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37. May 1. Are we perfect and free from sin because we are saved? Do we ever lose this perfection? Are we not supposed to see perfection in the entire human race? Marie – Fulham, London


Yes, salvation is a perfect spiritual work gained for us on the cross. Perfect because of whom He is in us. Salvation, spiritually speaking is a person, Christ Jesus the Lord. You ask - Do we ever lose this perfection? The Bible says "that He will never leave us or forsake us". In other words our Heavenly Father is pro-life, He never aborts the Seed (JESUS) that He sowed in us at the moment of re-generation.

Again you ask - are we not supposed to see perfection in the entire human race? No, perfection is available to the whole human race but only those who have believed on the Son have Eternal Life. A person must choose who he/she allows, by free will choice, to live in him, either the Old Man (Satan) or the New Man (Christ). 1 John
5:12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life”. 1 Cor. 3:16 “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God , and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you”? Hebrews 13:5” Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee”.


38. May 2. My family hates me because of Christ, they no longer care for me, I have to leave school because of non payment of school fees. I have no peace, no joy and no happiness in me. What do I do? Caleb - Nigeria

Your stand for Christ is the shining star in your life. Stay fixed in your mind that the decision you made to accept Christ as your personal Lord and Saviour is the right one. Continue to seek the Kingdom, which is within you, by holding the Head - Christ. This is accomplished through keeping His words found in the Bible, in mind. Rom 14:17 "For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost".

Pray for your family and ask the Holy Spirit to convict them of sin. John 16:8 "And when he is come, he will reprove (convict) the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment".

Obviously your family are not (as yet) born-again believers so your fight is not against them but the anti- Christ spirit the rules them. Luke 8:21 "And he answered and said unto them, my mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it".

Lastly Caleb encourage yourself in the Lord and keep your faith centered on Him, who is in you, to pull you through each and every trial that you will face as a believer living in this world.


39. May 3. Please tell me if the Israelites were God’s chosen people, and if so why? Chester Rockdale - USA

Yes, the Israelites were God’s chosen people to be the means to reach the Gentile world with the knowledge of the Invisible God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. However that favoured status ended at Acts 28:28 "Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it".

In this present Dispensation of Grace both Jew and Gentile must come to know Christ as the head of the New Creation by believing on the Lord Jesus which brings about the new birth that born-again experience.
 
2 Cor
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”.

God’s hand is still upon the Jewish people and soon their rejections of Jesus, as a Nation, will end and they shall receive Him as their King and Messiah. To be anti-Israel regarding their God given rights to exist as a Nation, is to show one’s hand as a Christ rejecting individual or group or nation.

We are not necessarily asked by God to agree with or condone the Jewish people regarding their customs, manners, morals or traditions.  However to try to overthrow, by any means whether militarily, politically or sabotage, Gods choice of who He calls His wife is another matter. If God decides to divorce her, whom He did, it is still God dealing with a Nation of His choosing under a covenant that will during the Millennium be fulfilled by Him.

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40. Regarding 1 COR 11 Did Paul make any doctrine on women covering their hair? And what is the correct position?
BABALOLA -
LAGOS STATE NIGERIA

Paul had a difficult task in his teachings in that there were, and still are, so many different customs to deal with among people and the respective churches. That's why he said "Judge in yourselves". A women's hair, as a covering in itself, is sufficient as far as Paul states in vs.15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering”. However your church culture might not agree with that as it goes on to say But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God and that is where your personal judgment based on the WORD comes in.

Most head coverings seen on women today in churches would indicate a more legalistic approach to the scriptures. Today in the dispensation of Grace we can come, male and female as there is no difference “In Christ”. In fact we are told to come boldly unto the throne room of Grace. Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need”.

To come that way in a ‘Grace approach’ would necessitate an open face or non-legalistic entrance into His presence. To come veiled would suggest an individual still with an legalistic mindset, not yet realizing that the way into His presence has been made available by the one perfect sacrifice of the lamb of God - Jesus Christ of Nazareth.


41. What more can I do to be empowered by the Holy Spirit, so that I can improve my ministry and take my city for Christ? Francis – Camden Town

Your desire to improve your ministry ability and reach your city is a good one. However, you’ve got to come at it from the right direction. Ask yourself this question - is the Holy Spirit’s ministry to make me a great minister within myself? I doubt it. In our zeal to win the lost we are prone to overlook the reality of the in-dwelling Christ, who is to be the power and the wisdom in our entire ministry endeavours.

Inadvertently we pervert the ministry of the Holy Spirit by trying to get Him to empower us to do great things for God. Jesus said over and over again that the Holy Spirit is the Comforter and the One who has come along side to TEACH us something; and that He’ll lead us into all truth.  John 14:25-26 These things have I spoken unto you…. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you”.

The Holy Spirit wants us to know that Christ is the Evangelist is in us; the Healer is in us; the Pastor is in us. Christ is all these things, in us. You and I simply are the containers of His all-ness, so we no longer try to improve the container to be something other than what it is, but rather seek to know Him and the power of His resurrection. 

Let me encourage you to wait on Him and learn to be busy where He is already busy working, to save the lost in your part of town.

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42. May 6. I’ve heard some people teach about the Rapture, but that word isn’t in the bible and I find it hard to get my head around it as it sounds so laughable! Stella – Cambridge

"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: 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.” Thess 4:16-17. The bible says encourage one another with this promise and all we do is disparage the whole thing as fiction.

We could also ridicule the Bible account in Gen 5:24 of Enoch’s departure And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

  How about laughing at the description of Elijah’s exit from this world in 2Ki 2 :11 behold, there appeared a chariot of fire …and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.

Then there’s the story of Philip in Acts 8:39 And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more”.

  How about Jesus’ own departure in Acts 1:9. And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight

Why is it so preposterous for a future similar event, regarding the body of Christ, soon to take place, when there are so many past “catching away” accounts in the Bible that have happened to others?

Just because it sounds strange doesn’t mean it won’t happen. Things change (ever hear about dinosaurs?) and they are going to change again dramatically.

Even if miracles were evident at every evangelistic meeting it still wouldn't be enough to convince the doubters. That blind eye opening caught on camera would be labelled as trick photography.

The healing side of the ministry of Jesus of Nazareth was specifically to the Jew to make an unmistakeably impression on them that He was their promised Messiah. The greatest miracle in this church age is when the Holy Spirit convicts a person of their sin and the need to receive Christ as their personal saviour, causing them to be born-again.

When the emphasis in preaching is always to see outer miracles to prove that God is real, we lose the very thing that is important, which is for a Christian's mind to be renewed to fact of the in-dwelling Christ.

Without renewing the mind to the "isness" of God, we can witness people being raised from the dead and still be ignorant to the "good, acceptable and perfect will of God". Outer miracles are impressive but possibly can hinder a person from receiving an inner knowing and that's why Paul the Apostle said, 'know this'; 'knowing that'" "keep in memory"; "looking not unto the things that are seen but the things that are not seen" and "holding the head'.

I still lay hands on the sick in my meetings and expect the "gift of healings" to be operational. But what's more important in my estimation is having the power of the Spirit in manifestation whereby the light of revelation truth is operating in the minds of the hearers. 300


43. Every programme I’ve started in my church has failed. Whether a bible study, group or an outreach event. What am I doing wrong? Jonathan - Walthamstow

Did you have ‘His planning permission’ to begin with? God first gives the planning permission then we get busy. This permission comes by revelation, by hearing His will in every matter pertaining to “Kingdom” building. “And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. John 10:4

The art of being a good builder of ‘God things’, is to wait on Him. Otherwise we proceed and build and then God say’s to us one day, “Hey, let’s pull this thing down, I never gave you permission.” That could be a bit tough! This is a hard lesson for us to learn. The bible says that all of our works will one day berevealed by fire and the day shall declare it, whether it’s of God’s consent or not. That which is without God’s permission, the hay, wood and stubble of human works, will be burnt up. The only thing that will be left will be the gold, silver and precious stones of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

That which is of Him will last and be allowed to stand. So be careful, the bible says, how you build. Here’s the foundation, 1 Cor 3:11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. He first initiates what He wants done, by the insight He imparts, and then expects us to go ahead and build.


44. I’m stuck in a job which I don’t like and I’ve got so much I can do for God. It seems that wasted years have gone by and I feel like He’s forgotten about me. Why doesn’t he hurry up? Julia – San Diego

We all need to learn to wait on Him and not to be hasty, because we serve a “God of patience”. Psalm 46:10 Be still and know that I am God is a scripture that I have had to look at and contemplate for many years. In fact I placed it, in a little picture frame, on top of my computer to remind me daily not to allow haste to be my model for living.

God has a purpose for every one of his children, 2 Tim 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace… Therefore, it’s what He wants to do, in and through you, and not what you want to do ‘for God’ that’s important

The bible says that in Satan was found “violence” before he was kicked out of Heaven. Eze 28:16By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence”. Violence is an Old English word which means ‘haste’ therefore all that Satan has within himself to give anyone is haste, the opposite of what God is.

The devil is a “hurry up” kind of guy: He persuades you to think “You’ve got to get it now, quick or else its over.”  We have been speed trained by the god of this world to ‘crack things up’, to ‘do something’ even though the excessive effort can lead to burn out. That’s the world’s way of doing things, rushing about and trying to make things happen.


45. Should Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount be a good guide for living?

As a guide for living, under this present ‘Dispensation of Grace’ it wouldn’t be fitting. As born-again Christians, we are expected to live by the Christ who is in us, who is our only life, and not by ‘doing’ or keeping Law as did the Jews previously.
 

Jesus used this sermon back then, to those under the ‘Dispensation of Law’, to trap the ‘holier than thou’ in their deceit. Listening to Jesus were not only the common folk but the scribes and Pharisees whose intention was to trap Jesus by His words. These He called ‘hypocrites’ and kept His harshest sentences for them. He told them they would cross an ocean to convert someone to their religion, but they themselves didn’t keep the Law.

  Living under the Law was easy compared to what Jesus laid down for them to ‘do’ in His Sermon on the Mount. He was upping the ante, by adding to the Law, and making it an even further impossibility for anyone to keep. To top it all of, in case there still was a diehard ‘hypocrite’ left thinking that he kept the Law perfectly, Jesus delivers the ‘Coup de Grace’ by saying “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect Mat 5:1:48. Keeping the Law perfectly was one charade they could maintain somewhat, but ‘Perfect‘ as the Father, whom they knew not, was beyond their ken and all there that day knew it.

  The Sermon on the Mount has been correctly stated as being the constitution of the Kingdom of Heaven . During the ‘Millennium’ it will direct people in the way they will be expected to conduct themselves. Christ will be physically present during that time when the Kingdom of Heaven will be operational once again as in the days of Jesus of Nazareth.


46. I find it difficult to understand everything in the bible and it confuses me how one minute it says one thing and another minute something totally different!
Dennis –
Thames Ditton

Understanding everything in the bible will no doubt take more than one lifetime to achieve. Fortunately for those of us who have believed in the Son of God have received eternal life to allow us to iron out each and every troublesome contradiction that have arisen. Let me give you a key point to achieving the harmony of scriptural integrity.

It is to ecognise the importance of dispensational teaching in our bible studies. 2Tim 2:15 Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth”.

God, since Adam, has dealt with the human race in different ways so it is unwise to read from a dispensation other than our own and take any directions not meant for us, today. A bible dispensation is a period of time where God deals with man on the basis of a special consideration governing human affairs in that particular instance. We cannot therefore take every scripture, even those words that Jesus Himself spoke, and try to apply them directly as rules or commandments to govern our life now, unless the words are found to be pertaining to the Dispensation of this present church age of Grace.

Whenever we are studying the bible the first thing we should do is ask the Holy Spirit to grace us to see these several dispensations and then progress into dividing the Word. Say to yourself, “Where do I fit in the scheme of things?”  Or “Who is this book to?” “Is it to me in this dispensation of grace or to the Jew in a previous administration?” We have to ask these questions, otherwise we will continue to be confused.


47. How can I be more righteous in my life and show love towards people a little more?

Most of us have tried, some harder than others, to bring about what you just described. The majority of us who are honest will attest to not having achieved any consistency in this matter. When we eventually come to the truth, that we contain Christ who is the only righteous and perfect lover in me, can we begin to express this Christ-like nature.
If we are still trying to bring forth self-righteousness, we are practicing religion, which is trying to be Christ-like by our feeble attempts to imitate the one who is love. This is where the renewing of the mind is so important. We have no righteousness of our own; we should resist the urge to even show it as usually backfires in our face and spoils our testimony.
Living in the Spirit is to ‘know the truth’ about your union with Christ and responding in mind – body action. Gal 5: 25 “If we live by the Spirit, by the Spirit let us also walk by the Spirit. The only way He can express Himself through you is when your mind has become renewed to these facts and you become a know-er. The Christ in you will begin to manifest effortlessly the attributes (man-child) of the fruit of the Spirit which is “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, self-control; against such there is no lawGal 5: 23. Against these fruits there is no law or keeping of law. You just keep in memory that there’s another One in you who is all these things and the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus automatically begins to operate in the life of the believer.

48. How come the writing of the Apostle Paul differs so much from the Disciples and the Apostle Peter?

Paul wanted you to know something whereas Peter wanted you to do something, namely miracles. Obviously, there is nothing wrong with miracles because Paul preached and the power of the Spirit was there and miracles did happen under Paul’s ministry, but that was not his emphasis in his ‘my gospel revelations.

In contrast, Peter’s gospel was all about what Jesus of Nazareth did and all the mighty miracles that followed His ministry.

The gospels that the disciples were advocating were under law. The highlight of their books was Jesus’ miracles. However when Paul came along, his advice for physical wellness was: Use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thine often infirmities, he gave them a recipe! He didn’t talk power or miracles.

When he came across a demon-infested person, he did not rush to cast out the devil! It took a few days before he got sick and tired of them and then he cast it out, but that deliverance evidently wasn’t his main emphasis. Paul said, “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power. We’ve thought that meant powers as in miracles, but it was the power of the Teacher, doing what He does best, illuminating our minds to know Christ as our life.


49. I want to get baptized, my dilemma is do I get baptized in the name, Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost (Matt 28:19) or in Jesus name (Act2:38). Born again Christians have not made it clear to me.


When a person is baptised in water and the declaration is, "I baptize you into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit," this is not a formula that must be recited to authorize the baptism.

Water baptism was carried out by the Apostles either in the name of "the Lord", the "Lord Jesus Christ", or simply "in the name of Jesus." "Repent," Peter said to them in Acts 2:38, "and be baptized, each of you, in the name of Jesus the Messiah for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit". Those believers in Samaria were baptized "into the name of the Lord Jesus" (Acts 8:16). When Paul baptized some disciples in Ephesus they were baptized "into the name of the Lord Jesus Christ" (Acts 19:5). After that, Peter commanded Cornelius to baptized "in the name of the Lord" (Acts 10:48). Jesus said, "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you…" (Matt 28:19-20). As we can plainly see from the Word itself that not all of the phrases used were identical still certain "Pentecostals" squabble that "in the name of Jesus" is the set formula which must be adhered to in order to validate the baptism. The first century apostles would also then be at odds with the present "Jesus Only" Pentecostals. If you believe and will confess your faith in Him, be baptized into the blessed name of the divine Three as baptism is nothing without faith in God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ and witnessed by the Holy Spirit.


50. I was brought up Christian but have since drifted. I always believed that Satan was evil and hates God. If Satan hates God, why does he go along with His system of punishments and rewards? I was taught that if you do Gods will, you go to heaven and are rewarded. If you sin, you go to hell and are punished. But wouldn't Satan reward people for sinning, because they are following his will to sin.

You're right Satan does hate God. Gods reward system entails spiritual blessings for those that receive the gift of His Son into their life. Eternity and all that it implies is the gift that the Father promises to those that act by faith in believing the simple Gospel message. This simply means to believe on Jesus who paid the price for sin with the perfect sacrifice of His own body crucified at a place called Calvary.

Satan is the God of this world's system and can and sometimes does reward his devotees with material goods. This we know as Jesus himself was tempted by Satan to bow down and worship him and if He did He was promised the material wealth of all the kingdoms of the world. Matt 4:8-10 "Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve".

Serving Satan and doing his will instead of receiving Gods love will prove very costly in the end as the bible states that the end of all those that commit ungodly acts will die in their sin.


51. Why doesn't Peter's sermon in Acts 2, contain any reference about Christ in us, even though Christ had already ascended, were they actually born again yet?


Yes, they were born-again, they just didn't fully understand what had happened to them, just like some people today who can be born again and not know the reality of Christ in them as their life their only life.

Peter's first sermon on the day of Pentecost was taken from Joel 2:28 which was about a prophecy being fulfilled in the midst of all those present. "And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit".

He could have preached from a far greater perspective if he had known what fully happened on that feast day called Pentecost. John 14:20 "At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you". Then Peter could have preached "Christ in you, the hope of glory", he could have preached that Christ has come to dwell in the hearts of those that believed on Him. He could have, but he didn't because the secret that lay in the heart of the Father for 4300 years had not yet been revealed.

Paul some time later was given the revelation directly from Christ, what was in Gods heart, and the permission to speak and write those revelatory truths, which he called "My Gospel". Rom 16:25 "Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began...".


52. What are you supposed to do when you 'wait on God'?

Waiting is not about doing anything it's about knowing something. Waiting on God is not seen as a valuable trait in most people's way of thinking, but God sees it as valuable. He is the God of patience. Rom 15:5 "Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus".

Sooner or later during our Christian walk the Lord will manoeuvre us into a position where we will be forced to wait on Him. This timely lesson, of patiently waiting on Him, will ultimately prove to be profitable although we don't see it to be so at the time. This period is of Gods choosing and is not something that we should try to achieve by our own devises or religious practices.

During this period all you can do is just wait on Him until He initiates a plan or speaks a word in season. Its then, after the silence is broken, we'll be busier than ever, being busy where He is busy, working whilst having rest in that labour of love.

Paul said in Col 1:29 "Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily". He didn't say, "I labour and strive doing all these things for God apart from Him working in me". So now we have learnt to rest in the work, knowing that He in us has initiated it.


53. Does Heb 6:4-6 present a case for Christians to lose their salvation?

Heb 6 begins by saying "Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. And this will we do, if God permit".

If God permits, then He will take you "on unto perfection" and this perfection is His Son and knowing Him as your only life in a degree of union life not experienced before due to a previous legalistic approach to the Word. The idea here is of course is that we are not to go back from what we came out from.

What follows our permitted release into perfection or union life, is a hard portion of scripture in verses 4-6 to understand "For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame".

When we read this, we tend think of 'falling away' as in 'losing one's salvation'. However it just means falling away from the enlightenment and revelation of perfection which we have received and willingly putting ourselves back under legalism and law. So the Word is telling us that as Christ isn't going to 'die again' for us it's now impossible to renew our minds again, once we have put ourselves back under law. That's why, if God doesn't permit, He is protecting some of us, and we won't be going onward inwardly and upward spiritually because doesn't want you or I to fall away from the deeper knowing without a hope of ever regaining perfection.


54. Jesus said "today you will be with me in Paradise" to the thief on the cross Luke 23:43 - and it says that when He comes again, "the dead in Christ will rise first". 1Thess.4:16. My 13 year old son died last year after battling cancer. He loved and knew Jesus so I know he is with Him. Lynette, France.

The explanation of this verse where Jesus said "Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise." rests entirely on punctuation, which depends in every respect on human authority. It wasn't until the ninth century did the Greek manuscripts have punctuations added which was only a dot in the middle of any given line separating each word. In the absence of the word "that" before today, allows a uncertainty in the wording of the dependent sentence. The uncertainty is set aside by the frequently used general Hebrew saying, "I say unto thee this day," in addition to the treatment given in other scriptures where the verb is connected with "to-day".

The thief had uttered faith in Messiah's coming Kingdom, and consequently in the imminent resurrection of its King. Jesus therefore answered him in his dire circumstance "thou shall be, with Me, in Paradise". In reading Isa. 35 we see the Promised Land turning into a Paradise brought about by the Messiah reigning in His Kingdom. It is "THE Paradise," of which the prophets spoke regarding the Lord coming in His Kingdom.

Those who have gone before us, that are asleep in Jesus, who believed in the Lord Jesus, including your son, shall "rise" first before those of us that are still alive at His coming. 1 Thess. 4:16.

This resurrection of our physical bodies will allow us to be like Him in conformity to His glorious body in order to enjoy eternal life. The Christ rejecting will not rise until the end of the thousand years Millennial reign of Christ.


55. I believe Adam and Eve sinned not because they wanted to be like God but just because they wanted to be God. Jesus calls us all to be like God. "Be perfect as my Father in heaven is perfect". So is it wrong if I teach that Adam and Eve wanted to be God not like God? Juliet - Ocala, Florida

The temptation was not that they could be God but that they could be as gods "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". Gen 3:5

So yes, you would be wrong in assuming that Satan tempted them with the thought of becoming God. The tempter is very subtle so a direct attack on eliminating Gods position and taking over the universe by their own power was not an option he gave them. Rather he suggested they rid themselves of Gods supervision and go into business for themselves.

This disobedience has continued in the human psyche for over 6000 years, Hopefully, we the body of Christ, will begin to lead the way in reversing the trend of independent self trying to live the LIE that Satan propagated. The LIE that man can within himself somehow manage his or her life is still the issue today that needs correcting.

Satan who is the high priest of all worldly religions flaunts the premise of an independent self, as if there's such a thing, trying to please God through human effort and good deeds. All religions essentially say the same thing, keep a set of laws or wear outer symbols or deny some form of normal human behaviour etc and God will accept you. This equals wrong thinking similar to Cain's in Gen 4:3.

As for being perfect by ones own ability in keeping a set of outer laws (doings) is to keep the LIE alive. We as Christians are only perfect because of who we contain not because we can keep the Law perfectly thus becoming perfect by our own efforts.


56. We have all these teachers in prophecy, but three differing views: That Jesus will come again before the tribulation, halfway during it, at the end of the seven years. Does rapture happen where Christians get taken up to heaven? That seems to infer a Third Coming? That doesn't seem to fit. It's possible that when Jesus comes again we believers who are alive together with the dead in Christ are called alongside to join Him in His return is it not? And then His glorious appearing will herald the millennial reign on earth. What do you think? STEVEN B.

You're right there are so many different views about the rapture - pre, mid, post or none at all. So what do we all do in a case like this where everyone has their version of bible end-time events? First of all we all can agree that Christ physical return to earth is a future event soon to be fulfilled. Secondly continue to pray that the Holy Spirit reveals the truth in the scriptures that contains the one true end-time event.

Also it important to know the there are two views regarding the end-times one is historical and the other is futuristic. Most charismatics and modern day writers hold the latter view. The historical view says that the anti-christ has been named and the tribulation already has taken place with the death of millions of believers during the Inquisition therefore Christ's physical return can take place at any time. All the reformers including Martin Luther pointed the finger at the papal succession of authority centred at Rome. The latter and modernistic view causes us to look for another anti-christ before Christ can come back to the earth.

Let's keep it simple. Christ returns to earth with the trump of God sounding in the ears of all. The dead in Christ rise first then we that are still alive on earth at His coming will receive their glorified bodies to match Christ the Lord's so forever to be with Him through eternity.


57. If Jesus leads us into all truth, then how come so many Bible teachers have all manner of interpretations, teaching on many issues, e.g. predestination? I believe it is nonsense to hold that God has elected some to damnation. The justice of God demands otherwise. The Early Church Fathers taught free will until Augustine came up with his theory. STEVEN B.

Jesus prayed that the Holy Spirit would come as the Revelator to lead us into all truth. John 16:13 "When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak whatever He hears. He will also declare to you what is to come."

That prayer was answered and on the day of Pentecost He came with tongues of fire being evident upon the heads of the disciples. I firmly believe that the ALL TRUTH that Jesus referred to had not as yet been released. The necessary vessel required was Paul the Apostle to receive the ALL TRUTH directly from the Lord. It is apparent to all that God has made known His will "at sundry times and in divers manners" (Heb 1:1-2). He also held in reserve His secrets, and revealed them periodically according to His purpose and counsels.

As for predestination it only makes sense in the light of Gods foreknowledge. God sees through the telescope of time and knows the choices a person will make during their lifetime. Armed with that knowledge He calls us who are in the election, knowing we will accept Him as Lord during our lifetime. 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". This "foreknowledge" of the Omniscience God allows the freewill of man to be maintained by saint and sinner alike for nothing should interfere with a person's freewill.


58. Moses, Paul and others in the Bible were disabled. Some could not see well, others could not hear. Are there others in the bible that God used? T. W. Jonesborrow GA USA


When God showed Samuel whom to anoint as king of Israel, the old prophet was astonished to find that God didn't choose the tallest or the oldest of Jesse's sons. This particular event sends a message of unprecedented clarity that God's choice of whom He will work through does not necessarily include physical perfection or human talent. In fact quite the opposite stares at us from the pages of the bible. Christ's teaching as well as Paul and the other Apostles seem to favour the weak position over the strong as the example in receiving grace from God.

Finding appropriate role models from the pages of bible history with whom disabled people can identify with is rather hard. There are, however, some fascinating references to disability involving well-known figures in the Bible. It seems very likely that Moses, one of the most well-known prophets of the Bible, was disabled. Moses wasn't lying to God about his speech impairment which led to his brother Aaron being his translator. Ex 4:10 "And Moses said unto the LORD, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue. And the LORD said unto him, Who hath made man's mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD?".

Later on Moses received directly from God the Ten Commandments that ruled the conduct of the Israelites and still today is used as the plumb line of morality for approximately two thirds of the world's population. Moses was used by God to liberate his people from slavery calling on Pharaoh to 'let my people go'. This is the cry of today's Disabled Peoples' Movement and DAN's Free Our People Campaign.


59. What do the stories of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, the Flood, and the Tower of Babel say to us in our situation today about the judgment and mercy of God?

In the four stories that you gave you will find that each one ends in the inability of mankind to keep the laws and conditions imposed by God for each particular dispensation. For example the end of the Dispensation of Innocence required a sacrifice for sin, as all the future dispensations eventually would.

A Bible dispensation is a period of time during which God deals with the human race according to that particular dispensation. Even though God says in Mal 3:6 'For I am the LORD, I change not'. He doesn't change but the way He deals with people in each dispensation does. God has dealt with mankind differently in each dispensation throughout history. Therefore it is unwise for us to read from a past dispensation other than our own present dispensation of grace and take directions and doctrine not meant for us.

So the end result of this first dispensation was that God proved to the first man Adam that it would be impossible for him to keep law, without the life of God in him, enabling him to do so.

Many would like to think they could bring about their own success. They actually think they can come through life in good shape, living for themselves in achievement and prosperity. We never were designed by God to manage our life that never was and never has been God's plan. It's madness to think we can, that was, and still is, the lie from Satan. Gen 3:5 " …that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil".

So God's mercies have continued down the ladder of dispensations providing sacrificial lambs until the LAMB OF GOD, took away the sins of the world at the start of this wonderful dispensation of Grace.


60. When Christ came into my heart two years ago he gave me the promise in Jer 29:11-14. Time and time again God has used this verse in my life and now is one of those times, but as I have dug deeper I find links to Dan 9:3, Lev 26:39, Deut 30:1, 24:7, 4:7, Ps 32:6 and so on. I am finding it really difficult to understand how all these tie together, can you help me. Chris.

Jer 29:11-14 "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. Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. And I will be found of you, saith the LORD: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the LORD; and I will bring you again into the place whence I caused you to be carried away captive".

All scripture as we know is God breathed and as such is not meant for personal interpretation. 2Pet 1:20 "Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation". The scripture that you refer to was from Jeremiah the prophet who sent from Jerusalem to the remainder of the elders, priests, and prophets which were carried away captives and to all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had taken away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon; However The Holy Spirit does use scripture to reveal things to us as individuals. If a scripture for instance leaps out of the pages of the Word during ones bible study then that Word (Logos) becomes Rhema. Rhema (Greek) is where the written word becomes life to that person but not necessarily to everyone else.

The Bible has three different ways in which it can be interpreted. Firstly, scripture has a Primary purpose intended for a specific situation in dealing with or admonishing a person or Nation etc and needs to remain in that setting. Secondly there's the Prophetic interpretation which has a future time line for its fulfillment and cannot be made to fit any other non intended scenario to suit someone's forced reading of the scriptures. Thirdly there's the Inspirational interpretation, where a preacher or speaker can minister a portion of scripture, through the unction of the Holy Spirit, to make it a personal word to the hearer hence leaving the Primary and Inspirational interpretations that it was originally intended for.


61. Do you believe in love? J.K

I certainly do believe in love. Of course we know that love has many different forms of expression. To those of us who read our bibles we know that the word says that "God is love". 1John 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".

God then doesn't just give us love, as He is love, so He gave us the gift of Love in the form of His Son. The nature of the Son is the same in quality as the Fathers and this love is like a diamond of the first water. This means it is without flaw or taint of any kind. Human love can be degraded by the taint of jealousy or envy and can become vulgar by carnal lust or made ineffectual by being a respecter of persons.

When we believe and confess Christ we receive into ourselves His nature which is perfect love. This love (self for others) is opposite to our previous Adamic nature (self for self) and seeks an opportunity to express itself, thus fulfilling the Royal Law of Love..

When this agape love (self for others) operates through us we honour God and His Word. To say we have love and yet still hate our brother means we reject him who God has accepted. 1John 2:9 "He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now". This hypocrisy throws a shadow over us whereby we no longer see clearly with discerning eyes but rather become a judge of the Law. Finally let us embrace the heart of God and keep His commandment which He gave us in John 13:34 "A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another".


62. Psalms2:7 says "I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee".
What day exactly does this mean. That Jesus became His Son?

The day referred to was the time of Christ's resurrection from the dead.

It is necessary that an announcement by God the Father of that decree as it is required for the satisfaction of all of us who are called and commanded to surrender themselves subjects to the King of Kings.

This decree would leave no room for excuses to those who will not have Christ to be Lord over their lives. Three times in the New Covenant the words from Psalms 2:7 are mentioned so as to drive the point home as to Christ's appointment as Lord and High Priest over all. Whether we willingly accept this decree or not depends on our freewill choice. Ultimately all living creatures will bend the knee to His choice of Divine Authority whether we have willingly submitted, by believing and then receiving Gods gift of His Son, or not as a Christ rejecting individual.

Ac 13:33 "God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee".
Heb 1:5 "For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?"
Heb 5:5 "So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee".

He is the Son of God, and having the same nature with the Father, containing all the fullness of the godhead, never-ending wisdom, power, and holiness. The highest government of the church is too high an honour and too hard a task for any one person as there is none capable but He who is one with the Father and was from eternity by him as one brought up with him, thoroughly one with of all his Fathers counsels and will.


63. So what is the deal with hell?
Where did the idea come from scripturally?
B. P - Santa Monica CA

The first mention of this Hebrew word "Sheol" is in Gen 37:35, where it is stated as "grave". Grave is mentioned 65 times in the Old Testament so a bible student needs to go to each scripture to draw together the Biblical usage of the word.
Most traditional and pagan use of the word "Hell" is harmful to our understanding and devalues Gods love. The only two translations that mention "hell" in the Old Testament are the KJV 31 times and the NKJV 19 times. The use of the pagan word "hell" in the OT is eliminated in all other versions of the Bible. In the New Covenant of the KJV of the Bible the term "hell" is mentioned 23 times. Hell is translated in the Old Covenant from the word, Sheol which means "the world of the dead" and is not suggestive of fire.

In the New Covenant, "hell" is from three words, Tartaroo, Hades, and Gehenna. The first "Hell" from tartaroo is translated only once which means "the deepest abyss of Hades". Hades is where "the angels that sinned are to be reserved unto judgment." 2 Peter 2:4 "For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment". It would nonsensical to believe that angels would be burning in hell before the judgment of their rebellion is pronounced as they haven't been judged yet. It would be a serious breach of justice if our courts hanged an accused murderer and then later on judged him to see if he was guilty or not.

If the Christ rejecting were to exist forever in a fiery hell that would constitute eternal life which is the same as the righteous only the quality would be different. Rom 6:23 states - that the penalty for sin is death not eternal life.


64. May 28th So what is the deal with hell?
What about those folk who have never heard the gospel?
B. P - Santa Monica CA

Our part in Christian witnessing is to share the Gospel so that they have heard. To come to the conclusion that a person is lost because he never heard our preaching is a severely flawed opinion. As we do not know the inner thoughts of a person we shouldn't act like a god and sentence those who never heard the massage of Gods grace to everlasting torment. Best we leave it to what we do know and that is plain when a person testifies to the acknowledgement of receiving Christ as Lord and Saviour.

For any of us to pass judgment on a person would be infantile. We are not omniscient and know not how a loving God will judge a person regarding eternity. Certainly we are asked to make judgments of persons in the church that affect the overall running of our community. However we have never been authorized to pass judgment on individuals in association to eternity. What may or may not happen to people, who have never heard the Gospel after death, is generally someone's opinion... that's all. Nobody really knows what will happen to them except God Himself.

Lets at least comfort ourselves and others that the God we serve and know will not send anyone to eternal damnation without that individual having the choice to first reject or receive Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. Where and when that choice is presented to them we do not know, that's our Heavenly Fathers domain.


65. So what is the deal with hell?
Is there redemption based on personal experience and knowledge?
B. P - Santa Monica CA

If the personal experience was a genuine one and the knowledge revelatory then I would say yes if it centered on Jesus Christ as God coming in the flesh.
The danger in personal experience and knowledge as being the means to securing eternal life is when it replaces the scriptural way of salvation. 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".

When a person hears the true Gospel through a preacher or messenger the Holy Spirit is the one who convinces that person of three things - John 16:8 "And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment".

The real problem with all doctrines about hell, eternal security etc is that we so often fail to remind each other in our preaching and teaching that salvation is a person, not something you do or don't do. If salvation is union with a person and that person is Jesus Christ then it's reasonable to suggest that not being saved from the old Adamic union (that satanic nature in man) and his ways would constitute the opposite of heaven which we would call hell.

Bluntly put - we will be where the God who indwells is, for as Paul exclaims in 1Co 6:19 "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?". So then twice born (physically and spiritually) die once physically, once born (physically) die twice physically and spiritually


66. So what is the deal with hell?
Where is hell located? B. P - Santa Monica CA

Of the 3 words in the Bible referring to hell tartaroo, Sheol, and Gehenna only the latter has any suggestion of fire or torment in mind. Gehenna is the Greek word comparable of the Hebrew Hinnom. This Hinnom is a valley outside Jerusalem where the refuse of the city was taken and cast into a continual burning fire.

J.W. Hanson's, Bible Threatenings Explained

"Gehenna was a well-known valley, near Jerusalem, in which the Jews in their idolatrous days had sacrificed their children to the idol Moloch, in consequence of which it was condemned to receive the offal and refuse and sewage of the city, and into which the bodies of malefactors were cast and where to destroy the odor and pestilential influences, continual fires were kept burning. Here fire, smoke, worms bred by the corruption, and other repulsive features, rendered the place a horrible one, in the eyes of the Jews. It was a locality with which they were as well acquainted. But in process of time Gehenna came to be an emblem of the consequences of sin, and to be employed figuratively by the Jews, to denote those consequences. But always in this world. The Jews never used it to mean torment after death, until long after Christ. The word had not the meaning of post-mortem torment when our Savior used it. Also note, not one single time in the entire Old Testament was this word "Ge-Hinnom" translated as "hell."

Every Bible reference using the word "hell" is addressed to this world. It was also employed in the time of Christ as a symbol of moral corruption and wickedness; but more especially as a figure of the terrible judgment of God on the rebellious and sinful nation of the Jews. It was a place fit only for waste.


67. What day is the Sabbath Day that Yahweh refers to in the 10 Commandments and the statement Jesus made, "But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day"? Mat 24:20

If you look up the word Sabbath in the dictionary it will inform you that Saturday is the seventh day of the week to be observed as a day of rest. During the Dispensation of Law this was to be kept as a Holy Day as unto the Lord and still today held by the Jews and some Christian sects as sacred.

During ancient times the sun God was worshiped by the Babylonians, Persians and Romans. The emperor Constantine of the Roman Empire had many troubles to deal with especially as the Jews were revolting against Rome. He knew that the Christians and Jews worshiped on Saturday and that Sunday was essentially held sacred by the pagans of whom many were Roman citizens. He devised a clever plan to unite the empire by introducing Sunday as an acceptable day for Christians in which to worship in honour of the resurrection of Jesus Christ and also for the pagans to keep Sunday in honour of their sun god, thus pacifying the people. The decree Constantine made in 321 AD says "On the venerable day of the sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all the workshops be closed."

One of the reasons Jesus told the disciples to pray that the flight of the Jews during the Great Tribulation would not take place on the Sabbath was because the gates of the city would be shut, preventing their exit. The signal to flee, Jesus said, was "when therefore ye see the abomination of desolation" or "When ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies" Luke 21:20.
The city of Jerusalem was invaded on August 10, A. D. 70. Such was the ordeal that it caused women to eat their own children to stave off starvation. Those Jews within the city fought each other as well as the Roman army with 1,100,00 people killed, and 100,000 were sold into slavery .
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