shadow, Reality, and Unbelief."

a. Meaning:



Lesson Seven :

Class Title : ISLAM:

Memory Verse : Has One Greater Than Christ Come? --- (John 14:6)

    1. Ubu'l Kaassim was born in A.D. 570 into the Koreish tribe, which cared for religious pilgrims and the Kaaba Shrine in Mecca, Arabia.
      1. The Arabians descended in part from Ishmael and his twelve sons. They were nomads and caravan traders, dwelling in Midian, the Sinai peninsula, and Arabia. cf. (Gen. 16;12; 25:12-18; 37:25-28, 36; Judges 8:24; 1 Kings 10:15)
        1. The Arabians were polytheistic and came to Mecca to see a small building called the Kaaba which housed 360 Images and the Black Stone (supposedly given to Abraham by the Angel Gabriel).
      1. As a young man Ubu'l travelled with Caravans and was exposed to Rabbinic Judaism, apostate Christianity and many forms of idolatry and mysticism. He married the owner of a caravan business and often meditated in a cave on Mt. Hira near Mecca. One night in 610, he claimed to receive a vision telling him to read, recite, or proclaim "in the name of thy Lord," but he knew not whether this was divine or demonic in origin. His wife convinced him that it was divine. Ubu'l said his name was changed to Muhammad ("highly praised") by the messenger --- the angel Gabriel. All his "revelations" were collected shortly after his death into a book called THE KORAN ( the reading, recitation, or proclamation).
      2. The Arabs embraced many gods, with Allah as the chief god. Muhammad rejected idolatry, emphasized Allah's or God's oneness, and claimed to be God's true prophet. Opposition in Mecca forced him to flee to Yathrib in 622. This Hegira or flight by night marked the official beginning of his religious movement and of the Islamic Calendar. Yathrib changed its name to Medina ("The City of the Prophet") and Muhammad ruled. He raided Mecca's caravans and waged successful war until Mecca surrendered to him in 630. He removed all idols from the Kaaba and died in 632. His religion is called ISLAM ("to submit" to God) and a follower MUSLIM or MOSLEM ("one who submits").
      3. Muhammad united most of the warring tribes and factions of Arabia. Within 20 years of his death, fierce Arab armies had taken Syria, Iraq, Palestine, Egypt, and the Persian Empire. The Arabs swept southward from Asia Minor through North Africa on to Spain, Portugal, and France --- where they were stopped at the Battle of Tours in 732. By persuasion and force, Islam spread into India, Pakistan, East Pakistan, and the islands of the South West Pacific Ocean (Indonesia, Philippines, etc.). Over 700 million Moslems dominate 42 countries in Asia, Europe, and Africa. Islam is the world's fastest growing religion. (See Chart One: Map of Spread of Islam.)
      4. W.D. Fard (Farrad Muhammad) began the black Muslims in Detroit, Michigan in the 1930's primarily as an anti-white movement. An associate, Elijah Poole (Elijah Muhammad), led the cult later. Treated as heretical at first by Islam, the black Muslims are accepted now under their new name "World Community of Islam in the West."

    1. Muhammad drew on ideas learned from his native Arabia, religious Pilgrims, and his Caravan travels. Though illiterate, he was a master improvisor with a lively imagination and mystic temperament. He borrowed much from Arabian religious traditions, the Jewish Talmud, and perverted forms of Christianity. The part that is good is not new and the part that is new is not good.
    2. Islam teaches five fundamental Articles of Faith:
      1. GOD --- The oneness of God is emphasized. Muhammad thought Christians worshipped the Father, the Son, and Mary --- blasphemy to him. God's greatness and power overshadowed His personal grace and love toward man.
      2. ANGELS --- Four archangels include Gabriel, the messenger of revelation. There are an indefinite number of other angels. Jinn are creatures from Arabian traditions, standing between the position of angels and men, created of smokeless flame. They are unseen but may appear as animals or men, and can help or hurt. Jinns are a carry- over from polytheism and are worshipped by some Muslims. The devil is a fallen angel or a Jinn.
      3. PROPHETS ---There have been many thousands of prophets, 313 of them designated "apostles," and six who brought new dispensations: Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad. Muhammad is the last and greatest of all prophets.
      4. DIVINE BOOKS --- Of the 104 divine books given to prophets, only four remain: The law given to Moses, the Psalms to David, the Gospel to Jesus, and the Koran to Muhammad. The Koran is the final revelation of the true religion. Where the Koran and Bible conflict, parts of the Bible have been lost or corrupted.

  2. JUDGMENT DAY --- All men will be raised and judged at the last day. Faithful Muslims will go to paradise to recline on couches, to receive plenty of good food and wine, to marry an abundance of wives (though wine and over four wives are forbidden on earth). All who reject Islam suffers in boiling water and metal.
      1. DECREES OF GOD --- This sixth article of faith is often added. All good and evil comes directly from God's Will. Man's impression of free will and choice is God's creation. Fatalism and lethargy have plagued many Muslims.
  3. Islam requires "Five Pillars" as a Code of Conduct:
      1. CONFESSION --- Anyone can become a Muslim upon the confession: "There is no God but Allah; Muhammad is the prophet of Allah."
      2. PRAYER --- Ritual prayers in Arabic are required at five specific times each day. The person faces Mecca and performs stances, prostrations, and rituals of cleansing. On Friday there is a public meeting at the mosque for prayers and exhortations.
      3. FAST --- During the month of Ramadan, Muslims abstain from all forms of food, drink, smoking, and sexual intercourse during daylight hours. This teaches self-control and sympathy for the needy.
      4. ALMS --- Alms are levied to help the poor in addition to free will gifts.
      5. PILGRIMAGE --- A pilgrimage to Mecca is required if possible at least once in a lifetime. The pilgrim performs a number of rituals and visits the Kaaba to see the Black Stone.
      6. HOLY WAR --- A sixth pillar applies to adult males. They are to answer any legal call to Holy War against non-Muslims.
  4. In addition to the "Inspired" Koran, Muslims Slavishly follow the Traditions --- Uninspired Records of Muhammad's Words, Deeds, and Habits. Using the Koran, the Traditions, and their own counsel, Islamic leaders prescribe the SHARI'A or the Law Covering every possible aspect of life (ethics, morality, criminal and civil laws, even proper use of toothpick, etc.).
    1. Islam is a system for man working and earning his way to heaven, but provides no atonement for sin. The "glad tidings" is that men must believe in Allah and do good works. The Muslim prays for forgiveness and is especially promised pardon in making the pilgrimage to Mecca or dying in a Holy War. But there is no atonement or basis upon which God can forgive sin while maintaining justice. Seeing no need for the atonement, Islam denies Jesus Died on the cross. He appeared to die but it was really Judas --- God took Jesus to heaven without death. He will return to earth later, die, and be buried next to Muhammad.


1. Gospel Confirmed by Miracles

cf. John 20:30-31; Acts 1:3; 4:16; 2 Cor. 12:12; Rev. 2:2

1. "God Has Not Sent Me to Work Wonders" --- (Muhammad)
2. Gospel warns Against Pretended Revelations From Angels

cf. Galatians 1:8-9

2. Muhammad Pretended To Receive His Revelations From The Angel Gabriel
3. Jesus Claimed to Be the Very Son of God, Divine in Nature.

cf. John 8:58; 10:30-32, 36; 20:28-29

3. Jesus Never Claimed to Be The Son of God or Deity
4. Jesus Said He Would Be Crucified and Raised

cf. Matthew 16:21

4. Jesus Was Taken to Heaven Without Death
5. Judas Committed Suicide

cf. Matthew 27:5

5. Judas Died on the Cross, Appearing to be Jesus
6. Jesus Promised a Complete Revelation in the First Century

cf. John 16:13

6. Christ Prophesied and Muhammad Completed a New and Final Revelation
7. God Promised to Protect and Preserve the Gospel

cf. Matthew 5:17-18; 1 Peter 1:24-25

7. Parts of the Bible are Lost and Corrupted
8. The Gospel Defines True Marriage As One Man for One Woman for life with Only One Exception

cf. Matthew 5:31-32; Matthew 19:1-9

8. Muhammad Had 10 wives and Limited Other Muslims to 4; Concubines Permitted; Divorce for Any Cause
9. No Forgiveness Without Blood Sacrifice

cf. Matthew 26:28; Hebrews 9:22

9. Islam Promises Pardon Without Atoning Blood
10. Man Cannot Work and Earn His Way To Heaven

cf. Romans 3:23; Ephesians 2:8-9

10. Man Earns His Way to Heaven by the 5 Articles and 5 Pillars of Faith
11. Christ Ever Liveth

cf. Hebrews 7:25; Revelation 1:18

11. Christ Will Return, Die, and Be Buried Next To Muhammad
12. Jesus taught Fully and Perfectly How to Love Our Neighbor

cf. John 16:13; Luke 10:29-37; Romans 13:8-10

12. Islam claims a Final Prophet Was Needed to Explain How To Love Our Neighbor --- The Unfinished Work of Christ
13. None is Greater than Christ --- All must Come To God Through Him

cf. John 8:58; 14:6

13. Muhammad Is a Greater Prophet Than Jesus Christ

Questions On Lesson Seven: ISLAM

1. Ubu'l Kassim was born in the year ___________ in the town of Mecca, ______________, a country inhabited in part by the descendants of _________________. Ubu'l died in the year _____________.

2. When Ubu'l was born, what importance did Mecca Hold to the Arabians?

3. To what religious influences was Ubu'l exposed as a young man?

4. When Ubu'l claimed to receive a vision telling him to proclaim, he was unsure of what?

5. How did Muhammad "convince" Mecca to remove all idols from the Kaaba?

6. Define these terms:

a. Muhammad c. Hegira e. Islam

b. Koran d. Medina f. Muslim, Moslem

7. Though Muhammad emphasized God's oneness, what misconceptions did he have about God?

8. What are jinns in Islam?

9. Name the prophets who brought new dispensations, according to Islam.

10. In Islam what degree of authority is assigned to the Koran in comparison to the bible?

11. What is the Moslem view of paradise?

12. Briefly explain the "five Pillars' of Islam:






13. What sources of religious authority do Muslims recognize in addition to the Koran?

14. What provision does Islam make for pardon or forgiveness from sin?

15. Since Muhammad admitted he did no miracles, what conclusion would be required from a study of John 20:30-31, 2 Corinthians 12:12, and Revelation 2:2?

16. How does Galatians 1:8-9 apply especially to Muhammad?

17. Though Islam denies it, what clear claims did Jesus make in these passages?

a. John 8:58

b. John 10:30-32, 36

c. John 20:28-29

18. How is Islam confused about the ending of Jesus' and Judas' lives on earth?

19. What promise did Jesus make to his own Apostles in the first century, contradicting Muhammad's claim?

20. How do Moslems contradict the teachings of Matthew 5:17-18 and I Peter 1:24-25?

21. Islam claims Jesus as one of its prophets, but how does this religion deny what Jesus taught in Matthew 5:32 and 19:1-9?

22. What is taught in the following passages which contradicts the Moslem doctrine of forgiveness?

a. Matthew 26:28; Hebrews 9:22

b. Ephesians 2:8-9

23. What Scriptures deny the Moslem claim that Christ will return, die, and be buried next to Muhammad?

24. What unfinished work of Christ did Muhammad complete, and how does the Bible show such a claim to be false?

25. How did Christ claim to be the greatest and final prophet, denying such a role to Muhammad?

Lesson Eight :

Class Title : HINDU:

Memory Verse: Can We Work & Earn Our Way To God? (Ephesians 2:8-9)

    1. The Hindu Religion has over 450 Million followers, making it the World's Third Largest Religion (behind "Christianity" & Islam). Most Hindu's live in India and this religion's history is tied to the history of India.
    2. About 2,500 B.C. the Indus Valley was inhabited by Dravidians who worshipped many Gods in Animal and human forms, and regarded all forms of life sacred. About 1,500 B.C. the fair skinned Aryans came from Indo-Europe or Central Asia and conquered the Indus Valley, bringing animism (worship of spirits which inhabit aminate and inanimate objects). The result was early Hindu polytheism, the worship of many gods, idols, and images --- especially the worship of nature's forces as gods (i.e. storm, fire, healing, etc.).
    3. "Vedas" were Hymns Chanted in praise of the gods. "Brahmins" Interpreted them. This priestly group produced and preserved orally hymns, chants, magical sayings, and rituals. They were written down as the VEDAS in the 700's B.C. and expanded until about 300 B.C. There were four main books and each had three divisions. The material written 500 B.C. - 300 B.C. tried to find a concept of one God behind the many gods and arrived at pantheism ( God is all things, all things are God).
      1. Literature Arising between 100 B.C. and A.D. 500 included the BHAGAVAD GITA, an Epic Poem telling of "Krishna" --- Portrayed for the first time as an Incarnation of God. Myths, legends, and stories of all kinds multiplied for a thousand years more and were devoured by the masses.
      2. Since about 1750, hinduism has reformed some of its worst features in an effort to absorb and Adapt "Christianity" and Islam. Though Hinduism is still basically a religion intertwined with the cultural, social, and economic life of India, it has had an impact on the outside world.
      3. Ramakrishna --- (1834-1886) said that the God of Hinduism is found in different forms of Christianity and Islam. His disciple (Swami Vivekanada - 1863-1903) created a sensation by presenting Hindu as the universal religion at the Parliment of Religion during the world's Fair in Chicargo in 1893.
      4. India's Leader Gandhi --- (1869-1948) gained much publicity with his philosophy of non-violence and of all religions as equally true expressions of a universal religion.
      5. Modern gurus mediate Hindu to Western man seeking something beyond materialism. The Transcendental Meditation movement and certain Hollywood stars helped to popularize Hindu concepts in America. Hindu concepts of man are reflected in the "human Potential," "Positive - Mental _ Attitude", and "New Age" movements.

    1. The contradictions within the Hindu System are not considered embarrasing. They are accepted as equally true expressions of their own God who is many. Variety permits contradictions.

1. GOD --- God is a personal being with all powerall wisdom, a character of love and forgiveness, & a determination to punish sin. He is a Spirit without a body and commands worship from the heart of man without images or idols .

{cf. Ex. 20:3-4; Deut. 6:4-5; 1 Tim. 1:17; John 4:24}

1. The essence of Hindu is the oneness of all things, seen and unseen, as OM or Brahman (pantheism). It is the Impersonal Absolute, "That One thing." Weaker minds are permitted to think of it as Persoanl Deity, incarnations in the forms of animals or men, 330 million gods (polytheism), idols and images, or spirits dwelling in all things (animism). Ancestors may be worshipped.
2. UNIVERSE --- God created all things from nothing by His almighty power. He rules over the universe and is not subject to its laws. It is only His footstool. When He fulfills His eternal purpose, He will bring it to an end.

{Gen. 1:1; Isa. 66:1; 2 Peter 3:5-7}

2. Brahman made all things from itself. This was sport or play to OM. The universe has no reason or purpose. The universe evolves through cycles of fullness and activity followed by collapse every few billion years. This process repeats itself eternally, like the movement of a gigantic accordion. Only OM is reality, but it permits the universe to appear real to man.
3. MAN --- God created man's spirit in His own image from nothing and made his body from dust. Man and woman rule over the cattle and all animals. At death the body and soul are separated. The soul waits in Hades and the body in the dust until the resurrection and final judgment.

{Gen. 1:26-28; 2:17; Eccl. 12:7; John 5:28-29}

3. All life ( vegetable, insect, animal, and man) represents different levels and representations of Brahman. Man is a layered being: body, personality or self, and the Atman, Godhead, or Self. After death, the Atman is reincarnated in some form of life or in some social class ("caste") to pay off the debt of self's bad deeds or to advance for good. Karma is the law of one's debt or credit which requires constant cycles of reincarnation. Woman must let man make every decision --- she has no will and may own nothing.
4. DUTY, SIN --- Man is to love God above all else, and to love his neighbor as himself. Love involves duties of both private and public worship, family duties, and obedience to civil law. We are to love and help anyone in need. Sin is the transgression of God's Law, rebellion against Him, and an offense to His Person.

{Matthew 22:36-40; 1 Tim. 5:8; 1 John 3:4}

4. Man's highest duty is to discover or experience the OM or Brahman within --- "Thou art That." All life forms may be worshipped and cattle especially. Since worship is for private aims, public assemblies are not generally provided. A man may leave his family in search of the OM within. One's personal duty is to stay within the limits of his caste. Suffering should not be relieved if it seems to be the result of the karma. Sin is not moral offense against God but only ignorance of OM within. "Good" and "Bad" are only greater and lesser expressions of Brahma, for it is all.
5. SALVATION --- Salvation is pardon or forgiveness of sin and requires a perfect sacrifice or atonement. God sent His Son Jesus Christ to provide the gift of salvation through His death on the cross. Man receives pardon by faith as he repents of sin, confesses the deity of Christ, and is immersed in water. Man turns away from sin. Our final salvation is the resurrection and eternal life in heaven through Christ. To live and die in sin without Christ leads to eternal hell.

{John 3:16-18; 5:28-29; Acts 2:38; Romans 10:10}

5. Man is saved from unreality, ignorance, and illusion, not from sin as moral evil. Salvation is the experience of the reality, "Thou art That". Through reincarnation man strives to work off his karma. We may have to work though rebirth in thousands of life forms and as man in four major castes with about 5000 sub-castes. Final salvation is escape from the cycle of rebirths, and the absorption into Brahman. The body and the individual personality or self are shed forever and only the ATMAN, "Great Oneness", or Brahman remains in all. This loss of self in Self is mukti and all men will finally reach it. There is no resurrection and the highest hope is the loss of individual existence. Individual drops of spray from the ocean wave can only hope to lose their identity as drops by returning to the ocean itself.
6. CHRIST --- Jesus Christ is the divine Son of God who lived a perfect life, died as a perfect sacrifice for sin, arose from the dead, and reigns at the Father's right hand. He will return to destroy the world, raise all the dead, and judge men unto their eternal destiny.

{John 1:1,14; 5:28-29; 1 Cor. 15:1-3}

6. Jesus Christ along with Krishna, Buddha, and many other men are incarnations of Brahman. Brahman has come in animal form, for instance, a great turtle. There is no unique virtue in the death of Christ and eternal life is not to be found in him alone.
7. TRUTH --- Truth was revealed from God in words through prophets. Miraculous signs confirmed their words as true. The word of truth is written down in Scriptures and may be understood by any person with an open and honest heart/mind.

{Hebrews 1:1-2; 2:1-4; Mark 16:20;

John 20:30-31; Eph. 3:3-5}

Jesus Christ is the ONLY way, truth and life. Those who reject Him and follow another way are lost cf. {John 14:6; 8:32; 2 Thess. 1:7-9}. The gospel is the truth of God without speculations and contradictions --- cf. {1 Cor. 14:33}.

7. There is no revelation of truth from God to one man which can be confirmed or verified to another. Truth comes by flashes of intuition, mystical experiences, and trances which are purely personal and subjective. The minds of the early writers of the Vedas were so pure and clam as to perfectly reflect the eternal truths of the impersonal Absolute.

Every way of religion is equally true as a partial expression of Brahman. All gods and goddesses are but various aspects of the OM. The one God is many. Truth is contradictory because of its great variety. Unified truth is beyond the grasp of man. (NOTE: To be consistent with such a view would destroy all rational discourse.)


    1. The Hindu is trapped in a hopeless system of Confusion, Contradiction, and Frustration. He must work, earn, and merit his way to Brahman by thousands of rebirths and without any assurance as to whether he is progressing or regressing.
      1. "The hopeless cry of the Hindu has always been, who can free me from the weight of my karma (accumulation of deeds from many lives) and get me out of the wheel of transmigration?" {Wm. D. Hall, Beliefs and Consequences St. Louis, MO: The Bethany Press, 1964, p. 48}
      2. Jesus Christ answers that cry in Matthew 11:28-30.

    1. No man can work his own way out of sin. Jesus died as the perfect sacrifice to pay the penalty for our sins. The deepest need of every man is to find this forgiveness in Christ --- cf. {john 1:29; Titus 3:3-7}. A nagging sense of sin as moral failure is seen in Hindu's promises of magical cleansing from sin by washing in the Ganges River.
    2. The poor Hindu works and gropes to find God in a system of speculation and superstition which leaves man in darkness and sin without the true God.
      1. Jesus Christ came to reveal God in all His fullness and perfection. God delivers us from vain speculation, superstition, and sin through the gospel of Christ. --- cf. {John 1:18; Col. 2:6-9; 3:1-14}.

Questions on Lesson Eight: Hindu

1. The Hindu Religion is tied to the history of what Country?

2. Define these terms:

a. Animism d. Vedas

b. Polytheism e. Brahmins

c. Pantheism f. Bhagavad Gita

3. The Vedas were produced and preserved orally for hundreds of years, then put in written form during the years ______ - __________. The material written during the years __________ - _________ tried to find a concept of one ________ behind the many ______________.

4. Hindu has had an impact beyond India by claiming that the God of Hinduism is found in _________ and ___________, that Hindu is the ____________ religion, and that all religions are equally __________________.

5. Names some movements and concepts in the Western world heavily influenced by Hinduism.

6. The impersonal pantheism of Hindu is expressed as OM, _____________, or "___________ __________ __________," but It is given more personal identity and worshipped in what forms?

7. How do the following passages show that God is a spiritual person without a body?

a. I Tim. 1:17

b. Exodus 20:3-4

8. According to Hinduism, the universe was made by ______ from ___________ and evolves through eternal cycles of activity and collapses every few ___________ _____________. What is the reason or purpose of it all?

9. According to 2 Peter 3:5-7, what are the four steps or stages in the history of the earth ordained by the power of God's Word?

a. Creation c.

b. d.

10. What are the Hindu concepts of the following?

a. Atman d. Karma

b. Reincarnation e. Woman

c. Caste

11. Use the following passages to explain man's nature:

a. Gen. 1:26-28 --- Who was created in God's image?

b. Gen. 1:26-28 --- What was man's relationship to other forms of life?

c. Eccl. 12:7 --- How does death change our existence?

d. John 5:28-29 --- What is our ultimate destiny?

12. Briefly explain the Hindu concept of the following:

a. Man's highest duty

b How to fulfill the duty of worship

c. Our duty toward our fellowman

d. Sin or 'bad"

13. Use Matthew 22:36-40 to explain:

a. Man's highest duty

b. Man's next greatest duty

c. Where we learn how to fulfill these duties

14. Final salvation for the Hindu is escape from the cycle of ________________, and absorption into _____________. How does the ocean illustrate this concept?

15. Use John 3:16-18; 5:28-39; and Acts 2:38 to explain:

a. How salvation from sin is provided and obtained

b. The hope of our final Salvation

16. What is the Hindu concept of Brahman's incarnations, and of Christ?

17. Use Scripture to explain the only true incarnation of God, and why He came.

18. Hindu truth cannot be confirmed but supposedly comes by flashes of _____________, ____________ ___________, and _________________.

19. How do men receive the truth of God's Will today, and how has it been confirmed as truth?

20. Briefly explain the Hindu concepts of:

a. All the contradictory religions of the world

b. Truth

21. How did Christ contradict the Hindu concepts of question 20?

22. What is the hopeless cry of the Hindu and how does Christ answer it?

23. What does the Hindu's washing in the Ganges River reflect about his conscience?

24. Describe one of the Hindu gods from the picture given.

25. How do the religions described in the news article and in Colossians 3:1-14 differ?

Lesson Nine:

Class Title: BUDDHIST:

Memory Work: Is Extinction Our Highest Hope? cf. --- {1 Thess. 4:17}

    1. The key to understanding Both Hinduism and Buddhism is that they are concerned with Man's existence as suffering and with how to escape human existence.
    2. Siddhartha Gautama ( ca. 560-480 BC) lived as a prince in a small Kingdom near the border of India and Nepal.
      1. Like other Hindus, he saw human suffering as man's greatest problem, he believed in reincarnation, thought each person's lot in life is the result of karma (a law which reflects the merits and demerits of a person's past lives), and sought a way to release man from the curse of existence.
      2. He protested some features of Hindu: the idea that one is born into a caste from which he cannot escape except by reincarnation, and the toleration if myriads of gods, idols, and images along with superstitious rites.
    3. He left his wife and child to search for light. After searching Hindu holy writings and then living as a ascetic, without finding the answer to life's problem, he meditated under a fig tree until he suddenly experienced the mystical, irrational light of wisdom.
      1. Though the experience supposedly defies words, it meant man's desire for personal existence and its attractions is the root cause of the cycles of life and reincarnation. Escape is effected and the passionless peace of Nirvana discovered when all desire is extinguished.
      2. Nirvana means "to blow out" or "extinguish". Extinction of personal desire and personal existence releases the nebulous life force from rebirth. Like a drop of spray from an ocean wave, the individual life loses its desires and identity by rejoining the larger ocean of all life.

    1. After the Bo Tree Experience (bodhi, wisdom), Gautama was called Buddha --- "Enlightened One." Other titles given him include "Sakyamuni" --- {Silent Sage of Sakya Clan} and "Tathagata" --- {Thus-come, Truth Winner, Perfectly Enlightened One}. Some people call him "The light of Asia." Anyone who attains Nirvana may be called a Buddha.
    2. To teach detachment from self and desire, Buddha offered "Four Noble truths" and "The Eight fold Path," pointing man to right views, aspirations, speech, conduct, mode of livelihood (make a living without harm to any form of life), effort, awareness, and concentration.
      1. This program of self help in ethical training gets more detailed and complicated as it progresses, ultimately requiring a person to become a monk. The monk at age 20 pledges to keep 227 rules of discipline. The monk strives to become "a worthy one," a "not self", conquering "the five pollution's that affect the human race --- the power of beauty, sound, odor, taste, and touch."
      2. Most Buddhists are laymen who follow a lighter regimen, supporting the monks and hoping to be reborn as a monk.
      3. Buddha and his strictest followers offer this whole program of do-it-yourself therapy without reference to God, worship, prayer, forgiveness, or a final judgment pointing to heaven or hell. Buddha emphatically taught, "Be ye lamps unto yourselves" --- i.e., the light to be discovered is within man himself.
      4. Buddhism is tolerant toward all forms of belief or unbelief in God or gods. Its most liberal branches embrace all sorts of idols and images. It is a paradox that Buddha ignored the question of deity and rejected all idols but many of his followers worship him as a deity and his statue has become the world's best known idol!
      5. In short, Buddhism is a course in self-improvement leading to the experience of complete detachment from all personal desire, consciousness, or identity. A person has "raised himself above all the worlds," said Buddha, when he has no desire for and makes no distinction between such things as existence or non-existence, oneself or all things, good and evil, and life or death. Buddhism is a subjective human philosophy, teaching man to look within himself for light. it tends toward mysticism (claims of irrational and intuitive knowledge) and absurdity 9 a denial that reality or truth can be understood by the mind or explained in words).

    1. After Buddha's death, no accounts of his life or teaching were recorded by his contemporaries.
      1. Myth's and legends multiplied, and his teachings were handed down orally for 500-600 years. Then they were written down by his strictest followers as the Tripitaka or "3 Baskets" --- Vinaya --- (rules for monks), Sutra --- (teaching of Buddha), and Adhidharma --- (interpretations of his teachings).
      2. Later and more liberal groups have expanded these writings to as many as 5,000 volumes. Divine inspiration is not generally claimed for Buddhists scriptures.
    2. The strictest Group call their teaching "The way of the Elders." But they are often called "Little raft" or "Lesser vehicle" to indicate their way is narrow and few can follow it. few men can become monks, which is the final and necessary step. This orthodox Buddhism is found in Southern Asia: Ceylon, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos , and Vietnam.
    3. As Buddhism spread in the early centuries, many of its devotees liberalized and modified their teaching to compromise with other customs and religions. The result is called "Big Raft" or "Large Vehicle" Buddhism for its leniency and majority following. "Big Raft" Buddhism encompasses many local variations, many contradictions, and many radically different sects and sub-sects. It became widespread in Central and Northern Asia; China, Japan, Tibet, Mongolia, Korea, and Nepal.
      1. Some "Big Raft" groups say that Buddha is the essence of ultimate reality. He was incarnated for a time but all the universe and all the contradictory forms of Buddhism share in the ultimate Reality. This is Pantheism in a Buddhist robe!
      2. A mystical group posits pantheism in the Supreme Buddha, specifically embraces the Shinto deities of Japan and manifestations of Buddha, and offers Tibetan occult and magic as Lamaism. Secret oral doctrines from Buddha include magical bodily movements, incantations, rituals, symbols, diagrams, and all sorts of supernatural powers.
      3. The most popular Japanese group offers a final conscious existence in the :Pure Land" paradise by grace to all men who express faith in Amida Buddha, "Buddha of Infinite Life and Light."
      4. ZEN Buddhism requires complete submission to a Zen Master, who directs the seeker in years of disciplined and silent meditation. The student meditates on such questions as "What is the sound of one hand clapping?" Questions such as, "Who is the Buddha?" may be answered, "The cat climbs the post." The point is to so frustrate the seeker's mind that he finally experiences a flash of intuition. The mind emptied and the illusion of personal existence and identity broken, the enlightened one realizes, "Buddha is all and I am Buddha." This is pantheism.
      5. One Buddhist group was built around the Japanese leader Nichiren in the 1200's A.D. and has an arm called the Creative Value Society. They worship a black box kept in the home, which contains sacred words, hoping that their souls may be united with the eternal Buddha spirit. This sect claims to be the only true religion.
      6. "Big Raft" Buddhism even allows a person to embrace several religions at once. "Thus in China, one might follow certain Taoist practices as a farmer, obey Confucian teachings in his social life, and at the same time consider himself a Buddhist in such matters as funeral services or prayers for help in time of sorrow" {David G. Bradley, A Guide to the World's Religions. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice -Hall, Inc., 1963, p. 121.}

    4. What is the strength and Influence of Buddhism?
      1. Buddhism is the world's fourth largest religion (behind "Christianity," Islam, and Hindu). its followers number about a quarter of a billion. it is the predominate religion in the Far East.
      2. Though Buddhism originated in India, it has no significant following there today. Buddha started out in protest to some Hindu ideas, but his reforms were adopted by several Hindu sects.
      3. Buddhism has made some inroads into Western Civilization.
        1. The London Buddhist Society was established in 1907 to translate, publish, and spread Buddhist texts in the West.
        2. When Hawaii became the 50th State in the USA. in 1959, tens of thousands of Buddhists became American citizens.
        3. Materialism, immorality, rejection of the Bible as absolute truth, and the resulting spiritual emptiness of many Americans has opened the door wider and wider to eastern religious influences including Buddhism. A western Buddhist University was opened at Boulder Colorado. The Buddhist church of America openly criticizes and opposes the gospel of Christ. People looking for subjective concepts of truth and for religion which does not speak of sin and eternal hell may find Buddhist ideas attractive. Buddha said, "Look inward --- thou art Buddha." Various movements centers on the occult, on self-help, on positive-mental attitude philosophies of life, and on the so called "New Age" speak of light, vibrations, hidden powers, and even divinity within man. {See "OM .... The New Age," time Magazine, 7 Dec. 1987, pp. 62-72}.

A. What is the Basis of our Knowledge of Buddha?

1. Buddha lived ca. 560-480B.C., but no eyewitness or contemporary recorded anything of his life and teaching. The 3 Baskets were written 500-600 years later and are filled with myth and legend. The earliest manuscript copy of this record dates ca. A.D. 900.

A. What is the Basis of our Knowledge of Christ?

1 Jesus Christ lived in the 1st. Century A.D. His Life and teaching were recorded by eyewitnesses and contemporaries in the New testament. John, the last writer, died at the end of the 1 st. Century and we have parts of a manuscript of john dating to A.D. 120. the New Testament is the best attested document in all ancient history. The New Testament offers truth grounded in historical events, not legend and myth --- {John 20:30-31; 1 John 1;1-1-3; 2 Peter 1;16-18}

B. What was the nature and Origin of each man?

1. Buddha never claimed to be anything but a man and taught that all men can be as fully enlightened as himself. He did not teach men to worship him as deity. He remains in the grave.

B. What was the nature and origin of each man?

1. Christ was fully man and fully God. He came from God the Father and came as the unique Son of God. Men are to recognize and worship Christ as deity. He arose from the grave --- cf. {John 1:1-3; 5:23; 20:28}.

C. What was the Mission and great Accomplishment of Each Man?

1. Buddha's mission was to search for and find light in order to save himself from suffering. Then he told others how to search.

C. What was the Mission and Great Accomplishment of Each man?

1. Christ is the true light and is the origin of all light. He came not in search of light but to fully reveal it. He came to suffer and die, not to save himself but to save others from eternal punishment. --- cf. {John 1;4-10, 29; 8:12}

D. What is the Authority Behind Each Man's Teaching?

1. Buddha decided that he was his own authority and that each man must be his own authority. "Be ye lamps unto yourselves." The light of truth is a subjective experience which cannot be taught or understood in words. Therefore, he offered no miracles to certify his teachings, no verification of his experience, and no claim that his light came from God.

D. What is the Authority Behind each man's teaching?

1. Christ is deity --- the only true light, the only way, truth and life. All must come to the Father by Him. All who reject Him and claim another light are living in sin and darkness. the words of Christ can and must be understood as the "Words of eternal life." he confirmed these words as Divine by many miracles --- cf. {John 1;1; 14; 6; 3:19; 6:63, 68; 20:30-31}.

E. What Did each Man teach?

1. GOD is unknown and unknowable. There may be gods or a God, but deity did not create the universe. it is eternal, always evolving in cycles independently of deity.

2. MAN has no soul and should not desire to always exist as an individual person. His life essence is reincarnated many times until it loses the illusion of personal consciousness and identity.

3. LIFE is a single essence in all forms, though separate from the material universe. All life is impermanent, in flux, evolving. Man should not kill animals or insects for any reason.

4. MAN'S DUTY is to fulfill the karma or eternal law that assigns him to pay in this life for the deeds of his life essence in previous incarnations. There is no such thing as forgiveness of such deeds. His ultimate duty is to quit desiring anything, to be detached from all things. Sin is any and all desires of the person and is based on ignorance. To find the light, duty may mean leaving one's family and becoming a monk who will not work but lives by begging.

5. SALVATION means the acceptance of "no self", deliverance from reincarnation, and the passionless peace of Niravana. There is no eternal heaven where man exists as an individual in God's presence and no eternal hell where man suffers conscious torment. extinction of the personal self is man's highest hope.

E. What did each Man Teach?

1. GOD created all things and will end the universe. God is fully revealed in the person of Jesus Christ. Those who regard God as unknown need the gospel of Christ. --- {cf. John 1;1-3, 14, 18; Col. 2:9; Acts 17:22-31; 2 Peter 3:10}.

2. MAN. Since man is made in Gods image, he has an eternal soul or spirit more valuable than all the world. God made man to be an individual person with a conscious identity for ever and ever. We live only once on earth. --- cf. {Gen. 1:27; Matt. 16:26; Heb. 9:27; Lk. 16:19-31; Matt. 25:31-46}.

3. LIFE. There is a sharp distinction between human life and all other forms of life. Man's rule over animals includes the right to kill and eat them --- cf. {Gen. 1:28; 1 Tim. 4:4; Acts 10:9-13}.

4. MAN'S DUTY is to worship God and keep His commandments. God blesses our proper desires which He placed in us. Sin is rebellion against God and transgression of His law. God forgives our sins through Christ if we accept His pardon. To leave one's family and beg is detestable sin --- cf. {Eccl. 12;13; 5;18; 1 John 3:4; Rom. 6:23; 1 Tim. 5:8; 2 Thess. 3:10}.

5. SALVATION means forgiveness of our sins through the blood of Christ. Each person will enjoy the conscious bliss of eternity in heaven with God or the conscious torment of eternity in hell with Satan --- cf. {Matt. 26:28; Acts 2:38; Matt. 25:46; 1 Thess. 4:17}.

Questions on Lesson Nine: BUDDHIST

1. Gautama accepted and protested various parts of Hindu religion. What did he accept and what did he protest?

a. Accepted:

b Protested:

2. Gautama is called "The ____________ of Asia" because of his meditation and experience under the _________ three, which enlightened him on life's problem:

a. Life's problem:

b. Escape or Solution:

3. Following "______________ Noble Truths" and "The _____________ Path," man's exercise in self-help and self-discip-line leads by reincarnation to the level of a monk, who pledges to keep ________________ rules."

4. Briefly explain what Buddha taught about the following:

a. The source of light.

b. How man raises himself above all the worlds

5. What is "the Little Raft?"

6. The "Big Raft" includes many diverse claims and groups, such as:

a. What secret oral doctrines from Buddha?

b. What promise from a popular Japanese group?

c. What final enlightenment through Zen?

d. The worship of what as followers of Nichiren?

7. What American movements echo Buddha's call to "look inward?"

8. When did Buddha live (______________), when was any of his doctrine first written (_______________), and when does the oldest copy of this record date (__________________)?

9. When did Jesus live (_________________), when did the last writer to record his teaching die (_____________), and when does the oldest copy of this record date (_______________)? What qualified the Apostles to record the life and doctrine of Christ?

10. What did Buddha claim to be and where is his body today?

11. What did Jesus say men should do, and what did Thomas do -- cf. John 5:23; 20:28?

12. What was Buddha's mission?

13. What was the work and Mission of Christ --- cf. John 1:4-10,29?

14. What was Buddha's concept of authority in religion?

15. What is the source of authority according to John 14:6; 6:63,68?

16. What did Buddha believe about God and the Universe?

17. What do we learn about God in John 1:1-3,14,18?

18. What did Buddha teach about our soul and purpose for living?

19. What is the value of our soul and how many times do we live on earth cf. Matt.16:26; Heb. 9:27?

20. Why did Buddha say we should not kill animals or insects?

21. How does 1 Timothy 4:3-5 counter the command to abstain from eating animals?

22. How did Buddha's concept of duty eliminate the need for forgiveness of sin?

23. What is our duty or purpose in life and what provision is made for our forgiveness when we fail and sin?

24. Contrast what Buddha and the Bible says about leaving one's family and begging cf. 1 Tim. 5:8; 2 Thess. 3:10.

25. Contrast the highest hope offered to man by Buddha and by Christ.

Lesson Ten:

Class Title: CONFUCIAN:

Memory Verse: Were The Former Days Better Than These? (Eccl. 7:10)

    1. The Background or Setting in Which Confucius Arose.
      1. Like other people described in Romans 1;18-32, the Chinese had rejected the true God and turned to pagan idolatry. Their religion was characterized by polytheism and nature worship (a god of the sky or heaven rules all and under him are gods of the earth, of fertility, etc.), animism (spirit beings --- both good and bad --- inhabit the atmosphere and natural objects such as stones, trees, etc.), and ancestor worship (spirits of ancestors affect present life for good or bad). Chinese philosophy and religion reflect an ancestor cult and a deep desire for harmony with nature.
      2. The concept of TAO (pronounced DHOW) was developed in the 500's B.C., by Lao Tzu according to legend first recorded in the first century B.C. He is credited with writing Tao Te Ching (Classic of the way and Virtue), 81 mystical poems on the TAO. The text is cryptic and difficult to translate. This philosophy -religion was organized and promoted in the 300's B.C. by Chuang Tzu.
        1. TAO is the ultimate reality or ground of all being, but is nebulous, silent, impersonal, indefinable, & indescribable. "I do not know its name, and so I call it TAO, the Way, and I rejoice in its power" {Tao Te Ching}. This TAO flows through all things, making them act in a spontaneous and natural way.
        2. TAO is a "back to nature" philosophy applied to man. Without effort or law, man should meditate and yield to the natural flow of all things. Conduct which is spontaneous and without thought for oneself is in tune with nature --- moving along like water in an effortless flow. Harmony with nature is broken when man tries to influence, challenge, or master the forces of nature or when he devises rules and laws of behavior. Man's failure to "go with the flow" within himself and within nature disrupts the harmony of nature, resulting in natural disasters and social ills. the secret to life is harmony with TAO: "Leave all things to take their natural course and do not interfere."
        3. The masses adapted TAO, as did all other philosophy and religion, to crude superstitions. Using incantations, sacrifices, amulets, potions, and magic, they sought the secrets of life to control the world of gods and spirits and to become immortal in this world.
        4. TAO as the way of all the universe harmonizes all things which appear to be conflicting, contrary, and contradictory: male-female, good-evil, light-dark, heaven-earth, sun-moon, summer-winter, life-death, etc. These opposing forces are called YANG (the male, positive, constructive side) and YIN (female, negative, destructive). This harmony of all opposites are pictures in the Tai Chi Diagram (see top of page). The end result is that all standards and values are complementary and relative. Taoists ask, "Who knows what's good or bad?"
      3. The 700s - 300s B.C. were years of war between feudal barons, leading to corruption, chaos, slaughter, and horror.

    2. Chiu King (551-479 B.C.) was called by His followers Kung Fu-tzu, meaning Kung the Master or Sage. This tile is latinized as Confucius. He is called the First Teacher (i.e., 1st in rank and honor). His body of doctrines was called the School of the Scholars.
      1. Our knowledge of Confucius depends largely on tradition and legend. His early marriage ended in divorce and he was aloof from his children. He worked in government some but was mainly a travelling teacher. Because his civil and social reforms were not adopted, he died in disappointment.
      2. The main concern of Confucius was to bring peace and harmony to the social order. He claimed no new truth but simply devised a system of ethics (principles of conduct governing relationships among people) based on selected traditions handed down from ancient times. "I transmit but do not create. I believe in and love the ancients."
        1. Confucius imagined a golden age of harmony in China's past, then summarized and edited a "deliberate tradition" of ethical conduct from that age to be taught.
        2. His sayings and their interpretation were collected during the years after his death in the "Five Classics" and the "Four Books," which include the work of his most orthodox disciple, Mencius (371-289 B.C.). Mencius was less interested in religion than was Confucius. None of their writings claims divine inspiration. The original texts are uncertain and very hard to translate.
      3. Confucius did not emphasize deity or an afterlife, but was personally an agnostic. His ethic represents pragmatic humanism rather than divine imperatives and moral absolutes. Still, his ethical system proceeded on the assumptions of ancient Chinese religion with special emphasis on traditional ancestor worship. He utilized religion wherever it seemed to reinforce his humanistic social values. His goal was not to erect a religion but was to replace war and anarchy with social stability.
      4. Confucius accepted many elements of Taoism, especially the emphasis upon harmony in social relationships. However, he differed with Taoism on the means to that end. Taoists proposed to free men immediately from all traditions, laws, and codes in a return to the natural and spontaneous flow of life. Confucius proposed laws, customs, and codes of behavior based on tradition.
      5. Confucists and Taoists shared the YANG-YIN principle as ruling the universe and all things in it. The full symbol includes 8 trigrams (long dash for Yang and short for Yin) representing the natural world and 2 fish at the center representing the primal matter from which all things come. Only heaven is all YANG, for it rules over all things. All other things are a mixture of Yang and Yin with one predominating, but these contrary elements complement each other ultimately. Even good and evil complement each other in an ultimate harmony.
      6. Filial piety is the fundamental duty and first loyalty of every living person. Confucius posited the heart of social order in the family unit. The duties of life are summed up in filial piety or reverence for a person's elders: Civil rulers, fathers, husbands, (older) brothers, and (older) friends. A cardinal maxim of Confucius was, "What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others" -- i.e., do not mistreat those above or below you in the social hierarchy, just as you do not want them to mistreat you.
        1. The duties of filial piety include ancestor worship. the spirits of the dead rule the earth and determine the fate and fortune of living families. Spirits are worshipped in the home, at their graves, and at temples. Paper facsimiles of sacrifices are offered. Prayers to the dead report on the family's status and ask for blessings.
        2. Filial piety may mean taking a concubine if a man's wife has no male children. It may also mean that suicide is honorable in order to "save face" for the family if a person seriously errs or fails in life.
    3. After Confucius died, he was gradually deified and His ethic became part of the complex of Chinese religion.
      1. From the 100s B.C., a cult of worship centered in Confucius developed and grew through the centuries. Exalted titles were added, sacrifices offered, temples built, and statues erected until 1906 he was raised by the government to the standing of Heaven and Earth as the highest objects of worship. Many people have honored Confucius as a scholar and a philosopher and embraced his humanistic ethics without any religion.
      2. The Chinese mind tolerates all religions and especially combines 3 elements into the total complex. Taoism supplies a philosophy to many people or nature worship and magic to others. Confucianism adds a code of ethics and reinforces the deep-seated ancestor cult in the Chinese mind. Buddhism ("Big Raft" variety) entered China in the 200s - 600s A.D. with elaborate concepts of many saviors to help man and a blissful afterlife for all souls in the "pure land" paradise. Many of the superstitious masses add a fourth element --- animism --- to the complex.
    4. What is the Influence and Strength of the Confucian Ethical System?
      1. Confucianism has been the single most powerful influence on the social, civil, and academic life of China since about 200 B.C. Its emphasis on tradition is eroding in the 20th Century in the face of Western education, science, and Communism (took China in 1949 - 1952). Under Communism, all religion and the Confucian ethic have been forced out of public life into the home.
      2. About one fourth of the world's population is in China. Many Chinese are found also in Taiwan (Formosa), Hong Kong, Macao, Malaya, Thailand, and Indonesia. Chinese concepts are strong in Korea (where the South Korean flag bears the Yang-Yin symbol) and in Japan (where Taoism influenced the development of Zen Buddhism.).
      3. Confucian traditionalism is not popular in the West, but other elements of Chinese and Eastern thought have increasing influence on the West as our people turn away from the Bible. Zen Buddhism and Taoism concepts of meditation and the natural way are applied to judo, archery, art, gardening, motor cycling, etc. The "hippie" generation of the late 1960s - mid 1970s reflected the impact of this "back to nature" philosophy. The Yang-Yin idea of relative rather than absolute right and wrong, with tolerance for all religions, is shared more and more in the West.

1. The Taoist text which influenced Confucius, the texts he edited, and the texts his disciples composed are written in Ancient Chinese ideograms (picture symbols representing ideas but not exact words or phrases). Translating these obscure symbols is a speculative venture. it is uncertain when these texts were actually composed and how well the extant copy's match the originals. 1. The Hebrew texts of the Old Testament (which prophesied of Christ) and Greek Texts of the New Testament (which record His life and teaching) are the best preserved texts of all ancient history. Ancient Hebrew and Greek were precise languages which have been carefully and accurately translated.
1. Confucius never claimed to be anything but a man and confessed that he erred. he did not claim to be deity or command worship. He remains in the grave. 1. Christ was fully man and fully God. He never erred or sinned. Christ taught men to worship Him as deity, and arose from the dead to prove His Divine nature --- cf. Rom. 1:3-4; John 5:23.
1. Confucius wanted to establish an ethic of peace and harmony in human relationships, starting with the family unit and reaching through out civil government. His system defeats its own goal in some practical ways: he divorced his wife and was not a true father to his children; women must do only what men decide; polygamy and concubines have been tolerated; suicide may honor the family. Government in his day rejected his reforms and he died disappointed. Society began adopting his reforms about 200 years later and achieved some stability, but his extreme traditionalism restarted social progress in many ways and paved the way for the radical reaction of Communist revolution. 1. Christ came to provide a perfect example and a perfect sacrifice for sin in order that men might have peace with God and with each other. This was accomplished on the cross, so He said, "It is finished." His principles of morality and ethics reinforce proper family life: all parties are to love each other; God's rule is one man for one woman for life; a woman can make decisions; suicide is sinful. Christ is the friend of true peace and true progress in every realm of life --- cf. John 1:29; 19:30; Matt. 22:39; 19:3-9; Col. 3:18-21; 1 Tim. 5:14; Gal. 6:10; Col. 3:23.
1. Confucius claimed only the authority of the ancients --- tradition. He had to rely on his own authority in selecting which concepts and customs of ancient times to preserve. Confucian ethics are a form of humanism, as is Communism. 1. Christ taught by the authority of God and confirmed that claim with miracles. He taught that to glorify men who lived in "former days" leads away from God and truth. Christ exalted God and His Word, not tradition and humanism --- cf. John 14:9-11; Eccl. 7:10; Matt. 15:1-9.
1. GOD --- Ancient Chinese beliefs about gods and ancestor worship are useful traditions in a system of ethics, but no one knows whether those religious concepts are true or not. (What kind of ethics is it for Confucius to tolerate or perpetuate such beliefs when he does not firmly believe they can be proven?) The universe evolves and changes forever according to movement of TAO, to which even the gods are subject. 1. God existed before all things in the universe, created them, controls them and will bring them to a final end. Christ fully revealed God. Those who know not the true God need the gospel of Christ --- cf. John 1:1-3,14, 18; 14:1-9; Col. 2:9; 2 Pet. 3:10.
2. MAN --- There is no certain answer to the question of whether man has a soul and an after life, but some such beliefs are useful traditions. (The Chinese turned to "Big Raft" Buddhism to answer such questions. 2. Man is made in God's Image with an eternal soul or spirit, more valuable than all the world. Our souls live after death --- cf. Gen. 1:27; Matt. 16:26; Lk. 16:19-31.
3. DUTY --- Man can learn the eternal truth of TAO flowing in himself and learn the traditions of the ancients without divine revelations of an absolute standard outside of man. Man's whole duty is summed up in filial piety. He should not mistreat those above or below him in the social order. 3. The Bible is God's Word, all truth, and the only absolute standard of truth. Man's duty to man cannot be known without his duty to God given in the Bible. Man's duty is summed up in loving and obeying God, and in loving his fellowman as himself. He must go further than avoiding abuse of people above and below him in the social order --- he must actively love, bless, and help all men no matter what their station in life --- cf. John 6:63; 8:32; 2 Tim. 3:16-17; Matt. 22:36-40; Luke 10:25-37.
4. SALVATION --- Sin as moral evil or rebellion against God is minimized and eliminated. Instead, we have the philosophy of TAO (natural behavior) and Yang-Yin (opposites such as good and evil complement and merge). Self improvement with the help of good examples and education is all that man needs --- without a Savior, a sacrifice, or God's forgiveness. Social order and stability is all the salvation man is sure about. Personal existence beyond the grave is uncertain and unnecessary for the ethics of social stability. 4. Sin is moral evil, the transgression of God's Law. Man cannot save himself but is saved from sin through the gospel of Christ, the forgiveness of Christ, the perfect example of Christ, and the spiritual help of Christ. Humanistic social goals are not the highest good ---- "man shall not live by bread alone." The gospel includes the threat of eternal punishment in hell and the promise of eternal life in heaven --- cf. Psa. 51:4; 1 John 3:4; John 8:33-36; 1 Peter 2:21-22; Matt. 4;4; 25:46.

    1. Christ perfectly teaches love and harmony among men. The key is peace with God --- loving and serving God, knowing His forgiveness --- cf. Rom. 5;1; 12:18; 14:19. Confucius was groping in the darkness of rationalism, relativism, traditionalism and humanism ---- without the key!
    2. True love and harmony among men requires Divine Revelation as the absolute standard truth, overcoming sin, and the prospect of eternal rewards or punishment. Only the gospel of Christ has the moral imperative and moral power to truly unite men with God and with each other in peace and love ---- cf. Rom. 1:16-17.


1. Early Chinese religion was characterized by what three forms of false worship?

2. Who or what is TAO (pronounced ___________), as developed 500s B.C. - 300s B.C.?

3. According to TAO, man should yield to what in order to avoid disruption and disaster in life?

4. Explain the YANG and YIN concept in TAO.

5. Who was given the title "Confucius" and what does it mean?

6. What was the origin or authority for Confucius' system of ethics?

7. What was Confucius' attitude toward religion, and what was his highest goal?

8. Although Confucius accepted much Taoism, how did he differ from it?

9. Explain the Yang-Yin symbol as interpreted by Confucists and Taoists.

10. Explain the role of filial piety in Confucius' philosophy.

11. What does the Chinese mind often embrace and combine from the following?

a. Tao

b. Confucius

c. Buddhism

12. Briefly state the influence or impact of Confucian thought on the world:

a. On Chinese Life:

b Name other Nations affected:

c. On Western nations:

13. How do our copies of the original texts of Scripture differ from those of Tao and Confucius?

14. When you contrast who Jesus claimed to be and who Confucius claimed to be, what bearing does this have on the authority of their teachings?

15. Give some examples of how Confucius defeats himself in the realm of ethics, and give passages to show what the Bible teaches on each point.

16. Contrast what Confucius and Christ taught about the authority of tradition.

17. What ethical problem can be seen in Confucius' use of God and religion?

18. What are some things Jesus said in John 14;1-9 reflecting his certainty and assurance about the true God?

19. What are some things Jesus said in Luke 16:19-31 which would settle Confucian uncertainty about the nature of man?

20. What is the origin of eternal truth and human duty according to Confucius?

21. What grand principles of eternal truth and human duty are given in Matthew 22:36-40, which are absent from Confucianism?

22. What is Confucian salvation and how is it obtained?

23. What concepts are taught in Psalm 51;4 and Matthew 25:46; which are absent from Confucianism?

24. What key to peace, love, and harmony is given in Romans 5:1 but missing from Confucius?

25. What moral and spiritual power has God provided to the world which is absent from every false system of philosophy or religion?

Lesson Eleven :

Class Title : SHINTO:

Memory Verse : Many Gods & One Nation, or One God and Many Nations ? (Acts 17:24-26)

    1. The origin of all Pagan religion is outlined in Romans 1:18-32 ( see esp. vrs 21-25).
      1. Primitive Pagan religion originated in Japan when men departed from the true God and devised various perversions and substitutions for the truth.
    2. From early times the Japanese Worshipped many Gods of nature, Spirit beings, and Ancestors. Their word for the sacred power or essence of the universe is KAMI.
      1. KAMI is not a personal God but is a power that creates, sustains, and governs the universe, flowing more or less through all things. KAMI is found in different degrees from greater to lesser extent in the nature gods, spirit beings, and ancestors; then in males, in females, in animals, and in all other things.
      2. KAMI borders on Pantheism ( concept that all things which exist are deity). Anything can be KAMI, especially anything holy, unusual, or connected to the spirit world. The 800 myriads of KAMI include all sorts of animate and inanimate objects. KAMI include Mt. Fujiyama, the Japanese Islands, the Japanese people, and especially the heroes of Japanese history. The imperial dynasty later achieved a high station in this pantheon.
      3. In common with other Far Eastern religions, Shinto pays special reverence to ancestral spirits.
      4. The line between opposites is blurred since they are viewed as different manifestations of KAMI --- good and evil, right and wrong, good and bad spirits, etc.
    3. Chinese culture influenced Japan in A.D. 400s-500s. The ideas of Confucius, Tao, and the Yang-Yin principle came in the 400s. Buddhism came in 522 via China and Korea.
      1. The Chinese term Shen-Tao means "the way of the gods." The word combines TO (from TAO, the way of all things) and SHIN (refers to deity). SHINTO was adopted to refer to Japan's ancient religion as "the way of the KAMI," as distinct from the way of Buddha and the teaching of Confucius.
      2. Through the centuries, Shinto would accommodate and compromise with Confucius and Buddha, but would also struggle to maintain itself as Japan's distinctive and native religion.
    4. As Buddhism gained ground in Japan, SHINTO felt the need to define and clarify its own beliefs in self defense during the 700s. Before that time, Japanese religion depended wholly on oral traditions and the practice of ceremonies and rituals. Two books were written in the 700s recording the sacred myths of the origin and history of the Japanese Islands, people, and emperors.
      1. The first book was dated 712 and called CADUCA (records of Ancient Matters), the second dated 720 and called NIHONGI or NIHON SHOKI (Chronicles of Japan). Other stories, poems, rituals, and prayers were recorded later.
      2. The basic myth in these books made the Japanese Islands, people, and emperors sacred.
      3. The writing of the myths in the 700s had a political as well as a religious purpose. They were part of an effort by the Yamato clan to unify Japan under their rule by assigning the Yamato chieftain a mythical lineage from the Sun goddess, Japan's preeminent KAMI.
    5. During the 800s - 1200s, the Interplay and Intermix of Shinto and Buddha continued. Buddhist temples included Shinto shrines. KAMI were adopted as Buddhas, then Buddhas adopted as KAMI until the universal KAMI spirit was said to include all the deities of both Buddhism and Shinto.
    6. During the 1600s - 1800s, 3 religions operated as Facets of a single life for many Japanese. Shinto was considered Japan's own distinct religion, providing worship of KAMI (including the Emperor) as a guarantee of earthly welfare. Confucianism offered a system of daily ethics, especially filial piety which reinforced emperor worship. "Big Raft" Buddhism provided hope of an afterlife.
    7. In the 1700s - 1800s, efforts were made to revise some of Shinto's Primitive Traditions. The superiority of Japan was emphasized.
      1. Its people came from KAMI and so needed no code of ethics to tell them what to do. The Emperor ruled by divine right and should not be questioned. Japan had a divine mission and was supreme among nations.
      2. The Emperor designated Shinto as the national religion in 1868 and required participation of all citizens in certain Shinto ceremonies as a patriotic duty no matter what other religions they followed in 1882.
    8. Religious Fanaticism and nationalist fervor led to military expansion and World War II in the 20th Century.
      1. Japan invaded China in 1931 and bombed Pearl Harbor (Hawaii) 7 December 1941 in pursuit of its destiny to rule the world. World War II was fought on the eastern front against Japan 1941-1945. It took 2 atom bombs (6 August 1945 on Hiroshima, 9 August on Nagasaki) to dispel the religious-patriotic military delusion which gripped Japan.
      2. At the insistence of Gen. Douglas MacArthur and the Allied forces, Emperor Hirohito renounced the divinity of the imperial line on 1 Jan. 1946.

  1. Although Shinto is no longer a formal state religion, it is still widely believed and practiced in Japan.
      1. Estimates of its followers vary from 30 to 70 million.
      2. In addition to a few major national shrines, there are a great variety of local and family shrines and traditions.
      3. In addition to the varied but traditional Shinto centered around the shines, there are 13 major Shinto sects. About 150 minor sects have developed after World War II, which in contrast to popular Shinto offer a definite founder, prophet, savior, or creed. Elements of Shinto, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, and "Christianity" have been mixed to form new religions.
      4. While the sun goddess as Japan's patron is still symbolized on its flag and the basic concepts of the sacred land and people persist, the Shinto foundation which makes myths, nature, and ancestors sacred is eroding as Japan modernizes (i.e. becomes more industrial, urban, scientific, and secular). Japan is the major center of Big Raft Buddhism, but Christianity makes slow progress there.
      5. The Japanese, like many Far easterners, see no contradiction in embracing several religions at once --- typically Shinto for welfare in this life, Confucian for ethics, and Buddhism for the after life. Opposites and contraries are treated as part of the unified whole.

    1. Shinto has no Inspired or Authoritative Scripture, but is based wholly on traditional myths, rituals, and Ceremonies. The main myths are recorded in the CADUCA and the NIHONGI.
      1. Since none of these writings claims divine inspiration or authority, they are respected only for their antiquity and reinforcement of Shinto concepts. Traditional Shinto looks to no founder, prophet, Savior, Creed, or authoritative doctrine. Few of its followers have read its sacred literature. Shinto is perpetuated by rites rather than writings, by ceremonies rather than commands, by traditions rather than teaching.
      2. The result is countless local varieties and sects with a common core of faith in KAMI and Japan.
    2. The basic myth of Shinto Concerns the Origin and Importance of the Japanese Islands, People, and Emperors.
      1. All things began from the cosmic egg which divided into heaven and earth (reflects Chinese Yang-Yin concept that all opposites harmonize as a complete whole). An original KAMI trio appear by spontaneous generation. Numerous other KAMI were generated or procreated until at last Izangani male) and Izanami (female) appeared.
      2. The KAMI Izanagi and Izanami generated and procreated many islands and earthly KAMI such as those of sea, wind, rivers, mountains, plants, and food. Once when Izanagi returned to the upper world from a trip into the nether world of the dead, the filth cleansed from his eyes and nose became 3 gods --- including the sun goddess AMATERASU O MAKAMI ("great Kami Shining in Heaven), patron of Japan.
      3. A descendant of the sun goddess later came down to rule Japan, bringing 3 sacred treasures which are still symbolic in Shinto (a mirror, a string of jewels, and a sword). He married the KAMI of Mt Fiji and a later descendant of this union was Jimmu, Japan's first Emperor! The imperial line is supposedly traced from Jimmu in 660 B.C. to every Emperor of Japan throughout history. The Japanese Islands, people, and Emperors have sacred significance.
      4. In common with much of pagan lore, Japanese myths are lewd, extravagant, vulgar, and bizarre. No absolute standards of truth and right are taught, and no ultimate values, other than the exaltation of Japan.
    3. Three Types of Shines are central to Shinto Worship.
      1. Home Shrines ---- each home has a KAMI-DANA or 'god shelf" which holds a sacred symbol for some KAMI, such as a tablet inscribed with an ancestor's name or a mirror. A moment of reflection or prayer may be offered here each day.
      2. Local Shrines --- over 100,000 local shrines house a sacred object representing a KAMI which has some limited power over a land area, tribe, occupation, climate, or disease. The most common KAMI to inhabit a shrine is an ancient chieftain whose spirit guards a region. The main acts of worship are purification rites (rinse mouth, wash fingers, etc.), prayer (in loose sense --- may be a non-verbal "feeling" of the KAMI's presence), and an offering (rice, rice wine, money etc.). Annual festivals include feasts, music, and dances, otherwise worship is mostly occasional and personal.
      3. National Shrines --- a few shrines (such as one to the sun goddess) are nationally recognized and provide a focal point for the Emperor to officiate as priest for the annual Harvest Festival and the semi-annual Great Purification Ceremony. The later ritual removes such sins as damaging rice farms, leprosy, incest, misfortune, and killing of animals. Prayer asks gods and goddesses to carry away sin.
    4. Shinto "Salvation" relates to this Worldly concerns such as the welfare of Crops and the Nation.
      1. The cause of trouble and disruption for the individual or the nation is two fold:
        1. Polluting actions --- includes failure to respect traditional taboos (hang boy's clothing on girls hanger, etc.)
        2. Displeasing ancestors or gods --- neglecting to report to them on activities of the family or nation, or failing one's family or nation.
      2. Man's "salvation" or welfare depends on keeping the taboos, appeasing the gods (in ceremonies and rituals at shrines), properly using fetishes (pole in path to a bridge blocks demons, etc), and obeying the Emperor.

    1. Christ emphasized that the One True God loves all men equally --- cf. Acts 17;24-26; John 3:16; Mark 16:15-16. The pantheon of Shinto KAMI are partial to Japan.
      1. Christ taught that the One True God Seeks All Men To Worship Him Alone --- cf. Acts 17:26-27; John 4:23-24; 5:23; Matt. 4:10. The worship of Shinto KAMI leads the Japanese into broad polytheism and animism and the worship of a nation, its people and its Emperors.

    1. Christ offers Forgiveness of Sins to All Men --- cf. John 1:29; Acts 10;34-43. Shinto has no concept of sin as a moral offense against the holy character of God, but thinks in terms of dishonor to the family and disruption of harmony with KAMI. Shinto sin is removed by traditional ritual and ceremony, not by the spiritual change worked by the gospel of Christ.
    2. Christ offers us a UNITY of relationships with the living God, including the Hope of the resurrection and of Eternal Life with God. The resurrection of Christ confirmed his promise that all men will be raised in the last day --- cf. john 5:28-29; 2 Thess. 1:7-9.
    3. Christ Meets ass the Spiritual Needs of Man. Much of the religion of the Far East revolves around ancestor worship. This concept cannot meet the spiritual needs of man.
1. Reconciles man to God --- 2 Cor. 5:17-21 1. Cannot reconcile man to God
2. Christ arose --- ever lives to give us God's love, mercy, and grace --- cf. Heb. 4:15-16; 7:25 2. Ancestors in grave --- love and care can not reach us from realm of death.
3. All sin forgiven --- spiritual help to overcome sin --- cf. Acts 2:38; 8:22; Eph. 3:16-17 3. Cannot release us from bondage to sin
4. Man in God's image with need, capacity, and duty to love God with our whole being --- cf. Matt. 22:37 4. Love of ancestors --- not fulfill our capacity to love God.
5. Teach and help us to love fellowman as self --- cf. Matt. 22:39; 5:43-48 5. Not resolve hatred and bitterness which often grips the human heart.
6. Life full of meaning and value in service and closeness to God --- cf. Rom. 14:17; Phil. 4:6-7; Col. 2:10. 6. No true meaning and value of spiritual life --- no relationship with God.

7. The same points of contrast between the all-sufficiency of the Gospel of Christ and the deficiencies of paganism can be seen by substituting "Nature Worship" or "Nation Worship" for "Ancestor Worship" in the chart above.

8. For further studies, see Shellon Wee, "Why I left Ancestor Worship to Become a Christian" {Gospel Advocate, 19 Nov. 1987, pg. 681}.


1. What does Rom. 1:21-25 teach about the origin of all pagan religion (including Shinto)?

2. Briefly answer the following questions about KAMI:

a. What is it?

b. Where is it found?

c. How does it relate to good and evil?

d. What is the origin of the word?

3. What two books written in the 700s represent the first effort to define Shinto in writing, and what is the basic myth or message?

4. Many Japanese people have participated in three separate religions at the same time. What are the three and what does each provide?




5. To what extremes were the Japanese carried in the 1930s-1940s by the concept of the supremacy of Japan and its Emperor, and what shook this delusion?

6. What other developments have added to the confusion and the erosion of traditional Shinto?

7. Since Shinto has no authoritative Scripture or Leader, it is perpetuated by _______________ rather than ____________, by _______________, rather than _________________, and by _______________ rather than _______________.

8. According to Shinto myth, the lineage of Japan's First Emperor began with a cosmic __________, followed by the ___________________ generation of a _____________ trio, followed by the appearance of male and female KAMI (named ________________ and __________________), followed by the _______________ goddess, followed by a descendant who married the KAMI of _____________________, whose union finally produced ________________ (Japan's first Emperor in 660 B.C..). Such myths exalt _________________ rather than teaching standards of ______________ and _________________.

9. Explain the meaning of these things related to Shinto Shrines:

a. What is a 'god shelf"?

b What KAMI are said to inhabit most local shrines?

c. What is the purpose of the Great Purification Ceremony?

10. According to Shinto, how does a person bring trouble upon himself and how can he secure his welfare and deliver himself from trouble?

11. Explain with Scripture how the One true God differs from Shinto KAMI in attitude toward people of various nations.

12. Use Scripture to show how Christianity and Shinto differ in regard to who or what ought to be worshipped.

13. Use Scripture to show how Christianity and Shinto differ on sin and forgiveness.

14. What passages offer clear and certain promises to the Christian which are not secured to the follower of Shinto?

15. What role in redemption did Christ fulfill which could not be fulfilled by our ancestors --- cf. 2 Cor. 5:17-21?

16. Since both Christ and our Ancestors died, how can either of them help us now?

17. How can Christ help us in regard to the problem of sin, in ways which our ancestors cannot?

18. What capacity and duty do we have in regard to God, which cannot be satisfied by love of our ancestors?

19. What is taught in Matt. 22:39 and 5:43-48, which cannot be adequately addressed by ancestor worship?

20. What are some things promised in Rom. 14:17; Phil. 4:6-7, and Col. 2:10 that cannot be found in Worship of our ancestors?

Lesson Twelve:

Class Title: HUMANISM:

Memory Verse: "They Did Not Like To Retain God in Their Knowledge" --- cf. Romans 1:28


    1. Humanism as used here does not refer to the desire of men to help each other (Humanitarianism) but to a view of life which makes man his own master without God.

    1. God revealed Himself to man in the world's first religion and Satan started the second oldest religion when he told man, "Ye shall be as Gods" --- cf. Gen. 3:5.
      1. One impulse of sin is man's perverted desire to sit in God's place, directing himself and glorifying himself as a god.
      2. Man has a capacity to worship God. When men "did not like to retain God in their knowledge," they did not quit worshipping altogether but worshipped idols and other parts of the creation --- including man himself --- cf. Romans 1:21, 25, 28.
    2. Humanism is properly called a "religion." It denies the existence of God, but makes man the highest being in the universe (which has the effect of deifying man). Humanism performs many of the functions of religion.
      1. With the Greek philosopher Protagoras (400s B.C.), humanism says, "Man is the measure of all things." That makes man his own deity --- the source of all values, laws, standards, morality, justice, good, and right.
      2. Man is deified because he derives his own world view. He supplies to himself a view of ultimate reality, meaning, and purpose rather than receiving it by revelation from God.
      3. Man is deified because he alone becomes the ultimate author of all freedom, liberation, release, hope, and answers to the ills and tragedies of life. Man alone guides the destinies of all things in so far as they can be guided.
      4. Humanism deifies man by centering the faith of man in himself. It captivates the whole man. It involves a total commitment of man to self without any other master.
      5. The Humanist Manifesto I (1933) claims to present a new advance in religion, refers to its own beliefs as a 'religion" nine times, and says at one point, "so stand the theses of religious humanism."
      6. Humanism claims to be a religion without a supernatural God. A book by 29 humanists explains that religion can be defined as "a form of human expression and art" centered upon man without God. Some humanists even use the word "God," defined as the elements and forces of the universe or "the ideal or man's highest good." Humanists may "insist stoutly that their faith is religious". {Paul Kurtz, ed., The Humanist Alternative: Some Definitions of HumanismBuffalo, N.Y.: Prometheus Books, 1973, p. 65-67}.
      7. The U.S. Supreme Court recognized humanism as a religion in 1961 when Justice Hugo L. Black wrote, "Among religions in this country which do not teach what would generally be considered a belief in the existence of God are Buddhism, Taoism, Ethical Culture, Secular Humanism and others" {Torcasco vs. Watkins}.

    3. Humanism shares some basic views but is too broad to offer a single plan of action for the individual or for Society which all humanists would endorse.
      1. Humanism affirms faith in man as the highest known form of life, faith in man's intellect or reason for the solution of all human ills, and faith in man as the sole master of his own destiny. The greatest good for humanity on this earth is the highest goal of man. The road of human progress is paved by science and technology.
      2. Humanism is secularist (this-worldly), rationalist (truth known through reason without revelation), and materialist (only physical things are real). It rejects or denies everything supernatural, miraculous, or spiritual including the reality of God, the divine inspiration of the Bible, the miracles of the Bible, the creation by God, the deity of Jesus, prayer, the reality of sin, God's pardon of man's sin, man's soul, life after death, the resurrection, the Judgment, eternal life in heaven and eternal punishment in hell.
      3. Evolution, relativity, and subjectiveness reign in all matters of truth and morality. Growing out of humanism's concepts that there is no absolute standard of right and wrong, that all truth is relative, and that man should be free from moral law, humanism advocates such things as the evolution of the universe and of all religion and morality, situation ethics, the unisex movement (no distinct male-female roles), sexual license (premarital, easy divorce, homosexuality, incest), abortion, mercy killing, and the "right" to suicide. All morality and ethics are subjective (self-determined). "Man must look in his own heart to know what he must do" {The Humanist Alternative, p. 81}.
      4. Humanism comes in a wide variety of forms, philosophies, and life styles. In Western cultures, it tends toward hedonism (the worship of pleasure and the desires of the flesh).

    4. Some forms of humanism offer specific political plans and programs to improve society. Visions of a humanist - materialist social order include communism, fascism (cult of state worship; Italy, 1923-45), national socialism (Nazi Germany, 1933-45), and other forms of nationalism, socialism, or one world government.
      1. Some humanists have been attracted to Communism because it is a form of humanism which offers a specific plan for mankind's progress, guaranteeing a future world of perfect freedom and prosperity.
      2. Many of Europe's and America's elite were attracted to Marxism during the period of 1917 (when Lenin came to power in Russia) to 1939 (when Stalin signed a non-aggression pact with Hitler). Some of these were later disillusioned and told their story under a title which shows that Communism involves the total commitment of a religion. See Richard Crossman, ed., The God that Failed New York, N.Y.: Harper and Row, Publ. 1950). These men first despaired of the compromises in modern "Christianity" and the empty promises of freedom and fulfillment in humanism, then found the same evils in Communism. "While rolling along the single track of faith" in Marxism, Communists justified such "monstrous" evils as lying, slander, liquidation of certain classes, and even the "sacrifice of a whole generation in the interest of the next" {p. 54}.
      3. A similar story is told in greater detail by {Wittaker Chanbers, Witness New York: Random House, 1952}. Chanbers speaks as a personal witness to the appeal and delusions of Communism, a striking story of the struggle of his soul! (Quotes below from pp. 9-17, 81-83).
        1. He like others found that Communism gives humanism's vague faith in man a practical plan of action to change this world for the good of all mankind. "It is the vision of materialism," excluding the supernatural. Communism poses "in practical form the most revolutionary question in history: God or man?" "Communism is what happens when, in the name of Mind, men free themselves from God."
        2. The result is a system of faith and practice proving that "man without God is a beast, never more beastly than when he is most intelligent about his beastliness." To understand that statement, consider the millions of lives sacrificed in the name of Communism's humanistic goals. Stalin engineered the starvation of seven million of his own people in the Ukraine in 1931. Estimates of the total death toll caused by Communism range up to about 100 million lives.
        3. Chambers' break with Communism began on an occasion when he was watching his baby girl eat. "My eye came to rest on the delicate convolutions of her ear --- those intricate perfect ears. The thought passed through my mind: 'No, those ears were not created by any chance coming together of atoms in nature (the Communist view). They could have been created only by immense design.'" Chanbers tried to dismiss the idea but finally had to admit the truth: "Design presupposes God."
        4. Communism's disregard for human freedoms and lives, its ability to sacrifice millions of lives as easily as one, forced Chambers to ask, "What is lacking in Communism? ..... Now in my despair, I asked at last: Can it be God? .... The rags that fell from me were not only Communism. What fell was the whole web of the materialist modern mind." He had finally realized that two seductive mirages "were illusions" --- the mirages of man's "Almighty Mind and its power to plan human salvation."
      4. Many humanists loathe to admit that Communism with its slaughter of millions in the name of freedom and progress is a form of humanism. But consider that in the same name Western humanism proposes the "rights" of mercy killing, suicide, and abortion. Humanism has slaughtered an average of 1.5 million babies every year just in America alone by abortion since 1973 --- the equivalent to 25 Viet Nam wars per year! The Holocaust in Nazi Germany exterminated six million Jews, and the silent Holocaust in humanist America has murdered several times that many infants (27 Million by 1993). History teaches us that humanism denigrates human life in attempting to deify it, and exterminates man in attempting to exalt him.
      5. Some humanists try to separate themselves from Communism by claiming to be non-totalitarian or democratic. But Communism only asks a temporary sacrifice of certain personal liberties until capitalism as the source of all evil is destroyed, when the state will no longer be needed and all men will enjoy freedom, prosperity, and fulfillment. Humanism must agree that temporary sacrifices sometimes are necessary for the greater progress and good of all mankind.

    1. Three Key Statements of the Common Principles and Doctrines of humanism have been made in the 20th. Century.
      1. (Humanist Manifesto I} appeared in the new Humanist of May/June 1933 and was signed by 34 educational, religious, and social leaders, including John Dewey (who helped to shape the education of American teachers) and Lester Mondale (half-brother to vice president Walter Mondale, 1976-79). Fifteen principles affirm naturalism, repudiate God, and teach that man has "within himself" all the intelligence, will, and power to attain his central task --- "the good life" here on earth. {H.M. I} reflected the post World War I optimism that man could conquer all the ills of the world, but the horrors of World War II forced humanists to admit in {H.M. II} that they had been "far too optimistic".
      2. {H.M. II} appeared in the Humanist of Sept/Oct. 1973 and was signed by 216 leading college professors, philosophers, preachers, "sexologist," psychologists, authors, and social leaders, including Betty Friedan (founder of National Organization for Women), Allen Guttmacher (president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America), Isaac Asimov (science fiction and rabid anti-creationist author), and Joseph Fletcher (Episcopal clergyman, famed promoter of "situation ethics"). Seventeen propositions deny God and offer humanism as man's guide in every area of life.
        1. "As non-theists, we begin with humans not God, nature not deity ... No deity will save us; we must save ourselves."
        2. Life does not survive "the death of the body." "immortal salvation" and "eternal damnation" are false ideas. Man has no soul but is purely a "biological organism" reflecting "natural evolutionary forces."
        3. Moral values are made and "situational," not sacred and absolute. "individual autonomy" supersedes all religious and moral codes. "Moral education for children and adults" must teach the rights of abortion, divorce, and various sexual "life-styles" forbidden by orthodox religion (i.e. styles such as homosexual, lesbian, etc.).
        4. Other points call for the rights of mercy killing, and suicide, a "guaranteed annual income," a one-world government providing a socialistic economy, and scientific research and technological experimentation unlimited by religion and morality.
      3. "A secular humanist declaration" appeared in 1980 in the first issue of the new magazine, Free Inquiry (edited by philosophy professor Paul Kurtz of the State University of New York at Buffalo). Signed by 58 professors, doctors, authors, and other social leaders, it affirms, "Secular humanism places trust in human intelligence rather than in divine guidance." The personal existence of God, His rule over the universe, and the deity of Christ are openly repudiated.

    2. Humanism as an outlook on life has a much greater impact on Modern man that is suggested by the existence of several Humanist Organizations (American Humanist Ass., Fellowship of Religious Humanists, American Ethical Union, American Ass. for Humanistic Psychology, etc.).
      1. Humanism is reflected in the "Playboy" philosophy (hedonism), in education (evolution, values clarification which teaches situation ethics, sex education without moral principles, etc.), in social and political movements (woman's "liberation," homosexuals, abortionists, etc.), in entertainment and in media (vulgar language, materialism, graphic violence, illicit sex, etc), in psychology (from the view that man is only a physical being, shaped only by environment), and in religion (modernism, situation ethics, etc.).
      2. Science and technology are worshipped by most humanists as the harbingers of unending progress and happiness. Such views are evident in articles, books, and a thirteen week T.V. series entitled "Cosmos" (Public Broadcasting Service, Sept - Nov. 1980) by Cornell University Astronomer Carl Sagan. Humanists even think that all the diseases and other problems resulting from ungodly living can be solved by science and technology.
      3. Few Americans know anything about formal humanist organizations, but many of our people have brought the lies of humanism and live by them daily.

    1. Why does the Universe Exist and Persist?
      1. Humanism has no answer.
      2. Christ and the Bible point to God --- cf. Gen. 1:1; Matt. 5:45; 6:26,30; 2 Peter 3:5-7.

    2. What is Man's Origin and Nature?
      1. Humanism says man evolved by chance and is nothing more than the latest and highest animal to appear. If man is only matter in motion, then his life came from non-life, his intelligence came from non-intelligence, his moral sense from the non-moral, and his religious capacity from non-religious matter. Man's will, choice, and sense of responsibility are the only vibrations of matter. Man is no more responsible for his thoughts, motives, and deeds than is a roach for the twitching of his antennae. It is no more a moral issue to kill a man than a roach. Humanism speaks without really explaining man's origin and nature. The logic of humanism destroys the basis for all rational discourse and for the moral value of human life. Any claim humanism makes to such values is a flower cut from the garden of Scripture --- beautiful for the moment, but separated from the roots which sustain it.
      2. Jesus and the Bible answer that God made man "at the beginning," made both "male and female," and made them in His own Image as Spiritual beings endowed with intelligence and will power. Because man's spirit is able to think, to understand, and to choose between right and wrong, Jesus taught, reasoned, rebuked, debated, and convinced people of the truth. He recognized each person as having infinite value --- cf. Gen. 1:26-27; Matt. 19:3-9; 10:31; 16:26.

    3. What is Man's Nature and Duty?
      1. Humanism says man is nothing more than a complex animal with the duty of discovering and developing his own potential and helping his fellowman to do the same. But what is the basis of such moral imperatives and who gave the humanist the authority to state them? Is anything absolutely right or wrong for man any more than for other animals --- stealing, murder, pre-marital sex, adultery, polygamy, suicide, drunkenness, drug abuse, incest, bestiality? If all such "decisions" are only the result of the random movements of material elements in the brain, then man is more "responsible" than other animals. The humanist may attempt to define duty in terms of promoting convenience (but whose?), happiness (but whose?), or order (but who has the moral right to enforce order?). "Order" implies a standard, a rule, a law, a design, and a purpose --- all pointing to God! Humanist professions of moral truth are cut flowers, cut from the garden of Scripture.
      2. Christ and the Bible teach that man is much more than an animal --- he is in God's image. Man learns from God his duty to love God and his fellowman. God teaches man the principles and perimeters of true love which forbid as sinful, unholy, and destructive such conduct as murder, suicide, abortion, adultery, polygamy, homosexuality, and such like. Striving to be like God and to submit to God's authority, man learns to sacrifice for the good of others --- a moral lesson which humanism cannot establish! Men's duties to each other are reinforced by a proper understanding of the infinite value of each person --- another moral lesson beyond the vale of humanism --- cf. Eccl. 12:13; Matt. 5:43-48; 7:12; 22:37-40; 1 John 3:18; 4:7-21; 5:2-3.

    4. Where does Man Find His true Happiness, His Hope, and His Ultimate Destiny?
      1. Humanism dismisses the existence of God and the reality of sin, then tries to find man's meaning and purpose in this life alone.
        1. Some humanists freely admit life has no purpose --- in which case, man can never find the happiness of fulfilling his purpose in life, is without hope, and has no destiny other than oblivion.
        2. Humanism can only lead to perplexity, paralysis, and despair as the inner man cries out, "IS THIS ALL THERE IS TO LIFE?" --- cf. 1 Cor. 15:19,32; Eph. 2:12; 1 Thess. 4:13.
      2. Christ warned of the emptiness of Humanism (life without God and without Hope) when He said, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."
        1. Rather than closing His eyes to the guilt and disruption of man's soul caused by sin, as humanists do, Christ came into the world as God's Divine Son to die on the cross as a perfect sacrifice for our sins.
        2. By uniting man with God, Christ fills our lives with happiness, meaning, and purpose for both time and eternity. "And so shall we ever be with the Lord." --- cf. Matt. 4:4; John 1:29; Acts 2:38; 1 Cor. 15:51-58; Gal. 6:7-9; 1 Thess. 4:13-18; 2 Thess. 1:7-10.
      3. The humanist bears unbearable burdens.
        1. He attempts to sit in the seat of God, to be his own God, and He is wholly incapable of filling the role.
        2. At the same time, the humanist separates himself from God and so suffers the gnawing guilt and emptiness of man estranged from His maker.
        3. The frustration and futility of such a life is heavy indeed. Only Christ can remove that burden ---cf. Matt. 11:28-30.
      4. For further study on this point, see Arlie J. Hoover, "Humanism Has No Sabbath," Gospel Advocate, 17 April. 1986, pp. 240,242

Questions On Lesson Number Twelve :Humanism

1. What is the difference between a humanitarian and a humanist?

2. What did Satan promise man if he sinned, which is the foundation of humanism?

3. Humanism functions as a religion in the following ways:

a. Man is deified as the source of all:

b. Man is deified as supplying to himself:

c Man is deified as the ______________ of all hope and the guide of:

d. Man is deified by centering:

4. Humanism is called a religion in the following sources:

a. What humanist document?

b. What humanist book?

c. Case decided by what court, and when?

5. Some humanists claim to believe in God, but how do they define "God"?

6. Briefly explain these terms associated with humanism:

a. Secularist -

b. Rationalist -

c. Materialist -

d. Subjective -

e. Hedonism -

7. By rejecting everything supernatural, humanism rejects all the following:

a. h.

b. i.

c. j.

d. k.

e. l.

f. m.

g. n.

8. In the realm of truth and morality, humanism advocates such things as:

9. What does Communism offer which has attracted some humanists?

10. Some men who despaired of the _____________ in modern "Christianity" and the empty promises in ____________ turned to Communism. When they found the same evils in Communism, they called it _____________ ____________ _________________ __________________ (1950).

11. When Wittaker Chanbers recounted his experiences in Communism, he said it poses "the most revolutionary question in history: ________________ ________________ ________________ ?" "Communism is what happens when, in the name of ________________, men free themselves _________________ ________________." "Man without ___________________ is a ___________________."

12. Tell in your own words how Chambers' break with Communism began.

13. Many humanists are embarrassed by Communism's slaughter of millions in the name of _________ __________ _______________, but in the same name they advocate what forms of slaughter?

14. According to Humanist Manifesto I, what is man's central task?

15. According to Humanist Manifesto II teaches:

a. "We begin with _______________ not _____________, ________________ not ______________ .... NO _____________ will save us; ________________ must save ___________________."

b. Life does not survive " ___________ _________________ _____________ _______________ ______________" because man is purely a " _______________ ________________" reflecting "natural ______________ _________________."

c. Moral values are _____________ _______________ and " ________________," not ______________ and __________________.

16 "Secular humanism places trust in ________________ ____________________ rather than in _________________ ____________________ " (A Secular Humanist Declaration").

17. How is secular humanism reflected in the following elements of society:

a. Playboy philosophy -

b. Education -

c. Social, political movements -

d. Entertainment, media -

e. Psychology -

f. Religion -

18. How does Jesus explain all forms of life continuing to exist --- cf. Matt. 5:45; 6:26,30?

19. How does humanism destroy the basis for man's intelligence, responsibility, and morality?

20. In what ways does the Bible recognize each person's infinite value?

21. Why is it so hard for humanism to define any duty or moral order for man?

22. Using Scripture, give some principles of duty, right, and wrong which humanism cannot establish.

23. How does Scripture express the emptiness and despair of humanism?

24. What are some things taught in the Bible which give us happiness, meaning, and purpose?

25. Why might Matthew 11:28-30 have special meaning and appeal to someone struggling with humanism?

Lesson Thirteen :


Memory Verse : "The Word of the Lord Endureth For Ever" --- cf. 1 Peter 1:25


    1. Both the Old and the New Testaments Constitute "The Word of God" --- the Word which was inspired of God and is preserved by God --- cf. Isa. 40:6-8; 1 Pet. 1:23-25; 2 Tim. 3:16-17.
    2. Men of faith have depended upon God's Word all through the ages because that word is like God Himself --- Settled in Heaven, Sure and Steadfast --- cf. Psa. 119:89. The Gospel survives because God designed it to meet every spiritual need and men have found that it does --- cf. Eph. 1:3.
    3. Christianity ---- the teaching, cause, and Kingdom of Christ ---- survives by the Seed Principle. In explaining the parable of the sower, Jesus said, "The seed is the word of God." Wherever and whenever honest men hear this word in the remaining history of mankind, they will continue to follow Christ --- cf. Lk. 8:11-15.
    4. The Scriptures of such religions as Islam, Hindu, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Shinto do not claim to be revelations Verbally Inspired of God and confirmed by miracles from God.
      1. Therefore, such religions cannot have the same moral force or authority as Christianity has but must be perpetuated primarily by the force of tradition and habit.
      2. The Bible as the Word of God makes Christianity certain and specific all through the ages. Human authority and tradition subject false religions to the ravages of change and speculation as time goes on.


    1. Jesus Christ came into the world as God in the flesh to make a full and complete disclosure of the character of God.
      1. Notice the use of the terms God, life, light, grace, and truth in reference to the person of Jesus in John 1:1-18. Jesus Christ fully revealed what men could not discover for themselves --- God the Father.
      2. Man-made religions flounder in myths, tradition, and mysticism, searching for the true God whom Jesus revealed. Islam borrows and perverts the partial revelation made of God in the Old Testament. Hindu has 330 million gods and makes everything god, losing the distinction between God and his creation. Both Buddha and Confucius regarded God as unknown and unknowable. Shinto ranges from polytheism (many gods) to pantheism (all things share the nature of deity), yet offers not one certain word from any deity. The gods of these religions are generally immoral. Confusion and uncertainty reign supreme, even for people who embrace several of these religions at the same time. God is the great unknown --- unpredictable --- a being much feared as capriciously inflicting calamities upon man.

    2. "Behold .... the goodness and Severity of God" --- cf. Rom. 11:22. The Gospel of Christ reveals the full and true character of God.
      1. "Our God is a consuming fire" --- Heb. 12:29. Justice, truth, and right will prevail, and sin will be punished. God's moral character is too holy and pure to tolerate sin, injustice, and lies. Sin is an infinite crime against God and will justly be punished in an eternal hell.
      2. "God is love" --- cf. 1 John 4:8. God's love, mercy and grace reign supreme for all who will accept it. God's love is unconditionally provided and revealed, but must be received by man upon terms and conditions.
        1. The operations of nature testify to God's Love --- cf. Matt. 5:45; Acts 14:15-17. Some false religions are so perverted as to reject the terms which God requires men to accept in order to personally harvest the blessings of nature. Some people will not kill and eat animals, and others will not work at all.
        2. The death of Jesus Christ on the cross as a perfect sacrifice for our sins is the highest provision of God's love --- cf. john 3:16; Rom. 5:6-8. God patiently waits for men to accept this forgiveness of sins by obeying the gospel --- by believing in Christ, repenting of their sins, confessing the deity of Jesus Christ, and being immersed in water --- cf. Mk. 16:16; Acts 2:38; Rom. 10:8-10; 2 Peter 3:9.
        3. No false religion understands or teaches the great love of God, or the great desire of God to bless man, as revealed in the gospel.
      3. Christianity survives because it provides something found nowhere else in the religions of the world --- a full revelation of God's true character.

    1. Just as man was created with a Capacity and need for human companionship, he has the capacity and need for fellowship with God. Man is a worshipping creature. He worships God or some part of the creation or even himself. The gospel of Christ perfectly and properly answers the craving of man to worship, serve, and obey his God --- cf. John 4:14, 24-26; 6:35,51.
    2. Most of the world's religions include ancestor worship in some form and provide for certain rituals or conduct which may appease various God's and Spirits. Even, so, uncertainty and fear prevail. Men are left hungering and thirsting for the bread and water of life ---- longing for true fellowship and communion with God.

    1. Each person's sin separates him from God --- cf. Gen. 2:17; 3:8.
      1. Man's conscience is an inner sense or capacity which is conscious of approval or disapproval of his conduct. The conscience functions according to what it has been taught. Even in false religions some truth is handed down by tradition from "times past" when the forefathers knew the true God, so that even modern day pagans retain enough truth to have a bad conscience in some ways --- cf. Acts 14:16; Rom. 1:21; 2:15.
      2. The problem of the conscience cannot be resolved apart from God. Sin brings a nameless dread and fear, which men do not understand as a result of the absence of God. The gospel addresses this problem by making man aware of the sinfulness of sin, and of God's merciful provision for the full pardon and forgiveness of sin --- cf. Rom. 7:13; 8:1
      3. The forgiveness of man's sin against God brings union and communion with God.

    2. The gospel teaches man to understand and to deal with sin on the highest plane. The cross of Christ is central to the theme of sin.
      1. The concept of sin is not based on the caprice of an unpredictable and malignant God, but on the high and holy character of God. The death of Christ on the cross reveals not only God's great love, but also His just and holy character. In order to meet the demands of both mercy and justice, God gave His Only Son to die --- cf. Rom. 3:23-26
      2. The cross of Christ is the very power of God to call the sinner to repent of and to overcome sin. --- cf. John 12:32; Lk. 9:23. This appeal to the inner man transforms his whole life by subjecting not only his deeds but also his thoughts, intents, and motives to the will of God --- cf. Rom. 12:1-2; 2 Cor. 5:17. This power affects both the public worship and daily lives (morality, ethics, etc) of Christians in ways impossible to pagan systems.

    3. Christianity survives because of the sharp contrast between the way it and other world religions address the sin problem. Some systems tell men to work their own way out of sin by submitting to the detailed regimentation of human rules, traditions, laws and rituals --- a hopeless task. Some systems have little perception of the moral dimension to sin and think of it as conduct which offends the caprice of gods or spirits who will interfere with man's earthly success unless appeased with sacrifices, prayers, or rituals.

    1. The gospel gives new hope to life with the gift of the remission of sins --- cf. Matt 26:28; Acts 2:38; 8:20-24. When God forgives our sins, He accepts us as His children with the privilege of drawing near to Him in prayer. A person's relationship to God in other world religions is always doubtful and uncertain.
    2. The gospel promises the resurrection of the dead, based on the resurrection of Christ --- cf. John 5:28-29; 1 Cor. 15:22-23. Most other world religions offer no resurrection. The few which do cannot secure the promise by pointing to a resurrected Savior.
      1. The gospel promises eternal life in heaven with God, based on the preparation of a place there for us by Christ --- cf. john 14:1-6; 1 Peter 1:3-5. Most world religions say nothing about the hope of heaven. Several teach the monotony of reincarnation followed by the loss of personal existence. Humanism flatly denies the hope of heaven.


    1. Sin is a progressive disease of the soul. Beyond the single act of sin (which is serious enough) lie bondage, destructiveness, and superstition.
      1. Sin becomes a bondage of habits and patterns which cannot be completely broken except by the gospel of Christ --- cf. John 8:32.
      2. Sin is destructive to a person's well being and to the welfare of others. It breaks homes, brings a sense of personal failure, scars lives, and even takes lives (murder, suicide). Buddhism approves leaving one's family and wandering as a monk --- cf. Rom. 1:28-32.
      3. Sin brings superstitions, foolish fears, and taboos --- cf. Rom. 1:21. These are oppressive to the human spirit and hinder the progress of mankind in such areas as health and agriculture. Ancestor worship makes men fearful of progress, lest ancestral spirits disapprove changing the old ways. the Bible teaches men to study and utilize the world around them rather than fearing or ignoring it, and to be busy rather than passive in life --- cf. Gen. 1:26-27; Col. 3:23.

    2. Christianity survives because it frees man from the shackles and chains fashioned by sin. Other religions of the world hold men in depressing bondage.


    1. Because the gospel fully reveals God's Will, it is the One and only right way in Religion --- cf. John 8:24; 14:6; 16:13; Acts 4:12; Eph. 4:4-6.
    2. The gospel is unique, distinct and uncompromising in the face of all sin and error.
      1. In his debates with the Pharisees and Sadducees, Christ never offered to compromise the demands of truth but sought to persuade men to accept the truth of God's Word --- cf. Matt. 19:3-9; 22:23-33.
      2. Wherever the Apostles preached the gospel, they demanded total and unconditional surrender to its doctrines, terms, and conditions --- cf. Acts 2:36-38; 8:5-24; 14:8-18; 17:16-34.
      3. The New Testament epistles insist upon an exclusive standard of truth in the gospel --- cf. Gal. 1:8-9; Rev. 22:18-19.

    1. The Bible does not remake God in the image of sinful men, but teaches men to be pure and holy like God. Christ set a perfect example for us to follow --- cf. 1 Peter 1:13-16; 2:21.

    1. Christianity survives because of its full, distinctive revelation of God and His Will. The gods found in such religions as Hindu and Shinto never claim to offer full revelations of deity, and their gods are as immoral, impure, and unholy as sinful men. Some of these religions survive by compromising with everything that challenges them, and some become diluted by compromise that they eventually are absorbed by other religions or simply disappear.


    1. Jesus Christ is not only the Lamb of God who died but is also the Lion who conquers --- cf. Rev. 5:5-6.
      1. Christ conquers Satan and all his angels --- cf. Gen. 3:15; Matt. 25:41.
      2. Christ conquers our own lusts and theories which lead away from God --- cf. James 1:13-15, 21, 27.
      3. Christ conquers the devices and deceits of false teachers --- cf. Acts 13:6-12; 2 Cor. 10:3-5.

    2. Christianity survives because it is based on certain truth, which the forces of error and unbelief cannot match. Man can choose to reject and to resist the truth, but they simply cannot answer and defeat it.


    1. The gospel is designed by God to be Universal in its scope and appeal.
      1. It is for the rich and the poor, the high and the low, the male and the female, and people of every culture, country, or climate --- cf. John 12:32; Gal. 3:26-28.
      2. The texts of the Bible were written in Hebrew and Greek so they could be translated into other languages of the world, but the sacred literature of Islam, Shinto, and other religions is not based on reliable texts or truly translatable texts.

    2. The gospel teaches its followers the moral imperative of spreading its message and converting the lost --- cf. Matt. 28:18-20; Mk. 16:15-16. "Freely ye have received, freely give" -- cf. Matt. 10:8. the church of Christ is an army motivated by love and militant in spirit --- it is a kingdom, whose gates are open to all --- cf. Matt.. 16:18-19; 1 Tim. 6:12; Jude 3.

    3. The gospel survives because it contains the authority and appeal of God to every soul. Hindu reflects the limitations of India's culture, Islam of Arabia, Shinto of Japan, and Rabbinic Judaism of the Jewish people. Many religions degrade women and treat her as a lesser being than man.


    1. The stories of the Bible are historical in nature --- the Creation; the account of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; the Exodus and taking of Canaan; the judges and kings of Israel; the captivity and restoration of Israel; the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ; the travels and work of the Apostles of Christ. Archaeology, geography, and similar studies confirm historical details mentioned in the Bible.

    2. Revelations were confirmed by miracles --- cf. Ex. 4:8-9; Mk. 16:20; Heb. 2:3-4.

    3. The Apostles of Christ were eyewitnesses to the events of His life, including His death and Resurrection --- cf. 2 Peter 1:16; 1 John 1:1-3.

    4. Christianity survives because it is grounded in history. Not one other world religion can offer this solid evidence and firm footing for man's faith. The sacred literature of the other religions is a mixture of fact and fancy, truth and tradition --- it is heavily weighted with myths and fables. The Bible is full of prophecies which were fulfilled, an element of evidence missing from other sacred writings.

Questions on Lesson Number Thirteen: Why Christianity Survives

1. What promise does God make for His Word, which cannot be established by any other religion - cf. 1 Peter 1:23-25?

2. True Christianity is perpetuated and spread by the following things finding each other --- cf. Luke 8:11-15:

a. What message?

b. What kind of heart?

3. Why must the false religions of the world be sustained largely through tradition, habit, or even force?

4. What terms are used in John 1:1-18 in reference to Jesus, indicating that He was able to make a full revelation of God?

5. Indicate which religions teach the following in their confusion about God:

a. Pervert partial revelation of God in Old Testament.

b 330 Million gods.

c. God is unknown and unknowable.

d. Polytheism and pantheism, but no word from any deity.

6. What do we learn about God's character in the following passages:

a. Heb. 12:29

b. 1 John 4:8

7. How does Christ express man's hunger for fellowship with God and God's provision of fellowship with man in John 4:14, 24-26?

8. After learning how to worship ancestors, to perform rituals and to meet codes in false religion, man in left uncertain and hungry for what?

9. False religion may retain enough truth to create a bad conscience to some degree, but what clarification does the gospel make in helping man resolve the problem of sin --- cf. Rom. 7:13; 8:1?

10. What meaning does the death of Christ on the cross have:

a. In revealing God's Character?

b. In changing man's character?

11. The limited understanding of sin in false religions leads to:

a. What hopeless task?

b. What misconception of sin's moral offense?

12. The gospel of Christ removes doubt and uncertainty about our relationship to God by revealing His plan for the remission of our sins:

a. What made this provision possible --- cf. Matt. 26:28?

b. What must we do to personally receive this provision --- cf. Acts 2:38?

13. What assurance does the gospel of Christ give of the resurrection of the dead, which cannot be given in the same way by any other religion?

14. What promise did Christ make His followers, which is absent from nearly all other religions - cf. John 14:1-6?

15. While the gospel of Christ frees man from sin, false religions can tighten sin's grip on man. For instance, how do Buddhism and ancestor worship hinder people from feeding their families?

a. Buddhism -

b. Ancestor Worship -

16. How do these passages teach the gospel of Christ is the one and only right way in religion.

a. John 8:24

b. Ephesians 4:4-6

c. Galatians 1:8-9

17. The character of God calls us to what kind of living - cf. 1 Peter 1:3-5?

a. God's Character:

b. Our Lives:

18. What is the character of Hindu and Shinto gods, and what kind of living does this reinforce?

a. False gods:

b. People's lives:

19. As the Lion who Conquers, Christ conquers:




20. Christianity is based on what, which error and unbelief cannot match?

21. How does Galatians 3:26-28 show the universal scope of the gospel of Christ?

22. How is it that the sacred literature of false religions cannot be translated into other languages?

23. What imperatives are given in Matthew 28:19-20 and Mark 16:15-16?

a. To Christians

b. to Sinners

24. What in the nature of false religions limits their appeal to all the world?

25. The following combination of factors gives us an assurance of the truth of the gospel, which is absent from others religions:

a. The stories recorded in the Bible are __________ in nature,

b. its revelations were ______________ _______________ ______________, and

c. Christ's Apostles were ___________________ of his life.


Ali, Abdullah Yusaf. The Meaning of the Glorious Qur'an: Text, Translation & Commentary. 2 Vols. 33 Kasr El-Nil St., Cairo, Egypt: Dar Al-Kitab Al-Masri

Anderson, J.N.D. Christianity and Comparative Religion. Downers Grove, III.: Inter-Varsity Press 1970. This book specifies areas in which Christianity is unique to other religions (in its key message of Christ, its salvation, and its revelation of God).

*Anderson, Sir Norman, ed. The World's religions. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Wm.B. Eerdmans Publ. Co., 1950, rev 1975, reprint 1985. A different author especially qualified to write on the different religions contributed to each chapter.

Bach, Marcus. Major Religions of the World. Nashville, Tenn.: The Graded press, 1959. The chapters are short but there is a helpful glossary of terms with each chapter.

Barrett, William. Zen Buddhism: Selected Writings of D.T. Suzuki. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Co., Inc., 1956. Suzuki is considered the primary authority on Zen.

* Boa, Kenneth. Cults, World Religions, and You. Wheaton, III.: Victor Books, 1960,1973. Boa shows the relationships between modern cults and the non-Christian world religions. Each chapter on a specific religion or cult evaluates the faith discussed from a biblical viewpoint.

Bradley, David G. A Guide to the World's Religions. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1963. Bradley gives some helpful historical material on each religion.

* Bruce, F.F. The Defence of the Gospel in the New Testament. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Wm. B. Eerdman's Publ. Co., 1959. this book shows how the gospel confronted the challenges of Judaism, paganism, the Roman Empire, and early apostacies.

Copeland, E. Luther. Christianity and World Religions. Nashville, Tenn.: Convention press, 1963. This book is very well done and includes an outline of key points at the beginning of each chapter.

Hall, William D. Beliefs and Consequences. St. Louis, Mo.: The Bethany Press, 1964. This is an excellent little book contrasting the concepts of Christianity and the World religions on God, man, conduct, history, and salvation.

Hamilton, Clarence H., ed. Buddhism: A Religion of Infinite Compassion. New York: Liberal Arts Press, 1952.

Kellogg, S.H. The Light of Asia and the Light of the World. London: Macmillan and Co., 1885. Though older, this is an excellent work on Buddhism. It may be borrowed through Interlibrary loan at any library.

King, Daniel H., et. al. Theme Issue on "Christianity and World Religions. Guardian of Truth XXXIV, 10 17 May 1990.

*Larson. Bob. Larson's Book of Cults. Wheaton, III.: Tyndale House Publ., Inc., 1982. In 428 pp., the author identifies "cultic roots in world religions" and summarizes the beliefs of many cults (both major and minor).

*McDowell, Josh, &

Stewart, Don. Handbook of Today's Religions. San Bernardino, Cal.: Here's Life Publ., Inc., 1983. This 567- page book is a compilation of four recent books on the cults, the occult, non-Christian religions, and secular religions. each chapter includes a contrast with some key points of Christianity, a glossary of speacial terms, and a bibliography.

Ridenour, Fritz. So What's the Difference? Glendale, Cal.: Regal Books, 1967; rev. Ventura, Ca.: Regal Books, 1979. The edition of 1979 does not contain the draweings and illustrations in the 1967 edition which summarize key points (and which can be enlarged for overhead projector charts).

*Schipper, Earl. Religions of the World. grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Book House, 1980, 1982. Each chapter includes "Additional Sources ..." such as books and films.

Smith, Huston. The Religions of Man. New York: Harper and Row, Publ., 1958. This is a classic or standard. The author writes from a view which is sympathetic to each religion 9overly so at times).

Spenser, Sidney. Mysticism in World Religion. South Brunswick, New York: A.S. Barnes and Co., 1963.

Vos, Johannes G. A Christian Introduction to religions of the World. Grand Rapids, Mich., 1965. each short summary of a religion includes incisive contrasts with key concepts in Christianity.

*Welles, Sam, et. Al., Eds. The World's Great Religions. New York: Time Inc., 1957. Family Edition in 3 Vols.: 1963. This is outstanding material with many pictures and selections from sacred texts of each religion.

Encyclopedias. Look up each religion in regular encyclopedias at home and the public library.

END NOTE: Some of the better books have an asteric (*) by them. As you would expect, some of the writers are denominational authors who push such human doctrines as the dogma of man inheriting a sin nature from Adam.