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Understanding the Parable of the Sower Part 2 – The Sower

Planting-seeds2(Ver 1.1)  This is Part 2 in a series of very essential basic Bible lessons concerning the subject of Understanding the Parable of the Sower.  The first lesson was simply the introduction to the subject and it contained an overall perspective of the information taught by the LORD Jesus.  In that lesson we read the parable given to us in the Book of Mark.  We followed this by reading the explanation of the Parable in the same chapter given from the lips of Jesus to his disciples.  From this information we derived a list of the main named elements.  There were 8 in my list 1) a sower, 2) seed 3) soil, 4) enemy birds, 5) enemy stones, 6) enemy sun heat, 7) enemy thorns and 8) fruit.   I then called the sower, seed & the fruit to represent positive good elements and the 4 enemy elements to be recognized as negative evil elements opposing the good.  That only leaves the soil and I called this the variable element that will change.  I hope and pray that you were able to read this because this information will not all be repeated in today’s lesson.  If you have not read from the beginning of the series I would highly recommend that you go back and start with “Part1”.   We will begin the subject again with this outstanding foundational claim spoken by the LORD Jesus:

Mar 4:13  And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables?

From this statement in Mark 4:13 we should begin to understand that if we do not know and understand this parable that no other parable understanding will be entirely possible.  Today we will be diving deeper into one of the fundamental positive elements taught by the LORD Jesus.  Our key subject today will be focused on the key positive essential element called the “Sower”.  This is an extremely indispensable part of the parable as evident by the name of the story being called “The Parable of the Sower”.  I believe this topic will be a blessing to us to learn.

 

INTRODUCTION TO THE SOWER

I believe Jesus was teaching his disciples a natural story about a significantly higher spiritual subject using an indirect third party viewpoint perspective.  Jesus actually used this technique of speaking frequently.  In this teaching we will soon learn that Jesus is given to be the ultimate sower example to follow.   I believe that Jesus is the pattern that  truly saved disciples must attempt to grow up to become.  The “Sower” is certainly one of the greatest elements at the time this parable was originally taught.  Without the work of a sower the seed is unable to produce and really could be considered dormant.  It is as if I owned a farm and had a barn that was full of seed but yet my fields were bare because I had failed to plant them.

 Mat 13:18  Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower.

 According to the LORD Jesus He named this lesson the “Parable of the Sower”.   Therefore we all should agree with Him that this is the name.  This name implies the importance of this type of worker.  In this lesson today we will be focused upon answering the basics of “Who”, “What”, When”, “Where” and “Why” of the specific “sower” subject.  For example, “Who is this stated worker?”  “What is their intended purpose?”   “When does the work occur, begin or stop?”  “Where can the work take place?”  “Why is this work necessary or important?”   There are literally so many questions that we could ask that I could not write them all down or even attempt to answer them all in one lesson.  However, we will attempt to answer the major questions even though the answers may be expanded into other lessons because many of the subjects being discussed cross over into other subject element boundaries.

 

WHO IS THE SOWER IN THE PARABLE?

The Greek word translated as “sower” in this verse is G4687.  This Greek word according to the Strong’s Dictionary reference literally means to “scatter” seed and that simply means to “sow” seed.   This Greek word is found in 42 N.T. verses.  It was translated in a number of forms of the root word “sow”.  For example, “sower”, “sown”, “sowed” and “soweth” are just some of the most popular translated English words.  However, this Greek word was also translated as “received seed” in several verses.  Both definitions are technically true simultaneously and both are directly related to the subject of seed scattering.  Seed scattering is the dual release of seed as well as the catching process.  Both actions occur based upon the single active work of a sower.   Notice that it is not the sower’s responsibility to catch the seed but only to throw it or place it where he would like for it to go.

It is very much like someone throwing a small rock into a pond.  The single motion of tossing and releasing the rock into the water automatically causes the water to receive the rock and react with the laws of physics to cause waves extending from the entry point.  This is in effect what is occurring with seed scattering paradigm with some differences.  Also note that one seed throwing action causes the release of power to potentially cause other designed laws to become effective.  Let’s look at another verse that was spoken by Jesus in the book of Mark concerning this subject of the “sower” to understand what kind of sower is being spoken of in this Parable:

Mar 4:14  The sower soweth the word.

In this verse both the translated words “sower” and “soweth” are the exact same Greek word G4687.  This information simply confirms further that the scattering concept being discussed is about someone throwing word seeds out and someone listening to take the power.  This power can represent words that make it possible for new potential life producing results that previously had never occurred before.  This is how the natural process works but notice that Jesus is speaking spiritually to what seeds represent in the parable.  Jesus is clearly not speaking in literal natural terms and He explains His lesson is spoken in the “figurative” spiritual application.

Jesus is teaching an amazing spiritual concept using a more easily understood natural description.  According to this verse spoken by Jesus in the book of Mark, a “Sower” (the described seed scattering worker) is defined to be literally anyone that is speaking “words” to implied listeners.  This verse provides us the spiritual definition of what “seed” represents.   We will be discussing “seeds” in the next lesson in the series, God willing.  But, according to Jesus ALL spoken words are potentially a type of a seed.  That is an amazing claim if you take the time to think about.  Jesus is literally implying that we all should think to our self before speaking.  Ask is what I am saying to others the result that I wish to plant and grow in them?  What kind of seed am I speaking to people?  I know a lot of people will not believe this, but it is true none the less.

Jesus does not actually define who the sower represents directly in this verse nor does he answer the “who” question in any of the other parable explanations found in Matthew or Luke.  But, I do believe very strongly that Jesus was speaking this parable of Himself and His work using the external third person point of view.  Jesus actually did this frequently in many of the things that He talked to people about.  It is actually a very common method of speaking or writing.  Many people do this and it if you go through and read the Gospels with this in mind you should be able to easily see it.

This verse in Mark 4:14 has some far reaching impacts of implied meanings even beyond the direct context.  In the first lesson I introduced the concept of this Parable of the Sower to be a spiritual battle of spiritual words.  I believe this so deeply that I pray that you will join me in this understanding very soon.  What this verse implies is that anyone speaking audible words that are either good or evil is potentially planting seeds within the lives of human minds and hearts that choose to hear, listen, pay attention and understand.  If you do not yet see this up till now, please don’t throw it in the trash until you read some other verses on the subject.

What I believe is that we should begin to understand that this sowing principle is how human life operates from the beginning birth to the ending death cycle.  If you have ever had children and watched them grow up, you must certainly agree with this concept of seed planting being Words that can positively teach, direct, help, guide, encourage, praise and correct a child to get them headed in the right direction for the rest of their life.  No child comes out of the womb speaking complete understandable sentences.   We are required to speak seeds into them for literally many months before the first meaningful seed planted will be returned to us.  But, finally they say “mama” or “dada” or whatever you taught them to say.  These are examples of positive seed plantings.  It is truly an amazing process of a good life.  But, we can also speak negative, mean, angry or evil words that will also have the same effect in reverse being returned to us from their mouths.  That is certainly not a positive of fruitful outcome.

Of course the main emphasis in this parable is focused primarily upon “Good Seeds” spoken by the “Good LORD Jesus” spread to all humans in order to produce “Good” fruit” in return.  But, the antithesis of this Good truth return objective is still true also and I’ll introduce a new parable very quickly by giving you an additional part of a direct related story spoken by Jesus on the subject of sowing.

 

OVERVIEW OF the PARABLE of the WEEDS

Mat 13:24  Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: 

Mat 13:25  But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.

This parable was spoken by Jesus in the same context of the Parable of the Sower directly after the explanation in Chapter 13.  Notice the fact that again this parable is spoken in the external “third person point of view”.  But, we will soon discover that this reference in verse 24 to just “a man” that sowed good seed is a directly defined reference about Jesus.  Also we need to notice that this verse contains the exact same Greek word G4687 that was used in the parable of the sower.  This makes this parable related by both the laws of contextual reference and the more direct named word selection and subject matter reference.

It is also very important to take note of two other Greek words that follow the Greek word G4687 in verse 24 and these were translated as “good seed”.  This is really amazing truth after you learn it.  The Greek word G2570 that is translated as “good” literally means “valuable” and “virtuous”.  Wow I hope you are seeing the type of seed being described here.  This Greek word is a qualifying adjective that severely limits the type of “seed” being described.  I personally believe that this Greek word describes God’s Word Seed perfectly.  The usage of God’s limitation of “Good” also implies by the law of antithesis truth that there must also exist “evil seed” and that the two are extreme opposites.

Then we need to notice the next word translated as “seed” as being the Greek word G4690.  The English transliteration of this Greek word is “sperma” and yes we get the English word “sperm” from this Greek word.  Natural human sperm is just one type of “seed” listed in the Bible.  Therefore a human male was designed by God to be a natural sower of seed into a female.  This process of producing natural human life is also called bearing fruit and we will probably talk more about this when we get to that part of the subject lesson.

But, this Greek word G4690 translated as “seed” comes directly from the “Sower” Greek word G4687.  In other words without a “sower” speaking words there would be no “seed” word to be planted.  It really is teaching us that seed sowing is literally dependent upon the existence of sowers.  Do you believe that the seed word originating from a sower is an accident or is found by chance random occurrence?   I do not.  I believe that this is a statement of designed truth concerning who produces “Good” seed and how this process works in us.  I believe that God’s Word is His Seed that produces His Life in us to be born again spiritually and we are going into this much deeper later in this lesson series when we discuss the seed and the fruit.

This new parable story spoken by Jesus is often called the “Parable of the Weeds”.  According to Jesus the Kingdom of heaven seed represents “Good Seed” that produces symbolic “wheat” that is harvestable and the “tares” represents evil seeds sown by an enemy into the same ground.  You see in verse 25 Jesus speaks of two very important factors.  One is the Greek word G2190 that was translated as “enemy”.  This Greek word literally means “to hate”.  That word represents the opposite description of God who is described to be “love” (agape, G26) in 1 John 4:8.  Hate and love are antithesis opposing definitions of forces of power.  These are clear descriptions of two opposing extremes.  God is Love and the enemy being spoken of is Satan who is “hate”.  Satan hates you and me and he hates God.

Next we need to notice the Greek word G4687 that is translated as “sowed” in verse 25.  This is again the exact same Greek word translated as “sower” in the Parable of the sower and “sowed good seed” in verse 24.  They are all connected directly together.  We are beginning to put some major pieces of the puzzle together to understand the Parable of the Sower and the Parable of the Weeds.  Both are concerning the subject of sowing words.  There are stated “Good” words that produce harvestable symbolic “wheat” in the Parable of the Weeds and the implied “virtuous” words of God that produce symbolic “fruit” in the Parable of the Sower.  God is giving us a very detailed look into the enemy in both parables and how Satan operates.

Here in both Parables is found amazing parallels of truth using similar representations.  I am not going to go into this parable in much further detail today.  I mainly wanted to show the divine connection to why “weeds” appear was because of the stated work of a hateful spiritual enemy called the devil.  God is introducing us to the fact that there is a described spiritual battle for humans and their end is determined by whose words these humans value.  Some will become children of Satan by valuing his lies of deception and some will become children of God by valuing His Virtuous TRUTH.  We will move into this more later.  But, I do want you show you that Jesus claimed that He was this stated man that sowed the Good Seed mentioned in verse 24:

Mat 13:37  He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man;

When this Parable was first taught to the disciples and the natural people of Israel, Jesus was the named “Sower” mentioned in the Parable.  When we read further in his explanation of the Parable of the Weeds in verse 37, we discover plainly that the “Good seed” originated from the spoken words given by the “Son of man” (Jesus).  There are over one hundred verses in the Bible that refer to Jesus as the “Son of man”.  I will not give you them all here because you can easily go and search them for yourself.   There are so many confirmations that there is no refuting that this refers to Jesus.  This teaches us that any “good seed (sperma)” will originate from God and Jesus.

We understand that a natural sower is defined to be someone that sows (plants) seeds by scattering them in or on the natural ground (soil).  But according to what we just learned from Jesus a Spiritual Sower is someone that scatters good or evil “Words” on or in the ears, minds & hearts of humans.  We must understand that Jesus was only sowing “Good” (valuable and virtuous) words.  We will learn the good type of Word in next lesson concerning “seeds” that Jesus spoke the “Word of God” (Luke 8:11).   It makes logical sense to me that Jesus was speaking only God’s Words.  However, we can confirm this when we search further in the Bible to learn that Jesus actually claimed to be a spokesman for His Father.   Verify this claim here in John:

Joh 12:49  For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.

Jesus claimed in this verse that the “Seeds” or “Words” that He spoke including those that were found in the Parable of the Sower must have come directly from His Father in heaven by a divine command.  In fact we should learn from this statement that every word spoken by Jesus in our Bibles were direct words from the Almighty God.  This makes these Words directly inspired and divinely essential messages.  There were no imperfections or untruths that could be found in them (Tit 1:2).  These “Seeds” had to have an extremely important purpose.  We will be diving into this subject in the next lesson when we further discuss in more detail the “Seed”.

 

ARE THERE ANY SOWERS TODAY?

We all should know that Jesus died and was raised from the dead and ascended back to heaven where He currently sits at the right hand of the Almighty awaiting the time of His return.  Therefore, we need to ask a new question since we know that Jesus is not physically present on the earth to sow more seeds in any new humans born in the last 2000+ years, did this Parable end?  Did the death of Jesus mean that sowing of seeds into humans has ceased?  There are some denominations that have beliefs like this, but they usually do not extend them to seed sowing for some reason.  But, should we just assume that the seed sowing process of the Parable of the Sower stopped or does it still continue today?  We actually need verses to fix our beliefs on, in order to answer this question to remove any doubts.  But, we can learn and know the answer from reading further in the New Testament that any man or woman speaking, teaching, or preaching the Word of God can also be named to be a seed planter aka a “sower”.  For example, notice this verse written by the Apostle Paul written to the Corinthian Church:

1Co 3:5  Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man

1Co 3:6  I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase

1Co 3:7  So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

These verses here contain some amazing truths.  Notice what is claimed by the Apostle Paul?  Paul informs the church that he was a minister and that his work performed to them was to “plant” seeds (verse 6).   The Greek word G1249 in verse 5 translated as “ministers” is not a high claimed position of great authority in the church.  This word literally can be translated as a servant, or someone that runs errand, or even as a “waiter” of tables for those that are present eating.  Paul is an extremely humble man that is not claiming to be anyone special or important in any of these statements.  If Paul felt this way who wrote 2/3 of the New Testament, how can any of us ever think we are any better?

Why am I bringing these verses into our lesson on the Parable of the Sower?  I would pray that it is already very obvious.  Paul is repeating a significant number of positive elements found in the Parable of the Sower here in these three verses.  Paul in these statements is focused on how seed planting successes occurs and who gets the honor and the praise for any of it.  Paul is teaching us about his contribution and participation in the common elements of “being a sower”, “possessing seed”, “sowing seed” into “soil” in order to produce “fruit”.  They may not all be mentioned directly but they are understood to be present by the direct mention of the words “planting” and “increase”.

The Greek word G5452 that was translated as “planted” literally means “to set out in the earth”.  In other words this Greek word G5452 means “to implant” seed in the natural realm which must represent the parallel spiritual reality of imparting God’s Word in the human heart (symbolic soil).  Earth in this Greek definition G5452 is a clear synonymous reference to the successful and fruitful soil type that we have yet to discuss in detail.  The Strong’s definition goes further to state that this word figuratively means to “instill doctrine” into humans.  Therefore we are definitely on the right track to speaking words to people.

The Greek word G837 translated as “increase” in verse 6 literally means “to cause to grow”.  I introduced in the first lesson that “fruit” represented “salvation” and “spiritual fruit”.  But we have not discussed this yet either.  But that is exactly what Paul infers by verse 5 stating what he preached caused these people in the church to believe and believing God’s Word is the foundation of Bible faith and salvation.  We will discuss later that faith is a basic requirement for salvation and there are many verses that will confirm this truth such as John 3:16, Romans 10:9-10 and Ephesians 2:8.

Then Paul adds a new unstated element not found in the Parable of the Sower called “watering” or “water”.  If you have read all of the Bible lessons on this blog, you will already know that the same Word of God represents multiple facets of essential life producing forces called “seed”, “water” and “light” and these are the basic requirements that must be combined with the soil to produce new “fruitful life”.  We will be going into much greater detail later when we speak about other elements after the “sower”.  But, let’s first move to two further verses in the Paul letter to the Corinthians:

1Co 3:8  Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. 

1Co 3:9  For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.

The Greek word that I wish to focus on first in these three verses is G1091 that was translated as “husbandry” in verse 9.  This word literally means “a farm”.  This should be another obvious connection to the Parable of the Sower using God’s law of selection of synonymous terminology.  A farm is usually defined as an area of land that is used to produce and grow crops for harvest.  Humans are literally called to be the spiritual ground that grows spiritual fruit from the implanted spiritual Words of God.  But, yet this does not occur automatically or magically or forcefully.   We will be discussing this aspect of the discussion later in the elements of “soil” and “fruit”.

These verses found in Corinthians are just one major proof text that God desired everyone in the church to become His “farm land to produce His fruit” as well as simultaneously growing up spiritually to become His “seed planters” or “seed waterers”.   We may not all be called into the office of “Apostle”, “Prophet”, “Evangelist” or “Pastor” or “Teacher”, but we are all still called servants of God.  Notice again in verse 5 the ending statement.  Paul claims they were minister servants of the LORD and then claims this responsibility was given to “EVERY MAN”.  Then in verse 9 God calls the church body to be His “co-laborers”.  This word literally means we must cooperate and coordinate our efforts with His planned work for our lives.  These are just more ways to proclaim the great commission given from the LORD Jesus to everyone in the church:

Mar 16:15  And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Go into the entire world, and sow seeds in the entire world by proclaiming out loud of His exceedingly Great News.  Jesus is commissioning all of His people to become “sowing servants” of His Word.  If we are just receivers collecting His Words and not spreading the seed to others then we are being disobedient barn storage facilities.  The Greek word G2784 translated as “preach” in this verse literally means someone who is like a town crier that brings good news to the people of a city.  Clearly this is a “seed” planter that is attempting to follow after the LORD Jesus’ patterned example found in the Parable of the Sower.  What is the purpose of being a seed planter for God?  If we read the next verse we will learn God’s designed goal:

Mar 16:16  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

We are being introduced to God’s primary purpose for speaking His Word to people in the world.  According to Jesus it was God’s design for His Words to be believed by a human faith choice and then this belief would place us onto a course or pathway whereby we could be saved.  We actually read this in 1 Corinthians 3:5 also.  We learn the fact of salvation is dependent upon our beliefs in God’s Word by reading verses like this as well as Ephesians 2:8 and even John 3:16.  Whoever believes God Word to the end is the one that receives the free gift of His Great Grace.

But, then comes the bad news if any human does not choose to believe His Words spoken by His sowers, they are damned.  Wow, that is so strong.  What a significant warning.  What a great responsibility that we are given.  Is it possible if someone does not state the right words in the right way at the right time with the correct attitude and motive that the responsibility for why some are not saved could be on the sower’s hands?  That is something that I believe we must take into consideration.  I believe that we all must be led by the Spirit of God in everything that we do including sowing seeds.

Perhaps you have already deduced that sowing seeds is why I do a Bible study Blog on the internet.  This blog is an attempt to spread God’s “seed” to every nation on planet earth.  By the immense Grace of God these Bible lessons have gone into over 250 different nations already.  That would be an extremely difficult physical effort for anyone to travel to reach each one personally.  I praise God for using an insignificant man like me to spread His Word and I pray that you will also join me in becoming a “seed of God sower”.

 

CONCLUSION

I will end this section on the “sower” with this stated truth.  When the LORD Jesus was teaching the Good News while Sowing Seeds into the hearts of people on the earth in His physical body during His short 3 ½ years of ministry, this was the closest to perfection that was possible for the Parable to have successful crops of fruit.  However, we also know from reading the Gospels that most of the people that heard Him teach and preach these “Seeds” were possibly the same ones that killed Him on a cross.   Think about it.  There were only 120 believers in the 50 days from His death in the upper room in Acts 2 awaiting the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.  We know that when Jesus was on the earth that he sometimes taught to over 5000 people at one time and over 4000 at another time.  He traveled wide and far throughout the region to preach the Word of God to people. Where were all of these thousands of people that heard the “Seed”?  I think that is amazing.

This truth only proves that imperfect humans today that are attempting to follow Jesus’ example of sowing should not expect to make everyone accept what they are teaching them as “Good News”.  The servant is never greater than the master Jesus said.  If they persecuted me Jesus said, they will certainly persecute you also.  Believe me I know this for sure.  Some people are such very nice Christians that say good things about my lessons even if they disagree with something, and others sound like demon possessed people and say the meanest things.  Just learn from Jesus and don’t let the praise of anyone or the condemnation of anyone else be the motivating source for preaching or teaching God’s Word.  Remember what Paul said, it is not the sower of the seed or the one that waters that is anything, but rather it is God that that causes the increase of the fruit to grow that is important.  Okay we answered some basic questions about the sower today so we will review:

  1. WHO?   Jesus was the initial Primary Sower Example.
  2. WHO?   But, Christians today have the same responsibility to sow seeds.
  3. WHAT? Being a Sower is simply sharing God’s Word with someone.
  4. WHAT? The reason we sow God’s seed is to get someone saved from a certain eternal death in hell.
  5. WHEN?  It is implied that the time to sow is now.
  6. WHERE? It is implied whenever the opportunity presents itself.

In the next lesson in the series we will move into the very positive subject of understanding the “Seed”.  I know we could have covered a lot more information in this subject of understanding the sower. If you have any specific questions on this part of the subject I would welcome them.  I pray that you have enjoyed this lesson but I believe the next lesson will even be better.   God Bless you.

2018 – Please Vote!!! But FIRST PRAY and ASK Jesus Who He Would Like You to Vote For!

(Ver 1.0)  This is a plea to my United States readers and subscribers.  If you live in another nation this may not apply to you.  It is past time for U.S. Christians to wake up and get motivated and involved in the God given responsibilities that He has provided to us in our nation by voting.  Voting is a Constitutional right and a privilege in the United States of America that is not available to the majority of the over 7 billion people on planet earth.  So many nations have no say in who leads them and makes the laws.  For example, any communist nation or socialist nation if they even hold elections are not real elections and are fixed for the power of the ruling class’ agenda.  But, here in America we have a government for the people and by the people and we are allowed the right to choose who makes our laws.  But, one man said it this way and it applies to voting “the only thing that is necessary for Satan and evil to win is for GOOD CHRISTIANS to do NOTHING”.

Please do not take this privilege lightly or for granted.  Every election should be as important as a Presidential election year.  Tomorrow is NOT a presidential election year and the number of participants in the election usually drops very significantly.  That makes your vote tomorrow even more important than in a larger election.    Your vote matters and it will count significantly more than you can possibly imagine if you choose to align and agree with voting according to God’s Truth, Morals and Values found in the Bible.

The indifference and passivity of the real blood bought saved Christian Church member MUST come to an end.  We MUST not remain silent anymore or we will continue to allow Satan to win and to shove his agenda down us and over us.  Satan has almost eliminated all Christian morals and values in our public education system because Christians have either not voted or did not vote correctly in alignment with Bible Truth, either way Satan has been winning.  Public prayer has been eliminated and the Bible has been banned by Satan’s design from the influence of young impressionable minds.  Girls are not taught to know they are girls to act like ladies and boys are not taught to know they are boys and to act like gentlemen.  Please help stop this insanity for you and your children’s sake.

Practically every University of old was founded by Christians to teach people the Bible, but now real Bible Truth and Christianity is rare to be found taught in any of them.  We are in a tremendous unseen spiritual warfare.  Satan causes the distraction of being busy with minor unimportant things and other cares of this life to cause Christians to look the other way at the evils rapidly taking over our nation and voting to change them.  Our children’s future will be doomed if we do not cooperate to participate with God and His WORD and go and vote with Him!  Teach YOUR children through a living example to demonstrate your unwavering commitment to show them the importance and priority an election should be given by going and voting.  This will help us ALL now and them in the future.  Then discuss with your Children why you voted and who you voted for.    Train up a child in the way that they should go and when they are old they will not depart from it.

This election taking place on November 6, 2018 will either be a victory for Satan if Christians remain apathetic or for Jesus if His Body obeys Him and acts according to agree with His Word.  I am a very firm believer that God will judge every Christian for “if they voted” and “how they voted”.  Please vote as an informed Christian and not a guessing Christian.  Please go and read both the Republican and Democratic Platforms.  These are each party’s stance, beliefs and goals for our nation’s future course and direction.  Please determine which platform aligns the closest to God’s Word and Truth found in the BIBLE.  It is only with us agreeing with God and the Bible that we have any assurance of being saved as a Christian.  I ask ALL Christians to pray first before voting to ask Him who He would like you to vote for.  Seek God’s wisdom, guidance and direction and then submit to His wise LORDSHIP and leadership to obey. 

I do not believe that God will command or force anyone who to vote for.  That would be wrong and a clear violation of our freewill to choose good or evil.  Like Adam in the beginning God set before him a choice and then gave him the right to make the wrong choice.  His wrong choice had major consequences for all of us still today.  This principle is still true today.  All of our wrong choices up till now and those that we may choose to make tomorrow will potentially have the same lasting consequences for all of our children in the tomorrows to come.  This is why we MUST find the right people to vote for with God’s Word as our basis to vote.

I’ll end this encouragement to go and vote with this information.  My wife and I voted for all Republicans.  We chose this by careful prayer and Bible study.  We understand that the Republican platform more closely aligns with God’s Word than the opposition party of the Democrats.  We understood that even if Republicans were not perfect we had to choose who it was that was closer alignment with God’s values.  For example, the Republican platform supports more closely the “Right of Human Life” including unborn babies and the Democrats do not.  Democrats support the murder of an unborn child even up to the day before a child is born.  Many of these terminated children being killed by doctors in the womb could survive if brought out of the womb and modern medical technology was used for the good of life instead of their death.  I can’t support that.

Democrats have aligned themselves with the removal of all of God and Bible references from Public Schools, Government buildings and meetings and even our military.  Almost anything that promotes God, Jesus or the Bible is off limits to Democrats and to the people that they govern.  Democrats have aligned very strongly with the redefinition of a Biblical Family being between one husband and one wife.  I can’t support that either.  Our last Democrat President allowed the United Nations to condemn Israel one of our closest allies without using the U.S. veto power to overrule it.  This spoke volumes to me.  Democrats are moving to a socialist agenda very, very rapidly and I could go on and on and on about the major issues that I see that are in direct conflict with sound Bible principles of morality and values.  I pray that you will do your research and then make the right choice to vote with God.

I pray that I did not offend you but if I did, I will not apologize for speaking the truth in love.  The apostle Paul had the same problem.  In Galatians 4:16 he wrote under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit “I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth?”  We all need to become more like the Apostle Paul.  Ask other Christian friends and relatives to go and vote and then tell them the reason why you did and who you voted for.  Provide everyone Bible reasons why you voted how you did and not your opinion.  Be an encourager, a blessing and choose to speak the truth in love despite the threat of losing them as friend.  Finally, if you are going to leave me a hateful comment about this blog, I may or may not read it.  But, I will definitely not post it on my website.  May God bless you, guide you and lead you to vote His will and His way.  I love you all.

Understanding the Parable of the Sower, Introduction – Part 1

 

planting-seeds

(Ver 1.1)  This is Part 1 in a series of very essential basic Bible lessons concerning the subject of Understanding the Parable of the Sower.  This may be a very familiar subject to many Christians but this assumed familiarity could cause some to not open their heart and mind to receive from God something fresh.  A spirit of pride caused by an assumed broad knowledge of a subject will too often cause some to not accept exactly what was new that God wanted to teach.  However, I believe that many of the fundamental concepts found in this Bible lesson series should be a delight for most Christians to receive, learn and apply.  We do appreciate your prayers and the time reading these Bible lessons.  We hope they are a blessing and we pray for all our readers. We will begin the subject study with this outstanding claim by the LORD Jesus:

Mar 4:13  And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables?

 

We will be diving deep into some of the fundamental principles that were taught by the LORD Jesus from this parable.  Many of these are deep spiritual truths that are not easily found even though they were given to us in a simple natural parable form.   According to Mark 4:13, Jesus claimed that to know and understand this parable was the most important parable there is.  It is significantly stated by Jesus in this verse that if we do not know and understand this parable then grasping even the basics of any other parable would probably be futile.  This is why I believe the LORD wanted us to study this subject today.  Today will be the first basic lesson and subject introduction in the series.  Then we will break down the spiritual elements in more depth in subsequent lessons.  Let’s get started.

 

INTRODUCTIION:

From an in-depth study of this subject it has become evident that the Parable of the Sower is a direct lesson on how and why some humans obtain “faith” for “eternal salvation” and why many others fail to receive.  I have concluded that there are two disparate types of people being described in this parable.  There were those at the end of the parable that obtained “faith for salvation” and produced spiritual fruit and then there were those at the beginning and middle of the parable that either never had faith to be saved or abandoned their faith to produce no lasting spiritual fruit.  Those that produced lasting “fruit” live and those that do not produce lasting “fruit” eventually die and go to hell.  The entire process of faith, salvation, human choices and how each work together to produce fruit is God’s design of the seed sowing process.   It is also revealed that this process of seed sowing has revealed enemies that assisted in the process to cause wrong human choice for a crop failure.  These truths are all summarized in this parable.

Bible faith is one of the central and primary themes of the entire Bible from Genesis to Revelation.  I believe that it is essential that we all learn and understand as much as we can about what has been revealed to us by God on this vital subject of Bible Faith.   We know from reading Hebrews 11: 6 that if we do not have any faith it is absolutely impossible to please God.  We also learn from reading Ephesians 2:8 that we are only saved by God’s grace through our faith.  Based upon just these two verses alone, God makes it sound like that if we do not have faith we are in serious trouble.  This to me is why we need to study the subject of “Bible Faith”.  I am mentioning this first to inform all readers that understanding Bible Faith is one key to understanding this Parable.  If you have not read the series on this website about this subject I would strongly recommend that you do so by clicking “Understanding Bible Faith Part 1”.

I believe that every human has the God given right to choose to participate in the “God kind of faith” (Mk 11:22) fully, partially or regrettably to choose not to partake whatsoever.  Humans even have the God given right to choose to initially participate and then to turn back to choose to walk away from God’s plan for their life.  I can hear people say, “faith is not that important and is only mentioned a very few times in the Bible”.  If we do a search on the English word “faith”, it occurs only twice in the KJV Old Testament with it then being found in 229 verses in the KJV New Testament.  Clearly the emphasis of faith was increased significantly by the LORD to His people in the New Covenant.  There are 788,258 words found in the KJV Bible and I will admit that there are so many other words and subjects in the Bible mentioned more frequently than faith.  “LORD” is mentioned 7365, “God” is mentioned 4293, Israel 2509, and we could go on and on with many other words.  I found these numbers off of a website and I did not attempt to verify them so please don’t use them as the Gospel.  I was only attempting to make a point that many other words and subjects have a greater mention besides faith.  But, yet I still believe that this subject and topic of “Faith” is one of the top 3 themes that every Christian must learn after being saved.

I can still hear people say “I just can’t find faith in very many chapters of my Bible”.  What I have learned from years of Bible study is that we must search for whatever we want to find (Mat 7:7).  If we are not looking for faith we will never find faith.  But, I believe that if we learn to change our focus on the known features, characteristics and values of faith then we will be able to find faith almost everywhere.  What I am trying to say is that just because a verse, passage, chapter or book does not contain the actual word “faith’ does not mean the subject is not found there.  Too many Christians are reading the Bible with wrong thought perspectives and would truly be amazed what is found in the Bible by learning to view the words on the page more like God designed them to be “as spiritual truth”.  This is literally a very true Bible study methodology for any subject.

I desire in this introduction just to help us shift our focus.  Just because the “Parable of the Sower” never mentions the word “Faith” does not mean that it is not directly all about the subject.  I desire to teach the concepts of how a familiar set of verses that are often used to teach other subjects can contain a vast amount of truth on the subject of “faith” if we are willing to rethink to change our perspectives.  In this series, I plan to visit many verses that do not mention faith directly in both the Old and New Testaments in order to show how God can use them to actually teach us key hidden “faith” principles.   We will also explore related verses in other parts of the Bible that greatly assist us in understanding concepts not directly mentioned in the Parable.

We will be using this information to focus on how to understand the “Parable of the Sower”.  In this lesson series we will hopefully learn to search and find relationships in this parable to the subject of faith, salvation, right and wrong words, right and wrong human choices and the spiritual battle of good versus evil for all human lives.  I trust God to help me do this and to help you to also open your heart and mind to receive it and then for you to become an Acts 17:11 noble Berean and go and verify what was taught in your personal Bible study time.  Please, please, please, do not take my word for anything if you do not see it in your own Bible.

 

INTRODUCTION TO GOD’S PROCESS OF SALVATION AND FAITH
IN THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER

As I have previously mentioned, I would like for us to rethink the Parable of the Sower in the light of it being one of God’s revealed processes and projects to activate faith in humans for their eternal spiritual salvation.  It has become very clear to me through Bible study that Jesus’ taught us a great spiritual representation of how human salvation by His extraordinary Grace through our humble cooperative faith works using a natural seed planting and farming truth many call the “Parable of the Sower”.  Every parable ever taught by Jesus in the Bible was a natural truth that helps us to understand a far superior spiritual unseen and unknown truth.  I have grown into the belief that this greater spiritual truth taught by Jesus in this parable is concerning primarily God’s extended grace and mercy for human salvation through their freewill choice to believe in His Word.

I further believe that this parable represents a description of how people are either saved or lost through a spiritual war of words (good vs. evil) that will take place in the human mind and heart.  I also believe that this hidden unseen spiritual warfare helps to influence the decisions that a person makes concerning their salvation depending upon which spirit they choose to yield to.  A person’s focused choices of importance, priority, value and worth towards God’s spoken Word will determine their eternal destiny after this natural life ends.  Does this sound interesting to study?  I hope and pray it does.

It amazes me that Jesus taught all of these hidden spiritual truths being described in a natural farming concept and process.  The natural and the spiritual processes represent two parallel realities of truths.  Growing natural food and growing spiritual faith for salvation (aka fruit) were taught to us by Jesus to represent a common paradigm.  This to me is so amazing.  The truth has been hiding in plain sight for the entire duration of human history on this earth.  This truly displays the Omniscience and Wisdom of God.

Even though Jesus was speaking and teaching in natural terms created from the beginning, He was really not teaching us about natural farming.  As I just stated humans have known this natural process of farming for literally many thousands of years.  Through these basic principles of life found in simple to understand naturally created methods of farming, we can now begin to understand how spiritual life occurs or in many cases does not occur.  Let’s now read the “Parable of the Sower” to refresh our memory.  But also, please read the Parable with a notepad and a pencil or pen so that you can list the main items that you find as important and those that may jump out at you as you read.

Mar 4:3  Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow: 

Mar 4:4  And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. 

Mar 4:5  And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: 

Mar 4:6  But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away. 

Mar 4:7  And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. 

Mar 4:8  And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred. 

Mar 4:9  And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

 

Jesus used such a very simplistic natural farming design and process to explain to us the incredibly vital interrelated subjects of God’s Word, the devil, words, faith, salvation, listening, hearing, understanding, salvation enemies and making right choices to name only a few basic concepts that I have observed.  These are just a few of the most critical and highest spiritual truths that I have found so far in the Parable.  I know you may not see all of these by just skimming the parable in a rapid surface reading.  In fact I believe it is practically impossible to know what the parable is really about by only reading the parable.  I view the parable as a type of riddle or puzzle being presented for curious humans to dig into to solve.

I believe that there are far too many Christians that have not given this living natural example the priority and emphasis that it deserves.  I believe that it is essential for every Christian to learn this parable as soon as possible after being born again in order to help them to begin to mature and grow spiritually.  Reading the parable you should have noticed some of the main components being mentioned as I asked you to do.  I found at least 10 symbolic references that I want us to focus upon.  I’ll list them for your consideration and you can compare my list with your list:

  1. A Sower
  2. Seed
  3. 4-6 Types of Soil (Depending upon viewpoint)
  4. 3 different Soils that produce no fruit or no enduring fruit
  5. 1-3 Soils with increasing levels of fruit production (30%, 60%, or 100%)
  6. Enemy Birds
  7. Enemy Stones
  8. Enemy Sun Heat
  9. Enemy Thorns or Weeds
  10. Fruit

Wow, this list is so vital to understand in-depth.  However, I will be unable to give a complete study of every symbol in this first lesson.  But, we will try to explore these items in increasing depth later in the series.  Today we will only try to introduce the important spiritual symbols given by Jesus.  Before we get into this discussion please review the explanation of the parable from Jesus.  Use your notepad and your pencil to find what Jesus said the key elements represent and then list what each of them symbolically represented next to their corresponding symbol:

Mar 4:10  And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parable. 

Mar 4:11  And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: 

Mar 4:12  That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them. 

Mar 4:13  And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables? 

Mar 4:14  The sower soweth the word. 

Mar 4:15  And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts. 

Mar 4:16  And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; 

Mar 4:17  And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended. 

Mar 4:18  And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, 

Mar 4:19  And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful. 

Mar 4:20  And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred. 

 

This explanation from Jesus of the Parable is also absolutely awesome.  We should obviously understand that Jesus knew and understood what every symbol represented and how all the positive elements worked together to cause the plan of God to succeed and how all the negative elements worked to cause the plan of God to fail.  I hope that you can agree that it should be obvious to us that some symbolic elements worked favorably together to produce a good fruit crop while other symbolic elements fought against the planned process for a positive outcome in order to keep the fruit seed and fruit crop from succeeding.  This is the introduction to the spiritual battle that is taking place in the unseen spiritual realm.  It is a spiritual war for human lives.  I pray that you are paying close attention to what was just said, because this is very important in the rest of this revealed truth.

In verse 11 Jesus revealed to us that these combined natural elements fashioned into a symbolic parable form represented a divine mystery.  The Greek word translated as “mystery” is G3466 and it literally means “to shut the mouth in order to keep a secret”.  All God had to do was not speak to humans and we all would be very ignorant concerning any truth of spiritual realities.  But, God was now beginning to open His mouth through Jesus to explain these many hidden secrets.   At the time when Jesus was physically on the earth He was the only one speaking to a limited few humans at that time.  But, since these words were written in a book form we today can also benefit by studying and applying them.

We must also notice what else Jesus said in verse 11.  He told His disciples that at that time He did not desire to give everyone the secret’s explanation that He had spoken the parable to.  He said “Unto you it is given but unto them that are on the outside I speak only in parables”.  That is still a basic principle that is true today.  Just because most everyone can find a Bible and can read the Bible does not mean that any of it is understandable to them.  We confirm this principle from reading 1 Corinthians 2:14 that informed us those spiritual things of God are not received by a natural man because they are spiritually discerned.   Spiritually asleep people (Eph 5:14) are usually unable to feed on deep spiritual things of the Spirit.  Here now is my list of some of the major points that I found listed and what I believe that they are revealed to represent:

Symbol

Meaning

1.      Sower A Spiritual Bible Preacher or Teacher (Specifically Jesus in this parable when it was spoken the first time, it later became any real Bible teacher)
2.      Seed Seed=Symbolic Spiritual Spoken Words from God
3.      Soil Heart (aka the spirit) of a human, God’s Spiritual Garden
4.      Enemy Birds Spiritual opponent called Satan, devils & demons that Blind Human Minds using words in the form of thoughts
5.      Enemy Stones The wrong hard hearted choice to not do the Word that was heard (Sown into their heart)
6.      Enemy Sun Heat Tormenting Words of Persecution sent because the Word of God was Believed.  Persecution pressures many to make the wrong choices to returning to a life of sin
7.      Enemy Thorns Satanic Worldly Distractions &Temptations of the flesh and mind
8.      Fruit God’s goal for His Seed sown (a spiritual harvest – representing the fruits of the spirit and human salvation)

 

I regret that I am unable to go into a great level of detail for every Parable Element in this list today.  I will attempt to cover every element found here in this list later in subsequent lessons in the series.  I would also recommend that you go and read the explanations of the Parable in the books of Matthew and Luke because these contain additional information that the book of Mark does not include.  I will be referring to some of these other writer’s explanations in this series but I will not be giving the entire verses in this lesson in order to decrease the length.

In my list I have focused on what I considered to be 3 dependably positive elements, 4 consistently negative elements and one element that I will list into a variable, changeable or unstable category.  The 3 positive elements listed in the parable were the sower, the seed and a good fruitful outcome that was produced from the combined sower and seed elements.  The success of these 3 consistently positive elements (seed, sower and fruit) represents a successful “faith” process and project taking place in a human heart (soil). The 4 potential consistently negative elements were described as enemies to the positive elements and these were called 1) birds, 2) stones, 3) heat and 4) thorns.  The single element that I considered to be the lone variable or a changeable element is the soil (heart of man).   The soil is clearly the most frequently mentioned item of the parable being spoken of at least 4 times.  I believe that this makes the soil one of God’s major focused items in the entire description.  I will also say that the consistently positive and negative elements are all spiritual.  The soil changeable element can either be carnal or spiritual dependent upon right or wrong choices made from thoughts selected.

I’m going to end this lesson with this introduction to the subject.  I pray that this has at least raised your interest into learning more.  In the next lesson in the series we will move into a greater detailed description of each element named beginning with the “Seed” symbolic element first.   Thank you for reading and studying the Bible with us.  We are humbled to know that there are people that spend their valuable time on this website.  May  God continue to lead you, guide you, direct you and bless you.

If you would like to continue to the next lesson in the series please click “Part2“.

Understanding the Divine Spiritual Laws and Court System of Heaven – Part 2

Judge Gavel

(Ver 1.3) This is Part 2 in a series of very advanced spiritual Bible lessons on what I believe is a critical and important subject that has been popularly overlooked by so many Bible teachers and students.  The more that I have studied this subject the more that I have become absolutely convinced that this is a required Bible theme to learn about.  After learning this subject we then must learn how to balance it with other vital spiritual Bible subjects like Faith, Love and Grace to name just 3 other major Bible themes.   If you have not read “Part 1” I would recommend that you go back and read this lesson before continuing here.

Too many times in the church a pastor receives a revelation from God on a particular subject and too often they take it way beyond the base revelation to an extreme position of error. This is what I often call “Taking A Truth and Making it THE Only Truth or THE Highest or Most Important Truth without a Regard to any Other Truths in the Bible”.   Any Bible truth can be exalted into an extreme position either to the left or to the right of the balanced middle and this will usually cause the belief to become an unbalanced deception.  It is happening in many churches today with the Grace truth.  Too many modern Bible teachers have taken the awesome truth of God’s revealed Grace and simply ignored the other central themes of God’s Holiness and Judgment to name just two that must be balanced with His Grace correctly.

In today’s Bible lesson we will be introduced to the major theme of “Judgment” from the perspective of the Heavenly Court system.  Grace and Judgment are both central themes found from Genesis to Revelation.  We can see these subject threads woven together in practically every book.  For example, in Genesis 6:8 God says Noah found His Grace.  But, within the same context the world was found to be so wicked that God was sorry that He ever created man on the earth (Gen 6:6) and He judged the earth with a great flood.  The subjects of Grace and Judgment are found intertwined so closely together that it should absolutely amaze us.

In this lesson we will be looking at this subject of Judgment from the viewpoint of New Testament writers like Paul and Peter. Both wrote about grace but they also included a balanced message of God’s judgment even in the same context.  I would be a fool to ignore the subject of divine judgment just because I like the subject of Grace much more.  You see our flesh loves the grace message but our spirit should understand that there is still judgment available for sin.  Grace is not the freedom to sin with no consequences, but should rather be viewed as a position  of humble thankfulness that I was saved from committing sin.

The battle between doing right and doing wrong occurs in our minds.  Satan tempts us with thoughts to sin and God convicts us through our spirit.  This battle can be called the human conscious.  However, the human conscious should be viewed to be the Holy Spirit trying to help us think correctly, and then to say and do what is true, good and right.     I, like other Christians am in a war between these two realities.  It is my goal and priority to let my born-again spirit overrule my flesh desires but sometimes it is more of a challenge than at other times.  I pray that you understand what I am talking about.

I believe the LORD showed me that this lesson series on God’s Divine Spiritual Laws and Court System in Heaven must be read, understood and balanced rightly with today’s extreme Grace teaching that tries to teach us many things that do not touch on what is being stated in the verses that will be clearly covered in this series.

God teaches us very plainly in Hosea 4:6 that His people are destroyed (by Satan) because of their ignorance and stubborn refusal to learn the truth.  He is so clear in John 8:32 that it is only by the dedicated continuation in studying the Bible that we will ever learn the actual truth and only then can this truth that we know correctly set us free from the things that the enemy uses to keep us in captivity and bondage.

Therefore, we should learn that what we do not know is being used against us by our legal opponent and adversary Satan to gain an advantage over us while we live here on this planet (2 Cor 2:11). I pray that you will continue to read these lessons with an open and receptive mind avoiding any prejudicial preconceived ideas, thoughts or conclusions towards what is being taught.  I believe with all my heart that it is the Holy Spirit’s direction for this information to go forth and be spread to all believers.  Pray first before continuing and ask the Holy Spirit to bear witness with the truth and to reveal anything that may be only a man’s opinion on any verse, topic or subject. 

We are commanded by God to study and to rightly divide the Word of Truth (2 Tim 2:15).  But, only the Holy Spirit can lead us into all truth (Ps 25:5, John 16:13).  So put your full confidence in Him and not me or anyone else on the earth.  Let’s begin Part 2 with a quick review of the first lesson in which I have added some additional supporting evidence that was not included in the first lesson.

Lesson 1 Review with New Additional Thoughts

1Pe 5:8  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

Rev 12:10  And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

In the first lesson in the series we should have learned at least two primary essential Bible truths. The first truth came from the Lord recorded by Peter to us in 1 Peter 5:8 and the second came to us from John written in Revelation 12:10. We also learned from two very important Greek words.  The first Greek word G476 was translated as “adversary” and this word meant an “opponent in a lawsuit or a court of law”.  The second Greek word was G2725 and was translated as an “accuser” and it is defined as a “person who brings a complaint of law to court against someone else that allegedly commits a crime”.  Both were very accurate technical descriptions of Satan who God informed us in Revelation 12:10 brings up charges of accusations against us as brothers and sisters in Christ every single day and night.  The term “day and night” in Revelation 12:10 must represent a continuous repeated daily action of Satan.  These two words are used like this several times in the New Testament and this is the correct way to interpret them.

Always remember that Satan is God’s enemy and our enemy and please never believe that he has no right, power or ability to win a law case over you because he is very tricky and has been around much longer than you and knows so much more than you can imagine. We are in a legal fight for our lives and we must understand that doing nothing to fight or win permits Satan almost automatic victory.

In 1 Peter 5:8 Christians not the world are warned that we have an “adversary” who is named the “devil” and he is plainly defined to be our legal opponent in the court of heavenly law.  It is worth noting again that this Greek word translated as “adversary” is only used 4 times in the N.T. and every time it is mentioned it refers to a court case between legal opponents.  This was certainly no accident and God is informing us in a very pure direct easy to understand way that this is how He is using this word in 1 Peter 5:8 also.  There can be no other logical conclusion that Satan is anything else but a spiritual individual that is bringing up charges before God to gain an advantage over us in order to devour us.  If you don’t believe me please hang in there and read all the verses that we will cover today and then tell me if you still believe the same.

We should have learned from reading 1 Peter 5:8 that our adversary the devil (Satan) is described to be going about the whole earth to find someone (primarily a Christian since it was written to us) to devour. I would ask any reader this question to consider, what is Satan seeking (looking for) that permits him to devour some but not others?  It would appear to me based upon Job chapter 1 that God places a hedge of protection in order to keep Satan out.  Why would it be necessary for a hedge of protection to be present if Satan could do nothing to Job unless he had permission?  I find that to be an amazing question.  If Satan could only harm someone if granted permission as is taught by many Bible teachers there would be no need for any hedge round about Job.  It is fascinating to me to see in Job 1 that Satan accuses God of doing this unjustly and accuses Job of fearing God for no cause.  There were at least two accusations brought before God’s court and we need to see this.

However, it is very important to learn from 1 Peter 5:8 that Satan cannot devour everyone. Therefore, there must be something that a Christian does or does not do that permits Satan’s admittance into their lives.  Also by antithesis reasoning there must be something that a Christian can do to keep Satan from killing, stealing and destroying their lives.  I believe the determining factor is our sin and we will learn why as we continue in this study.

I have concluded from significant study of the book of Job that Job opened the door in the hedge and we will certainly be getting into this part of the subject as we continue the Bible study series.  Please expect to receive revelation from the Holy Spirit on what we all need to do to keep Satan as far away from us as is possible in this world.  Let’s continue to explore another new thought.

I believe that it is also critical to learn the definition of the title “devil” used by the LORD in 1 Peter 5:8. We should learn these details in order to more fully comprehend the impact of the warning being spoken of by the LORD.  I believe the title being used in every verse reveals a great deal about Satan’s specific character, plans and methods of operation.  The Greek word G1228 that is translated as “devil” literally means an “accuser”.  This title speaks volumes of information to us.  It teaches us that Satan and his followers are speaking malicious accusation against us as related in Revelation 12:10 both day and night.  Who do you believe they are doing this to?  Of course we learned in Job 1 before the law was given Revelation 12 long after Jesus was resurrected from the dead that these accusations have been taken up before God the supreme judge in Heaven.  I pray that you will agree that spiritual trials will continue until the middle of the tribulation where all of sudden Satan is finally cast down never to return.

You may remember in Lesson 1 that God connected this verse statement of truth found in 1 Peter 5:8 directly to the activity found in the book of Job using very similar synonymous truths. I believe this was not an accident or chance occurrence and that it confirms that Satan came before the throne of God to hold a court trial of the man Job.  I also firmly believe that this connection confirms that these same court trials were occurring even after the death, burial and resurrection of the LORD Jesus in the early church day when Peter wrote this epistle.  I believe 1 Peter 5:8 was a part of God’s commentary of the O.T. story of Job that helps us interpret what happened in the book more accurately.  Always remember a basic rule of interpretation that the God who wrote the Bible is smarter than both you and I and He will always assist us in the correct interpretation His own writings.

I would recommend that you go and reread Job 1 and 2 again and again from this new legal trial perspective. For example, we should have learned in Job 1:6 that Satan had come into heaven before the presence of God Almighty to present his legal case for obtaining access into Job’s blessed and protected life.  We should be able to know that this was an accusatory trial case being presented to God since the spiritual being described is revealed to us by the name “Satan” in Job chapters 1 and 2 nearly 14 times.   God’s usage of this name proves to us by the name’s definition that this being was present before God as an “opponent” and an “adversary” present to accuse Job.  We should be able to easily see how the name “Satan” in Job and the description “adversary” in 1 Peter 5:8 are married together.  One is a Hebrew transliteration (Job) and the other is just a translated Greek word (1 Peter 5).  But, both mean the exact same thing.

Again names and titles in the Bible have great significance. None are there by unplanned chance.  For example, one of the first direct titles mentioned of Satan found in the Bible is seen in Genesis 3:1.  Here, Satan is called by a symbolic description of “serpent”.  The title used by God in Genesis 3:1 is a totally different type of informative description.  Serpent is in no manner like the other names used in other verses like Satan, devil, accuser or adversary.  This teaches us that Satan was not present in the garden to accuse, but to do something else that he is also good at.

If you look up the definition of “serpent” in the Strong’s Concordance you will find it comes from a Hebrew root word H517 that can describe someone who came to Eve’s mind to whisper a magic spell.  Wow, that is deeper than many may possibly comprehend.  Serpent literally meant someone who was attempting to magically foretell the future to Eve.  My main point here is that God reveals what Satan does or is doing to us by his symbols, names and titles.  We need to learn this principle and use it to help us understand spiritually what is then happening in the context. Let’s get back to our lesson 1 review.

It is critical to see how God asks Satan where he had come from in Job 1:7.  Because God is the omniscient author of the entire Bible He knows the right questions to ask to teach us what is happening.  It is this wise question and true answer of Satan that provides the joining evidence that we need to learn from.  Satan replies to God’s question very truthfully by saying he had just come from walking up and down on the face of the earth which is the amazing parallel admission of confirmation of the truth that we had learned about Satan in 1 Peter 5:8.  This Hebrew word in Job 1:7 which was translated as “going to and fro” literally means that Satan had just come from traveling all around the earth and was there in heaven for an implied purpose.  We learned Satan’s motivation for this movement from earth to heaven in God’s commentary description in 1 Peter 5:8.  Satan was only searching the earth so that he could locate one of God’s people on the planet that he could devour.  This is exactly what Satan does to Job, is it not?  If we believe anything has changed from Job to Peter we would be mistaken.  Satan was doing the exact same thing in Job’s day as he was doing in Peter’s day and even all the way to the current church now.  We are in the exact same church as Peter was writing to therefore, please don’t write off these words as unimportant or as not applying to you.

This direct connected satanic activity description between Job 1:7, 1 Peter 5:8 to Revelation 12:10 is no inadvertent assembly of synonymous truth. God has designed the Bible with tremendous amounts of hidden connected verses and these help us to understand correctly the information that He planned to reveal to us in these last days.  I pray that you are learning how God does this so that we do not have to lean onto our own weak human reasoning as so many have.

We then should have learned from Job 1 that it was only after the appearance of Satan before God’s throne of judgment that Satan was given access to come back to the earth to devour (kill, steal and to destroy) Job, his family and his possessions. It is so very clear to me that Satan won this access legally and justly to Job’s life in God’s heavenly court system.

I believe that God is the Supreme Judge of everyone but, I also believe His character is amazingly far above our human comprehension. We cannot ever compare God to any human judge on the earth.  I have never seen any human judge that knows everything and never make any errors.  No, I believe that God is perfect and does not make any mistakes in judgment and that He is a completely fair and just to humans in every spiritual court case.  Therefore, if judgment is pronounced on any man there was a valid cause and reason and we will learn more of this as we continue the series.

I also believe that God is compassionate and merciful in His judgments. Let’s explore this part of the topic briefly.  Job is not directly mentioned very many times in the Bible but this next verse is another divine commentary on the court trial and verdict that was rendered in this law case found in the book of Job.

Jas 5:11  Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.

According to God’s Holy Word commentary He showed Job great mercy in His judgment. I know it might not seem that was true by our reading the book, but He did.  For example, we can clearly read in Job 1:12 how God restricted Satan from touching or taking the physical life of Job personally.  That limitation was a display of His infinite and great mercy.  The entire duration of the trial of Job did not last a significant amount of time especially in light of God’s view of time and eternity.  God actually restored and blessed Job at the end of the book more than was taken by Satan away from him at the beginning of the book.  So again we see God’s infinite forgiveness, grace and mercy at work.  Let’s go back to James 5:11 and continue reading further.

The Greek word that was translated as “the end” in this verse in James is G5056. This is a very fascinating word to understand.  One of the primary meanings of the Greek word is “the point aimed at as the limit”.  It is absolutely critical to know that Satan’s attack usually have a termination point where it will end.  I said usually because it does depend upon if we learn the lesson of Job and stop doing what we were doing to let Satan in our life to devour us.  If we repent like Job did and close the open door of attack the blessings of God can and will return.

In one other definition of G5056 it can also represent “the price that was paid as a fine or tax”. Wow that is an important legal description of judgment from a trial if you do not know it.  Job paid a very heavy price for his sin, but yet I believe that we can read and see that he was able to get his life back on track by repenting at the end of the book before God in Job 42:6.  We should clearly learn from this book that if we do the same we can also recover from what we have done to allow Satan’s access into our lives.  I believe that knowledge should encourage and inspire us and give us hope.

I know that many will try writing this teaching of Job off by explaining it away as an act of the Sovereign God giving Satan His permission to teach Job a lesson.  Others will say this is the Old Testament and we are not now under that law or that covenant.  But I cannot agree with those reasonings using any Biblical rational form of belief since God is a loving good God (1 John 4:8, Romans 2:4) and I believe does not work with Satan to correct His people.   

Then you must also understand that Job was not at all under the Mosaic law or the Old Covenant since his life story occurred before either existed. What we are learning are three examples of spiritual judgment from heavenly court trials.   Job was before the Old Covenant and law, Peter was in the Old Covenant and under the law and then in 1 Peter 5:8 we in the church are the New Covenant people.  We will very soon learn more about these legal activities occurring in the New Covenant as we continue in today’s lesson.

I believe in every realm of the Bible that there must have been some human action, words, motivation, emotion or other negative sin committed by Job or others that unlocked the door within God’s hedge of protection in order for Satan to come into their lives to legally devour them.  As we learned again from 1 Peter 5:8 that “Satan is going about seeking for someone whom he may devour” and from this we should be able to logically deduct by strong implication that there MUST be something that we do that allows permits or grants Satan this access.

In the first lesson, I listed at least two reasons that I believe the Lord showed me that opened the access door for evil to enter into Job’s life and I also believe there were other reasons stated that I did not mention. These two door opening sins were first Job’s fear and second his pride that caused him to try to judge God and his friends.  Both of these are huge and they still occur in church members today.  We could write a lot on these two subjects but I do not have the time today. Perhaps the Lord will lead me to write a more detailed lesson just on the trial of Job someday.

In our second key study verse from lesson 1 we read what the Spirit of God said to us in Revelation chapter 12. Here we learned about how in the future when this chapter is prophesied to occur how Satan the “accuser” of the brethren (the Church) will finally be thrown down to the earth to never again be allowed entrance into heaven to accuse us.  This clearly taught us that Satan had been authorized to do this legal accusation in the past human history and he must still be accusing the people of God on the earth even now since Revelation chapters 4 through 12 have not been fulfilled.  Therefore, these court battles in heaven will continue according to God’s Word right up until the middle of the 7 year tribulation period.  Time is running out on Satan’s access and I believe personally that he is working especially hard at holding as many trials as he can to gain access to devour Christian people remaining on the earth.

I pray that you will at least study these things to see if they are true for yourself (Acts 17:11).  Let’s move forward into some more New Covenant verses to learn from on this subject.  These fresh perspectives on legal things found in the New Covenant will help build a firm foundation for our knowledge on this important spiritual subject.  They will confirm that even though we are in the church age of Grace that we are still living in a time where legal trials are still occurring.

 

New Testament Spiritual Court Confirmations

In today’s lesson, I would like to expand the topic of spiritual court systems and trials to other New Testament Bible verses that will benefit our study to support this truth from the present day New Covenant saved Christian perspective and viewpoint. As I have just tried to say, I want us to learn beyond any shadow of doubt that these heavenly trials are taking place even as I write and type the lesson and as you may be reading this lesson.   This would imply that it is even possible that you or I may be on trial presently in heaven and we probably would not know about it until Satan came to execute the sentence.  Remember in the examples that I gave in lesson 1 that Job knew nothing of Satan’s attack and he even attributed everything negative that happened to him as being caused by God’s work.  Do you remember in Job 1:21 where Job said that it is God that gave and God has taken away?  However, Job was very ignorant of God, His truth, His Character His ways and His enemies and when we are ignorant of what is really happening in the spiritual realm we can very easily fall into the same trap to accuse God for what Satan is doing to us.

Even Peter was totally unaware of the fact that Satan had demanded to sift him like wheat until Jesus directly warned Peter and even prayed for him that his “faith” would not fail during this time of trial. That is a great point to learn from.  The objective of every satanic attack is Satan’s attempt to get your faith to waiver enough for you to fall away from following after the LORD.  Peter learned a tremendous revelation from this legal trial experience and if you read his letters written to us in the church you will find this was very true.  We have already read in 1 Peter 5:8 about our legal adversary but we will back up in the letter to the previous chapter to learn more.  Let’s observe two of the most important confirming verses that will reveal and ratify this truth of the existence of heavenly trials being carried out in the church now.

1Pe 4:17  For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

1Pe 4:18  And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?

 

Can you see the words written to us in the church by Peter given according to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit? We will begin by observing the initial time reference of the recorded statement.  It appears to me to be plainly a present tense “now at the time of writing” statement.  According to proper grammatical framing whatever is written directly that follows this introductory time frame must be applied directly to the reader then and by forward association to us the modern reader now.   This makes the next statements active until there is a verse that we encounter that reveals the end of the validity of the stated truth being discussed by God.  Let’s read what was occurring to them at that time and by forward implication is occurring now to us also.

The immediate statement following the identification of the timing is about the legal court issue of “judgment”. God informs us that “judgment” will begin with us in the church and again the time being stated was clearly present tense “now” as Peter wrote the letter.  This means that this stated “judgment” written about was to believers in Peter’s day of life on the earth while alive and could not be referring to a “future” judgment after they were dead even though there are other judgments in the Bible that people will face after death.  I hope you understand that there are repeated judgments listed in the Bible.  Just because we are judged once now does not mean we cannot be judged again later and vice versa.

Both of these verses were well written relevant warnings to believers. It is very plainly stated about judgment originating with forgiven saved believers in Christ.  Notice how in verse 17 that God presents us with a sharp contrast between believers and non-believers and it cannot be any clearer.  Then in verse 18 there is a restated direct warning to every Christian that they are just “barely” saved.  We could talk about that truth for a long time and we probably should but it is really not the main thought line of this lesson.

I know for sure that we now live in the prophesied church age of God’s Grace (1 Peter 1:10).  I know for sure that God’s Grace saved us through faith (Eph 2:8).  But, I also know verses like 1 Peter 4:17 and 18 that speak additional truths and these must be aligned correctly with God’s saving grace and forgiveness message.  I just can’t teach this enough.  It is so very important to learn.

What do these verses in first Peter say to us? Do you think they do not apply to you now?  I know with 100% certainty they apply to me and were written to me.  I would strongly recommend that you find out if they were written to you also because if they were not then you may not be a real Christ follower.

God wrote to you and I (the righteous and saved) and He informs us very clearly that we may be just “scarcely” saved. This Greek word that was translated as “scarcely” is G3433 and it means “with difficulty”, “hardly” or “scarcely”.  Some synonyms of scarcely are “barely”, “narrowly” or “by a small margin”.  Some other idioms for this word would be to be saved by “the skin of your teeth” or to be saved “by a whisker”.  This Greek word can also mean “with a lot of significant work” we are saved.  Wow, have you heard that taught in any church lately?  No, I don’t think so.  I know I don’t hear it personally being taught but this is what God said.  In fact I hear the opposite being taught in churches and on TV.

You see the antonym or antithesis truth of this Greek word G3433 translated as “barely” is to be saved “fully”, “entirely”, “completely” or “totally”. That is the very popular message being spoken of by many extreme Grace Teachers and even other churches who teach a salvation without any further challenges, struggles, or any other human choices to be made in order to remain a Christian.  That is just not what the Bible actually says.  Please do not misunderstand what I say here.  We are not saved by our works.  Salvation is ONLY through our faith in God’s finished work of Grace found only in Jesus Christ.  But, that does not mean we will never be judged for doing wrong things here on the earth after salvation.  Peter clearly is telling us that “judgment” for sin begins with us right now.

We could literally talk a very long time on these two verses in 1 Peter 4 but I pray that we  receive what Peter says by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Remember that Peter is also speaking from his own personal direct experience along with God’s inspiration.  Remember we have seen how that Peter was judged and demanded to be sifted like wheat.  Then we will soon see another example where Peter was present where Christians were judged.

This Greek word G2917 that was translated as “judgment” is the key word that reinforces the truth of a trial system in heaven occurring.  This Greek word is defined as “a decision” that has been rendered by an implied Judge with proper authority (God) to make a ruling.  The decision can either be for us (in our favor) or against us (in the favor of Satan the accuser).  The implied cause of this decision (judgment) is given for the crimes (sins) that have been committed by Christians.  This same Greek word can also mean that we could be “condemned” or it is even translated as “damned” in other N.T. verses.  We certainly don’t hear these words mentioned in many of our Grace churches do we?  Since we all have been guilty of committing sins we can understand a little better why Peter said that we are just “barely” saved, can’t we?

 

Acts 5 – Another Example of N.T. Judgment #1

Did you ever read Acts chapter 5?  Remember that it was Peter that was the man that wrote the words of 1 Peter 5:8 and 4:17-18 for us.   Peter is also the man found to be preaching in the book of Acts chapter 5 to saved people of the church when another believer named Ananias comes into the service late to bring his offering to the Lord.  However, this man held back some of the money in secret and only gave a part of the money using deception saying that this was all of the money obtained.  That was a lie.  Immediately the same Peter that we are studying about was inspired by the Holy Spirit of a judgment against Ananias by giving Peter a word of knowledge.  Peter asks the man Ananias “Why has Satan filled your heart to LIE to the Holy Ghost?”  And immediately Ananias drops dead in the middle of church and his body is carried out and the church service just continues like nothing happened.  I seriously believe that a spiritual trial occurred in heaven and a verdict of guilty was determined and the sentence was carried out immediately.  You of course can explain it away and believe whet ever you like about these truths.  I have heard one popular unnamed TV extreme Grace Preacher say that Ananias wasn’t really a true Christian and this is why he was killed.  But, that cannot be the truth based upon what we just read in 1 Peter 4:17.  It is my goal to use the Bible to interpret the Bible and 1 Peter 4:17 stated that judgment begins in the church not in the unsaved world..

You will also notice in Acts 5 that this event is repeated again for his wife Sapphira. Please go and reread the story again from a court room trial perspective where a judgment and verdict is rendered and carried out.   The saved Christian wife does the exact same sin as her husband and she also drops dead in the middle of church after being confronted by Peter and the Holy Spirit.  Wow, after all of this occurs in the church a “great fear” fell on the people in church.  It may be that these types of things will occur in the last days also before Jesus returns.  We should really learn from them rather than repeat them.

Act 5:11  And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things.

“Fear” in this verse is the Greek word G5401 and it means a person who is in a state of “terror”.  Why would there be any GREAT fear in the heart of saved Christians if two unsaved people just suddenly dropped dead in the church? Why not weeping?   Why not sorrow?  Why not compassion?  Fear would only be justified for one reason.  The only way fear could be appropriately found in Christian believers would be because they knew Ananias and Sapphira were also Christians and judgment just fell on them so it could happen to them in the exact same way.    Do you understand this?

It is very foolish for Christians to try to believe these two individuals that were judged by God were anything but Christians. The belief that a loving God would condemn two unsaved people to immediate death and eternal punishment in hell is ludicrous.  If God did this in the age of Grace He would have to do it to everyone that is not saved because they all sin.   Jesus said very plainly in John 3:17 that God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world but that the world through Him might be saved.  Please let that verse found in John sink into your heart and grow very deep roots.

I hear too many preachers try to accuse God of judging lost sinners while forgetting that God loves them enough to wait for them to get saved (James 5:7).  Why wouldn’t God’s love be the same for Ananias and Shapphira if they were unsaved Christians?  I believe God so loved the unsaved world that He gave His only begotten son so that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).

We are going to read several more verses in today’s lesson about this subject. I would strongly recommend that you not stop reading because of what has been taught so far.  God is only trying to change our perspective so we can see some potentially new truths in the Bible.  All of this so far is to help us think in a fresh and a new way on things in the Bible that we have never seen in this light before.  This is really good stuff that will help us fight the enemy’s temptations and accusations that will be coming to us all.

 

New Testament Judgment #2

We have already observed where Peter said Judgment will begin with the Church. We then just read through Acts 5 for example #1 of an actual judgment that occurred to two Christians.  We are now going to turn in the Bible to a verse written by the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 11.  In this verse we are going to be reviewing the implied topic of the heavenly court system to obtain further confirmation that judgment will begin now in the church.  Please read this very carefully and accept the fact of truth that this was written directly to you and I personally as Christians:

1Co 11:31  For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.

This is an amazing truth that is too often ignored by everyone reading and teaching from the Bible. It is addressed to “we” and that is a plural pronoun that even includes the “Apostle Paul” the writer, as well as you and I the readers.  It always amazes me when a Bible teacher misses the fact that Paul included himself in statements like these.  If Paul needed to do this and he wrote 2/3 of the New Testament, how much more do you think we should do this?  What was it that Paul needed to do along with us?  Paul says very plainly that IF I JUDGE MYSELF, then and only then I will NOT be judged.  Wow, that is as insightful as it could get for a lot of Christians.  Paul is declaring very simply that a spiritual heavenly trial could have occurred for him if he did not judge his own intentions, emotions, motives, actions and words.

There are two different Greek words spoken of in this verse that we miss totally if we do not look up the original language definitions. The first Greek word translated as “judge” is speaking of our human responsibility and it is not the act of a judge in a court.  This Greek word is G1252 and it literally means that we need to separate ourselves thoroughly and completely from sin.  This is a human right of choice found and encountered every day of our saved existence.  We can do what the world does, live like the world, speak like the world, dress like the world or we can come out from the world and choose to be separate and different than they are.  This is our choice.  We can choose to either obey God or if we don’t what does God say will happen?  God says very clearly that we will be judged for doing what the world does.

Let’s observe the second word in the verse translated as “judged”. This Greek word is G2919 and it does mean that a judge will make a decision over us to possibly condemn or punish us.  Don’t take my word for it, go look up the word for yourself and learn.

The Greek Word translated as “should not” is G3756 in verse 31 is much stronger in this stated original Greek language than you can imagine. It literally means the “absolute negative”.  It should be translated in this statement as “we are never judged” IF we judge our own self.  This is revelation #1 for us to keep from being judged.  It is also the #1 reason why Christians are judged.  How many Christians think before they speak?  How many Christians really think hard about what they are going to do before they do it?  How many Christians are going to bars and night clubs acting and looking like the world?  I know there are some Christians who are doing better at being separated from the world’s way of doing things than others.  But, this is just a small part of the subject of judging yourself first in order for Satan not to bring a case before God about you!  If we read the next verse that follows verse 31 God will help clarify the reasoning why He must judge Christians even after all of our sins were forgiven in Christ:

1Co 11:32  But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

Notice the initial wording of the sentence. God begins the statement by speaking a fact of truth about “when we are judged” (G2916).  He does not say “IF WE ARE JUDGED”.  No it will occur, God leaves no doubt.  Then God gives us the #1 reason for this discipline.  The God of all knowledge says we must be chastened of the LORD so that we won’t fall into the exact same “condemnation” that the world will be judged with after we die.  There are two judgments being spoken of.  One in the future is called the “Great White Throne” judgment (Rev 20:11-12) where those that are not written in the book of life will be judged one at a time standing before God.  The other judgment that occurs before this is the one that is occurring in the Church age of Grace.  This judgment occurs when we sin willfully like the world and God needs to bring correction.  This is exactly what happened in Acts 5 believe it or not.

We as Christians can choose to judge ourselves now and choose to be different than the world now so that we can skip this after life judgment. If Ananias and Shapphira would have judged themselves before going into the church service they would not have been struck down dead.  I will try to talk more about this as we go on in the series.  Lets read some of the preceding context verses of 1 Corinthians 11 in order to learn more on this subject of judgment for those who did not judge themselves:

1Co 11:29  For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. 

1Co 11:30  For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

If we read this context carefully we will confidently confirm that this was written to Christians about Christians concerning spiritual court trial cases that were taking place even when Paul was writing this letter to the church. We should be able to see in verses 29 and 30 how that some in the Corinthian church were found guilty of both spiritual and natural sins.  In verse 29 they had been found guilty of eating the body and drinking the blood of Christ unworthily and disrespectfully.  It appears from the previous context that this church came and possibly got drunk from too much wine and ate too much bread as if they were gluttons.  Paul informs us very clearly that for this reason the result came that many of them (Christians) in the church were either sick or dead because of these abuses.  In other words, I believe that Satan had brought the judgment of the LORD against them and oppressed some of these Christians with physical illness that put them in a weakened physical state or Satan had actually been granted permission to take some Christian’s lives.  Wow, that is some very amazing truth to apply to our subject of study.

It is so very obvious to me that because of specific sin in the church that some judgments were passed in heaven in order to allow or permit Satan to come down to devour them to make some of them ill and others of them dead. This is exactly what happened to Job.  This is exactly what happened to Ananias and Sapphira.  This clearly informs us that judgment was passed before they knew of this and that only after Paul wrote to them in order to warn them how to fix it was it learned what the real problem was to begin with.  I personally believe that Paul was given a word of knowledge for this church and Paul tells them very plainly that if they would only begin to judge themselves to do things differently than the world that they would never be judged.

Wow, Wow and Wow!!!   Who was it that judged them?  Who was it that accused them before the judge?  Who was it that gained an advantage over them to take them out of this world or make them sick?  I hope you can already see the answers are plain.  God had to pass judgment because they had not judged themselves.  The judgment had to have been initiated by the accuser of the brethren and that is only Satan or at least it should be.  I hope and pray that you as a Christian would not pick up a stone to throw at your brother.  Please never do this.  Don’t act like Satan, but rather choose to act like Christ who said to the woman caught in adultery “Woman where are your accusers?  Neither do I condemn you, go your way and sin no more”.  What an amazing example lesson to learn from.

CONCLUSION

I think I have gone long enough in this lesson. We can certainly learn so much more from these chapters in Acts 5 and 1 Corinthians 11 than I was able to go into in today’s lesson.  The Lord has provided us all great and very significant meaty spiritual food for thought.  We all should take these words of God to heart and meditate on them for a long time.  Please study for yourself and verify exactly that what is being said in this series is what the loving God of the Bible actually says as a warning to Christians.  God has provided at least two major witnesses to every truth being taught.

Thank you for reading and taking your time to study these advanced Bible lessons. I am truly humbled that God would use anyone as imperfect as me to teach anyone anything.  The goodness of God is truly overwhelming me every day of my life.  I love the LORD and trust Him to help mold me and you into the highest pattern of Christ Jesus.  I pray that you are blessed with every spiritual blessing of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ Jesus.  Amen.

 

Understanding the Divine Spiritual Laws and Court System of Heaven

Judge Gavel(Ver 1.3) This is  Part 1 in a series of advanced spiritual Bible lessons on the revealed subject of God’s Divine Spiritual Laws, Systems and Legal Proceedings.  Are there spiritual laws found in heaven?  Is there a heavenly courtroom?  Are there trials that have taken place in this heavenly realm?  If yes, who is the judge?  Who is the one that brings charges and against who are the charges addressed at?  There are so many things to learn from the Bible that we will not abe able to answer every question in one Bible study.  To attempt to do so would do each answer an injustice.

It has always been my priority to teach what God has given to me for free and give it to others without any charge.  But, I don’t only want to teach you what God gave to me, but also I wish to teach you a better way to study and learn from His glorious Word.  Hopefully, the LORD has used me to teach you how to fish for yourself and not just for me to feed you a fish for a single day.

Like many other lessons that I believe the Lord has given to me, today’s Bible lesson should be viewed as a very advanced spiritual topic intended for Christ followers that are fully committed to grow to become a spiritually mature student of God’s Word able to partake of spiritual meat.  Please judge if you meet this requirement before continuing to read this lesson further.  It is one of my greatest heart’s desires to not offend or cause any newborn or spiritually immature Christian to stumble or fall causing them to depart from the LORD.  I believe that the Apostle Paul wrote with this same quality when he said I would have liked to feed you meat but you were unable to receive it and therefore I could only give you milk.  Ok that was my paraphrase of 1 Corinthians 3:2.  But, I believe the hidden heart of Paul’s message contained in that verse is that of one of his greatest desires for his students to grow up spiritually.  I believe Paul desired people to grow up so that they were able to receive a much stronger spiritual message of truth.  Then I believe Paul wanted for each of them to go and spread his message from the word of God to others with the same love for people.  Please judge for yourself before you continue.

INTRODUCTION

We in the United States have three branches of Government. These three are a Legislative Branch, an Executive Branch and a Judicial Branch.  This was the idea framed by our founding fathers of our nation and they were mostly Christians that I believe modeled their government beliefs on God’s Bible principles.  I believe this was not by chance or accident but rather by divine design.  I believe God placed His hand on their efforts and blessed them to know things way beyond their natural ability.

In this lesson we are going to focus upon God’s Judicial Branch found in heaven and how the earthly U.S. court system is a pattern of that which God originally designed. Maybe you did not realize that God’s heavenly spiritual government (Kingdom) had a Judicial Branch?  If you have read the Bible, I am really not sure how this fact has escaped you but if you search for it you will find that it is very true from Genesis to Revelation.  For example, in the Bible the LORD God reveals Himself as the Most High Righteous Judge in so many verses.  A named existence of a Heavenly Superior Divine Judge implies very strongly that there also must be found present laws, a courtroom, some legal proceedings and rules, lawsuits, trials, a plaintiff or a prosecuting attorney, a defense attorney and a defendant.  I will prove to you using the Bible that these all exist in a form or pattern using the Bible.  I will also teach you that there are innumerable court cases that are taking place every day including today right this moment while you are reading about them.  Wow, that should at least peak your interest a little bit to desire to learn more about God’s revealed truth.

If you have read very much of the Bible you should already know who the Heavenly Judge is and that is certainly the LORD God and Jesus Christ according to Genesis 18:25, Acts 10:42 and Hebrews 12:23 to list just three of many confirming witnesses of truth.  But, there are also so many new implied questions that need to be answered.   Who is the plaintiff or prosecuting attorney bringing the charges and cases against someone in God’s Court System?  I’ll tell you right now it is Satan and I will prove this later in the lesson.  Who is the defendant being charged or sued?  I’ll tell you up front again that you are the one being charged by Satan and I will prove this with scriptures also.  We will also begin to learn about the charges being made to God by Satan.  This should interest you because we will learn that it is our human wrong actions here on the earth that open the door for Satan to bring a lawsuit against us.

Is there a defense attorney in this trial?  If so, who is the defense lawyer in the case?  I’ll tell you right now we have access to a legal defense team ever since the LORD Jesus Christ died and was resurrected from the dead.  You can be introduced to this part of the message by reading an older Bible lesson that I wrote called “Understanding How to Make Jesus Your Legal Advocate Right Now”.

I’m sure you must be asking “How can there ever be a spiritual case of law being brought into a heavenly trial to be heard by God for a Christian if Jesus has truly paid for every sin that we have ever committed or could ever commit in the future?” Many would say “I thought we were not under law but under grace therefore can there really be a spiritual trial now before we die?” Others ask the question “I thought the only judgment was after we die according to Hebrews 9:27?”  We know from reading the end of Revelation that there will be a Great White throne Judgment but I believe that there are also other named judgments that will occur after death and even now before death. If there is a judgment that can take place before we die, “What could be the charge brought against a forgiven saved Christian?”   These are complex deep questions to answer and God gives us the revelations in the Bible if we dig for them and find them.  Seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you and ask and it will be answered (Mat 7:7).

This Bible lesson is a response to a question raised by a good reader doing their homework. They asked the question concerning a message being taught within certain churches that appear to conflict with what is taught in other areas of the Bible.  The controversy comes from a modern extreme Grace teaching that is being taught that since Jesus paid for all of our sins, past, present and future there are no longer any consequences for committing any sin or any need to ask for any future forgiveness of a sin.  In other words sin is presented to be harmless without any negative penalties.  In fact at least one very popular grace preacher teaches we do not even need to ask for forgiveness for any sin and they explain away 1 John 1:9 using illogical natural human reasoning to be written to only unbelievers.  But this is certainly not what the Lord has taught me about a better way of Bible interpretation and more specifically sin.  This Bible study series will address this topic using several ignored scriptures that must be balanced with the doctrine being misrepresented by some extreme unnamed grace teachers.

You see I do certainly believe that Jesus died once for all sin that has ever been committed, is being perpetrated today and will occur tomorrow. We know this truth from verses like Romans 6:10, 2 Corinthians 5:14 and Hebrews 10:10 to name a few foundational truths on this subject of the comprehensive power of the blood sacrifice of the Lord Jesus.  I will say it again for emphasis, I am a very firm believer that there was one sacrifice for every human sin and no further sacrifice was or is necessary.  However, we cannot ignore other verses that declare very plainly that the sin of even Christians can still have some major potential consequences.  Please do not misunderstand what I am teaching.  I am not saying every little sin we commit can cause something significantly bad to occur nor am I teaching that a Christian can lose their salvation by committing a sin.   But, I am definitely teaching that Satan is looking at each of our lives very closely to gain an access and entry into our lives to kill, steal or destroy us (John 10:10).  That is exactly what we will learn next.

SATAN IS SEARCHING FOR A LEGAL WAY IN

There is another part of the extreme Grace message that must be addressed immediately. While it is true that Satan was defeated by the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus, it does not mean that he is not presently trying everything in his power (and he is still very powerful) to get you to fall away from Jesus or not produce any savable fruit to be harvested by Jesus.  We need to study the parable of the sower and I wrote about this awhile back so I will not repeat it all here again.  Just understand that every soil type in the parable “heard” the word of God and only one group produced any harvestable fruit.  Satan successfully destroyed the harvest in every other soil type.  Satan desires access into our lives after we hear the Gospel and are saved by believing, accepting and confessing Jesus as our LORD (Romans 10:9-10).  There must be some insight given by God that shows us what grants Satan access to be victorious over some and not over others.  We could talk about this a long time but we need to get to one of the foundational verses for the lesson:

1Pe 5:8  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

We are starting with a verse that was written directly to “saved born-again” Christians. I take this verse personally as an inspired word of warning written to me and so should you.  It is so very clear to me that Satan desires to devour every Christian but can’t.  What is it that allows Satan access to attack some Christians and not others?  If you do not believe you can do anything to grant or permit the devil access into your life to devour, you have definitely been deceived by an extreme grace teacher.  It would be very stupid for the LORD God to inspire Bible writers to warn us about something that could not occur and God is not stupid!

I am now going to begin to introduce you to God’s heavenly court system. There are four main participants in every court case.  Those that are the accused can also be known as a defendant, the defense attorney may be present, the prosecutor also known as the plaintiff and then the Judge.  Many know of these truths better than others.  But, these are the basic main participants of every trial in this natural world and these are all parallel truths for the divine heavenly court cases going on today also.

Notice what I just said. I said this is happening everyday of your life here on the earth.  I say this because I believe that every day Satan is looking (seeking, searching and plotting to gain access) using a legal charge to accuse and condemn us with.  I want to go back to 1 Peter 5:8 and give you one of the key words that will help us verify one of the key principles that I am teaching.  The primary word is “adversary”.  This Greek word is G476 and it literally means “your opponent in a court trial”.  According to this verse Satan is bringing a legal lawsuit before God on a daily basis in order to gain access to someone (even a Christian) to devour them.  What this verse implies is that God must judge the “access demand” to be just in order for Satan’s entry to be legal.  Wow, that does not sit well with a lot of modern extreme grace teachers.  But, I’m sorry it is what the Bible says, not me.

This Greek word G476 translated as “adversary” occurs in the New Testament only in four verses and it is always applicable to a legal battle between two opponents in a court of law. You may look up these verses to verify these truths by reading verses in Matthew 5:25, Luke 12:58 and Luke 18:3.  In every case there is a stated defendant, an adversary and a judge.  While there is no legal counsel it may be assumed or implied based upon our knowledge of how natural court cases transpire.  We will look deeper to verify the identities of the spiritual participants in God’s heavenly court cases very shortly.  But, please understand that God’s word selection of G476 establishes a direct word and subject association  to a court trial case that must also be occurring in 1 Peter 5:8  and this is a very critical lesson to learn and apply in a better way of Bible interpretation.  See how a word selected by God is used in other verses and it will help to establish the definition in the verse in question.

Based upon 1 Peter 5:8 we can learn by implied reference who the defendant is and who the plaintiff is. Since the verse was a written warning to us in the church, that makes Christians the direct implied defendant being charged. We then can certainly see very plainly that since the devil is stated to be our “adversary” we know clearly that he is the one bringing the case before the Judge.  Therefore, the case is being brought up before the implied Judge (God) by Satan in order to accuse us and gain access to attack us.

Let’s get another verse to help us verify this truth. After all God instructs us to use the mouth of two or three witnesses to establish every truth which is another best practice to correctly interpret the Bible.  Again this truth must be occurring in a judicial spiritual courtroom before God the Spiritual Judge.  I believe that God will always require at least two witnesses to establish every case truth.  Please turn in your Bibles and read the following verse found in the Book of Revelation:

Rev 12:10  And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

Wow, this verse is of such great significance to our Bible subject that I cannot emphasize it strongly enough. I would like to begin by stating the fact that this verse is a future prophecy that has not yet occurred.  We know this by the fact that God tells the author John in Revelation 4:1 to come up to heaven in order to be shown things that will occur in the future.  I am a firm believer that everything in Revelation 4 to the end of the book is future prophetic statements that have not yet occurred.  I also believe that they are written in Chronological order of occurrence.  Therefore, since Revelation 4 through 11 has not occurred Revelation 12 has also not occurred.

What does this verse say? We must really read the context in order to discover the true identity of one of the central figures being named and discussed in this verse.  We can read back a few verses in Revelation 12: 7 to begin to learn that Satan is also called the ancient serpent and the great dragon as figuratively speaking titles.  Satan has also just been cast down out of heaven after a significant spiritual war.  Let’s read these verses to verify where Satan will be cast out of.  Turn in your Bible and begin reading with verse 7 to get the more complete revelation of what is going to occur very soon:

Rev 12:7  And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 

Rev 12:8  And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. 

Rev 12:9  And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

Here are the future prophesied facts given to us by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. First, a spiritual war will occur.  It is definitely a spiritual battle and not a natural conflict.  Second, the participants of the war are spiritual beings.  There is Michael and his angels defending heaven against the dragon (Satan) and his angels attacking heaven.  Third, Satan and his angels lose the battle.  Fourth, God states that Satan has ONLY NOW lost his place (right and ability) to enter back into heaven ever again in verse 8.  What does this teach us?  Verses 7 and 8 are teaching us by implied truth that before this event occurs Satan HAD FULL ACCESS and the ability to come and go from and to heaven any time that he wanted.  Why do you think this was granted?  I personally believe it is because of two main factors.  The first factor is that God is just and that God must honor His Word.    I believe we are about to learn more by a deeper study that the access granted was for the purpose of putting God’s people aka. Christians on trial.

We now should know that Satan had access into heaven very clearly from the statements found in verses 7 through 10. Now, look at what Satan is called in verse 10.  Satan is referred directly by the Word of God to be the “accuser”.  In fact the name Satan literally means “adversary”.   Remember that “adversary” means “your legal opponent in a law case” and this firmly connects us back to 1 Peter 5:8.  The Greek word translated as “accuser” is a very synonymous legal title to “adversary”.  An accuser (Greek word G2725) is literally defined by Strong’s as someone that brings a compliant of law before a judge to gain an advantage over an opponent.  I added the last part of that definition simply because that is what is being implied by the definition.  Why would Satan come up to heaven before the LORD GOD’s court to accuse a “brother” in Christ?   It would be extremely wise to give that question a lot of thought before answering quickly.

I believe God is telling us from verse 10 of Revelation 12 that Satan came up to heaven before Him both night and day to bring up complaints and charges against the people of God. We learn this truth by applying the key word “Brethren” to make it personal to Christians in the family of Jesus Christ.  The Greek word translated as “brethren” is found over 300 times in the N.T.  It can be used for natural or spiritual brothers.  But, we use the context to understand that it must be “spiritual brothers” because everything else in the chapter appears to use natural symbols to point us to spiritual truths.  I can see this and I pray you can also.  You can search your Bible for G80 to learn how Paul and other N.T. writers applied this term “brethren” to the church family members.

Brethren here in this verse 10 must also be interpreted as those that are still living here on the earth since Satan was just thrown down form the spiritual realm of heaven back to the earth in a great fury of rage to wage war against those still not in heaven. I understand that there will be a lot of people that call themselves Christians that will not agree with what the Lord is teaching us here today.  But, I’m not responsible to make anyone believe the Bible.  All that any teacher can do is to present the facts given and then let the reader decide what they wish to believe for themselves.

While we are on verse 10 of Revelation 12 we must see and learn the second legal word term being mentioned. This term is the Greek word G2723 that was translated as “accused”.   Let me review the part of the verse statement that I wish to emphasize.  God says here “which accused them before God day and night”.  Wow, this is critical to understand.  This Greek word G2723 literally means “to be a plaintiff” in a court case.  This word plainly means to bring a charge of offence/crime against a defendant.  This is clearly describing spiritual court cases that were taking place 24 hours a day where God was the stated judge, Christians were the stated defendants and Satan was the stated plaintiff bringing the charges.  All of this legal activity stops after Revelation 12.  According to Revelation 12 these spiritual court cases do not cease until half of the tribulation’s seven years have gone by.  That literally verifies to us that they are happening right now as you are reading this lesson believe it or not.

BIBLE EXAMPLES OF SPIRITUAL TRIALS

I will end this lesson today with three examples of spiritual trials that have taken place. The first one is a trial that occurred before Jesus was ever born on the earth.  I am talking about a trial that is found in the oldest book of the Bible, the book of Job.  The story of Job probably occurred way over 4000 years ago.  My best guess would be sometime after Noah and before Abraham.

I am not going to go through every verse that I could, but I would recommend that you go and reread Job chapter 1 using the information we have learned in this lesson so far to verify that this is an example of a literal court case being waged against Job a righteous man.  In fact it would be good to read the entire book of Job looking at it from a legal court perspective.

This case is being brought before God by Satan who is bringing charges up against him to the Judge.  We learn by reading Job 1:6 that the trial definitely takes place in heaven as we have learned he had access to heaven from reading Revelation 12.  Satan appears before God and the omniscient Judge asks him two questions.  The first question in verse 7 is where have you come from?  You know God knows the answer but he asks the question for our benefit to connect us directly with vital information found in 1 Peter 5:8.  Remember what this verse said?  Satan answers the question truthfully and states he has just come from going to and fro in the earth.  Do you now see the direct connection to 1 Peter 5:8?  Your adversary the devil (Satan) goes about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.  God is giving us direct connected insight into Job’s court case by connecting us with a verse that helps us to understand the legal procedure taking place in heaven.

The second question asked by God to Satan was “Have you considered my servant Job”.  Omniscient God understands that Job was why Satan came up to heaven to start this court case.  Satan then asks God a question “Does Job fear God for nothing?”  This is the beginning of Satan’s introductory opening statement for his case against Job.  Any way I am not going to go through this all in depth in this lesson .  But, please understand and apply what we have learned from 1 Peter 5;8 and Revelation 12.  “Your adversary the devil goes about the earth like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour” and “Satan accused them before God night and day”.

We also learn from reading and studying Job that God informs Satan that he has access to devour Job (all that he has is in your power Job 1:12) and this is what proves that Satan won that court case.  Satan obviously has found someone that is able to be devoured.

Satan then goes about Job’s life and kills, steals and destroys a great portion of his family and possessions.  It was a very clear victorious court case won by the devil over a righteous man on the earth.

But, what won the case for Satan?  I will let you into a couple of significant clues to why the court case was easily won by Satan.  There are at least two major things that Job did to open the door in the hedge of protection that God had placed around him.  First, it says in Job 3:25 that Job said “the thing that I greatly feared has come upon me”.  This verse informs us of the presence of “fear” in Job’s heart and it was this spirit of fear that helps open the door for Satan to win a case against him.  Fear is the opposite spiritual force of faith and without faith it is absolutely impossible to please God (Heb 11:6).  Therefore, fear is not a connecting force to God but it must be considered an attracting force of Satan.

The second mistake Job made was pride.  The Bible says that God resists the proud but gives grace unto the humble (James 4:6).  If you read the book of Job you will find that Job was found guilty of judging God and judging others (his friends) without sufficient knowledge to do either.  We should be able to understand that judging others and God is a clear sign of pride.  Job spoke many things that he was later rebuke by God for saying.

We learn these truths by reading the rest of the book of Job where he is speaking to his friends and later when God speaks to him.  Notice in Job 38:2 that God asks Job a question “Who is this that darkens counsel with words without knowledge?”  Here is a very good verse that informs us of another legal term.  A “Counselor” can be applied to a person of law or legal advice in a courtroom trial.  Perhaps you have seen this before.  What I am trying to say here is that words spoken in judgment of others without full knowledge can be an access point for Satan to win a judgment against you.

I have said enough about Job to get you started.  Now, let’s go read another example court case that transpired only about 2000 years ago.

The second spiritual trial that I want to point out from the Bible occurs while Jesus walked the face of the earth in the flesh with His 12 disciples about 2000 years ago. We will begin reading in Luke 22 and verse 31:

Luk 22:31  And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

Reading only the English language translation we miss so very much of the stated truth. Jesus is talking directly to Peter and calls him by name twice to emphasize the critical importance of the next statement to follow.  Satan as we learned from Revelation 12 and 1 Peter 5 was the direct adversary seeking access by legal complaint against the human Peter in this case.  Therefore, we understand that Satan is the plaintiff in this statement of Jesus.  The key word that must be examined with deeper understanding is the Greek word G1809 and it is incorrectly translated as “desired” in this verse.  While it is true that Satan desires to get to us all but that is not what the Greek word that was selected and written was intended to have been spoken by Jesus.  This Greek word literally means “to demand for trial”.  Jesus is warning Peter that he has done something that Satan believes gives him access to sift him like wheat.  Perhaps you should do a little research about how wheat is sifted.  Sifting of wheat is definitely not a nonviolent or peaceful act.  Anyone sifting wheat represents someone using their power, ability and force over the wheat being sifted to remove some good from the bad.  It would be good to learn more about this but that is not my primary subject.  I just want us to focus on the legal issues that must have occurred to give Satan the right to “demand” by a trial to have access to Peter’s life.  But, we later learn after this verse that Jesus (Peter’s implied attorney) prayed that Peter’s faith would not fail.  This does not mean that the sifting would not take place it only means Jesus asked the Father to help Peter come through the trial’s verdict being rendered.  It would be great to go and study more about what Peter may have done to be sifted but I don’t really have the time in this lesson.

A MODERN DAY TRIAL

I am not able to go into every sin that a person can commit in order to be bought into spiritual court by Satan the accuser but I will end this part of the lesson with a third true life firsthand experience of this reality that I experienced a few years ago. This testimony concerns the life of my father.  I learned of it by living it and hearing from others about it and I trust the testimony of those witnesses that have shared it with me.  My father was a pastor for several years.  I grew up attending his churches and hearing him preach his sermons.

My father was going to his second Bible school to learn and expand his knowledge of God and the Bible by attending good classes with great teachers. In his second year of this Bible school attendance in the first semester, he was sitting and taking notes when suddenly the man of God giving the lesson stopped and looked right at my father.  God was giving the instructor a vision of a great dark cloud resting above the head of my father.  The instructor knew from experience what this meant.  He knew it was a death cloud that was warning my father that he would die soon.  The Bible instructor called my father to the front of the class before all the other students.  He put his hand on him and rebuked death and prayed for him.  But, the instructor then asked my father to come see him privately so that he could share what else the LORD had given to him in his warning.  I was not present when all of this occurred but my mother was in the class and she is one of the primary witnesses to the story and my mother was not a liar.  She recounted this testimony after my father died.

I guess you already know that my father did not ever go and see the Bible teacher in private to hear the rest of the warning message from the LORD. A couple of months later my father had a stroke and was carried unconscious in an ambulance to a local hospital.  My brother was home when all of this happened and he can testify to the truth of this part of the story.  My father died a few days later after being transported.  He never regained consciousness.  He died like the Bible teacher warned he would.

The Bible teacher performed the funeral for my father and after the funeral my mother learned the rest of the message directly from the teacher that prayed for him. The Bible teacher informed my mother that God had told him to warn my father about his love walk with people.  I should rather say that it was a lack of his love that concerned him more.  Jesus gave us in the church a new commandment of LOVE and this is one way that Satan gained access into killing my father through his disobedience.  I believe very firmly that because my father was not walking in love towards others that Satan brought him up on trial.  I believe very firmly based upon spiritual laws that God tried to warn my father by even giving someone a vision of what was about to happen even before it happened.  Like the prophet that warned the king in the Old Testament to get his house in order for you shall surely die, the same occurred for my father.  However, the king in the Old Testament repented and prayed and he was granted more years on the earth.  I believe this was what was happening with my father also.  If he had repented and changed he might have lived a much longer life.

But, my father did not cooperate or may not have believed the warning or may have even wanted to go ahead and die.  We don’t know the reason why he did nothing to prevent Satan’s attack.  But that is what happened to him.  The thief came into his life and killed my father just as John 10:10 states.

There was also another door that my parents opened to allow Satan access into their lives in this spiritual court case. After they were first married and before I was born, they went to a fair where they were just having fun.  They ran across a fortune teller/palm reader tent and went in to play Satan’s deceptive game in ignorance.  The fortune teller informed my mother that she had a long life line and would live a long time on the earth, but when she looked at my father’s hand she told him he would die young.  I believe this foolish act set spiritual laws into motion and gave Satan a plot and a plan to bring up before God in my father’s trial.  Had my father not gone into the fortune teller based upon his knowledge of God’s word this may have changed his life significantly.  Had he rebuked the words spoken over him this may have also changed his life significantly.  But doing nothing is certainly the worst option that anyone can choose.  My mother informed me of all this after my father had died.

My father was barely 44 years old when he died. My mother lived to the age of 80 and the palm reader’s words both came true.  Become aware of the things that can open the door for Satan before it is too late.  Dabbling in the occult, fortune tellers, Ouija boards and the like, I believe opens the door for Satan to bring you before God’s court system.  Spiritual laws are put into motion by words spoken by us, over us or about us.  I believe that if we do not renounce them and rebuke them they will become seeds that grow and produce thorns and thistles in our lives.

CONCLUSION

Psa 43:1  Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.

This was only a basic overview and introduction of a much deeper subject. There are many other things to learn on this subject of God’s divine justice system.  I do appreciate your time in reading and studying the Bible on this website.  There are many other lessons that can be freely accessed by searching or clicking on topics and dates.  May God bless and keep you until the return of our LORD and Savior Jesus Christ.

If you would like to continue reading in this series you may click here for “Part 2“.

Understanding Bible Division: Part 2 – Jesus Teaches Us on the Coming Division

brick-wall-barrier-figures-both-sides(Ver 1.0) This is Part 2 in a series of advanced spiritual Bible studies about a subject of significant proportions and value that is rarely being taught.  Because of a lack of teaching on  the subject of division, many false beliefs have tried to creep into the church.  One such belief is known by some as the doctrine of “Universal Salvation”.  Within this false belief people think incorrectly that just because God is not willing for any to perish according to 2 Peter 3:9 and because God is sovereign they believe that no one will ever go to hell or be forever separated from Him.  However, that is not what the Bible actually teaches us when it is divided correctly.  Please understand that Satan is fighting this divine message of division with his great and convincing powers of deception.  He is doing his utmost best to not let Christians or the world know that there remains a default separation of eternal fiery torment that people must choose to avoid.  It is only by this one way of escape named Jesus Christ that they can be saved.  They must  make Jesus Christ their own personal LORD and SAVIOR or they will be eternally separated from God to be with Satan.  I’ll talk more about this later.

Division Series Foundational Verse

It has been awhile since I was able to continue this series so I will review the lesson series foundational scripture verse. I pray that you took the time to read Part 1 already.  I am sorry, but I am unable to attempt to cover everything that was taught in the first lesson here again.  I believe that God gave to me the foundational basis of these Biblical division lessons and this verse comes from the mouth of Jesus spoken to us in Luke 12:51.  Here in this statement Jesus reveals a hidden prophetic reason for His personal appearance in the flesh here on the earth.  Please read the statement carefully and even go back and reread the context if you like.

Luk 12:51  Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:

Jesus states very clearly that He has not come into the world to bring peace. Then Jesus also said very clearly that “division” was then and I believe still is now one of the primary reasons for His first coming.  Please notice that this division is stated by the associated combined statement to be the antithesis of “peace”.  I believe that this disunity with peace was one of His crucial reasons for appearing here in the flesh on the earth.  Do you believe Jesus knew what He was saying when He spoke these words?  Do you believe Jesus was speaking the truth?  If He was not speaking literally the truth here then this raises doubtful questions about every other word that was written that He spoke also.  I personally am going to believe Him.  Others can make their own choice.

This statement of Jesus was truly a very mysterious declaration of truth. This goes against many Christian’s theological reasoning and thinking.  On the surface this statement appears to contradict with several verses that I went over in lesson 1.  Another potential contradictory verse came to my mind is found in John 3:16.  Jesus said in John 3:16 that “God so loved the world (in its entirety) that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life”.

If we just read the first part of John 3:16 and ignore the last adjoining conditional statement we may think that Jesus’ plan to divide the world in Luke 12:51 is a strong contradiction to God so loved us to save the entire lost world. But, Jesus attaches a major condition in order to obtain this salvation for all humans and He informs us that we MUST believe in Him in order to not be eternally lost.

Does everyone in the world believe in Jesus? The answer is an obvious NO!  Once you understand that being saved or lost is a human conditional belief in Jesus and who He is and what He did for us then possibly you can begin to understand why Jesus said He came to divide the nations of earth and not to unite them all in peace.  Let’s continue in this lesson with some new statements from Jesus that are clearly related to the statement of Luke 12:51.

 

Jesus WILL Divide the Sheep from the Goats

Today we will carry on this vital Bible study series with a few additional direct teachings of Jesus that support the belief that His appearing on the earth was to bring division based upon our personal belief in Him. I personally believe the following words written in red ink in the KJV Bible are some of the most clear and direct words of a coming prophesied division that we can find in the Bible.  Please read these words very slowly and carefully and pay attention to what is being communicated and notice the timing of these events.

Mat 25:31  When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:

Mat 25:32  And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 

Mat 25:33  And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 

Mat 25:34  Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 

Mat 25:35  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 

Mat 25:36  Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 

Mat 25:37  Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 

Mat 25:38  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 

Mat 25:39  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 

Mat 25:40  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. 

Mat 25:41  Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: 

Mat 25:42  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: 

Mat 25:43  I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. 

Mat 25:44  Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? 

Mat 25:45  Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. 

Mat 25:46  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

Starting with verse 31 we should be able to begin to understand the timing for the prophetic statements that are being made by Jesus in verses 32 through 46. Jesus was then and still is now informing us what will occur at His second coming to the earth.  This will be a future event that is probably much sooner than we can imagine.   I want you to first notice in verse 31 that Jesus said that He will be bringing with Him all of the Holy angels to assist Him in this event.  Wow, that is amazing information that implies to us that there must be other “unholy” angels that are not included in the number.  We can understand this plainly by the addition of the adjective “holy” since this is a limiting qualifier that reduces the scope of the total angel group class (the noun) that is being spoken of.  It would be the exact same as if Jesus said he would bring with him “all the red angels” eliminating the blue angels, green angels, yellow angels, etc.   The inclusion of the word “all” means “every” and none are excluded and this simply informs us that there are No holy angels that are omitted.  This is the first statement of division being made in this subject discussion.  There will be 2/3 of the angels called holy that will remain with the LORD and the other 1/3 angels that will not be with Him we can call the “unholy” angels and we learn this information by reading about them in Revelation 12:4.

The holy angels that are for the LORD Jesus in verse 32 will then gather all of the people of the nations of the earth together for the final judgment of each individual. This is plainly stated but it cannot be viewed as a confirmation to the false belief of “universal salvation” because not everyone in these nations will be saved as we will read.  Only those that qualify by their correct beliefs in Jesus will be saved.  All others will perish just as we read in John 3:16.  However, perish does not mean that they will cease to exist.  That belief would contradict too many other verses that I do not have time to teach on in this lesson.

One of the key words found in verse 32 was translated into English as “separate”. This is a direct reference to our Bible study subject of division.  We are unmistakably informed by Jesus that He will be the one that will divide the people of every nation just as we read in Luke 12:51 that He said He came to do.  This Greek word G873 translated as “separate” literally means to set apart by a boundary.  Synonyms can be “divide” and “sever” and it comes from two Greek root words that mean to “partition off”.  Jesus is teaching us that there is a coming portioned boundary or a wall of separation between two very different groups of people and we are about to find out who these are in the next verses.

Notice at the end of verse 32 in Matthew 25 that Jesus tells us of Him separating people like a shepherd removes his sheep from his goats. One of the key words for correct interpretation in this separation is the word “like”.  This clearly informs us that Jesus is about to begin speaking about literal spiritual truths using figurative natural symbols.  However in this interpretation process knowing what is figurative and what is literal is what becomes important.  Know how to rightly divide the spiritual truth using the natural symbols is a major part of the subject of division but not my main topic today.  Please just note that most of the next nouns being referred to will be symbolic but the verbs I believe are very literal.

Jesus said “like” a shepherd separates his sheep from his goats is the action that is about to take place. I found that statement so very interesting and it raised a lot of questions in my mind.  For example, is it necessary to separate sheep from goats?  Why would a shepherd do this?  How would a shepherd do this?  These are just a few of the questions that were raised by the statement.

Verse 33 informs us that Jesus will set the sheep at His right hand and the goats at His left hand. I found this to be a very interesting concept to try to grasp and I asked another questions can sheep and goats even live together in the natural?  If yes, then why would it be necessary for sheep and goats to be separated by natural shepherds?

Do sheep and goats fight each other or is there some other created reason that sheep and goats should be separated?  I did some research and discovered that the mineral “copper” is the primary reason for any natural need of separation and division.  Feeding copper to sheep kills them but copper is a nutritional necessity for all goats.  Without copper in a goat diet they will die.  Therefore, goats must have copper to live and sheep absolutely must not because it will kill them.  Could any of this information have spiritual meaning and significance to our Bible study subject?  I believe it does.

There is a unique quality of copper given to us in the Bible that I will only touch on in this lesson briefly. The English word copper is translated from the Hebrew word H5178 in the Old Testament and this word is most often translated as “brass”.  However, this is even more interesting because it is also translated as the English word “filthiness”.  There is a very powerful hidden message being given to us by the LORD Jesus in the separation of the sheep from the goats lesson.  The sheep represent pure beings without any filth being found present in them and the separated goats represent beings that must have filth in their lives in order to live.  Sheep living in continued filth will die but remaining pure without partaking of the copper filth diet (sin) they will live.  I found that to be truly amazing.  I believe the Lord led me to this to teach us the basic need for separation and division between these two groups.  Filth represents sin and cannot remain in those standing on His right hand representing symbolic sheep.  But, those standing on His left hand representing symbolic “goats” seem to indicate that sin will never depart from them.

Matthew 25:34 tells us that those (symbolic sheep) on His right hand will be called “blessed” and they alone are invited to enter into the kingdom prepared for them from the foundation of the world. In sharp contrast in Matthew 25:41 those on His left hand (symbolic goats) will be called “cursed” and commanded to depart from His sight into everlasting fire prepared for Satan and his angels.  This is further confirmation that there are two prepared destinations determined for two kinds of people and two kinds of angels.  The angels with God were called holy earlier and these combined angels with the goats are both joined with Satan to go to hell.  Hell is the destination location where sin and filth is associated.  Wow, that is really some very powerful words of revelation from Jesus.

Jesus ends the lesson in verse 46 of Matthew 25 with two very diverse ending locations for these opposing groups. Those sheep that will be called righteous have received eternal life while those goats that depart and go into eternal punishment we know are unrighteous.  I am not going to go into every verse of this teaching to show why sheep are rewarded and goats are punished.  You can do that for yourself or ask specific questions if you like in a comment.

Please take away from this lesson that there is a major division of separation that will be taking place.  Both the sheep and goats live together for a time and it is a personal choice which one you are.  Those that are goats that will be separated in the future to be on His left hand should be warned now to choose the free gift of eternal life as soon as they can before it is too late.  Let’s continue to a new parallel teaching from Jesus.

 

Dividing the Wheat from the Tares

There is more than one message of division found in the Bible being spoken from the direct lips of Jesus. In fact this message is a central theme given by God from Genesis to Revelation.  We can read this message repeatedly in almost every book of the Bible in some form.  I believe that division was the plan of God before He even created our present world.  Adam’s sin did not take God by surprise.  I believe that God always has an answer prepared before there is any known stated problem.  I want to continue this lesson today with another very direct and plain message of division given to us by Jesus in the book of Matthew.  We will begin reading in chapter 13 and verse 24:

 

Mat 13:24  Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: 

Mat 13:25  But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. 

Mat 13:26  But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. 

Mat 13:27  So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? 

Mat 13:28  He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? 

Mat 13:29  But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. 

Mat 13:30  Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

 

This is another message of divine spiritual importance given to us by God using symbolic figurative natural language to describe supernatural realities. The basic rule of interpretation for this parable is similar to the sheep and goats message.  The nouns should generally be viewed as symbolic while the verbs should generally be taken as literal acts done to or by those that are represented by the symbolic nouns.  It must be understood that this parable is stated to also be a likeness of the truth and not the complete truth in detail.  That does not mean it is not true.  But it does mean the timing of the events and specifics of the events are not al plainly stated.  This higher spiritual message represents a natural message given to us on a much lower human level.  God does this so that we can possibly understand it more easily than if He described the spiritual events from His superior divine intelligence viewpoint.

Maybe, you are not fully grasping what I was trying to teach. But, I hope and pray that you are.  Let’s talk about this idea and concept in a bit more detail.  The Greek word translated as “likened” in verse 24 is G3666. This Greek word is used to make a comparison between two separate realities, truths, people, etc.  It is used 15 times in 15 different verses.  The majority of the time it is translated in a form of ‘like”.  For example, someone could say “oranges” are like “tangerines” and if someone had an experience of tasting, smelling and feeling a tangerine and never had an orange.  This comparison knowledge gives the tangerine person a step up on understanding unknown oranges.  However, the tangerine person also learns that oranges are not tangerines while they more easily comprehend that they contain some amazing similarities of experience, quality and type.  This is exactly like what Jesus was teaching us also.    Jesus is simply saying that the Kingdom of Heaven is very similar to and closely resembles a natural wheat and tare harvest cycle from the beginning to the ending process in many distinct ways.  However, always remember that it is not an exact match just as a tangerine is not an exact rendition or a replacement for an orange.

Since the spiritual realm cannot be comprehended or confirmed by the five natural human senses of touch, taste, smell, sight or sound, it is a very complex task for any human to understand it. This is why God informs us in Romans 1:20 that His secret hidden qualities of His power and supremacy were clearly given to us to understand by things that He had created in our world all around us.  Jesus reveals this truth repeatedly by using natural parables of sheep and goats and wheat and tares which represent likeness of the real.  I believe that this clearly demonstrates God extreme intelligence and it truly amazes me.  Let’s go through a list some of the key symbolic nouns found in this wheat and tare parable to help us understand the major spiritual players being described.

Symbolic Noun

Spiritual Reality

Supporting Verses

Man God/Jesus (Son of Man) Mat 13:37; Mat 13:41
Good Seed Word of God and People that Believe it Luke 8:11
Field Hearts of people in the world Luke 8:15; Mat 18:38
Enemy Satan Luke 8:12
Tare Seeds Evil words producing evil people (children of Satan) Mat 13:39
Wheat Saved people producing fruit (children of God) Luke 8:15
Tares Lost people children of Satan Mat 13:38
Harvest End of the Age Mat 13:39
Reapers Holy Angels Mat 13:39
Barn Heaven Mat 13:43

 

This is a great parable containing very significant hidden spiritual information that was not revealed clearly to any human or even angels before Jesus came to the earth to teach it to us. God is the symbolic man that owns the field.  The field represents the world of people and more specifically their hidden spiritual heart.  John 3:16 said God so loved the “world” so much that He gave His only begotten Son to die for them all so that they might be saved if they believe.  Sorry but that was just my paraphrase of a very important verse that I can’t stop telling you about.

I believe that the “good seed” sown into the field that produces the fruitful wheat is always the “Word of God” according to the Mark 4 parable of the sower.  I also believe the good seed wheat crop that is taken at “harvest” time to be placed in the field owner’s barn (heaven) is specifically saved Christians that believed in Jesus.  Harvest is revealed to be the end of this age and the reapers that bring in the harvest represent the holy angels again.

There is a very clear distinction given to us by Jesus between righteous people (wheat) and unrighteous people (tares). God makes a division of separated difference between those that are “good” and those that are not good.  Wheat represents the good people and the tares represent the evil people.  However, we know from both observation and parable teaching that the wheat and tares reside in the same world growing up together. What we learn from this parable is that the children of God will be eternally separated from the children of the devil.  The children of Satan will be burned by fire which represents their eternal destination within hell.  Those called wheat that have been saved will be gathered into a place of separated safety and peace.

There are some basic keys of spiritual knowledge given to us in this stated parable. For example, to the untrained (unsaved) eye both the wheat and the tares growing together can appear very similar.  However, the tare plant when closely examined represents just a fake looking real wheat plant.  The tares have a dark black seed on the inside and this represents the kingdom of darkness that fills their human heart.  Ripe tares stand up proudly and arrogantly while the ripe wheat plant bows humbly to their maker in the wind.  You can do other research to learn more about these differences if you like.

I think I should point out a few potential major problems with taking everything literal in this parable. For example, there is a stated man that owns a field.  This man is named to be Jesus.  But only the natural man Jesus walking the earth ever slept.  The spiritual God never sleeps nor slumbers according to verses like Psalm 121:4.  Since God is omniscient and omnipresent it is impossible for any enemy to plant bad seeds in His field without Him knowing fully about it.  However, Jesus chose to make this information apart of the parable to help us to know something.  I believe this information shows us that God did not stop the evil sower by divine choice but rather permitted him to come into the world to sow his seed.  There would just be too many scriptural contradictions to believe otherwise.

Here is another reality that I struggled with in the telling of this parable. Have you considered the order of mention for the described sequence of events? Jesus describes the owner of the field that sowed the good seed is Himself saying the owner was the “Son of Man”.  Jesus also said that the field received the good seed first and then the evil seed sower named Satan came afterwards.

We know from reading the Bible that Jesus does not appear physically on the earth until approximately 4000 years after Adam was created on the planet. Satan is first mentioned in Genesis 3 as the serpent that deceived them.  This was clearly way before the personal appearance of Jesus (Son of Man) to sow good seeds.  I struggled for awhile to believe that the good seed was planted before the evil seed that produced the tares.  To resolve this in my mind I believe the Lord showed me the solution and I will cover this very quickly:

Gen 2:8  And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.

Notice what this verse appears to say in Genesis 2. The LORD God planted a garden…”.  That is exactly what the parable we are reading describes to us.  This is clearly before Genesis 3 and the introduction of the bad seed sower.  This sower can only be the pre-incarnate Jesus that is planting the good seed.  I hope you understand that this Genesis 2 planting was only “GOOD” seed sown by the LORD God?  The only interpretation that can be viewed to make this correct is that Jesus was with God and was God as it is clearly laid out to us in John 1:1 and then later He became a man in the flesh as declared in John 1:14.  I’m apologize if I don’t spend more time explaining this truth, but I believe that would take a significant time to cover.

This parable can be viewed as complicated very easily. I wish I could spend time to dig deeper into it.  If you have any specific questions that rise up in your spirit, please let me know about them and I will trust the Lord to help me to answer them.  Let’s move on quickly to another parable message from Jesus on the subject of division.

 

Dividing the Catch Caught from the Sea

Jesus repeatedly teaches us about the subject of a coming great division from many different perspectives. All of these perspectives were given to us using basic natural patterns of symbolic terms that the everyday common man could easily understand.  As you should recall we’ve already seen the subject of division taught to us from a rancher/shepherd perspective.  In this lesson the shepherd was tending his combined flock of both goats and sheep.  However, only the sheep being placed on His right hand are saved and the goats on the left hand are lost. We have also seen the exact same type of division principle occurring in a distinct farming example where there will be the separating of the good grains of wheat from the inedible crop of tares.  Again the wheat is saved and the tares are lost.  Now Jesus is going to teach us again on the subject of division from the common level of many of His chosen disciple followers.  Four of the twelve or one third of the disciples were fishermen.  Therefore, this next parable should have definitely made both common and logical sense to them.  Let’s read 4 verses found again in Matthew 13 and pay close attention to the similar symbolic concepts being communicated on:

Mat 13:47  Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind: 

Mat 13:48  Which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away. 

Mat 13:49  So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, 

Mat 13:50  And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

I found this parable very interesting. Jesus chose Peter, Andrew, James and John to follow him and they were all very experienced fishermen that did this type of work being described day after day for years.  They would all get into their boats and launch out into the sea every work day.  Then they would then throw their nets into the sea and draw it back up into the boats for their catch.  After hauling the nets back up into the boats they would have to separate all of their good catch selecting each out individually from their bad or unclean catch.  Every fish that was judged to be good was put into vessels to be separated completely from those that were deemed not to be good for anything.  This dividing effort took place after close examination of each fish one by one.  All that were determined to not be worth keeping were thrown away.  Wow, how can we all not see the truth?

The parallels of truth being given are truly amazing between all of these parables. Even though each parable used different noun types to teach the truth the verbs types are practically identical or very synonymous.   Notice how in each setting the good and the evil live within the same setting and environment.  Notice how in each setting workers and servants are laboring to bring in the good and the bad and then are used to separate them completely and permanently.  Notice how the good is always saved and the bad is always burned.

One of the key subject words in this fishing catch description is found in Matthew 13:49 and it was translated as the English word “sever”. This Greek word translated as “sever” is G873 and is the exact same Greek word as was found in Matthew 25:13 in the discussion of the parable of the sheep being “separated” from goats.  God directly connects these two passages by His divine word selection and this confirms that we are studying the exact same subject and event.

The Bible clearly teaches us that in the mouth of two or three witnesses let every word of truth be established. Jesus has just given us three very profound witnesses of truth using three different natural examples of division taking place all prophesying of a future spiritual division.  In every example the end result is identical.  In every example the good and evil co-existed together in the same worldly environment until the time of the “end of the age” came and then there is a judgment that is made and an eternal separation occurs.  There is almost no room for mistaken understanding, misinterpretation or misalignment of the truth in any of these parables.  I believe that Jesus not only gives us the parables to teach us the subject of division that He said He came to do in Luke 12:51, but I also believe that He consistently explains each to leave no doubt to their meanings.  It is only by ignoring the truth that we should remain ignorant on this subject.

There are more lessons, parables and verses on the critical subject of division that came directly from the mouth of Jesus, but I did not get to teach on all of these today. Take for example the parable of the 10 virgins.  All came together to meet the bridegroom, who represents Jesus symbolically.  This is the exact same message of coexistence as in every other previous parable.  Then separation occurs with only 5 virgins entering behind the door and the other 5 foolish virgins were shut out completely.  This is just the exact same division subject and an identical wall of separation being communicated from a new and different natural perspective.

Each time a new example is given by Jesus there can be new truths complimentarily added to enhance our understanding of the basic foundation of divisional truth.   However, none of these new truths will ever change the foundational truth of division.  I pray that you are grasping these concepts and receiving their truth.

I’ll end this part of the Bible lesson series on division with this warning from the Lord Jesus. Jesus makes a statement in Matthew 7 that should put a great deal of righteous fear into our thinking process.  This verse is about the subject of division even though the word does not appear in the statement.  Please read the verse and learn what is said:

Mat 7:21  Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Jesus clearly warns us “Not everyone that calls Him Lord will enter into the kingdom of heaven”. It would appear that calling Jesus LORD, even though it is a major part of the way to get to heaven it still does not guarantee our entry.  It would appear to me that entry is conditional upon us doing the will of the Father also.  This is a plain statement of division.  This statement is speaking of people who will be positioned on the left hand of the LORD called goats, tares, unclean fish or foolish virgins.  They will be told to depart from Him because He never knew them.

 

Conclusion

There is coming a great division between the righteous and the unrighteous, the just and the unjust, the good and the evil, the saved and the unsaved, the wise and the foolish and the clean and the unclean. It was stated by Jesus that this was one of the primary reasons for His appearance here on the earth.  The division began spiritually when Jesus from the Kingdom of God paid the great price of our redemption purchasing us from Satan and the kingdom of darkness with His blood.  The death of Jesus on a wooden cross was the sealed fate of separation of good from evil.  Jesus then rose from the dead to become the only doorway to salvation.  By entering into this door you can be included in the narrow path that Jesus said only few would find to enter.  Jesus warned very clearly in Matthew 7:13 that wide is the pathway that leads to destruction and many are there that will fall for this trick of Satan to be lead astray.  You have an enemy named Satan that has come to kill, steal and destroy as many as will allow him access either willingly or by deception.

I hope and pray that you have enjoyed this lesson and have learned at least something that you can share with others. The Lord willing, I will attempt to do at least one more lesson in this series sometime in the future.  The coming end of the age could be here before we all know it.  We should learn as much as we can to warn others before it is too late for them.  God bless you and thank you for your prayers of support.  I do greatly appreciate them.

Understanding Persecution: Part 1 Beware the Rise of the Spirit of Saul

persecution-1

Persecution

(Ver 1.1)  What a strange title for a Bible study? What could this possibly mean to us here in this modern world?  Who was Saul?  What is this spirit of Saul reference?  I was recently awakened in the middle of the night at exactly 3 AM and suddenly these words arose up in my spirit saying “Beware the rise of the spirit of Saul”.  Then Bible verses came to my memory about this actual historical man named Saul and this Bible lesson is the result of my middle of the night awakening.  I believe this message was from God speaking to us all a warning according to His stated works in John 16:13.  I believe God was informing us of a coming resurgence of an old spiritual force that persecuted the early church and I believe it will become as “great as” or even greater than what the early church encountered and endured.  I believe that it is obvious that this is the increasing trend and movement found within the present unsaved world, all those living in darkness (Eph 2:2).

Modern unsaved people living in the world today are identical to all others that came before them. They are all opening a door to allow the repeat of a pattern of ignorance that causes them to not comprehend the difference between that which is called “good” or that which is called “evil”.  In them there is no understanding or acknowledgement of who or what represents the true God of good or who or what represents the false deceiving god of evil (Satan).  That which God called evil in His Word is being tremendously magnified and exalted by the unsaved world to be called normal and good and everything that God called “good” is being called evil at the same time (Isa 5:20). Anyone that speaks against what is called evil by God is being persecuted and called a bigoted intolerant hate monger.  What a sad condition the world has fallen into and I believe by observation that it is getting worse.

Today Christians that are simply speaking the truth in love warning those that are on the way to hell are being labeled as evil. This must break the heart of God greatly and we will see an example of this in the lesson.  If you knew that the highway that you were traveling on had a major bridge on it and that it had just collapsed, would you not try to stop everyone that was about to fall to their death because of the deep drop off?  The drivers of the cars on the road at night are about to die because of their ignorance and inability to see the truth.  Wouldn’t you warn them?  That is what every mature believing Christian is faced with today.  We can shut up and be silent or we can cry out and try to save them.  It is our choice but any warning given may be ridiculed and laughed at by those being warned because probably most will not believe it.

Jesus gave us many warnings about these end times before His return to the earth. One warning to us was very clear when He said “As it was in the days of Noah and of Lot so shall it also be again in the days right before the coming of the Son of Man” (Luke 17:26-30).  I am very sure that this statement describes the exact days that we live in right now.  It is by no chance or accident that Jesus (God in the Flesh) chose these two biblical events to describe the times directly before His return (2 Peter 2:5-6).  However, that is really not what this Bible lesson message is concerning directly.  The message of Noah’s flood and Sodom’s destruction is however an indirect applicable truth to this lesson of warning about the subject of coming persecution.  Noah was laughed at and the angels in Sodom were commanded to come out and have sex with the men.  How appropriate are these two witnesses of truth?

 

Introduction to the Spirit of Saul

Let us now get to God’s basic message concerning the “spirit of Saul” warning spoken to me. The main subject of today’s lesson is concerning the theme of persecution.  We will be looking at this subject from at least three or four different perspectives.  The first perspective is that of the persecutor.  The second perspective is that of the Almighty God.    The third perspective of persecution will be driven from the one being persecuted and these are Christians.   And the final perspective introduced today is that of the enemy Satan..

  1.  The Persecutor’s Perspective
  2. Almighty God’s Perspective
  3. The Persecuted Church’s Perspective
  4. Satan’s Perspective

We will similarly be addressing basic definitions and questions concerning this very important and timely subject. We will also look for scriptural answers in the Bible for why persecution occurs and who is ultimately behind it all.  As part of the study we will briefly introduce why God allows persecution to occur and see what His attitude and response was in the past and could be again today since we know God does not change (Malachi 3:6).  As a final part of the Christian perspective discussion in today’s lesson we will introduce how a Christian’s expectations should already be preset before this persecution occurs to them.  Please don’t be surprise when God warns us that persecution will occur if we are living for God and obeying His Word and boldly declaring His truth in love to the lost and dying world.

2Ti 3:12  Yea, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.

God promises us that we will be persecuted if we are living for Him and following after Christ’s example.  It would be wise based upon these words to check if you are being persecuted.  If you are not I would then check to see if you are following Jesus.  In Luke chapter 21 Jesus informs us of the coming end of the age describing wars and rumors of wars, earthquakes and famines that are already occurring and then in verse 12 Jesus said before the end of all these things you will be persecuted.  Jesus’ warning to us in the Gospels is just another witness to the message that I heard from God personally.

Bible basics teach us that humans are designed by our creator God as a triune being made in the image of the Almighty God. A human is a freewill spirit being that possesses a soul (a mind, a will and our emotions) that lives in mortal human body (1 Thes 5:23).  However, this spirit of Saul warning was not a warning that the natural man Saul written about in the Bible will return to the earth because that would violate scriptures and make God a liar (Heb 9:27). Therefore, we need to learn more about what the message could mean by rightly dividing the Word of Truth (2 Tim 2:15). We will however, briefly study the life of Saul to learn from it the persecutor’s perspective and I will begin by reading a verse concerning the stoning death of Stephen in the early church description found in Acts 7.

Act 7:58  And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.

Please allow me to provide a very quick overview of the context of this verse so we can better understand this part of the message. The context actually begins back in chapter 6 and it is a story concerning a Christian man named Stephen.  He was ministering to people and doing many signs, wonders and miracles the same as Jesus did before him here on the earth.  It is important to know that Stephen was not one of the original 12 disciples of Jesus yet he did the same types of miraculous works as Jesus did.  I find that fact very important and fascinating as many in the church today teach miracles passed away with the death of the 12 disciples.  Oh well?  Oh Lord, please help us all to see the truth.

These supernatural miraculous works done by God through Stephen were not well received because of the accompanying message being preached concerning salvation only through faith in Jesus Christ who was recently condemned to death by a similar type of court with made up evidence that Stephen stood before. Men from the synagogue accused Stephen of blasphemy and soon he was on trial before the leadership of the Jewish synagogue.  It is during this trial that Stephen gives a great overview of the Old Testament and how it applies to the gospel message of Jesus Christ.  However, this message was not well received either.  The Jewish leaders refused to listen and stopped up their ears and then took up stones to kill Stephen.  Stephen sees a vision of heaven while being stoned of Jesus standing at the right hand of God as they hurl their deadly stones.  That brings us now to verse 58 which was just quoted.

This verse 58 is the first time that the name “Saul” is mentioned in the N.T. The Hebrew name Saul occurs approximately 26 times in the book of Acts alone.  This N.T. Saul is the exact same Hebrew name as the first king of the O.T. nation of Israel.  By the number of mentions in the book of Acts we can easily see that the man Saul was a very prominent figure to learn about and learn from.  We learn from reading the N.T. that Saul was a young devout religious man and a very self-righteous zealot man during this time of the birth of the church in the first 8 chapters of Acts.  We can learn more about the background of this man named Saul by reading in his writings because he wrote nearly 2/3 of the N.T.:

Php 3:4  Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more:

Php 3:5 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;

Php 3:6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.

Reading here Saul/Paul claims to be of a very noble stock of the natural nation of Israel. He was circumcised according to Mosaic Law on the 8th day after his birth.  He was by no doubt raised in a very strict home that observed all of the Jewish Holy days, laws and Sabbaths.  He also must have spent a very significant time in reading the Law of Moses growing up in the strict order to become a Pharisee.  I can speculate that Saul must have thought very highly of himself, during this time and he must have been very proud of his learned position of authority.  However, if we read in Proverbs 16:18 we see a verse that Saul appears to have possibly ignored.  This verse says “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall”.

We can learn while studying his life that Saul spent a great amount of his time persecuting, hunting down, imprisoning and even killing any of those that confessed faith in Jesus Christ. However, was this natural man named Saul the actual main source of the problem of the persecution to the church?  Could there have been a greater force of influential power behind this evil man persuading and even controlling his thoughts and actions?  I believe according to the future writings of this man named Saul there was certainly a much greater spiritual force that helped influence him to do all this evil to other people on the earth.  Let’s read one verse to confirm this reality:

Eph 6:12  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

What we must glean in the beginning of this lesson is that physical natural people that are persecuting us are not our real problem even though it looks like it on the visible surface. Saul/Paul in this verse teaches us that Christians are not at odds with anyone of the divinely created flesh and blood design order.  However, he does reveal very clearly earlier in this chapter that we are at war and he names the enemy here in verse 12 of Ephesians 6 to be hidden unseen spiritual forces and the evil invisible rulers of this present world that rule the kingdom of darkness.  This truth will become considerably more important as we continue this lesson to learn how we should react to persecution.  This information helps to better comprehend who and what the “spirit of Saul” is referring to in the warning.  I am completely convinced that the “spirit of Saul” reference on the rise in our world is a reference to Satan our adversary and all of his demonic followers.  Let’s review what we should have just learned in this section:

  • People Persecute Other People
  • We Will Be Persecuted if We Live Right
  • We are at War
  • It Appears That Humans are Our Enemies
  • But, Our Actual Enemy is Not a Human
  • We are at War With Unseen Spiritual Beings
  • These Invisible Spiritual Beings Influence Humans To Do Evil

 

 

Persecuting the Church Today is still the same as Personally Persecuting Jesus

If the naturally born Hebrew man named Saul was not the real problem being spoken of by the LORD, why would God say “Beware the return of the spirit of Saul” to us? The answer to that question is because as we should have learned that unseen spirit beings are at the root of every seen evil event occurring in the world.  I am convinced that the natural man Saul was not who the early church was wresting against based upon what he later wrote in Ephesians 6.  However, why would a man do something so evil and suddenly then change and not do it anymore?  That is a really good and important question.  I believe the answer to that is that the natural man Saul was unmistakably a very deceived man who bought into and believed in so many lies given to him from the real enemy Satan.  I believe the natural man Saul was doing what he thought was right in his own blinded mind (2 Cor 4:4) and was performing what he thought was pleasing towards God even though what he was doing against Christians on the earth was very wrong and taken very personally by Jesus.  Let’s continue reading additional truth in the book of Acts about the death of Stephen:

Act 7:56 And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.

These are some of the last recorded words spoken by Stephen the first martyr of the early church to his murderers and they reveal how their wrong actions were being received by the LORD Jesus. Please notice when reading this verse that in Colossians 3:1, Paul teaches us that the LORD Jesus ascended into heaven and is now seated at the right hand of God in heaven but here in this recorded vision of heaven Jesus is intentionally standing up on his feet observing the wrong being done to his servant Stephen.  Wow this verse speaks literal volumes to me.  Jesus showed such great love and concern for what is happening to Stephen that He makes the personal choice to stand up from His seated position of rest and authority to welcome Stephen into His spiritual realm presence.  I believe that this position of Jesus standing teaches us that Jesus wanted to do more to stop it from occurring but did not again by choice.   You might remember that later Paul formerly Saul would teach us “to be absent from the body is to be present with the LORD” (2 Cor 5:8). Therefore, when Stephen was killed, his spirit immediately departed his physical body to be in the presence of Jesus where Jesus was personally standing up to observe and welcome him into heaven.

Since the murder of Stephen there have been countless numbers of other Christ followers that have been killed and have gone to be with the LORD simply because of their beliefs in Jesus. No actual crime was necessary for either Stephen or any other saint to be persecuted with evil acts.  We should learn from “how was Stephen persecuted” in order to know what to expect again today.  If you read the context of the chapter you will find that leaders gathered false witnesses to accuse Stephen (Acts 6:13-14).   These false accusers used the semblance of law and order to justify their evil done to others.  They were clearly disobeying their laws by speaking their lies and perjuring themselves before man and God but in their minds they were justified to do so.  I recently learned this is taking place in people in Islam.  They are taught that it is permitted for them to lie to others in the world in order to promote the greater cause of spreading Islam.  This is clearly of demonic influence since the Bible teaches Christians that “all liars will have their part in the lake of fire” (Rev 21:8).

This is what is coming now to Christians here in this world whether you believe it or not. It is already occurring in many nations of the world right now.  Terrorists kill many people just because they are Christian.  Islamic governments and their extremist religious people of that nation are persecuting, imprisoning, torturing and killing Christians daily.  Communist nations also throw into prisons people who are reading their Bibles and being a Christian that walks in love trying to save others from hell.  Who could have seen all of this coming?  I believe only Jesus and this is why the warning is being given to us today.  Let’s please continue reading in the book of Acts:

Act 8:1 And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.

Act 8:2 And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him.

Act 8:3 As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.

Act 8:4 Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.

The Greek word G4909 that was translated as “consented” in Acts 8:1 is a word that means Saul was “very pleased” by the murder of Stephen. In fact this Greek word implies that Saul took great pleasure in watching Stephen die.  The zealot Saul after the death of Stephen then takes out after other Christians to do the same with them.   Saul is very intent upon forcing his will and reason upon everyone that is preaching Jesus to be the only way.  This is a very common motivation for persecution.  The demand is frequently made to Christians to deny the Lord Jesus Christ, convert or die.

Look at Acts 8:3 and notice what begins to happen to the Church of Jesus Christ.   Both men and women were taken to prison just for being a professing Christian.  Also notice in this chapter the complete removal of basic human rights of privacy by the people committing these evil acts.   Acts 8:3 tells us clearly that there was a house to house search for Christians done by Saul.  This is exactly what is about to happen and even has started to shine on the horizon here in America.  For example, there have been Christian people who refused to issue marriage licenses to homosexual couples because of their beliefs in God, Jesus, the TRUTH of the Bible and they have spent time in jail.  I believe the house to house search for Christians will also come as the world continues to slip into greater realms of deceived darkness.  It already has taken place in other nations.

Act 9:1 And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest,

Act 9:2 And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.

Act 9:3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:

Act 9:4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?

Act 9:5  And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.

Saul continued speaking his great threats of violence directed at and towards all Christians. He began moving out of the city of Jerusalem to other nearby regions.  Notice that the persecution taking place was with the authority of the law givers and administrators.  Wow, is this not happening now?  Law givers and judges in America are making so many decisions that violate the Truth of the Word of God that it is literally shocking to me.  Evil now is prevailing by the misguided interpretation of the law and the wrong definition of what is good vs. evil.  Watch for laws to continue to come to support this evil behavior.  Watch for the removal of basic human rights that have been guaranteed up until this point in time.

Saul was on the road to a city named Damascus in these verses of chapter 9 of Acts to bring about more evil in the name of good.  However, things this time didn’t go so well for Saul’s way when the LORD interrupted his journey with a very personal touch and a very strong message of truth.  Instantly a great light shown down from heaven and a powerful voice came down clearly saying to Saul alone “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me”.  As in the death of Stephen again we can recognize how Jesus was taking personal notice of what was being done to Christians by this natural man named Saul.  We can learn a very important lesson from these awesome words of truth.  The first thing that we should have just learned from reading these verses is that coming against any Christian for any negative reason is the exact same thing as coming against the risen divine LORD Jesus Christ.  The second thing that we should have just learned from this is that Jesus takes these acts of evil personally. Why does Jesus take persecuting a Christian the same as persecuting Him?  Saul/Paul clearly writes to us later in the New Testament and informs us in 1 Corinthians 12:7 that “Christians here in this world are the body of Christ”.  Natural people who choose to persecute Christians must learn and realize before it is too late that it is not wise to come against Jesus’ body here on the earth.  Jesus Christ is a far greater Spiritual Force than the spiritual force that is tricking them to do this evil (1 Jn 4:4).   Wow, I do not believe that very many people understand this truth yet.

I will go further and also say that this revealed truth is true regardless of your salvation state, being either saved or unsaved. If you are not a Christian and you are persecuting a Christian mentally, physically, emotionally, legally or verbally you are coming against the greatest spiritual force of power which is much greater than you can possibly imagine.  My point is that this same message of warning is true for a Christian that comes against other Christians as it is for an unbeliever to come against a believer.  This is still true even though you may believe that you are totally right and they are totally teaching false doctrines that you do not believe in.  Let’s review a summary of the major points in this section of the lesson:

Persecutor’s Perspective

  1. Persecutors believe they are doing “good” in their own minds.
  2. Persecutors are very pleased when they are victorious over and even cause the death of a Christian.
  3. Persecutors are deceived people that believe they are good and Christians are evil.
  4. Persecutors obviously do not believe, know or understand that they are deceived.
  5. Persecutors will use the law to back their agenda of persecution.
  6. Persecutors love to force their will and beliefs upon others.
  7. Persecutors feel justified to do evil because their rule of law is in agreement with them.
  8. Persecutors will use lies and break laws if there is a greater good for the expansion of their beliefs to occur.
  9. Persecutor’s goals are the complete removal of all Christian freedoms and privacy and eventually the end of all Christians.

God’s Perspective

  1. God takes note and watches all persecution that occurs to the Church.
  2. God takes all human persecution of the church personally.
  3. God says to persecutors coming against the church “Why are you persecuting me?”

Christian Perspective

  1. A Christian is the Body of Christ on the earth.
  2. Anyone persecuting a Christian is persecuting the LORD personally.
  3. A Christian when killed by persecution goes to be with the LORD instantly.
  4. Christians will be persecuted falsely without doing any evil.

 

THE CONVERSION OF SAUL THE PERSECUTOR

God showed the evil man Saul some very great mercy by appearing to him on the road to Damascus. Paul the former Saul will forever be grateful for the exceeding great compassion given to him.  While I believe it is within God’s power and ability for the Lord Jesus to do this with everyone that persecutes His body, I do not believe that He will and I may try to talk about this later but if not you will have to wait for another opportunity for me to try to explain why the Lord may not come down to save you from every evil doer on the planet personally.  We should have learned this truth when reading about the death of Stephen.

Act 9:5  And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.

Act 9:6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.

I personally believe from understanding Romans 10:9-10 that Saul became a Christian falling on his knees on the road to Damascus.  I hope you understand how you and I became a Christian.  To be saved we must believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that God raised the Lord Jesus Christ from the dead after being crucified and buried 3 days and we must then confess Him as our LORD and Saul certainly did both of these while on the road to Damascus.  We can confirm this belief simply by reading Acts 9:17 when God sends a disciple named Ananias to Saul for him to receive his sight and to be filled with the Spirit of God.  Upon entering the house where Saul was waiting, Ananias calls the man Saul his spiritual brother and this is only possible and true if Saul has already received the Spirit of God being born again on the road to Damascus.   Therefore, Saul became exactly what he was fighting against and persecuting and that was very fortunate for him.

1Co 15:8  And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.

God gives us another quick confirmation for what was just taught concerning Saul’s salvation on the road to Damascus written directly from the hand of Paul. Here in this chapter and verse Paul tells us about several others seeing Jesus personally  after His resurrection.   Then Saul says that he also saw him providing us an incredible revelation that he was then reborn “abnormally” during this encounter.  Saul was speaking of his spiritual rebirth (John 3:3) but I do not have the time to explain all of this more fully in this lesson.  Please just accept the facts that 1) Jesus appears to Saul, 2) Saul asks who he was, 3) Jesus identifies Himself, and 4) Saul then believes what he heard and acknowledges Him as his LORD and that was the definition of an abnormal spiritual rebirth.

We are extremely blessed to have Saul the former evil persecutor of Christians become a Christ follower.   After his salvation, Saul was given such great revelation from Jesus Christ of the Truth.  Saul would go on in his life of Christian ministry to write approximately 2/3 of the New Testament.  I believe that without Saul’s conversion that we would not have all of the information that we needed for us to be victorious Christians.  I know that this salvation of a persecutor seems to be off the mainline subject but I believe it is very important to know as a Christian. Let’s look at some writings of Saul/Paul and learn from him what he thought of this great transformation that he experienced:

1Ti 1:12  And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;

1Ti 1:13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.

1Ti 1:14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

1Ti 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.

We can learn the most valuable information concerning a persecutor’s perspective by reading the N.T. since Paul was a former persecutor and he writes about it. As we can read in verse 12, Paul is so very thankful.  Here is a man that has now realized that he was headed for an eternal existence of pain and suffering in hell but now suddenly has been given the free gift of eternal life, a purpose and a new destiny. I can identify with Saul’s heartfelt change.  I know I am also eternally grateful for the free gift of God’s salvation and I know I don’t deserve it and neither did Saul.  We are all sinners (Rom 3:23) and deserve hell but God paid the penalty price for our sins (2 Cor 5:21).  Thank you Jesus!

Paul lists just a few of his guilty sins in verse 13 that he was personally participating in while persecuting Christians. Let’s go through these to better understand the dramatic change that took place in the heart of Saul.  The first sin listed was Saul calling himself a “blasphemer” and this is a Greek word that reveals significant amounts of new information that we should learn from.  According to the Strong’s definition of G989 translated as “blasphemer” it means to be scurrilous towards someone.  This word scurrilous has the following dictionary definition:

 Scurrilous : making or spreading scandalous claims about someone with the intention of damaging their reputation

This is exactly what Saul was doing to the early church. He used the words of his mouth to slander, accuse, condemn and judge the church falsely.  But even though Saul thought he was fighting against evil human people that were deceived, Jesus informed Saul that He was blaspheming against God personally.  This is pretty amazing information and I pray that it will hopefully cause someone to shut their mouth when speaking against Christians.

However, this Greek word G989 has some deeper more specific meanings for sinning against God with the words coming out of our mouths. Remember what Acts 8:1 and Acts 9:1 said that we looked at earlier?  Acts 8:1 used the word that was translated as “consented”.  This implies that Saul consented to words of others spoken against Stephen in addition to the actual murder of Stephen.  Saul did both of these willingly, physically, emotionally, mentally as well as verbally as both a willing direct instigator and participant and as an indirect accessory that watched others cast the stones.  These represent sins of both commission and omission.

Acts 9:1 is much clearer when it informed us that Saul spoke direct “threats” against Jesus and His body and this is a strong example of what blasphemy is defined to be in the Bible. I personally believe that a man or woman on the earth that speaks against a preacher or prophet of God or even just against one of God’s children is risking great consequences and danger if they do not repent like Saul did and change.  Jesus will certainly take all of these words personally either now in this world or later at judgment day.  Words have power and words have consequences.

The second sin that Paul lists is being a “persecutor” of the church, which is the body of Christ. This Greek word translated as “persecutor” means someone who is in pursuit of another.  However, this type of pursuit can not be for the good of the individual(s) being pursued as revealed to us by God in the passages we read about Saul in Acts chapters 7, 8 and 9.  Let’s quickly examine some synonyms for the word “persecute”.  Persecute is the same as words like “oppress”, “abuse”, “accuse”, “condemn”, “ill-treatment”, “torment”, “torture”, “martyr” and others could be added and we get this idea of truth because these are exactly what Saul did to the Christian members in the early church.   It is very important to note that Saul thought that what he was doing was what was right and good in the eyes of God and the government leadership of that day.

The third sin listed by Paul in verse 13 is “injurious” and this again is synonymous with the word persecute. Being injurious was a further explanation for what great evil sin he was guilty of.  I believe this word literally means physical injuries were taking place upon men and women in the name of good.  However, this word can also mean a verbal assault as well as a physical assault.  I am convinced that doing any Christian hurt and harm physically, mentally or emotionally is equivalent to the abuse and persecution of Jesus Christ that the Jews did to Him personally when they crucified Him on the cross in the eyes of God.

If we continue to read past Saul’s list of sins in verse 13 we will observe Saul’s stated appreciation for the Lord’s mercy being provided to him. Saul informs us that he received mercy instead of what he should have been given.  Wow, that is the amazing love of God being displayed to a very deceived and evil man.

Did you also notice in this written passage that Saul declared why he was given this great mercy from God? Why was this unthinkable mercy available to Saul even after all he had done?  Why was the judgment of the Almighty God not immediately given to Saul?  Why instead was mercy given? Paul tells us the answers in verse 13 that God’s mercy was available to him because of his own great “ignorance” of the truth.

This revelation of mercy based upon ignorance reveals so very much to us about God, people who persecute the church and about the Christian people who are being persecuted. According to God’s inspired Holy Word written through Paul, his ignorance and his unbelief were two of the main reasons that the church was then being persecuted and I believe these are the two main reasons the church is still going to be persecuted today.

Even though Saul was a very learned and educated man, he was extremely ignorant of the truth that really mattered. Yet Saul did not know how ignorant he was while he was sinning killing Stephen.  Please understand that no one that is ever deceived believes that they are deceived.  This is impossible simply because of the existence of their ignorance of the truth.  That is everyone’s problem “we simply don’t know what we don’t know yet”.   That is the mysterious advantage of the deceiver Satan.  Satan uses the weapon of human ignorance to destroy us (Hosea 4:6).  Satan can present enough lies with some basic mixed truth to allow a human to think that they are doing good for God when they are actually doing the evil plan that Satan desires them to do.  Satan is a revealed master deceiver (Rev 12:9)

Persecutors justify their evil actions in their minds overruling the evidence for clear evil acts with the belief that they are doing a greater good for a higher power of authority. Recently here in North Carolina, USA we have been in the news around the world because our state passed a law that disallowed men from going into women’s restrooms and women from going into men’s restrooms.  This law was designed to protect innocent children from predators. Yet, North Carolina has been accused of being biased, prejudiced, intolerant, discriminatory, bigoted and even hate filled towards a select few people who demand the right to go into any restroom that they sexually currently “identify” with.  Wow, where has truth gone?  Absolute truth, reason and morality have certainly passed highly over the minds of everyone that has been protesting against the law.  All of these deceived people are extremely ignorant of God’s truth.  We should ask ourselves a simple basic question, if truth is based simply upon how someone thinks and feels today; how and when will truth all change when they think and feel differently tomorrow?  Where do we ever draw the line of absolute?  It sounds like a constant moving target.  If we change the line of truth drawn today that was established then tomorrow it will become even more distant away from the standard of truth tomorrow.  I could teach an entire series on this but this is not the subject and I will not go there today.

Saul did such significant evil and justified it because he believed he was knowledgeable, correct and backed by the law. Saul was greatly deceived into believing in their popular religious human traditions. Satan filled the mind of Saul with replacement knowledge that sounded good to him.  However, it was still Saul’s ignorance of the actual truth that caused him to carry out the will and plan of Satan.  Once Saul came to the saving knowledge of the truth, suddenly the thoughts he had as a persecutor were gone.  Wow, that is good news for persecutor’s today.  There remains hope for everyone to be saved.

Just as Satan influenced and controlled the unsaved people like Saul nearly two thousand years ago to persecute the church, this is the same warning being given to us today. The spirit of Saul (Satan) is still at work in people today and these deceived people will rise up and begin to persecute the church with increasing enthusiasm before Jesus returns.  It has already started and we can clearly learn this from the Spirit of God’s message of warning or we can remain an ostrich Christian and bury our heads in the sand and choose to ignore it pretending it is not happening. I would recommend that we do not ignore it or pretend that it is not happening already.

I personally expect some very negative comments for the truth that I published today. You will receive the same soon if you are speaking the truth to anyone in the world today concerning their life style personal choices.  The spirit of Saul is alive and well on the planet.

Hos 4:6  My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

Did you know that God allows people to be ignorant, wrong and to even do evil and sin? This truth has always been an extreme mystery in the minds of many Christians “Why doesn’t God stop all of this evil?”  This would take another series of lesson’s to explain this to you today.  Therefore, I will leave that to another day also.  But we must at least first begin to understand that God does allow evil to occur in the world and is not the one that is causing it to occur and we can simply learn this truth by reading the story of the stoning of Stephen in Acts.  Jesus was found standing at the right hand of God observing the evil being done and did nothing to cause it or to stop it.  Wow, that boggles the mind of many religious people in the world.  I believe that God’s passive observation made it appear to Saul that he was doing what God desires and that He is for them and it temporarily reinforces their wrong behavior.  However, the wages of their sin will still overcome them and they will be judged for what they have done on the earth according to the truth found in the Bible.  The main point in this paragraph is that God will allow this persecution to continue so we better learn it is coming.

I have talked briefly about the persecutor’s reasoning and justification for persecuting the church as well as the superior divine perspective on the persecution situation to allow it to occur. Now in conclusion I want to speak to the church’s reaction to this coming persecution.  What was the reaction to this evil in the early church and what will probably happen in these end times?  I believe that the early church’s reaction was both natural and supernatural.

Act 8:4  Therefore they that were scattered abroad went everywhere preaching the word.

Reread Acts 8:4. God reveals to us all the two fold reaction to the great havoc being perpetrated upon the church.  First notice the fact that it did not stop the Gospel from being preached.  It did however cause the people to scatter.  What does scatter mean?  This Greek word is a based upon a farming concept of “sowing” seed.  This is a great revelation since it is concerning the “Word” of God being spread to the entire world.  Remember when Jesus taught the parable of the Sower in Mark 4?  The sower sowed the Word of God.  The seed being sown was God’s Word and this is the only thing possible today in the world that can save people and turn them from hell.

The end result of persecution in the early church was a greater spread of the Word of God, an explosion of salvations in many new locations and this is exactly what will happen today in the end of the church age.

The Greek word translated as “preaching” in this verse is a word that means “to announce good news” to someone. What kind of person would still be trying their best to preach the good news of God’s salvation to anyone that was or still is trying to imprison and kill them?  The normal human tendency or reaction against persecution is for us to fight back, or to defend oneself or even to run away and hide in a cave to not be found.  I have seen people plan and do all of these in this modern world.  Which would you do?  Wow, that is a very great question to consider.  If you are a Christian would you be able to do nothing but be forgiving and loving to the persecutor and turn your other cheek? Consider the warning and then make a good choice now before being faced with it.

Persecutor’s Perspective

  • Persecutors believe they are doing what pleases God and their lawgivers.
  • Persecutors don’t believe they are sinning.
  • Persecutors believe their words spoken against Christians are good.
  • Persecutor’s goals are to damage the reputation of God and Christians.
  • Persecutors believe causing physical injury to Christians is good.
  • Persecutors believe they know the truth and are not ignorant.
  • Persecutors believe others are deceived and they are not.
  • Persecutors believe there is no God to answer to or Satan influencing them.

 

God’s Perspective

  • God sees all of the sins of everyone including persecutors.
  • A persecutor can be saved and change their evil ways.
  • God says speaking against a Christian is equivalent to “blasphemy”.
  • God says killing a Christian is the same as nailing Jesus to the cross.
  • God will show mercy to any sinner including murderous persecutors.
  • God tells us that persecutors are extremely ignorant of the truth.

 

Christian Perspective

  • A Christian has gained saving knowledge of the truth.
  • A Christian was shown great mercy by God and is thankful for it.
  • A Christian desires to share this saving knowledge of Jesus with others even though it costs them their own life.
  • A real and maturing Christian begins seeing things happening in the world from God’s perspective.

 

 

CONCLUSION

In conclusion I want us to see a future prophecy concerning the coming persecution of the church. Revelation chapter 4 and verse 1 God calls for John to come up to heaven so that he can be shown things that will happen in the future and this includes this prophetic chapter of Revelation 12.  Let’s read just verse 12 and 13 concerning our main subject study to learn Satan’s motivating factor for increasing persecution upon the church during the end time.

Rev 12:12  Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

Rev 12:13 And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.

This chapter in Revelation 12 totally fascinates me. I could spend a long time trying to convince you who the woman in this chapter symbolically represents but I have already tried to do this in another lesson series.  I will summarize briefly that lesson series by saying this woman being described can only fit the pattern of the church that is being persecuted by Satan.  We learn this easily by the symbolism that she is clothed with at the beginning of the chapter and by the statements within the chapter.  For example read verse 11:

Rev 12:11  And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

This is the immediate preceding contextual verse and it can only apply to those that are in the church. I have heard this verse quoted in many church services and they are applying these words to themselves and their struggles in this life with the devil.  It is the Word of God and the Blood of Jesus that were given to us by Jesus in the church to insure us we will overcome Satan.  If you have not read the Revelation 12 series of lessons I would strongly recommend that you do so.   I do not have the time to repeat every detailed verse.

Let’s go back quickly to verse 12 and review the message from God. This is clearly a warning from God given to the inhabitants of the earth through the apostle John.  In this verse Satan has been cast down from heaven after a great spiritual warfare and according to this prophecy he is in a furious way committing murder on the earth.  If you look up and study the Greek word that is translated as “wrath” it comes from a root word that can mean to slaughter, kill or sacrifice someone.  This sounds a lot like what Saul was doing doesn’t it?  This simply confirms what we learned earlier.  It was the spirit of Satan influencing and controlling Saul through his ignorance that caused the persecution of the church to begin on the earth.

As it was in the beginning of the church age so shall it also be at the end of the church age. Persecution is the key word found in verse 13 of Revelation 12.  Satan in this verse is still persecuting the same woman that he was persecuting using Saul that we read about in Acts.  We in the church are not a different woman; we just have newly grown members within the same body of Christ. If you are confused about what I just said I would strongly recommend you read the Bible lesson that I wrote a long time ago about “How the Church Became the Body of Christ”.

During this end-time persecution it will also be Satan using new ignorant people with the exact same spirit behind it all. If you look up the Greek word in verse 13 translated as “persecute” it is G1377 which was also the word spoken to Saul while on the road to Damascus by Jesus “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?”   God connects the two verses with His word selection and the message is very plain to me that God is speaking of the same subject being done to the same church body.

Today’s lesson was just a basic introduction to the broad subject of “persecution” and the spirit of Saul that is behind it. I believe God awakened me in the night to bring this message of warning to those that would receive it and learn from it.  There is a rising of evil on the earth taking place.  The enemy’s rage is increasing as the end of the age draws closer.  How you react to it may just determine where you spend eternity.  A Christian that withdraws and conforms to the world view may be greatly disappointed with their choice.  However, standing up for the truth of God’s Word and proclaiming it boldly will certainly cause us to be persecuted.   I will conclude today’s Bible message with these words from my Lord Jesus:

Mat 5:10  Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Mat 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

Mat 5:12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

I wanted to talk more about Satan’s perspective for persecution today but I will try my best (the LORD willing) to cover this part of the topic in the next lesson Part 2.

Thank you for reading and studying the Bible with me. I hope this word of warning given by the Lord Jesus will be taken to heart and it will help you to prepare for what is certainly coming.   God bless you all very much and thank you for your prayers for me as I will continue to pray for you also.

If you would like to continue to read the next lesson in this series please click here “PART 2

Bible Basics: Jesus Asks “Who Do You Say That I Am?” Part 2 – Believing in the Name of Jesus is a Requirement NOW!

whoami2(Ver 1.2)  This is Part 2 of a very fundamental and rudimentary but essential Bible Subject for every Christian to study, learn, understand and be able to share in an instant with all others in the world!  What is that vital subject you ask?  The subject that I am referring to is “Who is Jesus to you?”   If you did not read from the beginning I would strongly recommend that you go back to “Part 1” to begin reading the series because all of that information will not be repeated again and it was very important for your understanding of who Jesus should be to you.   The first lesson was a focused approach to understanding the significance of some of the most important revealed “Names” of Jesus in the Bible.  If you read the first lesson you know that I introduced you to 3 of these primary names of Jesus found in the New Testament.  There are of course several other revealed names and titles of Jesus that I did not mention.  Later in the series we will explore more of these names but I will mention at least two other direct names today in this lesson.

I hope after reading Part 1 that you at least have a better comprehension for the importance of these 3 Bible names of Jesus that were covered.  These names were 1) Jesus, 2) Emmanuel and 3) The Word of God.  All three names connected us directly to a personal divine appearance on the earth of the creator Lord God coming from heaven in the form of a man like us.  In today’s lesson we will expand the subject of these 3 names by adding two new names “Lord” and “King” and we will begin to address the question of what benefit is there for believing in these names of Jesus?  Were there any benefits in the early Church?  Are there any benefits to these names in the modern church?  Why is it important for us to even believe in the names of Jesus?  What occurs if we do not believe in Jesus being God in the flesh or in His revealed names?  We will soon be learning what the Bible says about what will happen if we believe in His name and what will happen if we do not.  Wow that sounds imperative to know.

In many of my Bible studies I place an added emphasis upon how to study the Bible.  Today’s lesson will be more of this type of double teaching effort.  I want to provide the reader with valuable spiritual information but at the same time I desire to teach a few of the rules and methods for how the information was obtained.  In this way I am teaching the reader more about “how to fish for information” than simply just offering them a “onetime fish meal of information”.  Of course the number one rule for every Bible study method is for us to be led by the Spirit of God and listen for His guidance as we study the Bible by faith.  Following this rule will insure that we are on the right path to not deviate from the way of finding the truth.  The Spirit of God is Truth (John 14:17) and we are told that He will guide us into all Truth (John 16:13).

INTRODUCTION TO THE NAME OF THE LORD

Let’s begin this Bible study using the important Bible study technique called “The Law of First Mention.  Today’s Bible study’s primary focus is upon the importance of knowing, understanding and believing in the name of Jesus.  So we will go back into the O.T. to find the name of God that is found within this name Jesus.  Perhaps you do not understand what the law of first mention represents.  I found through years of Bible study that the law of first mention is a very useful study technique to learn from and use.  This study law introduces us to the subject where God first mentions what we are interested in learning.  I have found consistently that God places key information in every initial subject reference that is critical to understanding almost every other subject reference in the rest of the Bible.  Since we learned in lesson 1 that the original language Hebrew name of Jesus was comprised of two Hebrew root words “Jehovah and Saves” we will focus in on the O.T. references to the name of God, Jehovah.  The first time this name Jehovah is used by God in the O.T. is found in Genesis 2.  Let us read the verse and learn what God introduces us to in this first subject mention:

Gen 2:4  These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens,

Did you notice that this verse connects the name Jehovah directly to the God of creation and the creation event itself?  In Genesis 1 the name of God primarily mentioned is H430 Elohim which is normally translated as “God”.  However in this verse in Genesis 2 Jehovah and Elohim are joined and used in conjunction together as a connecting force for equality, for clarification and for further definition.  I believe this simply teaches us that Jehovah is Elohim and Elohim is Jehovah.  Why is this important?  It is only important because in the New Testament in John 1 we saw another direct reference to GOD and to the creation event that must be included with Genesis 2:4 in order to be understood more thoroughly.  Let’s review the first three verses of John 1:

Joh 1:1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Joh 1:2  The same was in the beginning with God.

Joh 1:3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

John 1:1 and Genesis 1:1 are parallel creation event verses connected together by God’s design.  God in the book of John further clarifies and bring newly defined light and revelation to the subject of creation and the Creator.   God is being declared equivalent to the Word in these verses and we are clearly informed that the Word created everything that was made.  We can now go back and reread Genesis 1 and find that this is exactly what happened.  God spoke His Word and the created things came forth and produce life.

In these verses in John the name of God is the Greek word “Theos” and this is the equivalent of the Hebrew name of God “Elohim” by direct association.  Notice, in Genesis 1:1 God says “In the beginning God (Elohim)…” and in John 1:1 God says “In the beginning God (Theos)…”.   I know technically it says “In the Beginning was the Word” but later in the verse God tells us the Word was God (Theos) and that is a basic Algebraic law at work that says if A = B and B = C then A = C.  Therefore I hope you understand why it is legal to say Elohim and Theos are equivalent but I will offer additional evidence as I continue in the lesson and probably repeat what I have said for the benefit of everyone.

One of the things that I want to teach in this lesson is that anytime God quotes even a portion of a verse from the O.T. in the N.T., He is connecting the words across a language boundary.   I hope you understand the importance of knowing this.  This technique of word structure, definition and equivalency is part of God’s internal technical design of the entire Bible.  God used this technique of quotation to help us and teach us the way through the complexity introduced by His usage between two main separations of languages found within the original Bible manuscripts.  The O.T. was written in predominately Hebrew and the N.T. was written in exclusively the Greek language.  So how do we resolve this major language separation when studying any subject in both the Old and the New Testaments?  We do it by finding and using God’s laws designed for us to follow.  Following God’s laws of how to cross language boundaries provide us very specific rules and boundary limits to avoid an “anything goes approach to Bible interpretation”.  Without following God’s established rules there is only a random unstructured chaos approach to interpretation taking place based upon human reasoning and that will usually fail us 100 times out of 100 attempts.  That is exactly why there are thousands of different Christian denominations in the world today.  Too many people are ignoring God’s rules and inventing their own ways to understand the Bible.

What we learn from this divinely designed language connection technique is that the Greek word Theos (G2316) is the equivalent word found within the Hebrew as the word Elohim (H430).  Do you understand this?  What I am saying is, if we were translating the O.T. original Hebrew language into the Greek language we would make the Hebrew word Elohim read as “Theos” because this is exactly what God did in the Bible and we should follow His example.  Conversely if we were translating the N.T. into Hebrew the Greek word “Theos” would be translated into “Elohim” because of God’s choice and not mine.  This is not that complicated but it is still a very essential concept to learn for correct Bible understanding and interpretation.    We can further confirm this truth of the word equivalence between the Hebrew Elohim and the Greek Theos by looking at several verses but I will give only one other verse to keep the lesson shorter:

Mat 4:7  Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

This is an excellent verse to expand our knowledge from.  Jesus is quoting a commonly known O.T. verse in this statement within the Gospel account.  Here in Matthew God directly connects two very key Greek words together that we need to know.  The first Greek word is G2316 (Theos) which was translated as God and is the same word found in John 1:1 that we just looked at.  But now we can also see the second Greek word being connected to God (Theos) is G2962 (Kurios) which is translated as Lord in this verse.  This is the exact same word and name connection that God made in Genesis 2:4 if you recall.  The “Lord God” is in fact the name that I am looking for to further understand.  Now let’s go and review the original Hebrew statement being quoted by Jesus to learn the original Hebrew language words:

Deu 6:16  Ye shall not tempt the LORD your God, as ye tempted him in Massah.

Here again are the two key words LORD and God that are being researched having been connected by God’s design to the New Testament in the Matthew 4:7 quotation.  The Hebrew word H430 that was translated into English as “God” is Elohim and the Hebrew word H3068 that was translated as “LORD” in English is Jehovah.  We now have a very direct confirmation that the Hebrew word Jehovah is directly linked and is equivalent to the Greek word Kurios and the Hebrew word Elohim is directly linked and is equivalent to the Greek word Theos in all of scripture.  Do you understand why I could just say this?  If not there are more than enough verses quoted in the N.T. that you could go through to prove this statement if you want to do the work.  This is a very critical part of correct Bible study to find these types of details.  This should leave no room for doubt that we are on the right track learning about who is named LORD in both the O.T. and the N.T.  I do hope that you are beginning to understand where I am going.

Now let’s go back to John 1 and review again.  In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God (Theos = Elohim) and the Word was God (Theos = Elohim).  I just inserted the Greek and Hebrew equivalent words in this verse to help bring clarification to what God is speaking of.  John 1:1 is very clearly telling us that the Word is God (Theos = Elohim) and it further teaches us in verse 2 that the Word was with God in the beginning.   The terms “with God” and “is God” sound like conflicting statements but these are only possible because of the triune nature of God Almighty (Father, Son and Holy Spirit).

Then in verse 3 God (Theos = Elohim) speaks clearly that all things that were made by God (Theos = Elohim) and everything that was made was made by the Word.  Wow that is awesome information to teach us something very new and profound.  Go back and review Genesis 2:4 again to make the connection.  Genesis 2:4 said “Jehovah Elohim” created the heavens and the earth.  Do you see the direct connection being made to who Jehovah was?   Can you see that the “Word = God” in John 1 is the exact same God as the “Jehovah = God” in Genesis 2:4?  Both are speaking of who created our world.  I believe overwhelmingly that the LORD GOD is the same as the WORD GOD and they are equivalent and I will prove that statement further as I continue in the lesson.

Let’s review some of the basic mathematical laws again to help us understand the Bible more clearly.  The Bible was authored by the same God that created math so it just makes logical sense for us to apply the same laws of God’s math design to God’s application of His Word.  Do you remember what I said earlier?   I said that God Theos = God Elohin by God’s usage of quoted O.T. verses found in the N.T.  I then said LORD Kurios = LORD Jehovah using the same type God’s N.T. quoted examples.  Now using John 1 we learn how God connects the “Word” was equal to “God” which was equal to “Theos” which was equal to “Elohim”.  I think this may be going over the head of many of my readers but that does not mean that I should not be teaching it.  Now using the divinely connected verses of Deuteronomy 6:17 and Matthew 4:7 we learned that Jehovah Elohim (Hebrew) = LORD God (English) = Kurios Theos (Greek).  I think I need to say this again because it is so very important for you to embrace, using O.T. quoted verse words in the New Testament we now know that Jehovah Elohim = Kurious Theos = LORD God.  I am just laying a very important foundation for more knowledge that is coming.

Ok if I haven’t left you behind so far I want to go a bit deeper.  Recall from lesson 1 that Joshua was the original Hebrew name of Jesus.  Never, never forget that Jesus was born a Jew and spoke the Hebrew language and not the Greek language.  Jesus said very plainly that He was only sent to the lost sheep of Israel (Mat 15:24).  When people met Jesus on the road they called Him “Yeshua” (Hebrew) = Joshua (English transliteration) = Jesus (Greek to English transliteration).  This Hebrew name came down from heaven and was given to Him by an angel of the LORD GOD.  As I have stated more than once we should know that the name Joshua was the Hebrew word H3091 and this meant “Jehovah Saved” which comes from two root words H3068 Jehovah and H3467 yasha being joined together.  We have just learned that Jehovah (Hebrew) = Kurios (Greek).  Therefore we can by the mathematical law of equivalency say Jesus’ name was the same as Kurios Saved because that would be the legal name using the Greek language equivalent.  Why is this important?  We will soon find out very quickly as we continue.   I hope and pray that you are interested in learning because this is only going to get better.

I have already established who the Word of God was stated to be in Lesson 1 of this series.  The Word of God was a given name for Jesus revealed by God to us in the N.T. (Revelation 19:3). I have just emphasized that the name of Jesus was a Hebrew name originally and it is comprised of two key words Jehovah Saves.  We are discovering further confirmation that Jesus was Jehovah come to save His people just as He was prophesied to do.  So let’s now move on to further study that subject in the next section of the lesson to go even deeper.

CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD

Psa 20:9  Save, LORD: let the king hear us when we call.

This is my opening key verse to this entire section of the lesson.  Please, notice what God says.  The verse begins with “Save Lord”.  Uh oh do you remember what that means in Hebrew?  Opening in this verse are found the two key Hebrew root words that comprise the name of Joshua and Jesus.  These words that were translated correctly as “save” and “LORD” are H3467 and H3068.  Wow this is pretty good stuff if you are paying attention.  I’ll say it again “these are the exact two Hebrew words that make up the name of Jesus” and this verse in the Bible calls Him the King that saves the people that call upon Him.  Save us Lord (JEHOVAH) is the cry being made by the people in this verse.  These were people on the earth crying out for the LORD to save them.   So let me ask you who came to save them?  Who is your savior today?  Is it not Jesus?  I know Jesus saved me for sure, but I cannot speak for you.

We are told that they are crying out and calling for a king to save them.  I’ll ask you again, “Who is this king that will save them”?  Wow again, because if you know the N.T. just a little bit you know that Jesus is called the “King of kings” in Revelation 19:16 another divinely appointed name and title.  I told you earlier that we were going to learn a new Name of Jesus today and that was it.  Jesus is the KING of kings which clearly qualifies Him to be called upon according to this verse.  Now know and believe that Jesus is this King and make the connection being made to Jesus our Savior and Lord in Psalms 20:9.  Jehovah Saves = Joshua/Jesus and the people are calling upon this King named Jehovah for their salvation.  Could it really be that Jesus is this prophesied King that will come to save us who call upon the Lord/JEHOVAH?  I believe beyond a shadow of doubt that it is Him and we will certainly see many more verses in this lesson that will affirm that this King is Jesus.

What I am trying to teach over and over in this lesson until we all get it is that Jehovah is Jesus and Jesus is the Jehovah God that has saved us when we believe in Him and call upon His name.  Now let’s shift our focus slightly to a different first mention in the O.T. concerning those that “called on the name of JEHOVAH”.  In this part of the section we will look at when men first began to call on the name of the Lord in the Old Testament.  This is accomplished by a simple Bible text search within a good Bible search software program like “eSword”.  If you do the search you will find the first mention of the words “name of the Lord” to be in Gen 4:26:

Gen 4:26  And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the LORD.

Seth is the third named son of Adam and Eve.  Seth has a son and names him Enos.  Enos is the same as the Hebrew word H582 that means “mortal” and I find that fact very interesting when observed by what God connects within the context of this verse to this name Enos being given.  Enos was born approximately 235 years after Adam’s creation.  You may recall by reading earlier in the context of Genesis 4 that Adam and Eve had a son named “Cain” first and then they had another son named “Abel”.  The older brother Cain murders his younger brother Abel and this is the first direct mention of any natural human death occurring in our world in the Bible.  I’ll say it again that this natural death of Abel entering into the world was the first recorded occurrence of human mortality to actually be observed by any other human on the earth.  God plainly prophesied and warned Adam that death would come if he sinned and disobeyed God’s command.   It was truly the sinful disobedience of Adam that allowed death to enter into the world according to Romans 5:12.  I personally believe that it was the observed death of Abel the first human’s blood to be shed upon the earth that caused this verse in Genesis 4:26 to come to pass.

I believe that as soon as men and women on the earth began to realize the great impact and consequences of human sin they began to call upon the name of the Lord/Jehovah.  Why do you think that people would feel the need to call on the name of the Lord in Genesis 4:26?  What were they calling Him for? That is a very great question to ponder.  What benefit was there to calling on the name Jehovah at this time or anytime?  Was there actually any profit for doing this?  I firmly believe that there was then and still is now.  Let’s look at an example of one O.T. stated benefit for calling upon the name of the Lord:

Psa 99:6  Moses and Aaron among his priests, and Samuel among them that call upon his name; they called upon the LORD, and he answered them.

Notice that Moses, Aaron and Samuel all called on the God named Jehovah.   Let me ask you this question, if you are calling on the name of Buddha will the LORD God named Jehovah answer?  If you are calling on the name of Hare Krishna will the LORD Jehovah answer?  What about the name of the sun god Ra or the mythological god named Zeus?  What if you called upon the name Allah?  Will the LORD Jehovah answer to any of these names?  Let’s look at a great Bible example of why it is so very important to call upon the right name and the right God:

1Ki 18:24  And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the LORD: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.

Wow this verse is pretty awesome.   Elijah challenges the priests of the false gods and tells them to call upon the name of their gods and he would call upon the name of Jehovah the true living God just like Moses, Aaron and Samuel did and the God that answered by fire would be God.  That was an overwhelming display of faith in the name of Jehovah by Elijah.  If you read the rest of the chapter you will find who heard, who answered and who prevailed in this challenge and it was the God named Jehovah.  Was there any advantage gained by Elijah for him to call upon Jehovah?  It is very self-evident that there was a great benefit found in this example for Elijah’s faith and wise choice to call upon Jehovah.

This is just a very basic fact of truth being taught.  If you called me by the name of John when my real name was Ron, please understand that I will probably not answer you.  If you want a response from anyone you should probably know their name. If you want someone to answer you, it is wise to call them by their name.  These are very simple truths yet extremely important to know.  We could say that this “call on the right name and He will answer knowledge” is just “common sense” but yet this human quality seems to be an escaping virtue to possess these days for so many.  God gives us examples in Psalms 99:6 of a few select men that called upon His name.  These men were Moses, Aaron and Samuel and they are said to have all called upon the name of Jehovah and it tells us clearly that they received a response from Him.  That is the first astounding benefit revealed by God in this lesson for believing in His name and calling upon the name of the Lord.  God teaches us that if we call upon His name then He will hear us and He will answer because He is no respecter of persons.  Therefore, if your LORD is Jesus then call upon Jesus and see if He hears and answers the same as Jehovah did in these examples.  I believe that we have already established with scripture that Jesus was Jehovah in the flesh in lesson 1 but we re exploring more evidence in this lesson to remove all doubt.

CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD BENEFITS

I introduced you to just one of the benefits to calling upon the name of the Lord in the previous section. This section will continue the lesson with more of the stated benefits for believing in the name of the correct Lord and calling upon His name.  I want to begin this section of the lesson with a verse for you to read and then ask you a question to why it is important.  Please read over this verse carefully noting what is stated and then you begin to ask yourself questions from what you believe that God has given to you to know:

Act 4:18  And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus.

Notice the Apostles were teaching others about Jesus and this made the Jews very angry.  But more specifically notice that the apostles were teaching directly about the “name of Jesus”.  Wow that sounds important to me.  Why would it even be necessary for the apostles to teach in the name of Jesus?  Could there have been any directly stated or even implied benefits that were attached to this name that needed to be made known to the others that heard?  Could the others that heard the name of Jesus being taught also gain any benefits from hearing about His name?  Why would Satan not want the “name of Jesus” to be spread to others? According to this verse there must be some great significance for teaching in the name of Jesus that the enemy wants to silence.  This name of Jesus sounds very important to me and I hope you will agree.  This is exactly why I am spending so much time teaching on the name of Jesus.

We are studying the reasons why the belief in the name of Jesus and calling on His name is very essential.  We have discovered that when we call upon the name of the Lord, He says that He hears us and that He will answer.   We can learn some very key facts to know about the name of the Lord Jesus if we open our spiritual eyes to see and receive them.  The word benefit is defined as “an advantage or a profit gained from something given or obtained”.  The something in this case given is for us “to believe in the name of Jesus” and then “to call upon this name of Jesus”.  The profit and advantage gained from doing these two simple things may be far greater than you can possibly imagine right now.  Before I go further I’ll state the antithesis truth of what I just said.  The opposite truth states that the losses and disadvantages that are faced by not believing in the name of the Lord and not calling upon the name of the Lord Jesus could be infinitely consequential to your life.  Let’s get started with learning some of the essential benefits and advantages for learning the name of the LORD:

Psa 116:12  What shall I render unto the LORD for all his benefits toward me?

Psa 116:13  I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD.

Here are two great subject verses.  The Hebrew word in verse 12 translated as benefits means to “bestow on” or to “deal bountifully” with someone.  That reveals to us that God by His freewill and sovereign choice has placed His infinite divine grace and favor upon those that call upon His name.  But many will try to say that these verses are not about Jesus so why are you including it here?  However that is really not true.  Almost everything in the Old Testament points us to Jesus even if you do not see it at first.  I teach that Jesus is the central themed subject of the entire Bible from Genesis to Revelation.

Verse 12 teaches us that we cannot earn or repay what God is prophesied to do for us in this verse or now has done for us after Christ has come.  However, this undeserved gift is truly a New Testament Grace concept.  What is God talking about here that cannot be repaid?  Verse 13 gives us a glimpse into what one of these coming benefits is.  Salvation is the stated primary subject benefit for believing and calling on the name of the LORD.  However, this “cup of salvation” must be taken by the one that it is being offered to.  God does not force anyone to drink from this saving cup. This cup is what God has offered to every man, woman and child on the earth.  God has extended the cup of salvation to each of us in this life.  If we choose to take it we will be saved.  How does this work?  God tells you in the last part of verse 13.   We must call upon the name of the LORD.  Again that sounds critical to know.   Could that be the reason why the Apostles in Acts were teaching the people about the name of Jesus?

The key name of God found in verses 12 and 13 are translated as LORD which is the Hebrew word H3068 again referred to in English transliteration as “Jehovah”.  The Hebrew word Jehovah is included by God in over 5500 verses of the O.T.   Jehovah is also a root word of the name of the English transliterated name of Jesus as I have previously taught several times now.  What we need to do is to learn if there are any other supporting God given connections of Jesus being Jehovah.  So let’s establish truth using the Bible and the Spirit of God to guide us.  Consider this important subject verse next:

Rom 10:13  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Here in this chapter’s context is found the primary subjects of human salvation in conjunction with the belief and placing our faith in the name of Jesus in order to be saved.  Did you notice what this verse said?  God tells us that whoever shall choose to make a decision and call on the name of the LORD they and they alone will be saved.  Who is this LORD?  I believe if you are intelligent you will know that this LORD is speaking of only Jesus Christ.

Now please know and understand that this verse in Romans 10:13 is a direct quotation of another Old Testament verse about Jehovah found in Joel 2:32.  Wow, that is just an amazing coincidence that God through the inspired writer Paul would use an obscure O.T. verse to teach us that the N.T. man named Jesus is the same LORD as O.T. named Jehovah.  You see the Hebrew word that is translated as LORD in Joel 2:32 is Jehovah (H3068) the exact word found in over 5500 verses of the Old Testament and the Greek word in Romans 10:13 that is translated as Lord is Kurios (G2932) the same word we have been learning is the equivalent language match.  Again these two verses in Romans and Joel further establish that the Greek word G2932 and the Hebrew word H3068 are equivalent words about the same subject just across a language division boundary.  Are you getting it yet?  I hope so.

I hope and pray that you are beginning to learn why this is so important.  God is teaching us that the O.T. Jehovah (LORD) is the same as the N.T. Lord Jesus using the direct law of inspired quotation.  They must both be the same person called by one name “LORD” in two different languages.  God is teaching us that it was Him, the Jehovah/Lord God that became Jesus and walked among us to save us.  Why can’t people see this?  People do not see the truth because the Bible says in 2 Corinthians 4:4 their minds have been blinded by the god of this world (Satan).  Satan is still trying to stop people like me from teaching on the name of Jesus and who He is.  There is truly nothing new under the sun.

There are so very many people who call themselves saved Christians and ignore the Bible.  They do not believe that Jesus was God come in the flesh and I believe this endangers their salvation tremendously.  These types of people take their selective verses and attempt to prove Jesus was just a man, just a prophet or even just an angel sent down from heaven.  This type of belief leaves God’s direct participation and contribution in our salvation process completely out of the picture.  It would further make Jesus an impersonal created unwilling participant and would certainly deny His deity.  In other words some believe that God sent or created someone else instead of coming Himself to save us.  That type of belief denies the name of Jesus to be meaningful.  Wow that is such a huge deception being pulled over the spiritual eyes of people.  Let’s move to two other verse witnesses that Jesus Himself spoke:

Luk 6:46  And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Joh 13:13  You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am.

In the first verse Jesus asks “Why do you call me Lord (Kurios) and do not do what I say?”  In the second verse Jesus says “You call me teacher and Lord (Kurios) and you speak well because I am (He)”.  However, remember again the basic fact that Jesus was a Jew and spoke Hebrew, so He was not speaking the Greek language when He said these statements even though it was recorded in the Greek language for us to read.  This means from our previous study that Jesus said Luke 6:46 “Why call you me “Jehovah” “Jehovah” and do not do what I say?” and in John 13:13 He said “You call me teacher and JEHOVAH and You are correct I am”.  Wow, Wow and Wow!  Are you receiving who Jesus claimed to be?  Get what Jesus is saying.  Think like a Hebrew for a few moments!  Put yourself in the audience when Jesus made these statements and you will soon understand why many picked up stones to kill Him.

Jesus is directly claiming to be God Almighty in the flesh with both of these statements.  Nowhere in the New Testament does Jesus ever dispute being the Jehovah LORD.  Nowhere does Jesus ever deny being God Jehovah incarnate.  In fact the completely opposite is actually found true.  Jesus repeatedly alluded to the fact that He had come down from heaven and that He and His Father were ONE (John 10:30).  Yet so many people refuse to see the truth and they choose to buy into a lie of Satan so easily.  Here is another additional witness to insure the accuracy of Jesus being Jehovah:

Act 2:21  And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Let every word of truth be established in the mouth of two or three witnesses the Bible teaches.  God again quotes the prophet Joel here in this verse in Acts.  This verse is a duplication of Roman’s 10:13 statement.  The Apostle Peter after being filled with the Holy Ghost stands up and preaches to the multitude that was found present to hear him.  If you read the context you will find that He is speaking directly of Jesus as being this “Lord” that Joel prophesied about coming.  Wow again, is that not just a little bit crazy?  I’m being humorous by asking that question.  No, Peter was not crazy.  Peter was a Jewish man also and he was quoting a Hebrew verse about Jehovah claiming that it was written about Jesus.  Therefore, Peter claimed that Jesus was Jehovah come down to the earth and was teaching this to anyone that hears it.

We just read that Jesus Himself claimed to be Jehovah.  Then if men like Peter believed Jesus was Jehovah and Paul believed Jesus was Jehovah why don’t you?   We would have to follow a completely different and false Gospel in order to believe in a salvation process that did not come from the God Jehovah personally being present on the earth to die for our sins.   I would strongly suggest that you go and reread Roman 10 and Acts 2 again and again to see how God used the Joel prophecy to describe Jesus as being LORD (Jehovah).  This is exactly what was being proclaimed by the early church believe it or not.  I am going to take this divine message even deeper to help you to learn the truth.  You are probably familiar with this verse but hopefully new light will shine upon it so that you will see it differently:

Rom 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

Paul a Jew writes that “if you will confess (call, speak, say) with your mouth the LORD Jesus….you will be saved”.  The Greek word translated as “LORD” in this verse is the same G2962 Kurios that we have learned is the equivalent to the Hebrew Jehovah.  Now change this one word Lord in the sentence and reread the verse:

Rom 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth JEHOVAH is Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

I made three minor but legitimate changes to the KJV Bible verse.  I took away “the”, added “is” and change Lord to the Equivalent Hebrew word “JEHOVAH”.  All of this was legal.  I will confirm this with using the amplified translation:

Rom 10:9  Because if you acknowledge and confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord (JEHOVAH) and in your heart believe (adhere to, trust in, and rely on the truth) that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

Notice how the amplified translated the original Greek.  I added the word (JEHOVAH) to bring clarity because this was the original Hebrew equivalent word.  The amplified Bible said for us to say “Jesus is LORD” and by the law of Algebraic equivalence we know that we can or should say “Jesus is Jehovah”.  BY believing who Jesus was and making this statement we are declaring Jesus to be Jehovah our God and this verse says when we do that we will be saved.  This harmonizes precisely with the verses we just looked at in Joel 2:32, Romans 10:13 and Acts 2:21.

What we are learning is that our New Covenant salvation is found in believing that Jesus is the God Jehovah.  Before we end this section we will observe an additional essential reference for this part of the benefits to the name of Jesus subject study:

Act 4:10  Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.

Act 4:11  This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.

Act 4:12  Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Here in these verses we find the primary reason for believing in the name of Jesus and calling upon His name.  Peter very clearly teaches us that there is no other name under heaven given among men where we can even think to be saved.  Wow, wow and wow!!!    Here we again get confirmation that the name of Jesus is an absolute necessity for being saved.  This implies that we must know who this name was given to and what He represents.  What makes this name different than anyone else’s name on the earth?  Why would Satan want us to not teach about this name, learn or know this name?  Anyone telling you that Jesus was not God is from Satan and you have a choice to believe them or not.  I am telling you plainly that Jesus was God using more than enough verses from the Bible to establish the truth and you have the same choice to believe what I say from the Bible or not.

We should learn that salvation is the primary need to learn, know and believe in the name of Jesus, but there is also another quick reference given to us in verse 10 that should be mentioned.  If you read the context you will find why Peter is speaking about Jesus and His name.  Peter had just used his faith in the name of Jesus to cause a lame man at the temple gate to walk.  It was this name of Jesus that Peter said made the man whole.  The Greek word translated as whole means to be healed and made complete.  That teaches us that salvation is much more than just God taking our spirits to heaven after we die.  No the Greek word translated as salvation is “sozo” and it means to be made whole spiritually, mentally and physically.   Go back in Acts and read verse 9 where Peter is telling the elders “by what means this man was made whole”.  The Greek word “whole” in this verse is G4928 “sozo” and it means “to save, deliver or protect”.  This word is used in the N.T. in a varied and wide all-inclusive process.  The name of Jesus saves us in so many ways that most of us have not yet realized or believed.  I’m really not going to get into this part of the meaning of salvation any further in this lesson.  I have other lessons that will expand upon this if you are interested.

What we must conclude from just these few verses that I have gone through so far today is that Jesus was Jehovah come down to save, deliver and protect us by our faith in His name and saying He is our Jehovah (LORD).  That is what the name Jesus means and that was what has occurred and is offered to you if you choose to believe it and receive it.  Therefore, our salvation is the most important reason for believing in and calling upon the name of the Lord Jesus.  This truth was clearly established in Romans 10:13 and Acts 2:21.  We are commanded to call upon His name and God says we will be saved.  Satan will fight you over this and try with all his power to get you not to believe this because this will take you out of his kingdom of darkness and he will no longer be your lord.  I seriously hope and pray that you understand what is being said here because the antithesis truth not directly stated is that if you do not believe or call upon the name of Jesus you will not be saved and go to hell.

DIVINE SIGNIFICANCE FOR THE NAME OF JESUS

I am going to conclude this name of Jesus Bible lesson with a final message of warning.  This warning comes directly from God’s Word and not from my imagination.  I am just the messenger that is delivering the warning.  Paul is writing to the church in these next few verses and we should take special heed to what is stated especially in the light of what we have learned so far about Jesus is Lord/Jehovah.  Turn to Philippians chapter 2 and read with me:

Php 2:5  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

Php 2:6  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

Php 2:7  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:

Php 2:8  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Php 2:9  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:

Php 2:10  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;

Php 2:11  And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

According to God people can bow their knees to the name of the LORD Jesus right now by their choice or they will be forced to bow later without a choice.  There are no other options given to us.  It is and always will be a right now decision by an act of freewill humble submission and surrender or later by an act of superior force.  You need to spend a lot of time reading these verses and understanding what is being revealed about Jesus conforms to everything that I have taught up until this point and then realize who God claimed Himself to be in His written Holy Word.  Verses 5 through 8 teach us about God coming down from heaven and taking on the form of a human male.  He humbles Himself to be a servant in order to die on a cross for our sins.  Verse 9 is referring to God raising Jesus from the dead to ascend back into heaven being given a much superior name above every other name.

Read down to verse 11 and notice who Jesus is written by God’s design to be again.  God tells us in this verse that every tongue will confess that “Jesus is LORD”.  Who is this LORD?  Always remember that the Greek word translated as “LORD” is G2962 Kurios the exact same word that we learned earlier that was equivalent to the Hebrew word H3068 JEHOVAH by God’s definition?  If God inspired the writer Paul to write this message in his native Hebrew language instead of the Greek, what would it have said?  Remember the writer Paul was a native Jew by his own admission.   Paul would have thought thoughts primarily in the Hebrew language.  Therefore, reread the statement inserting the Hebrew word equivalent, “every tongue will confess that JESUS CHRIST IS JEHOVAH”.  Wow that is a very strong word of warning for us to believe in right now.  I really do not understand why people do not think when they read the Bible.  The truth is staring them right in the face but it is hidden from their view by wrong thinking.  Please confess that Jesus is Jehovah right now because later you will be forced to say it but it will be too late.

CONCLUSION

We have only begun to touch on this very major subject of believing that Jesus is Jehovah and calling upon the name of Jesus to be saved.  I have only introduced you to a very small portion of the importance of the name of Jesus. However, we have seen more than enough reasons and evidence to confirm the significance of why it is vitally essential to know Jesus by name and who He was as Jehovah incarnate.   I have also taught on why we all need to believe and call upon this name in order to be saved using multiple verse confirmations.  We have learned a few reasons to know what is gained from believing in the name of Jesus and by calling upon Him by name.  It is very clear from Bible research that the early church taught on this subject of the name of Jesus everywhere they encountered people that needed to be saved. If the early church placed such great emphasis on Jesus being Jehovah why should we not do the exact same?   I will list a few benefits for doing this now again for a quick synopsis overview:

  1. When we believe on Him we will call and when we do not believe we will not call.
  2. When we call upon Him, He will hear us.
  3. When He hears us, God says that He will answer.
  4. All who believe and call on the name of the LORD Jesus will be saved.
  5. Salvation is found in absolutely no other name but the name of Jesus.
  6. I’ll say it again, there is no other name given to men whereby we may be saved.
  7. Never forget to tell people that Jesus is Jehovah.

I appreciate you taking the time to read this Bible lesson.  I do pray that it opened your eyes to see some things that you have never considered before about Jesus and God’s Word.  I hope and pray that this lesson will give sufficient evidence to convince any doubters to confess Jesus is Jehovah now.  If you have the opportunity to share my website with your friends and family I would be so grateful for your help spread the Word of God to others.  Thank you all and God Bless you until next time.

BIBLE ANSWERS: How Can the Bible Be Called a Personal Love Letter Written to Me?

bible-answers2(Ver 1.1)  Today’s Bible lesson contains a response from the Spirit of God to answer a very important question asked by a loyal Agapegeek reader.  My reader asked me why I could call the Bible a personal love letter written from God to you and me.  I have mentioned this concept more than once in other Bible lessons.  I have suggested to peoplet that they read the Bible like it was”a personal love letter from God written to them”.  I firmly believe that if each of us would just change or adjust our perspective of the Bible slightly to see it differently from where we may have seen it before that it would be of great benefit for us to help us learn the truth.  What if we read the Bible as if it was a private love correspondence written from a very dear boyfriend or girlfriend?  How would this attitude change your expectations of the words on the page?  Would you consider the word’s of the Bible more meaningful or to be significantly changed by God’s great love for you?  I really do believe that you would.

I grew up in the age before email and text messaging.  In that age to reach someone of any distance you had to write a letter to them.  Yes, I know the telephone was there and that could be used to convey a lot of the same or even better information with feelings by hearing their voice directly.  But long distance calling was expensive so the best way to normally talk to someone in any length was to write a letter to your love.   While God could certainly boom out His message directly from heaven for everyone to hear, He too has chosen to reach out to us using a written form of messaging.  This raises two questions immediately in my mind and these were 1). for what purpose was the Holy Bible written and 2). what were God’s thoughts for us when it was written?  The intent of the Bible could have been anywhere from an attitude of anger, rage and hate on one side of the pendulum to being from a calm, peaceful and loving attitude towards us on the other side.  Which one was it?

Many people read the Bible as if it was written only by a powerful angry God of judgment and punishment for all of their sins and the evils that they have done in this world.  But I am not one of those and I believe the Bible came from a God with a personal caring attention and a specific communication style of love directed at at all of those that would take the time to read what He said!  I believe that we should each receive the Bible like it was an important special delivery love letter written from the most distant place called heaven from the most special person in our lives and see it as Him speaking directly sweet, kind and loving words written to us.  Look at the Bible as God making well intended promises about what He will do for us and to us when He comes for us because of His great love for us.

My reader said that God’s Spirit on the inside of him witnessed with his spirit that this type of Godly loving attitude of message content was a correct perspective to receiving the Bible.  He also felt that it was a true saying that I wrote about in my Bible lessons when I said we should read it like a love letter from God.  But, yet he still needed scriptural evidence and proof for the defense of this statement to confirm his belief.  In other words how could he defend this stated belief if someone asked him why he believed His Bible was a supernatural personal love letter written to him from God?  What an excellent question and what an admirable quality of Christian character to possess.  For someone to be so open minded and in tune with the Spirit of God but at the same time wanting to verify whatever is taught with the backing of the Bible caused him to be like one of the noble Berean types of Christians found in Acts 17:11.  I hope and pray that you are the same way.  Therefore let’s obtain foundation evidence from the Bible for a belief that God wrote the Bible as a personal love letter.

 

WHY WE NEED TO KNOW THE ANSWER

 Let’s open this Bible study with a directly related discussion to why we need to be able to answer when someone asks us a question about the Bible concerning why we believe the way we do about what is written in it.  What I want you to learn in this initial section is why it is important to learn, know and remember the sound Bible truths in order to respond to the questions of people desiring to understand the foundation basis of our beliefs and faith in Jesus Christ. We will begin reading form the book of Colossians:

Col 4:3  Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:

Col 4:4  That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.

Col 4:5  Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time.

Col 4:6  Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

This is such an excellent set of verses.  Paul writes to the church of Colossae.  This information should immediately raise the question in your mind “why am I reading a letter written nearly 2000 years ago to someone else originally like it was applicable to me?  This is what many intellectual deceived people will conclude.  I have also heard religious people that graduate from unnamed seminaries use this argument to explain away verses that did not conform to their traditions.  However that is a lie from Satan.  This letter was written to the Church of Jesus Christ and that is me because I’m in the same body of Christ and they were. There is no new body of Christ today from back them.  I hope that you understand that.

Paul writes both a request for prayer as well as to give them instructions on our important subject question do we need to defend our faith to non-believers?  Paul asks for them to pray that God would open a door for him to be able to preach the mystery of Christ to the lost.  Paul expounds clearly and plainly that God’s word contains divine mysteries that are not easily understood by carnal minded unsaved people.  Therefore Paul then asks them to pray that God would show him what to speak so that he could walk in divine wisdom toward them that were unsaved.  This is an excellent prayer for me if you would have the time to do that.  I know if you are witnessing to people it would be a good prayer for you also.  Let’s continue to go through some more of the information found in these verses written to us in the church.

Paul is talking about speaking the right words for the specific situations for those coming opportunities that God was going to present to him through the open doors being prayed for.  Can you understand what Paul needed and why it is even necessary to ask God for this to help others get saved?  Think with me for a moment.  Every man is different.  Each individual being different will respond to only certain personal words.  One answer to one man will be rejected by another.   This is why we need God to help us because only He knows the right words to speak for every person we encounter.

What if someone that is unsaved comes to you and asks you why do you believe in Jesus?  Do you have an answer?  Wow, I think many do not.  Now let me ask you something related to what Paul prayed.  Do you have the answer that they will receive?  Someone coming to you and asking why you believe in Jesus is really no different than if someone comes to you and asks you why are you reading the Bible?  I believe that one possible good answer to that question would be “I read the Bible because this is God’s love letter that He wrote to me personally”.   However this answer may just bring up another direct question about why you said that?  Will you be able to answer that question also?  What kind of proof or evidence do you have to present to anyone in the court of human personal interaction to defend your statement?  I hope and pray that is the reason that you are reading this Bible lesson to find out.

Col 4:6  Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

Look at verse 6 again because this is the main point that I wanted you to see in this introduction.  God says through Paul for our speech (words spoken to the unsaved world) to always be done with God’s Grace (full of grace, spoken in grace, led by grace and even done with and for grace).  Then God says to let your words be seasoned with salt.  Wow now we are getting into more difficult symbolism.  We could spend days talking about the subject of salt but that is not my main subject today.  Therefore let’s move to the last statement in verse 6.

In the last statement in verse 6 God says if we let our words be as the seasoning and preserving salt filled with grace this will cause us to be able to answer any man’s question the way that we should.   What God is saying is you better expect questions concerning your faith and beliefs to come from unsaved people and then you also better expect to give them answers to those questions right away.  Are you ready to do that?

1Pe 3:15  But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

Today the question asked to me was “Why I believe the Bible is written to me personally as a divine love letter from the Almighty God”.  Let’s get into the subject of why the Bible can be considered a divine love letter written to you and I from the most intelligent and all powerful being that you can imagine named God.

 

WHY SHOULD WE CALL THE BIBLE A LOVE LETTER?

 I’ll begin this section of the subject study by using a very basic important fact presented to us in the Bible about how God identifies to us His character as being love.  This basic foundational fact should be one of the truths that every Christian learns directly after being saved.  Knowing God’s true character and nature will help us to know how to understand the entire rest of Bible.  We should always balance God’s revealed character of love with His stated works and actions.  I will say that this is a complex question to answer and sometimes Bible answers to basic questions are not as easy as reading only one verse but I will still try to answer the question as best as I can in this presentation of message delivery.  Let’s start with seeing this very important basic Bible truth of God’s character found directly in the first epistle of John:

1Jn 4:8  He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

1Jn 4:16  And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.

Notice the declaration of divine character being presented to the church in these two verses that “God is LOVE”!  The Greek word translated as “God” in these verses is G2316 and this Greek word can be transliterated as “THEOS”.   THEOS is one of the dominate N.T. names of God and is found in 1172 verses.  THEOS is LOVE is one of the most vital statements of God’s makeup, character, personality and nature found in the entire Bible.  Love is stated to define who and what God is and this declaration must be the revealed source for His other great qualities such as His morals, His compassion, His mercy and His grace.  God wraps all of His other Bible described attributes in the one word named Love.  This word translated as “love” is the Greek word “AGAPE” (G26) and we all need to learn this word.  According to John 3:16 AGAPE means to give grace, mercy and compassion to someone when it is not desired, deserved, earned or even appreciated.  I am not going to explain that statement further so if you can’t read John 3:16 and see that this is a true statement you need to spend a great deal of time studying on this verse before you continue in this lesson.

God’s (THEOS) divine love (AGAPE) is nowhere close to a normal human type of expressed love.  The God kind of love is unconditional.  God loves us because this is His character and nature and not because of anything that we can do for Him or to Him to earn it.   I would like to make a point that God does not have love because these verses say very clearly that God is love.  There is a huge difference between being something and having something. For example if I had gold that is completely different than saying that I am gold.   Humans fall in love and fall out of love and this is not an example of God’s love (AGAPE).  God is never going to stop loving you because you did something wrong, made a mistake or even told Him that you did not love Him.  Wow, that is difficult to even comprehend.

What we observe from these two statements in 1 John 4:8 and 4:16 is that there is a definite mathematical law that what one (GOD THEOS) is the other (LOVE AGAPE) is.  Each are declared to be the equivalent representative of the other only using a different description, name, title or label.  Wow, that was a very powerful statement of truth.  What I am saying is when you see “AGAPE” you should see “THEOS” and when you see “THEOS” you should see “AGAPE”.  There is no difference between the two by God’s definition.  Remember that this is God’s definition and not mine.  God teaches us that they both are stated to be mathematically equivalent.    This truth is like saying “GOD/THEOS” = “LOVE/AGAPE” in mathematical notation terms.  Let’s check out another verse that claims God is love:

2Co 13:11  Finally, brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.

Here we have further confirmation that God is love.  I like to give more than one verse to prove the statements that I make because God declares in the mouth or two or three witnesses from the Bible let every word be established.   Here is God writing through Paul to say “the God of LOVE”.  It would be perfectly fine to say “the God (THEOS) who is love (AGAPE) and peace will be with you”.   Wow, I just love the Bible.  This is simply teaching us because we have God on the inside of us we have LOVE present.  We cannot or at least should not deny that God (THEOS) is stated to be love (AGAPE).

Ok we have just learned and now should know that God and love are stated to be equivalent and so whatever God does should be concluded to be based upon HIS dominant descriptive quality of Him being LOVE.  Do you understand this logic so far?  Therefore, based upon 1 John 4:8, 1 John 4:16 and 2 Corinthians 13:8 we have a new mathematical rule to use that states wherever GOD (THEOS) is found LOVE (AGAPE) can be found also by the mathematical law of algebraic substitution.  Using these mathematical commutative laws it is perfectly acceptable and even encouraged to say GOD (THEOS) = LOVE (AGAPE) and therefore LOVE (AGAPE) = GOD (THEOS) and we can use either titled name form to describe Him or point others to Him.  Do you understand this very basic mathematical truth reality?  If you do then please read this verse next carefully with this in new information in the forefront of your mind:

2Ti 3:16  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

Now change the single most important focused subject word “God” (THEOS) found in this verse to the equivalent of “Love” (AGAPE) using the mathematical laws of substitutionary equivalency and reread the sentence:

2Ti 3:16  All scripture is given by inspiration of LOVE (AGAPE), and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

Now we should be able to begin to easily understand why I could say that God’s Holy Word was a personal Love Letter written to you and me.    Based upon this knowledge, one of the primary reasons for the purpose of the Bible being given to us is because of GOD/LOVE.  Then God explains in this verse because of His love His Word is beneficial to teach us (doctrine).  This literally means God’s Word instructs us like children helping us to grow up.  The next benefit for God’s word is “reproof” and this is a Greek word that means to give us “proof” or “evidence”.  Uh oh that is exactly what we all need to answer any question.  We are finding the proof that the Bible is God’s love letter simply by studying and learning what He says.  This is us again coming to God’s Word like 2 year old children asking their loving parent why, why and why.  Next the Bible is then stated to benefit us by “correcting” us.  This simply means a confirming repetition of the previous statements that God is turning us away from the ways that are not good for us using His loving Word.  This is exactly the role of a loving parent given to their child in a caring and loving relationship.  The final statement is a Greek word translated as “instruction” which declares the same loving purpose for the Word of God meaning “tutorage”.  God is simply saying My Word will train you in the way you should be going as a wise loving parent will do for any of their children with great love.

What we have just observed is a Loving Heavenly Father that gives us His word in Love and for AGAPE instruction, training and evidence.  This should be changing your perspective of the Bible dramatically by now if you are His child and want to grow spiritually.

 

HOW CAN ALL OF THE WORD OF GOD BE PERSONAL TO ME?

 Jer_29_11We have just gone through a simple quick introduction to the subject of why the Bible is a written love letter from God.  But we still need to connect why the entire Bible should be considered personally written to you and I?  In other words if the Old Testament was originally written to the natural nation of Israel, how do any of these previous Old Testament words apply to us today in the New Testament church?  I will answer that question by saying Old Testament verses do relate and apply to us if we know how to use them.  But let’s begin by taking a specific O.T. example to consider.  We will go back to a verse that is often used by modern church preachers.  This verse is found in the book of Jeremiah.  Yet it this old verse is often quoted to be for us now in the church.

Jer 29:11  For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

First consider the verse using the knowledge gained from the second section in the lesson on the subject of GOD = LOVE.  Is this verse in Jeremiah 29:11 a love based statement?  I believe it is very clear that it is AGAPE based.  The LORD is speaking in this statement and He declares that He has good plans for the intended reader of this text.  It further says that God has good thoughts of peace towards these people also.   Sounds like a loving father to me, how about you?   If you read the context you will see in verse 1 of this chapter that these words were written to the remnant of Israel that was taken captive into Babylon.  This is clearly not me or you, is it?  So how does this type of verse apply to us in the church?  That is the great question.  Do verses like Jeremiah 29:11 have anything to do with you and I today?

Do you remember that we just learned from 2 Timothy 3:16 that “ALL SCRIPTURE” was given by inspiration of God for our instruction and this statement was written directly to the church and I am certainly in the church.  This verse in 2 Timothy immediately teaches us that even the Old Testament contains inspired words that are at the least important and beneficial for us to learn from.   Do you understand this so far?  Do you agree with this concept so far?

When the church was first established based upon the description given to us in the book of Acts, the disciples preached the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the people of that day using only the Old Testament writings.  Therefore the O.T. verses were the only divinely inspired Words of God that could be used to verify doctrinal information that they possessed or were presented.  The Old Testament was the only proof and evidence that was present to confirm everything that was being taught by the disciples.  If you read Acts 17:11 as I previously mentioned it declared the more noble Berean Christians searched these O.T. scriptures daily to verify what was being taught by Peter, James, John, Paul and etc.  This should help us to begin to understand the significance of why even the Old Testament is so important to learn and correctly understand for us in the modern church.  It is vital to remember that the Old Testament verses were given by the same inspiration of AGAPE that the New Testament verses were given by.  There is absolutely only one Bible written by only one author and He is the God called LOVE and this fact will sustain us to arrive at the truth if we continue to study and learn.

Christians today often still struggle to understand how a verse written to the Old Testament natural nation of Israel could be applicable to them.  Therefore, let’s examine some verses in the New Testament that help us to understand why they do apply to us.  We will begin by reading a verse found in 2 Corinthians:

2Co 1:20  For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.

 Here is where life could begin to get complicated for many Bible readers.  This is a verse of Holy Scripture that teaches all of us in the church that “EVERY” promise made by God applies to us even if they were made by God during the Old Covenant.   That statement is also a complicated concept that passes over the head of Christians.  They tend to over analyze and see many O.T. promise verses as being only made to the people of natural Israel but that is not what this verse said.  Every is an all-inclusive statement omitting none of them.  That means if God made a promise it is ours by the definition of 2 Corinthians 1:20.   However there is a qualification given in order to be included in this statement.  Did you see it in the verse?  We must pay attention to every detail or we will fall into error easily.

The qualification for God’s promises to be made manifest was given to only those that were “IN HIM”.  I’ll say it again “All the promises of God are given to those that are in Him”.  All the promises of God are Amen (so be it) to ONLY those that are “in Him”.  What does that mean?   This simply teaches us a principle that is not widely taught in the church but I will try to explain this without going into great detail in this lesson.  I’ll begin by asking you “Are you in Him?”  The “Him” is of course referring to Christ Jesus!    You are either “In Him” if you are saved or you are “separated and apart from Him” if not saved.  That is the basic simple truth.

So why is it important for us to be in Jesus Christ?  Wow that is an amazing question to find the answer if you really think about it?  Who was Jesus Christ?  We should already know that Jesus was the Son of God the second person of the Godhead and trinity.  But, we should also know that He was the Son of Man (Adam) and a descendant of Abraham.  The genealogy of Jesus given by divine inspiration in Luke 3 proves to us the natural family lineage of Jesus as direct descendant of the natural nation of Israel.  This makes Jesus our qualifying partner.  Jesus was and is the reason we can possess the Old Testament promises of God written to natural Israel.  There are over 100 verses in the New Testament that informs us that we are in Christ Jesus.  Because we are said to be in Jesus Christ, we have what He has.  What Jesus possesses we possess.  It is very simple and yet so very profound.  Let’s explore some additional New Testament verses to help confirm what is being taught:

Gal 3:9  So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

Here is another potentially confusing verse.  They which “be” of faith is speaking of “you and I” if you are saved by God’s grace through your faith (Eph 2:8).  Are you of faith?  I know I am of the faith!  Then it says if you are of faith then you are blessed along with and the same as faithful Abraham.  Why would this be a true statement?  Many of us in the church are probably not a natural descendant of Abraham.  So how can we have the same blessings as Abraham?  Let’s continue down to another verse in Galatians to learn more:

 Gal 3:14  That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Oh, this verse is beginning to speak more directly of me because I’m definitely a Gentile man.  Notice that the blessings of Abraham will come upon the Gentiles through the Lord Jesus Christ.  Now we have two keys to the puzzle.  There was the mention of faith in verse 9 and mention of Gentiles being blessed through Christ Jesus in verse 14.  What we are doing is gathering puzzle pieces to learn how the spiritual things of God were accomplished and how they apply to us by faith.  But there is much more to learn and we are missing the main puzzle piece still.  Let’s continue to read down into verse 16:

Gal 3:16  Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.

Notice what this verse says because this is a very essential New Testament truth ignored by many.  God through the Apostle Paul writes to us that all of the promises made to Abraham were made to him and to his seed.  But here is where the clarification comes from God that it was not all of the people that were born from Abraham but rather only one seed being Jesus Christ.   Do you understand this?  God promised the blessing to only Abraham and to only Jesus the seed of Abraham.  That is an amazing statement of truth being given by revelation to Paul.  Seed is a word that can be singular or plural without any modification.  It is only by the choice of the speaker which one it is.  Since God is the speaker we need to conform to which one He said it was and not what we thought or learned from a man.  Do you understand that principle?

Why did I just go through all of these verses in Galatians to teach you these basic Bible facts?  It is simply because since we are “IN CHRIST” we have everything that He has been given by God.  Every blessing that was promised to Christ belongs to me and to you also if you are in Christ.  I’ll say it one more time “What was given to Jesus has been given to us by our faith in Him”.   I will only go over one other puzzle piece in this chapter for the conclusion of this part of the section:

Gal 3:29  And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

If you are Christ’s then God declares that you are Abraham’s seed and an heir according to the promise given to Abraham and his seed.  Wow again an awesome statement.  This is just further confirmation that whatever God promised to Abraham in the Old Testament was given to Christ and because we are “IN CHRIST” we have also become the seed of Abraham.  Are you receiving this message from God?  The primary reason I am going through these verses is to teach you why statements made to the natural seed can and will still apply to us in the church today.  Most of the church today are not natural seeds of Abraham but because Jesus was a natural seed that the promise was made to then we have obtained the blessing also.  This is one of the primary reasons why most of the blessing verses written to natural Israel can and will apply to us today in the church.

Do you remember how we got here?  I began teaching this section declaring the truth of 2 Corinthians 1:20 that teach us that “all of the promises of God are in Him Yes and Amen in Christ Jesus”.  What we have accomplished is the placing together of many pieces to present a greater and more complete pictured truth.  Each individual picture piece represents a truth that when joined together correctly present a view into something that is truly much more significant for us to know.   I’ll end this section of the lesson with only one other verse concerning the promises of God:

Heb 8:6  But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.

This verse is again speaking of Jesus.  The works of God through Christ Jesus are so much greater than most of us really know or understand.  What God has done through Jesus and given to us because of His death, burial and resurrection is far beyond the human imagination.  All of God’s promises of blessings given to natural Israel have been given to us plus a whole lot more.  The promises of God in the New Covenant must be greater than all of those given in the Old Covenant or no one could call them better.  This is just another reason why it is legal for us in the church to go back into the Old Testament and use any of those words of blessing from God in our lives.  Whatever we can find spoken and written down by God through one of His prophets will be the minimum that we should possess.  In other words we can claim by our faith in Jesus because we are IN HIM and we now have better promises that trump those of the Old Testament.

 

CONCLUSION

 I hope and pray that you enjoyed this very basic but very essential Bible lesson answering the question “How can the entire Bible be considered a personal love letter from God written to me?”  This lesson should provide us a firm foundation for why the verses of blessing that were written to the natural nation of Israel can be applied and taken as a promise from God to us today in the church.  I began this lesson teaching the basic character trait that GOD/THEOS = LOVE/AGAPE.  I then took this truth and applied it to the Bible being given and inspired by GOD/THEOS who is LOVE/AGAPE.  We substituted AGAPE for THEOS in the verse of 2 Timothy and this taught us that the Bible was LOVE inspired written down by men of God for us to learn from.  We went through the fact that there are over 100+ verses in the Bible that tell us those that are saved are “IN CHRIST”.  These verses benefit us because we were given the promises of God made to Abraham by our faith the same as Jesus because we are “IN HIM”.

If you have any questions or comments about anything that was written down here I would be very glad to read them and to respond to them as time and the Lord permits.  Please share this website with you friends and family to help the Word of God’s truth be spread to everyone for free on this planet.  The more God can reach and help people the faster that Jesus can come back and take us out of this world.  I’m personally looking forward to Jesus coming very soon.  Redeem the time because the time is short.  Stand firm in the faith of Jesus Christ and tell everyone you can about His saving grace.  Thank you and may God continue to richly bless you to grow spiritually.

Understanding Bible Faith! Part 18 –- Righteous Faith Speaks

faith speaks2(Ver 1.1) This is now Part 18 in the advanced study series of Bible lessons on the very valuable subject of “Understanding Bible Faith”.  This is one of my favorite Bible subjects to learn, to study and to teach from the entire Bible.  If you know anything about this subject then you should already understand why this is such an important focus to learn intimately.  I want to stop and reemphasize the opening statement that this is an advanced Bible study series about one of the most important subjects concerning believing God’s spoken and written Holy Word and how to receive whatever He has promised or given to us by His sovereign grace either spiritually, mentally or physically.  I have already covered a lot of information on this subject in this series that will not be repeated.  Therefore, if you have not read this entire series from the beginning I would strongly suggest that you begin at “Part 1” and then read through the series in the order presented for the greatest level of understanding and retention of this complex Bible subject.  It would also be recommended that you reread the entire series more than once.  The more you study a Bible subject the more you will grow in spiritual maturity in that area of God’s given knowledge.  Let’s get started with learning a few new things about the subject Bible Faith.

INTRODUCTION TO SPEAKING THE WORD OF FAITH

Today my subject concerns “Righteous Faith Speaks” and “Speaking the Word of Faith”.  What is Righteous Faith and why does it speak?  What is the “Word of Faith” and why do we need to hear it, know it, understand it or even to speak it?  We will be attempting to learn some fresh verses on faith as well as reviewing some standard faith verses that we have previously seen in this Bible study series.  However, I will hopefully be providing you some new perspectives to any of these repeated verses.  Some statements that I make today may be a review of what I have referred to before but I will place a new angle upon them because God wants to remind us of what He has already said.  Often times we read a Bible verse and think that we have it completely understood knowing everything about it but yet God can bring out something brand new that we have never seen before because all of His words are layered so deeply with both natural and supernatural knowledge much like an onion is designed to be peeled layer by layer and used in each succeeding deepening cover.  If you have studied the Bible very long you know exactly what I am saying.  Let’s read three verses to begin in Romans the 10th chapter to get us familiarized with the foundation scriptures for today’s entire lesson:

Rom 10:6  But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)

Rom 10:7  Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

Rom 10:8  But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

The end of verse 8 introduces us to one of today’s focused concepts called the “word of faith”.  There are many churches in the world today that have taken this name and there are equally as many people in the world that consider all these word of faith churches to present a less than an accurate representation of the Bible.  However this modern church title did not originate from a contemporary false idea.  The Word of Faith title was only adopted today because of verses like this one.  Paul claimed to be one of the first preachers of the “Word of Faith” and I strongly believe that we should all be following Paul’s example at doing exactly what Paul did, can you agree?

If you do not yet understand what the “Word of Faith” is, I will tell you plainly up front that this Word of Faith mentioned in Romans 10:8 is the written and spoken Word of God.  To help confirm this statement we will begin this study by looking up the definitions of the Greek words translated as “the Word of Faith”.  We will first focus on the Greek word translated as “faith”.  This Greek word is G4102 and it is used by God 244 times in 228 N.T. verses.  In my view this Greek word is one of the most important subjects found in the N.T. Bible.  Let’s review the Strong’s definition to help build and refresh our understanding of this word again.

G4102

From G3982; persuasion, that is, credence; moral conviction (of religious truth, or the truthfulness of God or a religious teacher), especially reliance upon Christ for salvation; abstractly constancy in such profession; by extension the system of religious (Gospel) truth itself: – assurance, belief, believe, faith, fidelity.

The Greek word translated as faith is defined by Strong’s to be a “persuasion”.  The English word “persuasion” represents “the act of convincing someone to believe”.  Your beliefs are the basis for your faith, good, bad, right or wrong.   This Greekword also means “credence” which is defined as “the belief in or acceptance that something is true”.  These are exactly what God is teaching us through Paul in Romans 10:8.  Real Bible faith is accepting, being fully persuaded and convinced of what God has said, promised or spoken to us in His Word is the truth.   This process of accepting, believing and being persuaded is done without proof or evidence of it being true other than knowing the revealed character of God that it is impossible for Him to lie (Heb 6:18).

Before I move to the next Greek word translated as “word” let’s talk briefly about the English word “of”.  Sometimes it is very beneficial to go over the basics to enforce what God was speaking to us.  The word “of” is a very basic concept in the English language and it is often ignored.  The word “of” directly connects the word “faith” with the Greek word translated as “word” in Romans 10:8.  “Of” is a preposition.  In the application usage within this phrase “of” is used by God to indicate that the source of our words come from our faith (beliefs) as well as it meaning the source of our faith can come from our words.  Both of these are true statements.  Remember what Jesus said to us in Matthew.  Let’s review these words quickly:

Mat 12:34  O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.

Jesus very clearly tells us that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth will speak.  Jesus in this case is speaking of evil words coming from the heart that is filled with evil.  But the antithesis truth is also true that good words will come from the same source of good being in the heart.  Now consider and ask yourself where the source of “good” comes from?  If you do not understand that it is from God then I would suggest that you go read some more basic concepts of good versus evil in the Bible.  God is always the source of good words because His heart is filled with Love.  Satan is the source of evil words because his heart is filled with evil intents, thoughts and ways.  Now if God is the source of good as He certainly is, then His spoken and written words should also be for our good and be good for us.  We will see more of this truth as we continue.

The second Greek word that I wanted to focus upon was translated as “Word” in this Romans 10:8.  This Greek word translated as the English word “word” is G4487.  This Greek word literally means an “utterance”.  An utterance carries the definition of a spoken word, phrase or literally an audible vocal sound.  This Greek word is the word “rhema” and this is a very specific type of “word” that means someone has spoken, said or declared.  This Greek word “rhema” comes from the Greek word G4483 which is defined as “pour forth” also meaning to utter, to speak or to say.  Consider this root Greek word G4483 definition to be like a natural pitcher of water that is poured out into a glass for someone to drink.  This pouring out of this water pitcher is the symbolic representation of God or us speaking words of faith.  This is a very important Bible concept that needs to be grasped by Christians.   Do you remember again what Jesus said to us?  Look at this verse and consider the implications:

Joh 7:38  He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

What an outstanding and easily misunderstood statement being made by the Creator of the universe.  Do you believe on Jesus?  If you do then Jesus said you should be pouring out from your internal belly, rivers of life producing water.  Is this literal or figurative speaking?  Of course it has to be figurative symbolic information.  Jesus is teaching us spiritual concepts by using naturally created concepts.  Jesus says that we are living pitchers that pour forth waters of life if we believe on Him, do you understand this? But, what are these rivers of living waters being spoken of?  This river of life that pours out of us must originates from the “Rhema” spoken Word of God.  God is the source of all good, and life is good.  I will give you a couple of quick verses to confirm this:

2Co 4:6  For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

2Co 4:7  But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

Here we have two verifications to what I just taught.  We are very clearly called “vessels” with treasure in it in verse 7.   This earthen vessel is our created human body.  The body is the container of our spirit as well as for God’s Word as inferred in verse 6.  God has shined his “knowledge” inside of us and this is clearly His Word.  It is these words of light inside that will be poured out of us (the earthen vessels) to help others to see and receive the same internal light and eternal life being mentioned in John 7:38.  Let’s see another quick statement that helps to confirm for us that the internal waters of life that must come from our mouths cannot be anything but the spoken Words of God:

Joh 4:14  But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

Again Jesus is talking about symbolic waters that quench our spiritual thirst and bring us life and this water can only come from what God gives to us by His spoken Word.  The location of this life source of water we are expressly told must be “in us” and this also corresponds to what Jesus was talking of in John 7:38.  “In us” and “our belly” are synonymous positions for the location of our spirit.  Jesus directly says that out of this internal spirit location will come a well of water (river) that will spring up (flow out, stream out, be poured out). Jesus is teaching us a concept of pouring water out from one vessel to another  Jesus was clearly a vessel used to speak words of life producing waters to others that would receive them.  These waters could then be inside of them and are able to flow from their vessel to still another.  Why don’t Christians take this seriously?  I really think it is because they have not been taught it.  However, Jesus was not teaching any new ideas to us but rather He was teaching concepts found in the O.T.   He is then applying them to us in the N.T.  Let’s review some of these O.T. verses quickly that Jesus is referring to:

Pro 18:4  The words of a man’s mouth are as deep waters, and the wellspring of wisdom as a flowing brook.

Pro 10:11  The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked.

The words of a man’s mouth are defined by God to be symbolic deep waters in the first mentioned verse found in Proverbs 18.  In this verse the human mouth is also called a “wellspring”.   A wellspring is a place that is dug into the ground as a source of fresh pure drinking water.   Drinking water is a basic necessity for natural life.  This is the symbolic nature of the human mouth by God’s design.  You should be clever enough to understand the human body was made from the dust of the ground.  And it is in this ground that God put a spiritual well of life.  It is a very simple concept but hut yet not widely taught.  Then in Proverbs 10 the mouth of the righteous man is again called a “well of life”.  Here we again have an implied source of life coming from our mouths.  Both of these verses directly correspond to the teachings of Jesus found in John.   The wells of life will spring from the mouth of the righteous and this is the critical nature leads us to ask what is this water that must come from our mouth to give us life?

INTRODUCTION TO THE RHEMA WORD OF GOD

The first section was a simple and quick introduction to speaking the rhema words of life and faith.  But I believe that we still need to learn more about what God is trying to say to us by telling us to speak the word (rhema) of faith in Romans chapter 10 and verse 8?  The answer to our questions was certainly implied in that verse in Romans but it was indirectly mentioned so this makes it easily mistaken for something else.  Paul says that he preached (proclaimed, spoke and said) the Word (rhema) of Faith.  Through this implied statement Paul was stating indirectly that he preached the spoken and written Words of God.  Paul was also indirectly claiming that he preached words that produced faith.   What are these faith producing words being preached?  Perhaps you can remember this answer to where our faith originates from a previous faith lesson on how Bible faith comes and this was where we should have learned that Bible faith comes ONLY by us hearing the Bible preached.  Let’s review the key verse from that Bible lesson:

Rom 10:17  So then faith (G4102) cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word (G4487) of God.

God says in Romans 10:17 that “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God”.  There is a very specific connection found with our lesson’s focused verse of Roman 10:8 by direct contextual association and by God’s direct word selection by using the exact same Greek words G4102 and G4487 which were translated as “faith” and “word” respectfully in both verses.  I hope and pray that you know that valid interpretation of God’s word is always based upon rules.  Two of these rules are 1) direct verse to verse context and 2) by finding other verse word usages of the word(s) being studied.  In Romans 10:17 the Spirit of God through Paul is explaining and defining what the “Word (Rhema) of Faith” represents.  We can logically correlate by the laws of mathematics that the “Word of Faith” is equivalent to “the Word of God” and I will give further verse confirmation for this as I continue.

There are generally two different noun types used in the N.T. to describe God’s spoken word.  “Logos” G3056 generally refers to the spoken words of God written in book form and is what I will call reference type 1 and then “Rhema” G4487 is also a type of the spoken word of God referring to God directly speaking His word to anyone by audible sound. But this type of word (rhema) can also refer to God’s spoken word being spoken by an angel or even by us as believers speaking His written word (logos). The “Rhema” word is what I will call reference type 2.  Both Logos and Rhema are used by God in reference to God’s spoken word.  I am only going to focus on type 2 Rhema since this is the key word selected and used by God in Romans 10:8 and 10:17 to describe the substance that produces faith that was being preached by Paul.

You should be familiar with this verse in Romans 10:17 already.  God gives us a direct formula for how Bible faith comes through hearing God’s spoken Word.  God very clearly says that it is this Rhema word of God that must be heard in order to produce faith.  Therefore we must have those that speak God’s Word and those that hear God’s word for any faith to be produced.  It is also interesting to note that these words pour forth from one spirit (heart) to enter into another heart and that is the process of the pitcher and water vessel giving drink to the thirsty empty man vessel we looked at earlier.  I’ll give you another couple of verses quickly to help us confirm “Rhema” is the Word of God being spoken:

1Pe 1:25  But the word (rhema) of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word (Rhema) which by the gospel is preached unto you.

Rhema (word) is associated to be both the spoken words of Jesus as well as the Gospel that was preached verbally to the people.  After the people heard this spoken word it was the same as if they had heard it directly from the lips of Jesus.  There is really no difference between me preaching the Word of God and the Words of Jesus as if Jesus was here personally preaching to you in the flesh.  We are both proclaiming the same “Rhema” words of God.  It is this same Rhema Word of God that will produce the faith in the dry hearts of the people to believe and to receive salvation.   What did I just say?  Some will probably call me a heretic for comparing my spoken words preached with the spoken Words of Jesus but if I say what God says then you need to see how this changes things dramatically.  I’m simply a pitcher of water container and representative of God on this planet.  I am called by God to teach His Word.  I am anointed by God to teach His Word.  Therefore it is technically not me teaching but rather the anointing of God in me that speaks using His Words not mine.  Do you understand what I’m saying?  It is not me that has the power to produce faith or save you, it is the Word in me that has this power.  I do nothing but pour it out and if you drink from it the water of the Word of God will be what causes anything good to happen.  This same principle applies to many other water pitcher vessels and not just to me.  It applies to anyone else that is called by God and anointed by God and is filled with His Word to preach.  It can apply to you if you fill your pitcher with His water.  God uses so many people in this way and I do not want you to think that I am saying I am anybody special because I am not.  I’m going to end this section with another verse that Peter wrote by the inspiration of God:

2Pe 3:2  That ye may be mindful of the words (Rhema) which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour:

Here is another confirmation that people can legally speak the Words of God and that these words carry the same effect if God said them to each of the people that heard them personally.  Here Peter is speaking of men in the Old Testament saying they gave them Rhema from God.  In other words God gave Rhema to the Prophet and the prophet in turn passed this Rhema to the people and now the people were held responsible for the message give to them by God as if they heard it from God directly with their own ears.    What we are seeing is that when we speak the Word (Rhema) of God we are representing God with the same power and authority.  But I know that will not be easily received by many of my readers because of their feelings of their own weaknesses, insecurity and inadequacies. I guess we still have a lot to learn to overcome these incorrect feelings.

RIGHTEOUS FAITH SPEAKS

Before we go further into this subject of speaking the Word (Rhema) of Faith let’s back up and study the first two foundational verses of Romans 10:6-7 in some depth.  I know that we read them but then we had no discussion on them since I jumped into verse 8 and taught for a long time on the subject “the Word of Faith” being preached.  Because it has been a little while since we read these verses please reread them again to refresh your memory:

Rom 10:6  But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)

Rom 10:7  Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

There are at least 5 central themes found in the 10th chapter of Romans. These central themes are 1) the Lord Jesus, 2) faith, 3) righteousness, 4) salvation and 5) speaking.  For right now I only want you to focus in on three of the lesser primary themes found in these two verses to see how they relate to the most important primary themed subject as being the Lord Jesus.  These three lesser themes needing our attention concern our “righteousness, our “spoken words” and our “faith” in Christ.  These three subjects were directly joined together in these verses and in this chapter by divine providence.   “Divine Providence” simply means that they were given to us by the caring plan of a guiding and loving intelligent God for our benefit and for His purpose.  God begins the discourse in verse 6 by saying there is a “righteousness” which comes only through faith and this is a very important description found in the New Testament for learning how we become “right” in the eyes of God.  Being right in the eyes of God only means that you are now converted from being a stranger to God (Eph 2:19) to being in the household of faith (Gal 6:10) also called the family of God (Eph 3:15).  We will see other verses in this lesson that will help confirm this but begin to agree that it is only by your faith in Jesus Christ that makes you righteous (right) to God and not your good works.

Now that we know the intended target audience was stated to be those that have been “made righteous by and through faith in Jesus” we are then informed what they (the righteous) should be doing.  Did you see it?  First let me ask you “Are you one of these righteous ones that these verses were written to?”  I know they were written to me personally but only you and God can determine if you qualify.  Satan would like you to think that you are unworthy to qualify but it was because of what Jesus did and not our works that have made us righteous by believing in Him (Rom 3:22).  If you are not taking the Bible personally like it was a love letter written directly from God to you then you really do not understand God or the Bible very much.  If you can say you are one of the righteous ones being described because of your faith then please continue reading otherwise you may be wasting your time continuing to read this lesson.  Let’s see what “we” (the righteous) were told to do next.

Continuing in verse 6 of Romans 10 God says that the righteous (anyone that has believed in Christ Jesus and confessed Him as Lord according Romans 10:9-10) are told to “speak”.  In fact I believe that we were directly commanded to speak.  This means it is not a recommended suggestion but rather an instruction and expectation from the Lord.  Then following this command to speak we are told very clearly exactly what NOT to say first.  Uh oh?  This is the introduction to the hotly debated subject of right and wrong speaking.  Many Christians do not understand that there is such a thing as wrong speaking.  Too many Christians think that it is OK for anything to come out of their mouths but this is clearly not what the Bible teaches us.  Sure most Christians believe that profanity and cursing is a wrong type of speaking.  But that is not all that God declares to be wrong words spoken.

God describes right and wrong speaking to us plainly in Romans 10:6-8 by teaching us examples of what not to say first.  The command of right speaking is a part of faith that many Christians ignore or simply do not understand exists because of a lack of teaching in this area.  This will be a potentially controversial subject and I may lose some readers simply because they are not mature enough spiritually to receive it. I hope and pray that you will do your best to accept what God is saying today and we will soon see and learn what is right to say/speak and what is wrong to say/speak as we continue through the study with the rest of the faith study verses.   But before we move on let me establish a new rule for having effective faith.  God clearly says that the “righteousness which is of faith speaks”.  I will reemphasize this more than once in this lesson and it would benefit you if you just went ahead and write it down as a note for future reference.

In order to understand this command found in Romans 10:6 to speak more clearly we need to examine the Greek word G3004 translated as “speaketh”.  This Greek word is very interesting.  It means to “break silence and say something verbally and audibly” that can be heard by someone/anyone directly listening. Wow, that is some really good information for those of us with righteous faith to learn.  Not only is it wrong to speak wrong words as we will soon see, but it is also very wrong to stay silent and say nothing when you are in faith.  I hope you will take hold of this and believe what God just said and please don’t throw any stones at me because it was not me that said it or wrote in the Bible.  I’m just a messenger delivery service sent from God to teach.  You can accept it or reject it but it is only God’s Word that you are rejecting.  Just please read and study all of the verses that I’m giving to you for yourself.  I want to give you some additional confirming verses for what God wants you to know about faith speaking and we will continue with Galatians the 4th chapter:

Gal 4:1  Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all;

Gal 4:2  But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.

Gal 4:3  Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:

After reading these verses you may just ask me “What do these verses have to do with us speaking?”  You may not see it yet because you have not studied the original Greek words spoken by God but they do apply directly to our subject study.  It is so easy to miss the deep things of God by reading the verses only.  I want you to understand that the deep things of God are never found by just reading the Bible.   According to 1 Timothy 2:15, God tells us to “study” in order to be approved.  The Greek word translated as study means to labor and to extend great effort.  This is an essential part of growing spiritually.  Learn to move beyond surface reading to enter the realm of deep study.

To speak to Galatians 4, I will start with the question “Are you an heir?”  Those that think that they are not righteous will also generally think and believe that they are not an heir of God either but this verse is speaking of you and I, if we are born again by our faith in Jesus Christ.  Let’ verify this reality of being an heir of God by God’s Word using a new verse:

Rom 4:13  For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

Here is a quick verse to help us learn more about the “righteousness of faith”.  God directly connects Romans 4:13 with Romans 10:6 by using the exact same Greek words G1343 and G4102 which were translated as “righteousness” and “faith”.  These two words were also joined together in proper sequence.   Here in Romans 4 we are told that those that were made righteous by their faith were also made an heir.  An heir means we have an inheritance after someone has died.  The person that died to give us this inheritance was “Jesus Christ” on the cross (Romans 5:8) but He was also the first one to be raised from the dead in order to become the chief heir of God (Col 1:18).  You see in the Bible the first born was supposed to obtain the greater blessing from their father.  You can find that Jesus was called the “first-born” from the dead in Hebrews 12:23 and Revelation 1:5.  Please understand that Jesus was the only one that could die to give us an eternal inheritance and be capable of being raised from the dead to enforce the inheritance.

I don’t have time to explain all of these verses that I just passed on to you in those last paragraph statements fully but you can find more information on these subjects in other lessons that I have published.  Just please understand what God says in Romans 8:17 that we are called and made the “joint-heirs” with Jesus Christ meaning we have obtained the same level of benefits from God through the death of Jesus as Jesus obtained for Himself.  Right now, you should be saying that you are “righteous” and an “heir” of God because of your faith in Jesus.  I’ve given you more than sufficient scriptural evidence to establish this belief foundation.

Let’s get back to Galatians 4:1 to discover the hidden reference to us speaking.  The Greek word G3516 which was translated as “child” in Galatians 4 verse 1 and “children” in verse 3 contains the secret hidden message that I am referring to.   This Greek word means not only a general child but more specifically an “infant” baby.  To be even more specific this Greek word literally means a “non-speaking human baby”.  Every natural child born into this world must acquire the skill of speech over the course of time through physical and mental growth and experiences.  No one is born with this magnificent gift of speaking automatically.  A new born child produces only audible cries.  A one year old is beginning to understand very simple words and may begin to form very simple words like “mama” or “dada”.  But this ability to grasp words and speaking them increases more and more as the months and years progress.  By the time a child reaches the age of 3 to 4 years the words, phrases and sentences usually become better formed, structured and more complete.  Even though the comprehension of what all the words mean can still be incomplete at this early childhood age.

The process of learning to speak is quite miraculous.  But, new born infants obtain this gift through a maturing process of hearing and listening to their parents speaking to them and from mimicking the sounds observed from others around them.  This process of learning to speak is exactly what God is teaching us in the beginning of this chapter 4 found in Galatians.  God is saying to us that this natural process reoccurs in the spiritual realm after we are spiritually new born (born again) into the Kingdom of God.   God is teaching us that even an infant heir to the throne of rule is not able to take control of it and exercise their given authority until they first learn to speak intelligently and confidently learning wisdom from their teachers.

Do you now understand that when a Christian is born again in the spiritual realm that this same natural infant growth and maturing process of learning to speak correctly is repeated in this spiritual realm by God’s design?   If you analyze the first 3 verses in Galatians 4 you should find an analogy comparison being given between two realms of existence with the first being the natural and the greater being the spiritual application of the natural.  The Greek word being used to speak to us of an immature non-speaking child implies someone that is very simple minded or unlearned in the spiritual realm.  God is teaching us that we all start out by not knowing or understanding how spiritual things work like the significance of speaking right words but that He expects us to learn these.  If you are still reading this Bible lesson then you are potentially growing and maturing spiritually by learning these concepts.  More pastors and teachers should teach their people this subject of right and wrong speaking because it is a very important and true reality based upon the proper understanding of scripture.  God expects His spiritually new born infant children to grow up and learn how to speak appropriately in order to rule over their spiritual enemies.

I do not really have the time to teach the importance of the spoken word subject fully today but I do have a much longer series of Bible lessons on the significance of your spoken words on my website and you can go and read those to help you learn more on this critical subject.  If you are interested in learning you can start with “Part 1 – Speak to your Rock”.  This Bible lesson has been the most prevalent viewed lesson of all the Bible lessons on this website.

We could spend a lot more time on studying Galatians 4 about growing out of an immature spiritual state of spiritual babbling but we really need to get back to Romans 10.  Do you remember where we were in verse 6? We had just been introduced to the commandment that “righteous faith speaks”.  I’m going to say this at least one more time for even greater emphasis because this is the foundation for this faith lesson given to us by God and it was directly stated by God that “Righteous Faith Speaks”.  We should begin to understand that Christians should be at the very least learning to speak correctly and that they should also not stay silent after they mature spiritually.  Let’s move to what is found next in verse 6 concerning God’s specific instructions.  After the initial statement in Romans 10:6 God then informs us exactly what not to say/speak in verses 6 and 7 followed by what to say in verse 8.   This is some very essential and valuable information and instructions for learning how God’s divinely designed force of faith should be operating and working in us and through us.

I am going to stop here and make a strong suggestion to you before we look at the sub-category study of wrong words.  Please create a big sign on a piece of plain white paper and in big bold letters write what you have just learned.  Print in large letters “Righteous Faith Speaks” and place this sign on your refrigerator or your bathroom mirror or on any other place where you can see it more than once a day.  This sign will help us all to learn and remind us to put God’s Word into practice.  God has designed and established a law of faith (Rom 3:27) to live in our everyday Christian lives.  But God is not going to make you do it.  You must be the one that applies what you learn.  Hopefully you remember that faith is a law based upon the Word of God given from the previous faith lessons.  Reading this printed note daily will cause this lesson to remain fresh in your mind and help you to become a doer of the Word of God and not a hearer only (James 1:22).  Doing this for at least 30 days will help to build a brand new spiritual habit for living life in a new way as a mature spiritual Christian and I will be talking about this even more as we continue through the rest of the lesson.

LEARNING WHAT NOT TO SAY FIRST

….Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)

Let’s talk briefly about what real mature Christians are not supposed to pray or say.  God only gives us two short examples in Romans 10:6-7 of wrong words but this should provide enough of a pattern that we can extend those two to other areas of words that should not be spoken if we can understand why they are not wise to speak.  The first statement of what not to speak tells us not to say “who will go up to heaven to bring Christ down”.  Why would anyone want to say this?  What kind of wrong thinking would cause someone to speak this way?  Someone could be thinking that if Jesus was only here on the earth that they would not be going through what they are going through right here in this natural realm.  In other words they could be thinking very naturally and not spiritually.  Someone could be thinking that if they could just bring the Lord Jesus who is sitting on the throne in the spiritual realm back to this natural realm that all of their natural problems would be solved.  But that type of thinking is very simple minded and is certainly not of faith.  We must realize that God’s power extends beyond His present location in Jesus Christ.  We must consider that the Spirit of God is already here right now living and abiding in us having been poured out from heaven to be our comforter (John 14:16), our helper (Heb 13:6) and our guide (John 16:13).

Therefore we do not need for Jesus to come back to the earth to fix anything.  The Holy Spirit is here and He is God omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent to solve whatever we are facing.  What God is trying to say is that simple naturally thinking people generally gravitate towards natural solutions without considering the spiritual presence and ability of God that is ever present and all-knowing and all powerful.

….Or say, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

Now consider the second statement of what not to say and this will help us understand the first statement much clearer.  In verse 7 God says for us not say “Who will descend into the lower parts of the earth to raise Christ again from the dead.  Why would God recommend that we not say this?   Perhaps you will recall reading the Gospels that after Jesus was resurrected from the dead He walked the face of the earth for 40 days.  During this time He met with many men and women followers.  Since they had all seen Jesus personally there was no need for any of them to have faith in His resurrection.  However, do you think that any of these eyewitness followers would dare say what God said not to say in Romans 10:7?  I personally do not believe they would.  Remember they were told by angels in Acts 1 that this same Jesus that went up into the clouds out of their sight would come back in the exact same way.  So this promise from God required their faith if they believed the message and I think they believed.

There is something so very profound found in this statement that was not directly stated.  God is saying that “we do not need to think or say that Jesus should die again or be raised again from the dead”; but rather we only need to understand that He did do these and then find out what was accomplished by these finished and completed acts of God.  I am a firm believer that not knowing what was given to us by His shed blood in His death, burial and resurrection of Christ Jesus is why we pray and say some very ignorant things like this.  If we would only come to understand that Christ gave to us His authority (Luke 10:19) on the earth we would not need to ask Jesus to come back to the earth or to be raised again to solve anything.

What God is teaching us is not to say things that are contradictory to His written report in the Bible. In other words have faith and believe and then have confidence in what He has spoken to you.  Both of these stated examples of what not to say were spoken words not based upon scripture or faith in God’s Word.  They are literally the opposite of what someone who had faith in God’s Word would say.   Do you understand this?  I know that some people will not comprehend what God just said.  God says the natural man receives not the things of the Spirit of God (1 Cor 2:14).  But these concepts should help many that will receive it and apply it to other things that they like to say.  I believe that we should think before we speak.  Think about what God’s Word says and then see if what you are going to say aligns with His Words.  This will become clearer as we continue learning.  Let’s move to what we should say next to see the contrasted difference from what we should not be saying.

CONFIRMING AND LEARNING WHAT TO SAY

But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

I began the lesson talking about the last part of this verse.  But now we will back up to the first part of God’s statement to confirm what God is trying to teach us.  I have started and ended with the most important verse to learn today.  Paul starts writing “But what does it say” (NKJV).  Paul is of course talking about God’s word.  The “it” in this statement represents the spoken recorded words of the living God.  If you have not realized it yet these three verses of Romans 6, 7 and 8 contain partial quotations of verses found in the Old Testament.  In Romans 10:6-8, God is quoting in a paraphrased form, portions of some very obscure verses found in Deuteronomy 30:11-14.  We could learn a tremendous amount of information if I had the time to go talk about these original verses.  But I do not have the time today to talk about them.

However, I still want to emphasize that “it” was the recorded words (Rhema) of God and Paul takes these words that did not directly mention Christ and teaches us that they directly apply to Christ.  Wow, that is a powerful degree of knowledge if you want to do the study for yourself.  You go and read Deuteronomy and you see if you can find Christ plainly?  He is there but only if you see the commentary of the New Testament to help you explain them.  That is just how the Bible was written by God.  I call it “Hiding the Truth in Plain Sight” and if you have not read that series of Bible lessons I would strongly recommend that you do that soon.

Now we should realize from the opening statement that the next coming statement was given from God through His prophet Moses and it was written down in the Old Testament for all of us in the here and now in the New Covenant.  God’s next statement says “The Word is near you, even in your mouth and in your heart”.  The Word is referring to the Word of God.  This Greek word is again “Rhema” and that is important. Where is the “Word” (Rhema) of God supposed to be?  There are two place mentioned directly by God, one is a natural external location that God referred to earlier as the wellspring of life and the other is the origination point from where these words spring up from in the internal spiritual location figuratively called the heart of man.  God is teaching us how spiritual things are supposed to operate.   Hear and get the Word in your heart and then learn to speak it out of your mouth.  This is the reason why we do not need Christ to be raised from the dead or come back to earth from heaven.  The word of God is the power of God (Heb 1:3).  This power should be resident in your heart.  You should place the Word of God in your heart daily to reinforce its firm foundation.  Otherwise Satan can come and steal this Word (seed) from your life if you let him.

The Word of God represents the “what” that is “right” or “correct” to speak as a mature Christian.  A new born Christian is incapable of speaking the Word of God because they haven’t heard it, don’t know it, don’t believe it or don’t understand it.  All of these conditions will cause the Word of God to be unfruitful in their lives.

CONCLUSION

Is the Word of God coming out of your mouth?  If it is then you are probably in faith and if it is not then you are probably not in faith.  I could give you many Bible examples of this but in conclusion I will tell you of one when God had instructed Joshua how to have good success in this life.  Are you interested in being a winner?  Are you interested in being victorious?  Are you interested in being an overcomer?  God told Joshua how to do it and Joshua did it and possessed the land that God gave to them.   Here is the key verse:

Jos 1:8  This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

Wow, what an awesome set of instructions for our success in this life.  God told Joshua to put the Word of God in his mouth and then to meditate on it day and night.  This would build the Words of God into his heart.  God was telling Joshua what He said through Moses, “My Word is very near you, even in your heart and in your mouth”.  Joshua became the leader of the people of God after the passing of Moses and He was responsible for the law passed down from Moses to the nation.  Joshua had this Word and filled his mouth with it.  Filling his mouth with God’s Word gave Joshua faith in God.  We learned this from Romans 10:17.  Remember?  It is almost impossible for anyone to say the Word of God if they understand it and not have faith and success in this life.

Well we could talk for hours and hours on this subject of faith speaks but that is the end of this Bible lesson.  We were told by Jesus that out of our bellies would flow rivers of life producing water and this symbolic water can only be the Word of God.  We are told to speak the Rhema Word of God and this was just the words that were spoken from the mouth of God and recorded in His Precious Holy Word.   It is only the Word of God that will produce life.  Speaking the word of God are the right words to be speaking in every adversarial situation and circumstance.  I’ll just give you a couple more verse to help you see more right things to say:

Psa 107:2  Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the enemy,

Joe 3:10  Beat your plowshares into swords And your pruning hooks into spears; Let the weak say, ‘I am strong.’ “

These were just two verses that teach us God wants us to say positive things from His Word.  How can anyone say things that are not overwhelming real and apparent in the 5 physical sense realm?  This type of logic will contradict normal human reasoning, doesn’t it?  When faced with great weakness in your life how can we say “I’m strong”?  When faced with negative circumstances from and in the world, how can we say “I’m redeemed?”  These types of positive words are only possible if you believe God’s Word instead of your circumstances that you are facing.   So infant baby Christians stay silent or cry for their milk but mature Christians will speak to their mountain and cause it to flee before them (Mk 11:23).

This was an advanced Bible lesson on righteous faith speaks.   I hope you enjoyed this Bible lesson and learned a great deal.  But I desire more that you start applying what you learned to your life.  Make a sign like I said to do earlier and read the sign on the wall daily multiple times out loud saying “Righteous Faith Speaks” and don’t let this truth slip from the forefront of your mind.  Share the Gospel with your friends and recommend that they go read and study the Bible with me.  I appreciate your time extended to read and study the Bible and for any comments or testimonies of how God is working in your life that you would care to share with me.  Until next time may God continue to bless you with everything that you require to grow in spiritual maturity.

BIBLE ANSWERS: Was Jesus the ONE and ONLY Son of God?

One and Only Son of God(Ver 1.2)  There is a popular false teaching going around in many churches that Jesus was the one and only Son of God and that is NOT what the Bible says.  In fact that is not even close to what God says in the His Word.  Why don’t we learn the truth and see what God actually wrote us in the Bible instead of believing preachers or teachers that don’t know how to read?  This false teaching that Jesus was the One and Only Son of God has even crept into several modern Bible translations and thus it appears to become more legitimate than it truly is.  Many Christians will read an erroneous modern Bible translation and think this is what God really said but they have to ignore the details of the correct writings of God in the original language word meanings to believe this way.  This false teaching is destroying the truth to project an image that there are no other children of God except for Jesus.  This leaves Christians with the impression that we are “a nothing” and “a nobody” and this is exactly what Satan wants you to believe so that he can condemn you.

Please understand this very basic truth, only the original scriptures in the original languages were God inspired and at no time were any of the TRANSLATIONS that were created by men ever inspired by God.  Every translation produced by a human introduces some new version of the personal opinions of the translators that must be weeded through in order to find God’s intended accurate truth.    I literally mean that you can find many translation errors in the KJV Bible, the NIV Bible, the NASB Bible and every other translation if you go back and study to find the truth from the Greek and Hebrew.  This of course becomes highly controversial in many Christian circles.  This Bible study will be potentially discarded simply because people do not seek to learn, know or understand what God says.  Being a “concrete” or “firmly set, dry and hard” Christian will cause you to miss the truth and I hope this is not you today.  I am a detailed oriented type of person.  I was a computer programmer for over 25 years.  You cannot write a computer program without paying attention to the details or it will not work.  This same detailed oriented approach is how God taught me to study the Bible.  Please learn to pay attention to the details found in the Bible and this will help you to see the scriptures more from God’s perspective that spoke them.

Also please do not read this lesson and believe that I am saying there is more than one Son in the Trinity!  I am not claiming this and do not intend to do so.  I know this Bible lesson will be controversial and I know that people will potentially take the message wrong very easily.  People become so narrow minded  when hearing something new.  People like to take hold of one truth and abandon all others.  I have said this more than once; there is more than one truth in the Bible.  Jesus is the primary truth and the greatest reason to study the entire Bible but God teaches us other things like this lesson that should also be made known.  This Bible lesson is not taking away from the message of Jesus Christ being the only begotten Son of God within the Trinity.  Do not read this and believe that at all!  I teach the Trinity of God very strongly.  I teach the fact that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God very strongly.   I teach the fact that God came to the earth personally in the flesh and died for our sins to give us His gift of righteousness.  Before you criticize me on one Bible lesson go read everything and then ask questions.

The main focused scripture today in this Bible study is one that we have all heard at some time in our Christian life.  This verse is one of the most popular verses learned by many children at an early age in Sunday school.  This verse is one that Satan would like to remove from the Bible and this is the reason for his attack to pervert it.  Here is the main verse in question that will be answered:

Joh 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (KJV)

John 3:16 is the focused controversial verse that I will be talking about in this lesson today.  I started with the basic KJV translation of the verse since I believe it to be one of the most accurate.  However, this verse was translated by men in several different conflicting ways.  For example the WNT, CEV, ESV, BBE and NIV Bible translations all get parts of the translation very wrong changing the original language into “Only Son of God” or “One and Only Son of God”.  The KJV, NKJV, NASB, Webster, YLT, AMP, ASV, Darby, LITV and the MKJV translations all translated it correctly saying “only begotten Son”.  While “Only Begotten Son” is more accurate, this English word “begotten” is not well understood to what the term means.  This of course was not a complete list of all the available Bible translations but it gives us a clear view of why there is a controversy and asks the question who is correct?    For your review comparison here is the NIV translation of John 3:16.  Please note the differences given:

John 3:16  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (NIV)

Both the KJV and the NIV translations cannot be correct since they simply mean two completely different things.   “One and Only Son of God” and “Only Begotten Son of God” cannot be considered identical because one set of modern translations completely left out one important word “begotten” when the other set included it.  The NIV further convolutes the truth to add the word “One” before Son and this just brings further confusion since the word “one” does not even appear anywhere in the original Greek language.  Now consider the English grammar found within John 3:16.  What does the term “only begotten” represent and how does it relate to the noun “Son”?  You should begin to understand that the term “only begotten” represents an adjective modifier to the noun “Son”.  An adjective is only required to limit the scope of the discussion of the types of nouns being referenced.  In other words if there is only one sun in the sky then there is no need to modify that noun to qualify which one you are speaking of.  The same is true of the moon in our sky.  When only one exists the need for qualification is eliminated.  Now what would happen if there were two moons in our night sky?  Then we would need to qualify which one we are referring to.  This is exactly what God is doing in John 3:16 with the adjective “only begotten”.   Now what does “begotten” mean and why is it found in so many translations?  Why was “begotten” omitted from many other translations to change the meaning?  We need to learn the facts in order to determine the truth and this is what we will attempt to do in this lesson.

Someone might try to ask if it is even important for us to believe the Bible correctly.   Aren’t you just being too nitpicky to think that it makes a difference how we believe John 3:16?   I would answer that question with this reply; does it matter if you believe the Koran or the Bible is the truth?  They both can’t be the truth so does it matter which path you chose to be on?  Of course it does.  Jesus very clearly said that He was the only way to be saved (John 14:6).   So now take that truth to the next level.  Does it matter if you believe that Jesus was just a man like those in Islam because according to the Koran He was just a prophet of Allah when He died or should we believe what God says in the Bible that He personally came down in the flesh to save us?  I hope you are getting the point.  If it does not matter greatly what we believe then God would not have given us His Word to study and learn.  Therefore, if the Koran or the Bible belief matters then it also matters if Jesus was the “One and Only Son of God” or the “Only begotten Son of God”.  We just can’t omit one word that God included and think that it does not matter.  What I am getting at is that we need to learn as much accurate Bible as we can so that we are not deceived by someone that comes along with a message of one lie mixed with several truths.  How can we recognize the truth if we ignore the details of God’s Word?

I will warn you that this is an advanced Bible subject intended for spiritually mature Christians only.  It is not a rudimentary lesson that is designed to feed baby Christians the milk of the Word of God.  This lesson is definitely a meat subject that can cause immature Christians to choke.  If you do not feel like you are very spiritually mature then please just go read another lesson so that I do not offend you with something that you are unable to receive.  I will also warn you up front that this is another long Bible lessons with a lot of spiritual content.  My subjects tend to grow lengthy because there is so much that needs to be taught from the Bible on any given subject.  I usually do this using a series of Bible lessons but these Bible Answer responses to reader questions are usually stand alone.  I hope you understand and will continue to read to the end.

In this lesson I will be using a minimum of 3 primary rules of sound Bible interpretation to verify the truth.  I will also introduce you to a concept that you have probably never been taught before.  This concept found in the Bible will teach us that there are at least 4 unique types of individuals that are called “sons of God” in the Bible.  I can already hear the gasps being loudly raised by that last statement.   People might be resistant to anything new simply because they have never heard it taught before.  But please do not reject the message without first reading what is taught with an open mind.  Then only after reading what is taught here do I ask that you become an Acts 17:11 type of noble Christian and verify everything that is being taught using your own Bible study.   This is the only correct method to confirm what the Spirit of God wants you to know.  Work within God’s methods and grow or work apart from them and fail to see the truth.  It is your choice.

CORRECT RULES OF INTERPRETATION

driving-in-manilaI am going to begin this Bible lesson by introducing some of the basic rules of valid Bible interpretation.  I will not be covering every rule that exists but these three will be used in this lesson for us to find the truth to what was written by God in the John 3:16 verse that needs to be understood.  Can we begin by agreeing that rules are good?  What would be the outcome if driving on the road was freeform with no rules to govern the actions of the drivers?  How many drivers would still be alive after a few days if driving was based upon a chaos random approach of  actions that allowed people to go however they wanted, where ever they wanted, how fast they wanted and whenever they wanted type of driving style?  If governments permitted unstructured driving methods to how fast they could go or where they could drive it would be an extremely dangerous environment.  This same principle of a no rules approach to Bible interpretation represents the same level of dangers except restricted to a mental or spiritual environment.  I hope that you can agree in this introduction with the need for good Bible interpretation rules.

I will use three rules of Bible Interpretation that the Holy Spirit taught me to use.  I did not learn these rules in any seminary so they may not adhere to your version of hermeneutics.  But I would rather follow God than man’s rules because only God’s will give the correct truth.  Please read these rules and then I will try to explain each briefly to help you learn how they work and why they are important to follow:

  1. Find and Use Original Word Definitions
  2. Compare an Original Word’s Usage with Other Occurrences in the Bible
  3. Search for Direct Bible Contradictions to Balance Scripture Harmony

ORIGINAL WORD DEFINITIONS

One of the keys to correctly understanding any translated Bible verse is to judge each translated word using the comprehensive definitions of the words found in the original transcripts of the Bible.  Without studying the original word definitions you must trust and rely on an imperfect translator that was not inspired by the Spirit of God in what they wrote.  Also many translated English words like other languages transform or mutate into new or different applications and meanings as the world changes around us.   For example in the KJV Bible the Greek word that was often translated as “charity” would be almost always misunderstood by the majority of modern Bible readers.  The modern application of “Charity” is not what the word means in the original Greek.  This word was “agape” which represents the unique God kind of love.

These original word definitions are critical to discover.  Without them the original meanings were often lost in many of the modern translations.  I have heard some claim that the KJV Bible was God inspired and that no other Bible translation should ever be read.  These types of proponents often claim there is no need to study the original Greek or Hebrew words.  This is entirely a wrong belief based upon ignorance.  These types of people have been so deceived that they may never know or see the truth of God unless they learn to dig deep and study to find it.  I have discovered so many errors in the KJV Bible that leaves me no doubt that the original language study is indispensable to knowing the real truth.  You are free to disagree with me, but by you ignoring the original language this will help us to resolve why we differ on what any one verse means.  Let’s move on to another rule of correct understanding of the Bible.

OTHER BIBLE OCCURRENCES OF THE WORD

Another key to understanding specific original words is to go and look for God’s usage of the same Greek or Hebrew word in the rest of the Bible.  To do this we need to use our computer devices, smart phones or tablets to search in our Bible for all of the places where God uses only the exact same Greek or Hebrew word that we are trying to learn.  In doing this we obtain a more complete understanding of  this one word that we wish to study.  I need to emphasize that we do not search the Bible for the English translated word because more than one Greek or Hebrew word can be translated to the same English word.  For example the Greek language has at least 3 different words that mean a type of “love”.  But only God’s selection of the one can be compared correctly to learn how each verse usage is related.  If we attempted to mix the Greek word “philedelphia” (G5360) and the Greek word “agape” (G26) we would be mixing apples with oranges and only causing confusion.

This rule of interpretation allows us to see how one word in one verse relates to the other occurrences of the same word in other found verses.   This type of study method is what I call doing a “word study”.  There is also a type of study that I call a “subject” study that goes into considerably more detail but also take more effort to perform.  There are at least two different ways of doing a word study or a subject study.  First in a word study you can restrict your search to only using the direct Greek or Hebrew word in question.  This will shorten and limit the study considerably.  The Subject study would need to include the matching Hebrew word for the Greek word in question as well as include every other word that is a synonym of the word in question and this can take significantly more time but can also give great benefits to new truths.  Today I will only be performing a very basic word study for “only begotten”.

This word study technique of understanding the Bible introduces us to the concept of consistency and uniformity.  I have found through many years of Bible study that God is normally very consistent in His selection of words, their usage, their application and what they mean.  In other words if God wanted to say something differently in one verse from another verse, He would have used a different word.  I call this God’s “Intelligent Design” of His Words.  God knows every word and what they each mean better than you do, so do not attempt to change a word’s definition based upon some random human speculation or reasoning.   Keeping a Greek word’s definition consistent will help bring stability and balance to our understanding of every word being selected by God.  In review this step of correct Bible interpretation involves at minimum finding every occurrence of the Greek or Hebrew word being studied and reading each verse closely to see how it was used by God.  We then compare each verse to every other verse to understand how they are related attempting to understand why God chose this single word in each.  In doing this we attempt to balance every word’s usage into a single definition and application.  This can be simple or it can be complex based upon the number of times any word is used by God.  Some words are used less than 10 times (simple) and other times they are used many, many hundreds of time (complex).  Let’s move on to the next guideline for correct Bible understanding.

NO VERSE CONTRADICTS ANY OTHER VERSE

The next method of understanding correct Bible interpretation is for us to utilize the basic fact of truth that NO one Bible verse when correctly interpreted will EVER conflict or contradict with any other Bible verse when both are correctly interpreted.  Do you understand this rule?  This is another essential part of understanding absolutely anything in the Bible.  Realize that God is not stupid.  Then understand that God does not change or flip flop on truths, word definitions, thoughts, concepts or ideas.  God is not here today on this word’s definition and then there tomorrow on the same word.  God is not a Dr. Jekyll or a Mr. Hyde type of God.  God is a God of never changing goodness, purpose, character and qualities.  What God says today will never change tomorrow.   What God said in the beginning will remain true at the end and what was said will not reverse, disqualify or eliminate anything else that was spoken by God in between.  I do not know how to explain this rule more clearly.   If one verse says God has only one son and another verse says God has many other sons then one verse is clearly NOT TRANSLATED CORRECTLY.   There can be no conflicts within the Bible when understood correctly.  The only time a conflict exists is when a human does not correctly comprehend the truth of what was spoken by God.

I am going to apply these three basic rules of correct Bible interpretation and understanding to answer the question “Was Jesus the One and Only Son of God”.   After you see what God and the Bible actually says about this subject you must agree that Jesus was not the one and only son of God.   I will begin with the rule of searching for the original word definitions to find what God meant by them and then this will help guide us to what the word means in the verse that we are questioning.

G3439 ORIGINAL WORD DEFINITION

Joh 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten (G3439) Son (G5207), that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (KJV)

This verse has become very controversial by Satan’s design. This verse was previously held up in football games like the Super Bowl until it was banned by the NFL again by Satan’s design.   It has been cried loudly on street corners to passing people that walked by indifferently and ignored the message.   It has been preached on TV and in many churches by countless preachers.  It is one of the first verses that a child learns and memorizes in Sunday school.  However this verse has stirred up a modern dilemma and debate asking was Jesus the One and Only Son of God as the NIV and many churches claim?   The translation that I opened with was the KJV Bible and it is stated to say “only begotten”.  However you already observed in the NIV how it was changed to say something almost completely different.

While the NIV change on the surface seems to be insignificant to many, the underlying application of the subtle difference is very profound.  If Jesus was the one and only Son as the NIV Bible states then this verse translation invalidates a great number of scriptures in the rest of the Bible.  This NIV translation purposefully causes a direct conflict within God’ Word and that teaches us that we need to determine the resolution to the conflict in order to correctly understand this part of the Bible.  We will do this by beginning to see what the original Greek word means as defined in the original language using the Strong’s dictionary:

G3439

From G3441 and G1096; only born, that is, sole: – only (begotten, child).

The Greek word translated into English as “only begotten” in the KJV Bible is “G3439” and it is a single Greek word that is created from the combination of two other Greek root words.   The first Greek root word designates the single or solitary occurrence of something, someone or somewhere.  This Greek word is where the translators got the application of the English word “only” which is correct so far.  However, the second Greek word designates something that was made or caused to be.   Let’s stop there and consider what is stated when something was caused to be or made?  Anything made was not in existence previously and that only means that Jesus was a new type of Son and nothing else can be assumed from this definition or it would be adding to it or changing what was given by God.  These two Greek words literally mean that Jesus was uniquely made and did not compare with anyone previously created or anyone that was subsequently created.  However it does not mean that there are no other types of sons that came into existence in some other way.  Do you understand this so far?

Let me use an analogy of an automobile.  There are many types of automobiles, but yet someone can also create or make one unique auto that was created as a special custom model that is unlike all the others.  People do this all the time.  This new custom car could be called this type of “only made” (G3439) model of cars.  That is exactly what Jesus is being called in this definition.  This definition does not mean that there are no other sons of God; it only means that this one named Jesus was made especially unique unlike every other son.   Think about it before you reject it.  Was Jesus uniquely made?  I personally do not know of another human that came from a virgin woman, do you?  I think that makes Jesus especially different than me and you.

The Strong’s dictionary further defines this Greek word as “only born”.  What does this mean?  I think this part of the definition also applies to Jesus very well.  Were there any other naturally born sons of God?  Not according to the Bible as we will soon learn.  The New Testament is very explicit in declaring Jesus to be the only naturally born Son of God.  This is the literal definition for “only begotten’ in John 3:16.  To be called the “only begotten” means that Jesus was God’s only naturally born child.  Again this does not disqualify other sons or children of God from existing using this correct definition.  Did you know that God is all powerful?  God being “omniscient” and “omnipotent” simply means that God is able and knows how to make a new unique child if He so desires to do it.  This was God’s design of Jesus.

In the Thayer dictionary he makes the point that this Greek word G3439 is only used to describe a son or a daughter when viewed within their relationship to the stated parent(s).  That is a very important part of the meaning and we will discover this as we continue through the other rules of interpretation.  When using the Thayer consideration we must now deliberate who the parents of Jesus Christ were.  Any serious Bible student will say that Jesus was both the Son of God and the son of a natural virgin woman named Mary.  But we must eliminate Mary from this “only begotten” participation since in John 3:16 it is only speaking of God the Father who gave His Son to save the world with no mention of Mary.  We should also know from further Bible study that Mary had other natural children born from the union with her husband Joseph.  Therefore, Jesus was not the “only begotten” son of Mary.  Nowhere in the Bible is Jesus called the only begotten of Mary and there are a lot of people that need to learn that fact.  What I am introducing you to is what this Greek G3439 word means.  Jesus was the only naturally born son of God and this is the only way that this can be correctly interpreted based upon the definition and the contextual subject matter.  Uh oh I just introduced another important rule of correct Bible interpretation that was not one of the 3 that I was going to use today. This new rule states that no one can take any verse out of context to make it say what it was not intended to say within the context.

You see in John the 3rd chapter Jesus is speaking to a natural man named Nicodemus that asks Jesus how to be saved.  Jesus tells this man that he must be “born again” in order to enter into the kingdom of God.  Clearly Jesus was teaching Nicodemus about birth types in this chapter.  Jesus is using two contrasting types of birth to explain salvation.  Jesus was saying to Nicodemus that there is a coming spiritual birth that must occur after the natural birth occurs.  We will soon discover in this Bible lesson that there are many spiritual births that have occurred since Jesus was raised from the dead.  However, please note that up until this point in John 3 that no man was ever born again because the sacrifice for their sins had not yet taken place on the cross.  It is within this context of the subject of births that we find this Greek word G3439 that was translated as “only begotten”.   It makes logical sense to conclude “only begotten” son of God is related to the contextual subject of birth types.

Therefore, the “only begotten” son of God could only represent Jesus coming into the world through a natural birth experience and could not be related to this coming spiritual birth that Jesus described.  This again is what this “only begotten” Greek word means.  God only had one Son that was naturally born and His name was Jesus Christ.  God’s usage of this Greek word to describe Jesus teaches us that only He could be called the naturally made, created or born Son of God.   However, that still does not mean that there are no other types of sons of God that were spiritually born or created by some other methods.  I hope you understand this but if not it should become clearer as we continue through the other verses found in the Bible on this subject.

OTHER VERSES WITH THE GREEK WORD G3439

If you search the New Testament you will find this Greek word G3439 that was translated as “only begotten” in John 3:16 is only found in 8 other verses.  Five times it is used to describe Jesus in relation to His Father God but 4 times it is used to describe other naturally born children that were the only begotten son in direct relation to his earthly mother.  For example, in Luke 7:12 God describes a man being carried out at a funeral and he is called by this name G3439 as being this mother’s only born son.   What this means is that this dead man was her only child that she actually conceived inside her and gave birth to.  Notice that only the mother is mentioned in this verse because of her presence.  I would also like to point out that the KJV translators made the same mistake as the NIV translators did in John 3:16.  In the KJV, Luke 7:12 says that this man was her “only (G3439) son (G5207)” but they intentionally leave out “begotten” part of the definition and that makes it an error.  This woman could have had other adopted sons but that would be ignored by the translators from what God intended it to say.

What I want you to begin to see is that an “only born son” is always given using the relationship to only the specific parent being mentioned and does not necessarily apply to the other parent involved.  There is no mention of the father in Luke 7:12 and he could have had many children through other women like Jacob did in the O.T. before he died.  People like to put God into an oversimplified human box of limitations.  However the Bible says very clearly that what is impossible with men is possible with God (Mat 19:26).   So while a natural woman may have had only one naturally born son it is entirely possible for God to have other types of children that were not naturally born even though Jesus is still called His only begotten.  Do you understand this?

I am certainly not teaching you that God had other naturally born children other than Jesus.  Jesus by definition from the dictionary and word use application was the only naturally born Son of God that ever existed.   Just please do not limit God to say this is the only way that He can produce children.  That would be very foolish if someone believes their limits placed upon God effects what God is able to do.  If we continue to look through the book of Luke we will find two other examples of this Greek word G3439.  In Luke 8:42 a ruler of the synagogue came to Jesus asking Him to come and heal his “only born” daughter.  I will just tell you that this is the same type of translation error example as seen before in the NIV.  The daughter being described is not the only daughter in the nation born but she was this man named Jairus’ only born daughter.   Again the KJV translators get it very wrong and leave out the word begotten.  In fact the KJV translators in this verse added the word one to further confuse people.  Instead of being consistent and making the word “only begotten” they changed it to “one only”.  This just proves that there are errors in the KJV Bible the same as other translations.  Now let’s look at the next word occurrence also found in a verse in Luke:

Luk 9:38  And, behold, a man of the company cried out, saying, Master, I beseech thee, look upon my son: for he is mine only child.

Here again is an example of a very wrong translation.  It should not say “only child” it should rather say “only begotten” or “only born”.  The word child is not found in the original Greek word.  If God would have wanted the word child to be included in this verse He would have added the Greek word G5043 that is normally translated as “child” in several other N.T. verses, for example:

Luk 1:7  And they had no child (G5043), because that Elisabeth was barren, and they both were now well stricken in years.

Here in this verse God is saying that this couple does not have a child.  The woman Elisabeth is said to have been barren.  What we can learn from this truth is that God has other words in the Greek language that literally means a child.  So if God wanted to say “only child” in Luke 9:32 it could have been accomplished using other specific Greek words that actually mean that.  The translators thought they were making a good assumption but this simply produces inconsistences that were not stated by God.  God selected by His choice to say “only begotten” or “only born” and this was the correct original meaning.  It is just so obvious to me that if God wanted to say “only child” that He would have said G3441 (only) followed by G5043 (child) and this would have matched what the KJV translators thought.  However since God did not say this why did the translator not understand what they were doing was changing God’s word into something that was not stated causing a potential confusion to occur.

The last occurrence of G3439 not being used to describe Jesus is found in the book of Hebrews.  In this verse God is describing Abraham and his “only begotten” son named Isaac.  Let’s examine this verse and consider the implications given by God on this subject of Jesus:

Heb 11:17  By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,

Notice that God calls Isaac the “only begotten” of Abraham.  Uh oh, that is a major problem since Abraham had several other children.  The first born of Abraham was a child named Ishmael and this child was born from Hagar.  God does not consider this child to be an heir of promise.  Also if you read in and study in Genesis I believe that you will discover that Abraham had other children later after Isaac.  Yet God still calls Isaac the “only begotten”.  What this teaches us is that God could have had other children before Jesus Christ as well as other children after Jesus Christ and that the existence of these other children still cannot disqualify Jesus to be called the “only begotten”.  I know that this is potentially complex information but Abraham is a type pattern that was given by God in the Old Testament to teach us about spiritual truths.  You see if you read in Galatians 4 carefully you will discover that God teaches us that the life of Abraham represents an allegory of spiritual truth that is much deeper than the natural story.  I am not going to go into this allegory in depth today because that will take too much time.  You should go and read my other Bible lessons to discover what this allegory represents.

I believe we need to be consistent when viewing this Greek G3439.  I believe we can clearly see that every time it is selected by God in the New Testament that it is in reference to an “only born” child in reference to a single parent.  You can go through every reference in Luke and see this very clearly.  You can find this pattern again in Hebrews when God only speaks about Abraham and his only begotten son Isaac.  Consistency is an important factor.

ARE THERE ANY “ONLY SON OF GOD” CONFLICTS IN THE BIBLE?

The next rule of correct Bible interpretation involves researching for potential conflicts to any given statement.  If the NIV Bible translation is correct claiming that Jesus is the ONE AND ONY SON OF GOD then there better not be any other verses found in the Bible that contradict with that statement.  If only one verse is found that can be shown to disagree directly then there is a major problem with one of the verses being read.  So here we go with discovering the conflicts of the statement “One and Only Son of God”.  We will begin with Genesis 6:2:

Gen 6:2  That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.

Here is another potentially ontroversial verse.  Many have tried to explain away this verse as not saying what God describes.  There are two separate types of individuals being described by God in this verse.  There are the “sons of God” and the “daughters of Adam”.  If the father of the sons of God is God then the father of the daughters of men must clearly be Adam.  Perhaps you do not see it so clearly.  If you research the Hebrew word translated as “men” in this verse you will discover that it is the Hebrew word H120 and this is the exact same Hebrew word as H121 that was translated as “Adam”.  Therefore these women originated from Adam and these other beings had to originate from the spiritual creator God and they cannot be the same because of the two different associated fathers being described.  Perhaps I need to tell you that this Hebrew word translated as “God” in this verse is one of the most popular names for God in the O.T. Bible.  This Hebrew word H430 is found in over 2200 verses in the Old Testament.  Nine times out of ten it was translated as “God” starting in Genesis 1:1 where it was first used to describe the creator.  The other Hebrew word used in conjunction with this name of God is H1121 which was used to describe a “son” is defined to be a male builder of the specified family name.  The family name here is God and the sons are clearly his spiritual children within His personal family.  In order to confirm who these “sons of God” represent in Genesis 6, we need to look for other examples of these same word combinations in the Bible just as we did with our search for the “only begotten” Greek word.  If you do the search you will find some important verses that help to reveal who these sons of God are:

Job 1:6  Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.

In the book of Job, God again describes the “sons (H1121) of God (H430)” but this time using some new contextual realities.  The previous Genesis 6 setting was definitely set upon the earth with human female interaction but this time in Job this same group of beings are found to be in the very presence of God in heaven.   What type of beings can be found both here on the earth and up in heaven in the presence of God?  If you do not understand that these are angels then you will need to go study the subject of angels in more depth before continuing.  I will give you a verse from a dream that God gave to Jacob and this will help establish that angels can travel between these two separate dimensions:

Gen 28:12  And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it.

These sons of God must be angels based upon the logical facts given.  There are other verses that we could explore but I need to move on.  Please notice that Satan appears with the “sons of God” in Job 1:6.  This is actually a very interesting concept given by God and implies a great deal of hidden information.  The Hebrew word H8432 that was translated as “among” in Job 1:6 literally means that Satan was in the center of them.  This Hebrew word represents a bisection of the group of “sons of God” with one half being on the left side of Satan and the other half being on the right side of Satan standing before God.  This places Satan as the implied leader of the “sons of God”.   We know from reading in Ezekiel and Isaiah that Satan was one of the chief angels if not the chief leader of them all.  Also notice that the position of Satan being in the center of the “sons of God” means that Satan was also one of this group of sons by association.  Did you know that Satan and the angels were called “sons of God”?  Let me give you some additional proof:

Isa 14:12  How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!

Here in this verse the individual named Lucifer is called a literal “son” of the morning.  The morning is actually a poor translation because this Hebrew Word H7837 means “dayspring” or more literally “early light” or even “first light”.   The emphasize detail in this definition is the light and the timing of its appearing. Who is called The Light in the New Testament?  God is clearly called “Light” in 1 John 1:5.  Also Jesus claimed to be the light in John 8:12, John 9:5 and John 12:46.  But since Jesus was God in the flesh both are equally the Light.  I think I need to give you another key verse to this puzzle:

Luk 1:78  Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us,

You can clearly see from this verse that Jesus was called the “dayspring” from on high.  This literally means that Jesus was God but it also confirms who Satan was as a revealed son of God in Isaiah 14:12.  If you look up the definition of “dayspring” you will see plainly that this Greek word in Luke 1:78 has the meaning of the early light of dawn and it is a perfect match for the Hebrew word definition of “morning” or “dayspring”.   What God is revealing to us in these verses is that Lucifer was one of the first created beings that God produced.  Early light in the context that God is Light simply means the preceding order of time which is a difficult concept for us to grasp about a God who lives outside the dimension of time.  God is clearly indicating to us that Lucifer was His son before Jesus became His son.  I know that is hard to grasp for many people because it is new information.  Just keep in mind that Jesus was God who created everything and that He had children called angels before He ever had a Son name Jesus.  All of this will become clearer as we continue to discover who are represented as the other “sons of God” in the Bible.

I want you to notice in Isaiah 14:12 that the Hebrew word H1121 translated as “son” is repeated in this verse the same as in Job 1 and Genesis 6 for the “sons of God”.  God claims that Satan is a builder of His family name.  The name of God is His family and God of course is the head of the family being the Father of all spirits.  Perhaps this is a good time to introduce a New Testament confirmation verse that is related to this subject of sons and fathers:

Heb 12:9  Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

Here is a very revealing verse for the discussion of spiritual fathers and spiritual sons.   God is being named the spiritual Father of all spiritual beings.  Is Satan a spiritual being?  Is every angel a spiritual being?  You must understand that created Satan and every created angel are both eternal and spiritual beings before you continue to learn more complex Bible truths.  I try not to teach anything without at least giving you a reference for what is being stated so I will give one about angels being spirits to help you see it:

Heb 1:14  Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?

Reading this verse in context you will discover God speaking of angels.  God declares His angels to be ministering spirits sent to minister for those that are heirs of salvation.  I know this is talking about me because I’m an heir of salvation.  Therefore God’s ministering spirits (angels) will be there for me to help in this world.  What I have just done is establish a basic truth of angels being called “sons”.  Since God is clearly called the Father of every spirit in the Bible.  I hope you are beginning to learn how poorly translated the NIV Bible was in John 3:16.  We have just witnessed the reality that every spiritual being is called a child of the spiritual God who is called Father.  This literally means that we should find this father and son theme in the Bible in other places.

I have only introduced you to the second type of a son of God found in the Bible.  Jesus was my first type called the “Only Begotten” but before Jesus we found that angels were previously called God’s sons as the second revealed type of a son.  Technically speaking angels existed first as sons before God became His own Son in the natural form of Jesus.  Did you notice what I just said?  God created everything and everyone and He clearly self-existed eternally.  However, the eternal God chose to become His own son before the foundation of the world to redeem us from our sins as well as accomplish many other things that I can’t get into in this lesson.  God becoming a Son being born 4000 years after the creation of Adam was clearly a mystery that took Satan by complete surprise.  However the wisdom of God prevailed and we find that truly “All things are possible with God”.  I hope you understand this truth of the eternal Spirit of God manifesting as a human Son because this defeated Satan and set you free from Satan’s rule.

What I have just given to you is the realization that before Jesus physically existed that there were other spiritual beings called angels that are referred to by God as His spiritual children.   This is enough of a conflict to cause us to reconsider the NIV translation of the verse in John 3:16.  But there are many other verses that also cause additional conflict.  Let’s look at another important verse:

Rom 8:14  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Here is an additional verse that was written to the church (me and you if you are a Christian) that conflicts with the belief of “one and only son” of God.  This verse indicates that those that are led by God’s Spirit will also be called God’s children.  Are you a spirit?   Do you remember that God is called the Father of spirits?  God has made you a son when you were previously not His son.  How did these people being led become God’s children?  We have to do further research in order to answer that question and this answer is found here in this verse:

Joh 1:12  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

Do you believe in the name of Jesus?  Have you received Jesus Christ?  If you have done both of these then you qualify to be called a son/child of God.  Now consider what else this verse says.  This verse clearly indicates that we were once not His child but have become this son by God’s plan of salvation.  Uh oh!  That raises too many questions that just cannot be answered fully in this Bible lesson.  You see you were a spirit being before being saved but yet you had to become saved in order to become this new son of God status.  If God created our spirit and He was previously our Father then how did we lose this son status in order to need this again?   The Bible is a highly complex book of spiritual information and this is just one mystery of the many that God solves by His extreme wisdom.  I will not answer this question in this lesson so if you want to know this you will have to leave a comment and ask for the answer or go find it for yourself.  However, I will give you this verse since it is found in the context of my main subject of John 3:16 to help confirm what I have just said:

Joh 3:3  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.

In the context of John 3:16 we find Jesus telling a man that he must be “born again”.  Uh oh again!  What does this mean?   Nicodemus thought that it meat that he needed to reenter his mother’s womb and be born naturally and that was not what Jesus was teaching.  Jesus was teaching a spiritual birth and not a natural birth.  Notice what Jesus confirms here.  Unless you are born again spiritually you will not enter into the kingdom of God.  That means before we were born again we were not in God’s family and needed to be saved (born again) to become a member of His family.  Being a son/child of God is essential to being saved.  We were once not His children but now being born of the Spirit of God have become His children and this is the new third type of son being described in the Bible.  This son type differs from every other son type previously mentioned and yet there is still a fourth type of son that has not yet been mentioned.  Let’s discover the fourth type of son of God that was not like the only begotten Jesus, the angels or the born again church.  Here is where I will start next:

Luk 3:38  Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.

This is another controversial verse that is ignored by most non-serious Bible students.  This is the genealogy of Jesus Christ recorded by the author Luke given to us by the inspiration of God.  This genealogy proceeds in reverse order all the way from Jesus back to Adam and then finally concluding with God the Father of every spiritual being.  Every named pair represents a father and his son relationship however the Greek word for “son” is not included so many believe that this was omitted to allow God not to be called the Father of Adam.  However that is just the deception of Satan trying to keep you from learning the truth to what is stated in this genealogy.  Let me go back to the top of the list and show you the beginning:

Luk 3:23  And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli,

Notice what God says here.  God says Jesus was SUPPOSEDLY the son of Joseph.   Any learned Bible student knows that God is correct to state it this way since God was His Father and not Joseph.  Now consider the end of the list of names using the light of the beginning.  If Adam was not the Son of God then God would have said “SUPPOSELY” again and since He did not do that we know that Adam was a created fourth type of a son of God.   Now to confirm this we need to go back to read Genesis 2 where God created the man named Adam.  Read this chapter in full if you like.  I will not quote it all because I want you to focus on verse 26 primarily:

Gen 2:24  Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.

This verse was written about Adam leaving his Father to be joined to his wife.  Who then was his father that he left if not God?  It has to be God that was the spiritual Father of Adam.  I know this because of what we read previously in Hebrews 12:9 where God is declared to be the Father of every spirit.  If you go back up in the chapter at Genesis 2:7 you will read where God breathes the breath of life into Adam.  This Hebrew word translated as breath is the same word that means “spirit” and this word teaches us when and where Adam received his spirit directly from God his spiritual Father.

We have now discovered 4 types of sons of God and there is at least one other type but that is sufficient overwhelming evidence that John 3:16 cannot be correctly translated as “ONE AND ONLY SON”.  This erroneous translation simply conflicts with too many other verses in the Bible that teaches us about other “sons of God” that existed before Jesus came to the earth and after Jesus returned to heaven.  I received one additional question that I will end with in this lesson.  I received a question about Jesus having brothers and who these brothers were.  I have alluded to this truth in some of my other Bible lessons but never fully explained it.  I may not be able still to fully explain it here but I will at least introduce the subject for your consideration.

If there are multiple types of sons of God as I have demonstrated and God is the Father of them all, then  it makes good logical sense that Jesus has brothers/siblings.  If Jesus is a Son of God which He clearly is then every other son of God must also be His brother.   In many of the parables taught to us by Jesus there is more than one son given.  Even within Old Testament typology there are many examples of multiple sons. For example, Isaac was a half-brother of Ishmael.   Isaac was accepted and the older brother Ishmael was cast out.  This is a common pattern found in the Old Testament types.  For example, there was Cain and Abel the first two sons of Adam mentioned by God.  Abel was killed by his older brother Cain.  Abel’s offering was accepted by God but Cain’s was not.  Then there was Jacob and his older brother Esau.  Again Esau the firstborn was rejected but the younger Jacob was chosen by God.  Abel, Isaac and Jacob are all clearly types of Jesus Christ.  Yet who are these brothers a type of?  I personally believe that they are types of Satan.  I have other Bible lessons where I address these subjects so I will not repeat it here.

What I am doing is teaching you that Jesus had spiritual brothers.  We now know that Adam was a brother of Jesus since God was both of their direct spiritual Fathers.  We should also now know that Satan was a brother of Jesus since he was called a son of the early light in Isaiah.  We also know from reading that we Christians are also called spiritual brothers/sisters of Jesus if we have become “born again” by the Spirit of God and being led by His Spirit.  How do we know this?  Well we know this because Jesus was called the “firstborn” from the dead in Colossians 1:18.   That verse teaches us that this means Jesus was given preeminence by God’s design being the first to be born again from the dead.  Wow God teaches us some pretty hard things for us to grasp.  Who understood that Jesus was talking about Himself being born again in John 3?    If Jesus was the first then there are others that followed Him being called second, third, fourth and etc.   There are many other verses that teach us that we are called brothers and sisters of Christ.  For example we are called “joint heirs” with Christ Jesus in Romans 8:17.  What is an heir?  An heir is normally a child that inherits what is left after the Father/Parent dies.  Who died to make us an heir with Jesus?  It was Jesus who died to allow us to become an heir.  This is just another divine mystery.  God died and became the first heir and this act of God allows us to become the same in subsequent numbered positions.  This is a very complex spiritual subject that is not known or understood by many Christians.

Today in this Bible lesson I want to reemphasize the fact that I am not taking away from the deity of Jesus Christ nor am I reducing His most significant Son of God status with the existence of other created sons of God.  I always capitalize Jesus as the Son of God and any other being like Lucifer was but a mere son of God.   I fully acknowledge Jesus Christ as being Supreme.  Just because I taught you that there are other types of sons of God that exist in the Bible that does not disqualify the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit within the trinity.  These three are the One True God.  If you perceived any other message from this Bible lesson than what I just stated here then you need to go back and reread this lesson again and again.

My website is called “Advanced Bible Study”.  This is one of those types of lessons that have been designed for spiritually mature Christians.  I went over many things that will be rejected by a lot of immature people who call themselves Christians but yet that is the nature of teaching advanced subjects to students who are only capable of understanding simple basic subjects. I used 3 to 4 basic rules of good Bible interpretation to confirm the truth in this lesson.  You should have learned these rules so that you can apply them in your Bible study.  If you disagree with this lesson please do not leave me any nasty comments.  I really am not going to change what I teach if you are incapable of understanding spiritual truths.  I thank those that can see the truth and understand why it is important to learn.  I could not include everything in this lesson so if you have questions I am willing to hear them and see if I can help you to understand anything that was not covered sufficiently.  In conclusion I will give you the list of 4 types of sons of God:

  1. Only Begotten (natural born) Son (Jesus Christ)
  2. The angelic beings are called the sons of God created before the world existed
  3. The born again church are called sons of God if they are led by the Spirit of God
  4. Adam created as a son of God who left his Father to be joined to his wife

I hope that you enjoyed this advanced Bible lesson and will leave me a positive comment or question if you learned anything that you can share with others please do that also.  Also please point others to this website to help the Word of God to be spread to the entire world.  Post links to my Bible lessons on Facebook, Twitter or any other social media site where people can learn about Jesus. I thank you and may God continue to bless you as you are led by His Spirit with me.  God Bless!

BIBLE ANSWERS: Understanding Biblical Typology! Does God Use O. T. Typology to Explain Spiritual Things in the New Testament?

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(ver 1.1)  I received a very disturbing comment from a potentially confused reader concerning the latest Bible study lesson given to me by the Holy Spirit.  This lesson was regarding the subject of the Rapture that has been hidden by God within O.T. Typology.   While I generally ignore critics, I felt led by the Spirit of God to answer this comment publically in order to potentially help someone else that this person might teach these untruths to.   A few of my critics are some of the unsaved people of the world but the majority of them are very carnal Christians that do not understand the spiritual meat found in the Bible.   Anyone with a growing level of spiritual maturity should be able to see the truths of the deep spiritual knowledge that God is sharing.  I certainly realize that there are still many milk drinking Christians that are not capable of receiving meat.  That is why I try to regress into milk subjects occasionally to help everyone grow.

According to this commenter’s beliefs the use of “Typology” is not an established, valid or sound method of Exegesis or Hermeneutics.   I would have laughed at their comment if it was not so saddening.  There is a major problem occurring within the body of Christ today where people who think more highly of their personal knowledge and abilities come to correct others before attempting to learn what was stated.  This is happening constantly on Facebook and on many other internet websites.  People that come to teach others without asking ANY questions to the teacher is a display of their human pride in their own knowledge and understanding of every verse in the Bible.   People just might discover their ignorance if they would only open up their minds to think and learn to find answers to a few simple questions in order to understand why what was stated was taught.  By the nature of this man’s comment I understood that he was un-teachable and I did not reply to him.  If they read this article that was their response I would be shocked.

I have said this before but it is worthy of repetition.   My favorite non-Bible quote is by Will Rogers when he said “We are all ignorant, just about different things”.   That was so profound and accurate that I cannot say it enough.  I am a Bible teacher not because I know everything or because I agree and teach what you want me to say.  I’m called by God and only accountable to Him and I will be judged for the content of my message according to if I have heard from Him correctly.  Therefore I take this responsibility with great concern and respect.  I do not publish free Advanced Bible lessons because that is what I wanted to do.  If the Spirit of God does not lead me to teach a subject then I am silent on that subject.   Why then does anyone judge me or anyone else to correct us using their own limited knowledge (Romans 14:10-13)?  Have they appointed themselves to be my judge (1 Cor 6:6)?  Of the gifts of the Spirit listed in the New Testament, I do not recall any that are referred as the judge’s anointing.  Don’t you realize that the world is watching your arguments and laughing at them?   Christian arguments are placing stumbling blocks before those that do not believe but still need to be saved.     I personally believe these argument stumbling block people will be judged very severely for not helping others to come into the kingdom.   If you do not like my Bible lessons, just go somewhere else and find someone you like.   I’m not going to argue with you or debate you on any subject!  Let’s let God be true and every man a liar.

Today I am going to teach those that want to know the truth that God believes in O.T. Typology, Types and Shadows and He calls them clear and valid methods for exegesis (aka Bible interpretation).  God also believes in symbolism, symbolic representations, parables and metaphorical interpretation.  God further believes in allegory, spiritual names and the other methods of sound exegesis that have been placed in the Bible by God’s design.  These are just some of the revealed truths found in the New Testament that God used to teach the hidden spiritual message from the Old Testament to Christians in the early church continuing to us today.  These methods were clearly taught to Paul by the Holy Spirit and by Paul to the early church through the direction of the Holy Spirit.  We in the church today can still benefit from this knowledge by learning to observe it in what God wrote through Paul and the other Apostles.  Therefore my commenter must not believe the New Testament since it is founded on these principles.  This Bible study will prove beyond any reasonable doubt that God created the method of Typology and that I have done nothing in my Bible lessons but observe their presence.  After I learned about these truths in the Bible I believe that it would be totally foolish of me to deny they exist just because someone from seminary says they are not valid.  I pray that you will also do the same.  In this Bible lesson we will seek the answers to the following questions from the N.T.:

  1. What is Typology?
  2. Why is the use of Typology a valid form of correct Bible Interpretation?
  3. How did God conceal Typology in the Old Testament?
  4. How is Typology revealed by God in the New Testament?
  5. Why did God use Typology in the Bible?

I will definitely warn you at the beginning that this Bible lesson will be one of the most advanced complex deep spiritual subjects that is found on my website.  The title on my website is “Advanced Bible Study” and this will be one that qualifies for this category of lessons.   If you are a brand new Christian or not a very mature spiritual Christians then I really do not recommend that you try to study this subject.  I am going to need to go over some very advanced concepts and some very technical definitions.  This is just a word of warning of what will come next.

WHAT IS EXEGESIS AND HERMENEUTICS?

Before I begin today in this Bible lesson to teach that Typology is a divinely created reality found and taught to us by God in the New Testament, I would like to go through some foundational basics on the subject.  I will go into sufficient detail to what the Bible says on this subject of typology but I first want to show everyone an explanation of what Wikipedia says about the word “exegesis” to help establish the correct understanding and definition of what this potentially unknown theological term represents.   This was the complaint of my commenter that typology does not conform to sound exegesis and I believe that there are at least some Christians that actually know very little about what this word means.   Don’t allow an unfamiliar word to sway you to one side of belief or the other until you at least find out what it is defined to be:

  • The terms exegesis and hermeneutics have been used interchangeably.  However, hermeneutics is a more widely defined discipline of interpretation theory: hermeneutics includes the entire framework of the interpretive process, encompassing all forms of communication: written, verbal and nonverbal, while exegesis focuses primarily on the written text

As you can read both words exegesis and hermeneutics deal with Bible interpretation methods.   But the most important word in this description that must be observed is the given term “THEORY”.   Does God have any theories?  I do not believe that He does since He knows everything.  Is the Bible a book of theories? Again I do not believe it is simply because the God of infinite knowledge and wisdom is the author.   Therefore, if God is not the source of human theories then we need to ask “Why do humans resort to theories?”  Let me give you a definition of a theory.  A theory should be defined as any subject being discussed which is based entirely upon human ignorance of all of the known true facts of the subject.  In other words if we knew and correctly understood all of the true facts of any given subject we would have no need for any further theories or theoretical discussions.  Do you understand what I am teaching?   A theory is completely derived from the lack of sufficient evidence or proof to support it.   A theory is also totally originated from human speculation, rumor, assumption, conjecture and guesswork.   All of these are synonyms for what a theory represents.   People today often believe theories to be science and that is not accurate.  The theory of evolution lacks any sufficient proof for its existence to be taught but yet is widely accepted by ignorant students to be a fact.   Just because a subject is widely accepted does not make it a truth. This is the same that is true for man’s theories of exegesis.

Human theories are always based upon inadequate fallible human reasoning and thought which attempts to teach or explain something that is not completely known or understood by the speaker.  Therefore according to Wikipedia “exegesis” and “hermeneutics” are both human attempts at theories for interpretation based upon the lack of sufficient known facts to prove or verify their accuracy.   That is the primary purpose of the rest of this Bible lesson today.   I am here to relieve your ignorance and present you with the God given Bible facts on this very important subject of Typology so that you can depart from your exegesis theories and believe the truth of God.   The main point in this part of the lesson is that man’s theories of exegesis are always trumped and overruled by God’s facts every time.  I seriously hope that you believe what God says in His Word and will choose to ignore what ignorant men say in order to not be led astray.

What I have been attempting to introduce you to is the fact that human theories of exegesis are only necessary today because people have not yet discovered or do not completely understand ALL of the true facts for the subject of correct Bible interpretation revealed by God in the Bible.   God gives us an amazing set of lessons in His word concerning correct Bible interpretation.  He defines very specific rules for interpretation.  He defines very sound methods for correct Bible interpretation.  He even gives us many great examples of each type of interpretation for us to learn from and apply to our study.  This will be the focus for the rest of the Bible lesson.  But before we do that let’s talk briefly about hermeneutics.

According to Wikipedia, the subject of hermeneutics is a more inclusive discipline for interpretation including the entire framework of the interpretative process.  I found that statement to be very oxymoronic and contradictory to their previous statement of it being a theory of human work.   This statement of the “entire framework” clearly “assumes” in error that they know and understand the complete process.  To state that a discipline includes everything means that they know and understand it all and that is clearly not the case.   What is being stated here is the fact that they just said it was a theory and then they changed positions attempting to define it to be all-inclusive and all knowing.  There is absolutely no way that is possible.  You need to be careful when you read human explanations for what words mean.  If there are contradictions then there are problems.

But here is another very interesting point to consider about the subject of Hermeneutics.  This word is derived from a pagan Greek name of a mythological god called “Hermes” which was their false messenger god.      It would stand to reason from knowing this fact that anything to do with Hermeneutics is potentially a demonically inspired distraction from obtaining the real truth of God in His Word.  What did I just say?   I said if Hermes was a Satan inspired distraction from the true and living God then “Hermeneutics” could be the same.   What we should observer by the review of Hermeneutics and Exegesis is that they are both man’s attempt at creating rules to define how to understand a God that they clearly do not understand.  This is one of the main reasons that I avoid any manmade rules and theories of Bible interpretation.  I long to only know what God says on the subject of interpretation and I will follow only Him completely and whole heartedly.    I could have talked a lot more about those two words but this was a brief overview and certainly not a detailed book discussion of the subjects.

BUILDING THE TYPOLOGY FOUNDATION

We began by exploring the words of exegesis and hermeneutics in order to establish their origins and definitions.   We clearly saw them to be theoretical works of men that conform to their own incomplete understanding of the subject of Bible interpretation presented to us in the Bible.  Please allow me to do the same type of research for the word “typology” as a comparison.   Is Typology based upon human guesswork, reasoning or speculation?   Is Typology a manmade theory?  We need to answer these in order to see how typology fits into correct Bible study.  I believe you will quickly discover as we research this subject that typology is the opposite from what exegesis was defined to be.  Both exegesis and typology are based upon rules but the origin of these rules will become apparently different.   Let’s start this part of the subject study with a dictionary definition of the word “typology”:

  • TYPOLOGY
  • 1. The study or systematic classification of types that have characteristics or traits in common.

I thought this was an excellent definition.   Can you see any differences between this and exegesis with your first review of the word typology?  First understand that typology is NOT defined to be a theory.   It is not based upon indeterminate human speculation.  There is no reference to it being a theoretical effort of work like we saw in the definition of exegesis.  Next, I would like to emphasize what this word means.  Begin with the initial part of the definition to see that Typology represents a “STUDY” or a “CLASSIFICATION”.   Right there this teaches us the fact that it is a clear effort of human labor which is predominately based upon observation.  Study implies that someone is attempting to discover, learn and understand the known facts from either God or from any human subject teacher.   Bible Study should be defined as the “acquisition of Bible knowledge” and Bible knowledge should be defined as “any established facts of truth found within the Bible context”.  Therefore we have no theories involved in true Bible study.  Did you understand what I just said?  Typology is not a theory, but rather it is a study method and that is extremely insightful.   If a person studies the subject of how automobile engines work they are seeking to learn the established facts of these machines and there should be no desire to learn from any speculative theories or opinions from people who have never built one, worked on one, repaired one or learned how they work or can even operate one personally from experience.  Did you understand that automotive analogy?   What I was attempting to say is that any serious Bible student should not need to learn from any man that teaches on the basis of theories because the true facts can only found in God’s Word.

Let’s shift into a Biblical spiritual discussion about “study” for a moment.  What does God teach about the subject of “Study” in the Bible?  Are we required to study the Bible?  In other words is it necessary to study the Bible to understand it?  Is typology a part of God’s study method?   If you do not remember the answers to those questions I will show you the key verse that God gives to answer them:

  • 2Ti 2:15  Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

According to God “study” is a personal effort of labor.    The Greek word that was translated as “workman” in this verse is G2040 and it literally means “a toiler”, “a worker” and “a laborer”.  This Greek word comes from a root word that means “to work”.  I believe that it is now self-evident that study is a level of extended effort way beyond just reading the text on the pages.   Reading has never been studying, but studying does involve reading.   God very clearly says here in this verse that if we do not study the Bible that we may fall into a negative state of shame someday.   Therefore Bible study is a requirement given from God by N.T. command.    This is very good and important information to consider.

I could spend a lot of time talking about study, how to study and how study works and the application to the spiritual man but that is not my main subject here in this lesson.   I will briefly teach an overview of spiritual study to help you get started.  The human spirit is incapable of any Bible study without the engagement of the human mind’s comprehensive application.  Why is this mind and spirit interaction a necessity?  It is because of the divinely created triune state of a human.  The triune nature of a human is first the visible exterior body layer, the next layer of the human makeup is the invisible interior middle layer called the mind or soul and the final unseen layer is the innermost center of the living being called the spirit or heart.  In Matthew 9:4 Jesus said to the people “Why do you think evil in your hearts”.   The heart of man is the spirit of man and Jesus was connecting the two interior human realms together to teach how they work in unison.   From that statement in Mathew Jesus just revealed that the heart of man can be in one of two states, either evil or good.   All humans by nature are evil from the age of accountability which came from the works of their father Adam being passed down to his every descendant.  How then do we get the evil out and allow the good to enter to replace it?  Romans 12:2 will provide a clue to this answer by God commanding us to “be transformed by the renewing of our minds”.  I personally believe this is like computers and the old computer programmer saying that went “Put Garbage In, Get Garbage Out”.    In other words what you allow to be placed into your heart through your mind’s eye is what will be produced outwardly.    Like I said this is a very deep subject to even try to mention here in a paragraph so please read some of my other lessons or ask questions if you do not understand the nature of a human and how the parts work together.

Now let’s research the term “classification” found within the “typology” definition.  According to the dictionary this word means “the act or process of classifying things based upon common qualities or characteristics”.  Again we are not concerned with any theories simply because classification is only dealing with the observable facts between two or more objects.   What we are witnessing is that classification is a formalized approach to organization.  Did you notice God’s inclusion of classification within the verse we just read in 1Timothy 2:15 about study?  What does it mean to “rightly divide” the Word of Truth?  Rightly dividing is a synonymous work of classification.  God is literally saying that we need to organize the truth into proper like groups in order to understand it and that is called typology whether you believe it or not.  This means when we study a subject in the Bible we may need to correctly observe the facts and then organize these facts in order to understand any of them.  Perhaps, it will help if we first understand the definition for the term “classifying”.   This word means “the systematic arrangement in groups or categories according to fixed established criteria”.   Again this is a form of division and organization.  To organize anything you must divide it up within known like categories.   This is exactly what God was saying in 1Timothy 2:15 when he said to rightly divide the word of truth.   To rightly divide God’s truth it must be classified into like categories.   The antithesis truth to rightly dividing is wrongly dividing and this simply means that people can easily put truths in improper groups or categories of organization.  I really hope that you are grasping these deep complex concepts found in God’s Word.

Organization is just a bad word to many people because it involves work again.  Clearly we learned from God in 1Timothy 2:15 that work is involved in correct Bible study.  This literally teaches us that organization must be a part of the same effort.  Therefore if you are a lazy Christian you will never study the Bible.   What I have observed from my Bible study is the fact that God is a highly organized being.  There is no unorganized chaos found within God or His creation.  Look around you and you will observe order everywhere you look.  Order and organization do not originate from or appear from disordered chaos.   It only stands to reason that if God operates in the realm of order and has created order then His Word must also be organized in some manner that would reflect His own divine qualities.  This is one of the main reasons why I believe in Typology so strongly and we are about to learn many other great reasons soon.

What we are doing here is discovering the basics to what typology represents to God and man.   Placing like items or objects together is the study of the arrangement, classification, grouping or organization of similar forms, kinds, types, etc.  This method of classifying is based upon observing each object’s participation in a well-known and well-defined common set of like features, patterns, characteristics, qualities, abilities, etc.  So far knowing these definitions we can make the claim that typology is the study of the “systematic” classification of types that have the same traits or characteristics.  Wow, that is still a potential mouth full, isn’t it?    Do you really understand what this typology means?  Have you ever worked at filing in the days of the old file cabinets?  Every old office paper filing system was organized by a defined rules based system to enable organized storage and facilitate the fast retrieval of the filed information.  In a large stack of office papers it could take someone days to find the right paper if there was no organization applied to it.  But with proper planned organization it is found in a few minutes.  This old style manual filing organization was normally done by placing documents in alphabetical order based upon the name of a company or an individual’s last name.  A paper filing method was always a “rules based” system of defined storage and retrieval and this is actually directly related to what God has done in the Bible using typology and rightly dividing the Word of Truth.   I guess we need to look up the definition of “systematic” next.  I know we are going through some really basic technical information in this part of the lesson, but I believe this will help you understand why God uses typology:

  • Systematic:
  • Done or acting according to a fixed plan or system; methodical.

Systematic represents anything that is created, performed, established or done according to a defined set of never changing rules, standards and methods.  Systematic also represents a repeatable discovery or process by continuing to follow the same rules.  In other words a systematic discovery is one that is not accidental or unknown to how it was achieved.  Thomas Edison went through a systematic process in discovering the light bulb.   Every time that he discovered a light burning filament process that didn’t work that one was thrown out until the one that did work could be repeated consistently.  The discovery of the defined process for creating light bulbs created a new systematic process that remained for many, many years of reliable service.    If you understand this definition then you need to ask, does God have a plan before He does something?  Does God follow any set methods of design before doing something?   Does God use any set patterns when creating?  Because people are so uninformed, they usually do not know to ask these questions and they certainly do know the answers to these very important questions.     Let me repeat the definition of classification because this is just essential:

  • CLASSIFICATION:
  • The action or process of classifying something according to shared qualities or characteristics.

Like I have tried to say before,” classification” represents the human work of organizing and grouping like objects together based upon observable common features, characteristics, patterns, or any other standard observable qualities of similarity.  Is classification a good or an evil system or method of work?  Surely you can see that it is all good.   Where did classification originate from man or God?   I am firm believer that if you can see that classification is good and not evil then it had to have originated from God based upon what God said in James 1:17.  Go read that verse and you should see what I mean.

I have talked about this concept of classification in several of my Bible studies on this website.   Classifying like objects together is based upon basic mathematical set rules.   Every object of a like nature can be grouped together in a common set and can be referenced by the superior group label or title.  Each object in the set is unique but they are capable of being organized together because of the common feature being associated together.   For example, the mammal classification or set of created beings will have in common certain observable facts that they are all 1) warm blooded 2) vertebrate 3) animals.  Therefore any animal that fits this rule based description can be included in the set called mammals.  That is what classification represents.   Is this too complicated for a Bible study?

Concluding this part of the technical discussion we have learned that typology is the study of the systematic (rules based unchanging well defined methods) of classifying (organizing and grouping together) like or related individual objects (people, places, events and things) sharing common features or common characteristics.  What this teaches us is that by learning about one object in the defined set we can apply this knowledge to learn about every other object in the set in some limited degree of defined classification.    I might be going over the heads of many of my readers with this technical discussion about how types work but we need to learn this or remain ignorant.   We need to learn these are God given facts and that in order to understand many things found in the New Testament correctly it requires us to obtain correct knowledge of the given Old Testament types.  God’s use of Typology contains very specific classifications of like subjects, actions, individuals, groups, people, created objects, etc. that help us to understand spiritual things that we have never seen before.  Are you beginning to grasp the significance of this subject?   Let’s start an introduction to the subject of types found in the Bible.

BEGINNING TO SEE HEAVENLY TYPES IN THE OLD TESTAMENT

Gods Image BearersLet me take you into the classification of created man to help you understand that God declared the existence of types all the way back in Genesis 1.  In Genesis 1:26 God says “Let us make man in our image and after our likeness…”.    Man being the literal image and likeness of Almighty God is a mind blowing concept that is ignored by many Christians.  The angels of God could look at created man and immediately see the features and characteristics of God being demonstrated and repeated.   Man being made in God’s image is the definition of the word found within types and typology.  The created man possessed the common qualities and features of God by God’s design and purpose.  This Bible fact makes created man a literal “type” of the God class of beings using these common observable characteristics.  I know that is not very religious sounding but it is what the Bible says.

By observing the original created design in man we can perceive the unseen qualities of God and learn about Him in so many ways.   I do not have time to go into this subject fully today but I will give a quick overview of it.  For example God is described in the Bible to be a triune being.  Man was also created as a triune being consisting of three distinct and separate parts that comprise the whole as I mentioned earlier in this lesson.  God is described with a mind and man was created with the same likeness of mental capacity with reasoning and thought.  God speaks words audibly and man was created after this same pattern as a speaking individual.  I hope that you will do more research or even ask questions if you do not understand how that God can be observed in a created being called man.   Also do not misunderstand what I was saying about man being in the God class of beings.  I was not declaring man to be equal to God so put down your stones.  What I am beginning to teach is that spiritual things existed before there were any natural things and these naturally created things came from existing spiritual patterns, types and objects that were found present in the spiritual realm.   I could teach this subject for a long time but I will not do a comprehensive inclusion of every characteristic of man as a type of God in the Bible.  The primary point from Genesis 1:26 was that God existed eternally before man existed but yet when God created man He placed Himself as the pattern within the man.  One of the main points from Genesis 1:26 is the fact that anything with like characteristics represents a type and fits within the typology definition.  We will learn a lot more about this from the New Testament as we continue to study so do not yet give up or despair that you are not grasping it fully yet.

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAI will now go over another O.T. prevalent subject quickly that God revealed to me about the existence of types.  This subject is mentioned in many of my other Bible studies because of the importance of this typology revealed by God.   If you search the Bible for the name of the city called “Jerusalem” you should find that it occurs in over 700 verses directly.  This city is also indirectly labeled and named by many other titles of a symbolic nature and the total verse count is actually much greater than 700.  Are all of these verses about the same city here on the earth?  You may be surprised to discover that they are not.  Have you ever considered that there may have been a heavenly version of this city named Jerusalem before the earthly city was ever conceived by God?  I know that I have, especially after reading what God wrote to us in the New Testament.  If you go and read in Galatians 4:26 you will find where God declared that there exists a city called “Jerusalem Above” which is a totally different city than the one that is now presently here on the earth.   Let me give you two main verses to consider concerning these two different cities both named Jerusalem:

  • Gal 4:25  For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.
  • Gal 4:26  But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.

There are just not very many Christians that understand this truth because it was a new revelation from God sent to Paul for us to learn from in the last days.   This city “Jerusalem Above” is called the spiritual mother of the church and I do not have time to explain that either.  Notice in the verse before that God speaks of the earthly city of Jerusalem as a separate physical entity.   It is very obvious to me that these two cities named Jerusalem are types of each other.  It might not be as obvious to you but I have studied this subject for over 16 years and it becomes very apparent when you dig into it and allow God to open it up to your spiritual understanding.  If you need to learn about this city in more depth, it is covered in several other Bible lessons on my website.  What God has just revealed to you, is called hidden typology within the Bible.   God implies that the earthly city Jerusalem here in the Middle East has been patterned from a city that already existed in the spiritual heaven.  This is called typology where two cities are grouped together based upon common features and characteristics.  God has just demonstrated a superior classification called “Jerusalem” where exists more than one individual types of the city in the set.    Ok, God says for us to let every word be established in the mouth of two or three witnesses and I will give you another N.T. verse about this heavenly spiritual city:

  • Heb 12:22  But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,

This is another extremely important verse to learn.   It directly teaches us that there is another city in heaven named Jerusalem where the angels of God reside.   When were angels created?   That is a very difficult question to answer since we are never directly informed of this event in the Bible that I know of.  There are several verses that indicate to us that angels were created long before man existed.  I do not have time to teach them in this lesson but they are in some of my other Bible lessons on angels and creation.   What we are observing is the realization that spiritual things existed before natural things but they can also both exist concurrently at the same time.   We are also beginning to understand that some of these natural things have been modeled after the original spiritual things and even named the same.   The Jerusalem that is on the earth is certainly not the Jerusalem just mentioned that was found in heaven.   But by God calling them by the same name this teaches us the valid existence of typology.   Also if you go and read back in Galatians 4:24 you will discover that both of these cities represent covenants with God.    That gives them common features causing a likeness that can be grouped or classified together.   Wow, I am hoping that you can understand and apply the typology concepts here to this information given to us by God.

What I am trying to say is that both of these cities belong to the classification called “Jerusalem cities”.  Therefore we can learn about one of them and this knowledge will teach us many things about the other one and vice versa.   If the Jerusalem below had a temple then the city above has the same type of feature.  If the Jerusalem below has a high priest then the city above will contain the same type of feature.   If the Jerusalem below was the home of a nation of God’s people then the city above will have the same characteristics.   We could just go on and on with this subject of Jerusalem for a very long time but that was enough to get you started thinking.  I will end this part of the introduction to this O.T. Bible typology discussion by trying to emphasize again that the naturally created things here on the earth will always point us back to the unseen spiritual things that existed before (Rom 1:20).   This is what God reveals to us in the New Testament and we will now explore more examples of this divine use of typology in the next section.

DISCOVERING MORE OF GOD’S DUPLICATION OF EXISTING HEAVENLY PATTERNS

I have been going through the introduction of two hidden examples of Old Testament natural patterns that were concealed projections of existing heavenly spiritual patterns.  Both the natural and the spiritual shared common features and characteristics allowing them to be legally grouped together within our typology study.  This was the nature of typology by definition.  As we continue to learn more about what has existed in the spiritual heaven has now been repeated by God here on the earth as types of heaven we will be able to learn about spiritual things that were never conceived within our human minds before.  In fact it would be impossible for us to know of the existence of these spiritual things without God giving us the natural things to observe.  We will also learn that these natural types on the earth will return back to the spiritual realm as in a full circle.  All of this was a hidden concept taught by God in the Bible.  Paul obtained the revelation of these truths and God is now making them known to us in the church in these last of the last days.  What I want to do is to help confirm what I just introduced you to by using what God says in the Bible about these subjects.   What will be doing is confirming that these O.T. things came from existing heavenly spiritual objects.   Let’s start with a verse in Acts:

  • Act 7:44  Our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness, as he had appointed, speaking unto Moses, that he should make it according to the fashion that he had seen.

Have you ever considered the information given by God in this verse?  God is informing us that Moses had a spiritual vision of heaven in order to see this preexisting pattern that he was to build.    God was telling Moses to make the articles of the temple on the earth after the pattern design that was found in heaven.  I know this verse can be taken other ways.  For example God could have shown Moses what to build and these could have been completely new designs.  However that interpretation does not match with what else God says in the N.T. and we must take into account every scripture that is given to us about this subject.  If what I said about these earthly temple articles being heavenly patterns is true, this literally teaches us that the design of the temple in heaven was transferred to the earth through Moses and everything that was found here was a man made duplication of the divinely created spiritual realm.   Obviously this means that the natural objects were not spiritual object but the resemblance could be seen if you knew both like the angels of God did.    I will give you another verse that explains this more clearly next:

  • Heb 8:5  Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.

Please read this verse very carefully.  There are three key Greek words that need to be defined in order to understand that this is God using Typology to teach the people.  The three Greek words are G5262, G4639 and G5179 translated in this verse as “example”, “shadow” and “pattern” respectively.   But before we explore these Greek words let’s observe that this verse in Hebrews is a partial quotation of an Old Testament verse from Exodus and go and read it:

  • Exo 25:40  “See that you make them after the pattern for them, which was shown to you on the mountain.

God again tells Moses directly that the objects of the temple will be made after the “pattern” that was given to him on the mountain.   If you do not understand the concept of patterns in creation you will never correctly understand the Bible.  A pattern is a creation technique and/or a device that causes duplicates to occur.  A pattern is used to recreate any original work of creation.   This is used in manufacturing, the garment creation industry, construction, automotive manufacturing and many other human work efforts.   Man did not invent this method of work, God did!   Please take a look at the definition for the Hebrew word H8403 translated as “pattern”.

  • H8403
  • From H1129; structure; by implication a model, resemblance: – figure, form, likeness, pattern, similitude.

Does any of this definition sound familiar to what we have been covering in this Bible lesson?  Take what I taught first in the previous section about Adam being made in the likeness of God.   That was a different Hebrew word in Genesis 1:26 but the meanings are very synonymous.  Both Hebrew words mean a resemblance or a model from a pattern.    Strong even places the word “pattern” as a legal definition and that is what was translated in KJV Bible.  Let’s go back to Hebrew 8:5 and look up the three Greek words that I was telling you were important to this subject.   The first word is G5262 that was translated as “example”.  What is an example?  According to the dictionary an example is “a thing characteristic of its kind or illustrating a general rule”.   Wow, that is the definition of a type within typology if I ever heard of one.   God is teaching you some very profound truths located in the Bible and I pray that you are not letting them slip away from your mind.   Again in the Strong’s definition we see concretely the words “likeness”, “model”, “resemblance” and “pattern”.  Learn these words and remember them.   See how they apply to Adam and God and then we will continue to learn how they apply to other types to come.

The next Greek word that I would like to point out is G4639 which is translated as “shadow” in this verse of Hebrews.   This Greek word being included within this verse context is one of the main reasons why many teach that “types and shadows” are synonymous terms referring to the same concept within Typology.   What is a shadow?   A shadow is usually a place where the light does not fully reach, right?   This means a shadow is where there is some level of darkness found to be present.  In other words there is something that is blocking the light from being seen directly on that spot.   I find that concept extremely informative to why people do not see or understand typology.   It also implies that God withheld certain levels of detailed information within typology so that he could reveal them later.   When Jesus came into the world in the flesh, He declared himself to be the light of the world (John 9:5).   Jesus literally taught many new things that were hidden from the foundation of the world.  This was Jesus being a light to the world explaining things that were never revealed before to man.  If you have ever seen a television studio you know that it has a lot of lights in it.   Bright lights cause shadows and that is not good for TV so they add more bright lights to eliminate the shadows.  That is exactly what Jesus was doing taking the shadows of the Old Testament and bringing more light to them.   Let’s review the Strong’s definition of this word:

  • G4639
  • Apparently a primary word; shade or a shadow (literally or figuratively [darkness of error or an adumbration]): – shadow.

This Greek word is defined to be a “shade or a shadow” literally or figuratively and in this case in Hebrews 8:5 it is certainly a figurative usage.  The word in this definition that I found the most interesting is probably a word that you have never heard of.  Do you know what an “adumbration” is?   This word means to “give a sketchy outline of something”.   It literally means to provide “a sketchy, imperfect, incomplete or even a faint representation” of something else that is not given directly by reference.  In other words it means that you can only know what is being stated if you understand the complete subject but otherwise you will not have a clue what the vague outline is about.  This is a good description of a shadow on the ground.  Unless you know who or what is casting the shadow the sketchy outline will be useless information to you.  An adumbration also means the “vague foreshadowing” of a plan, event or a person.   All of this information that we have discovered is completely relevant to the subject of Typology and God’s purpose for using it.  Please tell me that you understand these vital concepts?  The last Greek word that must be understood for this subject in Hebrew 8:5 is the Greek word G5179:

  • G5179
  • From G5180; a die (as struck), that is, (by implication) a stamp or scar; by analogy a shape, that is, a statue, (figuratively) style or resemblance; specifically a sampler (type), that is, a model (for imitation) or instance (for warning): – en- (ex-) ample, fashion, figure, form, manner, pattern, print.

duplicatedThis Greek word is also one of the most important found in the verse and is the best description yet of typology.  Please observe the concepts given in the definition.  Do you know what a “die” is?   This device is used in the manufacturing process to create duplicate objects.  It is usually made of metal and hollow on the inside where other metal or plastic can be poured into it to harden and become a new identical piece.   There are other types of these tools that are also used as stamps to leave an impression of an identical image.  This is a common type of tool used in leather work.   The idea that the one tool leaves a repeatable image in something represents another description of what Typology is to God as you can observe by continuing to read the rest of the definition.    The key word in this definition is the word “TYPE”.  It means that you can look at the thing being spoken of as a model of something else that is not normally revealed.   Patterns are also found in this definition.   We now have three different Greek words to search for in our Bible to learn how God uses them.   These are essential elements to understanding Bible Typology.  We have just covered the foundational basics for the subject and will now begin to explore the dynamics of some of the other aspects found within the New Testament.

GOD’S DETAILED USAGE OF O.T. TYPES AND SHADOWS IN THE N.T.

I have presented Biblical evidence that the naturally created things on the earth were patterned after unseen heavenly spiritual realities that pre-existed before the natural.  We are now going to discover that the next step to this designed process is to see exactly how God has placed in the Old Testament very specific natural patterns, types and shadows that point us again to unseen New Testament spiritual types.   God has taken this reality of patterns in a full circle from the spiritual to the natural then back to the spiritual again.  What you will begin to discover are some of the reasons that God did this but probably not in total coverage in this Bible lesson.   There are literally a great number of very specific natural types and shadows found in the O.T and these were designed to teach the church about the coming complex unseen spiritual truths found in the New Covenant.   Without the existence of the natural realm the church would have no comprehension of the spiritual realm.  As I have stated God created the natural world as a hidden reflecting window into the spiritual world.   God very clearly said in Romans 1:20 that “The invisible things of God even His godhead and power are clearly viewed in the things that He has created so that men are without excuse”.   I believe this verse teaches us something so very profound about the existence of typology.  I believe God was saying that which has been in the past is that which is seen now and that which is seen now is that which shall be again in the future.  If that doesn’t sound familiar you need to read Ecclesiastes to discover what God has said to us about this subject:

  • Ecc 1:9  The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

Hopefully you can read and understand that God says there is NOTHING NEW under the sun.  Nothing is a very comprehensive word and does not omit anything that can be observed in the natural.  What does that teach us?   That literally means everything that we see here right now in this world was modeled after what existed previously in the spiritual world.   I am totally convinced that this is the concept of types and shadows used by God as repetitious patterns.  These patterns found in the Old Testament bring us light to know what is occurring in the spiritual New Covenant.  Let’s explore some more of the specific types revealed by God to us in the New Testament that were hidden by God in the Old Testament.  I’ll begin this section of the lesson with a verse that is found in Romans 5:

  • Rom 5:14  Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.

This is God’s commentary on the creation of Adam in Genesis 1 and 2.  In this N.T. explanation God very specifically reveals that Adam was a “TYPE” of the coming Lord Jesus.  We can further confirm this truth by observing how God called Jesus the “Last Adam” in 1 Corinthians 15:45.  What we are learning here in these two verses is further confirmation that God can use duplicate names like Adam or Jerusalem to establish a valid type set comparison and relationship.  This concept was exactly what I taught you previously about the name of the city of Jerusalem.  God will often repeat the name of an O.T. reality calling it HEAVENLY, NEW, LAST or by using some other adjective modified form to cause it to be known that it is not the same object as the one mentioned previously but is rather a new type of that one.   If you continue to study this subject of typology you will soon discover that God will use a natural named reality found in the Old Testament to teach us about a spiritual reality again and again.  The Greek word that was translated as “figure” in this verse in Romans is the repeated key word that was covered in the last section concerning the temple that Moses built in Hebrews 8:5.  Do you remember the Greek word G5179 that meant a “die” or a “stamp”?    How can Adam be called a stamped pattern of Jesus?   By not understanding this word and how to apply it to Jesus will cause you to totally miss the very important message being taught by God concerning the legitimacy of typology.   Can we agree to at least try to learn and understand what God wants us to know about this subject?

If you recall from the definition of G5179 it was based upon an engraving process, a printing press process, or even a modern “model” building process.  When I was a kid I use to like to build models.  I would buy them and then put them together trying to follow the instructions with glue and the finished model would “resemble” a real airplane that could be flown in the Air Force.  It was such a great lesson of what is happening in this God example given to us in Romans 5:14.  God is saying Adam is not Jesus but the resemblance and characteristics that he possessed clearly point us to Jesus using typology.   It is exactly the same as the model airplane is not the greater real airplane but it teaches us and points us to what the real airplane looks like.  That is obviously one of the greatest values for the existence of typology in the Bible.  God says by us using typology that we can learn about Jesus from reading about a naturally created man named Adam.   Wow, I wonder, how this Adam truth of Biblical typology fits into your theoretical rules of correct hermeneutics and exegesis.   According to some believers and Bible teachers today God is incorrectly interpreting His own scriptures by using typology.   Who among us believes that God knows what He is doing here?  I choose to believe this very strongly and that is why you cannot talk me out of it with your manmade exegesis rules.

I can still hear many questioning how this reality is possible that Adam was a type of Jesus.   I really do not have time to teach that in depth in this lesson today since that is not the main subject of this study.   I will tell you that if Adam had a wife that came out of his side then Jesus will also have a wife that will come out of His side.  That is one of the most profound hidden truths concerning the Adam typology.  I will tell you that the law of marriage given to natural Israel in Genesis 2:24 is quoted in Ephesians 5 where God is talking about husbands and wives.  In this chapter of Ephesians, God clearly reveals the wife of Christ Jesus to be the church.  If you do not understand how this typology is possible either, ask questions or go read some more Bible lessons where I talk about this very important subject.  I hope that I can challenge you do a study of Adam now with a new set of Jesus spiritual viewers on.   God has just concretely confirmed the existence of O.T. types and shadows.

Jesus revealed in John 5:39 that the natural Jews needed to search their scriptures because these were the words that testified concerning Him.   Jesus was teaching them that He was the predominate subject of their Holy Law.   If they had to search in order to find Him, then He was not found plainly or easily in the surface text of the words written on the pages or scrolls.    It was not until God reveals to us in the New Testament how Jesus could be found there that anyone could possibly know that Adam represented a “TYPE” or “PATTERN” of the coming Jesus.   This single fact alone teaches the validity of using TYPOLOGY in correct Bible interpretation.   Are you receiving this?  I’m not done teaching so that is not all that I have to say on this subject but I have already given you very significant Bible evidence that should help you to begin to learn the truth about Typology.   Let’s examine another type of Jesus found in the New Testament that confirms the reality of Typology:

  • Heb 7:15  And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest,

Here we have a new and different Greek word but yet it means the exact same things as the ones that we have looked at previously.  All of these Greek words G3665, G5179 and G8403 are very synonymous in their definitions.   Here in Hebrews 7:15 God declares that Jesus is a priest “like” Melchisdec.   The Greek word G3665 that is translated as “similitude” is the key word from this verse that must be understood.   If you read the context of this verse you will discover that God relates the story of Abraham meeting the priest Melchisdec and how he gave to him a tenth of the spoils.  What God is doing in this verse is teaching us that Jesus is again a spiritual type of the natural O.T. high priest Melchisdec.  In doing this Jesus has become our high priest for the people in the church today.  Perhaps we need to review the Strong’s definition for this Greek word in order to comprehend the typology connection completely:

  • G3665
  • From G3664; resemblance: – like as, similitude.

This Greek word comes from a root word that means “similar in appearance or character”.   Again we see the definition of what typology represents.  This is the exact same concept as I gave you concerning the creation of man in Genesis 1:26.   Man being made in the likeness and image of God is what God is saying about Jesus being made in the likeness and image of Melchisdec.   Do you need me to repeat the definition of typology?   Remember that typology was defined to be the systematic classification of similar objects based upon common characteristics.  There are a lot more types of Jesus found in the Old Testament than these two witnesses that God just gave to you.   What you will discover is that God has left many more types of Jesus for us to discover by teaching us of their existence using the examples of Adam and Melchisdec.   I’ll give you one more N.T. example of typology which is more difficult to find but was written to the Hebrews who clearly knew the Law of Moses:

  • Heb 3:1  Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;
  • Heb 3:2  Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.
  • Heb 3:3  For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house.
  • Heb 3:4  For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.
  • Heb 3:5  And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;
  • Heb 3:6  But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.

Nowhere in these verses does it say specifically that Moses is a type of Jesus by using the 4 key Greek words that we have already found, but yet the description given to us is exactly within the context of the Typology subject discussion.   Both men are said to be faithful.  Both men are said to be “servants”.  Both men are said to be builders of houses.   Those few characteristics give them commonality that can be classified together.   This is the definition of typology again.  Can you see it?  Of the two being referred to Jesus is clearly called the greater.  This again is the repeated pattern of creation coming full circle.  The greater God created the lesser man named Adam and then the greater God became like a lesser man Adam who died and has now been raised up to life again and exalted back into the realm of greatness.   I am trying to teach the effectiveness and validity of Typology using as many examples as possible in this limited format lesson.  I hope that you can seeing these for what they really are and learn how to apply them to your Bible Study going forward.  Let’s talk about another aspect of Moses being a type of Jesus before we leave this part of the study.

If you recall the story of Moses he was chosen by God and deemed to be the “deliverer” of the natural nation of Israel.  Again these were all types that pointed us to what Jesus did.  Jesus was chosen by God and He was the “deliverer” of the whole world from Satan’s kingdom of darkness.   The whole O.T. story of the deliverance of the people of natural Israel from Egypt is an extremely important lesson using Typology of how God brought the N.T. people out of the realm of control from Satan.  Natural Israel was captive for 430 years in Egypt and the people of the earth were held captive to Satan for 4030 years.   The natural story occurs in Exodus as a type but the greater story of deliverance was given to us by God in the Gospels and then revealed in the letters written to the church.   If you still can’t understand these concepts after all of this I am beginning to think that I can’t help you.   I would suggest that you go to Ephesians 1:16 and pray the prayer that Paul prayed for the church at Ephesus for God to open the eyes of their spiritual understanding to see the wisdom and revelation of Christ Jesus.  If you pray this for yourself I know God will answer it because that is what He did for me.

Always remember that before these N.T. church letters were written there were only the Old Testament scriptures to find Jesus in.  Acts 17:11 teaches us about a part of the church that was found by God to be more noble than others.  These church members were open to what Paul was preaching but then they used their Old Testament scriptures to verify everything that was spoken was actually written in the Holy Book.   The letters written to the church simply taught the people how to find Jesus and explain the many techniques that were used to conceal Him there.  I write about this frequently because this is one of the number one problems that I face on my website.   The only way that I have figured out how to get people to overcome not seeing the truth is by teaching it frequently over and over.  Eventually people will either get tired of me saying the same thing and leave or finally get it into their spirit to believe.

We could talk about typology for a very long time since it is so dominate within the Old Testament.   I will not even attempt to give you every possible type found in the Old Testament but I will quickly provide an overview of some that I found very interesting.  We have already looked at Adam but the first two sons of Adam were Cain and Abel.  Notice the fact that Abel was the younger brother because that will become a pattern within itself in many of the types found in the O.T.   Cain’s offering is rejected by God and Abel’s offering is accepted.  Cain gets angry and kills his younger brother.   Abel is a type of Christ in this story.  Christ came to the earth and was killed by Satan on the cross.   God certainly accepted the Lamb’s sacrifice that was shed on the cross and God had already rejected Satan’s offerings.  The blood of Abel was “like” the blood of Christ.  Perhaps you struggle with my conclusions but what I say is based upon scriptures and not my own reasoning.  Take a look at this verse and see the typology being mentioned between Jesus and Abel:

  • Heb 12:24  And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.

Why would God even mention Jesus and Abel in the same verse if they were not in some related classification together?  Both were killed and both had their blood poured out on the ground during the commission of the act.  God is giving you a clue about how typology works in this verse.  God does not tell you everything that the type reveals so that you can still go and read it and discover more.  This is called TYPOLOGY people and it is right in front of your face if you will just read it and see what it says.

Let’s consider the O.T. man Isaac next.  This was the promised son that God told Abraham would come.  However Abraham got impatient and listened to his wife and they had an Ishmael through a maid servant.   God specifically told Abraham that this Ishmael was not his heir.   Years later the promised son was given and Isaac was born.  The maidservant and her son were cast out of the family and God reveals in the New Testament that this is an allegory of a far greater spiritual truth.   Remember when I talked about Jerusalem above versus Jerusalem below?   These were revealed using a form of typology called allegory.  Allegory is simply a real natural story that reveals a hidden spiritual story of greater importance.   If you go and read Galatians 4 you will find that Sarah was a type of the city Jerusalem that was above.  Hagar was a type of the Jerusalem that now is here on the earth.   I’m not going to teach this lesson again here so I do not have to explain it over again.   Just try to conceive what God has done in the Bible using typology.  The promised son Isaac is a very specific type of the Lord Jesus Christ the promise made to the whole world.   When Abraham took his son to sacrifice him a ram was conveniently caught by the horns nearby.  The Ram is symbolic of God coming to the earth in the flesh take the place of Isaac.  The typology within this story is rich and very deep with spiritual content.  Every player in the story of Abraham, Sarah, Hagar, Ishmael and Isaac has a role in the greater spiritual story.  God the father is the type of Abraham.  Isaac was a type of Jesus Christ.  As we have seen the city of Jerusalem in heaven a type of Sarah and the city of Jerusalem in the middle east a type of Hagar.  I’m not here to teach this whole allegory, so we will move on.

The subject of typology is found throughout the New Testament but let’s go back to chapter 7 of the book Acts.  Earlier I gave you one verse from this chapter that was about Moses being given the heavenly patterns from God on the mountain.  The rest of this chapter is also about hidden typologies found within the Old Testament.   The man Stephen is speaking to the leaders of the synagogue and Stephen uses much of their law to try to explain why Jesus had to come to the earth.   These are clearly all typology comparisons that were inspired by the Holy Spirit to teach them they were not seeing their scriptures correctly.   These words are still true today for those that use private exegesis rules that disallow the use of Typology.   If Typology is an invalid interpretation method then chapter 7 of Acts is from the devil.  Please read this chapter carefully and learn what is being stated.   Solomon is being stated by God to be a type of the coming Jesus in verse 47 who builds God a new spiritual house like Solomon did in the Old Testament.   Also King David in the preceding verse is used to represent a type of God the Father in heaven.  I’m just not going to spend the time to go through this whole chapter.  You can do that for yourself.

I hope and pray that you are beginning to understand typology’s significance in the correct interpretation of the Old Testament.   I could have told you about many other types of Jesus found in the Old Testament but I gave you enough to prove the reality that it should make you change your perspective to how you read the Old Testament.   Learn from early church Bible teachers like Peter, Stephen, Paul and John who write and taught initially from only the Old Testament foundational verses about Jesus.   Try to understand how they applied the O.T. scriptures to mean what they were revealed to them by the Spirit of God to mean in the New Testament.   When you read the Old Testament if you are not looking for Jesus primarily then you are probably missing the main reason that the words were written.  Then when you find a type of Jesus if you are not looking at the other named individuals that interact with the type of Jesus then you are missing another of the main reasons that they were also included in the text.   God’s intelligence is way beyond what you can comprehend.   God will take words within natural stories and teach you such profound spiritual knowledge and wisdom that it is staggering to the human mind.   If you learned anything from this lesson I would enjoy hearing about it.  These positive comments will counter the negative comments that will also surely come.   God Bless you and if you keep studying the Bible to find the truth, Jesus said that it will be found (John 8:32).  Thank you!

Genesis 3:14 – Was There a Literal Talking Serpent in the Garden? Pt 2

Snake-speak-300x224(Ver 1.2) This is now Part 10 in the Bible study series dedicated to understanding God’s spiritual subjects hidden beneath the natural words found in Genesis chapter 3.   This is also a continuation of the first lesson in the series relating to the subject, “Genesis 3:1 – Was There a Talking Serpent in the Garden?”  I taught on this first subject a long time ago but I was led not to publicly respond to an important question that I received concerning the meaning and application of what God says in Genesis 3:14 and how it relates to what was communicated to us by God in Genesis 3:1.  Since I received the same question recently, I felt led to now publish the answer for everyone else to study.   If you have not read “Part 1”, the introduction to the identity of the symbolic serpent to discover what the Spirit of God said about Genesis 3:1, I would recommend that you go back and read that lesson first before you continue on with this lesson.  Reading the foundational basics will just help to affirm what the Spirit of God says to you today while providing additional context information found in the rest of the chapter.   Also by reading this entire Genesis 3 lesson series you should be becoming spiritually aware of how many new subjects are found in this chapter.  Not recognizing spiritual content within the natural word description Bible story is one of the greatest reasons why we have such diverse opinions to what the words mean today.  That is why I have been teaching this series of lessons on Genesis 3 to help people think in a new spiritual way concerning the very specific words that the Spirit of God has inspired Moses to write in this chapter.  This will probably be a long lesson with many new things to learn.  I need to go into a level of additional detail in this lesson to help people see that reading Genesis 3 in isolation is a very easy way just to be confused.

WHAT ABOUT GENESIS 3:14?

 I am now going to respond to the direct reader question “What about Genesis 3:14”?    You see in the past there are has been so many Bible teachers within the Christian body that have taught concerning the existence of a literal talking snake in the garden which tempted Adam and Eve to sin that it is now difficult for anyone to accept any new revelation on the subject.  This popular natural way of thinking and teaching promoted the creation of a commonly misunderstood physical interpretation which violates the information given to us by God in the Bible, the natural laws of creation and the mathematical laws of God.  People often believe that God created these laws but then they do not believe that God chooses to live by them and I do not agree with that religious philosophy.  That type of reasoning promotes a God that says “Do as I say but do not do as I do”.  Man being made in the image and the likeness of God clearly must learn to follow and conform to His examples of behavior or we just fail in our own efforts.  I believe firmly that man was created to be an imitator of God’s ways.   Jesus clearly provided humans an example of this divine lifestyle in the natural when God appeared personally upon this planet.   Our Christian belief of following God’s and Jesus’ examples has created the popular modern concept of “WWJD”.  When humans are faced with challenging situations and circumstances they should stop and ask “What would Jesus Do”?   I believe a Christian should act like Christ, look like Christ and speak like Christ and in doing these point others to Christ.  You are free to disagree and not attempt to be like Christ.

This prominent teaching of a literal talking snake is also directly linked into the propagation of the many paintings of a naked man and women in the garden being pictured with a serpent in the tree performing the temptation to eat the forbidden fruit.  This has been the prevalent traditional viewpoint of this chapter and people accept it today because it has been so frequently and widely taught.   Everyone in the world telling you the same story over and over and us all hearing it told over and over causes people to accept it and believe it more easily, even if it was never true.  I have learned this concept by observing what has been happening in the world in the last 50 year with the gay community message.  50 years ago gays were not accepted and even looked negatively upon for their poor choice in lifestyles.   But during this time more and more gays have been opening up and “coming out of the closet” to proclaim themselves as being normal.    TV and movies began introducing the subject in the 1970’s and now it is mainstream and widely preached.   In the last 50 years gays have increasingly proclaimed their normalcy and demanded their acceptance and finally now the majority of the people in the world are buying into these lies to believe them as the truth.  However, even if everyone is in full agreement with a belief, that does not change the belief to be a God inspired truth.   Truth is only found in the Words of God.   But only the Spirit of God can reveal to us His truth in His Word.

This teaching about the literal talking serpent is what I call a tradition of men taught by men based upon a man’s carnal human reasoning rather than the actual Biblical spiritual insight from God.   We should become smart enough to see that none of these Bible teachers that teach on the subject of a literal talking snake can provide us with sufficient scriptures to back up their belief.  The Bible very clearly says to let every word be established in the mouths of two or three witnesses (Mat 18:16, 2 Cor 13:1).  That means we need at least one other reference apart from Genesis 3 where an actual serpent speaks to tempt a human in order to embrace that concept fully.  Can you search your Bible and find one for me?    God has established specific rules for rightly dividing the Word of Truth and not knowing these rules or choosing to ignore them will result in a chaos random Bible interpretation where any interpretation is truth.  We need to become wiser Christians verifying what people teach, applying the correct rules and not accepting blindly anything just because they said it (Acts 17:11).  That is what I want you to do with everything that I am going to say today.  You analyze it closely with the information found only in the Bible and if you don’t see it like I said it, then that is fine with me, don’t believe it.

What God has shown me is that there was no literal talking snake in the garden.   There are two primary reasons why many Christians do not see what is written by God in the Bible and one is that they think totally natural ignoring the spiritual elements of application or two they do not know how to study the Bible from a God spiritual author perspective.  I am going to address both of these situations today in this lesson.   My goal today is to teach you to think spiritually concerning Genesis 3:14.  You may not yet understand that thinking carnally is different than thinking spiritually but if you continue to read with an open mind you should be able to make the transition.  Carnally dominated people think that if they cannot see it, touch it, feel it, hear it, smell it or taste it, then they believe that it is not a reality or a state of truth.  In thinking this way they believe that spiritual things do not exist or that natural things are superior to spiritual things.  Carnal thinkers are totally dominated by the 5 sense realm.   Spiritual thinkers are more influenced with the Spirit of God, the Word of God and the unseen spiritual realm.   Being spiritually dominated versus being naturally dominated should become your goal today even if you do not understand it yet.

Ask yourself if natural things take precedence and priority over the spiritual things in your life?  Maybe I’ll help you, is eating natural food a bigger priority than eating God’s spiritual food from the Bible?  God says very clearly that “the unseen spiritual things are literally more important and permanent than anything observable here in this natural universe”.  That was my paraphrase of a verse found in 2 Corinthians 4:18.  Since all natural things were created by a Spirit (John 4:24) it should be self-evident that the spiritual realm pre-existed everything that is natural and therefore the spiritual realm is greater by definition.  What does it mean to be greater?  Is the created automobile greater than the manufacturer or is the manufacturer of the automobile superior to the created automobile?  If the manufacturer was broken the automobile could not fix it, but if the automobile was broken clearly the manufacturer could certainly repair it.  I think you get my point that only the Spirit of God can fix a human to see His superior spiritual ways.  Let’s go and begin the study of Genesis 3:14.

ANALYZING GENESIS 3:14 – GOD SPEAKS TO THE SERPENT

I want to begin this part of the Bible lesson by giving you the key Bible verse in question.   This Bible verse is easily misunderstood and commonly misapplied.  To remedy this problem we will be analyzing the words carefully in three distinct phrases using the Bible to define what the statements mean.  Allowing the Bible to render the interpretation will remove our opinions to what we have read discovering what God was speaking about in the verse to begin with.  God does not leave us helplessly guessing to what He has written.  God places so many clues in plain sight that it is amazing how we do not see them.   To correctly determine the verse’s interpretation using God’s methods, I need to give you a list of the basic rules for interpreting and understanding any verse found in the Old Testament.  These rules of correct Bible interpretation will take us out of the realm of unstructured random Bible study placing sound organization within the realm of intelligent constraints and these learned laws will provide order and structure to our Bible study methods.  I follow these rules whether I tell you about them or not.  But by me teaching you how these rules work, you will gain great benefit for how you study the Bible in the future.   I will also tell you that these rules of interpretation were given to me by the Spirit of God and I did not learn them from human teachers, so they may not agree with your seminary version of interpretation rules.

As you read this verse please allow the words to be fresh and new ignoring what you have heard about them in the past.   I say this because many times people need to remember that everyone was once taught that the earth was flat until some brave people like Columbus and Magellan proved this was clearly not an accurate truth.   To allow a round earth truth to become a fresh new normally accepted reality those that believed in the flat earth theory so firmly had to release their corrupted viewpoint in order to see the new.  This is what will also need to occur today with what God will teach you in this lesson.  It would even be good for you to stop and say a prayer before you start reading God’s Word and ask Him to allow you to see how He sees the words.  Only by changing to look at the Bible from God’s point of view can we begin to see the truth from the author’s perspective and not a skewed human viewpoint or opinion.    Are you ready to begin?

  • Gen 3:14  The LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life.

This verse begins with the LORD God speaking directly to the stated serpent.  This “serpent” is the same being that was introduced to the reader in verse 1 because God repeats the same Hebrew word H5175 in both verses.   This Hebrew word occurs 5 times in this chapter and this mention in verse 14 is the last time God uses the word in this chapter.   The other word references are found in Genesis 3:1, 2, 4 and 13.   The Hebrew word H5175 by Strong’s definition means a “literal snake”.  But is that what this word is really referring to in this chapter?  How do we know when to take a word to be literal versus making it a figurative or symbolic representation for something else?   That is the answer that we will seek in God’s Word and I hope and pray that you are ready to learn how to do this.  I will mention briefly that the only other time this Hebrew word for snake is mentioned in the book of Genesis is when it is found in a prophecy spoken by Jacob about his sons.  It would be good for us to stop and take a look at how God used this word there to potentially apply that knowledge to what we are reading in Genesis 3:

  • Gen 49:17  Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward.

I must ask you, is this mention of a serpent a literal snake or a figurative representation?  Does the son of Jacob named Dan change or transform into a literal serpent?   It would be extremely ignorant to think that this is a literal prophetic statement.  Why then do people believe the serpent in Genesis 3 which is the exact same Hebrew word must be literal also?   It is interesting to note that if we consistently interpret every H5175 word occurrence in Genesis as being symbolic that this would further match the 5 serpent references that are found in the book of Revelation which I believe are equally all symbolic for the same creature.  I also find it very interesting that the tribe of Dan is never mentioned in the book of Revelation when the other 11 are clearly named in chapter 7.  Just thought I would throw that fact in for you to consider since Dan is prophesied to be a serpent in Genesis 49.   Let us look at the definition of this word given to us by Strong:

  • H5175
  • From H5172; a snake (from its hiss): – serpent.

In the definition of the Hebrew word H5175, Strong defines it to be a snake and never mentions that this word could be used figuratively and I believe that was an oversight on his part since we clearly saw in Genesis 49 that this word was used this way in relation with the prophecy to describe Dan.   Then further notice that this definition includes the sound that a literal snake makes as a “hiss”.  I found that part of the definition to be an extreme contradiction to what was just recorded in this chapter 3 of Genesis by God.  Nowhere in this chapter is this serpent ever hissing before or after the fall of man.  This hissing sound is based upon the Hebrew root word and we will get to that soon but it also corresponds to the modern or present day noise that a literal snake makes and that does not conform to what is witnessed occurring in Genesis 3.  This is where too many people try to come up with creative unstated explanations for what they believe must have occurred.   These people automatically assume that snakes could talk before the fall but after the fall serpents were reduced to hissing sounds only.  I call that a work of fiction based upon imaginative suppositions.  Perhaps it will be good to review the first verses of Genesis 3 and learn the sounds the serpent is stated to have made:

  • Gen 3:1  Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
  • Gen 3:2  And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
  • Gen 3:3  But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
  • Gen 3:4  And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
  • Gen 3:5  For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

This described serpent in Genesis 3 is clearly speaking with extreme intelligent terms using logical and informed reasoning with plainly understandable word statements in verses 1 through 5.  Not only can the serpent think clearly and talk perceptively, but this being can hear and understand the women’s responses and communicate back with her on a level that is clearly above her.  Believe me I am not saying that the woman was stupid; I believe she is very intelligent but this being must be far above her level of understanding if he is able to deceive her so easily.   I want you to go back and notice that the serpent knew what God had said to Adam in verse 1 where there was no mention of a serpent being present during this discussion in chapter 2.  How is that even possible?  We must conclude from this information that the serpent was either present but not mentioned in Genesis 2 or that the serpent heard about this event from another source that was present and that only included the stated participants God and Adam.  Based upon Bible information given about Satan either one of these could have occurred.  For example take the story of Job the oldest book of the Bible.  In this book Satan appears before God to discuss a human named Job and this story is very relevant to what we need to understand about what is given to us concerning Adam and Eve.

  • Job 1:7  And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

I want you to notice certain facts given to us about Satan in this verse.  The name Satan means “adversary” or “enemy” and this clearly denotes Satan’s position at this time to not be a friend of God.   Yet, Satan has just come from the earth in order to have a conversation with God.  We therefore know that God and Satan talk and even communicate about human events.  This could be the way that Satan found out about Adam’s conversation with God in Genesis 2.  However the last part of this verse also applies to Genesis since Satan is walking about the earth even though there is no mention of him being seen by the human man named Job.   Since Job knows nothing about Satan what would make you think Adam knew anything about him either?  Satan very clearly walks the earth after the fall of man in the book of Job, could this be the way that Satan found out about the conversation in Genesis 2?  I believe it could be.  Adam was clearly given the task to guard and protect the garden before the fall of man occurred and this had to be guarding it from an external being like Satan since he is the only being that appeared on the scene in chapter 3 to deceive his wife.  Since the first 5 verses occur before the fall of man, this proves that Satan had access on the earth before the fall as well as after the fall of man.

What we have just discovered is that Satan has great ability to communicate with beings even with an extreme intelligent being like God the creator and this means him speaking with a man or a woman on the earth is probably more like child’s play than speaking with God where he is clearly the child.    Regardless of how Satan knew of the conversation the fact remains that this stated Genesis 3 serpent being had great knowledge of past events with outstanding memory recall abilities and that is very important to understand who you are dealing with.    Satan has been here on the earth for at least the last 6000 years and you have been here probably far less than a100 years.  Who do you think knows more you are him?

These facts found in Genesis 3:1-5 would appear to me to be a direct contradiction to what God says in the Bible in chapters 1 and 2 of Genesis if this is a literal snake.  All the land animals were created on the first part of day 6 of creation before man was created last as the culmination of all of God’s creation.   So would that order of creation make the animals supreme to the man because they were first?  Or did God leave all of His creation in the hands of the supreme last created beings as I believe occurred?  God says that man was created to have dominion which means to rule and have authority over ALL of the animals in Genesis 1:26.  I do not see how a lower created being could have been fashioned to be smarter than God’s man made in the image and likeness of God himself.   I do not recall any other being that was made to be like God in Genesis 1 or 2.  I also recall no other recorded conversation between God and any other created being.  Both of those are major problems for those who believe in a literal talking snake that deceives Eve.   We are already discovering some very significant inconsistencies in what is being defined and stated versus what is being taught by many preachers and teachers in the church today.  This is a very good time to dig deeper into the Hebrew word definition translated as “serpent” to discover what else is contained within this word.  This Hebrew word H5175 comes from the Hebrew root word H5172 and that is a very important new word to learn and apply to what is being communicated to us by God here in Genesis 3.

  • H5172
  • A primitive root; properly to hiss, that is, whisper a (magic) spell; generally to prognosticate: –  X certainly, divine, enchanter, (use) X enchantment, learn by experience, X indeed, diligently observe.

This Hebrew root word contains the meaning of a “prognosticator”.  Do you know what that is?  That is someone who foretells the future.  This is what many would call a fortune teller who speaks words about forthcoming events in your life.   Do these still exist today?   Are they still talking snakes?    Let’s go back and review the conversation that the woman had in the first 5 verses again using this new information.  Do you recall what the serpent said to the woman?  The serpent begins the conversation with a question to engage her mind.   The serpent asked “Did God say?”   The serpent’s question in verse 1 includes a stated connection back to what God said in chapter two as previously stated in this lesson.  Then when the woman responded to that question in verses 2 and 3 the serpent responds back in verse 4 “No, you shall not surely die”.  Didn’t the serpent just attempt to foretell the woman’s future with this statement?   I find that fact very significant to know.  Then in verse 5 the serpent makes a claim that is beyond comprehension.  The serpent claims to know what God knows.  How could a created inferior being on the earth even come close to knowing what the creator God knows and how would the created superior man and woman not know the same thing or even other greater truths that God shared in personal conversations with them?   Of course many people will counter this information that I just stated with the fact that Jesus claimed the devil was the father of lies (John 8:44) and therefore the serpent was lying in all of these statements.  But using that logic just made this serpent the same as the devil and not a literal talking snake, so which one is it?  You can’t have it both ways even though some have tried to claim the devil possessed the physical body of a created serpent in order to communicate with the woman and I gave you New Testament evidence that this would be an illegal supernatural temptation for the devil to do it this way.  I’m not going to repeat that again.  So far we have at least three possible interpretations given for the identity of the serpent by Bible teachers and these are:

  1. A literal talking snake (A NATURAL ONLY INTERPRETATION)
  2. The devil possessing a literal snake with the devil doing the speaking (A COMBINED NATURAL WITH SPIRITUAL INTEPRETATION)
  3. The devil in the spirit realm talking to the mind of Eve (A SPIRITUAL ONLY INTERPRETATION)

So far I believe that the evidence being presented by God in the Bible dictates that the serpent can only be number 3, but number 2 can be easily beleived by many to be the truth also until you put all of the pieces of the puzzle together correctly and see that this is not possible.   Number 1 is definitely out of the question but we will explore more of why this is not possible also.   What are the facts presented to us so far?

  1. We know the serpent is smart and possesses great intelligence.
  2. We know that the serpent had recall of past events even when not stated to be present during the occurrence of them.  We know the serpent knew what God had said in previous conversations with Adam.
  3. We know that the serpent can remember, think and reason.
  4. We know that the serpent can speak clearly understandable words.
  5. We know that the serpent predicts the future speaking of events that have not transpired whether they are completely accurate or fictitious is really irrelevant to the facts given.
  6. We know from verse 1 in Genesis 3 that the serpent is very cunning. 

There is at least one recorded conversation between man and God in chapter 2.   God’s voice is also described to be walking with man in the garden in Genesis 3:8.   This description clearly makes it sound like it was not the first time that this voice of God walked there since Adam and Eve both recognized Him being present.   But up until this point in Genesis 3 I want you to see clearly that there have been no recorded conversations between a serpent and God, yet this creature is clearly more informed than the man and the woman to know how to deceive them.

I really hope you have read the entire Genesis 3 series of lessons because I’m not going to repeat them here.   I did one lesson on the subject “You shall be as God Knowing Good and Evil” and that was a prophecy of misfortune but yet it would still come to pass.  This statement literally contains the implied knowledge that the serpent understood the current status of God.   All of this information is a direct contradiction for a literal snake to know how to speak, to know the status of God and His thoughts or to even predict the future of the woman.  This is a major problem for a literal only interpretation yet it is explained away because of what people think that Genesis 3:14 says.

Please review the definition for the Hebrew root word H5172 again and see how it was defined.  It is stated to be a literal hiss but then it is directly tied into someone whispering a chant or a magic spell.  This changes the word’s usage from a literal hiss sound to become a potential figurative or symbolic word application.   Do you have any clue yet how Satan communicates to you every day?  Did you even know that the serpent is still speaking to people like you and I every day?   Doesn’t Satan still come to us using whispered subtle phrases?  Aren’t these whispered words of temptation picked up by your mind so that you can hear them as thoughts?  Satan will come to your mind and whisper a thought to entice you and many respond to this mental stimulus, even Christians.  The reader of this chapter can still ignore all of this information and try to take these initial verse statements of Genesis 3:1-5 and 3:13 and 14 literally.  Many people will still try to think that God was speaking to a literal created being that thinks and talks like a man no matter what I teach to the contrary.  But if those that want to see what the Bible really says they should begin to weigh the growing evidence for how this serpent was just a symbolic named reference for the hidden spiritual being named Satan who was not yet revealed to man.   But we need more Bible verses to confirm which viewpoint is the truth and that is the objective today for us to find.  Let’s continue analyzing the phrases in Genesis 3:14 and see the next stated expression.

  • “Because you have done this, Cursed are you more than all cattle, And more than every beast of the field;

Again in this next statement of Genesis 3:14 we can see a common theme reappearing from Genesis 3:1 in that the serpent is similarly compared to the “cattle” a subset of the beasts of the field and then God compares the serpent to the superset of “all the beasts of the field”.   We should easily know that a literal serpent is not from the livestock mammal class of beings so that is pretty simple to understand that the serpent does not belong in that set or class of created beings.  But again in this verse we see the word ALL being placed in front of the noun set of the “beasts of the field” to qualify the applicable scope of the statement.   Since “ANY”, “EVERY” and “ALL” are synonymous terms and they mean none are omitted from the specified set of referenced nouns we know by this statement made by God alone that the specified serpent is not a member of the “beast of the field” superset or class of created beings either.    This is not rocket science but people ignore the words on the page to render what they want them to say.   God chose these words so it is very important for you not to ignore one word like “all” because it does not conform to what you think it needs to say.  Let’s move on to the last controversial statement that was made by God to the serpent and explore this for the remainder of the Bible lesson:

  • On your belly you will go, And dust you will eat All the days of your life;

People still look at this last statement in verse 14 wondering what it means.  In fact that is exactly what initiated this entire Bible lesson and why I am attempting to respond to two different commenters.  God says in the last part of the verse that the serpent will travel on its belly and eat dust.  Here is where people again begin to jump to erroneous assumptions and wrong conclusions misunderstanding and misapplying what was actually stated.   Because everyone knows that has seen a literal modern snake at the zoo or in their yard that they slither on the ground on their bellies as the primary way to get around they therefore assume that this is what God was declaring to happen.  Thus they believe that God was talking to a literal snake and this is where they become more creative again to imagine or invent some new unstated explanation of what God just said in His Word.    I have heard more than one preacher try to claim that the serpent before the curse walked using legs but after the curse his legs were removed and now he had to slither in the dust on its belly.  That is the required logic that must have transpired for a literal interpretation.  But, that type of belief or reasoning is based upon a form of reverse evolution.  Reverse evolution occurs when a higher formed creature returns, regresses, reverts or mutates backwards to a lesser or inferior form of creation.   This belief is the stated antithesis of the theory of “evolution” also taught as the “evolving” of lesser beings classes that are raised to a higher state of development class by some unknown miracle.  I have a major problem with believing in either of those two theoretical scenarios since there is no written evidence or fossil evidence that either of these theories ever occurred.  If there were walking snakes before the fall then there should be some fossil evidence for them found somewhere on the earth.    Instead of thinking on these words from a completely natural perspective inventing creative untruths to confirm them, let’s divert our attention away and try to see the words from a new spiritual point of view.  We can only counter theories with facts.  We therefore need facts from the Bible that trump the reverse evolution belief.

Do you understand what symbolism is in the Bible?   I have already tried to explain that the “serpent” was a symbolic reference to a spiritual being named Satan as revealed by God in Revelation.   God uses vast amounts of symbolism in the book of Revelation but yet people like to think that God never used symbolism anywhere else in the Bible especially in Genesis.  Suddenly people want to think that God changes to do something new in Revelation and uses a novel technique never before used in the Bible.  But that is clearly not sound reasoning to think that way.  For example, Jesus taught consistently in the Gospels using parables.  What is a parable?  A parable is a lesson about spiritual things using natural symbolic references to convey the message.   Clearly Jesus used natural symbols and I could give you other uses of symbols in the Bible if you do not believe me ask me a question and I will supply you with an introduction to the subject found in the O.T. and even in Genesis.

There is another important concept that is related directly to symbolism found in the Bible called a “figure of speech”.    Do you understand what a figure of speech represents?   I’ll not go into this in depth but I will attempt to give you a couple of examples of a figure of speech to help affirm the conclusion.  If a person today says “You are a pain in my neck”, was he saying something literally or figuratively?  I believe you are smart enough to know that this is a figurative description of the person and not a literal one.  You can see God using this illustrated type of speaking example in the Bible several times when He says to the natural people of Israel “Wipe them out or they will become thorns in your side” (Num 33:55, Jos 23:13, Jdg 2:3).   You see God was not speaking to Israel literally so He must have been declaring a figurative statement that they should have been smart enough to recognize.   What is a thorn in your side?   That is just an example of someone who causes you physical, mental or emotional harm or causes you to stumble over something that results in physical, mental or emotional harm.  In these three Bible examples that I just gave you, God was saying these people will introduce you to their idols and by you worshiping them these people will cause you great negative consequences.   That is exactly what God was doing in Genesis 3:14 when speaking to the symbolic serpent.  God was not telling the serpent that he just lost his legs; He was saying something else which you do not even yet understand.

RULES FOR O.T. BIBLE INTERPRETATION

How can we find the meaning of these figurative and symbolic words in the Old Testament?  How do we understand any verse written in the Old Testament if the Jews could read them all for centuries but never saw any of the words that described Jesus’ coming?   These are finally great questions to answer.   Please allow me to introduce you to some very basic rules for O.T. Bible interpretation and understanding.  Read these rules over and then I’ll explain them and apply them more completely as we continue into the rest of the Bible study:

We can only understand the O.T by:

  1. First understanding that the Bible is ONE BOOK written by ONE AUTHOR with superior intelligence (2 Tim 3:16)!  Therefore, we must not study one part of the Bible trying to understand it while ignoring the other parts of the Bible that reveal it.
  2. Secondarily understanding that the Bible interprets itself and we need not add our opinion to the mix or we will violate God’s law of correct interpretation found in 2 Peter 1:20.
  3. Next understanding the revelations, explanation and descriptions of the words, concepts and subjects found in the verses in the New Testament.  The Bible is progressive revelation also called the unveiling, the uncovering or the revelation of the truth (Rom 16:25).
  4. Searching, finding and observing God’s definitions of the words and subjects in the New Testament and other parts of the Bible where they are given (Col 1:26).
  5. Observing the context of the verses around it.
  6. Observing God’s usage of the same Hebrew words in the other verses of the O.T.
  7. Looking up the definitions of the Hebrew words in dictionaries like Strong’s.

That is certainly not an exhaustive list of rules for correct O.T. Bible interpretation but that was enough to help get you started moving in the right direction for studying this part of the Bible.  I have just given you a short “to do” list for O.T. Bible study.  This is a list of items to consider when desiring to know what you are reading from the Old Testament.  These are very specific things that you should not ignore but rather learn, apply and deliberate on while you read the Bible.  These are very direct items that are essential for studying to find God’s revealed answers to your questions.   These are the basic rules that I follow and I will apply them directly to the rest of this lesson to teach you how you should apply them to what you do.  Not understanding them and applying them is the primary reason why many Christians do not know what the words on the pages mean.   They simply have not been taught how to resolve the lack of structure for how they study the Bible.  I hope that you at least try to use this initial list and see how it changes what you find in the Bible.  If you find them to not be useful, then that does not bother me but it might reveal why we believe differently about the same verse.  Let’s study the verse here in Genesis 3:14 using these rules and see what develops and changes about what we can see in the verse.

I will say that rule number 1 is a general statement of fact and truth.  It is repeated in more detail in rules 2, 3 and 4.  The combination of the first four rules is us finding God’s details and interpretations already recorded in the Bible.   We do this these through other rules that I may or may not get into fully in this lesson.  I just mention this because I know them and you probably do not unless you have read most of my other Bible lessons where I give you descriptions in certain places on how to use them.  I’m sorry I just can’t teach everything that I know in every Bible lesson or I would never get a lesson completed.

RULES 1 AND 2: ALLOWING GOD TO INTERPRET HIS WORD

I want to begin with rules 1 and 2 of every sound Bible interpretation.  We must allow God the author of the entire Bible to interpret His own words in order to leave our thoughts out of the meanings.   God’s mind is superior to my mind and yours.  When we introduce the thoughts of our mind into the discussion we introduce an inferior process and way of thinking.  I have discovered from many years of Bible study that God is smart enough to interpret His own writings if we can become smart enough to learn how to find them and apply them.   That is your number one challenge being issued within the Word of God.  Go find the verses that explain the verse that you want to learn about in the Old Testament.  That is what we need to do next so let’s go looking for some New Testament explanatory words for what we have read in Genesis 3:14.

RULES 3 & 4: WHAT DOES THE NEW TESTAMENT TEACH ABOUT SERPENTS?

Since someone was questioning if the serpent in Genesis 3 was literal or symbolic we need to ask what does the New Testament say about “serpents” and how should these references be applied to this question concerning Genesis 3?    Can you see that I have already answered a portion of this question in the previous lessons in the series?  I pointed you to two verses in Revelation (Rev 12:9 & Rev 20:2) where God directly identifies and names the “old serpent” and the “ancient serpent” to be the literal enemy Satan.  This was a God inspired definition that was further mentioned within the context of another symbolic name for the same individual called the “dragon” and that truth helps to teach us that the serpent and the dragon are both symbolic titles for Satan.   We need to treat both referenced titles of the serpent and the dragon to be equivalent for the literal spiritual being named Satan.  There are also other references to a serpent in Revelation and one is found in Revelation 9:19 where God uses this same word to be like something else.  This fact teaches us that God is in the practice of using a serpent as symbolism to teach us about spiritual things that we have never observed with our eyes.  The next reference that I gave was that of Revelation 12:9 but also in this same chapter God uses the serpent again as symbolism to be associated with a symbolic woman also mentioned in the same chapter.  I hope that you have already read my Bible study on Genesis 3:15 called “The Seed of the Woman and the Seed of the Serpent”.   If not you really do not understand that Genesis 3:15 and Revelation 12 are parallel prophecies of a soon coming future event.

If you continue to read down in Revelation 12 to verse 14 you will see the woman and a serpent being mentioned in the same verse.  I’m not going to elaborate on these, just understand that they are both symbolic for someone else.    In the very next verse Revelation 12:15 you will find the fifth reference in Revelation to a serpent.  In this verse you should be smart enough to see that this serpent is again a symbolic reference and he is stated to spew symbolic water out of his mouth like a flood to cause the woman to be carried away by the flow.   I really do not have the time to teach this chapter in full.  Just understand that the woman and the serpent are both clear symbols for a greater defined spiritual reality and God is for the woman and against the serpent.   We also know that the woman is not named or identified directly but the serpent was and that is what we were searching for to understand Genesis 3:14. This is just very basic information that helps us to confirm that the serpent in Genesis 3:1 through 3:14 was not a literal reference but rather also a symbolic association.

The term “serpent” is only mentioned in 15 verses of the KJV New Testament.  Only once can it possibly be considered to be a literal created serpent moving on the ground.  Let me give you all of these verses so that you can review them for yourself to learn how God uses the term:

Verse

Symbolic/Literal

Description

Matthew 7:10 Symbolic Referenced by Jesus in a teaching about Father giving the Holy Spirit
Matthew 10:16 Symbolic Referenced by Jesus in a teaching to His disciples about them being wise as a serpent but harmless has doves both symbolic references
Matthew 23:33 Symbolic/Figurative Speaking Jesus speaking the leaders of Israel calling them a generation of vipers.
Mark 16:18 Symbolic Jesus instructing the disciples after His resurrection often called the Great Commission
Luke 10:19 Symbolic Jesus speaking in contextual reference to Satan giving authority to His church to tread on the serpent
Luke 11:11 Symbolic Jesus speaking to the church about the Father in Heaven giving the Holy Spirit
John 3:14 Symbolic Reference to O.T. symbol being placed on a pole by Moses
1 Cor 10:9 Symbolic/Literal Possibly a reference to either or both a symbolic and literal snakes killing Israeli people in the wilderness who disobeyed God
2 Cor 11:3 Symbolic An explanatory reference written about Eve being deceived in her mind by the serpent
James 3:7 Literal Here James is using a reference to taming created animals and creatures but this is a totally different Greek word than all the other references to a serpent.  This one is G2062 and is translated as “creeping thing” every other time in the N.T.
Rev 9:19 Symbolic Used by God to describe the 4 angels that kill 1/3 of the human race during the tribulation
Rev 12:9 Symbolic Verse where God identifies Satan to be the serpent of old
Rev 12:14 Symbolic Symbolic connection of the woman and the serpent found in Genesis 3:15
Rev 12:15 Symbolic Symbolic connection of the woman and the serpent in Genesis 3:15
Rev 20:2 Symbolic God again clarifies the identity of the ancient serpent to be Satan

I just gave you 14 verses containing the direct references to the Greek word G3789 translated as “serpent” and the evidence is very clear to me that the vast majority of the N.T. word usage must be considered as symbolic references to a spiritual being.  The only verse that I could possibly leave to be a natural snake was 1 Corinthians 10:19 when God was describing what occurred to the natural people of Israel in the wilderness after they disobeyed God.  Every other reference appears to be a symbol for Satan and the enemy of God.  I can still see how people could argue about some verses being literal but that is probably because they do not see what is stated.  For example the 2 times that Jesus speaks about a father giving his son a serpent when the son asks for a fish is definitely an example of a parable where all named nouns represent a spiritual reality not named.  The literal symbol of a snake in these verses is used by Jesus to teach a spiritual lesson.  Then consider John 3:14 where the serpent was placed on a pole to bring healing to the people of Israel in the wilderness.  This is clearly another symbolic representation for Christ being made sin for the salvation of His people in the New Testament.  I do not know how you can ignore all of this evidence?   If the New Testament references are 13 out of 14 for the “serpent” being symbolic in the N.T. then this teaches us that we must consider this information and apply it to what we are trying to understand in the Old Testament.  God would not have given us so many clear examples if we were supposed to not understand them.  So if you did not realize it already, I have just used the first four rules of O.T. Bible interpretation to discover the explanation, definition and identity of the “serpent” in Genesis 3.

I would also like to teach you a basic Bible fact that the O.T. was written in Hebrew and the N.T. was written in Greek.  How then do we know that a N.T. Greek word is equivalent to a given O.T. Hebrew word?   That is another Bible interpretation rule that needs to be learned and observed.  There are generally two ways to solve this language difference problem.  The first primary way is to find an O.T. verse that is quoted in the N.T. that contains the word that you are searching for.   Since the “serpent” word is not found in this manner we must use plan B.   Plan B is finding a verse that speaks about the subjects found in the O.T. even though it is not a direct quote.   Since 2 Corinthians 11:3 contains the subjects of Eve and the serpent together we can confirm conclusively that the Greek Word G3789 is equivalent to the Hebrew word H5175.   We are now assured by rule definition that these verses found in the N.T. are speaking to us about the same subject given by the author in Genesis 3.   That was a very important part of the study that I just gave you.   I did not use random chance to connect O.T. words with N.T. words.  I used rule based methods that were designed by God and that changes everything.

RULE 5: WHAT IS THE CONTEXT OF GENESIS 3:14?

Let’s move on to rule number five for correct Bible interpretation.  This rule involves us observing the context of the verse in question.  This would include the speakers, the participants and the intended reader audience.  Let’s begin this section of study by observing the next verse 15 following Genesis 3:14 because I believe this is very relevant information.   I have already published a Bible study on this subject that you should have previously read but if not we will go back over parts of it very quickly.  The statement in verse 15 is a continuation of the statement in verse 14, do you understand this?  Therefore whatever God was talking about in verse 14 is still being continued in verse 15.  I cannot disconnect the two verses and neither can you if you use wisdom.  God is still speaking to the same symbolic serpent but God is now introducing a new important connection for the serpent.   I’ll give you the verse so that you can read it again for a mental refresher:

  • Gen 3:15  And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

God introduces us to a woman in verse 15 that He declares to be the serpent’s new forthcoming or prophetical enemy.  God says very clearly I will put enmity (hostility or hatred) between you (the serpent) and her (the woman).  Right there that new statement should become a mental “turn on the light bulb moment” clue for you that this stated serpent is not a literal physical talking snake.  Yes women are not the usual friends with natural snakes but that is clearly not what God is saying in this prophesy.  You do realize that this statement was a prophetical statement, don’t you?   Eve was the only literal physical woman present during this conversation, therefore you must show me where she ever stepped on the head of this physical snake to bruise her heal or bruise the literal serpent’s head.  Since you cannot find a verse that states this occurred, that is a major problem for a physical or literal snake’s existence as being cursed by God in verse 14.   A physical serpent’s life span in this day and age is less than 50 years by far.  Therefore this event if it was a literal snake must have occurred during a time span of reasonable age less than the life time of the woman in this chapter.  Since it was not recorded as a past event we must now reassess if a literal snake makes any logical sense at all anywhere in this chapter.

No God is again speaking purely prophetically and figuratively in verse 15 using natural symbols for a coming spiritual event.  The woman is symbolic, the seed is symbolic, the heel is symbolic and therefore the serpent must also be symbolic along with the head of the serpent.  If you can find me where any literal woman, heel or seed steps on the head of any literal snake to bruise it then we can all join together into the same belief that this is a literal historic account of literal beings.   I believe what we have just confirmed is that verse 15 is symbolic and matches what I previously showed you to be symbolic references in Revelation 12.   If the context of Genesis 3:15 is both prophetic and symbolic, then the previous verse 14 references must also be prophetic and symbolic and that changes most everyone’s way of viewing it.  This means in verse 14 the serpent is symbolic, the belly of the serpent is symbolic and even the dust is symbolic for some things that you have not yet discovered.  Who knows if I have convinced anyone yet, but we are not finished with the study so please continue to read the next important Bible interpretation rule application.

RULE 6: HOW DOES GOD USE THIS PHRASE IN OTHER O.T. VERSES?

Let’s review what else God says about this subject in the Hebrew Old Testament to consider the further usage of the words found in Genesis 3:14.  We are interested primarily in what God says about a serpent eating dust so I did a search for these key words and found a verse that you must read and apply to what was stated by God in Genesis 3:14.  Obviously God knew that He would have many people that would not understand His selection of the words in Genesis 3:14 so He uses them again to teach us what they mean later in another prophet’s words.  Read this verse slowly and carefully and observe it to be a prophecy on the same subject:

  • Mic 7:17  They shall lick the dust like a serpent, they shall move out of their holes like worms of the earth: they shall be afraid of the LORD our God, and shall fear because of thee.

I need you to examine this verse word by word and then if you don’t know the answers to my questions go and read the context of this verse to see who God is speaking to and about.   I guess I was going to first ask you who and what this verse is concerning but I better just answer it for you so you learn how to do this.  If you go back to Micah 1:1 you will find God informing the prophet Micah concerning the kings of Judah concerning the area of Samaria and the city of Jerusalem.  Therefore the rest of this book is written by that direction and must be interpreted in that light.   When God writes to them and tells them in chapter 7 verse 17 that they will lick the dust like a serpent, is that literal or is that figuratively speaking terminology?   I can see how people will try to make it literal but God is speaking to men using symbolic application.   I connected this verse in Micah to Genesis by looking for “serpent” and “dust” together in the same verse.  God uses a synonymous reference for eating with the term lick but they are basically equivalent phrasings.  I can very clearly eat an ice cream cone by licking it.   Let’s pursue another example of God’s usage of this term in another prophet’s writing:

  • Isa 65:25  The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent’s meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD.

Here is another important verse to consider for us understanding Genesis 3:14.  Here is a verse written by the prophet Isaiah literally many hundreds of years after the prophet Moses wrote Genesis and this verse contains the exact same three Hebrew words that Moses used in the Genesis text.  These words are H6083 translated as “dust”, H398 translated as “eat” or “meat” and finally H5175 translated as “serpent”.   The translators made a slight modification so that the one word “eat” from Genesis 3:14 is not easily recognizable but that is why I searched using the Strong’s numbers and not the English words.  Did you read this verse and consider how it applies to Genesis 3:14?   Is the verse in Isaiah speaking literally or figuratively?   I also want to ask you is this statement a historical past tense description, a present tense right now (at the time of the writing) description or a prophetical future tense based event description?   I can potentially hear many different answers to my question but only one answer can be correct.   Since this is the prophet Isaiah writing many, many years after Moses wrote Genesis 3:14 and both are speaking of the same thing I cannot agree that this occurred in past history in Genesis 3.  No, I see both statements in Genesis 3 and Isaiah 65 to be written about a future coming prophetic event that has not yet occurred.   If you do not agree then explain to my when you ever saw a lamb lie down with a lamb and dwell in peace and safety?  For that matter when was the last time you saw a wolf eat straw regularly?  Then analyze the last part of this verse and tell me when this has occurred in the Bible?   God describes that His Holy Mountain will never again be destroyed nor will there be found any hurt or pain present there?   I just don’t have the time to explain this verse fully.  Please know that this has not yet occurred and will not occur until the end of Revelation the last chapters.   Then know that if this verse is a future speaking prophecy it helps us to understand how Genesis 3:14 is concerning the same prophecy.

I want you to understand very clearly that Isaiah 65:2 and Genesis 3:14 are the only two verses in the entire Old Testament (23,145 verses)  that contains these three exact Hebrew words together.  Do you believe that was a coincidence or a chance occurrence?   I really do not believe that.  God has placed a design in the Bible using extreme intelligence.  He has implement certain rules of interpretation that are being revealed now to help us through the use of computers to find the meanings of what was written thousands of years ago.

CONCLUSION

Since I have already used Rule 7 in previous discussions of the Hebrew word for “serpent” I will not redo that work in this part of the lesson.   I pray that you understand how I applied the definition of the word in Strong’s and the Hebrew root word to the lesson to show how it was used symbolically.   I have covered the application of seven Bible rules of interpretation.  We have explored New Testament references and definitions and applied them to what was spoken of by God in Genesis 3:14.  We have looked at the context of Genesis 3:14 to see that it was  both prophetic and symbolic.   We have looked for and found other verses in the O.T. to further confirm this was also a prophesy found in Genesis 3:14.  What I have attempted to do is to teach you that the words of a verse in Genesis can have a much different intended purpose by God than a literal only interpretation.  I have used sound rules to give you a new and different way of seeing the words.  I may have not fully explained what the words “upon your belly you shall go and eat dust all the days of your life” mean but I have tried to teach that God does offer a way to learn what they mean by searching the Bible.  If you still do not understand we can do more lessons later on this subject of the symbolic serpent if you ask direct questions about what I have presented to you.  From everything that I have found so far in the Bible there is only evidence given by God to support a symbolic reference for the serpent in Genesis 3 to be Satan and not a literal talking snake.   I thank you for taking the time to read this advanced Bible study lesson and please help others to see what God has said in His Word.

Understanding Isaiah 53 the Good News of God’s Substitutionary Saving Grace! Part 1

Isaiah-Bible-Series(ver 1.1)   This is Part 1 in a lesson series on understanding the prophesied saving work of Jesus predicted to come in Isaiah 53.  I recently received a valid important question concerning the prophecies found in Isaiah 53.   The basis for the question was who this chapter was about, who are the players and characters being described and is this God pouring out His judgment upon someone and why was it necessary?  As part of this question I surmised that this also included the implied question of, “Was all of this prophecy fulfilled and if yes, what was accomplished by the fulfillment of this prophecy?”    I will not be attempting to answer every part of all these questions in this single Bible lesson today.   In order to understand the deep subjects of any chapter in the Bible we must first regress to understand the very basic subjects that establish the foundation for the deep.   Therefore today’s lesson is a teaching of the basic concepts found in Isaiah 53 to lay the foundation for the coming more complex subjects being mentioned.   I pray that you understand why I teach in this manner.  Paul said “I fed you milk and not with meat because you were not able to bear it” (1 Cor 3:2).  God teaches us very clearly that we should not get the cart before the horse and expect the passage to be successful while striving for deeper knowledge and understanding.   Therefore I am going to leave the meat parts of this subject to a future lesson in the series and focus upon the more important subjects in today’s lesson.

This chapter of the Old Testament is actually vital to understand as a Christian.  God places certain facts here that apply to us today and these help us understand why some people are saved and some are not.   In the English King James Version of the Bible there are several Hebrew words that were poorly translated by the translators.   These mistranslated Hebrew words cause serious doubts and even confusion when read in isolation ignoring the New Testament explanations and descriptions.  Without studying and researching what these original Hebrew words really mean people are left wondering what was actually prophesied by God to occur and who these words were really written about.   Also when we find the Hebrew scripture being quoted in the New Testament many of the Greek language translations were done with greater degree of accuracy.  Why the translators were not smart enough to be consistent I cannot explain but I have learned that I must find the answers from the New Testament in order to understand the writings of the Old Testament.

There is an essential basic concept found on the pages of the Old Testament that is absolutely crucial to understanding any of it.  Every word found on the pages of the Old Testament is completely true from a natural perspective but the spiritual meanings of the words have been hidden from the natural human viewpoint being veiled from their carnal minds.   I know of very few Bible teachers that teach or try to explain this spiritual veiled writing technique.  I have learned this fact simply because the Holy Spirit taught it to me personally and I did not learn it from any human teacher.   That is exactly why I teach this over and over to allow more people to understand the importance of this truth.   Every unsaved person will never be able to read the O.T. in isolation and figure out what it is all about.  Even carnal baby Christians do not have a clear perspective to what the O.T. was written about.  In today’s lesson whatever I say about the chapter of Isaiah 53 will come directly from the New Testament and this is the proper way to understand any verse written in the O.T.  In doing this we allow the Holy Spirit to interpret and define the O.T. words that are presented.     I am going to focus only on the first verse in this lesson on Isaiah 53.   I believe that Isaiah 53:1 contains the key to unlock the rest of the chapter.  In other words if you do not understand Isaiah 53:1 completely you will not understand the verses that follow. We will discover this fact by continuing to read and learn what the Holy Spirit has to say about it.

IS ISAIAH 53 EASILY UNDERSTOOD?

What I am going to do to begin this lesson is to turn to a story in the New Testament and go through a good portion of it to help confirm what I have just introduced you to in the first few paragraphs concerning the hidden spiritual information found in the O.T.   I want you to ask God to open the spiritual eyes of your understanding and allow you to see what He has to say in His Holy Word!  God gives us a very clear example of the O.T. hidden spiritual truth fact in the book of Acts.   If you go to Acts chapter 8 you will find this story and I ask that you read it over carefully and consider what was just revealed to you by God and how it applies to your understanding of the same passage:

  • Act 8:26  And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.
  • Act 8:27  And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,
  • Act 8:28  Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.
  • Act 8:29  Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
  • Act 8:30  And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
  • Act 8:31  And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
  • Act 8:32  The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:
  • Act 8:33  In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.
  • Act 8:34  And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
  • Act 8:35  Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.

This God inspired story is pretty awesome.  You can clearly see from reading verse 34 that the man did not understand what he was reading.  Here is a Gentile man from Ethiopia and he was sitting and reading the book of Isaiah and wondering what these words meant.  If you note from the context this man was a seeker of God coming to Jerusalem to worship and that is very important for what happens next and why.  Hebrews 11:6 tells us that God rewards those that diligently seek Him and this story is a prime example of that basic truth.   The Ethiopian man was struggling greatly with the understanding of the words that he could clearly read on the scroll before him but he still desired earnestly to know their meaning.  If you are observant you will find that this man was reading the words found in Isaiah 53.   God sent to him a preacher man to help explain the words and this man was named Philip an evangelist of God.    Well as you can clearly read in verse 35, Philip preached the hidden Christ in Isaiah 53 and as a result of this explanation this man was saved.    We have just learned something very important.

I have personally learned a lot from this story.  The primary take away is to understand that Isaiah 53 is predominately about Jesus the Messiah/Christ.  The second most important thing to understand from this chapter of Isaiah is the primary theme concerning Jesus pertains to human salvation since the Ethiopian was saved after hearing and understanding just these words.  The initial verse that Philip preached from was Isaiah 53:7.  This was where the Ethiopian was focused on so Phillip used it to teach the man about Jesus our silent sacrificed lamb.   It is important to note that when Acts 8 occurred there was no New Testament to read or share with others.  So the early church had to use only the Old Testament to preach and get people saved.    Do you understand this?   Why couldn’t this Ethiopian man just read the text, figure it out and get saved without anyone preaching and teaching him what the words meant?   Did the words on the page suddenly change when someone preached them?  I really do not think they did, but something happened to change the man’s perspective who was listening to a new way of seeing them.   A wrong thinking within the human mind is the greatest reason why the words are not known to the spirit of the man.   Once the mind is opened and cleared to see the words they are passed into the spirit of man to be believed.   I’ll definitely be talking more about his as we go forward.

God designed a system based upon divine grace and human faith where salvation is the common desired end result for both.  The fact that someone must preach the Gospel and the hearer must believe the Gospel is just a part of God’s design for salvation.  There is something about a man speaking with authority and preaching the Gospel with boldness that makes the words on the page come alive to many people that want to know them.  This Ethiopian man clearly desired to know them, was open to learning about them and God sent the preacher to open the words up from their concealed original state to be seen through preaching and teaching.

So far we have looked at only one reference of Isaiah 53 found in Acts 8 and have discovered the central theme to be salvation and the theme giver to be Jesus Christ.  That is the foundation for the rest of this lesson.   I might point out to you that the name “Isaiah” does not appear in the New Testament.  However that does not mean his written words are not found there.   The problem is that the New Testament was written in the Greek language and the name Isaiah was transliterated from Hebrew into Greek and then into English.   The Old Testament was transliterated directly from Hebrew omitting the Greek transition and thus we have two different spellings for the same name.   In the KJV New Testament the name “Isaiah” is written as “Esaias”.   This Greek word that was changed to “Esaias” is G2268 and it is derived from the Hebrew name H3470 written as “Isaiah” in the English.  Just understand that they are both the exact same name.  Then learn what the name means in the Hebrew.  “Isaiah” literally means “Jah saves”.   “Jah” is a short form of the Hebrew “Jehovah” (H3050) a primary name of God in the Old Testament.  The name of the prophet designates further hidden confirmation of the book’s main subject content.   Isaiah the prophet wrote about God’s plan of salvation for man so we need to learn how this applies and what it entails.

ISAIAH 53:1

I’m only going to go through the first verse in Isaiah 53 to keep the lesson shorter.  Then I will move to the New Testament to understand this verse.   What we will be looking for is the New Testament explanations and applications for what Isaiah recorded for God.   It is absolutely essential that you understand these words written to the natural nation of Israel are applicable to us and for us in the church.  If you do not know this you will discount them as being irrelevant and unimportant.  The reason I know they apply to the church is because these verses in Isaiah 53 are quoted in the New Testament repeatedly and explained there.  So we will begin reading with verse 1 of Isaiah 53 and then find the references to it in the New Testament:

  • Isa 53:1  Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?

Isaiah 53 begins with one of the most incredible O.T. hidden secrets that was only revealed to us in the New Testament writings after Jesus was raised from the dead.  Isaiah 53:1 is about the subject of faith.  Nowhere in this verse is that subject described, named, or defined and that is the reason very few understand it.  Galatians 3:23 describes a principle that faith was revealed (uncovered, made clear, opened for view) by God in the New Testament.  In order for any subject to be uncovered for view it had to be previously covered from view.  That is further confirmation for what I have taught.    However, if you do not understand the subject of faith then you will not understand this verse is about faith.   I would strongly suggest that you go and read my lesson series on “Understanding Bible Faith” if you have not read them.  This will build a foundation for understanding what is written here in Isaiah 53:1.   I will attempt to give you a brief overview of the subject of faith but I cannot repeat the lessons in any detail.  What is the number one question being asked here in Isaiah 53:1?   God very clearly says “Do you believe the report”?   What is a report?   A report is a spoken account of a given event by a witness or an expert qualified to speak about it.   Remember what we just read about in Acts 8 concerning the Ethiopian man?   Didn’t God send the report of a witness to the man from Ethiopia so that he could hear and believe it?   Did the Ethiopian believe the report sent by the Lord?  Evidently the Ethiopian man was saved because he did believe what was reported to him by Phillip.  Wow, that is pretty amazing!

Let’s analyze the last part of the verse, before we move on to the New Testament references.   What does it mean if something must be revealed?   As I previously stated anything that is revealed must first be concealed.  No one on their birthday ever knows for sure what present they have been given until it is opened and revealed to them.  What does the arm of the Lord represent in this verse?  These are both key determining factors for what I am teaching.   God reveals what was previously hidden from plain view was something unexpected.   In this case the subject being revealed is connected directly to the “arm of the Lord”.  The Hebrew word H2220 that was translated as “arm” can have either a literal or figurative application.   God’s “arm” in this verse is a reference to the figurative and not the literal.   This figurative Hebrew word will apply to God’s strength and power being revealed.   But, since we are limiting the discussion to Jesus and the salvation of man by definition of context discovered from reading the Acts 8 application, we will need to search and find what God says concerning the power of God that has saved men today.   Do you recall any verses like this in the New Testament?   One comes to my mind very quickly and I ask you to read and learn the reason why I say this:

  • Rom 1:16  For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

I need you to see what God has just plainly stated.   The Gospel is defined to be the power of God for our salvation.  We also have a direct connection to Isaiah 53:1 with God’s usage of the word “believe”.   Since we have previously seen a clear example of Phillip preaching the Isaiah 53 verses to an Ethiopian Gentile man and him being saved from it because he believed the spoken report, we know concretely that Isaiah 53 is the Gospel that contains the power of God for salvation.   Therefore God declared Isaiah 53 to be His arm of power that saves if you will see what it says.  Let’s move on and look at the direct quotes of Isaiah 53:1.

Isaiah 53:1 is quoted specifically in the New Testament twice.  We will look at both of them.   I believe to fully understand this verse we must go and discover how God used it in the New Testament, how it was applied and why it was selected.  The first occurrence of Isaiah 53:1 is found in the book of John.   Jesus is the primary speaker within the context and His words are followed by God’s connection to Isaiah 53:1.  Therefore these words of Jesus must contain some very important information directly from the author of the entire book.   Read these verses very slowly and carefully:

  • Joh 12:35  Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth.
  • Joh 12:36  While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light. These things spake Jesus, and departed, and did hide himself from them.
  • Joh 12:37  But though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him:
  • Joh 12:38  That the saying of Esaias the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spake, Lord, who hath believed our report? and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed?

These are actually very relevant words to learn.   Jesus claims to be the light of the world.  But this is a spiritual light and not a physical one.   Then Jesus says to them “to believe in the light”.   What is God in the flesh saying?    He is saying I’m here to fulfill Isaiah 53 and you can see this very clearly reading the context in verses 37 and38 where John also quotes from Isaiah 53:1.   What God is doing is teaching us that people have a very significant role to play in the process of salvation.   Jesus was God in the flesh walking like every other man before them and they chose not to believe in Him of their own freewill.  These Jews were NOT saved because they failed to believe and not because Jesus failed to save them.   If you don’t understand this you need to regress to even more basic Bible subjects.

Isaiah asks who has believed the report and Jesus said “Believe in me” and then goes away and hides himself from the people so that they can see what it would be like without Him being found.   John tells us that they saw great miracles but still did not believe in Him.    That is not good news for them because there are no second chances after death occurs.   I do not have time to teach everything that is found in these verses.  Just understand the statement that Jesus was sent to fulfill Isaiah 53 and this further confirms the chapter was about Him and His saving work for man to believe in.  Let’s move on to read the second critical N.T. reference of Isaiah 53:1 which is found in the book of Romans:

  • Rom 10:16  But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?
  • Rom 10:17  So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Here in this chapter’s context is found invaluable information concerning God’s saving power extended to man.    God quotes Isaiah 53:1 in verse 16 after He tells how to be saved in verses 9 and 10 of this chapter.    How are you saved according to Romans 10:9-10?  You must start by believing in Him and this includes believing that God raised Him from the dead.  Then you must confess with your mouth Him to be your Lord.   This is the basic requirement for salvation and it starts with believing the report since you were not there to witness the resurrection for yourself.  That is how faith works, you believe and you say.  This is a very basic reality but one that is ignored by many Christians.

It is very interesting to note that Paul quotes 12 different O.T. verses from Deuteronomy, Psalms, Isaiah, Proverbs, Nahum and Joel in this chapter context including the last verse of chapter 9.   I find that fact off the charts fascinating and significant to learn.  This knowledge helps to prove what I call the law of related distributed truths.   I am a firm believer that God has placed many connected clues in the Old Testament being spread out like random seeds in a field as perceived by the casual reader.   To put these random verses all together correctly without the Lord’s assistance is like trying to solve a large complex double sided puzzle without any pictures on any of the pieces.  If you do not understand the significance of this distributed factual information being combined together as an integrated lesson then I would suggest that you go and read the context of every O.T. quoted verse found here in Romans 10 and then try to figure out for yourself how God did this and why.   How is it possible that 12 different verses from several different books of the Old Testament were combined into a single unified subject lesson taught to the church?  I wish people would begin to learn the complexity of the Bible instead of ignoring these types of important factual details.

I believe that this information which I have just given to you is confirmation that the entire O.T. contains hidden references about Jesus, the church and salvation and we should quickly begin to realize that Jesus is the central theme of the entire book.   God teaches us how that the writings of 5 or 6 different prophets can all be tied together to teach a single cohesive lesson about Jesus and human salvation.   I’ll give you a list of the verses so that you can do some more research on your on:

QUOTE

O.T. REFERENCE

Romans 9:33 Isaiah 8:14
Romans 10:6 Deuteronomy 30:12
Romans 10:7 Deuteronomy 30:13
Romans 10:8 Deuteronomy 30:14
Romans 10:11 Isaiah 28:16
Romans 10:13 Joel 2:32
Romans 10:15 Isaiah 52:7; Nahum 1:15
Romans 10:16 Isaiah 53:1
Romans 10:18 Psalm 19:4
Romans 10:19 Deuteronomy 32:21
Romans 10:20 Isaiah 65:1
Romans 10:21 Proverbs 1:24; Isaiah 65:2

I want you to understand God’s usage of the Isaiah 53:1’s reference in the context of Roman’s 10 more clearly.  If you back up and read the end of chapter 9 you will clearly see that Paul was writing about the natural Jews that Jesus was speaking directly to in John 12 and this connection carries forward into chapter 10 with Paul’s statement “I pray that they all will be saved” in verse 1 of chapter 10.  Paul then goes into a comparative writing between two diverse types of people; those saved by faith and those that were attempting to save themselves by their individual works of righteousness.   Paul as you can observe says these people of natural Israel have rejected the gift of God’s righteousness through faith because they have failed to believe the report.   Now let me emphasize two other verses found in Romans 10:

  • Rom 10:14  How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
  • Rom 10:15  And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

These words contain some of the keys to understanding Isaiah 53.  We need to learn that God has directed some to preach the Good News Report.  This is a required design from God.   Jesus came to the earth to preach and teach as well as to save.  We have already seen the fact that Isaiah 53:1 was used by John to inform natural Israel that Jesus had brought them light and Jesus said for them to follow the light.  Follow the light is just another way to say “Believe”!    I have also previously shown you in Acts 8 where Phillip preached Isaiah 53 to get the Ethiopian to believe and get saved.  Now we can see Paul using Isaiah 53 and all of these references have to do with the existence of a preacher with a message sent to those that can hear and have faith to believe the report to be saved.    We have just achieved 3 witnesses in the New Testament that Isaiah 53 is the GOSPEL of JESUS CHRIST!   Gospel literally means good news.   What was the good news that Jesus provided to us from Isaiah 53?  I guess that is what everyone needs to know next.  But let’s focus in on one more verse in Romans 10:13:

  • Rom 10:13  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Whosoever means me!   This is a verse written to me since I am clearly a “whosoever” by qualified application.   Whoever calls upon the name of the LORD, will be saved.   I want you to review one key word in this verse found in the original Greek language.    The Greek word G4982 which is translated as “saved” is the word “SOZO” and I have made mention of this word before.  But I want you to learn a new association.  We can clearly see the primary subject is salvation and God connects salvation back to the verses found in Isaiah 53:1 by His choice and intelligent design.  Therefore we must understand what Isaiah 53 was written about by understanding how God uses it here in the N.T.    The Greek word SOZO literally means to be made whole and complete.  The antithesis of wholeness is incompleteness.  Incompleteness is a state of lack or a deficit in entirety.  This word has broad application.  This Greek word crosses over into three realms of reality simultaneously.   God’s plan of salvation included your spiritual salvation (wholeness), your mental salvation (wholeness) and your physical salvation (wholeness) in one act of His divine saving Grace.  This teaches us literally what Isaiah 53 must contain and it MUST include all of these subjects or God does not remain consistent with the N.T. message of salvation.   We now should better understand what to be looking for when reading Isaiah 53.   We must search and look for the salvation of our spirit, soul and body.

I think this is a good place to end this lesson today.   We have learned a lot of good basic information from searching the New Testament and finding God’s explanations for what was written in Isaiah 53.  We should now know that the 53rd chapter of Isaiah is God’s power (arm) to save, heal and deliver us.   We should also  know that Isaiah 53 is only made effective in a human’s life if they choose to hear it proclaimed and believe the report.  I thank you for your time reading the Bible and studying God’s Words.  Please come back and tell others about what you have learned.  God Bless!

If you would like to continue reading in this series of lesson you may continue to “Part 2” now.

BIBLE ANSWERS: What Does the Bible say About Church Governance and the Proper Structure of Authority?

Question-marks(Ver 1.1)  I recently received this question and felt led to respond to it publically.  The question was asked, what is the correct organized structure of authority for church government?  My answer from the Bible may or may not conform to what you believe is true or the way that your church does things.   But, my answer will definitely be spiritually Word of God based and that will automatically cause many to reject it.  You are welcome to give me any specific Bible verses that teach what you believe represents the truth for this answer.  What I will not accept is your denomination’s doctrinal statement created by ignorant men that does not conform to any Biblical truth.   If that is what you want to give me don’t waste your time or mine.  I only base my beliefs on the Bible and I leave out the opinions of all others.   You would probably be wise to do the same.

Too often Christians want to read the Bible and find all of the rules for life, the church and for being a real Christian in a neat set of itemized instructions.  People like to over simplify everything and live by a list of prioritized “do this” and “do not do this” in order to believe that they are on the correct path to pleasing God.   They often feel like their good works permits them to be worthy to be in God’s presence.  Possessing any feelings that you are pleasing to God because you have satisfied a very small part of what you think you know about the Bible is a very foolish attempt at exalting yourself to match God’s established standards and know everything that God knows.  If this approach did not work for Lucifer it will never work for us either.  What I am attempting to do is to point us to a new spiritual way to think about church government.    Quit thinking like mere men and consider the thoughts and ways of God and make these your priority in the church.  Today I’m going to list at least 3 key factors for establishing correct church government and structure.  Without all of these three spiritual factors being involved nothing that we do will work.

#1: BEING LED BY THE SPIRIT

What I have noticed about God in the Bible is that He rarely does the same thing twice exactly as He did before with anyone.  One time in the wilderness when the people desperately needed a drink of water God told Moses to hit the rock with his staff and the water would come.  The next time this exact same event occurred God said “speak to the rock” and the water will come.  If God addresses the same problem in two different ways why do people want to make every church organization look exactly the same?  That mindset does not make any sense to me!   A one solution fits all approach to Christian life and church government is not how I have ever viewed that anything really works successfully.  What works well in one church may not be what God wants to happen in another church at another time and another place.

There is a very profound statement made to ALL Christians in the New Testament that is sometimes rarely followed in many church organizational structure designs.   This essential concept is found in Roman 8:14 where God says “Those that are led by His Spirit, they are the sons of God”.   This verse is very clear to me and it says for us to seek God’s direction and He will guide our steps into the correct paths when organizing our church governments.  God knows how it should be setup and who should be in every position.  Ignore God’s leading and you will get what you will get and that is your best effort to satisfy God in your ignorance.   I believe Romans 8:14 applies directly to us right here and right now in establishing and organizing any church.   Therefore what God might lead for one church might not match exactly for another church.  There are just too many variables and  factors that are involved in creating and managing a church.  The location can be different, the culture can be different, the people can be different, the leadership can be different, the community outreach can be different and all of these play a role in God’s decision on how to direct.  Of course the Spirit of God is never going to contradict His written Holy Word.  Whatever God directs us to do with His Spirit will align perfectly with the Words in the Bible that apply to this subject.   But we need to be careful with following the traditions of men who thought they knew the answer while possibly ignoring the leading of the Spirit of God for what He desires will work best.    Consider the fact that God knows more than you do.  Then realize we need to ask for this wisdom or we will potentially fail.  Therefore the number one factor for establishing correct church government is to be led by the Spirit of God.  Can I get a witness?

GOD IS A GOD OF ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURED AUTHORITY

I saw in my Bible studies that angels are a highly organized group of spiritual beings separated into tiered levels of organization with varying levels of authority.   Angels appear to be organized like a large military body.   Jesus said that He could call down 12 legions of angels in Matthew 26:53.  That statement implies a high degree of organization with a precise arrangement containing a direct hierarchical structure of authority.   Therefore if God has structure and established levels of authority in heaven it makes perfect sense for the same to be present here on the earth in the church.  Do you agree with this?  What I also observe from reading and studying the Bible is that God is a very detail oriented being.  He pays attention to the least little details to even number the hairs on our head (Mat 10:30).   I use this information to confirm that every church needs to be organized and have the same great attention to every detail within the church.

In the ministry of Jesus on the earth you can clearly observe an organized structure of authority.  Jesus was the leader and the next group under His authority were the 12 disciples that I call His inner circle followers.   Jesus would spend extra time and effort with those of the inner circle to explain the plan of God and what He taught to others in parables only.  Within the group of 12 not everyone has the exact same role of responsibility.  Peter, James and John would go with Jesus when the other 9 did not always go.   Judas held the money bag and acted as the treasurer for the group.  Therefore the other 11 came to Judas for financial matters.  Clearly there were roles of designated responsibility to each follower.  Underneath the second tier of12 within the Jesus ministry organization came the 70 (Luke 10:1).  This is now the third tiered level of authority with new responsibilities and roles.   These 70 were assigned the task to go ahead of Jesus and the twelve and prepare other cities for their coming.

It is just very clear based upon just these two examples given to us by God that every church requires at least the same basic organization, structure, designed roles, responsibilities and varying levels of authority and accountability.  This should be very basic common sense and I pray that you see the need for such to exist.

#2: JESUS THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH

I do not agree with the Catholic Church philosophy of church government.  The Catholic Church is the largest group of people that call themselves Christians on the earth and they are extremely organized with varying degrees of authority rising to their ultimate leader called the Pope.  Nowhere in the Bible is one man designated to be the head of the church other than JESUS CHRIST.   Ephesians 5:23 leaves no room for misinterpretation clearly stating that Christ is the Head of the whole Church.  This truth represents the church past, present and future and there can never be any other head than He.  The church is clearly called the body of Christ and Jesus is clearly called our head (Col 1:18).   How then can any individual body part of the church claim to the leader of the body?  I think we need to learn the truth and stick with only that.  When we are led by the Spirit of God we are being led by the Head of the Church.  The Spirit of God will not speak of Himself but what He hears that will He speak (John 16:13).    I just paraphrased a portion of that last verse in John to make a point that the Holy Spirit speaks to us and directs us into things to come.  Go read the verse for yourself and see how it applies to setting up church governments and being led by His Spirit.  Recognizing the Head of the church to be Jesus Christ is the number two factor for establishing correct church government.   Ignoring the Head of the church will just result in man’s attempts to please a God that they do not know.

CHURCH ORGANIZATION, STRUCTURE AND AUTHORITY

There are certain and specific church offices of differing roles and responsibilities mentioned in the Bible.   For example, in Ephesians 4:11 God lists what many call the “5 fold ministry”.   These five are apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers.   I personally believe that those are listed in the order of church authority.   It is essential to know and understand that not everyone is called to be in these offices.  In fact in the body of Christ there are mostly disciples and they can later be promoted to one of these 5 specialized callings by God’s choice.  When a person is called by God to stand in one of these offices they are anointed by God to fulfill that role.  Therefore God enables them with gifts to do the role.  Each role of office is important and necessary and we as Christians need to give proper respect to those in these offices.  I am not going to go through what every role entails in detail.  But I will give a quick overview.  An Apostle is one that is sent by God for a specific purpose.  The 12 Apostles were clearly given leadership roles that others under their authority should revere.  Apostles are clearly called by God.  Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 1:1 that he was a called apostle.

The Prophet is also another major role within the church body today.  God calls certain individuals to be His voice on the earth.  These people hear directly from God and speak His words to the people of God.  They are often given revelation knowledge and can even hear from God about coming events on the earth.   Paul stood in the office of both an Apostle and Prophet since Paul was given special revelation from God and Paul wrote about things to come as direct prophecy in his letters to the church.

The third ministry office is called the Evangelist.  The primary role of the Evangelist is to preach the Gospel to the lost world to turn them to receive Christ as their Savior.   While every Christian has this basic role, some are called by God to do this as their service for God.  Phillip was an evangelist in the early church and this office still exists today.  The Evangelist is not so much a teacher as he is an exhorter to call people to repentance.  John the Baptist held a role very much like this found in a modern day Evangelist.  John called people to the kingdom of God pointing them to one that was greater than he was.

In a local body congregation the leader of that body is always a Pastor.  A pastor is the designated shepherd of the flock.  Peter was a shepherd and an apostle.  Jesus asked Peter to feed His sheep (John 21:17).  Feeding the sheep is the primary role of the pastor.  They take the Word of God and feed it into the spirits of their congregation.   Every Pastor shepherd is usually always a teacher also.  They go hand in hand to some extent.   Peter was a teacher as well as an Apostle.  Paul was a teacher as well as an apostle and a prophet.  One person can be in multiple offices but rarely is it more than 2 or 3 offices at the most and then not every office is in continuous manifestation in everyone full-time.  One person might be a teacher on occasion and an Apostle full time.  Another person might be an Apostle full time and part time prophet.  One person can be a pastor full time and a part time evangelist.  All of these offices can teach on occasions but not all may be called to teach full time.  Again this is called Jesus is the Head of the church and you are not!  If the Spirit of God leads someone to do a specific task then they just do it because God desires it and not because they asked to do it.

Jesus was the only person that I know of that held every office role concurrently.  Jesus is called an Apostle and a Prophet in the Bible.  Jesus said He was the Great Shepherd meaning a pastor of all.  He also demonstrated that He was a teacher and an evangelist.  Therefore, Jesus clearly showed us that He could fulfill multiple roles being the head of the church.   It is essential for you to learn what your role is in the body of Christ.  Everyone has a purpose and a place.   God has a planned reason why you are here no matter what you think about it.  It does not have to be a role where you stand in front of thousands to teach the Bible.  No it could be simply a behind the scenes ministry position that supports the pastor’s role.

Churches as they grow need increased levels of support to oversee the work of God.  A pastor in a small church can do several roles but in a large church that becomes unmanageable.  One pastor in a large church should have an inner circle of associate shepherds to help lead the flock in manageable numbers.   There are needs for many other leadership positions and roles especially in large congregations.  One Pastor or Shepherd cannot adequately maintain a flock of 5000.  Even Jesus taught this when He designated the inner circle 12 to have the authority to go and feed the flock of 5000 the 5 loaves and the 2 fishes.   Jesus stood back and watched while the under shepherds did the feeding.  Don’t misunderstand what I am saying we all know that Jesus taught the whole group but when it came time He appointed others certain  roles to play.  You can clearly see that Jesus did not even try to do it all Himself.  Let’s talk briefly about the other Biblical roles in a local church’s government.

Correct church organization for leadership should include what the Bible calls “elders”.  Church Elders are not just mature looking people on the outside.  It is more important to be a mature spiritual Christian inside regardless of what your appearance is on the outside.  A spiritually new born baby that has an appearance of maturity externally is not fit to be called an elder of the church.  God very clearly tells us that He does not look at the outward appearance of humans but rather He judges them and calls them according to their hearts (1 Sam 16:7).  People tend to judge how the person looks externally in order to determine if they should become their leader.   But that is certainly not being led by the Spirit.  That practice is walking by your sight or by the appearance of others and that is clearly not a spiritual way to do anything in the church.

I personally believe that a spiritual elder is someone born again and spirit filled for at least 10-20 years.  These people should also display the fruits of the spirit in observable clear ways even under pressure.  An elder of the church should have wisdom that is needed to fulfill their role of responsibility.  God can give people anointed gifts in certain areas of church administration that are needed to wisely manage the church’s affairs.   It is very clear that elders played a role in the early church’s organization.  However, in the spiritual food chain of authority they are always under the authority of the other 5 church offices.   Elders do not hire or fire the pastor, God calls the pastor to be the pastor.  This makes God the head of the church and not the elders.

The other major church role mentioned in the Bible is often referred to as the “deacon”.  This is a very interesting term because it denotes someone called to serve another.  That clearly means they are not in the top command of authority or it could mean that they purposefully lowered themselves in order to serve someone that is in need regardless of their called position.   Jesus demonstrated this concept when He set the disciples down and washed their feet.   He lowered His position to become the least among them even though He was the greatest one present.  Any church office within the Body of Christ is called to be a servant of God.  In the church we all serve Christ first and others second.  If people would gather this knowledge and implement it the church would become a great place to be a part of.

RESOLVING CHURCH CONFLICTS CORRECTLY

Within any large church congregation there will always be potential conflicts.  Most of the time these are human carnal jealousy based factors.  People see what others get from God and think this should just automatically apply to them.  I am not going to address every church problem and the reason for them.  I am only going to give one quick example of God establishing a structure of church administration in the early church.  These verses are found in the book of Acts chapter 6:

  • Act 6:1  And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.
  • Act 6:2  Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables.
  • Act 6:3  Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business.
  • Act 6:4  But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
  • Act 6:5  And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch:
  • Act 6:6  Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them.

I am not going to go into everything these verses say in great detail.   I underlined most of the key words that need to be understood on this matter.  In verse 1 we see the problem being stated between two carnal groups of disciples.  Disciples in the church organization are the lowest in the church authority so this is why I called them carnal thinkers in need of spiritual growth.   The twelve represents the apostle group that holds the ultimate responsibility and authority for church administration.  Did you notice what they said?  They acknowledge the need but said it was not their responsibility to leaven teaching the Word of God to feed the body of Christ with natural food.  In a small church they could do this, but in a large growing church it becomes impossible for even 12 to do everything.   Therefore they said that there should be a selection of 7 men with wisdom that were honest.  But foremost they must be filled with the Spirit of God and that goes back to them being led by the Spirit of God.

This is just an excellent story for how church government should work and be established.  We do not create positions just to create positions.  We only create new positions when new needs arise to solve problems.   As soon as any new need becomes a distraction to the pastor in a church so that he is unable to spend adequate time in prayer and study to preach the Word of God that is when new areas of church government needs to be expanded.   As the church grows and more needs arise, more roles of responsibility can be established.  It is also important to note how this was done.  After they have been selected, the hands of the leadership are placed upon them and this is done for what reason?   You see this represents a transfer of authority and anointing.  What the leader was anointed to do is passed down to the next level for them to perform as the representative of the pastor.  God teaches us so much in this example and I hope that you will take the time to study it and see how God wants things to work and grow in church governments today.

#3:  THE NEW TESTAMENT LAW OF LOVE

I’m going to end this Bible study lesson talking about the third spiritual factor for establishing correct church government.  What is your motivation for creating this church government?   There is only one commandment given directly by Law from the Head of the church to the church in the New Testament and this is the God established Law of Divine Love.   The Law of Love governs every action of every church member from the disciple to the apostle.   Jesus very clearly said a NEW COMMANDMENT I give thee (John 13:34).   If a church’s government is not founded, established and ruled by the law of love then they are not within the church’s prime directive and will fall short.   Therefore we must permit love to govern our motivations and our actions.   God is defined to be LOVE in 1 John 4:8.  Therefore when we are led by the Spirit of Love we are being led by God.    Do you see how all of these three factors for correct church government establishment are connected together?   Christ is the head of the church, Christ is Love personified and we all answer to follow His desired directions of love.

Love rules the church!  Love governs the church!   Love leads the church!  Love teaches the church!   Love preaches to the lost!  Whatever is not done in love is not by the leadership of God.   This is just the spiritual basics for what we do as Christians.   I have said this before but it will apply here again.  I like to teach WWLD.  If you have heard this before then take it as a courteous reminder.  Before doing anything in this life, ask What Would Love Do?   When reflecting on God’s love in order to make a decision this will help guide you into a closer relationship with the Head of the church.  Are you love dominated and love controlled?   If not then you are in serious trouble.

I have just given you three directives for establishing correct church government.   I will recap them one more time for those that need it.   When creating a church government do the following:

  1. Recognize that Jesus is the Head of the Church and no one else takes His place.
  2. Be led by the Spirit of God who is the Head of the Church when creating your government.
  3. Be led by the Spirit of Love in Love extended towards all others.

Only those that will submit to authority correctly can understand how to be in authority correctly.   All others not submitted to the Lordship of Jesus Christ will be establishing their own church to benefit themselves.  Run from these people quickly or be consumed with their selfish motivations.  My subject today was not authority and what it is defined to be by God, but it does apply and you need to learn this subject.   Being faithfully submitted to God’s authority will give God the privilege to promote you to higher authority levels.    Thank you for reading my Bible studies.  May God continue to lead and guide you into higher spiritual levels of understanding His Precious Holy Word!

Introduction to Divine Grace! Balancing the Grace Truth with the Fear of God Truth! Part 1

balancing the Word of God(Ver 1.1)  This is Part 1 in a series of basic Bible lessons on the infinitely important subject of God’s Divine Grace.  The subject of Divine Grace is by far one of the most significant found and emphasized by God in the New Testament but also one of the most misunderstood, overstated, exaggerated and unbalanced modern messages that I have found on TV, the internet and in many churches.  Any subject in the Bible can be taken to a position of errant inaccuracy causing the underlying true message to become lost.   Departing from a well-studied, thoroughly balanced, rightly divided, sound doctrinal view of God’s Word is a very dangerous but prevalent reality found in the church today.   The subject of Divine Grace is just one of these subjects found in the present church that has experienced this sad fact of extremism.  Many modern extreme Grace Bible teachers only teach a slanted selected fragment of the complete subject ignoring the rest of the Bible concerning sin, repentance, forgiveness, the fear of God, judgment, faith, holiness, sowing and reaping, deception, spirituality, carnality, being sprit led and the many other N.T. subjects which all must be taken into the full discussion equally.  Instead of doing this these Bible teachers are working very hard to explain these complementary subjects away or totally ignoring them all together.   I refuse to take that kind of narrow minded approach to such a broad important subject with so many other associated and linked matters being overlooked.   I will warn you up front that this will be one of the most significant Bible lessons never taught by many modern Bible teachers on the subject of Grace.   In fact, it will be so different that I may expect to receive several negative comments from my religious carnal readers who do not wish to see the spiritual truth of God’s Word.  I ask that you open your mind and spirit to receive from what the Bible has to say on this subject.

INTRODUCTION TO THE FEAR OF GOD

I’m going to begin this Grace Bible lesson series with an introduction to another very important Bible subject called “the fear of God”.  In this part of the Bible lesson I will be using a personal testimony from my life experiences that God used to help teach me to see things differently in the Bible about the subject of Grace than many other Christians.  Why am I starting a lesson on God’s Grace with the subject of the “fear of God”?  That is a great question and the reason that I do this is because this subject is so consistently ignored that it has become lost to the modern Christian.  In teaching with this approach I will have to battle an apparent Biblical surface text contradiction.  The subjects of the “fear of God” and “Grace” appear to be in direct opposition to each other.  Why should I fear God if God has given to me this free gift of divine grace and forgiven all of my sins?  Because people do not know how to correctly balance two opposing subjects is the primary reason they choose to ignore the one they do not like.  You are about to learn what these two directly opposing subjects mean when joined together correctly if you decide to continue to read the rest of this lesson.

The teaching of the “fear of God” is dramatically lacking and at times non-existent in the modern church.   It is a well-known fact that Christians today disregard this subject called the fear of God and have no driving desire to learn it.  The “Grace” message appeals to our flesh and that is more highly desirable for the normal Christian to seek after.  However, I’m one of those different types of Christians that likes to believe that we must balance all of the subjects found in the Bible together in order to correctly understand any of them?   This is why I have chosen to teach Grace by giving you an introduction and an overview to the subject of fear.  Let’s begin this part of the subject by determining how God defines “fear”?    Here is one N.T. Greek Word from Strong’s to begin with:

  • G5401
  • From a primary φέβομαιphebomai (to be put in fear); alarm or fright: – be afraid, + exceedingly, fear, terror.

This Greek word occurs in 44 verses of the New Testament.  There are 14 verses in the Gospels, 5 verses in Acts, 3 verses in the apocalyptic book of Revelation and the rest (22) in the letters written to the church.  G5401 is not a superbly popular word but it is well distributed throughout the N.T. and therefore should not be ignored.  I will begin my discussion of this Greek word by saying that I believe God’s definition of fear is based upon human awe and respect of His great power but that is not a complete and accurate definition based upon this Greek word’s usage.  I certainly do believe that a reverential fear of God is a very healthy part of a real Christian’s relationship with God.  I also believe that this reverential fear of God is a requirement and not just an optional condition placed in the mind of those that do not wish to see the truth.   Those that wish to explain away the subject of the fear of God do so by stating this fear is nothing but “reverence” and that is by far not an accurate representation of the word’s definition as you can see.

Reading from the Greek word definition given to us by Dr. Strong this Greek word means more than just giving God respect and goes to a deeper human response level of being afraid, to become fearful or even to be in terror of.  How does that fit your relationship with God?  I personally believe that if you have no real fear for God or of God then you really do not know Him very well.  God is described to be omnipotent and this simply means “all-powerful”.  Do you believe anyone else is more powerful than God?  I certainly do not believe that anyone else is even close.  Since you or I are not omnipotent it would be very foolish of us not to be in total awe of Him that is.

The Greek word G5401 or the Hebrew word H3374 translated as “fear” can be researched in the Strong’s dictionary/concordance to verify how they are defined and used.  Doing this research, will help us to better understand what these words mean.   For example, when Jesus came walking up to the boat with the disciples on the water in the darkness of night, they were described by God to be in “fear” (G5401) crying out “it is a ghost”.  Can you put yourself into their position and think how you might have reacted?  Does that story help you to see what this word “fear” means?  This word “fear” means to be un-expectantly terrified because this is not a normal/natural situation found in this life.   Matthew 14:26 describes this event and God uses this same Greek word G5401 to describe how the disciples reacted.  This Greek Word we will soon discover in the other parts of the N.T. is used by God to describe how we should react to God.  I will give you several examples to help you learn how God uses this word when speaking of Himself and our reaction to Him and His works.  It would be very wise of you to verify everything that I will say to you today for yourself using your own Bible and Strong’s dictionary.

Is “fear” always a negative or can it ever be viewed as a positive emotion or reaction?  What about physical pain?  Is physical pain a positive?  Can we agree that God created fear and pain as possible human benefits?  If God created the response of fear and the feeling of pain do they have a purpose for existence?  Is this purpose for our benefit or for our harm?  I believe that fear and pain should be viewed as positives and not a negative aspect of our life or our relationship with God.  You see if you did not have the sensation of pain you would not know to take your hand off of the hot stove.  Likewise if you do not fear big trucks and step out in front of one moving very fast, you could be found dead in just a very few moments.  Having fear of a greater power is healthy and normal and we should respect anything or anyone that is bigger than we are if we want to live a long well life.  But, this subject fear and terror is still a potential major conflict for the God revealed to be Love who displays and extends us Grace in the New Testament.   How do we balance “fear” with “love” and “grace”?

Perhaps you were raised by strict parents that loved you?  Did your parents ever discipline you when you did wrong?  Did they do this because they were bad parents or only because you were being bad?  Could it be that they were good parents for spanking you?   Love was always my motivation for disciplining my child to instruct him which way to go.   You see the Bible says “He that spares the rod, hates his child” (Prov 13:24).  It is only a parent that does not discipline their child that proves to God they do not love their children.   This is the main reason we have a generation of bad grown-ups doing evil in the world.  No one took the time to train them in the right ways to live.  Because I was bigger and stronger than my child, my child’s respectful fear for his loving father was a positive influence and this fear of getting a spanking was a positive influence and not a negative.  This is the way that we should become with our own God and spiritual heavenly Father.  Let me take you to a New Testament verse written to the church and see what God says on this subject:

  • Heb 12:9  Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

This description is exactly what I was attempting to teach.  We should learn to respect our God because He loves us enough to bring us correction.  This Greek word for reverence is not “fear” but it contains implied fear in order to give someone reverential status.  God is basically informing us that we need to become aware of His correction in our lives because this is just a normal part of the healthy relationship between the teacher/master to a lesser student/disciple in need of guidance.   Perhaps you do not believe that you need any divine guidance and that will become your downfall soon.  The Bible very clearly tells us that “those that are LED by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God” (Rom 8:14).  How can anyone lead someone else without also bringing correction when they stray from the instructions?  I do not see how that is possible so pay attention to what God is teaching us.  We need to learn from the parent analogy that fear, correction and judgment coming from God is a necessary and healthy part of divine power, grace, love and guidance.  Without all of these subjects being found present there is no need for any of them.  I’m not sure if you understand what I just said, but it was very profound and important.

Numerous teachers today in the modern Grace message teach that every sin is completely covered by the shed blood of Jesus (TRUTH) and that there is nothing that they or any other Christian can do by omission or commission, good, bad or indifferent that will cause them to depart from God’s Grace or to fall under God’s divine judgment (LIE).  In other words they are teaching Christians that God never judges them because He has judged Jesus and therefore, God does not love them enough to bring them any correction for their ways.  They have foolishly taken the truth reality of the perfection of Jesus to mean that they are now perfect because of what Jesus has done for them and that is definitely not a sound Bible truth.  This very popular belief places all of the responsibility of us remaining a Christian on God and omits any human influence, participation, contribution, responsibility, freewill choice or satanic involvement for deception.   This extreme grace doctrine is simply a newer modified version of a very old doctrinal lie called “Once Saved Always Saved” (OSAS).  They have placed salvation and eternal security totally and completely in God’s hands while ignoring what God says in His Word for us to do after we are saved.   I always ask them, if God controls the outcome of the Christian race then there is no need for our effort to run in it (Heb 12:1).  Therefore, there are no consequences for quitting, no disqualifications for cheating, no need for correction and certainly no need to fear God.  That doctrinal belief sounds satanically inspired to me and I pray that you begin to see it in the same light.

Eternal security and divine personal safety are both valid parts of the N.T. Gospel message but they are not everything that the Spirit of God taught me from my life experiences or from what is written in the Holy Bible.   Try not to misunderstand what I just said.  We do not base our faith or our beliefs of God solely upon our personal experiences in this life, but we can use them as examples if they align with the words of God in the Bible to teach others a lesson.  That is what I will attempt to do today.   I’ll tell you about what happened to my family and then you can judge if I am speaking the truth or if I am just here trying to deceive you.    Will you do that?  Can I count on you to be an unbiased, just and fair judge of what I teach you today?

When I was a young man my father and mother went to a Bible school here in the United States.  They were in their second year of Bible training with a great man of God teaching the class when suddenly the Holy Spirit interrupted the class giving the Bible teacher a supernatural spiritual vision.  This Bible teacher saw a cloud of death hovering over the head of just one student in class and that man was my father.  This vision from the Holy Spirit was a warning sent to my father.  The Bible teacher being very concerned stopped the class and called my father to the front and prayed for him and asked him to come see him privately in his office later.  My father basically did not understand the importance of what God had just tried to do for him and he ignored the request to come see the man of God privately.  My father’s refusal to become obedient was the continuation and not the beginning of the downfall of my father.   You see when the man of God gives anyone a message from God and they disobey it, they are not disobedient to the messenger but rather to God and His message.   A few weeks later my father collapsed at home, was rushed by ambulance and went into a coma at the local hospital.  The doctors did the best they could to save him but my father died suddenly in the hospital as a young man in his forties and never finished that year at Bible school.  All of this happened despite the fact that my father was a Christian, the pastor of several churches, the graduate from one 4 year Bible College going to another Bible school to further his education of God and the Bible and all of us living in the church age called the dispensation of God’s Grace.

I do not believe that my father was not a Christian or that he did not go to heaven when he died.  I am convinced that he was born again and a Spirit-filled preacher man.  But the fact that God gave another Spirit filled preacher man a clear vision to help warn my father of what was going to happen weeks before it happened is a major problem for the modern “no fault”, “no fear of God”, “no responsibility”, “no sin”, “no repentance” and “no judgment” Grace message.  Every time I hear some preacher trying to tell me what people do today doesn’t matter for them being a real saved Christian living long in this world causes me righteous anger knowing what I know now about my father, God and the Bible.  I believe you can see why I feel this way but let’s continue to read the end of the story.

My family and I learned the rest of the story after the funeral.  The man of God that was given the vision’s warning told my mother privately that God had showed him that my father was in sin not walking in love towards certain people.  This man of God was shown what to tell my father to instruct him to change in order to not die this premature death.   My father being a young man was definitely not in the season or time for his death.  Since my father showed no fear and ignored the warning and did not humble himself to go and get the message from God, he died exactly as it was shown to the man of God.   Some will try to say this was not a warning but a prophecy for something that could not be changed.   Others will try to say the preacher lied about the vision or that my father was not really a Christian.  Some will try to tell you that my mother lied to me and that none of this really happened this way.  That is what one extreme grace preacher tried to tell me and then he unfriended me on Facebook like a real Christian brother would do walking in love.  He definitely did not want to hear the truth but that is his choice and it will become yours shortly.  I stand by everything that I just said, and I can show you the death certificate, let you listen to recorded testimonies and name every name that was involved giving dates and locations, but what difference would that make if you don’t want to see the truth.

Does this story of my father’s death sound like any other Bible story to you?  When I heard this being described by my mother and later learned more of the Bible it sounded exactly like a story given to us by God in the Old Testament with very similar circumstances.  I’ll use this story found in the Bible to help us see how God aligns the Bible with the story of my father:

  • 2Ki 20:1  In those days was Hezekiah sick unto death. And the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz came to him, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Set thine house in order; for thou shalt die, and not live.

Have you ever studied this Bible story?  Isn’t this basically what the Lord tried to do for my father?  God sent a prophet with a vision that said you are going to die in both cases.  What happened to this king after Isaiah the prophet visited him with this very comparable message of pending death sent from God?   You did know that my father was a king, didn’t you?  Perhaps I did not mention that in my testimony.   Maybe you have read in 1Timothy 6:15 that Jesus Christ is called the “King of kings”.  Who exactly are these kings that Jesus is King over?  If you don’t understand who these kings are go read Revelation 5:10 and find out it is God’s church who will reign with Christ Jesus during the millennium.  If you think that God does not still send His prophets to His kings when they do wrong you better wake up and learn you’re not God and He is still the same yesterday, today and forever (Heb 13:8).  Notice what King Hezekiah did that my father did not do and then see what God does in response:

  • 2Ki 20:2  Then he turned his face to the wall, and prayed unto the LORD, saying,
  • 2Ki 20:3  I beseech thee, O LORD, remember now how I have walked before thee in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in thy sight. And Hezekiah wept sore.

The king seeks his God with his whole heart.  Notice that the king’s response was “fear based” and precisely what my father should have done.  What exactly do you believe would have happened if Hezekiah would have not feared the message of God or would have ignored the prophet’s warning like my father did?  Not taking the warning of God seriously and giving God respect will always result in what was warned to happen, occurring.  God is omniscient and that simply means God knows the future before it occurs, but that does not mean that the future cannot be changed.  What did I just say?  Did you know that your future is not set in stone?  That is what I am trying to teach you today.   People like to think there is an appointed time for a man to die and nothing will change that, but that is just not what the Bible says.  My father’s future outcome was not set in stone either and if he would have made the right choices he would not have died.  We learn this fact from this profound story here in 2 Kings.   God states emphatically that the future for King Hezekiah was going to be his quick death.  God offered the king no deals nor made any other options available to him.   But Hezekiah seeks God’s face and notice what happens next:

  • 2Ki 20:4  And it came to pass, afore Isaiah was gone out into the middle court, that the word of the LORD came to him, saying,
  • 2Ki 20:5  Turn again, and tell Hezekiah the captain of my people, Thus saith the LORD, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will heal thee: on the third day thou shalt go up unto the house of the LORD.
  • 2Ki 20:6  And I will add unto thy days fifteen years; and I will deliver thee and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for mine own sake, and for my servant David’s sake.

I hope that you can see that the previously prophesied demise of the king was changed and Hezekiah’s life on the earth was extended by a further allowance of God’s Divine Grace.  God said to His prophet to go back and tell the king that I have heard his prayer and saw his TEARS!  That was a clear sign of the king reaching out to God with an attitude of repentance asking for forgiveness.   Didn’t God initiate His divine grace to Hezekiah by first warning him about his death before it happened?   If God would have kept silent and given him no warning the king would have died and that would have been justice for his sins.  It is very clear to me that it was not the warning sent from God that was going to kill him.  It was the warning sent from God that was designed to help the king make the necessary corrections.  This is exactly the same truth for my father’s story.  God’s warning was intended to turn my father around like King Hezekiah.  Do you understand this point of the existence of God’s grace in these warnings?  You will find this truth becoming clearer as we continue to study this subject.  Grace will always be God’s initiated involvement in our life especially when we do not deserve it.

What happened after the warning was initiated by God?  Isn’t the continuation of further Grace placed into the hands of the men that were warned by God?   You see I view the subject of Grace to be like a heavenly/earthly tennis match.  I see God always serving the first Grace Ball at humans, but then it is the correct human response to this serve that determines another round of Grace.   Please do not accuse me of blasphemy for reducing God’s Grace to be like a tennis match.  I am simply attempting to teach you the fact that there is always God’s Grace that is extended first, followed by man’s reaction to that grace and then if it is appropriate in God’s eyes, God will extend them more grace.   Didn’t God show the king additional grace and mercy by changing his prophesied future?  I believe He did.  This lesson of Hezekiah is definitely a valid story of indirect or unstated divine grace and that is why I am including it today in this lesson on grace and the fear of God.

Can you agree with me that what God did for this O.T. king was an undeserved gift and an act of His divine grace designed to help avert disaster?  If yes, what was missing from my father’s life story that was different from this King’s story?  Both men were in a covenant with God and both were sent a prophet from God with a message for their coming death.  But one man in the Bible believed the message in fear and sought God diligently and the other obviously did not.  You have to throw the Bible away and simply call me a liar for telling you this story that happened to my father well over 30 years ago.  The man of God must have made up the vision to his Bible class, my father, and my mother which started this whole chain of alleged deception.   My mother then propagated the alleged lie to me and the alleged deception of Satan is continuing by me telling you the same story.  That is certainly one way of looking at it attempting to explain it away if you do not want to believe the truth.  I give you no proof or evidence for what I just told you other than this corresponding lesson from 2 Kings.

You are now going to be forced to judge if these stories that I just told you are true or not.  Start with the Bible story and determine if God lied?  Then review the links of the Bible to the story of my father.  Finally, consider the following questions.  What is my motivation for telling you this story of my father?  Can you think of any benefit that I gain from it personally?  If I do not gain anything from telling these stories then consider how or what you would either gain or lose from knowing them and believing them or rejecting them?  How, would these stories cause you to be deceived to not know the real truth?  What benefit would be gained by Satan over you if what I said is true and you don’t believe it?  Then reverse that question and say what benefit would Satan gain over you if the story is false and you do believe it?  You really need to use your brain and think when you read my Bible lessons.   I just can’t do your thinking for you!  What advantage does Satan gain if you believe the modern extreme Grace message that teaches us nothing we do matters in this world?  I can see that Satan’s major advantage is your ignorance of the truth.   You need to learn the truth or this lack of knowledge might be the open door that allows Satan to take you down.

I believe what we must discover from these stories is the fact that both Hezekiah and my father were warned by God’s initiation of Grace but because Hezekiah made the wiser choice to fear God the outcome of his death was stopped by God’s additional extension of divine grace.  The story of Hezekiah teaches us a lot about the modern subject of grace found in the New Testament.  What we are learning is that further grace from God is given out to men conditionally based upon the correct actions of these men and their attitude of respectful fear for God, His Word and His prophets.  This same Old Testament pattern is found in more than one place.  For example, Jonah another prophet of God was sent to warn Nineveh of their coming destruction.   The city of Nineveh repented and changed their ways and their destruction was also prevented by their wise actions.  What were the determining factors for the change of the prophet’s prediction not coming to pass in Nineveh?  I believe that we can draw from these examples several facts starting with all the warned people needed to possess the “fear of God” in order to obtain any further grace from God.  If no one would have feared God’s words, no one would have given the warning any second thought.  The next factor for receiving God’s grace was belief in God’s words of warning.  If no one believed what the prophet said then no one would have bothered to take the next step to seek God.  Finally, there was the factor of humility being present in the people warned that played a major role in them asking God for forgiveness with an attitude of repentance to change.   I am going to keep saying the same things in different ways to make sure you are grasping them.  These are the facts again that I learned from these Bible stories:

  1. The fear of God must be present to receive God’s initial grace.
  2. Faith in God’s Words must be present to receive God’ initial grace.
  3. Faith in God’s messenger/prophet is also a requirement to receive God’s initial grace.
  4. The humility to admit your error must be present to receive God’s initial grace.
  5. Asking God for forgiveness must be present to receive God’s additional grace.
  6. Repentance and change must be present to receive God’s additional grace.
  7. God’s grace is conditionally extended to man based upon their correct human response.
  8. Greater extensions of God’s grace are a progressive reality based upon correct human attitudes, responses and corrections.
  9. Grace can be rejected and lost by no fear of God being present, wrong human beliefs, wrong attitudes, and human pride.

The first eight truths in my list were factors apparently missing from the life of my father and you need to learn from them to make your own wise choices in this life.  Number 9 in the list was my father’s mistakes and again you need to learn to not repeat them.  I just gave you two O.T. examples where they made right choices and lived a longer life and my father’s N.T. example where he failed to receive correction from the Lord and died.   This is about the time I can hear people try to say “we are not under that covenant and the Old Testament does not apply to me”.   Don’t be ignorant and speak where you have no knowledge.  There are too many things that you don’t know to say the O.T. does not apply to you.   Everything that was revealed by God in the New Testament was first concealed in the Old Testament.  The O.T. is nothing but the N.T. covered and the N.T. is nothing but the O.T. exposed!  They are practically identical in many corresponding ways with one being totally a natural pattern in the Old and the other being a totally a repeated spiritual pattern in the New.   What I am attempting to teach is that if the fear of God existed in the O.T. it clearly must exist in the N.T. or God has changed.

THE FEAR OF GOD IN THE NEW TESTAMENT

If you still believe that we should not have any fear of God in the New Testament you seriously need to reread your Bible more closely.  God says too much for this subject to be ignored.   For example let’s continue this subject discussion transferring to the scriptures on the subject in only the New Testament.  Read these next four verses written to the people in the church and take note to what they say:

  • Act 13:16  Then Paul stood up, and beckoning with his hand said, Men of Israel, and ye that fear God, give audience.
  • 2Co 7:1  Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
  • Eph 5:21  Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
  • Heb 10:31  It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

The Bible teaches us to let every truth be established in the mouth of two or three witnesses.  Therefore, I wanted to show you that the “fear of God” is directly mentioned in the New Testament in more than one place.  Pay close attention to see that these verses were written to Christians living in the age of Divine Grace and that they were written for us to learn from and to follow.  Did you notice what the first verse in my list in Acts 13:6 said?   Wasn’t Paul one of the first “Grace” preachers?   Who was Paul preaching this message of Grace to?   Did you see it?  Paul was preaching grace to Christians in the church that first and foremost “feared God”?   I thought Paul was the ultimate grace preacher that everyone today likes to claim to preach like?  I have heard more than one of these modern day Grace preachers say that  Paul got blasted by people in the church for preaching grace claiming that he was giving them a license to sin.  However I noticed a major problem that is not lining up in the N.T. with this modern day grace message, did you see it also?  Why are these modern extreme grace preachers NOT following Paul’s example in Acts?  Why do these modern grace preachers speak to men that do not fear God and still claim to be like Paul?   I believe that is one of the most profound things that I have taught you today.  Is your preacher teaching people that fear God?  If not the preacher is wrong or the people are wrong and do not fit the pattern given.

Did you notice that the other three verses that I listed were also all written by Paul?  Make no mistake that the fear of God is still a major factor in the true complete N.T. gospel message.  Consider why God sent a warning to my N.T. preacher father the same as he did to those in the O.T. like Hezekiah and Nineveh?  Didn’t God extend them all the same Grace filled opportunity to change?   Was not the same warning sent to my father that could have permitted him to turn and live?  If you are not understanding yet that God does not change and what has already happened in the past is that which will occur again you either need to open the eyes of your heart to see the truth fast or go read someone else’s Bible lessons that will scratch your itching ears.   It is just abundantly clear to me that the subject of the “fear of God” is still important for us to know.  But, for those that are still not believing Paul here is one command from the mouth of Jesus, God in the flesh spoken right before the beginning of the church age:

  • Mat 10:28  And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Jesus Christ is the revealed Head of the Church (Eph 5:23).  If you do not believe my words or Paul’s words that the fear of God is still a factor for your salvation, why don’t you begin to believe the words of your God?  In this verse Jesus clearly says “fear God” and do not “fear man”.  Do not fear those that can only kill the body but not your soul but fear Him that is able to do both.  This command will become significantly more important as I continue to teach.  Remember these words!  This verse is a statement not addressed directly to a people by name but rather by implication applies universally to every human saved or unsaved.   Those that do not wish to believe the “fear of God” command was spoken to them will attempt to explain it away as a statement spoken only to unsaved Jews.  However, if you read the context you should be able to see that this statement was made to the disciples of Jesus and that means the words apply to the future church more than they apply to the lost world or Jewish people but both are still relevant since none of the disciples were yet saved when this was said.   Consider the audience that received this message was mixed with those that feared God and those that did not.  Was not Judas present with the 12 when this was spoken?   Eleven of these disciples of Jesus became founders of the church but one betrayed Jesus because he lacked this quality called the “fear of God”.  Judas witnessed the same miracles of Jesus as the other 11.  Judas heard all the same preaching and teaching messages that the other 11 heard.  Judas saw Jesus walk on water, calm the storm and so much more.  But clearly Judas lacked the important feature of the fear of God and regrets that eternally in hell today.

People are free to ignore these words of Jesus or to explain them away but they will be judged for that error someday.   Ask yourself, do you fear God?  If not why is there no fear present within you?  Is it because of the modern grace teaching?  Did you know that anyone that is ignoring the fear of God command is being disobedient to God and not man?  The words spoken to “fear God” came from the one that was going to die for your sins and the giver of all grace, so do whatever you like.   But be further warned that Jesus the head of the church also said “Why do you call me Lord, Lord and do not the things that I say” (Luke 6:46).  So what did Jesus say and why are people not following this command to become obedient?   Let’s take a look at an important subject verse that is popularly ignored or explained away by the modern extreme grace message teachers:

  • Act 5:11  And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things.

What did this verse just say?   Not only was there “fear” in the early church there was a “great fear” and that just intensifies the terror of God level to a much higher plateau.  The Greek word used here in this verse is again G5401 that was used to describe the disciples in the boat observing Jesus walking on the water.  Clearly from the verse context this was a result of what just transpired within the church.  What caused the early church to be in such excessive terror of a loving gracious God?  Ok, maybe I should first ask you who were these fears in the church people directed at?  The verse does not state directly who or what this fear is of or for, therefore these words can be explained away to be a fear of something else besides God.   This is where one grace preacher unfriended me on FB.   I simply told him that he knew how to read the Bible but that he could not see what the Bible really said right in front of him.   In order to answer this question we need to study the context of the verse and find out what God teaches in the surrounding verses.  Taking verses out of their context will allow Bible teachers to make them say what they want them to say but using the context to explain them is a wiser approach to correct Bible study.

Go study the entire context of this verse.  We should back up to begin reading in chapter 4.  I’m not going to go through everything said verse by verse but I will give you a synopsis overview of what is occurring and what is important to notice.  Reading in Acts 4:1 it begins with a description of the disciples preaching to the people of Jerusalem.  They preached the resurrection of Jesus to the people and were put into prison in verse 3. In verse 4 you can clearly see that many people believed the Gospel and at least 5000 men were saved.  Therefore we are observing the church is growing by preaching the Gospel.  What was this Gospel message being preached?  We need to go back further in the context to chapter 3 to see if it contained any message for the fear of God.  Read chapter 3 and in verse 23 tell me what it says?  Peter tells the people that Moses told them to look for another prophet from one of their brothers and this one will have a greater message for them to hear.  Peter then says the words of this prophet called Jesus is for you to believe or to be destroyed.   Do you believe that this message was a warning to the people?  I can see where Peter says believe or perish and that was a clear warning statement of fear.  What happens when a warning is given by a messenger sent from God like Isaiah or Jonah?  Does fear play a role in the people receiving the message?  Please observe what the message was that Peter was preaching and then try to figure out if that is anything like what is being preached in churches today.  Peter very clearly says for these people to believe or to be destroyed in verse 23 and I never hear modern grace preachers saying anything like this.  I guess they just don’t want to offend them into heaven so they flatter them into hell.  Let’s go back to chapter 4 of Acts.

If you continue to read down in chapter 4 of Acts you will see the leaders of the temple commanding Peter and John to never preach or teach in the name of Jesus anymore.  Peter looks at them and says “Whether it is better to obey you or God, you judge” in verse 19.   Clearly Peter was telling them we fear God more than we fear you and we will not stop.  Isn’t this an example of Peter and John being a doer of the commandment of Jesus that I just gave to you?  Do the disciples fear the leaders that can throw them into prison or do they fear God?   The leaders of the synagogue finally relent and let them go and they return to the other church members and tell them what has transpired as a warning to them from men.  They immediately stop and all pray together in one accord saying in verse 29 “Behold their threatening”.   The disciples asked God for boldness to proclaim the truth in spite of these human threats to their life.  It is very clear to me that these people in the early church feared God more than they feared man because in verse 31 it says God answered their prayer by shaking the place they were in.  Let me explain to you what God was saying to them by shaking the ground.  God was saying can these men that threatened you do this?   That was God’s answer and I believe that is enough evidence to inform us who the early church feared and who they did not fear.  So I’ll go back and ask you this question again about Acts 5:11, who did the early church fear in this context story?   It was not any man, so it was either Satan or God.  We could go through and prove that it was not Satan, but I am spending too much time trying to counter these false teachings so let’s just focus on the words that are written.   Look at verse 33 in Acts 4 and find the subject of Grace.

  • Act 4:33  And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.

Here we have another exponential growth in the Grace of God given to His church.  Not only were they shown “grace” but God has increased the level of His grace to a greater degree.  What we learn from this verse is that Grace is delivered in stages.  If there can be “great” grace then there can also be “little” grace or even “no” grace.  What do you believe is the main factor for the presence of this greater level of God’s grace in the church?  I believe it was a combination of factors beginning with the presence of a “great fear” of God.   The church being in fear of God while not fearing what man could do to them, increased the level of God’s grace being offered to them.    Of course there are other factors that are also involved in this grace being given but we will learn those as we continue to study this subject.

  • Act 4:34  Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,
  • Act 4:35  And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.

Verse 34 of Acts 4 is the opening of the story of Acts 5.  Clearly the translators made a poor choice to divide the chapters at their current locations.  Start reading in verse 34 and you will see God speaking directly about the church.  He says those that were in the church lacked nothing because those that had were generous to give to those that did not have.  That is the foundational context of what we need to know in order to understand chapter 5.  We can clearly see who God is speaking of and speaking about in chapter 4 and this just continues in chapter 5.  Man divided the chapters not God.  So do not believe the chapter heading five starts a brand new story.

  • Act 5:1  But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession,
  • Act 5:2  And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
  • Act 5:3  But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?
  • Act 5:4  Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.
  • Act 5:5  And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things.
  • Act 5:6  And the young men arose, wound him up, and carried him out, and buried him.
  • Act 5:7  And it was about the space of three hours after, when his wife, not knowing what was done, came in.
  • Act 5:8  And Peter answered unto her, Tell me whether ye sold the land for so much? And she said, Yea, for so much.
  • Act 5:9  Then Peter said unto her, How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? behold, the feet of them which have buried thy husband are at the door, and shall carry thee out.
  • Act 5:10  Then fell she down straightway at his feet, and yielded up the ghost: and the young men came in, and found her dead, and, carrying her forth, buried her by her husband.

One modern TV extreme grace preacher tried to explain away this story of the early church by teaching what happened was God’s protection of the early church from the deception of two unsaved people.  That was a very creative attempt to explain what was happening so that all of the words on the pages are totally ignored.  Since this TV preacher could not give us any scriptures to back that opinion I call that a private interpretation unworthy for consideration.   Go back and read Acts 5:1 through verse 10 carefully again and again until you see what is actually said.  Attempt to confirm that this is just one example of what was explained in Acts 4:34-35 given to us by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost.  We can see clearly from reading Acts 4:34-35 that Ananias and his wife Sapphira were both Christians doing what all the other Christians were doing with only one major exception being omitted.  It is very clear to me that neither Ananias nor his wife feared God.  Otherwise they would not have lied to the Holy Ghost as was revealed to us by Peter in Acts 5:4.  Peter also said they “tempted” the Holy Ghost in verse 9.  Peter was very clearly telling Ananias and his wife that they did not lie to men or tempt men, but God was the one that took offense at what they did and they both then fall dead in church.

You do understand that this was a church service going on that lasted for hours and that Peter was given a Word of Knowledge by the Holy Ghost when God interrupted the service to bring judgment?  Do you believe that both people just coincidently dropped dead in church at the exact appropriate time of rebuke of the preacher?   What do you believe killed them?  Was it a heart attack? I want you to notice something else here in this story.  Both of their names are given to us by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost as examples for us not to follow.  Do you recall in Luke 16 where Jesus gave us the story of Lazarus and the rich man?  The name of the rich man in hell was never revealed.  Why was that?  Was it because the rich man’s name was not known by Jesus?  I do not believe that is the case.  I personally believe the rich man’s identity was protected so that his relatives would not know he went to hell.  Why then does God give the names of Ananias and Sapphira if they go to hell?  You see that is a problem to me.  I do not believe that they went to hell.  I believe they were saved by grace but that they were judged by God that shortened their time here on the earth.  That explanation would fit more precisely with what I learned from my father’s life.  Clearly God took the sin of Ananias and Sapphira personally and had to bring judgment so that those that remained living in the church would learn a lesson.   After all what was the result of this event?  Was it not the spread of a “great fear” in all of them that heard it in the CHURCH?   Look at the results and tell me who caused this fear.  Was it God, Satan or man?  I can only attribute it to God by careful observation.

Acts 5 is a major problem for the modern extreme Grace preachers that do not attempt to correctly balance grace with the fear of God and judgment.  How can a God of such infinite Grace cause a Christian to fall dead in church when this sin was clearly covered under the blood of Jesus?  Do you see the conflict this raises with the modern Grace message?  God was teaching us that if Ananias and his wife would have feared God they would not have lied or tempted God.  Do you understand that analysis?  The key factor missing today in the modern church is the message concerning the fear of God.  Before I conclude this grace study please allow me take you to another very important part of the Bible to consider concerning the modern “no fear of God” grace message being preached in many churches and on TV today:

  • Rev 14:6  And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,
  • Rev 14:7  Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.

What do these two verses say to you?  I read them and they literally spoke volumes to me.  After the church is taken up from the earth, the angels during the tribulation period will come to preach “the gospel” to the people still living on the earth that remained left behind.  Did you notice what this Gospel message started with that was preached by the angels?  Look closely again at verse 7 and see the angels commanding the people of the earth to change their attitudes and to finally begin to “fear God” before it is too late.  It is very clear to me that these people on earth have no fear of God if the angels warn them they are lacking this quality.   Then notice that there is coming a proclaimed judgment from God and both of these subjects are hardly ever preached or even mentioned by modern grace extremists.  Why are the modern grace preachers teaching a gospel that is different from what the angels of God will preach?  Who do you think is preaching right?  Why have the modern grace preachers departed from the words of the Lord Jesus who established the church by His shed blood commanding us to “fear God”?  Why have the modern grace preachers left the full teachings of Paul who preached to those that “fear God”?  If the church age begins with a message of “the fear God” from Jesus, Peter and Paul and God ends the church age with the angels proclaiming the same message to “fear God” where is this message in all of the church services this Sunday?   If your preacher never preaches about the “fear of God” you have the wrong preacher.  People seriously need to wake up and see the truth.   I do not understand or tolerate irresponsible people very well, but clearly many of today’s preachers are either very unwise, ignorant or extremely deceived.  Since I did not call anyone’s name do not accuse me of speaking about you!  However, if the shoe fits wear it.  I’ll probably not make many new friends with this grace lesson introduction, but I am writing it from my heart.  Look beyond your offense and learn what God says on the subject of the Fear of God and His judgments.

I think I have gone long enough in this Bible lesson and will end it here.  I hope that you understand why I introduced the subject of the fear of God in the study of the grace of God more clearly now.  In the next lesson on grace we will expand the subject and learn God’s definition of Grace by studying additional displays of His Grace.  I pray that you will help me spread this very important message to those that need to learn it.  If that is your preacher point him to my website and ask him to read it.  If that is your congregation then preach it boldly to them so that they hear the message clearly.   Learn to fear God and not man and watch God’s Grace increase in your life.  If you want to see “great grace”, learn to do what God says.  Until next time may the knowledge of the truth of God continue to increase in your life.  God Bless you!

Bible Answers: What is the Human Soul? Is the Soul the Same as the Spirit?

theSoulMan_final_logo#8DB3F2(Ver 1.1)  This Bible lesson is a response to a good question that I received from a reader.   This is a very easily misunderstood topic in the Bible and I have addressed it at least in part in several other Bible lessons but this is a more direct topic discussion on the subject.   When I first started writing this response I thought it would be a quick and easy Bible lesson to do.  I very soon realized the broad scope of information on this subject in the Bible and it quickly grew way beyond what I could feasibly address in one lesson. This question is also potentially complex because of the very common misunderstanding that surrounds it.  I am going to have to overcome all of the false teachings that have already gone out on this topic and that is going to be challenging.  The subject of the human soul is mentioned directly or indirectly in literally thousands of different verses.  The Bible is covered with parts of this subject throughout and there are so many verses that I cannot even begin to list them all.   I will attempt to list the verses that I feel are important to help introduce the subject and focus on those.  I will learn based upon the follow-up questions and comments that I receive, if there are other lessons that need to be added.   Please feel free to leave your questions and comments and I will address them as I am led.  I’ll start by giving you a dictionary definition of the word soul.  I do not agree with this definition but it is at least a starting point:

soul  –  Noun

  1. The spiritual or immaterial part of a human being or animal, regarded as immortal.
  2. A person’s moral or emotional nature or sense of identity.

This definition of the soul is a result of the confusion behind the word’s popular usage.  It is literally a muddled attempt to define something that they know nothing about.   Let me start by saying that I agree with parts of the definition but certainly not the entire wording or the connection of the stated phrases.  The soul is definitely an immaterial part of a human; however it is not the spirit of a human as it is commonly assumed.  Both people and animals have souls but animals do not have spirits as we will observe from the Bible shortly.  The soul of the human is not the immortal spirit of the human and we will see scriptures that will confirm that also.  The soul of a man or a woman is related to their identity from a non-physical aspect or perspective.  We could call the human soul their personality and that becomes a much closer definition to what God reveals of the soul in His Word.  This dictionary definition also leaves out many other parts of the soul that are not mentioned, unknown or just ignored.   We will soon see some of these as I continue to go through the Bible lesson.

Even Bible translators struggled to know and understand how to accurately translate many of the original language words on this subject in the Bible.  For example the Hebrew word H5315 which is commonly translated into “soul” is found in 682 verses of the Old Testament.  If you study the original language translation closely you will find this same Hebrew word H5315 is translated into several different English words because of the pre-established confusion.  Here is a list of some of the popular ways that this Hebrew word was translated in the O.T. 1) soul, 2) souls, 3) creature, 4) life, 5) one 6) yourself, 7) body, 8) beast, 9) person, 10) mind, 11) heart, 12) breath, 13) will, 14) ghost, 15) appetite, 16) pleasure, and 17) desire to name some of the basic words used by translators.  That was not a complete list but we should be able to see from this diverse set of definitions this Hebrew word could be potentially all over the board.  We need to learn which words being used to describe the soul are correct and apply to the subject and which words do not?  Technically I will tell you that each English word in this list has a linked association to the subject and thus the reason for the wide misunderstanding.   I personally believe that many of the translated verses use very inadequate choices of English words to describe what is being communicated by God and perhaps I will attempt to go through a few of these examples to demonstrate what I mean.  This subject is a Bible basic truth that is essential to correctly know and understand.  You may already think that you know everything about this subject but I would challenge you to read the whole lesson to ensure that what you think you know agrees with what the Bible actually says.  In this Bible lesson I will attempt to answer the following reader questions on the subject of souls:

  1. WILL YOU DO A MESSAGE ON THE MEANING OF SOULS?
  2. WHAT THEY ARE?
  3. WHAT HAPPENS TO THEM AFTER DEATH?
  4. AND CAN A SOUL BE EATEN UP AND DESTROYED WHILE ALIVE?

In addition to these questions I will also address what the soul of man is not.  I will begin this lesson by stating the subject of the soul of man is popularly confused with the subject of the spirit of man and we saw this in man’s dictionary definition of the word.  People want to take a dictionary definition for a word that God defines to be something else and that is a foolish approach to trying to understand the God of the Bible.   Often in churches and on the internet the term soul of man is used in error interchangeably for the term spirit of man causing a general misunderstanding for the body of Christ.  What I have observed is that many people because of this confusion believe that they are the exact same things just called by two different names.  Every time the soul is used instead of the correct term spirit or vice versa, it just makes it that much harder to understand which is which.  For example, have you ever heard anyone speak of God saving 6 souls in church last Sunday?  I will guess that you have.  Do you know exactly what they were talking about?  Did you also know that Jesus did not come to die to save your soul?  Uh oh, I think I just put some people into shock.   But that is the problem because people do not know what a soul really is.  This will become much clearer after you know what a soul is defined by God to be.  Let me give you a New Testament verse to help prove my introductory point:

    • Jas 1:21  Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.

What does God say in this verse?  Does God say your soul is already saved?  If you can read you will find that is not what is stated.  God tells the church to receive the engrafted word which is ABLE to save your soul.  That is a future tense conditional promise.  If you receive the Word meekly the Word is able to make your soul whole again.   Once you begin to learn what a soul is verses like this will make so much more sense.  Knowing the basics of truths just opens the door for knowing the more complex truths of God’s Word.  I hope you can see my point from this verse.  God states your soul is not saved yet, but it can be if you continue in the Word.

GOD”S CREATION OF THE TRIUNE MAN

I never switch these two terms soul and spirit casually since I try to be a very detailed oriented person that likes to call things by their specific correct titles for clarification to what I am saying.  If I speak of the soul then I am speaking of only a soul and if I speak of a spirit then I am only talking about a spirit and they are definitely not the same thing.  Also I would like to say that my reader asking a specific question about “souls” may have intended the question to be about spirits but did not know the difference.   I run into this frequently and I will touch on both subjects in this lesson to help everyone learn the differences between spirit and soul.  In order to understand the human soul we need to understand the full created human composition and structure in the correct order of importance.  In order to understand this original human composition we need to back up to the account given by God concerning creation and see what He has to say on the subjects.   I do this to establish the foundation for the pattern transition that took place between the triune Creator God creating the triune man in His own image and likeness.  I pray that you already know what a triune being is.  If you do not understand that God is a triune being go to my Bible study on that subject and read it, I’m not going to prove the trinity of God fully in this lesson.  We will start with Genesis 1 and read concerning the revealed creation of man at the end of day 6:

  • Gen 1:26  Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

Notice this verse begins with the title of God and this is the Hebrew word H430 that is used in over 2000 verses in the Old Testament as His divine name.  From the frequency of usage you can tell that it is a very common Hebrew name for God but what you need to know about this name is that it is also a plural name for God.  Hebrew words can either be singular or plural and this name is definitely a plural form of the Hebrew word H433.   Next, notice what the plural God says “Let US”.  God speaks of Himself in another plural pronoun form through the word “US”.  These are just two clues to the trinity of God.  But I said I wasn’t going to fully teach that part of the subject, but I just did an introduction to challenge you to think.   God then says “let us make man”.   So God is speaking of man as being a new part of creation that did not previously exist.  The next part of the verse is the main part that I wanted you to see.

The Hebrew term in this verse translated as the English word image means “a figure of”.   Michelangelos-Statue-of-DavidA figure of something else would be like a created statue or a sculpture that represents something else which is greater.  For example, the artist Michelangelo created a sculpture of David and while the sculpture was great it was not as great as the original David.  I personally believe that what God was saying is that the original man was a precise representation of the greater God.   I believe the angels in heaven could look at the created man and see a lesser view of the Supreme God.  This clearly states that Adam was not God but yet had the image of his Creator upon him.  Now take the Hebrew word translated as “likeness” and know that this word means Adam was a similar instance, example, illustration, pattern, design or a model of the Supreme God who created him.   In other words what God was, the man must also be in a lesser form.   You see man is definitely not omnipotent, omniscient, or omnipresent as God clearly is, however what was present in Adam had to resemble the pattern of God or he was definitely not made in His image or His likeness.   I believe that God was a triune being and that this means man would also have to be a triune being.  I believe that whatever qualities that God possessed the  man must also have a lesser version of that feature.  Therefore we need to understand who and what this Creator God is, what qualities He has revealed to us, in order to know who and what the created man is and what he centrally consists of.

  • Joh 4:24  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

We know from reading scriptures that God is a Spirit first and foremost.  At least 31 times in the Bible God is referred to as the “Spirit of the Lord”.  At least 22 times in the Bible God is called “Spirit of God”.  At least 7 times in the KJV Bible God is called “Holy Spirit”.  At least 89 times in the KJV Bible God is called “Holy Ghost” and that is just a common mistranslated way to say “Holy Spirit”.  God is conclusively revealed to be a Spirit by the overwhelming evidence of scripture.  Therefore man must also be a spirit being or man was not made in the similar image or likeness of God.  This is where most people begin to struggle to understand the basic human composition.  You see I previously stated that Michelangelo created an image of David and we all know that the created image was stone and the other was flesh.  So clearly a created image does not have to be made from the exact same materials to be a good representation.  That is true, but we just need to learn some more facts instead of isolating one truth in the Bible thinking that is everything that we need to know.   It is also clear from simple observation that humans are outwardly flesh based carbon creatures because this is what we can see and touch.  However, God also called man a likeness of God and that additional word changed man to be a pattern of God.   Since we cannot verify the existence of the human spirit with our senses there is no evidence from a natural perspective in this world to support its existence.  But, we should also know from reading the Bible that God is not a man (Num 23:19).  Therefore, God is not a flesh based carbon unit.  How then can man be made in the likeness and the image of God if God is a Spirit and man is only a created human body?  Those are excellent question to consider and to find the answers in the Bible.

Here is another interesting point about God.  God is described to be invisible in Colossians 1:15, 1 Timothy 1:17, and Hebrews 11:27.  If God a Spirit is invisible are there any components of the human man which are also hidden and invisible?  I believe that there is and we will find out why very soon.  People in the world seek to know the external temporary body and neglect to seek to find the truth about the more real eternal internal invisible spirit.  The majority of the unsaved world believes a human is only a physical body, a soul and nothing else.  In thinking in these terms they believe man does not differ from all of the created animals of our planet in any way.  In fact they have been deceived to believe that man simply evolved from these lower forms of animal species and that is not supported scientifically, by DNA evidence, any missing fossil linkage, the Bible or any other evidence but people still believe a fool’s theory.  There is no evidence supporting this deception of evolution.   Creative fiction taught with authority causes the majority of the acceptance of lies.

  • Gen 1:20  And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.

Here is where I think it might be good to introduce you to a concept that is important to know about humans and animals.  You see if you do a deep study of the original Hebrew word (H5315) that was translated into “soul” and the many other various words, you will find that this word has application to both man and animals equally.  Why is that?  For example here in the first chapter of Genesis is the first mention of the Hebrew word but it was translated as “life” instead of soul in this verse.   God is definitely teaching us that created animals have life or AKA souls.  I believe that this is an example where the translators would have been more accurate if they used the word soul instead of the word “life” but they both do apply.  Since created animals breathe air and have a similar form of life as men on the earth they both must possess the same type of “soul life”.  However, there is another truth in the Bible that is also very important to know about the difference between human souls and animal souls.   In several verses in the O.T. the term soul is joined together with another Hebrew word that means “dumb”.   In these verses a “dumb soul” or “dumb life” is referring to animals as being non-speaking living beings on the earth.   This fact distinguishes created man to be a completely separate class of being and a different type of soul than the created animals simply because of the existence of “speech”.   This significance or dissimilarity will become more evident as we continue to dig deeper into the truth.  Men speak words, words have power and authority and this feature reveals man to be like God where the created animals are not.  We may get into this more later, but if not just remember what I said.   Let me take you to a very important verse to study about this subject of the soul of man:

  • 1Th 5:23  And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

This Bible verse clearly identifies all of the key parts of the basic created human composition.  The three main components are listed in their proper order of sequenced priority.  This order is from the greatest or most important human feature descending to the least important part of every human.   Not very many Christians put humans into this order but that is what God says, learn it.    This verse declares every human is to be first, a spirit that second has a soul and third lives in a physical body.  Spirit, soul and body represent three different realms of human existence that require our attention and God’s attention according to this statement.   Consider the declaration being made by God closely.  God says He desires that your whole being be made holy and then He lists three separate areas for this act to take place.  Did you see what God just said?  God just told you that you were designed to be a triune being and that you definitely have a spirit using the exact same Greek word that was proclaimed as God’s Holy Spirit in many other verses.  The fact that God chooses to use the same word for spirit to describe Himself and man makes man the likeness of God.   Do you understand that point?

Right here in this single verse we have just confirmed the existence of two unseen features for the created man being made in the image and likeness of God.   Using this foundational information we understand that the human spirit is not the human soul, the human soul is not the human body, the human spirit is not the physical body and all of these in the vice versa.   To emphasize this point again I’ll restate it using basic math terms.  The human spirit is not equal to the human soul, the human spirit is not equal to the human body, and the human soul is not equal to the human body.  These are very simple truths and this is very profound information for us all to learn.  Each component is a separate and distinct part of the whole man and that is why I never use the terms soul and spirit interchangeably.  This triune pattern revealed as a whole man is the repeated design from the trinity nature of God.  Like I said before I’m not going to teach the subject of the trinity of God in this lesson; I have other lessons on that subject.  Therefore, if you still do not understand that God declares Himself as One God in the form of three unique titled personalities then you are in need of knowing the truth.

Perhaps this will be a good time to introduce confirmation for the location of the human soul.  I just stated that the soul and spirit are the unseen parts of humans and we will need to find Bible verses to help establish this or we should change to believe what the Bible does say.   Even though we do not yet fully know what the soul is, we can still learn where it is located to help us understand the subject.   I’ll give you a verse that helps to point us to the location of the human soul.

  • 1Pe 3:4  But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.

Here we have the Apostle Peter writing about a part of the human that is reported to be of greater importance than the outward human body mentioned in the preceding context verse.   God through Peter says that this internal part of the human composition is hidden from natural view.   This simply means it is not perceivable with the five physical human senses.   Clearly there is a part of humans that is invisible which is very similar to the Spirit of God.    What part of man do you believe this is speaking?  I believe it is speaking literally of the human soul and the human spirit.   In this verse it points us to the core of a man called his heart.  But we will need additional verses to confirm this belief.   Let’s go back to the Old Testament and review a verse that might help clarify this location for the soul.  Please read this next verse and if you would like, look up the Hebrew word definitions to expand your knowledge and understanding of what is being communicated:

  • Psa 103:1  A Psalm of David. Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.

Begin by understanding the Hebrew word (H5315) translated as “soul” is the same word that we previously defined to be at the least 16 different English words.   We should be able to then look at the next most important Hebrew word and find H7130 which is translated as “within” means the center of something.  In other words the center of an apple is the core.  The center of something means something else surrounds it.  In my apple example, the skin of the apple surrounds or covers the internal parts.  That is the concept being communicated by the Spirit of God in this verse in Psalms.   Therefore the soul of man is an internal component and not an external quantity.  This again points us to the center heart.  Do you understand that?  Perhaps you do and perhaps you don’t.   Using the list of 1 Thessalonians 5:23 human components we can see that the human soul was mentioned second.   I also said that this list was given to us in the order of importance.   Either way the soul being in the middle of the other two words means it is surrounded by something else.   However that is not exactly the best description of the three components of man.

spirit_soul_bodyDo you understand what a bull’s-eye target is?  This target is a series of concentric circles with a center circle usually given the highest point achievement to hit.  This type of target is popular in shooting sports, darts, archery and other types of recreational activities.   Don’t let the word concentric cause you difficulty.  Concentric only means every circle has the same center point.   I personally believe the human composition of man is like this target design.   For example, in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 God lists the center circle of man first called his spirit, I believe this represents the bull’s-eye.   The bulls-eye is the ultimate goal that God and Satan are after.  The spirit center circle is followed by the next circle called the soul and finally the outermost circle would be last, called the human body.   You will find this concept throughout the Bible and it is important for us to understand.  Let’s go back to Genesis again and see another reference commentary to the creation of man:

  • Gen 2:7  And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

In this single verse is found all of the three stated created triune components of man revealed for us in 1 Thessalonians 5:23.  Every part of the specified composition of a man is mentioned here in this verse but they are easily confused or missed.  By contrast, in this verse God shifts the order of the mentioned priority to reveal more essential information concerning creation.  Understand that God’s order of mention always teaches something, reveals something, or states the sequence of importance, precedence, priority or authority.   You see in many secular schools there has always been the classic debate held about which came first the chicken or the egg?  The debate begins with a conclusion that a chicken always comes from an egg therefore the egg must have existed before the chicken.  However, the opposing side of the debates begins with this counter argument and states where did the egg come from?  Since the egg comes from a chicken the chicken must have existed first in order to produce the egg.  Thus we have a classic circular reasoning debate without end and without any clear winner.  However, God reveals by His phrasing exactly which came first here in His Word and ends the debate.  I guess people want to debate because they do not desire to believe in the Bible or the existence of a great creator God and thus they produce man made logic to explain away the truth.

This verse in Genesis starts with the revealed fact that God first created the complete mature body of the man from the dust of the earth.  What was the first created part of the man?  By definition it is the body.  Without a physical body there are no humans, man or woman.   When the body of a human baby is formed from the union of the female egg and the male sperm cells that action produces the body for the human spirit and before this occurs there is no human spirit and if you can read you will see that is what this verse in Genesis is teaching.   After the man’s formed body was produced by the work of God’s hand, what happened next?   The Bible says God “breathed” into his nostrils (body).  Let’s stop there and interpret this verse based upon what we have previously learned about God.  In John 4:24 we learned that God is an invisible Spirit and therefore God does not breathe air like a natural human being takes in the oxygen based atmosphere into the lungs and then exhales the carbon dioxide mixture back out.  In fact, have you ever read any verse that says air exists in heaven?  I personally believe air is a created substance and therefore the creator existed before air.   Therefore God did not need air to exist.   Surely you can see that spirits do not need air to be a spirit or to have life.  If God does not breathe air what then is God saying to us here to us in Genesis 2:7 that he breathed into Adam?

This is the introduction to the potentially complex part of the discussion on the human composition.   We learned from reading in the New Testament in 1 Thessalonians 5:3 that man is definitely a spirit first and foremost.  But here in Genesis 2:7 God creates the man’s body first and so far there is no mention of any direct spirit either God’s or man’s.  Where then did this spirit mentioned in 1Thessalonians 5:3 come from?  Are spirits created by God from nothing or do spirits originate from another spiritual being?   Did you ever ask yourself why God a Spirit is called by the direct title of “Father” repeatedly in the Bible?   In fact over 200 times in the Bible God is revealed by this title.  In order for any being natural or spiritual to be labeled a father they must procreate to produce a child.  What is the basis of procreation?  Naturally speaking it is sex, but how is that related to a spirit like God?  How does God procreate?   According to Genesis 2:7, God breathed and man became.  Analyze what natural human breath is.  Breathing is a process of inhaling or the intake of air followed by exhaling, outtake or exit of the air?  That process of breathing represents air flow or more specifically air movement.  So if God created natural things to give us pictures into spiritual things what does God breathing into the nostrils of the man represent symbolically and spiritually?  I believe that God breathing out from His Spirit and into the body of the man was God’s Spirit moving from God into the body of His creation to become Adam’s spirit.  What else can it be?   This would answer the question where the spirit of man came from.  Let’s look at a verse that Jesus spoke when teaching His disciples to pray:

  • Mat 6:9  After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.

Here Jesus says to pray “Our Father”.  This does not say “My Father”.  The term “Our” is a statement of inclusion not leaving the disciples out.  If God was their Father as well as the Father of the Lord Jesus then this is important information to remember.   This verse in Genesis 2:7 that I have been using to teach specifically says that God blows something out from His Spirit that enters into the body through the nasal air passage of the man to cause life to be first observed.   The nasal air passage is just one human gate to the body of man.  Gates can be two ways or one way.   In the case of the nose and mouth these are two way gates that allow air in and out.   Please allow me tell you briefly about a testimony of a man that I knew.  This man died as a teenager and went to hell.  This man was about to enter into hell when a voice spoke from heaven and he ascended back to the earth.  When his spirit came back into the room where his body had died, he remembers his spirit entering back into his body through his mouth.   It seems that there is a direct connection between the air passages and the internal invisible spirit of the human that resides in the body.   I haven’t proved that yet, but maybe I will get to that part later.  If not and you want to know where this is in the Bible you can ask a question.

Here is a basic simple question, was the body of the man Adam living or alive before God breathed?  If you are smart you must agree that Adam’s body had no life before God breathed.   If it was not alive then it was technically dead.   Isn’t dead the antithesis to being alive?  I am simply using the term dead to mean there was no life present until God breathed.  Here is another very interesting point to observe from the creation account in Genesis; ask yourself, why didn’t God breathe into any of the nostrils of any of the other created animals to cause them to become alive?  Have you ever thought about that?  Actually I should ask did you notice that God did not breathe into the animals.   What this proves is a basic fact that man was not created as an animal and did not originate from the animal class of species.   It conclusively proves that man’s life came directly from God’s Spirit and that makes man a very unique and a very special created being.

What does the Bible say is the reason for the life of the flesh or the body of a man?   Realistically there is more than one answer to that question but I’m going to focus in on only one part of the answer for now.   We are going to interpret the Bible using the Bible so that we can understand what God is saying in Genesis 2.  Read this verse and tell me what it says and why it applies to what we just read about in Genesis 2:7:

  • Jas 2:26  For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

This verse clearly says that when the human body dies, the spirit of that man departs, exits, or leaves the body.   To be more precise this verse says if there is no human spirit, then there is no human life!  This verse is the stated antithesis of what occurred in Genesis 2:7 and it teaches us what happened to the man in that verse to cause life to enter his body.   The man’s spirit had to have come from the Spirit of God in order for the man’s body to become a living being.   Are you getting the connection?   Where did the spirit of man come from?  The spirit of man could only come from the Spirit of God and this is not that complicated and it must be this way for every human.  Spirits come from the Father of Spirits and this is told to us by the verse in Hebrews 12:9.  Go read it and see what it says.  I’m spending a lot of time on the spirit of man component because this is the most important part of every human being.  The spirit of man is the eternal part that never dies, never ceases to exist and will be judged someday standing before the throne of God.   The human spirit is the part of the man that was made in the direct image and likeness of the Creator.

Earlier I told you that the human soul is not saved yet and that God has given us His Word to save our souls.  Therefore, the human spirit is the only  component of God’s salvation that was reconciled back into relationship with God’s plan of salvation.  You see at the point of salvation your physical body does not change one bit.  You have the exact same body before receiving salvation as you do after salvation.   Remember the order of priority given to us by God?   God thinks about you internally to externally in that precise order.   When God offered you salvation He did it through a preacher proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  This Gospel message should have included the message of the identity of Jesus as being God in the flesh and His voluntary sacrifice to die for our sins.  But it did not end there, Jesus was then raised from the dead and that act was the key difference between every other human death and when we believe on all of this that Jesus accomplished that saved our spirit and God’s Spirit enters into our body to witness that we are now again His children.

  • 1Co 6:17  But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

To be joined with the Lord is a marriage covenant phrase first given to us by God in Genesis 2:24.   After receiving the Lord Jesus as savior the Spirit of God becomes one spirit with your spirit and you are conclusively saved by His Grace through your faith (Eph 2:8).  Therefore, God’s Spirit joined with your spirit is the result of salvation.  The rest of you still needs to be saved and I’ll show you why next when I begin to describe the human soul.

INTRODUCTION TO THE SOUL OF MAN

I needed to spend considerable time upfront emphasizing the spirit of man because that is not the soul part of the human composition.   The spirit of man comes from the Spirit of God, but the soul of man does not.   Ok, I probably just confused most of you with that statement.  Let’s spend time analyzing what the soul of man represents.   I do not currently know of one verse that accurately describes all of the parts of the human soul.  If you know of one, share it.  I will go through and give you some verses that list specific parts of the human soul and then we will need to put the pieces together to define the whole

  • Pro 2:10  When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;

Here we have two references to two different parts of the human composition.  The heart of man can normally be viewed as the spirit of the man and the soul is the Hebrew word H5315 that I have been focusing upon in this lesson.   Wisdom goes into the spirit (heart) of man.  Let’s define wisdom as being, knowing what to do when you don’t know what to do.  I believe we could also define wisdom as being, saying the right thing when you think you don’t know what to say.  Wisdom directs good words and good actions to come forth from a man, but the lack of wisdom causes a man’s acts and words to appear foolish.  According to God wisdom is what we all should be trying to obtain.  But, God also says knowledge is a positive ingredient for our soul.  Therefore, ask yourself how do you get knowledge and where do you retain this knowledge?  Do you believe that knowledge is tied to your mind and your memory?  If you agree with me that getting knowledge is a part of your mind’s function, then the soul of man contains your mind.   Let’s consider another verse that brings in a new aspect of the soul:

  • Pro 14:10  The heart knoweth his own bitterness; and a stranger doth not intermeddle with his joy.

This verse is easily missed because of the translation error.  The term “own” here is the Hebrew word H5315 that should have been made “soul”.   This is one of those poor examples of Bible translations that I referred to earlier.   Change the word to soul and reread it.  The heart (spirit) knows his soul’s bitterness”.   What is bitterness?   If you look at the entire verse you will hopefully see bitterness is being defined as the antithesis of joy.  What is joy?  Joy is a human emotional state.  It represents a very happy moment in life.  Therefore, bitterness could be the opposite the sad, discouraged, disappointed times of life.  What we are observing is the inclusion of the human emotions into the soul realm.  So far we have found the mind and the emotions to be two parts of the soul.

  • Pro 15:32  He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul: but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding.

Here is another interesting verse about your soul.  What is the main subject of this verse?  If you did not know God is focused on the human soul in this verse.   We can see from the last word in the verse that God is talking about us getting understanding?  How do you understand anything?   Isn’t that with your mind again?  People get knowledge and then they can grow to understand what they know with their minds and that is an intricate part of the human soul.  However, God introduces us to a new aspect of the human soul called choice.  The right of human choice that we all possess is called our human freewill.   If we refuse to take instructions we have made a negative choice and God says we despise our souls.   This is an act of a vile person, an ignorant person and it is not a positive description to be associated.  What we have learned from this verse is that the human soul is comprised of their will or right to choose.    We could go through many more confirming verses but that was a quick introduction to the three main human soul sub-components.

WHERE DOES MAN GET HIS SOUL?

The human soul is one sub-realm in the triune whole design of man (spirit, soul & body).  We previously looked at God as being the source for man’s spirit, but where did man get his soul?  The soul of man is comprised of three main specific entities called 1) the mind, 2) the will and 3) the emotions.  These soul items were created patterns, models and qualities that God possessed but they were not God’s personal mind, God’s personal will, or God’ personal emotions present in man.  In other words man was an independent spirit possessing an independent soul, an independent mind, an independent will and an independent set of emotions all being separated from God’s soul.  Did you know that God had a soul?  Ask yourself does God have a mind?  If yes, then ask does God have a will?  If yes, then ask yourself has God ever displayed any emotions?  If yes, then God has a soul and man’s soul was modeled after God’s.  However, the created man did not come preloaded with all of the knowledge of God, the understanding or the wisdom of God after creation.  The created man was not fully packed with all of the memories of God.   The created man was not told anything specifically about the will of God except “do not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil or you will surely die”.  This was one of the only details of knowledge revealing the will of God that the man possessed.  Therefore the man was not pre-conditioned or pre-programmed to do the will of God.  How would the man even know what death was?  There is no way that he had ever seen death or experienced death because God created everything very good.  Adam did not find out what death was until after he sinned and his son Cain killed his other son Abel and that was the first recorded natural death that occurred in the Bible.

Soul_Empty_containe2rWhat I am attempting to teach is that the created man did not auto-magically possess the full knowledge of God, the thoughts of God, the ways of God or the emotions of God.  He could learn these from walking with and listening to God but they were certainly not automatically transferred to his soul when he was given God’s spirit life.   I view the human soul to be an empty large container in need of filling.  A human learning something is their empty mind being filled with knowledge.   Consider a new born natural child.  Does this new born baby possess all of the knowledge of their parents directly from birth?   Can they speak intelligently about the facts of life or the experiences of their parents?  Obviously a child is an empty container in need of an education and individual and personal experiences of their own in order to grow up and mature.   Why would you think that Adam and Eve were different than any new born babies in need of the same?   Let me let you in on another Bible pattern.   The Bible teaches us that Adam was made in the image and likeness of God in Genesis 1:24 but these two same exact words were used to describe Adam’s new born son named “Seth” in Genesis 5:3.  What I am attempting to say is if one pattern is not identical to the other pattern then God just must be confused to use the same words.  No what God is teaching us is that the same image and likeness that Adam was created with was also transferred down the life chain to every human descendent that came from Adam.  Let’s move on and talk more about the soul.

Consider the human mind to continue our soul analysis.  The human mind is comprised of both mental reasoning facilities for thought processing and knowledge retention capabilities also called our memory.  Memory is used for human learning and for experience and information storage, which demands there is also recall capabilities later for these memories to be reused for other decision making or expression.  Perhaps I need to stop and verify the existence of God’s soul using scriptures.  Start by looking at Jeremiah 5:9 and Jeremiah 9:9 to see the Lord speaking directly of His personal soul.  This is the same Hebrew word used for man’s soul an animal’s soul, etc.  I think verses like these confirm that God is in possession of a soul.  Let’s consider what God says about the “mind of Christ” in 1 Corinthians 2:16 and we will certainly verify from this verse that the Lord God also has a mind.  Now consider the prayer that Jesus taught to his disciples to pray in Matthew 6:10.  Jesus said to pray “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is done in heaven”.  Therefore, God definitely has a will.  We really haven’t fully defined what a will is, but this is the inward desire part of the spirit being.   I also said that the will was the part of a being that possessed “the right of choice”.  The inner desires usually help to determine the choices that a person makes.  Therefore, the will is another factor for decisions.  We are just going through a few of the key components of the soul to verify their existence in God.   Now consider the mind’s thought process for thinking and read Isaiah 55:8 and you will see a direct connection being made by God where He says “My thoughts are not your thoughts”.   God basically declares we both have minds that think but you are not thinking like I think.  If you continue to read in Isaiah God says “Your ways are not my ways”.  This again states the will of God to be separate from the will of man.   God was clearly saying the choices that you make are not the same as the choices that I would have made.   Are you learning anything about the related and connected parts of man’s soul to be like God’s soul?  Let’s move on to the emotional part of the soul of God.  Does God have emotions?  What are emotions?   Sadness, anger, joy, disgust, fear and surprise are all common emotional qualities found in normal humans and I did not attempt to give the complete list.  Does God ever display any of these qualities?   Read Exodus 4:14 to begin and you should quickly see that “the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses”.   It appears that God does possess emotions.  Nehemiah 8:10 states the “joy of the Lord is our strength”.   Clearly God displays joy and anger to name two emotions.   I could give you other verses but that is enough to confirm that God has a soul and that man’s soul was modeled after it.

We can read in Genesis 2 that the created man definitely had extreme thought and reasoning capabilities and he must have possessed incredible memory abilities in order to name all of God’s created animals.  Modern scientists still do not know exactly how many species exist on the planet but it is estimated to be between 9,000 and 10,000 different types.  Let’s see how long it takes you to come up with original names for each one of these groups and then remember them all.  Where did Adam get these names?   Notice in this chapter that God brings the animals to Adam and says “whatever the man calls it that is what it will be called” (Gen 2:19).  This statement implies that it was an independent man only naming operation that transpired.  God would direct the animals across Adam’s path and Adam would use his independent reasoning abilities to name them all.  This teaches me that Adam used his own personal mind, thoughts and reasoning abilities to name all of the animals and God did not contribute His abilities or thoughts into Adam’s mental thought process.  There is no stated time for how long this took Adam but the fact that it happened is good enough for me.  I want you to see that it is clear that Adam must have had a desire to name the animals or he would not have done it.  This displays the unique quality of drive, initiative, curiosity and desire; in other words Adam’s human will was a contributing factor in this Animal naming process.  Therefore the second part of the triune soul called the human will was a confirmed factor that Adam had to possess.  The fact that Adam did something without being told to do it demonstrates not only intelligence but also his freewill choice and the right to make a decision.

Consider all of the mentioned components of the soul of man; each component of the human soul has some significance in the story of Adam in Genesis 2.   God says in Genesis 2:6 that he formed the body of the man from the dust of the ground and then breathed a spirit into his body and Adam became a living soul.  This confirms that the soul of man exists only after the spirit is introduced.  This makes man the unique part of God’s creation.  You can see that every animal has a soul but without any spirit.  The fact that Adam shows interest in God’s creatures demonstrates a unique human quality that is unlike any creature that was displayed before Adam.   No other animal looked at Adam to attempt to name him.  What God was teaching Adam by parading His creation before Adam was the fact that there was no one else like him on the planet.  God showed him the whole of his work in this world and nothing that God created on the planet was Adam’s equal.  That is why God created the woman because God says it was not good for the man to be alone.  That statement by God proves Adam was an independent being separate from God.    Adam has demonstrated the three qualities of the human soul in this chapter.  This was just a quick introduction to the topic of where did Adam get his soul.  I tried to show you that Adam’s soul came as a designed pattern for God’s soul but it came void of God’s divine soul fullness.  I hope you understand these quick points, I just don’t have the time to explain them in greater detail right now.

SOUL VS. SPIRIT BEFORE AND AFTER DEATH

I am now going to provide further confirmation that the soul is not the spirit and the spirit is not the soul and give you evidence that they both still exist after death.   You may have heard me say this before but it is always a good practice to find at least 2 verses in the Bible that impart the same truth.  When we locate two verses in two different books of the Bible that demonstrate the same truth, we know this is a truth that God has firmly established by the mouth of 2 witnesses.   I think we have covered this fairly well but there is more to it that needs to be studied.  Previously I believe I stated the soul and the spirit to be hidden unseen qualities of a man.  I linked the soul and spirit to internal parts of the human not connected to the physical body and that is potentially a controversial statement since everyone knows the human brain is the container for the mind.  Or at least that is what people think in error and we will talk more about this soon.   Let’s go to the New Testament and see what God reveals on the subjects of soul and spirit:

  • Heb 4:12  For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

We are going to continue with the mind part of the soul.  In this verse God declares His word to be a sword of division capable of dividing the human soul from the human spirit.  Spirit, soul and body are all technically mentioned in some form in this verse.   Joints and marrow are body sub-components just as thoughts and intents are soul sub-components.   The spirit is directly mentioned in this verse to be separate from the soul.  But why then does God mention the heart at the end of the verse and not the spirit?  What is the difference between heart and spirit?   Here is where we get into more potentially complex discussions.  The Body as you recall is the outer layer component to the inner concentric circles of man.  The body layer is followed by the middle circle layer of the soul ending with the center circle layer of the spirit.  So the heart of a man is that which lies underneath the outer layer.  I believe the heart of a man normally refers to both his spirit and his soul together and I will try to explain this as I go.

Many people confuse the spirit and the soul to be like Siamese twins joined together at the “S”.  This verse appears to imply this relationship but it also clearly says that they can be separated, detached, parted, or divided revealing them to be unique separate human qualities.   Consider what is not directly stated here.  If the word of God says the soul can be separated from the spirit, this would tend to show that they are normally always linked together.  In other words where the spirit goes, the soul will surely follow.  I then want you to consider why it takes the Word of God to separate the soul from the spirit?  Is there anything more powerful than the Word of God?   I do not know of anything that exists that is more powerful than the Word of God.   God spoke the world into existence and that is enough proof for me but I’ll give you Hebrews 1:3 for you to research.  You may not understand that the soul and spirit are normally linked but this is actually a very true statement and I will show you verses that confirm this belief shortly.

Earlier I stated the soul is a triune structure consisting of the “mind”, the “will” and the “emotions”.  This verse in Hebrews lists two of these three parts leaving out the emotions.  The “thoughts” of man are linked to the human mind’s functionality.  You think and therefore you are.   The “intents’ of the soul mentioned in Hebrews 4:12 are the parts of you that produce purpose, drive and ability and these give you choice.   You mind is a very complex designed part of your being.  I could spend a lot of time on this subject but that would be a better separate lesson.   Know the soul is the location for your thoughts, your memories, your reasoning, your desires, your emotions, etc.   Also understand that God says that your thoughts and intents are for your spirit and not for your body.  This brings me to the next part of the lesson question.  What happens to the human soul after the death of the human body?   I’ve already shown you Bible evidence that states the spirit departs when the death of the human body occurs.  Therefore, that leaves us to decide does the human mind just cease to exist after death?  That is what some ignorant Bible teachers claim; they call this belief the doctrine of “Soul Sleep”.   They define the state of soul sleep to be an unconscious state of existence that is experienced by the spirit until the judgment day and suddenly they are all awakened by God and are back to normal.  This belief practically denies the existence of heaven and hell and ignores a lot of the truth in the Bible that counters this belief.   It is a very foolish belief that cannot be fully confirmed with all the scripture.  For example let me give you something that Jesus taught on the subject of the soul and spirit:

  • Luk 16:19  There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
  • Luk 16:20  And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,

Read this story told by Jesus very carefully and give it vigilant consideration.  This information is a real literal historical story known by Jesus and not a parable as many fools claim it to be.   If it was a parable Jesus is going to state two obvious lies and one of them is found here in this 20th verse.  Jesus called the beggar directly by the name of Lazarus.  If this was not a real man named Lazarus then the story has become a work of fiction, a make believe account, and a fabrication of unimportant information.   If Lazarus does not literally exist Jesus would not have given us his name to make himself a liar.  What I am doing is countering a false teaching that attempts to explain away this real life story to make it a parable.  These soul sleep teachers have to do this in order to support the rest of their false doctrines.   You see the popular approach to discrediting any conflicting verses in the Bible that disagree with your belief is to explain them away using human reasoning.  This is a very common technique for deception.  They will take the truth and change it into a lie to help support the other lies that they claim are also the truth.   Ok, let’s continue with the information from Jesus.

  • Luk 16:22  And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;

Notice that both men are stated to die a physical death and that their physical bodies are buried in the earth.   Then notice the wording that is used here to tell what happens to them.  What was carried away by the angels?  Did you happen to notice that the body in the ground was not them?  It was the real man that was being carried away and it was their bodies that were being buried.  Here we have the separation of the spirit from the body.    We have a very clear separation of the internal unseen man from his seen body.  Are you making any connections here?   Since the body of man was separated from the spirit of man at the time of death what happened to the soul?  Does the soul cease to exist?  That is the problem with what is being taught in many ignorant churches, they are ignoring what the Bible says on the subject to believe more untruths.   We are about to find out from words spoken out of the mouth of the creator God what happens to their souls so pay attention to what God says:

  • Luk 16:23  And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
  • Luk 16:24  And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
  • Luk 16:25  But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.

Use basic logic observing what is literally stated for us to learn from.    We can understand easily that everyone mentioned here is dead, right?    Abraham is dead from reading Genesis 25:8.  Lazarus we just read has died and is with Abraham.  Finally the rich man in hell was also a dead man from the same story that Jesus was using as an example warning.  These are three dead individuals that have all departed leaving their bodies on the earth.  Notice that Jesus mentions Abraham another real man and this is the second lie that Jesus told if this story is not a literal account that actually happened to Abraham.  We cannot hear a story of a real named man and conclude it to be anything but a lie if it did not actually happen.  No this is all an actual account given by Jesus stating the literal truth.  Then notice everyone that is mentioned can see, think, feel and talk.  We can easily understand from what is stated the rich man in hell literally feels the torment of the flames.  He sees Abraham and Lazarus a far distance away from the flames and asks for a drop of water to cool his tongue.  The key word that I want you to focus on is found in verse 25.  Abraham looks at the rich man and tells him to “remember”.    A memory is nothing but the recollection of real past events that were personally experienced.  I can’t remember what you did yesterday because I don’t know what you did.  We all have memories either good or bad and these are an intimate part of our mind and our soul.  Therefore, the soul of man is definitely present with the spirits of all of the men after death.    The rich man was still able to remember, to think, to reason, and to see and speak.  Without the soul and the mind none of this would have been possible.  There are many other things to learn from this story but that was the key points that I needed you to see in order to understand the existence and location of the soul after death.   Let’s look into another Bible story that is applicable to learn about the soul of man.

  • Mar 9:2  And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into an high mountain apart by themselves: and he was transfigured before them.
  • Mar 9:3  And his raiment became shining, exceeding white as snow; so as no fuller on earth can white them.
  • Mar 9:4  And there appeared unto them Elias with Moses: and they were talking with Jesus.

Here we have another literal story that happens while Jesus was physically present on the earth.   Jesus takes three disciple witnesses with Him for them to tell us what was about to occur.  These disciples observe Jesus being transfigured and suddenly two men appear with Him.  Notice, who these men are that join Jesus on the mountain.  Elijah did not die and was raptured up but Moses certainly died by reading Deuteronomy 34:7.  Did you know that the O.T. law of God prohibits talking to the dead?  Uh oh!  That is a problem until you realize Jesus was actually speaking to two living men and not dead ones.  The fact that Moses’ body had died does not make Moses a dead man.  The spirit of Moses is alive and present hundreds of years after his physical death.  Then notice the mind of Moses is still intact with his spirit since he is clearly able to hold an intelligent conversation with the Lord.   That is so important to learn what is being taught in the Word of God.  Spirits still have souls and these reside with their spirits after the body has died.  Let’s look at another verse that will assist us with this truth:

  • Rev 21:4  And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Let’s shift our focus to a prophetical verse about the future.   Here in this verse God declares that He will wipe away every tear.   Who is this that God is wiping away their tears?  Probably a better question would be “Why do they have tears to wipe away”?  If you read the preceding context you will discover that God is wiping the tears from people.  Not just any people, because these are the people of God that God lives in eternity with.  That means two things that are very relevant to answer the soul questions.  First the presence of the soul is confirmed in the future tense because the tears that are flowing represent the presence of their emotions.   Tears normally flow as a result of hurt, pain, sorrow, sadness or other related emotional conditions.  There is also the term “tears of joy” and that might also apply to what is being stated here.  Remember that I told you the soul was comprised of the mind the will and the emotions.   Every one of these subjects is implied to exist in the eternal man.   Why do people cry at funerals?  They cry simply because they can, but not only that they cry because they love and remember their friend, spouse, child, parent or other relative that has departed.   Therefore, memories play an important role in why tears are present.   Emotions play a role in the existence of tears.   Finally the human will plays a role in shedding tears because I have seen many choke them back to keep them from flowing.   What this does is to help confirm that the soul of man will never cease to exist.

I have just given you three great examples of man after death on the earth that still possess their souls with their memories, thoughts, wills and emotions all being implied present with their spirits.   The soul of man is an eternal part of the human composition and it will never cease to exist.  That brings us to the last part of the question; what about the soul here in this life?   You see there is another popular lie from Satan that is taught even in modern medical universities that when a human brain flat lines with no activity that the body is clinically dead and the plug should be pulled.  Is that what Jesus said?  Is that what the Bible teaches?  How does that belief line up with the truth found in God’s Word?  Didn’t the spirit of man still possess the mind even after his spirit left his body?   What I am saying is that your mind and your memory have nothing to do with your physical brain cells.  None of the dead men in Luke 16 had any physical brain cells and every one of them could still see, speak, think and remember like they were in their bodies and probably better.   I didn’t give you the full story in this lesson but you can go back and read it to see that the rich man in hell remembered his brothers that were left behind on the earth and he desired (used his will) that they be warned not to come to the same place of torment with him.  If this man remembered his life here on the earth, then every man after death can still remember his life in the past.  Here is another ending point for the rich man, not only did he remember his brothers on the earth he knew who Abraham was and Abraham had died long before he did.  You are going to know a lot of people after you die that you have never seen before.  This is just very basic knowledge based upon the Bible.  I pray that you will see it.

WHY DOES MENTAL ILLNESS EXIST?

How then do we resolve life’s soul issues?   What are the source causes for mind problems?   The existence of emotional and mental issues in this life is certainly present.  Why are there lapses in memory such as amnesia or Alzheimer’s disease where the recollection is lost?   Why are their mental hospitals and physiatrists to try to help people with unstable normal thought patterns and emotions?  I’m not going to spend a lot of time addressing this subject because it could potentially be very long and very complex.  I will however point you to a few Bible stories that will help begin the understanding process for why these types of things occur in the natural realm even when the soul is not literally tied to the physical brain cells.   Let’s start this part of the lesson with this scripture verse:

  • 2Co 4:4  In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Did you see who God claims to be the source for mind issues?  The god of this world is a title given by God to the devil and Satan.  He rules the night and the kingdom of darkness of this world.   Darkness is nothing but the absence of light.  Since God is light, the loss of God represents darkness.   Now consider what blindness represents?  Can you see in the dark?  Have you ever been in a cave and they turned the lights off?  The darkness is so thick there that you feel like it engulfs you.   Naturally speaking, blindness is the inability to see illuminated objects clearly or at all.  Since the mind is an internal human component, how does Satan blind a person’s mind?  Did you even know that the human mind had vision?  Perhaps you have heard of the mind’s eye?  This concept is the visualization of concepts, ideas, knowledge so that they are clearly understood.   What God is saying is when a person has been blinded in their minds by Satan, the information enters their ears, but does not pass deeply enough to remain planted.  It is very much like the parable of the sower where Jesus said the birds of the air come quickly to devour the Word of God that was planted in their hearts.   You really need to give this information serious thought.  I’m not going to talk about this in great depth because I am running very long in this lesson already.  Just understand that if Satan can blind your mind then that is an area of the soul that is open for attack by a foreign spiritual being.    Let’s see if we can verify some of these concepts using other verses in the Bible.  I will continue this part of the lesson with the confirmation that the process of thinking within our minds is linked to the spirit of man and not the natural body or brain:

  • Mat 9:4  And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?

Jesus looking at some people knew their internal unseen thoughts and asked them a question that was very revealing to what we are studying.  Jesus clearly is speaking of the soul thought realm and he leads us to these thoughts being attached to their spirits and never mentions their physical brain activity.  Do you think the creator God knew what He was talking about here?  There is no reference to the body anywhere in the context.   Little clues like this are hidden in the Bible in some of the most unlikely settings.  Truth is concealed so well in the Bible that it is easily overlooked by the casual reader.  Everyone is focusing on what Jesus is doing while ignoring what He just said.

  • Pro 23:7  For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee.

Again God connects the location of the thought process to be within the center of the man called his soul and spirit and not within the physical body, the brain or the external natural realm.  The heart of man is not the physical blood pump organ, it is the center or core of the human like the heart of an apple is the center of the piece of fruit.  I’ve said this before but for those that need to hear it again that was for you.   This is the basics of God’s truth found in the scripture and that is what is needed for your understanding of the subject of the soul.  Now let’s observe what the Bible says about the cause of human mental issues:

  • Luk 8:26  And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee.
  • Luk 8:27  And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs.

Let us perceive what is happening in this Bible account of the Lord Jesus.  They are passing through a part of the country to a town called Gadara.    They encounter a man that is far from normal.  Physically speaking he has issues, but mentally speaking he is off the charts and can be labeled crazy or a mad man.   He wore no clothes and lived in tombs.  These are clear signs of a deep mental illness but they are attributed to the presence of devils.  What we are going to discover by study of the Bible is that demons, devils, or unclean spirits cause the majority of the mental issues found in the people that Jesus encountered.

  • Luk 8:28  When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not.

You can see from this statement that the man is unaware of the presence of the devils.  He does not ask to be delivered from them and is directed by the demons to ask Jesus not to torment them.  The reference is to the man, but the thought for the spoken words surely originates from the demons.   Clearly this man is possessed of devils.   These devils can manifest vocally and take over the voice of a human speaking through his body.  This is normally not an ordinary human voice and can be easily identified to those that are spiritually aware.

  • Luk 8:29  (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.)
  • Luk 8:30  And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him.
  • Luk 8:31  And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep.

You can see that Jesus understood that the devils were present and He had commanded them to come out of the man, but that was not the end of the conversation.  It is obvious that the demons did not depart on the first command and asked more questions.  Jesus then asked for their name.  The man replied “legion” because there were many devils in his body tormenting his mind.   It would be like having a thousand voices in your head and each one driving you into a state of madness and that is what was happening to this man.  I’m going to skip down to the end of the story since that is the important part to understand about the subject of mental illness.  After Jesus cast the tormenting spirits out of the madman this is what occurred:

  • Luk 8:38  Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying,
  • Luk 8:39  Return to thine own house, and shew how great things God hath done unto thee. And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him.

Here we can see with the absence of the devil influence being present the man had returned to a sound and stable mental state and wearing clothes.   The new normal man wanted to follow Jesus, but Jesus instructed him to go back to his former house and live like a normal man like he did before he went crazy.  We have just witnessed a full circle of mental illness that went through the stages of first being normal, then becoming crazy and finally a full recovery with spiritual deliverance to again being normal.   The fact that the devils were present during the crazy times proves that they were the cause for the mental illness. The man starts out as normal, but does something that allows the devils access to enter him to take over and control his mind, he then goes crazy until Jesus comes by and delivers him.  This deliverance only occurred because of the power and the authority that Jesus used to solve this man’s abnormal situation.   Let’s move to another story found in the Bible that is also related to mental and physical instability:

  • Mar 9:17  And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit;

Again we see the presence of a spirit being related as the cause of an abnormal human conditions.  This stated dumb spirit is not the human child’s spirit even though that is also certainly present since the boy is physically alive.   Read the next verse to see what this spirit causes to happen in this boy’s body and mind:

  • Mar 9:18  And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not.

Is any of this description normal human behavior for a child?  I seriously do not think we can call any of this foaming at the mouth, seizures, gnashing of the teeth, and shriveling or shrinking away normal human behavior.   If you took this description to a physiatrist without explaining where you got the information from the Bible they would probably request an immediate meeting with this person very fast.  I believe it is a clear account of a mentally unstable individual.   I’m not going to go through the entire story because you can do that for yourself.  What you will find is that Jesus casts the devil out and the child returns again to normal human behavior.

What we learn from these two simple stories is that mental issues are largely originated from evil spirits being present in the bodies of the humans.    When the evil spirits depart or more specifically are cast out, normalcy returns and humans can resume their lives.  What we discover is that the human actions of an individual can be controlled by or at least certainly influenced by the existence of evil spirits.  That was a very quick overview of soul issues and deliverance.  Deliverance is possible still today because Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.

CONCLUSION

I believe this has been an incomplete discussion of the full subject of the soul given to us by God in the Bible.  However, in this lesson, I have demonstrated to you from the Bible that the soul is not the spirit and the spirit is not the soul of a human.  A human being is a spirit that has a soul and lives in a body here in the natural realm.  I have also shown you that man was created in the image of God and that God is a Spirit and that He has a soul and these were the patterns for man’s spirit and soul.  I have given you more than adequate evidence from the Bible that states the soul of man does not cease to exist after death and the separation of the human spirit from the body.  We have seen more than enough verses that teach us the soul and the spirit exist separate from the body.   Finally, at the end of this lesson I showed you how the soul realm was within the realm of influence of evil spirits.  I believe I gave sufficient evidences to prove that mental illness is caused by demonic possession.   There are probably another thousand verses in the Bible on this subject.  It would be good for you to go and see if you can find them if you truly desire to know more about this subject from the true authority.   If you run across verses that you do not understand you are welcome to ask me questions and if I know anything I will share it.   I hope and pray that you learned something that you did not know before on the human soul and triune composition of man.  I thank you for your time to study the Bible and may God bless you with the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ Jesus (Eph 1:16).

Is it Possible to be Both a Democrat and a Christian in the U.S.?

Gal 4:16  Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?

(Ver 1.1)  Here in the U.S. we have been living through a very nasty election process costing billions of dollars.  This Bible lesson is intended for my U.S. readers, but the application of the Bible principles taught will apply to any nation where you are permitted to vote.  This of course will be a potentially controversial subject to talk about.  Who knows I may lose some readers by offending them with the truth as Paul did in Galatians 4:16.   But like Paul, I still want to speak the truth on my website, because this is what is needed at this critical time in America.  Can a person be a Christian, be saved, be born-again, go to heaven and still ignore the truth, the Bible and the God of the Bible doing whatever they like?  Whoops I thought this subject was about being a Democrat?  Yes, you are right the main subject is about people claiming to be a Democrat and a Christian and that goes with my preceding statement precisely.  Isn’t choosing to be called a Democrat a human freewill choice of the man or woman?  Am I saying being a Democrat is someone that is ignorant of the Bible?  Well you are going to have to read the entire lesson and decide for yourself.   Let me give you my opening scripture verse for this subject:

Rom 8:14  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

God declares that His children are led by His Spirit!  Are you His child?  Not if you are not being led by the Spirit of God you are not!    If you claim to be a saved child of God you better learn how to be led by the Spirit of God very fast.   Nowhere in this verse or in any other verse will God contradict this truth!  This verse strongly implies that those that are not led by the Spirit of God are not the children of God. The Spirit of God is never going to lead you into sin.  The Spirit of God is never going to lead you to violate the Word of God.  The Spirit of God will never lead you into hell.  The Spirit of God will only say things to you that agree with the Written Holy Word of God.  If you do not understand this you are free to call yourself a Democrat and choose to make God a liar.  So the question remains, will the Spirit of God ever lead a person to be a Democrat?  Not if it violates the Word of God.  You better find out if being a Democrat is either in agreement or discourse with the Word of God and then decide personally which path you want to follow in.

First, I strongly believe that there are no perfect people in the world; Republican, Democrat, Independent or Christian.  However, does that fact mean that that every Christian should not strive for perfection?  I seriously do not believe that is the case.  Perfection should be the goal of every Christian in order to conform to the image of Christ Jesus’ example.  If you do not want to be like Christ you are definitely reading the wrong website.  Can you find a scripture in the Bible that says that we are free to ignore what God says in His Word and still be saved?  Are we saved independently from the Word of God? I have not found any verses that say we can be saved or remain saved apart from the Bible.  I have found some verses that appear to say the opposite is true.  Jesus was speaking in the Gospels and was quoted to say the following statement that should be strongly considered if you want to call yourself a follower of Christ:

Luk 6:46  And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Who was the Lord Jesus talking to?  Notice that this statement was not made to anyone that is not a Christian or at the least thought they were a Christian.  No one is going to call Jesus Lord if they do not believe that Jesus saved them.  Did you notice that?  People came to Jesus saying “Lord, Lord!” and they did this with the forethought He was their Lord.  You see according to the Bible, in order to be saved, an individual must believe that God has raised Jesus from the dead and then must also confess Jesus to be their “Lord” with their mouth (Rom 10:9-10).  Therefore, Jesus makes this statement but, only to people that have called Him their Lord.  No unsaved person has done this nor can they.  What significance does the Lord Jesus place upon His spoken word in this statement directed at Christians?  Is the Lord Jesus a casual, unconcerned or non-caring speaker of random unimportant words like people are?  Do you think that it matters to God if you actually do anything that He says or not?  Is God simply speaking words to hear the sound?  I believe that you can clearly see in this verse that Jesus strongly implies that it matters a great deal what you do in this life concerning what God has spoken.

2Ti 3:16  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

What has God spoken?  This verse informs us that God spoke the words of the Bible and that every one of them is here for the purpose of righteousness.  The Greek word translated as “inspiration of God” literally means “God Breathed”.  If God’s breath produced them they came from the Spirit of God and these are the Words that you are directed to follow by Jesus own admission.  Why call me Lord, Lord and do not what I say in my written Holy Book of Words?

Whose responsibility is it to get you to do what God says?  Who is going to make you read and learn what is written in the Bible?  Is it not your choice what you do every day?   Seriously pay attention to what the Bible is saying to you, learn it and begin to follow God’s instructions.  It will matter more on judgment day than you can possibly think at this time.  Let’s get another witness of the truth spoken from God about what you need to do:

Jas 1:22  But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.

God speaking through the apostle James says directly to the church in a letter, that they need to do the Word of God and not just hear it only or they will deceive themself.   That is an amazing statement.  Self-deceived people are abundantly found in the church today.  These are people that go to church but still vote for a Democrat.  Of course I understand that many churches are not teaching the Bible and that is even a greater problem.    God says very clearly “My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6).  Not being taught the actual Word of God will cause people to be deceived equally.  I believe that it is abundantly clear that the God of the Bible was warning Christians that we better learn what He has said and then do what He has said or we will be destroyed.  Let’s then figure out what God says in the Bible and then see if any of this Godly information disagrees with Christians being a modern Democrat.

Today I’m going to give you at least 4 sound Bible reasons why you cannot be both a Democrat and a Christian.  You are free to disagree with me, but I would suggest that you do not disagree with God and His Word.  What I will say today are not my words but His.

#1 THE MAJORITY OF THE DEMOCRATS AT THE DNC CURSED GOD

Anyone can clearly observe the Democratic official platform.  The Democratic National Convention (DNC) was held here in Charlotte NC and I heard about this event for months before it happened and every day that it was here it dominated the news.  Anyone can easily verify what I am about to say by searching the internet to find the DNC position.  There are documents, videos, news reports and other evidence to the truth if you are unaware of what I am about to tell you.  First, consider at the DNC that Democrats removed the mention of “God” completely from their official position platform.  They further removed all mention of Israel and Jerusalem as their capital.   Both of these should have been clear warning signs to those that call themselves Christians and Democrats.  If you watched the DNC on TV you would have seen one man stand up and attempt to put God and Jerusalem back into the Democratic platform and he was required by rule to get a majority of the delegates to raise their voice and vote “Yes” in order to pass this position.  He called for the vote once, twice and even three times and each time the NO’s clearly won the voice level vote.  At the end of the third time he simply decided on his own that the “YES” votes won and that ended the voting session.  Many of the delegates in the audience quickly booed the decision and that is a major problem with being a Democrat.  How can you as a Christian associate with any people that are so far apart from the truth?  I do not know how you can, based upon what God says to do in His word:

Pro 14:27  The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.

Did the great majority of the delegates representing the U.S. Democratic Party from every state have any fear of God?  If you believe that you can boo God and be a Christian you are a fool!  If you think you can stand with people that boo God and still be a Christian you are still a fool.   To “fear” God is a Hebrew word that means a human position of humility giving God great honor and respect as He clearly deserves.  What kind of respect is it for Democrats to say to God we don’t want you God mentioned in our platform anymore?   Wow, I do not even know how to begin to justify someone saying I’m a Christian and still calling themselves a Democrat.  What did God say in this verse in Proverbs?  Did He not just say if you fear me you are on the path to life and if you do not fear me you are headed on the path towards death?  You better think a long time about what is being said here.  Let’s look at another verse that applies to this situation of the DNC vote.  Here we had a man that must have thought he was a Christian who wanted God put back into the platform and the majority of his fellow delegates blasted him down and said “NO”.  What does the God of the Bible say about this?

2Co 6:14  Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

Can you read?  To be yoked to something is to be joined with them.  To be joined means to be united in purpose, plans and action.  To be yoked to anything is a clear personal choice unless you are their slave?  Are you the slave to other Democrats or the DNC?  If you are not their slave then you had a choice to be there and to call yourself one of them.  Consider the legal ramification of being present at the DNC?  If someone in the car that you are riding in commits a crime the legal system considers you an accessory even if you knew nothing about what was going to happen.  The guilt by association is a very important topic in the court of heaven.  Because you were voluntarily present at the conference you have become guilty of cursing the God of the Bible even if you did not commit the act.  Just because you are a registered Democrat you are further guilty by association with the group.  Now, shift to what it means to be unequally yoked as this statement is declaring.  I take this to mean you are out-numbered.  It is like a balance scale with you on one side and the rest of the God cursing people on the other side.  If they have tipped the scale in their favor then God says you better not be linked with them.

This is a major problem again from the scriptural standpoint of being called a Democrat.  To be in an organization that does not even desire to have any relationship with God is more than an awkward situation for you.  This man that took the vote should have shook off the dust from his feet and walked away from the cursers instead of doing what he did and continuing to be one of them.  Look at what Jesus said to His disciples:

Mat 10:14  And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.

Does this not still apply to us today?  Are you not a disciple of Christ?  I know I am!  Of course this applies to you and I.  If we go and tell someone about Jesus and they reject it, Jesus said that we can walk away free in conscious that we did our job.  I feel like this would have made a much stronger statement than pretending that the “YES” vote won and add God back into the platform.  How long do you think that the DNC will keep God in?  Do you think that God will survive another vote?  I personally do not believe He will.  God and the Bible is being pushed out of the Democratic platform, it is just a matter of time before it happens.

The term “yoked” is a position of servitude whether you accept it or not.  If you desire to be a servant accessory of a people with a position that curses God then you are not a wise man or woman.  Take note with what these verses just said.  What fellowship does a righteous man have with an unrighteous man?  What communion does the light of God have with the darkness of Satan?  I know a lot of people do not understand the differences between what is being stated in 2 Corinthians 6:14 so they believe it is permissible to be labeled a Democrat.  That is exactly why I am writing and teaching this message today.

#2 OBAMA AND THE DNC EMBRACED HOMOSEXUAL MARRIAGE

Let’s consider point number two that was added to the official Democratic platform this year by Obama’s sudden change of position from the last election position.  In the last election Obama was clearly asked about gay marriage and he clearly stated that marriage should be between a man and a woman.  Now suddenly, the DNC and Obama openly embraced and joined themselves to the godless gay agenda by adding a gay marriage stance legitimizing the marriage between two men or two women as being normal and acceptable.  In doing this they have snubbed the Bible and the God of the Bible and they have departed to establish a new independent truth separate from both.  Here is the primary problem with the gay agenda; you cannot find it as a valid doctrine in the Bible anywhere.  In fact if you study the subject closely you will find a lot written about it in the Bible that says it is an abomination to God when people live this way (Lev 18:22).  I know that was an Old Testament verse reference and people are so quick to say that does not apply in the modern world.  Let me quickly show you a N.T. verse that is also equally very clear:

1Co 6:9  Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, (NASB)

God tells the church plainly in this text that homosexuals will never enter into the kingdom of God.  If people cannot be gay and be saved, what makes you think that you can be a Democrat supporting gays and the gay agenda and be saved either?  Perhaps you need a new perspective to the importance of being in agreement with God.  What is agreement?  Agreement occurs when two people make a pact to walk in harmony.  Disagreement is the antithesis and this simply occurs when two people are in opposite sides of any discussion.   If you look up possible synonyms for the term “agreement” you will find one term “covenant” is present.  That truth of covenant raises a new perspective and asks “Are you in covenant agreement with God?” or “Are you in covenant agreement with homosexuality?”.   Technically speaking if you are not in covenant agreement with God then you are not saved.  If yes, then God says you better agree with Him and what He says:

Amo 3:3  Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

You are being forced to make a choice today by reading the truth of God.  If you read what God says and still choose to be a Democrat and support Democrats and the DNC platform then you are not walking in agreement with God but with your godless political party.  That is an extremely poor choice in life to make yet people do it every day.  What God has just clearly stated is that you better agree with what He has spoken or you will not be walking with God.

People who do not make an effort to know what the Bible says are those that have chosen to ignore God’s Word.  Any non-decision to seek the truth is a conscious decision for ignorance of the truth.  Ignorant people will find themselves apart from God based upon what Jesus said to you at the beginning of this lesson.  You are not going to be able to call Jesus your Lord and then ignore what He has said about the subjects like homosexuality.  The two positions are mutually exclusive and incompatible.  If you do not know what the Bible says on the subject of homosexuality you need to find out very quickly.  No, the word is not officially found in the KJV Bible, but that does not mean that God does not give you what He thinks on the subject very clearly using other words.  I have a Bible lesson series on the subject called “What does God think about Homosexuality”.   If after you read this lesson series and choose to still be a Democrat then your blood is not on my hands any longer.

#3 OBAMA AND THE DNC KILL INNOCENT HUMAN BABIES

The discussion of abortion is a modern controversial subject that Democrats like to dance around by speaking about it using irrelevant oxymoronic terms like “Women’s Rights” or “Planned Parenthood” and others that twist the reality of child homicide into something legitimate sounding.  They have even gone so far as to call the unborn baby a “fetus” and not a human child even though that is clearly a lie.  The child in the womb is a new complete being after the egg is fertilized.  All of the future DNA of the complete human being is present at conception.  Cells continue to grow in the womb and develop but this same process occurs after birth also.  No human is born a completed mature work.  Therefore, the process before birth continues after birth and finally the child becomes an adult.  The baby developing in the internal water realm is no different than the external baby continuing to develop in the air realm.  If after birth the same attitude of reckless disregard is given as to the unborn life of the water realm baby and care was removed from them the child would not live in the external air realm either.  Developing cells that grow is the definition for life.  If a scientist found cells like this on Mars they would take extreme measures to preserve them.  Why then have ignorant deceived humans chosen not to value this life before birth the same as after birth?  Nothing was added or taken away from the process other than the taking of the baby’s life.  Things have gotten so bad in this area that many abortion procedures done by doctors today are to babies that could easily live outside of the womb with any proper modern care.  These procedures are called partial birth abortions and the baby is partly birthed and then deliberately killed before they can take a breath.   That is a totally insane ungodly behavior for any person to agree with but Democrats like Obama vote for it constantly to continue.

Today the determining factor for whether any baby lives or dies has been given into the hands of the woman carrying the baby.  That right there is another ignorant presupposition of the truth.  Who died and made this woman a god who decides who lives and dies?  Did the woman get pregnant by herself?   Here is where creative deceived people introduce a new argument of justification for the existence of abortions.  They say “what about incest and rape”.  They then use these minority cases to justify the existence of every abortion regardless if the woman consented to the sex or not.   God states in Genesis 2 that the two shall become one and this is a law of God’s created design.  Just because Satan has perverted it by enticing men to rape does not mean the whole result is evil.  One evil act never justifies another evil act.  The formed baby in the womb was not a participant in the evil so why is another evil taken out on them?  That just does not make logical or Biblical sense.  I recall no Bible verses that say if a man commits evil we need to kill an innocent child for retribution.

Take for example the young lady that had been kidnapped as a child by an evil man and forced to live with him for years and years until she finally escaped.  She was repeatedly raped and even got pregnant and had a child.  This child was still important and loved by God regardless of how it was conceived.  After the woman escaped the captor went to jail but she and her baby went home.  Perhaps in this case you believe we should kill the baby immediately after saving it from captivity?  What then is the difference between now and before in the womb?  Were they not both created through evil?  Surely this justifies us killing born healthy babies if they are conceived by evil acts.  If we kill evilly conceived babies after birth what stops any baby from being killed if they cry too much, are the wrong sex or whatever.  When is it murder and when is it allowable or permitted?  I do not see any lines that should ever be crossed personally.

When a woman determines that she does not desire to carry the baby to term, she chooses to commit murder and she terminates the life that God had placed inside of her by going to a clinic or by taking a pill these days.  You may quickly respond and ask who did you say put the life in her?  According to the Bible God says He put the life of the child inside of the woman.  Here is a verse that is about abortion but does not directly name the term:

Jer 1:5  Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

You can clearly see that God reveals that what the Democrats and liberals call the “fetus” in the woman was already known by God.  God clearly says “I formed you there inside of your mother”.  God also clearly says that I called you to be a prophet before you were ever born into this world.  What if Jeremiah’s mother chose to have an abortion today?  Would the prophet have been born?  Would God have stopped her from being so foolish?  I seriously do not understand why people cannot see that God will not override a woman’s will to murder her own child.   The woman’s body is the woman’s body but the child in her was not placed there by the woman so she has no right to remove it.  The child’s body is never a part of the woman’s body.  The child’s body is an independent new being awaiting arrival into this world.

In making these uninformed decisions the woman has engaged accomplices that help her.  The doctor is the instrument of murder that she uses to kill the life in the baby and I find that fact incredibly ironic.  The doctor takes a Hippocratic oath to save life and instead for money has chosen to ignore that oath and kill their own kind because an activist  judge somewhere said it was a legal act to perform.  Everyone involved in this act is a willing guilty participant or accessory and they are all ignoring God, the truth and the Bible in making this decision or even allowing this decision to be made.  That is just stupid if you ask me, but stupid is as stupid does.

In the United States alone there have been millions of abortions performed since it was legalized by a minority.  That is an awful lot of blood that is on the hands of women, doctors, judges, voters and politicians.  WHAT did I just say?  I said the blood of the murdered babies will be held on the account of all those that voted to allow this practice to continue.  If you do not think so, I would not want to be you on judgment day.  I did not do a complete teaching on this subject and I have other lessons that will expand it in more detail.  If you go and read “What does God think about Abortion” it will address more Bible verses that teach us about this very important subject.

#4 OBAMA IS AN OPEN LIAR AND DECEIVER

What is the definition of a liar?  When a man says one thing and then does something else does that make him a liar?  In my Bible I believe that is a very good definition for a liar.  What is the definition of a deceiver?  A very good definition of a deceiver is anyone that causes someone else to believe what is not true.  One good synonym for a deceiver is a “con artist”.  A “con artist” is anyone that tells you what you want to hear in order to get what they want from you.  A “con man” uses words to entice human behavior for their own personal gain.  Technically speaking a liar is a deceiver and a deceiver is a liar by definition.   Let me show you a verse that Jesus spoke to us all and you then tell me what it says on these subjects:

Rev 21:8  But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

So tell me what your God just said?  Is God a liar?  I strongly believe that God is not a liar and in this statement I believe it to be an accurate and literal announcement of truth.   If after reading this verse you still believe that it is permissible to be an abortionist murderer or a liar then I think that you are already deceived into believing a lie.  There is a missing message in many churches today called “Holiness”.   This old holiness message was previously taught strongly by many preachers but it is widely ignored in the modern Grace dominated church.  Because people believe that being holy is no longer a factor or a requirement for being a Christian they can justify being a Democrat and believe a man like Obama when he stood up in 2007 and said “I’m a Christian”.  Nothing done by Obama in the last four years has proven that statement true.   In fact his actions have proven the opposite.  Jesus very clearly taught us that we will know them by their fruits (Mat 7:16).   Jesus was speaking spiritually but said this spiritual fruit would be displayed externally in this natural realm in order for us to observe it and even possess the ability to judge it.  If you do not know what the fruits of the Spirit are perhaps you need to go study the subject closely because Obama has none of these that I can observe.  Let’s establish if Christians need holiness:

Eph 1:4  According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

1Pe 2:9  But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

1Pe 1:15  But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;

1Pe 1:16  Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

Both Peter and Paul were led by the Spirit of God to teach on the subject holiness.  Essentially God declared Himself to be Holy and commands that we are also to be the same Holy type.  This gets back to the goal of perfection.  If you are not striving to be perfect like God then you have already admitted defeat.  The Bible clearly says that God is a Holy God!.  The Bible also says that God does not lie (Heb 6:18).  Therefore anyone intentionally lying is not of God and will have their part in the lake of fire as Jesus clearly says.  I could spend a lot of time listing every lie publically spoken by Obama but that is a waste of my time and yours.    Other websites have done a good job at documenting many of these, just go and search the web and you will find more statements than you care to hear about.  If you have time to watch a video on YouTube I would suggest that you go watch these examples of lies spoken by Obama.  This video is by far not a complete list.  For example, Obama declared marriage to be between a man and a woman before being elected in 2008 but yet he has done everything in his power to reverse that even now making the clear position statement that marriage is beyond God’s definition.  Make sure you understand the definition again for a liar.  A liar is someone that says he will do one thing and then does something else.  I will expand the definition of a liar to be anyone that speaks anything that is not the Truth of God and that is a much broader definition.  Here is the video of lies, go check it out for a starter course:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kg9m1F8B2_c&feature=player_detailpage

VOTING WARNING EXAMPLES FOUND IN THE BIBLE

Exo 32:1  And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him.

The concept of voting is found in the Bible if you actually look for it.  The word vote does not need to appear for the message to be revealed.  For example here in this story we have a nation of people in a desperate state of circumstances much like the United States today.  Their Godly leader Moses has left them, they think and now we see them making a cry for a change.  You do realize that voting is nothing but you asking for a desired outcome?   Do you remember what these people have been through?  They had just been delivered by God from a very oppressive harsh nation and a people that oppressed them greatly.  The power of God was displayed over and over until Pharaoh finally bowed to the overwhelming display of God.  The Israelites all had witnessed this deliverance but now in the wilderness when things were again tough they voted for change in gods and leaders.  Was this the right decision?  Was this the right choice?  If you continue to read down in the chapter you will find that it clearly was not!

Here is my point for this entire lesson.  Can you vote against God and expect a good outcome?   Whenever the Democrats voted to throw God out of their platform were they not repeating the historic act that was given to us by God to learn from?  Do you not understand what God says here about Israel?  God tells us in the New Testament that these things were written as examples but not examples to follow but for examples not to follow (1 Cor 10:11).  When a nation departs from God, the Bible and His ways they have also abandoned His hand of protection, His blessings and His favor.  When the people vote against God they open the door for judgment to follow.   Seriously do you feel the need to be judged?  Continue to vote against God and His Word and you will be.  Stop and read this next Bible example of a popular vote recorded in the Bible for us to learn from:

Mat 27:17  Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?

Mat 27:18  For he knew that for envy they had delivered him.

Mat 27:19  When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.

Mat 27:20  But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.

Mat 27:21  The governor answered and said unto them, Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you? They said, Barabbas.

Mat 27:22  Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let him be crucified.

Mat 27:23  And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.

If you read this story with your spiritual eyes wide open, you will see another popular vote being manipulated by the elders of Israel and their priests.  Pilate clearly saw that it was because of envy that they were moved to do this thing to Jesus so he after being warned by his wife created a choice to vote on between two men.  One man Jesus was entirely good and one man named Barabbas was entirely evil.  Who do you think these men represent in our election?  Well, let me ask you who is in favor of murdering babies and allowing gays to marry?   Both of these are evil in the eyes of God.  Well Barabbas was elected to live and Jesus was condemned to die and this was the outcome of a popular vote of the people.  What does God say about this in the Bible?  You probably don’t know this either but this is God’s opinion of that kind of vote and voters:

Isa 5:20  Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

Wow, I do not understand how anyone can be a Democrat today knowing what I know from the Bible.  God warns people if they call evil as good and good as evil that there are consequences for these types of votes.  If America elects this evil Obama president again, there will be consequences and heaven help us all.  If you read down in this chapter you will find what God says will happen:

Isa 5:24  Therefore as the fire devoureth the stubble, and the flame consumeth the chaff, so their root shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust: because they have cast away the law of the LORD of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.

These curses are because the people have abandoned the God of Israel and His Holy Word.  Major parts of the U.S. have just gone through a long drought that left the farmer’s crops and ranch industries decimated.   Do you think this is a chance accidental happenstance?  When a nation kills millions of babies and promotes gay life styles as the new normal I believe this opens the door for these types of events to occur.  Let’s end this Bible lesson with the conclusion of the Jesus vs. Barabbas vote:

Mat 27:24  When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.

Mat 27:25  Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children.

Pilate washes his hands of the matter and says this man’s blood is not on me.  The people of Israel declare let his murder and blood be upon us and our children.  In their minds they totally believed they were doing something good but their actions were not based upon any common sense or the truth of God.  Pilate could see it, do you see it?  I completely understand that God’s purpose was for Him to come to the earth and die.  I totally agree that God accomplished exactly His plan to the very detail.   However, if you believe that God manipulated the people and forced them to kill Him you are one of those confused people that believe God is a giant puppet master controller of our every move and that people lack any ability of choice.  God can use human nature without causing it to happen.  God knew what would happen before it happened so this is foreknowledge and not forced manipulation.  Unsaved people today have not really changed much have they?  They are still calling good evil and evil good.   Still killing good babies and letting murders walk free.  What was the outcome of this vote for Israel?  Did you realize that there was a consequence for their actions?

If you did not know it Israel was completely destroyed and leveled shortly after this event in history.  In the year 70 AD the entire city was decimated.  The natural nation of Israel ceased to exist for almost 1900 years after this.  The people of Israel were scattered broadly throughout the world and were continually oppressed and persecuted.  The curse that they placed upon themselves followed them from generation to generation.  It was not until the near extermination of the entire Jewish race under Hitler that prophecy began to come back into focus for this natural nation of people.  Do you think that rejecting the Word of God had anything to do with what happened to them in history?  Are there any parallels to what happened to the nation of Israel and what is happening here in the United States today?  I believe very strongly that there are many direct parallels and if we do not change quickly and embrace God and His Word as a nation again we will experience the same outcome.

So can you be a Christian and still vote for evil?  Can you be saved and ignore the Bible?  Can you vote against God and still be for God?  Seriously if you do not understand that this is not possible then your blood is not on my hands as I have already stated.  No not everything a Democrat does is evil and that is not my point here at all.  What you need to see is that it only takes a little bit of poison to kill an animal if it is mixed with a lot of good desirable food.   If Democrats were entirely evil people there would be no contest in this election, no one would vote for them.  But, since they lace their good deeds with poisonous intentions people are deceived in eating it all.  I have warned you, and I have sounded the alarm.   I am just one man on the wall willing to take the risk to blow an alarm sound of warning to the people of this nation.  You can do whatever you like going forward but the consequences will come for your vote for evil sooner than you realize.  This was the message that the Holy Spirit placed on my heart and I was just the messenger.  I pray that your eyes were opened and that I saved at least one person from deception.  If only one person was helped then it was worth all of my time and effort.  God bless and we will get back to the other Bible subjects as the Lord leads.

Is the Rapture of the Church Really Found in the Bible? Rapture Basics in Intelligent Design – Part 3

(Ver 1.2)  This is Part 3 in a series of advanced spiritual Bible lessons on the important subject of “Is the Rapture of the Church a Bible Truth”.  If you have not read from the first lesson I would highly recommend that you go and start your study review with “Part 1” and then continue in succession until today’s lesson.  I have been going through the steps for building a firm doctrinal foundation for the Biblical subject of rapture.  In the last lesson we explored 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 to begin our discovery process to what God was teaching the early church on the subject of being “caught up”.  The Greek word “harpazo” was correctly and clearly translated as “caught up” in this verse and this Greek word is just a synonymous term for the modern English word “rapture”.  We further explored at least 6 historical rapture events recorded in the Bible to verify that being “caught up” was not a fictional or manmade concept but it was given to us by God as a standard pattern in the Bible starting in Genesis and going all the way to Revelation.

As we have discovered, not every historical rapture event reported in the Bible was both physical and spiritual but still every example fulfilled the pattern for the sovereign display of the power of God to take a man suddenly out of the world.  Each of these recorded rapture events that I mentioned from the Bible were the divine intervention of a sovereign God that interrupted the normal course of human events for the selected few that were affected.   We learned several important lessons from these examples.  For example, we can clearly observe that when these events transpired, that the man selected by God was removed from the earth while all others remained on the earth to be left behind.  We can further learn from the study of these men taken up that each was considered to be righteous and not evil in the sight of God.  Every person recorded in the Bible that has already been raptured was a righteous man in good relationship with the almighty God.  I could not find where God takes up an unrighteous man from off of the face of the earth as a historical pattern.  If you know of one that I missed you are free to tell me about it.  From what I have seen all those that were taken up by God had the normal course of their life suddenly and instantly translated by divine designed interruption.  These are all very important patterns to apply and remember.  God will not take everyone in the next scheduled rapture event either and God will only be focused upon the righteous people as is revealed in these great Bible patterns.

From the six recorded historical rapture events we have found in the Bible, three were very clear examples of living breathing men leaving the earth in complete unified body and spirit form.  These three men were Enoch, Elijah and the risen from the dead Lord Jesus Christ.   We of course know that Jesus going up was different from Enoch and Elijah since Jesus had tasted death first but was then resurrected back to life before He went up to heaven in Acts 1.  It is important to distinguish this difference since Enoch and Elijah never tasted physical natural death and they were both taken up by God as they were walking with God like we who believe in rapture soon will be also.  We further know that neither Enoch nor Elijah had any power or control over what transpired.  However the Lord Jesus Christ went up under His own control and power at His own timing, but He was also God.    Enoch and Elijah establish a pattern that teaches us that every living being does not necessarily have to experience natural death to be taken into the presence of God.  These three divine transportations from the face of the earth prove the concept of rapture is absolutely true and more than possible beyond any doubt in my mind.   We further saw two examples of spiritual transportation to heaven to view things never seen by human men and these two described experiences were Paul and Isaiah.  Finally, we also saw another human man named Phillip in Acts that was transported physically and spiritually from one natural location to another natural location on the earth.  All of these clear examples prove that another event just like those can occur by God’s selected design.  We have not talked about the book of Revelation or any future rapture events yet but we will get there as the Bible study continues.

A FRESH LOOK AT 1 THESSALONIANS 4:16-17

1Th 4:16  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

1Th 4:17  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

Today in this Bible lesson I am going to do a few things very different than in the majority of my other Bible lessons.  I am going to attempt to go into more technical depth with the basic Bible rapture information found in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.  I plan to give you a brand new approach for Bible study.  This method will help you to see how I think about the subjects found within a Bible study.  I realize that not everyone is like me and I understand that completely.  We are all unique beings with differing life experiences, training, education and personalities.  So while I describe to you how I study the Bible I am not saying that you must be like me or you are wrong.  I hope that you keep this in mind as you read the rest of the lesson.  I will not attempt to promote my Bible Study method as being superior to anything that you do.  In fact after you read this lesson, please be brave to share how you study the Bible, I would love to hear about it in a comment.  My primary point here is that we all just need to study the Bible and if anyone can use anything from my methods and learn from them that is really great, but if you have another method that works for you then you be led by the Spirit of God and do it that way.

I believe that many people do not generally spend enough time when studying specific verses in the Bible.  I am going to focus today on 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 again to help some to learn that there is always more that we can get from reading the same verses over.  In fact, most of the greatest revelations that I have received from the Spirit of God has come only after I spent significant time reading the verses over and over and over again.  Sometimes after the 30th repetition of reading it slowly again, the Words on the page would suddenly come to life in my spirit and I would see something new that I had never seen before.   Even as I continue to meditate upon the verses and reread them I would again see something new that I had not seen before.  I have learned that God just works like this because humans are generally spiritual dull people requiring their minds to be renewed with the truth before being able to see what God is saying in the Bible.  It is also noteworthy to consider that because of the extreme intelligence of God, He is able to say significantly more in a few words than any human can say writing an entire book.  Usually this mind renewal process is not a onetime read it and we got it type of miracle.  Even if someone has a photographic memory and can immediately quote the verse that they just read does not mean that they understand what it said completely in their spirit.  You can even teach a parrot to quote the Bible but that bird will not understand what he is saying   I hope you understand these principles because they were very important points that I have learned from experience.

Let’s examine these Bible verses in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 and extract the primary stated nouns, verbs and adjectives.  This is actually a very good first step in any Bible study.  If you have never done this I would suggest that you put this into your study habits.  It will help us to be more detailed oriented when reading and it helps us stop at each word and consider why God has placed this word within the text.  Also, in doing this it will help explain how these words selected by God fit into a new way to study the Bible that I use constantly and I’ll talk more about this later.  A noun is a person, place or thing and is usually tangible in nature, recognizable within the 5 sense realm, but not always.  There certainly exist many intangible nouns beyond the 5 sense realm of the natural senses.  A verb is a part of speech that expresses existence, action, or occurrence and it is usually connected in relationship to the stated noun part of the sentence.  Finally, an adjective is a word or phrase of descriptive quality that modifies any given noun in the sentence.  An adjective almost always limits the qualified scope of the noun definition by providing us with specific descriptions, attributes or qualities of the specified noun.  I am going to give you a list of what I found in these two verses and I would like it if you would see if you can agree with me on these.  I certainly realize that I am not a perfect man and that I do not know everything so I am open to correction if you have very strong sound evidence for your belief and understanding of the these subjects.

 VERSE 

  ADJECTIVE 

  NOUN 

  VERB 

16   Lord Descend
16   Heaven  
16   Shout  
16   Voice  
16   Archangel  
16   Trump  
16   God  
16 Dead In Christ Rise
17   We  
17 Alive   (In Christ) implied    Caught Up 
17   Them  
17   Clouds  
17   Lord Meet
17   Air  
17   We Be With
17   Lord  

This list is certainly not every word identified in the verses, but I believe that they represent the major subjects, actions and descriptions being communicated.  Being a detailed person I like to consider the words like “the”, “and”, “with”, “in” and etc., but including all of these in this study would make the lesson considerably longer.   Correct Bible study involves much deeper digging beyond a simplistic one time surface reading and this is what I am attempting to demonstrate to you today.  I personally believe that one of the next steps to correct Bible study is for us to look up each original language word definition in a good dictionary like “Strong”, “Thayer” or others.  I have found from experience that Strong appears to be a good word definition source however I do not consider it a perfect book without errors or at least certain human bias.  For example, Strong names the natural land of Israel “Palestine” in many of its definitions and I disagree with that.  There has never been a nation of “Palestine” that I know of.  Strong may have had a good reason for doing this, but I have not found it yet and it seems to promote the modern Palestinian view that the land of Israel does not belong to the nation of Israel.  I will point out that when Dr. Strong published this book back in 1890 the nation of Israel did not technically exist until 1948 when they were again given parts of this land area and reestablished as a nation.   Therefore when the concordance was published he could have viewed this land as the land of Palestine even though that nation did not exist either.

I have found 16 major nouns and some of them are used more than once like “Lord” and “we”.  I have found at least 5 distinct verbs of described accomplishment or action.  The adjectives are mainly two words that are describing two different types of Christians, the physically dead and the physically alive.  To study this completely we would need to look up the definitions of every word in the original Greek language to insure our understanding is complete on the word’s usage and translation into English.  I do this to protect the accuracy of the translation and in doing this I have discovered many mistakes that the translators have made.  If you have not ever looked up the definitions of these words in a dictionary like Strong’s, I would strongly suggest that you spend the time and do it before continuing to read. I simply will not go into that level of detail on every word to keep this lesson from growing into a longer book form.

I will point out a few key words that are important in verse 16.  The Greek word G2962 translated as “Lord” means the supreme one in authority and can only be a reference to Jesus Christ.  Therefore Jesus is at the beginning of this described future event.  The Greek word G2597 translated as “descend” means to come down and we are told the originating location for the descent by the Greek word G3772 translated as “heaven” the abode of God as one possible rendition.  So far in this event we have the risen spiritual Jesus from spiritual heaven descending down towards the physical natural earth.  That represents two realms of existence and a transition between them taking place.  I’ll skip the “trump“, the “archangel”, the “voice” and the “shout” for now.  Let’s go down to the Greek word G3498 translated as “dead” and you will find that this Greek word G3498 means a literal corpse.  The next primary verb is the Greek word G450 translated as “rise” literally means to stand upright again.  Thus we have Jesus coming down and the corpses arising up.  These are very descriptive words and I do not understand how or why people explain them away but they do.

Let’s quickly review some of the other key words found in verse 17.  The Greek word G2249 translated as “we” is just a plural form of the personal pronoun “I”.  Therefore God’s usage of this word “we” represents a group of more than one.  We of course are not given a number of people in this group and it could be an open ended quantity anywhere from 2 to more than we could count.  Did you ever think about the term “we”?  What is it that allows many separate individual people to be grouped into a single named pronoun entity?  The answer to that question is they all must have something in common together or they are not a “we”.  Also notice that the writer’s usage of the term “we” includes “me” the author of the letter.  Paul was clearly including himself in the category by using “we” or “us” and not “them” or “they” which would have excluded Paul.  Who are all of these “we” people and what is it that all these individuals in this “we” group have in common in this verse with Paul the writer?  The answers to those questions are found in the adjective that follows the pronoun.

The next key word G2198 is used as an adjective description for the preceding pronoun “we” and it was translated as “alive”.  G2198 literally means “to live”.  Clearly we are observing the stated contrast of verse 16 the dead corpses from the living bodies of those that are described to “live” here on the earth in verse 17.  Always attempt to place what you are reading in any verse within the context of the surrounding verses.  This is just a general rule of sound Bible interpretation.   Then notice that Paul was obviously alive when he wrote this letter, so he was including himself in this group of living and excluding himself from the group of corpses previously mentioned.  However, that is still not sufficient information for us to conclude who Paul was referring to as the “we” in this sentence because of the “and” word that connects the additional point to the description.  This next connected subject was the word “remain”.   Who remains, who left and what does that mean?  The Greek word G4035 translated as “remain” literally means those “left behind”.  However this “remain” can only be clearly understood correctly within the context statement of the preceding verse. Verse 16 clearly speaks of the antithesis of those alive in verse 17.  In verse 16 Paul writes about those that were not only “dead” rising but then speaks why they rise because they were also “Dead-In-Christ”.  The “Dead-In-Christ” must have already departed the earth to be present with Christ Jesus or the inclusion of the word “remain” would not make any sense to have been present in the sentence.  Can you begin to see how God says so much using so few words?  The wisdom of God is way beyond human ability to have written this text.  Notice that both verse 16 and 17 are clearly talking about two types of contrasting Christians.  One Christian group has physically died and spiritually departed earth and the other Christian group is alive and remains behind on the earth.

Finally the next key verb found in verse 17 after the stated adjective and noun is the Greek verb “harpazo” that we have already looked at before and it just means in context “to be taken up by force or external divine power”.  This is just not that complicated until you listen to deceived people that are trying to explain it all away using satanically inspired human reasoning.  Satan attempts to use people to help others see things that are not being communicated in the verses, but the Holy Spirit will always point us to Jesus and the truth.  We have just spent a very short time reviewing some of the key words found in the text, but certainly not everyone.  I hope and pray that you are getting the idea of how to do this for yourself.  I would much rather teach you how to fish than just give you a fish to eat in my lesson.  I know I have said that before, but not everyone has read every lesson that I have published.

What should the next step in the process of correct Bible study?  All of these steps are open to debate, but my next step is usually to explore the Bible for where else each word is used in the Bible? I would recommend that we need to exert effort to discover God’s usage of each of these selected words in the verses we are studying to insure that God does not redefine the word in any other verse of the Bible.  I have discovered that God’s definitions are always true and man’s definitions are always wrong.  Also by examining the word usage we can have a greater confidence and a more complete understanding of the entire subject being discussed.  Only by examining every word usage can we be assured that what we are teaching and believing is correct.  Simply by ignoring just one key verse on any subject from the Bible, that lack of information can leave us void of the complete truth omitting the key elements of the topic.  I pray that you realize that many times a partial or incomplete truth is more deceptive than a complete or total lie.  Not balancing every scripture on a subject will cause someone to think they believe the entire truth when they do not.

I certainly understand that the number of times any given word is used by God can make the research of the subject more complex if there are a great number of references found.  For example, the Greek word G2962 which is translated as “Lord” is found in well over 600 verses of the N.T. alone. That is a bunch of verses to read for any study.  However, if you have any doubts to who this “Lord” represents in 1 Thessalonians 4:16 then you need to do that study to resolve any conflicts in your mind that it can be no one else but the God/Man Jesus Christ.  If after reading all 600+ verses and still not being able to confirm that this word references Jesus, then I would suggest that you get saved and get to know Him personally for yourself before you come back and study the Bible.

Some words in the Bible are used very frequently and that truly makes them challenging for us to go and read every occurrence.  I suggest that if the word usage is less than 100 verses that you take the time and read them all.  If it is used many more than 100 times then that is probably more time than you have to spend.  I guess it depends upon your effort that you wish to devote.  I have found the harder I work the more I am rewarded with finding good things that I did not know before.  Take the Greek word G2597 translated as “descend” in verse 16.  It is found in 80 verses of the N.T.  Many times it is translated as “come down”, “came down”, “descended”, “and descending”, etc.  In reading all of these verses it seems very consistent what it means and it helps us to understand the word in relation to the Lord noun being described coming down from heaven.  Perhaps you do not know where heaven is stated to be in the Bible?  That would be an excellent question for you to answer in your word search.  You are probably not going to find the answer directly in the N.T. but it is stated clearly in the O.T. in Isaiah for example:

Isa 14:13  For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:

We should be able to see that Satan is being revealed to make a statement about the placement of the throne of God in a realm called heaven.  Satan is obviously on the earth looking up and telling God what he will do to ascend up to raise himself above all the other angels (symbolic stars).  I also take it that the direction given is very relative to the direction of this throne and heaven.  North is the only stated reference to a physical direction, but even this is relative to the position of the earth during the earth’s tilt and cycle around the sun.  I personally believe that this is just a general direction of where heaven is revealed to be, since I have no proof for this location other than what the Bible says.  Therefore, I am not going to fight over it, if you choose to disagree with what I just said.  I will give you one other verse that appears to confirm what I just said about the location of heaven:

Psa 75:6  For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south.

As you can read every direction given is where “promotion” does not originate from.  Which direction is therefore implied to be the source for a human’s promotion?  It is obviously from the north again.  If you read the context of this verse it is clearly speaking about God’s location being the one that raises up one man and lowers another man’s position on the earth.  Therefore God the judge is stated to be seated in the North.  We could go into other verses, but that is not a primary part of the rapture message even though it helps to establish which direction He will be coming from.

Take the Greek word G2398 translated as “dead” in verse 16.  Here is a fascinating word that can teach us a lot that is found in 123 verses of the N.T.   But, interestingly enough this Greek word is consistently translated as the same English word “dead” in every single one of them.  That is a tremendous rarity to find in so many translated verses.  Normally a Greek word can be translated into several different English synonymous words and some of them might be a stretched application for the given verse.  However, in this Greek word translation example, we can be more confident that “dead” literally means “dead”.  By reading all of those other verses, you will discover that this Greek word is almost consistently used to describe the physical death of the natural body.  However, that is not actually true in every word usage found in the entire New Testament.  This becomes a clear example of why it is so important to read every verse to expand what this word can apply to.  Take for example Matthew 8:22 where Jesus is speaking to a young man and tells him “let the dead bury their dead” when asked if it was permissible for him to go and bury his own dead father.  Here we have an important revelation of two kinds of dead being described in a single verse.  Since it is impossible for physically dead people to bury physically dead people Jesus had to be speaking of a new type of death and I call this the spiritually dead people in the city burying the physically dead people that have died naturally.  I know this presents some brand new challenging information for you to deal with in all of your Bible study verses.  However, that is what is necessary to learn when studying the Bible.  What we have just observed is a very basic Bible fact that the same Greek or Hebrew word can be used to describe both a spiritual truth and a physical truth and we need to be able to determine which it is or we will be confused.  That becomes a great challenge for us in rightly dividing the Word of Truth to determine which realm is being referenced in any one verse (2 Tim 2:15).  We can normally do this by examining the source statement closely within the context of the surrounding verses.  I hope you understand this point that I just taught you.  It is a major stumbling block to many carnal Christians when they read the Bible seeing all of the words as being natural references only.

It is a good basic rule of interpretation to take the Bible literally first and then seek to understand it as being non-literal only if there is a major conflict for a literal revealed truth.  Since Jesus was literally speaking about a real funeral service of a literal dead natural man, these are easy to accept as being literal interpretations and not symbolic references.  However, when Jesus tells the young man to let the dead bury his father, this departs from natural logic and can only be a symbolic spiritual reference to people that are clearly implied not to be like Jesus or the disciple.  This is one of those types of verses that one needs to see what is implied but not directly stated.  Jesus did not volunteer to go and help bury the dead father, Jesus is implying that he is not dead physically or spiritually.  Since Jesus did not tell the young disciple to go bury his father, Jesus was implying this man was not dead physically or spiritually.  These are just very basic ways to look at scriptures correctly dividing spiritual things from natural things to understand what was being stated.  I truly hope that you understand this concept because this will be repeated in so many other verses and subjects of the Bible.

I’m not going to go through every word in these two verses, but I will go through one more as an example of what we should be looking for.  The Greek word G3507 translated as clouds in verse 17 is only found in only 22 other N.T. scriptures.  That is a very manageable number of verses to go and read them all slowly and in-depth.  I have discovered that sometimes the fewer the verses a word is used in the more likely they are to all be linked together for a greater divine purpose.  This Greek word literally means cloudiness or a cloud and it is translated this way consistently in every example verse that contains it.  It can be either singular or plural but that is really not that important.  I personally believe that almost every one of these verses has something to do with the rapture but I do not have the time in this lesson to expand upon them.  We will get to as many of them as we can in future lessons as I am led.

If you have not done this research with all of these words, I would suggest that you stop reading now and using your Bible search program go look up and read every verse with every word being used in these verses.  It would take me a great deal of writing to do that, so I will allow you to do it on your own and if you have any questions or comments with what you find, you are more than welcome to add them at the end of this lesson as a comment or question and I will attempt to respond as quickly as possible.  Keep in mind my list of nouns, verbs and adjectives because I will be referring to these as I continue with a new perspective on Bible study.  Let me quickly review a list of my basic Bible study steps.

  1. List every significant word and designate it to be a Noun, Verb, or Adjective.
  2. Using a dictionary look up the words found in the original languages to insure your understanding.
  3. Search for every occurrence of every word in a verse and read and study them to see how they fit into the entire subject being studied.

BASIC BIBLE RAPTURE CONCEPTS FOUND IN INTELLIGENT DESIGN

I am going to attempt to reveal how a former computer programmer logically thinks in simple black and white terms while observing the intelligent design found within the complex system of information found within the written Word of God.  I believe that God is the author of the entire Bible and that it was written down in 66 different books in a period of time over 1500+ years by 4o different prophets of God.  I further believe that God is supreme in all wisdom, knowledge and understanding.  I also believe that God is an omnipotent eternal Spirit.  Therefore I believe that the Bible contains the superior thoughts, actions, words and descriptions spoken by the superior knowledge, wisdom and understanding of the supreme Spirit of God.  Perhaps you have never thought of the Bible as being a very large complex system of divinely designed information.  However the existence today of hundreds and even thousands of church denominations in the world prove that few in the church agree with God on what the truth actually is in the Bible.  Did you notice how I phrased that last statement?  I did not say many do not agree with me or you or any other human opinion.  I said many do not agree with God.  Only God is true and everyone else is just potentially ignorant or confused.

The Bible is a book containing easily read natural plain text word data but still not very many can agree with what these simple words actually mean.  Why is that?  I believe that this failure to agree is largely based upon man’s introduction of their own “Human Opinion” or as it is referred to in the Bible, man’s “Private Interpretations” (2 Peter 1:20).  Private interpretations are defined as “Self” defined meanings completely separate from God’s intended purpose.  Ever since the Bible was created this has been man’s greatest weakness of not knowing the truth.  What Christians do not realize is that within the plain text words of historical accounts, genealogies, laws, commandments and instructions are found hidden threads of complex spiritual truths about a spiritual world that we have never seen or experienced fully yet.  The Bible contains such great detailed hidden spiritual information about this reality, but the carnal mind will never be able to see it or understand it while reading the Bible.  Most of the spiritual meaning is cloaked or covered beneath layers of parables, symbolism, allegorical content, Biblical typologies and many other methods that God uses to hide the information from plain natural view. Becoming spiritually “born-again” is the beginning to the process of obtaining the spiritual eyes to grow in mature spiritual “understanding” of the truth of God.

I want to ask you, do you believe that the Bible is a divinely created “Complex System” of information?  I guess the answer to that question should rest upon the definition of what a complex system represents.  So I’ll change the question to, what exactly is a “Complex System” and how should it be defined?  I believe that if you live in this world you are surrounded by a countless number of manmade and God created “complex systems”.  Whether God created or man created the complex system each has the same patterned characteristics.  Perhaps you have never thought about these concepts before and how they relate to the Bible.   We are surrounded by complex systems still there are a wide number of varying opinions to what a complex system represents and how it should be defined.  Rather than give you all of those varying opinions, I’m going to just stick with my viewpoint and tell you what I think about the subject based upon my experience and observation as a former computer professional.  I normally do not give out my opinion on things but I am going to make an exception for this discussion today.  You see by me giving you my opinion I am violating one of the main rules of Bible interpretation that teaches us we should not “privately interpret” anything.  I do hope that you understand that every opinion is nothing but a personal theory which is just another phrase for a private interpretation based upon ignorance of the subject under discussion.  However, since I have had vast experience with large scale computer system design and construction since the 1970’s, I feel that I am a bit more qualified to give an expert opinion on the subject than many others.  Please extend me some patience as I attempt to expound through a complicated subject.

Let’s start by looking up the antonym for the word complex.  If you do this you will find that the opposite of “complex” is the term “simple”.  By far the Bible is not a simple book.  Yes, the Bible has some simple statements in it, but I would strongly suggest that you go and read the books of Revelation and Daniel and find out how many mysteries you encounter on every page that cause you to scratch your head.  I find nothing simple about either one of these books.  There are so many Bible teachers teaching a completely different message from them that it is truly ridiculous.  I have concluded that the Bible cannot be considered a simple book and if you have read all of my other Bible lessons you should easily agree me.  Let’s then examine the synonyms of the term “complex” and learn from those.  According to the thesaurus the term “complex” has some of the following synonyms:

  1. Multifaceted
  2. Compound
  3. Composite
  4. Multipart
  5. Intricate
  6. Multilayered
  7. Many-sided

Wow, I really believe these words describe the Bible very accurately.  Think about what they say and then attempt to apply them to what you know about the Bible.  Now permit me to define the term “system”:

sys·tem/ˈsistəm/

Noun:
  1. A set of connected things or parts forming a complex whole,     in particular.
  2. A set of things     working together as parts of a mechanism or an interconnecting network.

We can learn a lot by reviewing word definitions.  The term “system” implies complex by definition.  The term “system” means that is found to be in multi-parts.  Is that the Bible? The Bible is 66 separate books written by 40 different humans.  Therefore this information alone causes the Bible to be a system of information.  A system is a set of connected things and the Bible is definitely a set of connected books.  A system is a set of lesser components that comprise a more complex whole purpose and this also describes the Bible precisely.  I really pray that you are beginning to see this already, but I’m going to go into it in more detail to help you..

Based upon my personal experience as a computer system operator, programmer and designer, I believe that a complex system is first any observable set of components that were created by an external intelligent source of thought, design and construction.  I further see that every complex system is created for a very specific given purpose.  No complex system exists today in the world apart from external intelligent interaction and purpose.  Did you hear what I said?  I will probably get some disagreement from deceived individuals, but since they cannot provide any proof for spontaneous intelligent design construction by random chance, I will stick with what the Bible says about God creating everything that we can see.  You see “spontaneous design construction” or as some ignorant people call it “evolution” cannot possibly occur.  Evolution is the increased complexity from non-complex components.  This belief in evolution violates the second known law of Thermodynamics.  This law teaches us that everything around us is in a state of decay which is the reversed antithesis of the force necessary to form it, evolve it or make it complex.  The second law of thermodynamics is a study of entropy.  Entropy is the measure of the degree of randomness or disorder of a given system.  What that teaches is that a complex system is anything that is more ordered than it is random.  We could also say that a complex system is anything with a much greater degree of non-randomness by external intelligent design influence.

Ok, so the laws of thermodynamics just gave us a pretty good introduction to what a complex system represents.  From that I believe I will give you my definition for a system in the relationship to a book like the Bible.  The Bible would represent a complex system because it contains a collection of intelligent non-random words with organized designed purpose for every part to contribute to the greater complex whole.  In other words since the Bible is not random word patterns on a page and can be used easily by any person with a basic education, it is a system of related parts of information and by definition a system.  Let me give you these points one more time:

  1. The Bible exists only because of externally influenced higher intelligence
  2. The Bible is not a random collection of unrelated words
  3. The Bible was written in distinct parts
  4. Every Word of the Bible has a specific designed purpose
  5. Within the books of the Bible is contained many multiple layers, parts, subjects, etc.

The substance, laws and organizational non-random structure found in our own universe did not suddenly appear from nothing as many fools would like us to believe.  The organization of a system from chaos or randomness would violate the laws of thermodynamics.  Just the existence of a vast expanding universe proves beyond any reasonable doubt that someone of greater ability external to this known system caused it to exist here.  This simply states that a designed system with rules and laws cannot create itself nor could any force within the system have created the system.  Randomness never creates non-randomness.  Dis-order never creates order.  This is really not that complicated, but so many get it easily mixed up with people’s words that are trying to deceive you.  The existence of a complex system simply means someone external to the system was the source of origination.

The universe is very much like a modern computer system.  A computer system is a complex machine with many organized laws, components and structured building blocks that all work together to fulfill a greater purpose.  The existence of a working computer system proves the existence of an external computer designer, a computer builder and a computer programmer that cannot be found to be physically present within the computer system.  No one with any intelligence would look at a computer and believe that it just evolved into being present on the earth.  Therefore, since I believe that the universe was created by God and if the Bible was also originated from this same God as is declared (2 Tim 3:16), then I believe that the Bible qualifies to potentially be another complex system of recorded information created by the same external greater intelligence.  The existence of one complex universe system pattern helps to establish the existence of another complex Bible system pattern.

I believe that the size of a system plays a major role in the complexity of the system.  From what I have observed the larger the system is, usually the greater the complexity of the system.  Let’s go back to the universe system example created by God.  The universe is such a vast complex system that it can only be imagined to its total size, its full content, its type of individual components, its understood composition, its total mass and its actual past point of origination.  Scientists are still today constantly discovering new facts concerning the known parts of the universe surrounding us.  In my humble opinion based upon just the size of our universe alone we all need to open our eyes to embrace the existence of a much greater intelligent creator being.  Many agnostics and atheists will reason against me, but I still stand with that belief since I have personally come to know Him for myself.

I think I will expand the definition of size and help you to see that not all created systems need to be light years in expanse in order to be complex.  The system can still be considered complex depending upon the number of components and sub-systems discovered in the system.  You see I view the human body to be a very complex system within itself.  Within this one system of very measurable size and weight are smaller immeasurable components called cells.  There can be millions, billions and even trillions of cells within the many parts of the human body.  Many have estimated somewhere between 5 and 50 trillion cells in the human body.  Wow, that makes our bodies a very complex system all by our self.  Take the human body system and underneath this main system there are many sub-components containing subordinate systems and objects with each being made from individual cells.  For example we have the neurological sub-system object, the respiration sub-system object, the digestive sub-system object, the circulatory sub-system object and on and on I could go.  Each sub-system can have further divisions of several layers of individual object components, like the heart, lung, kidney, stomach, etc.  The level of complexity can get very great.  We could transverse the entire human body system all the way down to the individual cell level, molecular level and even add in the very complex DNA system object components that are a complex system by themselves.   The existence of the human body system objects with so many interacting sub-object components working together for the single greater purpose and good of the whole object represents external intelligent design.  Truly the human body system is an ordered arrangement of functioning designed components and systems.  Any complex system lacking non-randomness or chaos is a very strong indicator of intelligent design and this proves the existence of a greater intelligent designer.  Of course I am referring to God as the design engineer and creator for the human body object.

I have just introduced you to another factor for the definition of a complex system.  A complex system has other dependent subordinate complex systems within it.  Systems within systems, systems depending upon other systems and all working together for a greater purpose, how can we even get our minds around all of this?  Maybe you do not understand this statement yet.  Let’s examine the created universe system again.   If the universe is a complete complex system as I believe it is, how many other systems also exist within this system and would our universe still exist in the same form without every single one of these being present?  I told you I was going to get really deep in this Bible study to cause you to think today.  One basic rule of intelligent system design is that the designer never adds anything that is unnecessary for the completion of the whole given purpose.  In other words what I am teaching is that in any well designed system every given observable component has a specific purpose even if that purpose is not fully disclosed or known.  The universe system can be divided into a multitude of galaxy systems and the galaxy systems can be further divided into a multitude of solar systems.  The earth resides within the Milky Way Galaxy system.  The sun that the earth revolves around is just one star of around 20 billion others in our galaxy alone.  Therefore, scientists generally do not have a clue to how many galaxies exist in our universe since they do not even know how many total stars there are in our single galaxy.  Wow, is that cool or what?  God created such a great place for us to exist in.

Our planet’s solar system is just one complex sub-system found within the greater universe system.  Let me ask you this question and I want you to really think about it.  If our solar system did not exist would the universe still exist in the same form and for the same purpose?  I do not believe that it would.  Let’s shift back to the computer system example that I was talking about previously.  Any large scale modern computer system is comprised of many designed dependent sub-system components.  Every sub-system component is essential to the entire process or it would not have been included in the design.  Many of these sub-system components are so critical to the whole process that the designers have built in a factor called redundancy.  Redundancy just means if one critical part of the sub-system fails another part of the sub-system takes over until the whole sub-system can be repaired to full working redundant capacity.  The existence of redundancy within many critical computer systems proves that the omission of any single sub-system causes the design of the whole system to fail.  Thus the failure or elimination of even one sub-system without redundancy will be catastrophic for the working of the whole greater process of the system.  If you think a manmade computer system is different than a God designed complex system of the universe you are a very deceived individual.  Man was created in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26) and what God does a man can only do on a smaller scale.  There is nothing new under the sun.

In any complex system in order to begin to understand it, one must be able to break down the whole information into lesser manageable components and sub-components.  Many times people get the complex Bible truths mixed up because they are missing the basic spiritual fundamental details that are spread out in specialized hidden designed formats in the Bible.  Any complex system with intelligent design should contain the ability to be analyzed and broken down into smaller manageable pieces that first need to be understood.  By understanding the smaller core pieces and parts we can more quickly learn about the more complex interactive purposes and parts of the entire system.  What I am trying to teach is that there are methods to learning the Bible and that these methods conform to known modern intelligent design procedures.  I am talking about a basic of life concept found all around us.

For example in order to correctly fix an automobile you better understand how it was built.  An automobile is a complex system with many dependent lesser complex systems working together to get the user to a desired location.  The automobile system has a cooling system, a power system, an electrical system, a transmission system, a braking system, an air conditioning system and many others.  In the car example the failure of the AC system will not stop the car from functioning.  This is a bit of a departure from what I said earlier.  However without an AC system the driver might die if they are going through a desert in the summer.  If any system of a car fails, someone needs to know what they are doing and how it works in order to fix it.  If you don’t believe me go and take apart your car’s transmission and see if it will ever work again.  God wrote the Bible using defined intelligent design principles and if we are to understand these words we must approach studying the Bible with the same level of intelligent analysis methods.

I am going to conclude this Bible lesson with a very deep application of mathematics and computer concepts and how they relate to the Bible.  If you are not into either one of these subjects this discussion might be less interesting to you because of the new level of complexity that I am introducing into an already complex subject.   I believe that God created these concepts such as math and computers for us to learn, use and to apply.  Every part of creation has a purpose just as every word of God has purpose.  Math and computers are certainly a part of God’s creation so they have a purpose whether you understand them right now or not.  Even if you have never studied these subjects you might just derive some added benefits if you attempt to learn some of the basics concepts for what they mean.

In 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, I introduced you to a new concept based upon the laws of mathematical sets but I never revealed to you why I was giving it any significant emphasis.  I am going to continue to reveal my behind the scene logical thought process for what I was teaching in the first two lessons.  Let me give you a quick definition for a mathematical set.  A mathematical set is a grouping of related well-defined but distinct individual objects with common characteristics or features.  A set is a very similar concept to the definition of a system in many regards.  An object is either an abstract or tangible “noun” that can be practically anything that is perceivable or observable.  If you noticed, I just connected back into the discussion the subject of “nouns” that we listed at the beginning of this lesson.  A tangible object noun is like a man, a city, a tree, an animal, a fork, a car, or whatever.  An abstract object noun is like an idea, a thought, a spirit, or an emotion, etc.  An intangible object is anything that is not perceived by the five natural senses and this is why I included the noun spirit.  However, a spirit can also manifest and be seen or felt within the natural realm as is recorded in the Bible.  In those instances the intangible spirit becomes a tangible object.

From my list of nouns in 1 Thessalonians most can be considered tangible objects.  God and Lord of course are generally intangible since no one can prove His existence with their physical senses.  Of this list of nouns, how many are qualified to be sets or groups of related individuals or things?   That is probably a new complex question to think about?  Hopefully you can see that “we”, “them”, “the dead in Christ”, “the alive in Christ” and the “clouds” are all words that have both plurality and commonality.  Thus these nouns being more than one yet referenced with a single noun, qualifies the group to be a mathematical set by definition.  Not every Bible study that I do will contain this level of detail.  So do not get discouraged if you are having any trouble following it.  Do the best you can and learn what you can and more understanding will eventually come.

Both intangible and tangible objects can be grouped together into a single named defined set based upon any known and well-defined relationship or characteristic.   For example, a group or set of related objects would be like a set of universal cars or automobiles.  This universal set might include every automobile ever created if so defined.  Each automobile in the set can be a unique object (noun) but they can also be grouped together into the set because they share many common characteristics and features becoming a new named object (noun) called “Universal Automobiles”.  That brings up a new set consideration called sub-sets.   A sub-set is just a smaller more well defined set of the car objects in the larger set.  That brings us into the world of “adjectives”, doesn’t it?  An adjective is nothing but a further subset limitation of a larger defined noun set.  For example we can have a “Universal Automobile” subset of just “Toyota Automobiles” because all of the cars in this subgroup were manufactured by Toyota and share that common trait.   What if we created a subset called “Red Automobiles”?  Uh oh that brings a new wrinkle into the discussion that gets more complex.  Red Automobiles now cross over into every car manufacturer including “Toyota Automobiles”.  Therefore a Red Toyota Automobile is a common member of both sets.  This is where multiple subsets can potentially overlap each other and share common objects.  A single named object just might be found in common with multiple subsets and we need to at least be aware of this possibility when we read and study the Bible.    Do you understand sets yet?  It gets more complicated than that simplistic introduction.

Let me review a few of these set laws that I have been going over very rapidly.  Each unique member object in a defined set will either be a totally separate noun object or another new subordinate subset object.  Every member object in a set or a subset is joined by the selected well-defined noun description or adjective qualifier commonality.  As long as this is true each member object can be legally included and named as one object in the set or subset.  However it is very important to note that one defined object does not exist multiple times in any one single set.  Also one member object does not exist in two different opposing separate sets.  For example, being in the “In-Christ” set is one of the common bonds that join every Christian that is saved together by God’s set definition.  Perhaps I did not give you enough scriptural information on Christians being in God’s set called “In-Christ”.  There are repeated scriptures written to the church that clearly state this fact and I will give you a few of them to help establish the truth in your mind:

Rom 8:2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

Rom 12:5  So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

1Co 15:22  For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.

2Co 5:17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Gal 3:28  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

I am not going to go through every verse and explain them.  Nor am I going to attempt to give you every verse that says we (the church) are all in this mathematical set called those “In-Christ”.  However, I just listed some key verses that I felt were applicable to the topic discussion.  For example, look at the first verse found in Romans 8:2.  This verse declares a new spiritual law of life that opposes the old law of sin and death.  In effect God is revealing two sets of opposition.  I believe that these are those in Christ verses those out of Christ.  Then notice how in Romans 12:5 and Galatians 3:28 that Paul is clearly stating that we as many separate individuals are now referenced to be one “In-Christ”.  Those were mathematical set laws being stated whether you presently understand them or not.  Many times in the Bible God will say some of the most profound things in passing without any given explanation to what was just said.  I hope that you can see the stated fact that all Christians today are in the God defined set called “IN-CHRIST”.

Let us consider that there are multiple defined sets in existence in the Bible.  I personally believe that any plural noun reference in the Bible is a defined set.  We certainly all know that the O.T. nation of Israel is a predominate set of people described intimately in the Bible.  This set of people excludes every other person not of this nation.  Therefore the people not in this natural nation of Israel were another set called “Gentile”.  One set was in covenant with God and the other set was not.   If the saved church is now defined by God to be in the “In-Christ” set, where were we found to be before we were added to this new group?  Uh oh, maybe you have never thought this way before?  Theoretically we could have been in no other set but I rather believe that we were in either the set called “Gentile” or “Israel” which included everyone.  I personally believe that everyone in the world is in a defined set found within the Bible.  Determining the set is another new complex study.   However, I just alluded to this fact in the last paragraph when I reviewed Romans 8:2.  I believe that those now found “In-Christ” came from an unstated set of those that were “Out-Christ”.  Don’t start picking up any stones to throw at me yet, I’m not done.

You must understand that if God can name and define one set that there is no limit to the number of defined sets that God can use for His purpose, don’t you?  Please allow me to introduce you to a new important concept.  There is a very popular law of Bible interpretation that I call the “Law of Antithesis”.  This law states for every directly named truth in the Bible there exists an opposite truth position by unstated implied antithesis.  It is very much like reading about the subject of light and knowing that the opposite of light is the absence of light and that this is called darkness even if it was never directly mentioned or referenced in the verse it still exists somewhere.  In other words what was stated as truth for light in the verse, the opposite is implied to be truth for the unstated antithesis darkness.  Do you understand opposites?   In our current world there will always be opposing forces; evil opposing good, death opposing life, darkness opposing light, drought opposing rain, storms opposing calm and we could go on and on.  This antithesis fact came as a result of the choice that Adam made in Genesis 3 when he allowed the evil to enter the world after God had created everything in a state of being called “very good” and warned Adam not to do it.

Antithesis truths are a very common binary computer concept.  Every computer in the world is a binary machine.  What is a binary machine?   A binary machine is one where the basic most simplistic unit of definition can only be one of two states of opposite.  The lowest and simplest form of every computer device is called a “bit” unit.  A bit is the rudimentary binary computer element that is assigned either one of two opposing force settings.  A bit is either defined as a 1 (one) or as a 0 (zero) thus a computer is called a binary machine.  However, modern computers are comprised of millions, billions and even trillions of these single bit binary units. These simple single bits can be combined and grouped together to form more complex number concepts and objects such as bytes, words, double words, etc.  However the basis of every computer is still a simple solitary unit of either one or zero.  Combining multiple bits only facilitates larger binary numbers to be formed.  For example, an 8 bit binary number can be anywhere from 0000000 to 11111111.  These represent the numbers from 0 to 255.  In order to make larger numbers you must add more bits for more 1’s and 0’s.  This binary concept corresponds to a simple toggle switch that can be turned on or shut off.  Therefore, a bit is nothing but a binary electronic switch.   The laws of antithesis and computer binary concepts are very prominently featured within God’s intelligent Bible design.  Keep this information in your mind as we continue to study the subject.

In this discussion a mathematical set consisting of many individual objects can also be considered a complete self-contained object within itself as I alluded to earlier when discussing the set “In-Christ”.  Therefore using mathematical set concepts we have an important idea of many individuals being viewed as a collective named one.  The many being named as a one is another very popular concept found throughout the Bible and I pray that you are beginning to understand it.  The nation of Israel was many people but only one named wife to God in the Old Covenant.  The church of the risen Jesus Christ is also many people but still one named bride in the New Covenant.

I am taking these well-known mathematical facts and transferring them into my Bible study.  For example I taught you about the existence of the mathematical set of saved believers that God called those “IN-CHRIST”.  Every individual believer when they believed and accepted Jesus into their hearts to make Him their personal Lord and Savior enters into this common single object group having left their previous unnamed antithesis object group.  This set transformation is a single individual exiting or departing from a former set of many entering into as a new individual a new many set called “In-Christ”.   What I just described is God’s definition of marriage if you did not put that together yet.   When a man marries a woman, they both leave their former family sets to be joined together to become a new family set that never existed before and God defined them to be a new one (Genesis 2:24).  It is critical that you understand this simple but profound information.  Do you recall that I gave you 2 Corinthians 5:7 in my list of “In-Christ” verses?  What did that verse say?  It said if any man be “In-Christ” he is a new creature and the old things have passed away.  That verse teaches us set transition is possible with God.  We can leave the old set and become a member of a new set that never existed before called “In-Christ”.

By the defined existence of the saved group called those “IN-CHRIST” God has indirectly implied the presence of another unstated antithesis group of unsaved people in the world that we could call those “NOT-IN-CHRIST” or the “OUT-CHRIST” object group or set.  I hope you understand the concept for Biblical antithesis truths by now.  God teaches us by using a named noun set that there is a limitation to the scope of the objects in the named set.  If it was as the Universal Salvationist’s try to teach us that all will be saved, God would not have needed to create a named set called those “In-Christ” that excludes those that do not qualify.  No, I’m going to say this one more time that the existence of those that are “IN-CHRIST” clearly reveal the existence of those that are “NOT-IN-CHRIST”.   Jesus taught us these unstated concepts of set truths repeatedly in the Gospels using the wide path and narrow path example, the sheep and goat example and the wheat and the tare example.  All of these were single named symbolic sets with two opposing sets of many individual member objects.  Every parable mentioned was a binary teaching concept where only two states of existence persist.   Therefore sets and binary concepts are a prevalent themed subject in the Bible even if you never thought of them in these terms before.

I taught you previously that underneath this common set called those “IN-CHRIST” are two separate divinely defined sub-sets that I will call the “DEAD-IN-CHRIST” and the “ALIVE-IN-CHRIST”.   As you recall any set of collected objects can be sub-divided into further defined object groupings based upon selected and further defined commonalities.  In this case being dead or alive physically determines which sub-set you are currently in and if you are reading this lesson I will tell you that you are in the “alive” sub-set.  This is a major component to what God is teaching in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.   Try to understand how I arrived at the existence of these sets and then consider the existence of the antithesis set “OUT-CHRIST”.  Logically speaking, if the “ALIVE” and “DEAD” subsets exist within the “IN-CHRIST” set then the same must also exist in the “OUT-CHRIST” set.  These are all new concepts for you to grasp today.  All of these concepts conform to the mathematical laws created by God and are easily recognizable when you apply the laws logically to the scriptures.  If you do not understand basic Algebra, Geometry and math concepts you probably do not understand much about how I arrived at these conclusions.  Let me give you a quick picture diagram of these concepts that I have just given to you.

I probably do not have many readers that really understand computers and especially object oriented programming (OOP) concepts but I do know that I have a few that read my lessons that do.  This diagram shows a hierarchy of related objects.  OOP is not something that is required to understand the Bible but I have found that it is a good subject to know if you can grasp the complex ideas.  You see in modern computer programming there is a similar concept like math sets and sub-sets called objects.  An object in computer programming is a thing that performs a related set of defined tasks for the greater purpose of the system.  We’re back to talking about systems again.  I am still linking together all of the concepts using related titles and named entities to teach how these concepts overlap.  You see we are again speaking about one complex system within another greater complex system.  The computer that a program is running on is just one greater complex system and the application sub-system designed to do the corporate accounting runs beneath the computer system.

If you were programming a banking system in OOP, an object might be a single customer of the bank, or even one account of the customer of the bank or any other related defined banking noun.  Generally speaking programming objects are always nouns that have verb activities associated with them called methods or actions.  For example any customer object can change their address, create a new account, make a deposit, make a withdrawal, make a payment or perform any other normal banking activity. These are all verb actions performed by a banking object noun.  An object can also possess defined attributes.  A defined attribute is just like a descriptive adjective.  It is interesting to note than almost any adjective can also be a noun.  For example, a banking customer object will probably contain their name and address information as well as their date of birth, sex, tax ID and other pertinent personal identifying information.  Attributes of an object clearly identify the object and make it unique from other types of the same object.   I just tied into the discussion OOP the round trip with the beginning noun, verbs and adjectives from 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.  Can you see how all of these concepts are coming together yet?  We have gone from systems, to sets and now to objects and each possess the same characteristics and basic features.

So with every associated programming object we have a unique noun named entity that can perform specific things and be described with details that cause them to be unique from all other similar noun objects in the set.  I’m not sure how detailed I should get with this but I will teach you about another OOP concept called a class.  Every computer object is created from a class that is used to define the object its features and its designed actions.  While every object of the same type can be unique they are generally all created from the same class definition.  Therefore a “class” is nothing but a blue-print pattern used to create the unique noun object.  Wow, that is a God kind of realization if I’ve ever heard of one.  Patterns are a basic truth found in every part of the Bible.  Objects being created from class patterns are another basic reality found in every part of the Bible.  What I am doing is teaching you of the existence of God’s intelligent design concepts found in His Word using naturally created patterns found all around us.

One more complex concept found In OOP is that one object can inherit characteristics and features from another object’s class.  For example, a cell is a common human body object that is shared within almost every human component or object.  Therefore in the human body system we could have a basic cell object that every other system objects inherits from.  The complexity of object definition, object commonalities and object interaction can get very complex especially in a very large system like the human body.  Why am I teaching computer programming concepts and methods?  It is primarily because I see these complex concepts repeated by God in the Bible.  I am praying that you can see how your Bible is a very large complex system containing both antithesis and related word objects that I will call God’s Bible subjects.  These subjects have defined attributes, characteristics and limitations that I call “adjectives”.  These God given defined Bible subjects also can perform certain designed actions that I will call “verbs”.  All of these interact together with each other in a highly complex intelligent designed manner to achieve the greater message purpose revealed in the Holy Bible.  This is one of the central features of the Bible that makes it unlike any other created book ever conceived or written by a human.  It clearly demonstrates the characteristics of extreme intelligent design beyond the human capability to produce or even fully understand and when you see it, it proves the existence of a very intelligent author.

Let’s talk about the Bible object (subject) called man (Hebrew word H120 in the Strong’s).  I of course am using this term man to include both natural males and females in a generic object I could call “Mankind”.  Under this object type we could sub divide it into two specialized object types called the male and the female objects using the naturalistic perspective view.  Here is where I want to emphasize a change in your Bible perspective to include the spiritual viewpoint.   When you read the Bible looking at only the words from a natural perspective you will find only natural truths being communicated.  The spiritual truths are generally found within the same verses but deeper within the text than on the surface.   Perhaps you do not understand how one verse can project multiple or simultaneous messages.  If you do not understand this then you have probably not read and studied the Bible for very long.  I can read a verse that I have read for hundreds of times and suddenly in my spirit I see something that I had never observed before and the meaning is suddenly very clear now.  Explaining how you missed it before is a total mystery to most Christians.  What happened to cause this?  How can one person see something in a verse that the other person reading the same words cannot see? The answer to those questions is called God’s revelation or revealing of the words so that someone can finally see what was written there on the page from the beginning.   This fact is the main reason why God had to “reveal” the Old Testament to Paul and the other disciples even though they had read or heard the words all of their lives.   The New Testament has many, many quoted Old Testament verses with God’s explanations of what they finally mean.  One of my greatest frustrations is when people quote me Old Testament verses and they have not researched the New Testament information that explains them.  I run into this more often than I would like to admit.  When I try to tell them what the New Testament says, they close their spiritual eyes and refuse to be open to what God is saying.  The only thing that I can do after that is pray for them like Paul prayed for the church at Ephesus in chapter 1 of Ephesians.  Paul prayed for God to open their spiritual eyes of their understanding.  Go read this prayer and find out that Paul asked God to give them the revelation of Jesus Christ.  “Revelation” is God uncovering the words on the page so that they can be finally clearly understood.  If you have not prayed that for yourself, then do it!

Instead of a natural viewpoint let’s change the human object type “Mankind” into defined spiritual sub-divisions like I did in the previous diagram.  When confronted with Bible subjects I prefer to look at things from a spiritual God perspective first rather than from a natural human perspective.  We should understand that God is a Spirit and that God is the author.  When we try to look at the words from the perspective of how God looks at the words I believe that we come closer to seeing the truth.  There are probably not very many Bible teachers that would agree with me since so many are carnally minded.  One spiritual sub-division or object type of man would be the “IN-CHRIST” saved type of man.  We can clearly see from the Bible that not every human is in this defined object noun set.  This only leaves those that are not saved in the “NOT-IN-CHRIST” object type category.  Both the “IN-CHRIST” and the “NOT-IN-CHRIST” objects can inherit common characteristics and features from the greater “Mankind” object or class pattern.  However each new object type can also implement new individual characteristics or properties that are only common and in effect with the other named object types that are derived from this same object class pattern.  For example the “IN-CHRIST” object will be defined with a “SAVED” property and the “OUT-CHRIST” object will be defined to have a “LOST” property.  You just never know what you might learn when you read my Bible studies.  I try not to get this deep in most of my lessons but sometimes I believe that is just good for me to make you think outside of your box.

If we take this object lesson up the ladder from the “Mankind” object this human object that was created by God will inherit all of their spiritual characteristics from their creator class according to Genesis 1:26.  Mankind made in the image and likeness of God causes the man object class to inherit from the greater spiritual God object class but the spiritual God object class inherits from no one else being supreme.  That is until the Jesus Object class comes along and He inherited from both the God object class and the Adam/Man object class equally to become a new God Man.  I really believe I shock people sometimes because they do not think when they read the Bible.  Only Jesus was 100% God and 100% man.  Only Jesus called himself the Son of God and the Son of Man.  Only Jesus was a unique product of the naturally created and the divinely spiritual.  Only Jesus was qualified to save us by inheriting from two separate opposing natures.  If you disagree with what I have said you are free to be wrong and I will not argue with you.

Ok let’s move down below the “IN-CHRIST” object in the linked diagram.  We learned in 1 Thessalonians 14 that the IN-CHRIST object has been sub-divided by God into 2 binary antithesis subsets. These two were the “DEAD-IN-CHRIST” and the “ALIVE-IN-CHRIST” and both of these are unique qualifications that allow each to be treated differently by God at the rapture event.  Both of these object groups inherit common characteristics from the greater “IN-CHRIST” saved object type which inherits from the greater “Man” object class which inherits from the greatest “God” object class.   Understand the basic quality of the two groups of “DEAD” or “ALIVE” are speaking of the physical natural death or life respectively and not a spiritual feature.  The “In-Christ” object must contain the quality of spiritual eternal life already based upon what Jesus taught in John 3:15 that whosoever believes upon Him would not perish but have eternal life.  Right there Jesus is speaking about all those that are either physically alive or physically dead that believe in Him will have spiritual eternal life.  Therefore placing the verse in the proper context will align the words with those found in the saved “In-Christ” class.  It further goes on in John 3:15 and states that those that do not believe are those that “perish” and again this is a universal quality reserved for the “OUT-CHRIST” class of objects beings.   This is not good news for these people.

Let’s discuss in more detail the differences between the “DEAD-IN-CHRIST” and the “ALIVE-IN-CHRIST” objects.  The “DEAD-IN-CHRIST” objects must have a change of classification with the departure or the separation from their natural physical bodies.  The “ALIVE-IN-CHRIST” objects are still physically here on the earth and they remain present in their physical bodies.  The “DEAD-IN-CHRIST” objects have experienced natural death while the “ALIVE-IN-CHRIST” object types have not.  Once the naturally dead Christian departs they cannot die physically again.  Also both subsets are spiritually alive but one is in the body while the other is not in their body.  Using basic logic I have concluded that these two object types must also exist under the “OUT-CHRIST” object.  This is not rocket science we know saved and unsaved people both physically die by the story that Jesus taught in Luke 16.  However the departure from the body of the unsaved object will result in a much different location change to that of hell and not heaven like the “DEAD-IN-CHRIST”.  It is also interesting to note that the “ALIVE-OUT-CHRSIT” object types still can get saved and be changed to become an “IN-CHRIST” object and this results in a different future destiny completely.  The “DEAD-OUT-CHRIST” objects do not have any further opportunity to be saved once present in hell.  Maybe you can see why I like computer programming and why I can see things like this in the Bible.  If not don’t get upset at me, just keep learning whatever you can accept.  There are many other more complex things built into object oriented programming but I will not get into any of this in any more depth so that I do not totally bore anyone else that does not understand the importance.

Why have I spent so much time describing noun, verbs, adjectives, systems, sets and objects?  I use these complex realities whenever I study the Bible.  I read a verse and I analyze the words and then ask what are the objects given by God in this verse?  I then think why does this object exist?  Where did this object come from?  What does this object represent?  Does this object inherit any characteristics or features from any other Bible object?  Is this object a set or sub-set?  Does this object fit any known patterns in other verses of the Bible?  How does this Bible object differ from other Bible objects?  What features are presently in common and which features are unique?  Also remember that an object is just one member in a set.  How did the set get created?   How do members come to exist in that set and what are the benefits or pitfalls of being a member of that set?  We could finally determine, does this object have an antithesis related object?  So many questions to ask and I just really broke the surface of them all.

According to 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, rapture is a select activity performed by God which is reserved for a well-defined subset of objects within the greater set of all human beings.  In order to qualify for rapture described in these verses the individual must be found in the given set that will meet the requirements.  This teaches us that those not raptured are excluded from the event being described.   From the 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 information we are given only one very specific set that qualifies for rapture in the description.  This set that qualified for the rapture was the “ALIVE-IN-CHRIST” believers and it excluded everyone else.  Everyone else not raptured were in the sets called the “DEAD-IN-CHRIST” and all members in the “OUT-CHRIST” set.  The “DEAD-IN-CHRIST” did rise bodily but since their spirits were already present in heaven they do not qualify for rapture (harpazo).  Please notice in these verses that there is no mention of those outside of the set of “ALIVE-IN-CHRIST” being taken up and off of the earth at this timed scheduled event.  That is a very important detail to consider.  Learn from what the Bible says and then apply correctly what it does not say also.  Selective and exclusionary rapture is a pre-established pattern found in the Bible found in the lives of Enoch, Elijah and Jesus.  These were all taken up and all of the others on the earth were left behind to remain.  This is a very key point to distinguish.  Not everyone is going up in this prophesied event being described in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.

I totally believe that I have blown the minds of many of my readers.  I will conclude this lesson here so that I can allow you to think about the many facets of the information that I have presented.  If you like this style of detail you are free to tell me, but more than likely I will not go into this level of detail in the future on this subject of rapture.  In the next lesson I will attempt to get back to more of the standard types of Bible lessons that I have been doing for several years.  I just wanted you learn how I think and by doing this it might just help you to see why I write things in the style that I do.  Thank you for your time in reading and I greatly appreciate it if you would help point someone else to my website.  God Bless you until the next time I can get a lesson out.

If you would like to continue the study in this series on Rapture please go to “Part 4“.

Is the Rapture of