I would agree that the specific sins were the context: those crucifying Jesus, and those stoning Stephen.
That jesus' request was granted is plain, because He is God, and He Himself forgives sin. No reason to believe it wasn't the case here. Though I don't see in the context of it having to do with any other sins, or their general lost condition. Though at least one present DID, indeed, find faith and salvation in Christ, the thief next to Jesus.
In the case of Stephen's prayer, we can't know whether this was forgiven or not-this is between the Lord, Stephen and those stoning him. It is possible they weren't forgiven for this, unless they found salvation, but I suppose we'll know one day. It wouldn't have mattered if they continued on in sin, except that, if they were forgiven for this one, perhaps their eternal jucdgment will not be as bad as if they were held against them.
It is possible some at the cross were converted because:
Matt 24:54 Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.
1John 2:18 Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.
The following is the opening lines of The Noble Lesson of the Waldenses written about AD1160
"O Brethren, give ear to a noble lesson.
We ought always to watch and pray, For we see the world nigh to a conclusion. We ought to strive to do good works, Seeing that the end of this world approacheth. There are already a thousand and one hundred years fully accomplished, Since it was written thus, for we are in the last time. We ought to covet little, for we are at what remains, viz. at the later end.
I have had misgivings about Kendrick for years. Can we sing his songs & reject his theology?
I don't think we can. The danger is that those who come to our churches and join us singing his songs will look him up on Google and follow his teaching. There is usually a bit of false teaching in most of his songs and the constant drip, drip, drip, will be, as the scripture says, "a little leaven."
Well, I do have to say, christmas time in 'the world' is, [weirdly], a more peaceful and accepting time of the year. I know not all people are nicer, but my wife and I do notice peoples attitudes are much more like 'neighbors' out in public. So we do enjoy 'society' that does celebrate the 'season'.
I used to work in London/ One year came up to London with me on Christmas eve. She was shocked by the sight of drunken women office cleaners dancing the Hokey Cokey at 7 or8 o'clock in the morning.
Pubs in London which you would hardly notice at any other time would me overflowing on to the streets at that time. That is what the world thinks of Christmas.
I watched a Hairy Bikers show a couple of years ago when they made a Christmas Cake, The added "a little baby Jesus, ahh." to it. That is what the world thinks of Christmas. A little baby Jesus. A baby makes no demands on them, they are quite happy to accept that, but tell them of the crucified Jesus who died to save them and they are not interested.
More hindsight from the NT is what you quote and unclear in total Jim. I challenge to you find one indication in the OT of this. Surely if the new birth for all that believe on Jesus 1- 4000 years before His earthly birth were truth, then there would be at least a hint of it in the OT.
What you quote out of the NT indicates that the writers God used to record the OT had the Spirit in them at the time and for the writing but this in no way indicates new birth, a sealing or the permanent eternal security we enjoy in our time friend. I most cerainly believe the Spirit indwelt certain people for certain purposes (this can be found in the OT) prior to Pentecost but this in NOT close to the same thing as Pentecost when God said He will "pour out HIs Spirit over all flesh"
John 3:1 ¶ There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:
2 The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.
3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?
5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
9 Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?
10 Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?
Just a thought. How could Nicodemus be expect to have known about the new birth if it isn't in the OT? That was all the scripture that he had.
Actually, Christmas was not invented by the RCC - they simply integrated their version of christianity into earlier pagan holidays. Either way, the modern observance of Christmas by... anyone... does not mean they have a history in the RCC. Try telling that to an atheist!
That being said, the above comment is inflammatory and off topic. Why don't we go back there?
Yes, Salyan, I shouldn't have said that, I apologize.
Lunch didn't go too well today. I put the oven on the timer to finish when we got home from church, or so I thought, but when we arrived home the food had been cooked and the oven cooled down. I must have set the timer incorrectly.
It was edible, though.
When we arrived home I did a baked Bramley apple and Kay and I shared it, It was delicious.
Baked apple. For each person.
Wash and core a large cooking apple such as Bramley (the best) or Newton Wonder. Place in an ovenproof dish such as a gratin dish. Fill the cavity with brown sugar. I prefer dark brown but today used Demerara as that is all I had. Pour a tablespoonful of water over the sugar. It will go down so add more sugar. Add some raisins to the dish and a few chopped semi dried apricots,By this time the sugar in the cavity will have gone down a bit so top it up again Drizzle some runny honey aver the apple, I used acacia. Bake in the oven till it is done to your taste. About 180-200C or 375-400F When serving pour the syrup and fruit over the apple.
With wave of the magic wand of "figurative speech" you dismiss what the Bible describes in great detail, and therefore can ignore any problems you might have.
Then you say the binding took place after the death of Christ, and again ignore the facts of Satan working against Paul and others by saying the Jews are Satan.
So you solve your other problems by assigning a totally different meaning to a term that causes you problems.
You can explain anything you like. It is easy if you just ignore the words used, or change the meanings to suit yourself, or use the magic word "figurative" to make it mean something else entirely.
why can you not just read the passage and understand what it says?
Mark 3:27 No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house.
Did Jesus enter the strong man's house and spoil his goods?