Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 7, 2022

The Mechanics of Reconciliation

“Then everyone who survives of all the nations that have come against Jerusalem shall go up year after year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Booths.  And if any of the families of the earth do not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, there will be no rain on them.  And if the family of Egypt does not go up and present themselves, then on them there shall be no rain; there shall be the plague with which the Lord afflicts the nations that do not go up to keep the Feast of Booths.  This shall be the punishment to Egypt and the punishment to all the nations that do not go up to keep the Feast of Booths.” Zechariah 14:16-19

“And on the banks, on both sides of the river, there will grow all kinds of trees for food. Their leaves will not wither, nor their fruit fail, but they will bear fresh fruit every month, because the water for them flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food, and their leaves for healing.” Ezekiel 47:12

“Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.” Revelation 22:1-2

When people go up to the feast of tabernacles, what will be the process that will allow them to eat from the trees of life?

“But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.  Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison.” Matthew 5:22-25

Will a simple acceptance of apology suffice? Will restitution have to be paid? Will the church weigh in on the sincerity of the apology?

“After the Lord had spoken these words to Job, the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite: “My anger burns against you and against your two friends, for you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has.  Now therefore take seven bulls and seven rams and go to my servant Job and offer up a burnt offering for yourselves. And my servant Job shall pray for you, for I will accept his prayer not to deal with you according to your folly. For you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has.” Job 42:7-8

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | October 24, 2022

Did it happen?

“But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, and their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, who have swerved from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already happened. They are upsetting the faith of some.” 2 Timothy 2:16-18

“And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split.  The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many.” Matthew 27:51-53

Does this not seem like a contradiction? Did the resurrection happen after Jesus died or not? Our best guess is that the line saying, “The tombs also were opened. And many bodies…” was inserted later and was not part of the original scripture. Jesus himself appeared to many after he was raised and this would seem to negate the need for other saints to appear.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | October 11, 2022

The Great Commission

The Great Commission probably has a funny ring to a salesman. “And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to follow all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20

How many times have you heard someone say, “If I hadn’t preached the message to uncle Bob before he died, he would never have heard the gospel message?” How many believe that God would not give the full gospel message to a person and then condemn them eternally for unbelief? We need to get over ourselves and realize that God is bigger than our need to ‘save’ someone. We are merely called to share the gospel message out of a pure heart. We are not responsible for the response.

“This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24:14

Does this say that the gospel must be preached to the whole world and then Jesus will come back? This is what many believe. Actually Jesus will come back before all have heard the gospel. In fact, Jesus’ return is all about completing the Great Commission to the world:

“They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain,
For the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
As the waters cover the sea.” Isaiah 11:9

““Jacob will not be ashamed now, nor will his face turn pale now;
But when he sees his children, the work of My hands, in his midst,
They will sanctify My name;
Indeed, they will sanctify the Holy One of Jacob,
And will stand in awe of the God of Israel.
Those who err in mind will know the truth,
And those who criticize will accept instruction.” Isaiah 29:22-24

“I will lead those who are blind by a way they have not known,
In paths they have not known I will guide them.
I will turn darkness into light before them
And uneven land into plains.
These are the things I will do,
And I will not leave them undone.” Isaiah 42:16

“For this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord: “I will put My law within them and write it on their heart; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.  They will not teach again, each one his neighbor and each one his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the Lord, “for I will forgive their wrongdoing, and their sin I will no longer remember.” Jeremiah 31:33-34

“For the earth will be filled With the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, As the waters cover the sea.” Habakkuk 2:14

The Great Commission will be completed with or without us. Everyone will be raised back from the dead to accomplish this. Everyone will know about the Messiah and experience life as God intended.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | October 6, 2022

History

Have you ever read history? Does the account accurately describe what happened? Is it biased? How would God portray the same history? Much of written history does not account for the moral actions of the participants. Bible history is clear that right and wrong are most important to God. One aspect of history that is often ignored is the role of secret societies. Satan’s greatest trick is to convince people he doesn’t exist, and his second greatest trick is convincing people that he has no human followers working with him.

But what will we learn in the future? We know that all people are coming back to life: “I will ransom them from the power of Sheol; I will redeem them from death: O death, where are thy plagues? O Sheol, where is thy destruction?” Hosea 13:14

“Thy dead shall live; thy dead bodies shall arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in the dust; for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast forth the dead.” Isaiah 26:19

“Marvel not at this: for the hour cometh, in which all that are in the tombs shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of judgment.” John 5:28-29

“For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.” 1 Corinthians 15:22

“having a hope in God, which these men cherish themselves, that there shall certainly be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked.” Acts 24:15

We also know: “Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more, things that pertain to this life?” 1 Corinthians 6:3

If we judge angels, we must know them first. Will they show us history from the angelic perspective? Will we get to see a rerun of our own history with the angelic and demonic forces at play? Will Job finally get to see that he was a pawn in a Satanic drama? God gives us a glimpse of the heavenly curtain being pulled back with Elisha:

“And Elisha prayed, and said, Jehovah, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And Jehovah opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.” 2 Kings 6:17

Imagine being able to see angels and demons! Although we may get to see the heavenly activity from our past, we will not see any demonic activity during the height of Christ’s reign:

“And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand.  And he laid hold on the dragon, the old serpent, which is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, and cast him into the abyss, and shut it, and sealed it over him, that he should deceive the nations no more, until the thousand years should be finished: after this he must be loosed for a little time.” Revelation 20:1-3

Then it will all make sense. The mysteries of history will be laid plain.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | September 28, 2022

War

The war drums are beating in various places again. But, although we talk about peacetime, in fact we’ve been at war continuously since at least the Fall in the Garden.

“I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them;” Daniel 7:21

“And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels going forth to war with the dragon; and the dragon warred and his angels;” Revelation 12:7

“And the dragon waxed wroth with the woman, and went away to make war with the rest of her seed, that keep the commandments of God, and hold the testimony of Jesus:” Revelation 12:17

“There is a conspiracy of her prophets in the midst thereof, like a roaring lion ravening the prey: they have devoured souls; they take treasure and precious things; they have made her widows many in the midst thereof.” Ezekiel 22:25

“Be sober, be watchful: your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” 1 Peter 5:8

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | September 22, 2022

Ancient Mysteries

Who built the pyramids? How were they built? Who built Stonehenge? Who put the statues up at Easter Island? These mysteries will be unraveled during the height of Christ’s Kingdom.

“On that day there will be an altar to the Lord in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a memorial stone to the Lord beside its border.” Isaiah 19:19

Because of the unique geography of Egypt, there is a spot that is simultaneously in the midst of the land and at its border at the same time. This is where the Great Pyramid sits. It was built at the direction of God to show people that God knew the end from the beginning. Although it was completed about 2141 BC, it marks off events millennia future by way of the length of passages and turns. Those that built the pyramid will come back to life and explain how they built it.

“Your dead will live;
Their corpses will rise.
You who lie in the dust, awake and shout for joy,
For your dew is as the dew of the dawn,
And the earth will give birth to the departed spirits.” Isaiah 26:19

“I will ransom them from the power of Sheol; I will redeem them from death: O death, where are thy plagues? O Sheol, where is thy destruction?” Hosea 13:14

“Marvel not at this: for the hour cometh, in which all that are in the tombs shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of judgment.” John 5:28-29

“For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.” 1 Corinthians 15:22

“And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” Daniel 12:2

“This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; who would have all men to be saved, and come to the knowledge of the truth.” 1 Timothy 2:3-4

That truth will include the ancient mysteries.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | September 14, 2022

Witness Protection

One reason many crimes are not exposed is for fear of recrimination. This will change in the glory days of Christ’s Kingdom.

“For He will give His angels orders concerning you,
To protect you in all your ways.
On their hands they will lift you up,
So that you do not strike your foot against a stone.” Psalm 91:11-12

“Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand.  And he took hold of the dragon, the serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and he threw him into the abyss and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he would not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were completed; after these things he must be released for a short time.” Revelation 20:1-3

“The cities which you shall give to the Levites shall be the six cities of refuge, which you shall provide for the one who commits manslaughter to flee to;” Numbers 35:6

“Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, ‘When you cross the Jordan into the land of Canaan, then you shall select for yourselves cities to be your cities of refuge, so that the one who commits manslaughter by killing a person unintentionally may flee there.  The cities shall serve you as a refuge from the avenger, so that the one who commits manslaughter does not die until he stands before the congregation for trial.” Numbers 35:9-12

This shows the witness protection plan in action. The congregation will protect the accused until there is a fair trial. This will be carried out in spades during the height of Christ’s Kingdom.

“Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they will have the right to the tree of life, and may enter the city by the gates.  Outside are the dogs, the sorcerers, the sexually immoral persons, the murderers, the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying.” Revelation 22:14-15

Those that practice immorality in the fulness of Christ’s Kingdom will be prevented from harming the faithful. Forgiveness and repentance will be the order of the day.

“Come to good terms with your accuser quickly, while you are with him on the way to court, so that your accuser will not hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the officer, and you will not be thrown into prison.” Matthew 5:25

“For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:2

“Do not judge, and you will not be judged; and do not condemn, and you will not be condemned; pardon, and you will be pardoned.” Luke 6:37

Godly instruction will abound.

“Although the Lord has given you bread of deprivation and water of oppression, He, your Teacher, will no longer hide Himself, but your eyes will see your Teacher.  Your ears will hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right or to the left.” Isaiah 30:20-22

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | August 31, 2022

Is Summer Near?

“Now learn the parable from the fig tree: as soon as its branch has become tender and sprouts its leaves, you know that summer is near; so you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door.  Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.” Matthew 24:32-34

“I found Israel like grapes in the wilderness; I saw your forefathers as the earliest fruit on the fig tree in its first season.” Hosea 9:10

““This is what the Lord, the God of Israel says: ‘Like these good figs, so I will regard as good the captives of Judah, whom I have sent out of this place into the land of the Chaldeans.  For I will set My eyes on them for good, and I will bring them back to this land; and I will build them up and not overthrow them, and I will plant them and not uproot them.  I will also give them a heart to know Me, for I am the Lord; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me wholeheartedly.” Jeremiah 24:5-7

Israel is compared to a fig tree. Some see modern Israel and ask why Christ’s kingdom is not in full bloom. But has the fig tree sprouted its leaves? If we take Jesus’ millennial reign as a year, what season are we in? Biblically, the year most likely starts Fall, then Winter, Spring, and Summer. We are still in Fall! It’s likely that the fig tree’s (Israel’s) leaves are the resurrected Israelites of old. That clearly hasn’t happened yet. Remember:

“Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the Lord.” Malachi 4:5

Also, when it says ‘this generation will not pass’ it probably doesn’t refer to time or ancestry. It should read: ‘this race will not pass until…’.

We know this from the analogy with Noah:

“For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah.” Matthew 24:37

The problem in Noah’s day was the mixing of human and angelic flesh which resulted in giants who “every intent of the thoughts of their hearts was only evil continually.” Genesis 6:5

Is it a coincidence that we see in our day so much genetic tinkering?

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | July 26, 2022

One Flock

“And I have other sheep that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will listen to My voice; and they will become one flock, with one shepherd.” John 10:16

Many Christians have a superiority complex that they are going to heaven and are therefore superior to those who aren’t. How presumptive!

“Not that I have already grasped it all or have already become perfect, but I press on if I may also take hold of that for which I was even taken hold of by Christ Jesus.  Brothers and sisters, I do not regard myself as having taken hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,  I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14

If the apostle Paul didn’t think of himself as guaranteed to go to heaven, why should we? But let us remember that heaven and earth will meld in the end:

“And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.” Revelation 21:2

Jesus declared that ultimately there will be one flock under one Shepherd. Jews and Christians will merge as that one flock centuries from today.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | July 25, 2022

The Purpose of Life

What is the purpose of life? The short answer is: to prepare us for the next life. Most people don’t believe in an afterlife, and most Christians think heaven as some eternal serene retirement where there are no problems. If there’s no afterlife then the lament of Solomon is true:

“The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.

“Futility of futilities,” says the Preacher,
“Futility of futilities! All is futility.” Ecclesiastes 1:1-2

But God has us live our lives so that we will be prepared for the next. And the next life will by no means be boring! We will still have sin and good and evil to deal with. It will be some time (possibly millennia) till God has put all enemies under Jesus’ feet.

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

Categories